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Monday, April 30, 2007
Going to the chapel
I had a disturbing conversation with one of my co-workers today. She told me she's desperately trying to find a man so she can get married. When I asked her why she's so pressed to be married, she told me it's because she's a virgin and she wants to have sex. She mentioned nothing about wanting to fall in love and be with her husband for the rest of her days. Nothing about the vows, but everything about the dress, the gifts, and the sex on the first night. When I pressed her more, she actually said she'd probably divorce then she'd be free to have sex with whomever she wanted with no strings attached.

I have no idea why people feel so comfortable telling me all their business, but I guess that's just the way of my world. But her comments got me thinking about all those girls that were featured in the news stories about Chastity Balls, where they signed contracts with their daddies stating that they'd wait until marriage to do the dirty. I have to wonder, with the divorce rate in this country being what it is, what would happen if those girls got divorced. Would they then be free to do whomever whenever, or would they be bound by the contract to remain celibate until marriage again?

I'm also so saddened that people actually look at marriage as a joke--something they have to do as a formality before they have sex. What about the love aspect. I know for some people, that choice is a religious one and I absolutely respect that choice, but I have no respect for people who dismiss the sanctity of the institution. I'm also left wondering if young(er) people are actually prepared for marriage. I mean, are the daddies who are signing these contracts with their daughters teaching them how to maintain a healthy marriage? Or are they simply making their daughters sign a contract for their own peace of mind, so they "know" their little girl isn't out getting her freak on.

That also led me to wonder about all the shows on TV about Bridezillas and big huge hoopla weddings. I admittedly like those shows, just because I know the "evil-bride" probably watches the show and is like "Damn I acted a fuggin fool on there". I understand the concept of a wedding being the bride's day, and while I don't agree--I feel it's a day to celebrate the couple, I know planning the event is stressful and can lead to frayed nerves. However, when I see the brides acting a plumb fool cussin out their friends and loved ones over some frou frou details, I wonder what kind of messages are being sent to young people (especially girls) about marriage as a whole. On many of those shows, the groom rarely seems excited and there is hardly any mention of love or intent to be together forever or at the very least an extended period of time.

I know money is the leading cause of divorce, but I have to wonder if more of it has to do with people marrying for the wrong reasons. Hearing ol' girl talk about marriage that way is depressing. Is it really that hopeless? Is a growing majority of us really that shallow??

I'm rambling now, so get at me in the comments.

Sunday, April 29, 2007
Cart Craptasticness
I got back not too long ago from my weekly errand running, and of course that involved a run to Targét to pick up some necessities for home. I normally wait to go there in the evenings to avoid the Sunday errand runners with kids in tow and the people who can't park their ginormous SUVs, but I figured since I was in the area, I'd stop.

I don't know if today is national cart kiss my azz day or what, but after being in there, I need a drink. Maybe I'm wrong for this, but I navigate the aisles like I do the road...I let people coming toward me go past before I make a left into the aisle, etc. Most people seem to do the same, or are at least courteous with their carts.

Normally, if I say "pardon me" or something, the person blocking the aisle will move. But noooo, we're too good to move. It seemed like every aisle I went in, there was someone blocking and I uttered my pardons and not one person moved. I had to push one lady's cart out of my way and I apologized as I did it, but she still had the gall to say "You need to look where you're going heffa". Ummmmm, there is no need to call me out my name woman, I'm just trying to buy some toilet paper just like you are. I apologized again and she actually said, "You ought to be sorry, pushing my shit out the way like that". I'm telling you, if it wasn't the Lord's day, I would have come out of my face with something un-cute. But I let it go, and went about my shopping. But in the very next aisle, the same beyotch was there with her cart perpendicular to the flow of traffic and said, "Do you need to push my cart again?". Now that was unnecessary, so I said "It's not that serious, pardon me please". She grunted at me like a forlorn pig and slid her stuff enough for me to get by.

I rolled my eyes and kept moving over to the health and beauty aisle, and on my way there somebody's ignorant ass kid slammed me in the side with the cart she was pushing. "Excuse me sweetie"

Kid: "Who you talkin to?"

Me: "You."

Kid: "You don't know me"

Me: "Ohmydamn."

Her mother or whoever she was with flew around the corner and smacked the child upside the head for being so rude and apologized to me. At least some people have sense.

Then as I was walking up the office supplies aisle, some elderly white woman was there by herself. I excused myself so I could walk around her and she clutched her bag and threw herself over her cart like I really wanted to steal her kitty litter. I just shook my head, grabbed my envelopes and walked away. But, like always, before I left the aisle I looked left and right to make sure the coast was clear. I stepped out and all of a sudden some lady pushing a whole gang of kids came out of nowhere and ran all up in my cart and violated my personal bubble. She rubbed my back while whispering some sort of pleasantry and apology as she walked past me. Boooooo, yuck!!

Finally, as I was headed for the checkout, some big ass behemoth woman in front of me stopped dead in her tracks and in some booming voice said, "Move. I'm not satisfied with my purchase. I must turn around." I was afraid she might eat me or something, so I ran like hell to the checkout, paid, and left.

Next week, I'm sending Hunny to go shopping. I can't deal.

Thursday, April 26, 2007
I value being alive...
I really enjoy being alive, really I do. However, today you may have thought otherwise. One of my girls from NYC moved down here a few months back, and she didn't have a driver's license--just not a necessity when you have 24 hour mass transit. She got her learner's permit about 2 months ago, and has been taking driving lessons. This evening, she asked me to go driving with her. I figured it would be no big deal, seeing as we were taking her mom's car (I wasn't about to let her drive my baby), and she's been in driving school.

Umm, absolutely wrong. I drove out to a fairly rural area where there is very little traffic, then let her take the wheel. We were doing fine, going along a quiet straightaway, but then we came to a stoplight and I told her to make a left. There was oncoming traffic on the other side of the light. When it turned green, this fool decided to just dart out and make her turn in front of the oncoming traffic. I heard the WORST combination of screeching tires and "What the f***". I was in a horrible accident while making a legal left turn this past August, so all I could do was put my head down and pray as my short life flashed before my eyes. Luckily, there was no crash, but I did a lot of "What the f***" in the direction of my bad-driving friend.

