How many of you still have SUPER close friends from high school? I mean like...bestie close? Of course you still have friends from high school...but do yall interact daily or even weekly?
I was talking to a high school student about making friends in high school and I agreed that it could be difficult to maneuver. First off, you guys are all lumped in together in classes. There is no commonality really normally, other than the grade you're in. Because of this, it can be hard to find teenagers who share the same interests you share. There are clubs, of course, but even then, there might not be any clubs you're interested in joining and some of those clubs are filled with kids whose parents forced them to join.
So...if you don't meet friends in high school, then you'll certainly meet people in college where interests are more organized by curriculum, etc.
Because I'm a stupid adult, I doubt if the teenager believed me because well...yall know teenagers know everything. I shared that I have friends from high school, of course, but I only really spend time with them when I go back home and we're all happy to see each other and have a good time but when I return to where my current home is...we only "see" each other on Facebook.
Okay...I stopped using the rinse that the hair guru dude who wanted me to go natural told me to stop using. Now my hair is back to it's lovely (note sarcasm here) shade of reddish brown with gray straight up acting a FOOL all up and through it. I haven't been using anything because I don't like the way it makes my hair feel and I do love how soft it is to the touch but I swear whenever I get a good look in the mirror at it myself...I have to admit that I hate the gray.
And the red.
Oh how I hate the red.
To combat my not seeing it as much, I've been keeping it tucked up and under in a bun.
But I know it's there. UGH!
G-Baby: Ooooh Monnie! Look at your hair! All red and look! You've got gray!
Me: DIE GLADYS JUST DIE! WHAT ABOUT YOUR LIL FUNKY HAIR? IT'S ALL...I MEAN...LOOK AT...WELL YOU GOT...Hell, I gots nothing. Your hair is cute shit. Stop talking to me.
So...I'm thinking of options here and I was hoping you could help me based on your experience and opinion.
A. Let it go...let it goooooooo!
B. Get some for real PERMANENT color done by an Aveda salon?
C. Have a stylist do some type of rinse instead of doing it myself?
I met this woman in the airport recently when both of us decided the deal to give up our seats that Southwest was offering was bit too good to pass up. We had prime time direct flights but Southwest had oversold the flight. They were offering $300 voucher + what you paid for the flight and you'd get on the next flight out. The only thing that wasn't optimal was that the flight wasn't direct but hey...I didn't have anything going on and I was about to get some moooolaaaaaaaaaaa! I'd paid $361 for that flight so I got a voucher for $631 and I still got home.
I mean...come on. I couldn't pass that up. Sometimes I'm like...nah...I wanna go home. But when I did the math and realized that I'd only be getting home 2 hours later...NO.BRAINER.
So...the woman and I hung out. I noticed that she had a bag for the Black Enterprise Golf and Tennis Challenge so I asked her about it. Truth be told...they should hire her as PR because she RAVED at how wonderful it was. She said it was a gathering of really awesome professional people and it's the one thing that she doesn't think she will ever miss attending again.
As she talked, I paid attention to her. Beautiful woman. Obviously from good stock. Her legs were crossed properly. Neat makeup. Simple and elegant jewelry. She spoke with her eyes and smile. engaging. I knew she was successful just from the way she connected while she communicated.
So I started asking her lots of questions because I'm working on something that she would have been cast perfectly in as herself had she been an actress. LOL!
I'm so sorry...yes, I use bits and pieces about people all the time. LOL!
She told me about some other events throughout the year that she attends and I was impressed with just how much she does. See...she is single and enjoying the hell out of her life. She gets up and GOES. I like that. We exchanged numbers with a promise of keeping in touch because she's the type of woman you want to keep in touch with. Genuine and cool. A few weeks ago she sent me a text asking if I'd used my voucher yet because she was in the airport on her way to a conference or something in Vegas that weekend using hers. GET.IT!
I liked her energy and thought to myself that if I was single, I'd keep a future plan to attend something awesome too. Strategic you know? I'd be having fun in an environment where there were men I'd be interested in having fun too.
