In the summer of 1938, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Fair Labor Standards Act. The act didn't give people much mind you...a minimum wage of .25 cents per hour and a 44 hour work week would be considered full-time, oh, and it abolished child labor.
Even though this wasn't much, people with money fought against it tooth and nail. In one of the President's fireside chats he said, "Do not let any calamity-howling executive with an income of $1,000 a day, tell you that a wage of $11 a week is going to have a disastrous effect on all American industry."
I'm not trying to give you a history lesson here because I'm sure you know about all of this or, I'm sure you learned it in school even if you've forgotten the specifics. I know I learned it in school and promptly forgot the details once I'd answered the questions on my final exam.
You know...cuz that's how we generally roll.
On Labor Day, you always hear about the Fair Labor Standards Act and how it was the catalyst for the fair labor laws we have today. As these things go...I generally read something that leads me to something else and something else, yada, yada. And, as these things go...I realize why my father was so damn militant about what they were teaching me at school. See...it normally went something like this:
Dad: Oh...you're learning about the FLSA huh? Well...did they tell you how that only benefited White people?
Me: Um...they didn't really go into it like that I guess.
Dad: Of course not. Because they need folks to always feel like they're the blame for their own shit. Man...them White folks sliced and diced that act up so that they didn't have to pay Black people more. See...Black people mostly worked in the fields or doing domestic work back then cuz that's all they'd let them do. Well...even though they agreed that people couldn't live off what they were paying them...they still found a way to give the White people more and keep the Black people down. They said that if you worked in the fields or cleaned people's homes...you didn't qualify. And the unions? Shiiiiiiiiiiiiit...they didn't let Black folks join so the unions ain't help with shit. You got these White guys who didn't have education now making double what they were making and the Black guys? Same amount of nothing they always parceled out. I bet they didn't teach you that up at that school did they?
And then...after dropping his bit of depressing as hell knowledge which showed why he had such a disdain for the people in power...he'd roll off to let you ponder your place in the world. Or...for a better description...the place in the world you have to fight to get to since it's all set up against you.
My dear old militant daddy. LOL!
I hope by now yall know I'm not a race baiter. I don't excuse things that people do just because they are Black. I'm hard on myself and I'm hard on MY people. I want us to do well in life. But I'll be damned if digging around deeper into the history of stuff just really takes a toll on you from time-to-time. It's like...Black people have always been set up to do the bare minimum of what White people would have the opportunity to do. And...to this day, most White people won't even acknowledge these types of systematic racial prejudices across the board. I mean...if people had more money...they'd have more options. If they'd had more money, they'd have been able to send more of their children to college. If they'd have had more money, they'd have been better able to become homeowners. If they'd have had more money, they'd have been better able to maintain their homes and neighborhoods. If they'd have had more money, they would not have had to find cheap ways to forget that they didn't have more money/options/opportunity/experiences.
Same shit...different day.
If only they'd had more money.
Good morning. How was your Labor Day weekend? Did you go to a cookout?
SIP: How in the hell are you going to drop all that there and then ask somebody if they had barbeque?
That video is interesting. Basically they are saying that you can learn anything and that kids who are praised for studying instead of praised for being smart are smarter. They also say that if you have to struggle to learn something...your brain actually grows.
What do you think about how you should praise kids as it relates to them being smart? How do you do it?
We take the garbage out on Monday and Thursday during the week. Recycling is organized and put out for Wednesday pickup. I use the word WE loosely here because yeah...Robby takes it out.
Jaru likes long walks. He generally gets one good long one and two micro walks. Robby gives him that good long walk because he poops a lot and I love my doggie by my poop picking up skills are never something I enjoy cultivating.
