Movies that make you go "oh yeah": 9

I saw the movie 9 when it came out. The animated film about how machines wiped out humanity because humanity thought it was a good idea to create super intelligent machines to be their servants. When in human history has anything we’ve tried to enslave ever NOT bitten us back? Will we learn? Well there is a slew of sci-fi movies predicting what would happen should such and such take place. And I must say, sci-fi is dang near never wrong.

SPOILER ALERT: If you haven’t seen this movie, and want to, don’t read this…

This movie has significance for me because it was a study on character. The movie had 9 basic characters that moved the plot along. They were brought together to try to save themselves and eventually what was left of humanity. They were of varying character types, and as a movie fan, I rooted for the hero, I booed the antagonist of the group, and I was awed at the perseverance of all the little rag dolls. One of the morals of the story was that all 9 of the rag doll characters were a part of a whole. They made up the soul of their creator. Ah ha moment! There were some of them I liked, some I didn’t, and some I thought were useless. However they all were needed to get the job done. Just like in me…there are parts of me I would marry, parts I want to punch in the mouth, and parts I want to go on a diet and stop being such a dead weight. But I need all those parts if I’m going to make it through this crazy world. I may not be saving humanity, but I have to live and work with humanity, and that’s a battle all unto itself.

There were also some religious undertones as well, but I’m not talking about that. You’ll have to see the movie to capture all of the morals. I’ve already said too much. This movie was awesome. It was well written, well animated and was just awesome! Go see it! Believe it! Live it! We all have to get along, we may not have to agree with one another, but we all are here together. We may as well be useful to one another, help fulfill our purpose (here goes the religious undertones) be good to our fellow man (free healthcare!).

Be blessed people!

This week we will be looking at movies that remind us of what the heck we are supposed to be doing with our lives, or remind us of some goal or ideal we believed in a long time ago that we’ve forgotten. The movie doesn’t have to be new, just something we’ve seen recently that made us go “oh yeah that’s right…”.

I’ll start this week off with Fight Club.

I saw this movie about 2 weeks ago at The Plaza in Atlanta (they show old movies in a vintage theater). I haven’t seen this movie completely since it came out in 1999, while I was in college. It was great then, its great now. As you know, in the beginning, Ed Norton’s character muses depressingly over his furniture purchases from Ikea and flits around his grandly purchased box in the sky, also known as a condo. Ok ladies and gents, as I was watching this 2 weeks ago, I began to choke on my reeses pieces. My mind instantly flashed to the new Ikea catalog on my kitchen table, pages neatly folded in the corner notifying which pieces I wanted to see in person as I scheduled some time early on Saturday morning to brave the crowds and get my Ikea shopping on, complete with a jumbo hotdog and a 50¢ Pepsi. Then my mind pinged to the listings of condos I had bookmarked on my computer, and flashed to the appointment I had with my realtor. I slowly slid down in my seat. Then they blew the condo up, I slid further in my seat. Then fight club was established and the systematic f u to the establishment committed by the fight club members once indoctrinated by Tyler made my heart both burst and shrivel. I’d remembered how much I couldn’t stand the establishment and conformity. How much I did NOT want to be a buppie, a young money hungry capitalistic neck stomping corporate drone. How I rebelled against all things I was “supposed” to do. Where had I gone wrong? What happened to my inner rebel? Had I chocked her into submission? Had turning 30 erased any memory of the rebellious devil-may-care wild child I’d vowed to always be? Had I grown up and was this the result of it? Well the flaws in Tyler and Ed Norton’s plan were clearly evident by the end of the movie, but it still had me shook as I walked out of the theater, still clutching my reeses pieces. Had I sold out? and when did it happen? Am I the conformist drone I once hated? This movie had me lost. I threw out my Ikea catalogue. I’m only half heartedly looking for a condo. I’m so confused.

Thanks Fight Club!

Tiha’s Conspiracy: Education is a craps game.

Let me preface this post by saying that I am a huge supporter of education, I am one of those multi-M.A. having mofos and one of em is in education.

But I also know that there is more than one way to be educated and “book learning” isn’t the only kind of learning out there.

