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Whenever I go to the grocery store, it is almost a definite that someone will stop me about my hair. They would say some variation of, “Oh my gosh! I love your hair. What do you do to it? What products do you use? I’m natural, but I’m not sure what I need to do.” I share my hair regimen, and I can see the looks on their faces change from “Oh wow” to “Nuh unh.” 4/5 of the time, I hear this phrase:

“Oh wow. Yeah…that’s too much work for me.”

I normally shrug and say, “Well, it works for me.” It has happened so much that I don’t pay it too much attention. It always reminds me of something I saw on a Kevin Hart behind the scenes video. He and his friends say this as a sort of call and response thing: “Everybody wanna be famous…don’t nobody wanna put the work in.” I would chuckle to myself, and keep it moving.

Then, as I was in the shower, hair twisted, shampooing (only my scalp) section by section, drenching with conditioner, finger detangling, and thinking of the black tea rinse I wanted to do, something occurred to me: The same is true of relationships. Everyone wants their Mr. Big, but nobody wants to have to beat him with flowers. For any individual, how much work is too much?

Sometimes, the work for some is at the beginning with appearance. He doesn’t look like you want him too. He’s too _______. If Charlotte had felt that way, she never would have been with Harry, who is arguably (though not really) the best husband on the series. Sometimes, the work is in the middle. Personality differences, disagreements, and/or compromises. The entire Steve and Miranda relationship is based on that premise. Sometimes she did the work; sometimes it was him; either way, it got done. If the work is at the end, like Samantha and Smith, you’re giving the old college try to make sure you’ve exhausted all possibilities before calling it out. But what if your work is like Carrie and Big…all throughout? Is she just stupid for not leaving sooner? Or did her perseverance finally award her the prize?

On VerySmartBrothas.com, there was a post about why women are overly loyal.My friends and I had a conversation about it, and one said, “Most women don’t give up easily…but we need not to if we are going to be “overloyal” mothers to our daughters and sons (not to create needy daughters or mama’s boys though). So I guess we gotta learn to give up on people early in the game lol??” Her sarcasm, (which I love…it’s one of the reasons why we’re friends) rings very true. Where is the line? I know it may be fine, but can we see it? Would it be dumb to think that something we’re not doing in practice (being loyal/working in relationships) will happen in the game (marriage to divorce)?

Put it like this…I like the outcome of my hair styling sessions. I’m willing to put it the work when the outcome is what it is. BUT, if (God forbid) a fire catches my hair a la Michael Jackson…no amount of deep conditioner can help that. I’m going to have to cut this ish off.

What say you? How much work is too much?

Love,

–V

Okay, so remember a while back – some time around April I believe – when I mentioned that I had a boyfriend? Well, it didn’t work out. He was, um, otherwise engaged…amongst a bunch of other Eminem stuff (Eminem…shady…see what I did there? lol). It is for the best; it lasted all of two months officially, even though we were seeing each other for about 10 months before then. The good thing is that my niece said it doesn’t count anyway because she never met him or knew his name…bonus!

A friend of mine said, “Really? Two months? And weren’t you on a whole other continent for two of those months? So technically, it was a month and a week! I mean, wow…didn’t you know it wouldn’t work? I figured it wouldn’t.” (Most people did…only 3 ever said anything of the sort.) Now, this whole thing isn’t about him, but rather was a point that reminds me of something I was talking to my current beau about ( 😉 …hey babe *blush*), and a post on VerySmartBrothas about a cheating spectrum, and it got me to thinking about lying.

 It’s no secret that lies are one of the major dismembering factors in relationships, but are all lies created equal? My boyfriend and I were discussing how lies of omission are viewed because how deceptive they can be. I can say that this relationship has probably started the mostly honest-ly of any relationship I’ve ever been a part of, so we discuss a lot. And, because we started as friends (like seriously, I never would have seen it coming), there are certain aspects of our lives that we were privy to already as friends, so you can hold it back once it has moved to a relationship.

My question becomes one of “Is there a magnitude or caliber of lying that is wholly seen as permissible, while the opposite end is likely to find someone in a hospital?” Samantha caught Richard eating another woman’s…er…sushi (“I Heart NY”, Season 4). She papered his neighborhood and threw a drink in his face………but ultimately returned to the relationship. I have another friend who found out her boyfriend actually gets off work 2 hours before he told her he did, and she ended the relationship and never looked back. When I asked why, her response was “If he is lying about this, then we are starting off with problems. I’m not about to stick around to see what the **** they are. If he needed two hours he couldn’t tell me about, what the hell was he planning to do with them?” Touche.

