Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Stand Firm!

Good Day, Just GQ readers. Amongst all the narcissistic people in the world, who convince themselves that everyone is “hating on them” (Shoutout to Lana “igotsomanyhaters” Jones, somewhere on Facebook), true haters do, actually, exist in most circles and play an undeniable role in life’s play. Haters, dream killers, antagonists, etc. essentially serve as a human manifestation of adversity. Given that, I ask: How do you approach obstacles? Do you take them head on? Do you maneuver around them? Do you just ignore them?

Regardless of your approach, one thing remains certain. As naysayers read from, what seems to be a never-ending script, YOU MUST KNOW WHO YOU ARE AND FOR WHAT YOU STAND! Sometimes you just have to travel with two birds ready to flip anyone who attempts to de-rail you from your objective (gentlemanly birds, of course). This principle ventures into another realm passing simple confidence because confidence can be false, but true self-assuredness is conveyed through actions. The resilience that one displays when told something is impossible exudes a Hulk-like strength of character.

Who validates YOU? Are you firm within yourself, or do you need a multitude of people around you patting you on the back telling you how great you are?

The manner in which one expresses him/herself speaks volumes about that person, as a whole, and often the messages we send about ourselves do not coincide with the message we think we send.

Let’s do a little exercise.

1. Think of three adjectives (describing words) that accurately depict who you are, as a person.
2. Arrange these in order of importance to you: Education, Family, Faith/Religion, Extracurricular Interests (Sports, Music, Writing etc.), and Attainment of your goals.
3. If a random person talked to one of your friends, what would be three words he/she would use to describe you?

With this in mind, can you, now, more effectively identify what is most important to you? Would the adjectives you used to describe yourself match with your friends’ description? If so, then kudos and continue, but if not, perhaps, you should revise the manner in which you present yourself, and re-evaluate your priorities. If you do not know who you truly are, then how can you expect anyone else to have a clue? Think on that!

Thanks for CHECKING IN THE GAME with Just GQ! PLEASE DO NOT FORGET TO FOLLOW THE BLOG! Receive direct blog post and Just GQ updates via e-mail! God Bless!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Titan Turmoil in Tennessee?

Yesterday, in a surprising overtime loss to the subpar Redskins, the focus transferred from the former AFC South leading Titans to the sideline circus that is head coach, Jeff Fisher, and quarterback, Vince Young. The continuous behind the scenes battle between coach and quarterback reached, yet, another boiling point when Young tore a tendon in his thumb, and after getting it evaluated, taped, and ready for a return to action was refused re-entry to the game in favor of 6th-round rookie draft pick, Rusty Smith, which led to the Titans’ 3rd consecutive loss. Following the game, reports detail Vince throwing his shoulder pads into the stands in frustration before getting dressed and leaving the locker room as Fisher addressed the team. When Fisher appealed to Young asking him to not walk out on his team, Young responded by saying, “…I am running out on you.”

To Titans fans, this saga is quite familiar, as VY has NEVER been Jeff Fisher’s quarterback of choice. In revisiting the 2006 draft when the Titans selected Young, Fisher and, then, offensive coordinator, Norm Chow, strongly lobbied for former USC quarterback, now, NFL bust, Matt Leinart. Since then, Young has compiled a 30-17 record (64%) as a starting quarterback, leading the Titans to a playoff berth in his rookie season. Fisher, on the other hand, possesses a 136-110 record (55%) as the NFL’s longest tenured head coach with one Super Bowl appearance.

While, owner, Bud Adams, who has always been a Young supporter, ultimately holds the trump card in this duel, I ask, to what do we attribute this fallout? In one corner, Vince Young, the proven NFL quarterback without a coach who has his back, and in the other corner, Jeff Fisher, the 16-year head coach, whose reputation as a player’s coach does not seem to apply to Mr. Young. DING DING!

FACT: Following an OUTSTANDING rookie season, one in which Vince Young won the Rookie of the Year award, he experienced an emotional breakdown when he was booed during a subpar outing in Tennessee. Young refused to go back into the game, and consequently, Kerry Collins finished the game and the season, leading the Titans to a playoff berth.

FACT: The Titans went 0-6 last year with Kerry Collins as the quarter back, before Bud Adams forced Fisher to switch to Vince Young. The Titans, then, went 8-2, barely missing a playoff berth.

