Friday, May 15, 2009

Greed Is Ruining Pride- the Final Installment

From the Desk of King in Miami
Follow me on Twitter During Memorial Weekend for the Latest Hot Spots and Things to Do-

EXTENDED Disclaimer: It seems my commentary on “Greed Is Ruining Pride” has upset a few people. First of all, the intentions of my commentary, were to bring to light Prides and other “similar events” with their organizers, have seemed to change the fabric of what “Pride” is and defined as. Greed or this “packin’ them in at all costs” mentality is destroying, what so many have worked so hard for; unity, empowerment, self-expression, and fellowship- a chance to be with others just like me. I wanted to state that the opinions expressed in this article are SOLELY MY OWN, and not the views of AndresFlava or Mr. Andre Allen, himself. AndresFlava gives me full range to state whatever opinions I have on my mind WITHOUT edit or preview. The drawback to this is that my comments sometimes may come off as harsh and condescending. I do apologize for that. But you have a choice…ignore me …discredit what I say…or just tune me out. But given the fact many of you tune in to AndresFlava every day and have added myself to your Twitter family, you have decided to TUNE IN and listen even harder. Thank you! The mere fact that my opinion has caused a ripple in the gay world gives rise that my statements have some merit and validity. If my commentary has gotten people thinking and talking…this is GREAT. New ideas, new ways of thinking, always gives rise to the change in the status quo (ie. Barack Obama). For the past few days my commentary was in no way, form ,or fashion, a gripe session about any particular event or Pride. But an overview of things I have saw and noticed, last year and this year, regarding our community and I don’t like it. I am not going to sit back and bit my tongue, just for the sake of saving face. This commentary was completed in it’s entirety last Sunday (except for few lines towards the end), but due to the length, I decided to publish it, in installments. Here is my last and final installment of the commentary “Greed Is Ruining Pride”. Again, these opinions are solely mine, and not that of AndresFlava or my good friend, Andre Allen, who we all admire and respect.

Finally, we have Sizzle to lead the charge this year and keep this age of Greed moving forward in 2009. If you are on Sizzle mailing list…you received an email on April 1, 2009 at approprixmately 9:25am (at least that is when this email hit my inbox) that stated the following, “This is your official warning. The men and women are coming to Sizzle Miami in Huge numbers....If you've been stressed at the job or at home, just got laid-off or stress about getting laid-off, Sizzle is your perfect outlet…” When I say this I was instantly sick to my stomach and disgusted. What would drive someone to write, come to my “quality event” even if you have been laid-off from your job? Has Sizzle been paying attention to the news; unemployment at 8.5% and climbing, job fairs with thousands of people buying for a few dozen openings, middle-class folks struggling to make ends meet, unemployment to hit 10% before the end of the year. What is purpose of saying, come to Sizzle even if you just were just laid-off? It’s insensitive and crazy as hell to put that in black and white and PRESS SEND. The person who would do that, does not have the best interest of the person who lost their job or our community in mind! What was reasoning behind this? Just to make a few dolllars; considering the huge expense of attending Sizzle? What would drive someone to say that, where all the host hotels are $150 plus per night, covers charges for the night events range from $25 to upwards of $40 a pop (without a VIP card) and a very limited number of FREE events. I know alot of people missed this little email that Sizzle organizers sent but I did not. GREED WILL ALWAYS RUIN PRIDE.

Alot of my friends have asked me what do you have against Sizzle. I really don’t have anything against Sizzle personally. I have attended at least one event of Sizzle since the inception a few short years ago. But, I have attended Sizzle less and less in the past couple of years because I have come to dislike what Sizzle has become. Sizzle has driven many people away from Miami during Memorial Day weekend. About two or three weeks ago I did one of my weekends getaways to New York City and the Bronx. When the weather gets warmer I tend to go there more often. The last night, I was in NYC, I visited one of my favorite spots, Chi-Chi’s in the Village on Christopher St. I met up with some old friends and I met some new ones there too. And it just happen someone asked me,” Do you attend that Sizzle event?” and I replied, “I attend maybe one or two events, that’s it. Why are you guys coming down?”. And when I asked that , you should have the seen the look of disgust I got. They all replied, as in a chorus, “NO!”. You know I was floored and asked why. There were various replies, “over-rated”, “entirely too expensive”, “it’s only for the muscle boys who want to show-off”, “it’s for the younger crowd”, and the list goes on and on. I spent the next 30 mins explaining to these guys that Sizzle is just a small part of what Miami is about during Memorial Day weekend. I actually defended Sizzle on many points that I could; the others were right on point and I had no rebuttal. When I went to Noctural last year as part of Sizzle and spent $14 on a long island ice tea, and $20/25 dollar at the door. I knew at that point, I would never truly enjoy Sizzle again. I felt like I was being taken advantage of, on many of the nights with over-the-top cover charges and outrageous drink prices. But my main point to them at Chi-chi’s is that there is a lot of OTHER things happening during Memorial Day weekend, too. Sizzle had become something terribly out of touch with what Pride is about and with my city. I could care less if Sizzle doesn’t consider itself a “PRIDE”. Line-up a set of pictures from various events Pride and those who don’t officially call themselves a Pride and you won’t be able to tell the difference. And what I hated most about that conversation with those guys in Chi-Chi’s. is that they based their opinion of Miami was based solely off this one event, Sizzle.

