Played-Out!!

 

FYI, played out has been “played out” since Curtis Blow said it in Christmas Rap back in the ‘80s, but it serves my purpose here. Lately, there have been trends going on that have quite frankly gotten numerous side-eyes from me in the past few months. Why you ask? I’m quite tired of them, I’ve either seem or heard about it too many times. Cue Jay-Z’s “I’m Off That”

  1. Colorism- It is sad that practices and beliefs that originated centuries ago still resonate with our people in 2011. Granted, some of us have preferences, but are we still going around still judging folks and refusing to associate with and date people based on the hue of their skin?
  2. Overworked-Sex Appeal– Sex appeal is one of those things that should come naturally, but if you’re overdoing it (*cough, Trey Songz) then it’s not so attractive. You need more people.
  3. Amber Rose– Yes, she’s a beautiful woman with the make-up and bleached caesar and I’d kill to have her body on call whenever I’m traveling to the beach, but I’m quite tired of home girl and her laying it low and spreading it wide, literally. It seems as soon as we go a week without Amber Rose related gossip/news, she finds someway to make herself blog-relevant again.Chile, go sit down.
  4. African-Themed Fashion Collections– It seems as though if you compile khaki, African-landscape, elephants, zebras and cheetahs and some made-up “tribal-looking” textile and not to mention ‘exotic’ looking models, you have yourself an African-themed collection. It has become quite boring, unoriginal and quite honestly a bit offensive that the only thing ‘fashionable’ that comes out of Africa are the animals and the jungle landscape.
  5. Mediocre Jobs after College– Let’s see, you go to school for 13-14 years being conditioned to believe that college is the key to success and a stress free life. You believe it and take the loans in order to get the degree only to graduate with a less-than pleasing job struggling to make ends meet. All the while Sierra, the C average class clown, is student loan free, now making $25 an hour right out of high school.
  6. Moscato- Ever since Drake said, “Lobster, steak and a glass of Moscato,” black folks who were never on wine have been running in droves to the sto’ for this sweet libation. Never mind the fact that it is a dessert wine, people drink it with whatever and whenever. So much so that it has become the ‘40’ of the new millennium. Broaden your horizons if you haven’t already, its more wine out there!
  7. Black-Female Bashing– Sigh….I don’t have the energy to sit here and give my thorough two cents on the issue. We saw the Psychology Today “study”, we heard the countless remarks from black entertainers and athletes, the YouTube videos and we read the comment sections of our favorite blogs daily. ENOUGH ALREADY! If you don’t consider us desirable, datable, attractive and/or wife-material, that’s just YOUR opinion. Don’t put us down to justify why we don’t want you you date outside your race or don’t associate with us.

So CT readers, what have you become ‘off’ of? What other things or people have become played out?

Practice What You Preach

 

“You say there’s a lesson that you wanna teach, well here I am baby, practice what you preach”

I hope you read that lyric with Barry White’s baritone’s voice playing in your head. Today’s topic is universal; all over the board. It can be applied to relationships, religion, friendships, marriages, finances, etc., etc., you name it, it can be applied anywhere, even to what Barry was referencing…sex. I once was at a place in my life (last month) where I needed advice on pretty much everything. I wanted to get opinions and feedback from others to ensure that I was making the proper decisions. While most of the advice was good, I found it problematic that the advice that I was given was not being practiced by the same people who had done the “preaching” and honestly, I have found myself as well on the not practicing what you preaching end.  Generally speaking, it is always easier to give advice than actually follow the advice you give. That is because you are the outside person looking in on the situation, so you can give advice without any biases. Yet, once you find yourself smack dab in a similar situation, you forget about all that Dr. Philing you had been doing.  You begin to make adjustments here and there and give exceptions to the rules. You forget that you dated a level 10 chick on the fugly scale, but you clowning your boy on the women he dates. You take to Twitter and Facebook to drop Think Exist quotes knowledge on your statuses/tweets, yet you don’t take the message of those quotes you post and apply it to your own life. Or you talk about starting anew, yet you stage an offering to get real offerings..**side-eye**

