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Going to the Inauguration? Helpful Tips

If you are going to be among the throngs of folks coming to D.C. to be a part of history yet again, I’m going to help you out.

It’s an exciting time. You won’t forget it. You’ll be telling your grandkids, you’ll be posting pics all over social media, but it can be stressful if you aren’t prepared.

1. Weather-– So four years ago, me and my best friend froze. I mean it was no joke. If you are traveling from other places and you want hand warmers, please buy them where you live and I’ll give you the money when I see you (lol). Basically, this week folks have gone to every store in this region and bought them all up so they can sell them to you suckers for $30 a pop when you get to the inauguration. And you will be desperate if it’s as cold as it was last time and you’ll buy it. There were so many angry fathers who had to calm down their cold wives and kids, and they paid. Oh, they paid.

1A. Clothes. Please wear layers. It’s easier to take stuff off because you are hot, then to freeze and be uncomfortable and mooody. You’ll be surrounded by hundreds of thousands of people you want to be as comfortable as possible. Wear a hat. Wear long socks. Wear comfortable shoes you can walk and stand in. Bring blankets. You will be sitting on the ground trying to psyche yourself up until the big event happens.

2. Transportation. First of all. You have to leave early. You have to leave beyond butt crack early if you want to get a decent spot on the National Mall. Me and my bestie left my house, which is a good 20 mins away from dc at 3 a.m. to catch the metro. Don’t drive. You won’t find a spot. Don’t do it. If you already rented a hotel downtown, you are in good shape. Don’t drive. I decided to actually park in the garage at my job (and those fools were actually trying to charge people but I showed them my electric pass that opens the gate and was like don’t even try it with me) and we walked to the nearby metro station.

Metro is going to be bonkers all day. Prepare to wait to get in and out of turnstiles, in and on the trains and even in and out of the station. My suggestion to you is to actually go to stations that are a bit out-of-the-way and just ride in. The chances of you actually getting a seat will be higher. Same situation with leaving. wmata.com here’s a link. Get familiar.

Trying to leave from L’Enfant plaza, Waterfront, or Smithsonian will be a joke. You will have to stand in a line to even enter the station. This is to even enter the station! Me and my bestie are pretty healthy, so we were gangsta about it and basically walked probably for a good two or three miles, all the way to the Navy Yard station, but we still ended up getting on a train before most of those folks waiting at the stations closer to the National Mall.

Oh, don’t even think of waiting to buy a Metro card the day of. Don’t even. If you are in DC now, you better get your Smarttrip right, right now and buy some for your friends and loved ones who may not have arrived yet. It’s going to be a monster.  You’ll be glad you thought ahead. I’m telling you. I can tell you now folks will be folks up at the suburban Metro stations filling their cards and buying cards tomorrow. Which is what happened last time. Folks are just there to avoid the pain on Monday. The last thing you want to be doing on Monday morning is standing in a line trying to add money to your card. Also, have enough for your trip back. Once again, it’s going to be madness trying to get back on the trains. You do not want to spend precious time waiting to put enough money on your card to get you the hell out.

You will see a million charter buses. Please pay attention to every detail of your bus if you want to see it again and end up in the right place.

3. Health. Please hydrate. Hydrate slowly. But if you hydrate, you are going to have to pee. All of the major Smithsonian museums will be open so people can pee, sit down to rest their aching feet and keep warm. Take advantage of it. There will be a lot of people in these places, but you need to be patient. Bring snacks so you won’t be grumpy. There’s a lot of waiting going on before the ceremony starts. Some folks brought board games and books. It’s not a bad idea, just don’t get carried away, you don’t want to bog yourself down with a lot of extra crap.

4. Security– Security is everywhere. They aren’t playing. Keep things simple and pack light. Ladies, bring a simple bag that can hold water, some fruit, nuts and just the essentials. You don’t want to be weighed down. You will be tired enough.

5. Traffic— Traffic is going to suck take the metro. The metro is going to suck, so walk as far as you possibly can.

6. Be patient. Be in a good mood. What struck me the most about the first inauguration was how folks were so kind to one another, paying close attention to helping the handicapped and the elderly. Don’t complain. Everyone else is experiencing what you are too. So if you are cold, or hungry or have to pee, so does everyone else, and you droning on and on will make people even more annoyed. Some will even tell you so.  So please, in the words of Kendrick Lamar, “Bitch don’t kill my vibe.” Don’t bring a stank attitude and if you can’t stand this president, don’t show up popping off on some nonsense. Speaking of when people didn’t like Bush the second, I remember going to a dinner with a boyfriend inauguration night and seeing the president’s limo pass and people throwing tomatoes at it. Remembering that makes me feel a bit worried about how angry folks may react to Obama this time around.

7. Just because an email you got called their party an inaugural ball or gala, don’t expect the Obamas to run through it. There are a gazillion parties, and even about 13 official ones that the President will attend and if you just bought a ticket today, he won’t be at that one. I’m pretty sure.

