What Kind of Black Woman Are You?

I thoroughly enjoyed the following comment by Stacey, so I decided to make it a post.

By the way, the post title is a general question, not aimed specifically at Stacey.

The following continues the discussion originating in the Black Actress Review: Just Wright – Big Boned Gurl Gets Good Guy Balla post.

Stacey says:

Ok, I must respectfully disagree with all the pro-Morgan comments here. Just came across this forum and had to respond, seeing as how Just Wright is one of my favorite movies of all time. Morgan was a gold-digger all the through. I just don’t see why she should be praised. I have no respect for women like that. LESLIE is the one who deserves a standing ovation. She worked very hard to achieve her goals–even bought her own house (on her OWN) Leslie had a heart-of-gold. She cared about all the people around her. She didn’t have any ulterior motives. Leslie was genuine, REAL. And that’s why I rooted for her from beginning to end.

I can relate so much more to Leslie than Morgan. Because I don’t feel that I need to bat my eyelashes and manipulate a man to get ahead. Just like Leslie, I want to be able to pay my own way.

I LOVE the way the movie ended. Scott finally opened his yes and realized that Leslie’s “The One”. And I love that Leslie didn’t have to change who she was. I love that she was still wearing her favorite Nets jersey at the end. She didn’t have to convert to some shallow glamour-girl to get her dream-guy. Leslie was fine just the way she was–there was no need for her to change. One of my fav moments of the movie: Scott gazing at Leslie when they were both sitting at the piano(he so wanted to kiss her)…and she was in her robe, without an ounce of make-up on—LOVE it!

And I gotta admit that I actually gained some respect for Morgan in the end(she realized that Scott was in love with Leslie and told him where to find her) Morgan could’ve schemed and plotted (although, it wouldn’t have done any good because Scott was already on his way to find Leslie–he even told Morgan, “I’m sorry, but it’s not gonna work)

Leslie was beautiful on the inside AND the outside. She didn’t care about Scott’s fame and fortune. She was up at 3 in the morn, giving him a pep-talk because she truly cared. The movie ended just as it should have: two people coming together for the right reason–because they truly love and respect each other, because they’re meant to be together. From their very first scene, it was obvious to me that Scott & Leslie belong together. They just fit together so perfectly. And this movie remains one of my all-time fav
rom-coms. KUDOS to Queen Latifah & Common!

 

flowers_can

GoldenAh:

Hello, Stacey. I liked your comment. You’ve given me so much to work with, but I’ll only bite a few portions.

I see what you mean, but this was about a movie that took what was unrealistic and made it into an interesting fairy tale. We were discussing how reality would have played out, and in each and every case Morgan would be the winner.

Morgan is Old School

I really believe black women hear such ridiculous, hypocritical, contradictory nonsense from black males they aren’t sure what they want to be.

Morgan is not a gold digger. There’s no reason to resent, dislike or be angry with her. She’s a realist. Her behavior was very feminine, self-assured, flirty, alluring and mysterious. She knew how to make (and keep) a man interested. That’s very normal and healthy. It is not manipulating a man!!! It is just a subtle way of saying, “Hey, I like you, you can chase me if you want.”

She was what most women were at one time – looking for a husband with the financial means to support his family. I know that’s changed in these times. Frankly, I look at her as being old fashioned. She was doing something that worked in an era where people understood social cues and signals.

Today, everybody seems rather lost about how to behave, even in showing basic manners. We’re lucky if we find a guy who doesn’t insist we pay for the meal, and simply wants to go Dutch. The meal tastes better if from jump he wants to pay and leaves a decent tip for the server. He looks like a good guy if he wants to take care of you. That’s a winner. That’s the best feeling in the world.

Leslie is What’s Up Now With Black Women

As for the “hardworking modern woman” character, Leslie is doing what she has to do. Like most of us, paying our own way is the default mode of life regardless. And that’s fine. We live in an age where it does make sense to have your stuff. I wouldn’t deny that.

However, even if you combined Morgan and Leslie into one woman, I would prefer that Scott dealt with Morgan’s personality and looks, while Leslie’s characteristics stayed (mostly) hidden.

brokenheart

The Ethical Flaw and Self-Harm

The problem with Leslie is that she was an employee whose job it was to look after Scott. I know if he was a white / Asian / Latino guy, you’d probably see immediately the problem with her cooking, cleaning and sexing him while he’s emotionally unavailable, on the rebound (still in love with Morgan), and working hard to do her job in making him physically / mentally fit to return to work. She may have fallen in love with Scott, but she endangered herself professionally and emotionally. She had a serious lapse of ethics and muddled her own waters while on the job.

