Tear ass!!!!!!

(translation: get out of here with that B.S.)

Yes, Barack IS Enough

Imagine a scene in a movie when they show a character, in slow motion, in a crowd of people or amid some type of hurried activity, but the sound is off, and all you hear is the character's breathing, while they look around at their surroundings.

Is that what Senator Obama felt last nite when he took the stage? Did he have a moment of peace and calm wash over him as he stepped boldly into his destiny?

I certainly hope so. I hope he took one moment to take it all in.

The speech was was fluid and confident. Purposeful and succinct. Obama came in like a verbal marksman and picked off his detractors with skill and GQ style.

Now, after bringing the funk, some are still asking, "what now?", "can he deliver on all those promises?", "is he ready to lead?", "is he qualified?". To those people, I ask, what is good enough? To those people, I say, don't worry so much about whether Obama is ready, ask yourself if you're ready. What role will you play? Will you sit idly by again, like we've mostly done during this awful Bush administration? Your answer should be no. I hope you get involved and help Barack hekp us all.

This man has laid it all out for you....his family tree and humble beginnings, his ivy league education and his selfless sacrifices to uplift others after graduation, his amazing choice in a spouse, whom he unashamedly references as "the love of my life", and his beautiful, all African-American little girls, who are just as normal, grounded and cute as some of your own.

His choice in a running mate is more than respectable, it is decidedly brilliant. His ability to move the crowd will be legendary.

I have resolved to ignore the naysayers and negativity. Some human beings are never satisfied. Everyone cannot be made happy and all are entitled to their own opinion. I say this though, get out the way if you don't want to get on board because this train is rolling full steam ahead. Change is here and it wasn't attained by ill-gotten gains. This change is of divine order.

I know there are a great number of people who won't vote for Obama because of his race, and some won't vote because they are still bitter about Hillary. Obviously, some are staunch Repubs and cannot fathom crossing party lines, but I think that the majority of those who are unsure are simply afraid of something different. To those individuals, I say, there is no better time than the present to face your fears, and if you're that damn scared, hit me up, I'll hold your trembling hand.

The Maven


It's Official!!!!!!!

Barack Obama is the Democratic nominee for the 2008 election for President of the United States of America!!

I have lived!


Roll Call

I am overjoyed right now.

The reality that Senator Barack Obama will become the 44th President of The United States of America, and the 1st African American man to do so, is becoming more and more evident.

As I sit here and watch this roll call, it warms my heart to hear the overwhelming number of votes cast for Barack and the tears are rolling down my face.

I'm 38, and although, God willing, I still have plenty of life to live, I never imagined that I would experience such an electrifying and historic time.

I am sitting here, excited and moved to tears.

Black folks STAND UP!



Michelle, My Belle

Since I was a little girl, I've always been engaged by and excited for "our" moments to shine. Black folks being on TV was once a really big deal.

While some things may never alter, and the "struggle" may take much longer to end, my people have come a long way and hurdled some difficult obstacles. Our bar is always being raised and last night was no exception.

Watching Michelle Obama last night, present herself and her family to the world, brought chills to my spine and tears to my eyes (of course). These are moments that I never imagined I'd see. Witnessing the landslide election of a Black mayor in Chicago (R.I.P. Harold Washington) was one thing, but this right here.......there are no words!

Seeing this regal, beautiful, and smashingly intelligent woman, a Black woman, stand before that crowd and affirm her humanness, her pride, motherhood, and the love she has for her MAN, was obviously overdue, and right on time.

Women tend to take issue with one another for various ridiculous reasons, in addition to the sexism we face daily, but in that crowd, there were many misty and teary eyes, because Michelle touched the core of family and womanhood. I wish we could connect more on those most basic levels. The world would be a calmer place.

I'm not going to speak for all of my folks, because we are not a monolith. But, last night was a proud and unforgettable moment for me. It would have been better, only if I were there in person.

The Obama's are my First Family. Put that in your hater pipe and smoke it.



Grow Out Blow Out - Three

Wednesday, the braids came down. Thursday I got a "press 'n curl", for the sole purpose of getting my ends trimmed.

While this growing process is taking awhile, I am rather enjoying the exercise in patience. They say its a virtue, you know.

I am quite pleased with the progress, but I must tell you, I am not a hair person, which is why my short and sexy haircut worked for me. I'm the broad that needs to stay in the salon chair on a very regular basis. For example, Friday, I woke up, unwrapped the hair, and looked like I was wearing a football helmet. I followed instructions. I even slept with the ceiling fan on full blast, so I wouldn't sweat it out. But noooooooo, I still woke up looking like I stuck my finger in a socket. So, Friday, I rocked a ponytail. Go figure.

