The Real Thing

September 26, 2007
I am. . . .
God is. . .
I like . . .
The Real Thing.
I'm listening to Jill Scott's and I LOVE it. Jameil was right as usual. I picked up the album after the freelance class me and Kish are taking. It was the second week and it was so good to see her (she was all fab in Paris last week celebrating her bday:). She walked with me over to the Virgin store in Time Square afterwards to scoop it up. Then at the N stop at 49th we had a life-job heart to heart for like a half hour both with heels on. The convo was that serious.

Power is the Real Thing.
Mademoiselle M, asked what was the big deal about my classmate I randomly saw yesterday who was a buyer for Vickie's. As someone who has a thing for power and loves me a powerful man (Barack, Richard Parsons, Ken Chenault, Ossie, Martin, need I continue?:) a buyer is important because they are a serious gate keeper for a big part of our lives - the clothes we wear that express the people we are. So being a buyer for Victoria's Secret means she probably decided the store would carry the undies and Betsey Johnson bra you have on now. Cool, right:)?
The freelance class has me so inspired to turn random thoughts like this one into stories which equal cash which mama desperately needs. If I don't post over the weekend, it's only because I'm heading to a retreat in Green Bay. I'm waay excited and looking forward to the R&R.

A Long Walk

September 25, 2007
Jill Scott's new album came out today. I LOVE her music. Planned to go get it on during lunch but forgot me and John were suppose to meet for lunch. Great to see him. He's working at King and we could definitely relate to life as an EA (freelance and all). Afterwards we're walking down the block when I spot Erin, who also went to HU with us, and I just have one of those moments when you really think about where you are in life and how much you've well, lived and changed. We were in the same freshman english class and here we are walking the streets of NY as young professionals. We life only a few blocks away from each other in Harlem. She then tells me she works at Victoria Secret around the corner as a buyer. We say are good byes and promises to connect, which I definitely am because I told ya I'm trying to expand my network in the area.
Walking I tell John how cool it is she is buyer for Vickie's.
"Yeah, I guess, so she just buys clothes?" he says. CLASSIC. Gotta love a straight manly man;)
After work I felt I had too much to get home to do to get the cd. And honestly, Im a bit nervous because listening to a few songs she played on the Steve Harvey show yesterday had me thinking the pain of a divorce would be in the whole cd. I know artist grow but I love ballad Jill, not heartbroken. Maybe it's my own fear of getting my heart broke that makes me not want to listen to one of my favs sing about it. Well, tomorrow I still plan to scoop it up. Anybody take a listen?

A Beautiful Day in The Neighborhood

September 23, 2007
I had a pretty great day, and weekend for that matter. Yesterday I hung out and started with brunch with India at Pink Tea Cup - got off at Christopher St. with a monsoon raining on what was forecasted to be 80 degree weather. The weirdest old white guy was trying to holler and followed me into the restaurant before realizing no still means no. The salmon croquettes were great though the biscuits were worse than canned ones
Ended the night with Charanna. What started as a bust at Mars 2112 and a last resort of 40/40 was the best move we could have made.
When we got there we both noticed they were letting folks in the back room instead of the main door. Well, we soon found out when we walked into the main room and were right before the door. The place is PACKED and in comes security, and the man himself, Jay-Z. And the crowd goes wild!
he makes it upstairs and the DJ plays his new song with Pharell six times straight. Yes, I counted before I even realized. Such a cool nerd:)
If that weren't enough to make the groupies on HIGH alert, Diddy gets on the mic and Jay introduces another song off the album that was produced by Diddy. Most folks are too star struck to dance (look at these guys looking up at the dj booth;) We party like the haven't partied in a minute girls we are . . .
today I get up somehow after a few hours of sleep from the early morning return. Im hurrying to church, when Paul, my new British friend, tries to holler. Instead of taking my Im late to church excuse as a hint he invited himself along, which I dont mind. The sermon was a GREAT one on the topic "A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste" based on Matthew 22: 36.
Afterwards, I guess I was feeling neighborly to invite Paul and his cousin who lives around the corner from me over for Sunday dinner. I had already invited India and her friend who is also from London over so it was perfect! I cooked macaroni and cheese, collard greens, corn bread and jerk chicken. I even planned to do the sweet potato smoothies but after baking the sweet potatos, I was ready to get out of the hot kitchen. You can see the sheen on my forehead with my London friends:) I've been itching to get out of the country (I'm way honored Z checks the blog out from across the world at school in Dubai). Between her, Zandile and Anthony, my Marshall Scholar, I have been inspired to make it happen. So if Paul and O could bring London to my Harlem apartment I'll take it. And I took great pride in making the first corn bread either ever had:) here's a pic of me and Yemi, the cousin.