The tire indicator came on in my truck letting me know I needed air in my right back tire. *sigh*
Yesterday the coffee maker made a pot of clearish hot water. I did what Robby told me to do and was successful in getting a pot of weak coffee made. It did the same thing today and I got out the manual and did a full scale super clean on it. I'm talking I whipped out a flashlight, the vacuum cleaner, etc. and now it's darn near in a brand new state of clean. I cleaned that thing to within an inch of it's life all the time knowing I have a lot to do today but at that moment...nothing was more important than cleaning that coffee maker perfectly and I started crying because I'm tired and my favorite Uncle has left us and I have so much to do but I have to go tell him goodbye and Robby isn't here so all of my pains have gone unsoothed because he soothes me and he makes it all better. He does all the heavy lifting and I get a little too soft because he cherishes me and does all the things he knows I don't care to do. I have put out the garbage twice even though I forgot to put out the recycling and I got a guy to put the air in my tire by playing cute chick without a clue and I've been scooping up poop like a pro.
And I've made my own coffee. Nine days in a row now and counting.
And my heart hurts and I'm sad and I have regrets about not being as...I don't know...communicative as I know I could be but I hate the phone and it's easier to get me online because I don't have to talk per se but our Elders...sometimes they can't get to their computer even though when they could...they read my blog and enjoyed it and laughed and fussed at me for cussing and gave me advice and talked to the other Elders about eDress Me and worried about me still being out here giving strangers rides and such even though they've always known that I was special, their words not mine, and have always been surrounded by angels.
And now I have another guardian angel popping in checking out what's going on and he is probably sitting over my shoulder right now while I'm writing this because...he missed reading my blog.
And yeah...I'm crying because I should have done more than I ever probably would have because well...I'm my father's daughter and that will always be my most significant weakness.
I'm so hurt that during a time I should be the happiest ever based on other things going on...my favorite Elder left us before I got a chance to do the more my heart always wanted me to do. This will be my most astonishing regret in life and the thing I question WHY the most.
I'm perfectly capable of taking care of myself but I've gotten soft. I don't worry about what I don't want to worry about because I always know that The Robinator has it handled. He's the man. He's MY man.
I'm truly a woman who can't live without her man. I need him to hold me and make it all better because that's the only thing that will soothe this empty burn filled with heat that is my heart right now. I just hurt all over.
Good morning. Sorry. I'm feeling some kinda way today.
I love Bey. LawsknowIdo...so I feel horrible when I'm a doubter when they refer to her as the greatest living performer. She's GREAT...no doubt about it...but the GREATEST? I'on know. I just saw Prince perform and well...he's Prince.
What do YOU think. Who, in your opinion, is the greatest living performer?
I was asked the other day if I juice. I don't really. Not like people do these days. I make a mean green drink or smoothie from time-to-time but not more than once or twice a month. But...I eat a LOT of fruit and veggies. Mostly raw and I really enjoy them. They taste really good to me. A good cold, crisp carrot? LOVE the crunch. Room temperature watermelon? Apples, pears, bananas. Tomatoes, celery (with hummus), plums, peaches, nectarines, oranges, tangerines, zucchini, squash, corn...oh goodness...too much to keep typing about.
Not a day goes by that I don't eat fruits and veggies. And not just a lil corner on a plate...Like all day. I'm sitting here now and I'm about to grab a piece of fruit when I get up. I don't have cakes and pies in the house. No cookies. No candy. Not even chocolate or a Jolly Rancher. No chips. But...I have all the stuff necessary to make brownies, a cake, some chocolate chip or oatmeal raisin cookies or a sweet potato pie if I wanted to. I have some kale so if I wanted some chips I could make some kale chips. Or...if I REALLY wanted some chips (during Midol Week it is a ritual), I can go to the store and buy a small bag of chips and eat them.
My husband would buy a big bag of something salty and crunchy if left to his own devices and will have the good sense to look sheepish when he sees I notice it. LOL! Since I generally control what he eats the majority of the time, no biggie. I know he can't fall off the wagon with one big azz bag of chips and salsa.
But this isn't a regular occurrence.
