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“And look, you tell me you ain’t did it, then you ain’t did it. And if you did, then that’s family business.” –Kanye West

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Snapshot from Carrie’s computer

Family Business by Mr. West is probably one of my favorite songs of his. (I think I’ve managed to mention Kanye in at least 5 different blog posts. In my personal opinion, I love this old style Kanye. But that’s another post…for another blog.) I love his candidness about family loyalty. A chain of events caused me to listen to this song, watch a specific episode, and reflect.

My ex got married this past weekend. This ex. Yep…this ex. Once I found out he was engaged, I felt some kind of way. Not negative, but definitely not positive. Probably incredulous. *Kanye shrug* But then I got on with life, and decided what I wanted for lunch, or something like that.

Then the text messages started:

“GIRL!!!!!!!!! Did you know….”

“I can’t believe that ninja….”

It was ridiculous. I started to make a twitter/FB announcement that I knew, and no, I didn’t care. Besides, most of the people who texted just wanted to know what my reaction was. They didn’t have a vested interest in me…and “ain’t nobody got time ‘fa that.”

The summer went on, and I forgot…unless I passed a Ruby Tuesday. (LOL…inside joke.) And it wasn’t until my friend posted pictures at the venue that I recalled that it had actually occurred. He was married…and I still didn’t care.

But I did. But not about him. Or the white dress. Or the people clapping at a new union. I’m from the school of, “If she can make you a better person, please, BY ALL MEANS, do you.” But I did care…about his mom.

I realize that that has been the only thing to hurt my feelings. I last talked to his mother on Christmas Eve (maybe it was the 23rd, I don’t know) to check on her, say Happy Holidays and invite her to church because I was singing. She asked about me, caught me up on his son, and told me that she would try to Imagewatch online. She and I had created a very wonderful relationship when he and I were in one, and when I told her that he’d ended it, she hugged me and cried, and said that we could still continue our friendship. It made me think of “Shortcomings” when Carrie dated Vaughn, a short-story writer, and she had more chemistry with his family. When the writing was on the wall, it was really his mom who she had to end it with. In the episode, she asked the question, “When you date someone, how many people become emotionally involved?”

His mom stopped answering the phone for me after the New Year. We talked via text. She declined my attempts to bring her my tax papers, preferring for me to mail them instead. It was only later that I realized why: because he was engaged. I spoke to his Uncle when I went home for Memorial Day, and he shared with me that his mom was extremely happy that he had made a commitment. It hurt. I felt betrayed in a small sense.

I’m big on family. So one of the hardest things in that break-up was realizing that I lost a piece of extended family, especially his son that I had been sowing into since he was 7 months old. So if there were any ill-feelings about those nuptials, it had nothing to do with him. It had to do the woman who promised to still be my family. Maybe she can’t keep those promises, or maybe she just wouldn’t. Either way, it stung a bit.

But again, life moves forward.

Love,

–V

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Credit to BET

I swear, this is the 3rd or 4th time I’ve made a Kanye reference on this blog. Who knew that ‘Ye and Sex and the City would be so easily connected? (Well, except for Mr. West’s wardrobe choices for the Watch the Throne tour. Skants. All he needs is a lace crown, and he could’ve been  Carrie…oddly dressed but still dope.) I digress.

My last post about Learned Behaviors had a lot of feedback. It didn’t come in the form of comments on the blog specifically, but rather I was contacted via DM, Facebook inbox messages, texts, calls, and face to face conversations from people who both congratulated my ability to write my most (in my humble opinion) transparent post, and shared that reading said post caused them to reflective in their own relationship behavior and the catalyst there behind. Just think, my sharing caused hundreds (okay, well maybe 9) to reevaluate their behavior for the better! Now, I can admit that there was a more negative connotation associated with learned behaviors, but what about the other side? What about the positive things you’ve picked up from your past that has only been helpful ever since you learned it?

Kanye West had a skit on his album “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” (I believe it’s at the end of “Blame Game”) where Chris Rock is engaged in conversation with a girl who is (presumably) West’s ex-girlfriend/jump-off/concubine. He kept asking her where she learned to do this or where she picked up that habit (and that description is clearly infinitely more G-rated than the actual song, lol), and her refrain was unchanging: “Yeezy taught me.” Rock’s final conclusion? “Yeezy taught you well.” Basically, being with ‘Ye gave her some skills that made her new man very happy. Now, depending on whose perspective you’re looking from, this could be negative. I think from the perspective of the album, it was decidedly more negative, yet funny. But let’s get it connected.

