Good News Travel Comrades: We’re (Almost) Free to Fly Unmolested

My first post of 2013, and it is on the perfect subject.

As Nysee mentioned a few posts back: this is the time to get back on track, or continue with our goals. Travel is a big part of that! I feel deprived not being able to leave for domestic and international destinations because of all the idiocy at the airports.

Although I still want the TSA a.k.a. “Those Stupid A$$h@!#s” and HS a.k.a. “Homeland (In)security” to be disbanded and eliminated sometime in the immediate future, this bit of *Rape-i-scan news will have to do. For now. The fight to bring society back to an unbowed and non-sheep-like existence, along with the eradication of this police state atmosphere, or totalitarian regime, is a lifetime affair.

And, no, I don’t believe I’m exaggerating. There’s a real limit as to how many stupefying hassles, inconveniences and degradations I’m required to endure just to get on a damn airplane. None of that security theater nonsense ever had, or ever will, make me feel “safe” and “secure”. We got the message years ago: if someone acts up on a plane, everybody will beat him into submission and duct tape his ass to a seat.

Finally, The Good News

According to the BBC:

“The US aviation security agency will stop screening travellers with scanners that show travellers’ naked images, amid widespread privacy complaints.”

“Separately to the privacy concerns, some health officials feared the *Rape-i-scan 1000SP scanner, which uses low-level X-rays to generate the image viewed by screeners, might expose passengers to unsafe levels of radiation.”

“The *Rape-i-scan machines will be replaced by scanners that use radio waves to detect suspicious objects hidden underneath clothes. Those display warnings on an avatar rather than show a naked image of the passenger.”

Our Congress made them stop.

Let us not forget that those people in government, every single one of them, work for us: we are not their subjects, servants, slaves or sheep.

And they could give two s#!&s about health risks. These people were worried about liability: the increasing possibility of someone, or a group of people in a class action, winning a massively huge! huge! lawsuit. Regardless of the BS you hear when you buy an airline ticket, that does not entitle this government to try and (slowly) kill you in order to get from point A to point B in the name of “We No Longer Call It The War on Terror”.

You get enough exposure to radiation from flying alone.

On the other hand, this might lead to an increase in the number of TSA stealing from, fondling and sexually abusing vulnerable passengers, since so many criminal-minded authoritarian control freaks and sexual perverts are attracted to the job (especially those at the top of these agencies).

Money always talks.

While I believe complaints from consumers reached the ears of our dimwitted representatives, and lent some weight to the removal of the *Rape-i-scan, I don’t think that’s the whole story. We need to remember that some of the most powerful lobbyists down in Washington, D.C. belong to the airlines.

So, I bet they ran the numbers and realized that a lot of people, like myself, were not FLYING because of those machines and government employee nut jobs. If you multiply that by a few hundred thousand Americans, especially business people who usually pay the full “weight” or fare, and other international flyers, the TSA was – and is – strangling the travel industry.

I also wouldn’t be surprised if they are also single-handedly responsible for the sluggish condition of the global economy. It’s a domino affect. If we aren’t travelling domestically or overseas spending our money – that’s a big loss. That well oiled machine is seizing up.

The government would like to think that the removal of the *Rape-i-scan is a lasting sole solution, or a sufficient move to appease folks, but to me – it’s just the beginning….

Note: *Yes, I deliberately misspelled the name of that despicable product. I apologize for the profanity, but this topic leaves me heated.

***

Update: This may be the only recourse. Everyday a passenger should sue the TSA.

Wired.com: Man With 4th Amendment Written on Chest Wins Trial Over Airport Arrest

 

 

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For Black Women: Don’t Ever Ask For Permission To Live

Spring is coming. Well, up here in the Northeast it’s coming. I’m sure for those of you around the country (or world) the weather is different. Could be blazing hot right now, eh?

I haven’t been pro-active enough lately, or the last couple of months. I think I’ve spent more of it catching up, because I’ve let so many personal things go by the wayside. I’m a procrastinator. It’s true. 🙂

I want to encourage those of you who are feeling a bit blue to look forward to the next few months, or years, of your life. I think the last two or three years have been a wake up call. We’re seeing relatively “young” celebrities, rich folk, public intellectuals and entertainers die way way way before their time. And here we are simple, regular folk, slogging through each day wondering how people with “everything” could pass so easily.