What’s worse is once you realize this person is great at giving advice, but just not great at following it, you begin to question their advice, feedback, words, etc., from that point onward. You listen, but you take it with a grain of salt and in the worse case, you become a cynic.  You become that cynic because this is a person that you probably have trusted, believed and revered. You looked to this person for advice, yet if they say one thing and do the opposite, it’s hypocritical and we all know that hypocrisy is never respected. I close this post by saying that some advice is good, but your own thoughts should never be put on the back burner for someone else’s- unless you intend on jumping off a bridge. Only you know what’s completely best for you and your life, “ya dig?” If you have found yourself in a place where someone loved to give you advice, but wasn’t following their own advice, what do you do? How do you handle these folks?

Black Fatherhood: Revered or Expected?

With Father’s Day right around the corner, some of us are rushing to find the perfect gift(s). Like Mother’s Day, we celebrate and honor the other half that created us, but when the smoke clears, then what? The reality is, not many in the black community will be that enthused for the Sunday holiday. Many of us have grown up fatherless, or our fathers may have been around, but did not play a pivotal role in our lives. Without question, parenting in the black community needs to improve-period, on both sides, but black fathers need to step up to the plate and be better providers and nurturers for their children’s sake. While I can say that my mother did an EXCELLENT job raising my sister and I alone, there were many times in which I wished my father was around for the advice I needed. For the men who are reading this, and grew up in a home void of a father, I’m sure you all feel the same way, more so than me. As children, we need are parents more than ever, but it is not until you get to adult life that you realize that a portion of your life may have been affected by their absence or lack of involvement. This post isn’t to bash black fathers, there are great fathers out there (GRANDPA IKE!), who take care of their children and are there for them. However, just because they are an anomaly, doesn’t mean we should put them on a higher pedestal. So we commend Dwayne Wade and Barack Obama for showcasing black fatherhood in a positive light. Their efforts are not going unnoticed, and they are making strides to improve the public’s perception of black fathers.  Yet, shouldn’t we be at a place where fatherhood is not an option, but an expected requirement?

I related so much to an episode of Braxton Family Values, I had to post. If you’re a product of separated/divorced parents, you know all about the “family gatherings”:

What were your experiences with your father? How do you honor your dad on Father’s Day?

When It Comes To Being Sexy, Should There Be A Limit??

 

"I'mma Kill 'Em Tonight Girl!!"

 

First I must say, like beauty, sex appeal is subjective. What I would deem sexy could be viewed as conservative or unattractive to someone else; everyone has their own interpretation of what is sexy. In Hollywood, celebrities are constantly pushing the envelope with their fashion to become relevant or to stay relevant. In a world in which you have 15 minutes to make your stardom known in order to last, it’s understandable. Yet, in the real world, there is a fine line between being sexy and just plain ole trashy. For example, yesterday, while looking at club pictures online, I stumbled upon a picture of SEVERAL, everyday women wearing textured tights as bottoms. Now, before you question, “what’s the harm in that?” keep in mind that their butts were exposed. No, their tops were not covering their butts, if so I wouldn’t have seen a huge problem with their ensembles. HOWEVER, there were exposed underwear, butt cheeks and all.  I couldn’t help but wonder about others who had visited the site and saw the pictures. Were their mouths on the floor as mine was when I saw the photo? I am sure someone who is reading this can relate to me on this issue. Seeing the scantily clad girl walking around in the club or any social function, thinking she looks good because she’s getting lots of male attention, but little does she know it is for all the wrong reasons.

Whatever happened to leaving something to the imagination? Judging by the lack of comments on the photo, have we become too desensitized to provocative clothing? Have these women, and the men who like this style of dress, made it harder for women who don’t feel they should have to wear swimsuits out to the club in order to get attention. Furthermore, have they made it harder for women in general to get respect at the club? I personally have always been a firm believer in the idea that tight and short does not automatically mean “sexy,” but what do you guys think?

