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Archive for the tag “Olivia Pope”

People Don’t Dress Up Anymore, All They Do Is This…

I just read an awesome article from the Huffington Post titled, “7 Ways Your Grandmother Dressed Better Than You.” It was so freaking on point and so true.

The list basically talks about how our foremothers were serious about the proper undergarments and proper fit of their clothing. It also discussed how because clothes were so expensive for everyone, knowing how to sew was a must among most American women of that generation. (Do they even have home economics anymore?)

That is totally a thing of the past unless a child has the fashion bug, and wants to be a designer and seeks out their very first sewing machine on their own. As an 80s baby, I had an Easy Bake Oven and I had a for real operational kid’s sewing machine. I feel like my generation was the last to be made to go to home economics, but honestly, when I can hem my pants or sew buttons for a boyfriend, it makes me feel like a hot commodity.

I actually want to take sewing lessons and learn how to make some things myself. It wasn’t uncommon back in the day for the older women of the neighborhood or some older person in your family to make a new baby a blanket, a christening outfit, prom dress or wedding dress.

The way things are now, I bet for most young women the first time they’ve ever worn tailored clothing is if they are a bride’s maid in someone’s wedding. There was a friend of mine a short thang who said she always had to get her pants and jeans tailored.

Tailoring! I had forgotten all about it. So when my jeans that fit right everyplace else but were too long and dragging on the ground, I realized, stupid, you can get these tailored!!!

It doesn’t even cross one’s mind and that’s sad. But as the article points out, what is the point of a good tailoring job if the fabrics are cheap and practically disposable anyway?

I didn’t realize how much we as a society, in America don’t dress up until a few years ago, my dad, who is quite stylish, visited me and we went out to dinner. He had on a button up shirt, slacks and blazer. I wore a dress. But all around us, people were wearing jeans.

My dad shook his head. To him dining out was an experience, therefore you dress up. I agree with him, although I eat out with my friends ALOT and I tend to be a jeans wearer, a lot of times, I do like to turn it up a notch and look like it’s a special occasion.

Then the last few times I’ve gone to the Kennedy Center for performances, I noticed that there were old school folks who dressed to the nines, like myself and others in….jeans.

In my opinion, the Kennedy Center is too beautiful to not show up looking your best. It’s one of my favorite places to go, because it feels so grand. But I guess the general consensus is you are sitting in the dark and no one will see you any way or you aren’t the one on stage.

We’ve gotten way too casual and it’s sad. I do think people feel better about themselves and hold themselves to a higher standard when they dress up for certain events and are expected to. There’s an increased level of civility. I know I walk with my head higher, I have better posture. What’s even worse is when you do go out for an event and everyone says, “Wow, you’re really dressed up.”

Actually, you’re way too casual. I love looking at blogs with street style in Europe and seeing how people in Milan and Paris turn everyday places into runways with a certain style and sophistication.

But here in the land of the free, home of the hamburger, we’ve gotten sloppy and slutty.

I’ll admit, I have moments I pull out a freakum dress or short shorts, but every occasion doesn’t call for that. I’ve been to weddings where people wore flip-flops (they are acceptable and smart during the reception only) and funerals where people wore jeans and tee shirts. (At hood funerals if said tee-shirt has a photo of the deceased, I’ll allow it).

Why can’t we even honor those moments with being well-dressed. We’ve gotten lazy as a society. “Clothes don’t represent who I am.” “I shouldn’t be judged by what I wear.” “People should accept me for who I am.”

I’m old school. I think people should dress nicely for church and I rarely wear pants to church, and if I do they are dress slacks, because that’s how I was raised. It’s not about showing off, or acting like wearing the best clothes is a status symbol or I want to be seen, but I want to respect myself and the occasion. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that or it makes me a dinosaur.

So hell yes, our grandparents dressed better. People may have been poorer or had less education, but they had way more class and self-respect. They had expectations and because they knew how to stretch pennies and make things happen, they knew how to cook and sew and fix things, we benefitted greatly, but it made us lazy.

Eartha Kitt photographed by Gordon Parks as she was being fitted for a dress by a woman who I am 99.9% sure is none other than the pioneering fashion designer Zelda Wynn Valdes in 1952.

Photo from blackvintageglamour.tumblr.com The amazing Eartha Kitt and her almighty seamstress.

Percy Verwayne (1895-1968) was the original Sportin’ Life in the 1927 Broadway DuBose and Dorothy Heyward play, “Porgy,” the precursor to the iconic 1935 George Gershwin opera “Porgy and Bess.” Mr. Verwayne was born in British Guiana (now Guyana) and appeared on Broadway, on radio and in several films for at least thirty years, but he was best known in his day for originating the role of Sportin’ Life. He was also a former athlete and that came in handy in 1941 when he was robbed of 75 cents by a very unwise 18-year-old within two blocks of his Harlem home at 400 West 128th street. The incident was gleefully reported in the New York Amsterdam News on August 9, 1941 under the headline, “Mugger Gets Wrong Victim.” According to the paper, when the mugger tried to run away, “Verwayne chased him for a block, grabbed him by the seat of his trousers and socked him into submission. When the cops arrived, Verwayne was in complete control of the situation.” I’ll bet he was… haha! Photo: New York Public Library, Billy Rose Theater Collection.

