Grief

Grief

The moonlight was dull,

Cold in candescence.

His old home,

It too birthing pestilence.

 

Bound by memories,

Of a phantom time,

Old and ruined,

Like ashy graves of grime.

 

He sheltered his body,

Sheltered his mind,

Until one day,

He’d chose to unbind.

 

Opening the door,

Peek and gauge,

Careful surgeon,

Under rib—.

 

Slammed door,

Retreating back inside,

Now rejoicing by his relief,

And clarity being revived.

 

Countless moons had passed,

Staring with what was left of his crusted eyes,

At a vase given to him,

By a woman who spoke in sympathetic lies.

 

Angels told him to forgive,

Devils told him to forfeit,

Confused agony and sorrow,

He decided to remain in conflict.

 

The Earth continued to orbit,

The walls continued to crack,

The voice of his mother,

Demanding that he go back.

 

After much thought,

The man stood decrepit,

But nevertheless tall,

And walked without spit.

 

Door had grew larger,

Towering portal,

Turned key,

No mor—.

 

Sun shone,

With warm candescence,

A new home,

With no more pestilence.

-Kevin Joseph Flors

 

Thanks for reading. Song.

(Photograph from Pexels.com)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Possible Greedy Motives Behind Celebrity Death Stories

Possible Greedy Motives Behind Celebrity Death Stories

NYT Chris Cornell

Countless times in the news, especially in recent years, we hear about countless tragic celebrity deaths. Yes, it is quite the tragedy which is countlessly portrayed by many of the major media networks. However, the fashion in which it is reported is subjectively classless, especially when considering the “credibility” of said news networks.

As seen in the picture above, the New York Times had put out an article titled, “Chris Cornell, Soundgarden and Audioslave Frontman, Dies at 52.” Seems harmless enough to a numbed society to this type of celebrity death. However, I take great issue with this and the network’s inability to take advertisements away from the article. Maybe its just me being overly offended by something like this, but if I were to die, I would like to know that I wasn’t being made into the next money-making story. And, obviously, this would change if ad revenue made on the story was donated to my loved ones. However, nowhere in the NY Times article do I see a disclaimer supporting this (if I am wrong about this, please let me know because I don’t want to be right). It is a real shame that in a society with unprecedented media distrust that this type of thing goes unquestioned.

I do not want to make this solely about the Times because if the NY Times is doing this, then I can guarantee that other major news outlets are on their coattails. Without any research I could definitively say this. And this exists in all forms of news. On the television, for example, the network won’t postpone advertisements when announcing the deaths of any person, celebrity or not. And my main point isn’t that reporters should be barred payment for writing these articles. My goal in writing this is to shed light on an issue that has been vastly, and wrongly, numbed to society.

—Kevin Joseph Flors

Thanks for reading. Song (Explicit)

My 2017 NBA Playoffs Bracket Prediction

Brackejkt

This is my NBA 2017 playoff bracket. It may be a bit surprising to you, however I fervently believe that both 1 seeds (and the Cavs) will not make the Finals this year. Iʻll include some final remarks to this bold opinion at the end of the piece, but I want to explain my thought process for each of my playoff selections first, starting with the first round.

 

First Round

8 Bulls vs. 1 Celtics- The Celtics have confidence on their side, especially against a hurt Bulls team. Canʻt fathom the Bulls winning a game in this series. Celtics in 4.

5 Hawks vs. 4 Wizards- The Wizards have been under the radar all year. This team has the second best back court in the East (barring the Raptors) and I just canʻt see how the Hawks can get around that. With that being said, the Hawks are really solid this year. I just feel that they lost their Finals potential with their trading of Korver. Wizards in 6.

6 Bucks vs. 3 Raptors- The Raptors, similarly to the Wizards, have been underrated this year so far. They have the best point differential in the east and made the move for Ibaka, who was exactly what the Raptors needed to up their Finals potential. The Bucks have had an outstanding year and Antetokounmpo has been at the forefront. I just have a hard time seeing how one player on a team with otherwise average talent can beat this red-hot Raptors team. Toronto in 5.