There you have it: even the wealthy, famous and “perfect” can suddenly die.

Oh, I meant to cheer you up. Sorry. 🙂

I want to encourage you. Push you. Gently. To refocus.

Think about what you want. What you want! What you NEED. What you DESIRE. What you feel you DESERVE.

You ain’t here to please nobody. So don’t let any naysayers, toxic people, or the crabs in your life know about your wishes. Only share it with those who really do love you.

And that’s another thing. Please run away, right now, from anybody who makes you feel less than. Who leaves a bad taste in your mouth after every discussion. A “frank” conversation shouldn’t leave you feeling sad, sorrowful, down-in-the-dumps or DISCOURAGED!

I meant this to be short, but I’m asking all of you to think of yourselves. Treat yourself better. Love yourself. Find people who adore you to surround you. And tell the vampires in your life to hit the road. There are people out there who are NOT entitled to invade your personal space or life.

Okay?

Make that list. Follow through. Do what pleases you. Do the impossible. And remember: Don’t ever ask for permission to live.

Take good care of yourself.

Cheers. 😀

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For Black Women: When Your Choices Make Other People Or Your “Friends” Mad

The following comment, and question, was sent to me by the intelligent and lovely Chocolatestar:

I wanted to send you this video and get your thoughts on this. I’m not sure if it’s just me and my strong opinionated personality, but i’m quite tired of black women bashing other black women, who call black men out on their self destructing behavior and hatred for their women.

Is it a crime to not be attracted to their characteristics( emotionally damaged, etc) or even want to take risks on black men, especially after observing the resulting trends.

I’m so tired of hearing how there are so many good black men out here, if i was interested in them I would be saying where they at, where they at. It’s funny who this chick ended up with after all.

I just recently ended a friendship with a bw, who was a christian extremist.

I sent her your essay on “Why white men are better” and she flipped her lid, saying that she has a black son and will never sabotage black men, because she love them so much and will only date a black man (yet the best man she ever had, her words, was a guy who was a drug dealer her babies daddy and eventually got shot down) and anyone blogging and reading essays bashing black men needs help.

Yet many have ran her through the dirt She went too far excusing their trending behavior with bible versus and the antebellum era. I tired to tell her that the essay to me was a clever way of counterbalancing the attacks bestowed upon black women who prefer white men over the ” kings” of the world bm ( yeah right).

Anyway I probably could rant more, but I have a test in the morning.

“Resurrection” – The Lost Black Man

I left out the video link. There are dozens, if not more, videos made by “strong”, “angry”, and “resentful” ultra-black wo/men demanding black women regard all black males with adoration, worship, reverence, and extreme diffidence. To place the value of any man before God tells you well enough that some people are a few fries short of a $1 happy meal.

There are people who believe black women compete (in any arena) with black men. It’s an amazing fallacy that has little merit in the real, mainstream, global, and international patriarchal world. Black women mostly struggle with financial sacrificing, relationship sustaining, parenting, and “saving the black community” alone. That’s not a strong functioning matriarchal system, that’s living with male abandonment.

Black men are in competition with other men
. All men are. It’s a man’s world. That’s never changed, and never will. The fact is black men lost – roughly 500 years ago. It’s likely they’re never going to catch up. At least, not for the next 100 years.

Black women cannot win it for them, no matter how hard they try to “man up” and do it. Which is why there are black women on YouTube, blogs, writing books, making hostile comments, and singing songs trying to “resurrect” black males back into the game. It wont work by encouraging an orgasmic savoring of masochism, sexism, and racism amongst black women, or false idol worship of black men. Her loss is not a black male’s gain.

But hey, good luck with that strategy folks. We can see from the last 30 plus years how well that’s worked out.

Friend of My Friend, Friend of My Enemy

I’d advise you not to argue with your friends, non-friends, and strangers about the men you may choose as a partner in life. No one actually has a say in the matter. What they think is irrelevant. If we go to them about these issues, it’s like we are looking for their acceptance. And we really cannot have that, can we? Do we go to the poor on how to become rich?

