Health Officials Warn Of Possible Measles Exposure At LAX Airport

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Health officials in Los Angeles are warning passengers about measles exposure after a passenger traveled through the busy Los Angeles International Airport last month.

According to USA Today, the infected passenger traveled on China Eastern Flight 583 through the airport’s Terminal B, a popular terminal for international flights, on the morning of Feb. 21

Health and safety officials said that travelers in Terminal 3 between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. could have also been exposed because the infected person had a layover before catching Delta Flight 5705 out of gate 32.

Related Post: How To Spend An 8-Hour Layover In Los Angeles 

Terminal B is home to 29 gates made up of several international airlines including Air France, China Airlines, Lufthansa, and Korean Air.  Terminal 3 features 12 gates and is where Delta Airlines, Interjet, and Copa is situated.

L.A. County officials told USA Today reporters that they first learned about the case of the highly contagious virus on March 7.

A statement on the county’s public health website describes measles as a highly contagious viral infection that causes fever, runny nose, and a severe rash.

The virus is spread through coming in contact through a cough or sneeze of an infected person. It’s possible that exposure to measles can infect others 2 hours after the infected person has left the room.

People with measles are highly contagious and health officials say that the incubation period for developing measles is up to 21 days after being exposed to someone who has the disease.

If you think that you or someone in your family has been exposed to, or has measles, you should contact your doctor’s office right away.

Many Southwest Airlines Travelers Left With No Return Flights Home

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Many travelers from Baltimore, Chicago, and St. Louis trying to purchase roundtrip tickets to Hawaii for Southwest Airlines ran into a frustrating problem this week. They were able to purchase flights to Hawaii, but couldn’t find any tickets for the return flight home. Angry customers flocked to Southwest Airlines’ Facebook and Twitter pages to demand answers.

The issue wasn’t a glitch or due to sold out flights, but was due to Southwest’s scheduling options. According to USA Today, the airline’s limited flight schedule doesn’t get passengers into California in time to catch Southwest flights to most cities east of Cali. 

RELATED: Southwest Airlines $49 Flights To Hawaii Officially On Sale

For example, flights from Honolulu to Oakland arrive in Oakland at 5:50 p.m. and 9 p.m. local time. The last flight from Oakland to Chicago is 4:50 p.m., not giving passengers an adequate connecting flight option. 

“When developing these schedules, our primary focus was to offer the best possible timings for local customers (in Hawaii and California),” said a spokesperson for Southwest Airlines in response to traveler concerns on their community message board.  “As we continue to add service to Hawaii and increase some of our technical capabilities, we will only see more cities gain connections to the state.’’

At the moment, the only way for travelers outside of the West coast to travel to and from Hawaii is to buy a series of separate one-way tickets. You would have to buy a one-way ticket to Hawaii, a return ticket from Hawaii to California, and then California back home.

RELATED: 50 In 50: Best Black-Owned Seafood Spots In Each State

Southwest’s new Hawaii flights will begin for travel starting March 17 and flights are selling out quickly. With introductory fares purchased for as low as $49 each day, it may be worth the slight hassle until Southwest can offer a more convenient flight schedule to and from Hawaii.

Delta Airlines Set To Serve Wine From Napa Valley’s Only Black-Owned Winery

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Delta Airlines ended Black History Month on a high note.

The airline announced a partnership with Brown Estate Winery during a wine tasting at the San Francisco Delta Sky Club. Brown Estate Winery is the only and first black-owned winery in the wine capital of the United States, Napa Valley.

The idea came from Carlyne Scott, a member of Delta’s black community business resource group. Originally, wine from the estate was supposed to be a special for Black History Month but ended up being the beginning of a long-term partnership. “Partnering with innovative, diverse suppliers from certified small, minority- and women-owned businesses like Brown Estate is fundamental to Delta’s strategy to keep climbing year-round,” vice president of supply chain management Heather Ostis said. “Seeking employee perspectives and leveraging unique ideas brings us closer to meeting that goal while creating the highest quality experience for our customers.”

RELATED: The ‘Turn-Up’ On Flights Is Getting Pricey As Alcohol Prices Is On The Rise

A number of wines from Brown Estates were picked and given to the airline’s master wine steward, Andrea Robinson, in hopes some reds and wines would be considered for the menu. They were a hit as two of Brown’s wines made the cut. The competition is tough. Robinson goes through 1,500 bottles per week.