There is a glimmer at the light of the end of the tunnel. Greed always breeds competition and behavior changes. Daryl Wilson will see it next weekend, when all the new promoters and events take center stage and moves his events to the sideline. And I predict the same thing will happen in Miami, when Sizzle begins to lose its flame. Sizzle is what is hot now, this year might be different though. I seriously doubt we will have the same crowds, like last year with the economy the way it is. Just to give you a heads up, Miami tourism numbers has decreased every month this year. It’s going to take a WHOLE lot of black boys here to make a dent in that statistic. But back to the topic at hand…Like the latest Sizzle email blast stated “Sizzle is not for all” (well, who is this event for then, I am confused?) but if something comes along that welcomes EVERYONE…. at that point other promoters will seize on the opportunity to offer something new and less expensive and more inclusive, something more like PRIDE used to be. And there will be a new fish in town, just like what is happening this year in D.C. It is already starting to happen based on my group conversation in Chi-chi’s. My conversations with my friends across the country, have not been much different. Many have opted to stay home or head to D.C.; which is another negative impact of greed, it keeps the ones we love in our community, apart.

I just hope that 2009 will not end like it did with 2008, with our gay community rocked by scandal and many of us left wandering what happened. Don’t left greed define our Prides. Be safe and have a great Summer Pride season. See you in Miami for Memorial Day, NYC for Pride in June, and Atlanta for Labor Day. Love you all!

King in Miami


Dwight Powell said...

First of all, I would have to insist that you please remove all of my files from your site immediately. Your site and energy is counter productive to what we are trying to achieve here at Sizzle Miami for our community and our business. What Sizzle is doing is no different from what the other white major events do throughout the country and the world. It's truly sad that a few black gay men such as yourself find fault seeing other black gay men succeed. If we were a white organization, you would have no issues paying their much higher prices from the same level of quality service that we're rendering. It's a bit unfortunate that some black gay men think so little of themselves and find it necessary to settle for less. It's important to know our community is deserving of and should have access to the best that are available to the other demographics.

As I stated before, Sizzle will never be for everyone as we're all at different financial levels and circumstances. I don't expect the Black Gay Millionaires Club to lower their expectations and standards for me just because I can't afford what they have to offer. Should I have this expectation of them just because I am black and gay? Of course not. I accept the fact that I can't afford their experiences as I am not a millionaire, and seek therefore seek other avenues that are within my budget and level. Do I get upset at them for hosting events at the Palms in Las Vegas, or dining at the Shore club in Beverley Hills, simple because these are normally trinkets that are not within my price range? Again, of course not! Whys should I expect them to lower their standards just because I am black and gay? I trust that you will see how this analogy relates to Sizzle Miami. Sizzle Miami is enjoyed by thousands that are able to afford what we have to offer. Am I happy? Yes I am. As long as I have a clientele that are in a position to afford the lever of service that we have to offer here at Sizzle Miami, then we have a win-win situation. You would agree that win-win situations trump any other.

There are reasons why so many black gay promoters can't seem to move beyond the ranks of just being a promoter at most of our non-black owned establishment. Further there is reason why it's such a struggle for them, merely having to reply on weekly parties to get by, and are in financial dilemmas if for what ever reason, were to have one bad eek in the month. Sadly Andre, it's because of uninformed individuals such as yourself that make it extremely difficult for the many quality, talented, and hardworking promoters to be able to offer the best experiences for their clients, and eventually elevate themselves to the point where they are able to run their own clubs and own their on businesses. We still call this out look or point of view, "The Negro Slave Mentality". Now that I have put it out there, how about we have an honest and open discussion on that topic, and not try as you continue to do, hold our community down with your negative mentality and lowered standard.

I wish you the best and will forever be hopeful that you and black gay men such as you are able to stand-up, look in the mirror and be happy with what you see looking back at you.

