Friday, February 29, 2008

Leap Year

So if you're feeling froggy, you ought to jump...
Now indeed is the time for moving forward boldly, unequivocally even. And it's days like today that get me thinking about the serendipity of opportunity. Some come around in a commonplace way, like stair treads raising on an escalator. Others though have a rare quality that heighten the senses. Mundane or miraculous...jump at chances. Take them.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

State of the Black Union 2008

I'm not going to say anything about Tavis' pouting and whining this week. The important thing is that The State of the Black Union 2008 is being broadcast live on C-SPAN from New Orleans. Turn off Flavor of Love 3 and watch it.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Eleganza Mack

Here's Will Ferrell dressed like he's headed to a Superlounge at the Essence festival...or a Maude audition...

Monday, February 11, 2008

Therefore do not worry...

When you walk through a dark you take small steps? do you stick your hand out in front of you? do you push ahead until you bump into something? And once you make your way across, do you flick the switch and flood the room with light? Do you continue to navigate in the dark? Or do you just stay in bed waiting for the sunrise.

There is nothing worth doing in life that doesn't require a confrontation with darkness, a reckoning with fear. And while it seems some days that fear gets the better part of me, truth be told, when I look back I realize that it hasn't. I have gone forward despite uncertainty. In fact, darkness itself has sometimes pushed me toward the light.

I suppose like many mothers and daughters, it took me a awhile to realize that the woman who birthed me was human, fallible, and overwhelmed with nothing but the best intentions for me. I often wondered if she and I met as strangers would we be friends. But life being the wonderful journey that it is, we --so different- are two individuals who needed to meet. Because we are a lesson for one another. And I don't think either of us would have gotten the point had we not been yoked to one another. We are very different people.

Ever since I was young, I have realized that my way of seeing the world was not the same as hers. And my mother realized the same. We were at odds for a long time because her solution was to compel me to defer to her perspective and my solution was to forge ahead anyway. The struggle took a lot out of both of us. Like any child, I wanted my mother's encouragement. I wanted her approval. I was hurt and angry that I couldn't seem to please her with my accomplishments or to inspire her with my dreams. What I said about the world and my place in it seemed to strike the wrong chord, even anger her. And to hold back heartache, I became stoic and very stubborn.

One day. One blessed day, we realized that we were fighting the wrong fight. It finally occurred to me that my mother wanted to protect me, even if she had to hold me back to do it. And my mother realized that my life, while different, was still very much connected to hers. That no matter how far or how foreign, my compass was always calibrated to home. It took some adjustment, but we have learned to learn from one another. We have learned not just to love, but to like one another. When I encounter an obstacle, she concedes at the outset that she has no point of reference from which to direct me. She offers her support and sometimes her analysis. And I continue to learn that I can discern my own way. To liberate and affirm my ability to make choices for myself...

I am also left to figure my own way through the dark. I suppose eventually we all are faced with that realization. That no parent, no mentor, no guide, no other can make what is our own way in the world. That we must do for ourselves. If we are fortunate, we will find souls who are willing to walk with us. But inevitably we must release the fantasy that someone will walk before us or leave a trail of breadcrumbs for us to find, for every life's journey is unique unto itself. If we do not come to terms with this truth, we fall short of what is possible. We may remain safe, but we will not become wise. We won't be hurt, but we will miss the journey.

It took me a long time to let go of my want for a mentor. I finally realized it was really a desire for approval and the type of childlike care that none of us who accepts the lucidity of maturity can ever wrap themselves in again. To have someone else make me feel better, what a respite that would be. I took a deep sigh. And grew up. I have to do that myself. Otherwise I will always be dependent on other people. And not know my own way. Beyond the darkness and fear is my best self and my highest aspiration. May that faith be enough to fortify me as I once again leave what is known for what is next.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

I can't tell you how many nights I have not been able to get to sleep. And it is absolutely torturous because I actually enjoy sleeping and need to sleep in order to form coherent sentences during the day. But I cannot get to sleep on time. Then I wake up late and I'm fifteen minutes behind for the rest of the day.

