Tag Archives: race

Spartan

My Spartan Race is scheduled for tomorrow on the muddy ski slopes of Pennsylvania; this is how I planned to prepare for the brutal 5 mile obstacle course: over run Prospect Park for distance familiarity, while alternating between sprint intervals and weight training for strength conditioning. As adults, we generally get over the spectacle of walking after we learn to do so as toddlers, unless yesterday was leg day, and you wake up with quadriceps contractions.

I came a long way from the super skinny competitive guy who hated losing, and mocked losers. I have always been competitive and obsessive enough to be good at anything I set my mind to; however, I wasn’t always equipped to excel at physical activities. Being slender, among people who intermittently exercise to lose weight, has earned me quite a few “good genes” and “divine metabolism” remarks; nonetheless, being scoffed at for eating small portions never gets old; neither does a lack of fat translate into an abundance of muscle. I learned the difference one summer when I went to visit my sister on an Army base, and was demolished on a basketball court by muscular men, the likes of which never make it from the pull-up bars to the basketball courts in Brooklyn.

By my mid-twenties, without professional aspirations, I finally adopted an active lifestyle to challenge myself. By that, I mean: I stand in trains cars, even the empty ones. I look forward to flights of stairs, two steps at a time! If not for sweaty shirts and winter months, my bike would be my primary mode of transportation. After paying for multiple gym memberships, I bought my own weights and weight vest to spontaneously break out into workouts. Without fail, I feel bigger, faster, stronger every year. Always trying to one up myself, I joined the New York Road Runners Club with the intention of running the 2014 ING New York Marathon. Now I have to run 9 club sanctioned races before the end of 2013, just to run another 26 miles next year; and I can’t wait.

In the mean time, without an option for “IT professional” on the Spartan Race application, I was told to represent; which means I plan to finish in the top 10% and Instagram a deluge of post race photographs. This isn’t the last of my personal challenges this year either: see my five minute plank if you haven’t already, then look forward to my race against a train; yes, a train, you read that right. Madness?

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Succeed Zoe Saldana

Zoe Saldana, born Zoe Yadira Saldana Nazario, is currently the go-to minority action heroine of Hollywood. When Will Smith cracked the movie blockbuster code, it must have occurred to another demographic that similarly promising rules applied to them. Once a movie producer accounts for conventional wisdom and historical demographics, we’re left to conclude that profitable movie investments should reflect the desires of hormonally charged young white men, and old Jim Crow era white men. It’s then no surprise that as a black actress, you should sleep with enough white actors to be cast for your appeal to satisfy these factors. Let’s explore this theory on a movie by movie basis with the leading ingredient of mixed race relations; please note that I watched movie trailers for the most part, rather than subject myself to watching dreadful movies.

Let’s begin with the outliers, known to people who order movies on demand as, After Sex and The Heart Specialist; highlighted by explicit sex with Brian White, almost lodging a wrench in my theory, despite Brian’s ironic surname. Let’s follow up with her movies devoid of a love interest, including The Skeptic, Vantage Point, Center Stage, and Get Over it; followed by movies featuring soft ethnic relationships, including Takers and Drumline. Finally, let’s conclude with her sexually themed onscreen mixed race relations, including Avatar (yes, Avatar), The Losers, Crossroads, Death at a Funeral, Colombiana, The Words, Star Trek, and Burning Palms/Maneater; in the last of which she begs Nick Stahl to rape her, thereby removing The Heart Specialist wrench. From Halle Berry to Thandie Newton, professionally and personally, to the opposite end of the spectrum, from Uma Thurman to Angelina Jolie, leading ladies rarely share intimate screen space with black male love interests. Observe the roles of your favorite leading black male actors, from Idris Elba to Morgan Freeman and Will Smith himself, question how frequently they’re left without love interests. Zoe Saldana is the beneficiary of an industry that rewards her for enforcing a social bias; for which, if the prolific Voltaire legally scammed his fortunes through the lottery, then Zoe Saldana’s profitable exploitation is no less admirable.

Her blueprint’s sales potential has only recently gone mainstream with Scandal and Deception; special shout out to Shonda Rhimes, banking like the new Oprah! The last leading pair of African Americans on broadcast television starred in Undercovers, which despite rave reviews, was quickly canned. The real loser here is Tyler Perry, as much as I feign his cross dressing caricatures, his stubbornness to present black men in a positive light will forever relegate his productions to basic cable and poor box office sales. Congratulations Zoe Saldana! No hard feelings; for someone to win, someone has to lose.