28 October 2008

I'm Proud

As some of you know, last weekend I went campaigning in Merrillville and Gary, Indiana for the Obama campaign. The campaigning was for door-to-door campaigns within a list of homes that were either Democratic or Undecided residences. The purpose was to make sure that all residences for which we were instructed to "hit" were registered, understood this year's election process, and encourage early voting as since this election will be bananas in the polls. Voting early is extremely encouraged.

All in all, it was a pretty good turnout. Aside from the seemingly endless McCain/Palin '08 signs that were hung up on trees, planted firmly in front of lawns, and stuck in windowsills on the way to our "target areas", everything ran pretty smoothly. I even met an elderly white woman who had just recently moved to the slums of Gary, Indiana from her hometown in a rural area in Mississippi who invited me and my homegirl inside her home, attempt to get her registration taken care of via calling our Head Coordinator of the event, and chat almost endlessly about her son who lives in the area she just moved to and her deceased husband. We were about two minutes away from being offered some hot chocolate before we realized that we had an entire list of other homes to spread the word to.

It was refreshing to find such a good heart within the realm of the perceived hatred that is assumed within a lot of elder Caucasians. My heart was warmed in this woman's presence. I wish I could have remembered her address for she would surely get a Christmas card from me had I remembered it…or wrote it down.

This morning I finally decided to take care of my own responsibility I have towards this country and vote and help to put my president in the White House. In the words of my new idol, Mrs. Michelle Obama, "I have never felt so proud to be an American this day".

(How could you NOT love Mrs. Obama?)

Today as I strolled in my car to the village hall for which I am registered, I immediately noticed the extremely densely packed parking lot. Cars of every size, color, make and model were all lined within the spaces of the three very large parking lots surrounding the village hall, cars were alongside the perimeter of the parking lot, cars were even outside the village hall altogether as there was obviously no more space to park. It mattered not. There were people that came to vote. Many people.

The air, reminiscent of a polar bear's toenails, clipped the residence's of the area's noses, making them squint their eyes to see comfortably through the immense sun and the sharp winds that wrapped angrily around their bodies, almost trying to prevent what they've come to do. It's cold as the coldest place on Earth outside. But it mattered not in the least. There were people that came to vote. Many people.

When I finally get inside the village hall, I am asked to fill out an Early Voter Registration Form, take a ticket, and sit until my ticket number is called. It is called after waiting for forty minutes. While waiting, I notice something….most, if not all, of the people that filled the small space are African-American.

My heart almost does a creative African dance. I am sooo filled at what this election has brought that I almost drop a tear through my Ugly Betty's. Never ever ever have I even anticipated such a turnout on the part of my Black American sistren and brethren. It's as if we all collectively see a new path being paved for us. The only thing is….the path actually looks a bit more than promising for us. It's attainable in every sense of the word and as members of a class that's been handed below scores no matter how much effort we've collectively put into anything we've ever tried, we all—at once—can sigh a real and well-deserved sigh of relief for a job well done, because guess what? We all notice that though this path is in front of us and the path is promising, we all know that we have all contributed to the construction of the path. As a team, we've all worked together and made the path a promise, a reality, that we've never before thought we could even remotely achieve or see come to such a fantastic fruition.

Of course there were those team members that didn't work as hard but will still get to benefit from the collective labor. But who cares? As a nation of Black American peoples, it is our time to finally exhale. Our time has come to finally rise up and stand tall with our backs straight, our heads high, and a look that looks onward, not backward.

It's our time and we're satisfied.

The fight isn't over. But it feels damn good to be such an integral part to said fight, doesn't it?

23 October 2008

Fight the Good Fight

Fight the Good Fight

I'm so excited about this upcoming election I can hardly sit still. I just cannot wait until the White House is painted a nice even shade of lightly toasted brown. Who else is as excited as I am?

There have been people from all across the racial board proclaiming what would happen if (read: when) Obama takes the presidency. People have been saying that we coloreds are going to go monkey bananas, dancing in the streets, and looking like something out of a Maudeville production. Some people have been offended by the remarks because when it's been said, instead of using the term, "people" to describe us, we are characterized by terms such as "niggers" and "monkeys". Racism is so prominent in this election it is outright ridiculous. Can we not rewind ourselves forty years back in time?

And as much as those remarks have angered myself, I had to stop and think:

"Are they wrong though?"

Sure the very unnecessary connotations of "nigger" and "monkeys" can surely be left out. But let's be really real. There will be some mass shuckin', jivin', and rejoicing. And not just from Blacks either, but especially from Blacks. We've waited over 400 years to feel even remotely equal to our White counterparts. So why not rejoice? All I know is….when Obama is called to the Presidency, you can BET that I will be losing my mind. It's a promise. When he's called, my emotions will go something like this:

I'll be at work (like a lame) looking intently at the television. I work for an advertising representative firm that targets African-Americans so I have a strong feeling that while we'll all be at work, no one will really be working. Why? Because that television is what will be keeping us afloat. We'll be holding our breaths for as long as it takes November 5th (the next day that the proclamation will come) and when he is called, we'll exhale a long, deep, and collective sigh of relief of the change we foresee in our future as Black Americans. After that sigh? We probably still won't be working. We'll most likely throw a party right in our office for every other office in the building to come and rejoice with us.

