FINALLY FAMOUS: Big Sean’s Concert


Sean Anderson. He’s also known as Big Sean. He’s from Detroit, Michigan and went to the same high school that most of my friends went to. He grew up around the corner from where I spent most of my childhood years. We’re from the same place but yet living completely different worlds now.

Anyway. I recently was able to check out one of his concerts for the first time. He performed at the University of Central Florida. There was a huge, mixed crowd. It was great to see somebody from my hometown get so much love from several different races. As I looked around, I couldn’t help but smile at the white faces mouthing every lyric of his songs, just as the black faces were. It made me proud. I don’t know him personally, but it’s not about that. We have a Detroit connection. People from where I’m from don’t usually get life-changing opportunities like the one Big Sean has. People don’t usually make it out on top. You wouldn’t understand.

Enough of that, here’s a little video I put together of the concert. I noticed that I had quite a few videos in my phone of the show, so I decided to do something with them. This was all shot and edited on my iPhone.

This was a hip-hop concert, so just a heads up, there is explicit language in some of the songs. If that’s not your thing, hey, I warned you. If that is your cup of tea, enjoy!

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Those Flags Are Red for a Reason

“God, please show me a sign. If he isn’t the one or if he is out to harm my heart, show me. Give me signs.”

It’s a talk some of us may or may not have had with God. You’re dating a new guy or chick. You’re feeling him or her. They make you smile and even give you those little butterflies that you use to get during puppy-love days. However, it’s too good to be true. You often ask yourself, “Self, why is this person so dope?” You may even ask why he or she makes you so happy. There has to be something wrong? Right?

You could be right. There could be everything wrong with this person. Or, you could be trippin’ because they could be innocent and just right for you.

For those of you who have talked to God and asked Him to show you red flags, just know, He will! Often times though, as soon as we ask for those signs, God gives them to us, then we ignore them! We make every excuse to ignore them. We always try to give that person the benefit of the doubt. “Oh, maybe it’s not what I think.” Yep. It’s what you think. “Well maybe he or she will change.” Nope. They probably won’t. The signs are there. They have always been there. Don’t get too caught up in “wanting a bae” or get “sexmatized,” that you’re suddenly blind to the blatant foolery.

So, he never really invites you over to his house. Red. Oh, he only really comes over when the sun goes down. Red. He blocked you and your homegirl from his Instagram page. Red. His ex is posting pictures of a home-cooked dinner from inside his house, but according to him, “They don’t really talk like that.” RED! In fact, all of these flags are red as ever. They are red for a reason, so that it’s bright enough for you to see them.

God loves you. He loves you more than anybody ever could. So, when His child is dealing with someone that isn’t honest or loyal, He will show you. It may not be immediately, but He will put you up on game. We don’t always know what bae is doing, but God knows. He’s clutch. He will come through with the alley-oop. However, it’s on you to dunk it. Don’t ignore the red flags. Those flags are red for a reason.

That Melanin Doe…

melanin 3

The blacker the berry, the sweeter th…..you know the rest.

Let me start by saying that there is nothing more phenomenal than that dark, chocolaty skin.  It’s like no other. No, literally, it’s like no other! What other pigment glistens in the sun, tans so effortlessly, and ages like, again I say, no other. That melanin doe! Nothing is more dope than the silkiness of that honey-like, caramel-like and fudge-like skin.

Sad enough though, I didn’t always appreciate what God had blessed me with. I didn’t always like the skin that I was in. I lowkey hated that I took after my mom and I got her complexion. Needless to say, I wasn’t here for it.

When I crept out of that womb, I was dark. I was blessed from the second I moonwalked out of my mama’s vag, and I didn’t even know it. I was just a tiny [actually really chubby] baby. Who knew that I had what people spent thousands of dollars on to have.

