Sunday, January 20, 2008

FHF-Wyclef Jean

The third inductee into the Flatbush Hall of Fame is Wyclef Jean. Clef's life personified a story well too known about families living in Flatbush. He came from Haiti while he was 9. He lived for a short time in Corney Island at the Marlborough Projects until his family moved to Flatbush. Wyclef often drops lingo's about flatbush in his lyrics. He often refers to places and things about flatbush that only a true Flatbush head would be able to pick up. Like Temptations, Maxines and the seven-o. In one of his lyrics he personified the depth and strength of what flatbush is all about. In his song "Jaspora" (which was Howard Deans favorite song btw) He raps in Creole about walking down Flatbush as a young kid and having his new Fila Sneakers stolen. His friend asked him if he shot the robber. Clef replied no because he was reminded of a psalm that his father (who was a preacher) taught him in which people need to "chache bondye" (Search for god) or spiritual redemption. Aside from being a great musician Wyclef is also a humanitarian. His non for profit organization, Yele, has helped numerous children and adults in his native country of Haiti.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Why the long face?

I was riding the Q train this morning. It seems that all my light skinned brethren look like they were in despair. From Newkirk to Cortelyou and beverley and even the prospect park stop. So I was very perplex as to why all my progenitors of scintillant coating was so much in despair. I mean I haven't seen so many white people in despair since the backstreet street boys broke up. Then at work I read this news story and it all made sense. It seems that Starbucks will stop selling Organic Milk *Gasp* What will Becca, Chad and Lori do to get their daily fix of Organic milk? This should be the number 1 story at the Ditmas Park blog. Maybe Vox Pop can tap into this. Have a protest. Get the Megaphones out!! We should have a commission to investigate the mitigating impudence of starbucks. It's bad enough that the nation is about to be in a recession, Global warming is on its way, there is threat of nuclear weapons being sold to rough nations. But This is TOO MUCH! How could Starbucks STOP SELLING ORGANIC MILK? The Humanity!!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Talib Kweli Greene

The second inductee into FHF is Flatbush native and critically acclaimed rapper Talib Kweli and family. They personify what flatbush is all about. Both his parents were educators. He grew up very humble and it shows in his music. Talib's rap style is as flatbush as it can get. It makes you think, get mad, have passion, be happy with what you got and always strive for perfection at the same time. Talib's star status in flatbush might be in grave danger of being upstage by his younger brother, Jamal Greene. He is Yale law school grad who has a very perceptive paper that was publish regarding the death penalty. Jamal also clerked for Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens in 2006 (which is nothing to sneeze at). Looking forward to allot of great things from Jamal. For all these reasons Talib Kweli Greene and Family is the second inductee into the Flatbush Hall of Fame.

First Inductee

I've decided to document the great things, places, people etc that makes Flatbush so great. The first inductee into the Flatbush Hall of Fame is the Dollar Van. As previously noted it is the life line of Flatbush for those of us who don't have a car. It will be even more valuable once the new Target mall sets to open this year.

From Hatian Times

BrooklynCAMBA's Small Business Services conduct workshops in a variety of areas. Pre-registration is required. To sign up, e-mail or call Kenesha Wheeler at (718) 282-2500 ext. 242. Class will be held at 884 Flatbush Ave. (corner of Church Avenue) on the second floor.

Credit Repair & Money Management; Jan. 22, Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Get control over your expenses, business and life. Learn money management and budgeting tips, as well as techniques on how to improve your credit score. The ultimate goal is to get out of debt and start saving and investing.

Money for Your Business; Jan. 29, Tuesday, 3 to 5:30 p.m.
FREE. Learn how to research and apply for FREE money. There are millions of dollars available from the government and private sectors through grants for new and existing small businesses. We'll show you how to get financing and free money for your business.

Successful Business Plans: Secrets & Strategies; Feb. 5, Tuesday, 6 to 8:30 p.m. This interactive workshop focuses on the foundation of writing an effective business plan. Learn what resources are available to assist you in writing an effective business plan and the secrets and strategies professionals use when developing an investor ready business plan.

Starting a Home-Based Business; Feb. 12, Tuesday, 6 to 8:30 p.m.
Starting a home-based business is appealing - lower overheads, less travel time and greater flexibility with balancing work and family. Learn what steps are involved in the planning and execution of a business based out of your home. Other topics covered include setting up your office software, hardware and equipment as well as legal and tax considerations.

Recordkeeping & Tax-Preparation; Feb. 19, Tuesday 6 to 8:30 p.m.
It's that time of year again! Learn how to prepare your taxes like the pros using low cost techniques and solutions. Learn about recent changes to tax laws and how this affects what can and cannot be included on your Schedule C.

