Ever wonder what happened to the classic black movies? Friday, Boyz N Tha Hood, The Wood, Love Jones, Eve’s Bayou, Jason’s Lyric…the blaxploitation era? Is Tyler Perry the best we’ve got now? What does the future hold? Warnessa and Meagan explore where the industry has been, where it is, and where it’s going in the first installation of “The State of Black Entertainment” series.
Author Archives: primemeridian11
I have been meaning to write this blog for some time now, but being a newlywed and jumping back into school has been hectic. This is mainly because I chose to still compete in moot court this year. Yeah…wouldn’t recommend doing that right after a wedding. I debated about how to approach this. Should I write about what I have learned in my first month of marriage or discuss the planning process? I decided to go with the planning process because that’s what most people said they wanted to hear about.
I would first like to thank my #ThreadFam for coming to the wedding in such depthness (made it up, rock with it). I was so happy to see all of you and ya’ll definitely helped to keep the party going!! LOVE.
Alright, so here is the backstory. My husband and I spent about 2 months confirming the date because we really wanted to do it at a good time. We soon found that there was no good time, so we went with our hearts. We also wanted to do the entire wedding with no debt, even though we are both law students and knew we would be shouldering most of the financial burden. Around the time we were really ramping up the planning (i.e. starting to pay for stuff), my boss told me that he didn’t need a law clerk anymore. So, yeah. That’s where the hard part came in because we also didn’t want to miss out on people because of the cost. Although, our original guest list was 500, so we had to do some cutting anyway. Also, we had to choose cheaper food, so that we could invite who we wanted. Hence, serving BBQ at a January wedding (took me at least 4 months to say yes to this). Meager funds + Large Guest List + Family and Friends Support + God=Miracle!
So here are the TOP 10 THINGS I LEARNED:
10. I know that a lot of people do pre-marital counseling, but we actually chose pre-engagement instead. It’s the exact same material as pre-marital, but it helped us to know if we should even be continuing a relationship at all. Our counselors told us that they had decided to have this because they found that people would do pre-marital after they were already engaged, had paid for stuff and their family was involved. People might find huge red flags, but continue anyway. Then, they would be seeking counseling through a divorce a few years later. Pre-engagement gives you the opportunity to just break up. We also joined a marriage group at our church after we were engaged, which helped tremendously!! There were couples ranging from 1 month of marriage to 20+ years in that group. We learned and grew so much and we still go every other Friday. This is probably already obvious, but we took marriage very very seriously and although people say “you’re never really ready”, we wanted to be as ready as possible.
“Excuse me for not fitting your stereotype.” (Saw this on a friend’s twitter bio and thought it was fitting)
When I was a kid I always opted to go outside and shoot hoops over playing with dolls. I would rather race bikes than play dress up. I never played in my mom’s make-up and fishing trips with my dad were some of my favorite times. Of course, this earned me the label of “tom-boy”. Not so ironically, 3 out of 4 of my sister’s also got the same label. We had 1 “girly girl” and she even played in the dirt with us from time to time.
The label on the box people put me in back then is still with me now. Boxes are funny things because most of the time we talk about not being put in one, but we often believe the labels that come along with them. I believed that label for so long and I just accepted that it was actually a part of me. So I was the girl who played sports, didn’t like dressing up, opted for jeans over dresses and sneakers over heels. The few times when I did actually try to indulge my “girly” side by wearing dresses and heels, people flipped out. They would say things like, “Oh you are so pretty! Never thought I’d see the day you wore a dress though.” That would instantly send me back into my shell of denim washes and nike checks. It was just easier to fit inside the box; no fanfare that way. And to be honest, the comments just made me feel insecure with my “girly” side.
Then I grew up. I outgrew the box and the labels. I got comfortable with all of me. That’s not to say that I am extra frilly now, but I am comfortable being so when I want to. I definitely rock dresses all the time now, love wearing make up on some days and thoroughly enjoy my “pamper me” days. However, the fanfare still comes more often than I would like and I still get the comments. I attribute this to a combination of people’s expectations, my strong personality (this cld be a whole post) and my practical spirit (getting manicures and pedicures every week, buying labels, having 20 purses and spending copious amounts of money on products is senseless to me; has nothing to do with being a tom boy, I just think that money could be saved). Although now I am secure enough to not allow the comments to force me back into the shell, they still get to me. I mean really, I am a woman, I am feminine and why wouldn’t I want to dress it up from time to time? It’s like instead of checking my outfit, maybe people should check their expectations. I think people don’t realize that when you make a statement like, “Wow! You actually look good in dresses,” you are questioning a person’s femininity. It’s a compliment in reverse that usually does more harm than good. I would like to think the motive behind such comments is to make the person feel more comfortable, so they wear certain things more, but it doesn’t do that. If this is news to you, well now you know. That’s like expressing concern by saying, “You look really tired? Are you okay?” It doesn’t go over well.