I remember the moment I knew it wasn’t going to work with the person who can be commonly regarded as my ex. (But for future reference, if I say Ex on this blog, 9 times out of 10, I’m referring to the 5 year relationship of over a year ago…or whenever it was…yeah, a year.) It was way before I knew anything else was happening, and it was simple. A little before Easter, we were at his apartment watching “The Wood”. There is a moment in this movie where the two childhood sweethearts were planning to give their virginities to each other, but the only condom present ripped. The female instructed the main character to grab another one out of her brother Stacy’s room. Well, Stacy comes home with his girlfriend, he has to hide with the condom, the girl goes ballistic because there is a condom missing and she had counted his stash the last time she was there. Stacy couldn’t explain it to her, and they leave arguing.

While we were watching, he said, “That’s so stupid. I would’ve just said, ‘I gave one to my homeboy, Boo.'” o_O.

I said, “Ummmmmmmmm…………what????”

“Yeah. I’d just blame it on him. It’s easier than trying to explain. And whatever I said would sound like a lie anyway, so I’d just lie to keep the peace.”

Our conversation after that was a continuous dialogue about the lying being wrong (or not), and I remembered that I brought it up to at least 3 groups of people. Now, granted, it was an interesting conversation starter, and everyone we discussed it with found it interesting. But honestly, I never let it go. The ease with which he created the plausible and logical lie always bothered me. Had I followed my gut in that moment, I probably would have experienced less drama (because the kid really doesn’t do drama).

Richard Wright has plausible and logical lies. The woman he was meeting for lunch was a business associate. So where do you forgive, or just say forget it?

My thing is, I don’t need to be performing mid-day secret ops in a wig and glasses before I decide we are NOT together. So what is your lying curve? Anything is a deal-breaker, or wait until it’s a bigger deal? Is not telling that you still talk to an ex on a semi-regular basis the same as planning your wedding while you have a date? Because it is all wrong. Let me know, lol.

Love,

–V

P.S. Here’s Ne-Yo’s take on it…(I love the writing…hate the message…but I get it also. It’s a conundrum.)

Who is Jasmine you say? Jasmine is my neighbor. I have never officially met her, but I know her name. Do you know why?

Because every Monday, Thursday, and Saturday, Jasmine and Jasmine’s guy friend get. it. in.

I am slightly concerned that I don’t know his name, according to Trey Songz, but that is neither here nor there. The issue is that Jasmine is waking me up on a regular basis. He is yelling, so my guess is that she must know how to do the Lynn-Spin or something.

Anyway…all I want is a decent 6-8 hours without looking for my earmuffs. Is that too much to ask? Now I know how Carrie felt at Anthony and Stanford’s wedding with Samantha next door.

Geez.......

How would you handle this? A bang on the wall (doesn’t work)? Visit? A post-it that says, “I’m sorry. I can’t. Don’t hate me.”? Smh…

Love,

–V

I was reading my daily dose of Very Smart Brothas, and today’s post stuck out to me. It’s basically about why ugly men can give solid relationship advice (you should totally go read it; I love their writing style. I have literally laughed aloud on several occasions).

This stuck out to me because a friend and I were just having a conversation about attractiveness to some degree. Without going into too much detail, the summary of the convo was about how to him, attractiveness is a major, albeit shallow, necessity in any woman he plans to take seriously. For me, I can be in a relationship with someone and not be attracted to him. I’ve done it before. I wasn’t necessarily attracted to my ex when we met. Quoting a part of the aforementioned blog, it pretty much goes like this:

But there’s also that little tidbit that most women either refuse to acknowledge or refuse to believe that it could happen to them. The most marginal man can book a decent to above average woman as long as he’s *WHAT CLASS?*…

…funny.

And me? I’m thebomb.com/imawesome.

We’ve talked about this before, but all women need to keep them interested, generally, is a good laugh. Not saying she’s going to give up the cotton immediately, but if you make a woman laugh she’ll at least listen a little bit longer. A smart ugly man will hone his comedic sensibilities because that’s really all he has…his gift of gab. So let’s say a funny ugly dude has the gift of gab and manages to charm the pants off of women…or has money. This cat can rack up chicks. We’ve all seen it happen.

He has a point. Even my husband T.I. has been quoted saying “Two kinds of men will never have a problem getting women…bad boys and comedians.”

And even though it didn’t last, it even worked for Samantha. Remember Samantha and the short dude, the one who she was trying to figure out if he was just a short guy or a short person, and freaked out when his suit jacking said “Bloomingdale’s Boy’s Department” (Season 3, “Politically Erect”)? Yep, he made her giggle.