Yeezy taught her?

Admittedly, there are some things I’ve taken from every relationship-esque situation I’ve been in that have been great assets in my next relationship-esque situation (including some I won’t discuss, but once I have a covenant, will have to get dusted off, lol). My first relationship really got me interested in hip-hop. Oh, I’d liked rap, but not with any great detail. I think the first rap song I learned I was in the 7th grade, and it was Warren G and Nate Dogg’s “Regulate”. When I was 18, the on again/off again semi-relationship/friendshippy thing I had, he loved hip hop. His favorite rapper was Redman, which is an odd choice considering we were both in the deep south (Louisiana). I listened to Eminem’s whole cd, not just the singles. I developed an appreciation for wordplay.

The guy after him, who I will refer to as Dawson’s Creek, was a baseball player. I talk about him here. He loved God, was a virgin (by choice, but even he admitted it was very difficult to do), and had great manners. We would play together all the time. I think baseball is incredibly boring; however, this is where I learned to take interest in my beau’s interests…even if it’s like watching caterpillars change.

My ex, he loved Southern rap. It expanded my palette to OutKast, Jay-Z, 8ball and MJG, etc… But more importantly, this is when I was forced to like football. From about the end of August until the beginning February, if we were going to spend time together on Saturdays, it had to happen on his couch. Preferably with wings. He was both a college and NFL football fan, so inevitably, I picked it up. And took it and ran with it. I’m a SEC girl (LSU! They’re my default. I was a Gator fan when Tebow was there. Loved him.) and wear my Saints t-shirts to work with a pantsuit to piss off my Falcons’ fan co-workers.

And every guy I dated after the previous one absolutely loved each picked up habit.

Big was a known jazz enthusiast. No doubt that helped Carrie with Ray, her jazz musician (until she couldn’t deal with his ADD). Steve taught Miranda to relax when he would wake her with their morning, er…happy time, even though she hated it. By the time she was dating Dr. Robert Leeds, she was comfortable enough to take a personal day of…um…happy time. And she didn’t even argue about it like she did with Steve. Stevie taught her.

All I’m saying is, even though we get some learned behavior that we need to get rid as soon as possible, we also get some beneficial things as well. I’m still me and I want to discuss issues like any other girl……………..as long as the Saints aren’t playing.

What say you? What good skills have you gotten from past relationships that will be helpful in your future ones? Who taught you well? (lol)

Love,

–V

P.S. …all you folks who read this, and then text me, you are more than welcome to actually respond here, lol

A conversation that I had with a friend (yes, you got mentioned in this post, even though you don’t read it, but I’m sure someone will let you know) gave me the most profound and idiotic insight into the male psyche after I asked him what constitutes a male thinking that a female is flirting with him:

“To a man who is interested in you, flirting is any positive interaction of any kind. ‘Hey, you dropped your $20 bill!’ can mean, ‘She wants me. Why would she hand ME back MY dub? We together.'”

I told him that was probably the most idiotic thing I’d ever heard. His response? “Might be, but it is what it is.”

Her: "What does he think of this painting, I wonder?" Him: "Oh yeah...she wants me."

Now, this isn’t just one-sided. Women can also analyze the mess out of some run-of-the-mill niceties and start picking out 2nd child names. I’m just wondering from what experiences do people’s definitions of flirting come? I’ve had several folks tell me that I’m a flirt because I smile at guys. D*mmit…I’m a happy person. Don’t hate on my joyful soul. Just because the hot-32 were aimed your way for a millisecond of life doesn’t mean I’m fantasizing about carats and how well your last name sounds with my first (or any other kind of fantasy). I was also told that I seem rather “friendly.”  I hug people that I know when I see them. Maybe it’s because I’m from the South.

We’ve all probably been in those “we together” situations in our own heads where the other person has no idea we’re even thinking that way like me and T.I. Who else has had to have a “Well, I’m flattered, but the truth is *insert nice let-down and ensuing discomfort and awkwardness*” conversation? Not just me right?

All of the girls did their share of analyzing a man’s intentions based off a message or a question. When Carrie first met Jack Berger in Season 5, she took his asking her to accompany him to the dry cleaners as a sign that he was interested (which, I’ll admit, is a bit odd; however, he could have just been enjoying her company at that moment, and wasn’t ready for the convo to end).