I told her to pull over and explain what in the name of everything good possessed her to pull a stunt like that. She feigned ignorance and said that she thought people making a left had the right-of-way. I went down the traffic laws with the quickness and let her know that what she did was hella wrong. She apparently understood, and against my bad judgement, I let her continue driving. The road we'd just turned onto didn't have any stoplights for a few miles, so I figured we were okay.

We continued on for a few miles, and I had her make another left at the next stoplight. No problems there. Yay! We were gonna be alright. I chalked up the past mistake as maybe she was just overexcited to be driving without her "real" instructor. We pulled into a parking lot and practiced parallel parking between some bales of hay that were nearby...yeah, we were across the street from two farms. She pulled that off with no problem.

After about a half hour of driving, I asked if she thought she could handle driving back to her house. I wouldn't dare take her on the Beltway--I may be a lot of things, but insane isn't one. I told her to take the streets back home, even though it would take longer. Oh my damn, worst mistake I could have made.

We were fine until we got to a pretty major road that had a speed limit of 45 MPH. Once she made the right onto the road, this chick decided to get a sudden surge of confidence. Next thing I know we were going 70. I yelled at her to slow down and instead of taking her foot off the gas or braking gently, she decided to slam on the brakes and come to a.dead.stop. in the middle of the road!! We damn near got rear-ended and had a whole rack of people going around us giving the finger. I told her to start going again, but at the speed limit, and to pull over into a parking lot a few blocks up so I could take the wheel and get us back home in one place. Well, instead of looking around her to make sure the coast was clear before she got rolling, she just slammed on the gas. No rearview check, no side mirror check, no nothing. We ended up thisclose to the back of a semi truck. I was freaking out trying to throw up every prayer I knew to Jesus, and she was sitting there nice and calm. We ambled over to the parking lot and I took the wheel and got us back to her house safely.

On the way back I asked what in the holy hell she was thinking, and she said she just had a momentary lapse in memory. How do you forget the driving rules when you're driving the car?! She told me she wants me to take her driving again, but I had to decline.

Friend: "So, am I a good driver or what??"

Me: "I pick "what". You're a driver, but you need some more lessons girl"

Friend: "Well you can be my alternate instructor. Yeah, we should do this a few times a week"

Me: "Girl, lemme put it this way...I'd rather chew on flaming aluminum foil. You need more time"

Friend: "ha ha ha. You too funny, Tash. So next Thursday?"

Me: "Ummmmmmmmmmmm.....how bout Thursday, April 44th, 2000-never"

Friend: "Hahahahahaha, ok. I'll call you tonight to figure out our schedules"

I love my girl like a sister, but I love being alive even more. Ugggggghhhh!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007
It made me go hmmm...
The first two days at my new job are over, and while I couldn't be happier about the position, I'm convinced that I signed up to be the ringmaster for a three ring circus and the moderator for Romper Room. The people who I directly work with seem to be fabulous people--everyone's been helpful and welcoming. Well, except for the uber-ghetto broads; but they're pretty much off in a corner anyway, so no one really hears from them except for the occasional "Ohmygoodnes, noyoudidn't!!" or crazy loud gum pop.

Once I set foot outside of my assigned segment of cubicles, all hell breaks loose however. Never in my life have I seen so much inter-office flirting and f%*#ing, with people just spilling their business all over the place. I witnessed an arguement at lunch between two co workers who are screwing but both cheating on their significant others. Not even two hours later while I was on my vending machine Twizzlers run, I saw the same two outside holding hands all kissy faced. Welcome to Junior High.

But even with all of that going on, I'm still happy to be back at work, and I'm settling into the position pretty well, but that's not what's on my mind right now.

Today, on my way home I saw someone in an ambulance being transported to the hospital or something, but apparently it wasn't an emergency because there were no lights flashing. The angle of the road allowed me to get a quick peek at who was inside and of course I was nosy and looked. Inside was someone who weighed 700 or 800 pounds easily. I looked again at the ambulance and realized that it was one of those special bariatric ambulances.

I can't even lie, when I saw that person inside, my most immediate thought was "you wouldn't be in that position if you didn't put all the fuggin donuts to your mouth". Yeah, I know that wasn't right. However, as I was sitting at the stoplight, I got to thinking something admittedly very stereotypical and shallow...

I've seen the talk show episodes where people have had to literally get cut out of their houses and I've also seen the super gastric bypass shows on The Discovery Channel, etc. One thing I've seen only very rarely on those shows is black people.

It's interesting to me that in general, as a culture we are more accepting of being non-skinny, but there seem to be so few cases of super extra obesity in our race. I mean, a chick with some meat on her bones tends to be the standard of sexy in our community. We've got lots of love for the church ladies, many of whom tend to be bigger than a lil bit, and we can be real quick to tell someone when they're getting too skinny but hardly ever say anything when they get too heavy.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that because we don't hear about Ms. Jenkins up the way getting cut out of her house to go have gastric bypass that means it doesn't happen, and I'm in no way saying that we're doing good on the weight scales either (umm, Mrs. Jenkins, say hello to Diabetes and Heart Disease), but hearing about morbid obesity in our community is quite rare.

Have you all noticed the same thing? What are your thoughts?? Get at me in the comments.

Sunday, April 22, 2007
Weekend Rewind
I've been MIA recently because I went up to NYC for my great aunt's 90th birthday. It's always fun to get together with the fam for a mini reunion (said with some sarcasm). I found out that a bunch of my cousins live literally right up the street from me here in the Urrea, so we'll be hooking up for a night out soon. I also had a chance to see some old family photos from 1903. That was definitely special to see who we come from.