Yesterday, I succumbed to the shampoo and conditioner, and brought out the trusty Miss Jes.sie's Curly Pud.ding, and did a double strand twist. I love the feel of my natural hair (I'm sure I've said that before) and I will rock my 'fro for a week or two, then head back to the C-O-M-P-T-O-N, to get my braids "re-did".

The Grow Out continues. When will I stop? December '09.

Just in time for the Big 4-0!

Yeah.....that sounds like a plan.



He Wept, Amen

Step your game up with your heavenly pleas. Invoke his holy name with some purpose and conviction. Basically, stop begging the Lord for "stuff". He will give you exactly what you need. Remember, he promised you your daily bread. Nothing more. You've got to work hard for the extras. Its called grindin'. I have to remind myself of this everyday.

Please, save those trivial prayers for your favorite team to win a pennant or division title; don't be prayin' for the Stanley Cup or the Vince Lombardi Trophy to roll through your city. Divine requests are not meant to stop your baby from pickin' boogers in church or your teenager from doing K.att W.illiams impressions in class. The Almighty is not gonna make the McRib sandwich a permanent fixture on Micky D's menu. The Holy Spirit is not gonna provide you money to get a new lacefront or enough loot for some rims. "Lawd, please" is not gonna make traffic move any faster or cause your boss or spouse to disappear into thin air.

We need fervent and sanctified prayers for some real things. Little Chinese girls aren't pretty enough to sing on international airwaves. Ok, seriously, folks are falling into trouble, the economy is in a tailspin, and need I remind you that there is still world hunger, drought, AIDS, war, and criminal miseducation of our youth. Clutch your Jesus piece for THESE things.

And by all means, if you want to send a few extras upward for the Obama campaign and family, I think that will be just fine. Go right ahead.


The Maven


Flower Child

My thumb is getting greener. Once upon a time, a plant was sure to meet early demise in my care. I just didn't get it.

Growing up, I lived next door to an avid gardener. Her name was Willa and she did not play when it came to her shrubs and flowers. My playmates and I would catch hell or high water for running across her grass and trampling her marigolds. She spent serious time tending her yard and the mere thought of anyone, especially someones little nappy-headed child, walking on her consecrated grounds was enough, I'm sure, to set her sponge rollers ablaze. Believe me when I say, that there were consequences to pay for running through her yard, namely a tongue lashing sprinkled with a few expletives that to me sounded as beautiful as her garden looked (yes, I love the art of cussin').

Fast forward some years to my mother's garden. As she matured, she too caught the gardening bug. Her yard and landscaping is not for punks. For a city dwelling, a Chicago bungalow, to be exact, The Lady's greenery is something to talk about. I used to look at her out in that yard like she was crazy. I mean, who wants their hands all up and through the dirt, and who has the patience to care for some plants and flowers until they mature, and who in their right mind would be putting certain plants/bulbs away for the winter, only to replant them in spring and start the process all over again?

Well, a few Thanksgiving's ago, on The Lady annual visit, I told her I wanted to spruce up the outside of my LA bungalow (very different from the Chicago style). Little did I know, that she would set me on a path to gardening glory! Mom set it off! We amended the soil and planted all sorts of things, and through trial and error, I must say that I have become pretty good. I lost a few things in the process so now I mainly go the container route with lots of clay pots; its easier to keep a handle on it this way. The dollar store sells clay pots, so I usually stcok up for when the mood strikes me to plant something new. I have mums, vinca, zinnia, and verbena to name a few. My tool game is on point too, I have special shoes, gloves to mactch and knee pads. I'm just missing a big sun hat, but I will wait for next summer for that, I don't wanna seem to frantic! :)

Once I get a full-fledged backyard, y'all better watch out because its gonna be like something you might see on HGeeTV, with vintage benches, a hammock, and some kinda well-behaved dog running around too.

My friends laugh at my green thumb, but I know they consider it classic Maven behavior, and they respect it.

The Lady was always right, gardening is therapeutic, and it is one of the most relaxing things I have ever done. Of course, the mimosas or glasses of wine, and the "Gardening" playlist on my I.Tunes makes it that much better. But, if you can, man, woman and child, I encourage you to try it. You'll have no regrets.

Side note to the PhDiva, get the little Capricorn's garden started!
Side note to K & K Lee, I got you next time I'm in The A.

As for Ms. Willadean, I hope she's looking down on me with approval because I think of her often when I'm diggin' in that dirt.



Sweet Dreams, Uncle Bernie

I woke up yesterday morning to a text from my girl back home, informing me of Bernie Mac's passing. I immediately jumped online to read the details and a sadness covered me like a blanket.

Bernie Mac was/is a Chicago legend. He epitomizes the Chi Town Hustle and will live on as a shining example of how to pursue and attain your dreams while taking no prisoners.

Arguably one of the most funny comedians of our time, Mr. Mac defied the odds of stardom and "making it" in Hollywood. He didn't have a Tinseltown pedigree and didn't come from a wealthy family, but he had heart, desire and loads of talent.