Now that’s bespoke. Photo from blackvintageglamour.tumblr.com

And now this is what we have today…

Rihanna Getty Images via Huffington Post.

So, I think deep down we want to dress awesomely. Aside from the storylines, people LIVE for the fashion of shows like “Mad Men,” “Sex and the City,” and most recently, “Scandal” because of the clothes, and the fit of the clothes. I am among a whole lot of people who created pinterest boards based on the fabulous Olivia Pope.

Folks aren’t just salivating over her steamy love scenes, but whilst live tweeting, you see folks going crazy over her coats, and amazingly chic clothing she wears sitting on the couch with her red wine.

http://scandalmoments.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/oliviapopefashionallsaintsepisode5scandalseason2.png?w=620

Photo from scandalmoments.com Please see the wonder that is Olivia Pope in all of her fashionable glory. God, this show.

One of my personal faves. Grandmother would be proud, Liv.

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Photo: Scandalmoments.com

Kyle Barker Returns, Again

A situation that took place yesterday kind of starts out the way the guy from the barbershop in Coming to America tells his story about meeting Dr. Martin Luther, the kang.

Clarence: “One day, I was walking down the street, just walking along, feeling good. I walk around a corner, A man walk up, hit me in the chest. I fall on the ground, right. And I look up and it’s Dr. Martin Luther King. I said ‘Dr. King?’ and he said ‘Ooops, I thought you were some body else.’ ”
Sweets: Oh man, you lyin’. You ain’t never met Martin Luther the King.
Clarence: Knocked the wind out of me, yes he did.
Sweets: No, he didn’t.
Clarence: Yes, he did.
Sweets: No, he did not!

Well. No, someone did not hit me in the chest after I walked around the corner, but it felt that way. And I was left feeling like the wind was knocked out of me, just the same.

I was rushing off to the metro near my job, to meet up with friends in DC after work. I looked great, felt great, like my friend Clarence and all of a sudden, I hear a man cat-calling me.

I’m grown. I aint got time for that. So then, the voice yells my name.

I twist around to see where this is coming from.

Lo and behold, it’s Kyle Barker.

Damn. Dressed like Harrison from Scandal (Always has. He’s been wearing gingham dress shirts for ages. I joke with him and call them picnic basket and graph paper shirts), looking so good and smiling that million dollar smile.

Oh he has a great smile.

So, I smile say hello. He asks me what I’m doing here and I tell him that I work nearby. He’s shocked because basically he works in the building across the street from me. He asks me how long have I been working in that building, and I tell him rolling my eyes, six years.

So we laugh at the coincidence. He asks me where I am going and tells me to hop in and allow him to drop me off to the metro. He has to switch out of the turning lane to get back toward the Metro, but he does. As we get closer, I tell him where he can drop me and he says, no, he wants to wait for another car to move out of the way to keep me in the car longer. I laugh him off and switch subjects.

I ask him if he’s still djaying and to let me know when he’s having the next gig. “Maybe I’ll grace the place with my face,” I said playfully.

“And your ass too?”

“And my ass too.”

He tells me he likes my hair and continues to look at me like a desert cart. I’m taking in the view myself. Damn, sir. Trying to fight instant flashbacks of old, naughty behavior, I’m calm, I’m cool. However if he saw or felt what was going on in my panties, I would have been a goner. My cover completely blown.

The sun was shining, I had on an amazing, super flattering Ann Taylor dress. It was, the peeerfect moment you pray for to have the man who pisses you off yet, curls your toes see you. I mean, I would have never calculated that moment for myself so well.

I was laughing at the irony. Kyle Barker hadn’t really crossed my mind. And BOOM. There he is.

Fine.

But before I drifted into my primitive thoughts and had Ciara’s “Body Party” playing in my head on repeat, upon entering his vehicle, the smell of stale weed met me in his car. I had to laugh about that too. He’s fine, he’s smart, he’s educated and has a good job, but him and that damn weed.

I used to smell it on him and taste it on his lips, back in the day. But I didn’t care, not one frigging bit. He put it all the way down.

I was having an Olivia Pope moment. He’s my Fitz. He’s my Mr. Big. No matter where I go, or what I do, I can’t seem to escape his draw. The magnatism.

He makes me primitave. It’s intense, the desire. He’s no good.

We’ve gone over this numerous times on this blog. No good. But uh, uh, uh. He’s fine.

