You can be a star*

August 26, 2008

So iv'e been meaning to post about my weekend but this no wireless at the crib is for the birds! Friday night I had a date that was cute, but totally not what I was going for. Saturday I took my old intern to brunch (still getting use to the fact I can say that. . .and LOVING having interns). I worked some that morning since Obama announced his VP choice and got my NY Times email on his choice before I got my text from Barack, but still totally loving how tech savvy the whole campaign is. Saturday night I went to my buddy Sammy's housewarming in Spanish Harlem. It was great to see some of my old magazine buddies and met some new one's, including Chris an EA at People.
A really cool guy. Then it was time to make my exit to head over to Yasmine's karaoke bday party, which was sooo her (looking like an American Apparel model), and a blast.
I broke out one of my dresses I planned on saving for the fall lineup and took the mic for "Bills, Bills, Bills" Only now do I wonder if my personal life and the song choice were related . . .

Sunday church was phenomenal! Went home and finally got more of my stuff settled. Then headed to Chelsea to meet my pseudo Aleksandr Petrovsky for drinks. Which turned into him wanting to take me for Italian. Hadnt seen this guy in months since he's in and out of the country directing commercials, and I admit one of the main reasons I go out to meet him is to hear of his amazing travels. So the first spot is super crowded (and cute). We head around the corner to another spot on Houston called Bar Pitti. Wait is better and we sit on the bench and chat. Cool spot that has doubled in size in summer with tables all on the side walk. I see a girl who looks like Lindsay Lohan walk past and enter the restaurant. Me and my little cuz went crazy for Mean Girls a few years back, and those quotes still are classic:). Turns our it is her, her her mom and her girl pal Sam. I thought it was cool. But remember, Im with Aleksandr, so they arent on his radar, and I wanna appear cool so I dont harp on it. When they go out for a cig break, the paparazzi have suddenly appeared and its a weird frenzy before they walk back in. Later that night I casually mentioned it to my new People mag buddy, as we do our nice-to-meet-ya facebook chat, and then he asks for more details. I tell him I wasnt on my mamarazzi tip, and almost wish I were. He still got enough and I was pleasently surprised to get this link from People.com:)

I always was told I had stars in my eyes . . . Truth is so much cooler than fiction.

- CJ

*Love that song by Janelle Monae. I wont start to ramble on how much I adore her. And she really has blown up. Heard her song on the Lipstick Jungle commercial whil watching Project Runway. Kinda a big deal . . .

Paid in Full

August 19, 2008

The last few months Ive been working with Essence.com's Black in America website, posting stories from the magazine on the Black experience in this country. One of the last stories I pulled was on reparations. And I know lot of folks eyes glaze when talks of 40 acres and a mule come up, like its beating a dead horse (no livestock pun . . seriously). 

But this article checked me real quick, as it wasn't about looking for a handout, but strategically approaching big businesses who can directly relate their millions in profits to the backs of enslaved people.

 And the last sentence of the article startled me as it said big businesses like Bank of America had already given money to Howard University, the NAACP and other institutions while acknowledging slave labor paid a part in their success.

I went to Howard on a academic scholarship from the University. At first thought I felt a mix of emotions knowing my debt-free status may have come at the hands of enslaved Africans (I don't like to use the word slave to describe a person, but that's another post). Then I felt a sense of connection and responsibility. It wasnt about me. Someone else gave their life and freedom for me to get educated. Time to step it up for real. Last Thanksgiving, heading back from the mall on Black Friday, I made my cousin Rob pull over as we passed by these big cotton fields. They stirred emotion in me as I could sense Black people working in these fields, which in history, was just yesterday. We snapped a few shots. Armed with a college degree, I pulled my first piece of cotton in memory of folks who dreamed of a better life that we live every day . 

All Moved!

August 18, 2008

So, deciding to step up my blog game in the middle of moving and busy times at work, wasnt the most thought out plan . .but I got heart:) We dont have wireless yet. TimeWarner says 4 to 6 weeks . . .booooo, well maybe not since mama just got her 401K together and hopes you continue to love TimeWarner:) Weekend was fab. Moved the last of my stuff, after some movers tried to get over me, a friend made me wonder if you arent a friend when Im in need, are you really a friend indeed? And its sooooo good to be out of the old place and start the next chapter of life with bills in my own name.
Saturday night me and the girls bar hopped in Harlem and laughed till our ribs hurt. This one tall guy was GETTING it at The Den doing the Urkel dance . . .

