February 28, 2007

Brian's Song: False Flags

What do you do when you see the rain..

Every time I look at it I gain so much in terms of perspective. I see the rain and I see the world wash it's troubles away, I'd often stand out there to try and wash away some of the dirt I've carried for so long.

Sometimes we get so caught up in our lives that we don't take any time to really think anymore. As we grow up, we learn to exchange dreams and wonder for obligations and realism. When I feel those moments come up on me I stand in the rain, I stand there to have it all wash off me. My wonder and my dreams are what brought me here, so for obvious reasons, I'm not in a hurry to forget them. In the rain I listen to music that inspires me and inspires those feelings, So I looked for a song that I dedicate to my friends and especially to my Editor who should be back next week so I can finally figure out why I have a coffee maker, and most importantly have someone who can keep me company in the rain....

So for this week I spotlight "False Flags" By Massive Attack as this week's Brian's Song

"False Flags"

In city shoes,
Of clueless blues.
Pays the views,
And no-mans news.

Blades will fade from blood to sport,
The heroin's cut these fuses short.
Smokers rode a colonial pig,
Drink and frame this pain I think.

I'm melting silver poles my dear,
You bleed your wings and then disappear.
The moving scenes and pilot lights,
Smithereens have got 'em scaling heights.

Modern times come talk me down,
And battle lines are drawn across this town.

Parisian boys without your names,
Ghetto stones instead of chains.
Talk 'em down cause it's up in flames,
And nothing's changed.

Parisian boys without your names,
Riot like 1968 again.
The days of rage yeah nothing's changed,
Well pretty flames.

In school I would just bite my tongue,
And now your words they strike me down.
The flags are false and they contradict,
They point and click which wounds to lick.

On avenues this christian breeze,
Turns its heart to more needles please.
Our eyes roll back and we beg for more,
It frays this skin and then underscore.

The case for war you spin and bleed,
The sales you feel screensavers feed.
The girls you breed the soaps that you write,
The graceless charm of your gutter snipes.

The moving scenes and suburbanites,
And smithereens got 'em scaling heights.
Modern times come talk me down,
The battle lines are drawn across this town.

English boys without your names,
Ghetto stones instead of chains.
Hearts and minds and U.S. Planes,
Nothing's changed.

And English boys without your names,
Riot like the 1980's again.
The days of rage yeah nothing's changed,
More pretty flames....

Like what you read, want to know more? Then click the link and learn about Massive Attack


"False Flags" is the off of "Collected" which is available at music stores everywhere.

Got an idea for a future "Brian's Song", then hit us up and let us know, there's nothing fun and more truer than just sharing some kick ass tunes with the world.

Until Next Time,



February 23, 2007

TBF: Scientology

By Patsy Cline

I'm crazy for feeling so lonely.
I'm crazy,
Crazy for feeling so blue.
I knew, you'd love me as long as you wanted,
And someday, you'd leave me for somebody new.

Why do I let myself worry,
What in the world should I do,
Crazy for thinking that my love could hold you.

I'm crazy for trying, crazy for trying, and I'm crazy
for loving you.
I'm crazy for trying, crazy for trying, and I'm crazy
for loving you....


Now, if you think that I'm finally going to help decide which space based phenomenon is better: STAR WARS or STAR TREK, well you are unfortunately dead wrong. I know when there are battles beyond even MY abilities of reasoning and believe me that is one of them. Though I admit I would love to see who would win that all too cool of a battle between Starfleet and the Jedi... Ah to dream.

Actually I know of another grand galactic legend, one where a ruthless dictator enslaved a galaxy and transported them thousands of light years to a distant planet called Earth... There they were imprisoned inside all the volcanoes across the land until massive explosions destroyed all the alien bodies and their spirits roamed across the skies until they learned to inhabit the local beings also known as cavemen, so skip ahead a couple million years and they now formed a church to celebrate this legend... surprisingly many people believe this, but what is it really? the beginning of a new faith or a really good scam?

We'll find out as we tackle this week on The Brian Factor: Scientology

Scientology. Obviously thanks to some of it's members, many of us have a pretty good impression of how they operate. But instead of judging the entire church because of a couple of idiots who don't help their image. I decided to really see what they are and learn more about them... then judge them....

