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MAFOOMBAY

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MAFOOMBAY last won the day on September 13

MAFOOMBAY had the most liked content!

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About MAFOOMBAY

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    mafoombay.com
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    Bridgeport, CT
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    WRITING, READING, HOUSE MUSIC.
  1. Unfortunately there aren't and maybe my optimism is 'a little' too (optimistic) but from my experience working in B&N, kids aged up to 12 (13 - 17 was YA) reacted to books by themes. If the cover was funny, they laughed, sports related they'd look for common ground, etc. and that stokes my belief of race not being a factor. I even look at the cover of the Dork Diary you have above and can see a Black boy and that wouldn't affect a child's decision to be attracted to it. As long as it's not racially motivated, the 'races' can be interchanged. And I combine that with the fact that at that age group, most if not all parents are happy and excited that their child is motivated to read recreationally. It's a win-win. I'd love to see an author do that, cross the borders and see if it's possible. I thought James Patterson was going to do it when he started his YA series, piggy backing off of his Alex Cross series, but he didn't. I do believe it's possible...
  2. I think Ezra Jack Keats did a terrific job with his books of African-American leads. The Snowy Day is an all-time classic across all races and "Peter's" race is never mentioned. Although it's for younger than YA, he did it and was extremely successful. I'd consider Dork Diaries pre-YA, ages 9-13, and there are other series like Captain Underpants, Roald Dahl's books and even the Ramona series that could've been just as successful with Black leads. I think the Hardy Boys could've been Black! I can't think of a series that has tried this but I do believe it's possible for the pre-teen reader.
  3. Wow! Every man should read this with shame; every woman with pride. I can count on one hand the number of books that changed my viewpoint and altered my thinking on a subject I felt I knew extensively - The Civil Rights Movement. In response to the #metoo awareness, I wanted to find a read that was geared towards the topic of abuse, rape, degradation and the defilement of women. I had previously read “Women who run with wolves,” so that's where I started my search. A great book, but I wanted something different. And different I found (thanks Goodreads). read more... purchase
  4. For kids in that age group, I don't think it matters. The key is marketing. Kids are attracted, more so than adults, to themed covers, exciting colors and the facial expressions of the characters so I believe the ethnicity of the person on the cover doesn't matter. THEN, together with their parents, they'll read what it's about and if it's interesting they'll go for it. This series is/was extremely popular and I do believe that if the characters were Black, it would have been just as successful IF, as Black subjects, the series would have been marketed just the same. Basically, you can have Black characters just don't have racially charged themes..
  5. Bestseller Seal has a typo....argh!

    It at least brought back memories, you spelled it the same way my grandmother used to pronounce it!
  6. The Black Russian: Vladimir Alexandrov

    I edited it and added the links. And yes, he had a few pics and I actually added a link to the author's website you can check out. Thanks for the tips!
  7. Every now and then you find a hidden gem. A piece of history you had no idea existed or even thought to think it would. A Black man becoming a millionaire in Russia? During Jim Crow? When the south became too much to bear, Frederick Bruce Thomas migrated to the Midwest in search of escape and a better life. Settling in Chicago and Brooklyn, he worked as a waiter and sometimes cook before heading to London seeking more freedom. And as fate would have it, he ventured to Russia and while many of his fellow dark-skinned Americans were being lynched and terrorized, he was able to amass a fortune and lifestyle no one could have imagined. Once settled in Russia, away from the racism of America, he renamed himself Fyodor Fyodorovich Tomas, became a Russian citizen and utilizing his penchant for hard work and talents he learned waiting in restaurants, became one of the nation’s richest and most famous owners of theaters and restaurants. Like many other citizens, The Bolshevik Revolution ruined his businesses and barely escaping with his life and a few dollars in his pockets, he escaped to nearby Turkey where he again re-utilizing his skills and had a second run at success in Constantinople becoming ‘the sultan of jazz,’ introducing this new musical art-form to the nation. But American racism and xenophobia crept in and unfortunately he was unable to escape these unfortunate times being embraced throughout the world. A remarkable hidden story of rags to riches to ruin that has escaped the mainstream but should definitely be told to display the ‘success against all odds’ especially during arguable the world’s most tumultuous timeline. More info: http://www.valexandrov.com/summary/ To purchase: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-black-russian-vladimir-alexandrov/1112319054?ean=9780802122292 My full review: http://www.mafoombay.com/the-black-russian-vladimir-alexandrov/ http://www.mafoombay.com Fascinating to say the least.
  8. Assata Shakur - the Revolutionary!