How to Become a Licensed Childcare Provider; Feb. 26, Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. FREE. This is a complete overview of the planning, application and start-up process. Topics include operating costs, program planning, insurance, contracts, licensing, and fire and safety standards.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Cutty in Flatbush

This New York Times article has a great story on one of the better residents of Flatbush. Chad L. Coleman who plays Dennis "Cutty" Wise on HBO's hit series The Wire.

Barber Shops

In Flatbush there are basically two kinds of Barbers. The old School Barbers and the Young guns. I prefer the old school barbers. In my opinion and from my experience they are more professional. They treat it as being a profession while the younger barbers are more or less in college or cutting hair to make some extra money. Some of the old timers still wear their uniform. I can remember going to the barber with my dad as a young kid. These barber shops where professional and very much old school. They would actually take there time to do your hair. Unfortunately most of these old school style barbers are gone. But there are still a few left. My favorites are Tall Man Article Barber shop on the corner of Flatbush Ave and Newkirk. This is a Jamaican barber shop. There is an old school Barber that still works there. He has the first seat. The rest are younger barbers. I don't know how good they are because I've never got a cut from them. Down the block is Clean Cut barber shop on 1193 Flatbush Avenue. This is a Haitian Barber Shop. There is one Barber that is a cut above the rest. I always get compliments about my hair when I go to him. His name is Lafontant. I got a cut from one of the younger barbers once and it was a disaster. Across from that barber shop there is another Haitian barber shop, but the barbers seems to be more interested in Haitian politics than giving a hair cut. If you can withstand all the screaming about Aristide and Preval then you will get a great cut from any of the barbers. There is also a barber shop on Newkirk Plaza that I use to go to, but the wait time was too long. They have two Barbers and both are really good. One is a dread. I never understood how a dread could cut hair, but he is really good. They have allot Pakistani clients and for some reason it takes a very long time to get their hair cut done. A few years back I use to go to this young guns barber shop on Flatbush Avenue. I think it was between Lincoln road and Chester Court. It may have been on the same block as Mikes International. This was the best young guns barber I've been to. They did a great job with the lines and the shape ups. If there are any other old school or young gun barber shops that I missed let me know.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Park and Mingle!

As noted previously allot of guys and gals in Flatbush still live at home. With that being said. Where do you guys go to hook up? It's kinda hard (no pun) to have a passionate moment with your significant other when mom and dad are your roommates. When I lived at home I had a car. For those who have a car, I will give you the best spots to park and mingle. First you need to park in and around streets where there isn't allot of traffic. That leaves out Church Avenue, Coney Island, Bedford and Flatbush Avenue. The best spots are the quite tree line streets. Farragut Road between Bedford and East 21nd are great. Any quite streets around Brooklyn College is great. The streets of Argyl, Rugby and Stratford road between Beverly and Church avenue use to be the best spots. I don't know how they are now, but I would be careful since some of the new homeowners look like they aren't getting any. They might just call the cops on you out of spite.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

New York's Finest

We should all be great full to have a Police Department like the NYPD. This cop was caught sleeping on the job. Then he tried to rail road the kid who took the picture. Read more here.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008


In one of his writings Martin Luther King Jr. talks about the psychological problem of maladjustment. He said that in modern psychology there is a word that is probably used more than any other word. It is the word "maladjusted." Dr. King then said that we all should seek to live a well—adjusted life in order to avoid neurotic and schizophrenic personalities. He said that at the same time there some things within our social order to which he was proud to be maladjusted. He then called the people to be maladjusted. Dr. King wrote that he would never adjust to segregation and discrimination. He will never intend to adjust to mob rule. He will never adjust to the tragic effects of the methods of physical violence and to tragic militarism. He then wrote, “I call upon you to be maladjusted to such things. As maladjusted as Abraham Lincoln who had the vision to see that this nation could not exist half slave and half free. As maladjusted as Jefferson, who in the midst of an age amazingly adjusted to slavery could cry out, "All men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights and that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. God grant that we will be so maladjusted that we will be able to go out and change our world and our civilization. And then we will be able to move from the bleak and desolate midnight of man’s inhumanity to man to the bright and glittering daybreak of freedom and justice.” I will never get adjusted to this notion you have to be a certain color in order to rent an apartment. I will never get adjusted to the notion that you need white people to live in your neighborhood in order to get better services. I’m maladjusted to the tactics of Real Estate Brokers, Coop Boards, Merchants and inequality.


I don't write these post to divide people. It is more to unite. We live in the same neighborhood, borough, city and country. I don't want this blog to become a black vs white issue. I want this to be more of a wrong vs right. Justice vs injustice.

