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Archive for the category “Humor”

When Grown Men and Little Girls Have Tea

I don’t know about you, but there are a couple of things that really bring joy to my heart and put an automatic smile on my face.

One of them, hands down, is seeing grown men take the time to play with their daughters, nieces, and/or granddaughters to have tea.

The little girls are absolutely ecstatic, and happy to serve water or air from their play set, usually surrounded by stuffed animals. The tea set fits their little hands perfectly, while their grown-up male companion, looking awkward, yet equally adorable, struggles with tiny cups and saucers, bringing said tiny cups to their lips and engaging in polite, tea conversation with baby girl.

I also think tea parties do something for men’s souls too. It reminds them of innocence and it provides them with memories that they probably go back to over the years, well after that little girl has grown into a woman. It’s a moment to be silly, it’s a moment where other men totally give other men a pass, because they know that warm feeling they’ve had simply drinking tap water or no water at all.

Just as when a baby passes you a pretend, plastic telephone, you have to answer, when a little girl invites you for tea, you must RSVP.

A conversation with a co-worker reminded me of the times my father and even my grandfather joined me for a cup of imaginary tea and how that image of two very strong, black men, who just couldn’t say no to me in my braids and big smile.

That memory is probably the very reason why, I just ADORE it when men take the time out to have tea and I melt when I see photos or video of these special parties.

I also think it speaks to something even deeper and the importance of little girls having an early image of a man spending quality time with her, paying attention to her and the mutual and very real doting that’s allowed to take place naturally. It takes root in your soul. I truly hope that all little girls, and every man who has influence in a little girl’s life can sit down for tea, because as simple as it is, it is truly a precious moment for all parties.

To this day, I love making tea for my loved ones. I’ve mentioned this in previous posts, tea-making is probably one of my love languages, truth be told. I don’t have tea with people I don’t like. It’s a moment to love on someone. You don’t understand the joy and satisfaction I have putting in just the right amount of sugar, based on the individual, or breaking out my best loose-leafs for my guests and then having a long conversation.

So cheers to the big, strong, tough men who take a little time out for tea with their sweet little girls.

10 Ways to Meet Your Mate More Socially Acceptable than Online

I became privy to an interesting conversation recently.
Guy and girl meet online. They chat, the chatting upgrades to phone calls, the phone calls upgrade to meeting in person, several dates and a few months later, these two are an item.
They are getting along famously. Guy asks girl to meet his folks, and girl says yes.
She meets the folks, it all goes great and they discuss the verdict coming in from guy’s family.
She passes with flying colors. Even with Guy’s mom.
But there’s a catch. The Aunties have given their blessing, and in the excitement of it all asked guy where he met girl. He casually responds online, and the aunties’ faces fall. They begin to worry, and exchange tales of woe, failed marriages and stolen organs sold on the black market.
And hence the online meeting versus meeting someone in person age-old debate began. Which led to the even deeper question of regardless of how you met, how well do you really know the people you choose to date, or anyone for that matter?
So, in honor of the aunties and all who side eye online dating, I would like to introduce to you all, 10 Ways to Meet Your Mate, More Socially Acceptable than Online. Now, some of these are old favorites, and others I’ve thrown in to be a complete smart ass.

1. If your parents hooked you up. It’s really a parent’s dream to actually vet and choose the right person for their child because they want their kids to be happy and not make mistakes. It goes back to you being a baby and them baby proofing your house and making sure you don’t hurt yourself. It still applies in your 30s. While some parents may have a more laid back or hands off approach, there are some parents who are actively involved in the process whether they culturally subscribe to arranged marriages for real, for real, or not. FYI, this would probably be the number one answer for parents, and not really anyone else. But they size up your partner with the most scrutiny.

1A. Your family or friends hooked you up. Now, this could be a blind date situation, this could be a set up via a backyard barbecue, wedding, baby christening, Nay Nay’s graduation party, but there’s nothing like actually clicking with who were co-signed by your loved ones. They’ll never let you live it down, they’ll take all the credit if it’s successful and they’ll fade into the bushes like the Homer Simpson meme, if yall crash and burn. It’s a super-socially acceptable way to meet people that is probably the REAL number one. But, parents, tho…

2. Your place of worship. If you are the religious type, this highly socially acceptable meeting place will resonate with you. It will reinforce that God totally brought you two together, and that you likely share the same values that will help you navigate life and a future family together. It’s a good deal if that’s your lifestyle.

3. The Gym. For some people, this is number 1. If you met the love of your life while working out, it means once again you share an appreciation for fitness, health, breathable clothing and meal prepping. It’s one of the more sexy places to meet people, because folks who may not even have a genuine love for working out will go there to meet someone they find attractive. Actually, it may be a bad place to start something real if everyone’s intentions aren’t honest. Nevertheless, people love those #couplegoals #fitness photos and hashtags with fit people doing impossible stuff that less fit people would just look silly doing, but God bless them for trying.

