Why Don’t We Crave to See the Families of the Murdered Policemen in Dallas Forgive Micah Johnson?

As the country continues to grapple with the racialized gun violence of the past weeks, several issues of comparison can be explored and discussed.   This is a thought experiment. I have taken an article titled, “Families of Charleston Shooting Victims: “We Forgive You” written by Inae Oh and published …

#StrikeForBlackLives: A Nationwide Job Walk-Off By Black Labor

  “Hamilton” isn’t the first play written by a writer of color that casts black and brown Americans in the roles of white Americans. 50 years earlier, Douglas Turner Ward wrote “A Day of Absence.” The play, with a role made famous by Ossie Davis, features a black cast playing …

Good Beats and Good Eats

Today we went "crate digging."  The students in me and Dj Goce's group all piled into taxis and went to the town center. There was an open air market where used books and used vinyl was being sold.

This process has been really pleasurable and improvisational. The students then went on pick samples and beats to go with the poems and raps they wrote.
Some dope projects emerged. They even sampled my voice.
Later DJ Goce took me under another student out to dinner as a way to redeem Macedonia's culinary reputation. The food at the hotel was bland and forgettable, and Goce described it as "prison food."  I must admit, that I was silently operating under the impression that Macedonian food was just "blah."  I was wrong. Very wrong.  The food has a Mediterranean flair, is diverse in ingredient choices, and highly flavored.  Some standouts were the fried goat cheese, The sautéed peppers salad, The whipped garlic sauce to be used as a condiment, and of course the minced meats wrapped in locally grown pork and filled with home made cheeses.
I was also introduced to rakia, which is Macedonia's version of moonshine. Although it was made with grapes, it was very strong!
Check out the video here:

 

 

Your Blues is Like Mine

I have been collaborating with a Macedonian hiphop Dj and producer named Goce (pronounced GO SEE AH). He began to talk about why hip hop was resonant with him and Macedonian people. He sees hip hop as a dissident art, as he came into consciousness of it in 1989 when socially conscious groups like Public Enemy were popular. He explained that Macedonians has endured slavery under Turkish rule. He talked about the particular way the Turks stole and enslaved beautiful Macedonian women, and as a response, Macedonian men began to carve crosses into women's foreheads so they would not be stolen by Turkish enslavers.

He saw himself as sharing the legacy of enslavement with black Americans.   Goce also talked about how the lyrics of indigenous Macedonian music shared the characteristics of blues music.
These resonances gave me a lot to think about. Check out some video here:

The Number One Reason the Orlando Shooter was not a “Deranged Loner, and Why We’re More Like Him Than Not

        Almost as soon as the Orlando shooter was identified, he began to be described as a “loner.” This description is often used to describe the personality of mass shooters. If we look back at the headlines surrounding many of the men who perpetrate mass shootings, the …

“Are We Being Transparent?” The Top 5 Questions Every College or University Should be Asking Itself (Part 5 of a 5 Part Series)

Last week, while answering the question: “With Whom Must We Collaborate?” I responded by using the five levels of learning (Bloom’s Taxonomy) to move to a deeper commitment to a collaborative Diversity and Inclusion plan.   For this final week of the series, I’m answering the question: “Are we Being Transparent?” …

“With Whom Should We Collaborate?” The Top 5 Questions Every College or University Should be Asking Itself (Part 4 of a 5 Part Series)

Last week, while answering the question: “Whom must we hire?” I talked about the ways organizations can revise their job announcements or admissions requirements to ensure a more diverse applicant pool.   This week I’m answering the question: “With whom must we collaborate?”   Collaborations are about reaching out to people …

“Whom Must We Hire?” The Top 5 Questions Every College or University Should be Asking Itself (Part 3 of a 5 Part Series)

You have just finished making love to your beautiful third wife, who happens to be a 20-year old Sports Illustrated swimsuit model when you feel it. The unmistakable stutter thump of heart palpitations. You break out in a cold sweat, and a bracing pain in your lower left jaw strips …