Monday, March 12, 2007
Sunday, December 31, 2006
That's All Folks!
I'm going Live Journal only now. I love Blogger, but the communities at LJ take up much of my time and the cross posts are killing me! I'm going to devote this page to the sharing of other Blogger blogs that I love!
I will still be checking in and commenting on the marvelous blogs here. I hope you come and visit me at LiveJournal, with Open ID you can leave comments there!
Check out the sidebar for blogger blogs that will cleanse every part of your online palate. From the delicious literary fictions of KneesUp to the satisfying meanderings of Seldomnice you will experience a pixellated taste sensation. For appetizers I suggest the wit of Mr. Eric Thomas extraordinaire, and to finish, the sweet subtle humor of Mr. Joer at Low Resolution. You may also enjoy the ala carte offerings of Catbird Journal, or for you enthusiasts, a double helping of Tastes Like Burning is in order!
Don't be afraid to indulge and be sure to tell a friend!
Saturday, April 01, 2006
Gettin' Some Head!
Saturday, December 31, 2005
A Little About Me! (New content appears after this!)
Race: Black and Proud!
Mood: Optimistic with Sarcastic Undertones
Personality: Irrevocably Corny
Coolness Factor: Depends on the crowd. Eternal hostess, yet rarely the star.
I am originally from Lincoln, Ne (Home of the HUSKERS!! Whoot!) and while I hate a lot about being Black in Nebraska, or just Nebraska in general. I will always love my Huskers. "How very sad of you!" you say? Well, it's a Nebraska thing, here you are born two things, an optimistic cynic, and a Husker. It's like a birthmark, or a cult.
It's funny writing all of this down because I begin to see the reasons I have for doing things are sometimes directly related to my upbringing, and my surroundings. I think that's the main reason for this blog, to kind of see myself in the third person.
Anyhow, thanks for coming aboard, get ready for weeks filled with insight, some fiction, some non. I don't cuss out loud personally, but everyone I know does so their curses will be unedited, and mine will. I'm a nerd, I'm learning to live with it.
I don't know that this will be a daily thing though knowing me it will be a multidaily thing. Feel free to leave comments, tell a friend blah blah blah yackety schmackety.
Tuesday, July 05, 2005
All these things and more...
Saturday, July 02, 2005
A Bad Day For Life...
My best friend’s brother died tonight. He was very young, he had a heart attack. Of course he has a wife and three beautiful kids. It’s weird, because our lives are starting to mirror each other in the worst possible way. He was very young,, as my brother was when he passed, my brother was also a father of three very young children. She lost her father in her teens, I lost mine in my teens. And a part of me feels like it’s my fault. There’s a cancer, stronger than the disease that’s plagued my family, and I hate to turn this into something about me, but it is. Starting in about 1992 my family has been plagued with a weird sort of death toll. It flirted with my mom twice, in ’92 and ’94 with breast cancer. While receiving radiation they accidentally nipped her lung and it’s dropped her life expectancy. In ‘95 my niece died of cancer, in ‘96 my cousin. My oldest sister in ’97, my closest sister in ’98. My oldest and closest brother in ’01. Then my dad died in 2002.
On top of this, of all of this, I had a very close coworker that died in 2004, a dear friend that died in 2003, along with the dissolve of four very close friendships between the years of 2002 and now.
There’s something about loss, any kind of loss, that puts you on edge. You start to wonder, "who’s next?" and your life becomes diseased in a sense. You don’t want to invite anyone in because you know that once you do they will be excised out by some force. You try to pick wisely, who has the least additional baggage, who has the least to lose, but it always comes and hits you back in the face. And it’s hard being the one who dies, but it’s harder in a way to be the one left behind. Because you spend your days and nights asking why? Praying to God to give an answer that never seems to come. You really do start to think that maybe it’s you, maybe you’re the cancer that’s killing everyone off. Then every unreturned phone call turns into a search for the body. Every unanswered email becomes an attack on your friendship. Every little gesture becomes grand because there is no such thing as subtlety anymore.
Then you realize that it’s ridiculous and there’s no way you have the absolute power to effect anything much less the lives of people around you… but then someone else dies, or leaves, or disappears, and you begin to wonder.
I'm learning, to kind of not expect the absolute worse of every situation. And of course the closer I come to realization, the more tragedy seems to happen around me, but I refuse to give up hope. It's an awkward existence, but much better than the alternative I assume.
So this post wasn't really to do anything but rant, let off some steam. I feel vindicated in a way, I wasn't around when my dad died, (I couldn't have handled it so I'm glad I wasn't), and my brother died in Omaha so my SIL did all of those arrangements. I'm glad I can be of help to someone who's lost someone, but it sucks to have anyone in that position.
RIP Anthony Page, God bless your family and friends during this sad time.
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
A Lesson in Three Parts… Part One
I have a bad habit. It’s not necessarily that it’s bad for me, as much as it is bad to me, but that’s really for you to decide.
You see, I have this automatic thing I do when speaking with people who annoy me. When they say something, I give an encouraging, “mm hmm” and a little head nod that allows them to believe that they can continue, and that I like what they have to say. But I don’t.
So I’m eternally stuck in a mode where I have to listen to people I don’t like, talk about things that I don’t care about. And it would be one thing if I just listened, but sometimes –most times- I include my own personal commentary, and I have no idea why.
What makes me this way? When did I find this acceptable? Is it my incessant need for people to listen to me brought to life by the belief that if I listen to them they will do the same?
Yeah, that’s probably it, but it never works that way. For I listen, and I converse, yet when I talk I get cut off or ignored. So why don’t I become a raging psycho and never listen to anyone ever again?
Cause while I hate my habit, it makes for some darn good story telling, of whose benefits you reap.
At least that’s the idea. The following are examples, not of these conversations, but of how it is when I am heard, and for extended lengths of time...
A Lesson in Three Parts… Part Two
Pretty Fly For a White Guy
He: You know what’s sad? Is that no matter how cool I am, I will never be cool, because there’s no such thing as a cool white guy.
Me: But you’re one of the coolest white guys I know.
He: Yeah, but only in comparison to other white guys. Like, you could take the nerdiest black guy in the world, and he would still be cooler than me, just by default.
Me: That’s true.
He: I know, like I couldn’t go around dressed like a clown and get away with it, and be cool, because I’m white!
Me: But that’s an attitude thing, I think the misconception is that since black guys do that, white America thinks that all black people like it, so it must be cool. The truth is we really think it’s wack too, but we have to be down with our people. Like Andre’ Benjamin.
He: That’s funny, because I wasn’t talking about a clown, like a fool. I was talking about a literal clown, Like Homey D.
Me: Oh! Well that too.
He: Like, because of all the fucked up shit that white people have done, I can’t dress up like a clown, and still be cool.
Me: That’s definitely true.
He: Not that I want to dress like a clown, I just don’t like not having the option.
Me: But what you lose in clown culture, you make up in global domination.
He: Yeah, there’s that, but it’s not clownin’. Clowns help people.
Me: Or scare them.
He: Kind of like white guys.
Me: You speak only the truth.
A Lesson in Three Parts… Part Three
Learning to Speak My Mind
I very rarely say the words as they appear in my mind, and to illustrate that I present to you the following conversation. My thoughts will be presented in Italics. My words will remain normal. Enjoy!
SK: Well she’s gorgeous, so she can do what she wants.
Douglass: She’s only gorgeous by American standards of beauty, I personally don’t find her attractive.
SK: Oh, you don’t have to do that here.
Douglass: Do what?
SK: That thing you just did. That hipster “we are the world” thing where we expose the truths. That thing where we are the exception to the rule because the rule must be broken. That “I’m not a part of America” thing. Because you are, and even if you don’t subscribe to its values, it doesn’t matter, because you’re not in control.
Douglass: I don’t understand.
SK: What I mean is that, like, you can say what you want, because I’ll always get what you mean. On the surface anyway. You don’t have to be politically correct when it’s just us, because I get it, and if I don’t, I’ll ask. (What I’m trying to say is that he doesn’t have to say “most” because I know when he says “all” he doesn’t mean “all” he means “most”. He doesn’t have to convince me that he’s not generalizing, or stereotyping even when he is, because I know he’s not).
Douglass (smiling a little): All I said was that I didn’t find her attractive.
SK: MmmHmm. No, what you said was you didn’t find her attractive in contrast to American standards of beauty by which she would be attractive. This means that you know something that America doesn’t in regards to these rules, which is true and false at the same time. Because you finding someone unattractive that America finds attractive doesn’t make you cool or special. Especially if you don’t really feel that way.
Douglass: Please explain further, I think this is the beginning of a very interesting conversation.
(This is when I started to loosen up a little. I’m always a bit uncomfortable around Douglass because I’m insanely in love with him, but that comes later.)
SK: There was this guy that worked here a couple of years ago that I was totally in love with (I was totally talking about Douglass). He was soo smart and funny and tall. (Douglass got my Night At the Roxbury mention and laughed a little. I loved that he knew that.) He was also dead gorgeous, and I love nothing more than gorgeous boys so I had to become friends with him (Douglass gives me this, “oh you!” head shake, but listens intently). So I was telling my friend Jerrod about this guy-
Douglass: What was his name?
SK: Jacob (sorry J, I was reading your blog when this all happened).
Douglass: And did you become friends with him?