Sincerely Yours

Dwight Powell
Sizzle Miami Inc / Owner

Nubian Dreams Blog said...

Please note that the issue in NYC involved Pride in the City NOT Black Pride NYC, Inc. that ran pride from 2001-2005 with absolutely no scandel. Please make a correction.

Second it is unfortunate that everytime a black person steps out on faith and tries to do the impossible without major sponsors people often assume that they are getting rich and taking advantage of the community.

In 2001, James Saunders asked me to be involved in bringing a bigger black pride to NYC. In 3 short years we made that happen only to be rewarded by slander and outright lies by people who assumed that we were getting rich as opposed to losing our personal money to make it happen. When Pride in the City was created to compete with Black Pride NYC and was funded by tax payer money many in our community turned their back on us.

Please be careful my brother in judging your fellow men. Give those that are trying at least the opportunity to explain themselves first.

Laurence P
Nubian Dreams Cruise 2

Unknown said...

Dwight Powell wrote:

What Sizzle is doing is no different from what the other white major events do throughout the country and the world.
Chillld, I don't think so.
Check out the IML Event (International Mr. Leather) going on for the White Leather men in Chicago on Memorial Weekend. They are NOT charging $40 to get into any of those clubs in Boystown (Lakeview section of town) that weekend. The white girls wouldn't even show up if they were charging some mess like that.

KingNmiami said...

I am sorry that you feel that my commentarty “Greed is Ruining Pride” is counter productive to what you trying to achieve at Sizzle Miami. I would beg to differ that you are trying to help our community. Just to clear the air, as stated in ALL FOUR of my commentary pieces, the opinions expressed in my article are SOLELY MINE, and not that of AndresFlava or Andre Allen himself. My commentary was unedited and not previewed by anyone except myself. I am not interested in a war of words with you Dwight, but your comment deserves an immediate response. If you would like to continue this dialogue offline, Andre has my direct email and contact number. I would never object to a constructive adult conversation about this particular topic.

I do agree that Sizzle is no different from WHITE and BLACK prides as far as the events are concerned. IntheLifeATL, New York General Pride, White Party in Miami, Houston Splash, and DC Pride, all have featured a vendor area or village, such as Sizzle; a concert with a major recording artist, such as Sizzle; defintiely a White party, like Sizzle, and most, if not ALL, feature some type of nightlife, like Sizzle. However none of these places, events, or Prides, charge any of the outrageous prices that Sizzle does, however they are supplying the same type of events and “services” you are. Explain??? You tout that Sizzle is a “quality event” and the reason for the increased cost is due to the fact you run and promote for the entire year. Excuse me?!! Does IntheLifeATL, the White Party, DC Pride, all are run year round as well. Again, explain? How is Sizzle different? If I am not mistaken all of these places have a central headquarters, the same as Sizzle as well, however you tout Sizzle is different. Ran must the same, but in some weird way Sizzle is different.

At Sizzle’s inception you encouraged and promoted that Sizzle was for everyone. TRUE OR FALSE? Now in 2009, Sizzle has miraculously because “exclusive”. Sizzle is now for the Millionaire’s Club of Black and Gay society? If that is the case, Dwight you did a model call or let’s just say a public relation and marketing blitz disguised as a model call across the country. You DID NOT go to these cities across the country and hangout where the Millionaire’s were. You hung out and promote where the average joe’s hung out. Not to say my fellow black peers are average joe’s and don’t have the money. Case in point, if you marketed to the average joes, you should cater to the average joes. It is not that you lowered your expectations, you marketed to them, you should cater to them as well. The attitude you expressed in your comment was condescending and bourgeois. And again you stated, “ As long as I have a clientele that are in a position to afford the lever of service that we have to offer here at Sizzle Miami, then we have a win-win situation.” Can you please get off the island and join us the mainland? Please turn to CNN and watch for a few hours. Again you marketed to the average joes, as your clientele, and ccording to CNN, the average joe’s are not doing too well. And some of the millionaires, too.

As far as in uninformed individual, that is not true. I have been going to Prides and other “quality events” longer that Sizzle has been around. Promoters come and go, Prides wax and wane with crowds from year to year. I have worked closely with promoters to know business and have invited to by promoters to perform at Pride events. So that statement has not merit. But Dwight, please pay close attention to what is happening in D.C. Daryl Wilson was in the same position you are, a couple of years ago. And if you have read my commentary and compare it to today’s events with the decline of his grip on DC pride events….it is a fortelling of things to come, if you don’t decide to change your attitude and bring Pride back to what it used to be. I was there in the beginning when Sizzle was at Club Boi…please remember your humble beginnings. Don’t get to BIG for your britches, as my grandmother world say. Love you regardless,


Anonymous said...