There is something about having an animal living your house. I was thinking about why I wasn't sleeping when I heard a really loud noise. Nairobi and I locked eyes. Then without missing a beat, she stood up, jumped out of bed and came with me to see what the trouble was. And I realized that either she's 1) fearless, 2) incredibly loyal, or 3) not too bright. Having seen her purposefully hide from strangers and people she didn't like, I have to conclude it's a combination of 1 & 2. She' s pretty clever. But I think it's pretty cool that even when I'm alone, at least she has my back. I wonder what she would have done if there was trouble.

Given all the press Chicco and Marcellus get, I figured I'd post her picture. As you can see, she still wears her broken bell.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Happy Mardi Gras!

If you don't know the Soul Rebels, you ought to. I can't take y'all to the Mardi Gras. But this is just a taste of how it's done.

Monday, February 04, 2008

I got tagged

A few days ago, I got tagged. Wow. I've never been tagged before.

Six non-important things/habits/quirks...
1. I really love Looney Tunes old-school cartoons.
2. The only flavor of ice cream I like is Vanilla. Though I tasted some chocolate-jalapeno ice cream a couple of weeks ago and it was pretty good.
3. Whenever I go home to New Orleans, I sneak over to the seafood market and get a soft-shell crab po-boy and eat it all by myself in my room.
4. I drive barefoot.
5. I've become addicted to cherry limeade.
6. I didn't take a shower until I went to college.

Tagged....Here are the rules:

Ok.. So,here are the rules: (1) Link to the person that tagged you. (2) Post the rules on your blog. (3) Share six non-important things/habits/quirks about yourself. (4) Tag six random people at the end of your post by linking to their blogs. (5) Let each random person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog. Now let's have some fun.

Mr. Slish

Giants win!!

New York City is going bananas right now because the Giants pulled off a fourth quarter win over the Patriots. Pretty cool. I mean it kind of sucks that the Patriots didn't get to finish their perfect season perfectly, but it also sucks that they've been accused of some pretty underhanded tricks like bugging their opponents. It's football, not Al Quaeda. Anyhow. It was definitely fun to watch the 'home' team win. On behalf of New Orleans, I'll take partial credit. I spent my youth watching ol' Archie Manning hang his head in shame after many a Saints game. I was an adult with a voter registration card, a driver's license, and an individual retirement account before the Saints even won a playoff game. But that isn't my point. My point is that Eli and Peyton Manning are from New Orleans, so we helped y'all win. You're welcome.

Postscript-- Slish, you threw a great party! I can't say that I'm going to take your advice and go out alone more often though, because I still worry about the return trip. Once Gov. Spitzer lets me break a fool off, then I will head straight to the nearest dance club confident that no matter how late it is, I'm ok on the train. Until then I'll have to keep to my curfew. But Revival was great, I had never been in that extra room. And I won two rounds of Name That Tune. Nice. What happened to that poor chump who was rooting for the Patriots? His face broke like a cheap mirror.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Too much to do...

As I type, I am under the dryer.

Have you ever had the humbling experience of realizing your life was missing something you didn't even know existed? I have had that feeling twice in the past 48 hours. The most recent was when I sat down and started setting my hair on these new longer Soft Spikes. Ahhh. That's what I needed all along. I am blasting my hair with more heat than I usually do because, as is becoming usual for me, I am running late. I have way too much to do today.

It is the 200th Bicentennial Anniversary of the New York Archdiocese and St. Patrick's Cathedral is having a special African American mass. Since I've never been to St. Patrick's Cathedral, I really want to go for this occasion. People of African descent were involved in the founding of the diocese. In fact, the only lay person (non-religious) buried inside the church, under the altar, is the Venerable Pierre Toussaint. He contributed the money to build the first St. Patrick's Church.

Being from New Orleans, I give no more thought to being Catholic than I do being black. It's just an inextricable part of my upbringing. And I didn't realize until I left home for college that so many people were unaware of the role of African Americans in the Catholic Church. I don't agree with many of the edicts of the church , but its liturgy is completely ingrained in who I am. I am one of those black people who goes to visit a black protestant church and does NOT want to turn to my neighbor and tell them whatever the preacher said we should repeat--smile. But I digress, and some black catholic churches do that too. Anyway, to commemorate the occasion, the Office of Black Ministry has commissioned a special cloth from Nigeria that we are all being asked to wear and choirs from all over the country will be performing in the special service. But somehow, I've gone all week thinking the service was at 3. Uh, no. It is at 2. So I woke up very early this morning, went to the market, stopped at Rite Aid and rushed back here to wash my hair, set it and sit under the dryer. I intended to do all this yesterday...

And that brings me to the other time I realized my life was missing something. I found myself in Bed, Bath and Beyond last night. I usually steer clear because the place is a real money pit. But I was desperate for a mop and a few other things to organize my mess rather than throw it out. My shopping list said mop, pants hanger. That's it. Two hours later...I had a mop, a pants hanger....and a purse hanger, 3 laundry bins (on clearance), an apothecary jar (I've been meaning to start a terrarium), a gazillion tea light candles, hooks that stick on the wall so I can hang my new mop, a new rubber broom that is the answer for picking up cat fur, and some Yankee Candle tart warmers (I have a fetish for Yankee Candle...another time). Oh I got this little thingy that claims to keep tomatoes fresh after you cut them. Oh and I forget, I got ANOTHER pitcher with a plunger in it. Sigh. I love those...

I was standing in the bathroom section looking at a boutique set that was half price. Contemplating whether I should buy a tissue holder and waste basket for my tiny bathroom-- who knows where I would put it. I turned around and saw this amazing stainless steel container. You can hide your toothbrush and paste inside it. It looks like a miniature cocktail shaker. Wow! I realized I NEEDED one of those. So I stood and held it for more minutes than was necessary. Sigh. And then I put it back.

So after mass, I'm headed back uptown to go to Mr. Slish's Superbowl party. It's in Harlem at Revival. It's nearby and better than sitting around the apartment in my flannel teddy bear pajamas.

And I am excited to the time it took me to sit here and ramble onto the keyboard I think my hair may have dried! This is thrilling. Absolutely thrilling. So I have to give the new longer Soft Spikes an unequivocal rave. As my hair got longer, it took longer to dry on the original size. Because I can wrap the length of my hair without overlapping, it has dried super-fast. It probably doesn't hurt that I have the 'Purple People Heater" on full blast-- which I usually never do and would recommend. But I'm in a hurry today, so just this once.

I'll post after pics on my other blog after I find someone to take my picture.

**update** I missed the service. Sigh. I couldn't get out of here. My apartment looked like a tossed salad. So I did another New York thing-- I went on craigslist and hired someone to do all the stuff I can't. But I just felt funny about leaving a stranger in my apartment. So, even though I could have gone and come back from church by the time she finished, I decided to stay until she was done

Friday, February 01, 2008


You all have no idea how much this blog means to me. Having it has gotten me through so many tough times. And I have re-connected and met so many special people because of it.

Because of your encouragement, I decided that I am ready and now is the time for me to get started offering Sisterlocks here in NYC. When I first moved here from Virginia, I was so overwhelmed with life that I could hardly imagine doing anything. But now is the time for me to take another step toward the life I want to lead.

I will still occasionally talk about hair here, but I have started a new blog -- -- to post information about everything related to Sisterlocks, including my own services. My first goal is to complete my qualifying installations. So I am offering a SPECIAL rate for a LIMITED time. Tell your friends, please.

And Haven? Well, this blog is going to evolve into something very special. So stay with me.

Damn, Wesley...

You're slicker than H & R Block. Mr. Biggs shoulda got your number!