Of course, there were the people who haven't seen me since I was about 4 years old. "Ohmygoodness, I haven't seen you since you were knee high to a grasshopper" and lots of cheek pinching. They seem to forget that in 20+ years, I grew into a woman and don't appreciate being passed around like a Cabbage Patch Kid. They also seem to have forgotten that I deal with sketchy men trying to holla all the time, so they felt the need to point out each and every one to me. "Oooooh, he was loooooking at you!! He must liiiiike you. OOOOOOOOOOOOhhhhhh". Damn yall, I'm not 14. Boooooooooo.

And of course, old people being who they are, feel the need to exert some level of control over my uterus. I was told that I need to 'give my mama some grandbabies' at least 20 times. Nevermind the fact that I'd like to finish grad school and get married first. Oh no, never that. I better pop out a baby before my reproductive organs turn to sludge--it's my obligation to my mama. When I heard it out of my great aunt's mouth, I turned to my mama and both of us just laughed. But then my mom had the nerve to say, "Well, you and Hunny's kids would be cute...". Mom dukes, I love you to death, but the closest you're going to get to having grandkids right now is my kitten and Hunny's puppy.

Before I left, Hunny and I got to talking about our living situation again. We've decided that at the end of our leases in August, we're going to get a place together, so now we're looking at townhouses (Umm, Ms. Honey Libra I'm starting to sound like you!!). It only makes sense because we basically live together as it is, and we want to be living somewhere central to both of our new jobs. We're going to visit the financial planner this week to get our stuff in order and also to work out individual retirement plans and as well as back up plans in case things with us don't work out. As unlikely as that sounds, we have to be prepared.

I start the new job tomorrow, and I'm so happy because I was really getting too good at housewifeydom. I'm used to my afternoon nap now though, so I know I'm going to be struggling to stay awake after lunch. I feel like a little kid the night before their first day of Kindergarten or something--new outfit, check...new hairstyle, check...lunch money, check...new (re)hire paperwork, check, etc. I went shopping with the girls on Friday and they said it looked like I was back-to-school shopping with all the stuff I bought. I gotta be fresh walking in there, lol.

Anyhoo, hope everyone had a good weekend and enjoyed the warm weather. Hopefully it'll last because I got a pedicure and a whole rack of open toed shoes I need to wear!

Monday, April 16, 2007
Big Mama Where Art Thou...
Pardon if all of this sounds a bit convoluted, but I'm still trying to form concrete words for my fluid thoughts.

In the wake of all the Imus brouhaha, I'm left wondering about dem hoes. I don't mean the gifted athletes that idiot was referring to, but the ones we see in videos and at the club and in line at the check cashing spot and on TV pretending to be in "Charm School". I've already made clear that I'm disgusted by how women are denigrated in videos and in rap-type (I say rap-type, cuz that shit is NOT rap. Rap is what came out of the Bronx around '79, but I digress) lyrics. It's absolutely disgusting, but I have to take a few steps back and think about the fact that they are singing about real women. And some of those real women actually appreciate, and resemble those lyrics. There are women who find that stuff appealing, who actually sign up to shake their asses in videos, who want to be tied to Snoop's leash, who enjoy being featured in Nelly's "Tip Drill" video.

We try to put the blame squarely on the shoulders of the men who spew this misogynistic trash for turning some women into gold-diggin' hoes and for creating legions of teen and 'tween wanna be skanks. But some of the blame has to lie with those women for making these lyrics acceptable.

Where the hell is Big Mama, Madea and 'nem? The current generation of video hoes have mothers, and I'm sure their mothers had Big Mamas, like many of our mothers had. Big Mama stood as the centerpiece of womanhood in our homes for generations, and her values were passed down to her daughters, and to her daughter's daughters. So what happened? We can say that a lot of the problem lies in women having babies too soon so some generational education gets lost. But there was a first group of babies having babies. Where were their mothers and grandmothers showing them their worth?

How did so many women take so many steps backward in such a short period of time? Thirty years ago, Pam Grier, Jayne Kennedy, Tamara Dobson, and Freda Payne stood as the benchmarks of sex appeal while maintaining high levels of personal respectability. Now, sexiness for many black women equates to some quarter-dressed eighteen year old shaking her over-developed ass in front of a camera. Why?? I don't know if money is a legitimate answer--money existed then, and chicks weren't rushing to show their physical delicacies for the sake of an all mighty greenback. They were rushing to get their dance on in a Soul Train line with their bodies tastefully covered up.

Why the seismic shift in values? Why does there exist such a ridiculous chasm in female priorities today? It seems like women, black women especially, have some seriously divergent ideas on what it means to succeed in a man's world. Some of us (include me in this bunch) believe we can succeed with our education, work ethic, and with our clothes on. Others seem to believe that you have to suck to succeed. We came from the same hoods, with the same music, same educational opportunities. How did so many go so wrong? How did those women make it acceptable to call me a bitch, a hoe in my music?

I struggle many days with my place as a *black* woman in this world, and it's not fair that a misguided subset of women have made it that much harder. I shouldn't have to watch young girls grapple with decisions about whether or not to expose her body for some shred of approval. I shouldn't have to watch some woman caled New York willingly promote hoe-values to attract a man while she's teaching our little girls that acting in such a manner is the definition of womanhood. There is no reason for a 13-year old to strive to be a "high-class hoe".

Big Mama, I wish you could come back and show them the error of their ways...

Sunday, April 15, 2007
Non Qualifiers Vol. 2
Mr. Too Damn Frugal...

Him and I were high school sweethearts or something like that. We knew each other growing up, went to the same church and all, and we went to high school together--well I was at the girls' school and he was across the street at the boys' school (we had some co-ed classes in high school, so don't think I suffered too bad). We didn't actually get together until after he graduated though, but I was still a junior.

But anyway, I understand for college students life is tough, but my boy had a job in the development office (which was NOT work study) so he made grown people's money. He was far from broke. I had a part time job too, so we were living cool. I had a car, he had a car...we were living hood fabulous.

I thought I was IT, because in high school all the girls wanted him, and I had him. He would come home from college most weekends to visit and we'd go out. When we first hooked up, I was working at a movie theater, so our dates usually involved my free entrance to whatever movies were showing and dinner. Somehow though, I always found myself paying for our meals. Then it happened...he paid.