There are two versions on how it all began; one version goes back a few million years ago and the other goes back about 55 years ago.

The older version officially goes like this:

75 million years ago, an alien ruler named Xenu who ruled the "Galactic Confederacy", brought billions of people to Earth in spacecraft resembling Douglas DC-8 airliners, he then stacked them around volcanoes and blew them up with hydrogen bombs. Their souls then clustered together and stuck to the bodies of the living. The alien souls continue to do this today, causing a variety of physical ill-effects in modern-day humans. These clustered spirits or "Body Thetans" are, in essence, responsible for all the bad in the world. So through the church you learn to isolate them and neutralize their ill effects.

While we know of this legend, a wide belief is that this is a core teachings in the church. In reality, it's not really their "Genesis" as much as it's really just one of the other chapters like a "Luke" or "John". The overall message is to "audit" oneself to remove traumatic events, your burdens, your mistakes; basically your faults. Since according to them, we are all old souls who have existed since the dawn of time and our souls are weighed down by all the events of our past lives, so it is necessary for us to cleanse ourselves in order for us to move up to an enlightened state of consciousness.

In fact, these are the central tenets of Scientology:

- A person is an immortal spiritual being (termed a "thetan") who possesses a mind and a body.

- The thetan has lived through many past lives and will continue to live beyond the death of the body.

- Through the Scientology process of "auditing", one can free oneself of "engrams" and "implants" to reach the state of "Clear", and after that, the state of "Operating Thetan". Each state is said to represent recovering the native spiritual abilities of the individual, and to confer dramatic mental and physical benefits.

- A person is basically good, but becomes "aberrant" by moments of pain and unconsciousness in his or her life.

- What is true for you is what you have observed yourself. No beliefs should be forced as "true" on anyone. Thus, the tenets of Scientology are expected to be tested and seen to either be true or not by Scientology practitioners.

- Psychiatry and psychology are evil and abusive practices.

Scientology claims to offer "exact" methods of spiritual counseling to help people achieve awareness of their spiritual existence, while enhancing their effectiveness in the physical world. The exact nature of all of existence is said to be stated in Hubbard's Scientology and Dianetics Axioms.

According to the Church, the ultimate goal is to get the soul (thetan) back to its native state of total freedom, thus gaining control over matter, energy, space, time, thoughts, form, and life. This freed state is called Operating Thetan, or OT for short.

Like pretty much anything, controversy has become somewhat synonymous with the church. Many of these ongoing controversies involving the Church and its critics include:

- Repeated claims of brainwashing and mind control.

- Scientology's disconnection policy, in which members are encouraged to cut off all contact with friends or family members critical of the Church.

- The unexplained death of Scientologists.

- The use of high-pressure sales tactics to obtain money from members.

- Multiple criminal activities by Scientologists, both those committed for personal benefit (Reed Slatkin, Gabriel Williams, and others) and those committed on behalf of the Church and directed by Church officials (Operation Snow White, Operation Freakout, Fair Game, and others).

- Numerous differing, and sometimes conflicting, accounts of L. Ron Hubbard's life, in particular accounts of Hubbard discussing his intent to start a religion for profit, and of his service in the military.

- Scientology's harassment and litigious actions against its critics and enemies.

- Some critics charge Scientology with being a cult of personality, with much emphasis placed on the alleged accomplishments of its founder.

- Lobbying search engines such as Google and Yahoo to omit any webpages that are critical of Scientology from their search engines (and in Google's case, AdSense), or at least the first few search pages (now, however, a search for Scientology on Google and Yahoo brings up the Wikipedia page, with both critical and official Scientology websites).


So according to them, I'm as old as time or at least 75 million years old, and I still haven't broken a hip...WOO HOO!!! As for how I feel about them, well I still think they're a bunch of dicks and definitely the most integrated group of exceptional idiots I've ever met, but what do you expect, I'm stubborn in my old age...

Though that still shouldn't excuse me trying to bat them away with my cane at the mall or yell out at the kiosk "HAIL XENU!!!" and believe me I've done it. If Marie were here she'd tell you about the last time we were at the mall. Seriously though, It's easy to make fun of a set of beliefs when it sounds like nothing else you've ever heard of before. Hell, a thousand years ago, people laughed at the concept of Christianity and I'm not comparing the two, just using the old reliable "lack of age = scrutiny" comparison.

