You have my permission to mush me

March 31, 2007

If you happen to run into me take your pointer and middle fingers, put them together, place them in the middle of my forehead and get to mushing.
Yesterday my little sister from Big Brothers/Big Sisters came to campus and hung out with me. It worked out so well because my little from last year I flaked on was there, her new big wasn't able to come, so she was able to hang with me too and I could try and redeem myself. In 8th grade scooping her ice cream and taking a picture of her and Terrance from 106 & Park quickly got me back on her good side. We hang on the yard, check out Founders and I see a lot of buddies hanging around. It was a great day to visit the school as the D.I.V.A.S and the Sigmas both came out and the 2nd Annual Hip Hop Symposium was on campus and Doug E. Fresh was the keynote. They werent fazed by Doug but knowing Terrance and Rocsi were MCing Doug E's session made them hurry through lunch so we could be to Cramton on time. Getting there I was really disappointed by the turn out but not surprised. Howard kids are spoiled and I just happen to find out about it through facebook and then the Hilltop did an article the day of.Rocsi and Terrance definitely are charismatic and made a great host . . .since honestly I dont watch 106 or any BET programming enough to know the talent.
Doug E. Fresh put it down!
He was hilarious and just made me want to curl up and listen to his stories allllll day. Right after detailing how long it took to save up for his first pair of British Walkers, and the feeling of opening the box after getting them (he actually made that "awww" sound like opening the bible) and taking off the plastic each was wrapped in, he didn't even want to wear em out of fear of something happening. Just as quickly he would switch to telling how he's coming from LA after being at American Idol working with the guy who beat boxes, flying over on a private jet and how the show he pitched to VH1 was "too intelligent." sidenote: he said 'I love New York' has actually beat Flavor of Love in ratings . . .wow. He was honest and really was able to step back and look at Hip Hop as an evolving industry that.

Now to why you can mush me. Hindsight is sooooooooo 20/20. I pitched this story to one of my favorite magazines of the moment to put on their sexy site. It actually got a green light. Doug E Fresh was the PERFECT man to give the quote that would really make it hot and he was right on campus. . .and I have no Doug E Fresh quote. There's a lesson in everything and damn did I learn this one the hard way. But my Littles had a great time so i guess I did something right. All the 8th grade girls were waiting for Terrance (and Rocsi too) to come down afterwards to take pictures and sign autographs and they went crazy! They really asked his shoe size and favorite colors . . and the bold one asked what his phone number was. He smirked and gave them his myspace info which they quickly gobbled up.
I wondered to myself when I was in 8th grade who I was crazy for like that and I could only think of Usher circa 'My Way' and Dru Hill, especially Sisqo.
So last night me and my best friend went to the University Fashion Council's Fashion Show because my girl Anya was in it. The first of many fashion shows and it was pure comedy. You know we love to get our people watch on and it was absolutely crazy. The guys are suspect or obviously can tell they think they are the shit. But they have nothing on this guy in my weight training class I think I am about to try and talk to. Im graduating soon so what's there to loose? He's shy, but I caught him seriously checking me out . . .twice and he has 'the back.' I'll keep you posted.
Me and celeste are just talking and laughing at the show and somehow I say somebody who I cant even remember now looks like Steve Urkel. She totally disagrees and then says, "You remember when he use to turn into Steph-an (who we called Steph-foine . . .cuz he was foine) Arkel and we would go crazy?" And I am rolling because I remember, being excited when that commerical showed Steve going into that chamber, going home from school, eating Little Caesar's pizza with the family and hardly containing myself waiting for TGIF and Stephan to come out that chamber. Now I understand how my girls felt about Terrance.

Living in the Shadow

March 28, 2007

After a day full of classes it finally sunk in that Im graduating in a little over six weeks. Crazy right? Im actually getting a "degree." Last night as it continued to sink in that this was it, this was my last first day of spring on the Yard where everybody is out to see, and most importantly, be seen, and I realized I wanted something more to mark these four years.

I wanted a class ring.
This class ring to be exact.

After completely dismissing the idea along with my BF and saying what a waste back in January, all of a sudden Im wondering if its too late to order and it get here in time for graduation.
After picking my perfect one and calling and placing my order with Joanie at Herff Jones. We decide size (7), stone(alternating blue and white), metal (14k gold) and are about done when she gives me what it will cost, not including shipping and handling: $763.79.
Yep. $700 dollars. I would probably never want to wear it out of fear of something happening and me going crazy. I paid around $200 or $300 for my high school ring and was not having to soon worry about rent and food at the time. So I tell Joanie Ill have to call her back. I hang up. Shocked . . .but not deflated. I check around online, even check Wal-Marts online selection, then find a ring that will do the trick. You know Im imaginative, so as I pick this ring, I think of my granddaughter who my daughter will give this ring to. crazy right? It doesn't have the seal in the middle and alternating blue and cubic stones going around yet I love it already. (that UTEP will say HOWARD and my full name, well middle intial because no room for katie, will be inside with " 'o7" and "B.A." on the sides)
Then I go meet with my counselor just to make sure Im not ordering stuff for nothing and I am indeed graduating. She looks in my manila folder and let's me know Im still on track to walk across that stage. Sorry Kanye.
As I was walking to her office I saw a flier on the wall say Sheila Johnson was being honored and "exemplary female students" could sign up to go to the luncheon. My heart is beating as i JUST had talked to my god mom about her and wanting to meet her after hearing about her. I rush to the lovely Ms. Dudley's office and she tells me it's a little late but somehow I JUST made it and let's me be added to the list she is sending. wow, right?
So now this weekend I have to get an outfit worthy of company with a billionaire. any suggestions? guess I should be studying for that test . . .and yes my business law final is still worth 40 percent of my grade.

