Sunday, December 17, 2006

...in with the new



Recently, I came up with a list of 50 things I hope not to see in 2007. Rather than just leaving the world with big holes from not having that stuff, I've come up with a list of things that I hope to see (or see more of) instead. Again, these are in no particular order:

1. Landon
My new nephew has been a much need breath of fresh air for my family. At five months, he’s already doing some pretty impressive things. I can’t wait to see which Ivy League school I’ll have to visit for his commencement.


2. Facebook.com
Opposite of blackplanet.com and myspace.com, this is a site where you can really CAN network and exchange thoughtful conversation. At least the part that I know about…


3. The abolition of the two-party system

If you’re like me and you’re sick of being represented by asses (Democrats) and pachyderms (Republicans), I think the emergence of a third, fourth, and possibly fifth party would be most welcome. For that matter, why don’t we just eliminate parties altogether? That would make for an interesting political environment.

4. Corinne Bailey Rae
Ever since I met her (figuratively speaking) in May, 2006, I’ve been in love. I just hope that her humbly beginnings keep her newfound fame in perspective.

5. Beyonce
Minus pretty dismal acting skills, she has the potential to be one of my favorite artists. If she can get rid of the ass-shaking part of gimmick and rely solely on her singing ability, she’ll go a long way in my book.

6. Academic success
I’m not rich. I’m not heavily desired/sought after by the girls. Hell, I can barely keep friends. One of the only bright spots I have right now is the sense of accomplishment that comes with achieving goals. Academic success is one of them. Andre Louis, Ph.D. Nice ring, dontcha think?

7. Keith Olbermann
Sure he’s clearly a liberal. Sure he’s as biased toward the GOP as Fox News is toward John Kerry. But you can’t argue with the fact that he’s one of the wittiest and most articulate editorial journalists around. Watch out “Bill-O”.

8. Barack Obama
I don’t think he should be bracing up for a presidential run so soon, but I’m completely enamored by his politics. It’s people like him who give me a restored faith in the political machine.

9. Dave Matthews Band
Now that Dave Matthews has got the ‘going solo’ thing out of his system, I’m hoping that he and his band can reclaim their title of the best band ever.

10. Spiderman 3
Lots of people are starting to grow tired of superhero movies. Not me. Sweet Lord, not me. In fact, if they don’t release this movie soon, I might have to vicariously live out the Spiderman experience. It wouldn’t be a pretty sight seeing me squeeze into a Spiderman costume and swing from buildings.

11. The Hippie Conservative
I often tease him about having an oxymoronic name. But, truth be told, it’s refreshing to see someone who doesn’t subscribe to every single tenant of one particular group.

12. Jon Stewart
Whenever you have a witty and satirical news show that is more reliable and relied on than ‘real’ news, you’re doing big things.

13. Youtube.com
Whether you want to find your favorite commercial from the 80’s or if you're trying to resolve a bet about how the Curious George theme song went, you can find virtually any clips and videos on this site. Google landed themselves a goldmine when they got onboard.


14. House, M.D.
For a while, Nip Tuck was the cutting edge show that I couldn’t get enough of. But once the Carver storyline made the show as sharp as a plastic spatula, House has become my new favorite show. I hope that its success lasts. Finding new favorite shows can be exhausting.

15. Mel Gibson

I know what you’re thinking: Why would I support this guy? Whatever you have to say about him being a jerk is absolutely correct. But – like him or not – he has an amazing ability as a writer/director. Between Braveheart, the Passion, and Apocalypto, he does as good a job as anybody in making us uncomfortable.

16. Warren Buffet
When I found out that he committed to donating 85% of his entire fortune to fighting AIDS, he became my new best friend.

17. Jim Gaffigan

Besides Sinbad, is there a funnier comedian around who doesn’t have to cuss and call the audience the n-word?

18. Bill Maher

ABC really dropped the ball when they cancelled “Politically Incorrect”. Since then, his show “Real Time” is the highest rated show on HBO. Whoever thought that bad mouthing the President could be so lucrative? Apparently not ABC.

19. Jeopardy
By yelling incorrect answers out loud, this is the worst way to prove your intelligence (but incredibly fun, nonetheless). What is “Playing Jeopardy”?

