To my “conscious” brothers and sisters: some of your Hotep principles invoke intraracial oppression and condescension rather than freedom. Don’t be fauxtep.
Every woman should have an article of clothing or accessory she owns that makes her tilt her head a little higher in the air. I always feel regal and beautiful in a wax print skirt or an African printed head wrap. Today I’m sharing my favorite vendors so you can check them out, too!
Are you on Facebook (anymore?) I still am. I joined Facebook in late 2005. It has now been nearly 10 years exactly since I joined the social networking service. Wow. I don’t think when I joined FB that I anticipated being on it a decade later. I don’t think any of us foresaw this. I remember vividly when it expanded to yo mama and yo cousins, too, prompting us graduating college students to delete incriminating photos. Ah, how times have changed and stayed the same all at once.
Last Friday I was picking Bean up from daycare and a song came on that made me sit in the driveway until it was over. That song was Common’s “Come Close” featuring Mary J. Blige. When I tell you this was one of my favorite music videos and hip-songs back in the day?! I bout Mary J. CRIED sanging in that car! How magnificent is it that hip-hop, an art form created within (some of) our lifetimes, has provided so many songs we fall in love to? It got me thinking…what are the best hip-hop love songs?
In fumbling toward a non-Americentric view of Blackness, I have learned how very little I know about what it means to be Black in this world. That is a start. I call it fumbling because it’s halting and clumsy. I am not proud of it. My education about the Diaspora is tardy in a way other Black global citizens have never had the luxury of being. My ignorance is no excuse, but a point from which I hope to distance myself. The first cure to Americentrism is to step outside my yard, mute the loudness of America, and listen. To realize that being Black in Africa, or in Europe, or in the Caribbean, or in South America…is not the same as my Blackness.
And that it’s still just as valid.
I dropped the ball last week. Okay, I dropped A LOT of balls last week. And no, this isn’t a blithely worded sexual entendre, as fun as it would be to make one here. I mean I was one overwhelmed woman last week. Again. I really do hate letting the blog go days without posts. I missed ya’ll!
Every year, some federal or industry agency finds it amusing to release statistics about the cost of living in various major US cities. The data largely stays the same: it’s expensive up Norf and it’s cheaper down Souf. Still, I read every single report. I do not know why. Well, I kinda do. I’m still shopping for a new city to live in. So a recent report about median housing prices and salaries in 25 cities caught my eye. When I look at cost of living data, it’s more than just to laugh at people paying $2,000/month rent to live in freezing temperatures.
I’m considering becoming one of those people. (shudder).
Proverb: Verily, I say unto you: It is far easier for a hand to scroll Twitter than it is to clean a messy house. Sometimes I feel as if the world I have created is closing in on me and I can no longer find my space in it. This is a different kind of claustrophobia than the one driving me to the precipice of my mattress. Motherhood’s slow erasure of boundaries makes me stare at socks as if solving for x. I was never good at equations. But I stare. Maybe the sock will pick itself and its compatriots up. Maybe there will not be laundry. Maybe the mountain of papers and books and mismatched hair barrettes on my dresser will crumble into tidiness before I hit the staircase.
All over social media today, using the hashtag #BlackOutDay, Black folk are loving on each other with selfies, Black History memorabilia, family photos, cosplay pics, and just other shots of Blackness being beautiful as usual. The Internet can be such an unforgiving place. I kinda love it when we Kumbaya to exalt the best things about each other rather than our worst attributes. It is refreshingly all love.
I am tired of having the “national conversation/debate about race.” As a student of African-American history and literature, it is readily apparent to me that Black people across the Diaspora have been talking about race for centuries. It’s not a conversation but a monologue at this point. I don’t need to say another single word about racism, really, when James Baldwin slayed so magnificently. Yet, here we are “conversating” on race again because White people have never stopped needing it.