I mean let's face it, when God called upon Noah, He got an Ark, and then eventually Bagels... When L. Ron called upon John Travolta, He got "Battlefield Earth", and that movie sucked balls....

I agree that Knowledge is something we should all aim for in life, cause when you really think about it, money can be spent, health can and will fade, but knowledge is essential to one's growth. My whole issue with religion in total stems from the fact that, yes, growth in yourself helps to create a better, stronger you, but instead of complete growth which we should aim for, most religions only want growth within their borders and ideals which really only creates stunted growth.

Here it's no different; you have to show unwavering commitment- both spiritually and FINANCIALLY- and that's the only way to truly move on up within the church.

The pursuit of something greater and an understanding of existence is a life long journey that'll bring about many life changing experiences, the rewards are priceless and so should be the journey. I honestly believe that Scientology takes a person's thirst for understanding and twists it for gain.

There is no definite on who's right and wrong in religion, cause really it's all the same. We want to know that our lives matter and that our existence is justified by some divine plan. I don't believe that my life will impact the universe, hell, I don't even
believe that my life will impact this planet, but that doesn't mean that my life doesn't matter; it matters to me, it matters to my friends and family and that's all that should matter....


February 21, 2007

Brian's Song: Baby Hates Me

Brian's Song - 02/21/07

Well here we are back again for another week of great tunes and great times, well kinda... See here at TBF headquarters it's just little ol' me since I gave Marie a two week vacation and I'm here all by my lonesome. I admit that you can't appreciate someone and all their contributions until they're gone. But I also forgot what it's like to be on my own again, for example I forgot how fun it is to write without pants on, or how I can blare out my Public Enemy tapes without bothering anyone, what can I say? I need a little "Fight The Power" in the mornings. Yet I can't lie, without Marie here, things are a little harder to figure out like why do we have a coffee machine since I don't drink coffee? Plus the office is a mess, and I just can't seem to locate my Platinum card...

Anyway, we are now one week removed from "V-Day" and in my experience one of three things has occured since last Wednesday:

1) Your relationship became stronger

2) Your relationship hasn't moved an inch in either a positive or negative direction and you're stuck in the same spot you were last year

3) your relationship will now be referred to in the past tense

Well, whoever had 1 and 2, all I can say is good luck and remember to celebrate Valentine's lesser known but still equally powerful counterpart "Steak and BJ Day" on March 14th. As for everyone who suffered 3, then allow me to help with the healing, in fact call me "Mr. Sensitive"...

So since your ass just got dumped and you feel like absolute shit, I found a song to help move on. When a relationship ends, you'll tend to dwell on the past and naturally go through the motions. The aim of the motions is to help you get to the point where you can stand up and say "you meant everything to me, but I'm still standing after the pain."

Want proof? Well look at me: a borderline misanthrope, with mild depression swings and split ends... who after the motions became a borderline misanthrope, with mild depression swings and split ends WITH a positive perception about himself.

So for this week I spotlight "Baby Hates Me" By Danko Jones as this week's

Brian's Song

"Baby Hates Me"

My favorite situations,
Are always sticky kinds.
I'll be the first to cast stones,
I don't let sleeping dogs lie.

I'll sing it from the mountain,
Just take me to the top.
I'll scream it 'til my lungs pop,
I'll stand here Ôtil I drop.

The feeling, Is Leaving
It's all gone, It's decieving.
If we don't stop, put me in a coffin.
Cause you and I had absolutely nothing in common.

I know you hate me
And you can't shake me

You make me rock solid, hot and bothered,
it don't matter, I can shake you.

You used to be so special,
Now I'm bored all the time.
You think the same of me too,
Just say it, don't be shy!

The feeling, is leaving
It's all gone, it's deceiving.
If we dont stop, put me in a coffin.
Cause you and I had absolutely nothing in common.

I used to want you, (Baby)
Now I don't want to. (I know you hate me)
Time to start moving on (But you still crave me)

You just amaze me

I used to want you, (And you can change me)
Now I don't want to.
You make me rock solid, hot and bothered
It dont matter i can shake you...

