Another One Bites the Dust

June 30, 2009

I'm tired of writing posts about magazines folding (Jane, Teen People, Cosmogirl, Elle Girl, Vibe Vixen, King) that particularly cater to the young and the Black. Times a changing . . .

Mommy's Having a Baby

I woke up feeling kind of weird over the weekend. My mother, pregnant? was the first thought in my head after a rather detailed dream where mom dukes, holding it down in her late 50s, was preggers.
Yesterday I called my brother's girlfriend, who I hadnt talked to since my big fight with the brother in April. She text messaged me back that she was cool, though her back and neck were hurting. We talked some more. I got off the phone and immediately thought, could she be pregnant? Was there something she was hinting at with the soreness claim? From our first meeting, I knew she was in it for the long haul with my bro. She shared she was ready for another baby before long so her five-year-old daughter wouldnt be too much older. of course the fact that I am a few months older than her freaked me out a little, since she was so domesticated.

Tonight I finally googled any possible meanings to that crazy dream of my mom being with child. Seems when you dream someone close to you is pregnant it usually is someone else. I'm itching to ask. Stay tuned . . .

Cashflow Dollar

June 28, 2009
So, I didn't make it to church today with my pastor being away, but I did write this about a certain preacher last week on a airplane . . .

Sunday, June 21st

In the middle of the air somewhere over North Carolina or Virginia I am a little disgusted by Creflo Dollar. The mega-church preacher in Atlanta never impressed me ( I am pretty hesitant in general when it comes to prosperity preachers to the masses.) And reading Upscale magazine with Tyrese on the cover confirmed all my ill feelings. Asked who his favorite TV dad was as a special Father’s Day, I almost got a headache with the serious side eye I was giving his answer: George Jefferson .

Sherman Hensley created an iconic character as the quick-witted and hot-headed business man George, who had found his deluxe apartment in the sky. I grew up laughing at him with the rest of my family, but an ideal father he was not. He was quicker to call his neighbor Tom a honky before giving his hard working maid a raise. His son lionel found him insufferable sometimes and he could leave his wife beyond frustrated and profusely apologizing for his actions. And this is a man to emulate for a man of the cloth?

“Seeing George make his transition from the boroughs to a penthouse gave me hope that I could do that as well,” Dollar said, the perfect last name indeed.

But teaching that the love of money is the root of evil and trying to get a penthouse seem pretty contradictory to me.

No I don’t think God sent us here to be broke, but bling was never a part of the reason we are here either. Just look where baby Jesus was born (a broke down manger) and his worldly possessions (the shirts on his back and some simple sandals). I have many tv dads in mind who exemplified great family values the Black church often reinforces and George Jefferson is low on the list, right where my chances of ever tithing in Bentley-driving, atm-by the church dooring, submit your W2s for tithe confirmation then direct depositing Creflo Dollar’s church.

Early Morning Mumblings

June 27, 2009
I slipped. As Miss independent, it seems I have fallen in love, amid all the "take it slow" phrases from friends and family.

The grin on my face just proved it at 4am in the morning. Waking up in the middle of the night I call Sherlock hoping he might have left work. He also works for a Black media company and has been working crazy hours on their Michael Jackson coverage. (Working in news is another whole post, as you cover the story, so not really experience. Im grabbing album covers from MJ's unmatched hit collection while we all witness a new day as TMZ reports the death and CNN still waiting for confirmation)

He's at his desk making sure producers and editors are in place and the travel logistics are confirmed. I'm listening in as people stop by his desk and we crack jokes in between.
 Then I hear his response, "I'm not caking, She's my girl." His reply wakes the female coworker wide awake and she goes "Ohhh, let me talk to her! Come on!" He replies with a laugh: "No, I want to talk my girlfriend, that's why I called." After pulling away from people, which I often do when overwhelmed or down, (I don't like a crowd at my pity party),  I felt some of the numbness melt. 

This week has been a bit crazy with an unexpected hospital visit with a friend, right after returning to work after burying my grandmother a week ago (thanks for all the condolences, including cards from my good buddy KLA and the fab BB

And the death of the King of Pop, reminds us all to focus on the things that really matter and appreciate the frailty and beauty of humanity. So yeah, since our time is short on this Earth, while I do believe in playing it smart, taking it slow may be a waste of precious time:) 

Think Globally . ..

June 24, 2009
. . .Act Locally. I got this letter from First Lady Obama (like millions of others, I know, I know). This Saturday I will be working an AIDS testing event in Harlem and hope you get active wherever you are . . .