Brown Estate wines will help passengers turn up on the 2019-2020 winter menu with two options. One is a 2017 Betelgeuse Sauvignon Blanc, with a tropical fruit taste the other being a 2017 Chaos Theory, a red blend of Merlot, Petite Sirah and Zinfandel. Your wine knowledge is definitely being tested.

Both Delta and Brown are excited about this new venture. “We are delighted to partner with Delta Air Lines,” president of Brown Estate Deneen Brown said. “Delta’s all-in commitments to the spirit of inclusion and to their wine program are perfectly aligned with our core values at Brown Estate.”

Brown Estate’s tasty wines already made their first appearance on Delta Airlines earlier this week. The winery got rave reviews from customers flying on a flight from San Francisco to New York.

Nearly 200 Passengers Stranded For 36 Hours On Amtrak Train

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An Amtrak train with at least 183 passengers on board is finally moving again after being stuck for 36 hours in Oakridge, Oregon.

Thankfully, no injuries were reported when the Los Angles-bound train hit a tree that fell onto the tracks Sunday evening, as reported by CNN.

“The train had been inoperable due to weather conditions and downed trees,” Tim McMahan, spokesman for Union Pacific, which owns the Oregon rail line where the train had been stranded, told CNN reporters. “UP crews worked overnight to clear the tracks.”

Before the incident, the National Weather Service predicted at least two feet of snowfall in the area. By Tuesday morning, at least a foot of snow had accumulated. To put that in perspective, Oakridge averages 1.1 inches in February.

Related Post: 3 Cities You Can Amtrak To From Los Angeles For R & R

Scot Naparstek said in a statement that the company decided that leaving passengers on the train was the safest option.

“We sincerely regret the extended delay customers on the southbound Coast Starlight experienced due to extreme weather issues while traveling with Amtrak,” he said. “With local power outages and blocked roads, it was decided the safest place for our customers was to remain on the train where we were able to provide food, heat, electricity and toilets.”

Amtrak officials stated that Amtrak Cascades trains between Portland and Eugene would be “suspended through Thursday, due to track closures because of severe weather conditions on the Union Pacific Railroad.”

Trains between Portland and points north are still operating, according to the Amtrak website.

Also, passengers should expect more cancellations and delays as the train heads back North from Los Angeles.

“Customers with reservations on trains that are being modified will typically be accommodated on trains with similar departure times or another day,” a statement reads on the company’s website.” Amtrak will gladly waive additional charges for customers looking to change their reservation during the modified schedule by calling our reservation center.”

This Iconic Sidewalk Is The Worst Tourist Attraction In America

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The whole state of California is one big tourist attraction, drawing millions of visitors year after year. People travel to get a glimpse of their favorite movie star or hit the beautiful trails on the California hills. However, one tourism hotspot in the state is the worst of the worst.

The Hollywood Walk of Fame has officially been named the worst tourist attraction in America. Since its a rare occasion that someone bumps into Beyoncé, the second best thing is going to see her star or the stars of the rest of Hollywood’s elite. In a study conducted by global luggage storage network Stasher, they took a look at close to 100 overrated tourist hotspots worldwide. They looked at reviews for spots like Universal Studios in Orlando, Disneyland Hong Kong, the Matterhorn in Switzerland, and of course, the Walk of Fame.

RELATED: Why Watts Is Becoming An Unexpected Foodie Destination 

The iconic sidewalk beat out Times Square, Busch Gardens and Pier 39 in San Francisco for the title, a surprise to Stasher. “It’s interesting to see that some of the more well-known attractions including the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the Great Pyramid of Giza and various theme parks do not perform well,” Stasher’s co-founder Jacob Wedderburn-Day said. “This perhaps suggests some popular sights are now overwhelmed by tourism, which, in turn, compromises many tourists’ safety and enjoyment.”

So how did they come to this conclusion? All the tourist spots were ranked by the quality of accommodations locally, safety and security, ease of access, and Instagram engagement, since that’s what really matters these days. Tourists who have been there said that the hotels in the area aren’t totally up to visiting standards and on top of everything, the Walk of Fame is a pickpocketer’s dream. It’s hard to pay attention to your wallet when you’re busy taking a picture with Elvis.