"Baby, get whatever you want off the dollar menu"

"Umm, dollar menu??"

"Yeah sweetie, whatever you want. It's on me"

Maybe that doesn't sound wrong to you because after all, every couple hits the fast food spot every now and again. But when it turns into every meal together, it becomes seriously problematic. See, he really thought he was doing something because he was the one taking me out to eat instead of the other way around. I had to ask if there was a change in his employment status just to be sure I wasn't asking too much of him, but of course there wasn't. He was still making grown people's money.

One evening, when I had gone to visit him at school, I asked if we could go to eat. He said, "Sure, my treat. Where do you want to go? I hear Wendy's has a good special on right now"

Me: "Umm, I was thinking Ruby Tuesday"

Too Frugal: "WHAT!? Are you kidding me?? That place is like $12 for an entree"

Me: "Damn, well we can go half. I just got paid and I know you did too"

Too Frugal: "Well I'll just get an appetizer. But can you pay for gas? It's like 5 miles away. Gas ain't cheap you know"

Me: "Are you serious?? I just drove 130 miles out here and I paid for my gas and tolls. You should be paying me!!"

The conversation disintegrated from there. And so did the relationship. I tried like hell to look past this disturbing trend of cheapness, partially because to everyone we seemed like the perfect couple--you know, friends from childhood, high school flirts/sweethearts, etc. It was the perfect alumni/alumna story that our high schools would love to hear about at reunions and report in the quarterly alumnae update newsletter: Tasha '00 and Mr. Tasha '98 are living happily ever after blah blah blah.

But it just got worse. I bought a new car as a gift to myself for graduation (which I was making the payments for MYSELF), and instead of him being happy, he told me how irresponsible I was. We went to Johnny Rockets for dinner once (on my dime of course) and I caught this fool trying to jack the ketchup and salt and pepper shakers from the table. I asked him what in the name of goodness he was doing and he said that he needed condiments. "Sunshine, we can stop at the grocery store on the way home" to which he responded, "Why buy them when you can get them for free here". Oh hell. Just oh hell.

The mess hit the fan when I told him he needed to get new socks because his toes were hanging out of all of his. He suggested that we go to Salvation Army to get them. I was patently disgusted.

Me: "You really want to put on some other person's grody ass socks? What if they had some incurable nasty foot fungus man??"

Too Cheap: "Well, it's cheaper that way"

Me: "Is there something wrong with your bank account or your income? Are you saving up for something?"

Too Cheap: "I just want to be wise with my money. I can't be all crazy with it"

Me: "I understand wanting to be careful with you finances. That makes sense, but some stuff you just have to bite the bullet on. I'm not saying throw caution to the wind, but you're only young once. Enjoy yourself, and buy some new effin socks!!"

That was one of our final arguements. It's a damn shame that I can remember that almost word for word. I don't know how, but I managed to put up with that for a few years too long. Comfort is a sonofabitch.

Mr. Too Effin Cheap for Words, welcome to the Non Qualifiers file!

Friday, April 13, 2007
Non-Qualifiers Vol. 1
I was talking to my cradle to the grave best friend earlier and we got talking about our exes, so I decided to create a series of posts dedicated to the former Mr. La Bella Noires. I would post their pictures, but I just can't be bothered with all of the scanning and photoshopping. Ehh well. I'll be posting more of them over the next few weeks.

First up, Mr. I'm too sexy for my car...

I met this dude not long after I moved to the Urrea, and at first all seemed well. Then I met his car. Mr. I'm too sexy is one of those men that when you look at him you find yourself physically attracted to him, but without logical explanation cuz he really isn't hot. He's a big looks like he should always be sweaty linebacker type guy with some questionable facial hair and an unidentifiable hairline. Thank the stars above he keeps his head shaved.

He thinks he is one of the fast and the furious, driving one of those TINY little Honda Civic Si hatchbacks even though he can barely fit. He thinks he's hot shit because he tricked the mini-mobile out with a racing header, an air intake, and a fart-can exhaust. You can hear this lil thing coming a mile away, but he swears it's FAST. Nah son, your car is LOUD. His only concern is how fast he can make the vehicle do the quarter-mile straightaway.

Date night included trips to Rockville to sit in a gotdamned parking lot looking at other people's souped up Civics. Nevermind that he was older than most of those kids, and most of them were Asian college students with hot girlfriends and money to burn. "I want the carbon-fiber hood, so I'll trade you my exhaust for your hood" or "Yo, what are your Dyno tune numbers??" or worse yet "I'mma hook up my laptop cuz I got Hondata". I grew up around cars and racing, so I understood the lingo, but damn can we see a movie without a mention of a car? I can't tell you how many times we ended up eating dinner at Ihop with the rest of his car cohorts.

Every weekend that included Saturday and Sunday (that would be every fargin weekend), I heard "I'm gonna go to the track and see what my times are since I changed out my (insert random car part here)". It seemed like something always had to be fixed or changed out on that thing. And the difference in time trials was negligible. God forbid we were on the Beltway at night and we saw some other souped up foreign vehicle...it was race time. Occasionally we'd hit 100+ mph. Not cute for a sista with the window open. Can we say, hair.fucked.completely.up??

Honestly, I was okay with the car-love for a while. I have lead-foot tendencies myself, so being around fast cars was fun for a very short time. But things hit the shitter when I realized that he loved his car more than he liked me. How you gon' put more investment in a car than in a human being? Over the few months that we were together, he spent more than $8000 for his car, but only $15 for my birthday--a card and flowers. Celebration of the car's birthday, special car washes before we went somewhere remotely considered special (i.e. cookout, party). Like he had to stunt or something. How can you stunt when you look all smashed up in the driver's seat, homey??

Things came to a grinding halt when he spewed some BS about him still having feelings for the ex. Ehh, whateva. Boo boo was mad because I called him out about his car and told him he might want to slow down spending $$ on his baby and work on moving out.of.his.mamas.house. At age 27+, there is no excuse for having to sneak your freak because you might wake your mama.