Even in elementary school, I couldn’t grasp it. I was always one of the darkest girls in my classroom, so naturally I was teased. I was called all types of names. Chile, I have heard it all. Kids are cruel. It was easy to believe that I wasn’t beautiful because I wasn’t high-yellow. So, in elementary school, I believed I was less than. I didn’t feel like I was ugly, just not as pretty as the light-skin girls. I carried that with me through middle school too. It didn’t matter how many strangers would stop me throughout my childhood and say “Oh my goodness, you have such pretty skin.” I still didn’t see it.

It wasn’t until I got to the summer going into my 10th grade year of high school that I started to think, “Hmmm, I’m fine.” Ok, that sounded a bit conceited but I wasn’t, I promise. Anyway, I went just about my entire life thinking that being dark skin was a bad thing, but that summer, my entire perspective on that changed. I remember starting my first job. I was a lifeguard [yes, black people can swim and can swim well] working at a water park in Detroit. It wasn’t until I had to stand in the hot sun 50 hours a week and turn 3 shades darker, that I realized that this was beautiful as fuck.

When I tanned, I turned a color that I describe as “golden-black.” I was dark, like really chocolate but the hairs on my skin would turn this gold color. I can’t really explain it, just know it was dope. Not only that, but the guys were noticing. Just about every guy who worked there tried to “talk” to me. My nickname became “Chocolate.” I start feeling myself. It wasn’t just the attention I got from guys, because I’m sure my thick thighs and curves did most of that, but I finally started to see how attractive that thing called melanin really was.

So, the summer of 10th grade year was enlightening for me. Sure, I still had insecurities, I was a 15-year-old girl, but my complexion was no longer at the top of the list. You couldn’t tell me nothing. I wore my natural color on my sleeves. When I got to college, it was really over. I was hella black, hella proud.

About 3 years ago, I was around 22, there was a girl who didn’t like me, because she was now dating my ex. Go. Figure. She would try to call me every “dark” name in the book. She tried hard too. Even went out of her way to insult me. Little did she know that I was proud in my skin. So, her shade [or lack thereof] didn’t bother me. It would’ve worked had I been about 13,14. But she was just too little, too late.

I think it’s so sad how we try to bring each other down as black people. At some point we have to fight for each other, there are already too many people fighting against us. No matter the shade, we’re all still [dare I say it] black. It wasn’t the white kids at school who would make fun of my skin tone, it was the black kids. We’re so cruel to one another.

It took me until the age of 15 to recognize my beauty. Sad thing is, it takes some people even longer. There are some folks older than what I am right now, walking around hating who they are and how they look. It’s disturbing to think about. I’ve read stories about people bleaching their skin and permanently changing their eye color and I really just can’t wrap my head around it. Why? Why would you take something as gorgeous as black skin, and ruin it? I guess I get it, I was once lost too, but I couldn’t imagine being any other way.

Don’t get me wrong, I love all people. I think all people are beautiful. However, when it comes to my people, chile, I’ve never seen a more beautiful sight. From the high-yellow, to the dark chocolate, we are so sexy! Who else can look 35 at 65? Nobody? Oh. That’s what I thought. We’re beautiful. God took His time when He made us. Value that melanin you little black baby, own it. You’re dope.

P.S.

I was inspired to write this after reading about a photo shoot by Chandler Easley that showcased just how beautiful black people are. All he did was put black women of all shades in front of colors and the pictures did the talking. See more here.

Ladies, I Blame You

He was tall. Honey-like skin. Nice smile. Well-dressed. Nice car. And a down-right idiot.

I have this homegirl, Mariah. The other night, she was returning a Redbox movie when she was approached by a handsome young man. He had all of the fittings for her. Sure, she’s into chocolate men, but this guy made her look twice. The first words out of his mouth were not “Hey, how are you.” Instead, they were “So, you’re about to go home and watch that movie by yourself huh?” She laughed. He laughed. She thought it was funny. He proceeds to tell her that she was a “lonely girl” and didn’t have a man, as if every black woman is manless. I mean, he was right, but still haha.

