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3 Reasons Why I Loved “Black Panther”

By this time, everybody and their momma has seen the new “Black Panther” movie, so I hope it’s safe to write about it. I don’t want to be that guy who spoiled things for others.

I had been avoiding most social media coverage of the film to make sure I did not accidentally read any spoilers. Aside from watching the trailer and seeing all of the excellent reviews, I knew almost nothing about the movie.

I finally saw it on Tuesday and I LOVED IT. Here’s why:

Women Warriors

This movie broke with the tradition of a muscly/smart/rich/kindhearted/some combination of the four White dude being the savior of everyone in the film. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love muscly/smart/rich/kindhearted White dudes probably as much as anyone else. I love the other Marvel movies (Thor, IronMan, etc.) and I even love the DC movies (even though, shame on them for not doing more with the latest Superman story, but I won’t get into my disappointment about that).

HOWEVER…
I am both Black and female and of course it was a welcome surprise to see Black female leads playing WARRIORS and SCIENTISTS. I won’t spoil it for anyone else, but OMG GO SEE THIS MOVIE. No matter your color or shape of your genitals, it’s amazing.

To be honest, I actually CRIED when I realized the warriors were women. Yes, I sat in the movie theater and cried real tears of joy. I was SO EXCITED to see Black women being the warriors. Is this what it’s like to be a White dude watching “Star Wars?” OMG I can finally relate. I GET IT. The shit’s super exciting!

I can also honestly say that I never *truly* understood how important it is to see representations of yourself in media until yesterday. I have read countless magazines and never felt the pressure to be skinnier, or lighter, or have a specific kind of hair. I usually feel nothing. I am writer, so I have always focused on the written content of printed media instead of the photos.

But, to actually feel SOMETHING when you see people in media who look like you, wow, that’s amazing. So I cried. Now the internet knows about it and I don’t care. Go see the damn movie. I’m going to see it again.

The gentlemen in the movie are lovely (Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan are both intellectually and physically amazing, for sure), but THE WOMEN make the movie. Lupita, Letitia, Angela, all of them, I love them.

Beautiful and Rich Cinematography

When you go see it at the theater, try to see it in IMAX if you can. I just happened to see it in IMAX because the movie timing fit my schedule, but what a happy accident. Seeing it on such a huge screen, I felt enveloped in all of the colors and emotion of the story. I especially loved all of the high tech and fight scenes. It’s a beautiful experience, both visually and emotionally.

The After Effect

I actually took a mid-day break from work to go see the movie because I wasn’t feeling well and I was in a deep funk. I couldn’t concentrate at all, so I figured it was worthless to just keep sitting at my desk, getting more and more frustrated.

After the movie, I felt so lifted and inspired. Sometimes I am a pretty staunch cynic, pretty much walking around in my own atmosphere of logical reasoning. But after the movie, the first thing I did was drive to Starbucks and engage a STRANGER in talking about the movie.

I did not drink or eat anything during the movie because I have a bladder the size of a peanut and I couldn’t bear the thought of missing a millisecond to go to the ladies’ room. So, at the end of the movie, I was parched. The drive-thru attendant asked me how my day ways, and I YELLED “IT IS GREAT! I JUST CAME FROM SEEING BLACK PANTHER!!!” GAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

I was on some kind of weird high! I told her to go see it and after she responded with a nice, but cordial, response, I said again, “NO, YOU REALLY MUST GO SEE IT.” It’s like I’d found the cure to melancholy at the movie theater and it was my job to tell everyone about it.

Those are my top three reasons for loving “Black Panther.” It is amazingly well done and it truly deserves all of the praise that you read about on the Internet. I hope you, too, will go see it…and again, and again, and again, and a fourth time for good measure.

WAKANDA FOREVER

Until tomorrow, my friends…

 

Sleepy

I don’t have a whole ass to devote to a post tonight. It’s been kind of a long day and I’m sleepy. So here’s my half assed post.

The one thing I will say is this: when you wake up tomorrow, promise yourself that you won’t let anyone or anything steal your joy.

Wake up with joy and commit to keeping it throughout the day. Pretend that it’s “your precious” like the gold ring in “Lord of the Rings ” and protect your joy, fiercely.

Love to you all.

Sleep for me now.

Until tomorrow my friends…

Mundane Adventures

Tonight, my tutoring session ended early, so I popped over to the grocery store.

I usually go to Whole Foods, not because I am a pretentious hippie, but because it is usually pretty quiet. The workers are super nice and friendly and know things about food, like what kind of cheese to buy for a picky eater.

But tonight, I happened upon the Central Market and decided to try it out. I’ll be going back! It’s like Whole Foods and a regular grocery store had a huge baby. A very huge, meandering baby.

Saki

I didn’t buy this saki, because it’s alcoholic (right?) and I consume very little alcohol. I had a martini last Friday and that will probably be the only alcohol I drink this month.

