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Humble nobody, Arrogant Somebody

Historic Clash  What happened to the world that used to love and cherish the knowledge seekers. Now it seems people are chasing the paparazzi. The fame and fortune of the temporary world. People of status have their necks in the air as we are inferior to them. (Sorry, I need a cigarette break, this is …

A paint brush or a gun? We decide.

Crime in urban America has taken a toll on how we live in our communities. Think about Chicago, Baltimore, and St. Louis; metropolises that have poor districts; are not progressing. Gun violence has normalized homicides, murders, and many other violent conflicts. Senseless killings have been our common themes. For these reasons, local news stations have …

Learning From The Hands of Yaba

Yaba (Arabic word meaning dad), worked all the time. He was there, but he was not there. Bittersweet when it came to him spending time with us. Yaba was a workaholic by force, not by choice. My great grandfather dies the day before my father was to be married. Tough life, he not only had …

NBC’s Chicago P.D. Promoting Terrorism

Future Terrorism Terrorism, who are the real culprits? And I want to say congratulations to the Arab American who got an acting spot on Chicago P.D. The actor receives a role to play a “terrorist”; who sets off a bomb in a public gathering. The depiction does not pay tribute to the many Arab Americans …

My Chest Hurts!

The Pain of Smoking Wake up in the morning are your lungs bothering you? I know, I have had the same physical symptoms. My chest used to hurt. Our bodies are telling us something; it’s telling us to stop what we are doing. Or cut down because of damaging of the lungs cannot take it …

Smoking on the Airplane got me Arrested

Nicotine Inducement While Flying Smoking and the monkey stigma that follows is embarrassing. I remember how I felt when I used to smoke around others; I felt terrible, and I hated the fact that I would stink after that cigarette break. Even though others were smoking in the group, I still thought that I was …

Neighbor is a Trump Supporter, Racist or Not?

The Democratic Years Luke is a kind person. He has been my neighbor for over seven years. I remember when President Obama was in office; Luke was very cordial with us. One time he was selling a 1994 tan color Nissan Maxima, and I approached him about it. It was sitting in front of his …

White Privilege-Village of Oak Lawn, Illinois

This month of Ramadan is an excellent time to quit smoking, and its been going right for me-coupled with applying for a position that only required a high school diploma. Moreover, I was very interested in this future employment and was optimistic that I was one of the right candidates for the job. The person …

Time For Healing, No More Bloodshed, Please!

The X Family Our world, we are one, we are family, even though we are strangers; even though we are not the same color, gender, and religion; it’s time for healing. We are one because we all want to live a happy life; the world is our home. There are enough resources for everyone to …

Six figures and a Pension Plan

Why cigarettes and pension don’t mix? Over 30% of Chicago city workers make more than a 100k.  Put things in perspective; if a bureaucrat worked for 30 years and made 100k per year (total earnings =$3 million). And still needs a pension? People that represent the government body; coupled with benefits and excellent compensation pay …

Small Consumers Incentive for Chicago Stores

Creativity of the Mind Imagine a city that gives you money back for supporting small businesses in your community. Less shopping on Amazon and more canvassing the markets. The good old days where mom used to force us to go to the stores and get those everyday items. Remember those times we supported family-owned businesses? …

Throwing out the Cigarette, Scene 1

Academia Landscape  There was I finishing my cigarette and who approach my space was Dr. Peters, a sociologist. It dawns on me that people with higher education; still can fall within the cracks of nicotine addiction. If the professor starts delving into deep science, I will want another cigarette. “Hello professor, what are you up …

Look to self and community to Change

Together Community is a strong concept when everyone is involved. We should have concerns with issues that are revolving around our cities. Government officials are hand selected to keep the status quo. We need to take control of our destinies. Write our history. Yes, there are plenty of government institutions that are supposed to be …

Unhappy Americans Under the Trump’s Eye

Trump, taking them away or bringing them back? Mr. President, there are many unhappy Americans. We need more work that can provide a meaningful life to all. We have many abandoned homes in the midwest. How about job creation programs that train people how to renovate stressed properties? You are a guru in the real …

Unhappy Americans and Where Are We Heading? (Part 1)

Capitalist Drugs and Dirty Streets My recent trip to Denver Colorado was an eye-opener. It seems that Denver suffers from a saturation of liquor stores. Chicago’s urban areas (south and west side) is saturated with liquor establishments as well. Nevertheless, Denver does not suffer the same crime rates related to alcohol. One reason is Denver’s …

Is Weed Going to Destroy Big Companies

Weed: The Super Plant Is weed the right alternative to smoking? Is it the Achilles heel to big tobacco and Big Pharma? We will see the answer when the people (not the government) decide to legalize it for good. Other drugs like cigarettes have produced cancer by inhaling carbon monoxide and other chemicals. Is the marijuana revolution upon us, is …

Vacation Equals More Smoking

Lake Michigan Just recently, my family and I got away to St. Joseph, Michigan. What a beautiful place to spend time with loved ones. The problem is that my family members were smoking like a chimney. I could not figure out why people; specifically in my inner circle were smoking so much on vacation. Smart …

Cigarettes are Expensive!