4. Club or Bar. Once again, you’d think with the loud music and the drinking and lewd dancing, how can you really tell a person’s true character upon first meeting? But, clubs and bars are totally socially acceptable places to meet a future mate, says society and movies and clubs and bars that want your money.

5. Volunteer event. Actually, in my opinion, this should be number one, if you were asking ME. But we’re not. We’re talking about the general public and the stereotypical places, society thinks we should be finding our true loves. But, I think a volunteer event is an awesome place to not only meet your mate, but find your tribe in a new city. When you find out what people are passionate about and willing to give up their personal time for, you can get a good insight into what they are about and their core values. You get to see it in action and you see how they balance those things with their lives.

6. Grocery Stores. Now, I’ve seen sexy guys at the grocery store, I have but I really haven’t ever had one approach me nor have I approached them. Maybe this is because I hate the grocery store, I hate how they are set up and I know despite having only a few items I’m still going to spend no less than 20-30 minutes there. I don’t think many people like grocery shopping either, but it’s a necessary evil. So, I’m really confused as to how people keep saying you’ll meet someone fabulous in the produce aisle. And it’s ALWAYS the produce aisle. Most of the time, after you’ve checked someone out, you’ve checked their cart to judge them or realize compared to them, you eat a lot of crap and you eliminate yourself and grab Talenti 2-for-1.

7. Bookstore or Library. I really don’t know how often this happens anymore because, Kindles. However, I love books and I love bookstores. So, if there is a fine man wandering the aisles and we exchange glances, there’s something romantic about bibliophiles finding love in this digital world. So go head, get you some. But, on the flip side, as a student, I think it is feasible for folks to find love in study groups hammering out projects in a library, so I won’t count it all the way out. The intensity of debate and striving for an A, can get folks all hot and bothered.

8. Work. I kind of put this low on the list, but PLENTY of people have met their significant others at work, or on their way to and from work. I have a strong belief in the don’t crap where you eat, but once again, there are a lot of successful relationships that brewed hotter than the kitchen keurig and they managed to keep folks out of their business. Gold star for them. I’m not a hater.

9. Dog Parks. This is probably an ideal place to meet for dog lovers. I know quite a few people who said if their dog don’t like you, you’re basically dunzo. So, I’m sure society will agree a match made in the dog park will probably bode well especially if the pooches get along.

10. Alumni Mixers. Ok, so this one kind of goes hand-in-hand with volunteering, but if you’re like me and you LOOOOOVE your alma mater, meeting your boo-to-be at one of these events can be pretty dope. Have you attended a sporting event against a rival school? Most schools put the playful drama to the side at a tailgate or after party, so don’t be surprised if you find yourself starring in a West Side Story…

Hmmm, I actually named 10 really legitimate places to meet people other than the internet. I was supposed to add in a few funny ones just to illustrate how ridiculous it is to judge people who meet on the internet, so let me pull a few out that are insane.

1. Competitive Hot Dog eating contest. This just seems gross. But these folks are committed. And men may be turned on by female competitors’ gag reflex…
2. Nudist beach. I’m just going to leave that right there. But at least you know what you’re getting. Rock on.
3. Lamaze class. If you know anyone who met and fell in love at a Lamaze class, please send me a message. That’s just amazing.
4. Prison. It totally happens.
5. Jury Duty. That would actually be a bomb ass story.
6. Target. Actually, meeting the love of your life at Target sounds pretty dope. They DO have everything!
7. Divorce Court. I recently heard about a person posting on facebook that her ex-husband got engaged to her divorce lawyer. Another person jumped on the post to correct her, and that it wasn’t her divorce lawyer, just the paralegal. LOL Burn.
8. Dentist office. That’s right up there with Jury Duty. If you can find love there, I salute you.
9. Department of Motor Vehicles. Since we’re going down the list of places we hate, wouldn’t it be great to at least find the love of your life, even if your Driver’s license photo looks awful?
10. Ikea. If you are a single person in Ikea and you aren’t shopping with your parents for a new bunkbed or dorm furniture, seeing all of the couples miserable or not, kind of reminds you of how alone your ass really is, and that you will be assembling that difficult ass furniture alone. But God is a good God, and would have truly shown up and shown out if he sends you a love to call your own, on your way to get that cheap soft serve ice cream. You won’t just get help putting together that complicated ass bed, you’ll get help breaking it in…

Relationship Status Not A Reflection of Your Individual Value

If you survived your mid- to late-twenties without going to a lot of weddings, and you are in your 30’s, you better guard your loins and brace yourself like Braveheart and his crew.

I’m starting to get a bunch of save-the-dates, as some of my dear friends (mostly male though…but that’s a whole other post) are finally making their way to the altar.

I’m very happy for my friends. Most of the folks I know getting married over the next two years are folks who have been in very long-term relationships. They’ve seen a lot of ups and downs, they’ve been able to watch each other change and grow, they’ve had serious battles and challenges, and they’ve decided to keep on choosing each other for the rest of their lives. It’s really beautiful. I’ll probably shed a tear because I know the behind-the-scenes stories. These couples haven’t always had the fairy tale, and for that reason, them making the conscious effort to choose each other over and over again, every day for the rest of their lives, is what makes these new unions magical. They put real thought into the huge life decision they are making. And for that, I applaud them and can be confident in their futures and really relish the celebrations.