Which brings me to my conspiracy theory: “They” use education as another means to separate the haves and have nots. The ultimate plan is to have some with the power and wealth, and many many many constantly dependent on those few. Why do you think small business owners always get the short end of the stick? Why do you think they make it so hard for independent thinkers to achieve IF the independent thought goes against the majority’s consensus of what is right in the world?

Ok back to the point. They say get your education, get a college degree, you’ll make more money faster when you get out. But guess what knuckleheads? All that education costs MONEY. and if you come from no money and are still able to get the education, guess what you’ll have once you receive that degree? Still NO money, and a whole lotta debt, which will keep you tied to the man for the next 30 yrs of your highly educated life. Yes, it may be true that you’ll make more money than your degree less counterpart, but you’ll also have direct loan on your payroll, which cuts a sweet amount of the percentage that you take home, which means you and degreeless counterpart are bringing home basically the same amount of cheddar. Now this doesn’t apply to doctors and lawyers, because who really wants to be either of those things? If you don’t find this funny, you must be either a lawyer (or bout to take the bar, I’m sorry you had to sacrifice your social life for a career that allows you no social graces and people will still not like you) or a doctor (I really have nothing negative to say about doctors because they have their own share of crap to deal with, money doesn’t make everything alright).

Another point is that just because you have a degree, and are highly educated, don’t mean you are cut out to run a business or be in charge of people. Everyone raise your hands if you’ve ever had to work for an idiot…an educated idiot…I have a lot of respect for people who worked their way up through a company, that’s the kind of person who could run a business. That is being educated by life experience.

LIFE EXPERIENCE: you can’t take a class on that. COMMON SENSE: that’s not a cfas(go Eagles!) class either.

So just because you get a degree, doesn’t necessarily mean you will be better off. If you are poor, come from no money, a degree may not change that. Don’t let them fool you. I say do what you love! Do what you have a passion for. You’re still going to be poor in the end, you may as well be happy. If you go to school, go for something you like, this is coming from the girl with a BA in Art. Word life. When you go to school, be smart about it, get people to pay YOU to go to school. Work the system. That all!

I have a theory that record companies are the devil. Not figuratively. I think that the devil and the government agencies have teamed up to brainwash the young Black youth. Think about it, what do they play on Urban radio? : Plies, Souljah Boy,Jim Jones, Gucci Mane, etc.. They play the same 10-15 song rotation ALL. DAY. LONG. Who listens to the radio? teenagers and young adults. What do young people have in common? they soak up information/messages like sponges. The result? Kids think it is cool to be ignorant. So of course the devil wants to further that kind of thinking. BUT, here's where the devil messed up, the white kids started liking the ignorant catchy tunes... so the plan was a little bit flawed, but still effective enough to justify the white youth falling to the side.

If you notice, the record companies do not readily stand behind any positive and/or creative rapper's musical projects. They will support just enough to give the semblance of good will, but that is about it. Have you ever heard of Blu, Tanya Morgan, or Kooley High? Don;t worry, I'll wait... Didn't think so.

So I implore my readers who have kids, please don't let them listen to the radio... I don't want them robbing me in 3 years and falling into the prison warehouse (I have a prison conspiracy theory too, might address that this week as well) just like "the man" wants to happen... Don't let the record companies/devil win.

These is where this post stemmed from:

[11:38] alisenikkole: it aint conspiracy to me, lol
[11:38] alisenikkole: everybody else is crazy, not me, lol
[11:39] alisenikkole: (spoken like a true crazy person)
[11:44] T 2U: lol! [11:44] T 2U: yes we have a shared psychosis
[11:45] alisenikkole: pterodactyls of a feather... lol
[11:47] alisenikkole: oh but my rap theory is that the record companies/FBI/gubment are all in cahoots
[11:48] T 2U: to keep conscous rap out of maintstream?
[11:48] alisenikkole: that's why the same 10 ignorant songs are played on the radio to engrain the simple melodies (ie Souljah Boy) into the minds of the youth...
[11:48] T 2U: to perpatuate propaganda that keeps the people stupid?
[11:48] alisenikkole: bc how do we learn?
[11:48] alisenikkole: repetition
[11:48] alisenikkole: Those songs are pneumonic devices for self hatred and promotion of ignorance
[11:49] alisenikkole: mnemonic*
[11:49] alisenikkole: but pneumonia works too bc it is a disease
[11:49] alisenikkole: that steals our breath and voice
[11:49] alisenikkole: Freudian slip much?