The point is this: attractiveness can vary based on situation. There was a guy I met once who was gorgeous on first meeting, and once he started talking, every possible facial flaw was accentuated. When I was in high school, I talked to this guy who looked like a moncheechee because on the phone, his personality shone through (I did, however, get surprised everytime I saw him. Okay, that was a no go once I made it to the third time I jumped on-sight, lol).

Does it happen all the time? No. Can it happen and be okay? Yes. The blog posts continues to say

I remember on the post that shall remain nameless how somebody said that my only real asset in life was my personality. But wow…what an asset. If I looked like Kid and was a douche, well yeah, I might be short in life. But I’m fun. And do you know what women like? Fun guys. And you know what happens to women who are around fun guys? They end up interested. Even accidentally. That coupled with women just being better people in general and more willing to take a shot on happiness as opposed to superficiality (in general) and you can end up with more women than you can shake your stick at.

A friend of mine reminds our circle of guy friends on an almost weekly basis to “date for your priorities, not just your preferences”. Sounds about accurate.

What say you? Can you give someone a chance who isn’t your “physical type” as a guy, or is that just a woman thing? Hope you’re having a great week! 🙂

Love,

–V

First things first…I’ll let you guys know that I had an awesome Valentine’s Day. Thanks for the wishes I received! I was very much so impressed…he did good 🙂

Now, this blog was inspired by my best friend who has had nuggets for the past few days that I have kept me doubled-over in laughter. We were having a conversation about my sister and the subject of romantic possibilities came up. I said, “There are obviously people interested in her, but to me they’re a bit lame.” Her response?

“Of course they’re lame! Your sister is like awesome…a complete package. People with their stuff together think out the details before they approach someone. All these dorks are going to be like, ‘wooooooo! Let me try to get on it and upgrade myself!’ Bring on the idiots!”

After I stopped crying, I got to thinking…where do the lames get their confidence? And even more so, what would happen if we attempt to change them?

Now, let me clarify. I’m considering lame to be something that is unattractive to 95% of the datable world, i.e. bad breath, braids when you are balding, illiterate and proud, sweaters tucked into white socks with black dress shoes and high waters, etc… I am not talking about idiosyncracies that might not be my style (like being a Gucci Mane fan), but would be good to a whole slew of other people.

VerySmartBrothas, a favorite blog of mine, had a post today about being interested in folks who aren’t interested in you. This reminded me of Season 1, “The Turtle and the Hare”, when Samantha was continually approached by “The Turtle” (I want to say his name was Danny Turtletop, but I could be wrong) for a date. Samantha began seeing some guy who walks away from her mid-date because he saw someone else who caught his eye. When Samantha was about to leave seeing as her ego had taken a crushing blow, The Turtle gives her the affection she needed in that moment. She decides she’ll make him a guy she wants to be with instead of pining away for the guy who rejected her. (Yeah…Samantha doesn’t pine. Whatever.)

Now see, The Turtle had a few issues: he was balding (not an issue to me, but it was mentioned quite often by the ladies on the show in reference to men), had weird conversation and habits (trying to figure out the exact ingredients of dinner dishes), and above all? His breath stank. Reeked. Badly. He had horrible pick up lines (“Do you like this shirt? My…ex-girlfriend picked it out.”), and seemed to be just generally awkward. When Samantha mentioned his herb-induced stank breath, he just made a joke after his explanation, and kept it moving. He didn’t have any pretension, and she liked that about him. So after a shopping spree and a facial…viola! A (sorta) new man.

Carrie couldn’t believe it! Why would her friend subject herself to such a man? Was it shallow of Carrie? Was it mean of Samantha not to accept him how he was? The thing is, first impressions can be deceiving. Not judging a book by its cover and whatnot. However, no matter the cover of the book, you can’t change the pages. The Turtle was still himself…awkward and slightly weird, and eventually it never worked for Samantha. I know plenty of people who will try to change a won’t to a will. It has never worked for them.

There has been a time or four where a guy (or girl for the fellas) has been interested, and you couldn’t fathom it. How do you handle this? Do you give it a go? Do you stand firmly on your no? (Hey, I rhymed. Double points.) Do you use it as an experiment? For me, I’ll befriend anyone who I genuinely like as a person (cute or not, if I don’t mesh with you, I won’t stand around to see if I do), but that doesn’t mean it’ll go romantic. But if it just becomes weird and uncomfortable, I’ll just distance myself.  What about you?

Love,

-V

P.S. The word tortoise looks like it is always spelled wrong. For some reason I want it to have a U in it, lol.

