Thursday, August 31, 2017

Tuscaloosa City Council Action from August 29, 2017

Tuscaloosa City Council Action from August 29, 2017

*Information provided by Tuscaloosa News*

The Tuscaloosa City Council took the following action at its Tuesday meeting:
‒ Authorized payment to James L. James in settlement of a claim; total: $1,486.90.
‒ Authorized settlement of the workers’ compensation claim of Cornelius Donyelle Billups; total: $11,217.73.
‒ Approved request and agreement for water service to My House on the 50, fire line; total: $8,135.92.
‒ Granted permit for Harrison Construction Co. Inc. to construct water lines for My House on the 50, fire line.
‒ Approved the ABC application of Wilhagan’s of Tuscaloosa LLC for lounge retail liquor and on-premises retail beer licenses at Green Bar, 2209 Fouth St., Unit 11.
‒ Approved the ABC application of SB Enterprise Inc. for off-premises retail beer and off-premises retail table wine licenses at Druid Chevron, 1500 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
‒ Approved the ABC application of Paradise Mart Inc. for off-premises retail beer and off-premises retail table wine licenses at Paradise Mart, 4103 Greensboro Ave.
‒ Adopted the 39th amendment to the Public Works Capital Fund budget.
‒ Adopted the 17th amendment to the Public Safety Capital Fund budget.
‒ Adopted the second amendment to the Fiscal 2017 Water and Sewer Reserve for Future Improvement Fund.
‒ Rescinded the previous resolution awarding competitive bid for the purchase of traffic signals and supplies and awarding to next responsible low bidder.
‒ Authorized an amendment to the city’s agreement and authorizing the mayor to execute the amended agreement with the Tuscaloosa Housing Authority under the city’s 2013 Home Investment Partnerships Program (HOME).
‒ Authorized the mayor to execute acceptance of an easement from Alabama Power Co.
‒ Ratified execution of application for Federal Transit Authority Grant; maximum total: $2.5 million with 20 percent city match.
‒ Authorized budget and program changes for a local amendment to the 2016 Action Plan of the city’s Five-Year Consolidated Plan for Community Planning and Development Programs for 2015-19.
‒ Authorized the issuance, execution, sale and delivery of a $15 million maximum principal amount General Obligation Warrant of the city of Tuscaloosa and the payment thereof.
‒ Introduced Zoning Amendment No. 1378 to amend the text of the Zoning Ordinance; various sections pertaining to bars, lounges and live entertainment, Sections 24-5, 24-52, 24-91, 24-224, 24-229, 24-303 and 24-304.
‒ Set Sept. 26 as the day for public hearing to consider adoption of Zoning Amendment No. 1378.
‒ Authorized and approved execution of a contract with BancorpSouth Equipment Finance, a division of BancorpSouth Bank

‒ Authorized the payment of bills; total: $12,805.88.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Sierra Leone Mudslide: What, Where And Why?

I wasn't able to find a whole lot of information about the mudslides in Sierra Leone. I'm assuming that they deal with the practicality of things and there's not a whole lot anyone can do except to do the things that we are doing for the Hurricane Harvey survivors and what we aren't doing for Flint, Michigan. <Pause>

Right now, here's what I've read:

On August 14, a mudslide killed more than 400 people in the mountain town of Regent on the outskirts of Sierra Leone's capital Freetown, sweeping away homes and leaving residents desperate for news of missing family members.
Here is what we know about it so far:

What happened and when?

  • A hillside collapsed on Monday at 6am local time (06:00 GMT), causing a mudslide on the outskirts of Sierra Leone's capital of Freetown.
  • The mudslide occurred after three days of torrential rain.
  • The mudslide and rain overwhelmed Freetown's drainage system, creating waterways that churned down steep streets across the capital.
  • Mudslides overran several houses killing hundreds of residents, many of whom were trapped inside their homes.
  • Military personnel have been deployed to help rescue those still trapped.
  • According to Sierra Leone's president, an emergency response centre has been established in Regent.  