So, he kept coming with the jokes. Then he says “Since I know you’re lonely and going home to no one, can I come watch the movie with you?” At this point, she’s listening in awe, shocked that this is how he’s trying to get with her. He’s basically trying to insult his way right into her heart. He keeps it coming, “Let me come to your house.” He’s saying all this while being on the phone [with another girl.] My friend then says “See, you’re on the phone right now with a girl.” His great response back, “So what, she doesn’t matter.” So again he asks Mariah if he could come over to watch a Redbox with her, she finally says “No.” He then says “I didn’t wanna come over and watch a movie with you anyway, you’re probably a bad movie watcher.”

Listen, when I tell you I laughed so hard at that line. What exactly is a “bad movie watcher?” I tell ya, you guys are somethin’ else!

When Mariah told me about that, I laughed. It was funny to both of us. But I couldn’t help but think that he’s used those lines before, and guess what, it worked! Somewhere in the past, he has tried to guilt a chick into feeling lonely, asked to come over and it has worked. He was handsome, and had he acted like he had some sense, he could’ve probably got my friend’s number and maybe even got the chance to come over somewhere down the line. However, he didn’t feel he had to, because if it worked before, it’ll work again. Sad thing is, I’m sure it will.

Also, the other day, a guy asked me if I wanted to “sit on his face.” Like, out of nowhere, that’s how he started the conversation, as if I looked like I sit on random guys’ faces for sport. You know what, he’s used that line before and it probably got him exactly where he wanted to be, submerged in ass. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?

Between dudes trying to talk to me and my friends, I’ve just about heard it all over my teenage/young adult years. I’ve even witnessed guys get with girls by saying the rudest things imaginable.

I say all this to say, ladies, these guys out here only do what they think will work. All it takes is for one vulnerable, low self-esteem woman to say yes to their foolery. After that one yes, they feel like they have won over the female species. If it got them laid once, it’ll more than likely get them some again.

That’s where WE come in. I say we, because I am a woman. Ladies, if you stop giving in so easily then it will force these guys out here to do better. You guys have to stop falling for these disrespectful lines just because he’s chocolate and bearded. Don’t get me wrong, a bearded chocolate man in a suit is my weakness, but understand that you deserve to be approached like a lady. Stop making it so easy for them. I figure if every lady shuts down the guy who approaches them with BS, then dudes will automatically have to step up their pick-up game skills. At the end of the day it comes down to knowing your worth and what you deserve as a woman. If you allow him to step to you with disrespectful, wack lines, then trust me, you won’t be the only or the last girl he tries it with. It’ll just become a cycle.

So, after you get mad at that dude who approaches you with foolishness, get mad at the girl before you who that actually worked on. Blame her, because I do.

Blowing Rocks…a Beautiful Escape

Florida is such a weird state. There are weird people, weird laws and it’s just an all around whacky place. I mean, it’s home to Casey Anthony and George Zimmerman, so, ya know. Anyway, with all of the bizarre crap that Florida has to offer, there are some drop-dead gorgeous sites.

Tucked away inside of Jupiter, Florida lies a little slice of heaven called Blowing Rocks Preserve. It is amazing. First, before you even get to the magic, you’re surrounded by big, beautiful mansions and palm trees. My eyes were big as I gazed out the window looking at the driveways that were about a block long. Sigh. One day. Then you walk into this nature-ry, rain forest-sy type area. There are trees and leaves everywhere. I’m not a “nature girl” by any means, but I liked it. Minus the spiders. Oh, those spiders. They were as huge as Peter Parker himself. Anyway, as you walk, there’s this canister with a sign saying that it was $2 to enter. There are no employees around. All they want is for you to be a stand-up citizen and drop your dollars into the canister, which I thought was cool. Yes, we were stand-up citizens just in case you were wondering haha. Then, it happened. I fell in love when I saw this.

