Friday, October 31, 2008
Happy Halloween Everyone!
In the spirit of Halloween and the 25th Anniversary of Michael Jackson's Thriller, I couldn't let the day go by without posting the best video of all time!
Say what you want to say about Michael Jackson, but that video was the SHIZNIT! I just knew I was going to marry this man after I saw this video - yes, at 10 years old! I knew how to do this dance with PRECISION! I would sit in front of the TV ALL DAY watching MTV waiting for them to play this video. And then once it started, I would get in position, wait for the dance break and then rock out! Anyone who is an 80's kid like me knows exactly what I'm talking about! Tell me you didn't have the Thriller jacket?! This album is 25 years old, and a classic. Timeless!
Tonight I'm going with my sister to take my nephews trick-or-treating. Kyce is going to be dressed up as a Power Ranger and Ibrahim is going to be a baby dinosaur :) I can't wait to see my boobadoos!
If you're going out to any Halloween parties tonight, BE SAFE! I'm talking to YOU Rene! And if you're dressing up in a costume, hit me up and let me know what you're dressing up as!
Have fun, be safe and have a great weekend!
p.s. If you don't think Thriller was the best video of all time, leave me a comment telling me your choice for best video ever. Thriller is hard to beat!
Thursday, October 30, 2008
It's Thursday and I still have this dang cold! If anyone has a remedy for me, please comment and let me know. I'm hacking up a lung over here...not sexy AT ALL!
Anyway - Amanda, Leesa, Peggy, Sandee, Annamaria and I have been emailing each other all morning about our little idiosyncrasies. I have several pet peeves and OCD issues and I found out that I'm not the only one :-) So today's blog will be light and easy, mostly because I don't have the brain power to write anything profound today.
What are your pet peeves, weird issues or just plain wacky traits that most people would find interesting to know about you?
My main pet peeve is in the clip below:
I think I mentioned this before, but I HATE HATE HATE hearing people pop their gum. Drives me insane. If I'm on the train and someone is in the same car as I am popping gum, I have to move to another car or blast my iPod so I don't hear it. Seriously, I'm ready to rip someone's lips off when I hear them popping gum. I know it may not be that deep to some people, but to me, it's like someone is ripping my fingernails out one by one - pure torture!
A weird phobia I have is falling down the steps. I'm terrified of that happening to me. I can't remember the last time I fell down some steps, probably happened when I was a kid. But you'd never know it. You'd think I fell down the steps yesterday the way I am with steps. And it's any steps. Porch steps. Subway train steps. Steps in my sister's house. Steps in my building at work. ANY STEPS! Every time I go down the steps I have to literally ENVISION myself making it down the steps safely. Yes, I know, very strange....but TRUE.
And it's not just me I'm worried about falling down steps. If I see someone trip up or down a flight of steps, my heart stops. I have to stop in my tracks and make sure they're okay. Once my nephew fell down a flight of steps and I cried. I couldn't stop shaking for like 15 minutes. He just got up, shook it off and was running around like nothing happened - meanwhile I'm a nervous wreck. I have no idea what it is about steps. But it is what it is.
I have several:
I have to brush each quadrant of my mouth for AT LEAST 2 minutes when brushing my teeth.
I like nuts, but can't eat anything with nuts in them - ice cream, M&M's, etc.
I like the taste of kiwi, but can't eat it because the hair on the fruit skeeves me out.
I have OCD about wiping down equipment at the gym.
I could go on and on forever about all my little peculiar habits, but I'm more interested in hearing yours. Leave a comment and let me know what your pet peeves are or what strange behavior/issues you have. This is going to be interesting!
Have a great day!
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Happy Hump Day!
Thank you to everyone who sent me their get-well wishes. I was sick yesterday and I'm still feeling a bit under the weather today, but I'm back....at least for now anyway!
Today, the word of the day is Zeitgeist.
Zeitgeist (pronounced tsīt'gīst) is a German language expression literally translated: Zeit, time; Geist, spirit, meaning "the spirit of the age and its society". The word zeitgeist describes the intellectual, cultural, ethical and political climate of an era or also a trend.
In 1769 Herder wrote a critique of the work Genius seculi by the philologist Christian Adolph Klotz and introduced the word Zeitgeist into German as a translation of genius seculi (Latin: genius - "guardian spirit" and saeculi - "of the century").
Now that you've all had your vocabulary lesson for the day, let me tell you why I chose this word. I believe Barack Obama is zeitgeist - the "guardian spirit of the century." I believe he personifies our collective consciousness to the shared beliefs and moral attitudes which will serve as a unifying force within our country. He is that movement. His time is now.
Spike Lee agrees - watch this clip. Don't be turned off by the sports talk at first (that is if you aren't a Knicks fan :-) - watch the clip. He begins to speak of the election, Barack Obama and the impact he's had on all Americans with his message of Change and bringing us all together at about 2:15 in:
I think I said this in one of my earlier blogs - God has a hand in this too. With the election less than a week away, I feel my spirit rising. The spirit of a nation is rising. That spirit has been alive and active throughout America's history, and now the spirit of this nation is at a crucial stage in our history again. Not just this country's history, but world history. The realization of Barack Obama's zeitgeist is about to manifest. Our world is about to be changed.
It's Zeitgeist. It's Divine Order. I believe the spirit of a people, the spirit of a nation, will spill over to become a UNIVERSAL SPIRIT. Just as in the rising of the sun, the changing of the tides and the spinning of the Earth - Barack Obama's zeitgeist follows the pattern of the universe.