    You may say...BUT, look at the pushback he's receiving from trying to put forth his agenda - travel ban, healthcare, or pretty much anything he's attempting. Only through executive order has he "succeeded" at anything. His Supreme Court pick only sailed through not because of him but as a result of the process. The GOP I liken to a cornered animal. They fight hardest when adversed with death. Now do we kill it or are we frightened away.... Racism will never be eradicated but the true method to defeat any societal ill is SUCCESS. Teach smarts, teach pride, teach respect. This may be 2017 but we must make sure it's not 2018, 2019, 2020, etc. I'm up for the challenge to defeating the right wing agenda, are you? Bringing forth the essence...
  9. Store Manager/training manager. Yes, it affected B&N tremendously, same effect, but they've adapted; incorporating toys & games, restaurants, community outreach, etc. but unfortunately it's a struggle for them to stay afloat. Big Box retailing is declining...
  10. Habit. I worked for B&N for 15 years.
  11. Do you know the circumstances? Convicted of the murder of a state trooper in 1973, Joanne Chesimard was sentenced to life in prison; no parole. She escaped in 1979, fled to Cuba and has lived there in exile ever since. But first, who was Ms. Chesimard? Born during Jim Crow (having to witness overt segregation, separate but ‘equal’ laws, the disparity in wages, earnings gaps between whites and blacks, having to live in government formed dilapidated ghettos, etc.), she grew up destined to be a part of the Black Liberation Movement of the Sixties (She was choice-ed with non-violence but deciding to not not fight back if someone spits in her face was too much to consider, she chose the BLM). A rebel. What citizen of the United States is against the desire or the necessity to fight back against a system that is against you? Taxation without Representation. She joined the Black Panther Party and immediately a target was placed on her back. Assata Shakur Speaks! After her arrest for cop killing, she was formally charged in a slew of pending cases including murder, attempted murder, armed robbery, bank robbery and kidnapping; receiving either an acquittal or dismissal on all charges. All after Angela Davis won her trial (The Morning Breaks), so imagine the temperature in desiring a conviction for a militant Black woman – yet she prevailed. Now her being a target was confirmed with the FBI’s COINTELPRO information regarding the ‘take down’ of the ‘terrorist’ organization – The Black Panther Party. Remember, the BPP was formed to protect Black neighborhoods and its citizens from the occupying force of police departments. They used laws (carry permits and open carry displays of weapons) and weren’t afraid to die for freedom. Shootouts became common between The Panthers and the police so that night on the NJ Turnpike, a violent confrontation was sure to occur. One trooper and one Panther was left dead. Officer Harper was wounded as well as Ms. Chesimard and he stated, on the record, that it was she that wounded him, which strengthened the case for her conviction. But forensics determined that she could not have shot him as there was no gun powder residue found on her hands and the gunshot injuries she received were consistent with her being seated and having her hands raised and her injury prevented her from being able to pull a trigger. Officer Harper then admitted to the jury that he lied (all of this is in the transcript). So why was she convicted? An all-white jury convened solely by the prosecution. Being a Black Panther – the #1 organization on the FBI’s hitlist. She beat the system 6 times previous. Outspoken against the government, especially Vietnam. Media assassination with false imagery and public sway towards conviction. And being Unapologetically Black. Now this country was formed under a rebellious spirit. Oppressed by Britain we fought for freedom. Who can honestly concede that that freedom includes Blacks? Through slavery, Jim Crow, Segregation, who can honestly say that Blacks did not have/does not have the right to demand equality? The term Civil Rights has become a noun but its essence of seeking rights that are civil should not be overlooked. Rights that are civil… If you can’t empathize with Assata’s plight, her story, you can’t empathize with the Black struggle. If you haven’t read her story, the transcripts of the case or understood the era (error) that led up to that night on the turnpike, you’re ignorance and lack of desire to gain knowledge is part of the hinderance to eradicating racism in America. If all you conclude is – ‘she killed a cop.’ – you do not understand… www.mafoombay.com - bringing forth the essence...
  12. Do you know the circumstances? Convicted of the murder of a state trooper in 1973, Joanne Chesimard was sentenced to life in prison; no parole. She escaped in 1979, fled to Cuba and has lived there in exile ever since. But first, who was Ms. Chesimard? Born during Jim Crow (having to witness overt segregation, separate but ‘equal’ laws, the disparity in wages, earnings gaps between whites and blacks, having to live in government formed dilapidated ghettos, etc.), she grew up destined to be a part of the Black Liberation Movement of the Sixties (She was choice-ed with non-violence but deciding to not not fight back if someone spits in her face was too much to consider, she chose the BLM). A rebel. What citizen of the United States is against the desire or the necessity to fight back against a system that is against you? Taxation without Representation. She joined the Black Panther Party and immediately a target was placed on her back. Assata Shakur Speaks! After her arrest for cop killing, she was formally charged in a slew of pending cases including murder, attempted murder, armed robbery, bank robbery and kidnapping; receiving either an acquittal or dismissal on all charges. All after Angela Davis won her trial (The Morning Breaks), so imagine the temperature in desiring a conviction for a militant Black woman – yet she prevailed. Now her being a target was confirmed with the FBI’s COINTELPRO information regarding the ‘take down’ of the ‘terrorist’ organization – The Black Panther Party. Remember, the BPP was formed to protect Black neighborhoods and its citizens from the occupying force of police departments. They used laws (carry permits and open carry displays of weapons) and