I agree with the author of Andresflava...Sizzle is about greed. Because of the economic situation, they've been reduced to calling people and sending numerous emails in an attempt to encourage people to attend the event. Every week since January, I've been receiving emails about price breaks for VIP cards and the hotels. It's because they're having trouble with selling the event this year. According to an inside source, attendance is way down. I guess people have finally figured that it's toooo expensive for what they get in return. $350 for the plane ticket, $600 for a three night stay at the host hotel, $200 for the car rental, $40 a day for parking at the host hotel, $20 a day for parking at the city garage 4 blocks away, $40 a night for the club, $60 a night for 3-4 over priced drinks. All that and I haven't included gas, food, and shopping. So the 3 day pride experience can easily cost you over $1300.00. I say, put the money in an IRA, fix up your house, use it towards a down payment for a house, or towards something you'll see a return in. There's a reason why the Black Gay Millionares club's because their members invest their money first!!!, rather than waste it away on an overhyped and overpriced trip. And when they do take the trips to the Palms in Las Vegas or the Shore club in Beverly Hills....I'm sure they are smart enough to write it off as a business expense...are any of the Sizzle attendees able to do that? There are so many folks I know who've skipped a rent, car or house payment to get to Sizzle. And the fact that Dwight Powell is encouraging people to "treat" themselves despite their failing financial situation in this poor economy borders on criminal. Didn't George Bush tell us to spend, spend, spend and go to DisneyWorld a year ago......look what happened to those who followed his advice. Homes foreclosed, bad credit ratings, etc. Dwight Powell makes over a half million with each sizzle event. He gets sponsorship money, a percentage of the hotels sales and a cut of the club he's doing your expense!! None of the money he makes off his customers goes to any charity benefiting Black Gay Men. He doesn't give back any of that money to benefit the community that supports his "Pride". Black men, work on your financial situation first!!! Get that straight, don't be pressured into spending for a trip you can't afford....(if you have to share your hotel room with one or more people....then you probably can't afford it) That pride last three days....but jacked up credit lasts alot longer. And I'm sure Dwight Powell isn't going to send you a stimulus check. Keep telling the truth Andre.....I support you and will subscribe to your blog..thanks to the email I recieved from Dwight Powell speaking against you.

Anonymous said...

From reading everything that was said. I personally think Mr. Powell went off on a tangent. He didn't take time to analyze and rationalize what the author was saying. I believe people need to evaluate a situation first before they start typing on a keyboard. The comments made about sizzle was from the perspective of someone who actually attended thee events.

This is my 1st time attending sizzle. I am not staying in the Host Hotel cause it was way to expensive in this recession even with 6 months notice. Also my "big brother" paid for my Sizzle VIP card. I'm a college student and it is hard just to pay a phone bill. Let alone party with my people. It's a very expensive trip in a time of reconstruction of our economy. I do understand that bills have to be paid. I have never been to MIA before but I hope my bottles of liquor I'm driving down with and the McDonald's value menu will get me thru the week.

I know quite a few friends that would love to go but just cant afford to live lavishly. This is like my trip of the year. And without great friends this would not have been a reality cause they really wanted me to go. So my bags are laying on the bed now. I need to look through my closet and pull out some outfits and continue to countdown and hit the gym.

Mr. Powell I think you owe Andre an apology. As a grown man and a business owner you should practice tolerance and understanding. You felt that one person was stepping on your toes and coming for you (your event) and you re-acted in a way that made you look childish and unprofessional, coming from my standpoint as a new patron to your event.

At the end of the day, I know you have to make your money, but to steal from Peter and give to Paul is not the way to go. You have promoted in my hometown and many other places which I would hate to see your budget for your Marketing Plan. Flying from city to city and promoting on meager sites like bgc must have cost a pretty penny. Not to mention model photo shoots, and high quality digital images.

Now I'm going to make the best of my trip. And party my ass off at your "Circuit Event". But don't compare it to our white counter-parts. I wouldn't go to a white pride event if it was free. So I most definitely won't pay $40 for their entertainment. I like to party with "my people". And FYI the Black Millionaires Club has to be very few and far between. If you are going to cater to a certain demographic make sure that option is available. Our economic disparities don't differ as much as you think across the board with African-Americans. You have educating young men that want to attend a "quality" event. So hook us up.