Spring Break II: NYC

March 27, 2007
So I make it to NY. One thing so different in NY and Atlanta is the separation of rich and poor when it comes to transportation. In New York you see Prada and Manolos on the train. No biggie. In Atlanta, well, everybody drives so if you are on the train and not going to the airport . . . Gucci is most likely gotcha.
I land Wednesday night and make it to my cousin's in Harlem around 11:45pm. Frustrated I didn't make copies of my resume before Wednesday got so good yet busy, and now the grocery store around the corner where she had told me I could make copies is closed. I hang my head in shame. I look up. My cousin has a copier right in the living room Im staying in. It already has stock paper ready for a crisp resume. God really does love me:)
I get up extra early because I know I need to iron (something I NEVER do) this wrinkled black blouse I have had since I was a junior in high school and my mom calls my ashy black wrinkled favorite shirt and do something with this 'not so casual' 12 inch. Meet Darby at the 116th stop and we head into the city.
We get off on the 1 train at 50th street and walk to 49th and 6th Ave, walking right past Time Inc where I spent my summer last year and I was sure to point that out to her and every other point of interest, probably more for my sake then hers.
Damn it felt good to be back in THE city!
We get to the conference a little early and go sit down where breakfast is available. Im still not completely comfortable in my high waisted skirt especially after eating way too good all week but let the insecurities go as we see more and more familiar faces. Pharoh comes. Shaena comes.
I feel like a rockstar as Nakisha comes looking like she walked straight off a runway, sees me, points and comes on over. She's also in a high waisted skirt and black top so Im feeling a little stylish if im dressed like InStyle's online EA who just got upgraded to an office!Her rows of pearls completed the look.
Then Tammy, my ASME summer suite mate who was at Ladies Home Journal comes in with LaToya who is a beast working at Vogue last summer as a sophomore and has plenty lined up for this summer.
I go in to sit and the beautiful and spunky Shaunice, who's job it is to help more brown faces like mine make it to a masthead, asks me to do the time cards. Im happy I could help in any way the person who hands down made our magazine conference at Howard possible. She sits me right next to one of my sheroes, Vanessa Bush, the executive editor at Essence and its so good to see her. One of my other mentors Corynne from Real Simple is there looking amazing . . .and on her way to Vegas the next day. Im telling yall, lets put in the work so we can be heading on trips for a break, when we are already looking fly:) The conference was amazing and I met a lot of new people and reconnected with some great folks I met before. . .which lead me to asking what was the oldest guy I should be trying to talk to at 22 (help:)!
After the conference me, Darby and Nakisha head to 5th Ave as Nakisha hunts for a trench coat. We end up in H&M and that Madonna line is everywhere. You like? I mean, I think Madonna is cool, but I don't necessarily want to be dressed by her.
So me and Darby head back uptown because I am pumped as Zenitra texts me saying we are bringing all our summer fun back! And we do at Wish 26 where i spent EVERY Thursday night last summer. As always, more guys than girls and fellas with there stuff together and wearing the hell out of some suits . . .my type of party:) Once again in this week, im frustrated to have to go back to DC.
Friday me and Darby hit my fav soul food spot Amy Ruth's for lunch. I get the catfish and yams and resist the mac and cheese for some green beans. who knew green peppers could really upgrade some green beans? try it, I know I am.
That night I Shani, Arion and my new buddy Charisse invite me to come with to a friend of a friends of a friend's birthday party VIP room at 40/40. Well, for the first time EVER I have under packed and don't have anything to wear as Shani tells me she is wearing a skirt and top. One of the MANY things I love about new york, I head up to 125th, grab a dress for under $15 and have time to take a quick nap before meeting them for dinner at my favorite thai spot in the city Cafetasia on 8th st. And yes, once again I weave one of my favorite spots into everyone else's plan. 40/40 is the usual 'just alright' crowd and they were tearing it up in that VIP room which meant it was hot and a tad bit funky. But I have a good time with my girls and run into Z's friend I met the night before at Wish and I think he was a little too happy to see me;)
Saturday I get up and head to Harlem Tea Room with my buddy Elle* and we have a great time as always. I walk with her to the library which hopefully will be my local library if I get my roomies on board for Harlem . . .not Brooklyn, though its a great plan B! Walking to 125th so I can catch the train to go shop with my girls, we see these guys with clothes laying on the ground to sell. Before I can get uppity and wiggle my nose in disdain, i come back to reality and spot these FLY glasses on the ground next to some jeans. I pick them up, LOVE them and then try and act nonchalant as I ask how much. I am ready to offer $10. He says $3. I act unfazed and pay. I heart Harlem!
We stop at Carol's Daughter and after using that body salt every time I go in and scrub my hands, I treat myself to a jar. I love it! I still wish they would bring the oils back:(
I make my way to my old neighborhood of Union Square and meet the girls in Forever 21. It's as busy as you would suspect on a Saturday Afternoon. I am in heaven once again when we hit Jammba Juice before heading to 17th and 7th to the Loehmans. Way too much stuff and not as good of deals as DC.
I hit my Mean Girls/Andre 3000 fellow fanatic Jan who is now in the city freelancing in beauty at Vixen where she interned last summer and tell her to meet us at BBQs in Time Square. LaToya also makes her way. After a looonnnnggg wait, everyone is there and we have a ball . . .or maybe they just had fun watching me because I was tipsy and talkative after that texas Blue Hawaii. Our drink server was GORGEOUS with these chiseled arms . . .hmmm.
Sunday I meet with my sexy and employed buddy Kristin who works at Real Simple. We go to this French Bakery with all these funky omelets and crepes and I had an oyster omelet. good stuff! She invites me to be the first to check out her harlem apartment on St. Nichols right around from my cousin at 117th and Lenox and I quickly accept. After getting over it was a 5 flight walk up - no elevators -Im already imagining this is my apartment:) I look at every inch up and close, which Im glad Kristin and her roommate didn't mind and it sinks in this will soon be my life. Talk to Mikey and Ashley for me . . .Harlem over Brooklyn!
On the way to Kristin's apartment I noticed this ad at the bus stop on this new NYC condom brand and the ad was interesting as the logo plays on the train numbers. Then walking back I see this empty wrapper in front of Native, a cute little restaurant we use to go to that's now closed:(, and instantly thought "guess business is good."
So Monday my stalkerazzi ways land me an informational with Danyel who is phenomenal as always and fly in this grown and sexy plaid skirt and white blouse with some chocolate pumps. All the people in the office are . . .amazing and BEAUTIFUL. You know I try and be tight lip when it comes to work places but I had to get that out. Hopefully, Ill be able to share some MAJOR news soon with you guys. So I make it to the airport Monday evening and who knew the NY to DC flights were from way way back in the airport somewhere. wow. So my final spring break? phenomenal. I didn't take it to Miami like EVERYONE I KNOW because honestly, the point of a trip is to get away from the people you always see and not be dancing with guys from school like my homegirls did . . .but the college girl in me still has to get Miami in before im officially grown so we're headed down Memorial Day Weekend:)
Now it's back to finishing these last few weeks before May 12th. Wow. April is next week so May . .. .I don't even want to think about it.