For the past few months, a guy who is a friend has sent me smiley faces via text. To me, I think they’re letting me know that though we haven’t had time to talk, he hasn’t forgotten about me. To others, he wants me and just hasn’t had the opportunity to get it out. *Kanye shrug*

So I’ll bite: What’s flirting to you? Wat do you do when you are truly flirting?

Love,

-V

 So, I’ve been thinking…how different are women and men? I mean sure, we know shoes versus football (and I happen to love both), but how much deeper does the rabbit hole go? I mean, too many men will not admit how much time they spend, if any at all, analyzing their own emotions. Women generally get boxed into the concerned-attentive-emotional box, while men get the guarded-aloof-apathetic position, and society, the general public, and Kanye West are fine with it.

But what happens when there is a behavior switch? A man finds himself concerned emotionally about where he stands with a female, and a woman is in the aloof and guarded stance…seems like it throws the cosmos off kilter.

In Season 3 (my best guess is episode 6, but I’m on a media fast right now, so I can’t watch it to see), Aidan wanted Carrie to meet his parents, but she was apprehensive. I remember that Carrie was concerned that something was wrong with Aidan because he seemed too perfect. Anyway, Carrie explained her conundrum to her friends, saying, “Aidan is acting exactly like I wished Big would’ve behaved, but now I’m behaving like Big.”

Currently, I’m dating someone. I’m pretty guarded and cautious, and my friends tell me I’m being a butthole. I guess, like Carrie, I am looking for hidden icebergs so they don’t blindside me when they were in clear view (like the last relationship). This person is great to me, we’ve had a few arguments already and no one has died, and generally makes me happy. So what’s up? Carrie thought it was the lack of a stomach flip. I have absolutely no idea. I don’t see the harm in being cautious and careful. My friend said, however, “You just might cautious and careful yourself out of a man.” Thank you friend. Of course, I needed to be thinking about that. #sarcasm

Give me your take on it. What do you think? Is caution a male trait? Women are just supposed to go hopping, skipping, jumping, diving, and falling in love (Hopefully, you know that movie reference) without buoys or life vests and depend on their friends to have their eyes on the ocean in case something goes wrong? And vice versa…isn’t it okay for guys to throw caution to the wind once in a while and just go for it? I’m curious…

Love,

-V

P.S. Work has been hectic and my schedule has been crazy.

“I’ve been dating since I was fifteen! I’m exhausted! Where is he???!!”

This is undoubtedly Charlotte’s most famous line of the show, from “Where There’s Smoke…” in Season 3 (Ep. 1). It was put on t-shirts, bags, and became the unofficial motto of the woman who was ready to get married. However, what was mostly overlooked was what she said almost immediately beforehand (in her hungover state), in response to a conversation about why firemen were so cute, even when they aren’t:

It’s because women just want to be rescued.” There it was: the phrase independent single women in their thirties are never supposed to think, let alone say aloud.

Carrie’s response to Charlotte’s declaration was, “Sweetie, did you ever think that maybe we’re the white knights, and that we have to rescue ourselves?” Charlotte’s response? “That is so depressing,” before plopping her head back into her arms. Carrie’s “Is it??” went unanswered, and you could tell the women were contemplative on the matter.

I was thinking about this after having several conversations with a close friend. Is this accurate? No matter how many Beyonce-esque SingleLadiesIndependentWomenIrreplaceable type songs we hear, ultimately would we honestly want to do as “Kanye the wise” would say, “…trade it all for a husband and some kids”? 

My homegirl and I debated this using the context of my “situation” as the basis. I’ve been sick lately (sinus infection, ugh) and haven’t been to work in a few days. I can honestly say that my friend took great care of me…bringing me medicine and food, checking to see what the doctor said, making me tea, etc… Since this occurrence, I have felt a bit more emotionally attached in a way that I can honestly say I wasn’t a week prior. Is that the innate want of the “protected” to be taken care of by the “protector”? Jury’s out I tell ya, but this is something to think about.

Even our “Queen”, Beyonce, who makes all these independent women songs, has Jay-Z’s name on her fingernails. After wrapping the set of “Video Phone” with Lady GaGa, she was captured saying, “I’m glad this is over…I’m going to see my husband. I’m happy! I’m happy!” I’m not saying she doesn’t believe in what she’s saying, but is it a bit easier to sell because she’s already been “rescued”?

I’m curious folks. What do you think? Here’s a little music for thought.

Love,

-V

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