Plus, Scott’s relationship with Morgan hadn’t achieved a clean break. They were still at an impasse. Breaking up and constantly making up is normal. There are plenty of couples who even after they divorce still find themselves having sex, cohabiting and doing other things because they haven’t really untied all the strings.

Leslie was setting herself up for some serious hurt while allowing herself to be the in between chick. She was the third wheel. She was the one who made herself available during a time she should have kept some distance from Scott.

In reality, she could be viewed as the man-stealing backstabber.

What If The Situation Was Reversed?

Just Wright  is clever in making Leslie the underdog, and she fits the type of woman who’s relaxed in her own skin. That’s cool.

But let’s switch it up. Imagine her as a guy who makes no effort to bathe, brush his hair / teeth, or groom himself even in your presence when he’s “relaxed”. Would you really find him attractive?

If he was fat, out-of-shape, a bit abrasive, has limited resources, and you were missing your ex-boo who’s smoking hot, though annoying, would you really find him attractive? Would you really consider him for a minute?

If you hired a guy to take care of your household chores, cook, clean or do something necessary and crucial for you, would you consider sleeping with him even though you were still thinking of your smoking hot ex?

We certainly love our double-standards. He should be tall, handsome, fit, rich and a balla. While he should be happy with our hefty, gaudy, rough, unfeminine appearance, because we’re keeping it real, and he’ll love us since we are the biggest fan of his sport. Considering that if he’s a baller, everybody would be a fan. He’d be swollen headed and expect the adoration.

In a sense, that entire angle is a wash.

What Kind of Black Woman?

You know why Morgan is very feminine? Obviously, she’s not working. And whether her character is likable or not, her decision to find a husband is supported by her family. She has time to devote to her looks. She’s making it clear to the men she’s attracting that her looks are a symbol of self-love. She also wants the man to admire the effort she makes in looking good, not just for herself, but for him.

Trying to look attractive for a man is not a crying shame. It is not bad. It is part of the mating dance. I believe a woman can be sexy in a hoody, but it depends on how she wants to wear it. But she has to be comfortable in her own skin.

Leslie is to be applauded for being a “worker”, but that doesn’t entitle her to a wealthy, handsome, tall man as a reward for “good behavior.” It doesn’t work in real life either.

What Men Are Really Like

Most normal, well functioning guys aren’t going to be dating your wallet, house, car, degrees or status. A good number will resent hearing anything about your “stuff” even if he has more than what you have.

For all we know, Morgan has stuff, but she has the good sense to let herself be the prize Scott has to attain.

And that’s the one thing this movie doesn’t really inform us of. Men are predatory animals, and in this story for the romantic angle, a good thing, of course. When Scott, as the wealthy balla, decides to pursue Morgan, he’s not going for her monetary assets or status – he sees someone who interests him, raises his curiosity, likely sexually arouses him and makes him want to PURSUE her.

That’s why we admired Morgan, she understood the game and played it well. Unfortunately, the movie leaves out that entire courtship, which is a shame.

Reality Checks

We understand that Leslie was the movie’s Cinderella, but as stated before, she did it at the wrong time and wrong place, which was not realistic at all.

While it was a fun movie, I was uncomfortable with what it was teaching black women. We have enough stories (from real life)  where the women do it all for the men and end up heart and wallet broken, because they continue to see Morgan as a negative and Leslie as a positive.

That perspective is too skewed and needs to be balanced. It’s okay to be Morgan on the outside and Leslie on the inside, but not to give it all up and away like it’s nothing. That’s been done too many times before.

It’s one thing to be ready to love a man, but a woman has to have him earn it, otherwise he wont think much of it and treat it as such. And don’t we see to much of that already?

And Leslie can shower Scott with all the cooking, sexing, love and affection after he puts a ring on it. 😀

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Black Actress Update: Hollywood’s Shrinking Box Office

I know if I made money the way Hollywood did, I’d be ecstatic. Especially when you have the most creative accountants in the world who can turn billions earned into “losses”. All legally, of course. That’s what you get for having the US Congress in your back pocket. I expect when their earnings decline even more, they will be asking for public funds to keep the business afloat (See General Motors). That will occur right after they make it illegal for anyone to say or watch anything on the Internet (pending legislative as of now).

But I digress, imagine being able to push garbage at people and compel them to head to a filthy, loud and uncomfortable theater just to sit through crappy schlock for nearly three hours? That clearly takes genius to run this con year after year, week after week and day after day. If they think they are losing money now, wait until everyone can download a film in the blink of an eye and re-create a movie theater at home without the nuisance, annoyance and hassle of a public one.

Nothing To See Here, Move Along

The box office take for Hollywood has been weak: headlines blurb about the lower attendance rates. A money quote from the BBC article:

“It’s unbelievable how bad it is,” said Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian.