Savor: Meals By Genet In Los Angeles, California

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meals by genet

In this installment of our Savor series we’re exploring Meals by Genet located in the heart of Los Angeles’, ”Little Ethiopia.” Little Ethiopia is known for its collection of Ethiopian restaurants, coffee shops, boutiques and so much more.

Meals by Genet offers traditional Ethiopia cuisine in a casual bistro setting. You’ll meet the founder and learn how she grew from a catering company to a full service restaurant.

Why Watts Is Becoming An Unexpected Foodie Destination

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There are so many neighborhoods in the United States that are stricken with drugs and gang violence, making them a sore sight for tourists. However, you shouldn’t always judge a book by its cover. Despite what it might look like to outsiders, locals and real travelers know those neighborhoods have some of the best people and some of the best food you’ll ever have.

Neighborhoods like Watts in California fits into this category. Known for random drivebys and massive gang violence, their food scene is last on the list when you think of the area, but things have changed over the years. Food hotspots like All Flavor No Grease and Hawkins House of Burgers are encouraging visitors to come and experience the unique tastes on their own, regardless of what their addresses are. Like Hawkins Burgers, which apparently sits in Blood territory, or All Flavor, No Grease, which was set up in active Crip territory. All Flavor, No Grease owner Keith Garrett, who started his business in his own front yard, boasts about his positive relationship with the neighborhood gang culture.

RELATED: LA African Is Changing The Way African Millennials Network

In fact, there was a time when Garrett, known as a Watts legend and making a mean quesadilla, brought the rival gangs together for a peace offering while he was setting up shop. “There was a meeting held at Markham Middle School, with both rival gangs,” Garrett said. “It was like, ‘If Keith said it was cool, it gotta be cool. He comes in peace, so we know he wouldn’t put our lives in danger to come get a plate.'” Food brought them to a neutral place. While Garrett said there was still tension, the respect was given.

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The same respect goes for Cynthia Hawkins, owner of Hawkins House of Burgers. The black-owned business, which is often called the best burgers in Los Angeles, has a lot of history behind. The building was the only spot untouched during the Watts Riots in 1965 and not by accident. Being that Hawkins’ had a reputation of feeding the community, looters gave them a pass. Celebrities like Grammy-award winning rapper Jay Rock, who grew up in the neighborhood, has given his stamp of approval as well as Baron Davis, and Hilary Clinton, who stopped by during her 2018 presidential campaign.

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After Yelp reviews and Instagram posts help get the word around about these two spots and how safe the neighborhood was for a food business, famous chef Roy Choi decided to establish the LocoL restaurant in Watts. As one of the founders of the gourmet food truck movement, Choi’s name alone brought in outsiders that would probably never give the hood a chance. Although the LocoL restuarants have closed, the food truck is still in operation. Leave it to food to bring people together, regardless of what color they are or what color they are wearing.

11 Unconventional Locations For A Destination Wedding

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One of the best days of your life just happened: the love of your life has asked you to marry them. After sending a picture of the ring to your family group chat, facetiming your BFFs, and updating that relationship status to ‘engaged’ — it is time to start planning your wedding day. Some might opt for a courthouse wedding, while others might opt for an over-the-top hometown soiree, but you and your honey want to seal the deal with a destination wedding — since it can be more cost-effective and stress-free. Here are a few destination locations we think would make your wedding both joyous and memorable.

Alaska

If you or your partner has ever wanted to come face-to-face with a glacier, here is your chance. On this one-of-a-kind experience, you fly in a helicopter to elevations of 1,800 to 3,500 feet and will have ice up to 2,500 feet deep below your feet, with mountain peaks surrounding you. Alaska Weddings offers packages starting at $2,380, that include a helicopter to the Mendenhall Glacier and thirty minutes on the glacier. Since there will be helicopter travel, there will only be room for the two guests of honor, the wedding officiant, the photographer, with a possibility of two additional guests depending on their weight. Their packages also includes special boots with metal cleats to wear on the glacier, a six-passenger chauffeured Limousine and a wedding planning assistance.

