Well... since I have an affinity for Black pinup model history, Josephine B., and Black burlesque, here's some Saturday sultriness; Contemporary burlesque performer, Pearl Noir the Black Pearl...
January 14, 2012
October 24, 2011
In these uncertain times where 9-to-5 jobs are difficult to come by due to asshole companies' discriminatory behavior and folks pushing forward to eke out an income working for themselves, money is tight and happy hour prices don't always put a smile on one's face once the bill comes. Fortunately Zula, located at 901 Main Street in downtown Hartford manages to keep it classy and sassy while providing a diverse crowd, good food, great music, and an outstanding happy hour from 4pm-7pm, so that folks don't side-eye their bill while angrily digging their wallet out of their purse or back pockets. $3 wines and drafts, $5 cocktails, and $4 plates. Why not? I was having a particularly good hair day this past Friday and ventured inside where I chatted up a personable and accommodating bartender named Jessica.
Jessica kept me company and divulged interesting details about her life as a bartender before rapper, Keith Murray's sister found her way inside... apparently seduced by the halo of awesomeness that was my hair that day. She said she spied it through the plate glass window. My hair is touch and go whenever I wear un-bunned; some days it's just OK and other days it's particularly eye-catching.
Now I'm familiar with this obviously cool woman (whose name always eludes me, unfortunately)- as I've run into her on numerous occasions downtown, where she resides. I had no idea until this past Friday that she was related to the Def Squad member, however. Keith's sister and I chatted about this and that... mostly regarding what her brother was currently up to and we pontificated a little about dating. Lately, I just choose not to do it. I'm really working on focusing getting to where I'd like to be professionally. Also, running into an unwanted nuisance I can't seem to escape a few days prior and then receiving a rambling voice mail this evening from another one, who once divulged an unfortunate story to me (on a FIRST quasi-DATE) about why his penis was virtually non-existent, has prompted me (an atheist type) to want to spend the remainder of my adult life in a convent for wayward dating souls. But I do enjoy hearing about what other people are up to in their love/sex lives. Keith Murray's sister spoke about a man she'd been dating for about a month, whose company she seemed to enjoy. He bought her gifts and he took her out to dine at fine restaurants. I happened to ask if they'd ever been to Zula. "This is too open for him. He likes more restrained, sort of fancier places. He probably wouldn't like this atmosphere." She suggested. We continued to make interesting conversation and shortly after, she excused herself to the bathroom. Suddenly a man and a young Black woman walked in. He pulled out Keith's sister's chair and I alerted him, "Oh... someone's sitting there." He slid it back up to the bar sans incident...
Keith's sister returned from the bathroom and surprised, hugged the man with familiarity. He and the young woman retreated to the opposite end of the bar. Considering our conversation just moments ago, Keith's sister alerted me that the man she hugged was the so-called charming fellow she'd been seeing, who bought her gifts, and who quite possibly would not take her out to dine at Zula... and it was obvious why.
It gave me no pleasure whatsoever to see her obvious discomfort and dismay, especially when she said, "He told me he's here with someone else." I suggested that she "be cool" and finish enjoying her drink. A friend I spied and then a cool Hartfordite I recognized from and communicated with on Twitter, as well as an inebriated Afro-latina woman who mistakenly took and opened my purse to retrieve money to pay for her drinks would later distract me. So I never saw Keith's sister leave... The cad and his date were gone from the bar and slipped out into the cool, autumn night as well, and I wouldn't see how the awkward situation panned out in the end. My hope is that Keith's sister didn't go home too upset and put out. My hope is that I randomly run into her again. I'm not sure why this man felt compelled to try to put the wool over Keith Murray's sister's eyes and I won't speculate, as I've stopped trying to decipher the complicated adagio dance women and men, when courting one another. It's best to piss into the wind and just tread as steadily as one can in these matters.
I'd like to think that if my hair hadn't been so awesome that day, Keith's sister would not have felt inspired to join me and stay long enough to see her paramour's dark-sided ways. And this is why I'll never bid my natural hair adieu.
April 29, 2011
Recently, while catching up on some interesting flicks, one film of note I'd seen several times before, was the comedic-horror flick, Teeth. A seemingly feminist manifesto of sorts (written and directed by a man, no less) about a young virgin named Dawn with a mean case of Vagina dentata, whose delicates snap, bite, and dismember any man trying to violate its orifice without her consent, including a male gynecologist who tries to molest her upon learning it's Dawn's first experience being examined. I started imagining the power every woman would have if her vagina were able to reject unwanted penis forced upon her during an attack or wayward penis that played games and whispered sweet nothings and lies ... Interesting concept when told from the perspective of the movie.