20. Music downloading sites
Before you sick the RIAA on me, I’m not talking about free file-sharing sites where you can pirate music. I’m referring to legitimate sites where you can purchase individual songs and .mp3s; versus an entire album. You can finally get the songs you want; rightfully pay for them, and get spoiled, whiny artists and their team of $1000/hr. lawyers off of your back.

21. Don Cheadle and George Clooney

While most of the entertainment world is focusing their attention on which celebs are in conflict with each other, who wore what at what event, or how many kids Madonna is stealing, it’s encouraging to see people use their status to address serious yet ignored issues like the crisis in Darfur.

22. Less complacency
One thing that 2006 has taught me is that complacency impedes change and progress. From mindless church practices to how people treat me, accepting things “as they are” doesn’t do me any good. Sometimes intolerance can be a good thing; especially when tolerance negatively affects change.

23. Political investigations
Had it not been for deep undercover exploration, the UN’s corruption would have gone unchecked, Jack Abramhoff, Tom Delay, and William Jefferson would still be accepting bribes and Mark Foley would still be sending “naughty” emails to young male pages.

24. The Practice on DVD
With the exception of maybe the last season, I’d eat my own children to get The Practice on DVD. Oh, wait. I don’t have children. Well then; I’d eat yours.

25. Paid student athletes
While we’re paying $45-60 per game to see these kids play every week; which allows the schools to generate millions, the students are getting just enough to pay for school and a week’s supply of Ramen noodles. Something is wrong with that picture.

26. Stephen Colbert
Not only is he hilarious on his show, but he’s one of the only people who can stand right in the President’s face, insult him, and have him not even know he’s being insulted. But since it was President Bush, I take that back.

27. John Legend
Similar to Beyonce, he’s a young black artist who actually has skill. A rare commodity in today’s industry.

28. Turbo Tax
No more waiting in long lines and paying big bucks at H&R Block. For a small fee you can own the tax preparing software that is likely to put CPAs out of the business (or lower their rates) pretty soon.

29. Hybrid Technology
Finally! Toyota and Honda and broken into the hybrid market. Their 60-mile-to-the-gallon babies are making a mockery out of the big three U.S. automakers. Fuel-efficient vehicles that don’t have to be powered by foot. Fred Flintstone must be fuming right now.

30. Joanne Rosario
After having a so-so first album, this Gospel talent blessed me infinitely with her second album. The future looks bright for her.

31. The Green-Eyed Girl on Planet Earth
Whoever came up with the idea that “opposites attract” must’ve had us in mind. Greeny’s optimism and my “pessimism” are a perfect mismatch.

32. Alicia Keys

Another R&B sensation who has brought a unique and refreshing sound to the music industry. Not to mention, she’s got a Juilliard education. I’m not a fine arts guy, but even I know that’s impressive.

33. Funnier Super Bowl commercials

They say that; proportionately speaking; commercials aired during the Super Bowl are the most expensive thing on television. For once, I’d like for the ads that interrupt my game-day experience to have a little more than Jessica Simpson selling pizza.

34. Michigan’s Proposal 2 Overturned
The so-called Michigan Civil Rights Initiative snuck its way onto the November ballot and relied on deception and false advertisement to gain support from Michigan voters. Hopefully, people will realize the error of their ways and overturn the voting outcome.

35. Jay Bakker

The son of Pastor Jim Bakker (an evangelical, turned crook, turned evangelical again). Challenging the traditional upbringing of his parents, this young, new-aged minister is just what we need for religious folks who have lost their minds these days.

36. State of the Black Union
As a young intellect (at least I’m aspiring to be), watching a collection of positive, intelligent blacks with immersed and prophetic agendas is a refreshing balance to people on BET talking about cars and jewelry.

37. The elimination of the Electoral College
Unless we can rationally explain to our grandchildren how a guy could receive more votes in an election and still lose, I think it’s time for the U.S. to catch up with everyone else and lose this silly voting system.

38. National Public Radio
Once NPR starts addressing minority-related issues with more frequency and lose their sponsorship from “private” organizations, they’ll dominate every radio market except for the gun-totin’ religion-promotin’ card-carrying members of the GOP.