But I had a thought as I was talking to a friend. It’s nothing new that a lot of women place their value on being proposed to. Simply being asked elevates them.

And I’ve even had the thought that being asked was in direct correlation to my value.

I had even said on a number of occasions, the reason I’ve kept my engagement ring is because it was physical proof that “someone loved me that much, someone wanted me to be his wife.”

Well, I’ll have to tell myself now after about four years of healing that in the illustrious and oh so truthful words of Brandy, almost doesn’t count.

I understand now that simply getting “chose” as my southern friends would call it, isn’t a reflection of your value. There are so many amazing single people who are amazing, period. If they got married tomorrow, they’d be amazing. If they were single forever, they would still be amazing. There are people who are just really great at being a human. They do it well, regardless of being involved romantically. And I do believe in my heart, because they’ve been so excellent at being a human, they will attract an equally amazing human, decide to be together and save the world by creating more awesome humans.

In my biostats class, we talk about independent and dependent factors. If an independent variable changes, the dependent variables are studied to see how much the independent variable effects them.

I think of marriage, relationships etc., as independent variables. They can change the other dependent variables about you, but those dependent variables you always had, your intellect, your ability to care for other people… you get the picture.

So for people thinking getting selected by someone makes you better than all of the other “pitiful” single people (something must be wrong with them) out there, or if single people believe married people or people in a relationship are “better” you’ve got it completely wrong.

Maybe I need to do another post about something that’s taken me a long time to figure out. I kept wondering why some people never got married or why they are still single. I’m learning it’s a bunch of things.

You know yourself too well to settle, even if it means turning down people who seem to be really amazing (on paper, or physically).

You trust how you feel first, even if it makes no sense to other people.

You know that you can be selfish sometimes and you’re just not ready to share anything, your space, your food, your time, your life…

You still have big decisions that you want to make and only want to have yourself to consider. Do you want to move to another country? Do you want to change jobs? Do you want to buy a house or sell it? Do you want to take out $60,000 in student loans to go get a degree? Do you want to take a significant pay cut for a dream job?

Do you just want to opt out sometimes? Being single gives you the space and freedom to say fuck it and it doesn’t affect anyone else but you. Want to take a few days off and go away? Book the ticket, you’re gone. Want to call in sick? You aren’t squirreling away days just in case a kid gets strep, you can take your mental health day and not slave to make it up. Wanna stay in your sweatpants all day and eat pho? No one is going to tell you no in your own house. Compromise isn’t something you have to consider in the single life. Doing you is not only allowed, but encouraged.

Entering into a relationship can make you a better person, because that person can bring out the best in you or challenge you to be your best self, but you’re relationship status alone doesn’t make you better than anyone else, especially those who aren’t attached.

Entering into a relationship is just a mutual decision between two people. Let’s be together! Ok! Whooo hoo! So is getting engaged and getting married. Let’s make this thing legal! Ok! Whoo hoo!! It’s the decision to choose each other for an undetermined amount of time, based on if you want to continue the relationship or if one of the parties expires. (Singing Fantasia’s Free Yourself, or Mahalia Jackson’s Upper Room) That’s it.

So people in love, even though you feel like it, you didn’t cure cancer, or create wrinkle-free clothing or the cronut.

You were simply able to match hearts at the right time and right place, which is quite a feat, but not one to place you on a perch.

Single people wanting to be in a relationship. Take some inventory of the luxuries and freedoms you currently have in your season of single and be that excellent human. Because it will sustain you when it’s time to really dig in, compromise, love and give freely to your future love.

A New List of Things You Need To Know As A Woman In Your 30s

I feel like I make this list like once a year. Normally, I’m inspired by a conversation I’ve had or an experience.

I’m just avoiding studying. But please add these things you need to know as a woman in your 30s. I may repeat some I’ve said before.

1. If you like it buy it in every color.

I was in NY and Company the other day and I found pants and tops that fit well, and I straight up bought multiples. You’ll see how important this is. You need ONLY things in your closet that make you feel good about yourself and like you are the finest person walking the earth. Facts.

2. Own at least one freakum dress. It doesn’t have to be scandalous if scandalous is not your thing, but going back to number one, it needs to fit and flatter your body and your favorite assets and make you feel sexy when you wear it.

3. Embrace your shape, understand it and find things that work with it.

Sometimes this means you can’t go with the crowd. Or the latest trends. If there’s something that looks awesome on you, stick to it and don’t let go, you will be timeless and polished.

4. Accessorize. I’ve always noticed that older women had tons of jewelry, real, costume, hats, scarves, brooches. They adorn themselves. Lately, I’ve noticed the power of adding a statement necklace to a simple outfit and it takes my ensemble to another more mature and unique level. It helps bring out my personality so I can stand out from the crowd. And shopping for accessories is just fun.