This may not be a "Pride" but HIV/ AID is killing "OUR" people at an extremely large rate. So it would be nice to incorporate HIV testing and a Group Session of some sort about that PARTICULAR issue. I hope everyone wraps it up next weekend. Cause GOD only knows how many dudes gonna be going at it. So if your going to cater then it would be a good idea to know who your actually catering to. Cause if you don't protect those who are coming to Sizzle now, they won't be around for long to attend 10 years from now.

If you would have thought clearly it would have been much more professional to Direct Message the owner of this blog and settle outside of public view. That could have even possibly prompted him to take his commentary and discussion down. The word of the day is "THINK" before you "ACT". I have no affiliation with anyone. I just had to speak my mind cause I seen this going in a bad direction.

Everybody be safe going to your Memorial Day Weekend destinations! Oh yea, Mr. Powell can I sit in VIP with you. I paid for this VIP card but I doubt if it's for VIP. LOL, I wanna drink Hennessy and laugh it up with the grown ups.

Klothez Minded Blog

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.” ~Dr. Suess

dw202dc said...

This is very sick behavior going on within the black gay community...I will say this for myself for those making comments regarding what I do here in dc get your fact straight before you start blasting you mouth not knowing what the hell you are talking about. My tenure as a promoter in dc have been above promoter in dc has put the kind of revenue that I have into my events. My club rental ranged from $15k to 30k for rentals to make sure that the black gay community could party in the best that dc has to offer. for my 5 yrs @ the Edge Nightclub my monthly rentals were $20 thousand dollars a month. I did a free festival in the park for 2 yrs which cost $15k each year.....My goal as a promoter is to bring the best not mess to the community....I understand how Dwight's feels when you are being attack by your own kind....people donot understand promoter don't own these venues....we rent them in that shit seems to me everybody wants something for nothing...far as dc goes damit I'm back..... myself in the dc black pride board have reunited so again if you don't have the right facts...ask me I'll tell you! Dwight keep doin what you are doin man for this crabs in the barrel mentality has to stop. Not one promoter in dc has invested into there night to bring in an artist to perform for there weekly events, but you give them your money weekly in get nothing in return.....I have turned every single damn dollar invested by the community to bring in such acts as , Patti Labell $ price you don't wanna know but I felt dc deserved it, Jennifer Hudson on three occassion $ price you don't wanna know, Tyson Beckford, Amerie, Letoya, Lil Mo, SWV, New York, DJ UNK, Doug E Fresh, Mr. Cheeks and many more....NO PROMOTER HAS STEPPED OUTTA THE BOX TO PROVIDE THIS LEVEL OF know why? because its about them NOT YOU! so to see this madness continue makes me sick to my stomach....if you don't want quality then you pile up into a small cram bar....! people you'll need to start looking a the level of the venues in then ask yourself Hmmmm this had to cost him a lot of money to rent for one night! so as dc pride approaches next week I have secured the better of clubs for what I believe you guys deserve. all my events have been tailored to $15 advance and $20 @ the door and I'm still providing live RB Artist and special guest so again you get what you pay for.....if it $10 dollars thats the type of party you get $10 dollars worth, but we are all worth should have more! not a hole in the wall with one way in and one way out BS!!

Unknown said...
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Unknown said...
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Unknown said...


Did Andre Allen write the Sizzle article?

Looks like someone else wrote it.

KingNmiami said...

Can everyone on the Sizzle staff including Dwight please join us in reality. The commentary, “Greed is Ruining Pride”, was written in it’s entirety expect for a few lines at the end, by me LAMAR aka KING, and not by Andre Allen. Andre doesn’t preview my posts nor edits them. It is a crying shame that someone from Dwight’s staff. would post personal exchanges between your office and Andre. Dwight I highly recommend you hire a P.R. person instead of having your staff handle your disgreements with media outlets and patrons. It reflects extremely poorly on your organization. A Shakedown??!!! Are you serious!!! As I have stated at the beginning of every blog, my commentary in not reflective of the views of AndresFlava or Andre Alllen. These were entirely my views and my feelings. However, some people are ignorant and have on repeatedly ignored that first statement in each blog and now have seemed to concotted this story of a shakedown. I am the orginator of this commentary from start to finish, every statement including my Chi-chi’s story is true in it’s entirety and I have the wonderful bank statement to prove my trip to NYC, in addition I can supply witnesses to my story because as stated in the blog, this conversation happened in the presence of old friends, as well as guys I met there. However I would not object my friends to such “low class” war of words, which this had turned out to be. But what upsets me the most is that a good friend is being affected by this negativity over some commentary I wrote. For that, Andre Allen I am sorry but I will not sit back and let Dwight, Sizzle, or anyone else bagger him when the commentary was written by me and the opinions are my own. Andre has my direct email and contact number and I have no problem sitting down and having an adult conversation about this topic in which I have written. I have said this before/ I live here in downtown Miami and Andre is in the DC area. Conspiracy? Shakedown? Can you please take your daily dose of reality and call me in the morning.

