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Category Archives: Our Culture/Our World

Black History, Black Culture, Advice, Opinions

Your Stamp on This World

Your Stamp on This World

Sometimes we make decisions in our lives that we regret. Other times we proudly go through our days wearing “No Regrets” t-shirts. Its a battle each day when we come up on challenges, roadblocks and barriers and have to make decisions or actions that effect the rest of our lives either positively or negatively.

Melyssa Ford of Blood Sweat and Heels created a “musical” hip-hop-era entitled For Vixens Who Have Considered Homicide When the Video is too Much. She wanted to do something to clear up any misconceptions or judgments that people have of her and other women who chose the “video girl” career path. “…for people to decide who you are from one pocket of your life…” she quoted during the episode featuring this musical, referring to her slightly unsuccessful attempt to remove the “video hoe” label from her popular industry booty.

It sucks that this is how things work in this world, but that’s what it is. Even Monica Lewinsky is still dealing with the national or perhaps even international perception of who she is based on a personal decision she made over a decade ago. Situations like these, are reasons why some people move through life carefully, realizing that the smallest decision can dictate how this world will perceive them.

If you are the type that doesn’t care what people think of you and think that  later on in life you won’t be bothered by the pressures or judgments that may be cast upon you, by all means live life without inhibitions. For most of us-planners-or people who don’t want to be labeled, we cautiously plan out three steps before even taking one. Not that Melyssa did anything bad, or wasn’t proud of being in the industry at that time in her life. She says she has moved on from that lifestyle and wants the world to remove that label.

You can be the prettiest, smartest, toughest person with a cure for cancer and the world will only remember you for that “negative” part of your life.

Just a lil of the TRUTH…

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Posted by on April 18, 2015 in Our Culture/Our World

 

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Black America’s Boyfriend

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Tall, Dark and Handsome! (They might have coined the phrase, but we truly understand it.) From his smooth chocolate skin, full lips and curly dark hair. Derek Luke is the go-to ,all American, all around good guy boyfriend for black cinema. Whenever I think about a storyline in or outside of major productions I (and I’m sure many others) envision Derek Luke as the good guy. He always gets a role of a guy that finishes last, but runs a good race.

When watching his latest role on Empire, I was reminded of his awesome talent, his believable portrayal of his characters and ability to make us and his on screen love interests fall in love with him time after time. I started thinking about him as a person. Of course I don’t know him as a person, but I’ve never heard any negative news regarding him. I read an article on Biography.com and It made me love him all the more. We all love his roles in Biker Boyz and  Friday Night Lights, I even enjoyed his “boy next door” role in Baggage Claim. I also like that we see him in small and large roles. It seems he’s not too proud to be in a movie with a role that may not be a big box office hit. He seems to have steady work in Hollywood whether it be a Tyler Parry film, or guest appearances on prime time television. I’m waiting for another moving role such as Antwone Fisher. He deserves it!

http://www.biography.com/people/derek-luke-17176744#personal-life

Whether he’s shaking his shoulders like P. Diddy or head of security for an Empire, Mr. Luke always performs.

Just a little of the TRUTH…

 
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Posted by on April 7, 2015 in Our Culture/Our World

 

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Timeless Artistry

MUSIC BLOG

Talent is not a trend; musical artists with great talent are classic. Music is at the core of many cultures, shaping ceremonial dance, creating soothing or celebratory atmosphere. Music helps to complete the event. African American, Black, Urban (whichever term you prefer) culture has a musical core. JAZZ, BLUES, FUNK, ROCK, HIP HOP, R&B and pretty much all forms of music have a history that parallels with OUR history.

With so many musical artists débuting regularly, Hip Hop and R&B seem to constantly change. Whomever presents a trend that sticks or connects to the people, stays on top until another trend hits. I’m so glad we have talented timeless artists that keep REAL music circulating.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~   D’ANGELO    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Infamous for making women holler at the TV screen, begging for the cameraman to inch down just a little lower. This man has been off the scene for years, and released an AWESOME album with ease. Not saying It wasn’t hard work putting it together, but this album seems uncalculated. Of course you can listen to the entire thing straight through, and almost get a little disappointed when it comes to an end. He’s just one of those artists who won’t ever go out of style.