Bali, Indonesia

The Tirtha Luhur offers many options for couples that want to say their ‘I do’s’ in Bali. With panoramic views of the Indian Ocean and the calm that Bali provides, this destination is one that everyone will enjoy. The Tirtha will help couples plan everything in-house including accommodations, food and beverage, decor, styling, and anything else the wedding party desires.

Wolwedans, Namibia

Getting married in Africa is a dream for many newly engaged couples and the NamibRand Nature Reserve is a offers a unique way to do it. The Wolwedans can accommodate wedding parties as small as two to as large as forty at their Dunes Lodge or Dune Camp. Before booking this as your wedding venue, you’ll want to be sure those on the guest list know what they’re signing up for as the reserve is set in a remote environment. The reserve also requires the couple to have specific paperwork on hand like a valid passport and screening documents from immigration — and you’ll also need to visit the Ministry of Home Affairs in Windhoek upon your arrival

Tuscany, Italy

Ready to eat, pray, love it with your forever bae and your loved ones? Add Villa Il Borro to your list, because their stunning accommodations, lush grounds, and exceptional service will make your special day one to remember. You will work with a dedicated wedding planning team that will coordinate every detail of your wedding, from decorations to food.

Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

Whether you want to have a one-on-one wedding experience or invite a small group of guests along, the Mara Explorer Camp offers a chance to have a unique wedding experience along with tailor-made excursions for you and your guests. From air balloon rides to see the sunrise, guided safari tours, and unique dining experiences — having your wedding here will be an unforgettable adventure.

San Luis Obispo, California

Barn weddings are relatively popular, but who says you can’t have a destination barn wedding? No one! Santa Margarita Ranch, located in California’s Central Coast region (just between Los Angeles and San Francisco), offers picturesque views and tons of space to bring your big day to life. The wedding package includes chairs, tables, parking space, on-site restrooms, security and parking staff, a private dressing area, along with a representative that will be there throughout the day should any hiccups occur.

Monte-Carlo, Monaco

Are you and your lifelong partner adrenaline junkies? If you answered yes, we think an underwater wedding in Monte-Carlo is for you. You will not only be underwater in your Sunday’s best, but there will also be an altar set up for you underwater to make sure you get the perfect wedding photos. After your dive, you’ll be met by your family and friends with cocktails and lunch on the beach. 

New Orleans, Louisiana

Solange and her hubby Alan Ferguson showed us how beautiful a NOLA wedding could be, with the help of the historic buildings and cultural experience the city provides. The Marigny Opera House, where Solange was married, is ideal for both the ceremony and the reception. Take it the NOLA experience one step further and have your guests picked up in a streetcar. Charting a streetcar starts at $1,000 per trip with the price varying depending on the wedding parties request.

Paris, France

Some Disney lovers might be dreaming of a wedding surrounded by the magic of “Happiest Place On Earth” in one of the most romantic cities in the world. Of course, Disneyland Paris can help you make it happen offering tailormade packages to bring the Disney magic to your wedding day.

New York, New York

If you and your partner share a love of all things, science, a wedding at the American Museum of Natural History would likely merge the best of both worlds. You could dance the night away under the dinosaurs, and after the night ends to continue the party on the streets of New York that never sleep.

Marfa, Texas

Marfa is known as a place where creatives (including Beyonce and Solange) go to get away and take amazing pictures — so why not plan a wedding there. Since this area is pretty remote, you’d probably want to make plans to host your wedding at Marfa Saint George since they have venues on-site where you can host everything from your rehearsal dinner to a late-night post-ceremony celebration.

Most Beautiful Places To Stay In The Bay Area

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The Bay Area is known for its stunning views, the Golden Gate Bridge, and for being home to America’s wine country.

If you are planning a trip, be sure to check out this list of some of the most beautiful hotels and accommodations that the Bay has to offer.

The Mill Rose Inn

This luxurious bed and breakfast is located about 28 miles outside of San Francisco. It is situated on the beautiful California coast and provides just the right amount of relaxation that you need. This early 1900s cottage was transformed into a bed and breakfast and has been in business for over 40 years.