weren’t afraid to die for freedom. Shootouts became common between The Panthers and the police so that night on the NJ Turnpike, a violent confrontation was sure to occur. One trooper and one Panther was left dead. Officer Harper was wounded as well as Ms. Chesimard and he stated, on the record, that it was she that wounded him, which strengthened the case for her conviction. But forensics determined that she could not have shot him as there was no gun powder residue found on her hands and the gunshot injuries she received were consistent with her being seated and having her hands raised and her injury prevented her from being able to pull a trigger. Officer Harper then admitted to the jury that he lied (all of this is in the transcript). So why was she convicted? An all-white jury convened solely by the prosecution. Being a Black Panther – the #1 organization on the FBI’s hitlist. She beat the system 6 times previous. Outspoken against the government, especially Vietnam. Media assassination with false imagery and public sway towards conviction. And being Unapologetically Black. Now this country was formed under a rebellious spirit. Oppressed by Britain we fought for freedom. Who can honestly concede that that freedom includes Blacks? Through slavery, Jim Crow, Segregation, who can honestly say that Blacks did not have/does not have the right to demand equality? The term Civil Rights has become a noun but its essence of seeking rights that are civil should not be overlooked. Rights that are civil… If you can’t empathize with Assata’s plight, her story, you can’t empathize with the Black struggle. If you haven’t read her story, the transcripts of the case or understood the era (error) that led up to that night on the turnpike, you’re ignorance and lack of desire to gain knowledge is part of the hinderance to eradicating racism in America. If all you conclude is – ‘she killed a cop.’ – you do not understand…
  13. Try this one. Eric Foner is the best author on Reconstruction. This was the first one of his I read but all of his books are in depth and fantastic.
  14. Two and a half years, Americans were left toiling, unlawfully – like slaves. 30 months in a timeless zone of what they knew; of what they were. For now, forget the ones that survived, for some died not knowing they were free, not knowing their children and grandchildren and great grandchildren have survived their plight. July 4th shall always be stained with the legacy of Juneteenth for that day ALL Americans became free…. I look back through American history, searching for something to grasp, to make me feel like an American. And it’s tough. I see slavery, Jim Crow, segregation, racist policies, the injustice system, the police states, inequality in housing and education, the Tuskegee Experiment, J. Edgar Hoover, southern monuments, racist epithets, etc. and again, it’s tough (to feel like an American). I want that same pride I feel when checking that box “Black or African-American” as I do with just being an American, but that shameful past hangs my head; hanging with the embarrassing legacy this country begat. It took a fight, a bloody fight, to end these aforementioned maladies. Many deaths ignorant if their efforts were in just. Millions of lives lost and infinitely more altered – all with the hopes of one day fully celebrating our national holiday. But I do smile a little brighter on Juneteenth, if only to imagine the joy on the faces of those Black Americans when those Union troops told them to, “put down those hoes, you’re free.” And then the chastisement of those (slave) holders with, “you ought to be ashamed of yourselves.” And yes, I do have my doubts about the American system; and how truly committed are they to equality, but I travel back to Texas, June 19<sup>th</sup>, 1865 and have full admiration for our government, for it, then, chose the right path and put forth great effort to equalize ALL it’s citizens. Risking the future of a torn and beaten nation; a nation of uncertainty humbly knowing that if it were to succeed, it must succeed as one. MAFOOMBAY - Bringing forth the essence... www.mafoombay.com
  15. Years ago, when this first came out, I read this. Rarely one to read biographies (they're so self-serving), this was during the height of the Chapelle sketches and he was Eddie Murphy's brother, so I gave it a shot. And I'm glad I did. I instantly became a Charlie Murphy fan for his down to earth-ness and awareness of how blessed he was to achieve his dream. Dude was real. An excerpt: After bombing in St. Louis and Cleveland, we rolled up to our next show at Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C. By that time, all sorts of crazy, negative thoughts were swirling inside my mind. This was the very same venue where Eddie had performed his breakout stand-up triumph, Delirious, in 1983. Suddenly I was terrified all over again about standing in front of a live audience. As the car approached the venue, I looked out at the soldout crowd of 3,702 people climbing the steps into the performance hall. My palms were slick with sweat. My heart kept throwing itself against the inside of my chest like it was trying to bust down a door. I turned to my cousin Rich and said, "This is it. I'm gonna die here tonight. If I bomb tonight like I bombed the last two nights, it's over for me, man. I quit." I made up my mind that bombing in Constitution Hall would be all the proof I needed to know I wasn't the real deal; to know, once and for all, that I wasn't a professional stand-up comedian, and that I was never going to be one. As soon as I got inside the venue, I was told that a very famous stand-up comedian was waiting for me inside my dressing room. I didn't want to talk with anyone, especially since I was sick with the feeling that I was about to bomb for the third straight performance and that my career as a stand-up was all but over. When they told me who was waiting to speak with me, I thought, What does that brother want? I was horrified. As it happened, all that brother wanted was to say hello and to pass along to me a crucial piece of advice that would change my whole approach to stand-up comedy from that point forward, teaching me how to ingratiate myself to an audience, and saving my career in the process. But before I get into who that comedian was and what he had to tell me, allow me to introduce myself. www.mafoombay.com
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