Saturday, September 27, 2014

This Past Week

This past week has been a really heavy one for me for two very specific reason. I dread September 23rd yearly. It is the day my Dad was killed. It's been 16 years. Some years are easier than others. This was not an easy year. Mainly because I have felt like I needed him more in the last two years. Wait, no. I know I needed him in 2013. It was a dark year and I desperately need fatherly advice from my Father. It's moments like those that remind me that I am a fatherless daughter and it sucks. My Dad was not a perfect man or father but he was mine. I look at pictures of him and see myself in his face. It's crazy how one person's act (killing my Dad) could STILL affect a family years later. His picture is below. We have the same nose, same eyes. His face is my face. I miss that man.   

The second reason is the guy in the picture below. He is my Uncle Larry. His birthday was September 26th. He was killed in 2000. He was my absolute favorite person when I was growing up. He was a father figure. I was blessed to have him in my life. He talked to like an adult even though I was a kid. He was straight up and straight forward with me. He schooled me on life, boys, and music. I miss sitting in my room with him and just zoning out to music. He was taken from us way too soon. Unlike with my Dad's case, we received justice. It took 8 years but his killer was arrested and convicted. On his birthday, I always remember those little gems he always dropped on me. I still miss him. This week took a lot out of me emotionally. But, I made it  and I know both my Dad and uncle would want it that way. Happy Birthday, Uncle Larry. Rest in peace, Daddy. 

"Some days, I just miss my Father."

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Ladies Love Lyrics: MJB's "Whole Damn Year"

Mary J. Blige has been singing my life's heartache and heartbreaks since her debut cd. She has had the ability to tap into that specific pain for years. Her new single is "Whole Damn Year." From the first listen, I was pulled in. The song is about the time it takes to get over a heartbreak. Mary says it took a whole damn year but it's going on two for me. So, this song is appropriate in this moment for me. Love everything about it because I am a MJB fan. Mary's new project "The London Sessions" will be released in November 2014. Get into these lyrics.

"See winter took most of my heart
And spring punched me right in the stomach
Summer came looking for blood
And by autumn, I was left with nothing

It took a whole damn year to repair my body
It took a whole damn year
It took a whole damn year to repair my body
It’s been about five years

Gon’ take a long long year for me to trust somebody
Gon’ take long long year
Gon’ take a long long year for me to touch somebody
It’s been about five years..."

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Thoughts on a Sunday

It's been a long week. Emotions have taken me through it. So, since today is Sunday, I thought I'd focus on the positive. Today's post is all about the things in my life that I am grateful for. 

  • I woke up this morning, well rested and in a great mood. 
  • My Saints won!!!! It was a home game and it was a great one. We needed this win to shake up the rest of our season. #RoadToTheSuperBowl
  • I am thankful for the ability to pray for peace. Peace of mind, body and soul. Because I deserve it.
  • I am beyond thankful for the gift of clarity. I needed it desperately. I was acting out of character and it needed to end. 
  • I am grateful for lessons learned. I took a leap of faith but it didn't end the way I envisioned. Reason, season, lifetime in full effect here. 
  • My hair is growing so fast. It is healthy and I am happy. This is a huge deal to me. Forever grateful for full edges and length and thickness.
  • I have really high standards and I am extremely hard on myself. But, I know what I want and what I deserve. I deserve people who know that they want me in their life and at what capacity. I deserve reciprocity. I deserve happiness. I am grateful for the people in my life that get that and give it as well.
  • I am thankful for open, honest, frank discussions about any and every thing. I am as grateful for the people I encounter who can engage me intellectually. I thrive off of intelligence. 
  • I've realized that I've invested way too much time in the ability of someone other than myself to bring me happiness. The problem with that is if/when that person leaves, so does my happiness. I am grateful for that light bulb moment I had recently. I am Kenda and I determine my own happiness with or without anyone else in my life. 
  • I am thankful that I can see myself for who I am , flaws, faults and great things in all. I see me better than any other person walking this Earth. I am me and that is a wonderful thing. Grateful. Thankful.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Who's Angry?!