P.P.S. No shade to anyone who has bad breath, braids when you are balding, illiterate and proud, sweaters tucked into white socks with black dress shoes and high waters. You need love too. And I’d still like to know where that confidence comes from, lol

*Shout out to my cousin whose name IS Mary!*

Now, today, several of my friends called me difficult for “refusing to acknowledge my feelings” (their words, not mine). It was after a close male friend told me he would start to prepare my wedding poem, to which I said some variation of “kick rocks” (with love though). One friend in particular said, “You’re only doing this because you want to be contrary, just like ***** (the name of a friend who is apparently known for doing such)! You both will do the opposite of what people expect, just so you won’t be doing what people expect, even if it is the best thing for you!” This reminded me of Samantha and Smith Jerrod. When she hurt her ankle trying to dodge a dreaded hand-hold, people were trying to make her feel comfortable with something outside of her level of comfort (Season 6, “The Domino Effect”). Now, it’s obvious that holding someone’s hand is not that big of a decision, but it was Samantha’s decision to make. (Even though Smith insisted by telling her he had enough of that horse****, she did put parameters on the action, lol)

Boo on them.

First of all, this is not true for me in every area of my life. I am generally a rule-abider. Even at work when we had to take the true colors assessment, I was a green followed in one point by yellow. Ideally, I want things to go as they should go, whether it is with the crowd or against it. Going about things the right way is important to me.

Even in this area, people take the stance that this relationship is a good thing…which it very well may be. How-so-and-ever…it doesn’t make it right to do it by others time. It’s my own time and comfort that is important. And I figure, if he is patient and understanding of my reservations, then everyone else can wait too 😉 All I’m saying is that if you walk too fast, you might fall in a manhole, and not love like everyone else is thinking. There’s something to be said for caution…and it’s not just being contrary. The only person who knows what is comfortable for him or her is that person…herself.

Love,

-V

By now, everyone has heard the story about the two second graders performing oral sex on each other. One of my favorite blogs, Very Smart Brothas, had a post dedicated to it today. My co-workers and I have been talking about it during planning periods and after school. My friends have asked my take on it especially because I’m an educator. There has been shock and outrage and oodles of fingerpointing.

Yes, it shocked me, but not much.

See, I’m in the classroom everyday, and I have almost had to desensitize myself to the things that could bombard me and my eyes and ears on a daily basis, just to function. Hey, I’m almost happy if I find out that a female student is just having sex with one guy. You would be surprised at the conversations that I have intercepted. But I’m not…not anymore. Movies like Thirteen have shown that what is appropriate is now no longer the norm. And on top of that, I have to try and help them make sense of Romeo and Juliet? All I can do is stop the language and inappropriate conversation when I hear it, and report whatever comes my way…and pray.

This was touched on in Sex and the City. In Season 3, “Hot Child in the City” Samantha was hired to be the PR for a bat mitzvah. The young lady was turning 12, and clearly looked about 21. She and her friends had overtly sexual conversations. One girl stated, “I’d f*ck him…I’d f*ck him and his gay boyfriend.” Samantha, obviously the most risque of the group, felt compelled to step in and ask about their language and topic. She urged them to wait until they were older, saying they had “…the rest of their lives to talk that way.” The girls did not respond to her advances, telling her to “talk to the hand, grandma.” Samantha, at first, was jealous at all the girls had access to, but pitied them by the end of the episode because while they were exposed to so much, she had access to something they never had: a true childhood.

Atlanta recently had a snow week. I was so excited because of my first snowman and snow angel, even when I had to build it alone. Not one of my students attempted to go and play in it. None of them watch shows that seem appropriate to their age levels. There is no equivalent of “Salute Your Shorts” or “David the Gnome” (which, goes really hard btw) now. There is only “Southland” or “Real Housewives…” Long gone are playdates and sleepovers to watch movies and play games. Sleepovers now come as a result of leaving the club so late. Even to this moment, I know most, if not all, words to the songs of every Disney movie (Except the Great Mouse Detective…that one sucked.) I was more excited to see Tangled than most other movies that came out this year. Now granted, I am in a metro-area, but this is the case across the country. Children do not have the benefit of knowing the Preamble to the Constitution because of School House Rock, but know every line to Gucci Mane’s “Wasted”.

It’s one thing to be feel like you’re still a kid, but quite another to know you’re not one anymore. I wouldn’t trade those memories for anything in the world. So yes, someone will have to pay – probably the teacher who allegedly was present as the act occurred – but that act didn’t just start in the classroom. It probably started when a 7 year old wasn’t watching cartoons or helping someone bake cookies. And that, more than anything, is what hurts most.

Love,

-V

P.S. Just for the heck of it…get your law-making on… 🙂

Or your states and capitals… 🙂 (Shoutout to Baton Rouge, LA for being first!)