One week from today, we will be taking delight in God's manifestation of Divine Order at work. Barack Obama's purpose will be perfect in it's time and place in our lives - his zeitgeist supremely evident and nothing short of miraculous!
Vote November 4th!
Monday, October 27, 2008
It's Monday. I have a very bad cold. And my heart is aching for Jennifer Hudson and her family. I'm sure by now you all have heard about the shooting deaths of Jennifer Hudson's mother and brother. And now reports are coming in that the body of a little boy believed to be Jennifer Hudson's nephew was found in an SUV. To say that I'm saddened by all of this is an understatement. This tragedy is any one's worst nightmare come true. Please send up some prayers for her and their family.
What I don't understand - what I'm sure NONE of us can understand - is how anyone can hurt, let alone MURDER, a child. It's unfathomable. Just this past weekend, a mother in Brooklyn admitted to beating her 11 year old daughter to death. She beat her so badly, the broomstick she used to hit her had broken in two. This woman already had one child taken away from her and placed in foster care because she attacked her - pulled a chunk of her hair out. In addition to the 11 year old, she has three other children ages 1, 3 and 6. Why did they not remove ALL of the children? If the mother is a danger to one child, shouldn't she be deemed a danger to them all? I don't get it.
And this morning, as I brushed my teeth and listened to the news on tv, I heard that a 2 week old baby was found dead in the mother's Brooklyn apartment - no one knows what happened. Two other children were removed from the home.
What the hell is going on?
I can see going off on another adult. I can see an adult getting so angry in a fit of blind rage or jealousy that you strike another adult person. I can see wanting to hurt another adult who threatened or did something to your family. I'm not saying I condone it, not in the least. But I can see how one adult can carry out an act of violence against another adult.
But a child? An 11 year old? A 2 week old baby?
If a person can harm a child, he or she is either incredibly mentally unstable, or simply a monster who has a special place in hell designated just for them.
I just don't get it.
But then again, only crazy understands crazy, so maybe it's not meant for you or I to understand.
Just pray for them.
All we can do is try our best to protect the children - our children, your children, every one's children. Try to pay attention to the kids around you. They said the 11 year old had bruises and scabs all over her body. I wonder if that's something someone could have noticed? Listen to them, mentor them. Sometimes the signs are there, sometimes not.
I'm convinced more can and should be done. There is no reason children should be dying, especially at the hands of their own parents, the ones who are supposed to be loving and protecting them. The present belongs to us. We can do more to save them.
Take a moment today and send a prayer up for these families. Pray for their peace. There seems to be nothing more unnatural than burying a child. But birth is not the beginning of life, just as death isn't the end. God has them now. Those children are resting in the arms in the Lord, cuddled in His spirit and sleeping in His grace.
Take a moment.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Okay, now normally I wouldn't do this, but as D.L. Hughley said, "let's keep the party goin!"
The nipple kiss stealin', down low tinglin', neck huggin', thigh strokin', lip bitin', heart poundin' The Fury has challenged me to give you all intimate access into my world and share 7 random facts about myself. He knows a lot of intimate things about me already - sexy beast that he is - but I'll keep this G rated even though we're all grown :)
Here are the rules:
-Thou shalt link to your tagger and list these rules on your blog.
-Thou shalt share 7 facts about yourself on your blog - some random, some weird.
-Thou shalt tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blog.
-And let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
Here are my 7:
1) I write erotic poetry - which is probably why I was tagged by The Fury - mmmmm, makes me think of Peaches and Plums (damned HHB!)
2) I know the movie The Color Purple word for word and cry EACH AND EVERY SINGLE TIME I watch it.
3) I can make a SLAMMIN cheesecake!
4) I get debilitating migraines - triggered by heat, cold, the smell of Happy perfume and the taste of coconut.
5) I'm ADDICTED to Snapple - especially the "Half Lemonade-Half Iced Tea" one.
6) I have to have surgery on BOTH of my knees! and I think I have a hairline fracture in my hand. I'm just falling apart!
7) I have a crush on my boxing instructor - but he's married :-( I think I hurt my hand sparring with him - sexy bastard!
Well, that's it - nothing crazy!
This is for The Fury :
did you feel that...
or is it just in my head?
here they come again
tremors are so strong
got my fingers shaking
over my qwerty board
vibrations of your inner sexy
so wild and untamed
before I try to calm the storm
cloud, please rain on me
the grace of your presence
in my life bears no fruit
and time refuses to reconcile
with what I've done
but I'm still waiting in the thirst of your love...
Tag! You're it!
Rene The Harlemite - who always has a funny, fly clip of the day!
Anthony Taurus - have no idea who he is, but found him on Rene's blog
Raw Dawg Buffalo - he visited my blog and gave me love
Scene & Heard - Tanika Ray's blog on Essence.com for all your entertainment news!
Lipstick or Fruit Punch - Rene shouted her out in his "Blogs, Blogs, Blogs" post.
Super Hussy - cool site.
Javon - his blogs are off the chain and sometimes just straight nasty, but always entertaining...love him!
She's got her own thing, that's why I love her.
There's something about her.
I hear this song no fewer than 3 times every morning while I'm getting ready for work. This seems to be some sort of new anthem and women love it!
She's everything I need.
I am surrounded by independent women who are phenomenal in every way. They're intelligent, articulate, cultured, ambitious, determined, devoted women. They do it all. They're daughters, mothers, sisters, aunties, wives, business women and mentors. They take care of themselves and everyone else, all while they handle their business.
And a lot of them...are single.
Where are the NeYo's that love them?
She'll break my heart, there's no doubt about it.