Ohh baby, it's been a long time coming.
And it's just the way it's gotta be.
But I know this is one thing..
One thing we won't fight about.
And you can put my name on the dotted line...

I know you hate me.

I used to want you (But you still crave me)
Now I don't want to (You just amaze me)
Time to start moving on (And you can't shake me)

I know you hate me

I used to want you (And you can't shake me)
Now I don't want to

You make me rock solid, hot and bothered
It don't matter I can shake you....

Like what you read, want to know more? Then click the link and learn about Danko Jones


"Baby Hates Me" is the off of "Sleep Is The Enemy" which is available at music stores everywhere.

Got an idea for a future "Brian's Song", then hit us up and let us know, there's nothing fun and more truer than just sharing some kick ass tunes with the world.

Until Next Time,



February 15, 2007

Echoes: Political Correctness

Tonight is something special, Super Editor Marie is stepping out of her Editor role to really speak candidly about P.C. and since there were no other submissions, I'm letting her have Echoes to raise her voice. I did throw in my comments and pretty much I'd say we're on the same page.

So here she is...MARIE...UNCENSORED

Comment Submitted by Marie:

Some things are simply obvious facts. I'm white, I'm female, I'm a young adult. You may be tall, short, fat, thin, black, brown, white, purple, one-legged, or multi-tentacled. The instant you see someone you automatically note certain factors about their appearance.

If you disagree with that you are either blind or in serious denial. So I'll assume we all accept that first sentence as true.

People seem to think that drawing attention to physical characteristics (e.g. using labels) is rude and hurtful. You've seen what I look like. Under our current racial definitions, I'm white. I know it and you know it. You calling me white is a mere statement of fact; I'm not going to get all pissy over it. Unless you say the word in a derisive or accusatory tone and/or surround "white" with other words like "bitch" or "slut" or "worthless". Then I'll get angry and punch your stupid face.

B.R.: She'll do it and it hurts.

Let's say I have a friend who only has four fingers total. I know he has a physical defect; he knows he has a physical defect. If he suggests that we go bowling, I may comment curiously, "Cool, you can bowl?" Should he take offense? No. But if I say something snarky like, "Dude, I didn't know they made bowling balls for guys with claws," then I deserve a slap across the mouth.

B.R.: Makes me wanna slap you right now...

The most often used example of political correctness is the debate over what white people should call black people. There have been many changes in preference over the decades: negro, colored, black, African-American, people of color, etc. I have a suspicion that black people won't decide on a term because they enjoy making PC-conscious whites nervous. Comedienne Judy Gold joked that a white woman was so afraid to offend a black bartender that she ordered an "African-American Russian."

Now, I can see how a fun little power trip like that may be a perk to someone whose ancestors were oppressed. But the mere fact that people are agonizing over what to call other groups of people only draws more attention to our differences. Varieties of race, ethnicity, gender, religion, etc. all need to be de-emphasized. We say that we hate them, that we want to be equal to everyone else, but we cling to our labels. We make sure that our labels remain in the front of everyone's mind- socializing our kids by pointing out "Jerry looks different because he is black, honey" rather than explaining "Jerry has black
hair, I have brown hair, and you have yellow hair. Everyone is different and special." As we grow up we forget that there are reasons that make us appear different; after all, it's much easier to just say "he's black," and move on to the next topic.

Why can't we move past having labels? People seem to like double standards. Our respective labels give us respective benefits and disadvantages. Someone will say "I want to be considered equal to everyone else" then turn around and ask for special treatment- Affirmative Action, extended test-taking time, handicapped parking permits, etc. But can you really blame them? If you can catch a break, why not take it? Opportunity's knocking.

Hell, I've done it. At boarding school, if I was running late and couldn't finish my morning chores, I'd approach a male staff member and beg to be allowed back into my dorm because of "girl problems." I'd make sure the sink was clean and my bed was made, and avoid consequences for rolling out of bed ten minutes late. (Women can get away with a lot by confessing "girl problems." Men just cut you off with an "I don't want to hear about it" expression and wave you ahead.)