We're still okay friends now and he's got a new wifey, so I'm legitimately happy for him. But Mr. I'm too sexy, welcome to the Non-Qualifiers file.

Back in Business
Yesterday, after getting that really jacked up news about my job and tossing my resume around like a crazy woman, I remembered that key phrase ingrained in my mind during undergrad--NET-friggin-WORK. I called up an old employer from NY, knowing that they have some outlets and connections in this area. In all of about an hour or two of conversations with HR, my old supervisor, and the hiring manager here, I found myself back on their payroll with state-to-state transfer complete. This was a company I did a modified internship with, but decided not to go full time with after graduation. I always liked the company, but wanted to get my feet wet with other companies before I made the move to the Urrea. Lucky me, cuz that is definitely NOT standard protocol for a company that daggone big.

They were more than happy to immediately welcome me back to the company, and my old supervisor basically gave the hiring manager here instructions to hire me post-haste because she remembered how good of a worker I was and just knew I'd make a lovely supervisor.

So ya girl is back in business. But my buddy JJ came through again, and let me know that there is some legal recourse I can take against the organization that screwed me over. So I will be contacting an employment attorney, not just for me, but to make sure this same bull-ish doesn't happen to someone else.

Thanks everyone for the well wishes and good karma. You all are great!!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007
Damn, talk about bad news. I was peeking through the newspaper today and saw an ad for the position I was just hired for, and not even 30 minutes later I got a call stating that the company has to renig my offer due to budget constraints. They would have to pay me so much less that it would be worthless for me to take the job, so they're looking for *ahem* less qualified candidates who would be willing to accept less money.

So what is a chick to do?? They'd given me the offer, so naturally I quit my old job. Common sense...call the old place and try to chat up getting my old position back. Not so fast, they already have a new candidate set to start making *surprise* less money.

Oh my stars! So I'm back in Monster's arse throwing my resume around like confetti. Thank God the bills for the month are paid and Hunny's willing to help me out for a lil while. But seriously, this ain't cute. I've never been in this kind of position before, and I know my worth in the job market so I won't take just anything.

Akkkk!! So I'm throwing it out there...if any of yall either work in or have some connects in the Healthcare Admin/Finance industry, lemme know.

So like on "Good Times", I gotta say "Damn, Damn, Damn!!!" Pray for me yall.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Tasha Takes on...
...The Imus Factor.

I'm not even going to go into what happened on Mr. Imus' show, because every possible news/newsblog/lateshow outlet has done that for me. But it seems like with all of the squawking going on, we're not really addressing the issue(s) completely. Here's my $.02. I know most of the black community doesn't agree with me, but oh well...

Everybody's making all this noise about how what Don Imus said was so racist. Ok, yeah I'll agree there, nappy.headed.hoes does equate to racist innuendo. But he would never have known what a nappy headed hoe is or how to use the terminology if he hadn't heard it from one of US. Yeah, I said it. We do need to take responsibility for some of this. Of course the man should have known better than to spew some stupidity like that on the air, but those words would never have entered his lexicon if some ignorant sounding black person hadn't uttered them in his presence.

I'm offended and appalled by the comments, as we all should be. However, the reaction I'm seeing is confusing me just a little bit. Before he made those comments, many college students and members of the black community had never heard of Mr. Imus. Now people are acting like a man they've never heard of, who is a walking mess of controversy anyway, has the power to destroy our race with his words. What I'm sitting here reeling over, however is the fact that we're all SERIOUSLY offended by what some scrawny, crazy looking white dude said but when we have our ign'ant azz, misogynistic wannabe hip-hop stars that look like us saying ten times worse in their music, we act like it's all status quo and stay quiet.

"Well Tasha, we have the right to denigrate our own. It's us..." or "But Tasha, that man is on MSNBC, the rappers aren't" OK, stop your bullshit immediately. More white kids buy OUR rappers' albums and know all those horrible lyrics than not. So with our music being just as mainstream, if not moreso than Don Imus' show, shouldn't we make a bigger stink about the lyrics and images we perpetuate??

Everyone wants him to be fired. But what good is that going to do? It would actually probably benefit him because he'd just get snatched up by some satellite radio company and continue his show making more money. Suspend him and make him have some in-depth conversations with us. We can't make him feel our emotions, but he needs to see better what we're about. Let him spend some time in the hood so he can see why comments like that hurt us so much. Do your show from Howard University, Grambling State...immerse yourself in our world before you open your mouth again. Firing him treats a symptom, not the problem.

Seriously, racism still exists, and rather than excommunicate the people that still live with these prejudices, we need to examine why they harbor those feelings. We can help solve the problem if we educate people and show them what we're really about.

I know I'm gonna get blasted to hell for my opinions, but get at me in the comments

Monday, April 09, 2007
Monday Mash-Up
The randomness for this Monday...

Uggghh, I think I'm officially too old to listen to the music on the radio that the DJs refer to as hip-hop. Maybe we as the listeners are being punked by the current breed of artists out there. The songs kind of meld together in my brain and I get something like this: "Put my 'Chicken noodle soup and a soda on the side' in the 'Icebox where my heart used to be'. 'My lipgloss is poppin and my lipgloss is cool' because 'She's fine too, but I want You'. 'If you were my B-U-D-D-Y', then I'd be able to say 'This is why I'm hot'. I'd 'Toot that thang up...Pop, Lock, and Drop' but I'm too busy trying to act 'Like a Boy'.

