Merry COVID Holidays!

I hope your Holidays have been better than ours! Das started feeling sick on 12.22.2021 and ran a fever on 12.23 – he got tested for COVID on 12.24 and was confirmed positive on 12.25. Yup, our lovely Christmas gift! Thankfully, his symptoms weren’t too bad – I ended up feeling bad on 12.24 and got tested on 12.26 and the results were negative.

(Many thanks to KW for bringing me the at-home-tests!!)

Das’ symptoms were a headache, body aches, fatigue, fever, congestion and a dry cough. My symptoms were the same, but add a horrible sore throat that made me lose my voice for almost a whole day. Not horrible, but uncomfortable to say the least!

Our plans were to visit family – I had a friend bake a homemade apple pie from scratch along with some banana pudding. This would have been SO well received because she’s AMAZING!! (Trying to encourage her to open her own catering business!) – of course I had a few bottles of Tito’s in tow for the celebrations.

This all will have to wait until next time I suppose. I’m just thankful my symptoms haven’t been as bad as the first time I had it – to tell you the truth this is the first time out of 13 times Das tested positive since quarantine started! I have to wonder if watching the new Spider-Man movie in the theater did us in last weekend.

All I have to say is, mask up and be careful when you hang out! This virus is spreading fast and if you’re at a super-spreader event, then buckle up (whether you’re vaccinated or not!).

I did have some crazy fever dreams that I thought I’d share, so here it goes:

Fever Dream #1:

Torey was working on a recycling pick up and it was well into the evening so it was dark. I guess because of COVID, he wasn’t picking up the usual recyclables and had a bunch of antiques in the bed of the truck. I was there to help and noticed neither of the license plates were on the truck – both of the front and the back were missing!

I mentioned this to Torey and he just shrugged it off and kept loading the truck. I found myself desperately looking for the plates because I didn’t want him to get into trouble. He kept telling me not to worry about it and I got annoyed and explained my worry.

“I don’t need them for where I’m going, ‘Nita…”


The end.

Fever Dream #2:

There was a militia of Trumper parents who were patrolling a neighborhood at night in the attempt of shooting any minority teenagers every night. They weren’t highly organized and I quickly learned about another group of parents who were on a mission to protect the teens.

Yup, I joined the band of self-armed minority parents, which happened to include many white people, too, so that was pretty cool.

Guns were fired, we used camouflage blankets to hide, used hand signals to warn others – a true movie scene!

The end.

Fever Dream #3:

Das was getting ready to go to school one morning and my parents were with us. We were at the dining table and they said that I needed to go to school with him and I asked why.

“Anu, you should know why by now!” my Mom exclaimed.

“I have no clue what you’re talking about, Momma.”

“Well you’ve been missing your first period and we don’t think you’ll graduate – have you checked your grades lately!?”

“Wait, what?” I asked and looked at Das as he shrugged.

“No, you need to go and make sure you talk to your counselor…”

The whole time they were talking to me I was wondering if anything they were saying was real! It felt so real and then I thought, “OMG! I gotta get ready! I’m already late for first period!”

The end.

I woke up in a daze and well – fever dreams are pretty trippy! These were just a few I remember – I had more while I was breaking my fever. Madness!


Phone Call With T-Mitch

I’ve been meaning to post this, but haven’t had the chance to sit down and write. For reference, just know that I had a full day of work with my co-workers in a setting where we were all together in one room for a work retreat. After the retreat we had our office Holiday Party and it was a blast! This happened last Friday (12.10.2021).

Here goes my dream:

I was in the conference room and we were discussing thinking about “out of the box” ideas and a said individual (aka *) suggested we call Torey. I was like, “We can do that!?” and was told we could so I took over the phone, dialed his number and he answered!

Torey: “Hello?”

* : “Hi Torey! I’m here with Anita and the rest of our team and we’re discussing on ways to think outside of the box. Do you have any suggestions!?”

Me: WTF!? We actually have TOREY on the phone!? I was incredibly excited/confused/but overwhelmed with JOY!

Torey: “Yeah sure – just think about being different from the industry standards and UP-lifting.”

* : “Thank you, Torey! I think Anita may want to talk to you alone so we’re going to transfer your call to another room so you both can talk.”


I get to the other room, shut the door and:

Me: “Torey, how ARE you!?”

Torey: “I’m good – chillin’

I started to pay attention to the background noises and it sounded like he was in an episode of The Jetsons – like “space noises!”

Me: “Where are you!?”

Torey: “I’m not sure actually – not sure what to call this place, but I’m good! Been chillin'”

Me: “So can I keep calling you here? I love being able to talk to you after so long!”

Torey: “I don’t think that’s a good idea, ‘Nita.”

Me: “Why the fuck not!??”

Torey: “It’s not good for you – I mean I love talking to you, but you gotta let me go. You really need to move on.”

I was truly heart broken, but understood what he was trying to say. And then I woke up in tears.

That is all.


* Co-Worker

Ballroom Dancing!?

Last night was yet another restless one… plenty of tossing and turning, waking up at least once every other hour… my mind just wouldn’t SHUT UP! I woke up so many times expecting to see a form of Torey – this may sound ridiculous, but it’s a thing. I can just feel him sometimes – call it madness or maybe it’s a true paranormal sense. I don’t really know nor am I here to argue either side of this sentiment.

All I know is when I did fall asleep in the early hours of the morning, I dreamt a funny one. Well, funny to ME anyway! Here it goes:

I was at the old Blue Mesa joint over there by Northpark Mall that got shut down a few years ago. I was upstairs – they had more TVs than I had remembered. Torey and I used to hang out there during our early to mid twenties from time to time. I’m not sure why it popped up in my dream, but it did.

I got a text from him saying he’s on his way to come see me. I was pleasantly surprised and asked how long it would be.

“Babs, I’m kinda on this bus, but I’ll be there soon.”

I showed everyone around me his response and realized in my excitement I didn’t really know any of the people around me! LOL! I didn’t care. I couldn’t wait to see him.

“‘Nita, guess what? Before I get there I want you to know that I’ve been taking ballroom dance lessons!”

“WTF!?” I responded in disbelief. We had talked about doing that together at some point after catching a few episodes of Dancing With the Stars a long ass time ago. (I think when Emmitt Smith was on the show!)

“Color me impressed,” I added, wondering what else he’s been into since he’s been gone.

“Yeah, we’re supposed to be performing on this show that’s about to be televised. Are you near a TV?”

I immediately looked around and that’s when I noticed all of the extra TVs around the restaurant.

“Yes! I’ll be able to see you, Babe!!”

“Good! I’ll see you soon, too!”

REALITY hit in the worst way. My phone went off, waking me up.

Dream incomplete.

Frustration overwhelmed me as I cringed.

And then … a smile appeared on my face: fucking ballroom dancing!?

LMAO! Love it!!!

This song is a classic one. This moment was epic. I should have recorded the whole thing! He asked my Cousins to set up a Henna/Mehndi day for me and they did (Thank you, ‘Dhisha & Snay!)


The Wire | Michael K. Williams | RIP

Torey and I used to have our “own” shows and “us” shows. He had started watching The Wire back in maybe 2008 or 2009 (maybe even earlier, I can’t put my finger on it) – and it was one of those shows where I drifted in and out of (unlike The Sopranos).

I definitely remember the character of Omar played by Michael K. Williams. What an amaaaaaaaaaazing performance! Not to mention our love for the show, Boardwalk Empire! And most recently which Torey would have LOVED, Lovecraft Country. Cherry on top for me was his part in Assassin’s Creed (a guilty pleasure to say the least!).

Yes, I found myself shedding tears for him several times today. I’m not sure what exactly what his demise was, but it was too soon, too sudden – and that pain is just not tolerable.

I just have to share a memory in reference to The Wire:

I remember watching the first few episodes with T-Mitch and understood Omar's character - and then came Stringer Bell played by Idris Elba. Say no more, right?!

One night we were talking about one of the episodes and I referred to Elba's character as "Slider". (Oops).
Torey: "Wait a minute ... his name is 'Stringer'... why you callin' him 'Slider'. Was this a Freudian slip!????"

Me: "Ummmm ... I'm sure he slides in pretty smoothly, yo. Just sayin'!"