Charreah --

National and community service has been a cornerstone of my life, as I know it has been for many Americans. And with the daily struggles now confronting so many families, it's especially important for us to reach out to one another and offer a helping hand.

I've just launched United We Serve, a national initiative to tackle our toughest problems by working hand-in-hand in communities across the country. We aim to make a real difference right now and bring more and more Americans into a tradition of life-long service to make an even greater difference down the road.

I'd like to invite you to be a part of it by joining Organizing for America's National Health Care Day of Service this weekend. You can join up with other local OFA supporters to help improve health care services in your community and make a difference as we work to reform America's health care system.

Sign up now to participate in a National Health Care Day of Service event this Saturday, June 27th.

There's an old Thomas Edison quote I've always liked: "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." It's no secret that our country faces some enormous challenges right now, and meeting them will take a lot of hard work. But in that work lies an equally great opportunity -- a chance to serve. And I do believe the chance to serve is a precious gift indeed.

Service has played a transformative role in my life -- bringing me tremendous joy and helping me find the path that led to where I am today. As a parent, I believe service is a great way to demonstrate values and to teach our children firsthand what it means to commit to a purpose beyond ourselves.

It should be a part of everyone's life. From the moment someone can walk to the day they leave this planet, service should be a part of how we give back, how we say thank you, how we express our gratitude for the lives that we've been given.

So I'm deeply honored for this chance to support our United We Serve initiative and Organizing for America, and I hope you'll be able to participate this weekend. Please sign up now to volunteer at a local event:


Thank you,

First Lady Michelle Obama

Things Fall Apart

June 23, 2009

Jill Scott and her beau caput. No, not the old break up from two years ago where she was divorced. The new one, her drummer she was planning to marry. Her son is just 2 months old. yes a mother can do an amazing job raising children on her own. But things like this make me wonder what is so bad that we cant work through this, yet were ready to get married and decided to have a child together not so long ago.

Question: Well, at least your hubby-to-be was there to support. How has he been adjusting to Jett?
Yes, he was there and for a couple of days afterwards while I stayed in hospital, but John and I are no longer together. When you have a baby you're dealing with a lot of emotions and I don't know how much of it had to do with us breaking up, but it happens. We definitely love our son and we are co-parenting and working on being friends. It is what it is. I have a lot of support, so I want for nothing as far as that's concerned. I know some might criticize me or the fact that my son is being raised in a single-parent home, but I wasn't raised in a two-parent home and I had a good relationship with my dad. I have hopes for him and I'm sure his father will do his part as well.

And if you know me, you know I LOVE me some Jill Scott music. I love her in love singing about cooking grits for her man or doing whatever he likes. Maybe I care more than she does, but we need all the hope we can get on strong Black couples creating strong Black families . . .

I saw the same thing with a couple who just had a baby on MTV, with a breakup shortly after a birth. Another big reason I definitely plan to be married before kids, just because I feel we would fight harder for things to work, if we had pledged before God till death do we part.

My Grandmother Had a Beautiful Funeral

June 22, 2009
I've been MIA, but from the title of this post you can see Ive been busy . . . and distracted.

My grandmother passed away last Sunday evening around 8pm (a number that continues to appear in my life).

Yes, i was, well continue to be sad, but glad she was at peace after slowly succumbing to sickness and even happier she had such a strong faith in God that continues to live in our family.

I worked Monday and Tuesday and flew to South Carolina for a grip Tuesday night, happy I was heading down as I could hear in my mother's voice, as strong as she was, she was having a weak moment.

By 12:30am that night I was on a driving dark rode to the small town where my mother and her two sisters were raised with my mom in the front seat. The next day I was in full grieving family mode, cleaning up the house, playing hostess to old friends and family who stopped by to show their condolences, as my mother and her sisters finished the details of the service (make sure someone get's grandma's Easter Star sash out of the Dry Cleaners, confirm flower order, make sure grave plot next to my grandfather is clear and marked, etc, etc). I also made a display presentation of pictures throughout my grandmother's live and seeing her young let me see a side of her I never met. A side of her that looked a lot like me. Thursday my other cousins arrived and we checked into a hotel, the first time ive never not stayed at my Grandmother's when in town. With everything moving so fast, I had little time to process how much I would miss her.