I’d also suggest you let your friends be if they are the ride-or-die, or black men only, type. We’d all like to be on the same page with our friends, but sometimes it’s better to let sleeping dogs lie. However, since this person is vehemently against non-black men to the point of belligerent, irrational racism, and it will cause you personal pain (and don’t we always run into people like that?), then yeah, you are right to cut them loose.

As for the video, you may be surprised, but my feeling about the criticism of black women like us from militant black wo/men is: C’est la vie. Shrug. I don’t care. Sure, sometimes I’d like to smack some sense into them. Yet, if the Titanic is sinking, and they don’t care: What’s there for us to worry about? Our goal is to make sure we are not on the ship with them.

To a degree we love (most) of our people(s). We’d love to see all of them behave rationally, intelligently, do well, and be happy. But at the end of the day – we all gotta choose our own paths. We have to worry about our own happiness first and foremost.

So I ask you, ignore the hate, don’t seek these forums / idiotic people out. It’ll make you miserable.

You sound like you have your life together, so keep on pressing on. ‘Cause when you listen to these morons, whether you think it affects you or not, you may end up sabotaging yourself in the future.

The subconscious is one hell of a thing to get a handle on.

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Goals Reset: Where Has the Time Gone? It’s May Already!!!!

Oh my goodness! This is crazy. I mean we are almost at the half point of this year already!

Where did the time go? I’m scared I will look around and it’ll be Christmas again.

Time for me to start my New Year’s Resolutions all over again.

Gym Rat / Weight Loss

I’ve been at the gym 5 days out of 7. My body can’t handle the daily grind as I initially thought, but at least the aches and pains are gone. Boy, do I love weight lifting. I do that every time I go, and I alternate the treadmill and bike riding. Based on my body type, which is Mesomorphic / Mesomorph. I’ve lost 10 lbs since April 1, not bad. Usually, I can only drop 2 lbs a month, but I think my updated routine has made it easier to lose.

Why Me, Lord?

Why does everything necessitate talking to people who don’t like me,  and I don’t like them? Seriously, I’m not talking blog land. I mean out in the “real world.” No one ever leaves intermediate or high school. It’s the same people over and over again.

Nice People

It’s interesting to hear about people you’ve met only once or twice inquiring after you. I don’t know, I always get a warm and fuzzy feeling from it. Well, I’m always asking after them. Good vibrations go both ways.

It’s Too Warm To Hide

It’s like when the personal trainer and I were talking and he asked, “So why now?” Dude! Because by June, you will have nowhere to hide. The clothes wont cover the butt or hips. Part of what makes me look really big is my chest. Some women don’t like losing weight there: I look forward to it! I’ve got enough bosom to spare. I can barely run because of it. Ugh.

I Love the Summer, I Hate the Summer

I actually find it more boring than the winter. I like mild weather, like how it is now in the Northeast. But when it gets hotter. I dunno. I don’t like festivals, street parties or outdoor events. I loved them as a child. Man, those were the greatest years of my life. Today, the only thing I truly find interesting is traveling to different countries. That takes time and money. My goals is to get going by September. Again.

Money

I love what it can do for you. I don’t have this mindset that it is the “root of all evil.” Its purpose is to be used like the TOOL (in a positive meaning) that it is. I think people get confused with what money does. If you don’t have money, remember that BARTERING is what existed before coinage came about. Always remember that favors / good advice are basically priceless, in essence, especially coming from the right people.

I Gotta Hurry Up

The only thing that irritates me about myself is the inability to rush things. I’m not an efficient multitasking type of person. I’m an old fashioned needle-style record player: one track at a time. I need things to be just right. Although I am aware that a perfectionist streak is a good mask for hiding fear of failure. I take too long. My goal is get it done. I will fix is as I go along, but things must get done. Otherwise, we stagnate, right?

Breaking the Introvert Habits

I remember being more outgoing as a kid. I took a class that said Introverts become more “closed” as they get older. Hey, for people like me, the daily exercise is to talk to someone (in the real world) everyday. Even if it is to ask the time. Co-workers don’t count. People I already know don’t count.