Seeing these injustices that goes on, I don't want this to be bash the white people or hipsters or yuppies or anything else. What I want to bash is Injustice. I want Flatbush to remain on open place. A place where ANYONE can find a place to live regardless of their skin color. A place where people are judge by the content of their character and not the color of their skin.

In his famous writing "The power of Non-violence" Martin Luther King Jr said that "We have to make it clear that also the resister seeks to attack the evil system rather then the individuals who happen to be caught in the system"

Martin Luther King Jr also talked about the agape love. He said that the Greek language uses 3 different words for love. He said that "
Eros is a sort of aesthetic love. It has come to us to be a sort of romantic love and it stands with all of its beauty. But when we speak of loving those who oppose us we’re not talking about eros. The Greek language talks about philia and this is a sort of reciprocal love between personal friends. This is a vital, valuable love. But when we talk of loving those who oppose you and those who seek to defeat you we are not talking about eros or philia. The Greek language comes out with another word and it is agape. Agape is understanding, creative, redemptive good will for all men. Biblical theologians would say it is the love of God working in the minds of men. It is an overflowing love which seeks nothing in return. And when you come to love on this level you begin to love men not because they are likeable, not because they do things that attract us, but because God loves them and here we love the person who does the evil deed while hating the deed that the person does. It is the type of love that stands at the center of the movement that we are trying to carry on in the Southland—agape." Maybe we should adopt this philosophy here in Flatbush.

Monday, January 7, 2008

The new Flatbush

In this craigslist posting this Westminister Road housing seems to have no problem blazingly violating fair housing laws by posting a subtle racial listing with a picture of 3 white women in front of the Building. One can only wonder if they would have done the same thing of 3 black teens. Although the majority of the black tenants kept up the Building throughout the 90's when nobody wanted to live in Flatbush, the good people in Westminister Co-op in Ditmas park has decided to illegally steer white people into the building. I know this for a fact because they told a black friend of mind a week ago that they only had for sale and there were no rentals. (This craiglslist ad is for a rental). Good to know good old American racism is alive and well and is being brought head on into flatbush. I will be on the trail. If you have had any problems you can file a Housing lawsuit against them by calling the New York city Human Rights Commission at 311 or (718) 722-3130. Or you can file directly with HUD online complaint here.

Flatbush hope!

In the comments this person that goes by the name of “the real ditmas voice” said that “We are the most diverse community in America, many African Americans, Jews, Asians and mixed races have bought into our coop and into the coops in the “hood”………throwing out accusations that have NO merit is detrimental to all people of the neighborhood, and the possibility of bringing new hope the "Hood".”

I was going to let that go until he/she said “bringing new hope the hood”. So I have good news and bad news for my condescending white liberal friend. I have no evidence that the real ditmas voice is a white liberal but I suspect that she is.I'll take it easy on her because she seems to have good intentions. But you know what they say about good intentions. I can be wrong and I’ve been wrong before. But I digress. First: the bad news. I’m going to rip you a new one. The good news: You’re going to be a better person for it ;). I don’t need anyone to live next to me to give me any new hope. I’m an individual. I blaze my own trail. I’m my own person. No one can mold me. I mold myself. I’m responsible for my own being and no one else. I’ve lived in Flatbush since I was as young as I can remember. Hope is having a solid unbreakable inner strength to keep going on no matter how bad it gets. Hope is having my friends older sister being shot by drug dealers in my own block and having to deal with that as a boy. Wondering why it had to happen. I did not need the Ditmas voice and her mix culture to give me hope. Hope is being a 12 year old boy having drug dealers on every corner of your block and worrying that you might get in the cross fires of a shoot out. Hope is waking up every day as a young boy in Junior High School, dodging crack dealers and refusing to ever end up like them. Hope is having the courage to move on after your schoolmate was burnt alive for refusing to smoke crack. I had despicable people hanging around me growing up. I vowed never to be like them. No matter who my neighbors are. Those people are no longer around. They've been gone since the 90's. It's not the yuppies or hipsters that changed flatbush. It's those of us who grew up here and refused to be pawns for the drug lords and the criminal justice system. I'm still here. I stayed through thick and thin. So do my neighbors have an effect on me? That’s a resounding no. I could care less how diverse flatbush is. It’s all a ruse. The only thing that should matter is that people have a right to move in wherever they want to without being discriminated on behalf of or against by sleazy brokers and real estate agents. I’ve checked out advertisements. There are signs that these scummy brokers have gotten their paws on flatbush. Everything is "apartment is next to Cortelyou road and vox pop." It's basically racial steering of whites. Discriminate against coloreds. Wash, rinse and collect your fee. It's funny that a self proclaim leftist coffee shop like vox pop is being used as a tool of oppression and corporate greed. If you would even think of discriminated against me, I would sue you so fast that you won’t even know what hit you. I've stood up against tougher things. That has no effect on me. So you can have your restaurants, your coffee shops and your crappy overpriced organic food. But never make the mistake that somehow you’re going to make my life better or give me new hope.