Then I'll cry tears of joy. And act a straight fool in the streets. I won't even be able to contain myself. I can be expected to be "out of body and character" as I won't be my usual self in any way. I'm starting to tingle from extreme excitement right now.....

November 5th should just be made into a National Holiday after this year. I'm serious. Doesn't it fit? I also don't think I'm going to sleep AT ALL November 4th. I'll be too anxious to sleep. Last election, I voted (for Kerry, of course) and stayed up in my dorm with my girls ALL NIGHT LONG watching the delegates roll in and the states' voting close. I think I got about 2 hours of sleep last election.

I was pissed when Bush won.

This year is something serious on all fronts. I've been feeling like I should do more in the whole campaigning efforts. I've donated twice for the General Campaign and once during the Primary. However, I still felt like I didn't "do much", ya know. Sooooo….…….Obama's camp called me one day and asked if I wanted to assist in the door-to-door efforts that his team is having on Saturday in Indiana. I gleefully accepted and I will be volunteering my time on Saturday, going door-to-door urging people to vote for Obama. I'm pretty proud of myself and I feel like I'm actually playing an integral part to the campaign. Money isn't everything and voting only takes a few minutes. I wanted to really be a part. I'm glad that I feel like I've achieved that short-term goal I had.

Here's another video I found amusing:

22 October 2008

When Girls Don't Put Out

One of my coworkers (yes the one from the water intoxication story from yesterday) forwarded me this email. I thought it was hilarious. I needed this laugh. Enjoy.

When girls don't put out!!
This was written by a guy
it's pretty damn smart.

Girls -- Please have a sense of humor! I never quite figured out why the sexual urge of men and women differ so much. And I never have figured out the wholeVenus and Mars thing. I have never figured out why men think with their head and women with their heart.


One evening last week, my girlfriend and I were getting into bed. Well, the passion starts to heat up, and she eventually says, 'I don't feel like it, I just want you to hold me.'

I said, 'WHAT??!! What was that?!'

So she says the words that every boyfriend on the planet dreads to hear...

'You're just not in touch with my emotional needs as a woman enough for me to satisfy your physical needs as a man.'

She responded to my puzzled look by saying, 'Can't you just love me for who I am and not what I do for you in the bedroom?'

Realizing that nothing was going to happen that night, I went to sleep.

The very next day I opted to take the day off of work to spend time with her.We went out to a nice lunch and then went shopping at a big, big unnamed department store. I walked around with her while she tried on several different very expensive outfits. She couldn't decide which one to take, so I told her we'd just buy them all. She wanted new shoes to compliment her new clothes, so I said, 'Lets get a pair for each outfit.'

We went on to the jewelry department where she picked out a pair of diamond earrings. Let me tell you... she was so excited. She must have thought I was one wave short of a shipwreck. I started to think she was testing me because she asked for a tennis bracelet when she doesn't even know how to play tennis.

I think I threw her for a loop when I said, 'That's fine, honey.' She was almost nearing sexual satisfaction from all of the excitement. Smiling with excited anticipation, she finally said, 'I think this is all
dear, let's go to the cashier.'

I could hardly contain myself when I blurted out, 'No honey, I don't feel like it.'

Her face just went completely blank as her jaw dropped with a baffled, 'WHAT?'

I then said, 'Honey! I just want you to HOLD this stuff for a while. You're just not in touch with my financial needs as a man enough for me to satisfy your shopping needs as a woman.'

And just when she had this look like she was going to kill me, I added, 'Why can't you just love me for who I am and not for the things I buy you?'

Apparently I'm not having sex tonight either....but at least that bitch knows I'm smarter than her.

Alright Ladies. Forward this if you agree. Hell even if you disagree, forward it anyway.

Here's a video that I found that also made me laugh.

21 October 2008

Water - Fatal???

They say we learn something new every day. And I must say that today, Tuesday, October 21, 2008, I have found that to be true.

While casually talking to a friend, the subject of moderation came into view. Somewhere in the conversation, he goes, "you can die from drinking too much water". Floored and shocked, I didn't believe him, chalking his rant up to "something that could happen as a freak accidental death".

But then I got curious. Was he serious? Could you really die from drinking too much water? I talked briefly with a co-worker on the subject who also agreed and even shared a personal story with me of how a few times she'd drink water until her head hurt and she'd feel sick and overly full.

But I was still curious and I went online and found a few links on the subject.