Is it honest for someone to profess "Hey, I'm just a regular person" then demand special compensation? Probably not, but are we going to act with integrity and pass up a free ride? I don't think so. We won't give up our labels and sob-stories of how society owes us for mistreating our ancestors. Once the benefits for being a minority cease being meted out by the government and other institutions, we'll have to accept that we are all people. (With the possible exceptions of sexual differences and physical and mental disabilities.)

I think that many people, consciously or not, like their labels. It's an easy way to define yourself. Racial identity may be the easiest. You automatically know that you have something (no matter how superficial) in common with people who look like you. ("You're blond! So am I! Like, wow!") Several of the fraternities and sororities at UCSC primarily base their membership on race or ethnicity. They often state their purpose as "creating a supportive environment for [insert type of minority here] students." Many also assert that their organization is not racist- that they welcome anyone of any ethnicity to apply. But, really, how many Latinas are aKDPhi's? How many white girls are in AKA? How many gentiles are AEPi's?

Don't get me wrong; solidarity is a good thing-- just look at the civil rights or feminist movements. But can't we all put aside our labels sometimes and just identify with each other as fellow human beings? Not white or black, Christian or Muslim, Hutu or Tutsi, even male or female. It will take generations, but the key to equality may be eliminating labels from our languages altogether.

B.R.: AMEN!!!!

Response From Brian:

You're absolutley right, there are double standards for eqaulity, I believe that you should be proud of your heritage but don't let it be all that you are. Great job Marie. I'm giving you a vacation.


February 13, 2007

Brian's Song: Better of Two Evils

With everyone going all "lovey-dovey" this week I too was actually in the mood for something romantic but then I remembered that the "lovey-dovey" part of me died a slow horrible death some time ago and honestly in my opinion this holiday can go fuck itself! but that doesn't mean that I still won't be hard at work sharing new music with all of you. So scrolling through the BriPod I found a song that fits for me today, like I've said before, music to me has many purposes and today I use it as both a source of reflection and contemplation. It's interesting how last week I spotlighted Nine Inch Nails and this week, I spotlight Trent Reznor's former protege.

So for this week I spotlight "Better of Two Evils" By Marilyn Manson as this week's

Brian's Song

"Better of Two Evils"

Haters call me bitch,
Call me faggot, call me whitey.
But I am something that you'll never be...

I won't look prettier if I smile for the picture,
Motherfuckers never liked me then and they
Sure won't like me now.
Don't try to drag me down with your cliche,
Your fake grin fits your faker face.
But I find all my pleasure in your misery,

I will step on you on my way up,
And I will step on you on my way down.
I will step on you on my way up,
And I will step on you on my way down.
Haters call me bitch,
Call me faggot, call me whitey.
But I am something that you'll never be...
Haters call me bitch,
Call me faggot, call me whitey.
But I am something that you'll never be...
I'll be your scapegoat, I'll be your Savior.
I'm the better of two evils (yeah yeah yeah)
I'm the better of two evils

I want to hang all you cattle,
With your velvet rope.
Motherfuckers step up and get into
An orderly line.
I'll show you how to make a muscle,
It takes less strength to grin than
It does to spit on all you

I will step on you on my way up,
I'll fucking step on you on my way down.
Haters call me bitch,
Call me faggot, call me whitey.
But I am something that you'll never be...
Haters call me bitch,
Call me faggot, call me whitey.
But I am something that you'll never be...
I'll be your scapegoat, I'll be your Savior.
I'm the better of two evils (yeah yeah yeah)
I'm the better of two evils

Don't try to lead me to temptation
Don't try to lead me to temptation
Don't try to lead me to temptation
Don't try to lead me to temptation
I've been delivered and I already know the way.

Haters call me bitch,
Call me faggot, call me whitey.
But I am something that you'll never be...
Haters call me bitch,
Call me faggot, call me whitey.
But I am something that you'll never be...
I'll be your scapegoat, I'll be your Savior.
I'm the better of two evils (yeah yeah yeah)
I'm the better of two evils

Like what you read, want to know more? Then click the link and learn about Marilyn Manson


"Better of Two Evils" is the off of "The Golden Age of Grotesque" which is available at music stores everywhere.

Got an idea for a future "Brian's Song", then hit us up and let us know, there's nothing fun and more truer than just sharing some kick ass tunes with the world.