Spring Break I: A-Town Still Down

March 25, 2007

I finally made it out of DC last Sunday morning. . . after my suitcase made the trip Friday morning. Got home, settled, went by and saw my oldest friend (pre-kindergarten and we're still tight -third grade she was raggedy ann and I was Mary Poppins in our school play . . .yes it was a black school:) who was having serious relationship drama then headed to every girl's favorite therapist - my hairdresser.
Monday was shopping and falling back in love with the city. Went downtown for dinner with my Ieesha and her teach for America buddies at this place called Sweet Lowdown right around the corner from that Tasti Delite. I was trying to stay away from the drinks because I knew once I got to NY it was on. Well $5 mojitos ended that. Good times on Peachtree. Than I met up with my summer intern buddy and Spelmanite Christian who the guys in Times Square and we now call 'Super Slim,' my favorite superhero! Her and her roommate are all tan after their break the week before in Miami. Her roomie says how she wants to teach in South Africa after graduation. We all say how we would love to teach at Oprah's school ( I dont tell them the crazy girl I am emailed Diane Hudson about that very thing back in December) So then Christian goes she is watching the special in her class on Wednesday. And who does she is the professor? My favorite author Pearl Cleage! This lady is a freaking genius in making characters come alive. And Christian adds it should be ok if I go to class.
We hurry back to their apartment. Did they have to study? no. wanted to go to bed early? nope. These chics wanted to watch wolfie - this amateur porn that comes on access tv that all the spelman chics watch. No, its not actual "porn" just weird people fighting each other in wolf suits. Funny stuff.
So Tuesday I go rent a car and the guy who does all my paper work is a big football cutie who went to school with my brother and knows my mom. And once again in 24 hours I am hating DC and its lack guys as he flirts and I flirt right back:). I then head to do my interview of Janelle. After we talk for a while and she let's me listen to her first suite from 'Metropolis' I am trying to be all objective but am LOVING her music and just . . .her spirit. So then their like 'you been to stankonia? wanna head over and see them mix the music" I play cool like Im there everyday. Great stuff. By this time I've been trying to stay chill and collected when I grab the door going back inside the studio like I havent seen all these guys doing construction and have a hand of gray paint the rest of the day. Aww well.
So I make my way back to the eastside and head to Ms. Sheila's to get my hair done. My friend eesh is always saying she wants a "casual 1o inch." Well, there's nothing casual about this 12 inch I got going on.
Wednesday I return the car, I do my Wal-Mart and Staples trip and get a new simple leather portfolio for my clips and let my HU blue and white polka dot one go. No more intern cuteness . . .I need a job, ya dig?
I hurry back, pack my bag and am right on time for Mama Wells to pick me up for our Tea Date. We get to this cute little spot and are set for Full Afternoon Tea which was absolutely great. We already know Im an old lady. So after a leisurely afternoon and me already excited for retirement as she tell me how she was at a B&B in Charleston the week before owned by Sheila Johnson, the former wife of BET's Bob Johnson and the richest black woman in America right after Oprah. I am hooked as Mama Wells tells me how Sheila was actually there while they were there and stopped what she was doing to come over and talk to them. A true billionaire and she told me she was so nice. We finish up our many flavors of tea and head to the gift shop in the back where I get another tea drainer that actually is a little tea pot with holes in it for the the tea leaves to soak with. So I have two so far, the other I got on that sweet date on the Baltimore Harbor. By the time I get to NY it's going to be on!

After tea I get back in enough time to grab my bag and be dropped off at Spelman. We put my bag in my friend's truck and head to class . . .Peal Cleage's Class! It was great. The first hour we talked about current news and talking about Judith Plame we got on the FBI and how they kept files on EVERYONE and how Professor Cleage got a box full of files on her dad who was a teacher and preacher and not affiliated with the Panthers or any parties but just stood up for black rights. The organist in her church - who had taught her and sister piano - had been one of the guys watching her and her family. See, Im not a conspiracy theorist for nothing! Crazy stuff goes on everyday!
The second half we watch the Oprah special and everyone is tearing up. It was beautiful so if I have to be the lame who goes to class during spring break I'll be that. The second Professor Cleage cuts off the video she asks "Those girls really wanted to be at the school for leadership for girls, much like Spelman is a place for black women leaders. Do you girls feel that way about Spelman that they feel about their school?" At the same time two girls go "Hell No." We discuss why they felt that way and she assigns the class to list what 5 books they would give to the school's library as Oprah asked guests to bring their favorite book the library. Im having a hard time thinking of what 5 I'd do. We hit Taco Bell and Christian drop me off at the train station that took me to the airport. Great times in Atlanta! If I didnt love New York so damn much I would definitely be heading back down.

Queen who was a Peach first.

I Stank I Can

March 24, 2007
Wow. Spring Break has been . . .amazing. And confirmed something we already knew. I am weird. Like, reaaaally weird.
I'm still in NY after a wonderful time in Atl. And though I want to tell you ALL about it, my camera's USB doesn't work on this computer and I don't want to post without pics. Like how we act like we didn't live without cell phones just fine when we misplace ours for a second, I am hooked to having pics in the blog. But I couldn't wait till Monday to get out all these thoughts Im having and sharing these good times I am sure I will look back at with a smile, so welcome to Sam's and here's a sample.

So yeah, I was saying, I Stank I Can!
I really am trying to stick to my goals for this year, though this break has wrecked havoc on my no candy/little alcohol workout plan (and after I could get back in these pants that had me depressed over Christmas. I feel a little more off the wagon.)I am doing a little better on my plan to freelance more.
God is good and I am writing.
here for Heart & Soul's website on the real deal on pregnancy and seafood. I was really taking aback when this OB/GYN was saying how black women aren't comforted by having another black woman as their doctor, but sometimes give her a harder time or want another doctor. Frank Ski was talking about that same mindset saying how blacks (and Larry King) are tougher on Barack Obama but blindly followed Kerry knowing nothing. interesting stuff.
Speaking of Obama, I also wrote this story on him that got picked up by Washington Informer on how he compares to pop culture's first black president like Chris Rock's Head of State.
So, those weird dreams with Cee-lo (who I sadly heard is separated from his funky wife. hope that wasn't true) I have and me reminiscing on that day I had those holy underwear on the playground and my uniform came up that I still have not fully forgiven my mom for, I am constantly thinking.
And have gotten better shaping those weird thoughts into story pitches.
I was REALLY excited when I got a green light to interview Janelle Monae, the amazing artist who I describe as like the younger sister of Outkast musically, which is appropriate as she works directly with Lucious Leftfoot who you may know as Big Boi.
One of my favorite interviews ever. I don't know what I was expecting but we quickly related and I was comforted knowing Im not the only old lady soul out here:) After talking at Wondaland we went to Stankonia where they were mixing her upcoming album that she let me listen to a little. I was hooked. You'll have to read the story for the rest I guess;)
So yeah, Spring Break has been just what I needed and once I get my pics Ill give details.
But till then I hold tightly to my weirdo card - I went to class during my spring break! and the old lady still lives inside having afternoon tea, twice. so, if Im an old lady . . . .what's the oldest a guy can be for me to talk to?