This post is dedicated to all of the newly natural sistas out there. Listen carefully. Folks of African descent have been doing there hair with juices and berries for more years than your 2nd grader can count. Meaning, it is not necessary for you to spend a grip on hair care products. Yeah I said it, CD, MCJW, and the like are probably hurling daggers at the screen as they read this. I don’t care; I’m busting wide open the myth that you need special ingredients to maintain your naturally maintaining hair follicle system. Ask Jewish people, what do you guys use in your hair? Luster’s Pink oil moisturizer? Yeah I thought so.

All jokes aside. It is easy to get caught up in the hype of hair care after it being ingrained in our lil black psyches that we had to do a lot to maintain our varyingly curly dos. Although it WAS true that we needed a special blend of moisturizers to keep our hair lubed and tamed when we had perms, but that was because we were killing our hair by way of fire every 4-8 weeks for the sake of looking like…something we weren’t meant to look like. After your hair has had the time to go back to its natural state, all chemical torture having grown out, follicles being healed, I will assure you that some basic moisturizer, pomade, grease, whatever you want to call it is all you need. I say if you feel like you need to spend all that money, send it to me! I’ll hook you up with a jar of the goodness and send it to ya!

Another note, all things won’t work for all people, especially if you are mixed. This is understood, and I’m all about finding what works best for your hair texture. What I am NOT about is buying into the hype that you need to make a huge investment in stuff that is going to slide off of your hair and glaze your forehead and stain your collar.

My theory is that “society” has a huge investment in making black women/people believe that they need to spend a lot on hair care, that their hair isn’t as good without all this “help”. Continuously making us feel inferior to those who are ok just the way they are, no prep time needed. Natural isn’t natural if you have to have a specially concocted, manufactured potion to make it look right. Home made mixes are not included in this description. We are alright just the way we are, our hair is alright just the way it is, oh yeah, btw, some of us have hair that wasn’t never meant to shine with a sheen. It naturally has a matte finish, sorry kids that is the way it goes. The only texture you are brining out is the one you were born with, no enhancements, it wont make it more wavy curly or whatever. If your hair only does a half wave, that’s all your getting. Deal with it.

Don’t be a sucka played out by the man. Keep that money for a new outfit or a gym membership.
This weeks theme is personal theories and/or conspiracy theories. We will kick the week off with a guest post by my very good friend Amy. Make sure to check out her blogs: random and pressing details and The Attic of My Mind because she is pretty awesome!

"My theory on that is.... "

I say that a lot. Just ask Alise if you don't believe me. I have a theory on almost everything human nature-ish. I think I get it from my mom. She was an observer of people... dare I say, she was an EXPERT observer of people. She almost coulda been an anthropologist or a sociologist or some such thing. (She wasn't though, she was a hairdresser... which is a kissing cousin to bartender in terms of hearing people's life stories and whatnot... but I digress). I also tend to be a bit on the analytical side. I like to peel away until I get to the core of how something works... I must understand the form and the function, if you will. And I tend to worry at things until I feel I do have a grasp on them.

Anyway, add my Theory OCD to my self-diagnosed ADD, and you get an endless train of thought that jumps the track on average every 5 minutes. Which is probably why I love Twitter so much. In terms of blogging, I'm probably lucky to get through a paragraph before my entire topic runs in a diametrically opposed direction!! See what I mean?

Today, I have a theory (or two) to share on racism/bigotry. Now, before I start, let me first establish that 1.) with me, "theory" and "opinion" are pretty close to synonymous, and 2.) I'm a common garden variety white girl. The closest I have ever come to personally experiencing racism or bigotry has been on behalf of my biracial son and in his defense. I do not pretend to understand the feelings and repercussions that follow being on the receiving end. I'm just spoutin' off about what I've observed and my theories about the jackasses on the giving end. I've given the topic a lot of thought due to the fact that my son is biracial. As his mother, I must at least attempt to understand, so I can help him navigate the world around him. (At least until he turns 18 and is outta my house... but that's a blog for another day).

In the scheme of things there is a continuum of bigotry (this is my beginning premise). I think to one extent or another, every one has a smidgen of it in us. It's about knowing where people fall on that scale. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and make a sweeping blanket statement: If someone (especially a melanin-deficient someone) says they "aren't racist" they are lying to themselves and/or you.