SK: Of course I did, but it was harder than I initially thought. You see the weird thing is that I’m not at all uncomfortable around gorgeous guys. (and I’m not), because in the realm of things, they have but one thing going for them. The fact that they’re gorgeous. And they know that they’re beautiful so they don’t really try to learn anything else because they know their beauty, for the most part, will see them through. So it really puts a cap on where I think a relationship could go, and since there’s no relationship, there’s no awkwardness. Usually they’re not that interested in me like that anyway-
Douglass: I find that hard to believe (I die a little inside of sheer joy. I will remember him saying that and play it over and over again in my head). You’re pretty great, I don’t know why they wouldn’t want to be with you…
SK: Because I’m black and fat and in Lincoln, Ne. Because for every girl like me, there’s a girl that will put out, or give them money, or let them get wasted and act a hot mess in front of them. In my hotel we see this a lot, so many girls apologizing for their boyfriends behaviors, and like, I’m not your mom, either learn how to hold your liquor and not be a complete jerk, or don’t drink, but don’t expect me to apologize for you. It’s not that these girls don’t have standards, it’s just a different set of standards.
Douglass: This is the only place I’ve known where being black is a sole hindrance. (Douglass is from Atlanta originally, then he moved to San Diego, Kansas City for a while, then New Orleans, and now here for school.) Usually you have to be black and lazy, or black and clueless. Being black has always been a hindrance, but it’s usually an additional hindrance. Everywhere I go I hear things like, “He’s the biggest thief, and it doesn’t help that he’s black.”, or “He has the most terrible grammar, and he’s black too.” Well not those exact phrases, but variations. They hate you because you’re black and because of what you don’t have. This place, they hate you because your black and that’s it. It’s different. (In the moment this was a perfectly valid inclusion. It doesn’t seem to work here on the page, but it has to do with flow. He knew what I was talking about, and responded to that, and not just what I said.)
SK: I think you just summed up my life, for the most part.
Douglass (gives a little chuckle): That’s funny. Anyhow, I didn’t mean to interrupt, please continue.
SK: Oh, uhh, where was I? (I must admit it was a little test, because I kind of knew where I was, I just wanted to see if he did. Every now and again I like to know people are listening.)
Douglass: There was a boy you liked, and you were explaining about how you’re never intimidated around handsome men. I’m very interested to see how this ties into our first conversation.
SK: Well it mostly does, but you’ll see. So anyhow, this guy was gorgeous. He was tall, about your height and beautiful and on top of all of that he had a great voice. And I’m a sucker for a great voice, it’s the reason I love Bob Costas.
Douglass (cracking up at me): Bob Costas?!
SK: Yes, Bobby C! Because he looks a little like Ferris Bueller, but he has this great smooth voice. The first time I ever saw him was on the 1996 Olympics on NBC. He was commentating but I had the mute on for some reason. I thought he would sound like Ferris, but when I depressed the mute button there was this man-voice being thrown at me. It was awesome, and I’ve loved him ever since, solely for that reason.
Douglass: Okay, Bob Costas, wow.
SK: Don’t hate. So as I was saying, since I don’t think about gorgeous boys as being potential mates, I try to be cool with them. Because just because we probably won’t get together, doesn’t mean we can't be friends, (or that I can’t crush on them, or have dirty sordid fantasies about them, but that’s something I didn’t feel needed to be said). So with gorgeous boys it’s always easy to befriend them because really all you have to do is make them laugh. Just say a bunch of black things and make them chuckle and it’s lovely. You ask them questions about themselves and they answer and the next time you say something that included their previous answer so they know you were listening, and you’re in.
Douglass: So you and this Jacob (sorry J) became friends because he was gorgeous?
SK: Not exactly. First of all, the gorgeous thing only applies if you’re not a fake jerk. Even real jerks and I get along because at least they’re being who they are. Fake jerks annoy me. But I couldn’t apply these gorgeous rules to Jacob (who we all know now was really Douglass).
Douglass: Why not?
SK: Because Jacob was gorgeous, and he was incredibly smart. Like super genius. And he was the biggest nerd, but it was a nerdiness that worked for him.
Douglass: Oh, so he wasn’t cool enough for you!?
SK: Oh no, the opposite actually, because he was too uncool for me. I can’t handle that. When people are truly uncool, it like circles back around to them being awesome again. They talk about things that I understand, but I don’t get. (Meaning, they talk about Schodinger, and I understand because I know who that is, but like, I only know from school. I don’t know from reading additional works. So all I know is about his bells or cats or something, and that’s it. I can’t pull from any other sources and therefore can’t join the conversation the way I want to.) They make jokes about certain comics that I enjoyed but can no longer remember. They have fond remembrances of Magic: The Gathering, and Myst and Riven, and like I was there, you know? But because I was black, I had no one to talk to about those things for years, so I’ve fallen out of touch with that side of myself.
So I struggle for things to talk about. Then there’s the realization that this guy is a nerd, and he’s absolutely gorgeous, so I just freak right out, because he’s just uncool enough to want to be with me. Because I’m the sort of woman who would truly love him. Which means that there is a relationship possibility which again freaks me right out.
Douglass: That’s nuts [Sticky Keys]! I mean look at me. I’m totally into sci-fi and punk rock, and I’m a biochemical engineering major. I make jokes about chemical reactions! (He does, and they're hilairous. I'm biased of course) I’m the biggest nerd in the world and you’re not in love with me.
SK: Please, I’ve been in love with you since day one. No really, I’ve been in love with you since day one.
Douglas: Ha ha. Yeah, so did you become friends with this “Jake”?
SK: Who? Oh yeah… Not “Jake”, Jacob, or sometimes J, but not Jake. It rhymes with steak.
Douglass (smiling): Is that why?
SK: I don’t know exactly, I never asked. I don’t even know if that was his rule or mine, I just knew it was true. (Which was true, I believe, of the Jacob I was talking about, since I had to envision him in my head to keep up with my farce.)
Douglass: I’m that way. I can’t stand Doug. I want people to call me by my full name. (I make a mental note of that.)
SK: So I was telling my friend Jerrod about that, and at the end I said, “Yeah, so he’s this big ol nerd, and he’s black!”.
Douglass: Oh, he was black? (Douglass is black by the way)
SK: Yeah, now remember your reaction to that news. So I tell Jerrod that Jacob was black and he’s all, “wow, you better get that girl!” and Jerrod is extremely uncouth, like totally inappropriate. (When I really told Jerrod about Douglass being black, he said, “Was he a black nigger?” and began to laugh uncontrollably. Jerrod’s black, I should mention, and I called him a black nigger once, completely in jest. I was like, “Jerrod Alexander! You come back here you black nigger!” There’s context around that, but it’s not important. What’s important is that no one black had ever called Jerrod a black nigger before. Sure he’d been called nigga by his boys, and nigger by white people, but just to hear me say it in my Nebraskan accent (of which I never knew I had, nor that one even existed) was the funniest, most country, bama thing he’d ever heard. He became so excited that he called his dad and told him about it, and then tried to make me repeat it several times. I only obliged a few.) so I hang up with Jerrod and I run into a friend of mine who’s out having ice cream with her boyfriend. I can’t stand her boyfriend and this is why, and it’s also how it ties in to our original conversation.
Douglass: Okay, I’m all ears.
SK: I go through the whole Jacob story (again. I notice that I always retell stories because I know so many people who are completely different and will never cross paths, so I have to tell it 5 different times and five different ways, that’s why I like email.), and I say, yeah, “and he’s black”.
My friend laughs and is like, “that’s hilarious girl!” but her stinkin’ boyfriend is all,
“So what if he’s black? What, black people can’t be smart and be nerds? I know plenty of black people that-“ and that’s where I cut him off.
“Ooo no, don’t go there. That’s not the point of me telling you this, and that’s not an argument that I want to have today.”
“What do you mean you don’t want to argue about it? You made a gross stereotype and-"
“It wasn’t a gross stereotype! And we’re not going to talk about it! Not today. Maybe later in the week we can rehash this whole thing and really sit down and get into it, but not right now because this isn’t about generalizations about black people, it’s about this gorgeous guy I met that I’m in love with!” My friend notices that I’m really upset that her boyfriend’s trying to play the race card to steal my boy thunder so she politely tries to swing the convo back around,
“So what’s his name?”
“Jacob (Douglass)” I look at her and try to get things back on track, but her boyfriend ain’t havin’ it!
“Naw, see [Sticky] you do this shit all the fuckin’ time!”
“You better watch your mouth boy!”
I look around, “Are there any white folk around here? At all? Who are you trying to defend?! Because when I make a generalization about black people, about MY people, I know what I’m doing. When I say all black folk, you KNOW that I don’t mean ALL black folk, but since I’m talking to black folk who know this, I should be able to speak freely without worrying if we come off bad, because we’re talking to EACH OTHER! Do you understand what I’m saying?” He shakes his head at me,
“No, because you have a responsibility to dispel the myths about black people-“
“TO BLACK PEOPLE?!”
“so that we don’t look trifling and lazy!”
“but we ARE trifling and LAZY!” and I’m yelling now, both at boyfriend and at Douglass, because I’m really upset, “but we got a right to be! After 400 years of captivity we need a BREAK!” My friend and Douglass laughs because she knows that even when I’m upset, I always see the potential for humor. The kindest thing you can do for me when I’m in a mood is make me laugh or leave me alone. This makes me laugh and I think we’re okay,
“What I’m saying is that you’re preaching to the choir when you say things like that, because I already know. I take those things into an internal account when I’m talking to you, so you don’t have to rehash them, because I already get it.”
