$25 Engagement Rings and Things

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When you're trying to be careful using mobile data while out of the country, you tend to miss a lot that goes on because you're not on social media as much as you are when you are NOT roaming.  I have a few friends whose pages I go immediately to in order to catch up on what went down while I was offline.  I was over on Tiger Bush's page when I read something about a $25 engagement ring.

I re-read that.

Oh...I didn't read it wrong.

Not a $250 or a $2,500 or a $25,000 engagement ring...but a $25 one.

WHERE THEY DO THAT 'ET?

So I asked Mr. Google about it.

Oh.

And I read the comments all up and down-t the internet.

Oh.

I guess.

But my two cents is that...we all know that everybody's paper "don't spend" the same. 

What is wrong with having expectations for the best of everything and wanting a good life? Why we can't want it all? It's not like we're going to go postal if we don't get it...but wanting it all Is okay, right? When folks keep the bar low attempting to manage their expectations...it only falls lower. $25 rings today. Woman buying her own ring and doing the proposing tomorrow.

SIP: Aren't they already doing that?

Me: Right.

I jokingly quote Robin Harris all the time when I say, "I want everythang I'm 'sposed to git." But I promise I mean it. I want it ALL. That is my expectation. If it doesn't happen, I won't die, as evidenced by my struggle with infertility, but damn if I don't want EVERYTHING ELSE. I want as big a life as my breathing can encompass and my wallet can handle. I want it ALL. Pretty stuff. Funny stuff. Jazzy stuff. Gray stuff. Bright pink stuff. Shiny stuff. Dull stuff. Denim, silk, pearls, diamonds, leather, canvas, need batteries, wired, books, notebooks, writing pens, pencils, movies, music, planes, trains, cars, jelly beans, almonds, chocolate, puppies, E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G!!!!!!!!!!!!!

"I WANT EVERYTHANG I'M 'SPOSED TO GIT!"

Sneakers cost more than $25. You are not supposed to be keeping time with anybody who can't afford the basic necessities. What gives them the right to even think they CAN holla at you? Why don't they have any expectations for their own lives? Who is holding them accountable for being that damn deadbeat? NO.NO.ANDHELL.NO. There is a natural progression of life. If you missed a step...start over. If you are arrogant enough to not think you need to restart to get better at something...then enjoy your TV dinner on your tray alone. You ain't 'sposed to be married.

If my husband had acquired a ring and not have had to come up out his pocket...kudos to our soon joint bank account. This is the same as with a family heirloom. Grandmother's ring? Yes, please! But if said ring was only worth $25 Imma go with naw. And I certainly would never want a girl child I love to have an engagement ring bar lower than what she pays for one of Rhianna's lipsticks. And I also take into account age. First dates at 18 to McDonald's? Cool. At 28? You already know. What kinda man is cool with this? The cheapest video game cartridge seems to be $39.99. I love you, I am not accepting that ring. You are not placing appropriate value on our future as husband and wife. Two months salary is the industry standard so you can use that as a guideline.  If you live in an area like DC or NY where less than 6 figures is for real considered lower income, you can't do that because the cost of living is so much higher so save up.  Whatever you can realistically save for two months, maybe three?  Good.  Get a part-time gig, a hustle, something.  Save up.  A 10-year-old child can save up enough to buy his mommy a $25 ring for Christmas  off a $10 per week allowance .  Your grown behind should be able to save up too.

A $25 engagement ring.  

AS.

IF.

I want everythang I'm 'sposed to git. That should be EVERYONE'S mantra EVERYWHERE. STOP MAKING YOURSELF SMALL TO ACCOMMODATE SOMEONE'S TOO SMALL LIFE.

Broke Back

Two weeks before Thanksgiving, I was in a rush to complete some pieces for Small Business Saturday at my shop.  I was rocking and rolling and went to pick up a deceptively heavy piece of furniture.  Nothing I haven't done before, I just picked it up wrong.  I picked it up so that the drawers were away from me and they slid out, quickly, and pitched the forward.  I felt something "give" in my back and the pain started radiating immediately.  I couldn't pick up my right leg or stand up.  I slid to the ground and rolled over on my back with my knees bent and my feet on the ground.  It was the only way I could find any relief.

Actual pic of me on ground waiting on The Robinator.

Actual pic of me on ground waiting on The Robinator.

The Robinator was in his office on a series of conference calls before he had to go to the office and, since my phone was in my pocket, I slipped it out and called him sounding really calm.

Robby:  Hello?  (sounding like...WHY YOU CALLING ME FROM OUTSIDE???????  YOU KNOW I'M BUSY!!!!!!!)

Me:  Heyyyyyy (sounding all casual like I'm just shooting the shit)...when you have an opportunity, can you come outside and help me with something?

Robby:  Yeah, okay, okay...in a minute.

So...I did what any red-blooded American with a smartphone in their hand would do.  I surfed Facebook until he showed up.  Snapped a few pics.  You know...the norm.  LOL!

He came out about 10 minutes later casually strolling.  When he saw me on the ground, his face registered mild confusion because hey...sometimes I just sit or lay on the ground...I'm country but when he got closer and I told him that I'd messed up and he saw the dresser on the ground near me haphazardly, he started moving faster.

I couldn't move.  The pain was getting worse.  He carried me upstairs because, I wasn't about to go to the doctor looking like I was looking, called the doctor and rushed me in.

Link Taylor piece that took me out.  Old super heavy, super well-made nightstand.  Humph.

Link Taylor piece that took me out.  Old super heavy, super well-made nightstand.  Humph.

Doctor determined it was a bad sprain.  Yall...I couldn't move my right leg without severe pain and screaming.  He suggested I get a steroid shot.  I declined.  He gave me some anti-inflammatory meds and muscle relaxers.  Silly me, I thought muscle relaxers were pain pills.

They aren't.

After waking everyone up screaming a few times in the middle of the night because I was trying to turn in my sleep, I called the next morning for pain meds.

I was told that my doctor doesn't prescribe pain meds.  To anyone.  Of any kind.

Wait, what?

This has been our doctor for 3 years now.  Neither of us have needed pain meds for anything.  But baaaaaaaaaby...if we need pain meds...DAMMIT...WE WANT PAIN MEDS.  So I did my thing I do when I'm trying to get what I want and or need.  After going around and around, turns out, the truth is that our doctor (ex-doctor cuz yeah...no) doesn't have a DEA license so he CAN'T prescribe pain meds.