With that said, keep your hands and feet inside the vehicle... this train makes erratic stops and changes in direction. The management is not responsible for any damage to property, limb or mental health that may result from the following trip through my brain. Thank you and enjoy the ride.

First up is Mr. Blatant. He's the guy who calls you out of your name, to your face. He's the one who revels in stirring shit up and causing outrage. However, in a sense, he's the safest. HUH?? (Give me a minute, I'm going somewhere with this). He's a KNOWN COMMODITY. No shame in his game, he's a bigot and proud of it. His whole lifespace is filled with "I'm a racist, and what??" rhetoric and behavior. The point is, you can see him coming a mile away. And forewarned is forearmed. Clearly, he's on one extreme of the spectrum.

Next, we have Mr. Blatant's first cousin, Mr. Covert. His sentiments are identical to his cousin's, but he's a little more world savvy. This also makes him a lot more dangerous... he's the one who's gonna smile in your face and stab you in the back. He knows that his opinions and beliefs will be censured. He knows that he has to "make it look good." Unfortunately, this jackass likes to run for public office and shit. He usually gives himself away somehow, though. Be it through a slip of the tongue, or because he has a membership at some "exclusive" country club, or because he's just a little too willing to make excuses for Mr. Blatant. This guy is the first one to yell "reverse racism." He has spent much of the last 20 years or so hollering about how the real oppressed group is "white middle aged men." He gets nan from me but the side-eye.

Now, down the street and over a block we will wander into the neighborhood of Mr. and Mrs. Don'tGetOutMuch. I qualify the next statement by saying this: there is no such thing as harmless racism. The harm done may be unintentional, but that doesn't excuse the behavior, and they must be taught. These are the people that due to upbringing and circumstance haven't had their cultural horizons broadened. In other words, wasn't nan but white folks where they were raised. These are the ones who stupidly put their feet in their mouths, then jam those bad boys in far as they'll go trynna talk their way out of it. In their defense, a good number of these folks will at least try to change their evil ways once they realize they have evil ways that need changing. And not to rag on BET, but it doesn't help when the only exposure to a culture is less than stellar. And the Don'tGetOutMuch family usually gets their ideas about other cultures through media exposure.

On the other side of town is the Enlightened family. They are educated. They took Cultural Diversity, African American Studies, Women's Studies AND Comparative Religions in college, by gummy!! You can't tell them not a gatdamn thing. They will argue to the death that they have not a prejudiced, racist nor bigoted bone in their bodies. But they lie. Primarily to themselves. Just let's wait and see what happens when their little Enlightened progeny (who might actually be a little more enlightened than Mom n Pop) bring home a boy or girl friend who happens to be from a different culture. I'll tell you what will happen.... sphincter tone. The Enlightened's will suddenly turn into the tight-asses... at least until they have time to adjust. (Guess what house AmyMay grew up in....)

Next is my personal pet peeve.... the Wannabes. This is pretty self explanatory. Usually younger white people trying to jack culture to fill the void.... because, really, white folks,,, not a lot going on with ours. (Except for our penchant for doing dangerous and life threatening crap for no good reason... who swims with sharks?? I mean really...)
The thing with this group is that they convince themselves that they are sooooo damn "down" (word to Tanya Morgan) that they can do and say certain things with impunity. I'm sorry, but I don't care how long you've been best friends with Michelle Obama, if you are white, it is NOT cool for you to drop the N-Bomb. I don't care if your Black best friend introduces you as his/her n____, it is NOT ok for you to do the same when introducing him to your people. (And here's where my train of thought temporarily derails...white folks, ummmm, NO DREDLOCS, ever!! It ain't a good look for us...c'mon, now... y'all know I'm right).

Bringing us to the far end of the continuum.... the Reconciled To It clan. These are the people who honestly face the fact that racism, prejudice and bigotry are born of the fear of the unknown. They understand that despite their very best attempts and most sincere intentions, they will never be able to completely eradicate every last particle of racism from their beings. That does not mean that they won't attempt to continue to become better people. In fact, that's what marks them as different. They recognize the room for growth. They welcome encounters which broaden their horizons. And they feel like shit every time they catch the random racist bullshit that their human nature sometimes trips over.

