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Are you curious about a bamboo shirt or hemp socks? Bamboo, Cotton, and Hemp Clothing add comfort and sustainability

by Paul Wallick and Raymond Jackson Many people are becoming more eco-friendly, by recycling and reducing waste. Global changes conditions suggest these are a much needed and appreciated lifestyle changes. There is also increased awareness of how other practices will help the environment and the sustainability of our planet as well. The fabrics we wear and use can be a huge contribution to our own comfort but also to the more natural and less harmful impact on the earth. Bamboo, hemp and organic cotton use is on the rise to help combat waste. Bamboo, at first feel, one notices the softness and comfort ability, while learning more about its eco-friendly existence. Because of bamboo”'s natural properties, which include moisture wicking, (keeps you dry); anti-microbial,(reduces odor); thermal regulating, (keeps you a few degrees cooler in the summer and a few degrees warmer in the winter); the t-shirts, shorts, pants and socks, are wonderful for yoga, bicycling and just an overall active lifestyle. In addition, bamboo is grown organically with no pesticides and fertilizers, which make it a healthy choice for you and the Earth! Hemp fabric is four times stronger than cotton, so it lasts longer and gets softer with each use. Hemp is breathable, so it also keeps you be cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter! Requiring very little water, hemp leaves topsoil in great shape and it resists bacterial growth. Organic cotton is grown in chemical free fields and helps drastically to reduce the pesticides and fertilizers used in regular cotton growing. Organic cotton is perfect for people with sensitive skin, allergies or irritations. Organic clothing makes for healthier families. One customer said, “I purchased a pair of the EarthVitality socks, and have never had a more comfortable pair of socks in my life. They are quickly spoiling me. My feet just feel so at ease. I highly recommend them to others.” Chemical free and organic [...]

Maria Hoyos and Maria”'s Café Honored by the City

Are you curious what “working hard and staying strong can do?” by Raymond Jackson Maria Hoyos and her Café”' that she owns and operates received a Business Resolution award from Mayor R.T. Rybak and The Minneapolis City Council on January 29th. Maria”'s Café”' located at 1113 East Franklin Avenue, in the Ancient Traders Market, was recognized by the city for having been in business at this location for 10 years. Having to overcome a variety of challenges leading to her success, the resolution presented to Mrs. Hoyos read: Maria”'s Café has helped to improve the city of Minneapolis and the Phillips Neighborhood.”' Arriving in Minneapolis from Columbia, in 1979, Maria Hoyos brought with her a wealth of business experience. Combining that experience with her ability to prepare and present good food and good service, Maria opened Maria”'s Breakfast Club in 1993. Her dream of a full scale restaurant was kept alive and she added her private catering and country club experience to receive the opportunity to open Maria”'s Café, on East Franklin Avenue, in 1999. This opportunity was presented to her by The American Indian Neighborhood Development Corporation (new name of which is Great Neighborhoods Development Corporation). Maria”'s continues to flourish, offering breakfast and lunch seven days a week and to make a difference, not just in the Phillips Community, but in the entire city of Minneapolis. Maria”'s assortment of specialty pancakes and other delightful treats keep people coming from all around. “I really enjoy helping those in need, because my family and I know what it”'s like to not have. I try to encourage others to work hard and stay strong as they follow their dreams. It is good the way the neighborhood makes us feel very accepted and I am very proud that they gave me a chance at success,” says Maria. I recommend treating yourself and your family [...]

SPORTS TALK: March 2010

By Ray Jay and Young Dex Sunday January 22, 2010, 9:28 P.M., The strings on my heart are being pulled with such force, that I felt compelled to immediately begin writing the March edition of Sports Talk. What I and Dex had just witnessed in the NFC Championship game, our Minnesota Vikings vs. The New Orleans Saints, was nothing short of a triple dosage of DISGUST. Mind you, I go back to the days of the Purple People Eaters, if you know what I mean? Disgust 1: Our Vikings had, in the past three hours, turned the ball over 5 times; two of those took place in that area of almost guaranteed scoring, deemed the red zone, which resulted in a forfeiture of at least six points, as the Vikings went on to lose this game. A game the Vikings seemed to not want to win and a game the Saints seemed to not be able to win! Disgust 2: Million dollar quarterback, Brett Favre”'s, decision to throw the ball, instead of running through a hole so large, that even I could have limped through it for 6 or 7 yards, which would have put the Vikings well within kicker Ryan Longwell”'s range to attempt to win the game in regulation time. The throw resulting in an interception, instead of a forty something yard field goal attempt. Disgust 3: The Vikings having 12 men in the huddle, which resulted in a five yard penalty on the play before the interception. Disgust 4: Well, I guess there were more than three disgusting moments, in that the referees made three very questionable calls, all against the Vikings, on the Saints overtime, opening winning drive. That resulted in a forty yard field goal made by the Saints rookie kicker. Excuse me for a moment, I feel like I”'m gonna throw-up. I will finish this episode of Sports Talk in a couple of weeks. February 7, 2010. I feel much better. The Super Bowl has just been completed, matching the New Orleans Saints against The Indianapolis Colts. We decided early on to support our President Obama in this year”'s [...]