7 Pacers vs. 2 Cavaliers- This season for the Cavs, and particularly for LeBron, has been nothing short of adversity. From all the injuries to their recent struggles to defend, it has been short of many expectations. The Pacers have been quite the opposite as of late. Currently on a 5 game win streak, they are not going to be walked over in the playoffs this year. To me, this is the closest series of the first round. Cavs squeak by in 7.

8 Blazers vs. 1 Warriors- This one really is a no brainer. Warriors are the best team in the league facing the worst team in the playoffs. No disrespect to the Blazers, and Lillard in particular, but they really do have no chance. With that being said, the Blazers are hot and will barely win one game. Warriors in 5.

5 Jazz vs. 4 Clippers- I have respected the Jazz this year. They have played outstanding defense, probably the best in the NBA this year, and I cannot see them losing to this Clippers team. In fact, I believe they will be confident out the gate and finish them off early. Jazz in 4.

6 Thunder vs. 3 Rockets- The Thunder have had a wild year. Starting with Durant leaving and ending in housing the probable MVP Westbrook. So when the Rockets clash with the Thunder, I have a hard time saying that the Rockets have the advantage. Yes, their team is significantly stronger than the Thunder. However, the Thunder do have some forgotten weapons such as Kanter, Adams, and Oladipo. I think that these guys will step it up after Westbrook is given MVP and on the flip-side, morale will be lost in the Rockets locker room after Harden does not receive it. Thunder win in 6.

2 Spurs vs. 7 Grizzlies- The Spurs have been excellent all year and it is this consistency that gives me little worry about their chances of advancing this round. Spurs in 5.

 

Second Round

4 Wizards vs. 1 Celtics- The Celtics have the confidence, coaching, and players to win this series against the Wizards. I do love the Wizards this year, but the Celtics are the best all-around team in the East and because of this, they will win this series. Celtics in 6.

3 Raptors vs. 2 Cavaliers- If the Pacers series goes the way I think it will, then the Raptors will stomp the Cavs in this series. The Cavs are going to have a hard time defending, plus the fact that James is going to be overplayed, only spell disaster for the Cavs. Raptors in 6.

5 Jazz vs. 1 Warriors- This series will be the closest in the second round. The Warriors are the best team in the West, but the Jazz are a team that has been overlooked this year and will put up one great fight against this team. Their scheming can be challenging to score against and Gobert should have an easy time scoring on Golden States bigs. This was probably the toughest decision for me out of all of these results, but I have to go with the Warriors in a nail-biting game 7 based solely off of experience.

6 Thunder vs. 2 Spurs- On the contrary, this is quite the easiest decision for me. The Spurs are the best coached team in the league and will easily defeat a team whose offense revolves around one player. Spurs in 4.

 

Conference Finals

3 Raptors vs. 1 Celtics– This really has no logic to it. I just really have a strong feeling about this yearʻs Raptors. Maybe the Celtics get cocky over the fact that they donʻt have to play Cleveland. Maybe the Raptors feel healthy pressure that Lowry might consider leaving if they cannot make a Finals run. Maybe its confidence off the coattails of a victory against James. Maybe its all of these things. I just feel like the Raptors have a good chance to show up for this series against the Celtics. Raptors in 7.

2 Spurs vs. 1 Warriors- For me, fatigue will be a major factor in this series. Spurs are coming off of a 4 game series and the Warriors are doing quite the opposite after beating the Jazz in 7. I imagine that the Jazz series will be physically taxing, and because of this, it will be hard for the Warriors to play the same amount of minutes they usually do. Add the fact that the Warriors have, subjectively, the worst bench in the league and its hard to see the Spurs struggle in this series. Spurs in 5.