Friday, January 4, 2008

How safe is this post?

So this troll writes on the comments section that Barack Obama just won the Iowa Caucus and that I should get off the race issue. He/She then compared Obama to Jessie Jackson. Well I got news for you. When I see Barack Obama the last thing on my mind is to compare him to Jessie Jackson. I see him more like RFK. Why would anyone compare Barack Obama to Jessie Jackson? The only thing they have in common is that they are black. The reason Barack Obama won and resonates with the public is that he transcends race. The people voted for him because they love his ideals and what he stands for. He gives people hope of what a greater America could be. But this is a neighborhood blog pertaining to social aspects of a neighborhood and the surrounding real estate. The fact of the matter is that if Barack Obama were just a regular Joe Somebody who walked into a Brooklyn real estate office with his wife and kids, he would get discriminated against. I suspect although I have no evidence that some of the people who are saying to get off the race issue are the same people who ask their real estate agents about “what type of neighborhood is this?” That is the first question to come out your mouth “who lives in this neighborhood?” If race is not an issue for you then why should you care about the race of your neighbors? But my favorite is when they ask how “safe” is this neighborhood? A recent article pointed out that NYC is as safe as it has ever been since the 60’s. So what are you really asking when you ask how safe is this area? Is safe a code word for “white” How white is this neighborhood? But that wouldn’t be politically correct would it? This is the same reason that all these puff piece Newspaper articles about Flatbush try to marginalize the black population. To appease racist fears of potential white homeowners. Real Estate agents are very unscrupulous. They just want to make a quick buck. So they try to White wash Flatbush. They know how the game is played. All they see is race. They know their clients have racial issues. So they appease. They show them where all the white people hang out (Vox Pop and Cortelyou Road). They convince these white people who have racial hang ups to move into the neighborhood. Then these white people segregate themselves from the rest of the neighborhood. Some (not all) only moved in because they saw other white people living here. So all of a sudden Flatbush is "safe". They think Cortelyou Road is the end all and be all. They (not all, but a significant portion) create this Bunker mentally. I got news for you. All of Flatbush has been safe since the mid-90's when everyone was saying that it was not. Some of these people live in Flatbush but have never been on Flatbush Avenue. I don't see too many white people who live in so called Ditmas Park and Prospect Park South hanging out on Flatbush Avenue. Why is that? Could it be because it's not "safe" yet?

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

How to pick up women in Flatbush

In the comments section, there was a white guy who posted that he loves black and mixed women. Well he moved to the right place. Flatbush has some of the most beautifully collection of Caribbean women of all mixes imaginable. He said that he didn't have the nerve to approach or hesitant to. There are plenty of ways to pick up women in Flatbush. Allot of guys don't know what to say. "Yo ma let me holla at you" is not going to work. It never does and it never will. Lets say you are at Stop N Shop or maybe on the Subway Platform. Newkirk Avenue and Church have the best looking women. I would stay away from Cortelyou and Beverley Road. The women are not that very good looking. I'm also kinda disappointed that the white women moving into Flatbush are not very good looking. Once in awhile you'll find , but most look like rags. If you see a girl that you fancy on Flatbush, you have to approach in a very casual and non threatening way. Women in Flatbush are very intuitive. You don't want to come off looking like a pimp. One of my favorite things to do if I see a girl is to pick up my cell, (turn it off so it will not ring) and pretend to have a conversation on the phone. I would then hang up and talk to her about whatever the conversation was. It is great because you can pick any topic and the conversation will not look forced.

Niche Marketing

Apparently these merchants have gone to the deep end to make a quick buck. It's not enough that they played up racial stereotypes, but they were also marketing to gang members until the city council stepped in. Read more here.

New Confederation?

Today I saw this jacked up puff piece on Prospect Park South. The author obviously doesn't know what she was talking about. She lumps together Prospect Park South with Ditmas Park. At one time she even refer to Cortelyou Road as Cortelyou Avenue. The piece talks about uppity restaurants and places on Cortelyou Road (which is part of Ditmas Park) but fails to mention Prospect Park Lefferts Garden. Since PPS is so small and is between DP and PLG, one could wonder why PLG was left out. The one Caribbean restaurant that was talked about is located at a place with the least amount of Caribbeans. She also fails to mention why the good people at Prospect Park South and Ditmas Park has chosen to segregate themselves from the rest of Flatbush. Is this new neighborhood now called Prospect South Ditmas Park? Read it Here.