What are some of the things you've heard about or attended that you think would be PERFECT for single professionals to put on their list of to-do's? Maybe we should ask Nisa! She would DEFINITELY KNOW!
Have you ever given up your seat for a good deal on a flight?
On Sunday, The Robinator and I were on a hike when it started to rain. We'd procrastinated leaving the house all day and ended up getting a later than usual start so we were a tad bit frustrated with ourselves. We contemplated what to do and decided to keep on since we were hiking in an area with a canopy of pretty large trees. It was warm enough so if we did get soaked, we wouldn't be too uncomfortable and we had towels and whatnot back in the truck to dry off if need be.
So we continued on. The sound of the rain on hitting the leaves and then sliding softly to the beyond was soothing. I'd forgotten my earbuds so all I heard was the sounds around us, The Robinator and the occasional voice of the woman on RunKeeper chopping down our stats.
Needless to say, it was peaceful as all get out.
We continued on and got to an area that was so beautiful, you'd swear it was a glade where fairies lived. The trees were strong and majestic, natural ferns so green and so lush. Nothing but trees, grass, rocks, dirt, and whatever lived out there. We reached the area by trudging up an incline and, just as the incline was about to level off...there is was. Perfection.
I found myself wishing I'd had my real camera instead of the camera on my phone.
As we continued on, the rain stopped and, just like that, the sun broke through the clouds once again. I looked back at my guy and I just smiled because, once again, he was right about continuing on.
I love hiking. I've loved it since I was a little girl hiking with my father. Robby teases me because I always keep my eyes out for a good walking stick. I very rarely find one, but I'm always looking for one.
We try and go to different trails and he checks out the trails online before we head out. We like there to be a changing topography, water, etc. Nothing boring. Constant change. And we like to hit pretty remote trails where we don't run into many people because sometimes, people can change the energy of the pace. The week prior we were hiking and came up on a guy in all black leather on a motorcycle in the woods. Just odd as hell. I didn't care for that. My imagination is too active. LOL!
Before the rain.
Do you ever go hiking? Do you ever look for trails in your area? If you don't, I bet you'll be surprised at what you find. I'm constantly amazed at the stuff we find in our own "backyard." It's truly stunning. We're planning to do a 10 mile hike this coming weekend and we're trying to plan it out so we can have a picnic too. I'm considering taking my camera but hey...who wants to carry that for 10 miles plus food and water? Not me that's for sure.
What kind of workouts do you do with someone else?
When I was growing up, Saturday mornings were for cleaning. You got up, ate breakfast while you watched cartoons and then the television was turned off, the music was turned on, and everybody got to cleaning. Some of us had inside jobs and some of us had outside jobs.
Last week I was discussing this with my sister and how kids don't know how to REALLY clean anymore. Sure, they know how to "swish" with a Clorox wipe but get down dirty with it scrubbing? They are ill equipped.
Comet or Ajax with something you could scrub with was the main cleaner and once everything was cleaned, then it was Windex and lemon fresh Pledge time. The last thing that was done was vacuum. Nice, neat lines.
I'm talking HOUSEKEEPER clean. Dust boards, all the frames off the sideboard dusted and cleaned, sideboard dusted and cleaned. Refrigerator cleaned out and wiped down. Bathroom sparkling. Even the plants got dusted.
In our house, you couldn't do anything else until after it was FOR REAL clean.
What about you? Did you guys do this type of cleaning too? Do your kids? Are kids too busy today to clean weekly? Are parents? Have cleanliness standards changed?
A while ago I met a woman on a plane who was a speech therapist and I was very surprised to find that a lot of her clients were actors who wanted to learn to enunciate words properly.
The majority of the issues she helped people deal with were based on regional / international dialect but, she found there were lots of people who really just didn't enunciate their words at all and that they were aware that their speech made them sound uneducated and less smart. She also shared that she worked with regular people in business related fields who wanted to get ahead and felt the way they spoke hindered them.
I wondered at the person who KNEW they didn't enunciate properly but still had to talk to people regularly. What did that feel like and how did they determine they weren't "doing it right?"
I remembered the episode of "King of Queens" when a woman in the office told Carrie that she might not get a job she applied for because of her "Queens accent" so Carrie tried to work on her diction:
And we all remember the Beyonce of old:
She cleaned that right on up.