It was really jaw-dropping. Looks like we were somewhere out of the country. Nope. We were just in lil ol Florida. The scenery was amazing. I’ve never seen water as dope as this at any of the beaches here. Another good thing, there were not many people there. That sand though, oh man it was hot! I tried to take off my sandals and walk, but it felt like I was walking on the flames from hell.
The hot sand was a small thing to a giant. I couldn’t wait to hop into that perfectly-blue water. You couldn’t just hop in though. You had to maneuver through the rocks. They were everywhere and boy were they sharp! There were times when I tried to sit on the edge of the rocks and look cute. Nope. Those waves came, knocked me right on back to reality. I mean, those waves and those rocks were disrespectful. I really get why they call it Blowing Rocks. I scrapped my leg on one of the rocks. So, I am now walking around with bandages on like a child.
I didn’t let that stop me though. Naturally, I got right in, swam around and it was lovely. The water was the perfect temperature, but it was really salty. I mean, Lawry’s had nothing on this water. Still, I was in awe. It was just so pretty. I brought my snorkel and mask so I got to snorkel and see some dope underwater life. It was unlike anything I’ve experienced before. I’m a girl from Detroit. We don’t have beaches. You can’t just go snorkeling whenever you want. We don’t have sites as beautiful as this one. As I was under water, and as I was treading water, I just looked around and soaked it all in. What a great God we have. His work is like no other. Blowing Rocks was truly a beautiful escape. Whatever problems you have, take a trip there, it’ll make you forget about all of your woes for the moment. While there with my friends, I just reflected on how blessed I am. Everything may not be perfect or exactly how I would like them to be, but they are exactly how God wants them to be at this very moment.

A New Feel…

The thought of starting over is exhausting. Just thinking about how much effort and time it takes to get to know someone new makes my head hurt. I was talking to one of my homegirls the other day and we both were saying how difficult it is to find the strength to date. As a full time working woman, time doesn’t just grow on trees. It’s very precious and the thought of wasting any of it is just unbearable. We talked for a while about all of the cons of dating, but never the pros. Sure, it takes a lot of hard work, but so does everything else in our lives. It wasn’t until now that I realized that maybe we as women or people in general, put off dating due to other factors.

One of them: fear. It’s not that we don’t have the time, it’s that we’re afraid future bae will be just like old bae. We’ve invested months and even years into a person before and it ended in less than a ring. So, now, that sets the tone for your future dating endeavors. There’s a fear of heartbreak.

Also, the thorough contentment of being with yourself. You’ve been single for so long that it feels weird to even think about anybody else. Trust me, I get it. I haven’t had a long-term relationship in a while. I briefly explained some of that in my last post. You like being able to come home after a long day of work and just do nothing. You like not being bothered with people sometimes. You like not having to check in with someone and consider somebody else’s feelings. Oh, don’t I get it! I’m right there with you. But, we shouldn’t let that stand in the way of getting to know someone.

Another thing, it’s not even really that we don’t have the time, it’s that we’re lazy. We don’t want to make the time. I’ll speak for myself right now. At first (and kinda right now actually) I didn’t want to work hard. No other excuse other than I just really didn’t feel like it. It takes so much effort! You have to learn what they hate. Study what they like. Find out what their bad habits are and decide if you’re willing to get over them. “What’s your favorite color?” “You like your eggs scrambled or sunny-side up?” “How was your last relationship?” Blah, blah, blah. And not only do you have to learn about that person, you also have to learn a whole new family! Now, that can be even more exhausting than learning about bae. It’s really hard work, and sometimes I just feel like I don’t feel like going through the trouble.

Fear, contentment, laziness. All of that could block you from your blessings. God is waiting to bless us with our husband or wife, but because we’re afraid, or we like being alone or we just don’t feel like putting in the work, we’re going to miss the bae bus. Don’t be afraid to experience that “new feel.” Yes, dating is tiring sometimes, but the feeling you get when you’re in something new and fresh is awesome. Getting butterflies in your stomach when bae comes around. Or talking for hours about nothing. Randomly smiling at work because you thought of something cute he or she said to you. The fresh moments of dating are priceless. The first hug, the first kiss, the first smash. Those are all moments that should be worth ridding yourself of the fear, contentment and laziness. Dive into the pool of newness and bask in the ambiance of that new feel. It’s a high. Don’t let that high go to waste.