Are men afraid of independent women? Is a better word "intimidated" by them? Most men I know love NeYo's song because they say they love a woman who isn't needy. I get that. Neediness is not sexy on a man OR a woman.
But I can't help but think that there are also a lot of men and women out there who want to feel needed from time to time. They don't want someone who is SO independent that they feel they have no place in their lives. How do we navigate that balance of feeling needed, without that neediness turning into dependence?
It's a fine line.
She says "don't worry I got it."
Some women who are independent sometimes downplay that independence as to not "scare off" some men who may be intimidated by them. Others wear it as a badge of honor to attract the NeYo's out there who are not only attracted to independent women, but are secure enough in themselves to be in a relationship with a woman who doesn't need them for anything but love.
But you have to be careful how you flash that independence. My girlfriends have told me of men who claim to love that they assert their independence, only to use it as an excuse for why they never take them out, why they simply come over, eat all of their food, drink all of their Cranberry-Grape juice, and "lay up." They curse the man who says "you got this right?" when the bill comes because they assume since you are an independent woman, you can pick up the check every time at dinner.
It's a fine line.
Personally, I have no problem spooning on the couch, eating popcorn watching movies. I'm a independent woman who is also a homebody. But at the same time, I'd like to spontaneously suggest we hit up a play, check out a movie, or try out a new restaurant at a moment's notice. Independent women want know that if they make an impromptu suggestion, not only is the man up for it, but he could contribute if the situation calls for it. I don't think women mind picking up the tab for a man they're feeling and who's feeling them, treating him every once in a while. But if every time the waiter comes, he's like "you go Miss Independent!" then that's something different. That's lazy. That's selfish. That's just plain wack!
I say all this to say - WOMEN - be who you are. Pay your bills on time. Continue to be a superstar at work. Give back to your community. Have girl nights with your friends. Be the most intelligent, hard working woman you can be. Pamper yourself. Rely on yourself to take care of yourself. Be open. Take a man out to dinner. Let him be the man. But, like anything else in relationships, keep your eyes open. Be smart.
MEN - appreciate an independent woman when you meet her. Don't be intimidated by her - she needs you, just in different ways. Bring over dinner and dessert when you go to her house for a Blockbuster night. Or bring the entertainment, don't just "be" the entertainment. Treat her like a lady. Don't take her for granted. After all, she's independent and she knows it. It won't take her long to figure it out :-)
The point is, strike a balance. We can all be independent when it comes to finances, our career or our possessions. But we all need love. We need companionship. We need friendship. We need each other.
And if a man says you're too much woman for him, thank him for his honesty and keep it moving. Chances are he won't say that though. After all, that's why he loves you! :-)
For all my independent women out there:
MY NAME, MY GAME, MY REIGN, MY FAME
MY NERVE, MY CURVES, MY WORDS, MY URGE
MY BILLS, MY SKILLS, MY THRILLS,
ME YOU WANNA FEEL,
MY JUST KEEPING IT REAL :-)
MY EYES, MY RISE, MY THIGHS
TELL NO LIES
MY RAISE, MY WAYS, MY SWAYS, AND
MY NEVER ENDING PRAISE
MY MOODS, MY NEWS, MY GROOVES, AND
MY SAPPHIRE MUSE
MY WAKE UP WITHOUT MAKE-UP AND
I STILL LOOK GOOD!
CAN YOU HANDLE IT?
OR AM I JUST TOO MUCH WOMAN FOR YOU?
MY FASHION, MY PASSION, MY COMPASSION AND MY EVERLASTING
MY YEARN, MY LEARN, MY EARN AND
I KNOW I CAN BURN!
MY INTELLIGENCE, MY DILIGENCE,
MY ENDURANCE AND MY HUMBLE EXISTENCE
IF YOU CAN'T HANDLE IT, I UNDERSTAND
I'M JUST TOO MUCH WOMAN FOR YOU
THE TASTE OF MY SAUCE, THE COST TO BE THE BOSS,
MY RHYTHM, SWEET RHYTHM
MY MIND, MY STRIDE - MY MOTION, MY DEEP OCEAN
MY SWEETNESS, MY FIRMNESS,
MY TAKE AWAY YOUR BREATHNESS!
NOT SURE IF YOU CAN'T HANDLE IT,
I MIGHT JUST BE TOO MUCH WOMAN FOR YOU
MY SEXINESS, MY RESTLESSNESS,
MY CAN'T GET ENOUGHNESS
MY ROLL, MY STROLL,
MY NEED TO BE IN CONTROL
MY FACE, MY TASTE, MY RACE,
MY SOMETIMES DESIRE FOR SPACE
NOT EVERYONE CAN HANDLE IT,
CUZ I'M TOO MUCH WOMAN FOR YOU
MY MATURITY, MY AGILITY, MY CIVILITY AND MY ABILITY
TO BOUNCE BACK JUST LIKE THAT
MY INDIVIDUALITY, MY SEXUALITY
MY SPIRITUALITY AND
MY STRONG SENSE OF REALITY
IF YOU CAN'T HANDLE IT, JUST MOVE ON
IT'S NOT YOUR FAULT -
I'M JUST TOO MUCH WOMAN FOR YOU
MY STYLE AND MY GRACE,
MY CUTE SMILE WHILE MAINTAINING MY PACE
MY MOTHER WIT, I'M A SUPER CHICK!