For all of you celebrating today, enjoy yourselves, as for me, I got a bottle of Vodka and two pieces of fried chicken with my name on it... Time to get my drink on!!!!

Until Next Time,


February 09, 2007

TBF: Political Correctness

By: A Perfect Circle

Dead as dead can be,
The Doctor tells me.
But I just can't believe him,
Ever the optimistic one,
I'm sure of your ability to become my perfect enemy...

So, wake up and face me,
Don't play dead cause maybe
Someday I will walk away and say,
"You disappoint me, Maybe you're better off this way".

Leaning over you here cold and catatonic,
I catch a brief reflection of what you could and might
have been,
It's your right and your ability to become my perfect enemy.

So, wake up and face me,
Don't play dead cause maybe
Someday I will walk away and say,
"You disappoint me, Maybe you're better off this way".

Maybe you're better off this way
Maybe you're better off this way

Maybe you're better off

So, wake up and face me,
Don't play dead cause maybe
Someday I will walk away and say,
"You fucking disappoint me, Maybe you're better off this way".

Go ahead and play dead,
I know that you can hear this,
Go ahead and play dead,
Why can't you turn and face me?,
Why can't you turn and face me?,
Why can't you turn and face me?,

You fucking disappoint me...

Passive aggressive bullshit
Passive aggressive bullshit
Passive aggressive bullshit

When someone excels at something, you would honor them for their accomplishments. Respecting someone for their abilities is simply what it is... showing respect to someone. Yet we live in a world where words have to be chosen carefully and that a person's background and beliefs have to be taken into consideration when you talk to/ about someone. So does being overly attentive to a person's background make you a better person when you speak of them? Or do you simply create insensitivity when there was none in the first place?

So let's find out as we tackle another grand social issue as we talk about this week on The Brian Factor: Political Correctness

Political Correctness (or PC) is a term used to describe language or behavior which is claimed to provide a minimum of offense, particularly to racial, cultural, or other identity groups.

A common misunderstanding is that PC is unique to a certain political party, special interest group, or language, when in reality it's been around for hundreds of years. In fact one of the earliest usage of the term was comes from the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Chisholm v. Georgia (1793), where it clearly means that the statement it refers to is not literally correct, owing to the political status of the United States as it was understood at that time:

"The states, rather than the People, for whose sakes the States exist, are frequently the objects which attract and arrest our principal attention [...]. Sentiments and expressions of this inaccurate kind prevail in our common, even in our convivial, language. Is a toast asked? 'The United States,' instead of the 'People of the United States,' is the toast given. This is not politically correct."

Ironically in the 1970's the term was re-appropriated as a satirical form of criticism, and was used by some on the Left to dismiss the views of other Leftists whom they deemed too doctrinaire and rigid. It was in this sense that the popular usage of the phrase in English derived.

But what really gave PC the full head of steam that we know it to be came about in the 1990's when conservatives brought about PC to challenge many colleges that refused certain historic events and figures. Believe it or not Former President George H. W. Bush spoke out against administrators and academics who would "declare certain topics off-limits, certain expressions off-limits, even certain gestures off-limits".

The creation of PC is based off of the Sapir–Whorf hypothesis which states in lay man's terms that what we say will influence our thoughts and our actions, So to make sure we don't do or think anything stupid, it's suggested that we not say anything stupid to begin with... That's pretty stupid.

Like anything and everything there's both a positive and negative aspect to PC. It's often cited for substituting one title for another as well as attempting to undermine free speech by convincing people that only PC words would inspire peace between all of us... well...


Before I rant on I should thank Harlean Carpenter for insipring this week's topic, four days ago I was chatting with H.C. and we were joking how I should label any links to the TBF site as "Crazy Mexican Rants" and H.C. told me that I have to say "Crazy Hispanic American Rants" so I wouldn't offend anyone and it kinda hit me right there at that moment: "I can't even be called what I am anymore?" You know, I'm all for giving respect to people and I'm even for peace, unity and whatever that thing was...uh... "Hands Across America", yeah I'm all for that but there IS a certain level of give and take...