I really think in-person customer service is dead. Hunny and I went car shopping over the weekend and we stopped at one dealership to test drive a new truck. The sales lady we got was the most ghetto-ass horrible chick EVER!! We walked up to a Tahoe and she said "This is a Tahoe, it's blue". Nothing at all about the engine, what year, or anything of that nature. We asked for the keys to take it for a drive, and instead of taking a copy of both of our licenses, she only made a copy of Hunny's. When I told her that I wanted to test drive the vehicle also she had the nerve to come out of her mouth with, "Ehhh, you must be from the Boogie Down Bronx with an attitude like that". Foul on the play, hold up...what did you say?? Lemme calm down a second "Yeah, I'm from the Bronx by way of Upstate. You from there?" "No. I just know about the attitude and my girl's man is from there". You know what, let's get this test drive over and leave cuz I might come out of my mouth with something un-ladylike. It just seems like people get hired for a job and forget that they have some home training, then get to work and act like heathens.

I officially dislike Hunny's dad's people. Not all of them, but well...most of 'em. He doesn't really like them either, so I don't feel bad. Yesterday, we went for Easter dinner at his gramma's house (his dad's mom). When we got there, all of his mom's side of the family were in the family room and all of his dad's people were in the dining room. We arrived a little late, so we were forced to eat dinner in the dining room with all of the stodgy people. The whole time, I could tell that his aunt was some wannabe bougie woman with nothing better to do than tell other people how 'right' she is and tell them how to live their lives. I can tell that her and I are going to have some run ins later on. It's terrible too, because Hunny, his mom, and all of his sisters feel the same way about this aunt...so they said they would back me up if and when it comes to blows, lol. The very first time I met Meema (Hunny's mom) and his sisters, they warned me about her. I'm glad they did too, cuz otherwise I might not have been prepared for the stupidity. How you gon' tell somebody to stay out of the hood when you live in the trenches yourself??? Ohhh, my brain hurts just thinking about that woman so I'm gonna just stop.

So since Easter was yesterday and all, I figured I would see people out and about dressed in their best, but I kept seeing women in brightly colored tracksuits looking like displaced jellybeans. This:

is completely unacceptable if you look like the last time you saw a track was to attend the Melrose Games in 1979 or if the only track you know of got sewn onto your hair. And there is NO need to be wearing a teal blue velour creation with an orange cami and bright orange Pumas. Seriously, if you're at the store and the saleslady comes at you with some mess like that, JUST SAY NO!!!

Speaking of just saying no, I think my neighbor needs some D.A.R.E. classes or something. I was walking out of my apartment this afternoon just as her dude was coming out and it was like "Half Baked", "Harold and Kumar do White Castle", "Cheech and Chong", and "How High" in the flesh. Just plumes of weed smoke and dirty looking cornrows. He said, "Mornin. On my way to work ya dig?" Puhleeeeeze negro, it's 2PM. Morning is long gone, and the only thing you're working on is a trip to jail. Piss poor. At least get some Visine for those bloodshot eyes, homey.

My J-O-B asked me to wait another week before I start. Dammit man, I'm not the Bank of Tasha. I gotta work to pay these bills. Comcast ain't free and I ain't no golddigger. Can a sista get an unemployment check or something? I like the freedom, but I'm seriously bored. This housewifey shit is for the birds. I can only go to the gym so much. I mean I've lost like 8 lbs. cuz I've been at the gym like a fool. And I love Hunny to death and lunch with him every day is super, but...you know what I'm sayin.

Maybe I should go do something productive...

Sunday, April 08, 2007
Happy Easter
It's Easter Sunday, and the first in my life that I haven't been at home with my family. My parent are in Jamaica for a funeral, so I couldn't go to NY to be with them, and although I could go have dinner with my brother or any of my other family, I know it wouldn't be the same so I'm not. I'm going to have dinner with Hunny's family, and I'm kinda looking forward to the blank stares that I know I will be receiving from a few of the people that will be there (mostly his dad's side of the family).

It's kinda hard being away from my mom at Easter, since this is a hard holiday for the both of us. This was one of the last times we saw her mom healthy before she passed away, so we always sit and reminisce. There's a small part of me that hates this holiday now because we're celebrating Jesus being resurrected, but the same couldn't happen for my gramma. Not three days later, not three years later. *sigh*

For five years before I moved here, I was the Easter Bunny incarnate. My mom's sorority holds an egg hunt the day before Easter, and after one of their members moved away, they persuaded me to dress up. I lifted up more children and dug up more eggs than I can possibly count, and truthfully it was fun. "Are you really the easter bunny???" and "Can you give me a hug Ms. Easter Bunny?" and "I love you Bunny!". I loved knowing that me in a crazy costume made so many little kids happy. Even though a few times, it was about a hundred and hell degrees in that costume, I still was more than happy to do it.

Anyway, I hope the Easter Bunny treats all of you well. After dinner, I'll be digging into the basket my Godmother sent and tearing up all those jellybeans and that chocolate bunny. If you don't celebrate Easter, have a great Sunday!

Thursday, April 05, 2007
You Must Not Know Bout Me
Over the last week or so, I've gotten a whole bunch of emails from people who read this blog (leave comments, it helps me figure out who you are, mmmk)who are jumping down my throat for the extra randomness of my posts lately, or are trying to tell me that what I write about is too young or too old, or telling me that I need to be more lucid with my writing, or hurling some personal insult, or my personal favorite trying to tell me what I'm about and who I really am on the inside. I've got thick skin, this really doesn't bother me, but I'm honestly getting tired of seeing the emails and I'm in rare form today, so allow me...

I write what I want when I want. I don't care if you don't like it. If you're such a non-fan, please help yourself to the X at the top right corner of this window. I don't write to make you happy, I write because I can and because it makes me happy. I don't sit at my computer and ponder over my words to make them amenable to the goings on in your brain. I'm so glad you stop by to read what I've decided to post up here, since more than likely I've read or do read your stuff. But I write about what's on my mind; some days I'm happy, somedays I'm angry, somedays I'm sad. So there are times when my posts go from jubilant to reflective--I'm only human. I think a lot and have strong opinions, but I don't always feel like being on a pro-intellect, pro-black, pro-women, pro-whatever tirade. I like to play and be silly. Sorry if that's not okay with you.

Since there are a handful of you who think you know me better than I know myself, let me help you out and ensure you have the right facts.