I've tortured Alise with this theory before. And I'm pretty sure I didn't cover every "type" in this post, but dang, it's already long as hell! So I better quit before I get further behind. I hope reading this tome hasn't been too painful for anyone. I'm sure I'm bound to get a lot of disagreement on it, but hey, like I said... it's just a theory!

Snark Week: Recycling is akin to insanity

Recycling-stingy aunt rita’s way of not buying new stuff. Can’t stand her a**. Recycling is the devil. Recycling the same shit and trying to get something new out of it(I totally stole this line from the SO). Like that tired ass weave, that tired ass attitude, that tired ass boyfriend, good grief just throw it away already.

Land fills are ok, they hold what we cant recycle. They keep the shit we need to throw out safe. Landfills help us to designate where to build the next projects (housing developments). Like a big ole stinky arrow, put poor folks here! Landfills give water filtration system employees fat bonuses. It all goes hand in hand.

[I must admit, thinking this demented for the past week is starting to tweek me out a little bit. I hope I can come back to the sane side once this is all done. I’ve been contemplating the perfect death for puppies and panda bears…this is bad]

Snark Week: Don't Give Peace a Chance

This week , we will be writing negatively about inherently good things (i.e. puppies, love, forgiveness, peace, wine) and positively about inherently bad things (racism, hate, murder, mayonnaise)... I know it is weird, but my blog partner is insane so let's just humor her...

*I don't wanna*

Life should be filled with lots of drama, it makes things more interesting. How about a world where MOP's "Ante Up" is played on continuous loop on loud speakers everywhere? How about DMX's first album? Metallica?

*Even Bert and Ernie have had enough*

That is my Utopia. I want people fighting in the streets. Pandemonium is all the rage. Your essential Fall wardrobe must consist of one shoulder dresses, leather pants, and pure unadulterated chaos. You want to be hip, right? It's very edgy. I recommend that you react from your gut anytime a stupid person crosses your path. Don't talk it out or turn the other cheek, that's so 2008. Just punch folks in the throat, it's the American way.

*New for Fall '09... cute!*

Take those brass knuckles out of retirement and just misdirect your anger whenever you get a chance. I PROMISE you will feel better, it's all about you anyway. Right? Wrong. It is all about ME, so let's just fight to the death to figure out who's right. I think that will work out well. What say you?

*This is all in jest... well mostly*

Snark Week: Kind People will Kill You

This week , we will be writing negatively about inherently good things (i.e. puppies, love, forgiveness, peace, wine) and positively about inherently bad things (racism, hate, murder, mayonnaise)... I know it is weird, but my blog partner is insane so let's just humor her...

Kindness- a submissive, passive aggressive way to get close and eventually stab you in the back or eye. Be ware of those with a smile, they will kill you.

Where do you think the saying “kill them with kindness” comes from?

That is not a coincidence, it is not wit, it is TRUTH! Kind people will kill you in your sleep because that is the kind way to kill someone. The next time someone is kind to you, grab your purse, put your chain under your shirt, grip your handle, and back away from them…

Which brings me to my friend Judgment.

Judgment is a good thing! It helps me to separate them from Me. When I’m being judgmental, I no longer have to explain myself, I don’t have to accept or tolerate someone else’s opinion. You no longer matter because I have judged you to be beneath me. In fact I cant even hear you "la la la". I have taken my scepter and knocked you upside the head with it. I have marked you as judged! You will spend eternity being beneath me. I also don’t have to be accountable for how I treat you once I’ve passed judgment on you. I don’t have to take the time to get to know you, to hear you or even consider your feelings. Judgment makes socializing with people a little more simple. I can cancel out entire populations if I wanted to. Ahh yes judgment, the social filter.

*This is all in jest... well mostly*

Snark Week: Forgiveness is for Suckas!

This week in response to Tiha's psychotic urging, we will be writing negatively about inherently good things (i.e. puppies, love, forgiveness, peace, wine) and positively about inherently bad things (racism, hate, murder, mayonnaise)... I know it is weird, but my blog partner is insane so let's just humor her...