If you are a lover of music, you were pretty anxious to get your ear on this new album, and satisfied when he didn’t disappoint the fans. There are numerous artists in rotation on the TV, radio and music streaming airwaves, but only a few have the talent that can breakthrough any trend of today. Artists like D’Angelo, Erykah Badu, Toni Braxton, R. Kelly, John Legend, Lauryn Hill, Jill Scott, Usher and a few others. Even Bruno Mars has impeccable talent (highly underrated), but that’s another topic.

The above artists can always drop a single, or a entire album without a single and fans will approve.

Thank you for taking advantage of your talents!

Just a lil of The TRUTH…

 
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Posted by on December 30, 2014 in Our Culture/Our World

 

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Girls on Film

Kudos to the black women who are making their way in this world in spite of the odds against them. I’m not speaking of the commonly known odds. I’m speaking of the odds we (black women) have put on ourselves within the last decade. The video “model”, the reality TV overnight celebrity, the twerk team instafame females who have adapted this rotten mentality of eyelash extensions, bright colored booty shorts, and thousand dollar sew in, glue in, floor length weaves as beauty.

Watching television realizing Hollywood views entertainment as Reality TV, (it seems shows don’t make it unless they’re reality shows) its refreshing to find a show-drama, murder mystery or sitcom that you enjoy. I’m excited for the black woman image being portrayed through 2 characters on Primetime TV.

“How To Get Away With Murder” star, Aja Naomi King portrays an ambitious law student, educated, and determined to get what she wants in life through hard work. “Thank you Shonda Rhimes for this image- among other images of black women, you are just a dynamic writer who helps to shift America’s view of US.”
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AJA NAOMI KING

“Sleepy Hollow” star Nicole Beharie is a gorgeous actress who plays a strong female lead that could’ve been written for a girl of any race. Black actresses strive for those roles, roles that were written to be delivered through talent regardless of race or cast type. Julliard trained, with several roles under her belt, this lady is doing well.
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I’ll keep watching these ladies to see where their talent takes them. I’m sure I’ll see them again. Black America needs those prominent black Actors & Actresses, and these two are well on their way.

Just a little of the TRUTH…

 
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Posted by on November 16, 2014 in Our Culture/Our World

 

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Substance Abuse

“…Anything that has substance… we as a people [black people] reject it.”

I heard an interview with Rico Love on Atlanta’s 107.9 and this statement he made inspired this post. He was discussing (as I’m sure many of our parents have discussed) how some of the hip hop music of today is cookie cutter and lacking substance.

I understood where Rico Love was coming from. Most of the songs of today are not songs that will carry us past our 40’s. What’s scary is being stopped at a red light and a 40+ year old, blaring the latest song pulls up next to you singing along. Some songs of today are of good quality, providing good melody, and thought provoking lyrics, but those songs rarely make it to the top, those artists rarely receive a Grammy. Underrated artists like Lupe Fiasco, Mos Def, Wale, B.O.B. should have a bigger or more prevalent platform. Not to say there is no quality music out these days, but there is a lot more rubbish than rubies out here. It seems that unless a song is a crossover song it doesn’t receive the recognition it deserves. We don’t accept the great songs unless there is a certain level of “turn up”. We ought to be able to put our quality artists over the top like we did back when SoulTrain, Luther Vandross, Diana Ross, and Smokey Robinson were in the forefront of the television screen.

Substance is lacking in not just music, but other areas:

Television Programming- Reality TV for starters, everybody has a show about anything. These “wives” themed shows are the ringleader in lacking substance, from the character to the storyline its all junk.

Food- Now days even the organic isn’t organic, you damn near have to grow it yourself for it to actually be considered food. So many preservatives, additives, and artificial in our diets, we might as well eat the package it came inside of.