Here is a typical scenario; you walk into a convenience store. Then you proceed to the checkout counter. You request from the clerk a branded pack of cigarettes. The clerk say’s “13.50” and you are contemplating your addiction and your bottom line. You Are Not Alone The world we live in today has many options …

Using Quit Smoking Aids and Recognizing the Triggers

So, you decided to use a quit smoking aid to help you finally get rid of that nasty habit. Good for you. Well, I am here to tell you that you need to recognize triggers; that will make you want to light up a cigarette. Being in the Present In the morning, before you brush …

Chicago Vice, Failing To Be One

Chicago Vice Our family grew up on the south side of Chicago in the ’80s and 90’s eras. Gangs were looking for respect. It was not like gangs we have today fighting over  “drug” turf. Street gangs were feared, and some of the adolescents yearn to be part of them. Chicago gangs were seen as …

Smoke a Cigarette or Play with a Refugee Cat

Challenges of Routine  Every day we face daily stress, which makes us want to smoke a cigarette. When we are not in stressful situations; we are not thinking about nicotine. It’s already in our bloodstream. Our jaded work can keep us miserable. We need to find an alternative to happiness, find meaningful employment. It does not …

I hate my job, that is why I Smoke.

Work and No Life Why I hate my job (i.e., retail)?  Is it because it makes me feel like a robot? Is that the real reason why we decide to light up; we despise our meaningless work? It’s not the traffic, nor the studying we have to do, it’s our careers or place of employment …

Smoking in front of Children. A Big No-No.

Learned Behavior And Constant Exposure Go ahead light up, there is no one important you have to worry about. Smoking in front of children; that’s just life, right? Or is it? Could it be that the cycle of addictions comes from the very hands that give us love? We listen to our music, not knowing …

Using Quit Smoking Aids and Recognizing the Triggers

So, you decided to use a quit smoking aid to help you finally get rid of that nasty habit. Good for you. Well, I am here to tell you that you need to recognize triggers; that will make you want to light up a cigarette. Being in the Present In the morning, before you brush …

We are getting older and we are still smoking.

Wrestling With Nicotine The days of getting rid of cigarettes for good has been a long journey. Smoking cigarettes are like drinking coffee; we do certain behaviors out of habit. Work-related, family problems and health issues make us want to smoke. The world was not supposed to be this way. Was it? We work long …

Cigarette Break, AfterMath Consequences that Smell

College Debt and Time I don’t want to go back to class after my cigarette break. Smoking makes me stink. It’s hard to sit next to a pretty person after I smoke.  I never labeled it nicotine addiction when I was working on my 4-year degree. The truth is I used cigarettes to keep me …

Products to Use Fewer Cigarettes, Drink More Alcohol at Parties

What Happen To My Gang? Are we missing those days of hanging out with the guys? Just kicking it with the fellows; were memorable moments in my life. We never thought about adding products to use fewer cigarettes. We were young and dumb. Smoking and drinking were part of our culture; even though the majority …

Smoking Fewer Cigarettes; When Life Is Good.

Postive Change Smoking fewer cigarettes could be a goal that you would want to accomplish. Your life is going well; maybe you just won the lottery. Yeah, you don’t have to work ever in the real world. The reality is that; statistics show that people have a higher probability of going into detox centers or dying after …

Smoking Makes Me Stink

Smoking Causes Clothes and Breath to Smell Awful  Don’t you hate after you smoke a cigarette you have to go back to work; or in class and you smell? Smoking makes me stink too, and I have the remedy for our problem. See, I like you— I love smoking. And I need nicotine just like you do. …

Don’t Quit, Just Decrease Smoking

Marketing As I stand on the cemented sidewalk trying to sell my nicotine replacement products; the sentiments from the people are somewhat disturbing. I approach my potential customers, and they do not want to quit smoking. Crazy as it sounds, but that is what many smokers are afraid of–quitting. Here is my suggestion; don’t quit …

Quit Smoking is Believing In Yourself

Quit Smoking Whatever goals you have; you have to do it. I believe that many people suffer from not achieving what they set their minds too. We all need help like people who want to quit smoking. I think if we understand that smoking is an addiction, we can combat it so. If we are …

Does Vaping Bother You?

Vaping Dream My family thought I was crazy for making e-liquid juice at home. The first time I thought about making my product; I fell in love with the idea. Vaping is a real innovation. The fact is that addiction to cigarettes is an easy road. I quit smoking cigarettes for six months, after twelve years …