MY RISE WITH IT, CHECK YOU WHEN YOU THROW A FIT
MY KNOWING HOW A LADY SHOULD PROPERLY SIT
MY BREASTS, MY NEST, MY MUCH-NEEDED REST, MY DRESS FOR SUCCESS,
MY NEED TO BE THE BEST,
THE STANDARDS I HAVE SET FOR ALL THE REST
I'M SURE YOU CAN HANDLE IT, JUST GIVE IT A TRY
ARE YOU AFRAID I'M TOO MUCH WOMAN FOR YOU?
THE MELANIN IN MY SKIN,
THE SARCASM IN MY GRIN
THE REALITY THAT IN THE END
I WILL WIN
BUT HEY - IF YOU CAN'T HANDLE IT,
JUST SIMPLY MOVE ON
AFTER ALL, I HAVE BEEN SAYIN'
I MAY JUST BE TOO MUCH WOMAN FOR YOU ;-)
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Happy Hump Day!
so yes....I feel cute today.
Not because I have on a fly outfit. Not because I have on make-up. Not because my hair is bouncing and behaving (even though it is today for some reason).
Wanna know why I feel cute today?
MY TEETH ARE SO WHITE!!! LOL!!
I went to the dentist yesterday and had my teeth cleaned. Something about having my teeth cleaned makes me feel good. I guess because the first thing I notice on a person is their smile. Then their eyes...then their skin. I guess I'm a face person :)
One of my best friends, Valerie, got an awesome haircut last week. Every strand moved with precision. It framed her face flawlessly. She's already beautiful, but this cut accentuated her features to the point where she almost looked like a whole new person. She said I should get a new cut, get a makeover. Maybe I should. We'll see. I think she was trying to tell me something :-)
She also said, "I feel that a woman's hair is her crown. When your hair looks good, everything looks good."
I know a lot of women agree with that statement. Amanda and Leesa get their hair done every Thursday like clockwork. I could be like "come over, Oprah Winfrey is sitting in my living room!" and they'd be like "nah, gotta get my hair did, but tell O I said what's up!" Yes, they are THAT serious about it! And their hair always looks FIERCE!
I WISH I was that serious about my hair. Hair just doesn't do it for me. Don't get me wrong, I try not to walk out the house looking like HoBo Scratch with my hair all over my head. But if it comes down to getting my hair done or seeing a great movie, I'm at the movies. For me, hair is not my crown. I think a person's crown is whatever makes you feel good about yourself. Your crown could be anything.
Personally, I feel most beautiful when my skin is glowing, when my eyebrows are shaped and my teeth are clean and bright white! A good manicure and pedicure make me feel lovely too. I guess since my smile, my skin and my hands are what I get complimented on most, that is what I focus on. I try to accentuate the positive.
So many times women focus on what they DON'T like about themselves. Men do it too, but you don't hear about it as much. Women are always saying "I'm too fat," "My ass is flat," "I have thunder thighs," "I'm a member of the "itty bitty titty committee."
We all have something we'd love to change about ourselves. In my case, I have several. But instead of fixating on what I don't like, I'm trying to zero in on what I love about myself and nurture those things everyday. Sometimes it doesn't work - but today, it's working overtime!
But with all this talk about hair and teeth and skin and nails, where true beauty comes is from within. Beauty is a mindset. It's a state of being. Beauty is having a positive outlook on life. It's having a loving heart. It's having a gentle spirit. Beauty is being kind to people. It's a warm smile to someone who may need it. It's staying true to yourself. Beauty is loving God and letting HIS light shine through.
Whatever is, is beautiful, simply for existing. There is beauty in all of us. We just have to let it out.
Tell me my sexy menz and women, what makes you feel beautiful?
Friday, October 17, 2008
As Marty from the movie Madagascar would say, "What's crackalackin!?"
(can you tell I spent A LOT of time with my nephews this past weekend?)
Anyway, today's blog came to me by way of...you guessed it....Amanda. For those of you who don't know her, she's a dear friend of mine - not my secret lesbian lover that some of you have personally asked me or insinuated via email! Not that there's anything wrong with being a lesbian...but I'm strictly....well, you know.
ahem....like I was saying :-)
I hadn't heard Beyonce's new song or seen the video, so Amanda sent it to me with the subject line "yeah...exactly." Now that was her inside joke way of asking "who does this remind you of?" If you haven't seen the video for "If I Were a Boy," take a look and then we'll get into it.
I'm sure all women (and men) have been in relationships with people who didn't respect them in that relationship.
When I watched this video, the first thing that came to my mind was a line spoken by Shug Avery from The Color Purple. She said "I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it. Everything want to be loved. Us sing and dance....trying to be loved."
Shug also said "God love admiration." Celie asked her if God was vain. She said "nah, not vain, just wanting to share a good thing."
I think that's how we feel in our relationships. We want to be admired. We want to share the good in us with one another. We want to be validated. We want to be seen. We want to be heard. We want to feel like we matter in our relationships. When the person who is supposed to love and respect us doesn't, it can be the worst feeling in the world.
Love without respect isn't worth much. It isn't worth much of anything really. We can "love" anyone in our own special way. But without respect, what we're really saying is "I don't care how this hurts you," "I don't care how this affects you," "Your feelings don't matter to me." Saying you love someone means nothing if your actions don't support it. Respect is loving even when you want to be unkind. Love is a verb. It's an action. It moves us.
Once you truly love AND respect someone, you instinctually become aware of their force in your life and the unity it creates. You can't ever forget it. It becomes a part of you and everything you do. Finding unity in variety, finding those likenesses, finding a pattern becomes second nature to you. Once you have found that key, that clue, that path, nothing or no one should be able to steer you from it.