Friday my mother pulled out my grandmom's jewelry for me and my two first cousins to get a few pieces to keep. Charm Trunk doesnt have anything on my grand. And putting on her pieces and looking through pictures to see where she wore it, it hit me she was gone.

That afternoon we watched Young and the Restless across the street at my great-aunt's house, a lifelong smoker in Stage Four of lung cancer that has spread. her 28-year-old daughter, who is pregnant with her fourth baby (conceived on Christmas, this somehow came up in a convo) and her two sons are still coming to terms with the reality of her condition.

That night was the wake followed by a seafood dinner at grandmom's with some spades, gin and phase ten card playing. I wore some of grandmom's jewelry to her funeral and wake. Both were so healing and comforting as people could not say enough how incredibly sweet and sacrificing she was. I pray for that kind of grace and spirit of sacrifice. Our family choir sang, with me and my cousin Aisha and my mom joining in and my aunt singing the solo to "He's An On Time God." We got the church rocking and the preacher shared his surprise at seeing a family do the comforting at a love one's funeral. Many of my mom's friends from Atlanta came up for the service and so did my dad who stayed the weekend. Writing this helped more then I realized as I flew back to NY sunday night (flight delayed 2 hours in philly, sigh) and back to work today, with little time to think before back to the serious grind. But one thing death does remind you is how precious life is and to cherish each moment. Back to loving reckless:)

Obama Style

June 9, 2009
Every since I discovered President Obama's smoking habit, I had one thought: glad that wasn't a dealbreaker for Mrs. Michelle. That thought had me determined to get a story around it and me and BB did a Guide to Getting a Barack Obama of your own by taking cues from their relationship.

Seeing The Root's story yesterday on Black women needing not be so picky like Flotus (the source of a big fight from one of my coworkers and her boo) made me think back on the 

Yes sisters can be too picky but I don't think it's as simple as changing our outlook to discover love because its plenty of single women open to a less-than-perfect guy, and that is NOT settling.

The surprising part is so many guys dont realize what Black women are up against in the dating scene and consider us equals. Boy, if that were the case.

And one comment caught my eye saying Barack Obama was raised by white people so that's why he wanted to get married. Woah. Well, first off he wasnt even sure he believed in the institution but was committed to Michelle. Some other women may have been satisfied with that but that wasnt how Michelle was raised and she let her wants be known (one of the tips).

The love lives of Black women are front in center

What Mitzi Said

June 8, 2009

Convicted Asian American Journalists in North Korea. Sigh. What Mitzi said indeed.

Saw a poll in the elevator home on what America should do and wonder what those results would be.

Today I'm feeling gender conscious. 

Lately I've been more race conscious after the shooting of yet another Black man by a cop right here in Harlem. Oh yeah. He was a cop too. Waiting on Chinese food last week a group of Black cops walked in and I got the oddest sensation of what it was like for them to return to work after the news. Did they talk about it with each other? With the White guys at work? I really do pray for world peace one little pocket of the world at a time.

Laws of Attraction

June 6, 2009

Long before "The Secret" hit bookstores a lot of us already knew the secret to getting what you want was believing it would come. Since officially moving to New York two years ago I have been vocal that this city is one of the best to be a single Black woman hoping to settle down with a successful single Black man, much to the sighs of many friends. Im not saying mini Barack Obama's are hanging from the trees (I've met my share of toads), but good brothers are around. And I guess I have been branded that way. 

I had a quick lunch yesterday with one of my friends who is working in the building. I was picking her brain for any story ideas by asking what her and her friends are talking  about and she only had two answers: Men (or the lack of) and Careers. We had the same convo we had a year before on me believing NY was a good spot for the single gal, and this is where I had to slide in I had a lil proof in my own life. Then this morning I got a fun email from my homie Nicole and she included this graph  . . .

I want to hear more about your Sherlock :) I'm so happy for you!! Since I've known you, you've always been an optimistic person about finding a good guy for yourself and knowing that they are out there, so I'm happy someone who sounds like a sweetie has come along! 
I smiled. No, believing good men are out there won't guarantee any will come, but having faith is half the battle - and means you wont be shocked when it happens just like you thought it would. And when those moments do come, just live in the moment because who knows what the future holds . . .

More about Sherlock? Well, last night we got Chinese and had movie night. Watched the latest "Friday the 13th" as two scary movie lovers. He's been great to have while Im away from home and my grandmother is really sick. And I am fighting not to be that girl who gets a man and no one hears from her .  . . can you hear me now? good, good


June 5, 2009
So twitter is all about Forward Fridays, broadcast people and things worth putting your attention to. Think I will do it blog style . .  .