I did a little research on Vagina Dentata and found its folkloric origins intriguing. It's apparently every man's fear of sex... that a woman's toothed parts will castrate and eat his throbbing member during intercourse. I'd be willing to wager the fear is derived from the age-old masculine dread (and misunderstanding) of the vagina. The many myths that involve women always seem to revolve around the mysteries (and in many cases, evil) of her vagina. Psychologist and Carl Jung alum, Erich Nuemann relays one myth in which a fish (major side-eye over it being a fish) inhabits the vagina of the Terrible Mother archetype (a Jungian theory)- who is saved by a male hero who eventually overcomes her... breaking the teeth out of her punany, causing her to become a "real" woman. Chinese myths also dictate that a woman's vagina is not only the passageway to immortality... but "executioners of men." Another Muslim adage says: "Three things are insatiable: The desert, the grave, and a woman's vulva."
In any event, female genitalia is the most intriguing, hated, loved, studied, desired, feared trope and idiom of any part of a woman's anatomy next to her breasts and perhaps large posterior. It's the one part of a woman's body a man can't even begin to truly understand or inhabit, despite grunting and panting over top or underneath her with every painstaking thrust or exploration of the tongue. Therein lies the speculation that breeds suck folklore, perhaps? In the same breath, many women don't even completely understand the intricacies and power of her womanhood either, most of us don’t even like touch ourselves let alone utter the word VAGINA in and of itself and so have resorted to calling it a vajayjay or some other equivalent name. Interesting and compelling thought...
April 02, 2010
Ofttimes, I shake my head (while still watching) at the train wrecks colliding on the screen: Young women on "reality tv" jumping into hot tubs... obscured nudity jiggling in the wind or clawing one another's eyes out in a fit of rage as their boobage and delicates burst through the seams of too tight clothing for all the world to see. Thonged asses and commando-ed vaginas (aye-aye captain) flap free amidst the chaos. Not a problem. Ratings booster!
I also love to watch music videos, most of which are par for the course... The grandiose donks (read: big butts, fake or otherwise) gyrate and twerk in the camera, struggling to stay contained sheathed behind dubiously fitted hot pants... some parts of their bikini-ed bottoms distorted just enough to make it past the network's Standards and Practices department. All of this current comehither lasciviousness notwithstanding, I am reminded of the furor Janet Jackson caused during her performance at Super Bowl XXXVIII when her adorned breast popped out for the briefest of brief moments. After which she found that same dirty pillow branded with a piping, hot scarlet letter. People were not pleased, despite her pleas for forgiveness, regardless of the fact that the media and the very network looking to air her immodesty out at the public square took a blink and you'll miss it moment, slowed it down, and played it repeatedly, despite being offended by the moxie of the act: A tit breaking loose from its harness for the briefest of seconds.
Flash forward a few years since Ms. Jackson's "Nipplegate." We've seemingly evolved even more where the grandeur of the female form in all its voluptuosity, is par for the course... considering several petulant nipples, butt-cheeks, and vaginas have cried out in protest since that incident in a united front in public under the glare of public scrutiny, and for pop starlets who are taking a queue fromn the Video Vixen book of trickery... succumbing to re-marketed aesthetics at the suggestion of male record executives and managers... winding their hips and carefully manicured poontangs in nothing more than a skimpy top, taut thighs, and heels in an effort to sell more records. Pants be damned! We've evolved... or perhaps not, since creative mind, beautiful eccentric, keeper of the 'izm that snakes upward like a cobra ... allegedly causing men to swoon, and accomplished musical artist Erykah Badu's new video for her single, 'Window Seat,' has incited the public to chorus. Erykah cites guerrilla filmmaking as a method, as she methodically walks through downtown Dallas, stripping away layers of clothing until she's completely naked, in the name of art and near the same location JFK was assassinated ... but some naysayers aren't feeling it.
Please get into my argument....
Why is it when a woman (especially a Black woman) takes charge of her image and body, and projects it in a way she sees fit... particularly when it's in the name of art, the public finds it obscene? Lest rappers are asking challenging questions and making demands like "How Low Can You Go?," and "Gimme that Becky!, or the likes of Hugh Hefner doesn't put you on the cover of Playboy or make you 1/3 of his harem, a woman's body will never be beautiful, unless the rules are dictated by the patriarchy and the media.
I'm still struggling to find the obscenity in Erykah's message and visual: Which essentially, is to break free from societal norms and to formulate your own thought process.