That’s the one constant I have to maintain: talking to people!

Feedback

As always is welcome, if you have any goals, spell ’em out. I like cheering people on. Have a good one.

Cheers everybody.

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Black Women and Our Mothers: Love Vs. Guilt by Oshun/Aphrodite

A stellar comment by Oshun/Aphrodite:

You are being manipulated.  Ask me how I know. Just ask…  LOL

Because I have been in your shoes!  Literally! My mother did a lot of right things by me, but she also did some bad things by me.  I think when you grow up and you have been taught to respect authority you equate your parents with God.  They are not, they are human just like everyone else and sometimes act with selfish intentions.  Your mother is being very selfish right now.  She is only thinking of herself.  Also you have an attachment to her and want to please her.  I can raise my hand on that one too because I have had to go through people pleasing deprogramming bootcamp myself.

Monae, when my mother discovered I was leaving home to complete my undergrad she threw herself across my bed sobbing and crying in a hysterical fit and told me she didn’t know how she was going to make it, she couldn’t live without me and I was mortified.  Add to that she has had health issues and I started concocting all sorts of scenarios in my head of my mother dying and me feeling responsible etc My mother became alternately passive aggressive, openly hostile, and even got in a few attempts at sabotage. She enlisted other folks to side with her…you name it- I went through it.

The other similarity that we share is that your mother is grooming you to be the caretaker/burden bearer in your family. It is that “raise” the girls, but “love” the boys meme in the so called Black community.  I can tell from what you shared that you are responsible. When I worked I also chipped in and paid bills and bought groceries.  But since I was an ambitious yet unskilled worker- low wages and mind numbing work chipped away at my self esteem.  The thing is this will only grow to become a larger burden that will be difficult to get out from under as time passes. Your family will come to rely on you more and more as you are the “responsible” one and if you can be easily guilted and manipulated now because of a desire to please and avoid conflict – they have your number.

Tell my why you are buying a new computer when you weren’t the one that broke it? When someone damages someone else’s property they compensate that person for it.  Your cousin should be at whatever store buying you a replacement or at least having it repaired.

At any rate your mother:

1. may not be prepared for you to grow up
2. may not wish to see you surpass her accomplishments
3. may wish to leech off of you emotionally and financially
4. may be using you as a crutch to avoid facing deeper psychological issues she is not addressing
5. may want to live vicariously through you and your youth

Whatever the reason, it is not your responsibility take care of her and work through her issues.  Parents raise children not the other way around. If you are 24 then your mother is young enough and wise enough to navigate through life and care for herself! Unless she is missing all her arms and legs and has been declared mentally incompetent by the state your mother can and will survive if you leave.

And even if she wasn’t wise enough to plan for her health issues or her old age that still isn’t your responsibility. You have to plan for your own health issues and retirement! If anything your mother should want you to be as successful as possible so that should she really need you – when she is 74 and really can’t do for herself you will be able to assist her if you are so inclined.

My advice to you is to work through your attachment issues. Address your fear of leaving and work though that now.  Until you do you are setting yourself up for being exploited. They can always play on that.  Do not discuss your plans with her or others and if you do slip up, do so in vague terms so she can’t employ psychological warfare or sabotage to derail you.  If you mother is that intense, then give her the okey doke just like she is doing to you say, “mother, I am doing this for the benefit of all of us” or whatever you have to to get the space to do what you need to do.

Major life changes are stressful even if you have tons of support, but since this is something you lack you need to have clarity at all times to stay centered and keep your emotions on an even keel.

If you don’t do what makes you happy you will have regrets. If you don’t do what makes you happy you will develop a seething resentment towards you mother that may have you considering homicide! LOL

Ask me how I know…LOL

You may develop resentments even if you go on and do what you want much later than intended because you will have to play the catch up and unlearn game and neither of those are fun.  So don’t give your power away.  Seize the moment!

I want to tell you that despite my mother I left anyway and had some of the most fabulous years of my life.  And you know what?  My mother got over it and kept on living.  All those things I was responsible for – they got done in my absence.  And your mother will do the same. My mother did not fall apart – if anything my separation redefined our relationship for the better. I think she now sees me as an adult/whole person – separate and distinct from her. There is a dramatic difference in the way she relates to me now in both speech and action.

