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Daily Dose: 1/4/17

Omarosa Manigault will be working in the Trump White House

2:23 PMHappy Wednesday, kiddos. It’s a dreary one here in D.C., so let’s get this moving. I think I might go see Fences tonight.

You know Omarosa Manigault, right? The woman from The Apprentice who got famous after being on the show, then ran the reality star circuit for a while before disappearing from the public eye? That one. Well, she’s of course back on the scene now that Donald Trump has been elected, and what you might not know is that now that she’s been hired to his staff. It won’t be the first White House she’s worked for, sort of. She once was working for Al Gore, when Bill Clinton was in office.

One of the funniest things in 2017 so far happened in Los Angeles. The famed Hollywood sign in California was vandalized, and made to appear to read “Hollyweed,” which, by any reasonable metric, is just plain funny. It actually wasn’t the first time it happened, but the fact that someone did it on New Year’s Eve and that Facebook Live streamed the repair process is hilarious. Anyways, these are the guys that claim they did it.

Kim Kardashian is back, y’all. It’s been a rough couple of months for the most famous person in America’s favorite television family. There was the Paris robbery incident, then her husband went a bit wild and put their whole home life on blast. But, let’s be clear. We’ve missed Kim. And don’t come at me acting like this isn’t news. There’s one thing that’s harder to do than anything else: getting people to like you. She’s great at it. She’s better than you at it. Her social media game pops.

By and large, bowl games are a mixed bag. The experiences are so varied, whether you’re attending, playing or just watching on television, and what they mean to each person is completely different. But if we’re to glean anything from them, they are a reasonably decent indicator of what certain conferences are all about. This year, the Atlantic Coast Conference is doing it very, very big. And if Clemson wins it all, it’ll be the best conference bowl year ever.

Free Food

Coffee Break: You know what it’s like to shop while black. Typically, someone comes up to you with WAAAY too much customer service, or they hide in the corner and watch you, if they’re suspicious. At Versace, they were far more open about it, using so-called code words. Nice try.

Snack Time: I don’t keep up with rap beefs with any regularity, but I do check in if required. And this situation between Soulja Boy and Chris Brown might the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen.

Dessert: Ivanka Trump is moving in down the block from the Obamas. There goes the neighborhood.

Daily Dose: 1/2/17

We really do have to say goodbye to the Obamas

3:00 PMWhat up, kiddos? I’m back, feeling energized and excited for the new year. I’d like to give props to Martenzie Johnson, whose week in this space was genuinely excellent. Time to rock.

It’s been a while since we heard from your boy, but Donald Trump is still wilding. Whether he’s popping off inane tweets about 2017, throwing people off his golf course or charging people major cash to kick it with him on New Year’s Eve, he isn’t slowing down. He’s also managed to somehow convince The Wall Street Journal that when he lies, it’s not actually a lie. How that works, we have no idea, fam. More importantly, clear your schedule for Jan. 10. That’s when President Barack Obama is going to give his farewell speech from Chicago. We expect zero dry eyes in the place.

If you didn’t see Mariah Carey’s performance in Times Square, check it here. There are a couple of levels to this. The people who are mad she was lip-syncing, an argument I’ll never understand. Secondly, there are those who were upset at how she handled the situation onstage. Then, those who thought her reply was excellent on Twitter. Then, all the way down to Carey’s camp, who are accusing Ryan Seacrest’s crew of actual sabotage. It’s not that deep, fam.

Over the course of my short journalism career, I’ve sat in a few press boxes. Not a ton, mind you, but enough to know that it takes a LOT to get kicked out of one, particularly during a professional game that typically serves as the working space for nearly a hundred people. But on Sunday, the somewhat unthinkable happened, when at a Philadelphia Eagles game, a reporter got tossed. Then, others were threatened with ejection if they objected. This is the equivalent of a parent saying they’ll turn the car around if everyone in the back doesn’t shut up. What a mess.

Speaking of abnormal occurrences at games, there’s U.S. Bank Stadium. At the Minnesota Vikings game Sunday, demonstrators managed to make it into the facilities and hang banners protesting U.S. Bank’s involvement with the Dakota Access Pipeline. Political message aside, it was a pretty impressive feat from a physical standpoint. Anyways, the people involved will be charged. Here’s the press release from those responsible.

Free Food

Coffee Break: The stories of how people fall in love can be interesting, but are often rather boring. Person meets person, person likes person, person, if they live in a place that allows, marries other person. But this story about a mixtape and then a wedding is pretty cool.

Snack Time: Want an apt description of where our nation’s politics are right now? Check out this editorial cartoon, which is about as good as I’ve seen in a long while.

Dessert: If you grew up a city kid, like me, you’ll love these pretty pictures.

Daily Dose: 12/30/16

Five years from now, the Greek Freak could be a $200 million man

11:00 AMThis is my last day of Daily Dose, as Clinton Yates returns on Monday. It’s been a blast this week running down the most interesting and noteworthy stories. Let’s get to it.

It’s coming up on three years since the city of Flint, Michigan, switched its water supply to the lead-contaminated Flint River. During that time period, anywhere between 6,000 to 12,000 Flint children have been exposed to dangerous levels of lead, according to the United Way of Genesee County. Ever since problems began to arise with the water supply in the city, government officials in the state were either willfully ignorant or purposely negligent in its handling of the situation, exposing tens of thousands of people to unsafe water. Over the past year, the water supply has been switched back to Detroit water, lawsuits have been filed, and officials have been charged, but contaminated water is still an issue. FiveThirtyEight, in its end-of-the-year awards, recognizes the man who blew this story wide open.