And lo and behold…you can drink too much water. Drinking too much water can be fatal. Who knew? Well, apparently everyone that I asked knew of this information….'cept me. It happens. I'm left out of the information loop at times and I'm stuck researching trying to catch up. Life goes on.

Here's what I found out though.

Water – Informative:

Question: Can You Drink Too Much Water?

Answer: You've probably heard that it's important to 'drink plenty of fluids' or simply 'drink lots of water'. There are excellent reasons for drinking water, but have you ever wondered if it's possible to drink too much water. Here's what you need to know:

Can You Really Drink Too Much Water?

In a word, yes. Drinking too much water can lead to a condition known as water intoxication and to a related problem resulting from the dilution of sodium in the body, hyponatremia. Water intoxication is most commonly seen in infants under six months of age and sometimes in athletes. A baby can get water intoxication as a result of drinking several bottles of water a day or from drinking infant formula that has been diluted too much. Athletes can also suffer from water intoxication. Athletes sweat heavily, losing both water and electrolytes. Water intoxication and hyponatremia result when a dehydrated person drinks too much water without the accompanying electrolytes.

What Happens During Water Intoxication?

When too much water enters the body's cells, the tissues swell with the excess fluid. Your cells maintain a specific concentration gradient, so excess water outside the cells (the serum) draws sodium from within the cells out into the serum in an attempt to re-establish the necessary concentration. As more water accumulates, the serum sodium concentration drops -- a condition known as hyponatremia. The other way cells try to regain the electrolyte balance is for water outside the cells to rush into the cells via osmosis. The movement of water across a semipermeable membrane from higher to lower concentration is called osmosis. Although electrolytes are more concentrated inside the cells than outside, the water outside the cells is 'more concentrated' or 'less dilute' since it contains fewer electrolytes. Both electrolytes and water move across the cell membrane in an effort to balance concentration. Theoretically, cells could swell to the point of bursting.

From the cell's point of view, water intoxication produces the same effects as would result from drowning in fresh water. Electrolyte imbalance and tissue swelling can cause an irregular heartbeat, allow fluid to enter the lungs, and may cause fluttering eyelids. Swelling puts pressure on the brain and nerves, which can cause behaviors resembling alcohol intoxication. Swelling of brain tissues can cause seizures, coma and ultimately death unless water intake is restricted and a hypertonic saline (salt) solution is administered. If treatment is given before tissue swelling causes too much cellular damage, then a complete recovery can be expected within a few days.

It's Not How Much You Drink, It's How Fast You Drink It!

The kidneys of a healthy adult can process fifteen liters of water a day! You are unlikely to suffer from water intoxication, even if you drink a lot of water, as long as you drink over time as opposed to intaking an enormous volume at one time. As a general guideline, most adults need about three quarts of fluid each day. Much of that water comes from food, so 8-12 eight ounce glasses a day is a common recommended intake. You may need more water if the weather is very warm or very dry, if you are exercising, or if you are taking certain medications. The bottom line is this: it's possible to drink too much water, but unless you are running a marathon or an infant, water intoxication is a very uncommon condition.

From: http://chemistry.about.com/cs/5/f/blwaterintox.htm

Water – Fatal Story:

On January 12, 2007, a 28-year old Californian wife and mother of three children died from drinking too much water. Her body was found in her home shortly after she took part in a water-drinking contest that was sponsored by a local radio show. Entitled "Hold Your Wee For A Wii," the contest promoters promised a free Wii video game machine to the contestant who drank the most water without urinating.

It is estimated that the woman who died drank approximately 2 gallons of water during the contest. When she and other contestants complained of discomfort and showed visible signs of distress, they were laughed at by the promoters and even heckled.

(And just because of this story alone, you can forget about me even considering a Wii.... not that I was ever the gamer but still...)

From: http://drbenkim.com/drink-too-much-water-dangerous.html

Addendum: All that for a Wii though? I hope they gave the family the Wii at the end, because if that isnt winning, I dont know what is.....

And all this time, I was always taught that drinking water is important, our bodies are made of ¾ water and we should drink at least 8 glasses of water a day, and blah blaah. I used to feel bad about not drinking enough water, too. I always hated its flavorlessness and opted for juice and Gatorades instead. When I was in high school, I ran cross country and had to drink fluids all day long. Did I drink water? Nope. Gatorade and Powerade were my drinks. I couldn't stand water.

When I got to college, my mom made me keep a bunch of water in my dorm, buying me bottles that I ended up giving away or drinking over a span of 4 or 5 months. I really couldn't do water.

And it all paid off. I actually saved my own life, come to think of it.*

Forget water. Unless it's Vitamin Water.

(The true drink of champions)

*Ok I'm quite aware that in order to die from water intoxication, it must be in the most severe of circumstances. I was just saying for the sake of….

10 October 2008

Beyonce--The Argument: Part 2

(before anyone starts, yes, I had time on my hands to write this last night, lol; I wrote it while watching tv all night so it took a lot longer than it should have lol; oh and I'm tagging other Bey lovers [as well as those that agree with me on some level] on purpose)

Let's start.

Beyonce--The Argument: Part 2

Ms. Camille Travis, just like millions of other girls around the world, is a Beyonce fanatic. It's no surprise that anyone who counters her belief and says that the new Mrs. Sean "Jay-Z" Carter is admittedly overhyped, overdone, and overrated, she'd get up in arms. As a matter of fact, it's expected. That doesn't take away from the fact that I'm still going to stand by my belief regardless. Anyone that knows me knows that with anything that I feel adamantly about, I have strong supports for my claim. And thus, "Beyonce: The Argument Pt. 2" has come to fruition. This is long but I think it's also informative and entertaining as well. Read on…

Before I begin, Ms. Travis has done the first part—the Beyonce Fanclub version entitled, "Beyonce: The Argument". It's much shorter and I encourage you to read her points as well.

Now make no mistake—I am not a "Bey hater" at all. In fact, I do believe that she can sing. However, as I said in one of the comments in Travis' note, "to say that Bey is the best thing since the creation of the Post-it is poppy-cock". I may upset a few Bey worshippers but that matters not. Bey is nothing more than a pretty girl that can sing. That's it.

Beyonce is indeed overdone as well as overrated as an entertainer. She's something like a—a Weezy in the game. Only two diffs: 1. She's a female and 2. She actually has talent. She was like a Visa card—everywhere you want to be—but with her being "everywhere" and not taking breaks as needed, an artist becomes overdone. People tire from them. She's been cooking for too long and had become burnt out in a sense. The last few awards shows, she was nowhere to be found. And that's a good thing, believe it or not, because when she comes back, the public is ready for her again and won't get a headache.

Wait. I hope no one took that the wrong way. Let's look at it from this angle. Okay, everyone loves chocolate, right? Okay, I know that not everyone loves chocolate, but I do, lol. I love chocolate to death. Can eat it all day long. However, if I keep eating it day in and day out, even though I looooove it the way that I do, wouldn't I get sick? *crickets, anyone?* Yes, I would. Same with Bey. She was everywhere, doing everything, popping up at awards shows, videos, the radio every third and seventh song, making her own songs, featured on other people's songs, "acting", doing "Bey tributes" on VH1 Soul, CoverGirl (or is that L'Oreal?) commercials—everywhere! Like with anything in this world, good things are better in moderation. Too much of anything is harmful. I think someone finally gave her the memo of this rule because she took a break. Finally. Glad she's back though. But, like Nakia said, "people act as if Bey is our Savior and bled, died, and rose for our sins." Chill. She is just a person. A regla person at that.

(I think her shirt is dope!)

I also said that Bey is overrated. Like I said before, Bey is a just a pretty girl that can sing. She's got additives that make her bigger as an entertainer than she should be. Additives including: the hourglass figure thing and the light-skin thing to name a few.

Sex sells and anyone who chooses to argue that isn't too well versed on how our society chooses to work when it comes to entertainment. Hence, Bey's sex appeal factor. She's got curves and every man loves curves, no? She instantly win males popular vote and the crowd goes wild.

And as painful as it is to admit, lighter complextions are looked on to be "more beautiful" in our society. Is it right? Not at all. It's wrong, but that's the scope of the society. Bey is of lighter tones. Add to that an hourglass figure that every man lusts after every four seconds and you have…a goddess. Since the world tends to delve more deeply into what they can see rather than any other of our God-given senses, Bey wins by default. Even though she can sing, it really doesn't matter either way. Even if she had the non-existent voice of Rihanna or Ashanti, she'd still be looked on as a "goddess" based on visuals alone. (see: Janet Jackson. She can't really sing at all. However, she is iconic because she blends her singing with her awesomely awesome dance moves. If she weren't such an awesome dancer and part of the legacy family, she'd be a regla girl that thinks she could sing lol [like my homegirl, Rihanna lol]. In fact, Jackson can just be a mute, busting out with these ILL dance moves and guess what? She'd still win). The point? Visuals distract and/or magnify what's in front of us. Bey's got the body, the skin, and the hair. Who cares if she can sing, right? But take away the good body, the light skin, and the faux pas hair and keep her good singing. What do you have? Any artist that's out that isn't as popular because they don't possess these visuals.

(Visuals, anyone?)

According to my trusty, dusty dictionary.com website, the term, "entertainer" is defined as, "a singer, comedian, dancer, reciter, or the like, especially a professional one." In her case, Bey is a singer, a dancer, an actress, and a songwriter. Let's go from there.

Bey the….singer.

As I said in the beginning, Bey can sing. However, being able to hold a note is only a small fraction of being an all-around entertainer as Bey is trying to be. Ms. Travis states that aside from (who she names here), no one can touch Bey vocally. Really? I disagreed profusely with that claim. There are a ton of artists who can and do outsing Bey on a grand and quite uncomparable scale. Some of these artists are: Jill Scott, Ledisi, Chrisette Michele, Jazmine Sullivan, and Mariah Carey (who is seriously one of the best singers of all time, period. [this does not include actual song content which I will get into shortly.] Her range alone is unmatched and is compared to the late Minnie Riperton as well). Bey isn't compared to Minnie, Aretha, Mariah, Whitney, or Billie Holliday (as Chrisette Michele is). The past 5 women mentioned are timeless and have literally unmatched voices that will and have gone in the Hall of Fame for some of the best singers to have ever done it. To say that Bey is on this list and is one of the best singers just isn't true. Because she isn't. She can sing though. She's just all visuals.

Bey the…dancer.

(This is probably a bad pic but here she is doing her infamous booty, thigh, and hip jerk dance she made popular in 1972 in Crazy in Love)

Where do I start with this one? I'm going to keep reinforcing visuals in this whole thing to further prove my point. Bey is about as average a dancer as the people in the clubs getting it in. For real. She's done nothing spectacular dance-wise. Ciara is a dancer. Bey? Not so much. She can try, but so can anyone. Her visuals reign so high in the dance-department that I'm sure that the Bey worshippers are reading this and gritting their teeth at me on some "how dare you talk about my homegirl Bey and her awesome dancing" stuff. Spare me, please. I've been dancing forever (though I'm guilty of not performing in the last 4 years lol) and I can do anything that Bey can do (but so can anyone). I can not do any ol' thing that Janet can do and I'm still trying to do that back-lean thing that Ciara did in her Goodies video back in 1958 when she first came out (but I'm close; almost got it right; my flexibility is awesome though lol). Get my point? To further drive this point home, Bey's visuals on her beauty is so strong that she can do a simple 2-step and people will go blogging after her next concert comparing her to Debbie Allen. Please.

Bey…the actress.

:-| Camille, you already know, missy and I'm quite sure that others do too. Hell, Bey herself should even know. But just in case someone wants to have on their Deny cap, I'm gonna go in…but only a little bit because I really don't think that Bey's lack of acting skill is a surprise to anyone lol.

Though I liked the movie, Bey was horrible in Carmen. She was worse in Goldmember and she wasn't all that hot in Dream Girls. She was only nominated for the Oscar because J.Hud was nominated for supporting actress and since Bey had been in the game longer, they didn't want to slight her. But back to her actual "acting ability"--am I lying? Did her lines not sound practiced and on some terrible mechanical tip? I encourage everyone who disagrees to re-watch those movies. Then get back. Again—she is gorgeous—who cares if she can act, really?!

She does need to fire her acting coach though. I'm serious.

Bey…the songwriter.

(I couldnt find a picture of her in the studio or writing to save my life, but a pic with her with a sword-like image in her hand to represent butchering work nicely, dont you agree? lol)

Okay. This subject I'm going to try and make as short as possible because this note is already mad long. Also, I understand that this subject may go over some people's heads. But……

Bey can't write songs, yo! Period.

*I'll wait til the readers calm down from shock.*

Now, if you listen—and I mean really listen to what she likes to shout out to the world that she wrote (that has undoubtedly been made a hit nonetheless), you'll find that the lyrics make no real sense. Think about it (and I'm totally about to bite off of a blog that I read on the subject a long time ago lol). Think about—um…..let's take "UpGrade U" for instance, shall we?

*ques UpGrade U* Sing with me, y'all….(first verse):

I hear you on the block

But I'm the lights that keep the street on

*record scratches* Stop singing, please.

I want everyone to look at those two lines. "The lights that keep the street on" doesn't make sense. If you think I'm wrong, read it again. Play it if you have to and sing along. But stop when you get done with the verse at least.

Let's think about this for a second. So, Bey, you're saying that the street is operated by the lights? For real, Bey?! Damn, I didn't know. Maybe I'm the dummy. K

Look, I understand the point of UpGrade U. It isn't a difficult concept to grasp at all. But, Bey, that shyt made no sense. Per-i-od. I'm gonna need for you to make sense in your lyrics. Please and thank you!

Even the chorus to "Bills, Bills, Bills", though a catchy song, didn't make too much sense. And she wrote it. Let's look:

Will you pay my bills

Will you pay my telephone bils?

Will you pay my auto-mo-bils

If you did, then maybe we can chill

K Stop there. As much as I liked this song when I was like 13, I am not in agreeance with the concept (a man to pay your bills, etc…that whole gold-digging concept, etc….) and those lyrics sucked! She thought she was being crafty with the "auto-mo-bils" line, eh? Crafty, schmafty. That shyt doesn't make sense. It isn't a double entendre and even still…..does she know what a double entendre is? *sigh* That brings me to my next point….