5. Never underestimate the power of the T. Whether you get cheap tees or more expensive ones, plain black or white tees make you look like you woke up like dis. Keep it simple, rock it with a blazer for work, and amp it up with a great necklace and boom. You look all effortless.

6. Keep mints, lip gloss, tampons and at least $20 in your purse at all times. The last part is most difficult for me as I’m always reaching for plastic. But the times that I actually do carry cash, it just feels like a safety net juuuuust in case!

7. Read stuff.

Read anything, read the newspaper, read the magazines, read books, join a book club. Grown women are informed and keep growing and have interesting things to talk about and an opinion. Books are easy ways to develop opinions and provide good party chatter.

8. Vitamins.

I had to learn about this one the hard way, but for real for real, B complex has changed my life this week. I can press on just a little bit further thanks to these energy boosting vitamins recommended by my doctor.

9. High/Low As a grown woman, you have every right to indulge in an expensive handbag, pair of shoes, suit or fantastic coat or pair of jeans. So for big items that you’ll use forever, I say go for it if you can afford to or save for it and then buy your cheaper items to go with them. When you’re grown, you want to stay polished. That’s the goal.

10. Have a signature drink you like to order, signature fragrance, and signature dish you can cook and cook well EVERY time. It just makes you feel good about yourself.

11. Take dance breaks. Throw on your favorite jam and just dance.

12. If you are wrong, beat folks to the punch and own up to it.

13. If you know you are wrong before you do something and you’ve made the decision to do it anyway, then George Bush that shit. Don’t hide. Bask in your wrongness and if anyone has something to say about it, say you did it for America and keep it pushing.

14. Truth over everything. When you know better you do better.

15. Try something new. Do not be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, fail, or look silly. Just try. Trying shouldn’t be for kids or folks screwing up in their 20s. As long as you are breathing you better find the sweetness of life and the feeling of accomplishment when you do something you’ve never done.

16. Travel. That’s it.

17. Be cool with going out alone. Start with the movies or a play. Something that doesn’t require anything but your attention and everyone shutting up. Then elevate and take yourself to dinner, but don’t get a table for one… have dinner at the bar. You’ll meet interesting people and bartenders like to give you free drinks or discounts for bringing more boys to the yard who’ll pay full price.

18. Be kind, be giving, be gracious.

20. Smile at yourself, laugh at yourself out loud when you do ridiculous things or look silly or fall down. Like, there are times I got so into it, I couldn’t stop laughing and that felt good. I’m serious though take a moment to smile at yourself in the mirror at work in the bathroom. Don’t give yourself a fake smile either, smile at yourself like yo, I like you. You’re cool people. And after you say that, if you’re me, you’ll start laughing at yourself for even saying something like that. But to see yourself naturally smile at yourself or laugh at yourself, it’s kind of nice.

21. When you have a tingle to check on someone or just ask them, how are you today? Or are you alright? DO IT! IT MAKES A DIFFERENCE. Even if you text some one and say “I’m thinking of you.” Or tell them something you like about them, it makes all the difference in the world.

22. Say you’re not ok, when you’re not ok. Some folks ain’t gonna know how to react to this. Expect their inability to react because they are used to folks lying, so this is going to throw them off. Tell them it’s ok that you know they have absolutely nothing perfect to say to fix it, but you are just satisfied with them caring.

23. Ask for help. If you don’t know, ask for help and be bold about it. I don’t know, I don’t understand, but I’m smart at other things, so my ego isn’t bruised. Help me so I can be good at this too. Most people will appreciate that you kept it so real and be very eager to help you understand. This is truth.

24. Be proactive. If you see things about to take a twist or a turn and you know you can prevent it or lessen the blow, then do so.

25. This is linked with 24. DON’T WAIT ON NOBODY ELSE TO FILL IN THE BLANK. If there’s something you want to do and folks keep making excuses or blowing it off go back to number 17. If you need courage go back to number 20 and remember number 15.

26. You are in charge of your narrative. Don’t let anyone else write it or define it. You do that. You represent you. If folks have it wrong, you have every right to correct their uninformed asses.

27. Stop cussin. LOL. Only do so for emphasis and impact to let fools know you ain’t playing and that this is not a drill.

28. If you did it right, the walk of shame is a strut of satisfaction.

29. If you really regretted it and didn’t have a child from the situation, you can subtract that bad situation from your “number” I’ll allow it.. like twice. But don’t get carried away.

30. If you are a woman in your 30s, you already know that you’ve never felt this alright with yourself and secretly looking forward to how bad ass you’ll be at 40.

PDA In Church Is Just Too Much…

I was sitting in church yesterday after a long hiatus. I didn’t want to go, but I felt really compelled to be there. All in all, I’m glad I went. I needed it. But back to the initial thought of this post.

Sitting in a row ahead of me was an attractive young woman. She was into the service, it was all to the good. Maybe about 15 minutes later a male companion arrives and sits next to her.