I remember once, back in the day, my girl JCC, the mouth of the Southside, who had aspirations of becoming a stand up comedienne, signed herself up for amateur night at The Cotton Club in the South Loop. Mr. Mac was the MC/Host that night and I don't recall word for word what he said to her when she finished (even though her routine was a hilarious mess), but I can say for sure that he wasn't harsh with his words and he didn't seek to embarrass her. That wasn't his style.

Last year, I had the honor of speaking to Mr. Mac via phone, regarding a charitable event that I was managing. The host wanted him to participate, and I had the honor of calling to ask if he could attend. While his schedule would not permit, he was humble, regretful and gracious in his response and I will never forget that moment. Dealing with celebrities is not always a pleasant experience, but Mr. Mac was a class act.

Its a known fact that at times he felt slighted in his opportunities, and he rarely missed a chance to let you know that he wasn't scared (you know the quote), but I would want him to know that he was always a star at "the crib" and in our community, and we weren't scared of him! He was and always will be truly loved. Uncle Bernie will be sorely missed!

I will be checking for his upcoming movies, and I'll continue to watch The Bernie Mac Show re-runs. I gotta get a copy of The Kings of Comedy too! He was brilliant!


The Maven


See The Justice of the Peace Instead

D Penn frequently gives examples of how and why Black stays losing. Well, here is some supporting evidence.

I enjoy my fair share of Reality TV. I won't go into detail about which shows I love, but I get down with the dysfunction of others on a regular basis. However, I will admit to watching B.ridezillas, faithfully. It is my guilty pleasure and this clip showcases my all time fave gutbucket, chittlin' circuit bride, Ms. Brandi. She is the epitome of what a cake top figurine should represent.......

Remember when I told you I was watching this over the weekend and LMAO! Now you know why. You MUST see it in its entirety. Check your listings!

Thanks to Cousin R Double L for the heads up!



So Presidential!

Happy Birthday, Senator!

A Monday Mind

Hugs and Kisses Y'all!

The weekend was juicy like D.erek L.ukes' lips. Not juicy in a gossipy or raunchy way, but fun and filled with happiness.

For me it began on Thursday, as I decided on a whim to dust off my roller blades and hit the beach. What a grand decision! It was a lovely So Cal day. It wasn't too crowded and it wasn't too hot. The wind was just challenging enough to make me skate harder, my iPod was bumpin', there were some cuties out too, also skating, jogging, or bike riding. At one point I sat down on a bench to relax and take it all in. I became fixated on two kites and my were they fancy. Kites have come a long way from my days as a pup. I think I want one! LOL! Anyway, like I said, the iPod was bumpin', and it was in shuffle mode, and all of a sudden Ree Ree Frank came in singing "Mary Don't You Weep" and at first it was sort of odd, because my surroundings gave no reasons to mourn. But, as the song continued, it gave me pause to reflect on my blessings and the beauty of life, and the song took on more meaning. It was funny though, to watch carefree, happy people frolic in the sand by while hearing "Pharaoh's army drowned in the red sea", and I began to think about tsunami's, so I quickly forwarded to the next track. I skated back to my ride, drove to Pinkberry, got my usual small with fruity pebbles and blueberries, and headed home (with a nice lil' tan, I might add).

Friday night, I went steppin'. By the way, the folks in the video are from the LA crew. I'm gonna tell you.......I gotta get some better shoes for this. Being cute and sexy is cool, but by the end of the night, my feet are usually crying for mercy. I love it though. If there are steppin' lessons in your city, trust me, go and join in, because it is an amazing and sexy dance. Great for couples if you wanna take your boo. Great for singles if you wanna meet someone new. Good cardio also.

Saturday night, I saw Eric Roberson at the Temple Bar here in Santa Monica. Supa Lowery Brothers opened for him. I copped their CD at the Third Street Promenade one day while they were out there playing. They are VERY good. As for E Robe, with the beautiful smile, he didn't disappoint AT ALL! I have been listening to him for a few years now, but this was my first chance to see him live and he gave me house music, freestyle, beautiful ballads and personality plus. He is very charming and incredibly talented. The band, Franklin Bridge, is phenomenal, and I was happy to see cutie pie Curt Chambers in the flesh. I'm gonna give the drummer some too! Great night!

Sunday, I chilled. I studied, I chatted with my girls back home on BB Messenger (hilarious stuff), I cooked a nice dinner, cracked open a nice bottle of wine, and watched that craaaazzzzy B.ridezillas with my momma and my cousin, over the phone. We laughed SO hard at those broads. WHERE do they come from???? Toe Jam at its best!

One more thing, The Football League Hall of Fame Game was a teaser. Not fair. Bring on the real thing! I'm ready!

The Maven