Are we supposed to weep for them? I thought this would be a bonanza year, since they have defenders, who say that films with too many black people – men and women, not just the guys – wont make money. This was the year of the whitest films around.

I’m usually a movie fiend, but this has been the year where I missed many of the “blockbuster films”, except for X Men: The Lamest Generation and Mission Impossible: Making Tom Cruise Hot Again. There may have been another, but I often forget a film the minute I leave the theater.

Come Back, Again, Ya Hear!?!

This was the year of sequels, remakes, prequels, comic books and animation. Proof of Hollywood’s emptiness.

The top 20 films of 2011, according to Box Office Mojo. I have a page that shows the same content of all the Top 100 films.

1 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 $381.00 WB
2 Transformers: Dark of the Moon $352.00 P/DW
3 The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1 $272.00 Sum.
4 The Hangover Part II $254.00 WB
5 Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides $241.00 BV
6 Fast Five $209.00 Uni.
7 Cars 2 $191.00 BV
8 Thor $181.00 Par.
9 Rise of the Planet of the Apes $176.00 Fox
10 Captain America: The First Avenger $176.00 Par.
11 The Help $169.00 BV
12 Bridesmaids $169.00 Uni.
13 Kung Fu Panda 2 $165.00 P/DW
14 X-Men: First Class $146.00 Fox
15 Puss in Boots $143.00 P/DW
16 Rio $143.00 Fox
17 The Smurfs $142.00 Sony
18 Super 8 $127.00 Par.
19 Rango $123.00 Par.
20 Horrible Bosses $117.00 WB (NL)

 

The fresh entries: The Help, Bridesmaids, Super 8, Horrible Bosses, Rio and Rango. So, out of the top 20, roughly 6 of them were “original”, fresh-out-of-the-box material. Heh.

The Non-Mystery of the Twilight Lure

Honestly, doesn’t Breaking Dawn sound like a porn title, or is that just me? 😀

Breaking Dawn In

The funniest thing I’ve read were reports of women having “seizures” at this latest Twilight film, and no one knew what it was. It’s called an orgasm, people. Sheesh. It’s the 21st century and female biology is still a mystery. Um, women like Twilight and Vampire flicks, because of the eroticism. The yearning, withholding and anticipating. He’s a bad boy, and an eternally powerful man who bites and licks the neck, targeting one of the erogenous zones of the female body.

Yeah, “seizures.” Okay.

The Black Actress: Inclusion or Exclusion?

Forgive me for not listing all shows, or movies with a black actress. If you find some with a black actress of interest, please add it to the comments section. Let’s look at the top films of the year and see if that hypothesis is true, you know: less black women (or nice black male actors) equals more money per film.

When I glance at cast credits, I look at the first 5 to 10. They get the most speaking roles, so even if a black actress gets one line and is part of the scenery – to me – that doesn’t count.

Films that include black women in starring roles also (animation doesn’t count):

1. The Help – love it or hate it, we got a film about being maids, in 2011. Thank you, Hollywood. Thanks so much. All we black women can do is still be maids in the 21st century. A black woman is First Lady, but these people have us doing roles cleaning some white woman’s toilet with dignity! whilst pretending that’s got something to do with civil rights. Alrighty, then.

2. Bridesmaids – big hit – from the people that brought us Hangover. Not sure how much of a role she played, but Kali Hawk (love the name) is in it.

Update: Somehow I missed Maya Rudolph, and she’s one of the stars!

Thank you for the tip, Vonnie!

3. X-Men – Does not have a black actress with two black parents, but a half-half of two half-half was in it. So, I flipped a coin and decided to include Zoë Kravitz.

 Here’s the bottom 20 movies of 2011 for comparison:

80 In Time $36.00 Fox
81 Colombiana $36.00 TriS
82 Sucker Punch $36.00 WB
83 J. Edgar $36.00 WB
84 Larry Crowne $35.00 Uni.
85 The Descendants $35.00 FoxS
86 50/50 $35.00 Sum.
87 Drive (2011) $34.00 FD
88 A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas $34.00 WB (NL)
89 Courageous $33.00 TriS
90 The Rite $33.00 WB (NL)
91 Arthur (2011) $33.00 WB
92 The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011) $32.00 Sony
93 The Adventures of Tintin $31.00 Par.
94 The Debt $31.00 Focus
95 Priest $29.00 SGem
96 The Mechanic $29.00 CBS
97 Abduction $28.00 LGF
98 Beastly $27.00 CBS
99 Winnie the Pooh $26.00 BV
100 Killer Elite $25.00 ORF

 

Anything Else We Need to Know?

An action film with a black actress is a miss, but the black actress as a maid might be up for an Oscar? Oh well.

