Muse: What If We Love Black People As Much As We Love Black Culture?

Apr 17, 2015

Sometimes when I come across cultural appropriating issues whether it be fashion editorial spreads gone wrong or anyone with the code name of Igloo Australia, I admit to finding the situation hopeless to explain especially when said issues come up in mixed company. Some aren't listening. Some take defense. Some believe that it's a personal diss towards the individual, and not what the individual is actively doing that is inappropriate. Some just roll their eyes and believe you're overreacting. All of it just becomes too exhausting to contend to after awhile and thus, I tap out and keep the thoughts to myself. Still mum I shouldn't be as cultural appropriating is an issue, a B-I-G one, and if undetected it becomes easier for us all to pass it off as "normal" behavior when it's far from that.

Maybe next time whenever I find myself combating with small-minded folk, I'll directed them to actress Amandla Stenberg's nuanced breakdown of culture appropriation and the historical and sociological context behind it.

Trinkets: Golden Girl

Apr 8, 2015

For the longest time I used to be a silver girl. Silver jewelry girl that is. All through high school I wore nothing but silver hoops, necklaces, rings --- even my watch had to be drenched in chrome. You'd think I was allergic to gold by the way I avoided wearing jewelry of that kind, but for some odd reason, I just kept turning my nose up to anything that shimmered 14 karat.

Oookay. Actually I'm telling a teeny-weeny fib --- I did have some gold jewelry growing up. It was mostly gifted, heirloom stuff from my grandmothers that made me look like a baby Liberace whenever I wore it. Gaudy sparkly stuff that was too potent, even for me. Also attached to this jewelry was the stern responsibility of owning and wearing something that was ~*sacred*~ to the family. You know the whole "Great Aunt Millie sweated over cotton and took 50 lashes from massa to get this! So you better keep it you ungrateful git!" type of guilt trip.

Gold jewelry = guilt trip jewelry = me being scared off of even wearing it :-(

But then...something happened...I began buying gold jewelry, gathering up a nice little cache of it. I should say it's majorly "gold" jewelry, as it is costume, but better costume fare as none of the pieces that I own have made my neck look I was getting hickies from the Jolly Green Giant (well...yet).
Now it seems that I buy more gold jewelry than ever before, with my beloved silver now taking a backseat, and well, it just goes to show that we all go through phases as we get older and our tastes change.

In these last couple of months I've collected a substantial amount of gold "medals" and figured I'd share, and with summer on the come up and knowing that gold jewelry makes even the sweatiest drenched tank top look fabulous, taking a gander at some of my current favorite pieces might spark some inspiration for you to get your gold rush on this season.

Dream Wardrobe: The Blazing Style Of Esther Quek

Apr 7, 2015

As I near my 30s (*gulp*) I feel that I'm failing at having a signature "look". The "look" that when I walk by DeBarge's "You Wear It Well" plays and everybody knows that it is Jennifer Time© and to soak it in. Okay...lemme step out of my own private movie montage for a sec...maybe I do have a "look" and I just don't realize it, because one sweep into my closet you'll see lots of stripes, dark blue skinny jeans, flats in all colors and styles, and --- to some degree --- a collection of scarves that are almost too pretty to don and almost impractical considering southern Texas' penchant for heat, heat, and more heat.

Most women I know from my mother to the besties have that one signature article of clothing, bauble, or even a distinctive fragrance that let's everybody know that when they walk into a room they have arrived. Fashion "rules" dictate that you're supposed to have a handful of basic and essential items in your closet to complete or enhance any look, and one such item is a blazer. Still, no "rules" could have told me that blazers were essential, as I've been drawn to them since high school back when I got a little obsessed with the '80s blazer style in films like Pretty In Pink and Working GirlAside from '80s film romps, if I want massive blazer/two-piece suit game inspiration for these modern times, I look no further than towards Esther Quek, who slays executive realness each and every time you see her.

What I ♥ Today: Cooking With Peg Bundy

Mar 4, 2015

Peg Bundy cooking with an egg and some M&M's

I'd follow the blog.
I'd watch the show on Food Network.
I'd petition for her to be a guest chef on The Chew.
I'd probably eat the omelette. It's got chocolate in it.

Stop looking at me like that...

Rant & Rave: Nobody Puts Jessica Williams In A Corner -- On Feminism & The Possession Of Personal Choice

Feb 19, 2015

When it was announced that Jon Stewart was leaving his post at The Daily Show, chatter of who would become his replacement became instant and rampant. Still one name was on the tip of tongues and minds on who should be his worthy successor, and that name was none other than the show's whip smart correspondent, Jessica Williams.

While it's a bit of brilliant fantasy casting, Williams had other thoughts as she pretty much held up her hands and said, 'thanks but no thanks', opting to disclose that she felt she wasn't qualified for the position, and truly had no interest in it. That should have been the end of that, but people got way too deep into their feelings via Twitter, jumped the gun, and began to literally badger Williams for a choice that really was well, her own. Things got screwy when one blogger even went as far to 'diagnose' Williams with 'Impostor Syndrome', attempting at vigorous lengths to bend their argument like Beckham in order to shame Williams for her personal choice, and literally forcing her to 'lean in' and 'man up'.

So much for feminism, right?

Muse: In Praise Of Solitude

Feb 13, 2015

Marilyn Monroe, photographed by Sam Shaw (1954)
"I restore myself when I'm alone" - Marilyn Monroe*
Being a singular soul is nothing new for me, after all, I am an only child. Contrary to some lopsided belief, only children grow accustomed to entertaining and relying on themselves. We know what it's like to look to the left and right of us, and see nobody there, and we're sort of forced to be content with that.

Some have pitied me for a lack of siblings, pitied my mother for her "paltry" breeding, others have believed I was a tan-colored Veruca Salt, constantly begging my poor father for golden tickets, a bean feast, and an Oompa Loompa to take home with me. Either way, my fate to be the focal point, my aloneness, my singularity, has bothered people.

When my body became a series of parenthesis and I became of "marrying age", all of a sudden it became oh so crucial for me to lock hands with another.

Relationship-bound friends, and even some overzealous family members, tried (and woefully failed) to set me up on dates with the men they thought I'd be compatible with (A common line was: "He's alone, you're alone, it's perrrfect!" No no, it's not). Strangers have asked me outright if I'm married and have kids, and their eyebrows raise, fall and then they fumble to further conversation when they find out otherwise (Just because I wear jeggings I'm a Mom? Just because I'm not a Mom you can't talk to me?). It's also assumed that I am a lesbian simply because insane logic says that if you're single by my age (late-late 20s) you absolutely must be into the same sex because gayness equates that you're playing a woeful hand of solitaire.

My eyes...they roll right out of their sockets.

Lady Who Rocks: Maysoon Zayid

Jan 21, 2015

Maysoon Zayid in 'You Don't Mess With The Zohan' (2008)

We all have things against us. Minuscule and major. We cry, moan, and FML about them, and then we either let those things make us feel like sh*t, or we turn the sh*t into shiitake mushrooms and make a delicious pasta meal out of them. Maysoon Zayid chooses the latter. Like us all, she has her own "strikes" against her. She's Palestinian. She's a Muslim. She's a woman, and...oh, yeah she's from New Jersey. Yeppers, she's got it rough alright. She's also just so happens to have cerebral palsy, and a set-back it is not, as Maysoon Zayid is a comedian and actress who is embracing her so-called flaws in the best ways possible.