CornerstoneDad Podcast – Mixtape #1 Open Letter To J-ICE…(And It’s Minivan Friendly)

Is Rap Changing Your Theology

After a long time away, I’m finally back with a podcast.

But not just any podcast, but a mix to my grandson J-ICE.

Old-school hip-hop heads know that bouncing with some hard beats is always a challenge, even with rap pre-1995. My son likes to roll with tunes that were out when he was still in a car seat, and is now facing that challenge when he’s rolling with my grandson.

I’ll post up the playlist pretty soon, but for now, just turn up that bass, grab the kids, grab your bible, and lets ride…

Click: J-ICE Mix

CSD

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CSD Ride Out: Welcome To Idlewild, Michigan

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The Streets of Idlewild

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How big was Idlewild? “By the 1950s and early 1960s, Idlewild reached the height of its popularity. During those years nearly 25,000 vacationers made their way to the community, temporarily overwhelmingly the permanent year-round population. During this era Idlewild boasted more than 300 black-owned businesses.” – Blackpast.org

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Looking forward to The Comeback!

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“Morton’s has been home to music greats such as Aretha Franklin, the Four Tops and Della Reese. Our comfortable, recently renovated guest rooms – some with kitchenettes – Great Room with adjoining large kitchen and cable TV, outdoor open space dotted with lawn chairs, picnic courtyard with umbrella tables and canopied patio are some of our attractions. We provide a warm, inviting place…”- http://www.michigan.org/property/morton-s-motel/

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“While the clubs attracted black patrons, they were often examples of interracial mingling. As one Idlewild resident recalled, the clubs filled to capacity every night, and on some nights, “there were more white people in there than blacks. It wasn’t about race, it was about fun…
Idlewild, like other all-black resorts, would not survive the civil rights movement. As formerly white-only clubs and resorts across the nation integrated in the late 1960s, Idlewild went into decline. Its clubs and hotels closed as blacks began to frequent other resorts.” –blackpast.org

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“Judith Griffin now lives in New Jersey, but her family would drive from Chicago to Idlewild resort in Michigan every summer. Griffin recalls one trip where her father—one of the few black gastroenterologists at that time—pulled over to save the lives of motorists in a very bad accident. ..Because of discrimination, families like Griffin’s were forced to use what was called “The Green Book.” It was a directory of stops that would serve African Americans on the road.” –http://wmuk.org/post/black-travel-during-jim-crow-illustrated-green-book

CornerstoneDad Privacy Alert: Insurance Companies Want Your Car’s Data

A few years ago, I predicted this was going to happen and folks thought that I had the tin-foil hat on again. But State Farm (and I’m sure others are sure to follow soon) wants your data, urrr….car’s data. Now this isn’t completely new, and trust me, it will one day be common. But lets think about the ramifications.

1.) At least once per week, I travel to a high crime area. Now they already judge me on the number of days I drive my car to the office, and that’s only part of the week, so why would they NOT develop an algorithm to determine the increased risk on the other days?

2.) For you vacation-draft-behind-truck-speeders…gotcha. Forget about your Fuzzbuster (my old school dads know what I’m talking about-that’s a radar detector for those born after 1985), your car will just report that you averaged 79 mph with applied braking at high speeds.

3.) Don’t get me started how they are messing people over by using their credit report as another factor in determining rates.

…can you give us a few more?

What other things do you think the insurance companies will extract from your ride and driving habits?

Oh yea, I bet the amount of the discount for good behavior is never as high as the rate increase for bad behavior. That’s not justice, that’s insurance company mathematics.

What do you think?

A Living Eulogy for My Mother

Happy birthday to my mother! 

Today is a day that I remember how blessed I am in two special ways.

  1. Both of my parents are still alive
  2. Both of my parents are still married

As I get older, I appreciate both of those points more and more.

CornerstoneDad.com is about promoting fatherhood. But because it is my mother’s birthday, I have to touch on motherhood today. Too often, mother’s are honored while fathers are taken for granted, scolded, and ignored. Even the Intruders cracked on dad in the song below for no reason! But not around here though dads, here you are safe. But please allow me to give my mom her props right now.