He moved from Nigeria three years ago and was so enthralled by my Jay-Z story because he's a big fan. Which had me completely thrown and he knew all the music. I learned his parents came over first and always brought CDs, including Jay-Z and other things when they would return to Nigeria. Cool right?

He and India might make a great match. I'm not a matchmaker but we all can use a little help every now and then. Let you know how that goes.

And as one of my friends reminded me, there's still a animal in the best of guys. Paul was doing good till he and the cousin were fighting the hint I was putting out there that it was time for them to go and he slide the massage offer out there. LOL. It wouldn't have been so funny had me and India not JUST discussed the infamous massage offer at brunch the day before. I guess wack come-ons are global:) Time to get ready for another week!

The Red Carpet

September 22, 2007
All the cameras come out for a Public Affair . . .
Don't front, I'm not the only one who has that Jessica Simpson song on the ipod(my crush from last summer, Johnta Austin wrote it;). And it's exactly how I felt when I was asked to be a stand in on the red carpet for the 10thVH1's Save the Music with Jay-Z, L.A. Reid and Mariah Carey among the heavy hitters expected on Thursday. So in my all black I scurry over to the tent at Lincoln Center Thursday and miss the first half of the red carpet.

It looks so glamorous from a far. Up close it's straight CHAOS. I get my badge and have to fight my way through camera crews and Access Hollywood personalities to get just a little spot.

First person I spot is AJ who I also saw at The View with Sherri. In my fav summer sandals (a Carlos Santana STEAL from Victoria Secret.com I got thanks to Miss Tia) I am rethinking this whole thing with my notepad, tape recorder and digital camera. next to five man crews for the smallest of NY networks.
Quincy Jones and John Mayer (love the Gap ads with him and Lucy Lui and the unstoppable Regina King) walk the carpet and it's a great experience to see how the segments we see on tv and red carpet pics we see on tabloids happen. And one, honestly, I don't care to have again anytime soon:). I started chatting with Bill, a middle-aged white guy, who does shoot audio for Entertainment Tonight and realized this was his life day in and out. he had also been at The View we learned. I was a little bummed when he said Jay-Z would probably not be doing the red carpet.

The highlight was definitely being able to hear the kids play inside the event and seeing the fierce Lola (formerly of NYTimes, now at CNN) work the carpet. When she got to Quincy Jones before everyone else as a print reporter, AJ was not a happy camper and let the folks handling the press coverage know and got things moving. But what made me the most excited is seeing such a seasoned journalist still using the good ole pen and pad. But seeing her and Quincy and John wasn't enough to make me want to stay. I tried to hold out for Mariah, but her "there in 15 minutes" soon turned to 45 and I had a life to live and the carpet wasnt it.

So I slipped from the madness and headed down the street. Walking down the block, I finally got the courage to call Randon and tell him how sorry I was to hear about his mom (thanks for the kick in the butt Jameil). He was doing just fine and had a maturity that sounded good on him. (Didn't hurt that he and Nick stroked my ego a little saying I was their most successful friend so far;) I definitely needed that because sometimes I wonder . . .

And Lincoln Center was gorgeous at night(this pic doesnt do it justice.) I hit the Barnes and Noble before heading home to see if they had this birthday book I want. You know I ended up with some magazines (I started my freelance class so its technically "research") and had to get this one called Audrey that's like Essence for Asian-American women with my latest girl crush Sharon Leal on the cover! Love her (and so over Kerry Washington and about to be over Thandie). She's half-Filipino. Was GREAT in Dreamgirls and is making her way to the black movie scene in Tyler Perry's "Why Did I get married?" which KB said was pretty good and "The Christmas Song" which Im excited to check out.