At the Movies: Precious

At the Movies: Precious

by Raymond Jackson Oh how precious everyone and everything is, all in their own unique ways! At the end of this very good movie, ”˜Precious”', exemplifies the aforementioned statement so much that one could hear a pin drop in the carpeted isles, while gasping for air and exhibiting an inability to clap. This movie is good and leaves you frozen in deep thought! The metaphor, keeping it real, can certainly be applied in this case, with bold caps even. Stand up comedian, Monique, plays an excellent role as Ms Jones, the mother of Clareece ”˜Precious”' Jones, played by newcomer, Gabourey ”˜Gabby”' Sidibe; who is said to have auditioned in between classes, while attending college in New York. Directed by Lee Daniels, ”˜Precious”' is based on the book, ”˜Push”', written by Sapphire, and is sure to be up for many awards. I am allergic to tears, so believe me when I say, this movie will have you crying and even laughing throughout, as you are taken down the path of a junior high school mother, who enters this drama pregnant with her second child, at the age of sixteen. Based in 1987 New York, Precious, after being told over and over again, by her mother and countless others, that she is nothing and will never be anything but a complete zero; starts to feel better about herself and her capabilities, after being forced to enroll in an alternative school and meeting teachers and students who seemed to care about her. Mariah Carey, who plays the role of an unbelieving somewhat kooky social worker, has already been mentioned for several awards. This is the best I have seen her, minus all makeup and extra hair. She is good! There are no murders, nothing is blown to pieces, yet the audience is left glued to their seats, with the vocal communiqué exhibited in this movie. Leaving another ole saying, “Action speaks louder than words” completely falsified in ”˜Precious”'. Yes there is plenty [...]

SPORTS TALK

By Ray Jay and Young Dex Let”'s start this edition of sports talk out with a big congratulations to Lynx coach Jen Gillom and Lynx point guard Renee Montgomery as they were selected to be representatives on The United States Women”'s Basketball team for the pre Olympics Games. We must also congratulate our Minnesota Twins as they made the American League play-offs with an exciting one game play-off entry win over The Detroit Tigers. Needless to say, that game took all of their oomph, as they were swept in the first round by the powerful New York Yankees, who beat the California Angels, Tori Hunter”'s new team, in their best of seven ALCS playoffs for the World Series. Speaking of Tori, just imagine that we may still be playing had the Twins retained him, and/or Johan Santana. Oh well! That”'s the way the small markets go, so some say. The Minnesota Vikings are riding high as they go into the seventh week of the young NFL season undefeated. I admit, I was wrong about Mr. Brett Favre. The coaching still raises my eyebrows, however, and we can only hope that gets better. What about the MN Wild NHL team. Two words; They Stink! This next team, The MN Timberwolves, I”'m not going to say stink, I will say they have their work cut out for them, as they are currently 1-4 in the exhibition season. It doesn”'t help the cause when two of your best players go down to injuries in the pre-season. I really like young Jonny Flynn, the rookie point guard from Syracuse; Damien Wilkins, son of NBA great Dominique Wilkins and Ryan Hollins show a lot of promise. We think a key to this season will be Sasha Pavlovic, the 6”'7” guard from Serbia, who gives the wolves something they have not had in many years, a big shooting guard who can hit the threes. With K-Love, Kevin Love out till December and Al Jefferson still suffering from his season ending surgery, the other players will have to step up. The Timberwolves only have [...]