The Royal Couple

It’s time to take our talents international CT readers, there is a royal wedding in the next couple weeks! In case you have been living under a rock these past couple months, Prince William will be marrying his longtime girlfriend Kate Middleton. A little fact about TLC: I absolutely love everything British! When I heard about this I was absolutely excited! I have taken notice of the kind of men Prince William and Harry have matured into since the death of their mother Princess Diana in the 90s.

As you can see Kate is wearing a pretty stunning engagement ring. That ring was actually Princess Diana’s; William wanted his mother to be apart of this joyous occasion in his life.

You can’t help but to reference Princess Diana in this situation. Kate Middleton, just like Princess Diana is considered in England a commoner, meaning she has no royal affiliation to the crown. The fact that before the engagement, her background wasn’t really revealed; now everything she does will be under scrutiny. The clothes she wears, the events she attends, and the company she keeps will now be closely watched. Hopefully Kate won’t have to endure the hardships Princess Diana had to in order to live the kind of life she wanted to and not what was expected of her because of the man she married.

I just love seeing love. These two have been dating for some time now and I always think it’s a good thing to make sure you get to know a person before you truly make that big leap into marriage.

Oh, and if anyone can get me Harry’s digits I’d appreciate it.

Top Five Biggest Office Distractions

To combat the stereotype of lazy black folks, I’m a advocate for office productivity, I am on time (for the most part), I get my work done, you know, all the good stuff. However, sometimes office distractions are apart of every typical 9-5 job, hence the time of this post. Here are my top five biggest office distractions:

  1. Blogs– with the exception of maybe Facebook and CNN, the majority of my online time is spent surfing blog sites. While I try to keep my online presence at a minimum at work, I can’t help but to visit Young, Black and Fabulous to see what’s the latest on my favorite celebrities or the fashion articles at Fashion Bomb Daily.
  2. GChat– gchat or ‘google messenger’ is the Messiah of office distractions. Gone are the days of AIM, GChat is the best way to chat to friends without having to pull out the cell and you can check your e-mails all at the same time.
  3. Facebook- this item is debatable since I strongly believe Facebook will become another defunct social networking site in the next five years. That is, unless it comes up with more innovative features, (Myspace anyone?). Nevertheless, in the meantime people still rely on Facebook to connect or reconnect with friends, find out the latest gossip, check to see who’s with who, who was wearing what and to ‘facebook stalk’- don’t act brand new, you know you do it too.
  4. E-mail Chains-What starts off as a simple forwarded e-mail sent to inspire, uplift and brighten your day can easily turn into a e-mail conversation with the entire recipient list. The worst part? When you think you have ended the thread by not responding and that ONE co-worker continues with the thread 10 minutes later with some off topic sidenote…ARGGGHHHH!!!
  5. Chatty Co-Workers-Everyone has that one co-worker that loves to talk. Even when you make it clear that it’s a) lunchtime b) your phone is ringing c) or you have so much work to catch up on, they still continue to go on as if they don’t get the message. Typically, these are the folks who never seem to have their work done and know it, but still walk around as if they have nothing on their plate.

So I’m curious of your biggest office distractions, please share. They may become useful to me in my downtimes…

Fun Fridays:Playground Games…What Was Your Favorite?

“Slide, baby 1, 1…..”

Remember Gigolo?  How about Miss Merry Mack? Dodgeball? Tag? No matter your age, everyone had a favorite playground past time when you were younger. I stumbled across www.folkstreams.net/, a site dedicated to preserving documentaries of various American traditions and cultures. This particular video features a group of young girls back in 1967 doing their, “cheers,” as I use to call them. Check it out:

 

 

I decided to post this video today because it is a reflection of a tradition passed down from generation to generation. No one really knows who created these cheers, when or where they were created, but once you heard them on the playground you immediately became familiar and it would stay with you forever.

So, what was your favorite playground game or cheer?

Happy Friday! Go Rams! #fromaWahoo

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