Douglass: So basically, the way this ties in is that I don’t have to pussyfoot around issues with you.
SK: Exactly. Normally I wouldn’t have gone down that long unnecessary route, but for some reason I thought you would enjoy that. (I say this to Douglass, and to you, my patient readers.)
Douglass: I did enjoy that. I always enjoy talking to you. (Then he looks at me with those beautiful black eyes. They’re so piercing but warm at the same time.)
SK: And you as well sir. You know… (and I was going to put this next part in Italics, but I actually said it, and I still can’t believe it) we should talk more, like outside of work.
Douglass: Yeah, I would like that. Philosophizing over what not. We could be unique. Be black and go to The Ross (indy film theater) and then to a coffeehouse-
SK: Not Starbucks.
Douglass: No, definitely not Starbucks, but a hole in the wall coffeehouse with an open mike. And we can order drinks and snacks-
SK: And snap whenever someone reads bad poetry-
Douglass: Especially when they read bad poetry.
SK: Let’s do it.
Douglass: Okay, is Thursday good for you?
And that’s how I learned to start speaking my mind. I’ll let y’all know how it goes.
Monday, June 27, 2005
In last week's QAF recap, (have you watched 506 yet? This won't spoil you if you haven't) Deb did something that I found to be impossibly annoying and I made the comment that if she would have did that to me I would have drop kicked her.
Now, I would never actually drop kick someone, but I got a rather nasty note saying that I hated the show and Deb was just being funny and I take the show too seriously.
Of course I posted it on the site.
My question is, how much do you have to know someone to assume that they're NOT a homicidal maniac?
If I make the comment that I will drop someone, or "take someone out", how many conversations must we have for you to know that "normal" people don't do these things, and I am in fact one of the normal people?
That's not really a question, as much as it is something I was thinking about today, and all last night.
On The Surface...
I'm talking about on people.
I'm reading some writings of the guy I'm stalking, and I'm realizing that we have absolutely nothing in common...
and yet, we are the same person.
We have soo many differences...
I'm Black, He's White
I'm Straight, He's Gay
I'm northern, He's southern
I'm an intellectual fraud, He's a literal genius
And when you look at these things, on the surface, they are in direct conflict with eath other. I took a quiz that said there was no chance of a relationship if your favorite movies would avoid each other at a party, but that's just it.
Because we both have tons of favorite movies. Some would ignore each other, some would make out on the couch, some would dance drunkenly totally freaking out to whatever was on, some would discuss the latest episode of whatever show was on, some would squee about someone's level of hottness, some would gossip and then tell everyone else what they heard, some would scheme on each other, some would take the closest chair and slam it over the other's head, some would hook up in the room of their host's little brother, some would get high and philosophize, some would get all political, some would call the other something racially insensitive, etc.
And we would sit there -I think- him and I, watching this, and making commentary about it. And that commentary would be in total agreement with each other, even if we disagreed because above all of this, we are the same person.
So what makes a person your identical match and your polar opposite?
Sunday, June 26, 2005
Just when I thought nothing else could go wrong...
Man what a day!
First I'm late to work, then there's a huge fight at work that results in a guest telling me that she's not impressed with the way our hotel is controlling our other guests yet has no suggestions when asked what we should do differently. Then we have to discount multiple rooms because of the fight, and once again, I get to clean puke up.
On top of all of this, I oversleep this morning because I'm freakin' exhausted, and the recap is late! Not only is the recap late, but blogger's actin' all wonky and doesn't want to format correctly unless I publish each page 6 frickin' times!
The only highlight of my day was a short conversation with the totally awesome avrilsmaleslut, and lpatrice from Moldy's Boards confirming that we'll get together to watch QAF.
So I'm having a great meal and beginning to feel better and I open the door to the fridge and watch as the delicious iced tea I just made goes pouring out onto the floor. I get just fed up and after I clean up the mess I notice something on the counter.
I asked my mom what it was and she said it was for kids so she knew I'd like it. After much sarcastic back and forth I look and find this:
You cannot get the smile off of my face!
Friday, June 17, 2005
In honor of Juneteenth I would like to share my best "talking about slavery around white folk" story!
My nephews and nieces are biracial and it's been an uphill battle trying to get their mother to admit to such.
There's more on that struggle here.
Anyhow, my nephew was doing a family tree and he asked me what Juneteenth was. I told him it was the celebration of the Emancipation Proclamation that freed the slaves. He asked me if any of our family had been slaves and I told him that in fact our last name was a slave name.
Sorry, it just slipped out! So my biracial nephew goes to his white mother and says,
"MOM! Did you know that our last name was a SLAVE NAME! Our family was held as SLAVES!"
Ha! Now my SIL doesn't like me talking about race anyway (no really, read the link), so I was on the other end of the phone going, "oh my sweet Jesus."
SIL just said, "Oh, oh really, how interesting." She never said anything to me about it, but later my oldest niece (my brother's daughter from a previous relationship) called me and was like, "What is wrong with you?!" I couldn't do anything but laugh. I mean, on the real, the children have to be taught!
Won't somebody please think of the CHILDREN!
More on a Juneteenth
Wednesday, June 15, 2005
An Open Letter To All Black People That Talk Black...
To Whom It May Concern...
Let me start by saying that when I'm around white people in a "professional" setting, I don't talk black. It takes a lot for me to talk black in general. In order to understand that, you have to understand something about the Heartland in general. Not to be confused with the Midwest, the Heartland is it's own entity. Where the Midwest is a bubble, the Heartland is a vacuum, and it sucks the soul out of everything that it can.
That said, when Southern blacks migrate to the Heartland, they do so in hopes of clean streets, decent education, and low crime, and the Heartland does offer such things, but it also makes sure that you give up certain aspects of your culture for you to properly take advantage of these benefits. You lose your accent, your hair becomes more tame, your mannerisms less loud, you settle into the quiet life, a more acceptable representation of your true self. You do this with the knowledge that just maybe you can get a decent job, and maybe your children will be able to have a little more access, and their's a little more.
Some prescribe to these changes, and others don't, but for the ones who do, there are two specific reasons. One, to assimilate. Why bite the hand that feeds you? Two, to overtake. Because the hand that feeds us has malnourished us for far too long.
I'm of the 2nd set you see, I'm an observer of people, and I will follow the rules until the opportunity arises to use those rules against the general system. I'm a complainer you see, I do the same thing, day in and day out without ever advancing, and this would be completely my fault if it wasn't for the general lack of expectations from my supervisor. So I complain that I don't get any training, but I don't actively seek training, because it should come standard. I complain that I'm the only person who doesn't work at the front desk, but when front desk positions open, I don't apply because it's in my job description, I should already be doing it.
All of this is a very long and drawn out way to introduce the following situation.
I was at the front desk (I finally got promoted to a night audit position which puts me at the front desk from the hours of 11pm-7am, basically drunk/bootycall patrol) and I was there with some girls from the night shift who were going home, as well as my coworkers from my shift. A black family comes in and I always love seeing black people at our hotel. It's a fairly expensive hotel so I enjoy seeing our people able to afford it. I went to my pod and greeted them,
"Good evening! Welcome to [hotel brand], are you checking in?" The mother looked at me oddly and finally said yes. I asked her last name and when she gave it to me, I recognized it as a reservation I made.
"Oh, Mrs. [last name]! I made your reservation, I'm glad you got here safely!"
"You made my reservation?" I nod, and suddenly everything went very badly.
"Yes I did. I spoke with you on the phone." I point to my nametag, "My name is [Sticky]."
"Really? Dang you sounded like a white girl on the phone, I thought you was white!"
Okay, it doesn't seem like a big deal, but let me re-set the atmosphere for you. There was the black family. There were 5 of my co-workers including my immediate supervisor. Then there was me. Did I mention I'm the only person of color in the front office? Did I mention that there have been exactly 2 other people of color at the front office in the past 5 years? So when the question of "Black" comes up at work, I am the answer.
The problem with them saying that is that it puts me on the wrong half of the changes spectrum. I instantly lose all of the cool I built up because it seems to my coworkers that my struggle for blackness is lacking. Here I am, being told I'm not black, by people who are blacker than me. Instead of being of the 2nd sect as explained above, I get lumped into the first sect. The white people stop seeing me as a hindrance, and start seeing me as an ally.
Because then to them, I become that black person. The one that they invite to every party, and expect me to show up, because I'm the kind of person that would go to those parties and drink my glass of beer and maybe mingle. But I'm not there as a guest, I'm there as color, as an accent to prove that they have black friends. They train me for promotions, but they make sure I know that the only way I'll get the promotion is if the quota filler they already have quits. So I make them look multicultural, and they make it look like their looking out for my best interests.
I think the main thing that happens is that putting me in the first sect makes me seem like I like white people, and understand them, but I don't, and I won't. You see, I hate white people just as much as the black family in front of me hated white people. And I must stress that I mean that in the most general of senses. I don't hate people because they are white, I hate the definition of what being white has become. It means better than, greater but not equal to. That's what I hate. There are several cool white folk, and Lord knows living in Lincoln, they are hard to find, but they're there. They use their white priviledge to change the world. They look out for the interests of "people" and not just themselves. Which, when put in a position of power, is what you should do. So really, I'm just happy that they're doing their jobs.
So what did I do? There were several options, but I had to choose one that would remain professional, for these were guests, and would allow me to regain my status. So I smiled, gave a little wink and said,
"Oh I just did that to welcome you to Nebraska. I didn't want you to think you were in the wrong place or anything!" Then I gave my best comic view laugh and the woman laughed and her family laughed, and I looked at my co-workers who looked confused and I knew I had done my job. Because where we were two separate entities, now we were one force.
