First blog post

This is the post excerpt.

Parting is such sweet sour, but over the years I learned some things. The Empire may have fallen, but I’m still here.

For every ending, there is another opportunity for a new beginning. Napoleon Hill said it better, than anyone else I know: “Every adversity brings with it a seed of equivalent advantage”. The future is seen in the minds eye and sometimes we can’t connect the dots until we have finished the journey. Blogging on a consistent basics just opened up the memory bank of a life that was a little different.


Change is difficult, but sometime necessary. If you can’t swim, the above picture is really scary, but if you can float, you can adapt and survive.  I started blogging as something to keep my mind active because of my early retirement. It would have been nice, if I made a little money to supplement social security but staying active was my main goal. One of the core requirements was to “blog daily” to build an audience.

As a baby boomer, this blog thing was like Greek, but I have always been up to a challenge. I learned that a blog is an on-line  commentary on any particular subject; they can function as a personal diary or as an on-line advertising vehicle. They can be text, images and links to other blogs or pages. Some focus on art (art blogs), photographs (photo blogs), videos (video blogs or vblogs), music (MP3 blogs) and audio (podcast). What is so unique is readers can leave comments for quick response.

For me to blog on a regular basics, required me to think about something that would hold my interest, or else I would quit. I happen to like the personal development, self-help field. I’ve had a very interesting and unique personal development story and loved to read and listen to the stories of the great motivational speakers. Plus, we all could use a little help in that area.

With the Empire Network blogging platform I didn’t understand a lot, but I was retired and had time to write. I’m not a trained writer, but I have written many things over the years. I wrote a fiction novel in junior high, a very long time ago and I wrote many staff papers and a training program for civilian warehouse workers as a U.S. Army Quartermaster Officer.

I was born and raise in Detroit MI, when it was the Motor Capital of the world. In fact Detroit was tagged the Motor City and the home of Motown. I even worked on the assembly line during my last year of high school. It wasn’t easy but I had worked my first summer job and liked the idea of having money in my pocket. I turned 18 and applied, but Pops told me I still had to finish high school.

I was home along when the 1967 Detroit Riots started (Pop was out of town and I was on my own).  I saw the movie recently with my sister when I returned back home from Philadelphia PA. Hard to believe it’s been 50 years since that happened. But the numbers are still amazing; 2,000 buildings were destroyed, over 7,200 people were arrested, 1,100 people were injured and 43 people were killed.

God must have directed my steps. It would have been very easy for me to go left instead of staying right, but because I didn’t act foolish, I didn’t become a statistic. It’s because, I didn’t cross the police line, I was able to walk the flight line in Libya North Africa (US Air Force) and later support the front line in Germany (US Army).

Even though I lost a library of material, I saved enough to write a book. This is a different platform so I’m just getting use to it. Stay tuned there is more inside.


Green Turns to Gold

Green turns to gold, as the story is told about “The Green Traveling Book”. CBS Sunday Morning top story was about the Hollywood Foreign Press Association just awarding ‘The Green Book’ the Best Movie of the Year, in the comedy or musical category.

green book

The movie is about a working class Italian American bouncer, who becomes the driver for a classic pianist, who happens to be an African American. They take a tour of the Jim Crow South in the 1960’s and learn something about themselves and the country.

The ‘Golden Globe’ recognizes excellence in film and television, both domestic and foreign and is awarded by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. The ‘Oscar Award’ is presented by the Academy of Motion Pictures and Sciences (AMPAS). The ‘SAG Award’ is presented by the Screen Actors Guild. It is only awarded to the actors.


Mahershala Ali, the African American, won the Best performance by an actor in the supporting role in a motion picture. The movie also won best screenplay for a motion picture.

9th Hamilton Behind The Camera Awards - Arrivals

The CBS story started off with Mary Wilson of the MOTOWN Supremes reminiscing about the early times she was a member of Motown’s traveling Bus Review. On the tour bus was Stevie Wonder, Mary Wells, and the Temptations and some other folks from Detroit. As a Detroit native I still remember going to the Motown Review at the Fox Theater when I was young. When I go older, I remember seeing the ‘Temptation Movie’ and the quick scene where  bus was shot at, while stopped on the road.

