titania writes

by Erica Razook

American lawyer and certified fraud examiner

Read this first

Just stopping in

Main Noodle House on Sixth Avenue near 38th Street is the kind of place one stumbles into solely on the momentum of famish.

Do the red and gold decorations on the wall exist? We might never know, because who would waste a moment to look up.

In Main Noodle House on Sixth Avenue near 38th Street, they get what they need - a swift production of food, and more importantly, a well-kept promise of voracious, rapid consumption without fear of being recognized, observed or engaged.

When it’s over, they will leave as quickly as they came, without the slightest memory of what transpired or how. They’ll reemerge into their hopelessly busy empty day, at least now passing through it with the familiar comfort of a heavy, satiated stomach.

And that is good enough for today. It usually always is.

The barista in the coffee shop asks her what she would like. She responds with a gaze into her eyes

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Forget the fat lady: a growing choir of black leaders sings #HillNo

One would be hard pressed to identify a human rights movement in the United States that was not led by or substantially bolstered by African American leadership. Black activists, theologians, intellectuals, writers, politicians, artists and sports figures have, throughout the history of the country, led it, spiritually, culturally and legally, to some of its finest moments.

In the wake of ongoing waves of murders and other brutal, violent attacks on black people in the US, non-black Americans of good conscience will look to black voices to guide their moral compass of how to move forward.

The country’s response to the most recent spate of violence is overlapping with the final moments of its presidential primary election season, and in both arenas, an enough-is-enough perspective is taking hold.

Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza stated unequivocally in an interview with

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Never, ever lose our sense of imagination

There are so many ways to die.

Our sack of bones and tissues are easily smushed by any number of physically stronger forces. And, presumably, that’s the end.

For some, the threat of irrelevance seems a pretty crushing blow.

More devastating, perhaps, has always been, for me, the loss of imagination. To not be inspired beyond the immediate backdrop of one’s life and its possibilities essentially signals a certain complacency with, a surrender to, the results of a power structure comprised largely by those who feared irrelevance. In other words, to agree to a landscape designed, overwhelmingly, by the living dead.

Without imagination, what is there but the triumph of corruption?

To be unable to escape a current reality with a vision of something else, something more, do we not, at that point, cease to exist as individuals? If we do not make our own spaces? If we simply ruminate

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How Bernie’s Courage Forces Us to Find Our Own

Someone who lives a principled life can invoke inspiration or guilt and sometimes both simultaneously.

As media clips and evidence of vintage Bernie Sanders project to many of our eyes and ears for the first time his lifelong commitment to the quality of life of working people, fairness and integrity in governance and markets, and allegiance to the fundamental rights of the discriminated, it’s not surprising that in addition to the tens of thousands gathering in public spaces out of inspiration, there are also many of us gathering (often in online spaces) out of guilt.

It would be hard to have lived as much of a life of consistency to values and beliefs as Sanders. Even the Saturday Night Live parody of him, a la “I own one pair of underwear. That’s it. Some of these billionaires have three, four pairs,” is not that far off from his actual repudiation of materialism and keeping up

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Bernie is a white man. And that’s ok.

I remember last year when the US presidential candidates surfaced, and, with all due respect to Dr. Carson, I thought, “wow, it’s going to be so weird to have a white president again.”

As this long election season has played itself out, though, and I’ve “checked my privilege” and all that, I’ve come to the conclusion that Bernie is a white man. And that’s ok.

Even though it’s true that the majority of domestic terrorists in the US are white, Wall Street upper ranks are overwhelmingly white men, not to mention the many white male faces of police brutality, I still think we should give Bernie the benefit of the doubt.

It’s quite enough to take on big money and power, everything status quo and call for revolution in one fell swoop; Bernie Sanders is also faced with convincing certain female and black Americans that he’s their strongest candidate, notwithstanding being, unapologetically

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Memories of fluff from the corridors of slush

In an eerie dream, visions of a mysterious harmless organic substance would seep assuredly into all the tiny crevices of the massive city and, quietly, peacefully, momentarily shut it down. After a full year’s worth of bustling, it would simply overpower every human attempt to do, every ambition, every bit of crazy.

It would not say stop. It would make stop.

Maybe violence was taking a toll. Maybe there was just too much happening. Maybe I had become weary. I had this dream and I wished it would come true. And then it did.

Now we sludge through the tarnished-freezy-sloshy streets adorned with ankle deep puddles of icy soiled waters, heading dutifully to our duties. We concentrate on not slipping and falling on the way. We look forward to our toes being dry and warm by the end of the day, when we’ve removed our street slush armor. We return to the regular.

But, though ages ago it

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Tossing mystery, a 2016 resolution

The time has come and gone to announce the ways in which we will endeavor to improve ourselves over the next 12 months, but sometimes late is [most likely] better than never.

This year, I’m giving up mystery. (Aka, I just can’t even with mystery anymore.)

I’m done with doing and tolerating “ghosting,” the passive aggressive, the elusive, the avoidance.

All of these tactics, mechanisms of communication or non-communication, I’m convinced, waste time, undermine trust, develop unnecessary turmoil and psychoses, and keep us from self-realization.

The adage, ‘practice makes perfect’ comes into play - if what I “practice” is engaging in and accepting from others less than forthright attitudes and behaviors, I fear that’s what we’ll perfect - being untrue and unaccountable to ourselves and others.

The exception that might swallow the rule is not feeling obligated to engage with

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A letter to Hillary Clinton

Dear Hillary,

Walking home through the park this evening, I started imagining what it would be like to meet you at a cocktail party, and what I would say if we met. Since that might well never happen, I decided to write you a letter instead. And, since I might not be able to get a letter delivered to you, I decided to post it here on my blog.

You know, as a woman, I really, really want to want you to win. I go to bed at night hoping tomorrow’s headlines will give me something I can proudly post on Facebook and Twitter. Something that will make me walk to my train stop with a bit more skip in my step about the prospects of our first woman president – and how she’ll make things so much better.

I so want to be excited about your candidacy.

But I can’t. You know all the reasons why, so I’ll skip the populist pitch and the feminist pitch. And, especially, the anti-war pitch. (But, yes

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Leaf Portraits

Looking up in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, New York, USA

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All photos, copyright Titania Returns, LLC, 2015. All Rights Reserved.

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From 1988 to 2015: hoodwinking, fraud and hate in US presidential debates

It´s quite obvious now that Donald Trump is intentionally spewing racist, sexist and otherwise polarizing and degrading one-liners to capture the attention of the American public.

Sadly, the tactic of extreme baiting and rallying of people’s fears, disappointments and insecurities has worked well for him so far. But should it be allowed in televised debates?

Whether his raunchy appeal wears thin or results in actual impact in the elections, in the end, is it fair to drag the targets of these rants - mostly non-white people and women - through months of humiliating, objectifying attacks for the purpose of some strange entertainment? And is it fair to everyone else to be distracted and manipulated in this way?

One of Trump’s most outrageous displays, the Thursday night GOP debate, earned Fox News some of its highest ever ratings, with a record 24 million viewers, “bigger than all of

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