Where did it happen?

  • The flooding took place in the mountain town of Regent, on the outskirts of Freetown.
  • Located about 16km from the capital, the town of roughly one million people sits between the Atlantic Ocean and a range of hills.
  • Many people in Regent live in informal settlements on steep hillsides.

How many casualties?

  • The death toll has risen to nearly 500. At least 109 children are among those who have been killed. 
  • It is estimated that at least 600 people remain missing.
  • The morgue at Freetown's Connaught Hospital has been so overwhelmed by dead bodies that many of them have been left on the floor for lack of space.

What happened next?

  • On Wednesday, President Ernest Bai Koroma's office promised "dignified burials" in the coming days. 
  • The first of which is expected on Thursday at 3pm local time (15:00 GMT). However, according a local Freetown city council official at least 150 burials took places on Tuesday. 
  • A week-long mourning was declared. 
  • The International Organization for Migration released $150,000 in emergency funds.
  • The government of Sierra Leone promised relief to thousands of people left homeless, opening an emergency response centre in Regent and four registration centres.
  • The UN said it was evaluating humanitarian needs in the country and that "contingency plans are being put in place to mitigate any potential outbreak of waterborne diseases such as cholera, typhoid and diarrhoea", according to spokesman Stephane Dujarric. 
  • Turkey, the UK, Israel and the UAE vowed to send aid, including clean water, medicine and blankets.

I'm guessing the good ol' United States of 'Merica will not be adding to the list of those sending aid. But that doesn't mean we can't do it on our own. I don't know much about the international waters, who to trust, who to avoid. But as my Dad told me years ago - if you're going to give, give. It's not your business on how it's used. If you gave from the heart, you will be blessed. If someone is stupid enough to mess with the church's money (because this was a discussion about tithes and offering), they will have to answer for that. Now, once you give, it's not up to you to monitor or police where the money is going. You've done your part.

Source of This Story

How Can We Help? I've listed some sources of those that are either reporting on the slide or organizations that promise to aid those in Sierra Leone, without actually being there or knowing anything about the country & how the aid operates.

Click Here To Read About: Mudslides/Tragedy in Sierra Leone


Save The Children

Culture of Sierra Leone

Help Sierra Leone via

I can't imagine the overwhelming grief and sadness with a tragedy of this magnitude but please know...

Who's gonna save the world? God, Beyonce or Joel Osteen?

I have love for, deep respect for and a special place in my heart for former President Barack Obama & his family but first things first: this picture is of the Obama family serving food in DC for Thanksgiving in 2015. This is not present day Texas. Yes, it's plausible and easy to believe seeing as what we've gone through as a Country since January 2017. But nevertheless, please stop sharing that narrative comparing him to 45. That's like comparing apples to condoms.

Now that we have that out of the way, let's talk about the savior of the world...or right now, the savior of Texas. 

Let's start with Joel Osteen - because he makes so much money, he should save all the flooded areas right? His parishioners and supporters pay him enough right? He should personally save everyone, right? He should use every piece of that church, that SEATS 16k to save and house millions without a plan, any resources, any security... Oh sure, he can charter 1000s of boats, use his personal planes and/or helicopters, he can purchase large pumps to pump the water out of Houston, he can set up FEMA trailers on stilts, he can administer medicines, heal the sick, refill oxygen tanks and swoop by rooftops with an extended ladder to save the masses. He's magical. He's mythical. With the wave of his hand...

Well damn, is Joel...Jesus? We can all pitch in to help. 1000 hands could work faster and stretch a lot longer than this man's two. I don't know what he's done or hasn't done but I don't think it's right to put the weight of what's happening on Texas squarely on his shoulders. Kudos to him for opening up Lakewood after securing it. Major side eye if he didn't. You wouldn't pressure me into shit. They are going to talk about you good, bad or indifferent so do as much or as little as you'd like. You won't have to face them about your choices. "They" don't have a heaven or a hell to put you in.