But isn’t this bottle super gorgeous?

Caviar

I also didn’t buy any caviar aka roe aka fish eggs, but I just had to photograph it because it is so beautiful. Look at all those tiny little would be fishes!

Bakery

I never go into a store without looking at the baked goods. I didn’t buy anything sweet; I just admired the artistry of the bakers and the gorgeous arrangements and displays.

Teas

I also didn’t buy any teas because I have SO MUCH TEA (see post from two days ago.) I almost wanted to donate some of my tea so I had a legit reason to buy more. Ah! I’m a tea hoarder!

I liked the names of these teas.

Curiosities

I have never seen a red pear or dragonfruit in real life. How delightful! And apparently you can buy a bundle of mushrooms. Fascinating!

What I Actually Bought

Sooo…I bought a random assortment of things.

I bought some of the most gorgeous scallops I’ve ever seen and will cook them tomorrow for lunch. I almost can’t wait. I also bought salmon and two peaches; the other things are shown clearly in the photos. I bought a bath bomb for $7. I can’t eat it, but it’ll be such a lovely thing to experience when I use it.

I hope your day was full of some kind of low key adventure.

If it was , leave me a comment below and tell me about it.

Until tomorrow my friends…

Getting Beat Up

Today I went to visit my elderly uncle. I’ve written about him before and today he imparted some more wisdom that I would like to share.

He’s 81 years old and is very gentle in nature. As long as I’ve known him or known of him, over 30 years, he’s always been the same. He’s not the guy who was a jerk before who became gentle. It’s just his nature.

Today, I talked to him about the challenges of entrepreneurship and having faith in myself.

He laughed very heartily, like I had told him a very funny joke.

“Do you know how many people have been beat up, so many times? And they just kept on trying. That’s what you will do.”

He said it with a level of confidence and surety that I honesty don’t always have about being an entrepreneur. Wait, I’m just kidding. That was an understatement. He seemed sure and I feel the exact opposite. But I’m still trying anyway.

I talked to him briefly about the often times crippling fear of uncertainty.

Again, he laughed, this time louder, and said: “You ever sit around and think about how every time you thought something was so messed up and some kind of way you figured it out?”

MIND. BLOWN.

No, my dear, ancient and wise uncle, I do not sit around and think about my successes. I have too many failures and near misses to think about!

That’s what I wanted to say, but I realized I was/am a silly worry wart and my uncle was right.

Trying is hard. Change is hard. Trying to do something new is hard. Failure is hard. But, for me, so is wishing for something different or settling for mediocrity.

Nowadays, I have no idea what’s going on in almost any aspect of my life. Everything from my health to my paychecks have big ass questions marks floating around them.

But, I’m doing it. I’m making it. I’m unsure, but I’m not dead yet. And if I wake up tomorrow again, not dead, then I have another opportunity to figure things out.

Take it from an 81 year old man: you can do it and it’ll be better than you thought, if you try.

Good luck…

Until tomorrow my friends…

My High Maintenance Habit

FIRST: Thank you to everyone who liked or commented on my post yesterday. I received the most likes I’ve ever received, but more importantly, I want you to know that I felt re-energized to continue to use this blog as a place to practice writing. I appreciate you taking the time to click like or comment and send some good energy out to a stranger. You rock.

Now for the blog post:

I have been called high maintenance in the past. But honestly, and frankly, the guys who told me that can go suck the handle of public bathroom toilet. SUCK IT!!

I’m not high maintenance; I yam what I yam, to quote the forever wise Popeye the Sailor. I truly am not high maintenance, at least not overall, but I do have one thing that I require: high quality tea stuffs. All the stuffs: the kettle, the tea, the honey, the mugs. It all must be divine.

In 2016, I visited Bergen, Norway for a few days and had this amazing rose tea at a restaurant. That tea changed my life, even though I’ve never found that exact tea ever again.

I have been able to find some close substitutions, however, thanks to a visit to the Twinings store in London last year. Now, I sometimes order some tea to be shipped to me, all the way from the UK, to my US doorstep.

Believe it or not, international shipping for tea is very affordable. You can get an entire box full of tea shipped from the UK for about $16. I order tea maybe twice a year, so the cost isn’t that bad.

Today, Santa Claus aka the mailman brought my box of tea boxes. Check out my tea haul.

Someone had to hand write on this box that it was filled with tea and was safe to transport internationally. Thanks, Maybel (is that what the writing says?)!

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A box of drinkable treasures…let’s look at all the tea I ordered. 20180217_185810

 

I plan to drink this tea when I’m feeling very fancy. I can’t open this box without a finger or two in the air. How cute, there’s a RIBBON! I’m so excited.

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This is the tea that I drank tonight. I opened this box because green tea has a bit less caffeine that black tea and it is kind of too late to drink a lot of caffeine. But, I had to open a box! Boy, oh, boy, this stuff is SO SMOOTH. I added a little sugar, but not too much. Mmmm! Also, this box was slightly damaged, so that’s another reason why I opened it first.