And yesterday was fab. Mom called as she was leaving brunch with her crew after early morning church. And wouldnt you know they had just heard my pastor here at First Corinthian! Everything thing came together beautifully for my summer closeout Charm Trunk Sale! After hunting around harlem for some stools with no luck, I settled on the fact it would be like a real store . . .sparse seating. Folks didnt seem to mind. I felt the love and was just excited to be doing something I love. We grabbed dinner at Amy Ruth's (in the process of booking our Puerto Rico get away so thats the last Whiting and Waffles for a while:) Girl talk got raunchy and real . . .

First Impressions

August 12, 2008
So here is my work cube and across the street neighbor J. He keeps me up on the latest pop culture (read gossip) each day, along with hilarious stories of his friends and family . . .he's definitely my crazy cousin you aint like at first but slowly wins you over (I can feel the side eye:)

And now he's sharing his craziness with the world on his new blog, I Am Not Impressed (yet another funny story on his mom not being impressed with too much). I guess Ill share s
ince I get the live versions each day. I think everyone deserves an actor friend becau
se every story becomes a full out production, and you know I love a good story (the one with Loretta Devine and another with Lil Kim wasting her drink on his suede outfit . . .CLASSIC) 
Though, we may be cool but he still will never be given a pass to use my name and SMASH in the same sentence. Show some respect, boi! 

And yes, this is the same one I was killing in our hip hop dance class at NY Sports Club . . .lol

 His amazing discovery of the mystery of Will Smith's hairline is classic. And speaking of Will, You can also check Jonte in Hitch doing this strut in the pool scene looking real Shazza from Different World back when they both had locs:) I was almost impressed . . .

We Need a Resolution

August 10, 2008
So . . .

I haven't been bringing my A Game lately. As an overachiever in life in general, my quarter-century crisis set in early:). And luckily so has the recovery so I am stepping it up on the full time, the side hustle, my personal relationships, and of course the blogging.

Im not gonna front . . .I live a charmed life and have little to complain about. Thus, I gotta share more of the joys and dramas of New York City living. This weekend I moved more of my stuff to the new place, and was a big girl going and buying my first bed:). Friday me and India hit Bennihanas (I didn't know they were in NY) and again traveling friends keep me thinking of a master plan, especially after meeting with a (one day my) book editor and my neighbor across the street Rakia earlier this week, another peach skraight from the Dec! Looking at an amazing view over Central Park in Columbus Circle, I felt a certain excitement of living in the capitol of the world I hadn't felt in a while. 

And I got a bone to pick with all my NYC girls . . .how come no one sent the memo Daffy's sells Tracy Reese? I made up for lost time with that sale they were having:)

And as if the blog angels knew I was not feeling the sub par blogging Ive been doing after being a self-proclaimed Queen to Be for over two years, I discovered my camera cord while packing my heavy suitcase of beauty products (perks of publishing . . .BEAUTY SALES . . .and only at the E are there rumors of folks getting upset when one shopper scooped up all the high-quality weave:). So now that I am back in the photo business, I really feel official.

So . . .I am stepping it up all around and feel free to let me know if you have any ways I can improve. After the Kanye show at Madison Square Garden (It was an amazing show . . .not sure how another date will top the world premiere of Jocking Jay-Z by the man himself:), they were giving out books by Kanye and I flipped to a page that said "Critiques are much more beneficial than Compliments", and I smiled. I had just had a critique so I felt that was the universe telling me to step it up!

This pic shows what happens when you dont . . .the mail folks just went ahead and created me a new name I guess after my supervisor called to get my mailbox. The lady has went on to leave the job to take her growing nail business full time and more power to her! Note to us all to follow your dreams . . .so you dont butcher folk's names:) They were happy to fix it, but I gotta admit . . .it's defintiely phonetic . . .

Ease on Down the Road

August 4, 2008
So I'm moving!

Yes Im still gonna be in a Harlem (well, really Sugar Hill as my 80-year-old great uncle broke it down this weekend that Harlem stops at 145th st and im on 149th). Im actually going to be on the same street:) Im super excited though the whole process has been a LOT. Keep ya posted and looking forward to hosting my first official housewarming with the new roomie.