Stank Ya Smelly Much for all the love!

America, America

March 17, 2007
So. I truly felt myself calm down today on stressing over my future. Enjoying this moment I wont ever get again.
I felt good.
Real good.
I know in the next four years I would have lived in South Africa working at a magazine or packing for my move over.
As I felt joy over my good day of self reflection I also realized I had fallen into the trap that has caught a lot of us by the ankles.
I just read an article on us, "The Me, Me,More, More" generation of college students and grads a few weeks back. America.
As I constantly asked myself "What am I going to do with MY life?" I realized the opportunity for me to even ask a question like that let me know how good I have it . . .and how what I do with this life should somehow help someone else experience that type of freedom to ask that question . . .as so many did so much so I could ask myself.

Then I went to this link of Fox News attack on Blacks compiled in a way that its no way to deny it and realized how, how I answer that question can help or hurt. America.
Wow, right?
No shock really.
At the airport yesterday CNN broadcast this story of a guy in Texas who was pardoned after being sentenced to LIFE IN PRISON for SMOKING WEED. He was on probation at 17 for an armed robbery where no one was hurt when he smoked weed and 17 years later he is being released. America.
Three of the officers in the Sean Bell case were indicted. Is that a victory?
Hell naw!!!
The victory is only when an unarmed man isn't killed on his wedding day for well, being black.
It's easier to say he shouldn't have been out in that area that late than to come face to face with the reality that it's not anything you did that is the problem, it's just you. Breathing you.
Then I read this column about the NAACP. And sadly, it hit home. I was active in the NAACP in high school and soon the disorganization and politics turned me off. Pretentious black people. Those suspender popping black people I saw at Chicken and Waffles last year with Mayor Nagin. College students. Those of us who are in the best position to "do something," well, I don't know.
Yesterday I was in line to buy a bottle of water at the airport.
The WASP ahead of me got his diet coke. $1.38 My 20 oz Deer Park. $1.73. America.
I am not a revolutionary. Yet, today I felt the weight of the need of a revolution. I am an American.
Aren't I? I was born here and got the social security card to prove it but is that really all it takes to be considered "in"?
I was really looking into going to South Africa this summer and interning back in December.
Then I looked at the staff of Elle South Africa and got intimidated. Not only am I not a true fashion girl (though I did get this Marc Jacobs dress at Loehman's Thursday for a STEAL I tell you! and I told Mikey, and he tells me Marc is in rehab . . . so his clothes are even more fetch these days. this twisted country I tell ya. America).
So like I was saying, not only was I uhm, a little intimidated by the staff I was nervous of what it would be like in South Africa, as far as racism.
One thing about today's American society is that racism isn't in your face so much. Which many say is good. We have made progress, but the behind the scenes conversations that aren't in the open are much more scarier.
I rather have someone spit in my face than stab me in my back. At least I have at least some notice to possibly move out the way. And even if not, I still know who did it because they are up front.
But even with all this bravado I type with. The reality of someone spitting in my face for my skin was something that hit too close for me. So I put on my Fantasia album and spruced up the blog.
Then I remembered so many didn't have the luxury to ignore what is so obvious.
Yes, her album is rather good and that 'Sunshine' is my jam. Yes, like Lorraine I will be black, female, American and do my part to try and get this society a little closer to where it should be.

If not me and you, who?

-Just a regular girl with royal ambition.

My Thoughts of Late: Fly High . . .sort of.

March 16, 2007
Party People! Awwwwwwwwwwwwww yeah.

yep, that's the tag team opening line for 'woop' and also the theme song from my bday including 'Get me bodied' which STILL has this guy calling me though I NEVER pick up the phone. And no, none of this has anything to do with this post . . .

Today I was suppose to head to Atlanta. Well, on a standby ticket, bad weather around the east coast and delta flights to Atlanta being cancelled last night, all the flights were overbooked all day leaving no room for baby CJ in the inn.

Anyone who has experienced Buddy pass/Stand-by hell knows how frustrating it can be hoping you make it on.
But honestly, I had a great day!

I had some great quality time with one of my favs. Me and Lorraine reconnected and I remembered why I always loved her!
I started 'To be Young, Black and Gifted' from the very beginning, reading each page slow, and highlighting the things that especially stuck to me, which was hard since she is so damn gifted and I "get" her. Or maybe her ability to anticipate the future reached this far and she "got" me and knew the comfort and delight I would find in her work.
Though it's great to be "above average" at anything, that also comes with the reality you are away from the norm and less people get you.
As Lorraine said and Mitzi has as her email quote:
The thing that makes you exceptional, if you are at all, is inevitably that which must also make you lonely.