Well, That was my first red carpet. The broadcasters definitely can have it, and already have my respect.


A promise is a promise . . .

September 21, 2007

So I have noticed I have completely been breaking the standard blog rules by blogging when the mood hits whether that's once a month or three times a day. not good. Then my last posts have been EXTRA long with no pics to break up the text. Even worse.

So I will keep em short and coming often!

The Single Life

September 20, 2007

Dating . . .
So Im not the only single girl out here trying to get the hang of this dating thing! ESSENCE has kicked off 30 Dates in 30 Days Dating Reality Show and it has been fabulous. The second date happened last night and log on now to watch. We have 5 ladies who will go on six dates each with six different guys. Nice right? Me and some of the girls at work were saying we'd be happy to do 30 dates in 365 days;) Not only can you watch the dates, but YOU vote on which guy the ladies go out with, where they go and what she wears.
The first bachelorette is Nicole, the talent producer for the Wendy Williams show, and she is comedy. If she didn't hit it off with Bernard last night I might have had to scoop him myself;)
So yes, check it out ASAP. And not just to see my name in the credits . . .
Can you tell Im WAAYY excited about that:)?

Mating . . .
That's what the boy Diddy is about. India did a fab interview with him yesterday and it is comedy. He's all flirting with her. But if that Ciroc is all that, I may have to do some seducing of my own. And the journalist in me could ring her neck for not going for the zinger when he answered what he wanted for Christmas was to be with all his kids. Did that include the baby in Atlanta?? Be sure to check Kim Porter's interview in the Keyshia Cole issue with all the juice.
I've been really thinking lately I would enjoy specializing in relationships as a beat and have been telling anyone who will listen:) Maryann is already on her way with her Baltimore Sun blog BaltAmour! What a clever name:)

Waiting . . .
Being single requires a great deal of patience. And for some girls a whole lot more than others when their special guy is in jail:(
That's why I'm in my black dress today to show my support for Jena Six. It may not make a big difference but only takes one person and one spark for big change. Though, I'll be real, with these big gold earrings its more fly girl than progressive intellect . . .hmm. I thought it was cool to hear this morning how David Bowie can $10,000 to the Jena legal fund.
This morning at the corner of my blog the guys gave me the usual approval that the dress was a good choice (and yes, I admit I have been feeling a little cuter after dropping a few due to stress). One yells, "yo, I need to go get some black myself. That's looking good." Then another to me, "Yeah you know today is all black." I tilt my head to the side (inside thinking "No Sh*t") and just say "yeah."
But wearing Black for a place hundreds of miles away is not really a solution, just a small reminder to society. . Jozen's column actually made some good points for a change:) I've been a big believer of "Think globally, Act Locally" every since I saw the phrase on a car bumper sticker a few years back.


September 19, 2007
So as usual in my life, when it rains it pours. Yesterday morning BB comes to my desk around 10:33am and ask will I take her at a press luncheon for General Mills' Serving Up Soul platform and B.Smith will be there. I am excited I am able to go, especially as I try and kick up my cooking and entertaining. After walking in and meeting the fab publicist for the event I'm quickly offer me a sweet potato pie smoothie.

Yes, it was as decadent as it sounds.

Well, I take that back. It was better than it sounds! A cinnamon stick in the glass added a nice touch and made me feel Fall had definitely made its way. And sweet potato smoothies are definitely now a part of my repertoire! Jonte at work (who sits right across from me and lives right across the street . . .freaky, we know;) already told me about this sweet potato cheesecake I want to master for Thanksgiving. So after two sips of the smoothie it was time to go inside and for the presentation to begin. I scurry to a table in the front and sit next to two guys from Sandbox TV. The setting was nice and intimate. There were fruit kabobs in the middle of the table and this tasty fruit dip that I know I could make with yogurt, brown sugar and a few other ingredients.

So the presentations begin. They talk about how soul food is alive in well in the Black community and Black woman want it to stay that way but just have two problems: it's unhealthy and takes too long to cook.