39. Jazz radio stations
Some people argue that urban communities aren’t sophisticated enough to enjoy jazz music. But at the Flint Jazz festival; not a single person was shot, arrested, or involved in a brawl. Compare that to the notorious nightclubs in the area and the so-called music they play. I rest my case.

40. A June Jordan anthology
Being one of the most righteous black intellectuals of our time, I hope that her works will be available in an entire collection one day.

41. You Can’t Do That On Television
The hit Canadian comedy show – turned Nickelodeon classic – gave us everything we needed a children. I admit: it was pretty edgy for its time. But I think that we adults can now appreciate how funny this show really was. Not like some of the other shows; that are so w_tered down. Ha! You thought I was going to “water”. *Cue the liquid*

42. Relocation
If everything goes according to plan, I should be finished with graduate school in 2007. From there, I’d like to move. I just don’t feel like there’s anything left for me in Michigan (except for Michigan football perhaps)

43. Spirit Airlines
Initially I wasn’t a huge fan of theirs. But any airline that can get me to DC and back for under $60 easily becomes a friend of mine.

44. Accurate movie trailers
If movie trailers were a true indicator of movie quality, perhaps I would not have been as angry with The Village. Better movie trailers mean a happier Andre; which means no complaining.

45. Retro TV

Looking for episodes of Fat Albert? The Facts of Life? Voltron? Double Dare? Jem? Mr. Wizard? Transformers? A television station that airs 24 hours of 80’s and 90’s shows will help me relive the childhood that I was forced to abandon for the sake of adulthood. As much as I love Spongebob, I’d gladly give him up for Alvin & the Chipmunks.

46. Yo Momma
This show probably wins the award for ‘best guilty pleasure’. Except for a cheesy, borderline homosexual host, this show is a winner. I get a kick out of it every time it’s on.

47. NBA on TNT
This award winning show is the only thing that makes professional basketball even remotely interesting these days. Well that…and the brawls.

48. Jill Scott
Her organic sound, poetic flow, and tight beats give my ears something to take rock to outside of the sterile and vacuous world of today’s hip-hop.

49. Scheduled naps at work
I don’t know about you, but nothing says “productivity” more than allowing time at work to sleep. Maybe if there was a designated 'nap time', I’d stop dozing off in staff meetings.

50. Safer automobiles

For an additional $110 per unit, vehicles produced in this country can be manufactured considerably safer. Isn’t human life more valuable than that?

There you have it. More wishful thinking...

- ACL

12 "Insiders" spoke their mind. Join in...:

green eyed girl on planet earth said...

Andre~ My Greeneyed handsome Sweet Man !!!!

I love the list , many things on there are great , and I really have to tell you that you have made my YEAR (giGGle) , it isnt even here yet (The New year) and it has a great light on it already! Thank you .
You really made me blush , sitting here all alone ,reading you and BAMM 31! You are such a sweetheart along with all your other attributes , which are many .
What a wonderful soul you are Andre , and yes opposites attract ,LIKE a MAGNET I am drawn IN, It is great .
Thanks for the comment , it means more than you know , and by the way I can sew , so if you want that Spiderman costume specially made LOL!!!! I think we would like to see you in it .:0} I know I would LOL
your A Charmer sweetie *(wink)
Greeneyes

Anonymous said...

cute

Will Luongo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Will Luongo said...

Congrats on your academic prowess, Andre!

I also would love to see more of the legitimate internet music distribution sites and services. I wholly endorse RealRhapsody, as you can buy individual tracks to burn onto CDs or you can pay a monthly service and listen to anything you want on your computer or iPod.

I also endorse less complacency, it is the reason we, our churches, and our jobs are all screwed up.

I would love to see a jazz radio station in Flint.

I was a little surprised to see youtube here. I think it needs refinement, particularly in the legality/licensing areas, but I do like creative forums like that, and your points are very true. Many an argument has been ended by youtube, and that is A-OK in my book.

JJM said...

I can't believe you would have the nerve to make this kind of list without your truly! But it's all good. I'll give you a chance to redeem yourself.

*Waiting for Andre to add me to list*

Well? What's taking you so long?

The H.C. said...

