TOUGHNESS

I recently gave a speech for our local National Guard unit. I was speaking on toughness, or as the Army calls it, resiliency. In my view… toughness is something that has to be developed. Merriam-Webster’s calls resiliency “the ability to rise above adversity”. How many of you consider yourselves to be tough, or resilient? How many of you honestly can look down at your life and say unecquivocally that you have that trait? In my eyes, we all have it, but in varying degrees. In my case, I had to grow into this. It was painful and took almost 35 years. This is something near and dear to me. I love seeing people “get over”. I am all about “putting people over”. Toughness is a whole hell of a lot more than using curse words, talking loud and being overbearing. Some of the toughest people I ever met were under 5 feet tall, under 100 pounds.

I am sure a lot of you are reminiscing by now, looking at your body, looking at the tattoos, the scars, memories. If you grew up in my era (late 1990s/early 2000s), you can attest to a shift in the overall consciousness of Americans.Seems to be a less confident, less resilient people now. More groupthink, less “rugged individualism”. More victimhood rather than a “can-do” spirit. I will leave you all with this: Do not be afraid to fail. Don’t be afraid to be hurt. Never fear anything.

ASHY TO CLASSY

Recently a buddy of mine in the A has been racking up wins. Now, he’s a supervisor at his new job. I am very pleased and proud to know that he is doing great. Add to that, he’s a burgeoning writer. As a friend, I can stand by and watch him succeed (as a fan watches his/her fave sports team). I am proud to know Mr. LeBeau and to watch his development- from ashy to classy. He had been taking quite a few L’s since I’ve known him. Now, I would like to take the credit for his development and his success… I know I’d be lying, and doing that makes for nothing more than being a disingenuous fraud.

HUMANOIDS

Hey people. Just back from a somewhat ill-fated trip. Ever have a really bad 96 hour time frame where it seems to be what everyone around you is lying to you? I’ve had years like that. Not very fun at all. Plans falling apart, just awful things. A really bad flight where I almost passed out because of the heat. It’s ridiculous at times how life is. I’d by lying if I were to say it didn’t hurt, sting or aggravate me.

I get back home, another fight, a house that looked like a terrorist attack. People calling, aggravating me about BS that they coulda let go. Typical humanoids.

Four days worth of nonsense. I need a real vacation.

DO YOU

Take this for what you will, ladies and gentlemen. We live in a society that doesn’t give two f**ks about anything except what they can get from someone else. If men ain’t worth it ladies, be like Fleetwood Mac and go your own way. Complaining about men won’t change YOUR lot in life (unless you like being bitter angry and spiteful harpies). Men, if these women are nothing but hoes, idiots and all that, GO YOUR OWN WAY. It’s a big world out there. Whining about women gets old and it changes nothing. In closing… DO YOU.

HARD TIMES PT.2

Today, I suffered a setback. I didn’t even try to argue it much, because in this stage of my life, arguing something other than anything that is really important to me is just an abject waste of time. I often say that people are cheap props, that they really don’t matter, and that’s true.

Most people are slaves to that paycheck- they’ll do anything for that check. No integrity, no backbone. No hope. I certainly hate hard times. I hate having to deal with nonsense. This is the wake-up call I need to get my butt in gear and rise above this once and for all.

HARD TIMES

I been having a LOT of hard times lately. Gives me introspection on the world around me as well as myself and my struggles. I have gathered one thing from my difficulties, and that is perseverance. It is essential to success. Quitting, running from your problems, that just does not work. It is in the hard times where you find out who you are, what you’re capable of. I tend to say that is in the fight you make your name. Besides, I haven’t come this far to turn back now.