The real reason behind the ‘Negro Motorist Green Book’ being published, was African Americans need safe places to stop as they traveled around the country. The first book was published in 1936 because of Jim Crow Laws. It was a guide for businesses that welcomed African American travelers.

In it heyday, ‘the Green Book’  sold two million copies. In the 1948 edition, Victor Green, the publisher wrote that someday in the future it would not be required. He didn’t live to see that day, but the last publication was in 1967 a few years after the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

History is not a mystery, it’s a story of what happened. But we should be able to learn from the past.  I didn’t travel until I enlisted in the US Air Force in 1968. My first plane ride was to Lackland AFB in San Antonio Texas.  Basic training is a shock to the system, the first problem I had was understanding that southern dialect but I learned real fast.

Being in the military exposed the world to me. I was always adventurous and never wanted to just stay on base. When I was stationed overseas I traveled when I could. Now when I reminisce, I count the countries, the continents, and the branches of the service: I’ve been to eight countries on three continents in two branches of the military.  I traveled as an Air Force Sergeant and as an Army Officer. Both get a chance to travel but one has a little more money to spend.


What is a good balance?


What is a good balance between a work and a good family life? Everyone seems to have a strong opinion on the subject. Everyone has a unique situation and there are no easy answers. A good time to think about this subject is the beginning of the year.

A woman married to a baseball player realizes that he will be gone most of the time. It may not be the idea marriage, but some couples work it out. Should a man follow his unique talents and skills.

The woman says yes, he should follow his dreams, but sometimes I sometimes I wish he was a banker instead. I like the lifestyle, but I wish I had more of his time. We chose to sacrifice some values for others but both parties pay the price. It’s difficult for two people to grow at the same rate.

One becomes ambitious and one decides to stay a home to take care of the kids. Now that women are in the workplace as much as the men it becomes a balancing act. Who does what is split, with the woman doing most of the domestic stuff. Someone must run the household or things fall apart.

Single parents must really balance. Men manage but women do a better job because nurturing is a major part of their natural make-up. Men were historically the protector and providers. One of the toughest jobs in the world is that on a single mother. Single mothers and teacher must have the patience to teach and reach the kids with the values they will need further in life, and keep them out of trouble NOW, so they can have a brighter future later.

It almost seems impossible, but human beings have the unique ability to do the impossible. They make it work no matter what. We’ve all heard stories about the mother who scrubbed floors to put her kids through college. Or the woman working two or three jobs to make ends meet.

A woman wants her husband to be hero, and good provider, so she says go conquer the world and be home by five o’clock. With all the stress that is in today’s world, most people don’t work a 40-hour week. The spouse who makes the most income, usually works the most while the other takes up the slack with the kids.

It is a challenge to do it all. We have books and people who have been through it all. We can read and we can listen to others or we can go through the school of hard knocks. With the power of the internet we can google almost anything.


What’s really important?

Morgan Freeman once said money was never enough. But he speaks as one the tops in his profession. Him and George Burns even played GOD.


You can make more money, but you can’t make more time. When they close the lid on the box, will you have served your greater purpose.

Simon Sinek went out to discover his why, will you? You go to work for the money because nothing comes free. But if you hate your job and you stay for the paycheck how happy will you be. Making a lot of money can buy you a bigger house, but will it make you content at home? It can buy you a fast car, but you can’t outrun time.

There are some people who want financial wealth at all cost. Is ill gotten gains and living lavishly a way to heaven on earth and a one-way ticket to hell? Thirty pieces of silver was a fortune at the time, but Judas was his name.  He had the money, but he was so unhappy he hung himself. When we chase money at all cost, we betray ourselves by not discovering our true purpose.

Don’t be afraid to step out and follow your dreams. Be aware that when you step out to do something different, there will be some who won’t understand. Some will be family, and some will be friends. Don’t let their fear keep you from doing what’s deep within. Your destiny is in your own hands.

You may not have the money or the support but don’t let that stop you. Your past does not dictate your future. You don’t have to settle for ordinary. It takes a strong mind and a lot of grind to leave the past behind. Some won’t understand because they have never ventured out beyond making a steady buck. To them working on something beyond a job is wishful thinking or just poor luck.