The whole time I’m like wow, this is stuff I have wanted to know and discuss and I am getting to come hear about it for work. They continue the presentation. Tell us about the Serving Up Soul website and how it is a great resource and I’m thinking this is just what I need! My whole sweet tooth, isn't just because my brother always supplied me with now and laters and got me hooked, but part of our culture. We like sweets! And one of the ways we get em is by fruit.

They also had interesting tidbits of info like enslaved Africans (I don't like the word slaves) bought watermelon seeds from the continent.
So they brought a course at a time and by the end of the hour we had cole slaw with cranberries, this chicken jambalaya (using chicken helper, who knew?) and these desserts. All the recipes used general mills products and the exciting part was they were all practical like the jambalaya and stuff I probably already have. Like this peach dessert that is basically a biscuit and crystal sugar with some whip cream.

I had to try the cinnamon fried ice cream! It was so good and something I could do. Did they spend an hour mixing up a cinnamon mix to use? Nope, they used Cinnamon Toast Crunch! That's what I’m talking about.

I loved Sylvia from General Mills view on cereal:
"If food were fashion, cereal would be Black"

Think about it. We eat cereal for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert and a midnight snack! And now it is my special ingredient for fried ice cream!

And B. Smith? Amazing and so cute;) She inspired me to start a supper club! She was charismatic and it’s easy to see why she has been so successful. She's gorgeous and has a daughter my age. Talking to her afterwards was kinda fab. But the best thing about her hands down was her husband in the back of the room. Comedy! When she was saying how she cooks and prepares for friends he yells out "I cook too honey" And for the rest of the time she was up there he kept her honest. I thought they might have been newly weds because of that spark they had that usually is so strong when a relationship is new. Then she goes, "my daughter, well, our daughter is 21" and I’m like wow, they've been together over 20 years and still got "it." beautiful!

So after snapping a few pics with B and Kenya we hustle back to work. It makes us all smile as we talk about how good the sweet potato smoothies were while waiting for the elevator and the kitchen assistant who made them happen to be standing by and is really touched. A genuine compliment is always most appreciated. I also caught up with Bisi from Heart&Soul who I met last week at Zandile's party. My network is growing I tell ya! And to think this weekend I was starting to worry I wouldn’t make new friends since I’m missing the ones I have like crazy.

5:56 pm

September 17, 2007
Justin called. She passed. Death is a part of life we all know. But damn, I hated to hear that. I'm a punk. I dont want to call my friend;(
One of my friends since 4th grade's mom is really sick. She's really sick! Life support sick:( I just heard the news. People have asked me in the last few weeks if I missed school. Im sure some part of me does (I love to learn like any cool nerd), but I have just considered that another part of my life. But hearing this news. And not being able to leave class or head to my room close by or go to the nurses office or call my mom and go outside and cry a little has made this whole "real world" thing realier than I ever imagined. I miss school. I miss the days when Mrs. Williams was just fine and had us all cracking up.