Bey's been accused of not being the brightest lightbulb in the package. And it's true in her lyrical content (*coughs* and interviews *coughs*). True enough, her songs are catchy as all get out and it doesn't matter what she's saying—she's Beyonce-flipping-Knowles for crying out loud. Plus no one's trying to think that hard. They just want a beat they can jive with, am I wrong? She could have been saying baby gibberish over a Dr. Dre-esque beat and folk would have called her Heaven Sent. Next!

Ms. Travis was right about one thing. Bey IS an entertainer and she's even one of the top. However, one of the best? Negative. Just because you're on the A-list, doesn't mean you are A-list. (just look at Weezy…and Weezy sucks, yo!) And as I've just proven, she isn't the best singer, dancer, actress, or songwriter—all of the components which label her an "entertainer". However, she is one of the most beautiful…and that's why she's hot © Mims. It's all in the visuals and Bey has taken heed to her visuals and been able to dupe her fans into believing that she's filet mignon, when really….she's only Popeyes. Delicious chicken, but not the best. Period.

09 October 2008

UnbelievaView Terrace

Last weekend I saw Lakeview Terrace. Before even hitting the theatre, I had reservations on it because from what I heard from various sources, the movie A. wasn't as good as a typical Samuel L. Jackson film usually is and B. wasn't really believable when compared to real-life schematics on the issue at hand. The issue, being interracial marriages and its effect on Blacks.

After hearing these things about the film, I'll admit that I wasn't really looking forward to going to see it. I'd have rather waited until it came out on DVD to be honest. However, I was with my girls AND we were in Quincy. The girls wanted to see it AND there were no other desirable movies left to see in Quincy as Miracle at St. Anna hadn't even hit Quincy at all. This didn't shock me because when Dream Girls came out, it never came to Quincy either.

[brief sidebar]

Quincy, for those not in the know, is a rural town that is primarily comprised of Caucasians. For this reason alone, a lot of "ethnic" oriented things (food, clothing, and media outlets) are completely non-existent in the area. It's comparable to going to the land of Pleasantville (remember the movie) because there are so many things that the town lacks as far as what the rest of society is kept to speed on. Quincy, Illinois just got a Starbucks last November for crying out loud. Starbucks, one of the fastest growing franchises this side of McDonald's, just got to Quincy, Illinois and you wouldn't believe the amount of people I've come across in the area who had never ever even tasted anything from Starbucks….except for the cold frappucinos sold in grocery stores. It's a mess.

(Real world is in color. Quincy operates in Black and White, smh)

[sidebar over]

But back to the film. Did I enjoy? What did I think of it? What was my reaction?

Two words: Three stars. That's it.

Why only three? Well, as stated before, I walked in the theatre with a preconceived notion in my mind already. I already had a perception of said film before the opening credits so when it came on, I was actually looking for certain things to prove my perception wrong.

Things I was looking for:

  1. Entertainment
  2. Believability

I can't say that I wasn't entertained, because I was. However, I also can't say that it wasn't a "positive" type of entertainment. I was entertained in that I was watching a popular movie that featured one of the most popular actors and I was with my homies, but I was terribly bothered by the antics that were taking place. Sitting with my girls with Caucasian faces all over the small theatre, I was livid.

[Spoiler here; don't read anymore of this review if you haven't seen the movie yet. You have been warned.]

Samuel L. Jackson was tripping. Hard. Did anyone catch just how ridiculous his antics had become? It was one thing to have the big beaming light on the couple's house and another thing entirely to have a convicted felon tear into the couple's home, break in, and then shoot (and intentionally kill) said felon when the felon had gotten caught by Kerry Washington's character just to cover his own ass. I was so thrown off by just how much hate Mister Jackson had for the couple that I was about ready to walk up out of the theatre and just wait out in the lobby for my girls to come out when it was over.

And why was I so upset?

I have never been in an interracial relationship. I have had boyfriends and dated men that were of mixed race, sure, but never have I dated a man that didn't have any African-American in his blood so I can not relate on a severely personal level. However, I do have friends that are in interracial relationships, I have family that are married to people outside of their race, and my paternal grandfather was an American Indian. In addition to this, interracial couples are extremely common in Quincy alone.

However, being that I am no stranger to seeing or even being close to interracial couples and how they make things work for them doesn't take away from the fact that Samuel L. Jackson's character was completely unbelievable in my opinion. Sure, I understand the underlying method to his madness when he addressed his hate for the couple because of what happened to his late wife and how a white man killed her. I understand that completely and I'm really glad that that scene was added otherwise I'd have really been in a whirlwind of emotions over the film but…let's be real here. Black men just don't act that way. Period.

If given a choice, Black women are the ones that'd have more of a problem with interracial marriages, especially if the couple featured a well-to-do Black man and a seemingly average White woman. Black women can be up in arms and throwing a fit because "a good Black man is hard to come by" and to see him hand in hand with a White woman is grounds for teeth-gritting, protests, and curse words. Women are more emotional than men by default. This is no surprise. Save the Last Dance was a lot more believable.