Furthermore, this is not the first time this topic -Greed is Ruining Pride has come up. This is not the first time people have expressed disgust over the prices and expense of Sizzle and many other events. This is not the first time I have expressed outrage over this particular topic; I wrote a similar commentary last year, titled, the Greed Machine. In addition, I am not the only person who feels this way, others have written comments about their reservation about the unjustifiable expense of Sizzle, in a downturned economy. Imagine all the others who are sitting reading and saying the exact same thing but who have not commented. You guys over there need a dose of reality. And I have no clue where this “topic” of cost came up. In my article my main focus was not the cost, but the insensitive nature in which a promoter solicitated our community to come his event, when they have lost their job. READ THE BLOG. The cost was an after-thoughTafter it was thrusted into the limelight by several comments made ON THE BLOG.

All I can say is SHAME on Sizzle to even suggest that there is a shakedown or conspiracy happening. I guess desperate times, call for desperate measures, HUH? Is that how is works over at Sizzle? Someone over there needs to read the blog, start to finish or have someone read it to you! Either or! And to give you one more TRUE story, Andre encouraged me to go to Purgatory and the Pre-Sizzle party, last Thursday. I had made plans to go, but after Andre had brought to light the negative comments and official press release slamming Andre, I DECIDED I would go to a more worthy event, my bed! But Andre encouraged me nevertheless to go! Again SHAME on you Sizzle and Dwight for letting this charade continue forward. Let your staff know this, Public Relations 101: Some times when a negative comment or attack is said, sometimes it’s best to say nothing or “no comment”.

Mcgregory CEO Omega said...

Greetings gentlemen this is Mcgregory CEO of Omega Entertainment a proud partner of Sizzle Miami Inc. Omega Entertainment stands fully in support of Sizzle Miami Inc.

Dear Gentleman Author.
I was reluctant to comment on your editorial, and I use this term very loosely here, because I believe the sole purpose of it is to draw attention to your obscure blog which I have not heard of until this so call "greed" controversy, because I feared that we would play right into your hands by bringing attention to it. Congratulations, you have succeeded. You have made a name for yourself at the expense of a great Man Dwight Powell and the vibrant organization he chairs Sizzle Miami Inc. I would now like to set the record straight and educate you on a few points you made on that poorly written piece of yours. First of all, there was no cohesion what so ever in the thoughts you tried to articulate in the piece it seems to me like a bunch of paragraphs put together and each one seems to contradict the other. On your piece, you seem to complain that Sizzle has gotten too large but yet later on you complained that Sizzle is too exclusive and should be for everybody. I don't even need to comment on this because any sane human being can decipher the incoherence there. That being said, allow me to address the main grievance you put forth which is that Dwight Powell is inviting folks whom had been laid off to come enjoy themselves at Sizzle.
I wonder if you the gentleman author have sent a letter of protest to the NBA, the NFL and all other entertainment outlets which advertise on TV or on the radio. I hate to inform the gentleman author that every time those ads come on someone's radio or TV whom had been laid off, these organizations are doing exactly that of which you complain. What you don't seem to understand sir, is the value people put on entertainment and recreation in their lives. There is a reason why someone like Lebron James earns nearly a hundred times more than our beloved President Barrack Obama who is responsible for the safety, security and well being of all 360+ millions of Americans. The same could be said for the earnings of Lil Wayne, Beyonce, Jay Z etc... The point is, Americans value their entertainment a great deal sir. It is our ability to recreate and enjoy ourselves that sustains us as the most productive people on this planet. Many of these folks of whom you talk will be down for Sizzle this year precisely because our mentality as a people will not allow us to seat in a bedroom corner and feel sorry for ourselves just because we got laid off. We go out, we party and we convince ourselves that things will be OK. After that, we go back home, pick ourselves up by our boot straps and continue to fight for a better life for ourselves and our community. That, gentleman author is the American way.
You also talk in your piece, of unemployment numbers and recessions, things that relate to the economy at large. What you sir don't understand is that the economy goes in cycles and recessions come and go. However recessions can yield to a depressions if those of us who have the power to spend decide that we're going to adopt your way and keep our money in our pocket. You talk of being laid off as if it is a fatal blow one can't possibly recover from. The calendar year is 2009, we have come a long way from the days of which you speak. In fact, a great number of our people can afford to maintain a certain standard of living despite being laid off. Did you also think of the positive impact that Sizzle has on the local and national economy. Ask your Mayor down there in Miami or Governor Chris for that matter. They all welcome Sizzle down there because you see, every year, when thousands of black men descend on South Florida, the airline industry benefits, the restaurants down there see a great pick up in activity hence maybe preventing the waiter and the cook from getting laid off while they otherwise certainly would be. The same is true for the hotels. How about the staff at those night clubs, would you have sent them a pay check if Sizzle was not going to happen this year. Do you sir happen to know the number of folks directly employed by Dwight Powell who will be able to feed their families as a result of this event. I couldn't help but notice that the blog for which you write (unfortunately), carries quite a few advertisement of Sizzle on it. I could not imagine that it is simply out of the largest or their hearts hence I assume that Sizzle send them a check and they in turn send you a cut so that you can write these so well written and so enlightening columns of yours. You see, Sizzle directly or indirectly seeks to help as many people (including yourself) as you seek to destroy with the venom of your misspelled words, by contributing in keeping the engines of this economy going.
You gentleman author ought to just apologize to Sizzle Miami, to Mr. Powell and to all of us for being exposed to the shallowness of your thoughts and having to read these excruciatingly written rants of yours, but I shall not hold my breath as the underlined psychology of your writing does not suggest the level of class and competence necessary to rise to such magnanimity. I salute you nonetheless...

