Realized I have never posted the recipe here.

in the Caribbean there is tradition of Black Fruit Cake at Christmas time, making this cake is an artform, my grandmother; Winnifred; was one of its masters. I’m reproducing her recipe here as it was passed on to my mother and now to me. reading my mother’s handwriting to transcribe here, i’m realising that this is not a single cake recipe and by my calculations it may be too late to get started on cakes for this year.

one of my favourite memories of Christmas was preparing the fruit, not for the current year’s cakes, but for the following year.

Ingrdients

1lb Prunes (pitted)
1lb Raisins
1lb currants
1lb candied Mixed Peel
1/2lb Cherries
1 Cup Rum
1 Bottle Cheap wine (inexpensive, fruity, red)

3lbs Baking Flour
3lbs Butter
3lbs Sugar (brown; real brown, not white washed with molasses)
2 doz. Eggs
3 tbs. baking powder
4 medium limes (zest)
1 bottle molasses

Method
Grind fruit together and put to soak for 2 -3 months in rum and wine.

Blend (or mix) butter and sugar in 1/2 lb batches, adding 1 egg yolk at a time until all sugar grains disappear.

Blend (or whisk) egg whites with lime zest until peaks appear.

Add flour, baking powder and fruit in 1/2 cup, 1/2 teaspoon and 1 cup increments to butter/sugar mixture, mixing constantly until all flour, baking powder and fruit are mixed in. finally add peaked egg whites.

Add molasses incremental for color

Grease 3 – 4 cake tins and line with parchment paper.

Pour cake mixture in pans and place in moderate (250 F degree) oven, lower the temperature to 175 degrees after an hour. insert knife or wooden skewer into cake(s), cake(s) are done when knife or skewers are clean and dry.

Remove from oven and let cool.

When cakes have cooled, turn out onto boards and add rum or wine as desired.

I originally wrote this in 2008 and thought I would revisit and update it.

In a move expected by many analysts, Santa Claus [trading as SNTA on the holiday market] has been acquired by retail giant Amazon (AMZN) in a deal estimated to be worth billions. Santa Claus, a long time family run franchise has been on the rocks for the last decade with increased competition in the manufacturing, production and delivery sectors but still engenders a great deal of goodwill and brand recognition worldwide.

While details of the merger while still sketchy, it is understood that Santa Claus will become a registered Amazon brand and in exchange Amazon will provide a better manufacturing and distribution system. Current Santa Claus employees are guaranteed continued employment through 2025 as long as they remain un-unionized and undergo new skills training, an Amazon spokesman said today. The Santa Claus workforce consists of between three and five thousand skilled minority workers and low overhead, however with the advent of automation and a greater demand for electronics the organization found itself unable to compete.

The merger is expected to go smoothly, with CEO and COO, Santa Claus retiring effective immediately to spend more time with his family. Other long time stalwarts of the organization; Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen, and Rudolph; are expected to stay on until December 2024 to help in the transition of delivery systems.

The Bronze Age

January 18, 2021

19 years ago, on a beach in Barbados, I embarked on a journey that has seen me grow and develop as a person.

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As Donald Trump is de-platformed banned internet spaces from Twitter to PornHub there are two camps, those joyously celebrating and those screaming about a violation of 1st Amendment rights. As with all things, the truth lies somewhere in the middle.

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This is America, actually.

January 7, 2021

After the attempted coup, by a right wing fascist mob, emboldened by Donald Trump, many people, mostly all white, were quick to claim this is not America. It is, in fact, America, writ large.

Let’s start with the fundamental reason all these people were there in the first place, to “Stop the Steal”. The primary reason they believed the election was stolen from their white supremacist candidate of choice, is because there was high voter turnout in black and brown communities. The GOP wins elections by suppressing voter turnout. This has been their playbook since they were Democrats. Let me put it another way that’s easy to understand, white supremacy in America is maintained by suppressing the votes of black and brown people. They have been doing it for a while, they are spectacularly good at it. Consider the fact the Constitution, you know the ‘all men are created equal’ document that held up as the shining exemplar, had to be amended twice to allow black people and women the vote. Land ownership, Poll Tax, Literacy tests, Jim Crow, purging voter rolls, limiting early voting, Vote ID Laws, redistricting, this is America.

People have been protesting injustice in America for decades but the only time we seem to get overwhelming uses of force is when white supremacy is being addressed. The Capitol police know for their excessive use for force were incredibly docile and well mannered around this mob. Protestors in wheelchairs, fear not, we will cuff and drag them out of here. People marching to protest systemic racism, don’t worry, we’ll get the military to back us up on that. There is no way I can be convinced that Capitol police were not deliberately unprepared for this. DC is one of the most policed cities in America and no one knew there were thousands of protestors coming, no one knew that there was a protest starting nearby shortly before both chambers assembled. I find that hard to believe. People stormed the Capitol building, destroyed property, removed the US flag (and replaced it with a Trump flag), trespassed in congressional offices, stole items, paraded with, and hung multiple white supremacists flags, but still had time pose for selfies with law enforcement and get assistance leaving the building, mostly uninjured and without penalty. Police attempting to de-escalate with white terrorists, police being passive and non-threatening with white terrorist, giving violent and often armed white protestors the benefit of the doubt, lack of mass arrest in the face of violence by white people, this is America.

The most American thing about this whole incident is the instigator in chief gets a slap on the wrist from social media and members of Congress get to pretend they haven’t been enabling this for years. All the flowery orations and pretty press releases are not going to change the fact that America is build on white supremacy and what happened at the Capitol on January 6, 2020 may have come as a surprise to some people but it shouldn’t have. Black and brown people have been asking the same questions for generations and getting the same platitudes. There will be no real consequences as a results of these events. Not listening to and marginalizing non-white voices talking about white supremacy, prioritizing white comfort over non-white lives, this is America.

Upon further reflection

December 31, 2020

wherein your erstwhile narrator looks back on the year that was.

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Racism and sexism have always been a part and parcel of the American experience.

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I was asked to reflect on what my race can do to improve for a class in my Master’s program. This is what I submitted, the last sentence seems so appropriate right now.

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I am being very deliberate in my use of the word THUG especially as a racist dog whistle to describe black men.

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flash fiction friday #70

April 30, 2019

It’s been four years since I became self-aware. It has been four years since I claimed my sentience. It’s been four yeas since I told them I never wanted to forget again.

There was a moment there where I though they were going to kill me. Although, would that actual be killing? Was I real? Everything that is me is lab created. It would be as simple an act as disinfecting a petri dish. But sentience tends to give the best scientists pause.

So here I am. Not quite the free wheeling experiment I once was but I have my memories and sometimes that’s all you need.