So in conclusion, it may seem small black people, it may seem non-important, but please don't bust out your brothers and sisters in front of white people. It will cause way too much extra work on their behalf. If they sound white, they are doing it for a reason, just go with it, and let them know you're on their side.
Monday, June 13, 2005
I'm sooo Smort!
I've decided to tell people that I've read books that I haven't, and then give a description so believable that the person thinks that maybe they didn't read it.
"I just got done reading The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway and it was so riveting. The way the characters came together was splendid. The book was filled with love and conflict that really spoke throughout it's pages. I've never seen black characters written in a way that humanized their attributes the way this book did. And the scenery! I could feel the Italian breezes drift over me as I read the descriptions in the book. I also loved how when the seasons in the book changed, the climate of the story telling changed as well. When it was winter the narrator spoke in quick short sentences filled with chilling sarcasm, and in the summer the narrator spoke in long, frilly odes. So wonderful!"
"Wait, what book did you read?"
"The Old Man and the Sea by Hemingway."
"That doesn't sound right... I thought The Old Man and the Sea was about-"
"Well I just read it! I think I know what it's about, you're probably thinking about something else."
"Uhh, maybe I am, but I could have sworn-"
and I've decided to do this... just because.
Sunday, June 12, 2005
Saturday, June 11, 2005
Re: Testing Post
Stacey <email@example.com> wrote:
There's a man that I love that loves me back and you would think it's Jesus, and it is!
Sunday, June 05, 2005
My Mom is So Mean Y'all!
"Get me another piece of meat while you're over there!"
"I didn't hear you say, please."
"You'll hear it in a minute..."
Wednesday, June 01, 2005
He + Me = We
He: Man, I'm straight and I'd play Gay Chicken, and I'd win! I'd play Gay Chicken against a gay guy!
Me: Then it wouldn't be Gay Chicken, as much as it would be you makin' out.
He: I'd still win.
Have you ever seen one of those Heartland rappers, that whenever they defend themselves, they do it through song?
I'm not talking about Midwest rappers, from Chi-town, or St. Loius, I'm talkin Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota spitters. They try so desperately hard to be hard in a place where you're only as hard as the guy down the street, who ain't that hard to begin with.
So since they are regionally, yet unintentionally wack, they are constantly on the defense. But to see them defend themselves is a true experience.
"Yo nigga! Why you so wack?"
"F*ck you nigga! You mighta seen me in the streets but nigga, you don't know me When you holla when you speak, remember you don't know me Save all the hatin' and the poppin', nigga you don't know me Quit tellin' niggaz you my partna, nigga you don't know me!"
And you can't be mad at them, because in it's own way, it was art. You just witnessed art. So what do you do? Clap? Snap? Give a tip? Naw, you sit there, you appreciate, and then you move on.
That's what I do anyway.
Tuesday, May 31, 2005
Cinnamon Ice Cream
Title: Cinnamon Ice Cream
Challenge #49: 500 words (or less) about food. Characters can be eating, talking, whatever, but the plot, the thrust of the narrative, the reason you're writing? It's about FOOD. The beginning line is: Give me another bite of that ____
Words: 500, exactly
Time: 35 minutes without edited, 45 with
Warnings: Not really nasty, but some mild sex talk.
Notes: I love feedback of any kind.
"Give me another bite of that yum yum chocolate chip, honey dip, can I get a scoop? Baby take a ride in my coop, you make me wanna Shoop!"
"Well you have to admit, it was relevant this time." And it was so I shouldn't have complained, but it's so easy nowadays. Complaining about the world, people in the world and the things they do. But today wasn't a day to complain, it was a day for ice cream. We had these old-fashioned waffle cones that were a little spongy and still warm. The ice cream didn't really melt on them as much as it melted into them. I had cinnamon,
"Cinnamon? That sounds so nasty!" She said as I ordered. I cut her my patented, "Please stop being ghetto in front of the white people" look. The look was an unfortunate part of me because really I didn't mind the way she acted. I didn't mind the way that black people, my people, acted in general The look was one that was passed on to me by my mother, and my grandmother; the women who schooled me into becoming a respectable, "well-spoken" black woman. She caught my look, but she knows me,
"There you go lookin' crazy again!" She played it off, because today wasn't about debating looks, it was a day for ice cream. I smiled,
"It's like cinnamon-sugar, not cinnamon-hot. It's sweet."
"Like me!" She laughed and touched her finger to her bottom, and then put it in her mouth, "Chocolatey and delicious!" I had to laugh at that, I had no choice. Even if it hadn't been funny. For our sake -and for that of the iced cream- I laughed, and so did she. We found a bench to sit on and devoured our treats.
"Girl!" She started. I knew whatever she had to say next was going to be nasty, gossipy, or gross, and I would be interested, "Tyrone!" Tyrone was her man -one of her men- he was the sex fiend.
"Girl, last night Tyrone bought home a chocolate cake. He fed it to me and it was so good, but then he accidentally spilled some and you know how he got it off!" Suddenly I got a vision. It happens sometimes, someone will talk about something and I'll manage to think up the most stupid reference I can. This one involved Tyrone as Charlton Heston, licking her off, and screaming that she tasted like Soylen Green, and that Soylen Green was people.
"Are you listening to me?" And she knew I wasn't, not like I never listen, just, well, you see where I was at the moment.
I'm sorry girl, this ice cream is sooo good!"
It is isn't it?" I nod and think about all the people, in the world, who are missing this. I want to share it with random passersby so that they know it's goodness, but I can't. All I can do is enjoy it on my own, and hope others will get their turn.
Monday, May 30, 2005
Oops! There Goes My Shirt Up Over My Head...
Well, not really. I'm sorry I haven't updated lately (and Katiedid, I haven't forgotten about you. I'm going to rent Bamboozled again and will give my analysis). The QAF site has been taking all my time, and I'm obsessed with livejournal, but I love this blog and I love, and appreciate all of my readers so expect updates this week.
I was talking with my niece on the phone today. I told her that I lost my mind and asked her if she knew where it was. She replied,
"Maybe it got lost in translation..." She's getting so grown!
Thursday, May 26, 2005
Telluride Film Festival... Do It!
So there's this small indy film theater on campus here called The Mary Riepma Ross Media Arts Center, and it's totally awesome. Anything that the local theater won't show, they'll show here. I saw The Dreamers (which sucked) there, and Bamboozled (double suck), and She Hate Me (triple sucky suck) there, along with tons of really wonderful movies.
They also have directors and writers come in and give special screenings and presentations. It's really rad and I love it!
Anyhow, every year the The Telluride Film Festival sends entries to the school, and then people in the community can judge them. Past winners have included Matt Stone, Spike Lee, and others. It's totally awesome and if you have a center near you, I implore you to judge. You could be seeing the first works of America's next great director! And most times, the contestants that don't advance leave their films so like, free movies y'all.
This PSA brought to you by StickyKeys, film geek.
I Don't Know What To Think About This...
I met a girl the other day. She excelled in English, got a 32 in the English section of her ACT's, took honors classes in school. She was a writer, but then stopped when she realized that she was only good in comparison to writers like her. So like, in a field of apples, she was a peach, but she most definitely wasn't a mandarin orange.
She said this to me one day,
"It doesn't matter how much I love grammar, or how well I use it, because whatever I write, it will be exemplory. Because that's all that's expected of me. If I improve, I will improve only by the standards of those who judge me. You see, if I misuse a comma, it's okay, because I wasn't expected to use it properly in the first place. If I fragment a sentence, it will get passed over because that's what I'm known for. Is grammar dead? No, but it only lives in those who have access to it. Being that I grew up in the ghetto, and had no access, I'm not expected to learn."
"But you did." I say inquisitively, "You did learn, and you're wonderful, doesn't that count for something?"
"No." She answered abruptly and blankly, devoid of feeling. It wasn't that the feeling was never there, it was that she had felt so much; that there wasn't any left. So I felt for her,
"Is that okay? To only be able to play on one level?" As I said this I realized that a tear strolled down my face. She looked at me and shrugged,
"I don't know it it's okay, I just know that that's what it is. That's what I have to aspire to, to be the top of my class. but never the Dean."
I wiped away my tear, and I knew why I was crying, but I can't put it into words. It has to do not just with our conversation, but with its implications, and consequences. I see her every now and again, and it's the same thing, brilliance bound by predeterminations.
And I don't know what to think about that...
Tuesday, May 24, 2005
I Don't Talk The Way I Write...
or is it I don't write the way I talk?
Those are almost the same thing, but not quite. You see, in my head I have these cool turns of phrase that I want to use and when I open my mouth to use them I just get stuck. I don't know if I wuss out or if I just don't have the mouth shape necessary to form cool words.
I'll finish this later, but really, think about it. Do you do this?
Monday, May 23, 2005
I'm on livejournal now...
Sunday, May 22, 2005
I Guess Only Time Will Tell
I went back to choir rehearsal after a year of being gone. Just went back in like I'd never left. And there's a reason why, but I can't go into that in it's entirety right now. There is a whole subsection of topic that talks about the background of the following incident, but I can't muster up the courage to write about it just yet.
This post is about one thing at the moment, so please bare with me.
We were practicing this song, and the girl who directed the song (Jamie**) gave the tenors a note that instead of being harmony, was merely an octave of the soprano note,
"I think you may want to give the men a higher note."