Three words have never irritated me more than the "Angry Black Woman" title. It is the stupidest stereotype because all humans get angry. All of us. Most of the time I am NOT angry. You know what makes me angry? Someone constantly telling me that I am angry. Or constantly be bombarded with the notion that ALL Black women are angry. If I am assertive or strong or I stand up for myself, I am all of a sudden angry. What simpleton decided that ALL Black women were angry? An idiot for sure. The United States is a hotbed for racial inequality right now. As a Black woman who was born and raised here, I feel like my Blackness is being attacked constantly. It's not often we as Black people see ourselves depicted in a good light on television or on the big screen. It's one of the main reasons I am a Shonda Rhimes fan. Those three little words sparked a public outcry on Twitter yesterday when the NY Times erroneously posted an article that read:
When Shonda Rhimes writes her autobiography," Stanley begins, "it should be called How to Get Away With Being an Angry Black Woman."

Rhimes' Twitter response was golden. And, guess what it wasn't? ANGRY. She seemed more appalled than anything. And, the fact that her new show "How To Get Away With Murder" was created by a white man made the author of that ridiculous article seem even more incompetent. I loved her response as well as those of some of the actors who work for her, especially Kerry's, Viola's and Josh's. I did not see one positive tweet about the article. Everyone felt that dig. After reading that lede, I was not inclined to read the rest. It rubbed me the wrong way. There is a way to offer praise. The article did not do that. It was a backhanded compliment filled piece that no one could feel complemented by. There was no happiness felt while reading it. 

Then, something miraculous happened. Black women started a Twitter hashtag movement. #IWasAnAngryBlackWomanWhen was born. The tweets were mostly sarcastic in nature in response to the article. The crazy thing is I didn't get angry when I read it. I was offended as was every Black woman and anyone who is a fan of the brilliance that is Shonda Rhimes. She is a visionary and a major success story. Her Shondaland Productions owns ABC's Thursday night slots. She is the only Black woman to head a company that has not one, not two but three primetime shows on tv right now. Two of those shows are helmed by Black women. All three shows have casts that are more racially diverse than any other shows or networks. Rhimes should be praised for having the golden touch. 

The NY Times seems to have forgotten that. Thankfully, other credible publications did not follow that lead. SlateVox, CNN, and Variety all took a different and better standpoint. The lede of the NY Times piece (which I refuse to link to) was wrong, stereotypical and awful. The author stated that the article was meant to praise Rhimes. But, you do not insult a person's entire being then follow it with shallow compliments. Do. Not. Want. Return To Sender. What the author and the paper should do is print a retraction, apologize for being racist, stereotypical pigs and never do it again. But, they won't. And, in all honesty, Shonda Rhimes doesn't need them to. She will continue to slay Thursday nights as she has for years. Because she is a genius and her shows are amazing. Winning is the best revenge. Make sure you are tuned in at 7pm central on Thursday, September 25, 2014 for the return of "Grey's Anatomy," and "Scandal," and also the introduction of "How To Get Away With Murder."

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Around the E-Streets (XV)

  • It's been 36 days and Mike Brown's killer Darren Wilson is still free. He has not been seen since August 9th. Why Lawd?! Fix It Jesus!! Protesters are still calling for the cop to be arrested as is the rest of the world. 
  • Vogue wrote a bullshit article creating white women with this new era of the booty. The entire web erupts in epic shade and laughter. The hashtag #VogueArticles took over Twitter. I can only shake my head. White folks stay columbusing
  • LAPD detained a woman, Daniele Watts, they thought was a prostitute. Why did they think this? She is a Black woman who was kissing her white husband in public. That's it. That's all. 
  • Ronald Ritchie, the man who called police and set into motion the murder of John Crawford III has changed his story. He now claims that Crawford wasn't aiming the toy gun at people. He only changed his mind AFTER the surveillance tape was released and it shows he lied. I think RItchie should be charged in Crawford's death as well as the cop who killed him. It is like open season on Black people. Damn!
  • This entire Ray Rice - Roger Goodell drama is insane. Rice is guilty as hell. But, so is Goodell. If Rice has lost his job, Goodell should suffer the same fate. Crazy that the NFL condemned Michael Vick behind some damn dogs and only gave Rice a slap on the wrist for beating his girlfriend who just happens to be a Black woman. Why don't we matter to people?!? 