Speaking of Queen Bey, same difference. If she has cameras where she's helping, she's showing off. It's not genuine. She does everything for attention. If she slides behind the scenes, she hadn't done anything. Where is your favorite singer? Why hasn't she said anything? She doesn't care about her fans. Y'all spend so much money with her and she cares nothing about y'all!


There's plenty of help to be had and plenty to go around. This is not going away anytime soon. With so many people trying to mobilize from so many different areas, in different areas, for different areas, I can imagine that it's more than chaotic. Outside of the floods, you have to remember: a real deal hurricane came through there. So, some people have lost everything. They've lost their shelter, their transportation, their pictures, their documents (to file claims), their belongings, their security and they've been separated from family and friends and may or may not have a way to call or signal for help. People are coming in from everywhere but with no centralization, it's more than chaotic. Then you have looters and snakes and gators and whatever other wildlife out lurking because they've all been displaced. Where do I go? Is my family there? Is it safe? How do I get there? What is that noise? How do I protect myself? How do I file a claim? How do I find food and drinkable water? What about my medicine? Where can I get treatment? What about my Dr's appt? What about my paycheck? Can I use an ATM? I need shoes. I need dry clothes. I need a bath. I have a headache. I need sleep. I need help.

Pics from Hurricane Harvey in Pictures from the NY Times

It's more to a natural disaster than just throwing money at it. There are logistics to be worked out. Relief efforts have to be coordinated so that the money is actually helping and going to those in need of help. You want to make sure that whatever you can give, will be given to a steward and/or organization that will actually put that money to use and not funneled into some fake scam for a quick come up by a hurricane hustler.

Bottom line is - you can't make people feel convicted of things that they don't have a passion for. Just because you would do it if you were in their shoes, doesn't make your way right or wrong. You're not in their position so quit trying to police them. Do what you can, when you can, as often as you can so when it's time for you to stand before your Maker, he can give you the thumbs up.


Ain't nothing like minding your own business. You don't need Joel or Beyonce to save Texas. There are plenty of us that are not in the area to pitch in without them. Yes, they'd be a great asset and wonderful for resources & their friends' assets and resources but if they weren't who they are, then would Texas still be helped? The answer is yes. So pretend that they don't exist & that you don't need their wealth to measure how much or how little that you want to help. Don't use them as your guide. Be a cheerful giver from YOUR heart.

And pray for all those that are devastated by this terrible tragedy. Prayer really does change things. And prayer without works is dead so if you can put something behind those prayers, the people of Texas would be most appreciative. But if prayers are all you have, then it's more than enough. Don't ever let anyone tell you differently.

Here are some links that I've looked up and read about if you're confused as to where to even begin....

This was floating around on Facebook

For my Houston folks...

Russel Furnace is headed toward Houston, has an airboat. His # is 432-230-3262

For anyone needing emergency rescue near 45 and Greenspoint, call Lauren Cupp at 936-499-3079 (two boats)

Dramekia and Joseph Booze have offered to rescue. They are at 409-893-1341.

Richard Espinoza has offered to rescue. He can be reached at 832-298-3582.

Derek Sereal has offered to rescue. He can be reached at 832-974-8104.

Austin Hall has offered to help and can make group rescues (10 or less). He can be reached at 214-254-1058

Lauren Henderson is in the Woodlands a
nd Houston area. TEXT her with name, address, and any contact info for specifics. # is: 936-697-9967.


Please feel free to share.

Click Here To Read Celebrities Pitching In For Texas

Click Here to Read: How Can I Help Texas?

Click Here To Read: How To Help Houston Recover After Hurricane Harvey

Click Here to Read About The Diaper Bank and How To Donate

Click Here to Read: How To Get And Offer Help After Hurricane Harvey

Lakewood Church aka Joel Osteen's Church/Relief Efforts

Click Here to Read About: Volunteering and/or Donating with Lakewood Church

Click Here to Read on How To Donate

Saturday, August 26, 2017

How To Let Go And Forgive...