8. Get your hustle on. There will be so many people selling cool stuff, and stuff that is so ghetto, you know they made it with photoshop and paper mache and plastic lanyards– but hey I don’t hate. Gotta hustle.  Have cash on you so you can support the great entrepreneurs and get yourself a piece of history to bring home.

9. Keep it sober. I recommend highly that even though it’s cold, leave the firewater at home. Once again security is not playing with people, and I really don’t recall seeing any drunk folks at 9 a.m. You have to be dedicated to drinking to do that, considering you have to get up at 3 a.m. to even make your way out there. Oh yeah. If you aren’t at least at Union Station by 6 a.m., just give up, turn around and watch it on t.v. You already lost one. You won’t get anywhere close to the action if you think you can show up even at 6:30 or 7 or 8. a.m. because you’ve lost before you could even get started.

10. If you want to go to a D.C. brunch on Sunday, go to breakfast. Like at 7 or 8 a.m. because Sunday brunch at the popular spots are hell on regular weekends. You won’t see no parts of a mimosa or the inside of the place if you and your party show up this weekend after 10 a.m. You’ll be short. Just saying. D.C. people brunch and they brunch hard.

For all things official, please see the Senate’s website. http://www.inaugural.senate.gov/

Post Game Report: Tommy, You Ain’t Got No Job

Hey everyone.

Welp, I’ll give an update. So far in the last four days, I’ve managed to go on two dates and visit my fam and friends in New York and I’m exhausted.

Seriously, I’m strongly considering hoisting up my eyelids with toothpicks, if this coffee I picked up on the way into the office today won’t do the trick.

Your girl is tired.

But, I will say even though I had a lot of venom for the online dating site after the first debacle, I’ve met three nice guys.

(Why do I have the tune of three blind mice in my head?)

The crazy thing about these dates is the fact that they have really been impromptu, out of the blue, hey let’s go out, ok, let’s go. So I never had much time to prepare myself and get crazy, super glammed up, which I’m kind of happy about.

I mean, if you are going to dig me, you’re going to dig me right?

So date one was with what my mom affectionately calls an “airman.” That’s right people, God Bless America and the troops! I had snagged me a good ol chap from the U.S. Air Force.

I thought he was a nice guy. I thought he was pretty good-looking with a nice smile, when he did smile or laugh (I made fun of his serious face).

Did I feel major sparks? Eh, not so much. I can’t call it.

He may be the kind of dude where we’d have to go out a few more times before he’d really loosen up. I haven’t heard from him since the date, and I was a bit disappointed that he didn’t ask me to text him to let him know I arrived home safely. He did give me a nice hug. But throughout the evening, I really couldn’t tell if he was interested.

But date number two, oh.

That was last night and this man had no problem expressing that he thought I was gorgeous, and interesting and different I was and how he wanted to know what my ring size was.

Now, he was good-looking too. The convo was absolutely excellent and I never had that good a time in Chipotle to save my life. We were talking so much, that I didn’t finish my burrito bowl (a first) and it got cold.

We even continued the night shooting a little pool and getting more acquainted.

Here’s the rub.

There was a popular running joke/storyline for a character on the comedy t.v. show “Martin.” One of Martin’s best friends, Tommy, was well-dressed, well-spoken, but no one ever knew what he did for a living and he never disclosed what he did.

Well, this guy seemed to have done or is doing it all. In the span of our convo, he’s had a number of jobs, almost made the 2004 Summer Olympics, and aspires to get his pilot’s licence (but doesn’t want to be a professional pilot), wants to own his own plane by 40, is a musician, and the final gut punch was when he said he lived with his sister. I know a lot of people can’t afford to live by themselves. It’s a huge luxury.

Case in point: I was watching t.v. with my parents this weekend and a news story mentioned how more and more home builders are building homes for three generations and folks are snapping them up. My father asked me if that is something I would ever want to do with my future family and he and my mother.

I let out a huge laugh. And said, well you did it with your folks until you could buy a home, and I’m sure my kids would love having you two just a few steps away and it would save me money on childcare.

My father being so astute, laughed and said, “you didn’t answer the question.”

Anyway, it shouldn’t have surprised me that he didn’t have his own spot because he gave a long answer about what he did. So it seems, being a gifted musician, he does piano lessons, but that’s about it. And when he said he goes to the gym at 11 p.m. every night, it clinched it even more. “Tommy, you ain’t got no job.”

My heart sank as I walked to my car. There was something genuine and sexy about him. He seemed to be a dreamer. He told me that he liked to fix cars, and take things apart and challenge himself to fix it. He told me he could cook.

So for someone with all of these skills and talents, I guess he just can’t seem to do the 9-5 thing, and it’s not for everyone, I guess, but sheesh, I don’t know, yall. He’s highly interested.

Of course.

So I think the lack of for real solidified employment is what is preventing this seemingly nice, interesting man from having a serious relationship. But, it’s a big, friggin, deal.

Bachelor number three is tricky.

He is a New York City police officer. He is also good-looking. What I like about him is, he seems sensible and he makes his contact with me count. I missed having a phone convo with him Friday, because I was on my way to my date with the airman. So it will be interesting to hear his voice. He already has a tough job in one of Brooklyn’s most difficult neighborhoods, so I’m sure when he wants to chill, he wants to chill and have no drama in his personal life.