For the duration of the service, she is rubbing his back, laying her head on his shoulder, holding his hand and in my opinion, just being extra. It wasn’t a packed service, so I kind of had the feeling she was putting on this show just for me.

Actually sister, I’m happy you have a man. I’m super happy for you that he joins you and is just as enthusiastic about worship and the word as you are, because this brother was taking notes and everything. He was all in.

But, your holy equivalent of peeing on your territory was too much, and in fact it was distracting.

I won’t front. If you are really into church, going to God’s house together is a really awesome feeling. And when your loved one actually wants to be there and is getting something out of it, you do feel mighty good about it. I knew I’d wave my hands a little more when I had my rock on my finger, but I was never to the point where I was PePe Le Pewing with my man throughout the entire service.

I have to say, she had him trained. When they do the obligatory say hi to five people thing, one, she didn’t even speak to me. Two, this brother gave me a high-five. I guess a handshake is just too much and a hug is certainly out of the question.

Whenever they do the greeting thing at church, I never hug men who are clearly with women. I don’t know them like that. And I honestly barely hug other men. Some of the older cat daddies seem to love this portion of the service and they will climb over about six rows to get to you, but hey, get in where you fit in.

The whole exercise in insecurity was comical to me. I get the competition is horribly stiff for finding a man in church especially if there are single men in your church.

I even understand how women can get super territorial of a man, when entering into a space where there is usually more women than men, and women looking for men. But I think this kind of paranoia in church is really, really scary.

Really scary.

A dear friend of mine was talking about getting a friend request from a high school rival of mine.

“Didn’t so and so hate us, you especially?” she asked.

“Yup.”

As we talked, I told her she did happen to manage to get married and have a pretty cute kid. Which made me launch into the, how the heck are these mean ass women getting married? To which my awesome friend responded,

“Oh well. That just means they have a longer life sentence.”

I fell out. That perspective made me think again about the *dare I say it again* gift of the season of being single.

So, basically if you are a church chick, and you have a man and your man loves going to church like you do, I congratulate you. I’m happy for you, because if I believe in God, which I do, I already know your man is NOT my man, but that the Good Lord has someone just for me. But please, please, please have a little faith. You don’t have to spend the entire service proving to people outside of your relationship that you’re in one. We get it. That’s your man.

We ain’t here for you, boo. I’m just trying to get my mind and spirit right before I walk into another crazy week.

One Artist Pays Homage to Exes Though Shoes, My Exes Make Great Sandwiches

It’s no secret that I love creative pursuits.

I also love shoes.

I also love love and have tried to become a student of relationships.

So when an artist made shoes based on his exes, I totally perked up. I had to see it and it’s so freaking awesome.

Check the link: http://shine.yahoo.com/photos/12-shoes-for-12-lovers-1386699601-slideshow/the-jet-setter-photo-1386704733985.html

So that made me think of my exes. Then I wondered what could I make that would represent our relationship or qualities each man had?

Then my mind wandered to sandwiches.

So here we go. I’m going to describe my exes/relationships through sandwiches.

The high school ex. PB and J with potato chips. It was simplistic and childish, and you can grow tired of eating it.

College ex #1 Bacon, lettuce and tomato. This relationship managed to be light, but still gave me everything I needed. It wasn’t excessive and when it was over, it didn’t leave a mess.

College ex #2 Tuna tar tar sandwich. This guy was pretentious and unnecessarily complicated. It’s tuna folks. Nothing more. If you got to do so much to it to make it taste good, it ain’t right. When it came down to it this dude was fishy from start to finish and started to stink after awhile.

Ex #3 Philly Cheesesteak. This guy was like your favorite college sweater. You could burp and fart and exchange rude jokes, he got along with everybody and was fun to be around. Not the most sophisticated person in the room, but the realest person in the room. Hard worker, manly, crazy about sports, big on family. All American guy.

Ex #4 Sloppy Joe with ground chicken. A hot mess. A hastily thrown together meal with basic ingredients. No one gets out without getting dirty. One false move, your outfit is ruined. And you can’t avoid it. But think you want it so bad you accept the consequences. It’s not the best choice, but when you’re really hungry it looks really, really good. And I chose chicken for obvious reasons. Punk ass. It seems sensible and safe, but if you have a more sophisticated pallate it won’t satisfy you. It takes longer to get the stain out of your favorite shirt than it did to eat it. And your favorite shirt may have a faint mark no matter how many times you spot cleaned and washed it. Yeah. Yeah I said it. LOL. 🙂

Things That Scare Grown Ass People

I was inspired by awesome fellow blogger from Choices, Voices and Sole. She recently discussed the most scary thing to single women who are dating and I thought it was so funny.

The struggle is real when you can’t zip up the back of a dress and you are running late. Missing your birth control pills and realizing you missed not one but two days, oh yes. You have quite the moment. So I want to not just talk about single women, but me as a grown person, things that scare me.

In no particular order.