I have read her good friend James Baldwin's introduction to her book at least a dozen times and it still touches me every time. Two loners finding comfort in each other is something I can relate to. She died so young.
I have never been afraid of death, but reading her work, and feeling like we were having girl talk with her quick wit and comments feeling like they were just for my amusement I was reminded who we really are doesn't have to die.
Diddy, Sanaa and Claire Huxtable started filming her 'Raisin in the Sun' last fall. So glad Lorraine didn't let her writing dreams shrivel up out in that desert.
Well, I hope I make it on a plane tomorrow, something my sister Lorraine never got the nerve up to do.
-Queen who'd Love to be a Little Lorraine (and, like, loves alliteration)

When I lay me down to sleep

March 13, 2007
So last night me and my best friend celeste went to some club. It's dark when we get inside and their is an upstairs but we decide to stay down and go check our coats in the back of the club in the middle. The coat check area which I think also was a snack bar or something looks like the place in the skating rink you go to get skates because the lights are so bright back there. So I assume we check our coats and then sit on these pew like benches to the left. We are thinking about heading upstairs and even start walking towards them when we hear Gnarls Barkley 'Crazy' come on, people start getting rowdy and we realize Cee-lo is indeed in the house and on the Mic. We rush back and get our seats on the pew which is like the front row. Everybody sits down. It's still dark but feels more like a meeting than a night club. He performs and Im loving it! On his third song we hold eye contact for a long time and everybody starts screaming looking at him looking at me. (intense but nothing sexual . . .thank the Lord) So he finishes that song and starts talking about how we need to help communities and talking about the struggles of Latinos and I look around and see the room is about half white-half black. As he's talking, he walks around the big circle that is clear in the middle of the room for him to perform.he then walks over near our bench. Earlier it was me and Celeste on the end but now there's a white girl sitting at the end of the row next to me and Celeste on my other side. There is like a book bag or something between me and the girl on the row. Cee-lo comes over and sits down between me and the girl and just keeps talking. Im nodding my head and playing cool and Celeste is way excited on the side of me and I notice another of our friends is now siting on the other side of her who I think might have been Michael.
So Celeste starts whispering all loud, 'where's is your camera we need a camera.' And Im thinking 'why is she so loud? Im no groupie!' I have a camera in my purse but am NOT taking it out.
Cee-lo then looking at the crowd says I have a camera and pulls one out of his pocket and hands to the person on the pew across the room facing us to take the picture. He puts his arm around me and the girl on the other side of him and her friend and we all cheese and take the picture. Celeste then grabs my purse and is fumbling for my camera and saying Im a take some more shots while he sitting here. After we take the pics with his camera he gets up and goes sort of near the front left side where we came in. It's still pretty dark in there. he starts talking some more than says how Buckey was fighting Buck Wild on Flavor of Love 2 and acts like he is fighting somebody and we are all rolling! In my head when he said Buckey I thought Boots and laughing hard I look down the row and she is sitting there at the end of the row! Boots was looking rough with this green cami and scarf on her head. I was about to call her out when this girl goes up to act out a Flavor of Love scene. She basically does the same scene Cee-Lo just did and gets two claps from the crowd for not being original. Celeste slides past me and goes upstairs in what looks to be a house upstairs. She comes back quickly and holds this white baby shirt with colorful flowers at the bottom up to her shirt so it looks like her stomach is showing and she instantly looks like Deelishus and we all start laughing. She does this whole scene saying "hey daddy," and sucking her cheeks in to look like she has dimples. Then she's all 'you don't have to meet my child or spend time with him because my baby daddy make good money. I dont need you to pay child support or spend anytime with him' and she really sounds like deelishus! Everybody is rolling as she slides back into the seat. Another girl goes up and her scene is wack. Cee-lo is just laughing and watching as people orderly come participate in this Flavor of Love charades. I then get the perfect idea to do 'Like Dat' and do the big girl lingerie scene and 'smack my butt' dance and know everyone would LOVE it. I am thinking how cool this night has been and how I cant wait to see those pics of chillin with cee-lo and tell everybody about it. I saw him when I was home for Christmas last year at the Havanna Club in Atlanta and was going to tell him that.
Then I woke up.
I dream at night. I dream A LOT and always in color. But last night's dream was a bit much, ya think and SO REAL! I think I need to go back to sleep to rest after that. There's no way I could possibly know ( or do I want to) what that dream meant . . .subconsciously am I just ready to go to Atlanta this weekend and looking forward to 'Charm School' with the Flavor of Love girls and Monique? I hope that's all that meant . . .

Queen, the crazy dreamer, literally.

I AMMMM Changing!

March 12, 2007
I am.
And fighting it so hard.
One of the beauties of me and best friend's relationship is we are so eerily different yet so much alike. She rids herself of relationships that aren't healthy and doesn't look back. I on the other hand am saying woulda' coulda' shoulda' trying to make things work and in the end she says toldya' as I try and make a friendship or any relationship work when its obvious its not meant to be.
Well, at least that's how I use to be. Lately, I have closed into myself not wanting to make new friends something so uncharacteristic of me. I have been satisfied with you great folks and not wanting to chance someone new disappointing or hurting me. I'll admit, people who I have been "cool" with and have done trifling things lately and I am not forgiving and forgetting and on two occasions decided I didn't want to be friends . ..though I don't think they got the memo and I don't know how to say it.
I feel like God is really working on me though and I'm taking a look at myself to check an ego when someone is genuinely trying to make amends or be your friend and you just don't want to go there. is that wrong? You are probably a great friend to someone, but does that have to be me? Is that completely ridiculous to think you can ever have "enough" friends?
See? I am changing . . .and humming the song of the same title Jennifer Hudson tore up. Shouldn't she just change her name to Dreamgirl? So Dreamgirl is still polishing that Oscar (I LOVE any dress with pockets because you can be fly as you wanna and still look nonchalant and like you aren't trying and this one is no different!) and she also will be the face of a new scent for Avon. Wow, perfume just keeps popping up everywhere in my life:)
Im serious though. I really am changing and really trying to stay open but one thing I'm not going to change to like is kids modeling adult clothes.

It's bad enough to get girls who look like teen boys for ads in fashion magazines but now they are skipping over and going straight for the pre-teen girl. Dakota Fanning is talented . . .and with that comes extreme weirdness. Her new Marc Jacobs ads in Seventeen fine, sell the clothes to teens, but why this morning flipping through the Jessica Simpson Elle or the Vogue with Dreamgirl on the cover did I see her modeling women's clothes in women's magazines when she is not a woman? I read her article in Teen Vogue a few months back (i know Im not a teen . . .but I have to take baby steps to mama Vogue right?;) and she says how she LOVES Marc Jacobs and goes into detail about his clothes. And I'm like wow, isn't she just a tad young. I mean, I gush about his clothes because the man really understands how to make clothes so understated sexy. And trust, my Marc Jacobs dream don't equal a Marky Marc closet. On the occasions I am able to, its a true treat to get an item from Loehman's or Filene's or my lucky MJ Vintage shoe find and then I always get compliments on his stuff and can't even say "It's Marc Jacobs" like I really want to unless I want to look like Im REALLY not use to anything:).
Friday I was at Loehman's and their was this sick purple and cranberry cotton dress that I knew I had to have. It was almost half off and still would have been a splurge - and completely worth it (I've been freelancing and owe myself a belated birthday treat:)! It was so me at the top but the bottom was just way too flowy and long. oh well.