I know that the whole process seems overwhelming, but ask if you need advice or info and I wish you much success.

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Black Women: Starting Over, Moving On and Out

When is the best time to move? NOW.

When is the best time to start over? NOW.

Spring is a marvelous time of year to run from wherever we are to someplace better. Right now.

The following quote comes from Monae:

It’s not that easy to meet white guys where I live. It’s not like they’re around, except delivery men. I don’t date at all now because the choices are bad. Plus, I am educated but only by going to the library, being on the internet and watching movies. I didn’t learn anything in school but it didn’t matter because I was beat down at school for trying to act white. Even though I know a lot I know I still sound like I’m from the hood, so I don’t know how many white men would want to talk to me just hearing the way I talk. What white guy is going to want to date a little black girl that sounds getto and still works at Long John Silvers when she is 24? How can I get away to somplace else. Thought about joining the army but I don’t think the army is for me.

GoldenAh

You have a lot of time to begin crafting the new you. You can start by not regarding yourself as ghetto. It doesn’t help to put yourself down. You want more out of life, and that’s the best thing in the world.

Before you think of men, ask yourself what do you want out of life? To go back to school, and pursue a degree (2 year / 4 year?)? Learn a specific trade? Maybe take a couple of courses for a certificate degree? Nothing is out of reach, and you don’t have to go into crazy debt to do it.

I recommend you move. You sound wise enough to want to cut and run, so Don’t Tell Anyone. Especially any negaholics who enjoy putting you down. Just run. First, research where you want to live (low crime rate, maybe a Community College nearby) and see about moving there. The new job hunt can start later, maybe even find a part time to help bridge the expense gap and save money. Real estate web sites give plenty of crime and school info. Or you can hunt for work in a new neighborhood, and once you have that new position, move somewhere nearby.

It’s not going to be easy making these moves, but stick with a plan: 1) move, then new job, or 2) new job, then move, THEN 3) more schooling in new area, or 4) 2nd job to save for new area… AND 5) widen your social circle by finding new interests.

The Ladies Respond

Here are the responses from many fabulous and helpful sisters. There can never be too much information in helping someone save their own life by changing it.

NijaG

As for your speech, that could be changed. You can buy a cheap tape recorder and practice your pronunciations and speech patterns by reading out loud. There are many books/tapes on grammar, enunciation, etc. I’m sure you can even find them online. Material geared towards people where English is a second language could be helpful.

Before even concentrating on men, think about the person you want to be and the life you want to have. I would say start with a short general life plan. Example, where you see yourself at age 30 and then break those down into yearly goals.

There are many books you could probably find on life/vision goals and planning. I would look maybe at Amazon.com for reviews and suggestions and then borrow from the library. There are also many career/job centers that offer counseling and advice for free. See if you can find out. The library may even have some info on this.

Formal education is key. The whole world is getting very competitive nowadays. There are many career fields that don’t require a traditional 4-year college. You can finish in 2-3 years depending. Whatever you choose make sure the schools are accredited and recognized.

While some people consider student loans to be a bad thing, they can actually be very helpful. Student loans are not only given to pay for education, put to sometimes help students live. If you start off at a community college or in-state school, the tuition rate are usually cheaper than private. Most times there is money left over. If you use the money wisely, this could actually help in getting you out your neighborhood.

I went to an in-state school, and with the money left over each semester, I was able to buy my books, and have money for at least 3-4 months rent. This definitely helped reduce some stress.

Goldenah has given some very good suggestions. Moving out from your environment and into a better one is so important. Roommate situations are very good place to start in order to cut down expenses. With the current economy you’ll be surprised some of the deals you can find in very nice neighborhood with homeowners looking to make some extra money by renting out extra rooms, garages, or basements.

Tracy

By being a self starter and studying on your own, you have shown that you are curious about the world and are ready for something more and better. Don’t knock the Internet – that is how I learned – in my thirties up to now at forty four – FOUR different languages! Speaking, comprehending and writing – so you keep looking stuff up and broadening your mind.