1. Traffic cameras

2. Women who wear jeggings as pants and won’t even wear a long shirt or sweater to cover their butt.

3. Kid germs. (I haven’t built up an immunity to them. Being single puts me at greater risk when working parents with sick children share bathrooms and office supplies. Getting sick from them is the absolute worst.)

4. Being out of Nutella

5. The ice cream machine is not working

6. Getting medical test results back, whether you are healthy or not.

7. Stepping on a scale.

8. Blind dates.

9. IRS tax audits

10. Speaking in public

11. Responsibility

12. Poorly lit parking lots

13. Missed or late menstrual cycles

14. Unemployment

15. Committment

16. STD’s

17. The words “We need to talk.”

18. Jury Duty

19. Being trapped in an elevator

20. Gas station restrooms

21. Hotel bed linens

22. Children allowed to make their own plates at buffets.

23. Being alone for the rest of your life

24. Online dating

25. People touching or biting food or taking a drink of something and offering it to you.

26. Bugs or rodents

27. Running out of gas or breaking down in a rough neighborhood.

28. Cell phone battery dying when you run out of gas or breakdown in a rough neighborhood.

29. Your final total in the checkout line at Target.

30. Sitting front row at a comedy show.

31. Your fat pants don’t fit any more.

32. Someone blew up the bathroom, and as you leave, another person greets you, and then smells the smell.

33. Chicken in a can.

34. DC tap water

35. Realizing you forgot to put on deodorant and you’ve already left the house.

36. Forgetting an important password.

37. Leaving your cell phone at home.

38. Traveling with a feeling that you forgot to turn off the stove, or you left your door unlocked.

Leave Baggage Claim Alone, Black Folk. It Did What Rom Coms Do

I’ve had numerous people say to me they weren’t going to see the new movie “Baggage Claim” because they thought it was going to be corny, predictable, formulaic, blah blah. A number of people also said they can’t really stomach Paula Patton, including the person I went to see the movie with.

In my opinion, Patton was a fine choice for the optimistic, still-working-it-out, oblivious Montana Moore. Her seemingly flighty persona and physical comedy seemed natural for the part.

baggageclaimI was trying to think of other black actresses who would have pulled it off, in my opinion would have been any of the female leads of the cast of Girlfriends (Actress Keesha Sharp (Monica) would have knocked it out of the park, she does the sexy, funny girl really well. I love her on “Are We There Yet?”) , because they all have serious comedy chops, and are extremely good-looking. The only problem, even though they all look amazing is, they would have been too old for the role. I refuse to throw Sanaa in the mix, because she has been done to death. Yet I love her.

Now that I think about it, Raven Symone would have been a really interesting and ballsy choice for Montana (they ain’t ready), and would have nailed it, especially the speech at the end about loving herself.

Wait, now that I’ve listed all of these people… either way, I digress, Paula did her job. She was still adorable.

The younger crop of actresses are relegated to being sexy objects of affection or neck-rolling, no mess-taking, independent women.

Basically all of the people I’ve talked to about Baggage Claim were other black people. I don’t know how white people felt about it. I didn’t hear them gushing about it at work, so they just didn’t care. These kinds of movies kind of don’t register on their radar, because anything with a majority black cast, I tend to get the feeling there’s a belief there’s nothing there for them, meanwhile on the flipside, people of color don’t have choices. Most TV and movies have mostly white casts with one person of color just thrown in, but it is universally accepted by all audiences. We find the connections to characters unlike us anyway. But reverse it, and you just don’t see white people in the theaters for movies like this. You just don’t. “Think Like A Man” may have been the exception because of the fact that Steve Harvey is inescapable these days.  (They were moved by “The Butler” though… I do wonder if they’ll take it a step further and see “12 Years a Slave” but that’s another blog.)

My argument is this. If you ask a lot of black women, we looooove romantic movies and comedies and we don’t care who the hell is in them.

I adore Julia Roberts in basically anything and most black women will agree “Pretty Woman” is a classic. And “Dirty Dancing” we know the words, we know the dances, the music and we will scream, “Nobody puts baby in a corner,” with fervor.

“The Holiday” is one of my favorites and who doesn’t love Bridget Jones? Cmon.

“How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” is another fav. I can’t get that yellow dress out of my head. Ever.

So after naming all of these movies, it just amazes me how critical black people are of romantic comedies. The few that see the light of day.

I don’t know if we just stopped believing in love or because in our real lives it’s such a fucking battle, we can’t even enjoy poking fun at the journey and how love really makes us look goofy and silly. We have to be cool all the time. We have to be proving a point or that we are just as worthy as everyone else. Ugh.

That shit is tiring.

Why can’t black girls hide in trash cans outside of their lovers house? Or step in dog poo?

My heels get caught in sidewalk cracks all the time, and my dress will blow up on my way into the office.

It’s funny! It’s great. It makes me laugh at myself. Sometimes I have lipstick on my teeth and one time I almost walked out of the bathroom with my dress tucked into the back of my granny panties. These things are humorous bites of life we find ourselves still laughing at years from now.