I said before that I hate NY men. However, I like texting him.

I’ve always said dating a police officer would give me chronic chest pains because I wouldn’t be able to sleep until I know he made it home safe every night.

I am quite interested in hanging out with him, when I go home for the holidays though. So yes, I am on my Carrie Bradshaw right now and of course, Kyle Barker hits me up asking how I’m doing…

But all-in-all this is actually turning out to be fun and it’s getting me out of the house.

I still refuse to take any of this seriously, but I do think it’s helping to open me up to new situations. So that’s a bonus.

Stay tuned. I’m sure it’s about to get interesting.

Motivation Is the By Product of Healthy Jealousy

Many moons ago, before any of you even heard of my blog or started reading it, I did an early post about how high-achieving friends can either make you feel absolutely crappy about yourself, and you can secretly hate them and let that hate and jealousy fester inside you, or you can sail on their tailwinds, watch and learn how they navigate life and get you some of that too.

Now, I don’t mean be a leech. But I do mean really take a look at how they approach life, the things they want and their motivation behind the things that they want. What do they care about? Are they happy? How do they maintain the happy? How do other people respond to them?

The people I know who are doing well at life, are a) just living it.

They are, in my mind fearless. But I’m sure they have their own insecurities and struggles, but they make things happen. They take a deep breath, swallow hard, and just go.

b) they are good people and everyone can feel it.

No one is a stranger. I get baffled at how there are some friends of mine, where I could be in any city with them anywhere and either they know people or the new people they meet fall in love with them, or they know some mutual friend like six degrees of Kevin Bacon.

c) they have a moral compass that guides them and they stick to it.

There are certain things that they just won’t do. Or if something ain’t workin, they let it the hell go and figure out a new plan, but they won’t sell their soul. And if they sold their soul, they are going to admit it. Then when they do, I tell them it’s ok, it was only a lease, you’ll get it back.

d) they are actually playing it by ear. I guess that’s a lot like the first item on my list.

e) they refuse to limit themselves.

The friends who decide they want to leave the country for a while and travel internationally, the friends who go back to school, go back again, start a business, fail start another, decide to join the circus or fix babies in foreign countries with cleft lip. They just say screw it, I’ma follow my heart.

f) they have a past and usually it’s juicy or very weird and totally interesting.

g) they tend to be the least judgemental out of everyone else you know. Hmmm. That makes me think. The most judgemental people I know tend to be the ones who haven’t gone anywhere, haven’t tried anything, don’t have different kinds of friends. I guess that makes sense.

So, in my long-winded intro, the inspiration from this post comes from what I call a tennis match between two friends I know, who I introduced at a concert last night. Both are serious world travelers and are actually a lot a like in terms of just having magnetic personalities. Naturally, they hit it off.

Others would think it was a pissing match of who’s seen what all over France, but oddly, a gal who’s only been to Canada and Mexico, did not see it that way.

I saw people bonding over a shared experience, and fueling my appetite to go, so I can have an awesome time and swap a story or two also. I didn’t feel left out, I didn’t feel like they were elitist. Their excitement wasn’t bragging to me because my spirit didn’t allow it. They were my friends, and it makes me happy that my friends can even do things like that. It was a nudge, saying, “Girl, you better get you some too. We did it, so can you, or better yet, what are you waiting for, let’s go!”

One of the friends, was actually cool with the artist and afterwards, we got to chill and chat!!! I was proud of myself for keeping my cool, even though to even be in the presence of super-talented, super cool people, it makes you wonder if everything you said is corny once it comes out of your mouth. It did make me feel better when he laughed at my jokes while sucking the marrow out of a chicken wing (just like a normal person). I even got a hug at the end of the night. I also love when celebrities introduce themselves and use their first name, like dude, I just paid $40 to see you. I know who you are, but it was still cool, and nice, and polite nonetheless. I guess I’d be pissed if he shook my hand and said, “You paid $40 to see me, you know my name already.”

Even in that moment, I thought I was totally blessed. I know great people who share their gifts and talents and even their celebrity friends. Yes, I walked back to a now 12-year-old car with tape holding up a window that is off track (next on my list to fix), but damn it. It was all good.

You all know I’d been feeling crappy about my lot in life recently.

And hearing my good friends talk about their travels in Paris, and their jobs, and their disillusionment with D.C. and how they do want to make a difference in the lives of others, then flip it back to hip hop and street slang, then talk about how it was such a shame we missed the Vice Presidential debates, I was back in my element. I felt life rushing back into my spirit.

You need at least one super awesome talented friend who leads an amazing life.

And you probably have one.

There’s a fellow blogger who is a friend in my head. She writes a blog called, “The Usual Bliss.”

I kind of lust for her life. It seems the complete opposite of mine and that’s what makes my attraction to her blog so fascinating to me. It’s filled with travel, love, her man and her faithful wonderdog. She’s always either whipping up awesome food, and traipsing through nature’s beauty mostly in Utah and other parts of America, that I really never thought I’d want to visit. (I’m no nature girl. At all. Think the little black girl from Troop Beverly Hills.)