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This tea is the closest that I’ve found to the elusive (and possibly out of production) rose tea that I had in Bergen. This tea is also mega smooth; I mean if your tongue had fingers, drinking this tea would be the equivalent of touching silk while listening to Barry White. Get the picture? SMOOTH AF!

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My second favorite tea blend is any of the Greys: Earl or Lady, or if there are any others. I am not a tea aficionado; I don’t know everything about every blend of tea. Earl Grey is what first turned me on to hot tea. I had it and thought, hmm, tea is not just meant to be sweetened and iced, like we do here in the Southern United States? I’ve been a fan of hot tea ever since.

I am looking forward to trying this Earl Grey in the morning. Ah! Another reason (aside from not wanting to die, of course) to be thankful to wake up in the morning.

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What do you think of my haul? Do you have a favorite flavor of tea?

And just like before, if you’ve read this far, leave me a comment or hit LIKE! I’d love to know that you’re out there!

And, if you have an idea for a blog post for me to write about, let me know!

Until tomorrow, my friends…

 

I’m Tired Of This

Whose idea was it for me to write every day for a year?!

I haven’t made it through even 60 days of the challenge and I’m kind of sick of it!

Me and my bright ideas!

Maybe today I’m just feeling tired and a little burned out, but also, I know that almost no one is reading this,which is demotivating.

Is this important enough for me to keep writing just to keep the promise to myself?

Well, I suppose keeping a promise to yourself is the best kind of promise you can keep.

But today, tonight, honestly, I just want to throw the whole blog and promise in a big, shiny trash bin and light it all on fire.

Speaking of trash bins, I keep mine in the garage and I swept the garage early this morning. Have you ever swept a garage? After it was done and the floor was all clear, it was SO SATISFYING! My gawd! I actually stood there, still wearing my robe and bonnet, hands on my hip, and admired how nice it looked after I swept. It was amazing.

Maybe I should start writing about cleaning hacks? Just kidding, other than sweeping the garage once a year, I know almost nothing about being a super tidy person.

How was your day?

If you’re out there in Internet land, please like or comment on this post.

Let me know that you’re reading my weird blog and are enjoying it.

If you hate it, keep that to yourself. I have enough critical nature in my own mind and I don’t welcome it from outsiders.

Unless you mail me a snickers bar.

Until tomorrow, my friends…

Have a Little Patience

When I was a school teacher, I endured many observations.

The principal, the assistant principal, the specialists, parents, everybody and their momma came into my room at some point and observed me.

During one observation early in my career, an administrator told me that I did a good job by pointing out a mistake in something I had written.

Honestly, I thought she was just being nice and just trying to find something good to write on my report. I’m sure she probably wanted to comment on how I often forgot to call in attendance and how I was the biggest germaphobe on the campus. I found it very natural to tell my students that I had made a mistake. I didn’t understand back then that my behavior was kind of a big deal for a kid to see.

In the years since, I have learned that a lot of people (I’m looking at you, parents) are actually huge assholes towards children…their own and other people’s kids, too.

Don’t get me wrong; kids are pretty awful. They’re only awful because they’re small, untrained versions of adults, who are technically the most awful.

Here’s the kicker: there’s a good chance that the parent made them into a little fart face.

So, if you’re a parent or teacher or anyone else who is around kids regularly, here are two tips to help you be less of a jerk and raise a little person who is also less of a jerk.

Number 1: Admit Your Own Mistakes and Shortcomings

I think some folks think that having a kid means having someone to tie your shoelaces when you’re old and fat. Unfortunately, there’s much more to it than that, even though wouldn’t that be super awesome of that were the case?

Take a cue from me, from many years ago and today, and show your humanness in front of your kids.

That doesn’t mean show them your angry, irrational side. That means to let them know when you don’t know something. Tell them about times when you felt like a failure or really failed at something. If the kid sees you as a whole person, they can accept themselves as whole people, too. And whole people are more conscious of how they treat others.

Number 2: Chill the F☆☆☆ Out

Tonight, I tried to learn two card games from two pre-teen children. You’d think that when I got home, the first thing I did was reach into my fridge and grab a 40 oz and guzzle it.

I didn’t.

While the children fussed and taunted each other while playing the games, I sat there, patiently, being present with them. My attitude influenced how they behaved and calmed them down. I was beaten in both games and even now I have no idea how to play either game (because children are cheaters who make sh☆t up). It was fun. They enjoyed me playing the game with them and I was able to influence them without saying or doing much. It was very rewarding.

If you have a bunch of kids at home, I send you my love and energy and prayers that you never run out of wine.

But most importantly, I send you my wish that you never run out of patience with your little heathens. The world is depending on you to be caring and human.

Until tomorrow my friends…