Oh.

And this is how the opioid crisis ends up affecting us.  When we were in for real serious pain...we can't get pain meds. I was incensed.

Once I got some pain meds and was able to start stretching without that severe pain, I started moving better.  The worst part, however?  The drive to and from Houston for Thanksgiving at my sister's house.  SO TERRIBLE.  And the pain meds made me toss my cookies so I had to take half doses after eating two chewable Tums to coat my stomach first.  My body was so filled with foreign stuff I never take that I looked and felt completely different. 

When we returned home, I stopped taking everything to flush out my system even though my back still hurts. I can't deal with that hazy, super swole feeling and truly don't know how anyone can.  So I'm doing yoga, stretching and, to quote The Robinator, "sit your azz down somewhere and stop doing stuff!"

But see...that's hard for me.

The Robinator has not let me pick up anything heavier than my toothbrush.  He has been the most hilarious nursemaid the world has ever produced.  Let's me know what I'm in for as we grow old together.  *sigh*  Pure comedy. 

The whole, no DEA license thing was news to me and something I guess we all need to be aware of with our doctors.  People like us aren't trying to score drugs so to leave us in pain because a doctor CAN'T prescribe something to take us out of pain is just WRONG.

Humph.

Did yall know about the DEA license thing?  Would you use a doctor as your primary care doctor who didn't have one knowing that if you really hurt yourself he/she couldn't get you out of pain using pain meds?

Have you ever hurt your back?  What did you do to fix it?  Do you still have problems with it after you hurt it the first time?  Or did it completely go away?

Sweets from "In the Heat of the Night" and Lowes

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The other day I was in Lowes and there were six police cars in the parking lot with a lot of activity.  I exited my truck cautiously in case something was popping off.  When I got to the first policeman, I asked if it was safe for me to go in and he told me that the issue was resolved and they were just getting video footage, etc.

Of course, I was curious as to what went down.

Turns out, a fugitive in the area was shopping in Lowes and the Chief of Police and his wife walked in and saw him.  When the Chief yelled out the fugitive's name, he took off running and jumped in his car.  The Chief grabbed onto the car and the fugitive drug him for a few before the Chief let go.  A customer who was leaving, saw what went down and followed the car calling the police and telling them where to find the suspect.  The Chief was okay save for being scraped up.

Quiet as it's kept, one of my and Robby's favorite television shows is "In the Heat of the Night."  There have been plenty of Sunday mornings when we have stumbled upon a marathon and been stuck like Chuck.  When I told Robby about what went down at Lowe's he was like...

Robby:  The Chief didn't have his gun on him? 

Me:  Probably not.   He was with his wife.

Robby:  You don't think Chief Gillepsie would have his gun on him if he was with Harriet?

Me:  Hell no!  Harriet was a lady.  She would have made him leave his gun at HIS house.

Robby:  I bet the Chief still kept a gun strapped to his ankle or something.

And then we fell down the rabbit hole of our favorite episodes, etc.

Something we both always laughed about was how the Chief would always send Sweet down to the bottom to spy on someone.  I mean really.  Like nobody in the bottoms knew that Sweet was on the police force.  But he'd trot on down there and his disguise would be a baseball hat.  I'd be down in the bottoms talking about..."HEY SWEET!  WE SEE YOU!  YALL SEE THAT'S SWEET RIGHT?  RIGHT!"  Just crazy.  I can't believe they put Sweet in danger like that.  

Speaking of Lowes.  I had to go back there again today and went to use the restroom.  I had to go badly so I grabbed the first stall.  As I'm in there, I realize that someone was in the stall next to me talking to a man on speakerphone.  

ON.SPEAKERPHONE.

I was so annoyed.

As I was washing my hands, she came out.  Young girl.  I looked at her and was like..."Are you serious!  You work here????????????"

I asked her if she thought it was appropriate to use the speakerphone while other people were in the bathroom taking care of private business in the restroom.  I told her that it was highly inappropriate, especially at her place of employment.  The sound of everyone taking care of their business and flushing the toilets was just...EW!  SERIOUSLY????????  I couldn't fix my face to save my life.  I was SO.DAMN. ANNOYED.

I found an older lady that I'd exchanged friendly words with before and told her she should pull the young lady aside and let her know that her behavior was highly inappropriate and that, had I decided to tell a manager, she'd probably be in big trouble.

I am still annoyed.  Big time.

Would that annoy you? Or are we at a point in life where being annoyed with that is being a prude?  

 

 

Lazy People

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I don't like lazy people.  I don't UNDERSTAND lazy people.  Sitting on your azz being useless. Taking up space.  BREATHING in and out.  Witcha lazy azz.

Let's not get this confused with BEING lazy.  See...I can choose to be lazy tomorrow because I know I have been busy getting stuff done.  So I can choose to be a bit lazy.

My house is clean but if something fell over and made a big mess...I'd get up and clean it up.  I wouldn't sit there and look at it.  I wouldn't step over it all day.  I wouldn't leave it there for days on end.

Cuz that's lazy.

Say you're young and single and in a job where there is no advancement potential and you are barely making a living wage.  You're single.  No kids.  At the end of paying your bills you have no money left.  You have nothing but time on your sofa watching television until it's time to go to work the next day.

You're lazy.

If you're not thinking of ways you can increase the money you are bringing in, you're lazy.  If you're not trying to figure out a side hustle...you're lazy.  If you're not signing up for some more schooling to increase your job pool...you're lazy.  

If you are settling for what life hands you...you're lazy.

If your house is nasty...you're lazy.

If the outside of your house looks a mess...you're lazy.

If your car's interior is disgusting...you're lazy.

If you have lightbulbs in your home but you have a lightbulb out in a lamp in a room you frequently use...you're lazy.

If you handle your business and have a comfortable life because you work hard and today you want to put up your feet and do nothing all day?  You're BEING lazy.

Be lazy.

If you're lazy and you know it...clap your hands.

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We always share the memes to pray for _________.

We always hold our breath in anticipation of what the murderer looked like.

We always speculate why the murderer did what he did.