Hey Dre,
I agree with most of your hopefuls here with one exception. Destroying the Electoral College. I'm a bit suprised that someone that normaly would side with the minority of any group would want to limit our elections to four or five overpopulated states. I understand the "One man, one vote" philosophy. But imagine that Utah or Montana were all black states. Would you still want them to have no say in our election? Politicians will simply campaign in the large cities and rural people will have no voice whatsoever. The College was brought about for just that reason, to keep isolated, low population states in the picture. On a different note, thanks for the kudos. There's no greater compliment than one that comes from someone you respect.

Andre said...

@ Greeny: Trust me when I say that the pleasure's all mine. You've made the year pretty fun for me; even if our connection is only limited to what a computer could produce. Thank you for being a blessing to me.

Now, if I can just get you to disagree with me on something and once we have our first fight, we'll solidify our relationship! :)

@ Anonymous: Is that a sarcastic cute or a 'cute' cute?

@ Will: Hey Will. How goes?

I wouldn't call it prowess, but thanks! I've been struggle away with the grad school nonsense. Hopefully, it'll pay some dividends down the road.

With music downloading, I was never against the idea of paying for music. I just hate being stuck with a crappy album just to get a few good songs. Rhapsody, Itunes, Napster, etc. are saving graces.

Great point about complacency. Anything you tolerate, you won't change...

Jazz in Flint is not only wanted, but its needed. How cool would it be for this city to add some culture to its airwaves?! Loud, grunting rappers just don't do it.

I honestly don't know about all the details behind YouTube's licensing. All I know is that if I'm looking for episodes of "Are you afraid of the dark?", I can find 'em there.

@ JJM: Sorry J. I'd put you at...like...number 54. That's more ammendment to this post than I'm willing to make. Ha!

@ HC: The way I see it is simple: "Smaller" nations get their vote added to a much larger pot. So what difference does it make whether or not the state itself is represented?

Besides that, given the racist history of the Electoral College (which allowed Southern States to gain additional representation by 60% to match the slaves they owned; as per the 3/5th compromise), it needs to be scraped.

Diane said...

Neat list, Andre!

And congrats on being well on your way to having that coveted doctorate. Now to get that thesis done....

Moving, huh? Hmmm....Arkansas is nice, and we don't have as much snow as Michigan, but we do have more skeeters and hotter summers, not to mention the tornadoes. I have to be truthful here, wouldn't want to give you any false impressions.

Hey, moving to Arkansas will put you closer to some good cookin' too!

And Greeneyes, you just keep your suggestions about moving north of the border to yourself! ;D

I've been fighting computer viruses, malware and Trojan horses, oh my! I've got most of them off here, but I've got a stubborn one that doesn't want to be evicted. I may have to enlist the services of a computer whisperer, LOL. ;D Or an exorcist, whatever works. :-)

MERRY CHRISTMAS, ANDRE!

Andre said...

Hey Granny Di. How've you been?! I imagine that with the wedding and gearing up for the holidays there hasn't been a moment's rest. I'm glad you were able to stop by for a second...

I don't think you'll have a chance of luring me to Arkansas. But I have been thinking about Tennessee. UT's got an excellent doctoral program in Urban Affairs. I talked to one of the faculty there last week and she sparked my curiosity. I've still got a year to make a choice. We'll see what shapes out. But one thing's for sure: Greeny doesn't have a chance in...well...Ontario to move me to Canada. While the country definitely has some appeal to it (something to be said about not having any enemies), I'm SICK of cold weather!!! Since black people are not genetically predisposed to cold weather (*joke*), I can't go anywhere that has a winter.

Sorry to hear about your PC getting a Trojan and/or catching a cold. Lot of that going around this year. Maybe you should have him wear a scarf when he goes outside.

This isn't the new computer you just got this year, is it?

At any rate, thanks for the Christmas cheer. I want to wish you and yours a terrific and blessed Christmas too!

*Wondering what "skeeter" is...*

Cynthia said...

I can't believe you listed "You Can't Do That On Television"! That was my favorite show as a kid!

Kids - "What do you think's in the burger?"

Barf - "D-i-i-i-i-i heard that!"

LMAO!

Cynthia said...

Hey Dre,

I found episodes of YCDTOTV on Youtube. Check 'em out if you haven't already!

Andre said...

I actually bought a few VCD's of YCDTOTV on eBay. After watching them as an adult, I can't believe the show survived for as long as it did. But it was definitely one of my favorites.