I wanted to know if there were lots of people in my area offering these services and what was the cost associated so I asked Mr. Google. Seems it ranges from $25 per hour to $80 per hour based on the education level of the speaking voice instructor.
So tell me...would YOU hire someone to teach you how to TAWK GOODER? Do you find any validity in the claim that if you learned better enunciation, there would be a benefit? Do you feel this is an area you could work on or are you good? Do you think an adult who doesn't enunciate properly, should make this a priority when job hunting?
Whenever my baby brother asks me something I can't confidently answer, I get a bit obsessed with finding the right answer for him. I don't like sound bites and people telling me what the what. I like to read up on some stuff. He asked me about the conflict between Israel and Palestine and I only knew what I knew even as what I knew has always felt like an oversimplification of the details. Being someone with friends whose only criteria is that they are good people...I, of course, have friends who are Jewish as well as friends who are Muslim so I reached out to them for some personal answers.
Truth be told...their answers were the type of which stem from true frustration with a situation that's long past gone too far. And, as these friends live in the United States...maybe their history on the facts have been blurred a bit simply by living in an area they don't have to worry about the very real violence going down in their Mother country/ies.
And I just really wanted to understand what has been going down over there and why as much as I could.
A long time ago a law was put in place which allowed children who were victims of sex trafficking to come to our country. We took care of them. Cool. No biggie.
Now, we have a situation where the citizens of Central American countries are sending abandoned children to our border unaccompanied. In many of these cases, the children's parents and other family members are already here. Since the beginning of the year, over 30,000 of these kids have showed up, literally, on our doorstep.
The ones without family...well...they become our problem.
We have to feed them.
All of that costs dinero.
And you KNOW the countries they come from do NOT have mucho dinero.
So...then you start thinking about all of the aid we provide to these countries in order to stimulate their economic growth and, on the backend of it all, we still get kids showing up. The poor keep getting poorer, violence continues on, death tolls rise.
The kids gotta go or they just might die.
Now, I'm not one to play race cards but I can't help but think about the parallels between these kids and the kids we keep hearing about in Chicago where crime and deaths continue to rise and yet...nobody has put a kid on the border and attempted to send him somewhere else to be raised. I don't have a solution for that...it's just the kind of thing I think about.
I think the kids should be helped, but I think their government needs to foot the bill for said help. We have our own ish going on that needs money thrown at it. I think, sometimes, there is no solution where we can actually help without creating additional problems for ourselves.
I bought that shirt to wear to see Prince. When I went to put it on, the thread at one of the holes holding up the gold thingy had come undone. Surprisingly, there wasn't any of that color thread attached to the tag. Shelly dug out a sewing kit and the closest we could come was a light pink thread. So I used that to reattach it.
Wasn't about to let this shirt wreck my Prince flow.
I washed it using the handwash cycle on my washing machine and a lingerie bag. When I took it out of the washer to hang dry, I noticed the other side of the dang gold piece had detached as well.
And I still don't have that color thread.
I guess I was about to just call it a loss since I'd already rocked it and, on a whim, went to check out the reviews and well...let's just say that I'm about to roll over there and get a refund after reading the reviews and the response to the reviews. REVIEWS
See...it wasn't just me...
Do you ever check reviews on clothing?????? Would you have returned this one without even checking the reviews?
All the teenagers I know have been pounding the pavement in our area looking for a summer job. One of them found a job but it was back in March before other kids started looking. It's at a dry cleaners and there is no air conditioning. It gets super hot in there but, to her credit, she works hard and feels a sense of satisfaction when she gets paid.
Another of them works for his Uncle for a few hours per week. His uncle makes and sells all natural, good for you, soap to Whole Foods and other local shops. The teenager wraps the soaps and labels them. When he talks about his job he's pretty blah but you can tell he feels good about working and making his own lil piece of money.
The other two are looking, one is too young but he's looking. Unfortunately I think the ship has sailed for summer work...but it hasn't stopped them from looking and I'm really proud of them for not giving up. They are still having a good summer even though they don't have their own money. Still going to the movies, hanging with friends at the mall, going out for pizza and ice cream and kicking it at the pool.