<< !-- more -->

First topic I would like to victimize is forgiveness. Booooo! Forgiveness is for suckas! I also advocate two wrongs making a right just in case you wondered. I have seen many quotes about forgiveness such as:

Forgiveness is the sweetest revenge. ~Isaac Friedmann

There is no revenge so complete as forgiveness. ~Josh Billings

Always forgive your enemies - nothing annoys them so much. ~Oscar Wilde

Yeah, just like I thought, all the quotes are wack. I say get revenge. Some folks say wait around for karma to deal with unruly folks. I don't like Karma, she is never on time, I'm not patient. Patience is overrated too.

I like this quote:

It's far easier to forgive an enemy after you've got even with him.
~Olin Miller
That quote is more awesome than me, and that is pretty awesome. (Stop your side-eyes) I want to let out the negative energy and make the situation better by putting more negative energy into the atmosphere, that makes sense right? Don't cross Alise, she won't get over it, she'll get even. I even wrote a poem a while ago, wanna hear it , here it go:


They say revenge is a dish best served cold,

but mine was blazing hot.....

Yeah I was hot!

Hot with:




And I felt bad,

But not how you think:

I felt bad that I didn't feel bad about it!

This time 2 wrongs made it right..... to my ego anyway.

My feelings were impatient

I had no time to wait for karma...... I got places to go.....

I am tired of good people getting hurt,

So I took the law into my own hands.

Just call me an emotional vigilante....

So be a vigilante, take your forgiveness and shove it and you can forget about forgetting... un-Peace Y'all!

*This is all in jest... well mostly*

Check out some of our other Blog Series:

Under the Influence: Incredible Hulk

An Incredible Hulk, Green Eyed Monster, or Hip and Hen is a green-colored cocktail made by equal parts (2 fl oz each) of the fruit liqueur Hpnotiq and Hennessy brand cognac poured over ice. It is named for the famously green comic book superhero, the Hulk.

I am speaking of this drink, not because I would admit to liking it, but because I have beef with people who remind me of it.

This hip hop urban concoction was created by a bartender at one of Puffy’s spots. Kudos for job security, shame for making Hennessy, which was already on its way to being a hood star, even more hood.

Just because you cut a ghetto liquor with a good liquor does not make the combination any better than its lowest liquor. Kinda like the 1 drop rule, you still black, its still wack ( I know that reference will have me tarred and hung, but I’m black so you know I don’t really mean it ;) )

Which brings me to my next point, Incredible Hulk Pseudo Intellectual Poser Poets. All of these things have the same thing in common. Pseudo Intellectuals pass as intellectuals because they may have had some college, they may have seen the Malcolm X movie, they may know some big words. Just enough to sound dangerous. BUT they aren’t. Check their SATs, check their GREs, check their tax returns, check that cheat sheet they have taped to their arm, just listen to a sentence…tastes like a syrupy sweet neon blue drink…

Poser poets…ahh yes…as I type these black letters on this white screen I think about how black folks always have to make their mark on the face of white folks just to be seen-I’m trying to give an example of a fake a** poet. Poser Poets can rhyme, sometimes, can string a bunch of words together incoherently and swear its poetry. Poser Poets think highly of themselves, but all they are really doing is tarnishing the art of expression through poetic story telling. They are cutting the Hennessey with imitation sweetness. And it makes me MAD!

In the bar of life, are you diluting something great with something that’ll rot your teeth, and calling it platinum?

*Alise chimes in... I just want to tell Miss Tiha that this post is FIRE*

Under the Influence: Red Wine

*Wine is an alcoholic beverage typically made of fermented grape juice... (Shiraz is my favorite)*

Red wine
How do I love thee?
Let me sip the ways...

I lust love red wine, and it loves me back... (Don't judge me) I lust poetry, and it loves me back... I think poetry is a lot like red wine. Let's explore:

  • Red wine is reported to be good for the heart. I think my poetry (or anyone's genuine expression of poetry for that matter) is beneficial literally and figuratively. In the literal sense I think anything that relieves stress or brings pleasure to your soul is quite positive for the health of your heart. It surely can't hurt. Also, anything evoking emotion, even sadness or anger, is a good exercise for you heart (soul), things like sympathy, empathy, caring, love must be practiced and poetry is a pretty good calisthenic plan.