Life in tha 77316 part 4

It’s been a while. So I am back with some new stuff to tell ya. Recently I was made privy to some stuff about some close friends of mine. One of them, and old Army buddy, is basically Norbit. So much so, he was called out on it by his section sergeant (2012) and was laughed at for it. I got love for dude, but he allows this sheboon in his life to walk all over him. It’s disquieting to say the least. Another friend, who I met along the way out West, is in a bad way. On one hand, he is doing great things in his life. On the other hand, seems as if his personal life is falling apart. Bad times, bad people, bad things happening to a good dude. He feels alone in a lot of things, since he is a newcomer to a major West Coast city. I talk to him a lot. He comes to a consensus that he is going to change his life in a major way. With his work, he isn’t settling for anything. He wants to work multiple jobs. He wants to date again (he is out meeting, greeting people through his work anyway), plus he understands that life is nothing nice. I applaud his courage, because change doesn’t just happen. Besides, he’s too smart to just allow things to happen to him and not challenge/overcome them. His attitude has undergone a facelift, as he talks of personal branding. He’s even talking about writing a book and self-publishing (or getting it on amazon). Seems to me buddy is basically having a second coming-of-age. He is in his early 30s, yet experiencing life as a twentysomething would. I’d say my friend is just finally coming into his own. To hear him tell the tale, he was an outsider of outsiders. With much advice, insight, prayer and relating my story to him, he sees that he wasn’t so bad after all. Just he grew up around a lot of fools in a foolish time.
In closing, I must say I have seen a lot of people like this- amazingly enough, most of these achieve a lot later on in life.

LIFE IN THA77316 Part 3

Today, I am on a tear. I am finally bursting with ideas. So I’m writing them down. I can certainly say at times, that the life I am leading now is fantastic. On the other hand, being between good and great SUCKS. Things are on the uptick for me, though at times, so may things could be better. As you all know, I am never ashamed or afraid to talk about myself, my flaws. It is imperative I do it this way. To do it any other way would be almost blasphemous to me. A lot of life-changing events happening seemingly at once. I stand back, looking at it all. It’s like I am in a movie, starring me. So I stand to the side, watching myself experience a lot of craziness, foolishness, sadness and frustration. I know things are going to work out as they always do. No magic, no formulas, no potions. Just hard work. I had thought a lot about these things when I was a youngster that things would fall into place. The 37 year old Kente would tell the 15 year-old Kente that it doesn’t work like that. Life is funny like that- you can go from losing to winning in an instant. The converse (or, opposite) is also true.

The LAST MAN STANDING

Have you ever felt that you are in a valley in life? That everything you do is seemingly “in escrow” for a later time, but you need things now? Add to that, the people around you are not making anything easier, whether they complain a lot, whine, or whatever it is that they do? Troubles, trials and tribulations are the name of the game in life. We do live in an era where people have been softened up with “sweetness and light” coming from every angle. What is more confusing, there are those who actually do have answers, but their manner of delivering the answers further isolates and frustrates the people in need. How can you make something out of the seemingly endless cacophany of voices that all promise you that they will help you, make things easier and bring things to a head? I am no expert, guru or any of that. However, I can tell you about how it is imperative that you think for yourself. Thinking for yourself, personal accountability, stuff like that, is a lost art in our world today. But HOW do you think for yourself, when it is easier to go with the flow of media, popular opinion and groupthink? It is something to behold when you see someone using the brains God gave them. It is amazing to see men and women accomplish their own dreams instead of seeing people go on some track that allows them to live “life on autopilot”. How many times have we on social media or on our blogs, comment on those who we deem to be “stupid”? How did they get to be mentally deficient? And what makes us, any better than they are? Is there some disconnect that we haven’t figured out yet? Is it because it is 2014? Is it because we live in such an affluent society that even a growing class of people who do not have the skills to pay their bills is nothing to fear, since “we got ours”?

i simply wanna say that the times in which we live, it is more important than ever to realize we must “break out of the matrix” and begin to THINK FOR OURSELVES. I know it’s not very popular to be a thinker. I know it’s not very popular at all to have a set of beliefs that prides itself on a deity, or “rugged individualism”. If it were all to end today, what would you want to be said about you in the history books? To be THE LAST MAN STANDING, you must realize the times we are in, the urgency of life (as it passes all of us by to some degree), and just how frail we really are. It takes brains, brawn, desire and the willingness to endure tragedies, troubles and disappointment. As it says in Psalm 30:5, “weeping may endure for the night, but joy cometh in the morning”. 

For those of you who this hits, I hope it helps you, as writing is therapeutic for me.

For all of you seeking something in life, remember this old Roman proverb: PERDES OMNES QUI ADVENERUNT (Destroy All Who Came).