I wonder if the same things happen to men. For example, say you have a classic pretty boy who always takes extra long on his looks, doesn’t really watch sports, and is just not into doing the typical “guy” stuff. Then he comes in with some hoopin shorts and a fitted. Does his masculinity get questioned?
I guess my bigger point is, what’s wrong with being a tomboy? The world feeds us so many stereotypes and prototypes. Those blueprints transform into expectations, but what is being “girly” really all about. I feel just as feminine in my kicks as I do in heels. This wasn’t always the case as I mentioned above. There was certainly a time when a dress made me feel more feminine…and more awkward. That was only because I bought into the stereotypes too. Now, I don’t feel less like a woman just because I may go a day without make up or rock my guy’s bball shorts from time to time. I am inherently “girly” because I am a girl. Period. Whatever label one may choose to put on my style of girl or woman is up to them and has nothing to do with me. As the fellow threader, Pipeline said, “I was a tomboy… still am… with pride!”.
Anyway, that’s my rant. Thoughts?
P.S. I still HATE heels and the person who made them. Whoever set that expectation was probably a man who has no idea how awful those things feel and they aren’t even practical. Death to heels for real!
I hesitated to post this because I was not sure I even wanted to publicize this any more than it already was. However, I think we need to be aware of the growing racism that exists and I don’t mean the metamorphosis that the article suggests. In a very poorly substantiated article, CNN writer John Blake asks if white people are racially oppressed. This is clearly oxymoronic as power and oppression are antonyms. However, the lengthy article actually attempts to utilize data to posit that white people are becoming racially oppressed. It’s comical that some white people equate losing “their” stuff as oppression. Inherent in that position is that white people legitimately believe that certain things, such as jobs and wealth, are theirs to retain. I will let the article speak for itself: See it here and Discuss.
WARNING: This is going to be a stream of consciousness rant. This is also not addressed to the critiques themselves as it is more about the discontinued support. Everyone will have critiques and I think that’s normal.
We’ve have already had a post about the newly revived show, “The Game” and you can read that here. Please leave comments if you do. This is about the backlash that the show has received. When The Game was cancelled, black people finally figured out the definition of unity and came together for a common purpose. Through all the petitions, phone calls, etc. The Game was revived. Now, after one freakin episode some black people have gotten on their conveniently placed high horses and abandoned ship. This has been frustrating for me and disheartening. I personally think people went in to the show with a more critical eye because it was on BET. If TVOne had picked the show up, my timeline may have been filled with people excusing certain things and delivering softer criticism because they were rooting for the network.
My twitter timeline was filled with comments like:
“BET ruined this ish. Should have stayed cancelled.”
“This is some coon mess.”
“And so much for that, I’m not supporting this BS.”
So church has been a source of contention for me lately. I do not understand how churches became conglomerates and how everyone started to climb some illusory corporate ladder in the sanctuary. This is not a blanket indictment against the so called mega-churches either. There are churches of all sizes that have lost site of their mission.
My friend posted something on Facebook the other day about how everyone wants a title in the church now. It’s so true. My father is a preacher and when I was growing up him and all his preacher friends were just Reverend. Now we have Bishops, Prophets/tess, Evangelist and the oh so new Psalmist. I’m not hating on the titles (although I think Psalmist is just doing too much), but what is the motivation behind the titles. Seriously, what changes you from a Reverend to a Bishop? How do you become that? Is it like getting your stripes or something?
Also, back in the day when I was young, anyone could sing in the choir. You just showed up to the practice (usually in your play clothes) and you could sing. I am almost tone deaf, but they even let me lead a song. Now, we have tryouts for the church choir. This baffles me. What ever happened to Make a Joyful Noise? Then, there is the problem with the coveted Mic spots. Some people don’t mind not being on the mic, but for some it is a real sore spot. Needless to say, I can understand their issue because it does create a quasi hierarchy in the choir. It separates the wheat from the tare when it comes to vocal ability. It just seems to me that you can’t hear the people on the Mic anyway, so why not just pass the mic from time to time.
Then there is all the flashing lights and production aspects. As much as I hate to say this, it is somewhat of a show. I understand the reasoning because in order to get people in the door and compete with the other churches, every church seems to need a little bit of a gimmick. When the message become secondary to the production with every minute planned, I have an issue. There just seems to be little room in the minute by minute schedule to allow the spirit to just move. Every actor has to be on stage and off within their allotted time slot.
I do not say all this to advertise against church. I plan to be a life long church goer and I think it is necessary for my life. However, sometimes the business, the hierarchy and the production make it hard for me to focus on the purpose. It’s just a little busy in there. Simplicity is just better sometimes and more effective.