Found this in my Facebook memories and decided to share. There are so many walking around with hurt and resentment that have built up over the years and it's slowly tearing us down. Whether we realize it or not, it shapes our lives, our views, our relationships, our habits, our children, our generations. We can see the effects of this by the way the generations coming up are behaving. Everybody thinks it's cool to walk around being a savage and cold and heartless. It's funny. It's a competition. Who can be the coldest? And we are losing a generation that not only sees love as weak and people as disposable or day I say, expendable, but they also see love as a myth. It's unbelievable. Not possible. Unattainable. They don't understand it, don't recognize it, can't receive it, won't give it and therefore shun it. 

The revolution is constantly televised. And it is not a pretty picture.

How to Let Go and Forgive

We’ve all been hurt by another person at some time or another — we were treated badly, trust was broken, hearts were hurt.
And while this pain is normal, sometimes that pain lingers for too long. We relive the pain over and over, and have a hard time letting go.
This causes problems. It not only causes us to be unhappy, but can strain or ruin relationships, distract us from work and family and other important things, make us reluctant to open up to new things and people. We get trapped in a cycle of anger and hurt, and miss out on the beauty of life as it happens.
We need to learn to let go. We need to be able to forgive, so we can move on and be happy.
This is something I learned the hard way — after years of holding onto anger at a loved one that stemmed from my childhood and teen-age years, I finally let go of this anger (about 8 years ago or so). I forgave, and not only has it improved my relationship with this loved one tremendously, it has also helped me to be happier.
Forgiveness can change your life.
Forgiveness does not mean you erase the past, or forget what has happened. It doesn’t even mean the other person will change his behavior — you cannot control that. All it means is that you are letting go of the anger and pain, and moving on to a better place.
It’s not easy. But you can learn to do it.
If you’re holding onto pain, reliving it, and can’t let go and forgive, read on for some things I’ve learned.
1. Commit to letting go. You aren’t going to do it in a second or maybe not even in a day. It can take time to get over something. So commit to changing, because you recognize that the pain is hurting you.
2. Think about the pros and cons. What problems does this pain cause you? Does it affect your relationship with this person? With others? Does it affect work or family? Does it stop you from pursuing your dreams, or becoming a better person? Does it cause you unhappiness? Think of all these problems, and realize you need to change. Then think of the benefits of forgiveness — how it will make you happier, free you from the past and the pain, improve things with your relationships and life in general.
3. Realize you have a choice. You cannot control the actions of others, and shouldn’t try. But you can control not only your actions, but your thoughts. You can stop reliving the hurt, and can choose to move on. You have this power. You just need to learn how to exercise it.
4. Empathize. Try this: put yourself in that person’s shoes. Try to understand why the person did what he did. Start from the assumption that the person isn’t a bad person, but just did something wrong. What could he have been thinking, what could have happened to him in the past to make him do what he did? What could he have felt as he did it, and what did he feel afterward? How does he feel now? You aren’t saying what he did is right, but are instead trying to understand and empathize.
5. Understand your responsibility. Try to figure out how you could have been partially responsible for what happened. What could you have done to prevent it, and how can you prevent it from happening next time? This isn’t to say you’re taking all the blame, or taking responsibility away from the other person, but to realize that we are not victims but participants in life.
6. Focus on the present. Now that you’ve reflected on the past, realize that the past is over. It isn’t happening anymore, except in your mind. And that causes problems — unhappiness and stress. Instead, bring your focus back to the present moment. What are you doing now? What joy can you find in what is happening right now? Find the joy in life now, as it happens, and stop reliving the past. Btw, you will inevitably start thinking about the past, but just acknowledge that, and gently bring yourself back to the present moment.
7. Allow peace to enter your life. As you focus on the present, try focusing on your breathing. Imagine each breath going out is the pain and the past, being released from your body and mind. And imagine each breath coming in is peace, entering you and filling you up. Release the pain and the past. Let peace enter your life. And go forward, thinking no longer of the past, but of peace and the present.
8. Feel compassion. Finally, forgive the person and realize that in forgiveness, you are allowing yourself to be happy and move on. Feel empathy for the person and wish happiness on them. Let love for them, and life in general, grow in your heart. It may take time, but if you’re stuck on this point, repeat some of the ones above until you can get here.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Don't Make Her Look Stupid


Don't Make Her Look Stupid (check out this video, then let's discuss)

Man, listen...