We always think it was a terrorist attack until we see what the murderer looked like and, if it wasn't a radical Muslim...we use other descriptors.

We never seem to understand that anyone inflicting terror by mass murder is a terrorist.

We never understand that homegrown terrorism is real.

We always hold private and public vigils.

We always try to stay away from the details not wanting to put a face to the poor people murdered.

We always blame failed security.

We always look for accomplices.

We always commiserate with strangers we encounter throughout the day.

We are always grateful it wasn't our loved one murdered down.

We always hug our loved ones tighter.

We are always astonished at the lack of respect for human life.

We are always shocked at how easy it was.

We always ask the family why.

We always become over saturated with the news reports regarding.

We always worry about the wrong shit.

WE NEVER DO ANYTHING ABOUT GUN CONTROL.

And we probably never will.

Until next time...pray for the victims.  

Until next time...don't let terrorists win.  I know it's hard to do when the terrorists are already within our borders.  When the terrorists are American.

Call it what it is.

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Hurricane Maria victims NEED OUR HELP!

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I've been reading to see how we can help and this article has a lot of really great suggestions:   How You Can Help Hurricane Victims in Puerto Rico 

I mean...it's a shame how this has happened.  They really missed the boat on this one and the more you read, the angrier you get.  

Hurricane Maria pushes Puerto Rico's struggling hospitals to crisis point

By the numbers: More than half of Puerto Rico still without drinking water

One Day in the Life of Battered Puerto Rico

And the latest...

President Trump dedicates golf trophy to hurricane victims, Puerto Rico

I mean...there are seriously just NO.WORDS for this level of incompetence that is currently our government.  They aren't by the people nor for the people.  Just...no.

Oh well, share that link.  I pretty much have nothing to say nice.

 

Going, Going, Gone...Gray

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I have been going gray for a minute now and I stomped all up and down declaring that I was just going to let it go until it is all the way gray and be a gray head rockstar looking all super sleek and whatnot.

I saw myself looking like this:

Just all one-dimensional amazing with some banging natural silvery highlights.

All regal and what not ya know?  QUEENLY!  I planned on wearing a lot of purple. Rich silks with like...some braiding on it or something.  I'm talking straight up Egyptian royalty in the house!  (Great...now I can't get "Egyptian Lover out my head...UGH!"

Yall...I was ready to wake up already LIT!  

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The reality of it, however?  It's gon' take a minute and I am struggling so much so that I think I'm going to have to do some temporary stuff in the middle of it all so I don't walk around here looking like someone without mirrors in her home.

This is my hair air dried and without heat or moisturizer on it to give it some semblance of a cohesive color and tame it.  This is my natural hair color and I am convinced God doesn't want me to live like this anymore.  Whenever He looks my way He probably shakes his head and says..."Oh no, baby...what is you doing?  I have given chemists the ability to create hair color so that you can handle that situation!  WHY DON'T YOU WANT TO BE HAPPY???????"

I've tried everything to keep it contained.  I even had box braids for three weeks (I couldn't get used to all that hair and I promise my neck was tired holding up that hair.) and after seeing my little cousin with Dutch Goddess braids, I even did a version of it on my own using braid hair and French braids (cuz I can't do them dang opposite braids to save my life) and they were okay but only last a good week for me because my exposed hair starts looking too fuzzy.  

And it totally doesn't help that this guy I'm married to looks all distinguished gentleman and whatnot rocking his gray.  (So unfair and honestly...just rude...)

I'd like to find something between the two different braid styles using braid hair to keep it under wraps until more of the gray transition has happened.  Something that covers more of my hair but doesn't have to use so much braid hair.  I'm serious...I had for real, serious neck pain with all that hair and I got sick of wiping oatmeal off strands every.single.morning.  That's just gross.  I wish I could have kept them in longer though.

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So I'm back to considering color but don't know where to start.  My funky red/brown/gray color is just odd as heck to me.  My hair is low-porosity so by the very definition it's more difficult to color and it's as healthy as relaxed hair can be and I don't want to sustain any damage with keeping color on longer during the coloring process.  Oh...and those temporary colors just slide off onto my pillowcase anyway so...

*sigh*

If anyone has any tips...holla atcha girl.  I'm desperate.  

Mommy Wars - The Ultimate Better Thans

She woke up at 5am and made enough coffee for two cups.  She removed the breakfast dishes from the table that she hadn’t had an opportunity to remove the day before.  The instant grits dried almost as hard as concrete on the plastic bowl.  She picked up her 6 year old son’s toys scattered around the room and put them in the basket she kept by the sofa. Next she folded the sofa blanket and straightened up as much as possible.

When her coffee was ready, she made a cup and took that first grateful sip, walking into the bathroom to start a bath for herself as quietly as possible so as to not wake her son.

Twenty minutes later, she woke her son, got him dressed for school, fed him breakfast and rushed out the door to drop him off to school and then go to her first job.

From 8 - 5, she worked for the state filing papers all day for petty lawsuits.  Her son catches the bus to her parent’s house.  His math tutor shows up and works with him for an hour a day on Monday and Wednesday and his reading tutor on Tuesday and Thursday.  Her parents are on a fixed income so she makes sure there is enough food in the house for all of them to eat during the week.  To afford all of this, she has a second job at the dollar store from 6pm to midnight.

At midnight, exhausted, she drives to her parent’s to pick up her son and she carries him to her car kissing his little neck and cheek softly so as not to wake him.  She puts a sweater over him in the cool night air and drives home.  At the last minute, right before her turn to go home, she remembers they are out of milk and decides to run in and pick up a gallon and a couple of apples.  She briefly debates removing her son from the car and considers letting him sleep with the doors locked, but she didn’t want him to get overheated since she’d recently watched a show about how quickly it gets hot in a car even during mild temperatures.

She only needed milk and eggs so she wouldn’t be in there longer than 10 minutes and she could see the car from inside the store so she left the car running with the air on and rushed in to get the milk and apples because her day started over again at 5am after having only 3 hours of sleep.

That was fiction.  

The real story is one where a single mother left her child in a running car at 1:15am to run into the grocery store and she returned to find her car, and her child, missing.  The car was found 15 miles away from the store with her son inside dead.  A bullet through the brain.

In the hours which followed her finding her car and child missing, back-to-back Amber alerts went out far and wide.  These Amber alerts woke us up in the middle of the night.  We read them, put our phones back on our nightstands and went back to sleep.

