This Just In…

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CONTEMPO COUTURE CONE SHAPE SEMI PRECIOUS STONE DOUBLE STUD EARRINGS (Turquoise/Silver)

So… I did a bit of shopping for you. Check out what I found. Some of you know I like baubles… some of you don’t. If you didn’t… now you do.

I am in love with ear jackets and double stud earrings (thanks to the awesome Jo-Ann Enwezor). I could be late with this, maybe you already knew, but I am cool with that. Everything happens in divine time, hunty.

But aren’t they just adorable? A little flair for behind the lobe. I love the mix of edgy with classic materials. Think about this turquoise and silver with your summer whites! It adds “business” to your look. Super excited about these.

I also looked out for your mental wealth. Check out the Sondai Book Reference page for managing your plan to leaving your legacy to your children and their children. My current go to book is Think and Grow Rich: A Black Choice by Dr. Dennis Kimbro. I watched a #MentorMonday Spreecast some time ago, where Paul Carrick Brunson spoke with the good doctor about building wealth. It has shaped my mind in new ways, so I share it with you.

There is more but I will let you browse at your leisure. I will be adding more finds and updating you to them. Just had to share this this mid-morning update; too fun and exciting to keep it to myself. Check out The Sondai Souq my updated Amazon Store!

Secure Your Mask… First

“In the event of a decompression, an oxygen mask will automatically appear in front of you. To start the flow of oxygen, pull the mask towards you. Place it firmly over your nose and mouth, secure the elastic band behind your head, and breathe normally. Although the bag does not inflate, oxygen is flowing to the mask. If you are travelling with a child or someone who requires assistance, secure your mask on first, and then assist the other person.”  ~ Most Airlines In-flight Instruction

Can you see me through a field of boteh? I mean really see my truth. Can the waving of palme really hide me; or do you just not choose to recognize? Prelude to Y.U.M.D.

Can you see me through a field of boteh? I mean really see my truth. Can the waving of palme really hide me; or do you just not choose to recognize? Prelude to Y.U.M.D. Part of the PluME/Paisley Coloring Project with Ella van Wyk – Urbane, IL

I have not been heeding this instruction. We have all heard it before; that is if you have ever been on a flight. The truth is if you have been on enough flights you know the script but tend to ignore it. You become immune to it. Metaphorically, this is an instruction that should be adhered to everyday.

Most people know I wear many hats. Sometimes so many that the question in social settings that makes me sigh deeply is… “So, what do you do?”. It is a big part of living in DC, especially now. The city has slowly become a cross section of politicos and artists; always working to find the balance between the two. “So, what do you do?” becomes that question necessary to figure out who is in the room. Mind you both politicos and artists are political, that is if the artist is truly into making art from the soul. But that could digress into another conversation.

The folks in between shuttle back and forth between the two categories creating an interesting bridge between the two. Then there are the folks who get caught in a position of liaison or straddler.

This is the space I currently occupy. 

One foot in the arts. One foot in politics. Mind on social justice. Now how exactly is that working? At the moment, I can’t call it. One this is for sure it is taxing and does not really serve my inner sanctum.

Rewind… Maybe 3 years ago, I asked my mother, “Why?” “Why didn’t you push me into a career in law or medicine?” Her answer simply and unequivocally… “Because you are an artist.”

Wow.

There are some who spend their lives looking for people who really know them… who really get who they are as a human being. My mother in that moment showed me that the only person who needed to get to know me was me. Because she clearly got it.

This is where the oxygen mask comes in handy. When you have those around you who see you in a certain light or your ability to aid in a particular agenda or further a particular cause, it is important and necessary that you have a firm footing and your lungs are fully operational and inflatable. Otherwise you get tripped up and can easily have the wind knocked out of you.

The agenda of others always seeps into the crevices of those who can fulfill it. A fact that I am not mad at. This is how things progress. However, sometimes it can be obtrusive and forceful, especially to those who are keen on “getting IT” done. You know, those types willing to help, picking up the ball to make sure the goal is scored. It seems like those people are becoming fewer in number, as they are over come by obtrusive agendas and worn out souls. So before my soul is worn out…

What then…?

I create more. I spend more time with me. I create more. I reveal more thoughts through the medium that feels right. Art is… Most importantly, I relinquish other people’s issues and agendas back to them, because there is no more capacity, no more storage for them here. Some time ago I learned that everything happens for a reason. It is no coincidence that “x” and “y” took place, it was all in the plan.

So, cheers to the plan.

I type these words self – centered-ly, though the compassionate side of me hopes it is helpful to someone. The passionate side of me looks towards saving myself because the air in the cabin is decompressing.

Letting Mercury Win…

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So I would like to think that I LET Mercury win yesterday. The truth is I think the planet had the upper hand. Have you ever just tried to keep pluggin through and everything and everyone was knocking you down at every turn? This day was one of those. KNOWING that Mercury is in Retrograde is a challenge because you really can’t tell if you, the other asshole, or that other asshole is being an asshole or if it was all just a big misunderstanding. It is so annoying.

But alas this time is about reflection, correct? It is a time to pause and consider “whassup”… what can you do better, what are you actually doing. So before I turn into Evillene out dis piece that is what I am going to do. Reflect.