It was all laughter and giggles and we shared that joke for years to come! LOL! 
Cast from Boardwalk Empire: Erik LaRay Harvey (L), Jeffrey Wright (C) and Michael K. Williams (R)

Seriously though … another young soul died tooooooo soon. RIP, Michael K. Williams – condolences to your family and friends, you Talented Man.



Just wanted to share the moment with you … so many loved ones who have passed away are in this footage as well. This was a happy day for us all and always makes me smile!

My Prem Chinanna (uncle) played an electric guitar of an Indian medley as I walked down the isle … it’s one of my favorite moments!! Thank you, Chinanna!

Many thanks to everyone who helped make our wedding day a special one!

Much love and enjoy!

Torey Mitchell | Belligerent Gus Blog
Click the image to listen to what our dance song was …


Another Letter from a Donor Recipient

It’s incredible to know Torey is still making a positive impact on total strangers. This came in the mail a few days ago and again, it moved me to tears.

Dear Donor Family,

I am writing to express my sympathy in the death of your loved one, and to thank you for the gift of tissue that they donated.

I needed it because I have arthritis of the spine, and developed Cauda equina syndrome.

I’m a 60 year old mother of two daughters, and a grandmother of two, with another one on the way. I also drive transport for rescued animals to help them start a new life.

My brother passed 10 years ago, and he also was an organ/tissue/bone donor. I plan on paying your gift forward by doing the same.

Much love,


I found myself googling what Cauda Equina Syndrome is and learned that it is a rare and severe type of spinal stenosis where all of the nerves in the lower back suddenly become severely compressed. I can’t imagine how painful this must be! It’s comforting to know Torey was able to help another person.

Please support T-Mitch’s 45th Birthday Fundraiser if you can – there are two days left!


Happy 45th Birthday, T-Mitch!!!

45 years young … and his absence is still so LOUD in our lives and I doubt this will ever change. Das and I miss him SO much!!! I know many of you do, too!

I think he’d be pretty stoked in how we’re kicking off his birthday celebrations this year! Many of you know he’s donated several of his birthdays to a worthy cause – here’s a few I can recall:

I Have a Dream Foundation

Reece for the Win

There are a few more, but no sites to refer them to… my goal is to add to this list!

Of course I was going to use Facebook to start this off, but alas I got hacked (perfect timing, right!?)! Not sure if you can blame the Russians this time because apparently it’s someone in Malaysia, but anything is possible! (Sorry my Russian friends!)

I wanted to have T-shirts made with a cool design of his silhouette to remember him by. A friend I used to work with, Siobhan Davis, helped me bring this silhouette into fruition and it was inspired by an image taken of him at a New Year’s Eve party a few years ago. This party was epic and we were able to share it with my cousins!

I can’t tell you how happy I am with this design (especially with how the original image is so grainy and blurry, but it just captured his essence at the moment!) and as you know – Torey was all about being fresh and loved new approaches to design. I feel in my heart and soul he approves of this image and if you truly knew him, you know I’m speaking the truth!

I have chosen to use Bonfire as an avenue to create T-Shirts and other apparel to showcase this design. They allow proceeds to be donated to a non-profit of my liking and I have chosen T-Mitch’s Sista From Anotha Mista’s organization as the first of many to come. Tran Dang is her name and helping is her game! The organization is The Rhizome Center for Migrants. They are devoted to helping displaced individuals for not only the sake of justice but also for human rights.

I know in my heart this is what he’d want right now. He had plans to go to Mexico to not just hang out with Tran, but to help her, too, in 2020 – that was one of his true intentions. The two of them under the same umbrella were not only intellectually lethal, but ummm… hangover lethal! LOL! It’s truly a blessing to have this bond with Tran (she happens to be Das’ Godmother, too!)!

You ready to celebrate T-Mitch!?? Well here you go, folks (several other products are available, too!). The products are available for the next 20 days to order. Click the image / link below:

Thank you ALL for your love and support!

T-Mitch, you are truly missed. Happy Birthday, my Forever Love. You upheld fatherhood at its highest mark. You’re in our hearts until the end of time, homie…