Get out the mustard

September 15, 2007
If you can't ketch up(I know Im a loser for that one:)
See, the thing when you don't post on a blog as things happen, is you have no idea where to start because so much has happened you don't know how to sum it up in 2.5. It's like trying to explain the Color Purple to someone who walks in when Nettie makes it home. I mean I could explain, but where to start? So though it's only been a week since I blogged I feel like so much has happened. I mean yesterday at work I was elated when one of the editors emailed the staff that Mychael Bell of the Jena Six had just had his conviction overturned. Though all the cases are far from over, it was a big step. A huge needed step. I must admit I was becoming resigned and accepting their case and Genarlow and other wrongs in society as "that's just the way it is." So I needed that conviction overturned more than I realized, to be reminded of the great power we have as citizens. I mean I think its a miracle less than 150 years after the legal ending of slavery and just 5o years after the legal ending of Jim Crow and segregation, that we even have the option to pretend racial injustices don't exist. If you just stop for a second, yeah, we still have a loong way to go as these recent cases prove, but they create a moment to reflect on the progress that has been made, even if some of that ground has been lost.
I know on this blog a lot of times it's all about me, me, me, but any true queen is only as great as the people she serves. I told one of my mentors how I was feeling restless not being majorly involved in any community service projects in the city. I promise to pull my weight in helping make this place better asap.
Wow. I hadn't planned this post to be a PSA, but just a week wrap up. I even planned Nettie and Celie's reunion to lead into The View and Whoppi/Celie saying to me in the middle of me asking her a few questions, "You have the greatest eyes, you have the greatest eyes. They're very rich." Before I could wallow in the compliment, KB said I was pulling a lot of girl on girl attention lately. hmmm.
The View was hilarious as all these soccer moms hooped and hollered and Sherri's first day was great. It was classic to see Marcus and the rest of the guys in the audience faces when Whoppi was getting sized for a bra on the show and everyone in the audience was told they'd get a free fitting and bra. I had a great quick interview with Sherri afterward and stumbled upon her closest friends of 15 years and that's what made me respect her more than anything. She made it to the top and her girls are along for the ride. Next weekend my girls are coming to NY and I can't wait!!! I admit I am feening a trip home so their visit will have to bring home to me.
And me and Sherri aren't the only ones with fabulous friends. Wednesday Zandile's, led by her fierce BF Julee who recently was promoted to associate fashion editor at Real Simple (nice!) threw her a surprise going away party and it was soooo much fun. I mean, Z's a fashion writer and one of Atoosa's Alpha Kittys so the fashion VIPs were out in full force. The brownstone of Candy Apple editor Latoya was phenomn. I am fighting not to be a name dropper. Much talk centered on Fashion Week and I will admit i was enjoying the company of so many fashion guys. I didn't go to any shows but my camera did as Pam borrowed it for her style blog. Check out the pics and my handy photoshopping;). And you know no young black event is complete without a sprinkle of HU folks. I met India and it was like we were friends forever both from Decatur, hitting Howard then NY. And you know Im always happy to find a new AIM buddy;) She was responsible for the infamous fashion show my freshman year with Venus and Serena. But what really made the party so right was the fact that Zandile's mom and aunt were there (pictured here) and her genuine surprise at seeing them there with all her friends brought tears to more eyes than just hers.
Yesterday before leaving work I helped BB with her blog a little and she has a great interview up she did with Michaela angela davis. Her definition of style is a good one. Later I went to one of my homie's who lives around the corner to play spades though I didn't even end up playing. I did have a good time though. A really good time. And am in the market for more friends that live close by as it cools off outside. Sorry for the looonng post. And I totally left the ABC offices without getting my free bra. Argh.


For My Viewing Pleasure

September 8, 2007
I know no one really wants to hear me complain, but earlier this summer when my mom and aunt came to town it made me a little down when they went to try and checkout some daytime shows and it sunk in that Id have to pass for a while on all the daytime touristy stuff. Well, God reminded me who runs the show and Im so excited to be able to go The View for Monday's show for the job and sit in the audience as they announce the new host and we all pretend to be surprised and act like we haven't seen the news in papers and blog. Let me know if you see me:) Journalism may not pay the most but for those of us in it love it and it definitely has its perks. As a journalist you have access to places you otherwise never would be allowed. I have a friend who was sitting close to Venus (or was it Serena?) at the U.S. Open. Unless you are a rich white guy or Esquire from ATL that ain't happening.
In my dorm room last year I had up Malcolm's quote on the media being the most powerful entity in the world. I respect the power! And now I just need to figure out what I'm going to wear . . .