The only thing that I can add to the already great advice is this: BW are the best actresses in the world, so while you are bettering yourself, fake it till you make it!

That white girl accent you got in trouble for in high school – rock it girl! Surround yourself with greatness, visit a consignment shop and get some nice designer duds, treat yourself and act as the wonderful being you are! You will be surprised at how fast you get used to it!

Another thing – expounding on the Dont Tell Anyone – when you move, consider a studio apartment. DONT GET A HOUSE!! Some folks are nosy – cant find a job or a life but they can find you. So if that happens, don’t give them a reason to think that you are their ” home away from home”. This happened to a single girlfriend of mine – got a house with way too much space and soon she became a flop house for whoever wasn’t getting along with “mama” or “random trifling negro”. Don’t let that happen to you – minimalize while you maximize your life!

You can do it!! Good luck to you!

Oshun/Aphrodite

The cool thing is that there are tons of non traditional students (over the age of 21 who attend college full time)

AND college is the best place to meet WM.

AND men do marry down…I am not saying you are down or don’t strive, but most functional men aren’t looking for women to be breadwinners.

You are at an age where you can easily position yourself to marry UP…

Diction, the way you dress, and carry yourself can all be polished simultaneously- the key is getting into the environments where it will pay off so to speak.

Ruth

Monae –

I almost started crying when I read your comment, I wish I could just hug you and squeeze you and and tell you everything is going to be all right, and take you out of there tomorrow. But I can’t, all I can do is offer you some counsel.

Listen to these older sisters on here; they’re speaking the truth. You’re still very young, and the good thing is you have already figured out that you want to be better than you are now, and, that no one around that you know at this time is likely to help you towards that goal. There are a lot of black women who come to that epiphany very slowly. They don’t get there until they’re 30, or 40, or even 50 years old. So, you are way ahead of the game in that regard.

I’m not going to re-hash what the others said, it’s all good advice that I agree with. I’ll try to add some things here and there, based on my own struggles and successes. I’m sure some of it may possibly seem like overkill or “over the top” to you or others, but you just don’t know how tough some parts of leaving your current situation are going to be until the time comes.

First of all, get out of there first (start planning to do this tomorrow), and then after the first move, pick a place where you’re going to live for at least a few years while you go to school. Since you’ll be working jobs that don’t pay very much, just like we all had to, and those jobs exist everywhere, then it’s really just a matter of where you want to live. Most Western states and some Southern states have junior colleges and community colleges that are quite inexpensive in terms of credit hours. It sounds like you don’t have a car, so a city would be best. If it were me, I think I’d try a place like Seattle or Portland, Oregon. And maybe you could stay there for your four-year degree, too. But, that’s what the internet is for, check out lots of places. There are also two European countries (Sweden and Norway, I think?) that offer free tuition to any student that is accepted, if you think that might interest you later, as you get some credit hours under your belt. And European men love American BW.

Which brings me to my next point: Don’t get pregnant. Your dreams will be completely derailed by an unexpected pregnancy, so when you have sex, use birth control! I cannot stress this strongly enough. And use protection against STDs, too.

Buy everything you can used. Except a computer, definitely buy a NEW laptop, don’t buy a used computer. But almost everything else can be bought in good or great condition for a reasonable percentage of what it cost new, and the only one that will ever know you bought it used is you. And I mean everything – clothing, furniture, cars, dishes, stereos, etc. Craigslist, baby! You can buy quality brands if you buy used, and you buy quality, it will last a long time. Just don’t buy cheap stuff used. This habit persists with me today – when I finally got enough money from years of working, I bought a used ladies Rolex for $1800 (the exact same model is $11,600 new), which looks great and runs great, and my new husband just (laughingly) told me a couple of months ago that when he first met me and saw I had an old Rolex on, he just assumed that I was “from a family that had money” and had received the watch from a relative when she passed. Yes, that’s how a lot of white people think. He said he knew it wasn’t fake, because no one wears an old fake Rolex, and so he saw that I like quality, and, that I was frugal. That little stupid thing made me even more desireable to him; the fact that I didn’t need a new Rolex, that I was happy with an older one. Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? Not really. I was ecstatic when he pulled up in a perfect-condition 20 year-old Mercedes – that was much better than a shiny new luxury car to me. I still buy used things whenever I can.