Not sure how Dreamgirl, Dakota and me all wound up in the same post but I guess we do re-enforce one of my fave India lyrics, "the only thing constant is change"


Pay it Forward . . .Charter Day Weekend

March 11, 2007
Man, what a weekend.
From a Secretary of State and new perfume to funerals and meeting my new boss (as I claimed in my prayers:)
So Thursday night I find out I indeed have a ticket to Charter Day Dinner ($250 a freaking plate), hands down the swankiest event the University has of the year. I haven't missed one yet. This year I went with the honors program. I feel obligated to go to the convocation Friday morning and man am I glad I went. Even if it just to wave the freakin program during the Alma Mater,Howard Ceremonies are always fun. Well, true to my style I get there right when it starts and have to wait outside a minute as the president and trustees walk by and make their processional. Who I didn't notice was with him until I sit in my seat is former Secretary of State Colin Powell. The speaker Ike Leggit, Montgomery County Executive was interesting . . and had a GREAT voice:). General Powell said a few words and I truly felt inspired and glad I go to HU!
So the event is over and now for the important part . . .I have to get a dress for Saturday's gala. Last year this girl had a gorgeous white dress I LOVED and I knew I wanted to wear white. I lucked out and found a dress . . .then felt self-conscious about wearing white so early so I got these black and white earrings I thought would keep it from being too spring-y. Driving back my dad calls to say he's in the city as he and his brother and sisters came up for a funeral of a cousin - his 2nd cousin I never met. I felt weird, but after some persuasion from him I decide to go to the funeral the next day since I do know his mom and other family.

So Saturday morning I have to cut my cousin's trip a little short who goes to Hampton and was in town for spring break as I get ready for the service. I start in this charcoal dress, then feel weird to look like I am in mourning for someone I never had the pleasure to meet. I end up in this green and white dress - one of my faves and feel comfortable. The service was not nearly as weird as I thought and was a straight 1960's deep south funeral in downtown DC in 2007.
lots of soul singing.
His mother, my aunt lula bell, a pastor, even did a hallelujah dance as she's giving the eulogy.
Absoulutely amazing . . . and beautiful. *Pic= the dress I wore to the funeral. Well right there Im at the Color Purple which I have to see when Fantasia starts and I also want to see Rent on Broadway before Frenchie leaves in May. Im thinking rush tickets Saturday after next. Wanna go? my bad . . .I digress.
So, Saturday Night .
I get dressed and hit the Hilton. The decorations and everything seems to be upgraded as the stage is set up like Founder's library. It was great seeing friends and it took each of us like 5 seconds to recognize each other because everyone has cleaned up so nicely. After losing 30 minutes looking for parking I finally relaxed as I sip some red wine and check the star studded program and enjoy the moment.
President swygert, who ironically was on the front page of Metro section in the Post has this sick black tux with like slivers of silver pin stripes.
A company donates $1 million.
They announce the university has surpassed its goal to raise $250 million in five years over 9 months before schedule.
Dinner is served.
One of my mentors on campus Mikel Husband, who runs University Communications and does the alumni magazine stops by. We chat, he confirms he saw Danyel last week like Brad had said and says something else that still makes me smile.
Now, I didn't get Time Inc Edit, this internship I wanted and what I had planned to be my Plan B to finding a job, and honestly It didn't bother me one bit. It truly wasn't for me and I'm not questioning God when I have been soooooooo blessed.
So anywho, as that door closed Mikel Husband tells me how Danyel mentioned me to him and I am trying to be on my best behavior at this swanky event but am grinning from ear to ear. I then tell him of my deep admiration of Richard Parsons, Time Warner CEO, who is on stage and the official planner of the night's events. He says I should go say hello. I know there is no way Im going up there, smile and take a pic with him and he moves on.
I enjoy the first two courses and then go speak to my surrogate magazine mommy Prof Lamb and we chat. She tells me she just took some students up to meet Isabel Wilkerson - Pulitzer Prize Winning former Hilltop editor and Im so sad she didnt see me to ask to join them because Isabel is another one of my idols. And she's so gorgeous!
Mikel/Mr. Husband (not sure what i am suppose to call him:) comes back and says Mr. Parsons is up there and not surrounded by people and I should go speak.
I do my best doe-eyes and beg/ask Prof Lamb to come with. She agrees and we head to the head tables on the stage.
We get there.
Im cheesing.
She introduces herself and me. I'm on.
He has these kind eyes so I feel comfortable saying how I use to work at one of his magazines and how much I am enjoying this event he put on.
He ask what magazine I tell him and ironically I had just emailed Angela the day before and tell him that. He is like the Time Inc God and he's talking to ME!!! He says how great she is and then in the most casual way, "Yeah, you should go back. Tell her I said so." He could have been kidding but i'm still on a high just to meet him and those 2 minutes were grand. And you know I'd absolutely LOVE to take him up on that advice and told him so:) Now let's just all keep praying a position reveals itself. by the way, seen the new issue of Essence with Terrence Howard on it?
So me and Professor Lamb keep moving down the table and get to Ms. Isabel Wilkerson and my admiration for her grows ten times! She is so nice and interested as we talk and makes me really excited that if you work hard enough your dreams will come true. I then am so glad I read her bio in the convocation program the day before as she is totally surprised I know she was on the Hilltop staff as a freshman.
So I head back to the table for the last course and dessert which was this sinful espresso truffle which really was a warm chocolate brownie with ice cream drizzled in mango and raspberry sauce that is in no way in my kanye workout plan!!!!!!
I'm already on a natural high, then that chocolate one when Bebe Winans tears it up followed by the hilarious and amazing Yolanda Adams.
The night's honorees were all amazing, especially DC mayor Adrian Fenty. I know I'm late, but who knew he was THAT sexy? I need to go hang out at the law school! He was funny and charismatic and gave me a little hope as he found his wife when they were both at the school.
After a fabulous and looooong night i head home with a car full and fulfill my duty as chauffeur.

