Politically correct? No, its racism

 While searching through the library in which I work, I came across two books, both seemed interesting to say the least. The first is a Jim Knopf book and the other is a book called Vater und Sohn, and it is a graphic novel. While both are quite entertaining, I take nothing away from the stories am quite offended by the character representation of the person of color. When I validation of my thoughts, I was told I was being too politically correct on the issue. Politically correct is a term that people throw around whenever you bring attention to matters when you find something offended. I want to say that while I understand people using the argument, I feel my thinking was Just.

I am always looking for books to read. I have searched through the library looking for books for myself and for my future son. I want to have something to read to him whenever. on the shelves we have some very outdated books. The books were written in the early 1900s, but with each addition, they seem to reproduce. I can tell though, that I am in Germany, because someone else would have complained about these books.

    The stories are very funny. The humor in the books are great, but I would like some changes. In the Jim Knopf books, race is part of the focus, since it is black kid with a white man, but the way that they draw Jim Knopf, could be changed without the story losing its meaning. The exaggerated pink lips is how they used to draw the Sambo dolls. Those type of drawings are basically banned in america. It is not the only racism things that still exist in Germany: they still advertise face paint for Karneval and Halloween so people can paint themselves black. That is highly criticized in America. At times I feel that Germany is more advanced when it comes to racial equality, but with these instances, I see that they still have a long ways to go.

with the other book: vater und sohn, it is a book of comic shorts. every two pages was a story. The joke is that the father and son went to a Freak/Folk show, and made fun of the black people there, but then the two black people made fun of the man’s mustache.

I brought this up to my colleagues at work, and they criticized me for being too politically correct. Everyone can have their opinions, but this came from people who seem to always complain about politics, sexism, feminism, always have issues, but as soon as I bring up racism, they look at me as if it is nonexistent and I am wrong for bringing it up. One even used the example of seeing a black person with curves as to say all black people have curves, which is standard stereotype that black people actually prefer, but it isn’t standard.  The real problem though, is that I am questioning things that they have loved and is part of their childhoods. Now, I am forcing them to questioning their beloved characters. The problem is I am not saying the book is problem. Keep the book, keep the story, just change the picture to look normal and not in a way that someone may find offensive.

Racism still exists here in Germany. I am not looking for it, it just happens to pop out, well mainly because they are not hiding it. The people here are very accepting to these things, because they do not see it as racism. The thing with change though, is that we have to have uncomfortable discussions about topics.


surround yourself with people that can help you grow

Everyone has room to grow, to become a better version of themselves. To go further in life, it is great if we surround ourselves with people that will help us reach goals that, at the moment, may seem out of reach; even if that means abandoning the people closest to you.

I, like many others, always set goals in which to get better. I have set lofty goals so many times, yet to abandon them so quickly. Goals such as getting in shape has been one that I have at many times stated “this is it.” Two years ago, I had made it up in my mind and I stuck with it. At first I stood alone in my task, but eventually when I proved to myself and others that I was in for the long run, others joined in my ranks. I was able to get support from people that I had inspired, but also I sought out others who I could seek some motivation from. The more I surrounded myself with people that had already enjoying the benefits of hard work, the harder it became for me to give in. I couldn’t be the weak link, for I wanted to claim my own standing.

There is something wondrous when you can share your success and progress with others. We are social beings and we embrace the comfort of others. People around us usually cheer us on, encourage us to become better. Help us when we are weak, and brag upon when we are strong.

At moments the greatest people that are threats to us reaching full potential are the very people we hold dear. My uncle always stated that some groups of people, are like crabs in a bucket. Whenever one tries to climb out, they are stopped and pulled down by another. It can be argued that really the second crab is really trying to grab on so it can also escape, but what actually happens is that they both end up remaining trapped. Whether it is through jealousy, or for another reason, friends can hold you back. For they do not share the same feelings about some topics as you., which could lead you and them astray. It doesn’t happen all the time, but it could happen.

Most of the time people do not have ill intentions when they get in your way. The people you are around enjoy the lifestyle that they are living and just do not want to change. And why should they? Whenever you hope to reach a lofty goal, many times that means you have to make some changes from your current state of being, even make sacrifices that your currently would not hold for granted. One example is through my family. We love to eat. The majority of us are a bit overweight. We are a living testament of love going through the stomach. We had so many eating contests, I have lost count; We favored restaurants that had all you can eat buffets, and you always asked for seconds when someone cooked. We ate to celebrate and honor every occasion. As well we ate through all the types of human emotions. I was one of the ones that everyone knew could eat a lot, and I did so with a passion. A sign for others to know if i loved the food, was if I ate multiple portions. Two years ago, I started to change my eating habits. I had gotten too overweight. The people around me though, started to ask me if I was sick, or if the food didn’t taste good, mainly because they were used to my old eating habits. For that was the only thing that had changed.