Perhaps the smartest decision my dad ever made was choosing the right mother for his children. Everybody talks about being that “Proverbs 31 woman”, but my mother has truly been that woman in our household.

 Proverbs 31:10 An excellent wife who can find? 

   She is far more precious than jewels. 

11 The heart of her husband trusts in her, 

   and he will have no lack of gain. 

12 She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.

 Yea, my dad picked a winner.

 I remember my mom getting me toys from her job as a gift-wrapper at Hudson’s. I found a photo once, where she was one of the only black women in her corporate job back in the ’60’s.

My mom left the career behind to stay home and raise some kids. My dad didn’t make a ton of money, but they decided that her being home raising us was the best way to keep the streets from raising us instead.

Therefore, she was there when I took the bat outside to knock out Ricky Collins in elementary school. Yea, bullying isn’t a new phenomenon young readers. Instead of bombs, some of us had to handle it different ways. Mom kept me from getting in more trouble that day.

Mom would hold down my dad’s arm, to calm him down, as there were times he wanted to go knock out the truck drivers that called us niggas or other names on the CB on family vacations. “Okay, meet me at the rest area and say it in my face!” screamed dad. Mom would calmly but firmly say something like, “Please, let it go, lets just keep going…”. Mom kept daddy from getting into more trouble plenty of times too.

I guess that’s why I love Good Times so much as her and Florida sounded so much alike.

Mom told me about Jesus Christ at eight years old, and my life (and my family’s life) has never been the same since then.

Mom told me about Jesus Christ at eight years old, and my life (and my family’s life) has never been the same since then.

Mom taught me that taking two papers out the paper box was stealing, even if it was just sitting in there and my friend wanted to get one for the box scores also.

Mom almost died when I was around 13, and I’ll never forget the pain she was in as her “insides” fought like Ali vs. Frazier. The crying I heard still upsets me now.

Mom was at home when I called as my high school friends were getting blown out at parties and I didn’t want to join in because I knew the effects of alcohol, plus I was driving. She was my alibi for not joining in the “fun”.

Proverbs 31:27 – She looks well to the ways of her household 

   and does not eat the bread of idleness.

Mom wrote me a letter when she saw that after high school, the gravitational pull of the streets was too much for me, so she tried to pull me back.

It didn’t completely work.

So I’m sure mom wasn’t surprised when I told her I got a girl pregnant.

It was mom that was there when I saw my son for the first time, and no matter what kind of relationship I had with my son’s mother, it was my duty to be the best father I could be to him.

My mom never understood why white parents didn’t except her son, while she never mistreated or rejected any girl her boys brought home regardless of their skin color. Plus, knew that they treated women with respect because we always respected her.

Therefore, my Mom was at my wedding, when I was marrying a “white girl”…and to this day she loves her not because she has too, but because of the relationship she developed with my wife.

Proverbs 31:26 – She opens her mouth with wisdom, 

   and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. 

My Mom is a superb grandmother. The photo above is her telling them things that I never even heard about growing up, like her struggles in the segregated South. Tales about the old buses she had to ride in for school while the “white” schools got the nice new buses. Yea…so much for “Separate but Equal”. (see: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/jimcrow/stories_events_plessy.html)

 Proverbs 31:28 – Her children rise up and call her blessed; 

   her husband also, and he praises her: 

29 “Many women have done excellently, 

   but you surpass them all.” 

30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, 

   but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. 

31 Give her of the fruit of her hands, 

   and let her works praise her in the gates.

If you’ve read this far. Thank you.

I hope it made you think about all your mother has done and if she’s still alive, please let her know.

I write not to be sappy, but because I do not believe in giving dead people the flowers and praise at their funeral instead of while they are here on earth to smell the flowers and hear the praise.

Young men, be wise, and choose the right woman to be the mother of your children. Every woman you lay with has the potential to be the mother of your child and I’d bet that many of them, you would not want raising your children (shout-out to Evander Holyfield, Shawn Kemp, and Travis Henry – all athletes that forget that sex and reproduction are still linked despite our 21st century technologies).

Mom, you are blessed.

You have blessed me and my family.

I thank God that you can still be here to read this.

Without you, there would be no CornerstoneDad.