I've listened to conversations about this. The girl doesn't want him, she just wants to make his girl look stupid. And he obliges. Or she thinks that he's going to treat her, side chick, the same way that he treats his girlfriend.

All of this drama and swapping just so she can say "why she out here claiming him, he was with me last night" or "look at her walking down the street whistling, meanwhile, her man been texting me" She wants bragging rights. What's the prize? Where's the prize? How is that working out for you?

There's some kind of mythological prize or high-five or underground hood prize for the humiliation of a sister. Guys aren't exempt either. There's a magical crown amongst them for being able to ease a girl away from a seemingly solid relationship & then calling the guy a chump.

All I see is unhealthy behavior and zero healing being passed from person to person, relation to relation, family to family and generation to generation. A lot of hurt people hurting people. It's as if love is a curse. It's as if love is equivalent to having the cooties. Please do not be fooled. Love, in it's truest form ( or as close as we can get as humans) is beautiful. And it is to be cherished and protected and to be given just as much as it's received, if not more.

Love is not a curse. Love doesn't play games.

And love can't be found between your legs.

Read this carefully. Karma is a bitch. A big bitch. And she doesn't discriminate. You will get served what you deserve. Make sure the karma on your plate is sweeet.

Eat up.

Bitch You Tried It...

Nothing like trying to keep your composure when you hear this dreaded question....
 Can I touch your hair? Bitch what?!!!

Why is this even a thing? Why would you want to put your hand in somebody else's hair? What if it stank? What if I have something in my hair that you are allergic to? Touch my hair rub  your eye and it swells shut..then what?

Asking someone to touch their hair or doing so without their permission is rude. You are treating that person like an exhibit or a pet. Oooooohhh that looks soft, let me touch it. UMMMMM, nah! Get away from me!

As I was leaving a party one night, a stranger reached out and tugged my hair as I was walking by and I lost it. I asked for the music to be turned off so he could hear me. I went off! *I said a lot of things that my mama would not be proud of so I will not repeat what was said.*
Why in the hell would a grown man think that was a good thing to do though? Who raised him?
I am getting irritated just typing this and want to fight all over again..woo saa!

For anyone that thinks about asking someone to touch their hair or is thinking about reaching out to touch someones hair...

Forward Fridays - Dr. Monte Linebarger

This Friday segment is dedicated to everyday people doing everyday things in our community. By recognizing these extraordinary people, we are looking to highlight their gifts, talents, contributions, and services available as well as encourage you to support, uplift and patronize them when you can. And maybe, it will inspire some, light a fire in others, to begin, step up and/or continue your own journeys to serve your community. 

Reach One. Teach One. Each One.

First up is Dr. Monte Linebarger, Principal of Central Elementary School
Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Recognition via nomination

I'd like to nominate Dr. Monte Linebarger, Principal of Central Elementary School. Dr. Linebarger is not only a great role model for the students under his charge, he is an amazing leader and community activist. He is very hands-on and has implemented numerous programs to boost the morale of his staff, his students, his parents and the community. He encourages involvement and he not only talks the talk, he walks the walk. 

You will often find him moving around through the school, visiting classrooms, engaging with the students, interacting with the parents and staff as well as attending school functions for Central Elementary, other City Schools and in the community. 

He is committed and dedicated to the success of the students, staff, parents, and community and therefore I feel that Dr. Linebarger is moving Tuscaloosa forward.

Thanks :)

Dr. Linebarger, we salute you. 