White men would also have more of a problem with interracial couples as well, specifically older white men. It bothers white men to see a white man with a black woman at times. "Why can't he find someone on his level" are some things that can be said, as us Blacks are considered equivalents to our White counterparts (though that theory is being more and more disproved and this election alone proves it).

But a black man? Seriously? I don't buy it. Sorry.

I understand he had reservations and no one is saying that his disgust wasn't real. It happens. But to that degree though? Not so much. A black man can be a little peeved by the sight of a sista with a White man, but he isn't going to come scaling skyscrapers on some superhero "Stop the Madness" bull. Please. It just isn't going to happen. He's too cool for that. He'd most likely say a snide comment or three, joke in serious jest* with his buddies and maybe his mother, give a side eye in their direction, and keep it moving. He's got more important things to do and he can't risk losing cool points for going off the handle for any amount of time at an interracial couple he doesn't even know. His swag game is a bit more pressing.

(Getcha hatin' ass on, Mista Sam and work on your swag game, homie!)

On another note, I did not like Kerry Washington's character at all either. Am I the only one that found her a bit too assimilated to White culture? She wasn't a sista--just a White woman with a deep tan. And there's nothing wrong with that, I suppose. I just needed her to be a bit more "real", ya know? I feel as though she kinda lost herself in her marriage and had fully assimilated to her husband's culture. Does anyone agree?

So as a result of all of this, the film got three stars from this critic. What did you think of it? What were your views?

08 October 2008

I'm A Hypocrite

(I wrote this last night immediately following the 2nd Presidential Debate)


Here's the video just in case you missed it…

Obama wins again, no? Glad you agree.

Moving on….(keep in mind that I wrote this last night after the debate was over)…

So I finally got my Voter's Registration in order this afternoon. It being the last day and all, I realized I had to hurry. Last night I actually had a "bad dream" about it being Election Day and after me standing in line for an hour (as in my nightmare, my superhero powers didn't take effect at all. In fact, they didn't even come to fruition not one bit..as expected…since it was a nightmare and all), it was finally time to be a part of history. I was excited. More relieved because I was finally at the top of the long line, but excited nonetheless. Then….I was turned around because my voter's registration was still messed up. I was still registered in Quincy and I was at a polling place in Chicago. There would be no time to get all the way down to Quincy as the town is nearly 5 hours from Chicago and I went home in complete and utter tears. Combined with pure anger too, of course…

{Nightmare over}

When I got to work today, I had a LOT to do in general. A whole lot. However, one of the things that I did was print out the voter's registration form (I called the Adams County Clerk office [city of Quincy] and asked if I could somehow vote absentee. I was informed that I had to switch my registration completely because my hometown is in Chicago, naturally.) I looked at the clock after hanging up and realized that I only had a few short hours to get everything done.

After printing up the papers needed, filling them out, and calling the courier messenger service to get them picked up and sent to the Cook County Clerk's office, I exhaled.

This election season means so much to me. It should mean so much to everyone.

It isn't really about a Black candidate getting so far in the political game and damn near winning (Obama is, in fact, currently kicking ass for anyone unsure of the current tally. Be prepared to repaint the White House a beautiful shade of Golden Brown. Yessir). However, this is so much bigger than that fact alone. This election season resembles everything there is that defines "change". From our economic system to our social hierarchy and even to the core values that we as Americans deem important on any grand scale in regards to what it means to be afforded the promises of the Preamble (Life, Love and the Pursuit of Happiness). Change is a-coming. I can feel it in everything that is going on with the election and beyond. Everyone sees this and it just fills my heart up with joy.

And as much ranting and raving and researching I've done in regards to the whole election season this year, I am quite disappointed in myself. Why has it taken me so long to get my voter's registration stuff in order? It's really not like I didn't know the rules and where my address was listed for voting. I didn't just find out. I've known all along. On February 5th, when the country had its first Super Tuesday during the Primaries for Illinois, I had a terrible time trying to vote because I wasn't registered in my county and was only granted access because 1. My parents' names were listed in the files they were looking in and I whipped out my driver's license which had a matching address and 2. The lady looking up the name had known me since I was about 13 years old, so she was really just being nice by letting me vote.

Basically, I got a pass from her based on a technicality. All year I've known of my responsibilities to this election. So why did it take a bad dream the last full night of voter's registration to get my stuff in order? Is there something wrong with me? I mean—I'm constantly ranting and raving about voting and even got into a huge argument with a girl that I went to school with this past weekend at my school (it was Alumni Weekend) as she ranted aimlessly and adamantly about how she refuses to vote because 'the system is so flawed'. I even pushed it into my brother's head this year about how important voting is, especially this go 'round. He just turned 18 and I've been walking around like a mad woman hollering "vote!" all over the place. I've even ordered this hella dope shirt which will be worn by me come November 4th.