Mom had it the hardest, for she couldn’t cook the way she normally would. See my biggest problem is that I am addicted to food. If it is in front of me, I would eat it, and I couldn’t stop at a small portion. I learned the best way was to just stay away. Do not sit at the table, or not go into the restaurants. My methods were a bit unorthodox, but it is what i did to get in shape. I had to make changes, but the changes were uncomfortable for others, it happens. After awhile everyone got used to the new me, but it took changes.

Not everyone is ready for the changes, and not everyone is going to be able to adjust. Depending on how and what you do to reach your goals, you have to be willing to embrace change. That could mean not going out as much, that could mean not hanging with the same crowd. That is hard though, because we are social creatures, so the best thing to do is find people that are similar to you. Find people that share the same passion as you. When they have the same passion and desires, you will be able to go further and reach your goals.

Undisputed on Fox Sports is the best sports program

Not having the chance to watch American sport programs as often as I used to has limited me to looking up video clips on you tube and whenever something pop ups. recently i stumbled across Undisputed clip on youtube and they were covering the Colin Kaepernick and his protests. I really liked the chemistry between Skip and Shannon Sharp. Plus Sharps answers were very candid and very real. He didn’t dance around the information. While i do think other commentators try their best to speak with honesty, I do feel that they have to give answers in a way that fits with the program, which means that it can’t be as real as it could be.

It isn’t just the openness, which was big on this story, bu it is the instant chemistry that the two had. When I first read that Skp was leaving first take, I didn’t know how well he would do on another show. of course, he is great at what he does, but he and Stephen A Smith were a great duo. I loved the arguments. It seemed though that the match up with Sharp will be just as successful, while First take seems to be still searching for their balance.

I will keep up with Undisputed and I hope that it stays on the path that it has taken.

Adventures: Marathon in Duesseldorf

Every weekend, up to the time my kid is born, I will go out and enjoy what my region has to offer. From major festivals to small village festivals, i want to be part of it all and document my experience. I want to become a true resident of my community. Events can only grow when others go out and participate and help spread the word. That is my job, and that is what I intend to do.
     Duesseldorf held a half marathon today, Halbmarathon auf dem Ko, I believe that is what it was caused. I went there, partially because i wanted to get out, but mainly because I was working. I dressed up as the school mascot, Spirit today. I danced, took pictures, and had a genuinely good time. Part of the day was rained out, so not so many spectators were present as i would have liked. Wearing a costume allows me to act, because no one can see my face, no one can see the fear, and I do my best to hide the body language that would show signs of discomfort. I can’t say that I do not psych myself out, for i still find ways to do it. So I just have to tell myself, no one knows me, just have a good time and others will be attracted to you. Plus when wearing a costume, all of the kids seem to be drawn to me. They are curious to what a horse is doing standing on two legs.
I didn’t run, but i was tempted to try to run in the costume. I did dance and clap a lot so I did get some exercise.
   I was able to witness people of all ages enjoying themselves. Watching others work toward their goals is so inspiring. There were people there that looked as if they never ran a day in their life, compete to try to show their strength. People with some form of handicaps, run their hearts out to try to compete the race. I was totally inspired to reach my goals. I also realize, that i have no excuse. Watching the competitors, proved to me that all of my excuses, was just me being lazy, was me giving up, because of fear of failure; it was me just giving in and giving up. This will help motivate me to take charge and strive for the best. Hopefully, the motivation will last more than just today.

my first body picture

Time to lose the weight. So this is my first document of me making changes as far as weight. I finally was brave enough to take a picture. I always said that I would only take a picture and post it at the end, but i always quit. I am trying to make it a point to keep myself in check, by making sure that I write messages in my blog to document my progress. See even with my blog, i have found times in which I do not feel like writing. Making excuses already can lead to a slow down, or  a break, which would turn into a quick shutdown. that can’t happen. So first step, post a picture, and make weekly updates of progress of the struggles.

First goal, is to have a no sweet days. I had gotten to the point where i would only drink water, but soft drinks have come back into my diet, and I also have no resistance to candy. I am confronted with it both at work and and at home, and i consume it both places, mainly when I am in first of thought. So i have decided to make no candy days. Small steps before I jump into the cleaner eating lifestyle. I can say, that I am not disappointed . I am not where I want to be, but I am not as bad as i thought I was up. The picture doesn’t lie.

The power in saying no.

I find myself always in situations in which I would much rather not be in. The reason for this? I have a hard time saying no. Part of it is, I want to feel needed, so when someone asks me to do something, and I am able to get the job done, I will get the satisfaction that I was able to complete a task for someone. 