Without you, I don’t even no where I’d be today.

Thank you, and may God allow us to see many more birthdays together as there’s so much more work to be done.

CornerstoneDad Podcast Episode #6 – Preparing for A Family? Sorry, You’ll Never Be Prepared

At the beach enjoying the children, but it hasn’t always been this easy! In this episode, I have the most beautiful co-host in the world, my wife. We tell a little bit about us and how our lives have changed with every child that we have been blessed with. We didn’t always see it as a blessing, but thank God he knows better than we do.

Click to listen: CornerstoneDad Podcast Episode #6 – Preparing for A Family? Sorry, You\’ll Never Be Prepared

Feel free to email me at: cornerstonedadpodcast@gmail.com and leave your comments about the show or tell us how your life has changed with your children. Have things gone exactly the way you’ve expected them to go? Let us know!


CornerstoneDad Podcast Episode #5 – The World Is A Ghetto

Today's Podcast Co-Host

Vacationing at the beach!

Just a quick podcast about my blog-post series, “The World Is A Ghetto”. Lets chat about:

– the stereotype of living in “the hood”

– why the house that’s “ghetto” on the block may be right next to you

– why getting “checked-in” didn’t mean someone wanted you, but they wanted what you were wearing

– if you’re a so-called interracial couple, do you ever just watch people watching you?

As always, please feel free to leave your comments and questions at: cornerstonedad@gmail.com

Enjoy the show!

CornerstoneDad

Click to listen: The World Is A Ghetto – Podcast #5


Introducing: The CornerstoneDad-Cost-to-Fun-Factor

Perhaps it’s a sunny day outside or maybe you’re making a “where-to-go” list for your vacation. You or the First Lady of the home recommends going to X-park or Y-event and if you’re like me, your mind starts calculating…(hit dream sequence music), For all of us to go that’s $25 per ticket x 7 equals $175 and we’ll only be there 5 hours, so really that’s  $35 per hour of entertainment/activity. I don’t make that much at work per hour!”

Now let me introduce the CornerstoneDad-Cost-to-Fun-Factor (CCFF)! During the summer, my family hates to spend time inside the house. I don’t even like to visit other people if I know all we’re going to do is sit inside on a bright sunny day. Therefore, we tend to be a bit more loose with the entertainment envelope as we seek out places to take the kids without breaking the entire budget. Please still understand, If It’s Free, It’s Me! That’s still this CornerstoneDad’s motto, but sometimes you just have to unfold the wallet and do what you have to do for the family, something you already know as a CornerstoneDad.

So again, here’s our equation:

1.) Price per ticket x number of tickets = Total Cost

2.) Total Cost / Length of Time having fun = Total Cost per Hour (or minute depending how you far you want to calculate)

3.) Whatever the result, that decides whether we go or not.

Now for an example:

Major League baseball game tickets for decent seats run about $40 per ticket. A game lasts about 3 hours. So for all 7 of us to attend a game, the CCFF is over $93! If I include the $10 for parking (we’re not parking close, we all need the exercise anyway), $5 for a program, and my kids already know I do not stand for being gouged at the concession stand, that bumps the CCFF up over $98. Now you all know I’m a baseball fan all the way through, but it’s hard for me to justify paying that much money to watch a bunch of millionaires play ball when, like LeBron James reminded me, when I wake up tomorrow I’ll have my same problems (like financial ones) and they will be just fine.

 

Now the CCFF does not take into account other factors that may make an unreasonable high score a trip to consider. If my children have never attended a baseball game or there was a special team/player that they wanted to see, I may just shell out the cash. But where it comes in handy is reflected in a trip to an amusement park. The total between parking and tickets was around $140 (Twilight rate but only from 5-10pm) for a CCFF of $29. Now, if we would have done the typical all-day trip, the CCFF would have been around $40. Therefore, we went after 5pm, did not have to buy food and just wander around the park to get our money’s worth. The best part, the park was less crowded and the kids were still able to ride the “necessary” roller coasters.

You know...when you get older, you sure start thinking about a lot more "what ifs" when you're riding coasters!

Now how about you? Do you use something like the CCFF with your family and how have the results been? Has it worked out well? If not, give it a try and let us know the results.