So what gives? Where's my true motivation?

I can honestly say that other things have been at the pinnacle of my thoughts. Other aspects of life and learning and that other "L" that I won't give credit to for many reasons……ehn…..have been at the top of my mind, making me put my unresolved issue I had with my voter's registration in a "when I get to it" file of sorts. Talk about being a hypocrite, no?

Ok well I sure wouldn't call myself a "hypocrite" (but I should) but I've definitely been slacking something awful. How dare I try to coerce my little brother into voting when I wasn't really able to vote legally myself? I mean I'm registered already but again—my location needed to be set. How dare I get into such a heated debate with a girl who refused to vote when there was a very real possibility of me being turned around at the polling center just moments before I help decide our real future Leader since Bill Clinton?

How flipping dare I? I'm so disappointed in myself. I feel like that cat that's a loyal fan of Lil' Wayne that at the same time believes that R.Kelly's was innocent just so that he can "keep making great music". *sigh*

I need to do a better job. Period.

Obama/Biden '08.

It isn't really that difficult. Really.

02 October 2008

Superhero at the Polls

Early voting has already started here in Chicago. I seriously have been considering voting already and getting it over with. After all, I have a strong feeling that this season's voting quarters and polling houses will be filled to the brim with folk coming out of the woodwork to be a part of history. (And this election season will be a monumental one by far. No doubt about it) I have a vision that folk will be coming out in their Sunday's Best, their Wednesday's Worst, and their beloved corners of Heaven and Hell to add in their vote for change in the economy which has been on its absolute worst behavior for the last 8 years. Any vote to whip this country back into tip-top shape, stand and say, "Aye!"

I can be a very standoffish kind of person at times. Actually, allow me to rephrase. I can be a very standoffish person for the most part….most times. It's not that I don't like people. I actually like people….for the most part. It 's just that I have no patience. People in general tend to like to drag their feet on their time and since we as a whole are selfish by nature, these feet draggers act like the world revolves around them. They are the worst! And will be up and through the depths of the every orifice and corner of polling places everywhere. I don't have time to wait for anything in this life. I was birthed early (was supposed to arrive October 11th instead of September 24th because I just couldn't wait a minute longer for the world to grace my presence), I graduated early from undergrad, my hair even grows at the speed of light (I seemingly can't hold a style for anything in this world; it can't wait to grow). Nothing in me can just wait up. I've made my decision about this election way back when we were in the Primary Season. Why wait til November 4th to hear the same issues drilled over and over, right? Right.

However, for me, there is just one thing that stands in the way of my dream of getting it over with and carrying on about other important matters of life……..like the rainforest, the problem with the ozone layer, or what's more close to home….my fall shopping that I still haven't found time to do.

What's standing in your way?, you ask?

Well, four years ago, I voted when I was 19. It was another crucial election period but more so on the "anybody but Bush" scale. As I told a friend, I honestly would have voted for the guy that runs the corner store who I don't know from Adam if he had run against Bush. I hate Bush that much.

So yes, I voted. But when I voted, I wasn't in my beloved hometown of Chicago at all. Instead, I was in the town of my alma mater, Quincy University. For that reason, I am registered in Quincy, Illinois--not Chicago. For about a month now, I have been trying with no avail to change my voter's registration card to read my permanent address here in Chicago. I'm quite frustrated that I've gotten nowhere. I'm more frustrated because I can just foresee the lengthy line which will probably be scaling the perimeter of any polling place in the state, both horizontally and vertically like Spiderman. I see this happening. I can see my headache forming now. I have no patience.

So since it's looking like I absolutely have to wait until November 4th to vote, something tells me that I may just jump out of body with my impatience, grow some instant super human strength, and push pass the voters awaiting their turns calmly to fill in the "Obama, Barack" bubble (I mean what other reasonable option is there? McCain?! That's hilarious!), and resume their lives of perceived normalcy. Meanwhile, I'll come from the back of the line and use the power of telepathy (because I'm too tiny to realistically bully anyone into moving outta my way; the point is to be as realistic as possible here) and make everyone step to the side from the left and right and part themselves reminiscent to how Moses parted the Red Sea.

(I've been to compared to my homegirl Psylocke twice very recently. This pic is hot of her, no?)

And I'll walk on by while the line of hundreds look off in a daze as their memory is temporarily frozen while I go and cast my vote…for Obama, Barack, naturally… and walk off like nothing unusual just happened. I promise not to forget to unfreeze their minds and restore their brains after my vote is cast. I just don't want to wait in line. Line waiting is for the birds. And though I'm fly, I'm a swan. I don't have to fly to be seen. Beautiful by nature, that's me.

I'll have the power of Piper in Charmed on November 4th.

Just call me SuperSlim. On November 4th, that is.