The mother did not go to sleep.  She waited for news of her child, terrified.  Hoping for the best but terrified of the worst.  A parent's worst nightmare playing out.  Not knowing where her child was, who had him, was he safe, what were they doing to him.

By the time we were eating breakfast, the news of his murder broke and all our collective hearts broke for that baby and his lost life.

By the time we were all reading the news reports online, the undercurrent of hateful rumors had started.  Speculation about why the mother was out that late started.  Stories of how the mother was in the club partying while the child was in the car.  Theories of how the child found a gun in the car while outside of the  club and accidentally killed himself.  Rumors that the mother was inside the store for over an hour waiting for the car to be fake stolen.  Adamant statements of the mother contacting the murderers and setting up a fake kidnapping so she wouldn't be charged with her child's murder.  And...the most startling of all...DEMANDS, IMMEDIATELY, FOR THE ARREST OF THE MOTHER FOR CHILD NEGLECT FOR LEAVING THE CHILD IN THE CAR.

Whenever I saw one of these statements and comments online I noted that the most vocal of them all were single mothers and, quite frankly, it came across with such an air of the "better-thans" that it was sickening.  "Look at me!  I'm better than her!  My child is still alive!"

Smug, nauseatingly so.  

"I'd never..."

"What kind of mother..."

After a mother lost her child in the blink of an eye.  Her baby in that car terrified, or maybe the baby didn't even wake up.  Just sleep and then dead.  A bullet to his lil developing brain.  Dead.

Why was it so quick that the potential story surrounding the child being in the car at that time of night be so ugly instead of the fictional story above?  Why was it so easy for so many people to jump on the bandwagon of straight damning this poor mother immediately after her child had been murdered?  Sure...she made a life altering decision to leave him in the car...but that woman didn't want her child to die.  SHE LOST HER CHILD!  

I saw pictures of this mother being carried by family members after she collapsed upon hearing the news of her child's murder.  

I saw pictures of her grief-stricken family, horrified. I read the story in the Clarion-Ledger and got so upset I had to walk away from the computer.  I had to walk away from all the perfect mothers who "would never..."

Turns out Ms. Archie, Kingston's mother, was in the store for 10 - 15 minutes buying medicine.  

Turns out the child was murdered after the car was stolen by, in another tragic twist to this horrible crime, 17 and 18-year-olds.

Turns out Kingston was murdered by at least one of the children who stole the car at 1:15am.

Turns out all those rumors were mean-spirited and evil.  Judge and jury in the midst of a mother's grief.  

Turns out...people will do the most to be "better-than" someone...even during the most heinous of times.

As you can tell...this shit has sat on me hard.  *sigh*

I know enough single mothers to know the shit is hard as fug.  I listen to how exhausted they are getting it all done.  I sit back and watch them do every single thing they can do to make sure their child/children have the best life possible.  Because I actually KNOW and interact with single mothers...I can empathize with this poor mother even though I'm not a mother myself.

You'd think that other single mothers would have been able to empathize with her even easier than I did.

But the ones spreading the rumors and calling for her to be charged chose the low road.

How dare you add to this woman's grief in such an ugly, ugly way.  How dare your narrative be so without compassion for another mother.  How dare you.

People Need to Quit

My week started out with back-to-back weird interactions with people.  

On Sunday, I had to go to Walmart.  Yeah...I know...already crazy.  Walmart.  And on a Sunday.  Crazy talk.

The homeless guy who is always by the car wash in front of the Walmart was standing there with his sign.  I rolled my window down and asked him did he need anything out of Walmart.  He said some food would be nice.  

Cool.

I got him some food from the deli and a couple of pre-made salads because everything in the deli was fried and I'm old school and believe meals should come with veggies of some sort which are NOT fried.

When I walked out of Walmart, he was standing across the row from my truck and told me that the police had made him move.  

Cool.

I handed him the bag with his food and told him that I'd thrown in some salads too.  He thanked me and said something about not having veggies in a while.  Then?

He hopped in the truck he had been standing next to and drove off while I stood there and watched him drive off.

Now, I know homeless people and people with immediate needs sometimes have vehicles but I was just so startled because I have honestly never seen someone who'd been standing on the road with a sign asking for help, drive off into the sunset after someone had given them something.

It was odd.

On Monday, I had to have a plumber come out to do some work.  The gentleman was extremely nice.  Good people.  He invited us to his church and kept trying to get me to change my mind about coming.  We kept talking and got on politics.  He mentioned the new laws in South Carolina and Mississippi about "religious freedom" and transgender bathroom use.  He shared that there was a gay couple in his church that everyone loved who were just great people and he hoped they didn't feel some kinda way thinking that everyone in their church supported the law.  Then he said the law in SC was something he supported, however, because...

Him:  I don't want some grown man in the bathroom with my 9-year-old daughter.

Me:  How would she know?  Is she looking under the stall divider?  Remember, women don't use urinals, we have doors that we can lock.  Also, the woman is NOT a man, she has been reassigned as a woman and, if your daughter HAD looked up under her skirt under the stall she would see the same software.  

Him:  I just don't want it to happen.  I mean,  they could do something to girls in the bathroom.

Me:  Or they could be so terrified that they are going to have to deal with some crazy mess just because they were in public and had to use the bathroom that they used the bathroom so fast you didn't even notice them.  Did you ever read the book "Middlesex?"  What about the people who were born with a little bit of this and a little bit of that and their parents, with guidance from their doctor, took action to assign a gender and, unbeknownst to them, assigned the wrong gender just trying to make their baby "normal?"  Do you think that poor child deserves to be persecuted for the rest of their life?  I mean...ya think that's how God wants you to handle it?

Him:  Well, I don't know about all that.  I just know how I feel.

SIP:  *sigh*

Such a simplistic view of a very real problem in the lives of some is cringe worthy.  To me.  As many defects as people end up having...yeah...okay.

Dude left so fast he forgot his utility knife.  I put it under the sink in the bathroom because I'm not in the mood to see him again.  

I’m a Transgender Man in North Carolina. Here’s What the Bathroom Law Means For Me.

