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The Struggle For Equality…

We have elected a Black man to the White House.  There is a Latina woman being considered for the Supreme Court.  A woman almost earned the Democratic nomination for the Presidency.  By all accounts we’ve come a long way, yet I still get screwed by the air conditioner repair man!

Let me begin at the beginning.  My air conditioner died last Tuesday.  *pauses to wipe the sweat from my brow* I was sitting on the couch and all of a sudden it just died.  I called the warranty company to set up an appointment.  I should have known there was going to be trouble when the technician finally showed up at 6:45 pm on Thursday even though he was scheduled to arrive between 9 and 1.

So he goes into the attic and tells me one of the parts died, and he would have to come back on Monday to replace it (he gave me some crap about having to order the part blah blah blah).  I phoned the warranty company on Monday to find out what time they were coming, only to be told the technician just turned in my paperwork on MONDAY MORNING, and thus the part had not been ordered yet.  They promised to call me back later in the day to schedule the appointment for Tuesday.

Now if you are keeping track you realize I am right at one week of no A.C. when I call again, only to find still no appointment had been set.  If I were a man, I know this WOULD NOT be happening to me.  Under normal circumstances I would be escalating up the food chain and going off on every person I talked to, but understanding the delicate situation I was remaining polite.  I was pretty much at the mercy of these people and if I went all JerzeeChick on them, they wouldn’t put me on the schedule until August!

So I am trying to be the dutiful and polite customer when I called back again Wednesday morning only to find out they decided to deny my warrant claim.  Surely you are all wondering why on earth would they do that.  How about the technician told them the A.C. failed due to a power surge caused by a lightening strike.  WHAT?!?!?!?!

I was FLOORED.  How on earth do they come up with that crap one week later? Again I say no way would this be happening to a man!  On what planet do you think you can tell a person their house got struck by lightening and they didn’t know it?  On what planet do you think a power surge caused by a lightening strike would ONLY affect the air conditioner.  I’m just saying…if the house got struck by lightening, I’m guessing more than just the air conditioner would be impacted. CLOWNS!!!

So Epiphanyblog, as I find myself escalating up the food chain and seeking second opinions from other HVAC specialists in an effort the make the warranty company cover the repair, I ask that you all send cool thoughts my way, and ponder this question:  When will the struggle end?  Will women forever be seen as easy marks by the mechanics and technician types of the world? *pauses to hum “We Shall Overcome*

June 18, 2009 Posted by | Life, Race, Society | 3 Comments

Cook Out 101

I love a good cookout.  Even though I don’t eat meat, there is something about the smell of food cooked on the grill that makes me smile.  It’s Memorial Day Weekend, which marks the official beginning of cookout season.  In honor of that I thought we should all come together to discuss proper cookout etiquette.  While I know we at Epiphanyblog know better…some people might need to be schooled!

1.    Peeing in the pool is so 80’s.  I think they have special chlorine that will expose you, so please spare yourself the embarrassment (and everyone else the repulsion), and exit the pool when nature calls!
2.      Know when to say when.  The drunk person at the cookout is always good for a few laughs, but do you really want it to be you?
3.    No one likes a pig.  Most cookouts are “all you can eat”, but don’t try to out eat everyone in attendance.  The host expects there to be enough food to go around, so don’t ruin it for the latecomers.
4.    And speaking of latecomers….cookouts usually start in the mid afternoon.  Don’t show up at 10pm and expect them to re-light the grill for you.
5.    Even though most people will tell you it’s not necessary, you should at least offer to bring something.  Even if it’s only a bag of ice, try not to show up empty handed.
6.    Supply and demand is an integral part of being a good cookout guest.  If your discerning palette demands a certain kind of beer…supply it yourself!
7.    It should go without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway.  Clean up after yourself.  You’re eating off of paper plates, so is it that hard to throw them away?  You don’t have to help with the dishes, but throw your chicken bones and dirty napkins away!
8.    Nothing annoys me more than kids running wild at a cookout, especially when the kids in question are guests.  Your hostess is not also running a day camp.   Keep your eye on your own kids!
9.    If you offer to make your “world famous” whatever whatever, bring enough for everyone.  I’m not saying you should provide a ten gallon vat of baked beans or seafood salad, but I’m guessing a small 8 ounce portion won’t be enough.
10.    …what am I forgetting???  Please free to fill in this blank!