We all have gifts and talents waiting for us to bring them into the world. The world is full of delayed dreams and silent screams as people get so busy trying to earn a living, they forget to design a good life. Or they look around and realize that they have run out of time.

You will grow through, what you go through.  If you can keep your focus you will be able to see what others can’t imagine. You will develop such an insight that you will be able to see the invisible, and do the impossible. You become the one-eyed man, in the land of the blind.  Every one else is trying to feel their way around but you can see. You learn to do what’s necessary and when you have done all that you can you do what’s required.


What a remarkable life.

Usually when one reaches the highest office in the land, that is the ultimate height of their success. For George H.W. Bush, I think it will be his “lifetime of public service”. At the young age of 19, he became the youngest Navy Bomber pilot in World War II and at 94 he was the longest living President in American history. Him and his wife Barbara were together for 74 years.

This photo of his service dog in front of his flag draped casket is very fitting for such a long serving public servant.


George H.W. Bush’s public service included: U.S. Congressman, United Nations Ambassador, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Chairman of the Republican National Committee and Envoy to China. CBS Sunday Morning did an outstanding job of covering Number 41.

When he ran for President he lost to Ronald Reagan but he serviced as his Vice President for two terms. When he got elected he said, “I want a kinder and gentler Nation.” When the Soviet Nation collapsed he didn’t spike the ball and dance on the Berlin Wall. His way of thinking, we still got to deal with a lot of Russian people.

When he lost his bid for re-election many felt that he had broke his promise. “No new taxes” was his downfall. As a by-partisan politician working across the isle raising taxes and reducing spending was a good idea for the country but spending didn’t end.

When he joined forces with the President from the other party many an eyebrow was raised but the union was for a good cause. the Points of Light Foundation raised millions of dollars for victims of national disaster and promoted volunteer service.

For those who said he was too weak and too nice to be President he proved them wrong. It takes a strong man to jump out of airplanes at 75, 80, 85, and 90 years of age. And it take a supportive woman to let him.

Real heroes don’t fuss, they fight for what’s right.  And history, remembers it all.


Gold is money

What do you do when you go to the bank and they issue your retirement funds with worthless paper?  Quantitative easing is the formal name for the introduction of new money into the money supply. But another way of ‘telling it like it is’;  really simple – printing money out of thin air, because the government owns the presses.


When President Richard Nixon took the US off the gold standard in 1971 the country went into commercial paper,(IOUs) “fiat currency”. Because when the money supply was disconnected from the gold, and it became more plentiful to those in control. For the whole story see The Creature from Jekyll Island by G. Edward Griffin – A second look at the Federal Reserve.

In the HBO Movie “To Big To Fail” the bankers got greedy and the lenders got lacks. And when it failed Wall Street was bailed out while Main Street suffered. Now that the White House wants even less regulations, the government regulators (employees not politicians) are not looking at the foxes who control the hen house.

So now the question is what are you going to do to protect your nest egg? In the last go round, many not only lost their eggs (their money, IRAs) but they lost their nest, their biggest investment, their  homes. If you could save pure gold 999.9 % 24 karat certified by the London Bullion Association,  but in small amounts would you do it?  JP Morgan is the Banker who said, “Gold is money, everything else is credit”.

Saving $300 per month starting in 1990 would be worth $72,000 in 20 years. But due to inflation your $72,000 would only be worth $56,000.  Saving $300 per month in 24 karat 999.9 % physical gold over a 20 year period would be  worth $236,000. Because it’s an appreciating asset. It’s not a gold certificate but actual gold (1 gram, 2.5 gram and 5 gram increments only). They will store it of you or you can have it shipped directly to you. Money is important but so is peace of mind.

You can get a FREE account and start savings today.


What side of the counter are you on?

On Small Business Saturday, what side of the counter were you on?  As we approached another holiday season were you busy hunting for the best deals on Black Friday as a consumer but having nothing to sell the next day? 

In the summer of 2018 Maggie Anderson came back to Philadelphia and gave an update of the Empowerment Tour. Maggie wrote My Black Year which gained national intention as her family attempted to support Black Owner business owners in the Chicago area.