I'm actually still feeling some kinda way.  I never remember anything about using the bathroom in public because my focus is on getting in and out of there with minimal time with major hand washing. Do people hang out in public bathrooms and that's how it comes to be that this is such a major issue?  Are transgender people in South Carolina holding sit-ins in the bathrooms naked from waist down?  

I should have asked him could I still come to his church if I was transgender huh?

The MIGHT.BE homeless guy did end up making me laugh cuz really...had you seen me in the parking lot watching him drive off...it was Seth MacFarland movie funny.  I was just standing there like, *BLINK,BLINK,BLINK*

Eh...I guess.

Have you had any interesting run-ins with strangers recently?  

Pause...Why didn't YOU tell me?

At peace buying plants!

At peace buying plants!

There are lots of things I've missed out on not having my mother in my life during my adult years that I could have really, REALLY used.  I've learned how to manoeuvre through life without her knowledge, however, and I continue to keep it moving.  This new thing however??????????    

I don't know how I'm going to get past it.

Men...check out now.  This ain'tcha genre.  You've been warned.

I've always had pretty basic Midol Weeks except for in the past when I've had a ruptured fibroid going on.  I used to be able to basically set them by clockwork.  They came ever 31 days and two days before I'd get PMS.  Cranky boots.  Tender boobs.  Water retention.  Backache.  Salt cravings (Lays Plain potato chips), etc.  I go about my business like all other women and make it do what it do.  I used a period tracker when I was trying to get pregnant so I knew when I was ovulating even as I had very painful ovulations and knew exactly what was going on when it happened.  After I wasn't trying anymore, I kinda let that go.  

A few months ago I was feeling really, really weird and messed around and asked Mr. Google one too many questions and determined that I might have Lupus.  It was two weeks after my regular Midol Week so it never occurred to me that it could be another Midol Week.  So yeah...Lupus.  I was seriously about to make a doctor's appointment when I had visual evidence that yeah...prolly not Lupus.  But I was way confused because I thought I'd just had a cycle.  I didn't know for sure since I wasn't tracking it but I thought so and I remembered other things like packing for a trip two weeks prior and having to take supplies so yeah...two weeks.  I told a friend who laughed and laughed and laughed at my "lil 'bout of Lupus" turning out to be Midol Week.

Again.

Thirty-one days later...Midol Week started up and, TWO WEEKS AFTER THAT...another one.  Now, at this point I'm thinking I must be crazy so I started using a new tracker:  Clue  

I like Clue.  It's easy to deal with and figure out.  BUT...Clue clearly thinks all this is crazy.  Like...Clue is so confused.  Clue is not here for this.  Clue thinks I'm inputting incorrect information.  LOL!  Clue is about to delete itself from my phone for making a mockery out of the awesomeness it has been accustomed to being.

My doctor says there is nothing wrong and that this is all normal for a woman my age.  Even when I shared with him that I get night sweats two nights before Midol Week no matter the length of that particular cycle so I know it's coming.  He just stared at me blankly like..."Yeah...and?  What do you want me to tell you?"

With these crazy cycles I'm a full, solid two pounds heavier than ever and, no matter what I do, I can't drop it until AFTER Midol Week is over completely.  Because of this, I'm my normal size for basically three weeks every two months.  LOL!  On my frame...that's a lot.  It definitely shows in my jeans and yoga pants.  I get crazy migraines before and after and well, twice a month for a year was bearable but now it's like six ever two months and well...those extra migraines are a hot, fonky fried mess.  I'm currently sitting here in shorts, a sports bra and a fleece jacket that I have zipped up.  I had it open an hour ago and before that...I had it completely OFF.  I used to only have to buy light and regular supplies.  Now?  Hand me them super doopers playa.  My already tiny bladder has clearly shrunk by about 50% of volume.  I can't drive from the house to Target without REALLY NEEDING TO GO TO THE BATHROOM WHEN I HIT TARGET!!!!!

Crazy talk.

I hadn't had any wine during Lent and had some this past weekend.  The wine made me too hot.  THE WINE MADE ME TOO HOT.  That might end up being the death of me.  

Oh...and during Midol Week, my ankles swell.  Had me on a plane once thinking I was going to need compression socks.

And again...my doctor says it's all normal for a 46-year-old woman.  He says some women go into perimenopause and stay there for a long time before it sorts itself out.  He says that if it's unbearable he can give me some drugs that might help but I'm of the mind that I put enough drugs in my body when we were trying to have a baby so yeah...I'm good with sitting around with a fonky azz look on my face as long as I can sit alone, in the cold, without a lot of talking going on.

Things that used to not annoy me now VERY MUCH ANNOY ME.  My people-ing skills now take significant prep time to be put on deck.  And, more than ever, I truly only want to do what I want to do.  I'm totally growing into one of those people who have a Zen garden with one of those rakes to make designs as meditation.  The only time I'm at complete peace is when I'm playing with flowers or digging in the dirt or on the sofa with The Robinator and the doggies (but only if they are NOT on top of me if I'm hot).

I said all that to say...these are things you don't really talk about out loud with folks until it is something you're dealing with and then...with only a few folks mainly your mom.  If she's not there...you gotta use another trusted source even as you know that everybody is different and will react to something this major...differently.

I'm totally going to do this without drugs because the side effects of the drugs used to treat these symptoms scare the plum piss outta me.  One Elder scared me so bad...she got me planning to start running as she says that it's the only way to keep the weight around the middle off by sweating A LOT via exercise.

I hate sweating but hell...I sweat sometimes just sitting.  LOL!

Now I understand the pink talcum powder puffs my mother and all her girlfriends had back in the day.  Hell...I'm looking at Shaq in the Gold Bond powder commercials with a steely glint in my eye.  I might need to incorporate some of that soon.

And I thought getting used to my gray hair was going to be the problem.  UGH!

Yup...it's like that.  These are the worst of times.  Getting used to this new normal is going to take some doing.  LOL!  Yet another reason to keep my baby wipe hand strong.

I'm Not a Racist. I'm Salty.

I wasn't very surprised at the Academy Award nominations.  Did I think Kevin Hart was going to get a nod for his role in "Get Hard?"  No.  I didn't.

Who in the world is going to argue that Cate Blanchett and Leonardo DiCaprio don't deserve awards for their performances?  Crazy people ONLY cuz yeah...they brought it as they always do.  Matt Damon in "The Martian?"  Dude did that.  I loved that movie and loved his performance.  Very seldom do I enjoy a movie as much as I enjoyed the book and I did here.