Time for me to be real and here it is:

Two thirds of what you do, what you say, what you damn sure think and in essence two thirds of what you are as a being, offends someone. You think that taking a word and replacing it with another word will make me tingle with pride... UH..NO. First off if I have a tingling sensation, then I take my ass to the doctor's, not to a pride march. Secondly, they are words, they can only hurt so much but something tells me that a punch or a kick and the occasional burning
of a cross on your front lawn might hurt a little more than a word.

Respect isn't given in a word, it's given in an action.

What really bugs me is that how a person's accomplishments can't just be his accomplishments, they have to "represent the heart and soul of his people." Nah, that's just straight up bull shit right there. We are all different, we all know that, but really this whole PC thing seems to brand a group purely on it's successes of failures and nothing else.

I guess in the end, the real question you should ask is why we even need to labeled for what we are?

Why can't we just be people? Strip away the skin and everything is exactly the same, the only real difference is where we're from, what we believe and our skin color.

But you can't, can you? So you call us a name to generalize us and you can't even call us what we really are, so you make up a word that's more pleasant to your ears and that doesn't make you feel like you're lowering to "our level". Real strength is admitting who you are in all aspects: your beliefs, your hopes, your flaws and most importantly your legacy.

So let's stick with the basics of what you need to know:

1) Don't use labels, either PC or not, it does nothing to help anyone.

2) it's your experiences that make up who you are, not your color.

3) If you still can't figure out rules 1 and 2 then Darwin says you should die or lose the ability to reproduce... whichever one's easier.

I'm not ashamed of being a Mexican, but I don't want that to be what defines me and I don't aim to do great things in the name of my people. I aim to do great things period, being Mexican is that thing that makes me extra special. I don't want to be remembered as a great Mexican columnist, I want to be remembered as a great columnist... Enough said.

February 08, 2007

Inside the Brian

"Inside The Brian..."

I was asked those ten questions that James Lipton asks on "Inside The Actor's Studio" and I thought I'd share those answers with you:

The ten questions by Bernard Pivot that host James Lipton asks every guest are:

What is your favorite word?

BR: Honor

What is your least favorite word?

BR: Failure

What turns you on [creatively, spiritually or emotionally]?

BR: Love

What turns you off?

BR: Fake People

What is your favorite curse word?


What sound or noise do you love?

BR: Laughter

What sound or noise do you hate?

BR: Fighting (Arguing)

What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?

BR: Doctor

What profession would you not like to do?

BR: Columnist... I'm Joking.. um... Rocket Scientist

If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?

BR: "You've been many things: An Asshole, an Artist and a Man, But you were always true to yourself and to the world... And I'm proud of you for that."


Brian's Song: The Line Begins to Blur

I don't know about you guys but i can remember the very first artist that got me into music. granted growing up I was exposed to a lot of music but I didn't really follow the music scene or even really try, but when I was 17, My boss gave me a Nine Inch Nails CD. At first I was surprised to get this but I remember putting my headphones on and just getting totally blown away. Hearing all this raw, grinding sound opened my eyes and ears to so much and I firmly believe that it helped to shape me into what I've become today.

By now Marie's thinking "Trent Reznor has created a monster!!!!"

It's funny how back then I didn't jack about music to save my ass and now people come to me looking for new and relatively unknown music... it's a fuckin trip.

Whether you've heard it in the news or you're hearing it for the first time here and now, NIN is releasing a new album later this year:

"Year Zero" will be released on April 17th

So to say thanks to NIN for all their great music, this week I chose "The Line Begins To Blur" By Nine Inch Nails as this week's

Brian's Song

The Line Begins To Blur

There are things that I said I would never do,
There are fears that I cannot believe have come true.
For my soul is too sick and too little and too late,
And my self I have grown too weary to hate.

The more I stay in here,
The more it's not so clear.
The more I stay in here,
The more I disappear.
As far as I have gone,
I knew what side I'm on.
But now I'm not so sure,
The line begins to blur...

Is there somebody on top of me?
I don't know, I don't know
Isn't anybody stopping me?
I don't know, I don't know
Well I'm trying to hold my breath
I don't know, I don't know
Just how far down can I go?
I don't know, I don't know, I don't know!!