  • One great thing that came out of the Ray Rice domestic violence/NFL suspension was the #WhyIStayed twitter hashtag.
  • Maybe someone should tell Stephen A. Smith to shut the entire hell up already? There was this and now this. Vick bankrolled dog fights. So, is Smith comparing Black women to dogs?!? Really, Black man? I call bs. ESPN should fire him.
  • I love children's books that feature Black kids and natural hair. Here is a list of some great ones. 
  • Read an interesting article. You should too. It's one woman's take on being the only White person in the room during high school. 
  • Word on the streets is that Beyonce' is quite possibly pregnant with Baby Carter #2 and that Jay Z announced it on stage in Paris at the second to last OTR show. Time will tell. 

Monday, September 15, 2014

Get Into It: Chrisette Michele Unplugged Vlogs

Chrisette Michele's voice is e-very-thing to me. Here she is singing "Better." This song has always been one of my favorites by her. I just haven't been able to listen to it without feeling awful and crying. So, I've avoided it for a long time. But, this made it's way to my Tumblr dash and I had to listen. Upon hearing this acoustic version inspired another emotion. I felt hopeful. I can honestly say I haven't felt hopeful in a really long time. It's been about 20 months since my heart was broken. The fact that I know the exact amount of time that has passed also let's me know that I'm not 100% better yet. I have been staunchly anti-love since then. I like that the song is about the possibility of a new love. Granted, I am not there. I don't know if I'll ever be to be honest. But, I digress. Chrisette has one of those heavily jazz influenced R&B soul voices. Her voice is truly an instrument and this video proves it. Get into the effortless way she dismantles this song. I think I love this version more than the original. Also, she is absolutely amazing in concert. Get into the video above and the lyrics below!!

"When I fall for love the next time.
And an arrow’s in my back.
I won’t let the pain get me down, oh no.
I won’t fight back. 
Let the cupid take me wherever he wants to go.
Fly me to the moon like an old jazz love song. 
Cupid, do what you want to do.
The choice is yours. 
When I get where you’re taking me,
Love’s gonna make me...feel better, better, better!
Love’s gonna make me feel better, better, better!
Cause getting to love’s got me losing my mind! 
I’ve been wrecking my brain
love’s so insane.
Cupid, help me please. 
cause Mr. Wrong keeps meeting me!
and I got a funny feeling love is just around the bend so  
I’ll keep on pushing till love falls for me!"

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Movie Review: "No Good Deed"

If you guys do not know, I am an Idris Elba fan from way back to the first episode of "The Wire." So, when I heard he was doing a Will Packer movie with Taraji P. Henson, I was all in. Then, about a year later, the trailers dropped. Idris plays Colin, a charismatic, good looking, stone cold killer. He is the definition of a bad guy here. The premise of the movie is that Elba is a escaped convicted killer who's specialty is "violence against women." Henson plays stay at home mom of 2 Terry. Their paths inadvertently cross and drama ensues. 

I loved seeing Elba in a role where it was easy to hate him. I loved seeing Henson in a role that on the surface appears like a docile, helpless one. But, that would be totally wrong. Henson is anything but helpless or docile. In the beginning of the movie, there is apparent sexual tension between the two. There is light flirting between a neglected housewife and a charming stranger. Things take a turn for the worse quickly. It was suspenseful, witty, well written and beautifully shot. This is a movie I will be watching again. I enjoyed it that much. You guys should go check it out. Get into it: "No Good Deed." 

Friday, September 12, 2014

That's Seaux Random!