Perhaps if she were stripping within the subtext of Playboy or King Magazine ... bent over in a teeny-weeny bikini... hands placed over bare breast to titillate and cause massive erections for the male populace and/or being violated/beaten/brutalized on film, she wouldn't be facing charges for "public indecency." America seems to be okay with the exploitation and violence shown toward women, but we're damned if we dare have orgasms on-screen (see the documentary 'This Film Is Not Yet Rated' or express the splendor of our bodies via our own visions, on our own terms, shouted through our own voices.
That is all.
*Perhaps due to its controversy, video links are no longer readily available.
February 15, 2010
January 24, 2010
damned the complexities of dating and all its bullshit to hell. Cynicism aside; Upon further discussions with friends newly found and old, recent meet & greets, as well as random acts of thinking on a lazy Sunday afternoon, I've concluded that finding a decent person to spend quality time with on occasion, is akin to holding onto a slippery bar of soap, while trying to keep your shit together in prison. I've never been to prison and have no aspirations of landing my big break in that particular environment, but I would imagine that lathering up in a communal shower while deep in thought over how the hell you found yourself there... and then dropping the soap, only to bend over without thought or caution and get reamed within an inch of your life in an opportunistic sneak attack, is a traumatizing experience to say the least. You have to hold onto that bar of soap for dear life, and be methodical with every move you make as you lather your skin in a circular motion, shifty eyed and leery.
Ọṣun, I always manage to regain my footing before going down, face-first like a cheap, ten dollar whore. Not sure what my score card would read like though. I shudder at the thought. And I bathe with shower gel most days, rather than soap sooo--- yeah.
December 10, 2009
I recently stumbled across a few websites, such as this one (my personal fave), mocking ill-thought out and poorly written dating ads. Interest piqued, I decided to reactivate a couple of dormant accounts on free social/dating sites, and do some perusing (in the name of research) myself.
So many Dating Profiles for Dummies type articles are written and seemingly geared toward women, suggesting how we might be able to get better results, if we spruce our profiles up a certain way... to endear ourselves to the male populace, who're undoubtedly trolling for creme de coochie as opposed to "Finding that true one." (Let's keep it real. That's what most of them are on there for. AdultFriendFinder and Craigslist be damned). "Be sure to include several, recent FULL BODY shots." ... "Be coquettish and clever with your headlines. But never come off as desperate or needy. Use catch phrases such as "Lioness needs keeper" some of the experts suggest. Every other week the Yahoo! homepage features articles titled "His Top 10 Turn-offs" or "Dating Site Techniques Every Woman Should Know."
Plenty do's and don't's for women... as many wave their arm in the air, yelling, "Pick me! Pick me! I'm beautiful, charming, and all of my pictures are recent!!!"
Careful inspection has prompted me to flip the script and offer my wry and sardonic take on my Top Turn-offs, when I attempt to read through some of profiles of the opposite sex. I see a notable pattern amongst all of them. Which causes me great distress, because some things should appear to be fundamental for those who don't think they're infallible. My $1.10 worth is definitely worth a damn, because the forums are rife with trolls and men, bemoaning the fact that women won't reply to their messages... and how we're only there to play games and collect emails...How we're all "bitches" with "saggy tits" who have no right to reject their advances.
One common theme in a lot of the profiles I skimmed when prompted by an email or a "favorited" status, is men starting off with a cynical or negative slant to their profile... "I don't know why I'm doing this, but here goes..." many read. Others ***PUT AN ALL CAPS WARNING*** hugged tightly by asterisks, at the beginning of their longwinded, grammatically incorrect decrees, that explicitly outline who's eligible to message them or even look at their boring profiles. Take this lecture for instance- (abridged and shrunken in size because it was just soooo damn long and rambling...)
PLEASE READ through my WHOLE PROFILE, I took time to write this so I don't waste your time or mine... I know how trying dating can be so I wrote in detail for someone that really feels compatible.. I'm open minded, passionate, and affectionate. I'm a self starter who's not afraid to take chances to better myself financially and emotionally. Don't believe in revolving doors. Only interested in a progressive relationship with someone that is READY for a COMMITTED relation that shows some kind of PASSION or real INTEREST in building something long term. Been meeting to many women as of late that give me the sense that they don't want to take a chance. Instant gratification is a pipedream. Things need to progress into something. If you don't show that you care one way or the other, well, the person your dating is going to loose interest FAST. It's just the way life is... We've all been hurt in the past one way or the other.
Um, that was just the introduction... then he finally concludes by thanking the poor soul who bothered to read through all of his drivel, P.S.ing that he also has two cats he hopes won't cause an allergy outbreak.
This guy figured a little condescension would go well with his photo...