I'm 24, I grew up in Albany, NY and moved to the South Bronx when I was five and shuttled between the two places for 12 years, so I claim both as home. I'm a Jamerican--my father was fresh off the boat. He left my mom with two kids when I was three, he raped me violently when I was four. My mom did her damndest to keep my brother and I in line. She sent us to private schools our whole K-12 years, and yeah I'm proud of it--more actually proud of my mom for doing so ALONE. Because of where I went to school, I'm more familiar with the term racial sellout than most of you EVER will be. Yeah, said straight to my face, as I lay on the ground with a foot in my back more than once, more than twice. I don't hate my father, even though since then he's stolen my identity, lied to my life insurance companies, and a whole bunch of other stuff you don't need to know. I'm proud of making it through that, and will discuss when asked or when I feel like it, but I don't broadcast it daily, nor do I let it define the direction of my life. If you knew most of the details, you'd think I lived in a Lifetime Movie.

I know the other side of being poor. Yeah, we were in the fancy school, but child support came when it wanted. So my mom went without more often than not. Lights have been off, no heat, watched her go through bankruptcy, I find out now somedays she didn't know how we were going to eat, but we did every day. Her mom was my rock, and she died four years ago, and I'm still destroyed. Watching her die the way she did wasn't right. She basically starved into a death by dementia. She never wanted to die in a hospital, but at least she's at peace now.

I'm supposed to be a mother, but God didn't want that to happen. I let my virginity go entirely too early, even though I knew what my mom did for a living (delivery room nurse at the time) and I knew just what the result of my actions could be. So I ended up pregnant at 15. Yeah, so when I get teary eyed over a young mom, I understand. I have a sonogram picture left to remind me of how far I've come.

My uncle is a bonafide crackhead. He told me a year ago he wished he would have molested me because I had the shape of a goddess when I was 13. He spent the $17,000 my grandpa left him when he died in four days on a crack binge. He was also left a house in NC. Sold it to buy more crack. Lied to my mom and gramma and managed to almost sell the house that was left to my mom (we didn't have money, but we had land that my grandpa owned yet didn't find that out till he died) to buy more crack. He stole my life savings, he stole my graduation money, he stole my brother's truck. Yeah, he's two shakes from the grave now, but he's sober--at last check.

I got hit by a car and landed on my back. I broke three of my vertebrae. two are fused. I have two hooks, a cage, a chunk of my hip missing to replace back bone all in my spine. But I STILL tap dance. It hurts, and most days I function in pain you couldn't imagine but I'm so used to it, that I'm almost afraid of what pain-free would look like. But you'd never know it. I run and dance in heels at the club, whatever I want. I've been tap dancing for 21 years now, so the only way I'll stop is if I'm pregnant or paralyzed.

I've got hangups about my hair. I admire those who are natural, but I haven't found the courage to do so completely yet. That doesn't make me any less conscious or black than the next person. At least I'm woman enough to admit that I still have those issues.

I have one brother, two half brothers, and ten step siblings. That leaves me a total of 77 nieces and nephews, and a whole rack of other cousins and such. I wasn't always physically alone growing up, but I was many days because I'm the thinker--the "smart" one.

I worked full time through college and still owe Sallie.Mae my soul. I moved here for a chance to live without the shadow of the demons of my life invading my space. I'm in grad school, I work full time in my chosen career. I'm in management and am the youngest manager this organization has ever had. Yes, I'm proud. I'm trying to learn how to be a better woman, better girlfriend, better Christian, but I struggle some days. I'm incredibly sensitive once you figure out what actually bothers me underneath that thick skin I've got. I have strong opinions on a lot of things, some are popular and some aren't. I'm absolutely happy with who I am, and I live everyday unapologetically.

That's me in a nutshell. Too bad if you don't appreciate how hard it is for me to bear so much of me like that. Too bad if you don't like how I think or how I write. It's me, and that's the very best I can do.

Back to regular posting tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007
Sometimes little children can be so wise.

I went to visit one of my cousins today, and while I was there she asked me if I would watch her six year old daughter for a half hour so she could go to the store. I wasn't feeling much like it, but it would only be for a little while so I said ok.

My mind was all over the place trying to kick out some negative thoughts that have been lingering as of late. You know, new job worries, and general grown folks' woes. I guess lil mama could tell because rather than run amok like she normally would, she got up in my lap on the couch and laid her head on my chest.

Lil One: "Tasha, what's wrong?"

Me: "A lot of stuff on my mind. Just a little worried and sad."

Lil One: "Don't be sad. I see you crying. (wipes my face)"

Me: "Aww thanks. I'll be okay though"

Lil One: "Yes you will. 'Member no matter what happens to you, the grass is still green, the sky is still blue, and ladybugs are still red."

Me: "Why do you say ladybugs are still red?"

Lil One: "Because my mommy says ladybugs are good luck. So when you get sad think of ladybugs being red and you will have good luck. And I know you like ladybugs Tasha."

After she said that, she got off my lap and went back to playing with her Bratz dolls. She really had no idea what that statement did to me. In her little world, everything really is that simple. Sometimes with everything that we have to deal with, we forget that we are so small compared to the big world around us. I had to take three steps back and remind myself that nothing should be that serious.

When her mom came back, I went for a drive in some rural area (almost got lost too) and let out the ugliest cry I had in me. I haven't done that in so long, but it felt soo good. And what seemed like suddenly, I had all the answers I needed and my mind was back in focus. I guess it's true that little children hold the answers to adult questions.

Thank you lil cousin, you made my day. And yes, ladybugs are still red...

Monday, April 02, 2007
Monday Mash Up
Today was the first work day that I spent as a "lady of leisure" as Bella Mama calls it. I'm taking a week off before I start the new job, and I really can't be happier about it. Hunny and I spent basically the whole weekend bunned up, and it was nice of course, but I saw some of his crazy arse man-habits, and I had to pull a Beyonce and Upgrade his ass.