I pushed the do not disturb button on the phone… in fact it is still on. I just couldn’t deal so… I took a nap. It wasn’t a bad day, just a day of I don’t  want to. Dealing with your feelings and Mercury being retrograde is no easy feat. Somedays are a real challenge, which is why I let Mercury win yesterday.

That doesn’t mean the day was a bust.

Today, I received a package that will be revealed in another blog post, I discovered a new show on HULU, caught up on all my Black•ish and developed an idea to tell my family history on a larger scale. So again not a bust. Just using this time to regroup and refresh… before I send some flying monkeys to ring Dorothy’s little neck and her little dog too.

Don’t Bring Me No Bad News…

Seeing is Believing

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I wear glasses, as do many. I think it has to do with not eating the necessary dosage of carrots as a kid. Like many of those that wear glasses I feel that if I have to wear them they might as well look good. After all glasses wearers are fun and fashionable too. However, I learned early on that wearing glasses could sometimes eat up that extra spending money you worked so hard to save. So over the years I have been on a search to find glasses that fit my budget, because personally I would love to have a pair of glasses that match every outfit I own. That is just the fashionista in me and of course I am my mother’s child.
There are many places for funky, fresh, exciting and visually dramatic eye baubles. I am actually looking to update my look. I receive a lot of compliments on my glasses. I appreciate them all! I realize that folks have to look at me if I am in their atmosphere so I figure I should be pleasing to the eye. I hope that doesn’t come off weird… if you get it you got though. Now I can’t tell all the secrets, to be unique is to have an arsenal of tricks up your sleeve. Alas. I consider myself a great helper if I do say so myself. So with that said check out this link and find yourself some funky fresh eye candy.

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Top 7 Reasons I Like Black-ish

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I have stayed out of the fray of conversations about the new tv sitcom Black-ish until I was able to actually see it. Well I have seen it and I like it. First of all the “ish”… is my favorite part. Allow me to analyze/hypothesize, to help you realize how clever the title is.

With the bastardizing and the abbreviating of the English language this play on what could mean “kinda” versus the new spelling of sugar honey iced tea, is just clever. Think about it. Signifying is a major aspect of the culture of the African American community. As is coded language also. It is recognized in the community to personify one thing however, someone not so well versed the the historical context of this or the understanding of such cultural nuisances would categorize it at face value. For example, made popular in the 90’s the word “dope”. If someone says “Those greens were dope.” It has nothing to do with drugs. It is a coded language not on purpose but by default.

So let me delve into the reasons why I like this show.

1. It is an actual sitcom with black people. What a relief to have a sitcom on television that has a plot, characters that you can relate to, and everyone has their clothes on. There are no ratchet reality stars “bringing down the race.” Someone wrote this and thought about it. It is not sensationalized nor does it have the drama or cat-yness of “reality” shows.

2. There are no punches pulled. This show is not politically correct. Dre played by Anthony Anderson, works to maintain culture with his kids despite being more affluent than his upbringing. The notion that a family with values is being portrayed on the screen warms the cockles of my heart. To this I say finally. Not since the days of Cosby and A Different world has this been a fixture on a major network.

3. It is driven by pride and not fad. The show does not have to tear down other races to be pro-black. In fact the cultural diversity on the show enhances the statement of pride.

4. It is Chris Rock funny-but-a-damn-shame type humor. While Chris Rock has gotten flack for his comments on SNL his brand of humor has always been able to allow laughing at the flaws of society. The absurd. He has proven that with his more recent foray in the media. Black-ish is so inherently simple you must laught. That is how I see Black-ish. You either shake your head and laugh or say “damn that is true”.

5. For our Caucasian brothers and sisters: It is a great way to get a translator for your black friend’s inside jokes. Now this does not mean that you can be a part of the joke, say the joke, or will ever completely understand the joke. However, your frame of reference will be broader that it once was.

6. Gauge your level of bourgeois vs. the common everyday black person.
Now this may shake it up a bit. I am sure you are saying “I am not bourgeois.” But think about it if you have gone outside of the country… ever eaten goat cheese with lavender and honey… or talked about traveling to the vineyards…. eh maybe a bit of bourgeois lives in you. But before you attack this post… I do realize that African Americans did/do these things all of the time. We are not a monolithic culture. But Twana an ’em ain’t getting down like this.

7. Which brings me to the fact that this is another facet of life most African Americans do not see. Ever wonder what keeping up with the Joneses looks like when the Joneses can’t even touch you? That is Black-ish. Part of why I love it is the fact that the show struggles to figure out what level of cultural inclusion is the right balance for their family. How would you approach the topic of rites of passage with your children in a neighborhood that is more Americana than Americana but is safe for your kids to not worry about harm.

It reminds me of the headline in the news recently about the brother shielding his kids by teaching them to speak and wear certain things in order to avoid harm from the police or disdain from their white counterparts. It is a complete set up and disservice for his kids not to understand the way this society works nor to understand who they are as people in this world. Black-ish is working on that balance of making sure that their family exhibits pride and confidence in cultural heritage and what it means to be responsible people in a society that is not always accepting or responsible or fair or honest.
It is not perfect by any means. It challenges and provokes conversation. I mean hell weren’t folks talking about it… eventhough they had never even watched it? Oh and by the way… yeah to critique/criticize you do have to examine, otherwise… your just talking… ish.