But she’s really got this black chick from Long Island itching to get a ticket to Park City. I’m so serious. I told one of my adventurous homegirls that we got to go.

She usually takes a bunch of snapshots from her life and she just shares them. She’ll write about some of her adventures or recipes, and her pending nuptials (so awesome happy for her). Whether it’s a glass of wine sitting on a table, or her dog chasing something across a calm stream, or a photo of her hanging with her very best people, her words and photos really make you feel like you’re spending time with a friend. She’s made me think of  going to places like West Virgina to see the leaves change one weekend. I totally dig and get her point. You’ve got to stop and find the bliss in the little things.

I don’t even know her personally, but I can bet she lives by the list of things I mentioned the friends I’m jealous of in a healthy way live by.

I just thank God, I didn’t have a spirit of, “wow, my life sucks compared to yours, “but instead, “wow, I need to figure out a way to travel internationally, like now,” or, “maybe instead of killing myself to find a job in this area, maybe I should widen my net.” I’ve moved before, and it’s opened me up to so much.

Instead of comparing and sulking and assuming their lives are better, I used that moment to be opened up to more possibilities.

That’s a huge gift my über awesome, successful, smart, connected, caring friends gave and continue to me. I’ll always love them for that.

I smiled all the way home, listening to the C.D. of the wing-sucking, light-hearted, nerd at heart (we discussed number 2 pencils, mechanical pencils and how they suck and made up periodic elements and whether or not he makes fun of people in the audience in his head while performing) musician I’d just met, who thought my “black nerds unite” shirt was awesome.

Then I thought, “Shit. I should have worn a shirt I DESIGNED!”

P.S. Aside from the Sister Act 2 Fundraiser featuring Whoopi singing “Get Up Off That Thang.” “Cookie Time” from Troop Beverly Hills (featuring the sassy little girl I mentioned earlier) is one of the best fundraising scenes in a motion picture film.

It’s Friday. I’m feeling generous! I’ma give yall a bonus. “Get Up Offa That Thang/Dancin In the Street.”

Fellas, I’ll Be at the Cultural Stuff

Welp, I figured I should tell you, my friends that I basically ended the situation with the older gentleman.

I know.

We all had high hopes. But it just didn’t feel right. He did something last week that led to a super lapse in judgement, involving a run-in with tow guys and the police, and a lackluster make out session, and the sense that he was too impressed by me, was a little too much.

He said he understood, but he still wanted to check on me from time to time and that he’d miss me.

I told him I don’t know what he was looking for down the line, but I had a feeling no matter how long we dragged this out, I wouldn’t be as all in as him.

It sucks. It sucks a lot because he was really, really sweet and kind. But he deserves more from someone who will be just as invested him. My heart wasn’t all in.

So here’s the deal.

I do think I’m ready to date and meet some great guys and I have a friend who is quite enthusiastic about me going out on the scene.

I’m not so excited about hitting the bars and parties. Actually, I dread it. It’s so not fun anymore. Don’t like it.

So, thanks to the good folks at Goldstar, where I get discounted tickets to all sorts of awesome stuff, I’ve figured out there’s a lot of interesting things going on that still involve a few cocktails, but involve cultural things, new music, art and things I dig, where there may be a greater likelihood of me even meeting someone who is interested in the same thing. It won’t be a meat market.

Tomorrow night, I’m going to check out an African hip hop artist at the National Geographic in D.C. I think it will be a lot of fun and inexpensive and I’ll be exposed to something new. Whether I meet someone or not, I still feel like I’ll get my money’s worth and I’ll be comfortable.

Next week, one of my awesome guy friends will join me to see the awesome jazz artist Robert Glasper, who has done some fabulous collaborations with R&B and hip hop artists. The music is unbelievable.

I won’t lie, I do feel somewhat self-conscious. Men aren’t chasing me down like they used to. Somewhere down the line, I gained 20 pounds and I really didn’t notice. I don’t think I look bad, but there is a difference. I’ve changed my hair, so it’s no longer long and straight, but short and curly. But I like my hair this way. I think I look good, but I guess in an unconventional way. So I’m not thrilled about going to some of D.C.’s hot spots trying to wear 5 inch heels and squeeze myself in to a freakum dress while surrounded by long weaves and rail thin music video girls.

I don’t want to push anything up or suck anything in. I want to be able to go out and look cute and comfortable. I just don’t have the desire to go all out to get men’s attention. You either see my light or you don’t. Am I being lazy? Will I not meet anyone awesome because I’m not trying hard enough, or am I old and jaded?

I drink Makers. Not apple martini’s. I like to argue about politics and social problems, I can’t dumb myself down. I like to talk about the books I’ve read, or the concerts or museum exhibits I want to see. I have opinions. Not to say that most of the men in D.C. are shallow, they dig all of that. But the ones that are 28-46, they are greedy, they know the demographics of the city and they know they are at an advantage when it comes to women and the numbers.