I'm wound up and wide awake.
I get on the computer and am reminded I am blessed to have absolutely wonderful people in my life.
First D. Chedwick Bryant offers to send me Paloma's perfume that I was dying to smell! How nice was that? I'm excited as I'm told it's perfect for formals so next time I'm ready:)
Then I head to my soul sister Darby's blog and she shouted me out. I was already feeling a little like a wannabe rockstar and that just added to my high.
So with so much feeling right with my world I felt a feeling I have been feeling lately, and what Yolanda Adams made a point of reminding us all to do, GIVE BACK! I may be perceived as flighty at times but Im not a flake. That's why I was so embarrassed of falling off as a mentor in Big Sister/Big Brother last year.
Waking up this morning, I decided to stop wallowing in the guilt and emailed the program director and even if he doesn't want me back I'll find another way to donate my time in a way that helps somebody other than spoiled me.
Well, I know this post was WAAYY long. Thanks for the release.

-Queen Wanna-be who had-a blast at the-ball

Let the juices flow!

March 8, 2007
I just left one of my newest regularly read blogs and blogger buddies d. chedwick bryant and the latest post inspired me to be honest. Honestly, your probably wondering how can that be when Im already probably a little too honest telling you about my crushes, arguments with the family and embarrassing childhood stories . . .yes, that really did happen on a Friday (our wash day when I was little) and my uniform jumper flipped over my head on the playground and I had on holy underwear.
Anywho, D. Chedwick had me thinking of the other creative sides of me that I don't share with the world or give people a chance to even shoot down. I think once we creative folks open the door of creativity and come on in, we don't just channel it into that one thing we are REALLY good at, which for me is writing.

So my creative juices have flowed to . . .
1) My Cooking. Creativity is crucial in the kitchen being open to new foods and mixing things that normally don't go together. In high school me and my best friend use to pretend we were doing some cooking show and making shrimp scampi with all types of seasoning, cucumber salads and spiking our frozen drinks. Just in the last few months have I really been exploring my talents in cooking and I am loving every second of it. This philly cheesesteak is from the summer when it finally sunk in anything I like to eat out I can cook for myself at home!

2) My Voice. Im no Mariah and I always uncomfortable when I have to hear my voice on a tape and wonder how people put up with it. BUT, all through elementary, middle and high school I was in my church choir(like 90% of little black girls Im sure) I was decent and had my chair of solos. Up until I graduated high school I held down the soprano section and this high pitched voice was put to good use! For my church's 125th Anniversary when I was like 8 I had a solo on 'Let Peace Begin with Me' as the Marsalis Brothers played.
I also am a pretty good public speaker and was probably better at is as a child then I am now, and I still think im aiight. Im soon trying out to do a little something at our School of Communications graduation. Wish me luck!

3) My hands. I played the piano for nine years before quiting as a moody teenager. One of my few regrets as a child is not sticking it through. Whenever I am around one I want to play and still can deliver a mean 'Entertainer.' I also bought myself a guitar off of ebay two years ago and still haven't gotten past teaching myself to tune it and do some chords . . .but I love it and I will get better!

4) My Dancer's Feet. Typical suburban girl you know I took the standard ballet, jazz and tap class as a child. I loved it.
I quit.
I wanted to play softball too, my mom said she didn't want me messing up my knees so I rebelled and quit dance and took up gymnastics at the Y. But the dancer in me still enjoyed seasonal dances with my church troupe and today if Beyonce comes on it's over!

5) My words. Though I never call myself a poet, as I have gotten older I write poems a lot more as I am inspired. I look through old diaries and realize I was writing poems but because they didnt all rhyme or only a paragraph long I didn't consider them poems. Currently I have reverted to my 7th grad self and am obsessed with Haiku's. Usually people who are creative don't like math, but I love math, and completely love the merger of creative thought and a formula in this art form.

6)My works of art. As a child at least once a week I would take newspaper and put it on our kitchen floor and either pull out my paint set or some play dooh and I would be good for an hour. Now, since I know my talents, I also know my limitations. Im no great artist and it was always a struggle to color inside the lines because Im not a girl who's easily bound. But one thing I always loved was color! So Im not getting my Beyonce on with Water Colors but I do bring color to anything I can. Right now Im looking at this new candle I have (shhh .. . we're not suppose to have them in the dorm) and its salmon, canary and blue and fits right in with the blue comforter red recliner and teal and lilac pillows I have going on in here. I respect fashion too much to pretend to be a fashion girl, but I love playing dress up! I think I rarely leave home without my dash of color, whether my mustard bag/tam/belt just brightens me up. So I may not paint, but when spring comes and I pull out my dresses, I have a closet of masterpieces, ya dig?

I've shared enough, that is if you could make it through a post after someone tells you of their holy underpants as a child. I also love to get my hands dirty and would love to join anyone who does pottery or anything with mud or clay. Well, let me know.

creatively yours,

We Major!

March 6, 2007
So my friends, I'm walking to the School of Communications for my 2pm class today after lunch with my cousin and her "friend" when I'm walking by the ilab and I get this strong inkling to go inside. I didn't know why I should go inside but I usually have good intuition and followed my instinct. I didn't scout a new crush or find a dollar but I did find the unexpected high point of my day when I checked facebook. John, who was one of Danyel's top two interns at Vibe last summer(and shameless plug, he first got his foot in the door when the magazine group visited the magazine sophomore year!) and he had shared Danyel's latest post on her blog. Check it!!!! Bananas right?

He said how she started the blog in November. She is SOO freaking busy it made it even more special that we might have motivated her to post. And if your lazy I'll be kind and quote her words for ya . . .or maybe I just really want a reason to read it again:)

"I'm still a bit energized by my weekend trip to
Washington DC. I was down there for the Howard University Magazine Conference,
and the kids are better than allright: almost too wise and
good-looking and thorough.
Ready for action, they seem, organized and
focused enough to make me scared for anyone who stands in their way. They made
me feel welcome, and I was happy to see
MItzi down there, and Joyce, too."

Now I make no secret of the fact I tend to be dramatic. But I really was close to a little water coming to my eyes walking from the ilab to the school and not just from that crazy ass DC wind. Like, it was just a good moment and felt like everything had come full circle, especially her shouting out Mitzi and Joyce like that! Shoot, I'm also motivated to update this here blog because I'm no way near as busy as the the eic of TWO magazines and definitely could use a new template (ahem . . .Shani . . . .Antuan).

This is also the perfect time to shout out my buddy
ELLE* who is close to following her dreams in journalism! The money will most definitely come and your happiness will be even bigger than that!

And if your interested in magazines and will be in NY March 22nd here's info on a FREE conference in the city!