No surprise.

I haven't seen "Room" yet but from what I understand, Brie Larson showed out.  She prepped for 8 months for that role and I'm kinda scared at what that means based on what I know the movie to be about.  I'm sure she was paid enough to not miss a mortgage payment in those 8 months of prep work too. You'd expect that right?  Hell...I hope so.

I'll be honest when I say I didn't really think Jennifer Lawrence was going to get a nod for her performance in "Joy."  Not that I don't like Jennifer Lawrence because I've truly loved all of her previous performances but I just didn't care for the "slowed down" version of her that was in this movie.  I mean I know an actress has to show range in all of their projects...it just didn't do it for me and hell...what do I know and yeah...she's the current golden girl so I wasn't surprised.

I'm also not stupid.  

I know there weren't a lot of movies with Black people in them again so I wasn't expecting more representation during the nominations.  There was "Creed," and "Straight Outta Compton."  Those were pretty much the only two widely released films with significant roles for Black people in them directed by Black people.  Both good movies...to me.  Did I expect "Straight Outta Compton" to get more nods?  Honestly...no.  But "Creed?"  Yeah...I did.

I'm constantly trolling The New York Times' Opinion Facebook page and read comments I expected to read about the "blacklash" regarding the nominations.  And a lot of people didn't seem to get it.  I'm talking White AND Black people.

It's not about the nominations.  I honestly hope they really try and be inclusive.   It's about the filmmakers and casting directors and the people with the clout to greenlight films.  It's about OPPORTUNITY.  

One commenter got a lot of likes for saying something like...it's about talent.  If you're not talented, you don't get nominated, simple.  People were like...YEAH!  SAY THAT!  NO AFFIRMATIVE ACTION IN MOVIES!  

And I rolled my eyes because...DUH...it is about talent and, more importantly...the opportunity to showcase that talent.  You can be as talented as Denzel, Cate and Leonardo but if you're not getting the opportunity to show  you're talented...THEN WHO IN THE HELL KNOWS YOU'RE TALENTED EXCEPT FOR YOUR MAMA???????????

So yeah...I was/am salty.  All of that talk that went on last year based on the success of the first season of "Empire" which blew the viewing numbers out of the water was just that...TALK.  While folks were talking and celebrating yet another magazine cover with a Black actor on it, movies were in full post-production about to be rolled out for awards season.  The same names had the same opportunities to show how great they are.  The same names DIDN'T have opportunities.  

Same old, same old.

I was only surprised that so many people were surprised.

Still doesn't mean I wasn't salty though.

What say you?  Were you surprised?  Were you salty?  Do you care?

Racial Fatigue: Become friends with the monster...

I'm a cancer survivor, an infertility survivor and a child abuse survivor.  In other words...life has dealt me a few blows that I've had to work really hard at overcoming.  This disease that I can't seem to overcome unscathed however?  Racial Fatigue.  I'm about to topple over from this shit.  Seriously.  It's too much.  Everyday there is more ish and people figure out how to rope all kinds of ish into it to make every.single.thing about race and how Black people ain't shit, weren't ever shit and never gonna be shit and lawd...I'm so over it.  I'M SO OVER IT.  

I watched that video of that football player who punched the chick at the bar.  When I first saw the video I was like...damn...he shouldn't have hit her like that.  But then I read the story and I understood.  She called him THE SLUR before she hit him and he was trying to keep her hands off him and then he just snapped and laid her azz clean the fug out.

I UNDERSTAND.

I don't want men hitting women.  Duh.

I don't want women hitting men.  Duh.

BUT GOTDAMMIT I'M SICK OF MOTHERFUCKERS THINKING THEY CAN GET REAL SLICK WITH THIS RACIAL ISH AND THINKING THEY ARE ON THE LANDING OF TARA GOING WITH THE WIND AND SHIT.

There are signs out here with that damn flag on it saying, "Keep the flag, change the speaker."  Like...them signs popped up the next day of the current flag controversy.  Nice signs.  PROFESSIONALLY PRINTED SIGNS.  Somebody sat down at their computer immediately and designed that gotdamn sign and then saved that shit to a thumb drive.  Then they went to a PROFESSIONAL SIGN PRINTER and had them damn signs printed up.  Approved the proofs.  AND PAID FOR THEM!  Stands and all.  Then...they knew exactly where they could put that shit up and be like...THEY COOL WITH IT.  I KNOW.  You spent all that time and all that money promoting something which symbolizes hate and oppression to so many people.  Just don't give a fug huh?

JUST DON'T GIVE A FUG.

JUST DON'T GIVE A FUG.

And Black people ain't no damn better.  Fools running around here talking about they trotting out Bill Cosby to distract you from Charleston, that damn flag and racism.  GOTDAMMIT WHY THE FUG I CAN'T THINK ABOUT MORE THAN ONE THING AT A TIME?  WHY THE FUG YOU GOTTA TRY AND LIMIT ME TO ONE THING AT A TIME?  OH?  I AIN'T BLACK ENOUGH CUZ I HAVE THE BANDWIDTH TO BE OUTRAGED ABOUT MORE THAN ONE THING AT A TIME?  Cosby been raping and all these damn fools know he drugging folks but still slurping his jello shots.  

People mad at Black fashion bloggers cuz they just talking 'bout fashion.  Well shit...that's what they blog about!  Don't assume that just because they aren't deviating from their chosen business message that they don't talk about these issues in their personal life.  I mean hell...how many businesses yall know out there polarizing folks and surviving?  Them damn bakeries that refused to make cakes for gay people are OUT.OF.BUSINESS.  Ain't nobody got time to mix up their money behind systematic shit bigger than life.

SHIT!

I was called a racist by a stranger behind that damn flag.  Me.  A racist.  Okay. *YAWN*  Rat bastid quick to say some ish like...THAT'S REVERSE RACISM! 

SIP:  SHUT.THE.FUCK.UP!

And Donald Trump?  And all these damn Republican candidates tipping around not saying anything conclusive setting up a pick for Jeb Bush so he can trot out his Latina bride as a stop gap?  Yeah...we see you Jeb.  We see you.  I gotta hand it to you...that one was perfect.  