God Bless the Child

September 7, 2007
Yesterday I was cutting it close to make it into work my scheduled time
of 10am after coming in early the mornings before and working late. Coming down from Harlem at 72nd street I change to the local to get on the 1 train. Those mornings I come early the trains are piled with bodies squished together because way more people have to be to work at 9am then the creative industry's 10am. Well that morning I was coming later and it seemed all those folks who have to be in by 9am were late because they were all on the platform with me.
A 1 train finally came and it was PACKED. For the first time ever I didnt hustle trying to cram my way in to a spot that didnt exist on the train. I was resigned to wait till the next train until I saw people getting off at the last second a few doors down which meant some space had opened up. I hustled down and am able to get the coveted door spot before the doors close. As soon as I do I realize what might have added to why those ladies got off instead of just the approaching 3. There is a baby WAILING. That baby sure had some lungs and it was fruitless for my morning ipod rotation to continue so I cut it off in the middle of my anthem of late, Beyonce's "Women Like Me." It's so crowded you can't really see where the baby is. After 66th st it clears out a little and I see the stroller and the young black mother sitting in front of it. At this point I know everyone on the train had to be thinking the same thing: Whyisnt she comforting this baby? By 59th st I am really tempted to go over and rock the crying child. And I
admit, I really thought about it until I realized maybe someonedidnt want me coming and picking up their child. At 59th St is where I get mad and my heart hurts for this little girl. She
continues to cry the most pitiful cry and then the mom gets mad and just starts glaring at her and talking to her like she's 21 instead of barely 18 months. At 50th she gets off and Im right behind her. And it breaks my heart to see that little girl. I was racking my brain for a
way to offer help without offending this girl. I resign myself to hustle to work before Im behind and pray a little prayer for that baby. That she has someone in her life that will hold her when she cries.
Seeing her and how rough some kids can have it so young just makes me that more appreciative for the good ride I've had. My mom and pop allowed me to be one of the most ignorant people I know on how harsh life could be until I was strong enough to manage. And
meeting people who are still battling things from childhood makes me wonder how different it all could have turned out for me if I weren't blessed with an environment where all I had to do was just be a bratty kid, where I was the odd combination of half tomboy/half crybaby. But more importantly I mourn the greatness that could have been of so many but a rocky childhood they couldnt overcome killed the possibility.
Me and my BFF may shutter every time we think of life if we were pregnant now, it just doesnt compute, but seeing that baby made me realize a good heart and a warm hug is an important start. At the corner of 50th and 8th Ave I put my ipod back on and walked in at 10:07am humming along to Billie's "God Bless the Child."

Papa may have, Mama may have, but God bless the child that got his own . . .

Sisters Sexxing and the City

September 3, 2007
That's not the title of some crazy porn dvd on the streets of 125th, well it probably is but not what this random labor day holiday post is about. Sisters Sexxing in the City - or the lack thereof- is the convo of any group of Black women on the fabulousness that is Sex and the City and then its obvious tragic flaw that the ladies had no Black friends or coworkers or friend of friends until Blair Underwood. After getting back from the West Indian Day parade in Brooklyn, I was so excited to see HBO on demand had moved on to the 5th season of Sex and the City.
And I must say, I hadn't noticed before the upgrade on the Black people on this season.
There's Steve's brother who married a Black woman.
A Black couple on the bench who Carrie looks to on the beach in Atlantic City
The Black limo driver who is so cool after Carrie's book party and takes her for a hotdog to celebrate.
Miranda's neighbor who is upset at Brady's crying and introduces herself as Kendal with a baby of her own, Aletha.
I should be doing something to help pay the rent instead of this random post. But watching Carrie always makes me want to blog. And don't hate me for saying this, but there is NOTHING like watching Sex and the City as a New Yorker. It's like watching the show with new eyes and appreciation. And the increase in diversity is definitely necessary to portray New York.
And the parade? Was so much fun! Great Jerk Chicken, cool folks and people represented hard for their countries . .. and let it all hang out.

My favorite part was the stilts! They were AMAZING! Dancing around on 6 feet of wood.

When the Mood Hits

I see you.
Surving and Striving
Society had almost made me forget you exist
You intelligent, thought-provoking, hillarious and virile men
Debating Bush and 50, homosexuality and my high heels and why in 2007 I still say red when the Kool-Aid pack says cherry
All with the same amount of passion
That's why the flavor will always be red.
The way you put your words together always makes me think
I get it but never would have thought of it . . . like t h a t
makes my humming Badu's Clever "This is what I look without makeup" kinda stale.
And I ain't stale.
But sitting next to you shines me up.
Like a little spit to that boot and it's strap you pulled yourself up by
You turn me on.
You are a walking miracle.
King kong still ain't got nothing on you.
But the second you realize all this, it's lost
For now, you remain the prototype

. . .I got up this morning mad that I still haven't broken my sleepaholic ways. I was going to write about how I have been enjoying being more social in the last few weeks and in particular being reminded there are still some good black men out here. But instead my fingers had a mind of there own. Guess watching Love Jones last week (can you believe that movie is 10 years old?) had more of an impact than I realized. And just as quickly as I am reminded of the good guys some grown man let's the dog in him out like those guys on the street who see you walking and turn there bodies so they can see your backside once you pass. I always feel I get the last laugh because my butt could use a mosiqito bite or two:) Happy Labor Day!