It’s the Cold War 2.0. On Thursday, the Obama administration announced new measures against Russia for its role in the alleged interference with this year’s presidential election. The measures include sanctions against multiple Russian agencies, including the spy agency that succeeded the KGB, the expulsion of 35 Russian operatives from the country, and the closing of two Russian-owned facilities on the East Coast. Early Friday morning, Russian officials shot back that they would recommend the expulsion of 35 American diplomats in their country, which is as petty as it sounds. While all of this may amount to a penis-measuring contest between the two countries, a recent story in The New Yorker about how the United States almost accidentally initiated a nuclear attack against the Soviet Union in the 1980s should give us all pause.

The Greek Freak is about to get paid … in five years. I won’t bog you down with the confusing numbers and terminology of the new collective bargaining agreement the NBA owners and players recently agreed to, but I will tell you that (no bias here) versatile forward and fan favorite Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks, for his next contract in 2021 (he just signed an extension in September), could nab a deal worth $240 million if he stays with his current team. That’s multiple-time MVP winners Stephen Curry and LeBron James money. Here’s to more dunks, struts and amazing stories from The Greek Freak for many years.


Winner of Thursday: rapper album sales

When a mixtape based on a Broadway play can sell almost 200,000 units in its first week, that means it was a good year for music. Complex runs down the first-week numbers for some of the most talked about albums in 2016.

Loser of Thursday: Simon & Schuster

The New York-based publishing company reportedly offered Breitbart editor and white nationalist Milo Yiannopoulos a book deal worth $250,000. Yiannopoulos, who was famously axed from Twitter after he incited a swarm of hateful and violent messages toward Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones, was a key agitator during the misogynist “Gamergate” controversy of 2014. The deal is not too surprising, though, considering Simon & Schuster has published the works of Donald Trump, Dick Cheney and Glenn Beck in the past.

What to look forward to this weekend: Driving safely

This weekend is New Year’s Eve, which means there will be a lot of alcohol and too much drinking and driving. Stay safe out there. AAA probably provides assistance in your area.

Daily Dose: 12/29/16

Jim Brown, Ray Lewis and Omarosa Manigault having a day party for Donald Trump during inauguration

11:40 AMClinton Yates is not back yet. He’s currently flying across the country on Soulja Boy’s $55 million G5 jet. Not the best cellular phone reception up there.

When I took over Daily Dose this week, I never imagined I’d have to write about so much death. But the day following the death of her daughter Carrie Fisher, legendary Hollywood actress Debbie Reynolds died at the age of 84. The Singin’ in the Rain star “suffered a severe stroke,” according to her son Todd Fisher, and died a few hours later at a hospital. The “curse of 2016” has inevitably gone from grieving for celebrities to a macabre game of “Guess Who?” Lost in the shock value of “Oh my God, X person died” are the families having to grieve for a lost loved one. In this case, a brother, son, daughter, granddaughter and half-sisters have to deal with so much pain and grief over a two-day span. The Guardian breaks down Reynolds’ illustrious career.

Another victory for Native Americans. Following the cancellation of construction of the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline earlier this month by the Obama administration, which protected the sacred waters of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Native American tribes in the West received some good news this week from the federal government. On Wednesday, President Barack Obama announced the creation of two national monuments in Utah and Nevada, preserving 1.65 million acres of sacred land in the two states. As NPR reports, “The Navajo, Hopi, Uintah & Ouray Ute, Ute Mountain Ute and Zuni all have ancestral ties” to the newly created area known as the Bears Ears National Monument. The tribes along with conservationists have been fighting for protection of the land for years. Elected Republican lawmakers in Utah oppose the monuments, which may be for economic reasons.

Jim Brown’s inauguration day party for Donald Trump. The Hall of Fame running back, who stirred controversy earlier this month when he met with the president-elect at Trump Tower in New York City, will host the “Amer-I-Can Pre-Inauguration Day Party” in Washington, D.C., one day before Trump is set to be sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. Brown will be joined at the event by his wife, Monique, Trump supporters and black pastors Darrell Scott and Bruce Levell, former reality TV star Omarosa Manigault, former college basketball coach Bob Knight and future Pro Football Hall of Famer Ray Lewis. No mention of whether or not Don King will be promoting.


Winner of Wednesday: LeBron James

Rogaine denialist LeBron James and men everywhere can rejoice, as there is apparently a new laser-equipped device that stimulates hair growth. The LaserBand 82, which looks like Cyclops’ visor from X-Men, will cost you about $800 if you dare take the risk. Mashable has a cool video to show you how it works.

Loser of Wednesday: Dylann Roof

The convicted murderer told a federal judge on Wednesday that he does not plan to offer a defense at next week’s sentencing for his June 2015 killing of nine black parishioners at a Charleston, South Carolina, church. Roof, who has disregarded the advice of his defense lawyers and will represent himself during sentencing, will provide an opening statement during the Jan. 3 hearing, which could be one more opportunity for the white supremacist to spew his hate speech. Either way, after next week, we won’t be subjected to this man for too much longer.

What to look forward to on Thursday: SagerStrong pins

The late Craig Sager and his family partnered with Foot Locker a few months back to create Sager-themed pins to help raise funds for the SagerStrong Foundation. Even with the broadcaster’s death earlier this month, the partnership is still intact, and the pins go on sale today at participating Foot Lockers.