Thanks for reading!

Share Your Energy

The great thing about getting older is being able to grow and learn from previous experiences. I started truly dating when I was about 15. That’s 10 long years haha. Within that time, I’ve learned a few things. One and probably one of the most important, learning to share my energy. I had to learn that dishing out 100 percent of my energy is not the same as giving 100 percent to the relationship.

My longest relationship was about 5 years. The longest 5 years of my life, but it was a good ride. I learned so much about “love” and myself. It was exhausting at times. But what was even more tiring was the thought of having to do it all over again one day, and with someone new. Since that relationship ended years ago, I have not been in a long term relationship or what I call “a relationship that I actually took seriously.” It’s not that I haven’t had the chance. It’s not that I haven’t met great guys who wanted to be with me. Looking back, I’ve probably swerved someone who could’ve possibly been my future husband. But it’s because during that 5-year relationship, I focused a lot on him. I was wrapped too much in him. A lot of my energy went towards him. I mean, he was my first love, so naturally, he was a big part of my life. So, when that ended, I felt like I had no energy left. I took the breakup hard. I felt like I had nothing left to give myself, let alone anyone else. That’s a very dangerous space to be in. It’s hard to believe sometimes. I can’t believe I gave someone THAT MUCH of my energy. That’s just like being stranded on an island with one other person and you both are starving. You both find a big, juicy steak, but instead of you eating half and the other person eating half, you give it all to that person. What sense does that make to die of starvation? That’s kind of what giving away all of your energy feels like.

Anyway, after some time after that relationship, I began to feel rejuvenated again. I began to feel energized. But for a change, that energy was for me. I focused on myself. I wanted to enjoy myself. So I did that. I wanted to focus on getting my degree. So I did that. Then I wanted to land a job in my field. So, I did that. My energy was finally just for me. While doing all of these things, I was entertaining men, having fun, but I wasn’t willing to give them the energy that I had reserved for myself. So, needless to say, those relationships went nowhere fast. And deep down, that’s what I wanted.

So, now that I’m enjoying my life, I have my degree, I now have my second job in my field, a thought crossed my mind. “Am I ready to share my energy?” I think a lot of people become content with being with themselves. I think that’s the issue some of my friends have. I mean, it makes sense. You don’t want your time wasted. You don’t want your energy wasted.

If I’ve learned nothing else from my past relationship, it’s that I don’t have to give bae all of my energy. Again, giving 100 percent to the relationship is NOT the same as giving away all of your energy. Share it. I can still support you. I can still cook for you. I can still give you all the affection that you allow me to. I can still be a great significant other and give 100 percent, without completely draining myself ,physically, emotionally and spiritually. Find that balance. You can’t love a person more than you love yourself. After God, you come next. If you’re not 100 percent, you’re not worth much to bae. Don’t be afraid to share your energy. If you learn how to do that, you’ll never be completely without IF things go wrong. You’ll still have strength to pick yourself up after it’s all over.

So, I now understand what it means to be there for myself during a relationship. I’m ready to share my energy with someone. I now know that being a good girlfriend and future wife doesn’t mean that I have to deprive myself. We can both share our energy with each other.

Thanks for reading!

Trying to Find Bae…One Swipe at a Time

So, where do I start…do I start from the guy with the cornrows with beads on the end of his braids? Or do I start from the bird chest guy who has “gym rat” in his bio. I’ll just start with what this post is actually about.

I’ve never been one for online dating. It was never my “thing.” Honestly, I would just rather meet my husband the old fashion way, in person. Of course, I know, the guys you meet in person could be just as wacky as those online, but the way my mind is set up, I would think everybody was out to catfish me.