So yeah...I'm suffering bad from Racial Fatigue.  Bad man.  I'm so sick of and tired of this ish.  I'm tired of the disparities I see from my vantage point.  I'm tired of the for real serious wrongs that folks turn a blind eye to.  I'm tired of feeling like there is nothing I can do no matter what I do.  I'm tired.  I'm tired.  I'm tired.

There is nothing I can do about how individuals think, of course.  I can just continue to be me and see something, say something when I feel like it.  I've always surrounded myself with good people without focusing on visual differences.  I always try and see it from all sides but I'm tired.  I'm so very, very tired.  This is how people become hermits.  This is how people just start collecting dogs, cats and reading books.  Tipping out every now and then to buy fruit salad in a can running their grocery carts into the back of people cuz they are just trying to get outta there and back to their home/haven as quickly as possible.

This climate is a moral sickness we're all suffering from and the antidote lies within our hearts.  Empathy.  That's all we need to start using.  Empathy.

"I'm friends with the monster that's under my bed.  Get along with the voices inside of my head.  You trying to save me stop holding your breath.  And you think I'm crazy, you think I'm crazy! Well that's not fair!"

FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!!!!! GO ME!

I was in Target the other day doing what we all do in Target...roam around looking for ish to buy with that red sale dot that we don't need to buy but it's super cute and it's on sale and well...it's really, really cute and really, really cheap.

Yall know how Target sets us up for failure.  Humph.

Well...I rounded a corner and saw this:

Patio umbrellas?  Rugs?  50% off?  I AM SO HERE FOR THAT!!!!!  I snapped a quick pic and sent it to Robby and then to my sister because I knew she'd been looking for one.  Then I sent it to a few girlfriends in the event they were too.  I mean...I NEVER find umbrellas for 50% off.  The most I ever see is 30% off.  I AM HERE FOR A SALE!  I'd been saying we needed to get one but then I was like...do I need to add to the stuff we have to move soon but again...for 50% off...NO.BRAINER.

So I made my decision wisely.  Picked a nice neutral color, rustproof, etc. Basically...I got the most expensive one they had.  Why?  FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!  OH YEAH!

I'm damn near skipping to the register.  The  young lady scans it and I note the price didn't reflect FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!!!!!  OH YEAH! Me...the signs say 50% off.  Her...um...  So, I show her the picture.  She makes her light flash.  Manager comes over.  Manager leaves.  Manager comes back, hits a few buttons and makes the umbrella price FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!  OH YEAH!

Manager:  It's supposed to only be the rugs but it's not your fault.

Me:  *BLINK*  So...it's NOT fifty percent off (no caps)?

Manager:  *sigh*  No.  They were supposed to separate the rugs from the umbrellas and only put the signs on the rugs.  

Me:  Damn.  Sorry.  So...

Manager:  Enjoy your umbrella.

And I drove my cart out slowly, hesitantly.  Dragging my feet.  Called Robby.  Told him.

Him:  FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!

Me:  (getting excited again)  Yup!

Him:  AWESOME!

So I came home, put up my new patio umbrella, made me a good lunch and sat outside to enjoy it under the lovely new shade created by my umbrella which was FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!

And then the flies came.  

It was hot as hell.  

I dropped my damn big piece of chicken swatting away flies cuz know what else likes damn shade outside in the damn heat?  YOU GUESSED IT!  FLIES!  DAMN FLIES!

I had to change clothes cuz it was really humid as hell outside and the big piece of chicken was barbeque and now I had a damn stain on my t-shirt AND my shorts where the damn chicken rolled down and then I had to go out and get a damn fly trap cuz seriously???????  I HATE FLIES!  I HATE FLIES!  DIE!  JUST DIE!!!!!

So I picked a cute one. (THIS ONE) That could hang from my new umbrella.  And then maybe I could enjoy the damn thing.

Now that I think about it...it just might be jinxed.  You know...cuz it wasn't FIFTY PERCENT OFF DAWG!

*sigh*

go.me. (no caps)

Has this ever happened to you?  Did you feel guilty?

Pool Party + Police = Dammit I'm tired hell!

When I'm at a pool, I act a donkey's butt.  I love pools.  I'm not around pools often so when I am...WHEEEEEEEEEEEEE!  SPLASH!  AND WHEEEEEEEEEEEEE SOME MORE!

When I was a teenager and around a pool?  YAAAAAAAAAAAAS!  SPLASH!  SPLASH!  SPLASH!

Kids and teenagers act like kids and teenagers around pools.  Pool parties are not tea parties.  Nobody is sitting around with their pinky out messing up some crumpets.  They are fun and loud and filled with laughter, music etc.

That's what goes on at pool parties.

Now...I don't know who the hell, what the hell nor do I know all the hells...but this nonsense regarding calling police on kids really needs to stop.  Call the parents.  Unless you FOR REAL feel like your life is danger...don't call the police on kids.  For a few reasons.  First off...we've all been kids.  We've all done really stupid things as kids.  Things we would never do today.  It's called maturing.  Most of us seem to do that pretty well with guidance from our Elders.  Getting police involved in silly teenager ish just seems silly.  Police have enough on their hands dealing with FOR REAL crime and criminals.  A pool party getting loud?  COME ON PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!  Think about the pool parties you've attended...how many of them were in the library?  How many of them were filled with quiet people reading books?  The best pool parties of your life...did anybody get shot up?  Anybody died?  Was their looting?  Mass murder-ation?    Was there straight up debauchery going down?  (Well...there prolly was.  Yall know there is always a group of at least three girls in heels with the itty-bittiest of bikinis on stunting on land cuz they AIN'T getting in the water...)  LOL!  N.E.WAY!!!!!!!!!

Pool parties.

Yeah.

So...what was going down wrong?  Well...according to what I've read, the party was at the community pool of the subdivision.  According to HOA rules...each household can only have 2 guests.  Well...according to the young lady who threw the cookout/pool party...most of the attendees were residents of the subdivision and they'd all attended school together.

But the young lady could have said that because she was reminded of the HOA rules.  Now...let's backtrack here...I'm on the phone currently with Dr. Punkin and I just said...well...you know if we were teenagers rolling around and somebody called us and told us such-and-such was having a pool party what would we do?  