But if you find that you are not on the same path, that there are NOT ENOUGH likenesses, that you CAN'T find that rhythm, or there isn't enough variety in your unity to sustain you, be HONEST about it. Let each other go so that you CAN find that path with the right person, should that be what you are seeking.
Keeping someone on your path when you clearly want to go in a different direction is selfish. It's mean-spirited. It's abuse.
Honor the other person, even if the love is gone. There is no rule that says if your heart has moved or if the connection is lost that you have to hold onto something that no longer exists or holds true. However, respect should always remain. It's important that we learn to communicate honestly about our needs, our likes and dislikes and letting the other person know our feelings. We also need to remind ourselves that we brought them into our lives for a reason. Our challenge is to be open to discovering the parts of ourselves that the other person mirrors in us, and then see how we learn and grow from that person - what they teach us, how they inspire us, and then, when we no longer complement each other - to let them go but to keep the lessons.
Make a conscious decision to face the differences between you with courage, with honesty and with respect. Appreciate the actor or actress in your life, even if you don't like the role he/she is playing in your movie. Release them so they can star in someone else's film and let them shine and your movie can be a success with someone else :-)
Speaking of actresses, I gave all of my female friends a chance to become someone else when I posed the question to them: "If I were a boy, I'd_____________."
Now before all my male friends get their boxers in a bunch, I will pose the same question to you for another blog...maybe tomorrow's :-)
But for TODAY, these are the answers I received from my lady friends who want to send a message to the menzes :-)
If I were a boy, I'd :
- cheat today, dry your tears tomorrow, and next week act like it never happened.
- be a complete gentleman and I would court the women I date.
- be a drag queen cause i love being a girl!!! lol
- call when I say I would or not even waste your time.
- be man enough to tell you why things didn't work out instead of you never hearing from me
- be running the world by now.
- stop trying to feed you stupid ass, insulting lies
- let you know that you’re important to me
- make you feel safe
- keep you smiling
- make sure you want for nothing
- always remain faithful
- make you feel wanted
- work on becoming a man
I think men and women want the same things...but if my man friends would like to answer the question - "If I were a girl, I'd________", then please email your responses to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks and have a blessed day!!
I hope everyone had a GREAT weekend! I had a wonderful one personally, as I spent it with my family in Philly. They just got back from over a month long vacation in Morocco and Italy and I couldn't wait to play with my nephews!
I am also giddy about the fact that I paid $2.55 a gallon for gas on the way back driving through Jersey! It's the little things man, the little things!!
And not so little of a thing that also had me smiling from ear to ear this weekend was Gen. Colin Powell's endorsement of Sen. Barack Obama! That's HUGE! That's wonderful, and it made me happy :-)
This is, on the other hand, is sad:
Last week, everyone was so "impressed" that John McCain "defended" Barack Obama when a woman at a town hall meeting said "I'm concerned because he's an Arab" and McCain corrected her. Now, when I heard that, I thought "okay...you corrected her and gave him a compliment, but at the same time, you insinuated that being an Arab was the antonym to being a decent human being." I wasn't that impressed.
As I stated earlier, this past weekend, Colin Powell formally announced his endorsement of Barack Obama. If you missed it, here was his announcement on Meet The Press. But if you forward to about 4:27, his statement is what REALLY impressed me.
My sister, my brother-in-law and my nephews are Muslims. If either of my nephews wants to be the President of the United States, then I want him to believe that he CAN BE one day, no matter what religion he practices. To suggest that, because he is a Muslim, he is not a decent human being sickens me. To suggest that one group of Americans is more patriotic, more worthy and better human beings than another group based on race, religion, gender or sexual orientation is ridiculous. I'm happy that Colin Powell addressed that in his endorsement and condemned his party for catering to the lowest common denominator of our country. Colin Powell knows himself and what he stands for and isn't afraid to say it. Now, THAT'S impressive.
I think it's important to take a really close look at what the candidates stand for, what they say, and what they DON'T say. In looking at them, take a look at what is important to you and look within yourself to see where your core values lie. And be honest with that look. Colin Powell was honest with his look. I wonder what that woman in that clip sees in herself?
If I could appeal to her and those like her, I'd tell them to take a journey toward enlightenment. The purpose of enlightenment is to challenge ourselves to discover the divinity within ourselves and honor it in one another. I'd tell them to seek light and greater clarity, to yearn for the insight waiting to spark within us all. Our intuition whispers to us. It's always there, in front of us, within us and all around us. I'd tell them to feel their way through it. If you are in the dark it's because your eyes are not open. Not "physically" unopened, but perhaps mentally and spiritually unopened.
Opening our eyes is about being diligent in expanding our awareness and understanding the multidimensional nature of our existence as human beings. A famous proverb states "the first step - and perhaps the only one we need to take - is to know thyself." In knowing our self - our true self - we will discover that they are not other, but our self as well. When we fail to recognize our own divinity, we fail to recognize our connection to one another. They are us, and we are them. A Zen master will tell you that how to become enlightened is to "Become Seeing" meaning see as God sees - your oneness with the WHOLE of life - judging not, but experiencing it's wonder. God is your first and last teacher - educate yourselves.
Bigotry is the disease of ignorance.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
TGIF my happy peoples!
Now, LAST Friday, I urged you all to go see The Express: The Ernie Davis Story. Well, TODAY I'm urging you to go see The Secret Life of Bees. I saw the film and fell in love with it. I did not read the book, so I can't speak to if the movie stays true to the story told in Sue Monk Kidd's best-selling novel. I know the paperback sold millions, so the movie adaptation is met with much anticipation by fans who loved the book. Although it is often the case that the book is better than the movie, I still think it's a movie worth seeing and one that we can appreciate whether you read the book or not. But as always, we can discuss if you like.
