Change In Mission

For the few that follow this blog. I’m going to be integrating my art (photography) with my activism. That means that this blog will be primarily my images with some text relevant to the image and the issue I’m trying to address.

Some images will be food with recipes. But all will be from the RiverHouse. Right here in Oswego County, NY.

Not quite as satisfying as a straight on rant but much more truthful. I hope you stay with me for this ride. I think you’ll enjoy it.

I know I will.



Small Talk

I avoid small talk.
That is the result of two traits I have. One, I am shy. Painfully. I usually can overcome it in short bursts but I can’t keep that up for very long without having an anxiety attack. Lisa is good at recognizing that and usually appears at my side to ask if I’m ready to go home right at that moment. Just another of her many superpowers.
Two, I am arrogant.
Or so I’ve been told. Repeatedly. I find that small talk often requires you to pretend you don’t know something that you do know. I just can’t do that. I know what I know. So, I don’t ask questions about things I don’t have questions about. People see that as disinterest in them personally. Though it isn’t. It is the exact opposite. It’s intense interest in them personally. An interest that doesn’t have time for pretense. An interest in what is new and now in their life. Not rehashing old news. Again.
They don’t see it that way. The disinterest that isn’t there but they see offends them. That sense of offense then leads them to believe that whatever is going on is my fault. And, since I don’t seem to care, I must be arrogant.
So I avoid small talk.
Just so you know,

Back To The Future…Again?

I don’t get the hate and fixation on undocumented immigrants.I assume that we must need the room or something because otherwise immigrants, documented or undocumented, don’t bother me, at all. They do the work no one else wants to do. For a wage no one else will take. Working hours no one else will work.
I think a large part of the obsession with undocumented immigrants is the neverending American need to have a Nigger of some sort. The Founding Fathers thought they had that covered forever but they never thought that one day folks would consider Blacks actual people OR women were included in the word “men”. Imprecise language opened a door that minorities and the marginalized barged right through.
New Niggers had to be found
The old Niggers were still there but some of them refused to play the part. Replacements had to be found. The Chinese, Irish, Italians, Vietnamese and a few others all spent time in the box. Being abused and laboring under horrible conditions to support the US economy. Each in turn were Niggers. Abused by their employers. Abused by the police. Abused by governmental authorities. Each until they gained enough political power and the goodwill of good people to ascend from Niggerdom and into personhood. Of course, the ur-Niggers remained.
To this day, we remain
Central and South Americans are today’s Niggers. Our economy rides on their backs. Abused by their employers. Abused by the police. Abused by governmental authorities. Political power is slowly coming but it won’t get there until the new Niggers are found.
My prediction? I’ll give you a hint:
Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd and a DeLorean.
– Eliot

Conspiracy Theory II

I watched the Trump press conference yesterday. Every second. Like everyone else, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. I couldn’t figure out what made him do that. Today, I’m watching the media focus on the Mad King Donald act from the press conference today. Jabbering on and on and on about something that is so obvious that there really is no need for the media to report on it. It doesn’t require deeper analysis. It is right there. But they are flogging that dead horse nonetheless.
Then it hit me when someone said that he did this against the advice of everyone. Why would he do that?
A picture of the Viktor Leonov flashed across my screen. I commented on it. And, it hit me. What is the most important thing going on in the world today?
The Russians have just violated a nuclear weapons treaty.
The Russians are deploying new nuclear weapons that threaten NATO nations.
Why does Russia think they can blatantly violate a treaty with the US and deploy new nuclear weapons against NATO? Because we are talking about how crazy Trump is while ignoring the moves Russia is making against NATO. This benefits Russia and no one else. It is as if Putin directed Trump to create a diversion big enough to draw attention away from the fact that THE RUSSIANS ARE DEPLOYING ILLEGAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS AGAINST NATO.
Denying that Donald Trump may very well be actively working to the benefit of Russia is no longer an option for patriotic Americans.
Where do you stand? With America or with Russia? There isn’t a third option.
– Eliot

Trump On Parade

The scariest thing President Trump said in his mad spewing yesterday was his off-handed musing about how popular it would be to blow up the Viktor Leonov.
Whether he thought that up himself OR whether one of the mentally challenged lunatics he surrounds himself with thought that up doesn’t really matter.
The President of the United States, a man obsessed with being popular, believes it would make him popular to start a war with Russia. Don’t get it twisted, while firing on the Viktor Leonov is an Act of War which could be finessed away, blowing it out of the water and killing all hands on board is an act that can’t be ignored AND that will lead to the death of millions.
If that doesn’t scare you, you either have no useful activity above your brain stem or…. nah, there is no second choice.
– Eliot

Spinning – A Poem

He came and pulled on the thread
she spent her whole life spinning
and spinning and spinning and
it unraveled
Just a bit
Right on the edge
Near the end
Pulling apart. “Harumph”, she said, as she perched her hat
on her head
Two towers of obscene pink
Shouting in the haze her frustration at having to
once again
Spin the thread
The one that holds us together.
But SHE does it because she does
She always does.
– Eliot

