It’s Just Entertainment

Reality TV has failed black women.  I have always been opposed to watching pseudo-celebrities go about their daily and often mundane life.  However, the wave of women-focused reality shows just makes my heart sink.  The Not- So Real Housewives of Whatever City, Bad Girls Club, The Girls Next Door, so forth and so on, may be a plan to systematically perpetuate the destruction of black women.  Well, maybe that is a stretch, but maybe it is… accurate.
Beyond the obvious child-like drama {staged to keep ratings up}, the shows have no objective or theme.  Usually when a pilot show is presented to a network, the objective and what it contributes to TV have to be apparent and not a complete waste of a time slot.  These shows do, however, have a message – a tragic one.  The emergence of catty women reality shows has desensitized black women’s views on what is acceptable behavior in both public and private.  I am not saying that prior to shows of this variety, black women were never prone to curse each other out, be sneaky and manipulative but there was a clear distinction between what was right and wrong.  The line, systematically, has been blurred.
Reality TV teaches women desperation.  The lack of sisterhood to obtain the fleeting attention of a man is frightening.  I constantly see this perpetuated in society- that a woman’s worth is directly correlated to if she has a man.  A worth that should be sacrificed at all costs to garner a man and/or his status. Furthermore, the relationships between the women are at best strained, at its worst, toxic.  Loyalty, friendship, and sisterhood are concepts targeted to be destroyed.
So let’s recap this leaves black women minus sisterhood, loyalty, friendships, and the gravest of all, self worth.
But hey, I could be wrong. It could be just entertainment…

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The Reader

People often use the expression, “the world is so small.”  But the world is vast, huge, and limitless.  In this lifetime, no one will ever be able to visit or experience all that this world has to offer.  Some people are extremely content with never leaving the world they know.  They dare not to journey beyond their parents’ footsteps, their neighborhood, or their grasp.  Supposedly, this could be call life or living.
Nevertheless, I am a journeyer.  I hunt challenges.  I reach beyond my grasp.  I try.  I don’t fear failure.  I am unfamiliar with limits and boundaries.  All of this to say, at the very least he, the one,  needs to be a reader.  I don’t have any arbitrary lists.  Yet,  I do think a reader, a man that reads leisurely, is innately accompanied by a desirable set of attributes.  It says “I do not know everything.  I am aware there is a world beyond my scope.  I am open to new ideas, new concepts, and new methodologies.”  It reads “I am a learner.”  Many others desired traits and features typically overshadow the fundamental quality of reading.  However, if I were to have a list, then a reader would be on top.

The Pass

Men are notorious for missing memos.  They miss the “I’m not interested” memo, the “I’ve been cheating on you” memo, and the “your pass has expired” memo.   It is understood between both men and women upon the first [successful] sexual interaction that there is a pass that allows future access without having to resubmit a new application.  I mean, that is all dating has been reduced to, an application to smash.
It seems that men think the one-time application submission is valid for forever.  They fail to read the fine print, the clause that very clearly states the terms of the pass:
a)     The pass automatically expires if it has been more than 30 days since last interaction.
b)    You lie on the initial application or any point thereafter that would directly affect the agreement of the pass.
c)     Either party decides to enter a serious, committed relationship with any other person.
d)    You stop giving your best
e)     You become annoying
f)      You become clingy, begging, weird, and/or psychotic
I thoroughly believe that men overlook these clauses because their egos (absolutely no pun intended) blind their vision.  Everyone thinks they are the best but clearly this is not mathematically possible.   Everyone feels like they can talk their way back but she has to be willing to listen.  So take time to pay attention because your pass just may be expired.  If so, please resubmit application for further consideration.

He Says, She Hears

As always, I’m keeping it light on Fridays.

Men and women do not understand each other.  We speak two different languages.  I will make absolutely no claim to understand the lack of effective communication of men.  I can, however, speak on behalf of women.
He Says…
She Hears…
Yes
Yes
Maybe
Yes
No
Maybe
I can’t
I don’t want to
I shouldn’t
I’m about to
I should
I’m not going to
It doesn’t matter
It isn’t important enough for me to think about
I don’t know
I do know, but it will cause an argument
I’m kicking it with the boys
I don’t feel like being bothered with you tonight
We’re just friends
That’s my ex and we occasionally still sleep with each other
I’m not ready to get married
I haven’t found what I have been looking for before you but maybe you can change that.
I’m running late
You’re not that important to me so I’ll get there when I feel like it, Michelle*!!!!
*see, Boondocks Season 3, Episode 1
Any others??? Let me know!