Here is the trailer:
Now, no one responded to last Friday's suggestion to go see The Express, which is fine. It was just a suggestion. But I want to implore you all to go support films that have a majority African American cast that tell a great story and have a positive message. Last weekend, The Express had a low box office showing, which is disappointing. The story of Ernie Davis is an inspirational one that shows a positive portrayal of an African American man who excelled on and off the field. It's not often that our stories get told, let alone in a positive way. We should really support them when they do.
Now don't get me wrong, I'm the first one to go see a Tyler Perry flick with my girlfriends to share some laughs.
Madea is hilarious to me! And I'm not saying there are no redeeming, positive messages in his films. But if we can go see a man act a fool in drag, then surely we can go see films that showcase accomplishments in our history, or films that are executive produced (Jada Pinkett-Smith), directed (Gina Prince-Bythewood) and starring strong, REAL, African American women (Queen Latifah, Sofie Okonedo, Alicia Keys and Jennifer Hudson) such is the case in The Secret Life of Bees.
Whether you actually like the film or not, it is imperative that we support these efforts as much as possible. We are the first to complain when Soul Plane comes out and we are misrepresented or stereotyped onscreen, but these are the movies that perform at the box office or that we flock to see because we want to hear some jokes.
(okay, maybe not Soul Plane, but you get my point) :-)
And there's nothing wrong with jokes. But we have to have balance. The only way the diversity that we long to see onscreen will ever manifest itself is if we show these studios that we have the power to bring in huge revenue for them. And not just for Tyler Perry or Spike Lee, but for the Jada's out there as well. WE can empower her to continue to make films that inspire us, uplift us and that represent us if she can make the case and PROVE to the studios and investors that we are interested in ALL of our stories. The only way they see that proof is with the almighty dollar. That is why Tyler Perry can put out a movie every 6-12 months. His films bring us out in huge numbers. We pay good money to see his films. And he shows the studios a profit and the investors get a return on their investment. It doesn't matter how great a story is told or how well the film is made if no one goes to see it. It's really just that simple.
So...if you haven't yet seen The Express: The Ernie Davis Story, then you still have time, it'll be there for a little while...but not TOO long. And please baby baby baby please! go see The Secret Life of Bees. You won't be disappointed!
Have a great weekend!
P.S.!!! Miracle at St. Anna is still out...it won't hurt to go see that one either! This is Spike Lee's vision of James McBride's novel who also wrote the screenplay. Spike brings to the forefront the contributions of African American and Latino soldiers who have fought and died for our country, often overlooked by Hollywood. I haven't seen it yet, but I plan on it next week...who's going with me!? I got the popcorn and M&M's!
I wasn't aware of this, but apparently I'm supposed to blog everyday :-) I love getting the emails and phone calls from you all that are asking - "Hey! Where is today's blog!" I'm so grateful to all of my friends for encouraging and supporting me. Trust me, I would LOVE to be able to sit all day and type all my inner thoughts and share them with you. But sometimes I wake up with a bunch of things I want to share, get to work, and then get so bogged down that I just don't have time!
Like Bernie Mac said, "I didn't come here to work!"
But they give me work to do anyway dagnabbit!! How dare they make me earn my paycheck...see how "The Man" is? As my nephew would say..."you shady grady!" LOL!!
(okay, maybe no one got that but me)
ANYWAY!! What I DO have the luxury of doing at work is watch tv. Last night, Amanda and I were running around in Target, so we both missed the debates. We got to my place just in time to see the closing statements. Luckily, I have a tivo at work as well, so I just finished watching the debates from last night.
Can I just say....Barack Obama is one cool cat. I mean, he didn't even break a sweat. He handles all of McCain's sneers, condescending remarks and flip responses with ease and lets it all just roll off his back. He's smooth. He's unshaken. Never stirred.
So many times people say they wish Barack Obama would "get mad." They wish he would "fight back." But in all of these debates where he's kept a calm demeanor, John McCain appears more agitated, more erratic and more hateful.
What Barack Obama has is PATIENCE. When it's said that we should be patient and withstand attacks, it doesn't mean that we are defeated or overcome. The purpose of practicing patience is to become stronger in mind and stronger in heart. In an atmosphere of calm, you gain wisdom. If you lose patience, your emotions take over and you've lost the power to analyze. Staying cool strengthens you to use your power of analysis and helps you to overcome the negative force that is opposing you.
We all know that Barack Obama is a Christian. He says he calls on his spirituality to guide him everyday. Being patient is a God-guided action. Nothing happens unless it's on His time. A lot of times, we pressure ourselves to act, when WE think we need to do something. We pressure ourselves to act when OTHER people think we should do something. But God's plan of action in never rushed. It's never erratic. Going against God's guided action can force us to make ill-timed decisions and to speak and act irresponsibly. Barack knows this, and he knows not to say or do anything before it's time. He remains unmoved until the right action arises by itself.
Barack is thoughtful in his responses because he allows them to come to him. No gift is greater than the gift of patience. Patience isn't waiting with empty hope. Patience shows an inner certainty of reaching the goal. That certainty gives light that leads to success. It gives you perseverance that brings good fortune.
Barack knows this. He knows the words will come. He knows the answers will come. He knows power will come. And he knows the time will come for him to lead.
And it will be right. In due time...history will be made.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Hey there my happy peoples!