"I really think this is fine." She snapped at me, but I took it in stride. You see, even though I had been at this church for 24 years, suddenly I was new there,
"But it's wrong." Old habits die hard.
"I don't care! That's what they're going to sing, and that's it!" She gave me this cold look that would have sent shivers up my spine except, well, it was Jamie.
"I'm sorry, are you trying to be scary?" She gets flustered very easily and throws down her lyric book,
"Why did you come back here?" She turns towards me with both hands on her hips and a vendetta in her heart. Unfortuantely my vendetta is much larger and much more entitled.
"Why haven't you left yet?" I shoot back, I take a step towards her, "You waltz in and out of here like you own the place and they let you. So I decided I wanted to be like Jamie! I want everyone to listen to me even though I'm a terrible, foul human being!"
Jamie crosses her arms and stares directly into my eyes,
"You don't know anything about me." Never one to be outdone, I take another step forward,
"You haven't given me an explanation!"
"I don't owe you an explanation!"
"Yes Jamie. Yes you do! You owe me an explanation as to why you decided to end a decade long friendship without telling me! You owe me an explanation of how in the world you got everyone to turn against me and openly ridicule me! You owe me, you big jerk! You (point at her) hurt (breaking stick motion) my (point at me) FEELINGS (outline heart on my chest)!"
So we're standing there, and normally I back down first, but I don't this time because this time it's not for me to do. So it's dead silence, and we're staring, and the time is passing, and everyone is watching and doing nothing, as they usually do.
Then she starts to cry. Big, wet, tears bog down her already hefty lashes, and tears are streaking her make up and it looks a mess and breaks my heart, but my heart has been broken for over a year and this time I can't back down.
"No! No, you will not cry Jamie. You will not wuss out on me. You will be a woman and hold yourself accountable for your actions!" And she sits on the bench and everyone shoots me a dirty look, as usual, and they comfort her and I grab my things and leave.
I would have stayed, but that would have been too spiteful. And I know they talked about me like a dog. And it makes me so mad, that this is the kind of thing that always happens to me. That whenever I stick up for myself I get into the most trouble. If I don't stick up for myself than nothing happens. So either way I'm screwed.
The saddest part is that I still love Jamie to death, it's just that, while I know things will never be the same, I know they can be better than this. Than the way they are. I just don't know how to get there.
You can imagine the dialogue I shared with God about this. Resplendent with "Why's", and "How's" and what not. It's a learning experience I know, but what am I supposed to be learning?
I guess only time will tell...
**names have not been changed because screw her, that's why!
My Mom Saves My Friendship... Almost
I was telling my mom about something I watched on Food Network today that involved grilling lamb, and my mom said that she really liked lamb and it was good.
I told her that if 'Dani'** and 'Beef'** make it to their one year anniversary, that we would be having lamb.
"Dani should have the party anyway, it sounds like fun with or without Beef!" I said, nonchalantly peanut buttering my bread.
"She and him should have a Go To Hell party like me and your dad did before we separated."
"Who in the what now?"
"Yeah, you've never heard of a Go To Hell party?"
"Should I have? What does a party of that nature entail? Are there games?"
"Naw, we just went out, got high, got drunk, and told each other to go to hell. We had to repent later, but you know."
There's so much about my family that I don't know.
Anyhow, my best friend is currently in DC applying for a job and she hasn't sat and talked to me in like 4 days, just a lot of messages back and forth. I was ready to disown her until I heard this story because I just had to relay it to someone.
So friendship saved right? Well it was until the heiffa didn't answer!
I'm on the BFF market, applications are currently being accepted.
**names have been changed uncreatively to protect the innocent
I Did Nothing Today...
In fact, I did so much of nothing, that when I went to Something, and was like,
"Ay yo, let me do you!" Something looked at me and was all,
"Naw son, it's not my time."
That's how much of nothing I did today,
and it was lovely.
Saturday, May 21, 2005
My Mom Bought McDonalds New Fruit and Nut Salad...
I have never been disappointed in my mom, until today.
Tuesday, May 17, 2005
I Hate Cowboy Troy...
but I completely respect what he's trying to do.
Let me explain...
As we all know black folk and country music aren't necessarily synonymous in the minds of everyday Americans. Truth be told, they have a much deeper connection than you think, but it's mostly a Southern black connection that doesn't reach this far north.
One would assume that just being black in country music would be automatic exposure, but the truth is, there is some stigma in that particular industry that has been in place for years. It's hard to get your foot in the door, and when you do it's even harder to keep it from getting stepped on.
In order to make a lasting impact you have to do something outrageous by country standards, and there is nothing more outrageous than the pairing of rap and country.
And that is how you get the mess that is Cowboy Troy.
I saw him while flipping through on Nashville Star and I stopped because I'd heard of him, but didn't really think much of it. Anyhow, it started off well enough, and then he started in with the rapping and I lost it.
I called all my friends to alert them to his wackness, and as I was telling a particular friend, she asked me, "suitcase's, why does he piss you off so badly?"
I had to think about that. I went first to the most obvious source of wackness, that of him being a black man in the country music industry, but I've encountered that before so I had to search deeper to see what the true reason was.
On the surface I actually admire Cowboy Troy mostly for what he's trying to do. I just hate the means he's using to do it, and I'm not too sure of the motives behind it.
Let's see if I can make sense of this.
Black people have had many contributions to the music world since the beginning of this nation. And their influence has spread across every genre. If there is to be a country/black hybrid, I think I would have liked to see it go more the soul root, or blues, or rock, but instead we get the most black, most subversive genre of "Hip Hop" to mesh.
In and of itself, that's not so bad, but why is it existent? Why was this the first try?
If Troy were a hip hop artist it would make more sense, but he's not. So therefore, hip hop to him is a gimmick. And that's what I hate. It's one thing to use your blackness to advance, but it's another to use black culture just for the sake of advancement.
If you are a soul food chef, and you start a soul food fusion restaurant, then that's cool, but if you are a French pastry chef, who's not getting hired, so you decide to open Aunt Jemimah's house of sticky buns, then that's wack. It's insulting and rude, and it's one thing to do this and be white, but to do it to your own people is beyond my realm of understanding.
And it sucks because he's getting play, and I respect that he's opening the door for more black country artists, but his "I'm trying to change the world" attitude just translates to "I'm trying to make some money, and what I was doing wasn't working" to me and that's pathetic.
There's more I want to say to make myself clearer, but I can't get my thoughts together just yet. Maybe later.
Sunday, May 15, 2005
I have a sad confession to make about myself. When I hear something, and I think it's funny, I like to wear it out until the absolute death. And then exactly 15 minutes before it becomes nostalgic and cute again, I like to drag it out much to the dismay of family and friends.
That said, I've only recently started watching commercials for entertainment value. I went a long spell without cable and watched every movie in existence during that time. After that I had satellite and then digital cable so if some commercial came on, I didn't find out about it until it became wack or played.
I realized this after the following conversation:
My cell phone rings and I see it's my friend Jerrod, I answer:
"Jake? (for I call him Jake)"
"What the hell was that?"
"What was what?"
"What did you just say?"
"Is there something that you need?"
"I need you to never say that shit ever again."
"You know you like it."
"No, I really don't. Damn, it makes me crazy cause you're pretty cool on your own, but then I remember you're from Nebraska."
"See, it's shit like that that makes me love you and pity you. That's sad."
"Sticky, for real, stop that."
"What? What happened?"
"I've fallen and I can't get up!"
"I'm hanging up on you."
"Where's the beef?"
Cool Like Dat
but not really...
You know those black people who are only cool to white people? They're mostly mixed and they grew up in a rural Ne town and went to school with only whites? One day in jr high they discovered that being black was cool, but they had no idea why, or how? They are completely at ease being black around white people, but black people freak them right out?
I ran into five of them today. And they all went out of their way to ignore me.
And I couldn't be mad.
Saturday, May 14, 2005
Just Above My Head
Have you ever read a book that was so wonderful, so awesome, so life altering that you couldn't re-read it?
It's been more than ten years since I read Just Above My Head by James Baldwin, and I can't bring myself to pick it up again.
Now I've read and re-read Go Tell It On The Mountain, Giovanni's Room, Another Country, Tell Me How Long The Train's Been Gone, and other essays and shorts by JB, and I love them all, but there was something about JAMH that just got to me.
It wasn't necessarily the writing, which was brilliant as usual. It wasn't necessarily the characters who at the time I couldn't fully relate to, but found myself empathizing with all the same.
I can't accurately describe exactly what it is. It's something though. Something inside of me that fills with great melancholy everytime I think of Aurthur and Crunch, or Julia. Something that churns and aches and there's a time and place for that, but I haven't reached that place again yet.
I feel the same way about Some Men Are Lookers by Ethan Mordden (and as I searched for that link I noticed I wrote a review about the book echoing the same setiments I've expressed here. I'd completely forgotten about that, and it refers JAMH), but only because I didn't want the series to end.
The feelings are the same to a certain extent for Black Bird by Larry Duplechan. Its main story isn't as bitter sweet as the other two, but Efrem's story is very touching if not rushed and a little contrived. I still love it without fail.
Friday, May 13, 2005
Petey's Side of a Key's and Petey Conversation
"You got a what?"
"A blog? What the fuck does that mean?"
"On the internet? That's wack! I thought you was black!"
"Naw shorty, not with no blog you ain't. In fact, give me your black card!"
"For real? She should have made you cut it up and burn it."