  • Red wine stains. Trust me, I know. (Don't judge me). I think any great expression leaves an indelible mark on you. For example, I will share one of my favorite poems written by one of my favorite poets. In the poem I will share, Nikki Giovanni speaks of how the lacking of a freedom of choice affects the human spirit. This piece left me with the mark on me to analyze and make use of the things I DO have the choice over. In her short poem I changed an entire piece of my thinking. This is an example of a large stain that OxyClean is not getting out, but other pieces may only leave a drop, but they touch you nonetheless... this is the piece I was referring to:
CHOICES, by Nikki Giovanni

if i can't do
what i want to do
then my job is to not
do what i don't want
to do

it's not the same thing
but it's the best i can

if i can't have
what i want . . . then
my job is to want
what i've got
and be satisfied
that at least there
is something more to want

since i can't go
where i need
to go . . . then i must . . . go
where the signs point
through always understanding
parallel movement
isn't lateral

when i can't express
what i really feel
i practice feeling
what i can express
and none of it is equal
i know
but that's why mankind
alone among the animals
learns to cry

  • Red wine tends to be an acquired taste. I have found that poetry is the same way. The way I approached a glass of red wine for the first time is the same way I approached reading poetry. It was a foreign expression, a little bitter at times, and was only thought of as a broad topic. Now when I sip red wine I enjoy it, the full body, the richness. Also I now recognize the subtle nuances, be it a Shiraz, Merlot, or Cabernet. I can identify the notes and quality. Just like I now have haiku, sonnets, odes, love poems, etc.
  • Wine gets better with time. As you live, learn, and grow, so does my (and hopefully yours) appreciation of poetry.

What in your life is like red wine?

Under the Influence: Cosmopolitan

Alise loves cocktails and wine, so this week we will explore the theme of alcoholic beverages. We will relate them to life in some sort of way. Some funny, some serious, some completely abstract... you know how we do...

Having just come back from a heck of a holiday weekend, this topic is quite fresh in my head. So I bring to you one of my most favorite and signature drinks! The drink you will always catch me holding at the chill spot, pinky up, attitude melting, give it up for:

The Cosmopolitan

2 ounces vodka
1 ounce Cointreau
1 ounce cranberry juice
1 ounce Rose's lime juice

One of the more recently famous martinis, famous for being famous, the Sex and the City staple, my little cosmo has been my companion for some time now. Truth be told, and I am telling the truth, I’ve been slurping cosmos since before Carrie and Samantha made them sexy. I’ve been a martini lady since I’ve been legal and able to make them myself, something about a martini made me feel so grown and sophisticated, especially since they are so strong that many an alcoholic newbie didn’t have the sophistication to either a) appreciate it or b) stomach it, which meant c) I never had to share. Let em drink beer!

The cosmo, when done right is a smooth, yet stiff drink. Don’t let the pink color fool you, it’s a sweet tart. Do you know why it’s pink? Because there is so much vodka in it that the once burgundy colored cranberry juice used to take the edge off, has been diluted to a pretty light pink hue. Hello world, is your response once you let the power of the cosmo wash over you. Don’t try to fight it, you will lose…

Now what the heck does all this descriptive narrative have to do with me? I am that diluted pink hue, seemingly approachable and sweet, but keep in mind, I’m pink because I’ve been cut and diluted with vodka, not water, not sugar, but pure distilled disinfecting madness. I bite, but I wait until I’ve slid down your throat, I’ve gotten inside ya, inside ya head, then…WHAM…you’ve just got got. I am not ashamed, I just caution you, don’t sleep on this martini drink…

In the bar of life, are you sophisticated enough to go toe to toe with a cosmo?

Under the Influence: Vodka & Tonic

Alise loves cocktails and wine, so this week we will explore the theme of alcoholic beverages. We will relate them to life in some sort of way. Some funny, some serious, some completely abstract... you know how we do... first round on me:

2 oz vodka
3 - 5 oz tonic water

Pour vodka into a highball glass over ice cubes, and fill with tonic water. Stir, and serve.