Clothing- Thin, shredding with each turn, lightweight, overpriced junk. Pay high prices for QUALITY. the garments hanging on the rack have strings unraveling at the seams, lightweight, frail zippers or buttons, uneven hems, mismatch patterns at the seam… think I’m lying? Next time you are shopping, check the hem or seams of ANY garment. Unless you are in a NORDSTROM, SAKS, and maybe BELK, you will find substance lacking attire.

Not being preachy, I’ve dabbled in a few of these substance lacking areas, but writing this post has inspired me to go a little further, search a little harder and spend the extra dollar for SUBSTANCE. I encourage you to no longer abuse substance, beating it down, neglecting it, and forgetting about it’s existence.

Just a lil of The TRUTH..

 
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Posted by on September 20, 2014 in Our Culture/Our World

 

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Like a Good Neighbor

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We all share this world, and regardless of how much of a recluse we want to be, we will be living, working and playing near each other. That being said, there are some courtesies that we should keep in mind. Living in the city, or suburbs, or even the country side, there are some simple living manners we should uphold. Common knowledge things such as keeping the yard cut and clear of litter, keeping a volume cap on the noise levels, keeping guest’s cars parked in places that don’t hinder other neighbors’ way of life. Some other things are not as noticeably common. Things such as monitoring the comings and goings of different people around the neighborhood. Not to become that nosey window peeking, porch chair watching, over the glasses snooping old lady or man, but knowing when things don’t look or sound normal. Other things such as the cosmetic details that should be maintained, keeping the property value where it belongs. Living in condos, or apartments some things see a little less obvious. Keeping the noise at common, comfortable volumes, walking softly when you live above the first floor. Not running up and down the stairs, bumping the walls, or leaving trash outside of the door. Keeping your living space clean so that you deter common city rodents.

While we hope to live near people with these common courtesies in habit, good neighbors are far and few between. I’ve given up on apartment living. My next move is ownership. Sometimes this world can make us forget the good inside of us. Its our job to remember the little things that can help spread the love to others.

Just a lil of the TRUTH…

 
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Posted by on July 19, 2014 in Our Culture/Our World

 

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Hair, Our Hair

A-Z BLOGGING CHALLENGE Letter “H”:
Since the times of Madame CJ Walker (maybe even earlier than that), Black women have had a strong interest in their mane. Her development of hair care products for black women was revolutionary. Now it may be that this affection we have for our hair comes from a desire to be accepted by or assimilated with the cultures and appearances of our European masters. Wanting our hair to be “fried, dyed and laid to the side” to be deemed beautiful and presentable, worthy to be looked upon, comes from slave mentality. Our culturally spirited broken ancestors instilled in us the maintenance of our hair, passing down the beliefs and practices of “good hair”.

There are several blogs, song and movies about our hair, excepting our hair, loving ourselves as God made us, and so on. This is not one of those posts. This blog was inspired by the recent uproar and petition about Jay-Z and Beyonce’s baby Blu-Ivy. People are complaining about the toddler’s hair looking wild and almost dreaded at the ends. Comments were made about a mother spending as much time and money on her hair as Beyonce, shouldn’t have a child running around with an unmanaged mane.
Yes, I think the petition is ridiculous, and that there are a lot more pressing matters than a two year old’s hairstyle. I can recall several pictures of myself and others running around with fly-away strands as a child. Several of us look back at our childhood pictures with the sponge roller bang and question our parents’ sense of style and taste in hair design. However black people, women especially take pride in our hair. It is who we are. Our hair is a part of our culture. Braids, beads, locks, curls, waves, afro, twists, blowouts etc. This is who we are. We are a people who take much pride in our appearance and as a part of that, our hair. The great thing about our hair is the variety of styles we can rock. Understanding India Arie’s lyrics to “I am not my hair”, we aren’t defined by our type of hair or style in which we wear it, but our hair is as much a part of our culture as music and dance.
What J & B choose to do with their child’s hair is their business. If it makes them happy, who are we to nationally request for action to be taken? Hair health is of more importance than the style, but we are a stylish people by nature. It’s in our genes.
Just a lil of the TRUTH …
A-Z BLOGGING CHALLENGE Letter “H”

 
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Posted by on June 24, 2014 in Our Culture/Our World

 

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