So, is my plan a great compromise? Go to more of the cultural events I already love to go to and maybe I can meet someone there?

Why I Don’t Like White Parties/Liberation Tour Recap

Welp, Labor Day is around the corner.

It signals the close of summer.

Old school fashion nazis say that one should not wear white after Labor Day, so I guess that’s why people love to have white parties that weekend.

I’m going to one where they say wearing all white is optional, so I may make some kind of spin on it.

I think white looks great before you leave the house and maybe as soon as you get someplace, but once you get to the summer party and start dancing, everyone looks even more disheveled as the night goes on.

The white linens stick to folks, you’re wrinkled, it’s easy to spill something on it, you’re always checking to see if you’ve spilled something on it. At the end of the night, everyone looks greasy.

Don’t even get me started on a white party I went to years ago, where I looked awesome. Even had a funky white hat that I wore.

Well, I ended up having a really great night, and NOTHING is grosser than doing the walk of shame in an all white outfit you partied and sweated out the previous night. I took two showers, back-to-back.

I already know I don’t want to wear a white dress. I hate white shoes, so that’s not going down.

I’ve already taken to pinterest for outfit ideas. I am in love with this. http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-0ZxSHkXY59Q/UABdpaMhbLI/AAAAAAAAvFQ/FqZ1u3-1W8A/s1600/4.+unknown+tumblr.jpg

I feel like ever since Diddy’s summer Hamptons party became on the radar of regular folks, party promoters and white linen enthusiasts have tried to recreate the original.

Also, I hate wearing all white to summer events, because it makes me think of all of those older couples who like to dress alike, often in white and usually the woman overdoes it and ends up looking crazy and uncomfortable with the heels and the accessories. I saw this over and over at the Mary J. Blige concert in Philly this weekend. BTW, it was awesomeness. She had folks going nuts. Awesome energy, I loved every minute.

I know why people love Mary so much. She gives everything. She is a massive superstar, but she gives everything when she performs and she just speaks to women. She speaks to us when we are down, she speaks to us when we are doing, “Just Fine.” There is something so honest about her, and when you see where she came from, her ups and downs and her battles, and you see how glamorous she is and what a major philanthropist and business woman she has become, NOW THAT’S EMPOWERMENT. She does not deviate from the formula. She sings to the heart, soul and pain of women, and she just does it right.

Nobody is doing it like her. D’Angelo never lost a beat, he is not is old cut up self from the untitled video, but he has such a sexy smile and his voice is gold. No one makes music like his. It was sexy, it was spiritual, the chanting, his pitch perfect screams (very Prince), it was part musical orgy/revival.

I also loved Melanie Fiona. Like my companion turned to me and said, wow, I didn’t realize how many hits she has. And he was right. Melanie has been slowly building. She’s a great performer and her voice was awesome too. Can’t wait to see her grow.

If anyone has any white party ideas, or do’s and don’ts, I really need some inspiration that will make me look fresh the whole night through.

This is really old, and not from the concert this weekend. But sample the greatness. Mary singing “No More Drama” is a revelation. I almost fought back tears. It’s ironic she’s wearing white! LOL. I was looking for the best quality in sound and such. Lucky day!

Older Men and the No Game, Long Game, Game

Time flies when you’re having fun.

For a little more than two months, I’ve been basically hanging with my older gent at least twice a week.

We’ve been going to restaurants, museums, taking in shows, having drinks, and I’ve cooked for him twice. We’ve even started the television series, “Breaking Bad” together. Yes. We are only on season one. We are waaay behind. No spoilers please.

He just disclosed to me last night that his birthday was coming up. Actually I brought it up because I wanted to know what his sign was. And when he said Virgo, I realized, that’s quickly approaching.

So of course I wanted to do something for him. It was instinctive. I’m excited because it gives me an opportunity to do something really nice for him. All of the wining and dining without a flinch, has made me feel like its high time to return the favor and I want to because he deserves it, in my opinion.

I’ve had a drama-free two months, no pressure for sex or a relationship and he basically enjoys my company, compliments me, listens to me and thinks I’m awesome.

So in honor of his, eek now 48th birthday which still makes me feel like the age gap has grown even wider and gulf-like, I’ve narrowed down the gifts and celebration ideas.

  • He’s a steak fan so the über fabulous Ruth Chris. It’s expensive, but if you add up all of the money he’s been shelling out, one Ruth Chris dinner on me really is a drop in the bucket.
  • He’s a golf fanatic, and he often plays at the club near my house. I was able to find out that there is such a thing as a golf gift certificate, so I was thinking two rounds of golf at the club on me.
  • And lastly, because he really likes go karts and thought of opening one, I would take him to this really awesome go-kart spot in Northern Virginia where you even wear a uniform, gloves and a helmet at a fabulous indoor track.

I was out with him last night, and he’s growing more physically attractive to me. His eyes, his smile, the beard he grew just for me because I wanted to know what it looked like. He doesn’t look like he’s “damn near 50.” Early 40’s totally.