1. Columbiana – Zoe Saldana. Perhaps she should stick to romances or something. Seriously, no one is going to believe that a 55 pound woman – soaking wet – can kick anybody’s ass.

2. Drive – Tiara Parker – don’t know if she has much of a role.

3. Larry Crowne – Tarina Pouncy – don’t know if she has much of a role.

4. Courageous – Eleanor Brown – don’t know if she has much of a role.

Notice that a lot of the big stars made spectacular flops this year? People are tired of them too.

Some of the bottom films are likely new releases, so those numbers will change for next year.

And that’s all folks….

Happy New Year. 😀

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Black Women: Please Yourself First

Note: This is a random rant.

I’m a selfish person. I’m not afraid to admit that. It’s probably because I’m the last child, the only girl, and spoiled rotten. I’m generous, friendly or kind – when it suits me.

Guilt Gets One Nowhere.

I’ve racked my brain to find instances of when I’ve pitched in, because I got “guilt tripped” into something I really didn’t want to do. Outside of my immediate family, and a best friend or two, it doesn’t happen. I will help people, but I don’t make a big deal out of any time, resources, and money given to causes I believe in.

However, anyone who comes at me with a “I gotta do such and such for groups X, Y, and Z”, since I am a woman who happens to be black will get that person nowhere. I’ll just smile at you sweetly, and say softly, “No, thank you.” I will take off. I wont hover around waiting for someone! anyone! to try and persuade me that I need to do something out of obligation to folks or “causes” I don’t care about, and probably never will.

I only worry about things that are of concern and interest to me, or within my control. I don’t apologize for that mindset. People who use guilt tripping are the biggest users you will ever encounter. Their awareness of this particular problem means that they should be organizing and managing it themselves, or if they want your help – they need to suggest a financial – yeah, I’m talking money – benefit you will reap from it.

Ever notice that whenever a celebrity supports a cause – they always go looking for time and money from their fans? Think about that for a second….

Your Time Isn’t Free.

I’m suggesting you be (a nice) mercenary. It wont make you a mean girl. You are simply teaching others how to RESPECT you. It can be done in the sweetest, most polite manner ever witnessed in a black woman. ‘Cause you know how everyone thinks we’re all crazy angry bitches. Right? :)

All that giving you’ve done, which will supposedly enrich you “spiritually” is nonsense. You are being used. If you are being volunteered for something people are usually compensated for – get PAID or get OUT of it. You have other and better things to do.

Another subtle con folks love to run on black women is the implication that helping others for FREE will help others LIKE you, because otherwise no one will. That’s the worst kind of emotional blackmail and sabotage. Folks like people for all sorts of reason, how much they can use you should never be one of them.

Demanding Busybodies Need to Sit Down.

People who spend their free time monitoring the activities of others, followed by demanding that they must fulfull obligations that no one has AGREED to are parasitic.

If you want people to do something that you can do, then DO IT, and leave them alone.

If you want people to DONATE to a cause that you can reach into your own pockets, then DO IT, and leave them alone.

The worse thing(s) I’ve seen online are the number of people who always has a job for black woman to spend HER time, resources and money on.

Yo! Slavery ended over 145 years ago. Let’s not backslide.

Black Women: It Is Okay to Get Paid.

I also want to say this: black women have the RIGHT to be paid, compensated, reimbursed, acknowledged, and thanked for any endeavors they participate in.

If she asks for funds, no one should recoil in horror and claim that this black woman is a hustler, pimp, gold digger, prostitute, or looking to dupe everybody. Let’s cut that nonsense out right now.

If one likes how she performs, PAY her. If one doesn’t, then leave her alone.

Folks love to get up in arms the minute a black woman puts a price on her labor – like she doesn’t have the right to be compensated. They’re stingy paying her – crying poverty – and will take advantage of enjoying her services / products for free, but will doggone find enough money to buy a pair of Christian Louboutins in a heartbeat.

Oy, I exaggerate.

Are people out of their minds? Why should she labor for free? Why is this demand always laid at the door(s) of black women? Economic deprivation is not a sign of spiritual purity anymore than wealth is indicative of a devious nature. If you believe that: you’ve been had.

I say, even if she’s not asking for dough, lucre, bucks, or money – send her some, buy her stuff, and tell her thank you. Otherwise, leave her the hell alone.

  • Let’s start picturing black women with wealth, health, and good spirits as normal and usual.
  • Let’s picture that as a progressive, or conservative if you prefer, trend that needs to be promoted, supported, and endorsed.
  • Let her be selfish for her own sake.
  • Let’s respect her time.
  • Let her earn her monies, and not begrudge her what she wants out of life.

Have a good one. :)

Note: This is a random rant.

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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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