When she did her TEDx Talk she discussed the lack of Black owned businesses. If we don’t get involved with being on the other side of the counter we miss out and so does America. You can go to any major city and find a China Town or an Italian Market but there is no Black Market Place. 

The African American consumer market has passed the trillion dollar mark. But what do we have to show for that beside all the stuff we buy. That figure is larger than the entire nation of Spain. There is a reason and a solution, if there is a collective will. Black past.org goes into more detail at https://bit.ly/2QiUlaG .

My mother migrated from the South to escape an abusive relationship. When I got older I worked on the assembly line in Detroit while still in high school, but had to find a way off the line because of the daily grind. I personally witnessed the fall of the city during the 1967 Detroit Riots. The whole city didn’t fall, but most of the damage was done in Black neighborhoods; 2,000 building were destroyed, 7,200 people were arrested, 1,100 people were injured and 43 people were killed. I go into a little more detail in my book Standing in the Shadows, Listening to the Greats!!! 

America is about economic and political power. If you have no power you have no clout. America was built around neighborhoods and the people in these neighborhoods prospered as they did business with each other.  The Atlanta Black Star goes into more detail. https://bit.ly/2ScXgPi . Martin was trying to leave a economic message before he left.

Lemar and Ronnie Tyler created a movie and provided a DVD titled Generation One The Search for Black Wealth. It takes a hard look at the numbers and gives a historical context to early wealth that was creation in the Nation. If you spend all you got what are you going to do if or when you loose your job? https://youtu.be/J8oyWbrF0MM

If you don’t leave something behind then each generation must start over. And that applies to every ethnic group. The cost of housing has gone up and the cost of higher education is like taking out a mortgage. What is really sad is when companies lay people off right before the holiday. It’s the business cycle of clearing the books before the start of the new year, but it’s personal when it happen to you or someone you know. 





Practice what you preach

The late great Wayne Dryer (May 10, 1940 – Aug. 29,2015) was a man who practiced what he preached. He quit his college job lecturing on positive thinking and motivational thinking techniques and went on the road to sell his first book Your Erroneous Zones.

He sold so many books out of the back of his station wagon and showed up to so many book stores and made so many media appearances that he made the best-selling list before book publishers even notice what was happening.

 Dyer was born in Detroit and spent much of his first ten years in an orphanage on the East side of town. His father walked out on his mom, leaving her to raise three young boys. I was also born in Detroit and spent the first nine years with my mom.

My mom was starting over after having left her first five kids with their dad in Mississippi. He was so abusive that the last time he beat her, he said next time he would kill her, so she left in the middle of the night and headed North.

Dyer built his success with lecture tours a series of audio tapes a PBS program and regularly publishing new books. He would recount anecdotes from his family life and use his own personal experiences. The fact that he was also Navy veteran just added another level of experience. https://youtu.be/4nIAwUJv2Eo

I wrote an blog about AARP coverage of those approaching the end of life and they featured comments from Bronnie Ware’s book “The top five regrets of the dying”. Nobody wished they had worked more. Almost all of them had wished they had lived the life they were destined to life. 

Dyer worked as a high school guidance counselor before he became a Professor of Counseling Psychology at St. John’s University in New York City. His focus was on positive thinking and motivational techniques.

I started blogging because I was taking early retirement. I chose personal development because it kept me straight during tough times. My mom sent me to stay with my dad while she went into the hospital. When she came out they decided to let me stay with him, so I spent the next nine years with him.

I dedicate my first book to my mom. “Standing in the Shadows, Listening to the Greats!!!” Subtitled – A blog novel of true stories of ordinary people who overcame all kinds of odds to become extraordinary, who then turned around to help others. If you don’t write your own story, nobody else will.


When Dyer talked about listening to that infinite voice I took heed. I didn’t cross the police line (The 1967 Detroit Riots) but I worked on the Chrysler assembly line, I walked the flight line in Libya, North Africa, and I supported the front lines in Germany as a two-time military veteran (US Air Force and US Army). 

That is my story and my legacy. What will be yours?