*contributions made by Tori Griffin

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The Amicable Ex

I am cool with all of my exes (well, all of them from college forward).  Some of my relationships were public.  Others were private.  Some had a friendly break up.  Others were, well let’s say, much less friendly.  All were necessary.
I admit most of the coolness between my exes and I happened by chance with little to no effort.  But there were a couple that I had to make a personal decision that once the last “f*ck you” had lost its sting that at some point we would come together to make amends.  I made the decision to forgive, not for them but for me.  However, my greatest objective was to see where and how we went awry.  I could easily continue to place blame and say there are no good men.  Or I could ask those who I had allowed to be closest to me to give their perspective.  I choose to listen.   It is hard to have someone that you loved magnify your shortcomings.  But those conversations gave me the realest portrait of myself.  At that point, I could choose to grow from it or continue to make the same mistakes.  I am pro-growth.
Eventually the pain subsides and we remember the foundation of which our relationship was established. However, this time we are saner and free of the  confines of titles and rules.  Through these saner eyes, we can see what we were possibly only intended to ever be – friends.

Jog With Me

Maybe this should have been the first blog

First of all I would like to thank EVERYONE that has visited, posted, and retweeted this blog.  The support has been overwhelming and greatly appreciated! Seriously and truly, thank you.
While this is another relationship blog, it is not just a relationship blog.  It is simply a medium to express my thoughts on every day, real-life scenarios.  The intention is not to heal, fix, or cure any ills but simply provide my [at times limited] perspective.  My focus is to document my own journey and ignite relevant conversation in your respective homes.   My stance is often light-hearted and/or satirical.  Sometimes I provide commentary and other times I am in the mood to write a short story.  It is just a blog, so I enjoy the freedom to go as I feel.  If you don’t agree with something, say so.  If you have a different perspective, share it.  This is by all means an open forum.
I say it is not just a relationship blog because I sincerely have an interest in relationships & behavior.  I have a psychology degree.  And well since that is useless,  I will be entering graduate school in the fall to study… guess??….Marriage Counseling and eventually to earn my doctorate in Family Science.  It is truly my passion.  This is merely a stepping stone toward bigger goals. It is a stepping stone that I have recently decided to take more seriously to help maintain my focus because it is hard to run a marathon without ever jogging around the block.  So this is my jog…..thank you for jogging with me.

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If Halle Can’t Keep a Man….

There is so much pressure for black women to be not only beautiful, but be perfect.  I don’t know who puts more pressure on black women to be perfect:   men, other women, or ourselves.  However, the universal standard has always been clear- Halle Berry, a beauty that transcends race and gender.  I have never been one to be entertained by celebrity gossip.  I don’t know those people and could care less what happens in their respective homes.  However with the news of Halle Berry losing yet another [gorgeous] man, I can’t help but wonder what is really going on here?  Is perfection not enough?
Additionally, there has been so much talk that black women no longer need to limit themselves to black men.  Black women supposedly need to venture out into other races because there are not enough black men that will live up to our lofty expectations.  Well leave it up to Halle Berry to dispel that myth as she has dated both black and white men and still has ended up the same result- single.
This leaves me pondering two possible theories: a) nothing is better than the “new” [ass] or b) being crazy can undo all the beauty in the world.
I’m leaning towards the latter….

Impress Me

Being back in the nation’s capitol has been great.  Dating in D.C.  is wonderful.  The concentration of diverse young black professionals is like none other. However, I have found people are so quick to put their number out there.  And no, it is not their phone number, but their salary.  I will admit the intentions may be varying; however, more often than not it is a mean to bait, impress, and establish value to someone. I am not impressed and underwhelmed (fearing D.C. will become as pretentious as Atlanta….)
There is a number that really should matter, but I am sure no one wants to discuss that on the first date or the 30th for that matter.   It is your credit score.  Current salary does not convey priorities or potential.  However, a credit score gives more insight to where the person’s head is at, well really, how their income is being managed.  It seems my peers would much rather wear top labels, drive (lease) high-end cars, live in (rent) expensive lofts to project an image of prosperity.   This pseudo “keeping-up” is often a veil to authentic poverty.

what's really good??

I feel in my preparation to better myself and to make sure I’m sufficiently contributing to a significant relationship,  then I need to have my bills properly managed before we enter any life-long unions.  I expect the same out of my significant other- that he is using this time of economic bliss to prepare for his future, our future (…because I want a big house. No, I am just serious. )
So while you may not see me in $500 shoes, $1200 bags, and $700 jeans.  I will be paying down these students loans, building my savings, and contributing to my IRA.  If that ain’t sexy, I don’t know what is.
Ms. “I much rather see your portfolio” Tryst