ANALYSIS: While it is clear that Jeff Fisher fosters a personal vendetta against Vince Young, it is Young who continues to handle situations poorly and seemingly justify Fisher’s unjustifiable biased actions. So what? Vince has never been Fisher’s guy. He has ALWAYS been Bud’s guy! The owner > The coach. Prior to his injury, Young went 12-16, boasting a completion percentage of 75%! SEVENTY-FIVE PERCENT! Everyone with eyes could see Vince was good to go, as he warmed up on the sideline, but Fisher, using weak rationale for his decision, went with Rusty Smith, who probably does not even know the playbook thoroughly.

When Vince handles situations poorly, he brings the spotlight on himself when it should be on a coach, obviously tampering with the confidence and psyche of his star quarterback. Vince Young has arguably saved Fisher’s tenure on two occasions, yet Fisher uses the SLIGHTEST reason to bench Young whenever plausible, but again, it is Young, who makes his actions plausible through his RE-actions.

For my comparative exhibit, I utilize, one, Donovan McNabb. McNabb was booed when the Eagles drafted him and from the media to his teammates has been the target of consistent and somewhat unfair scrutiny, plaguing his career, BUT McNabb has remained the consummate professional. He has never blinked, despite all the adversity, and this is why the league and public, with the exception of Philly, hold McNabb in the regard they do. Both parties are at fault but one is the instigator and the other the reactor.

Is a personnel change necessary in Tennessee, now that Young has been placed on injured reserve, deactivating him for the remainder of the season? I will leave that up to you for discussion.

Adventures in the Baby Mama Era

Disclaimer: This blog is an ANALYSIS. PLEASE take it as such.

In a recent story released by CNN, 40% of people polled felt that marriage was obsolete and unnecessary to life. While, certainly, an alarming statistic, should it really be that surprising in the “Era of the Baby Mama”? The study, also, distinguished the primary reasons for the perceived decline in the amount of priority placed on marriage existing in the desire to achieve one’s individual goals and the lack of associated privileges. In Layman’s terms, people want to accomplish everything they want BEFORE marriage, instead of building with someone in marriage. Because both, men and women, are able to achieve financial independence, marriage is unneeded for financial stability.

Oh, and associated privileges? Seldom activities are, now, saved for the institution of marriage. Sex? Virgins are more uncommon than a bald eagle being kept as a pet by a 10 year old. Children? Try again. Hence the term “Era of the Baby Mama”, and to top it off divorce rates are soaring at 50%! So, I pose the question: What are we to do when everything around us sends an anti-marriage message? On the one hand, we could give up, as a people, impregnate whomever, and live our lives as bachelors and bachelorettes until we hit 50, and then, settle down with someone we can tolerate. OR we could identify the problem and work through it.

Is it possible that we have become too obsessed with outsmarting our fear of experiencing a failed marriage? Has our pessimistic certainty that if we marry, we would be in the divorce half instead of the “happily ever after” half consumed us? Perhaps, as the frequency of divorce has risen, marriages have become viewed more as relationships with divorce as the option of a more complicated break-up prior to moving onto the next marriage or vacation in Singlesville, where people live it up until they get lonely, then, become desperate for exclusive and meaningful affection. POW!

There is a distinct reason why arranged marriages boast a divorce rate of 5%, as opposed to when the divorce card is in the deck, and it gets played like the big joker in spades. Now, clearly, I am not married, but while that may be true, I do know that work in ANY relationship is pivotal, and if one has not prepared himself (or herself) to make an effort in ALL aspects of a marriage, then maybe you should return the ring to Jared’s.

For my exception seeking readers, I do not completely disagree with the option of divorce, only when it is just utilized as a cop out, a button to push to return to the single life simply because hard times have been encountered. I realize that poor relationships exist, and people change, but there is much to be said for truly taking a relationship slowly, getting to know the person, learning the nuances of his or her personality, and observing one’s actions in various situations, to help provide clarity in both parties’ minds of how compatible the two of them, TRULY, are.

To bring it home, while not a necessity to life, I believe marriage serves as an accent, an opportunity to build and share a life with one’s counterpart, and when successful, it is an undeniably beautiful exhibit to behold. Do NOT fear what great can come from the institution of marriage. Choose your partners more carefully, and once in a marriage, work to preserve its sanctity. One of my followers on Twitter, @Pinkroyal, tweeted an insightful remark in response to the marriage statistics, “Without optimism towards life & the institutions of marriage, family, religion, etc., what would be the point? A gloomy life is none at all.” Think on that.

Thanks for CHECKING IN THE GAME with Just GQ! Hopefully, I raised some eyebrows and got the hamster in your mental wheel some exercise (Wait for it!) Stay tuned to Just GQ for more updates, and leave your comments on the blog! God Bless!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

NEW Just GQ Promotional Poster!