So we make a little more small talk, I keep it short. Got places to be. I bid him adieu. So he purposely says the corny line, like, “I hate to see you leave, but I love seeing you walk away.”

I laughed, and casually said, “Thanks for the ride, darlin.” And stomped off like a true G.

And like a true G, I never turned around to look back at him in the car.

Yes, hunty! Go in and let have! I was giving it everythang, strutting to the Metro like he didn’t phase me. (Inside, I wanted to straddle him in the car. I need Jesus. For real.)

Oh rapturous fabulousness!

And in honor of our ridiculous fauxlationship, Wale’s Bad. Shout out to Olivia and Fitz and Olivia and Jake… Bad girl…

Since I mentioned Body Party, why not?

I’ve Got A Feeling…

There are folks who always talk about speaking things into existence. I believe in this.

There are folks who swear by vision boards.

I too believe in this.

There are folks who say getting off your butt and being proactive and doing everything you can think to do to get whatever endeavor off the ground is essential.

I’m down with that 100 percent.

Folks also say to attain something you want, you have to take a risk and just step out on faith.

More folks say, if you stay calm, be positive and concentrate on giving to others and showing love, karma is going to come back to you.

We all know now, that I’ve been going through some professional changes, pay decrease, new company ownership, blah, blah.

I’ve mentioned that how all of this madness has made me really reevaluate what’s important to me, my definition of success and how I just want to be a better person who can be content with working with what she’s got until she can get a little more.

I was thrown a nice little life jacket of hope when a dream job called me back for a preliminary HR screening yesterday.

I was left feeling a little bit worried because they only asked me two questions– my salary requirement and my availability for work.

When they asked if I had any questions, I tried my best to ask some intelligent questions to really show my interest in such a great opportunity.

I mentioned a short list of things that people believe will help you get you what you want.

I think over this last week, I’ve been doing all of them in some way shape or form.

Last week, I stepped out on faith and I purchased a suit. I said, screw it. I’m going to buy a suit, because if someone calls me for an interview, I want to be ready and I want to feel confident. I tried on a cheap suit that looked ok, and I tried on a more expensive suit which made me feel like Kerry Washington’s character on Scandal, Olivia Pope.

While wearing my Olivia Pope suit, I turned and looked at the more economically friendly $40 option, said hell no, and purchased that Tahari. I dare anyone to tell me no, while rocking that thing. Olivia Pope does not accept no. Hell, I’m such a fan, I really have a pinterest board devoted to good-looking, non-boxy, ugly suits and Kerry Washington as her Scandal persona showing us how to rock a power suit right and still look like a lady.

The getting off my butt part, was just straight up spending evenings applying and looking and asking people if they knew of any leads.

The giving part is when I saw jobs that didn’t seem right for me, I sent them to other people, I offered myself as a reference, and I’ve even provided online recommendations on job sites for people I’ve worked with.

Seriously, I devoted entire prayers to praying for other people.

When my friends talked about things they were going through, I listened.

I just listened and thought to myself, so many people are going through so much. I want them all to get the desires of their hearts if that desire leads them to where they are supposed to be. I really felt other people’s pain, and thanked God for the blessings I did have.

Maybe doing these things opened me up.

I still have to wait to hear if I got the interview. They only want to see four people and right now they are whittling  6-10 candidates down to the four.

This job seems like the perfect fit. It blends things I am passionate about, which reminds me of speaking things into existence.

I was talking with someone maybe two weeks ago. I said, at this point in my career, I want to be financially comfortable, able to go on vacation twice a year, occasionally splurge on shoes or a spa treatment. But I also want to incorporate my skills as a writer/editor into something that involves advocacy and doing something for people. I haven’t been able to work in the advocacy area where I can see real change, real progress and people being helped.

Let’s just say, the more I research the organization I hope to be interviewing with in the coming weeks, the more my heart wants to jump out of my chest. I actually BELIEVE in what these people are doing and I can’t wait to work for them, use my talents and start helping folks while doing it.

I’m asking God for this chance and not to dangle it in front of me to only yank it away for some abstract reason I have to figure out six months from now. I’m guessing me interviewing and not getting a certain job earlier this year could mean, He was setting up this even better opportunity for me, right now? Yes? Maybe?

But I’m also thanking God for the confidence that phone call gave me to move forward and the proof that I have what it takes. Someone is going to want me in this crazy market.

I’m also praying for the maturity to accept whatever happens if I get the job and especially if I don’t get the job…

But I won’t front, I REALLY, REALLY WANT THIS JOB!

I really believe in my heart, I’m being led somewhere. And I’ve felt it for a long time, even when things started getting more crazy at my current job… and if the path is going where I think it’s headed, with this potential position on the horizon, all I can say is. WOW.

Love this inspirational song. Karen Clark Sheard, Missy Elliot, Yolanda Adams and Mary Mary. If that power combo doesn’t inspire you… Higher Ground.

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