We love popcorn. Freshly popped on top of the stove in canola oil. A pound and a half of organic kernels cost $1.19 at Trader Joe's. It lasts a long, long time.
Sometimes we sit here and my guy will look at me and say...I wouldn't mind something sweet and I'll ask if he wants me to whip up some brownies or some cookies. He mulls it over for a minute or two and generally picks brownies. About an hour later...we have brownies. Hot and gooey with chocolate chunks and walnuts. GO.US!
I'm careful about sauces and generally eat my own cooking 95% of the time.
I've read that weight loss is 80% diet and nutrition, 20% exercise and 150% mental. I agree with that and live by that.
You can't start exercising but keep the same eating habits that helped put the weight you're trying to lose on you. You will get frustrated by slow results and give up. EVERY.SINGLE.TIME. If you're cool with maintaining where you are...cool. But if you're not...you know what you need to do so do it.
That's all I wanted to say. Eat right. Eat junk food sporadically. Exercise. Always keep what you need to make you something sweet because it will take a lot to get you to get up, mix up the ingredients and bake it. See how that works?
Any tips on the mental part of the equation? What do you do to make sure the mental part stays on track?
The other day a friend went to get a massage at a massage school for $25. You don't get to pick who does your massage but you can ask for another masseuse if something puts you off. She said the young man who came out for her looked like Lil' Wayne. Tattoos and all. She then asked me if I would have allowed him to give me a massage and I told her that if I would ever go to a massage school for a massage I wouldn't have turned him away based on his physical appearance because he's obviously in massage school trying to better his life. So yeah...I'd give him a chance...IF I went to a massage school and couldn't choose my masseuse.
She then went on to tell me how unprofessional he was. He used slang, had his phone in the room with them and answered it after the second time it rang (apparently he'd left his charger somewhere and had called and asked someone to bring it). After he answered the phone call, she told him she didn't want to continue. He had an obvious attitude and made a snarky remark and then left the room. She got dressed and decided to leave a comment card that ended up being given directly to him. She was very thorough in her description of the experience and why it wasn't a good one. She also added suggestions for the young man.
And then she left.
With half a massage and nothing near a relaxed state of mind.
I shared with her that I always see young men with their pants sagging and I say to them with a smile, "You're too handsome of a young man to have your pants all bunched up like that. Pull up your pants and tighten your belt." I have NEVER had a negative reaction from a young man I've said this to. Most of them even look sheepish and say "Yes ma'am."
She said she tried to say something to him in the beginning in hopes that he'd straighten up and be more professional but it didn't work.
How would you have felt?
Would you have allowed him to give you the massage or would you have asked for another student?
Would you have attempted to redirect his lack of professionalism?
Would you have complained about him?
Would you have left a comment card knowing he'd get it?
Or would you just leave to never return?
Do you think people do certain things because they don't know they shouldn't?
Up until recently, I've only owned one pair of thong sandals and I keep them in my truck for when I go get pedicures because I hate wearing those paper ones the nail salon provides. I have never liked the feeling of things between my toes and it's extremely uncomfortable to me.
I was shopping recently and saw a pair of Birkenstock thong sandals. On a whim, I decided to try them on. They were sooooooooooooooo comfortable! I didn't even feel the thong part at all once I tightened the buckle. And...I loved the way they looked on my feet.
"You can get pissed off about it but what pisses me off more is when Raheem kills Tyrone and it's business as usual. Twenty-three Black people got shot in Chicago this past weekend and five died. Yet...everybody is focused on the White man who killed one over yonder in the Midwest. That right there is the stuff that pisses me off. They killing each other left and right down in New Orleans too. You only know about it if you read the Picayune and, truth be told, you tend to start skipping over those stories because they are in the paper far too often. Same old same old. Black kid kills other Black kid or two or three of them. 'Cept they are not kids by that point. They are hardened criminals who are just trying to figure out how to survive in the world they live in and are restricted to by economics and society. And people, no matter what color they are, are going to steer clear of them and the section of the cities they are restricted to live in by economics and when they are seen in other areas, they stand out. You know you see them and you know you steer clear. Doesn't make it right per se...but hey...we're all just trying to survive. I gave my children and my nieces and nephews some of the same warnings everyone else gives their children and told them who to stay away from and where to stay away from. You can't make people value what you value. People got their own way of being and you rarely know the rules unless you were raised that way too so yeah...Well, that's my take on it now let me go. I have some work to do so get off my phone. I Love you."