My feelings about religion can be considered mired in memories too dark for the general public I believe. My mother used to say/sing that all the time. "This is the day the Lord has made...let us rejoice and be glad in Him."
And...depending on the mood my father was in, the day could be beautiful but often times...it was fucking fear filled horrible.
I've been binge watching "The Bernie Mac Show." I'm telling you...that show was/is sooooooooo funny. I loved me some Mr. Mac.
In an episode I recently watched, Jordan had a crush on a lil girl at school and they were going on their first "date" to the movies. He was all excited and told Uncle Bernie about it, who was OVER THE MOON with joy about his nephew's first "date." He started giving Jordan all sorts of dating advice. One of them being, "You pay for her ticket. None of that Dutch crap. Real men don't go Dutch."
I continued watching smiling because I agree with that. None of that Dutch stuff. Real men don't go Dutch and then...I kept it moving and didn't think about it again.
Then, I started thinking...at the time, Jordan was 12. He didn't have any money. Two tickets plus snacks at the movies is kind of expensive for adults with jobs these days so a 12 year old with a limited allowance would be hard pressed to take a girl out if he was required to pay. Sure, Uncle Bernie could break him off some money, but Uncle Bernie was a rich celebrity. Most kids don't have rich parents.
Very few kids have celebrity rich parents.
So...I then started wondering what I would do if a pre-teen, teenage girl I loved was going on her first "date." Would I tell her to expect the boy to pay? Would I tell her that "real men don't go Dutch?" In these economic times when teenagers can't find jobs because adults are now filling those positions, is it irresponsible of me to have her thinking the boy should pay? what if that became her non-negotiable? Would that make her less datable in the eyes of boys/men everywhere?
Is this part of expected chivalry dead? Can we honestly hold on to this one without crippling dating among teens during the times they should be learning to court properly so it's not an anomaly once they become adults? Are we perpetuating the "hook up" generation by holding on to old traditions?
A while ago I was staying at a hotel and needed to go to Whole Foods to get food for my room. I was going to hit up Uber but when I went downstairs I noted the hotel shuttle was there and asked the driver could he take me. He said, of course...and I hopped in the van.
Him: You look like one of them healthy eaters.
In a real disdainful way.
I started focusing then and noted his 2 liter of soda, cooler and Big Gulp cup. And then...I noticed HIM. All of him. As much as I could see.
Me: Yeah...I am. What about you?
Him: Nah...I'm good. You gon' die from something. Might as well be happy while you're living.
Turns out dude drank almost two of those 2 liter sodas a day. He'd had his version of a healthy lunch earlier. A chicken sandwich from McDonald's. We started talking about quality of life. His quality of life was all about him being happy...currently. And being happy, for him, was tied to food. Not good food...but food that tasted good TO HIM. My quality of life focuses more on my body function and well...being vain as hell and well...I'm a punk when it comes to pain. We're from two different worlds of what makes whom happy.
I get that.
The conversation continued and I asked him was he worried about getting an illness which makes it difficult for him to take care of himself. I was like...you know you don't just die in your sleep the majority of the time right? You get some ish and can't walk and need to use them scooters in Walmart or an oxygen tank to keep your heart going because you're so clogged up stuff doesn't move and flow around inside right? Who is going to take care of you? Can your family afford a private nurse and driver to take care of you when they go to work? Are you from a generational wealthy family? Can you afford the type of medical care that comes with that kinda of stuff?
And he laughed it all off saying he'll deal with that when it comes. If it comes.
I went to Whole Foods, got my food and returned to the van. When I got there, he wasn't there. I looked around and he was rushing...to finish his cigarette.
Oh well...I guess.
Do you know anyone like this? "You gotta die of something."
When you pay your kids to do something...do you pay minimum wage rates or just a random amount? Like...do you say, "If you do X, I'll pay you $20." No matter how long it takes? Even if it only takes them like thirty minutes? Or...do you tell them it should only take them an hour to do X and then they will have earned the minimum wage amount for an hour?