I’ll actually be hosting a house guest the weekend of his birthday, so whatever we do will have to come a little later.

So, I think I like him. And no, we still haven’t kissed yet. Now that we haven’t done it, I feel like there has to be a right, special time for some reason.

I’m also nervous about it because things will certainly change.

Now that part, I’m not quite sure I’m ready for.

At this point, either of us would be free to walk away and it wouldn’t hurt that badly, but introduce the other stuff and full-blown feelings are involved and expectations.

But I guess if I’m willing to go all out for his birthday to show my appreciation for how awesome I think he is, something is already happening.

He said that he’s mentioned me to his friends and that he believes we are certainly more than friends.

He’s also mentioned to me that even though he hasn’t put any “Mack daddy” moves on me and he’s going very slow, that I should make no mistake,  he’s  interested.

And my personal favorite, was when he nonchalantly declared that men under 35 still have no clue how to truly satisfy a woman.


I quickly followed up saying, um, is this some kind of self-endorsement? He said no, but he did say it was the truth and that men of a certain age appreciate women more and aren’t as enthusiastic about finding that elusive “something better.” They start appreciating what they have more and in turn will, do a far better job.

Well oh my.

For the man who says he has no game, once I started blushing and squirming in my seat, I could have sworn I heard “checkmate.”

So, while he’s patient, he’s made it clear that he’s gladly investing his time and energy in me.

I should be flattered. And I am.

This is all just very different for me.

Older men may claim to have the no game, game, but I’m starting to realize for a man willing to play one game of golf for five hours, wooing a quality woman for two months, without even a kiss is nothing. A man willing to play the long game and play it cool, has the ultimate game.

I respect his gangsta.

It’s Not Easy Being Green, On the Golf Course, That Is

This is the year and the summer of trying new things and no fear.

Among the fearless things I’ve been dabbling in is dating a much older man.

It’s been going well. I have nothing but positive things to say about him and I’m enjoying spending time with him more and more. I was damn near ready to run into his arms after having the most ridiculous conversation at a club Friday night. This man actually said, “Oh you’re a journalist? You check facts? I got a fact for you to check. It’s nine inches long with a vein.”

Yes, that fool actually said that to me. The game is ugly and horrible right now. I may not be so nuts to go 17 years older.

Back to the real men.

The other night after having a small meal and checking out a local casino, where we pooled our resources and decided to get out while we could with a modest haul of $58, I asked him to teach me to play golf.

He is a golf enthusiast and lights up when he talks about it. I’ve always thought golf to be a snooty, boring game, involving snooty, boring people. I only have experience with putt-putt golf, which I happen to be quite good at.

But take away the windmills, replicas of the Washington Monument, and put me on a real golf course, hmm. I think I’d suck.

My friend has decided to show me a few things first at a local driving range, which is where we’ll be going this evening.

*Sidebar. Being in three consecutive long-distance relationships over the last decade, I forgot what a boost a mid-week date can give a gal.

So anyway, I’m excited to spend time with such a great person, who isn’t trying to get in my pants immediately and excited to try golf. After dealing with the crazy club guys, and watching amateur strippers do their best routines for random men all night and not get paid, SIGN ME UP FOR SNOOTY! I want to sip mint juleps in the clubhouse. Hell yes. LOL.  There’s literally a course and country club like around the corner from my house and he plays there sometimes.

Even though we are going to practice at the driving range first (also conveniently located near my house), he said he figures I’ll be a quick study and we’ll be on the green in no time.

Being me, and having obsessions of the moment, I already have a Michelle Wie-worthy ensemble for when I hit the links for real, for real. I just need a cute visor, and I want gloves. LOL.

Not only do I want to look cute, but I’m competitive. I don’t want to suck.

I’ll keep you folks posted on the progress.

This situation totally reminds me of an episode from season one of VH1’s Single Ladies.  In an attempt to be on a man cleanse, Val is trying to learn how to play golf, well after she buys a whole lot of cute clothes and proper equipment. Val meets Jerry, a handsome, charming and rich older man.

*I tried to embed the video, but I think VH1 wants people to watch directly from their site, because it refuses to work. So please enjoy the clip via the link. Sorry!!!

More Bees With Honey: Getting Your Guy to Go to the Theatre

Apple’s Eyes Studio/freedigitalphotos.net

I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned before that I love the theatre. I love dramas, musicals, comedies, improv, it just doesn’t matter. Seeing talented people perform live is just the absolute best.

So I invited my new, much older suitor (17 year gap) to join me to see a Broadway musical at one of my favorite venues ever, The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. It is a beautiful, beautiful place to enjoy the best performances in the nation. It’s a treasure. On top of that it’s just visually stunning with its grand hall of nations and the terrace with the awesome panoramic view of DC.

You feel important when you are there.

That’s why I dress up every time I go.

The Kennedy Center is also one of my favorite venues because they are truly about making the arts accessible to the people by offering a free show every evening at 6. Very, very cool.

Back to my original thought here.

Because I enjoy going to see shows and plays, I obviously want whatever man im interested in to join me from time to time. But sometimes, men can be a tough sell when it comes to the arts.