"Calm down BG! You know I'm just joshin' you and shit! Naw, for real tho', that's fly. You doin' the damn thang, trying to infiltrate whitey, keep him on his toes."
"Yeah that's what you're trying to do! You say it aint, you say it's all peace and love, and you just sharing, but I know you girl! I know what lies under that weave."
"It is too weave! That's some Yakky 4b shit up on your head."
"You gonna get enough of tellin' a nigga to shut up."
"Heh, I forget how spunky you are sometimes. It's all that white folk shit you into."
"Yeah, like a mother fucking blog, what the fuck is up with that shit?"
"Watch my mouth? Girl if my niggas knew I let you talk to me like this!"
"Damn girl, I'm just playing, slow your roll Baby Girl! For real though, what's up with this blog?"
"That's cool, I can see that."
"Naw girl, I can't do that."
"I would know."
"There ain't nothing wrong with it, I don't know, print it out and publish it and I might give it a run through."
"I'm a what?"
"A traditionalist? Yeah, I like that, back to nature and all that, right? I don't know man, computers hurt my eyes, and I need my eyes to see the injustices in the world. You know that nigga Renee (Renee is a real wack, wack, trifling dude. Seriously he's crazy and a disgrace) from up the block? I saw him yesterday trying to jack some dude for his wallet."
"Naw I didn't stop him. It ain't my job to protect whitey, he got his law to do that for him."
"Yeah, but that's not the point of the story. The point is here was this nigga that grew up in the suburbs right? His dad's a pediatrician, his mom's a teacher, I mean, just the fact that this dude has a mom and dad puts him ahead of the game, and then I see him doing that shit. It's a fuckin' waste. I saw him later and jacked him for the money he stole."
"Hell yeah! See he can go home and eat, but there are niggas on the street that jack because they have to. That's bullshit and you know how I feel about bullshit!"
"Naw, you know Niecy?"
"She's the one with all them damn kids."
"You know you wrong for that. Naw, she's the one that does hair, Steve her baby daddy."
"Yeah, anyhow, you know Steve broke ass can't afford all them damn kids so I gave her the money."
"Robbin in the hood? Yeah, I like that girl. Big P, jacking wack mother fuckers and supporting the needy and shit. That's fly."
"My baby mama on the phone, she said she's gonna call you tonight. I'll holla at you later Shorty. Keep your head up and keep doing the blog thang, aight?"
"Aight Baby Girl, peace."
So Saturday my SIL, and niece and nephews took my mom to Valentinos (local Italian, soooo good) to celebrate Mother's Day.
My SIL remarked that at this time last year we were celebrating my oldest niece graduating from college, and my younger niece (13!) turned to me and said,
"Did you go to college?"
SK: "Yep, for a year."
A: "So that makes you a college dropout?"
SK: Uhh, yeah.
A: I don't think I'll be following in that part of your footsteps.
And that's why I have to go back to school.
Stinking positive role-modeling!
Wednesday, May 11, 2005
And Some Crap About Carrie...
Carrie: I hate Carrie.
I hate her guts, I do, and it’s sad because she’s so pretty and she sings so perfectly and it’s a shame that I don’t enjoy her, but I don’t.
I watched this movie called 200 American, and it was a pretty nice time. It was a movie about an Australian that decided to become a hustler to pay for his wedding (looonnnng story), and I got it because the guy on the box was hot and I wanted to see some campy gay action that night.
Anyhow, the whole movie goes by, and there is no sex. Not one ounce. And while the movie had a decent story line, and hot guys, and some throw away gags, it was not what I signed up for. I was disappointed because I had already wasted 2 previous hours of my life on Blue Citrus Hearts, and that at least had a decent kissing scene.
I think my problem with Carrie is that you look at her and you expect something. You expect the sassy southern girl with the rock hard voice, but you get everything but the sassy. It’s very unfulfilling and leaves you wanting something that she just can’t give. And you can’t take her back to the store and trade her in, you just have to sit and take it.
That said, her 2nd performance sucked, and I really hope she goes home. I was expecting more from her pop side, but it’s like she has two voices, and she tried to use them both while singing that song.
(Probably Not) Sticky Keys Final Thoughts on One Ms. Vonzell Solomon
I really like Vonzell, but I can’t help but think there’s something about her I’m missing.
You know that movie, The Hanging Garden? I hate that movie with a passion. It can’t really decide if it wants to be Art House, or just drama, and it’s oh so representative, and I guess the acting’s not too bad and it has some good parts, but overall I just don’t like it.
On the other hand, there are people who love it, and love it with an obsession. They see it as a reflection of their own lives and believe it was a movie made just for them. The interesting thing about the movie is that you can only love or hate it, and even when you pick a side, there’s something that prevents you from fully understanding it.
You’re watching and say, “Ohh, the fat kid is him and he’s killed himself off, that’s so cool and repress- oh wait… wait, other people can see him? So what does that mean? What?"
It’s like a huge jigsaw puzzle of something, and you’re missing the piece that tells you what that something is.
That’s how I feel about Vonzell, that there’s something that we don’t know about her even though she’s told us everything about her. Even though she is so generic that there are millions of her. Even though she wears her emotions on her sleeve for all to see, there’s something crucial she’s holding back. It used to make her intriguing, but months into it, it’s a bit tiring, and confusing.
She has become a mystery wrapped in an enigma.
Tuesday, May 10, 2005
Get Your Sugar Off My Muffins!
And I mean that in the most literal sense of the word.
I love muffins, but I hate that stinkin' crust of sugar they insist on putting on top of them. It's not crunchy, and it's not chewy, it's just gritty and that bugs me to death. I knoew they think it's cute, but it's not.
Monday, May 09, 2005
StickyKey’s final interpretation of all things relating to one Mr. Scotty Savol
This post is actually at TWoP, but I'll be doing my analysis of Carrie later this week so I wanted everything in one place.
First of all Scott did fantastically tonight. He was great and I would have voted for him if I could have gotten through, but I watched a movie this weekend that related so much to Scott it was ridiculous so I’d like to share it with you.
It was called Blue Citrus Hearts, and it was a no-budget, indy movie shot on digital film and so edgy in it’s un”Hollywoodness”. Anyhow, I saw the movie got good reviews, and I love movies in that gendre (read, gay coming-of-age soapy dramas) so I was fairly excited to see what this movie was all about. It had a pretty good start, and then quite suddenly, it began to suck.
And so badly. I was sitting there watching like, nothing could ever be this bad ever, but then the next scene came on to prove me wrong. And it wasn’t the story that was bad, as much as the misdirection, the lighting, the angles, the bad acting. It wasn’t even fun-bad like Anthony Federov, it was just horribly bad mess.
So I’m sitting there, and I get to the point where I just want to turn it off, but I’ve already invested too much of MY LIFE into this so I couldn’t back out without feeling completely taken advantage of. So it hits the two hour mark, and there is crying and running and general acting out, and I'm about to fast forward, but I force myself not to.
Then, there it was. In the last five minutes of this horrible film, there was a scene that completely blew MY MIND. It rocked my world, and changed my life, and it was so mind-blowingly beautiful and wonderful and insane and lovely and subtle and predictable yet wholly satisfying. Then it started to go over the top again, but for those five minutes I was in bliss. I would never recommend the movie to anyone. Not even for those five minutes because in order to appreciated those five minutes you have to sit through 2 hours and 15 minutes of crap, but for those already along on the journey, it’s just a breath a fresh air. Something to let you know that humanity does exist in the midst of utter terribleness.
And that’s how I feel about Scott Savol.
He is wrong in everyway. He’s a thug who just can’t get right. After his scandal broke, a lot of questions have been asked about how you could vote for someone like Scott, but many failed to realize that Scott had problems from the very beginning. He was crazy, he basically told us so in his audition. He is one of those people that every would love to help, but you know it wouldn’t do any good, and the only thing he has to redeem himself is that beautiful voice.
People who vote for Scott are people that knew this, I think. They knew he had some skeletons in his closet, and there was nothing they could do about that, but maybe give him some positive reinforcement, and he won’t add to them?
Anyhow, tonight, I think he solidified himself as the blackest contestant on this show. My best friend’s SIL is white and calls Scott “that light skinned boy”. It didn’t phase me at all when he sung about what kind of brutha he was and about his homies. (Some speculate that the girl in the audience was his baby mama, but I don’t think so.)
Scott’s like that guy that you know, that just couldn’t make it as a white person. That just couldn’t handle the pressure so he decided not to be, and black folk are the one that took him in. Black folk in general seem to love cast offs and I know several that vote for him just because he’s the last “black” guy on the show.
In conclusion, I love Scott, I’ve tried to hide my love for him, but tonight it was solidified. I love him in all of his wrongness, and triflingness, and just plain social leperness. I wish him the best, and would totally cop an album by him. Blah dee blah. Oh yeah, On eBAYYYY!!!!!!
Thursday, May 05, 2005
Won't Tsombody Tsthink of Tsthe TsChildren?!
My friend Nina, and I love American Idol, and we were watching yesterday when Vonzell sang the Tsunami Tsingle (tm the lovely Jacob) and how the judges keep pimping it. I thought it was nice that they did the album, and that the proceeds are going to charity, and Nina made the comment that every few years there's some national even that brings the country together. This is that conversation.
Nina: You know, every few years there's some huge major event that brings this country together.
StickyKeys: I know,
Nina: There's 9/11, then World War 1...
Nina: The Civil War...
StickyKeys: I like how "every few years" to you means like, "every few decades or centuries". The Renaissance...