Before I even get into this, I must say that I need to come up with some kind of plan to post consistently. There is a bit much going on at work, but I will work through it.

Now with that said, let’s get to it.

Samantha.

I’ll be the first to admit, I do not have a lot in common with Samantha. She is probably the complete opposite of who I am. Therefore, when trying to find items that I thought represented her, I was at a loss. I thought, “There is no way I’m posting pictures of my underwear.” After a lot more deliberation, I decided to come up with items that were most like Samantha is spirit, rather than literally. So these are my favorite things that I own (and paid for with my own money) – inspired by the character…So here we go:

My Favorite Things - Samantha Style

Let’s start with shoes…

I love these shoes…they both have something about them that makes me feel badass. The shoe on the left is a pair I ordered from ShoeDazzle.com, Kim Kardashian’s online shoe store (I am addicted to this site…it’s just not even funny anymore). The pair on the left is from Bakers. The platform and bright color on this one make me think Samantha. Seems like something she’d wear with a regular business suit. Both have something a little bold about them (at least bold for me), and when I wear them, I stand out. 🙂

Next up is the makeup. Three things, MAC’s Show Orchid Lipstick, Urban Decay’s Revolution Lipstick, and NYX’s American Queen Mega Shine Lipgloss are bold, even for me, and I am not afraid of color when it comes to makeup! Both Show Orchid and American Queen have that dialed up fuschia-pink going on. Whenever I wear it, I have gotten used to people staring at my mouth. I believe I chose Revolultion not only for the in your face red, but for the packaging as well. Urban Decay’s packaging features a dagger at the end of the lipgloss. If that’s not bold…

Samantha had pretty bold nails in Sex and the City 2 (or was I the only one that noticed that?), and even though I don’t go as crazy as she did, I do like a little pizazz on the nails from time to time. Chic Prints by Sephora by OPI allows ladies (or gents, whatever) to quickly apply a bold print with easy removal. I saw them online one day, and immediately went to Sephora. Whenever I wear them, people always ask “Is that Minx?” Only problem? I have small nail beds, so I have to do a lot of editing to get it to look right on my nails.

Pic from InStyle UK

The other polish is Nabi Nail Lacquer. I picked it up for $3 at MetroPark. I painted my nails with Zoya’s Trixie (silver), and then coated these little rhinstone pieces on top of it. It was my say goodbye to summer nail 😦

The glasses are by Betsey Johnson, and they have little gold speckles on the side with a pink heart. The ring is from…somewhere. Either New York and Company, or Rock ‘n Sole. I forget.

Anyway, these are my Samantha-iest things that don’t go folded up in a drawer. What brings out the Samantha in you?

Love,

–V

P.S. If you want to join ShoeDazzle, here is my invite link. You know I have a shoe issue, so help support my habit if you’d like. Every 3 friends to make a purchase, you get a free pair. Come on! My bday just passed, so technically you could be in on getting me a present 😉 I’m just saying…

Samantha and "We" William

I find it interesting how many of us have run into this guy. He is the guy who calls just to say hi, who randomly makes reference to something that will happen in the 2013 (but includes you), who says things like “I can see us…” etc, etc, etc.

……………………………………and he is full of crap.

Of all the things that men use to get women, this is by far the most shady. At least to me.

What, or rather who, I’m referring to is the guy who sells a dream of future bliss to get into something more, um, current. It’s the guy who talks about seeing you as the mother of his children, the vacations you’ll take together, and all other manner of tomfoolery that he knows never crossed his mind. Several conversations with friends confirm that this is not a figment of my imagination, but rather a new technique. I mean honestly, poon-tang is that important to you that you will throw a future on the table? Really?

Even Samantha (who I rarely use as a reference here because I can’t really  relate to her personally) got got by a false-future guy. William, a guy whom she met in a club when she and the girls were on a ladies’ night outing in Season 2 (They Shoot Single People, Don’t They?). During the evening with this guy, he pretty much offered her the Hampton’s house for the summer complete with anything else she could imagine. Even Carrie narrated, “She let the ‘we’ wash over her…”, so they called him “We-William.” Of course, this guy didn’t deliver past the next 15 minutes of the show.

I am a little wary of guys who start mentioning “our wedding” within the first couple of months of meeting me (This has happened more than once since I’ve become single…I have had to reacquaint myself with the man-tricks), even in jest. I always wonder what the hidden agenda is…and there usually is one. I haven’t been wrong yet. Normally, it has to do with where they prefer a woman’s underthings to be. Silly rabbits…

Have any of you met this guy? Believed this guy? Have any of you BEEN this guy? Why? No judgement sorta. Let me know.

Love,

-V

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