Black History – Uncle Logan

screen-shot-2017-02-02-at-7-33-13-amThat’s my beloved Uncle Logan opening that door in an article about Black Inventors from the February 1990 issue of Ebony Magazine. He is the patriarch of the Logan family which occupies a place on our family tree that requires an asterisk to show both that it is different AND that it means so very much to us.
(But, as usual, that is a story for another day)
He was the Yin to my father, Morris Ware‘s, Yang. Opposites yet perfectly complimentary. Second to my father, he was THE most influential male figure in my life through my childhood. He taught us lessons through his words and actions that, when added to the lessons learned from my father, told you everything you needed to know about being a man.
Emmanuel Logan, Jr. was a brilliant man. A talented musician and songwriter. And not in that “he had a piano that he could bang out a few tunes on and I need something to say about him” sort of way. In that “he got paid money and Grammy nominated” sort of way. You know, musician and songwriter.
His mind was always working. Looking at things and trying to figure out if they could be done better. Seeing a problem. Devising a solution. Determining whether that solution could be monetized. Move on to next problem.
The total and complete entrepreneur
In all things. Which is not always a good thing that is where he stumbled. When that entrepreneurial spirit hit very real world relationships it crushed them. There always seemed to be a whirlwind around Uncle Logan. Events and happenings just seemed to spring up out of nowhere when he was around. That finally ended up in his divorce from Aunt Doris.
Yin and Yang
I only ever remember my parents getting into one real argument. It was frightening and horrible and scary. I don’t know what it was about and I don’t ever want to know what it was about. All I know was that we each got $5 to spend at the 7-Eleven to buy supplies for the trip. Trip? We were off to Alabama and Dad was staying here.
Comic books and candy bars
That trip never happened. Whatever it was, it was resolved that day and we moved on with life. A life of stability provided by a man that was, like Uncle Logan, brilliant. Mechanically gifted, a natural leader and athletic. And not in that “he played softball in the summer league” sort of way. In that “he was drafted by the Boston Red Sox” sort of way. You know, athletic.
My Dad worked 3 jobs to provide the little that we had. His primary job was as a member of the United States Air Force. He’d bring home patch panels, cords and diagrams. We’d lay the panels out on the floor and put the cords in according to the diagrams. We didn’t know it but we were programming the early computers being used at the Pentagon. He worked behind the counter at a drug store and also worked for IBM on weekends.
Dad enforced discipline at home. Brooked no foolishness and had little to say about the whole Black Power movement. Black Power didn’t feed his family. The US Air Force did that and so he focused. And we flourished. Our life was steadily getting better as he advanced in the Air Force. We had everything we needed.
We seemed to spend every weekend with the Logans. We were cousins now. Family stronger than blood. Crabs and cookouts. Cabarets. Sunday morning feasts of gallons of cold milk and donuts. All kinds of donuts. We would gorge ourselves on the glorious nuggets of fried fat and sugar while the grownups would be somewhere sleeping off the effects of the previous evening.
Watching those two men interact. Seeing the way they loved each other. Morris being so serious. So conservative in word and deed and belief. Logan being so freewheeling. Taking chances and winning or losing. And then taking chances again. Both relying on the other to show their children the side that they themselves just weren’t capable of showing. An almost symbiotic relationship that worked out well for all involved.
A relationship that started because a Black kid from up North came to the South and was set upon by some White kids from down South. And a Black kid from down South came to his aid. From that point on, they somehow recognized that together they were better. And they were. Together they were this kind, happy, serious, musical, athletic, liberal, conservative, stoic, joyous, philosophical, silly, loving man that formed my understanding of perfect masculinity.
My Uncle Logan is gone. I do miss him. When he was in the final days and in the hospital, I didn’t go see him.
I couldn’t.
I hope that he understands.
– Eliot
Welcome to Black History Month at the RiverHouse.

The Lesser of Two Evils?

Last night, my wife pointed out how odd it was that all of you folks that weren’t voting “for Trump” but “against Hillary” are awfully supportive of Trump’s attempts to lie about the Russian involvement in the election. You were disgusted by so much of what he said and did (I know because you said it in explaining your vote for this bigoted asshat) but were forced to vote for him because you just couldn’t bring yourself to vote for Clinton.
I understand that. Sometimes you really don’t have a choice. Either circumstances or people or whatever keep you from doing what is right. But I’m not quite sure why you support his pick of a White Supremacist for Senior Adviser OR support Russia’s interference in our election OR his continual cyberbullying OR his threats to NATO if you only voted for him as “the lesser of two evils”.
Actually, I’m kidding. I know why you voted for him and lied about your motivation. For the same reason that you rail against being called “racist” or “sexist” or “homophobic” or “xenophobic” just because you are. You can’t bring yourself to face the truth you know in your heart. The truth about what type of human being you are. You just can’t admit it and so you lie to yourself and to everyone else. 
Been there, done that
It’s wrong when I do it too. The only difference between you and I is that I’ve gotten past the need to lie about it. Isn’t it time that you did too?
– Eliot