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Knowing Success v.s. Living Success November 17, 2010
So last weekend I decided to watch the Matrix Trilogy. It amazing to think that such a classic movie came out when I was in high school. I think I may have been a freshman or sophomore, I’m not sure. But I remember discussing some of the subliminal messages and meaning in the movie during my Psychology class. Fast forward to now, and here I am again, re-watching some of the greatest special effects and dialouge ever used in movies and this pops in my head:
“There’s a difference between knowing success and living success.”
Now I don’t know which scene in the movie prompted this thought, but I know that’s it’s been on my brain ever since. Is there a difference between knowing success and living success? Most definately.
All my life, I’ve been told I would be successful. Go to school, get good grades, get a job, Success. I’ve never doubted that I would be successful, after all that’s what I’ve been taught all my life. I worked hard and I benefited from it. No complaints here.
Now that I’ve moved to NY, left my job, left my home, left my comfort zone, I’m starting all over. Now I have to reevaluated the concept of success. I know what success is because I’ve had it. Now I have to live it. I now have to take that confidence I had before and apply to my everyday life. I have to LIVE success now. What does that mean? That means that now I truly go for what I want in life, not what I’ve been told I should want. I have to stop wishing I could do things and do them. The word can’t doesn’t exist anymore. I have to live success now. If one can differentiate knowing success from living success, then they will be unstoppable. You might as well get out of my way now.
Her skin color problem isn’t the problem….. September 17, 2010
So over the last day or so, there has been controversy of Gabourey Sidibe’s picture on the cover or Elle Magazine. This one:
Now people are complaining that her skin was lightened for this picture. And looking at the picture, it probably was. We know how Hollywood is. However, I don’t think that should be what we are worrying about. The more important issue is that this sista is morbidly obese and NO ONE wants to acknowledge it.
Now let me say this. I don’t have anything against the sista. I’m happy she’s doing movies and tv and so one. I’m not a hater. I’m a realist. We need to stop acting like her size is normal. And this isn’t saying something against the curvy thick sistas. Alicia Keys is thick. Chrisette Michelle is thick. Jennifer Hudson is, or was, thick. Gabby Sidibe is overweight and it is going to affect her health in a bad way.
Per the Office of Minority Health: “African American women have the highest rates of being overweight or obese compared to other groups in the U.S. About four out of five African American women are overweight or obese.” Obesity leads to Diabetes, Heart Disease, and Cancer all which African-American woman are at HIGH risk for.
So when we have a young african american woman who is obviously obese, why isn’t anyone helping her? Hell she knows Oprah, and Oprah has been dealing with her weight for YEARS! All those people who are saying “Oh she is a beautiful black woman” are just ignoring the facts and if anything, making it worse. Yes she is a beautiful sista, but she’s putting her health at risk. Patti LaBelle learned that lesson when she was diagnosed with Diabetes.
We all know that Ms. Gabby is aware of her weight, but is she aware that she will also become a role model for many beautiful dark chocolate girls in America? There are probably other obese young women other there who see Ms. Gabby and feel proud. But they shouldn’t feel proud just because she’s a big girl, but because she acknowledged she was putting her health in danger and took safe and correct ways to change that. Seeing and hearing her say “I changed my life for the better and so can you. Here’s how:” may be just what these young women need. But it’s getting Ms. Gabby to say those words. That’s the problem.
And don’t come at me with that Monique “Skinny girls are evil” talk. Even Monique came to her senses and lost the weight.
Stay tuned for another moment in the life………………………….