*If nothing but for the amazing photos alone and fresh design, Nicole's blog is a great experience. She's living her dream life in D.C. as a photo editor and is snapping along the way. She's also dropping tidbits about her new love interest and who doesn't love reading about the thump thump of your heart with new love;)

Ok, so not an actual blog BUT she is a Pulitzer-winning columnist -and also married to Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown. I had the pleasure of meeting them both last year at a conference and have been enthralled every since. Her book "And His Lovely Wife" gave me a good look at her life as a new political wife and not losing your identity next to a powerful man. Her weekly columns always stir an emotion in me.

Let's talk about sex baby. It's refreshing to see someone be so open about their sex and dating life. She doesnt discriminate when it comes to the menfolk and I enjoy reading her new perspective and outlook. Dont wonder anymore what sex with an Asian guy may be like . . .

Movie buff meet Movie maven. Candice uses her "get to the point" approach to break dow
n movies. Most of her ratings I agree with (or enjoy debating) and I can get a synopsis from someone of similar outlook for movies I dont plan to see and fake it in a convo, not that I
 would ever do that;)

Ok, my good buddy Cynthia Gordy is the amazing
 White House correspondent for Essence and blogs about her daily adventures at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. What else is there to say:)?

*Picture: me, Cynthia and Candice (right) at Naz (center)'s 30th Birthday Bash . . .

Gotta Love Katies

June 2, 2009

Katie Couric was the first female Class Day speaker at Princeton in the university's history.

"What really matters in the end is how you've played the game of life...that you've lived it with honor, integrity and character... old fashioned qualities that never go out of style...whether you're a fan of Ella Fitzgerald or Lady Gaga"

and then she hit the ladies with this one . . .

"I'm sure you are all graduating with big career goals. You may also have a dream of being married and having a family, and at some point the career may take a backseat. Katie-Couric-princeton_lThere is no more challenging, rewarding or important job than being a mom. I just want to say this -- sometimes dreams of domestic bliss are interrupted by reality. People get divorced. People die. You need to protect yourself. I was very happily married to a wonderful man. He was diagnosed with colon cancer and nine months later, he was gone. I was a single mom with two very young children. This was not part of the plan. Luckily, I had a career and therefore the financial independence to support my children. Many women in my situation are not nearly as fortunate. And while I don't mean to be a Debbie Downer, I want you all to be prepared for the unexpected and approach some of the big life decisions you'll be making with your eyes wide open."

Very real stuff. As the years I see between me and marriage and kids slip under 5, her message hit me. Keep grinding. Enjoy life while you are at it.

Don't let the girly sound fool you. From my great-grandmom I was named for to Mrs. Couric, Katies sure can be ballsy movers and shakers

Ladies Love

June 1, 2009

LL Cool J. The other night I went to a concert with Estelle and LL. I was upstairs. She was rocking the stage and a week of running after memorial day had me beat. After she wrapped and I was on the floor with my buddy Niem, I fought off the yawns and at least wanted a peek of LL in the flesh. I was suppose to interview him and once I got there found out it was for after the lengthy show and close to midnight. After a half hour of setting up for him, bringing out towels and laying roses just so, the man of the hour comes out. He.killed.it Did all his classics, was just full of energy and taking pictures and dancing with fans. I was spellbound, and grinning remembering an old lady telling Sherlock he looked like Mr. James himself.

LL continues to rock out and show he's definitely still got it. He struts across the stage and licks his lips like it's closer to 1990 than 2010. Of course the ladies want to see his chest and he gets down to a wife beater.

The publicist texts me to see if I am still on, and I am completely awake after some "Rock the Bells" and "Hey Lover." I head upstairs as "I Need Love" comes on and we watch the rest of the show from the top balcony. Afterwards they take me around the corner where he will do photos and interviews. I wait. I wait. I waitttttttttttt. I get up thinking this will go on all night and the pub says they just got upstairs and I can go first. He rounds the corner. The sheen is gone. He's dry and in a new clean shirt. I head over and introduce myself and kick off my interview asking him to grade on hip hop. Turns out he is a Drake fan and is excited about his new role on NCIS. I get a decent interview in under six minutes and my shoulder is tapped. My time is up. I walk away smirking at the transformation. Beyonce isnt the only one with an alter ego. Sasha Fierce meet Mr. Cool J