    When I finally start to feel used and I become tired of just going along with the norm, I then start to resent the people that I didn’t say no to. Learning to say “NO” has been hard for me to do. One reason is when if I say no, would people still like me? Of course, I know the answer to this. If they do not like me only because I do not do what they want, then they do not matter. There is a chance though, that the others would respect me more, because I am showing that I have a backbone. Knowing one thing though, is different from acting out.
    At work fear may develop if one says no, and there would be a chance that the boss would not give you an opportunity to grow. I have tried to say no recently to something. I even had my game plan worked out. I gave excellent reasons to shy saying “no” was the best answer. It technically didn’t work, for i still ended up doing what I didn’t want to do, yet there was a compromise. I would only have to do the extra work for a certain time.
    My first actual job, I said no to something, and I blew up and quit because the boss was not as cooperative, and lacked leadership skills. Since then though, I have been compensating, by just saying yes, and when I do not want to say yes, I will say no, and I would give reasons. All others have to say is “Come on,” and they would talk me into it.
    Before I keep going I need to say this. My mom always felt that I was too much for a people’s pleaser and I was too gullible. She always worried that anyone would be able to talk me into doing something even when I knew it wasn’t right. Parts of her fear is true, but I have never taken drugs, and there have been many things that I never did, for the most part my morals were never compromised.
     When it was something legal, and basically unethical, I am easily persuaded to do almost anything. My weak areas, Food, taking on extra jobs, and doing activities that I would not find exciting. My hardest area is food. Everyone I know is basically a foodie. We have food with every activity: party, wedding, birthday, death, everything. When people offer food, then you are supposed to try it and tell them how good it is. In this culture at least it seems that you have to accept seconds, or it may seem that you do not like the food. Well that is my problem because people know I can eat a lot, and I usually do. When I don’t eat they take it as me not being happy, or not liking their food. My reason of trying to lose weight, seems not to be acceptable.
   with work, I feel that, what I do, can help make the job go smoother. What ends up happening is that no matter how much work i do, seems that more work appears, and I never get appreciated for it.
So saying no has to be an option. Saying no will give me the freedom to be happier and do things that will make me happy.
I do not say no, because I hate when others tell me “no.” i fear hearing “no” so much, until I don’t ask for things half the time, because I expect others would say no. Asking a girl out was something that i rarely did, only when I knew for sure that she would say yes, but why should I fear hearing no, and why do i fear saying no.
Saying no, frees you up to say yes to what you really want to do. Just like saying no is others prerogative, and when they say no, it isn’t like the no caused you physical pain and it shouldn’t cause you any mental pain either. Once you know the the answer, it frees you up to make steps in another direction, versus always contemplating what may be said.
While I am still learning how to say is, I understand its power and how it has to be used. Will I still end up doing things I do not want? yes, of course, that goes without he job, but will others at least know how I really feel. Al of this leads to honesty.

buying a bike: learning to trust sales people

a1So on Saturday, I went looking for a bike on Saturday, I went to a used bike Sale in Cologne. They have one every two weeks. I think they also have one in every city. The problem is, can I trust the salesman? http://www.fahrradmarkt-koeln.de/

Like many typical buys, that go into a situation without enough information, I go in looking at the salesman as a trickster, a snake; many times they are. I want something for dirt cheap yet I want it almost like new. It is hard to find something like that. Yet, on many of these deal hunter shows they seem to always get something really great for dirt cheap. For me though, it seems that the seller is trying to sale something that is a piece of junk for the depreciated value of a almost new one.

There is nothing wrong with a salesman trying to make a little money or at least not lose a lot of money, that is the reason why they are selling it. There mark up is usually not as high as it would be if you go to a dealership that sales used items, and usually not as high as a pawn shop either. Yet, I find myself trusting the used car dealer more than a personal seller. So why is it like that? why is it hard for me to buy from someone? why am I worried that I will be cheated?

If i buy something used, i should be prepared to fix it up, am I willing to learn how to fix up the bike or whatever item I am buying? That is the prospect of buying something new: In theory, since it is new, their should be no problems and their is a warranty that is guaranteed if it does mess up. That guarantee is a nice. I like that guarantee, even though I am paying full price.

I am not buying a car though, I just want a bike. All of the moving parts, I am sure that if I did buy it used, i can fix it up and getting it to work properly, and more than likely it is better than a Walmart special in quality.

See I need to work on my trust issues. I need to realize that not everyone is trying to take advantage of everyone else. I do not have to buy something and be mad at the seller after the fact. I will get over my trust issues and next time they have the event in Cologne, I will buy a bike. I will, however, go in with more research and have a clear understanding for the type of bike I want and need. I also need to know that I do not have to buy if it doesn’t fit. I do not “need” a bike, I just would love to have one. I will also ask for a lower price. They watn to make a sale and they are always willing to bargain.