Photo courtesy of Mill Rose Inn

 

Auberge du Soleil

A French restaurateur birthed this Napa Valley getaway. Sitting on over 30-acres, you can stay in one of 50 guestrooms or suites. This hotel is dedicated to giving each of its guests their own unique experience while providing one of the most beautiful backdrops The Bay has to offer. Some of the rooms even provide outdoor showers and tubs. That is the perfect recipe for relaxation.

Photo courtesy of Auberge du Soleil

 

Hotel Zelos San Francisco

Not only is this hotel beautiful, but is one of the most centrally located hotels you can book in San Fran. Part of the Viceroy Hotels chain, this place will put you steps away from some of the most popular attractions that the city has to offer. The rates are affordable, with prices under $200 per night most days.

Photo courtesy of Zelos San Francisco

 

Related: Best Black-Owned Restaurants In The Bay Area

The Scarlet Huntington

This apartment building turned hotel gives a perfect blend of modern and historic. The décor is inspired by Singapore Straits Chinese. Guests have access to a three-level spa, a fine dining restaurant, and large meeting spaces.

Photo courtesy of The Scarlet Huntington

 

Hotel Drisco

This classic Bay Area hotel can be found in the Pacific Heights neighborhood. Guests are treated to an all-inclusive stay which includes free bikes to rent, a nightly wine mixer, as well as a gourmet breakfast each morning. The price tag on this luxurious stay will set you back at least $600, but sometimes you deserve to treat yo’ self.

Photo courtesy of Hotel Drisco

 

Taj Campton Place Hotel

The 110-room Taj Campton Place is found close to Union Square. It has been listed as one of San Fran’s ‘9 Best Luxury Hotels’ as well as of the most romantic. Each room is equipped with its own Nespresso machine as well as plush robes. The restaurant on the property has been awarded two Michelin stars.

Photo courtesy of Taj Campton Place

Sonesta Silicon Valley

It’s only right that we highlight a black-owned hotel in The Bay. Located in the heart of Silicon Valley, this hotel was formerly known as The Beverly Heritage Hotel. It features a heated lap pool as well as a whirlpool.

Photo courtesy of Sonesta Silicon Valley

 

Black-Owned Marijuana Dispensaries In California

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As more states legalize the use of recreational marijuana, the number of opportunities for business owners is increasing as well.

One industry that is seeing a positive impact after the legalization of cannabis is the travel and tourism industry.

Reports show that in some states where weed is legal, tourism increased by nearly 50 percent.

Even with the legalization of marijuana, only one percent of the dispensaries in the United States are owned by blacks.

Whether it’s recreational or medical, here are five black-owned dispensaries to visit during your next visit to California.

iCann Berkeley

Sue Taylor, a former Catholic School Principal, opened iCANN Berkeley in 2018 to educate people, mainly seniors, on holistic resources as an alternative to pharmaceutical drugs.

There are three levels of service provided to customers, including express checkout, counter service, and private consultation.

Instagram | @icann_berkeley

Gas House

Located in Oakland, Gas House is a successful company whose products are sold in dispensaries across California.

The strains provided by Gas House have consistently won awards for “Highest-Testing Indica” and “Highest-Potency Flower,” according to the company’s website.

Products include pre-rolls, vaporizers, and its award-winning flower.

American Cannabinoid Clinics

The founders of the American Cannabinoid Clinics are a family of physicians who have more than six years of collective experience on counseling patients on the use of Medical Cannabis for illness and chronic disease.

Euphorium Oakland             

Euphorium was founded “to create an unparalleled experience for cannabis patients and enthusiasts,” according to the company’s website. 

Tee Tee, the company’s founder, left working a job in pharmaceutical biotech sales for over 20 years to provide patients with natural and holistic solutions for chronic symptoms.

Magnolia Oakland 

Magnolia Wellness is a full-service cannabis dispensary located in the heart of Oakland. They are open seven days a week from 9 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Instagram | @magnolia_oakland

VIDEO: Passengers Say They Were Held Against Their Will On Delayed Flight

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Flight delays and diversions can cause travelers to say things out of the norm. But passengers on a delayed flight in Northern California took it to the next level.