What do you think? Comments?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Thank You, Twenty-Three

Education. Triumph. Trial. Tribulation. Achievement. These present only a slight snapshot of the components involved in one’s maturation as a person.  As I am on the brink of celebrating another year of life, which God has allowed me to see (PRAISE HIM!), I can unequivocally state that my Heavenly Father has granted me with a number of life lessons that have facilitated my progression as a man.

According to 1 Corinthians 13:11, “When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.”

Now, I am not saying that I exhibit the portrait of manhood because I do not. I, like everyone else should, strive to improve daily, but in a world filled with a number of questions and an unequal amount of answers, the ability to learn from mistakes holds invaluable importance.  I am not going to bore you with all the lessons I have learned during the past year and whatnot because I do not place the value of my experiences over yours, but I have experienced an array of events from vital steps take in the direction of my career to the untimely death of one of my best friends.

I will, however, share a few sentiments, which I hold close to me and attempt to adopt in my daily living.

1)    Praise Him & Have Faith! With the amount of uncertainty existing, everyone needs something solid to which they can hold. GOD IS THAT ROCK! Life is too short to not foster a viable relationship with the Creator.
2)    Value Those Around You! Cherish the people that bring joy to your life. Not to say that death will remove them from your life, but various factors cause people’s priorities and personalities to change, which alter relationships. Also, re-evaluate who is necessary in your life. Who lifts you up? Who brings you down? Who do YOU lift up? Who do YOU bring down?
3)    Adjust Your Focus & ACHIEVE! As we, undoubtedly, exist to PRAISE GOD and live according to His Will, what better way to bring GOD glory than to use the gifts with which He Blessed you to ACHIEVE in HIS NAME! Priorities provide direction, and constant evaluation of where your compass is leading you remains vital!
In summary, I am filled with immense gratitude for all that I have been afforded and will be afforded as I progress into true manhood as one of God’s children. Embrace struggle as success for it is in struggle that character is formed!

Thank you for CHECKING IN THE GAME WITH JUST GQ! I appreciate y’all letting me reflect and vent for a little bit. Stay tuned to Just GQ for more posts! God Bless!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Cheers To The Editor

“She say I'm too wild, she wanna tame me; I told her 'even Photoshop couldn't change me” -Drake

I interpreted this lyric to express a valuable sentiment in his verse on “Digital Girl”. For some strange reason, women often think they know what men mean better than men do.  Allow me to dispel this rumor at the beginning for those who need it spelled out for them.  YOU CANNOT CHANGE HIM! SO DO NOT TRY!

KEEP IN MIND: Topics covered in Just GQ are RARELY gender specific. Lessons apply to EVERYONE!

Whew! I am happy we got that out of the way.  Basically, men evaluate a woman’s—hmm…let’s call it, “staying potential” within knowing her for about two quality interactions.  Your first impression is truly pivotal in the manner by which you are perceived.  Now, I am all too familiar with the thought process women adopt when they want to “fix him up” or “if I could just change this one thing”, but people’s behavior reflects habit. Thus, people must make a conscious effort to alter their habits in order for a change in behavior to occur AND REMAIN.  Your desire for someone to act in a different manner will more than likely not adopted and accepted by them in a genuine fashion. 

Most commonly, women believe they gain the success in changing him for which they longed because they observe temporary change.  Women, generally, recognize the aforementioned change as a proclamation of HIS shared desire to transform because HE felt this amendment to his behavior was necessary. In Layman’s terms, women think he changed because he wanted to, BUT the actuality of the situation (in most cases) is he changed because of the pressure she provided and it is nothing but a screensaver until the system reboots (Word to the nerds!). 

The other frequent attempt at change (outside of characteristic modification) occurs when one party avoids comprehending the message “I am not lookin for a girl/guy right now.”  During a conversation, I was told, “When guys tell girls they don’t want to be exclusive, girls just hear ‘TRY HARDER!’”  Pulling from my personal experiences, I have realized that through narcissistic proclamation, whether verbal or mental, when someone feels they are the better deal, they think you should feel the same.  This is a fallacy, for both males AND females.  Remember, ambiguity is clarity’s enemy, so when you are given a clear message, take it as such.

Word to the wise. Do not try to change people.  No one is perfect, however tolerance is key because there are, more than likely, some aspects of your personality that require toleration too.  If you cannot deal with the certain characteristics, go back to the store and continue shopping.  We have, now, reached the check out line. Lol.

Thank you for CHECKING IN THE GAME!  Thank you for continuing to check in on a regular basis. Stay tuned for more updates on Just GQ! God Bless!