Is this something only an Elder can say in private? Thoughts?
We have a list of things we want to get done around our house so we reached out to some handyman/repair/contractor people. Licensed and insured, of course. I called three companies and they all came out today to give me estimates on the work I needed done. The price tag on two BLEW.MY.MIND AWAY!
He didn't have a fancy Sprinter van with his name on the side and he looked like if I wanted him to get started in 10 minutes he would have gone out and returned in a work shirt and some boots while one of his sons was on their way to help.
Yup. Ramon & Son's seem to keep their prices down by having low overhead. I like that. It translates to my pocketbook well. Guess who has a new handyman service? That would be me! GO ME!
I almost lost my mind on Sunday when I saw this sale at Target. See, as someone who planks on the regular...this stuff is essential to my elbows. LOL! I hit them up every.single.night at bedtime. And then I hit my knees. And my feet. Yup...all that rough stuff stays soft with my nightly Aquaphor ritual. GO ME!
I am on the lookout for this $9.99 hat from Target in khaki and black. I visited two Targets and couldn't find it. If you see it at your Target, please send me a bat signal because I want them so and they aren't available to buy online. It fits my peanut head perfectly and I love it so.
When I get mad, you can't tell me nothing. You can't dangle a carrot in my face and think I'm going to take the carrot and settle down somewhere. See...I expect certain things to be unfair and have prepared myself for disappointments so I don't get that darn mad often...but when I get mad fo' real? POOT.YOU.
Seems to me, this is what's going down in Ferguson right now. People are mad. FO.REAL.MAD. Not the kind of mad where you can have a good meal and get over it after a back rub...but the kind of mad that will make you skip a meal or two because dammit...you're tired.
I've been watching all of the demonstrations and marches going on all across the country in support of Ferguson with ambivalence because I remember the same demonstrations and marches about Trayvon Martin. I remember the same going on about Sean Bell and Oscar Grant and I remember it going DOWN-T in New Orleans about the Danziger bridge shootings. And I read and know of so many more. I touch base with my loved ones and have the same tired azz conversations with them, the males especially, about being careful and learning to detect danger in the presence of authority.
Street smarts is what they call it.
As a Black woman, I've never really had a bad experience with a policeman. When I was wrong, I was wrong, but they never acted a fool with me. Probably because my stature and weight didn't pose a threat to them.
Whenever I hear of police opening fire on citizens I try to always remember that police are people too and, just like you and I, they want to get back home to their family alive as well.
It's got to be hard as hell wearing a gun and knowing that there may be cause for you to have to use it to save your life and the lives of those around you.
Because of this, I was cool with them not releasing the name of the officer involved in the Ferguson murder. I felt that when the FBI stepped in, all was going to be dealt with properly and that officer would be investigated. I didn't think releasing his name during the riots was a good idea because I didn't want the blood of his family shed. I hoped they'd put his people in protective custody while they figured this all out.
I hated watching the video of the young man shoplifting earlier that day. It doesn't mean he should have been killed, but I just hated watching it knowing what it meant public opinion was laying on him.
And I knew that those who decided to release the video knew that too.
"Look...he stole some cigars earlier that day piece of shit thug!"
Not a good person right?
I had a problem with how long the young man's body lay out on the sidewalk for all to see. I don't know the proper procedure for these things but I feel like 4 hours was excessive.
I had a problem with, if the young man was really trying to take the officer's gun, and the young man was with his friend, and his friend stayed at the scene...why wasn't his friend questioned and/or arrested?