Mcgregory F Estime/ CEO/ Omega Entertainment

Unknown said...

Lawd Hammercy.

Mcgregory F Estime/ CEO/ Omega Entertainment wrote:

as you seek to destroy with the venom of your misspelled words


Ask your Mayor down there in Miami or Governor Chris for that matter.

Did you mean Governor Crist? LOL
Girl,go back to school.

KingNmiami said...

Response to McGregory CEO Omega:

Omega Entertainment, I am glad you stand in support of Sizzle, in which you are a proud partner. That just gives light to our intelligent black gay community where your true intentions are, when you are promoting your events in the DC area. And hopefully the public will question whether your parties are for them or not. However, as you stated you were “reluctant” to comment on this editoral. It shows you have a conscience and that some of the points stated on this blog have some merit. To call AndresFlava blog obscure, give me a break; have you looked at the counter posted on the left-hand side of site. People are paying attention and observing this commentary and the reaction on both sides, those of the promoters and us, the black community.

I would like to comment on a couple points you made and clarify. Again, I don’t know what the problem is or lack of common sense or maybe a touch of illiteracy , but my views and my opinions are not that of Andre. We are two totally different people, with totally different ways of thinking. I am very outspoken compared to Andre. Andre is very much, the mediator, and likes for us to all get along. However the promoters and Sizzle keeps saying…Andre, Andre, Andre. Andre had ABSOLUTLEY nothing to do with this commentarty. The Sizzle Banner was posted by a supporter of Sizzle, Andre several months ago. The commentary was posted by me in the last week. It was totally my thoughts and perceptions and opinions. Next thing, I am not some mojo off the street who has never been to Sizzle. I have been to Sizzle every year since its inception a few shorts years ago. I have stayed in the host hotel, even though I live in downtown Miami, I have been to some of the events, and experienced the nightlight as well. So I have a HUGE knowledge of what to expect from Sizzle, what value you will be receiving, what things to do to increase that value, while keeping money in your pocket. So, get one thing straight, I am not speaking from a third person point of view, I have personal experience, both negative and positive while experiencing Sizzle over the years; I have BEEN THERE, DONE THAT!

Never have I stated Sizzle is too large. My commentary and subsequent comments have stated how can you advertise and market to the “average joes” and call your event, all of a sudden “exclusive” and charge outrageous prices. And I find it kind of sad that other promoters would not have the balls to say “well something is not right”. As Daryl Wilson stated in his previous comments, he is charging $15 and $20 dollars at the door and providing an R&B singer at one of his parties. You, Omega Entertainment, are charging at one of your parties $10 before midnight at Studio 10. Studio is not a hole in the wall club, it’s as nice as any South Beach or Downtown Club District venue. The same goes for Daryl Wilson’s parties. However, Dwight is down in Miami charging on Sunday, $30 before 11:30 and $40 after. Same type of club and venue; extremely different prices. And Omega you are new promoter in town in DC, not well established yet, so I would expected your rental cost to be higher at your venues, which would have increased your cover charge to your events. On the other hand, Dwight has been doing business with these clubs for years, however the cost has increased every year. Plus he has leverage with these clubs to possibly decrease the cost, renegoiate contracts, etc and bring that cost to him and his patron down, and this is all due to the fact he has a proven record with his event (however this year, I predict will be a down year due to the economy). I doubt he has done this given the prices are higher than ever. And this would be the year to try to redo, “things of old.” But it hasn’t happen, which gives pause to think, “why is that”, “what is really going on”, “two different prides, same BIG CITY weekend, two different cost”; something is not right, and I suspect it is GREED. Like I said Greed will ALWAYS ruin Pride.

