That Girl

April 25, 2008

So, one of the many phrases I like to say when I wanna feel deep is there is no such thing as coincidence . . .

Earlier in the week BB told me to check out her blog. And if you talked to me any this week you know I was crazed and busier than usual, which isn't the easiest thing to do. So that means I didn't make it to hers and my other fav blogs as I would have liked until yesterday. And when I did I was completely touched as she had included me on the blog. She started the post titled 'Do the Hustle,' about two fashion events in the city she would have loved to attend.

One was Claire's Fashion Bomb event. The other, which I didn't see coming as I read, was my Charm Trunk Showcase. How freaking sweet:). And she coined my offering tea as Southern and Sweet and not Grandma-ish. See why I love her? And her adventures are so fun to live vicariously through.

And right after I felt so special, I was back to work  and looking for Usher pictures in past issues since I was going to be interviewing him on a press conference call soon. The search led me to the November 2005 issue which he was on the cover for. As I flip to his feature and the cool pictures that accompany it, I see BB looking back at me. She is featured in the "Under 30" column the magazine use to have. I re-read BB's personal essay on her amazing father and just sat there and smiled and silently thanked her and God for cool people like that. And fun coincidences to remind you just how interesting life is . . .

I called into the number and talked to Usher. Here's the final product. He really has a certain maturity to him. And reinforced to me Im grown too I guess. In 8th grade with the release of My Way I seriously was convinced I was destined to be with Usher. I mean we were both in Atlanta and the 'Penny for Your Thoughts' song I just knew was just for this brown girl in Decatur. So I thought that childhood crush would resurface a little or create a feeling of nostalgia, but it didn't. I was just a writer with a tight deadline talking to a musician who had grown up right before our eyes.
And the pics from the past issue with BB's essay totally captured that maturity. And there really is no such thing as coincidence . . .

Love Lessons - No burps allowed

April 24, 2008

Things not to say to a woman #104

So my best friend came to town a few weekends ago. It was just what we both needed. It's a beautiful Saturday afternoon and we he leave my place and head to the train to grab the phenomenal veggie burgers at the diner in the meat packing district. And as Im thinking of things to say to let her know just how much more fun she would have living in NY (and yes I fully disclosed my personal want to have my bestest bud here), we round the corner from my building and some guys are hanging out. Its the standard group of guys that you can feel that hunter energy and if you are a girl with 10 fingers and 10 toes you prepare to be hit on.

After one exclaims how amazed he is to find an attractive brown skinned girl, he gives me his best line . . .

"Girl, I'll suck the burp out of ya."

Nice buddy, just classic. And this just as I tell her how the NY dating scene is cool and there are some great guys here. . . I guess I should have added they don't mind helping you release toxins? how thoughtful.

A beautiful day in the neighborhood . . . .

Oh Baby

April 23, 2008

Ashanti is back and belting out more than songs with the chorus Baby:) Last night I was on assignment at R&B Live where she and Lloyd and some other up and coming artist performed. She sounded good and looked great. It was PACKED and reminded me why I had stopped going to the weekly review.
But as someone who LOVES live entertainment, it was cool to hear the creator of the event, who doesnt look a day over 19 but has been in music for 20 years, talk about the need for something like that.
Lloyd had me laughing when I told him I was from Decatur too and he said most people from Decatur dont end up in New York . . but somewhere close to Candler road. Then he went on to say some real stuff about love and respect which i wasnt expecting. Get it Shawty indeed.
The world of journalists in NY is indeed thisbig, so it was great to bump into some familiar faces and meet some new ones.

Eternally Fly

April 19, 2008

Madonna is kryptonite. That new video with young Justin is HOT (well, minus that weird part where they have a inside look of what your face muscles are doing while you kiss . . .yuck) But looking at Madge then People at work made me realize how rare she is. Her protege Britney Spears is in and out of the psych ward, with her preggers 16 year old sister seeming to be the most sensible of the two.
Than there's Ms. Jackson if you're nasty Janet who it seems lost more than the mystique of what her breast looked like one Sunday afternoon my freshman year. And ever since it she's been falling short of the Janet we once knew. But looking at Madonna we cant excuse Janet's less than stellar attempts because of age.
Not only is Madonna fierce, but she's stayed that way while evolving right before our eyes. I know I cringe when I look at pictures now when my style was off or looking through my closet at outfits im like I cant believe you really wore that ish to work . . .last month!
But the coolest thing with Madonna, is that, though none of us would rock a cone bra now, looking at all the pictures she was always trendsetting and doing her thing. And all seems to be welll as she's getting everything straight with her adoption of her Malawian baby David, saying those marriage on the rocks rumors are wack (Im beefing up my relationship books and knowledge, so I mean I got a little insight mixed with personal intuition if they need someone to talk to;) . . .and she finally got little Lordes' eyebrows waxed. Yay! So, here's to 20 more years Madonna!