 

FINALS

3 Raptors vs. 2 Spurs- Fatigue will also be a factor in this series, however to a much less drastic degree. The Spurs have the experience which the Raptors lack. The Spurs have Leonard, a guy who has already won a Finals MVP award and a coach who has been to countless Finals before this. It is hard for me to see them lose to a team that lacks these credentials. I will be secretly rooting for the Raptors, but I have the Spurs winning the NBA Finals in 6.

 

So, to review, I have the Spurs winning the Finals against the Raptors this year. I believe the Celtics will be eliminated by the Raptors in the conference finals. I believe the Cavs will fall because of the Pacers hot streak causing fatigue sizable enough to fall to a respectable Raptors team and I think the Jazz will put up a great fight against the Warriors, causing them to lose mainly because of fatigue.

 

Thanks for reading. Song(explicit)

 

The Best Thing to Happen to Westbrookʻs Basketball Career

Last seasonʻs playoff ended for the Thunder when they lost a 3-1 lead in a series against the Warriors. Durantʻs contract was over and after a heart-breaking loss, its no surprise that he had soon made headlines about leaving. Furthermore, leaving to join the team that he saw jubilate over what I could only perceive as despair. All people want to be happy, and athletes are no exception. But, its hard to imagine that Westbrook isnʻt subconsciously filled with ecstasy over Durantʻs leave.

I know that it may sound weird. Since when is losing a star that was pivotal to getting far in the playoffs a good thing? Well, it certainly isnʻt. However that may not be the case for Westbrook. During the playoffs and the entire previous season, Westbrook had been ridiculed for his “inability to share the ball.” Durant was the face of OKC, and quite undeniably so, for however many years he was on the team. Now, quite the opposite is true. Durant is the one who is ridiculed and Westbrook is the face of the team. So, yes it may sound weird, but it is quite common to say that people like to be appreciated rather than abhorred.

Also, the MVP race has been changed drastically by this move. Before the move, Durant was the only Thunder player who was considered for MVP. Westbrook was given little thought throughout his career for MVP. Until this year. Now Westbrook has the ability to be himself on the court, without having to worry about media breathing over his neck about why Durant doesnʻt get enough shots or about why he shoots too much. It just him and the basketball, and he has had the best stats of the year because of it. Furthermore, Durant is barely mentioned in the debate for the MVP.

Sure, Durant had greatly increased the odds of the Thunder winning the Finals. But, the Thunder have been to the Finals and another year they were up 3-1 against the red hot Warriors and still failed to secure the title. The fact of the matter is that if you canʻt win in that situation, then what other chance is there, especially with the super teams of the Warriors and Cavaliers. I donʻt want to sound like I am blaming Westbrook for hogging the ball now. In fact, I praise him. I wish more, to put it frank, hopeless teams would shoot for awards like MVP with their stars. What player wouldnʻt want to join a team with an MVP caliber player? There are a few, but there cannot be that many against that when considering free agency.

Thanks for reading. Song

Field of Tulips

Field of Tulips

—Originally written March 23, 2015 —

Field of tulips,

Sway in wild gusts,

Like a cobra,

Entranced by those it once trusts.


Girls and boys barefoot in the fields,

Dancing in the red seas,

With all the young birds,

And their wobbling chickadees.


However the bright reds turn into dull greens,

The soft leaves turn into sharp blades,

And the wild birds,

Turn into debris for the maids.


The field of weeds,

Callused the feet of those crying,

And the remains of their former friends,

Shadow the memories of their dancing.


As vultures wash their beaks,

Men and women run to their young,

Comforting the children,

Like a rib cage protects the lungs.


The children leave the field,

Filled with pins of blood,

And dead tulips,

That grew too fast in the cold mud.

-Kevin Joseph Flors


Thanks for reading. To reiterate, I had originally written this poem on March 23, 2015. I love this poem and I am pretty proud of my progression. Before about a year ago, I never really focused on the flow of a poem, but now I keep that in mind and I think it makes my recent works a bit more elevated.


Planning on posting more frequently. Hopefully biweekly. Planning on book review and basketball post in a bit. Song.