I hope everyone had a nice long weekend! If you had to work yesterday, SORRY!
When I got to work this morning, on my desk lay a copy of Radar Magazine with Michelle Obama on the cover. The cover story read "What's So Scary about Michelle Obama?" Now, before I get into today's discussion, click on this link - all I can say is...David Alan Grier is a nut!
Now, we've all heard it said...Barack is too Black. He isn't Black enough. He's half Black. Whatever Black he is to you, as Tracy Morgan said, "Black is the new President!"
But what is undeniable is this: Michelle Obama is Black. Beautiful Black. Proud Black. Intelligent Black. But "scary" black? Huh?
Do they really think she'll be a "terrorist, fist bumping first lady" who calls people "whitey?" Really?
This woman is a Harvard educated attorney, a devoted wife, a loving mother and yes, America's next First Lady.
But is she scary because she's "really" black? No fair complexion or curly hair? No European features? Is it because she gets a relaxer and speaks her mind? What is so scary about her?
She's scary because she's not your stereotypical baby mama, neck snapping black woman with an attitude...even though they'd like to believe that that's what she'll be in the White House. They think she's the "angry black woman." She's scary because they don't know what to make of her. She doesn't fit into their box of who or what we Black women should be.
Let me tell you what is scary about her. She's a force to be reckoned with. That should scare the bjeezus out of everyone who doubts her.
She's the daughter of two parents who worked to raise their children together and to send their children to the best schools. She's an intelligent, professional woman, an educated woman, a hard worker, a woman who supports her husband, raises her kids, is private but outspoken, very busy, but disciplined and wants to work to make these United States a better place and shares that vision with Barack Obama and all of us. She's not angry, she's passionate. She's loyal. She's tough. She has a thick skin. And she's fierce!
And what do we Black women love most? The way Barack looks into her eyes. He loves that woman. Yes, he's the one in the spotlight. He's the one getting all the attention. But you get the sense that he knows who his rock is. He knows where his foundation lies, and it's in her eyes first that he seeks his validation. He adores her. We love that he loves a woman who looks like us. She didn't settle, nor should she have. Only the best for the best.
Michelle Obama is what Black women see in ourselves everyday. She's Black like me. She's our other self. She is what I would want my daughters to be. She shows us that we CAN be the best we can be, that we SHOULD be, that we were CREATED to be. We stand up for her because she stands up for us. She IS us. What's so scary about that? Not a damn thing.
Friday, October 10, 2008
Okay, I was going to leave Friday’s blog alone…just tell you to go see The Express and that’s it. But Amanda done started something, now I can’t let it go! :-)
Check this clip….sorry if the cursing offends anyone, but Katt Williams is funny as hell!
Those of you who know me know I can be pretty silly sometimes….okay….ALOT of times! Catch me on the right (or wrong) day and I can straight act a fool. Today might be one of those days. Okay…today IS one of those days. Today I’m giddy because I have a spa afternoon planned to pamper myself. I deserve it and ladies and gentleman, so do you! Amanda and I have been on a “I’m lovin myself” kick for a little minute now and all of us should be. No one can love you better than you can…except God.
Amanda’s quote of the day was “No one can treat you as inferior without your consent.” How true is that!? We were talking about women who, for one reason or another, get with dudes they KNOW are not good for them, but they do it anyway. Then later they’re crying the blues when this man breaks their heart, does them dirty or simply just bounces.
They blame the guy for being a bad guy when he was simply being himself. As my great-grandmother used to say – “When someone shows you who they are, believe them.”
Why do we do that? Do we think we can change someone? Do we think that if they’re around us long enough, we’ll be a “good” influence on them and they’ll want to be better? Whatever the reason, change comes from within…we can’t change anyone else.
My take on it is this - for men and women: If you want to be successful in your relationships, look in the mirror. Your most intimate relationship should be with yourself. We can see ourselves clearly if we’re willing to look. That mirror should reflect the best in us – our gentle, kind, loving, intelligent, sexy selves. We all have inner work to do, and we can only see where our fears and insecurities lie if we’re willing to look. Yes, looking may reveal unhealed wounds from former unions that may cause us to behave in ways that make us feel miserable, incapable or unworthy. But in that revelation begins the process of healing our innate wholeness and awakening that spirit of love that we all have inside of us. We are called by Love to love – loving yourself, in harmony with your life and at one with God. The oneness with God begins with self, He is in us all. Our partnerships have their best chance of thriving if we come to them feeling happy and whole and understanding that no one can fill the void we feel when we practice loving ourselves – everyday. So when you feel insecure or fearful and you feel that you’re not good enough, not deserving enough or you feel your fulfillment has to come from someone else – look deep inside you and recognize that that longing to feel loved is the longing to love yourself.
Okay, I’m done now…have a great weekend!
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Hey my happy peoples! It's Friday, and if you're looking for something to do tonight, I suggest you go see The Express: The Ernie Davis Story. I saw it last week and LOVED IT! And not just because I'm a proud Syracuse alumn :-) It isn't just a great football movie, but an inspirational story as well. I definitely recommend it and we can discuss it next week if you like after you've had a chance to see it.
Here's the trailer:
A little Friday morning inspiration:
-without looking back.
-the way you want.
-the way you need to live.
First I wanted to thank everyone who visited my page, read my blog and left comments yesterday on my first ever entry! Everyone was so gracious, and I appreciated all the feed back…you know I love y’all like cooked food! Your support and encouragement mean so much to me…so thank you!
Now…today’s discussion is born from a situation that a friend of mine wants some insight on. I will leave out names to protect the innocent, but I’m curious to hear your thoughts.