Fashion Bomb in the Breeze

April 18, 2008

So, Wednesday with the sun shining I dug through the spring crates to find a fun dress to wear in celebration of the warmth. I got to work and remembered it was the day of Claire's Fashion Bomb party. It was verrry nice. And EBP chic:)
Getting off the train heading there after work I bump into my fierce coworker Belle, whose writing I love and I totally adore, and not just because she let's me interview fine Black men:). So we head over together and it's a very fly crowd and Claire is hostess with the mostess in a fab frock and working the room, even after recently having foot surgery. 
And we already know how small world the is. I first encountered Claire as the prototype former intern of my editor at my first magazine internship at Upscale, and she had set the bar way high. (The fab editor has since moved on to uber-chic Atlanta Peach magazine and writes for People, breaking that story last week about Beyonce's rock at the Heart of City concert stop in the Peach). Then last year she ended up at our magazine conference at Howard and with a few folks canceling she didnt hesitate when I asked her to fill in, and was amazing.
So yeah, good times catching up with old friends and a few new ones. One friend of one of my good guy friends I had met before and she works at Nickeloden, which had us all reminiscing on old shows. Everyone agreed Salute Your Shorts and Snick you had to watch. But they left me out there on that 'Hey Dude' which I thought was pretty cool . . .
I promoted Charm Trunk and you know plenty of Howard folks came through including Jozen who is now back at Vibe as online editor. My face looks beat up in the pic of me and Belle where she is fly, so we will just leave that one on Fashion Bomb. Good time indeed . . .and even had a let out:)

*that's me on the crackberry with the red coat in the bottom left corner talking to Samantha. LOVED her do.

Labor or Love

April 17, 2008

Ok, so lately Ive been wanting to step it up and be a daily blogger. And damn it, Im gonna do this. So the easiest way would be to sort of pick some topics and do one a day,right? But be forewarned like everything and everyone else, my life doesnt fit in a box.

But one topic I could always talk about and relate everything in life to is love and relationships. Is there some deep rooted fascination of never seeing my parents really interact that way since they divorced before I could barely walk? Well, i dunno. But I do know I love talking about love. And since Thursday is one of my favorite days (yeah, weird but Im someone who loves anticipation almost as much as the real thing so the day before the weekend started was always exciting growing up. . .and it didnt hurt that my fav shows Living Single and New York Undercover came on. My middle school best bud had me in LOVE with Torez aka Eddie:)

For the job I interviewed Tangi Miller ( from Felicity, one of my other fav shows. I so wanted to start having a tape diary) Tangi produced and stars in Love and Other Four Letter Words out on dvd. Flex is a cutie in it. Let me know what you think. Im sure Charanna has already added it to the Black DVD collection:)

She was really cool and had some interesting things to say. She told me how the inspiration of the film was finding out a friend of a friend she knew in passing had planned an elaborate wedding, family and friends came to town and bought dresses. And the woman is there in her dress and there is and never was a groom. They end up taking her to the psych ward. Serious story but got Tangi to thinking what she would make her lie to get married and this movie was what came of it. We got to talking about the career-driven woman who wakes up to realize she has a career and no love in her life. This is where I would love to start quoting some lines from Mahogany:)

But its true for so, like everything else in our busy lives, if love is something you ultimately want, keep it on the 'to do' list and put forth the effort. We didnt wait on fabulous opportunities to just come to our doorsteps. We put in that work. So, the same effort has to go into dating. That is not asking guys out or buying yourself a ring but just staying open and putting the right energy out there.

And in the movie the character is reunited with a old childhood friend Peanut who has grown up nicely, which had us all watching, thinking, uhm, who from way back could end up being my guy. For me I wouldnt even have to change my initials:)

stay open to love!!

Charm Trunk Sale!

April 15, 2008


So as I mentioned, this saturday Charm Trunk is having a spring collection showcase in Harlem!!

I just got back in town from Atlanta (had SO much fun) and got some AMAZING finds. Get first dibs on the great goods including spring dresses, large waist belts and clutches galore.

Please click the evite and rsvp.

See you Saturday if you can!
Charm Trunk

Living My Life Like its Golden

April 11, 2008

So I promise I do more than go see my fav artists perform during the week. But this week it was Jill Scott. She rocked the stage at the Dress for Success Gala where I was a volunteer with Jess, Z and a few other Howard girls. Uberglam dork Susan works in events for the amazing foundation.
The night was electric.
The CEO takes the stage and lets us all get our priorities in order talking about women who are just on the cusp of getting it together and still cant seem to stay afloat. And women who have had their lives transformed by the organization bring a reality to the plight of so many.

As the CEO Joy said, a suit is just a suit - until you don't have one.

So, Im off my philanthropic soapbox, but I definitely am stepping up my community involvement. Because though we dont like to admit it, we aren't so special that circumstances could have and still can have us on the other side reaching for a hand.

And my hand was reaching towards the stage as a regal Jill took the mic. Me, Jess and Z had peeped her upstairs as she waltzed by heading to the elevator. At first we all just thought this amazingly beautiful and curvy woman was walking through the lobby until we realized it was Jill.