Omega, I want you to analyze this statement and you will know why I was so livid about the email, asking for “laid-off” off people to come to Sizzle; “Who is hit hardest by a recession, black minorities or non-black racial groups?” Answer that question quietly to yourself, then turn on CNN. Most economists would agree for black working-class minorities, when there is a recession, it is more like a DEPRESSION for us. Now look at me commentary the last day and put in that context, and you will see why I was livid. And my dear friend OMEGA; NFL, NBA, MLB and their respective teams, most if not all have had a recession special. Yes, they stated come and enjoy a game even if you have been laid off- BUT you know what they did to make it affordable. THEY SLASHED PRICES, not increased them.

Our governor’s name is “Crist”, not Chris (so much for mispelled words). Miami mayor and Governor Crist supports every registered event in Miami and the State of Florida. They are not just throwing their support behind Sizzle as you suggest. They support the Dog Show, the Annual Sex Convention they have on Miami Beach, and currently the Pow Wow Travel meeting, currently happening now. That little letter printed in the Sizzle guide from Crist and the Major, every event that comes to Miami gets one. Only thing that is changed in that letter is the event name.

I am glad our community is talking about this issue and expression their thoughts. I think it is great. Commentary is just that, a conversation, a way to get people talking and thinking. I am sorry that so many negative comments and putdowns (thanks Omega), and the like, are coming out of it as well, but it freedom of speech. I know that Sizzle does not like what I have written, this is not the first time I have voice my opinion about this event. I guess in hard times, it hits a little closer to home, because this economic problem has affected the average joe and millionaires. Continue to comment, keep it civil, and don’t let is lack integrity. I know a line will be draw in the sand, but our black community will get to decide who is right. Much luv to all, even you Omega.

King in Miami

Unknown said...

On some level I think that we are discussing apples and oranges. IMHO events like Sizzle Miami are much more like Circuit Parties than gay "Prides." Somewhere along the line the focus of these events has changed and something has been lost in the transition.

When I was co-Chair of Black Pride NYC early on we were very focused on the notion of pride, celebration and expression. We made every effort to be inclusive and diverse on our Board and in the events we lined up. We were very conscious of pricing as a potential deterrent to community involvement. Pride was, at that point, a not for profit event--though we did work with promoters in order to include their events in our line-up, programming booklet and other materials. The result was a core of cocktail parties, workshops, performances, panels, etc. that were mostly free and open to the public that were complemented by evening parties, balls, etc.

On some level, I think there is an inherent "conflict of interest" between profit and community upliftment when "prides" are organized by promoters whose life blood (and this is not a criticism) is revenue derived from promotion.

I've been out of the Pride loop for some time now, so I don't know much anymore about corporate sponsorship dollars and grants from funders, but if I had my druthers Prides would be events for community upliftment, education and empowerment with some parties on the side, rather than the other way around.

As an artist, I am dismayed at vending prices at these events costing upwards of $300.00. It is not unsound (when one's work and wares sell for less than $20) to call such pricing OUTRAGEOUS. How does it assist community to essentially strip away the potential for profit for our small businesses, artists and artisans?

As for the contention that I (or others) would freely spend our dollars at similar white events, I beg to differ and seriously hope others will as well. Highway robbery hurts just the same no matter the race of the assailant. I will agree though that I find it somewhat more troubling to have my pockets picked by other black men in the name of "community."

Perhaps there'd be less discussion and contention if Sizzle and some of the other similar events simply called themselves "Circuit Parties" and divorced themselves from this notion of "Pride." Perhaps the win-win would be if the Circuit Party promoters worked with individuals or groups in those communities to also create free educational, entertainment and other cultural, etc. events that are more in line with an effort to uplift members of our community.

I should note that I applaud Sizzle's inclusion of non-party events in their line-up even though I have serious issues regarding the "price of the ticket" for involvement.

It will never in my opinion be "uplifting" to encourage folks to spend money they don't really have in order to party or simply take part in a cultural event. Those efforts are more about encouraging a status quo spend spend spend, live for the moment mentality, rather than entreating members of our community to plan for the future and work towards achievement and success--the elements I believe PRIDE should be about.

G. Winston