Stop lying about wanting your success!!! September 16, 2010
So I was reading the entertainment section of CNN at work (Hey I had some free time, don’t judge me). I clicked on the VMA re-cap video. I saw Gaga’s meat dress, heard a clip of Taylor’s lost keys and saw the clip of Justin Beiber excepting his award. He was saying how he just a boy a from a small town in Canada and he never thought this would happen. And a little voice inside of me screamed:
I’m so sick of artists winning awards and saying “Oh, I never thought this would happen.” Yes you did!!! Granted, there may be a few, and I mean a VERY FEW artists who generally never intended to become famous artists. It just happened. But the majority of singers/rappers have been dreaming about this all their lives. They participate in talent shows, contests, community concerts, putting out mixtapes, etc. You wanted this!! You envisioned this!! In order to make something happen in your life you have to see yourself doing it. So once you get it and start getting awards for it, don’t start acting like you never saw this coming. I understand you’re happy. You’re surprised because you had serious competition and they’re were probably a better artist, but be real about it. Double H. Humble and Honest. When an artist says “I’ve been praying and working and dreaming about this my whole life! I’m so grateful and would like to thank my family and friends for this award”, that’s the truth. I appreciate it. Their admitting they’ve worked hard for it and they’re proud of their accomplishment, as they should be. But when they start that “oh, I never thought this would happen, i’m just a small town boy from the backwoods of okerdokeville where we didn’t have radios, all we had was one one-stringed bango and blah blah blah woe is me”, I get pissed, because you’re lying to all those people who bought your album, which probably sucked in all honesty because you can’t sing and you’re just the new Justin Timberlake replacement. And no I don’t hate Beiber.
So yeah, cut the BS famous people. Stop lying about your success. It’s an insult to everyone intelligence. And pockets if we bought your album.
Stay tuned for another moment in the life…………………..
There will never be another Michael…… June 25, 2010
Today marks the passing of one of the most influential people to music. On June 25 2009, Michael Jackson passed away. It’s still shocking to me a year later. But instead of mourning his death, I choose to celebrate his life. Michael was truly a talented brotha. He had no formal music or dance training, yet he was one of the best there ever was. He was so much more than just a performer. He was a true philanthropist. He donated to so many charities, many known and unknown. Instead of celebrating his life and talking about the good things he did, people (mainly the media) chose to put out the negative things. Yes, Michael may have made some bad decisions ( i.e. befriending young boys), but if you think he would do harm to those boys or anyone for that matter, you must be out of your mind. And what really pisses me off? Everyone wants to wait until after his death to sing his praises. Now everyone wants to admit they lied about him and so forth. After this man was tormented and publicly ridiculed you want to change your story. I remember when Michael first started going thru the trials and so forth. I thought he was innocent and everyone told me I was stupid, made fun of me, but I didn’t care. Now that Michael has passed and his accusers come out and admit they were lying, NOW everyone wants to jump his defense. Where were you when he needed you?
Nonetheless, Michael may be gone, but his art is still here. His music, his videos, and even his style. Even though he is not here to see the love being shown to him, I’m happy that it is being shown. I believe Michael was truly a special person with special gifts. His influence is seen in all the newcomers that pop up on MTV all the time. But let’s make one thing clear, there will NEVER be another Michael Jackson. I don’t think anyone could will have the influence on pop culture as he did. Nor do I think anyone will be able to be as big a philanthropist as Michael was. He truly cared for human beings. No matter what race, religion, anything. He was truly a humble person. And he used his music to help others. Whether it was thru donating money, or donating lyrics, Michael did it. I believe he was truly a giving person. I pray that the Lord forgives him sins and grants him paradise. Long Live The King Of Pop.
This brotha was BAD!!!
Stay tuned for another moment in the life………….
Have you any respect? June 16, 2010
So today I was on the bus and an argument broke out. Now the bus was crowded so everybody was on everybody, and I don’t know if the one person standing stepped on the person sitting or what, but the argument happened. Here’s the kicker, the argument was between a woman in her 40s (the sitter) and little girl no more than 10 yrs old (the stander).