Here we go... :) Is it just me or is being single and meeting a down to earth woman who is independent and has values so hard that is is like having a second job!!! I am wondering if woman in this day and age appreciates a guy that works a 9-5 ,who is independent and doesn't ask or say give me,give me,giveme.......If you have kids I am sure you independent woman don't need a grown man to also claim as a dependant on your taxes :)...If I offended any of you woman that thrive to do that then I apologize.......Life is too short.......I have a good sense of humor ,like to go to concerts or even a nice day in park to take a walk and talk........Into going to the gym to work out and respect those who respect me......Not into drama.....Just an open-minded fella here who knows how to be a good listener but at the same time I not a pretty boy or a softy......I am educated but have a little street in my swagger.Don't worry I do know proper english when having a sophisticated conversation with one or more people lol........Where you independant woman at? Stop hiding and upgrade on your choice of men.......Start with me first though :) Even it it doesn't work out we can still be friends......Open to all races along as keep you yourself mind ,body and soul intact.....I enjoy the company of a open-minded woman who speaks her mind,a little sarcastic,aggressive at times,good sense of humor,likes to stay somewhat physically fit and has a certain aura about her that makes her sexy and stand out..........I can be a romantic too with the candles,cards bubble baths :) and flowers or just say something nice to put a smile on your face.....Oh yeah I don't take the greatest pics and trust me I look better in person...No games I keep it real.I also enjoy music and can dance pretty good lol......Somebody teach me some salsa,merengue or bachata :) if you happen to be a latina woman :) Listen I am not an angel but I am a good man and role model if you have kids.......Good guy just try to keep up with the bad boys....It seems like they taking all the good ,hard working woman..lol
And of course, there're the charmingly poetic emails such as this one...
Hello, I realize this may sound abit forward of me but here goes. I will be turning 51 shortly and I would really like to receive an oldfashioned. over the knee birthday spanking from someone. Please let me know whether or not you might be up to it. Sincerely, (insert name here)
So forth and so on. Long winded profiles, none of it ever mentioning anything about their personalities or interests.
Listen, it's not rocket science. If you expect women to respond to your inquiries, keep it brief and keep it realistic. Once you start getting responses, than you can pick and reject accordingly. No one is going to read through a whole edict. If you're perfect and sans any flaws, congratulations... Most other people aren't. Good luck not getting any feedback. Also, why sign up for a dating site if you aren't willing to provide at least ONE visual? "Message me for a picture" just doesn't cut it. Sorry.Yet you sit there, all bugeyed from behind your naked profile, leering at photos, commenting how "hot" someone's rack looks.
Let's go guys, damn!
July 16, 2009
I've noticed an annoying trend in courting rituals. One more small annoyance to add to the already difficult process of dating. Texting. I am not one of those self-righteous, anti-technology people who goes on boring rants about the evils of social networking, texting, and mobile phones. As annoying and impersonal as those outlets can be, I am very pro-gadget and technology. While it has it's cons, technology and social networking has made it easier to keep in or get back in touch with long lost friends, enemies, frenemies, and prospective employers. Many things in life have negative aspects to them... you couldn't pay me to travel back to the dark ages. Advancement in technology is not the sole vice or annoyance society has to grapple with. The phenomenon is only as stupid as the moron accessing it... which brings me to my primary point.
Men- (I can't speak for women, because I don't date women and many of the ones I know aren't this inconsiderate, but I'll be fair and say I'm sure they're just as guilty)- if you've just met a woman for the first time, made out with her, groped her, etc... and you've decided "Wow, I like her and I want to talk to her and get to know more about her beyond this point" and you insist... DEMAND that she give you her phone number... and you make a point of programming it into your phone while she's standing there, then CALL her. This texting bullshit as the FIRST official attempt at communicating ... "Hey sexy" and "wat u up to?" is nothing short of rude and disrespectful, and it's not a good first impression. Not to me and many of my friends anyway.
How do you expect to develop any type of rapport with someone you supposedly like... or want to hop in the sack with by TEXTING grammatically lazy phrases??
Behavior like this is vexing and agitating. Myself? I may give your brusque and short messages the side-eye, and after careful consideration, might even respond a few times. I may even give you the benefit of the doubt that you'll actually CALL and I'll hear a live voice either on my voicemail or in real-time at some point throughout the course of the courtship. I'll do you one better; In the past, I've responded to text messages by leaving a voicemail, saying "Hi," asking to "Give me a call when you get the opportunity." Which means, TAG, you're it! Your turn! Only to get yet another text in response, RIGHT AFTER I've left the voicemail! After a VERY short while, your texts WILL go ignored! Trust this.