So here are my suggestions:

Pay for the tickets yourself. If he isn’t a fan of the theatre or seems hesitant about seeing the show with you, and you really want him to go, shell out the $80 + for orchestra seats yourself. Some people may say that’s ridiculous, but I think it’s only right and it will show that person that you really wanted to go, and you really wanted to go with them. They literally have nothing to lose. He just needs to put on a clean shirt, slacks, some decent shoes and just roll out.

Choose wisely: Pick a show where there are strong male leads, or a storyline that may be appealing in terms of something that’s relatable to everyone.

Don’t make him your theatre date every time. If it’s not his thing, you shouldn’t force it on him. But every now and then, when you are a theatre head, you do want to enjoy it with someone who is special to you. Have some other friends to do this with, so you can avoid burnout with him, unless you have converted him into being a theatre head too. Remember, his primary reason for going is because he likes you. Don’t take advantage.

I’m taking my new friend to see the musical Memphis. Now, this is kind of risky because a lot of people get annoyed with folks breaking out in song. If I had met him sooner, I would have broken him in with Fela. It’s a musical with amazing music, a captivating real life story and a strong, charismatic male lead. Oh and Fela had like 18 wives, all of them gorgeous, with amazing bodies, dancing and gyrating throughout the whole show. No man is going to be bored with that. In fact, he’ll probably be taking notes.

I also thought Memphis was a good fit, because he’s from Tennessee. I think it should be an interesting choice because it’s about soul music, racial tensions, love and it’s centered around music, so singing is going to be necessary.

Dress to impress. Look appropriately hot. I plan on wearing a gorgeous white dress that I haven’t worn since a party on a boat last summer. I really want to wear it again. Reward your date by being ridiculously fine. If he is bored by the musical, he won’t be bored looking at you enjoying yourself.

Thank him for joining you. Get your minds out of the gutter. Literally say thank you. Now if you are at a certain stage in your relationship, then hey, thank the man accordingly for being a lovely date especially if it is something he may not have originally been interested in.

Anything but opera. If your man has an axe to grind against opera, don’t even do it. Even if you paid for the tickets yourself, do not try to convince, trick, or lie to get him up in there. Opera is tough. Don’t push it even if you planned a surprise burlesque thank you show after.

No musical revivals. Save this for your fellow theatre heads so you can ooh and ahh and trade notes. If he doesn’t like the theatre he’s going to be lost, bored and ready to leave at intermission. This is the equivalent of watching ESPN classic and not liking sports. If you aren’t a fan, you aren’t going to appreciate the magic that is unfolding and how it lays the foundation for what’s happening today.

The next thing he wants to do that you may not be that into, do it with no complaints and a smile. It’s only fair. Especially if he was a good sport at your event. Reciprocity and compromise is essential in every relationship.

Summer Bucket List

I have been searching frantically for the blog post that inspired my post today. If you are reading this and you recently wrote a post about a summer bucket list, please announce yourself so I can link it and give you proper credit!

I’ve decided it is a good idea to create a summer bucket list so without a whole lot of jibber jabber, let’s just get to it.

1. Visit my apartment complex pool at least twice. I hardly ever take advantage and it’s a shame. Now if only they’d give me my passes. (Changed my mind. See this post.)

2. Go to the beach more. Be it a local beach or someplace else, I need a few more trips in the sand and surf.

3. Read at least two books. I’ve got a long list of things I’m itching to read.  Bossypants and Hunger Games! I’m going to read two more now.

4. Have a water fight. This is old school, but I think it is necessary to have some sort of water fight from time to time no matter how old you are.

5. Spend more time on my balcony. Although it faces a parking lot, the one time I went out in the evening to read, it was actually pleasant.

6. Hula hoop. I see people doing it more at outdoor festivals and concerts and it just looks like loads of fun. So simple.

7. Visit Luray Caverns. It’s a short trip to some very cool massive caverns in the Shenadoah valley.

8. Go to an outdoor concert. They are so much fun. I can dress like I’m going to Coachella or something. Chrisette Michele, Eric Benet and Ledisi at Pier Six!

9. Ride a bicycle. I already did this, but it was so much fun, I’m going to have to do it again.

10. Turn off the t.v. and just play music. It’s really soothing and relaxing.

11. Eat a funnel cake (already did this, but it’s a great summer thing to do).

12. Make my own lemonade and sweet tea.

13. Eat something from a charcoal grill (Been there done that. It’s so awesome).

14. Take walks.

15. Storyboard, plan and shoot the photo shoot for the t-shirt brand… ooh it’s going to be hot!

16. Work toward finishing my novel.

17. Visit places I’ve never been whether near or far (thankfully, I’ve done that already. Don’t want to stop).

18. Check out my favorite museums and find new ones.

* In other news, I had a wonderful time on my date! We shut down the restaurant. That’s really good. No awkward pauses, laughter, the exchange of relationship and dating disaster stories. It was good. Nice long hug but no good night kiss. Just not ready. Got to work up to this sort of thing. But it was just in the right speed for the first date.