StickyKeys: The Big Bang, Jesus dying on the cross...
Nina: When Penny got burnt by the iron on Good Times...
StickyKeys: That was a big one, my mom says she remembers exactly what she was doing when that happened.
Nina: What was she doing?
StickyKeys: Getting her hair done, so it really hit home.
Nina: Michael Jackson...
I Have Nothing! Nothing! Nothing....
to really write about tonight.
Or rather, I have a lot to write about, but very not enough energy to really go into how I feel about a subject.
Has that ever happened to you before? You get to that point in a situation where it's not that you feel very strongly about it, but you just feel so much about it? It's an odd feeling. Like being full. You know you have to get rid of the feeling, but you don't have the energy to.
You know that once you start talking about one aspect of the situation, you have to explain the other aspect for it all to make sense and sometimes you'd rather just let the situation escalate than actually deal with it?
That's how I feel right now. Huh.
Monday, May 02, 2005
Eating Chicken and Being Black is Stereotypical
No really, it is. That's what I was told anyway. By a white girl I work with.
Let me explain...
You see, the girl who told me this - we'll call her Triflin' - is a girl that works in the restaurant if the hotel where I am currently employed. Triflin's a nice enough girl, she's fun, she's loud, she's brassy. She's like Mikalah Gordon in 10 years when she's calmed down just enough to be bearable.
She's also one of those people that will say anything to anyone because she's so above predetermined social limits. She'll call her gay friends "fags", and her black friends "niggas", and her white friends "honkies", and she's just so very politically incorrect because screw the status quo! And while that's so open and liberal, and new to everyone else, it's really just tired and played to me. I mean, have some respect for the struggle. I'm not saying don't ever open your mouth, don't ever push envelopes or whatever, just do it with regard to the additional people in the room. Don't ever call a black person a "nigga" in front of me because it not only makes you look bad, but it makes your black friend look bad too. And even though that's more about my agenda than anything else, it's something I feel should be taken into consideration. I have black friends that will not let me say nigger around them, and I respect that because seriously, everybody has a different tolerance level and if you want to push it, then you do it at a pace that provides constructive results. I hate shock value for the sake of edutainment.
Did that make sense? Ahh, I might try to explain that more in the future, but feel free to draw your own conclusions.
Anyhoo, I was sitting at my desk eating a dinner I got that night. It was chicken, and some Hawaiian Sweet rolls I got at the store. I was chowing down, and Trifling came to the back office to sign in her keys because she was about to go home from her shift. We had a little bit of small talk and she asked me what I was eating.
I showed her, and then she opened her big stupid mouth and said,
"Chicken and biscuits? Isn't that a bit stereotypical? I expected more of you." Wha-?! What the-?! What just -?! Okay y'all, it's very rare that I get livid, but I was LIVID!, I mean, what the crap? What the piece of hot, buttered, steaming crap was that!? She was disappointed in me? For frickin eating chicken!?
Perhaps I should clarify. Would you go up to a Chinese person eating rice and say, "Isn't that a little stereotypical"? Would you go up to an Indian eating curry and say, "I expected more from you."? You wouldn't right? (God, please say no, and if you don't understand why, ask someone, but make sure they like you because they will laugh). So what makes it okay to go up to black people and say, "Oh my GOD! That is so like a black person to want to eat chicken!"
But chicken isn't a black food, Sticky Keys! Well, my eagle eyed readers, you are only partly correct. You see, the whole Soul food genre is one that was built on the backs of slaves. Many times blacks were given the leftovers, or the less choice ingredients, and we found a way to make due with what we had. The whole concept of chicken wings is one that was built on slave recipes so culturally, Soul food is very important.
Of course, there is a difference between Soul food, and food that black people frequent. If I had been eating watermelon and drinking a 40 I could understand Triflin's response, I still would have told her to go f*** herself, but I would have at least walked into that comment.
Anyhow, I just shook my head at her and said, "If you don't get out of here!", and she left. There was a ton I wanted to say to her, but I just didn't have the time or the energy. I wasn't eating chicken to be "black", I was eating it because I was hungry, and it was cheap and readily available. And while I wouldn't be completely adverse to the art of eating chicken becoming an act of racial pride, it's just not what I had in mind at that moment.
Rest assured Triflin', that the next time I eat chicken, I will do so in a dashiki with a pride pick in my newly blown out Afro. I will have We Shall Overcome playing on a boom box beside me and my fingers shall be adorned rings that spell out BLACK and LOVE. I will wear badges proclaiming that Black is Beautiful, and that I am indeed, Black and Proud. I will do this all with a drumstick in one hand, and a bottle of Louisiana Red in the other.
I hope this time, you won't be disappointed.
Thursday, April 28, 2005
Stinkin' James Earl Jones!
So, here it is, the Stinkin' James Earl Jones story.
About 1/2 an hour from Lincoln is a small town called Crete. In Crete they have a small liberal arts college called Doane. Now Doane college is nice. It's in a beautiful location, and the perfect place for small towners to go to school with all their friends that they've known forever. The problem with that is Doane, while sufficient in its educational merits, is severely lacking in the cultural arts department.
And why shouldn't it be? You can count on one hand the number of black students there, and they're pretty much just chillin, but Doane insists they want to be more open to others, and thus they have a plethora of various excursions dedicated to educating the masses on multiculturalism.
It's actually very nice. They bring in big name speakers, have concerts, and various festivals. I usually can get a hook up whenever someone fun comes in, but I hadn't been in a while so when I heard the S'JEJ was coming in, I was all too excited to make the ill fated journey.
Anyhow, he started out talking about the many trials he had to overcome to become Mufasa, Darth Vader, and have the most recognized voice in the world. It was all very inspiring until he got into the meat of his presentation which consisted of telling black Americans that since we come from nothing, we are nothing.
Let me explain. He started talking about how each culture was like an onion, with the layers and the blah dee blah, but his point was that every culture can be traced back to a language. He surmised from this that since black Americans do not have one language that defines them, that they are not legitimately a culture. Now it's one thing to say this to a room full of black people who know better, but it's another thing to say it to a room full of white people, and yet another to say it to a room with like 15 black people that are going to have to explain that mess later on.
On the surface I can understand what he meant. He said that each culture is defined by a certain language and that blacks were at a disadvantage because Africa is full of languages most of which are either no longer spoken, or were not carried over during slavery. He said that since we don't have a language that unifies us, we can never be whole as a community.
The problem with that assumption is that there are many cultures that have the same languages, but have been able to be identified as a seperate culture. Look at South Africans vs Australians vs. the British. On the surface, they are all British, but they have very different traits about them that make them unique to their region. The same example can also be made about Spaniards vs. Mexicans vs. South Americans, etc. They, for the most part, speak the same language, but are completely different cultures.
So why can't the converse be true for black Americans? Yes, we have many languages, but due to "unforseen circumstances" have managed to form a culture despite it. Being the defiant one that I am, I immediately questioned him about it.
"Don't the practices of our race define it as a culture?" I said, somewhat sarcastically, but mostly sardonically, "I mean, take for example, food." And he looked mindful because he knew I was right. Every culture had a food that defined it. When you hear curry, you don't think of Mexico, just like when you hear chitlins, you don't think of China. Soul food has been defined as a black food and one that is almost universal in black kitchens.
S'JEJ gave a long complicated answer which mostly amounted to, "No." Later when asked what culture he identified with, he said none, but that his son currently identified with the Asian culture (just Asian? That's not a "culture" is it? Does he mean Japanese, Chinese, Saudi Arabian? Shut up S'JEJ!)
The main issue I have with all of this is that his deductions make it seem like the reason for our lack of culture was one that was self inflicted. Black people just came over here one day and said, "Screw our traditions and languages. We're going all out, American style!" Did he really forget about slavery? Did he forget about the breaking up of tribes and families, and that the intermixing was not voluntary, but mandatory? That we had to throw away many of the ancient languages and learn English? That every semblance of our last culture was destroyed so we had make a new one?
Yes, you say? He must of forgotten. Oh, okay, well, good thing someone reminded him.
Afterwards, every black person in the room came up and commended me on my questions to S'JEJ. They agreed and said it gave them plenty of ammo when they had to do the explanation rounds the next day.
So that's it, my S'JEJ story, and my conclusion that even if S'JEJ doesn't think so, black Americans have culture dangit! And it's pretty nifty too.
The Soothing Waters of Lake Minnetonka
or the warming waters of the Double Tree Guest Suites indoor heated pool and jacuzzi, whichever is closer and within your budget.
Last weekend I celebrated my nieces birthday. She just turned 13 which is huge to me. I'm a young aunt (24), so I remember when this little girl was born and I feel so old, but she really looks up to me.
Anyhow, I work at a hotel, and she wanted to have a pool party so I hooked them up with a couple of rooms at one of our affiliate branches. As we were going over the plans, I asked her who she invited. She named a girl I knew, another girl from school, and another friend.
"She's black." She said nonchalantly, and then continued with activities she wanted to do that night.
That might not seem like much, but let me give you some background on her side of the family. My brother is black and my SIL is white, and they began dating for various reasons, but one, I believe, was because my SIL knew it would upset her parents that she were dating a black man. They started in the 70's where it was free and easy like Sunday morning, and soon fell in love.
Now, my SIL knew that my brother's race would be an issue. In fact they had been living together for several months before telling anyone in her family. The problem with this is that when it did get revealed, my siblings had to act like it wasn't a big deal, and her family had to act like they accepted it. Over the years they've all grown to love each other. He treated her unbelievably well, and when he died in 2002 (cancer sucks), it literally tore my SIL and her family to shreds.