Passengers on an Aeromexico flight called authorities to tell them they weren’t allowed to leave a plane. They called 911 and claimed they were being held against their will at Oakland International Airport on Thursday. The flight was scheduled to land in San Francisco after leaving Guadalajara but was diverted to Oakland due to intense fog, causing the flight to sit on the tarmac for four hours.

RELATED: VIDEO: Woman Chases Plane On Runway After Missing Flight

Travelers complained that they received no food or water and to top it off, they were allegedly forced to sit with no air conditioning. The report from the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office said an anxious passenger was even threatening to open the emergency door exit.

“He is saying that we are kidnapping him and he’s going to open the door. What I really need is the police,” the captain said via radio.

The man and one other passenger were detained based on the fact that they were tampering with the aircraft but since it was just a threat, they were allowed to leave and faced no charges. It was total chaos as one woman had to be taken to the hospital after having trouble breathing. One passenger caught the intense moments on video. 

RELATED: Talking While Black: Hotel Calls Cops On Guest Making Call In The Lobby

Oakland Airport released a statement saying it’s an airline’s decision whether or not to await clearance in order to return to the original destination or let passengers get off the plane at the airport they were diverted to. Not allowing passengers to leave the plane makes sense since the airline has no operations in Oakland. Aeromexico would have to get special authorization from authorities allowing passengers to leave.

Thankfully, passengers gained access to the terminal some time Thursday afternoon.

Black Travel Horror Stories That’ll Make You Cringe… And Laugh

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As therapeutic and exciting traveling can be, there are times when the journey can be rough.

Things happen and sometimes plans go wrong, especially when you can’t communicate because of language barriers or understand the customs.

The following traveling horror stories will make you cringe, laugh, or cry, but regardless of how you feel, don’t let them deter you from exploring the world:

Falsely Accused In Front Of Everyone

Flying from Asia in First Class (miles!!) when loudly accused by male flight attendant of “destroying the bathroom” (That’s not embarrassing). Turned out it was a young Korean guy.  Dude then decided to argue with me about why he didn’t owe me an apology. (Where they do that at??) – Jamal Simmons

When asked which airline by a Twitter user, Simmons stated he wanted to keep the company anonymous because it was handled by the company.

Attacked By Neo-Nazis With Kids In Car

I was sitting behind the wheel of our Volvo station wagon, hubby riding shotgun, two kids buckled in back. We were waiting for a spot at Santa Monica Pier – Lot 2. It had always been lucky for us.

We finally noticed a group heading to their car, and luckily for us, they were going to be giving us their spot. (You know how those lots are: you hold at one end of the one-way aisle, another car waits at the other aisle … it’s orderly first come first served, self-serve parking.)

At some point, it becomes obvious that these people have gotten into their vehicle and are waving over the ‘potential parker’ from the other aisle. They were deliberately backing up towards my car so that only the ‘potentials’ could get into the newly vacated space.

Had I not put it in reverse and rolled back a few feet, they literally would have hit my car. Luckily, I’d reversed barely enough for them or the other car to access the impossibly tight space. It was infuriating. It was offensive. It was aggressive.

My husband had gotten so angry that he started yelling out his window at the “offensive parkers.” It was obvious to everyone that they were denying us the courtesy of ‘wait your turn, take your turn’ coastal parking lot etiquette.

I was still stunned, but the hubby was angry and verbal enough that he’d begun loudly arguing back at the vehicle now sitting in front of us.

The interloping vehicle, unable to approximate any type of parking in that spot from that angle, had given up, relinquished the spot and had pulled forward enough to block anyone from exiting our aisle; including the “offensive parkers.” There was still arguing going on between the hubby and the “offensives.” But it had become clear to everyone in the vicinity of the lot that this was an issue based on race.

I’m a black woman. My husband is white. The truckload of racist Nazis were appropriately Neo-Nazi white, but darker than my pale hubby.

One of the Nazis got out of his truck to stand in front of our car and argue the merits of ‘race mixing’ at my hubby. The hub got so angry that he threw his venti Starbucks on the back of the Nazi mobile. It was messy and made things worse. 

At which point, the Nazi came to my window: the silent black driver, reached into the slightly open window, grabbed my head and pulled so hard that he smashed my head into my own driver’s side window and then pushed into the front windshield. It was an assault.

Pedestrians were rushing over, my kids were screaming, I was yelling, pulling away from the Nazi and frantically pushing the button so that his arm got trapped in the now closing window. It was a hot mess. It was violent. It was too close. It was horrible. And it gets worse.

The venti latte slinging hubby? Oh, he was crouched down in his seat, leaning away from me and the Nazi arm trapped in the window. No, he was not trying to help me at all, or even protectively shielding our kids; which really infuriated me.

I was trying to decide if we needed to drive over the Nazis because two more had gotten out of the car during the melee. I guess they were the cooler heads of the bunch, because they kicked and spit all over my Volvo as they pulled the head smashing Nazi back into the truck and they all took off. 

 Luckily, I’d gotten their license plate number, and good citizen pedestrians had also jotted down good descriptions including the make and model of the vehicle with accomplices. There were about four onlookers who accompanied us to the Santa Monica Police hut on the pier; all of us intent on filing charges.

 The police knew the Nazis. They took the information, allowed all of us to pick out their mugshots, in which they just so happened to have on hand, because as the Santa Monica Police Officers stated:

 “Oh, we know these guys; they do this sort of thing all of the time. They’re part of this racist group that we’ve been monitoring. No need to press charges just yet, we have our own way of handling them. It’s all part of a bigger investigation. We’ll get them for you, honey.”

 They refused to let any of us press charges or file an incident report. 

 I’ve never been back to Santa Monica ever since, including driving through there for any reason. My mind put up a mental detour around that area for quite a while, and I’m from the south. And yes, I divorced him.  -Anonymous

Not Realizing Your Barber Didn’t Finish Hair School

In Cape Verde, Mr. Barber is 65 years old and has been cutting hair for 52 years. Speaking very little English, he explains he didn’t finish school with a translation app.” – Alphonso Van Marsh

Why Isn’t The Marijuana Industry Booming In California?

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California residents were more than excited when marijuana was made legal in 2016. Business owners were ready to cash in on the industry since it was projected to soar. However, that cash has been coming in slower than expected.

Growers and cannabis shopowners blame it on complex regulations, high taxes and the decision to ban marijuana shops in numerous cities. Law enforcement has also been concerned about crime growing around the marijuana trade. These issues are top priorities for state governor-elect Gavin Newsom when he takes office in January. Pro-legalization groups don’t think the problems will be solved. “The cannabis industry is being choked by California’s penchant for over-regulation,” director of California NORML Dale Gieringer said. “It’s impossible to solve all of the problems without a drastic rewrite of the law, which is not in the cards for the foreseeable future.”

After Proposition 64 was voted on, the law estimated close to 6,000 cannabis shops would be licensed in the first few years but the state Bureau of Cannabis Control fell short, issuing only 547 temporary and annual licenses to marijuana stores and dispensaries. They were also off on their money count, estimating $1 billion in revenue sales. But with cities banning pot sales, tax revenue is falling far short of those estimates. “I think we all wish we could license more businesses, but our system is based on dual licensing and local control,” Alex Traverso, spokesman for the state Bureau of Cannabis Control said. With taxes collected as far back as January 1, the state is expected to bring in $471 million in revenue this fiscal year.

RELATED: Here’s A List Of States Where You Can Have Fun With Marijuana Legally

Even though the voters have spoken, they are a major cause as to why marijuana hasn’t risen to the states projected standards. Eighty-two of Los Angeles County’s 88 cities bans retail sales of recreational marijuana and some voters don’t want shops in their communities at all. Some voters in Malibu approved pot shops, but in Simi Valley, residents voted for an advisory measure against allowing retail sales. One shop owner, Sky Siegel, said he recently stopped trying to open another store in Santa Monica because of its restrictions on such businesses.

The whole industry has caused a lot of tension in areas where cannabis growers operate close to residential areas. Some state there are safety concerns, and others just don’t like the smell. “The smell is horrific,” Sanjay Bagai, said. “It’s like rotting flesh. And the traffic is insane.” Bagai, who lives next door to a cannabis farm, started a group called Save Our Sonoma Neighborhoods, which has taken measures to get a preliminary court ruling against one cannabis-growing operation.

With the new taxes and fees that business is starting to accrue, the cost of legal cannabis in parts of California could increase by 45 percent.

Best Black-Owned Restaurants In Oakland

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Oakland is known for its rich culture and diversity, making it a great place to try food from local chefs as well as cuisine from across the world. Here are seven black-owned eateries for you to support the next time you’re in Oakland.

Oeste Bar and Kitchen

Though this rooftop spot is just getting its footing in Oakland, it is already becoming a favorite on the local foodie scene. Be sure to try pop by during happy hour and try their highly rated mango habanero margarita.

Brown Sugar Kitchen Counter

After a name change and an Uptown move, this iconic West Oakland brunch haven is ready to keep serving up top chef’s Tanya Holland version of soul food staples.

Miliki

If you’re looking for a place in Oakland that serves authentic Nigerian dishes (spice included), head on over to Miliki since it’s the only Nigerian restaurant in Bay Area.

Souley Vegan

Who said soul food can’t be healthy? Well, Souley Vegan is giving Oakland residents “distinctive flavors of the south” with a vegan twist.

Enssaro

Looking for a place to eat traditional Ethiopian food? Enssaro is the place to go. The small restaurant even sources many of their ingredients and spices from the town of Enssaro in Ethiopia.

Everett & Jones BBQ

BBQ is always a good idea, and it’s even better when you’re supporting a local black-owned favorite. With two locations, you can be sure to find a route to get to great BBQ.

Chef Smelly’s Pop-Up Restaurant

Chef Smelly’s Pop-Up might be on hiatus for a bit, but we still wanted to share this business with you. People have lined up for at least an hour at their former 14th St location on Tuesday and Friday nights to feast on fries topped with crab, lobster, and steak alongside prawns, Dungeness crab, and the restaurant’s signature garlic noodles. Due to an issue with a landlord, the chef was forced out of it Downtown Oakland location, but he will be back.

Best Black-Owned Restaurants In The Bay Area

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From Caribbean food to the comfort food of America’s south, California’s Bay Area provides a variety of black-owned restaurants to try :

Miss Ollie’s

Miss Ollie’s is a counter-serve cafe with a menu full of Caribbean soul food. From the Wall Street Journal to the New York Times, the island vibes that Miss Ollie’s provides through their food and colorful decor is well-known throughout the country.

1300 on Fillmore

When co-owners Chef David Lawrence and Monetta White opened the doors of 1300 on Fillmore in the historic Fillmore Jazz District of San Francisco in 2007, the two made it their mission to give the community a taste of comfort dining with their Southern inspired American Cuisine.

A decade later,  the owners moved the restaurant to the international terminal of San Francisco International Airport so travelers across the world could enjoy Southern classics. The menu includes fresh water shrimp hushpuppies, barbecue shrimp n’ grits, and their famous black skillet fried chicken.

RELATED: The 50 Best Black-Owned Bakeries In The U.S.

Photo courtesy of 1300 on Fillmore

Ensarro

Located in the historic Adams Point District next to Lake Merritt,  Enssarro restaurant introduces guests to classic Ethiopian cuisine. Many ingredients and spices are brought directly from the town of Enssaro, according to the restaurant’s website. 

Amawele’s South African Kitchen

South Africa is known for its melting pot of cultures, and that’s exactly what you will find on the menu at Amawele’s South African Kitchen in San Francisco.  From cape malay quinoa, bunny chow, and Durban curry roti wraps,   guests will find influences from English, Indian, Dutch, Malaysian and Native African cookery on the menu.

RELATED: The Best Black-Owned Spas In New York City

Souley Vegan

Tamearra Dyson, owner of Souley Vegan,  has been cooking her signature vegan dishes since the age, of 18.  She created Souley Vegan with Louisiana in mind.  From good music and good feelings, and of course, Louisiana creole style vegan food.

Bissap Baobab

Bissap Baobab’s  menu consists mainly of traditional Senegalese cuisine and West African specialties.  The menu includes Aloko, ripe plantains that are fried and served with handmade tamarind yogurt dipping sauce; ceebu jen, a tomatoey mix of fish, joloff rice yucca, carrots, bell peppers, cabbage and eggplant; and seafood coco, sautéed tilapia or prawns in a spicy coconut curry, served with roasted potato slices.

Photo courtesy of Bissap Baobab