Must we be so oppressed that we can’t create movies that reflect that too?

We always argue that people of other cultures paint us with the same broad brush culturally.

I actually feel like there’s some parity in the world when we can have a corny, predictable, silly, romantic comedy too. Was it over the top and totally not realistic?

Yes.

That’s what makes it a great movie. For people who are so technologically savvy, we have lost our imagination. Sometimes a cardboard box is a space ship, people. Sometimes it is.

I don’t want to constantly see a movie about how hard it is to be a black person.

We love, we laugh and we embarrass ourselves all of the time in the name of love. You’ve read my blog. You know I have moments.

So while everyone waits with bated breath for “The Best Man Holiday” (which I’ve already said I’m going to see three times in the theater), there are a bunch of people knocking Baggage Claim without giving it a chance and I think it’s unfair and unnecessary. For those who don’t know, “The Best Man” is one of the crown jewels of black romantic comedy in the cannon of black romantic comedy. Great story, great cast, great portrayal of black folk. The others include, “Love Jones,” “Love and Basketball”, “Brown Sugar,” “Something New,” “The Wood,” “The Brothers,” and I will include “Think Like A Man.”

I can’t wait.

Baggage Claim fit the rom com criteria.

Sad girl wants love.

She knowingly or unknowingly along with or without Friends and family hatch a hair-brained scheme to catch a man.

Poor unsuspecting man gets drawn in.

Meets sad, crazy girl, who wants love more than anything else.

He realizes she’s crazy and it all falls apart.

He realizes he can’t live without her and goes chasing after her, or she realizes she can’t live without him…

Basically whoever messed up the most has to run through the airport, train station, opening night, performance, business launch, somebody else’s wedding… etc. to say they were sorry and make up.

Nothing more, nothing less. It wasn’t going to be a groundbreaking glimpse into the dating life of good, black folks doing well for themselves.

And if it was, I wouldn’t feel like watching it. Instead of being funny and light, it would be sad and depressing and I have enough of that in DC in real life.

So lighten up, haters.

Good Hair Days Make Me Feel Like…

I love GIFs.

When people use them properly, they bring massive joy to my life.

Today, I would like to attempt compiling a few GIFs to express how I feel when I successfully did a two-strand flat twist out on my hair. Two-strand flat twist out sounds like something Gabby Douglas would do at the Olympics in the women’s gymnastics all around and scare us all because of the difficulty and danger of the routine.

Gabby Douglas's All-Around Gymnastics Gold In GIFs

I feel especially wonderful that my hair came out great, because it was a technique I never tried, and won’t take insane amounts of time, especially once I’ve mastered it.

I’ve been at work like this most of the day, because I know I’m fine (sans shades).

When I walk, I feel like this…

I look in the mirror and say…

thats good thats damn good

Oh lawd, where is his hairline? Just noticed. I’ma go do his hair too.

Whoo hoo for happy hair days!!!! It’s really a big deal.

 

“Black Don’t Crack, But You Should Start Early, For Only $500…”

I knew I was in trouble when the siren call of the mall was completely drowning out that of the gym during the later hours of work yesterday.

So I listened. After all, the day after tomorrow, I will be in the fabulous city of New Orleans for the Essence Music Festival.

This will be the third time I’m going. I went for the first time in 2005, and then again in 2008.

Let me break this down for you. The Essence Music Festival is always held fourth of July weekend and draws hundreds of thousands of primarily black women from all over.

This straight up is black woman/girlfriends/exhale weekend. It’s a spring break for black chicks with wall-to-wall concerts with the most amazing R&B, neo-soul, jazz and gospel artists on the planet. BeyoncĂ© is headlining. That alone is a reason to go, but I’m foaming at the mouth to see the following artists:

Friday, July 5: Maxwell, Jill Scott, LL Cool J and Brandy will take the mainstage. While Blackstreet, Anthony David, Les Nubians, Emeli Sande, Maya Azucena, Simphiwe Dana, Mali Music, Shamarr Allen and The Underdawgs will perform in the superlounges.

Saturday, July 6: New Edition, Charlie Wilson, Trey Songz, Keyshia Cole and Solange will grace the mainstage. Faith Evans, Bridget Kelly, Big Daddy Kane, F. Stokes, PJ Morton, Jody Watley, Leela James and Avery*Sunshine will rock the superlounges.

Sunday, July 7: Beyoncé, Janelle Monáe and supergroup TGT (Tyrese, Ginuwine and Tank) will storm the mainstage while Rachelle Ferrell, Mia Borders, Mint Condition, Luke James, Daley, Tamia, Kourtney Heart, Greta Prince and Alice Smith perform in the superlounges.

http://www.essence.com/2013/04/04/2013-essence-festival-night-night-concert-schedule-revealed/

Let’s also keep in mind that every year I’ve gone, I’ve gone with dear friends that I really love. We’ve enjoyed the amazing food that only New Orleans can offer (including Brothers chicken, the most amazing chicken you can buy in a convenience store 24 hours for like $3 for a three-piece), the drinks (I will have a hurricane or a hand grenade or both at nearly all times) and just the fun and revelry of being in such a sexy, awesome, historic city.