Whoo I’m Back and Random California Flashbacks

I’m back from vacation from sunny California!

I had a ball folks. It was great. It was more than I had even expected and I got to relax.

So much went down this past week, that I’m going to try to keep this simple.

Where do I even begin?

First of all, I got a date tonight. I’m even wearing cute heels to work in anticipation of it. He’s nice. He’s charming. Good looking, well-traveled, employed, but he’s a good 15 years older than me.

Oh. Boy.

All of this is a big deal, well because I don’t know when was the last time I was actually excited about going on a date.

You all recall the last time I had to cancel a date, because the man wanted to take me to 50-cent wing night.

But I’ll talk more about this new guy after tonight’s date. Let’s get back to California.

Well, first off Catalina is beautiful and other worldly. I had a blast and am insanely happy for my cousin, who in turn seems to be jumping out of his skin in love with his beautiful bride (there is an actual video of him doing a happy dance), who also seems to adore him.

They rented a gorg beach house where most of us tended to gather and hang out over the course of the week. It was relaxing and basically in the heart of the town so we could see everything. We rode electric bikes and had great food (there’s no fast food anywhere on the island).

Everyone drove golf carts in this town (gas was like $4.75 a gallon) and it was the most adorable thing ever. We rented two carts and drove all around the island, the twisting, winding roads through and up the mountains. Everything also shuts down by 9 p.m. save for three bars. You could see dolphins and even buffalo. If you were a nature freak, it’s a great place to explore the land and sea.

I managed to also get a great massage. I was determined to do that, if nothing else.

Now for the party. It was great. Great food, interesting people, including a certain international musician/actor (who is a perennial favorite on Saturday Night Live) and his beautiful actress girlfriend. He wasn’t down for taking photos, which I can understand, but I couldn’t help but be a little excited being next to him doing the electric slide on a large balcony, facing the ocean. It was also loads of fun teaching the actress how to cupid shuffle and giving her a high five of approval once she got it. Both were very low-key, and honestly I wouldn’t have noticed them walking down the street. I’m the worst at celebrity spotting.

I was glad to spend time with my older and younger cousins, who have grown up to be wonderful young men. It was just a lot of fun.

Thanks to another cousin who lives in LA that I met only a few years ago at a reunion, she gave me my quick L.A. tour. Yes, your girl was in Beverly Hills and managed to make it to the world-famous Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles, and yes, it is worth all of the hype. Really yummy.

The only downside was the patron at our table before us, broke soul food etiquette and didn’t screw the top back onto the hot sauce. I went to shake it up, as you are supposed to and blam, hot sauce volcano. I was wearing white, and by some miracle, didn’t get any on my blouse. Amazing!

I mean who does that?

I thought Beverly Hills was ok, but it was hard to get excited about it because all of the stores there are in NYC and also in the DC area in Chevy Chase. But it was still cool nonetheless. The one thing in Bev Hills that did excite me was seeing the TMZ tour bus, because I always said, if I ever get to L.A., I’m all about taking the TMZ tour. And as they advertise in the commercial, they were indeed in “fancy schmancy Beverly Hills.” I friggin love that show. I was too slow in getting my camera out to take a photo of it. Darn.

My cousin who is fabulous in her own right, insisted on treating me to a lip gloss from  Chanel.  I mean, who turns down Chanel? I thought that was nice of her.

So there are a few things besides the hot sauce incident that got me a little riled or taught me a lesson.

One. Excessive drinking on a ferry in choppy waters… not so good.

Two. Black people do get sunburn! I got sunburn for the first time ever and I’m shocked about it and was in denial until the peeling occurred (especially on my forehead). The black Californians saw it coming, and they were like, no, really, you are burning. Someone get her some sunscreen! Aloe vera!

Three. Please white man in the aisle seat don’t assume the black guy next to me in the middle seat on the plane is my man. We didn’t even get to the seat at the same time or talk to each other. He is a total stranger that I’ve never seen in my life. He’s black too and I DON’T KNOW HIM! Shocker.

Four. Middle school students are annoying. They are the worst when hopped up on Starbucks and joining you on your red-eye flight. I had not one, but two middle school trips. The second group wasn’t as bad, in fact they were tired. I saw them just get off of another plane.

Five. Starbucks, you shouldn’t be allowed to serve minors coffee products after 8 p.m. in an airport. Period.

Six. I never made it in the water or on the beach. Catalina was too damn cold. There were only four solid hours of warm weather, but apparently hot enough to scorch my lovely skin and give this black girl her first bout with sunburn.

Seven. The time zone, 3-hour thing is real. I was exhausted by 10 p.m. and wide awake at 5 a.m. Like just looking up at the ceiling, saying, “Seriously? Seriously?”

Eight. At this one Mexican restaurant, I had the best damn refried beans ever, and I feel like that’s an accomplishment. Not everyone can get those right.

Nine. At the same restaurant, I also managed to get a bowl of liquor. Yes, a bowl.

Ten. I didn’t knowingly meet any gang bangers. I did want to try an In and Out Burger. Next time.

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