He's got three sisters and no brothers, so you'd think that he would have paid attention to at least some of their upkeep habits. I mean, he was no stranger to the nail shop when I brought him there when I got my eyebrows waxed, and he's a good shopping partner--he can tell me what looks good on me, and he actually has great judgement. So imagine my utter shock and dismay when he took off his socks today and all I see were alligators arguing over a bag of flour. Dammit boo, how you gon' be so damn sessy and your feet look like what the hell? This required an immediate emergency trip to the nail place for pedicures. I really didn't need one, but I got one anyway so he wouldn't get all suspect and think I was trying to tell him his feet looked like he left them in Afghanistan after his tour.

Lemme tell you, Mai Ling and Kim Sue were looking at me like "Damn girl, how did you not get sliced the hell up by his toenails in bed" and looking at his feet and speaking whatever language they do and half laughing half sighing in pity. It took a good 45 minutes for them to return his feet to human status after letting them soak for a good hot minute. Poor Hunny fell asleep in the chair, and I'm happy cuz if he'd seen the looks they were giving his feet he would have tried to pull out his gun and arrest them for public diplays of confusion. But he got a man-manicure after that and he said he hasn't felt that kind of good in forever, so I think we might just make this a monthly thing. I don't know how I overlooked his feet after all this time. Just a damn shame.

Baby, why are you loading the dishwasher like that? Let me help you and show you the way to salvation. Sweetie pie, ummm...your socks, well umm...lets take a trip to Targét and get you some new ones cuz yeah, socks come in grey, but they shouldn't fade from white to that color. I love you, but that G-Unit shirt has got to go. I know it's comfy, but no 50 cent-wear is allowed in our domicile (yeah, we share a home now...not officially, but you get the idea). Off to Macy's for some new shirts. That watch? About that...Sunshine, I know you got it when you graduated from the police academy, but it's time to give it a proper burial. You like that watch in the case? Please, by all means get it, after all, it is your money. Aww, thanks for letting me lose my mind in Victoria's Secret on your dime, but you could use some new draws too. Oh, now you think you're a damn Calvin Klein underwear model? Get out of my face and just buy the damn boxers ok?

After all of that, upgrade complete. Ahh, now doesn't that feel better? I thought so.

I'm glad to finally be free from the old plantation. Massa tried to lose his mind and give me a mountain of work before I left. "Uhh, you want ME to do all this right 'chea? Naw sir, I ain't no fool. You betta pass that on to someone else". The politics and bad business apparently is too much for the field slaves that remain there, cuz I got a call from 3 former co-workers asking if I could give them the hook up at the new place. Can I start first? Can I please get through orientation??

What is up with the fattitude in the Urrea?? Now, I'm a thick broad and I haven't seen a zero since I was a fetus, but what in the name of Purple Rain!? Why were we in the Silver Diner getting our breakfast on and I thought a solar eclipse was occurring when this HUGE chick walked by? And why was she wearing Pepto Bismol pink? I saw her and looked at Hunny and whispered "Nausea, heartburn, indigestion, upset stomach, diarrhea". Someone reserve a spot in hell for me, cuz I know I'm going after making that statement. But seriously, crunchy black and two tons of big shouldn't be wearing skin-tight bismuth pink. And when she didn't think I was looking, she licked her lips at Hunny like a rabid animal. He instantaneously lost his appetite and pushed his plate away, ran to the bathroom, and didn't come back for like 10 minutes. Poor baby! While we were on the Metro to the Cherry Blossom Festival, there was this crowd of ginormous heffas standing in the middle of the train talkin about, "Girl, I coulda got this 2 sizes smaller" and "Don't hate me gurrrrl, congratulate me cuz this skirt looks TOO GOOD". Lady, if you got that shirt any smaller, the Pillsbury Doughboy would appear and cuss you out for smashing his rolls all up. And other lady, about that skirt...I didnt know cottage cheese came in chocolate. Don't get me wrong, big girls are beautiful too and deserve to be self-confident, but we look better when our clothes fit properly. Otherwise, you look like a two bit whore who sells her soul for the almighty Twinkie.

I went to the gym this morning, and I wanted to throw a dumbell at this chick. You are a size negative three, you are NOT fat. For the love of Pete, do me a favor and eat a plate of chili cheese fries when you leave here. Your man is complaining about you being too skinny cuz you are. He doesn't like fucking a shadow. (Sorry for that crude comment, but I had to say it)

This dude needs to back up off me. Bruh, I didn't want you then and I sho nuff don't want you now. I'm not impressed by your half million dollar house or your car or your high paying gov't IT job. I don't care that you're a music producer and have a studio in your house. Yeah, you're cute in the face. Yeah you're nice, but you have strange ways. Why did you pay your direct TV bill on three way with me? Why did you show me your passport and birth certificate? You're a nucking fut. Ain't no confused feelings on my part. Go somewhere and look pretty for me, mmmk?

I really enjoy Spanish telenovellas. I understand most of what's going on, but they mesmorize me. It's almost like getting sucked into a bad Lifetime Movie. And the gameshows on Telemundo and Univision make me happy just because they can be so craptastic. Not all of them, mind you, but the cheese factor on a lot of them just add sunshine to my life.

Ok, so I watched the "I Love New York" season finale. Why is this broad still on TV and why does anyone care? I just love how she says she moved these dudes into her house, when really she probably lives in the projects and she claims the roaches as her dependents to get the tax credit. You know V.H1 provided her with that house and those fake eyelashes. That chick really does look like Janice from the Muppet Show. BOOOOOOOOOOO. Thumbs and big toes down!

My upstairs neigbors need some home training badly. They are up there salsa dancing or something, all I hear is these rapid heavy footsteps in some kind of beat. They're up all damn night long and they decided to vacuum at 3AM this morning. I went up there, knocked on the door looking my hood rat best, and the chick had the nerve to catch an attitude tombout, "Ohnoyoudidnt tell me I'm too loud. But I'll try to quiet down". Don't mess with me and my ZZZ's witch, I will turn into something you never want to encounter again.

Speaking of ZZZ's, lemme go find some. Have a good night yall