THE WAR ON DRUGS HAS EXPANDED; Or Has It Really? part III

By Raymond Jackson This epidemic consists of highly addictive legal drugs that go under the moniker of painkillers. Because they are legal, and the big profiteers from them, is the pharmaceutical industry, it will be quite awhile before they are made a relevant part of ”˜The War on Drugs”'. Long considered a Suburban high, painkilling drugs, such as Percecet, Oxycodiene and Vicodine, have found their way into the inner-city. Many addicts trying to get off of crack-cocaine have resorted to these highly addictive pain medications as a way out, only to become addicted to these alternative drugs. A lot cheaper, but just as destructive and deadly! One could even include the various types of sleeping medications into this epidemic. These pills sell for 2-5 dollars each on the street, so therefore the big profit is being made by the manufacturers, who charge millions to the Health Insurance companies that cover these medications. These pills were once the choice of unemployed suburban housewives and their associates. Just as we, the inner-city communities, had to wean each other away from the Prozac fountain, we will have to do the same with these prescription medications. AMERICA WAKE UP! According to a Pain Specialist, who spoke under the condition of anonymity; “The state of Minnesota is very strict when it comes to pain killing medication. Their one strike and you”'re out concept drives many a recovering addict back into the streets, looking for pain relief. This state does not take into account that we are all human, and humans do make mistakes. In most games there lies a multiple strike or fouls clause. You know, like in baseball, three strikes and you”'re out. If a client tests positive for non-legal medications, we have no choice but to either, ignore the positive test or simply take them off of our care. They usually wind up in jail or dead as a result of this strict enforcement. It”'s like we just give up on them,” [...]

THE WAR ON DRUGS HAS EXPANDED; Or Has It Really?

PART II, Where do we go from here? By Raymond Jackson This sequel to last month”'s, ”˜War On Drugs”' article will help to answer readers questions, such as Gina P. of South Minneapolis, who asked, “What do the officiados/doctors say  about this growing dilemma? “What can we actually do about it?” “What are some warning signs?” This follow up article does contain excerpts from the initial article. Remember that it”'s all about educating and saving lives! Crack-cocaine continues to rage the inner-city, most particularly, inner-city communities with large populations of people of color. Methamphetamine has still not had a huge negative impact in these communities, even though it is cheaper than crack-cocaine. Do marketing strategies, by those making the most profits; have something to do with this dilemma? Absolutely, yes it does! So who are the big profiteers of crack-cocaine sales?  Certainly not the low level street corner distributors. Nor is it the ”˜Scarfaces”', as main stream media would like to make us believe. The Tony ”˜Scarface”' Montanas, have a tendency to go out just like he did, and guess who steps right in to profit from his removal.  Perhaps they are different entities that take hold, seize, sale and profit.  There are many so-called, legal profiteers, people making large amounts of cash, off of illegal activities, who are backed by our system. In these larger scale elimination efforts, the seized property brings in millions and the drugs seem to find their way back to the streets. Although many consider Meth to be cheaper and more powerful than crack-cocaine, because of its make-up,(household products, etc.), the profiteers of Meth, seem to be more low level, somewhat ordinary people. So what is ”˜The War on Drugs”', really about? It appears to be about profiteering off of the ones, who for whatever reason, have become [...]

“”¦There are those that use pain meds appropriately”¦”

As I sit in my pain clinic reading Mr. Jackson tear apart pain meds without acknowledging legitimate use, I find myself getting angrier every line I read. I did not ask to be on pain meds just like I did not ask to be hit while on a motorcycle by a truck by an ass text messaging while driving. The obvious omission of a small insert of “there are those that use pain meds appropriately as well as those who don”'t” pisses me off. I pointed this out to those that bring this rag to this office and was promised I would not see it here again. Write about all the people we see texting while driving. They are killing more people than pain meds!!!!!!! Write about something you actually LIVE instead of what you assume. I took your rag so that I can express my disgust to all the people who purchase ad space so they think twice before choosing to spend their money on your space. Lots of papers out there besides yours. I live & work in the area and am ashamed to be represented in such a non-objective way. Lisa Widman Editor”'s Note: Lisa Widman”'s objections are taken seriously and certainly illustrate how personal and significant all of the specific, underlying issues of health care generally become because they are so loaded with in-depth moral issues. Raymond”'s article was talking about drugs that have a legitimate medical use finding their way to the streets for illegitimate, illegal use. The Alley welcomes her critic and the opportunity to learn again that such delicate topics need to underscore the main points being made even more clearly.

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