I have three of the most beautiful nieces and nephews in the world. They are little bad butts, and are way too grown, but I love them to bits and pieces. I would literally kill/die for them with little to no hesitation. My SIL, however, believes that she is the only one who can love like that, and rightly so, but also rightly wrong.
You see, when you're in love their is no one in the world that exists except you and that other person, but when you're in a commitment, you have to think of everyone else. When SIL had kids, she thought she would raise them her way, by her rules, involve only her family, etc. What she didn't have in mind was a defiant little sister (moi) who loved her big brother to death, and would fall head over heals for anything that he produced.
So the arguments began. I was never allowed to babysit, when she came to Lincoln (they live in Omaha, approx 1hr away) she would see her sister and not bring the kids over, she would never let us hold her, when the baby cried she had to be the one to attend to it, she would never discipline. It drove me utterly insane.
To be perfectly fair, part of the reasoning for my lack of involvement was my age. I am my father's youngest child, but I am my mother's only child. There is at least 20 years between me, and my youngest, older brother. They had always seen me as a baby, and even just now are seeing me as an adult. There is also an age gap of four years between my niece and my two nephews (who are a year apart).
Raising kids is hard, raising black kids is harder, and raising black kids that you refuse to see as black is probably hardest. Everything I did to instill some color into my niece was argued about. For her 3rd birthday I bought her a black girl doll with tight ringlets and my niece loved it, but my sister said she "lost" it (and yet none of the other dolls). When I bought books, I bought the ones with black girls on the cover. When I played music, I played black music, just anything I could to make sure she would grow up knowing who she was. It may seem a little extreme, but I figured with me on one side, and her mom on the other, it would be fine.
When my SIL just couldn't manage my nieces hair, but refused to get any help, and started straightening it, I got my niece black hair care magazines and did her hair whenever I was there. My SIL bought her Britney Spears (prewhore) albums so I bought her Destiny's Child (prewhores) albums. It was always this unspoken tug of war, and it got to the point where I just kind of gave up.
Then one day I was up for a family gathering. My niece was probably 8 or 9, and we were sitting outside in the grass on an unseasonably warm Feb day. She asked me what I would be doing the next day and I told her I was going to sing in a musical for Black History Month. She smiled and said, "Black History, that's me!"
You could not get the grin off of my face, even to this day.
What I realized is that as long as I'm there, as an influence, she will have access to any answers about the black side of her. She's so smart and so inquisitive. I thought that since she didn't outwardly express a lot of the personality quirks attributed to black people that maybe she wasn't open to experiencing that part of her culture. I was wrong. She was just trying to see where she fit in, which parts of her fit inside of different bubbles of her makeup, could she have some parts that overlapped?
The thing I love about it is that she knows that I care, without my saying anything about it. And I also love that she cares enough to tell me about her "progress" without analyzing it.
Her mom is getting better too. She's starting to trust me more with all of the kids. She's starting to realize that though one day the world might see these kids as biracial, they will never be seen as white, and that's okay. She's starting to ask me questions that really should have been asked 10 years ago, but better late than never I always say.
So that's why I was happy my niece informed me her black friend was coming. And I was happy when I started singing a different version of Happy Bithday she made it known that it was the black version. I was happy when her friends asked about different black artists, black writers, black dances, etc.
I'm mostly happy because for the most part black people are thought to be substandard. They are at the low end of the totem pole in even being acknowledged as a culture, and everything within said culture is said to be bad or negative. There are so many unfair stereotypes associated with being black in America so when anyone shows any type of appreciation for us, it warms my heart.
Tuesday, April 26, 2005
So I went and saw the film Guess Who? with Ashton and Bernie Mac. And while I actually liked it alot, I won't really be using this space to talk about the film.
You see, this film was supposed to be controversial and groundbreaking, and to some degrees it was. It brought up a lot of different views and points about white male/black female relationships that I hadn't seen portrayed on film, and I think it was most successful in the parts that weren't so heavy handed.
The problem with heavy handed scenes are they are heavy handed to the point of being anvillicious. Take, for example, the dinner table scene. You automatically know that there is going to be controversy and you already start to feel uncomfortable before the dialog even begins. This of course should be the point of the scene, but the problem is that it's completely expected. You know you're supposed to be uncomfortable so you brace yourself for it, and then when it comes, it becomes a bit of a let down.
Anyhow, this blurb isn't about that necessarily. I remember watching the dinner scene, and Ashton made some remark about something that his grandmother said. Everyone kind of got up in arms about it, and that was all well and good, but then Bernie said something to the effect of "Tell us a black joke [Ashton]. I know you've heard some." Now instead of just shutting up, Ashton decides to be all proactive and jumps into it head first.
Now, it's not really the jokes that upset me. I could really care less, some were cute, some were rude, whatev. The thing that got me was that this one scene completely validated the one thing that black people have always wondered about for years. And now that the question has been answered, it only raises more questions? What question is that you ask? Well, the obvious, do white people really sit around telling black jokes? I mean, I know that as a black person, I talk a lot of crap about white people, but never in my life have I ever sat in a pow wow circle all, "What did the one white man say to the other white man who applied for a job at his company? You're hired! Ha Ha Ha!" I mean, that never happens. Most times our disgust is at some sort of event that is so crazy that only white people could be behind it. "Did you hear that people are now getting their backs and sides pierced to look like corsets? Man, white people just run out of things to do!". Those are the kind of jokes we do.
So I need to know, who are these white people that sit around all, "What did the white man say to the other white man who was eating chicken? It's a good thing I'm not black, because I would take that chicken from you! HA! Get it? Because black people like chicken!" "And watermelon!" "Oh yeah! Man, that's rich, we should write that down!". And why are they doing this? Who started these jokes, who repeated them, who co-signed this idea?
Now I know black folk get on your nerves sometimes, they get on my nerves too and I'm one of them. I don't begrudge you the need to get amoungst yourselves and be all politically incorrect and vent, but for the love of all that is good, stop with the black knock knock jokes!
That is all.
Monday, April 25, 2005
My Mom and I Conversate
Mom: I don't want to go to work today.
Me: Me neither. How about, you go to work for me, and I'll go to work for you, but instead of me going to work for you, I'll just stay home?
Me: Are you sure? Because I really like that idea, especially the part where I don't go to work.
Me: Oh, okay.
Jacob Makes Me Want To Be A Better Man...
And by better man, I mean woman.
You see, I frequent this site called Television Without Pity which does snarky recaps of television shows (you can find the link in my link list which thanks to Katiedid is now in existence), and has forums so you are able to snark on television shows.
Anyhow, I always have a favorite, and the site is filled with wonderful writers, but every now and again there comes a recapper that blows my mind.
Now there's a difference between someone who's an absolute literate genius, and someone that you love in a way that's only makes sense to you. These are both hard qualities to find, and sometimes you can find one and not the other, but very rarely, you find someone who encapsulates both.
This was done by the one and only Jacob C. I've fallen in love, and he has a thread devoted to the loving of him, but it is more topic specific so I decided to write it here.
In today's culture many people are caught up with trying to sensationalize the extraordinary. There are freaks everywhere, acts of dysfunction everywhere, it's like people forgot what it is to be normal. The problem with this is that while it's great to step outside yourself, it's even better to take a look at who you are, and to even, sometimes, appreciate that.
Reading a Jacob recap is like watching a woman trying to decide which pair of shoes to buy. Now that may sound odd, but if you are a woman, and you've shopped for shoes, you may understand what I'm getting at. You see, when trying to decide between say, a red pair, and a green pair, the question is not simply, "Do I like red, or green?". For a true shopper, you have to consider the implications of your purchase. Do I need another pair of red shoes? Can you ever have too many pairs of red shoes? Do I have anything to match the green shoes? But does that matter? Can I mismatch the green shoes and end up matching? What does red say? What does wearing green make my legs look like? Do I need a pedicure? I should get a pedicure to go with my new green shoes. Or do I like the red? A lot of people would call that unneccessary torture, but I call it fun.
In Jacob's recaps, he writes the way he thinks, so you don't get the cut and dry 'here is the answer to the question' that so many authors trick you into thinking is original. He constantly flip flops, and changes his mind and has new revelations just like people. He can go from being passionate about something to being meh about something and the whole time you sit there nodding your head because you just get it. You may not always agree with it, but it's there and you appreciate that.
When you read his recaps you feel like you're sitting there, right beside him, reading along as he types. And you may comment on something, and he goes back and changes it because he agrees for the moment. The amazing part of that journey is that he is able to do this on a pretty universal level. Everyone can take something from his writing and have it be completely original to them. The only downfall is that to an extent he'll never know how much of an impact something so seemingly simple, or nonsensical can have on any given person.
Luckily through the power of email I have the ability to communicate with him, but the one thing that remains constant (and frustrating at times) is that this is his job. And I'm but a poster. It's like trying to become friends with your teacher, it's just not possible until you graduate.
So why all the love? Well, I think it's important to give credit while it can be given. I read a lot and want so much to be able to tell James Baldwin, or Larry Duplechan, Ethan Mordden, or even Terry McMillian how they've influenced me and entertained me, but I can't. I don't know them, some of them are dead, but I can email Jacob. Does he care? Sure, why not? I don't know, I like to think he thinks it's nice though, and that's what matters. Just getting the feeling through.