Change the name you use. If you have a middle name that is what most people consider a typical name, than use that name. If people see “Monae” on a resume, you may as well put “I was born poor and black” at the top of the resume as well. I’m sorry, but this is the way people think. BTW, it’s the same thing when you see a resume from “Krystal” with a “K” – you know she’s white and was born in the South in a trailer park. I’m just sayin’. I speak from experience as my original birth certificate said Latisha on it. My middle name was Ruth (my grandmother’s name), which I hated when I was younger because it was so plain and boring, but which I started using when I was in my early twenties. Just like magic, I started getting a lot more interviews from my resume. When I got in front of them, I was still a black woman, but at least I was now in front of them with a real chance to impress them with what I knew. At least I got my shot at the job. And I got those jobs. Latisha is now no more. I legally changed my first name to Ruth years ago, and picked a new middle name to go with it. I know it seems like a huge, radical step, but if you don’t have a good middle name, think about legally changing your first name now, before you go to school, so it’s the same name as your school records later. My husband knows me as Ruth, which he loves, and thinks the Latisha thing is pretty hilarious. Uh-huh. I asked him if he would have gone out with a Latisha, and he said, “Hmmm, that’s a good question”.

Last item. When you do the things you need to do to improve yourself, your family and current friends will undoubtedly accuse you of not “keepin it real”. My sister still does, she still pulls that on me.

She has three children from three different fathers, none of whom have ever paid any child support, and she works as a shampoo girl at a beauty shop. She lives paycheck to paycheck, has bad credit, a broken-down car, is in very poor health due to smoking and her weight, and bounces from one bad man to another (but every one of these black kings is “the one” while he’s around).

So she’s definitely “keepin it real”. You know, I love her because she’s my sister, but sometimes I don’t like her very much. She’s made a lot of bad choices, and still has the nerve to tell me that I have turned my back on my race and my neighborhood.

Don’t let people drag you down, girl. Because they definitely will if you give them even half a chance to do so. Unfortunately, I came from a very toxic environment, the whole “crabs in a barrel” thing. I was bullied mercilessly at school for “acting white”. My own mother said I was a sell-out and a whore to the white man when I started dating my husband. This from a woman whose husband left when I was a baby, and never came back. I never even knew my father. And she said that about my future husband? That really, really hurt my feelings at the time.

Now, this same man makes sure that she has everything she needs now, she lacks for nothing. It’s his paycheck that’s providing it, and he’s never complained about doing it, he’s never hesitated to take that on. I have an MBA and I had a very good job (6 months pregnant now, so no job now because I resigned recently), and still, I married up! He’s a good man.

Keep moving forward, make something of yourself. Lots of successful people in America started out with nothing and they came from dirt-poor families. Lots of successful people have completely re-invented themselves in this country. You don’t have to be like you’re always been.

{{Virtual hugs.}}

I recommend you move. You sound wise enough to want to cut and run, so Don’t Tell Anyone. Especially any negaholics who enjoy putting you down. Just run. First, research where you want to live (low crime rate, maybe a Community College nearby) and see about moving there. The new job hunt can start later, maybe even find a part time to help bridge the expense gap and save money. Real estate web sites give plenty of crime and school info. Or you can hunt for work in a new neighborhood, and once you have that new position, move somewhere nearby.

It’s not going to be easy making these moves, but stick with a plan: 1) move, then new job, or 2) new job, then move, THEN 3) more schooling in new area, or 4) 2nd job to save for new area… AND 5) widen your social circle by finding new interests.

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Black Women: My Pursuit of Happiness

I love myself. I am relaxed about it. I am mostly cheerful, generous, vain, conceited, selfish, don’t suffer pangs of guilt, and I like women who are this way too. In men, this is a no-no.

I love being a woman. If I could be reincarnated, I wouldn’t hesitate with my choice: same person, same looks, same everything.

I love my family. I love them. I never went around wishing for other folks to be related to.