She kicks off her set with my anthem of Living My Life like its Golden. We jam. She then kicks into the title track "The Real Thing" from her new album. That album was the soundtrack of my life in the fall of 2007.  'Whenever You Are Around' was soo my reality. Someone's presence making you lonely as you mourn what could be is kinda deep. And leave it to Jill to capture exactly what you feel.
She then slowed it down with The Way You Love Me and Lets Take a Long Walk. Once again my pulled together professional exterior relaxed an enjoyed the moment. Seeing her almost made me wonder why I was trying to drop a few (and thanks to good ole stress amid free pizza days and a three week break from the gym I'm down 6), but bathing suit season isnt as forgiving as wrap dresses . . .and Mexico awaits;)

Lettin' Go

April 4, 2008
"You coming to the show tomorrow, right?," she says to me.  

Now I've had some pretty cool experiences so far, but never has an artist I adore asked me if I was coming to see them perform and look so interested in the response. But nobody ever said Janelle Monae was normal. Its Wednesday night and and we are catching up at her pep rally. Yeah, she's just that cool. 
She has pep rallies. 
Beat that.

I have been a fan for a minute so, when I was writing for Vibe Vixen's site last year, I pitched her and got the green light. My last spring break in college last year didnt find me on the beach in Jamaica flirting with natives like I originally daydreamed, but sitting down with this talented phenomenon in the Wondaland space which has green grass as carpet inside, talking about life from Kansas and then in Atlanta, and then we're off to Stankonia to mix the first Suite.  Beats the sexiest native Jamaica could offer . . .well unless Idris has a Jamaican twin. . .

So fast forward a year, she makes her Howard debut during Homecoming, is signed to Bad Boy as Diddy's most prized signing and is back in NY for the ultimate showcase. And I, well, Im estatic. 

So yeah, I tell her. I will be there. 

Then the next 24 hours are sour. Family member keeps secret. Guy Im working with on side project blames me for his lack of direction (sidenote: Carpenter STILL never blames his tools). So a good night's sleep doesnt do much and I go to work hypersensitive, hit my limit, tear falls, too busy to get ticket for Jane's show and didnt go the press route.

Seems the best thing for me to do is to go lick my wounds uptown.  Then a coworker invites me to go to a listening session for Michelle Williams' new music. I say yes. Then another asks me to be her plus one at the Janelle Monae show. I say yes. 

We miss the Michelle session working. The coworker who gave the JM invite isnt feeling well and doesnt think she will go but still wants me to. Argh. 
My want to see the show outweighing my dislike to go alone and not officially on the list but a plus one, push me on. I walk up to the line and the first person I spot is Kenyatta from Giant, who I met through India. (Its true, HU folks are everywhere;). She spots Emil who recently took over Giant (yall know I LOVE Giant) and Danyel, who I still have a girl crush on since she strutted in those crimson patent leather pumps at our magazine conference last year. I had just emailed Danyel a few weeks back and she replied with the coolest words. And I had just emailed Emil the week before after seeing him at that MPA magazine conference. Somehow I get the nerve to go up and say hello. Danyel gives me a hug and Emil offers me a kiss on the cheek. I tell how he first put me on to the new Vogue with Lebron and wide-eyed looking like a cute kid, he says how he didn't know it would turn out to be all this, referring to the King Kong madness.
My tear ducts try a little more.
Inside there is a VIP area in the back with seats to see the stage. I walk up to the 'regular folks' spot at the front because I want to be close to the stage. Hob nobbing definitely has it place, but not tonight. Diddy comes out and lets the crowd know a star will be born on that stage tonight. 
Janelle makes her way out. 
I go to another place and dont care I am one of the few people around singing all the words and dancing. She does 'Smile' and a giddy grin covers my face. I put my big all purpose bag on the floor and rock with her as she dances like a, like a, i dont even know how to describe it. She dances.
The intro to Lettin' Go comes on and I physically feel my shoulders rise as a weight I didnt realize had settled, gets the hell on. I jump up and down singing the words. L-E-T-T-I-N-G-O

This is my first time hearing the song live and I will love her forever for singing it JUST like the track. The show ends. The band departs. I pick up my bag and smirk at myself who usually OD's on being cool at 'industry' events. I head straight for the door, with a slow crowd enjoying seeing who they can see and trying to be seen.  I skip the meet and greet afterward that Im sure was packed, as Diddy shouted out Blender and Rolling Stone among the VIP looking on. The next day, a guy at work says Tyra and some other folks were there too as he reads about the show on Crunk and Disorderly. Hope no one noticed that girl jamming extra hard in the purple dress. And if they did, well, I was just following instructions and l-e-t-t-i-n-g-o . . .

About that side hustle

April 2, 2008

Charm Trunk has new pics:) 

So, my first official photo shoot went down with Nicole and its was a treat to watch someone put their talents to use. Probably why I love live entertainment so much. 

Nicole, who I coined Mamarazzi back in our Essence Intern days in 2006, came by and took shots of some of my vintage merchandise.

It was amazing how natural it came to her to get the right light and poses in seconds. Im having a Charm Trunk Vintage Sale and Tea Party on April 19th and if you happen to read this and are in the city, stop on by.