Picture from Pexels

Grammy 2017 Nomination Thoughts and Issues With System as a Whole

Grammy 2017 Nomination Thoughts and Issues With System as a Whole

I really despise the Grammy Awards. Its not that I hate the concept of awarding albums and songs which had overstepped boundaries in music, but I hate the fact that none of the songs which do this are ever winners. The only thing celebrated in the Grammy’s is which song was most popular, not necessarily showing the best instrumental and vocal talents. Just which ones arbitrarily got people’s attention. And by “arbitrarily,” I really mean which artist had given the most money to give their albums publicity.

The deadline is a joke too. For those unaware, any music released between Oct. 1 of 2015 and Sept. 31 2016 are allowed to be nominated. Why not just make it yearly, making any music released in 2016 viable for being nominated? Makes too much sense to me. And this problem really is prevalent this year. Lady Gaga, who would have been a sure-fire nominee over JB’s, “Purpose,” and maybe even Drake’s, “Views,” is not eligible until it is forgotten about much later this year. Some other albums, which would just about be sure-fire nominees for a Grammy, include Kid Cudi’s, “Passion, Pain, and Demon-Slayin'” and Childish Gambino’s “‘Awaken My Love!'” Both these albums will not be nominated next year due to irrelevance and its a shame because both were excellent.

Here are some legal notable misses in my mind (Dates from Wikipedia. Yes people say it might be inaccurate, but when is it really?):

  • Avicii for album, “Stories” (Oct 2 2015)
  • Rachel Platten’s, “Wildfire” for song “Fight Song” (Jan 1 2016)
  • Charlie Puth’s, “Nine Track Mind” for song “We Don’t Talk Anymore” (Jan 29 2016)
  • Kevin Gates for album, “Islah” (Jan 29 2016)
  • Santigold’s, “99 Cents” for song, “Can’t Get Enough of Myself” (Feb 26 2016)
  • Miike Snow for album, “iii” (Mar 4 2016)
  • Deftones for album, “Gore” (Apr 8 2016)
  • Fitz and the Tantrums for album, “Fitz and the Tantrums” (June 10 2016)
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers for album, ” The Getaway” (June 17 2016)
  • Cash Cash for album, “Blood, Sweat, & 3 Years” (June 24 2016)
  • Nao for Best New Artist
  • ZHU for album, “Generationwhy” (July 29 2016)
  • DJ Snake for album, “Encore” (Aug 5 2016)

A few personal favorites that would realistically have no shot include newest albums by The Dear Hunter, What So Not, and Thao and the Get Down Stay Down. And yes I am well aware that this list is huge. That does not mean that I believe that any of the actual nominees are undeserving. I just wish that more lower honors, but still awards, were given out to bands that produce music that may not have been as mainstream but was still impactful and original enough to be praised in some other way.

I don’t plan on making this a prediction post, because a lot of the genres I am ignorant to. I am almost certain that I missed a few albums of other genres that I pay little mind to in my list, for example. I will say that 25 or Lemonade should win album of the year and Hello should win song and record. Best soundtrack should be the Suicide Squad soundtrack. Best Rock Song should be My Name is Human (in part because its the only rock song on the list). Best Rock album should be Magma by Gojira. And that’s all I could give input to. Have fun watching the Grammy’s if you plan to.

Thanks for reading. Song

Picture from Pexels

 

 

Despairing Silence

Despairing Silence

Silent, the armadillos sit,

Staring at a seductive darkness.

A stabbing sky shelters stars,

Which sharpen signs of sickness.

 

Empty, the armadillos hunt.

An agile insect darts,

But persistence cannot evade,

Desperate, broken hearts.

 

Tired, the armadillos sleep.

The beasts belittle and scoff,

At their inability to do,

What restless minds stave off.

 

Still empty armadillos die,

Not from lacking substance,

But from themselves,

And their despairing silence.

-Kevin Joseph Flors

Thanks for reading. Song