This year is the first year I won’t be with one of my most fabulous travel partners. I’m going to miss her. Instead, I’m accompanied by some EMF virgins- my college roommate, and two older cousins. These ladies are a lot of fun, so I’m sure they will bring an interesting vibe to all of the festivities.

This will also be the first year I actually spring for nicer seats at the concerts, so it’s going to be cool to enjoy that perk. I had loads of fun in the nosebleeds getting plastered and making friends with the bartender, but it’s nice to take it up a notch in that department.

Because there are droves and droves of women, men make it their business to come and take advantage of women loosening up because they are on vacation and in New Orleans, fueled by liquor and the atmosphere.

I won’t lie. I’ve packed short, shorts, revealing tops and a freakum dress or two. I’m ready to get loose. I’ve got cute flats, breezy summer dresses (truth be told I’ve been shopping for this trip since March.)

But the initial inspiration for today’s post comes from my visit to the mall. A sweet charismatic young lady got me to walk over to her kiosk for high-end, paraben free, mineral make up.

Her presentation was impressive. I did enjoy how the eyeshadow could transform to a lip gloss with just a little bit of water. I was most impressed with the foundation.

I won’t lie. I hate make up and I want things to be as simple as possible. If someone can help me find a foundation, that’s half the battle and that’s why I let her do her thing, and that’s why I forked over the ridiculous amount of money for it. It was light and it did make my skin look great and naturally glowy.

But what killed me was her partner who was giving me a facial with all of this stuff that’s supposed to tighten my face and fight aging. He went on and on about botox and how even at the tender age of 31, the key is to start with all these creams and gels.

“You look great, you look beautiful. But everyone thinks in 20s and 30s they don’t have to start with the creams. In 40s and 50s, you are already too late. You must start now. Black don’t crack right? But you should start early. For $500 I will give you…”

And he starts stacking boxes of so many products, I just couldn’t take it and I knew for damn sure I wasn’t going to spend $500 on any of that mess. I’d buy a new bag or some damn Jimmy Choos before I spend that on those kinds of products. Beauty products are not my drug of choice. They just aren’t.

The women in my family age beautifully. My late aunt was a faithful Oil of Olay user. So I’ma stick to that and my occasional bentonite clay mask.

He can go somewhere with all of that.

AINT NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT, SIR!

So I would like to share a few tips for the newbies.

You need flats. Or wedges you know you are comfy walking or standing in (standing particularly if you hang in the superlounges). Most people walk to the Superdome every night because the weather is awesome, the people watching is great and most people want to burn off the calories from all of the amazing food. Now for the more practical reason. Traffic near and around the Superdome is stupid. You’ll just be sitting in your cab. You’ll get there faster if you walk. If your hotel is in a mile radius, hoof it.

DRINK LOTS OF WATER. I know, you are going to be taking down those hurricanes and hand grenades, but seriously, get you some water, you are going to need it.

Sundresses are the way to go. It’s a music festival, they are cute and sexy and women of all sizes usually look pretty nice in them. You feel better when you catch a breeze. Trying to teeter around in heels or things that are too tight, you are going to end up looking silly as the night goes on, unless you have VIP tickets. Keep it simple.

Buddy system. Ladies, you are grown, but seriously stick with at least one other person in your party at all times. It’s easy to get lost. Put your section number in your phone and text it to yourself. One of my homies came up with the brilliant idea of texting the address and room number of our hotel to herself. I’d suggest that too. The street names can be hard to pronounce anyway and when you are stumbling in with the sun in the a.m. remembering your room number is harder than it looks.

Keep your cell phone charged. For some reason, I remember my service being spotty in the Superdome. But who needs a phone? It’s too loud to talk. Just use it for selfies and cute pics with the homies.

Safe sex. That’s a no-brainer. Let’s keep it real. People relax their standards during these kinds of trips. Wrap it up. No exceptions.

It’s always a good idea to have blotting papers and hand sanitizer. The heat and the nastiness of Burbon street will get all up on ya. It’s nice to be able to freshen up a little.

No large bags. You do not want to be fumbling with a huge handbag. Get yourself a cute, small cross body or a wristlet with just enough room your id, cash, cards, room key, phone, lip gloss and blotting papers and hand sanitizer.

Carry a little cash. The restaurants are packed. If you and your party pay in cash you can get the hell out a lot faster. Also if you pay in cash, you may be able to haggle with the fantastic street vendors for art and various things. Now, I’ve never managed to make it to the convention center, but this year, I plan to check out the day time events over there. It should be pretty cool. So I don’t have tips for that.

Oh yes! The superdome is freezing. A cute cardi is a must.

So if you’re going, have a fantastic and safe time! It’s going to be amazing!!!

xoxox

 

 

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