  • My Saints lost their season opener. I am super sad about it. Especially since we lost to the freaking Falcons. I HATE the Falcons. They are our division rivals. Oh well, still a Saints fan, still yelling "Who Dat!"
  • While food shopping in Sam's this weekend, I ran into my hs/college ex's Mom & Grandfather. This woman hated me the entire time I was dating her son. I haven't seen her in years. She hugged me & I was so shocked. She was actually happy to see me. We had a conversation. She told me that she missed seeing and talking to me. And, that she didn't know I was back here. It was odd but interesting. It was the weekend of random encounters. There is another one below. 
  • I randomly met this man Saturday. He was looking for my apartment manager. He told me his whole life story in a matter 10 minutes. Told me that I have a nice aura and that I was beautiful. It caught me off guard but it made me smile. It wasn't a situation where he was trying to get at me but just an honest exchange between two folks. 
  • I had a really good weekend. Slept like a baby. Spent time with my family. Reconnected with some friends. Just a really good few days and I am appreciative of it.
  • I think the above took place because I did something I've known for months that I should have. It's not always easy to do the thing that must be done. But, I have to look out for my well being because there is no one else who will do it for me. Loving myself more and more every day. It's my life and I'm gonna live it for me and me alone. 
  • My legs got the tan they've needed all year while laying out by the pool early Saturday morning. I love it when the color of my legs matches the rest of me. It doesn't happen nearly enough. I had to take photos to remember this lol.
  • I am taking this online modern poetry class. It started yesterday. This first assignment is about Emily Dickinson & Walt Whitman, two of my favorite poets. The class is ten weeks. I cannot wait to see what I will learn from it. 
  • Two different people told me that I seem sad and that I don't seem happy. To a point, they were both correct. It's been a very long 20 months for me. I don't feel the overwhelming hurt and pain and sadness that I once did. I also do not feel like there is a dark cloud over me anymore. Am I 100% better? No. And, I honestly don't think I'll ever be. I loved someone deeply and I was hurt just as deeply. That changes you. It changed me in ways I can't even begin to explain. But, I'm better. I still haven't learned how not to cry over it. I'm working on that. But, I'm on my way back to me. That's all I could pray for at this point. I'm taking care of me first, last and always. 
  • The fact that Michael Brown's killer Darren Wilson has not been seen or heard from in a month is ridiculous. The fact that he hasn't been charged or arrested is in-damn-sane. There is no justice here if you're Black. This country has no use for us. We seem to be disposable. It makes me sick.
  • I have been severely neglecting my blog :( I feel bad about it but the words in my head are ones I don't want to write out or share with the world. They are better left unwritten. I am trying to motivate myself to write more and be better about the upkeep here. I'm trying my best. I promise to be a better blogger, writer, woman. 

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Are You Ready For Some Football, Baby?!?

Football is finally back!!!!!!!!!!!! Can you tell that I'm a tad bit excited?!? I am because I love football. The season officially opened last Thursday. But, my team, the New Orleans Saints, play today @ 12 p.m. central. We open our season with an away game playing our rivals the Falcons. When the Saints play, it is a no fly zone so those dirty birds will fail and fall as usual. I am praying that my team has an amazing season which will lead us to the Superbowl!! Geaux Saints! Who Dat!! 

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Ladies Love Lyrics: Jazmine Sullivan's "Forever Don't Last"

Jazmine Sullivan is back. And, as a fan, I couldn't be happier. Her latest single is "Forever Doesn't Last." It is my current new favorite song. It's a song that touches me deeply and personally. The concept of "forever" has a very short shelf life in the world today. People say "Forever" when they really mean "right now" or "for the foreseeable future." Anyway, the lyrics of this song are so true. I really love it and the fact that it's Jazmine is singing them. Get into them. 

"I had high hopes for us, baby.
Like I was on dope for us, baby.
Chasing after a high that I'd never get back again.
So we turn into 3 long years.
And it became painfully clear that we would
never see those days again.

But, I guess forever doesn't last too long, 

forever doesn't last too long, 

forever doesn't last too long
these days. Hey.  
And, I tried to believe that we would make it.
But, trying don't work so I just have to face that
forever doesn't last too long these days.
Still think about the good times we had
and how you used to make me laugh.
But baby, I know most times we were miserable.
So every time I wanna call
baby what always help is when I think of the pain
and I realize I'm better off by myself.

forever doesn't last too long, 
forever doesn't last too long, 
forever doesn't last too long these days. 
And, I tried to believe that we could make it. 
But, trying don't work and I just have to face that
forever doesn't last too long these days. 

Lord knows I gave it my all and 
couldn't save us from falling. 
Cause some people ain't meant to be 
together forever, forever...