*******An exclusive one-day career insight conference on building a career in magazines for college undergrads, graduate students and recent grads being held on March 22, 2007 at McGraw-Hill in New York City (see program and write-up below).

9:15 “Which Magazine Job is Right for You?”
10:30 “Why Magazines?”
10:45 “A Day in the Life of a Designer”
12:00pm Lunch Break
12:30 “Why Magazines?”
12:45 “The ‘IT’ Factor: What Makes an Ideal Candidate?”
1:30 Practical Advice: What You Don’t Know
2:45 “What’s Next: Your Career Options”
3:30 “Why Magazines?”
3:45 Light Refreshments & Networking

Confirmed Speakers:

Mimi Valdes, Magazine Consultant
Vanessa Bush, Executive Editor, Essence
Danica Daniel, Editor In Chief, Black Beat Magazine & Right On!
Florian Bachleda, Founder & CEO, FB Designs
George Pitts, Director of Photography, Life
Arem Duplessis, Art Director, The New York Times Magazine
Wyatt Mitchell, Art Director, O, The Oprah Magazine

Sarah Vinas, Deputy Art Director, Portfolio
Won Kim, VP of Business Strategy, AsianDiversity
Amy Barnhart, Hearst Magazines
Betty Cortina, Editorial Director, Latina
Sheryl Hilliard-Tucker, Editor-at-Large, Time Inc
Sonia Alleyne, Careers/Consumer Editor, Black Enterprise
Andrea Chambers, Director, M.S. in Publishing Program, NYU
Andrew Simon, Managing Editor, Complex Magazine

Register now at www.magazine.org/diversity and spread the word to your network of college students and recent grads.

I'm going and let me know if you are too! We really can all be as major as we wanna be. And you know you doing BIG things when the haters come out. Be sure to check out FAMU and the AUC's comments on Danyel's post.


iMAGine That!

March 4, 2007

Ok. Ok. So I have REALLY been trying to post before the magazine conference on Saturday because I knew once it happened I would have a lot to talk about. Well after writing two full posts and having them malfunction before posting i guess it wasn't meant to be to tell you I yelled when J-Hud won and thought Ellen was great, loved how Beyonce was acting like Jay-Z in the Upgrade video, decided Im going to Miami/ATL/NY for spring break. But it was meant for me to let ya know the conference was BANANAS(sp.:)!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I mean, absolutely great. Cover to Cover's 4th Annual Magazine Conference. iMAGine:Dream. Believe. Achieve.

Friday night we had this sexy MAGtini Mix & Mingle on Ust that was so hot! Our 13 friends from UNC Chapel Hill made it and it was great to see the Ed2010 network at work. I felt cute . . .even I was a little overdressed. Probably just excited for the upcoming trip to Miami where my dress season officially begins again!
Remember last summer how it was one of my goals to meet Mitzi Miller, who made me want to go into magazines? Well, we met and somehow I finagled my way into her life and she is my homie/mentor/friend!
And I wasn't even extra greedy to try and keep her to myself and was so psyched she was able to accept my offer come to the conference. Now my friends keep talking about her and saying how cool she is and I'm loving it. So, her mentor (and mine too) Joyce E. Davis was able to come too from Atlanta! Mitzi interned for her at Honey and I interned for her at Upscale . . .and her mentor is my closest professor Yanick Rice Lamb.
If that didn't remind you to be pleasant at all times because EVERYONE knows EVERYONE, our lovely keynote speaker Danyel Smith of Vibe was sooo cool and her husband Elliot came too, the EIC of XXL. He was so funny and chill. Like, absolutely hilarious and actually got my jokes.
But just imagined if all you wanted to do was cover hip hop and you messed up with her . . .you really think you got a shot at XXL?

You would think them being at two magazines whose readers overlap would be an issue or something juicy, but he really broke it down and its really a beautiful thing. My main regret of the conference - I didn't take a pic of Danyel with her shoes or me with the two of them for the conference to have next year, I was on my 'I'm not a groupie" tip and didn't think about it till they left, which felt so presidential as I escorted them to their chauffeured car out front with the wind blowing through me and Danyel's hair.. .i know, way too much:).
Joyce had forewarned me Danyel gave a good speech and would have people eating out of her hand. Well, she was sooo right.
Danyel had people who weren't interested in writing or editing re-thinking their career goals. And she did it all while wearing these sick patent leather 3 1/2 inch red pumps.
Even with people who wouldn't know what hard work is if it bit them in their pompous ass tried to play like Im just the dictator from hell, my good mood and that feeling of job well done was there to stay. Im a compromiser. So if we are going to argue over whether a book signing or career booth should be at a round table or rectangular, I'll just sweetly ask the people who are using the table what they would prefer. Each said rectangle. Have you ever been to a book signing at a round cafeteria table? Anywho, I digress . ..but while Im at it. If you scream on me about you being in charge of something, than damnit, see it through and not slink into a corner proving my point of how you dont follow through . . .

Back to Danyel and Elliot and Mitzi and Joyce, yeah, it was great. And all the attendees were so fly all the speakers kept saying how they were keeping in touch with this bright bunch. And I'm all like me too.

Mitzi's freaking working on a screenplay with Malcom Lee, who did my beloved Best Man. Hot right?
Corynne Corbett, the executive editor at Real Simple, came and was great! Even cooler my summer buddy is her new EA and sent the comp. issues of the magazine to us. Yasmin Shiraz donated her sexy novel where the main character is what-a magazine journalist. I've probably already said this to you as I do everyone, but please please get up on myspace! It's a great networking spot and in a field like magazine journalism who you know has a lot to do with even knowing a job is open, let alone being considered.

That pic in the tan dress is from Friday with me and my Johns Hopkins homie Jan who interned at Vixen last summer in beauty. We are both Mean Girls/Andre 3000 lovers. Weird, right? She is so . ..me. It's so much more I could tell but I actually have to get back into school mode and do actual work:(
Well, we did get great press for the event and will be in the Washington Post later this week. Miss YBF herself was in the building, who my BFF absolutely loves and quotes on the regular, and was a panelist and even shouted us out on the blog! Yep, alls well that ends well and this ended FANTASTICALLY!
My last year as president, something I was the first of for this newly formed group when I was a freshman, has really come full circle. The closest thing I ever have had to a kid after my little sister is this club. I did my thing and am ready to move out the way for the next bunch and take all of the speakers and friends up on their offer to "stay in touch"!