And don't forget to come out and support Dr. Linebarger, the staff, students and parents at Central Elementary for their Ribbon Cutting Ceremony 
Tuesday, August 29, 2017 from 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM. 
1510 Dinah Washington Ave - Tuscaloosa, AL 35401

To nominate someone to be featured on Forward Fridays, please email us at along with a write-up letting us know why you would like us to recognize this person and include 4 pictures. And stay tuned for a new person featured every Friday!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie a renowned Nigerian novelist was born in Nigeria in 1977. She grew up in the university town of Nsukka, Enugu State where she attended primary and secondary schools, and briefly studied Medicine and Pharmacy. She then moved to the United States to attend college, graduating summa cum laude from Eastern Connecticut State University with a major in Communication and a minor in Political Science. She holds a Masters degree in Creative Writing from Johns Hopkins and a Masters degree in African Studies from Yale University. She was a 2005-2006 Hodder Fellow at Princeton, where she taught introductory fiction. Chimamanda is the author of Half of a Yellow Sun, which won the 2007 Orange Prize For Fiction; and Purple Hibiscus, which won the 2005 Best First Book Commonwealth Writers' Prize and the 2004 Debut Fiction Hurston/Wright Legacy Award. In 2009, her collection of short stories, The Thing around Your Neck was published. She was named one of the twenty most important fiction writers today under 40 years old by The New Yorker and was recently the guest speaker at the 2012 annual commonwealth lecture. She featured in the April 2012 edition of Time Magazine, celebrated as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World. She currently divides her time between the United States and Nigeria.

Intro and Outro music by Kadialy Kouyate performed at TEDxEuston 2011. You can view the full performance here:

She is so much more than a soundbite on Beyonce's Flawless...

Her website:

For a detailed bibliography please see the independent “The Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Website” maintained by Daria Tunca.

Who The Hell Are We Preparing For?

I've never thought of this for real until I read it last night. After reading it I began to wonder - who the hell are we preparing for? Male and Female Motivational Speakers make it a point to cater to the women. Conferences are full of women, both secular and non-secular. Women are the backbones and keep things running. Women run this. I get it. But if these messages are only catering to and specifically for women, empowering women, supporting women, filtered for women then who the hell are we preparing to live life with? Ourselves?

A lot of times these "speakers" are in no way qualified to be doling out advice. They put a few empowerment quotes together that sound good, a few soundbites and they get the women fired up! Change! Know Your Worth! You Don't Have To Take His Shit! You Are Strong! You Are Independent!

So umm...what are we getting fired up about again? To co-exist with...other women? What I'm saying is, if no one is teaching and reaching the men on this particular subject, if no one is drilling in their brains the importance of finding a wife, settling down, taking care of home, if no one is teaching boys to respect women, what to look for in women, if no one is teaching boys to grow up and be men and to be head of household and if no one has placed value on a woman and what he should look for, then what is this all for? What's the prize? A "woke" female with all this knowledge and empowerment sitting in a rocking chair on her front porch surrounded by her 20 cats...waiting for a man to recognize all the things she's heard over the years

Beyonce snuck this jewel by this Jewel into her Flawless song that makes so much sense on this topic. We are teaching the women and neglecting the men...

We teach girls to shrink themselves
To make themselves smaller
We say to girls
"You can have ambition
But not too much
You should aim to be successful
But not too successful
Otherwise you will threaten the man"
Because I am female
I am expected to aspire to marriage
I am expected to make my life choices
Always keeping in mind that
Marriage is the most important
Now marriage can be a source of
Joy and love and mutual support
But why do we teach to aspire to marriage
And we don't teach boys the same?
We raise girls to each other as competitors
Not for jobs or for accomplishments
Which I think can be a good thing
But for the attention of men
We teach girls that they cannot be sexual beings
In the way that boys are
Feminist: the person who believes in the social
Political, and economic equality of the sexes

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. 

Her full speech will be featured in the next story. Read about her...