Dr. Punkin:  Go to the pool party!  

Me:  Yup.  Her mama make good potato salad!

And we laughed because really...that seems to be all you can do these days when something like this comes up.  You discuss, find something to laugh about and keep reading about it  cuz really...da hell we gonna do about it?  We know how we feel about calling police on kids.  It's not something we do unless we honestly felt our life was in danger from a kid.

Now...community pools have rules so yeah...you gotta do what the people say do right?  AND...if you want to have a party...your HOA should have guidelines you can follow to be allowed to do so right?

Right.

Okay...so...there were Black kids and White kids at the party...but the only kids being targeted were Black.

When I first saw the video the volume was turned off.  I saw this policeman roll on the ground like he was doing a stunt for a movie and start running after kids.  I then saw other policemen acting like policemen should act and turned on the volume.  They were TALKING to the kids trying to figure out who should be there and who shouldn't.  One police officer was basically telling the kids to not take off running when they see police and I'm thinking...um...I don't want any parts of kids being around police with guns so I don't want them running either.  I'd prefer they backed away slowly and got home SAFE.

Yup.

The dude leaping through the sky like a ninjacop?  He was totally doing the most-est-er-est.

But hey...back to the pool party people.  No weapons are being concealed in bathing suits.  Bathing suits worn by KIDS.

It seems that some people chilling at the pool took issue to all the kids being at the pool.  They were chilling.  Nice day for the pool.  Hell...they pay for that pool too you know...and here comes a bunch of loud kids cutting the fool at their pool.  Now...had the kids been kids they were familiar with it makes you wonder if they'd just look up annoyed and say something along the lines of..."Stupid kids" and left to grab lunch out or just open a bottle of wine and chill out at home.  You never ever know.  

But...if the teen's account of one of the women telling them to go back to their Section 8 housing is accurate...well...I'm not surprised things got out of hand.  I'm not surprised tempers flared.  I'm not surprised it turned into a racially driven situation.

Now...the young lady on the ground?  I'm feeling some kinda way about that.  Why he needed to even touch her was beyond me.  I mean...I guess more is going to come out about it all...but yeah...a 15 year old girl in a bikini isn't a threat worth responding to with physical violence.  When she sat up and started hitting her words by popping them into her hand with the other however?  I knew it was gonna go down-t soon.  She was emphasizing that her mother was going to handle this ish with the swiftness.

I kept watching hoping she'd stop talking.  Hoping it wouldn't escalate.  Hoping that nobody would get killed.  

Someone sent me a message asking if I'd seen the video and what my thoughts were regarding.  I told him that honestly...it just made my already tired heart even more weary.  

Just like a few good kids can spoil a pool party for everyone...just as a few jerky adults can spoil relationships between kids and adults...ONE weirdo acting cop made all the rest look bad even though the other cops seemed to be doing the right thing.

But...what do we do?  What can we do?  I'm sitting here about to finish reading my book.  If yall think of something EFFECTIVE besides my writing about it...let me know.  

Oh...and don't call the police on kids.  Call parents on kids unless you feel your life is in danger.  Don't make a kid jaded too soon.  Kids?  If a police officer tells you to do something...do it.  Get home safe.  The adults who love you will sort it all out once you're home safe.

Thanks in advance.

THOUGHTS?????

 

Scenario from real life...

Scenario Header.jpg

It's dinner time and there are leftovers.

Two people.

Person A warms their food in the microwave and then puts person B's food in the microwave.

Person A...let's call him Robby, sits down to eat his food.

Gets REAAAAAAAAAAAL comfortable with it.

Then...he realizes his food isn't as hot as it should be.

Person B...let's call her Monnie, is waiting for her food to warm properly.

Should Robby...

A.)  Wait until Monnie's food is warmed properly, let her get her food and then put his food back in the microwave?

B.)  Take Monnie's food out before it's finished, put his food in, heats his food properly, removes his food and put Monnie's food back in to finish heating properly talking some...BUT I WAS ALREADY EATING!!!!!!!!!

THANK YOU IN ADVANCE FOR YOUR ANSWER.

New Universal Rule!

This frustrates me beyond reason so the people I talk to regularly on the phone know this is what we do.  If I called you and the call drops while we're talking...I will be the one who calls back.  If you called me and the call drops while we're talking...you should be the one who calls back cuz if I get voicemail more than once...I'm so annoyed I won't even remember what we were talking about.  LOL!

What about you?  Does this frustrate you too?

Fug 'em!

I can't tell you enough how to not worry about people who aren't worth worrying about.  Every second you spend on them is taking away from you being the light you need to be.  

FUCK.

THEM.

Do you.

And smile because you're genuinely happy.  If you're not happy...don't smile.  That fake ish is for the birds.  Tweet...tweet!

Complainers Are Drainers

Do yall have someone in your life who is ALWAYS complaining no matter what?  It could be the sweetest thing and yet they will find one thing they can harp on.  They could get a new car.  Free.  Right off the back of the car delivery trailer and they will complain that the car came sleeve wrapped for protection and they chipped a nail trying to pull the sleeve off.

I always wonder if that's just their personality or whether or not life beat that into them.  I mean...if it's their personality I guess I get it.  If you can't help that initial reaction without therapy then okay.  Hell...I have issues I'm not working on either.  Hopefully one day you'll prioritize working on that.  If life beat it into them however, I wonder what happened to their memories of better times.  Were there ever better times?  When life beats the joy out of you...can you ever regain that trust in the possibility that good things are coming?  Can come.  Probably came...but you may have missed it?

The people who always complain in YOUR life...is it their personality or did life beat joy out of them?  How do you deal with them?  Is the constant complainer YOU?  Do you notice when you're complaining?

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream Smaller at Same Price = NO

Dear CeraVe:

Your moisturizing cream has been my moisturizer of choice for a while now.  I was almost out last week and purchased another container when I went to Target.  I thought the container looked smaller but I couldn't be sure until I brought it home and put it next to the older container.

DUDE.

SERIOUSLY?

You just tried to sell me 75% of the product I used to buy for the same price of $12.99.  I say TRIED because yeah...this is what it looks like now:

In the bag.  With the receipt.  Going back to Target.  Never to grace the counter of my bathroom again.  I'm back to using Gold Bond.  14 ounces for $8.  No-ice.