As i lie here and stare,
The fabric starts to tear.
It's far beyond repair,
And i don't really care.
As far as i have gone,
I knew what side i'm on.
But now i'm not so sure,
The line begins to blur...

Like what you read, want to know more? Then click the link and learn about Nine Inch Nails


"The Line Begins To Blur" is the off of "With Teeth" which is available at music stores everywhere.

Got an idea for a future "Brian's Song", then hit us up and let us know, there's nothing fun and more truer than just sharing some kick ass tunes with the world.

Until Next Time,



February 02, 2007

Echoes: Beauty in society

Echoes of the Factor - 02/02/07

Responses Posted on: 02/02/07

Question/ Comment Submitted by Harlean Carpenter:

Brian, first and foremost I would like to say that to me, you're beautiful from the inside out, I love you for that and I always will. but now on the flip side of your topic, I would like to offer a comment. by a fortunate accident of genetics for which I can take no credit, I am a woman who has over the course of my adult life been called a range of things from cute to
pretty to beautiful, depending on who's doing the calling. you've called me beautiful, and I do appreciate and enjoy that not only for the hearing but for the source of the words, a girl always enjoys hearing such things from an intelligent man of
discerning tastes, don't get me wrong. but if you would be so kind, allow me to present the following short quiz to make my point.

1- when I meet a man for the first time, the thing he notices first about me is usually:

a) my 140 IQ and exceptional writing skills, or
b) my ass

2- when I look inward at the things about myself which I love and cherish the most, the one that ranks higher on the list is:

a) my 140 IQ and exceptional writing skills, or
b) my ass

conventionally "pretty" people are under pressure too, and it's the pressure of constantly having to prove that you're more than just a pretty face. in fact, there are those in the world who will do all they can to thwart your efforts to prove that you are more than that, because they resent the fact that you might BE more than that. no matter what you've got, there will always be someone in the world who doesn't want you to have it. hence my own personal motto, stolen from one of the best pulp fiction novels ever published, Lace by Shirley Conran; "you became an adult when you stopped caring what other people thought of you, and started caring what you thought of them."

or, to put it more Brian-esquely, fuck 'em.

Response from Brian:

You're right, Actually I should apologize for part of my tone from last week. As I was writing the second half of TBF right before post time, my cell went off and reminded me that my ex's birthday is coming up and actually her birthday is of all days Valentine's Day, So if I didn't like V- Day before because I'm single, now I have this whole other thing that has me not
being a fan of that day even more. I've made serious leaps and bounds in progress in moving on from Sarah since last summer. Hell, I hadn't even thought about her since last year and I see this one reminder and everything just came back and I took it out on my column and for that I do apologize.

Wounds heal in time and then they become scars, eventually scars fade too... in time.

As for your quiz I took it and here's what I put down:

1) B, Cause seriously you do got back...

But in truth when I first met you, what wowed me were actually your eyes (and I don't mean the synonym term for your rack, either). I always look into people's eyes because I believe you can tell a person by what's in their eyes and I could tell when I read yours that you weren't just a pretty face, and then you would wow me because you could really express yourself and you really stand up for what you think and feel even when we on opposing views and you honestly continue to impress me without really trying.

So to simplfy: B is what first got my attention but A is what kept me around

2) C: both And hear me out first, you have said that you're proud of both your intelligence and of your body and that you've never had to just be a pretty face.

And honestly now that I have a clear head let me really say something about last Friday:

Why would you want to be average? cause honestly there is no such thing. in fact there is such a thing as average, but they aren't those "conventional" stats I gave you last week. Average is really diversity, it's really anything, so what makes people exceptional? If I had to describe it I'd say it's sincerity, it's knowing when to and when not to take anything at face value, it's about being honest to yourself and others even when you don't like the answer...

Or I guess in one word: A Maverick

I know I use that word alot but just in case you forget what that means:

Maverick: (noun)

1) An unorthodox or independent minded person.
2) A person who refuses to conform to a particular party or group.

I know what I am and I embrace every aspect of it, I'm one, Harlean's one, Marie, my Brothers, We're all mavericks. There's no shame in wanting to be yourself to the fullest, a person should accept you for who you are, what you look like, what you believe, in essence all that you are.

And if they can't do it, well then as Harlean said as she quoted me: