Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: The Trayvon Martin issue)

I actually wanted to avoid this topic, but it is becoming much too big an issue to ignore. For those of you who are not familiar with this story, a teen in Sandford, Florida was shot to death in February. Trayvon Martin, a 17 year old kid with no criminal record, was walking to the store when a security patrol neighborhood watchman spotted him and called 911 to report a “suspicious looking” character. The name of the patrolman was George Zimmerman. What ensued next was up to speculation, but on the 911 tape Zimmerman said that he was going to follow the kid. The dispatcher told him “You don’t need to do that.” Zimmerman followed him anyway and moments later Martin was shot to death by Zimmerman’s gun. Zimmerman has since claimed “self defense” and has not been arrested. The biggest issue right now with this case is that everyone wants to infuse that “r” word (You know, the one that sounds a lot like “face”). Martin was a black teen and Zimmerman was a Spanish speaking man who appears to be white (With a name like “Zimmerman” his Latin ethnicity might seriously suffer some credibility issues). Most of you who know me realize that I like to look “beneath” the surface when it comes to most matters, so at this point I would like to review this case WITHOUT involving that “r” word. Let’s just SUPPOSE that both participants were of the same ethnic background. One man calls in a “suspicious” looking character and follows him with a gun AFTER the 911 dispatcher tells him NOT to do so. He doesn’t see a weapon on the kid and he doesn’t give any “specifics” of what the teen is doing that makes him appear to be so “suspicious.” He follows the kid with a gun while the kid is trying to walk away. He confronts the kid and subsequently shoots him dead. I have a problem with this due to several factors: A neighborhood patrol watchman is NOT the same as a police officer and he should not have pursued “anyone” with a loaded weapon. If he is to in fact claim “self defense” then how you justify it when you are the one FOLLOWING the suspect to confront him? How can you possibly feel threatened when the “alleged” suspect didn’t even have a gun or any weapon visible? Also I need to state that if I saw someone following ME with a gun, I would do WHATEVER I could to feel safe, even if that means attacking HIM in “self defense.” It doesn’t take much to put some of the missing pieces together here. It is obvious that George Zimmerman was an upstanding and valuable part of the neighborhood security and I am sure that he did a LOT of good for the safety of others. To me, than means that he was a man of “good” intentions. So given this assumption, I don’t think the local police want to arrest a man of such outstanding character, because he has been active, helpful and involved with them when it comes to making the neighborhood secure. However, Mr. Zimmerman made too many mistakes when it came to this particular situation, and those mistakes cost a young kid his life. If you excuse what he did, then in essence you are saying that it is okay for “anyone” to hunt down unarmed people and shoot them based on suspicion alone. THAT is a VERY dangerous precedent to set… I don’t need the “r” word to know that this incident was handled improperly, and even though Mr. Zimmerman may be valued in his community, he should not be above the law. A young kid lost his life because he got carried away with trying to apprehend him. Unfortunately, his taped 911 call may be the most damaging and incriminating evidence against him. Arresting Zimmerman will not bring back Trayvon but hopefully it will bring some sense of security to those who don’t want to be the “next” victim of someone with a “Robocop” mentality. I sincerely hope that this issue is NOT characterized by “race” (THERE, I SAID it… Happy now?) but rather on the improprieties of how it was handled. As bad as this situation already is, we don’t need to start adding gas to the fire by throwing out “labels.” I only hope that justice can be administered without having to utilize any “racial” implications.  Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always, I welcome any and all contrary or supportive points of view. Have a great day.


Vocalist Lyfe Jennings and Brett Jolly in studio



Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: Lying about your age)

Dear Brett,


Subject: Lied about age


I’m a 24-year-old woman and have been on four dates with a great man I really like. He told me he’s 36, which I don’t feel is too bad of an age difference. I told a friend at work about him. It turns out she knows him. She told me he’s really 43, not 36. Now I don’t know what to do. If he lied about his age, won’t he lie about other things? Plus, 19 years older is quite a difference. Should I confront him, break it off, or pretend I don’t know?





I always like to look beneath the surface when it comes to people. Yes, in your situation, he lied, but I think it is more important to note WHY he lied to you. If he felt that your interest in him would disintegrate based on his age then that is understandable (even though it still does not excuse what he did). At 36 or 43 he is still much older than you… Only you can make the determination as to whether he is now too old or not. However, please keep in mind that if you had NOT discovered his real age then chances are your present relationship with him would still be fine. You should, however, confront him about lying to you. You should let him know that someone who knows him says he is really 43 years old and you want to know why he didn’t have the heart to tell you in the first place. If he feels that he can lie to you and get away with it once, then he most surely can do so again, and that is a habit you want to break him of NOW… Once he realizes that he should have been truthful to you then hopefully he will handle all future matters differently. Most relationships are never totally equal, so it is quite possible to have a difference in age, religion, or any other life topic. As long as your union is not considered illegal (or immoral) then there is no need to question your relationship. Also there are no guarantees that you will be happier with a man closer to your own age. Feel free to love from the heart and be understanding of your mate’s imperfections, just as you would want him to be understanding of yours… Now is the time to understand the Phantom Poet:





I’m a 24 year old woman and just as fine as I can be


My man told me he was 36 when he is really 43


I just can’t seem to understand why he felt the need to lie like that


I want a relationship based on truth, and that’s just a fact


I have ALWAYS been truthful with him, so lying will NEVER be an issue


He thinks I have a size 38 bust line, even though I have been stuffing it all with tissue


Yes, I have truly been up front with him, and that you can surely believe


I just hope that one day he doesn’t find out that my hair is really a weave


The truth shall set you free, and the real person is the one underneath


That’s why I hardly every open my mouth near him (You see, I have false teeth)


And the nasty things I have done with him I have NEVER done with any man before


Well, maybe with the exception of the two guys down the street, but hey, nothing more


Because when you misrepresent yourself, then you’ve already encountered a huge hurdle


Just be the person you are (and please excuse me while I take off this tight girdle)


He doesn’t know that when I drink beer, I always do it by the “keg”


And I sincerely hope that one day he doesn’t find out about my wooden leg


Yes, honesty is important so you need to be as truthful as you can be


It will make your relationship so much better. Just take that tip from me…





“Baby, I never slept with ANY man other than you. In fact, we were both awake the ENTIRE time we had sex.”… The Phantom Poet


Stevie Wonder and Brett Jolly


Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: Is he cheating?)

Dear Brett,


Subject: Is he cheating?


I dunno, I am very suspicious of him and have never been like that in any of my relationships, but there is something I can’t put my finger on… Something just doesn’t sit well with me. Sometimes I see stuff on his pants that looks white like dots, and I know he loves me very much and loves his kids till the ends of the earth but a nagging feeling is always there. I have even seen things on his neck that look like light hickies, like I said I really don’t have a lot to go on but he has a colorful past sex life and lots of strange numbers on his phone but I WILL not call them back


You may be doing the right thing in NOT checking the phone numbers (at least not until you are more certain). Even though he could very well be cheating, snooping through his information is NOT the way to find out about it. A lot of times when a woman has gut feelings about her man they usually are true (even though there have exceptions).  If you go snooping around his belongings then the trust factor in your relationship will be “very strained” (especially if he is proven innocent). For something like this you will need to exercise just a little more patience. NO ONE can hide infidelity permanently (some are good, though). One way or another it will reveal itself to you. You should, however, use your suspicion to check for more signs, such as his availability. Can you reach him most times you need to (either in person or by phone)? What are his job hours and how much time does he normally have after work before you hear from him? It is one thing to have suspicions… it is another thing to prove them…Whites spots and hickeys should be good indicators, though, but you still have to be careful how you present this to him. It is perfectly fine to let him know that you have reservations about your relationship. He needs to know what you are feeling. While it is so tempting to ravage through his personal information it could prove to be very detrimental to the trust factor of your relationship if you are proven wrong. If he is cheating, he will NOT be able to continue to hide it. Keep talking to him until you feel comfortable with his answers and pay attention to everything he says. Make sure you have evidence against him that seems overwhelming before you confront him with any “definite” accusations. Be ever careful, and be ever watchful… Here is that wayward son, the Phantom Poet to guide you:


In the back of my mind, I suspect my man of cheating


If so, the top of his head is where I will commence beating


He often comes around with white spots and hickeys on his neck


He is about to encounter a beat down that will be the best one yet


I have these feelings, but I need to know the truth


I can’t begin whipping his behind until I get more proof


The other day I found a hotel room key in his pocket


He said his job had meetings there (after I knocked his eye out of socket)


One day I checked his shirts and found lipstick on his collar


He said some old woman hugged him, but there was no need to holler


And then there are the phone calls from some other woman calling my house


She wanted to know if my man would please return her blouse


Then last night I found him naked with a woman in bed


He said he was administering CPR after she had accidentally bumped her head


Yes, I suspect my man of cheating, but I really need to be “sure”


Because for what I’ll do to him there might not BE a cure


If I look well enough, I just might be able to find some clues


I just want to be sure before all his teeth he’ll lose


So I prayed to God to just send me some sort of sign


He replied, “God woman, if you can’t see all those clues, then I must have made you deaf, dumb AND blind


“Even Stevie Wonder can see that he’s cheating on you”… The Phantom Poet


Verdine White (Bass player for Earth, Wind and Fire) and Brett Jolly before show


Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: Marriage duties)

Dear Brett,





Subject: 50/50 home duties


Why is it that many men think it’s ok to expect the woman in their life to 1. Have a job 2. Raise the kids 3. Clean the house, while they just work that one job. They get the 40-50 hour work week (usually adding golf and games on tv into their week), while us gals get the 168 hour work week. Raising children is a 24/7 job, add 40 hour work week, and cleaning. So where’s the partnership there. The wife will always resent the husband in this dynamic. Yet, it seems more common place now. This may very well contribute to the spike in divorce rates. Guys, carry the burden equally with your partner. Otherwise, it is no partnership……..



I agree that there should ALWAYS be some sort of equality in your marriage (or living arrangements). The only question here is whether the both you share the same definition of “equal”. While you are saying that he only works a 40-50 hour week job he could be saying that those are only hours he puts in for THIS particular job. He “might” say that once he gets home he also has to assume the role of father for the very same kids you have to attend to (It is difficult to imagine him being in the same house and not assuming some sort of “fatherly” role with the kids). He may also say that he is the one who fixes things around the house when they break, or he is the one who mows the lawn and provides the upkeep on the property. For the record, it is difficult to find a relationship that is equally 50/50, because not all obligations will break down that way. Sometimes emergencies come up, such as a plumbing problem, or a flat tire outside. I am not defending your man, because I don’t know the full extent of your circumstances. However, I do know that work roles should be well defined in the house, and if you feel he is not pulling his share then you need to chat with him about it. Also, it sounds as though you think MANY household relationships operate in this same manner (at least that is the impression I am getting from your email). A happy household should be one with well “defined” responsibilities. When the two of you sit down to discuss them, make sure you have a good understanding of what he REALLY brings to the table in your relationship. It would also be a good idea to take in consideration the KIND of job he has to deal with. If he is doing something physically taxing like construction work or something mentally draining like detective work then you shouldn’t just equate that as being “one 40 hour job”. If your man worked the same hours as a tollbooth operator, it should not have the same value if he were working as President of the United States. In other words, don’t place “quantitative” values on “qualitative” measures. When it comes to family values women have a LOT to deal with (and no man should ever second-guess what they bring to the table). Don’t let your circumstances lead you to become one of those divorce statistics. Talk it over and work it out with your man first, then go upstairs and lovingly work on “each other”… You can probably get greatly inspired for the mood by reciting this sensually passionate verse from the Phantom Poet:

When we took our vows, we promised to live life as one


But when it comes to a woman’s workload, it is never done


We raise the kids, work a job and make sure the house is clean


We need more equal work efforts. You know what I mean?


Our jobs increased for us from the moment our kids were born


So now I will gladly present this apron for my husband to adorn


If I can’t finish a chore, then he can help me out by completing it


However, if he cooks something for me, I surely ain’t eating it


I want the workload to be equal, but I am still his wife


I KNOW his talents in the kitchen, so I won’t endanger my life


And when he cleans, he tries his best, but the vacuum cleaner he often breaks


And you should see the big messes in the kitchen that he often makes


And when it comes to raising the kids, he is as irresponsible as he can get


He will tell the kids to drive to the store, but they aren’t out of grade school yet


Yes, as a wife, I do it all, or at least I try to do everything that is asked of me


But now I’m starting to realize that if he works here, it will only be a catastrophe


I appreciate the fact that my husband is willing to work for me


I think I want him to sit down and do something constructive, like watch TV


It may mean more work for me, but when it comes to my home I need to have faith


As long as he is not trying to fix stuff here, I KNOW our home is safe


So when you want more work from your man, you need to realize what might be in store


Because there is a very good chance you just might get what you ask for


You may want more household chores for your husband, and have the old ways abolished


But you may want to think carefully about that, before your home is “demolished”


So when a woman volunteers to do household chores, then a man should always let her


Because I know that anything a man can do, a woman will always do “better”





                            “I am woman, hear me roar…” “prrrrr?” The Phantom Poet


Betty Wright, Vivian Green, and Jaguar Wright in concert with Brett Jolly



Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Topic: Luck and the art of feeling lucky)

“Luck.” What makes someone lucky? What makes you have bad luck?

A couple of years ago I was playing a gig in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and during a break  I went to the roulette wheel just to “watch the action.” I had  no real money to gamble with, so I figured the next best alternative was to check out others. No one was “hitting” and everyone had these long depressed looking expressions on their faces. All of a sudden this short dark gentleman walks up to the table. You could almost “feel” the confidence about him. He was sporting TWO women (one on each arm) and he was dressed as though he was worth a million bucks. I couldn’t believe what happened next. This guy goes up to the wheel and on his very “first” turn puts TONS of chips (money) on the absolute “long shot” to win. People were amazed that he would even put that much money up. After the wheel spun and revolved slowly, the long shot number turned up as the “winner.” This gentleman collected all his earnings, took his two women and “left” the table…. He not only had the luck, but he had the “faith” to go with it. It then dawned on me that there “has” to be energy forces in the air that we can somehow manipulate. People say that we cannot control our own destiny but somehow I can’t totally believe that. If you are walking to the street corner but decide to walk slower than usual and a car crashes into the area you would have been in, then you had control over your destiny. The opposite can work as well. If you wake up “thinking” that you are going to have a “bad day” then the negative forces in the air will usually gravitate to you to ensure your day is “bad.” When someone is on a roll, then they are feeling happy and in most cases secure. I am beginning to think that our lives depend heavily on how we “carry” ourselves and how we think. If we believe in something strong enough, we can generate the forces to actually make it happen. In essence, we can “make” ourselves lucky. Now naturally I can’t say that this will happen one hundred percent of the time, but I can say that I have seen what the powers of positive thought can accomplish. In my own musical life, I often believe that I can play just about “anything.” Last night I had a rehearsal for a church choir who did tunes that I had never heard before (with the exception of one). I listened to them rehearse the tunes and then they asked me if I wanted to try playing them. Confidently (but not with any cockiness) I told them that I could play ALL the tunes. When my turn came up, I played them all… easily. Confidence can go a long way when it comes to the luck you experience in your life. People who are often lucky have an “aura” about them that you can just feel… If you know someone who always seems to be lucky, does he or she always appear to feel down? Of course not. We can make good things happen, but only if we focus our minds on good thoughts…  The mind is a powerful instrument, and maybe it’s time for us to explore our own mind’s full potential. Who knows? Luck just might be on your side today… I hope you believe in having a great day today, and thank you for reaching my Daily Thought.

Wayne Brady and Brett Jolly in concert together



Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (“Marriage” in principle

I recently heard people talk about wanting to get married. There is nothing wrong with that at all (in principle), but the interesting part of this discussion was that these particular individuals were not even IN a relationship to begin with. In other words, their aspirations are specifically to “get married.” While this sounds great in theory, I find that there is a missing element to this statement. You see, when people engage in this kind of talk it leads me to believe that you are more interested in the “concept” of “getting married” than you are of actually marrying the “right” person for you. Hear me out on this for a second. “Marriage” is basically a “title” and a “covenant” under God to live together as one. It is a GREAT union to form under the right circumstances. However, it does you no good if you are missing a certain piece, and that would be the “mate” you love and the one who loves you back. I say this because some people get “so enamored” with the principle of actually “getting” married that they neglect to remember that they need a “partner” first. Maybe I am wrong, but I believe the formula should go like this: First you meet someone and do things together so that you can get to know him or her (Some may refer to this activity as “dating”). Next, you build on that relationship through your interactions with each other (find out your similarities, your compatibilities, your likes and dislikes). Then, after discovering that the both of you are compatible enough in “most” facets of life then you can opt to take that very “last” step towards “matrimony.” To me this seems fairly simple… When you “pre-plan” your wedding without even having a mate then it is obvious where “your” focus is. Just like sex, “marriage” should be the “icing” on the cake. While the icing is “great” it should never be mistaken for the “entire” cake. The foundation you build through a relationship is important when contemplating marriage, because there really is no such thing as “I will learn to love him later on.” Also, if you go into a relationship automatically “thinking” about marriage then you could miss vital signs that you need to pay attention to. Don’t get blinded by your own “anxiety.” Be patient, be aware, and believe that through time you can find the “right” one for you. You should never get married to someone that you “settle” for… Above all, remember that you should want to be with the person who will always be your friend, because that “tight butt” will fade with time, and those “flowing locks” will change as we go through life. If you live long enough, all the physical traits that you started out with will be altered significantly, and then what you will have left will be your “friend.” Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought today, and please have a great one.

If you have a topic that you would like to feature on my Daily Thought page, you can email me directly at


Vocalist Frankie Beverly and Brett Jolly in concertImage

Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (Balancing relationships)

The love of my life has children and aging parents. In addition, he is self-employed, which as you know requires a great deal of discipline, and/or time working in order to succeed. 

So that we can spend time together–I have suggested we share some of the times spent with his family. 

He, however, doesn’t comply. Does that mean he is not planning to make a future with me in it?

It is “possible,” but not entirely “probable.” If you have never met his family then that should be a warning sign. If you have never been over  his house then that should be another warning sign. However, the best way to find out what his plans are is to simply “ask” him. Granted, not all men tell the truth (okay, maybe NONE of them fom time to time) but you can still find out the answers you are seeking from what he says. A LOT depends on his circumstances and the “reasoning” behind why he does  not want you to take part in his family gatherings (assuning, of course, that he actually “DOESN’T want you to take part). I remember talking to a lady years ago who wanted to attend her boyfriend’s family reunion. He did not want her to attend but he finally gave in to her. Well, when she met his other family members she was “highly” embarrassed. The relatives were loud, rowdy, obnoxious and “none’ of his kids liked her. She couldn’t understand how her boyfriend could even “possibly” be related to these people. For her it was so disastrous that she wanted to leave immediately. Needless to say, she “got” what she asked for… I am not trying to say thats your man has the same situation going on, but I will say that the best way to find out his intentions is to get them from the ‘horse’s mouth.” Ask him why he doesn’t want you to spend time with his family, and see what he says. Ask him if he can envision a future with you. Ask him how he feels about you. A woman has a right to know where she stands in a relationship. However, I do not think you should base his future intentions for you “solely” on “family related issues.” There are way too many other factors that need consideration first. You do want to find out the answers though. Communication is always key in any relationship and when you start to make assumptions that is NOT communication. Take the time and effort to find out for yourself where you stand. It is better to “know going in” than to find out “going through.” Good luck to you and I hope you find the answers you seek. Take care and have a truly “Jolly” day.


From the gospel world, Baby Washington, Mabel Johns and Maxine Brown minister musically with Brett Jolly