Come on and braid my hair

September 1, 2007

So I have been going to battle with my hair this summer. This was my first summer having my hair not braided and no perm and I won't pretend I wasn't struggling. My hair was definitely getting frustrated with me not knowing what I want. Black women have always had a love/hate relationship with out hair and I am not immune. Sometimes we never know exactly how things impact us. Do I love my curly-haired fro? Hell yeah!
Have I warn it out more than a week at any given time without straightening it? Nope.
Maybe articles like this one with a junior Glamour edit staffer saying black hair in natural state and locs are a 'Don't' have impacted me more than I realized. I had hoped this was a rumor but my girl Monica's article confirms otherwise.
Guess we'll never know, But I do know in the last two week I've felt braids were the answer. Last Friday I told everybody I was getting micros then when Saturday came I changed my mind as I wasn't sure rather it was worth my hairline or hair coming out. When J asked me at work what happened to the braids I said I had changed my mind and then asked her if braids were sorta out of style (me and my bff are notorious for saying somebody has "Moesha braids")

J's answer was the reality check I needed: "Braids out of style? African people have been wearing braids since the beginning of time and will continue to do so girl. I don't think braids can go out of style"

Made me re-evaluate my attitude on our hair and how dangerous it is to let others define what is appropriate or stylish for "our hair". This week I was definitely contemplating a perm until Sister Sonya told she was the same way and wish she hadn't gotten her perm back and if I made it this long, fall is almost here and it will cool off and press will keep longer. So Thursday at work an email goes out the editorial office has Friday off and after finding out that includes me and doing my happy dance the pot stirer, what my Desperate Houswife-ish hip hop aerobics instructor calls the cabbage patch:) Like always God opened a window and I can spend the day off getting braids, and with no perm and a healthy hair line I felt comfortable getting them without fear my hair would come out.
So I go this place I went to last summer my cousin's friend told me about on 116th that is like a braiding factory. You have 30 African ladies (mostly from the west and central countries of the continent) in traditional garb each with a chair in front of them and someone getting braids in a room the size of a classroom. the place is packed and booming and you know they didn't let me down with the entertainment. The first hour and a half I stuck to the ipod as Jerry Springer blared in the background. I took my earphones out when in the middle of Maury someone turned to the news and I thought somebody thought we should all check out the headlines. Two seconds later the midday lottery drawings came on and everyone was ssshhushed. Back to Maury.
Then their was the resident barber/outside yeller of names/eyebrow archer/hot hair dipper for all those heads that needed curly braids dipped in hot water, Mad Dog. he was comedy! This older lady had gotten jumbo flat twist in a bun and was sent to get the extra hair on her neck cut. After cutting her hell of a kitchen, he turned her around and started cutting her side burns and burst out to her "Grandma, you got some Ashanti side burns" She smiles and says, "Is that good or bad?" I am rolling at this point.
And you know in a black salon on a busy holiday weekend and all these kids with school starting Tuesday everybody and their momma was in their trying to sell something. You had the guy with the multi-colored socks, the standard dvd guys, the big box of aleve seller and my favorite the Mace guy who had his little sell slogan "Get your Mace, Don't wait till it's too late" Thinking I was laughing at him he gives me a 5 minute speech on how anything can happen and be ready. All true search but you still aren't getting any money from me.
Next were the food drop offs every so often from the local chinese spot and the scrunched up faces of me and the rest of the tender heads who ended up with the heaviest handed of the bunch. And you know the "I already paid you, No you didn't" argument burst out and I enjoyed my front row seat.
After 6 and a half hours my braids were done and I had Mad Dog dip me and do my eyebrows for $5, you cant beat that! And you know this big comedian added his ghetto twist smoothing my eyebrows with good ole Jam before hitting them with his razor. I must admit I liked getting them shaved much more than waxed. With my butt numb from all that sitting I was ready to get out of there and completed my day in the hood with some popeyes! Y'all know I love all things black. My day in the braids shop had me remembering my Soul Plane experience:)