Lots of big, Black scary guys around I guess.
Autopsy reports say the young man was shot 6 times. Twice in the head. From the front.
Big. Black. Scary.
Able to kill a man with his very presence.
No weapons necessary.
I remember the protests of the previously murdered unarmed Black men. The marches. The t-shirts. The hoodies. The uncomfortably heated conversations with White friends and people you THOUGHT understood but who said shit like...Why was he wearing a hoodie? Why was he walking that time of night? Why did he...
I reminded a White friend this past week of some trouble her son had gotten into when he was 14 and then again when he was 16. They lawyered up quickly and got him off. No record. If he did some shit tomorrow, the news would report that he's never been in trouble. He's a good dude. Never did a damn thing wrong.
Money is a great eraser. The big block kind you used to get for the first day of school.
If a kid without parents with money did the same things he'd done...they'd have a record. They'd have been sentenced. They might have served some time.
If that kid ever got murdered by the police...the things they didn't have money to erase would be laid out for all the world to see.
The friend just nodded during my tirade. See...she's tired too. And it's easy for her to understand the unfairness but not really know what to do so she just goes back to doing what she does. Takes care of her family. Protects them with all she has.
Same as any mother.
Sometimes...it's too much.
I hope the dust settles in Ferguson soon and calmer heads prevail. I pray the violence stops before more people are hurt and killed. March if you want but public perception isn't changing. What YOU know to be true gains skewed outlooks from others.
I don't like clutter. I'm just like everyone else, however, and sometimes things get stacked up on top of each other. I have a specific clutter area. The area where I sit in the family room, my nightstand (inside and out) and any purse that I'm carrying. At any given time you can look at those areas and they aren't neat. STUFF is spilling over and out and I have to search to find what I need or want. Sometimes I change my mind looking for what I was looking for simply because it required too much work.
So I stop.
And I sit.
And I do nothing.
And the clutter stays in a heap and it disgusts me because I know I can and should do better.
Then...one day it's too much for me and I get up and get a bag, or a box and I dump all the clutter in it. Then, I go through the box and throw away what needs to be thrown away. I put away what needs to be put away and I replace the things that were supposed to be there.
And I feel better. Every time I do this...I feel better. And I KNOW I'll feel better after just as I've known all along as I lived with the clutter.
I have so much to do currently and my mind is so cluttered with thoughts of how I'm going to get it all done. I need to prioritize and sort tasks and I need to get started on this YESTERDAY. My ind is racing with all that I need to do and I don't have many days to do it all and yet...yesterday I hung out on the sofa all day with Jaru doing nothing. I surfed the net and watched back-to-back episodes of "Baby Daddy" on Netflix. I just discovered the show this past weekend and I'm already on Season 3 so yeah...I'm quietly procrastinating knowing that I need to get with the good foot.
And this morning I'm sitting here thinking about options and planning in my mind because the project ahead of me is SO.BIG. and I'm about to go make some stuff happen.
Any minute now.
Yup...any minute now.
My cluttered mind needs a box.
Totally wish mediating worked for me.
Do you ever have a lot to do but can't get started? Have you ever watched "Baby Daddy?"
I can be sad about Robin Williams. I can be sad and MAD about Michael Brown. I can be concerned as hell about ISIS. I can be wary of Ebola. I can be annoyed by my HOA. I can be nervous about Russia's aggression. I can still be shocked about that damn missing plane. I can be happy by BIG.THINGS.POPPING. I can smile at a picture of my Godson. I can laugh at something my husband said. I can miss my mommy. I can be grateful cancer didn't kill me. All in the span of TEN.DAMN.MINUTES. And wouldn't give two shits as to what you are SO.OVER. How dare you attempt to dictate what the hell people can and cannot feel whenever the hell they want to feel it. The only feelings yo stankin' azz gets to dictate are your own. IDIOT.