I love my friends. I love them and their ways. I adore quirky people.

I love to travel. Oh, if I had the money to fly, drive, cruise, sail, and go wherever and whenever I want. If I could travel freely, I would be away from home 6 out of 12 months a year.

I love sunny beaches. Why am I not living in Hawaii, Florida or California? I don’t know. New Jersey has beaches, I suppose that’s good enough.

I love fresh snow, until the next day and the next day and the next day. Cabin fever is getting to me!

I love babies, kittens, puppies and new born things. So adorable….

I love a brand new day. I get another start. I get to start anew. Each day is a gift.

I love to anticipate the good.

I love to think positive.

I love being an optimist.

I love rooting for the underdog.

I love America. I do. No matter where I travel to, I’m overwhelmingly happy to come home. This country is my home. I could easily learn to would love living anywhere else, since I am not an absolutist, but I’m happy here. For now.

Happiness is a deliberate emotion. Happiness is a decision you make each and every day.

I love men. Okay, I love most of them. I don’t blog about the ones I have no interest in. Doesn’t make sense to.

I love self-confident people. I love people who are attractive in spirit and that has nothing to do with perfect features or their external appearance.

I love learning.

I love my curiosity.

I have to remind myself that what I love is much more than what I could possibly hate. I don’t hate that many things, and for those things that I do, it is a very short list. My list of annoyances can be very, very, very long though.

I love life.

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The False Lure of Sexual or Reproductive "Freedom"

I believe women have the right, and I wouldn’t criticize it, to fornicate with any number of men, women, and animals (where legal) if that is what they want to do. I believe the same rights also apply to men. This applies, obviously, to consenting adults, whatever age society believes an adult is. And as we are aware, the age of maturity is defined differently from state to state and nation to nation.

What I cannot tolerate, are monies taken from society to support individuals whose problems are caused by these behaviors. If adults are consenting, they have to live with the consequences of their actions.

I am aware there will be arguments made that while people are engaging in all sorts of licentious, and/or promiscuous sexual acts, they may be misinformed, and society needs to support them when it causes harm. No, not at all. If women want abortions after freely sleeping around, her lover, husband, boyfriend, or herself should pay for it. Society did not get her pregnant. Her man did. Society should not take on the expense of helping her to raise her child resulting from her freely liberated lifestyle. Is that a blanket statement applied to every situation? No, of course not.

Western societies with sexually empowered, promiscuous (or not) adults, are free to do whatever they want. People have fought for freedom from judgment. I concur. They are also free not to be subsidized. They also don’t want to know, or hear, about abstaining from sex, waiting for marriage, or staying monogamous. They claim all they need is more educational information, or not. They want to be able to procreate freely, and then have this entire chain of irresponsibility sponsored by others. The way I look at it, adults must, can, and will manage their lives as they see fit. Society is not obligated, nor should it be, to pay for all the mistakes of individuals.

If a woman wants an abortion, she can have it, as long as she pays for it. If she was told she would be sterilized, doesn’t that lower incidence of more abortions in the future? The same should apply to the man who impregnated her. DNA testing will find him quickly enough.

I’m all for the free expression of lust, and its non-procreative (copulating) engagement. However, if it spreads disease, I believe people should be quarantined for maliciously spreading it.

I believe in procreative freedom, yet it sometimes come with a price. A second abortion should automatically get one sterilized. Men who have a number of children, with multiple women, that are supported by the state should be sterilized. Why make the rest of society pay for unproductive persons? There are cult compounds with men impregnating multiple women (and very young girls) just to collect monies from the government. Children are important, a healthy, educated, and growing populous is important, but people who pay no consequences for their behavior need to be held accountable.

I believe in the freedom to have as many children as one wants without interference from the state. However, once you cannot afford to raise, clothe, feed, or shelter children – an individual invites interference from society (government, state). One’s freedom ends with the abuse of children; while they may be the offspring of one’s loins, one does not own them.

Therefore, the well being of children are separate from their parents. This is why so many are in foster care. The biological parents give the children up voluntarily, or were taken by the government for inadequate care. This is the result of irresponsible, and selfish individuals, not free-thinking, thoughtful and caring adults.

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