Now I’m sure the argument could have been avoided by a simple “excuse me”, but that didn’t happen. All I know is that this grown woman was arguing with this child as if she were grown. Then the younger girl’s mouth got filthier than a Times Square garbage can. Some of the words that came out of her mouth…good lawd. I mean all kinds of b-word, s-word, p-word, kiss my a-word, everything. And it didn’t help that the high school aged boys on the bus were laughing and “oooh”ing, which did nothing but egg the little girl on. The bus driver ended up kicking everyone off the bus at the next stop (which luckily was my stop). While I went on to my destination, a few things popped into my head.
1. Why was this grown woman arguing with this child? I mean, she was old enough to be her grandmother. Why bother?
2. Where was this child’s mother? Was she on the bus by herself with no family, friends, or classmates?
3. What is she hearing in her house? That little girl was using language that I don’t even here some adults use. I hate to say it, but I’m sure her mother or whomever she lives with is using that language, and that child is soaking it all up. Horrible.
4. Those boys were laughing, which did nothing but encourage her. What they should have done was told her to stop. I’m pretty sure she would have listen to them.
Now call me old fashion, but when I was 10 years old, I never would have thought to speak to adult that way, or anyone for that matter. Hell, I’m 26 and I still wouldn’t dare do it. But our young people today say and do whatever they want. They aren’t taught respect. Do their parents command respect in the household? Are they being taught the difference between right and wrong? You can blame media all you want, but what happens in the home matters too. And if our young people aren’t being taught correctly in the home, how we expect them to act correctly in public?
Stay tunes for another moment in the life………………..
My Black IS Beautiful June 10, 2010
About a month or so ago, I was standing at the bus stop in the rain on my way to work. It wasn’t raining hard, just a light drizzle and it was a tad bit nippy. A beautiful young lady with an umbrella named Stacy walked up and said “here stand under with me”. She then began to ask me for directions (SN*: seems weird since I’m still learning my way around NY). We started talking. She started telling me how she recently came from Guyana and she didn’t like the cold weather. She then said, “I can’t wait for the summer, so I can get a tan. I want to be a little lighter. Like your complexion.” Now I didn’t want to kill her dream by telling her that the sun is only going to make her darker, instead I said, “Why? Your skin tone is beautiful!” From the look on her face I can tell that wasn’t something she was used to hearing. And I wasn’t just saying it for the hell of it, I really meant it. She had beautiful, pimple-free, smooth, glowing, dark chocolate skin with a beautiful smile to match. We chit chatted until she got off at her stop and I began to think; 1- she was very kind (that will be a future blog), and 2- it’s amazing how people still are, for lack of better word, ashamed of their skin color. To this day, black people still bleach their skin thinking it will make them look better. Some sistas still perm their hair because they think it will make the, look more beautiful. They believe their naturally curly hair is ugly. Why do we still consider our natural state ugly? Why are some many black people still ashamed of their beautiful melanin-enriched coverings?
A few years ago, Proctor and Gamble started a campaign called My Black Is Beautiful.You can say what you want about P&G, but I think it a wonderful campaign. They have tours, a TV show, a lot of different things with that one goal in mind, stressing that fact that Black is Beautiful. And it is needed more than ever. One of the reasons we have issues with our skin color IS because of media. We have been told for centuries that blacker you are, the uglier you are. We’ve all heard the saying, “If you’re white you’re alright; If you’re brown stick around; If you’re black stay back.” We may laugh at it now, but that mindset has been engraved in our subconscious and continues to affect us generation after generation. It’s in our songs, on the billboards, and on the TV. Like I said, media plays a HUGE part in the problem, so it’s only right that they participate in the solution, and I think “My Black is Beautiful” has started doing that.
Also, we need to teach our young girls that their black is beautiful. A lot of these images and misconceptions are fed to our daughters at a young age and it travels with them throughout their life, and then passed on to the next generation. We must teach out daughter to love themselves.
And in the process of teaching others to love themselves, we have to remember to love ourselves. Life lessons are best taught by example, and if we show others that we love ourselves, not by being conceited, but by not being ashamed of who we are. That is where the healing begins.
Stay tuned for another moment in the life………………………….
*SN : side note