I will flat out refuse to respond, assuming that you have no desire to actually TALK for 5 or 10 minutes, which is enough time to determine someone's personality and whether you want to ask them out on a date. I'll assume that you aren't interested in setting up a time to meet up and that you have no real interest in me as a person, and that you're only wanting to waste my time by playing electronic footsies with your cyclical, same sounding two word sentences. ... "Hey sexy. Wat u doing? Wat u wearing?" Level headed and tech-savvy folk in the know realize that "wat u wearing?" is code for, "send me a topless photo, and I'll send you a pic of my genitals."All before being asked out on an ACTUAL date for coffee or a glass of wine, because you'd rather wile away valuable time sexting messages like some sexually precocious preteen: "i want u so bad. wish u were here."
Listen, I text more than the next person, but I'm usually texting with people I KNOW. People I have connections with. People I also chat to on the phone. My close and best friends, my sisters, my mother, acquaintances I pal around with, someone I've dated, don't despise and have maintained a friendship with, so forth and so on and I'm not making an ALL DAY AFFAIR of it. If I don't KNOW you and am making every attempt to GET to know you within the context of dating, and you don't reciprocate that gesture, then you may as well kick rocks. And don't you DARE send me a message at 1:00 in the MORNING asking, "hey u up?" OMG!! R U SERIOUS!? How dreadful! Moreover, don't respond to my obvious exasperation with your thoughtless time wasting, texting : "I thought u liked me ???" or "It's just easier to txt cuz am on the run." If you're on the run, then BE ON THE RUN! How about contacting the person of your desire when you AREN'T "on the run" and have a moment to spare.
Look, I'm not one for walking down the street or going about my daily activities, jabbing at my phone's keypad like crazy. I understand that some people love it, but my thumbs get tired, it wears on my nails, more importantly it's distracting and detracts from whatever it is you're doing. As many people as I see running their pie holes on the phone while en-route somewhere, that "on the run, can't actually call" excuse is utter doo-doo. Texting sentences on a small keypad, on the run, seems like it takes more effort than talking to someone for 3 seconds to say, "I'm out and about, just wanted to call to say hi and that I'm thinking about you, we'll talk later though!" and then you hang the eff up. Don't ask for someone's phone number if you have no intention of talking to them. Get their email address instead if you want to type at them.
Cut this foolishness out. It's not a good way to connect with someone you supposedly want to learn more about. KNOW them first before you start texting them a bunch of nonsense. That is all.
January 01, 2008
For the past couple of weeks, I've been watching marathons on the Travel Channel. Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern and Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations. Both shows are pretty much parallel to each other but, I've always been a huge fan of Anthony Bourdain, since the publication of his bestselling book Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly. Anthony Bourdain is brash and unapologetic with his gastronomic opinions about cooking, vegetarianism, and celebrity (faux) chefs. Moreover, his approach to food, ciggies, and drink seems almost hedonistic. Shamelessly hedonistic. No Reservations makes me a fan of his all over again. Last night I watched Anthony navigate the epicurean and multicultural splendor of Sao Paolo, Brazil. He and two Brazilian companions dipped in and out of the frenzied rehearsals of Carnivale, visited decadent food stands that touted the wonders of pork with all the fixings and various other kabobed meats. They chugged caipirinhas one after the other during their food-hops. But one segment in particular stirred weird emotions inside of me. Anthony, his crew, and his two Paolista friends visitied an Afro Brazilian woman's home. Apparently, this woman opens up her small, modest home to weary travelers (many of whom pay her a small fee) filling them up with a home cooked Brazilian meal (with roots born from Brazil's African slaves), wonderful company, and drink. I watched everyone... the production crew included... appear rapturous and hynotized by this woman's hospitality. Cheeks flushed, eyes glazed from the effects of good food and drink. She had full on seduced them. The scene that played out during that particular segment seduced me. It made me tear (or it could've been the pinot noir I was sipping, but who knows). I felt an overwhelming sense of wanderlust. And a strong desire to be in that particular mix... dancing, eating, my brow covered in a sheen of sweat as a side effect. It made me yearn to be abroad once more. Because that is the exact feeling I had when I frolicked, drank, and ate with abandon, whilst in Palermo, Sicily. I felt nostalgic and emotional because I was once caught up in the rapture of an exotic locale with people who relished and appreciated food and used it as a way to congregate and engage one another... as opposed to our (Americans) unhealthy relationship with food, eating, and feeling regretful afterward. Perhaps I felt a little emotional because 2008 for me, will present a new career opportunity that, if all goes well, may just allow me to experience that high once again. This past year was tumultuous. Not just with me, but universally. Hopefully '08 will offer a slight reprieve, if only for a moment!