Anyway. I have this friend, her name is Mariah. One day over wine, I thought it would be fun to create a “Soul Swipe” for her. Most of me did it because I knew it would be hilarious. Another part of me did it because I wanted Mariah to find bae. Who knows, a few years from now I could be standing next to her while she said “I do” to her Soul Swipin’ hubby. You never know. Now, if you guys don’t know what “Soul Swipe” is, it’s an app that generates singles in your area. It’s supposed to be mainly for black people, although we saw a couple chocolate lovin’ snow bunnies in the mix. You can pick the age range you’re into as well as how far away you want potential bae to live. You must have a Facebook page to create a profile. They basically take your info (name, age, hometown and a few pics) from Facebook. You then swipe right if you like what you see or swipe left if you haaattedd it. Then, if you both like each other, you “match” and that’s when you’re able to start communicating.

Ok, so Mariah played along. She let me swipe left and right based on what I thought she liked. For hours we sipped our wine and swiped through men in the Orlando area. Funniest thing ever! If you ever just want pure entertainment, please, download a dating app on your phone. You can thank me later.

The agreement is that Mariah is supposed to match with a guy, then go out on a date. So, stay tuned, maybe she’ll meet bae, or maybe she’ll meet a creep, either way, stay tuned.

I Struggle Daily With Wanting to be Skinny but Also Wanting More Cinnabons

I think the title pretty much explains my every day struggle. Basically, I work out, probably not as much as I should, but a whole lot more than a lot of people. I’ll say I work out at least 3 times a week, on some cases more than that. When I’m in the gym, I go HARD. I go to cycling classes, body pump classes, martial arts classes, zumba and not including the days I just go and do my own workouts. I say all this to say, at the very end of my day, I still want goodies that’ll pack on at least an instant 20 pounds. My daily struggle: cinnabons.

See, I live directly across the street from the mall. Walking distance. And in that mall, a Cinnabon that stares me right in my face. Why do they have to be so good?! I’ve loved these things since I was a kid. The cinnamon, that icing, and all of that dough! I’m not sure how much fat or calories are in those things, but I’m pretty sure it’s more than I should inhale. There’s a time when I was heading to the gym, in my full workout gear, but I heard the sweet whisper of that glazy cinnabon saying “come get me.” And I did. So, with workout clothes on, I went over to the mall, gave the cashier my little 3 dollars and some change, and went in on that thing. Needless to say, I never made it to the gym. The addiction is real, but I want to look like Beyonce, so something has got to give.

Until next time…

Why Is Death and Destruction Interesting?

Control Room

This is my first post…yay! But let me start off by explaining what it is I do for a living. Actually, I’ll start off by telling you guys a little about myself. I’m a news (senior) producer. I’m 25. And I’m single. What an exciting life right? Now, let me go into what I actually do for a living. Each morning, sometimes at 7am, sometimes at 1am, depending on the day, I search for stories to fill up an hour of my audiences’ life. Most stories are about someone getting shot to death, or a mom abusing her child. We also get a lot of men getting busted for child porn or actually trying to sleep with children. You wouldn’t believe how many pervs live in Florida.

After I find stories that would depress even the happiest person, I have to write them. That’s the fun part. Trying to figure out how to say “A man was shot and killed today in Pine Hills,” and make it sound different from a story I just wrote. It’s the same thing, every single day. It comes to a point now where things like that don’t even bother us who work in the newsroom. That’s a problem. We actually joke about those kind of stories. Now that I think about it, producers, reporters, anchors, we are all pretty dark individuals. Don’t let it be a “slow news day,” that’s when the darkness really comes out of us. During slow news days, we are all hoping someone gets murdered, just so we can have content for our shows. How crazy is that?

So, when people tell me I have a cool and interesting life because I work in TV, I just want to know, what’s interesting about writing about death and destruction?