A vodka tonic is an alcoholic drink made with varying proportions of vodka and tonic water. Vodka tonics are frequently garnished with a slice of lime. Anyone who knows me well knows this is my favorite alcoholic drink. I think I resemble this drink. I know, I am not transparent. Not literally or figuratively, so that is not where the resemblance lies. I am like this lovely vodka tonic that is calling me from the page (don't judge me) in the following ways:

  • I am wonderful when mixed with high quality ingredients, it is then that I am a fabulous drink. In fact you don;t even recognize the taste, good quality vodka is flavorless. I make everyone feel all nice and tipsy and warm even if they don't know I'm there.
i.e. Ketel One & Tonic
  • I am horrid when mixed with cheap ingredients. Throw some negative energy, wack people, or some hardship and I am a terrible drink. I'll get the job done, but I will leave a wake of headaches and a bad taste in your mouth. It is not pretty, just ask Tiha...
i.e. Aristocrat & Tonic
  • I go down smooth. If you know me, you will see that I am a peacemaker. I am seldom argumentative (unless pushed to the limit, see "Aristocrat & Tonic"), never yell, and a lot nicer than Tiha. (She is going to kill me... literally, HELP, she might kill me) I treat people fairly and stay calm, cool, and collective.
  • I am a classic yet overlooked drink. You may ignore me, but I am not any less fabulous because of... and it's your loss.

In the bar of life would you order me a Vodka & Tonic?

Life Lessons Learned: Mean Older Kids

I know this is about childhood games and how they relate to my adulthood, well this is a little twist because right now I am extremely angsty this week, and hurting. So excuse my bitterness tone. W ell, I remember a cruel "game" that was played with/on me when I was growing up. A little back story: I grew up an only child in a single parent household, but every summer I visited my grandparents in Savannah, GA. All my big cousins lived in Savannah, they were all pretty much the same age, and I was the baby, 5 years younger. It was actually good most of the time, EXCEPT when they would do something that has me kinda f*cked up to this day. When I would excessively get on their nerves they constructed some sort of game together to where they would pretend that they did not see me. They would walk around the house looking under beds and closets calling my name and saying, "Where is Alise?" Me, in sheer terror would yell out, "Look you guys, I'm right here!!!" This would go on for 20-30 minutes until I would be in real full out tears. I think about this often.

The tragedy of this story is now I really can't find her. And who is going to help?

*if my cousins happen to read this, sorry I had to put y'all on blast, some things a child's mind never forgets*

Life Lessons Learned: Duck Duck Goose

A delightful game where everyone sits in a circle on the ground and has one person, the “fox”, tap them playfully on the head delineating which one of those unsuspecting people will be named the “goose”. Once goosed, the elected must jump up and tag the person who called them a goose before that person sits down in the “goosed’s” seat. Then the “goosed” person starts the process all over again.

Fun times! Being noncommittally mashed on the head, in assurance that you are not the dreaded goose, who will be called into action, whether they are ready or not. This game taught me that there will come a time when you will be selected to step up and take care of business. It would be to your advantage to be ready! But at the same time, if you miss your chance, you may get picked again….or maybe not…

A part of me cringes at the idea of waiting around to be picked to chase the fox around. Ms. Independent likes to think that I call the shots in my life and I pick and choose which battles to fight. However Ms. Independent also knows of a higher power that really runs things and that she is to be the humble servant and just be ready for when he calls. So keeping the higher power perspective in mind, I would recommend to all to be ready for when you are called to be the goose and keep the foxes away!

Life Lessons Learned: Double Dutch

A huge part of my childhood was jumping rope. My elementary school was internationally known for their jump rope team. Have you ever seen the jump-rope competitions on ESPN every once in a while; they always placed very high. I was a part of the jump-rope club we had and let's just say, I was a beast. I'm not talking the schoolyard skipping rope for mere fun; I'm talking serious competition. Through the years I have never been much of an athlete, but this was something I excelled in (and I still do) and was serious business.

My favorite jump-rope activity hands down was double-dutch. I have made a connection to that love of double dutch with my love and passion of spoken word performance now, here is how:

  • It brings positive attention.
  • Other people are scared to do it, and think I am awesome for taking the leap (pun intended)
  • Requires multi-tasking to concentration on the "moves" while also engaging your audience
  • Must jump in at precisely the right time, BUT if you mess up you can start over again easily
  • The rope turners are like the stage and the mic, I need to work with them to make a successful show
  • It's hella fun!
  • I am the sh*t at doing it (tee hee...)

*Durham, NC's own Bouncing Bulldogs*

So readers, how is your life or a passion of yours like the good ol' days of jumping rope?