For the purposes of today's blog - click on the below clip from Love Jones - one of my favorite movies ever! The clip is 9 minutes long, so forward to about 5:05 and watch about a minute and a half. The sentiment expressed by Eddie, the brotha on the left, is something I want us to think about.
My friend's situation, if you want to call it that, is simply this: He is married with kids, but in love with someone else.
Okay…stop…take a breath….breathe ladies, breathe! LOL!! Let me finish :-)
Now, he says he’s always been in love with this woman - always has been, always will be – but just never knew how to express his feelings. They parted ways, but maintained a friendship. After dating another woman, they discovered she was pregnant. He married his wife, he says, because after they discovered they were pregnant, he “gave in to the pressure” to do the honorable thing. He says that they love and respect each other, but are not "in love" with each other and never have been. They’ve tried marriage counseling and genuinely tried to work out their marriage, but the situation remains that they are two people who are staying in the marriage for the sake of their children, even if they are not “in love” with each other.
There is no deception going on, no adultery, no lying. Just two people married.
Now, I know what some of you are thinking, but I want us to reserve judgment just for a second and try to put ourselves in this situation if you’ve never been in it before. I would imagine it’s a tough place to be in. He is not planning on leaving the marriage, at least not any time in the foreseeable future. I guess my question is – has this ever happened to any of you and what would you do about the situation…if anything?
I tried to answer this question myself but find that I’m having a hard time doing it. I guess because we all have our own idea of what love and marriage should be. To me, bonding in marriage with another person is our opportunity to extend what we are. Once we make that decision to marry, we assume responsibility for that marriage and it’s up to us to make the effort. Both people are responsible for whatever is right and whatever is wrong. Nothing is necessary except that we remind ourselves that we ALONE are not in this relationship by accident and that all that happens in that marriage can be seen, done and felt by love. That love could be (and most would say SHOULD be) God. When we pause long enough to think about it, love is what you make, and with whom you make it.
Now, I don’t want to discount love…romantic love, sensual love. Love is basically a chemistry between two people. But love and marriage are two entirely differently defined relationships. In his case, marriage was a bond of a certain responsibility – the child. It was a decision, and a commitment. The love that we generally know is romantic…it’s alluring, it’s sensual….and to a lot of people…it’s fiction. The stuff born of fairy tales. The love that we generally know does not guarantee that life lived as a married couple is as attractive as what LOVE appears to be.
There is an old saying that we should “go with the person who loves you, not with whom you chase.” In that statement, it suggests that we forego what we believe love to be and look at love and commitment for what it really is. Marriage is not a vacation or a prolonged holiday. Marriage is work, compromise, adaptations, changes, intimate conversations, laughter, sexual intimacy, confusion, joy, smiles, tears, pain, crises, re-education, apologies, mistakes…more mistakes, new knowledge…and yes….Love. If children are involved, include parenting and repeat all of the above for each year of marriage and each child. But also with all of that comes wisdom. Is wisdom something that we get from romantic love? Or from the commitment alone? After the bloom fades and the differences begin to emerge, is that an opportunity for real love?
Sonia Sanchez says “There are things sadder than you and I. Some people do not even touch.”
Which would you long to have? The touch?….You tell me…
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Okay...can I just say...or ask....was anyone else as appalled as I was last night when Senator McCain referred to Senator Obama as "THAT one"?
Aside from the fact that Barack Obama is a United States Senator, he is a human being WITH A NAME.
I wouldn't even refer to my cat as "that one."
I don't have a problem with McCain differing with Obama on many issues. That is his right. I don't personally agree with any of McCain's policies. But that's neither here nor there.
What I don't understand is why one can't disagree without having a sense of personal honor.
He treated Barack Obama like he was an intruder in his home. The disdain, the hostility...dare I say, the HATRED that John McCain seems to have for Barack Obama is so glaring it blinded me last night. As the words "THAT one" left his mouth, my heart stopped. It was as if someone sucked all the air out of the room. "Did he REALLY just refer to another human being, a fellow SENATOR!...as THAT one?"
It was dismissive and disrespectful. This is a man I want to lead our country? This is a man who I'd trust to speak diplomatically to other world leaders?
It's bad enough he cynically chose a running mate who is no more qualified to be the VP than I am (I say that half joking...half not) and allows her to run around the country spewing lies and attacks on a man who has 10 times her qualifications. But to constantly dismiss, disrespect and try to belittle a man who is running against you is distasteful...if not just plain disgusting.
Sen. McCain is always putting out words like "honor" and "respect" but never seems to display those characteristics in his own conduct. It began this week with dirty campaign ads filled with "mischaracterizations" and continued last night when he referred to Barack Obama as "THAT one" and didn't shake his hand after the debate.
On the other hand, I'm so proud of the way Barack Obama handles himself, even when shown such blatant disrespect. But I'm not surprised that Obama just allows it to roll off his back....after all, angels can fly because they take themselves lightly. He knows he has a greater purpose.
Barack Obama has integrity. He has a dream. He is bold. And in that boldness lies genius, power and magic. With all the polls and pundits, what people fail to realize is there is a greater power at work here. God has a hand in this too. And while McCain refuses to shake hands with his political rival, remember....God gives nothing to those who keep their arms crossed.
Barack Obama respects others' views while he demands that they respect his. He can seek to live his life's purpose of service without downplaying, disregarding or disrespecting someone else's views or their purpose. I applaud that he leads by example and not perception, that he leads by living instead of preaching, and leads by doing and not professing. That is what you call personal honor.