Wait...did I just see that Alabama doesn't have a minimum wage?????????? NOR DOES LOUISIANA! OR MISSISSIPPI??????? SOUTH CAROLINA!!!!! TENNESSEE!
Sorry...got off track. I'm wondering if giving kids the minimum wage amount for doing stuff would be more helpful so their expectations of what their money should be able to buy makes more of an impact. So if they know they only make yada for doing certain types of work...would that make them want to do more?
What do you think about pre-school and kindergarten suspensions? A bill is being proposed to ban them with the thought that a child under age 5 can't possibly do anything to warrant being put out of school.
The bun will always be my goto hairstyle. So simple to do and so easy to do without any damage to you rhair. I switch the position of it often but I truly love a high bun.
A high bun when you're growing out bangs however? CALLENGE! (Yes...I said callenge and not challenge. Inside joke. LOL!) There is always a strand or 6 who want to floss and wave it like they just don't care.
Do you ever rock the bun? Do you have bangs? Tips? Tricks? SORCERY?
The other day I got up really early and took T (my honorary Goddaughter) and E to the mall when they first opened. They are looking for summer jobs and I thought it made sense for them to practice their approach while I was around to critique them knowing that they wouldn't be actually looking for a job in that particular mall. It ended up being a really great thing because getting there super early meant they weren't busy and we met some REALLY great managers who were really awesome sports about the whole thing. This one guy in particular at Lucky was SO AMAZING! I mean...he gave them really good feedback. Told them what to do and what not to do and told them what he honestly looks for.
Dude was AWESOME! So much so that I'm going to write a letter to corporate and tell them just how amazing that was.
So the kids were feeling good and getting some really good practice in. They did 5 stores each and got a good cadence down.
Ask for the manager.
Shake their hand and introduce themselves.
Look them in the eye.
Don't cross their arms in front of them.
Ask questions about the hiring process.
Say something about the products and the store.
SMILE CHILD HELL WHATCHU GOT TO BE GLOOMY ABOUT?
So it went really well and I was proud of them. After two stores in each I hung way back out of their way.
One guy in a store noticed us all come in. It was E's turn so he was asking for the manager. The other guy, an employee, came over to me and asked what we were doing. I explained that the kids were practicing looking for a job for the first time and that we were just hoping to run into some store managers who were good sports. Then...dude started staring at T.
Him: She is so beautiful. I mean look at her. And her lashes are so perfect they look fake. Man she's gorgeous.
Me: She's a very SMART sixteen year old CHILD and if we don't make a big deal out of her beauty then a grown azz man shouldn't either.
He had the grace to look embarrassed and stopped staring at the child but BAAAAAAAAAAABY I WAS FLIPPING PISSED AND HIS SKANK AZZ KNEW IT!
And I started feeling some kinda way. I mean...hell...she has to be out and about in the world without her Elders you know? So she's got to deal with this shit already?????? AT AGE SIXTEEN?
She might need a bodyguard and I am sooooooooooooo serious.
I was a late bloomer so I know nothing about this. Hell...I'll be 45 this year and I'm still waiting to fill out a bit. This was never my struggle so yeah...my thoughts are immediately of the violent nature because I haven't had to learn how to deal with it calmly. I wanna jack folks up.
Were you harassed by grown men as a teenager? Are your daughters? How did/do you handle?
So...I went to see Prince in New Orleans and BAAAAAAAABY! I had a good dang time.
Listen up. That concert was, hands down, the absolute best concert I have ever, ever, EVER attended. Prince showed his behind off. Dude danced MAGICALLY! Did you hear me? It was MAGIC! The music was on point. The dancers were on point. His outfit was on point. It was just all amazing. There were a few technical issues that I'm certain a sound engineer got zapped for...but hell...nobody but Prince seemed phased by the issues and yeah...he pointed them out.
The day was just full of awe. I woke up that morning thinking to myself...today is the day I get to see Prince. And that feeling carried over the entire day into the night and into the next day since we didn't get home until 4:30 am on July 5th. LOL!
We got up, got dressed and headed out for brunch and I was excited in my pre-Prince purple: