Lately, people have been calling me skinny

It’s a weird comment to hear, especially coming from one of the office whales. You know, like if you think I am skinny, what does that make you?

And she sounded exasperated, like how dare I appear so small – at least in her eyes, because I don’t see it. I was told by someone else – who I really regard as “in shape” that my waist appears “tiny”. While I admire the bodies of Mae West, Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield or Jane Russell, I don’t imagine I look anywhere near those figures.

Somehow this was the year I got my eating under control, but I walk no more than 25 to 50 minutes daily. If time and the weather allows. I really miss weight lifting.

And by the way, my waist is 28 inches, I have to measure my top and bottom again. I haven’t done that in a while. I am aiming for 36 – 26 – 36, if that’s possible. Back in the good ol’ says, those were my measurements.

I eat apples for breakfast, apparently they are natural appetite suppressors. I also eat very few sugary foods, bread, rice and I stick to meat, veggies and fruit that don’t give me gas (LOL) or make me hungry. I confess I like salty and spicy foods. I drink a couple glasses of water when I think I’ve overdone it.

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See? No big deal. And I love big belts.

What’s on your mind?

Update: another belt I love.
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Do I Want To Talk About

I suppose my hiatus is over. It’s hard to blog sometimes. Events happen quickly. And by time I think to write about it – I’m not feeling it anymore.

Do I want to talk about Floridian Cannibals? No thanks. Makes me lose my appetite.

Do I want to talk about the NBA playoffs? I only want the Miami Heat to lose. Otherwise, I’m not interested.

Do I want to talk about the President? I would, I could, but we’ll see after November 2012. I usually get asked by a relative, “Is he really such an idiot?” I’ve been reluctant to answer, but lately … I’m hard pressed, you know? If you are a fan of the President, don’t be offended. It’s just that if he was working at a private corporation, he’d have been fired by now. You try saying it’s the last guy / gal who held your title / position is the reason for your sub-par performance.

Yeah, that’ll work.

Do I want to talk about EU and the imploding Greek, Spanish, and Italian economies? Nope. Really don’t care. I suspect if the President was a Republican they could comfortably blame America for their wonderful mess, but they can’t say jack. I hope they aren’t hoping for any bailouts from the USA,  ’cause we’s broke, ya’ll.

Do I want to talk about our wonderful, thriving economy? Nope. ‘Cause the President says, “The private sector is doing fine.” Still smoking that stuff, sir? #doingfine #Choom

Do I want to talk about black men who are face chewing, stalking, cheating, murderous, promiscuous, insane, damaged beyond repair nutjobs? Not for a very very very long time. I think I’ve OD on the subject. What more is there to say? Stay the hell away from ’em. If you can, leave Blackistan. Nuff said.

Do I want to talk about travel? I’ve got Singapore on the brain. So far away. Lovely steady temperature. And expensive as all out. I’m due for a treat. Aiming for next year. If I go, it’ll be the first flight since the airports put in the Rape-I-Scanners. #fingerscrossed

Do I want to talk about dating and mating with non-black men? It’s academic, natural and simple. If you are a heterosexual woman, there are attractive men out there you can bond with regardless of hue. Wanting and needing is normal and acceptable: You want a man. You need a man. There’s no shame in that desire. Just relax. Go easy on yourself. And keep looking.

Do I want to talk about obesity? Naw, why should I? Aren’t fat black women helpless bullied victims?  It is obviously everybody’s fault some of them are such a hot mess. Shoot. Where I work there is this obese, short, extremely unattractive black woman – her stomach rests on the chair seat – she needs to lean back to stand – she cannot see her feet if she looked down – she waddles in a circle when she walks – she’s a malodorous cloud of sweat, stink perfume and sulfur – she’s always bringing in fattening foods to offer to others (and she’s always on a diet) – she offers advice no one wants to hear – she’s the office “Mammy”.

And I live rent free in her little head.

Guess whose BODY she studies? Guess whose HEALTH she wants to fret about? Guess whose CLOTHING she’s obsessed with? Guess whose phone calls she listens in on? Guess who she wont leave the goddamn hell alone – day in and day out? I don’t talk to this person. I don’t acknowledge her. I’ve never mentioned anything about her looks, but people like her – it has to be she’s been dropped on her shrunken head one time too many as a child. I also get my share of nasty lip curls and looks of hatred from two other obese black women at work, but hey, it must be because I’m the reason they cannot put their forks down. Must be my fault. What do I get from everybody else who’s short, tall, dark, light or small? Normalcy. We say, “Hello”, and keep it moving.

It’s not the first time I’ve encountered this kind of crazy from these poor, innocent, polite, delicate, sweet-natured big boned girls. I don’t usually mention it, because I often put it out of mind. And I’m not even close to slender, I consider myself medium-size. (I used to be heavier. I know what it’s like.)

But black women, some of you really, really need therapy. You require years of counseling. Do not be ashamed of seeking professional help with your issues.

‘Cause I’m gonna tell you right now, other black women – who are minding their own damn business, working to stay healthy, and living their life – aren’t in your way. And no amount of hectoring, harassing, bitching, critiquing or beseeching is gonna turn us into the office “Beulah” laboring beside you.

So, you go on ahead, continue to commit suicide by fork. ‘Cause you are on that plantation all by your lonesome.

Do I want to talk about Scandal? Really enjoyed the show. It’s meant to be funny, right? ‘Cause I couldn’t stop laughing. Best new comedy on TV.

Do I want to talk about the movies? Nope. Haven’t seen any of those “blockbusters”. Nothing interests me. Not even Prometheus. Only because anything to do with Alien(s) gives me nightmares. Yeah, I’m a big child.

Do I want to talk about anything else? Perhaps. We’ll see. I promise myself I’d blog more. We’ll see.

Hope everyone is doing fine and fulfilling their dreams. 🙂

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Black Actress Review: Just Wright – Big Boned Gurl Gets Good Guy Balla

I like Queen Latifah (Dana Owens), so I am willing to sit down and watch her movie(s).

Long Descriptions Ahead

Did I like Just Wright? To be honest, I dunno. Sometimes I’m too busy thinking about its message to appreciate whether it was fun to watch or not.

What message? Oh, the Good Employed Hard Working Non-Glamorous Big Boned Unselfish Black Woman versus the Shallow Unemployed Shopaholic Flighty Glamorous Beautiful Slim Selfish Man Eater.

Two of the Black Woman Archetypes

Here’s a simpler description of the main characters: Mammy versus Gold Digger. How’s that?

Queen Latifah, as you might’ve suspected, plays Mammy. Gold Digger is obviously Paula Patton. Common plays the Good Guy Balla. Pam Grier was delightful as Queen Latifah’s mother. Phylicia Rashad played Common’s mother.

I don’t think these roles were done on purpose. It’s so automatic that it’s nearly impossible for any film to get away from certain portrayals of black women. They fall into the slots effortlessly. I suspect that Queen Latifah was aiming for a hard-working-sista-sorta-Cinderella type story. The effort is appreciated, since her character is always cast as the best friend, BFF type, certainly not as the object of desire.

Oh, For the Want of Good Old Fashioned Lust Desire

Except that the problem with the movie is that there’s no chemistry between her character, Leslie Wright, and Common’s Scott McKnight. Excuse me for saying this, but Common is one of the meanest looking guys around. No matter how nice he tries to act, his face and voice doesn’t erase that vibe. I don’t know him, I don’t have anything against him, but it’s just how he comes across to me.

This Is How The Game Is Played

I’m also ambivalent about Morgan Alexander’s character (Paula Patton). I don’t see her as the bad guy. She’s beautiful. She’s learned that it enables her to get what she wants from nearly any man. Her character has decided that her looks are worth trading for a wealthy man.

And the problem with that is what?

Nearly every Hollywood flick with a white woman in her position celebrates her desire to marry a wealthy, educated, Good Guy Balla, millionaire, and all-around-nice-fellow. Is it because a white woman is entitled to a wealthy guy that this negative stereotype (of a gold digger) is rarely used to denigrate them? (Think about Tiger Wood’s wife. They didn’t meet by accident. And that scenario applies to a lot of meet-ups between women and wealthy men. S’okay?)

Back In the Real World

I’m glad no one said anything about Leslie’s weight, but I felt the film created an unreasonable expectation. Not only are there very very few Good Guy Ballas, but if they didn’t marry Morgan, they would still reject Leslie and move on to the next “arm piece / candy / gold digger”, and a number of them would be white women. Yet popular (rap) culture continues to denigrate black women seeking a provider, protector and father of her offspring.

Wow, how weird that must be, a black woman wanting what every normal woman around the planet usually aims for.

Why is what’s good for other women considered a bad move for black women?

Man Hunting Is Normal

I don’t see Morgan as the bad girl. She knows how to look her best to attract a man. She’s an expert at the bait and hook. I’m not mad at her. Thankfully, her character didn’t plumb the depths of depravity to ensnare a man. Scott was freely willing to marry her. He found her to be someone worthwhile and lovable in the weeks he dated her.

Also, I see Morgan’s behavior as no different from a man whose flawlessly beautiful fiancee (arm piece) gained weight and became horribly disfigured. He’d take off as well.

Leslie’s character is a goodhearted person, but I wasn’t convinced that the unpolished, sports nut, “home girl” routine was enough to bond her to Scott. Nursing a man through sickness yields gratitude, not love. I see that he nursed her at one time she became sick, but as we can see he predictably, and quite easily, dumped Leslie the moment Morgan returned.

In this film, I wished that the premise began and ended with Leslie learning how to “get a man” from Morgan. She didn’t have to be duplicitous, but Morgan understood the “rules” way way better than Leslie.

Because what if Scott didn’t see the light? Leslie would have been alone again, although in a better job. Morgan would have been Mrs. Scott McKnight as she planned.

In Real Life, the Morgans of the World Usually Win

I have no objection to the idea of the film: let things work out for the Mammy or overweight plain Jane this time, but reality almost always rewards the gold digger or ambitious man-hunter. We can see that with our eyes everyday. And the pro-Good Employed Hard Working Non-Glamorous Big Boned Unselfish Black Woman message that this film relays creates a problem.

It’s not a bad thing for black women to be quasi – and certainly not full bore – Shallow Shopaholic Flighty Glamorous Beautiful Slim Selfish Man Eaters who plan and pursue the kind of man they want to marry who has wealth, a good future, and education, etc, etc.

Unfortunately, Just Wright continues to points us in the direction of staying plain, heavy set, unglamorous, with a “keeping it real” demeanor, and not making any effort or plans to be attractive and attract the “right kind of man.” She’s working on chance, hope, and possibly prayer; black women deserve better than that.

Good luck alone wont work. It certainly isn’t helping us now. Life rewards the proactive, and more often than not you have to look fly, be positive, as you pursue your dreams and desires.

Phylicia Rashad
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Black Women – Devil’s Advocate: Has our femininity been denied?

It’s September, and it’s Devil’s Advocate* month. This topic will be a bit spicier than usual. :D

Are black women allowed to be women? Has our femininity been denied or compromised? Do we have the right to be respected, protected, and cherished like all other women?

We are accused of being jealous acid tossing lunatics by lying media whores. We are accused of being overly racially sensitive when we are being insulted by deranged bigoted radio talk show hosts. We are the first ones tossed under the political bus by individual(s) we overwhelmingly support out of misguided and ignorant racial loyalty.

Most of our issues are ignored by or are back-burner issues of so-called women’s groups. All of our issues are ignored by “civil rights” groups, unless it is to lay blame in our direction, raise funds from us, or rally around violent black male felon(s) who are a lethal and deadly menace to black women and men in their neighborhoods. We are berated, harassed, and demeaned to put all out, audition for a date, and prove our worth to useless black males who wont lift a finger to respect, provide, or protect us.

How are we being portrayed in the mainstream media right now?

One of the latest covers of Elle’s magazine is mendacious. No, it is beyond that, it is evil.

One of these pictures is not like the others.

Gabourey Sidibe a.k.a. Gabby

It winks: We’re making fun of her, ’cause this is the best looking actress they (black people) have to offer. They have three average looking, cosmetically enhanced white women all glammed up. We get someone who pc-wise people are gushing to declare is beautiful, acceptable, and attractive. Elle couldn’t use Jennifer Hudson?

And miss me with the garbage about hating on Ms. Sidibe. This topic is deeper than that.

Who do these folks think they’re fooling? The publisher of Elle is French – Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S., Inc. (HFM U.S.) , and the editor-in-chief is Robbie Myers. That’s who’s making a mockery of this black woman and the rest of us.

Is this their answer to requests for black staff? Investments in black magazines? Whether black women are attractive? Oh, I know, this fits the “Black women don’t sell covers. We lose money with their faces on the magazine” B.S.

Why is she the only big person?

Hey, I would ecstatically and gladly accept Ms. Sidibe as part of the unique, multicultural, fat acceptance, and “quirky looking people are beautiful too” cover, once they have a 400 pound homely white woman, with too much makeup on, wearing a tent-sized red mu-mu, and her stringy dishwater hair looking like dry straw, filling an entire magazine cover.

White women don’t “other” themselves. They are very, very protective of their image as feminine, sexy, and desirable women – despite the carping of “feminists” over some images.

Someone once said: I’d rather they ignore us than pay us this kind of attention.

You need to watch them. They are quite eager to get black women to be the tough-manly-gal, the jealous-and-hateful-acid-throwing chick, the loudmouth sassy troublemaker, the office mammy / Oprah / free therapist, and the “oh, you’re so brave to be xyz” kind of person.

Ask yourself these questions: At work, do some of these chicks come to you complaining about people like you’re going to be the one to set their tormentors straight? Do you get asked to lift heavy objects when there are plenty of guys around they could ask? Are you always volunteered for clean-up duty, cooking, or bringing in food? Do people push their leftovers, Halloween Candy, fattening meals, or other unhealthy garbage at you? I’m sure there are more examples that come to mind.

I’ll repeat myself: I might be willing to accept the alternative “other” images of us, once they let Ellen DeGeneres and Rachel Maddow on MSNBC be as unattractive and masculine as their original, keeping-it-real selves used to be. But if you notice, the first thing they went through was a total and complete makeover. They were made to conform to an ideal;  an existing feminine and attractive package.

Ladies. All of these people out there enjoy “othering” you. DO NOT EMBRACE IT. Let those bitches go first.

It’s a disgusting and deadly thing these people like to do to black women. When you accept “othering”, MEN wont and do not regard you as feminine. They will not come and protect you. You leave yourself vulnerable. That’s why people like throwing “strong black woman” at us. No one feels we are entitled to respect, protection, to be provided for, or cherished like other women.

Nearly everywhere one looks, there’s an overweight, or obese black woman (who’s often loud) receiving  mainstream media attention and accolades. Even if her career is going to last 5 minutes. Or maybe she’s the face of an extremely harsh and pungent detergent, feminine yeast problems, or other unattractive ailments, and even if she’s pleasant, the product is nice – there’s something off about her.

That big loud woman fits a mammy stereotype. Things haven’t changed when it comes to this offensive image of black women. She’s been around since Gone With the Wind and before. Her imagine was created to “other” us. I honor and respect her sacrifices. Black women needed these roles to survive and thrive.

However, we do not need to embrace her now.

A lot of us – feeling conflicted – honestly believe that if we embrace these “othering” images, they’ll eventually give way to those of beautiful, feminine, graceful and glamorous black women. Haven’t we been here before?

Don’t black women realize that when we ARE making strides, they deliberately bring up garish images of us?

Unfortunately, some of us fight each other over it, because for a number of us it means some kind of “acceptance” in all our diverse glory. I notice that this diversity almost always happens to be represented by the same type of morbidly obese, grotesquely crude, asexual and unfeminine black woman. I’m not putting all of this at Ms. Sidibe’s door. But would she have been as widely embraced if she was as slim as Zoe Saldana after doing only one bloody damn movie? At least Ms. Saldana has several blockbusters under her belt.

Funk that nonsense. I am not embracing “otherness.” I want black women to look as hot, glamorous, sexy, desirable, and feminine as the average looking, cosmetically enhanced, photoshopped white chicks on the cover of any magazine. We are women too. We can look as good, if not better, than they do.

Do we believe we are feminine? Are we equal to them as women? Or have we gone so deep down the “othering”, unfeminine and unattractive well that if Tyler Perry showed up as Madea on the cover of a magazine as an Influenial Black Woman – we’d talk about how much progress that is for us? Or would we only complain about the dress and wig he chose to wear? Would we miss the insult entirely?

I think we’re still missing the insult(s).

Black women wake up. Embrace being a woman first. These people are working hard to rob us of our womanhood, our femininity, and sense of self. Don’t let them do it. Don’t accept this distorted view of ourselves, where we are the “other.”

We are women. Our luminous, satiny, and beautiful dark skins do not detract or subtract from that.

*According to Wikipedia, Devil’s Advocate is:

In common parlance, a devil’s advocate is someone who, given a certain argument, takes a position he or she does not necessarily agree with, just for the sake of argument. In taking such position, the individual taking on the devil’s advocate role seeks to engage others in an argumentative discussion process. The purpose of such process is typically to test the quality of the original argument and identify weaknesses in its structure, and to use such information to either improve or abandon the original, opposing position.
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