May 21, 2009 Posted by | Laughter, Life | 10 Comments

Lessons Learned

This week is my birthday Mardi Gras!  No big party this year, but I am doing something fun everyday in honor of my “born day”.  I’ve also decided to use this week’s blog to highlight the most important lessons I’ve learned in my lifetime!

1.    Laughter is the best medicine!  I’ve learned to laugh at myself…often.  I don’t take myself too seriously, and laughing is the best way to keep from crying.

2.    Into each life a little rain will fall! Last year felt a bit like a monsoon, but I survived which is a good thing.  If I never felt the rain, I wouldn’t be able to properly appreciate the sunny days.

3.    Friendship is essential to the soul! I learned that lesson in college, but it still holds true today!

4.    Respect must be demanded and earned!  I have learned people will walk all over you if you let them.  I’ve also learned that people don’t get a pass simply because they ask for one.

5.    Make every minute count!  Time is the one thing we waste that can never be recouped.  I treasure time with friends and loved ones, and do what I can to  make the most of every day.

6.    Good things may come to those who wait…but they are only the scraps left behind by those that hustle!  Translation: I gotta get my hustle on!

7.    Seasons change, and so do people. Everyone isn’t meant to be in your life forever.

8.    Coincidence is a word used by people that lack faith.  I’ve learned everything happens for a reason.

9.    You get what you pay for.  Be it customer service or quality of merchandise, it will always come down to how much you pay for it.  The cashiers in Walmart don’t hold a candle to the “sales associates” in Saks, and the food in Applebees can’t touch the food at The Palm!

10.    People will get on your LAST NERVE…if you let them!  I’ve learned to hang up the phone, delete the emails, and walk away from the nonsense.  No reason to let the foolishness and bi-polar antics of other people get my pressure up!

There is one other lesson that I’ve learned that is even more important than everything else I mentioned.  GOD IS GOOD!!!!  His Grace and Mercy has sustained me, and I know I am blessed to be celebrating my 35th year!  Peace and love to all.

May 7, 2009 Posted by | Friendship, Life | 3 Comments

Things You “Shouldn’t” Do…

Before I begin, let me give the obligatory disclaimer…there is NOTHING funny about domestic violence.  I tend to err on the side of sarcasm, but please don’t think I condone a woman getting senselessly pounded on by a man that should know better.  Now having said that heeeeeeeeere we go!!!!!

This whole “Chris Brown beats Rihanna” thing has been the talk of the radio/beauty shop/nail salon/break room since the story broke on Sunday.  The only thing we know for sure is that Chris had an altercation with a female, and charges were pressed.  Because the name of the victim has not been officially released, we are all going by the pics of a busted up Rihanna on the internet, and her quick exodus to Barbados as confirmation that she was the victim.

Let’s keep this in perspective; Chris Brown is a 19-year-old boy.  He is not morally superior and he is not above doing something stupid (i.e. beating on his girlfriend).  At the same time Rihanna is an attractive woman in a grown up relationship doing grown up things, and unfortunately she has experienced something too many women go through on a daily basis.  I feel sorry for her because physical harm inflicted on you by the person that claims to love you is a horrible feeling!  I hope parents will use this situation as a teaching opportunity.   Teach our young men that if you put your hands on a woman NO MATTER WHAT SHE DID, there will be hell to pay.  Also teach them no matter how cute she is, if that little firecracker can push your buttons enough to make you haul off and slap her, then SHE IS NOT THE WOMAN FOR YOU.  At the same time, we need to teach our daughters, HANDS ARE NOT FOR HITTING.  If he loses his temper and gets to wailing on you, get out of there quickly, and CALL THE POLICE.  Tend to you injuries first and foremost, and then call your brothers to go find him.  No one wins in an abusive relationship!

So as you read this blog and ponder your personal relationships, where do you stand on the issue of “a man should never hit a woman”? Again there is nothing funny about domestic violence, and I believe a man “should” never hit a woman, but I am also woman enough to admit that there are some things I could do that might possibly warrant getting “shaken” half to death.  There is a rumor going around that Rihanna “allegedly” gave Chris Brown herpes.  This is still alleged as neither camp has made an official statement, but lets run with it for a minute.  Men, would being told you just got the gift you could NEVER give back warrant you busting a chick in her eye.  Go ahead and tell the truth, because I am not going to judge!

Let’s say it wasn’t as extreme as that.  Let’s say you are having dinner at your girlfriends place.  She sneaks a peek at your cell phone while you are in the bathroom (sloppy pimping if you left it on the table, but I digress…), and finds a bunch of naked pics from another female on your phone.  The pics are dated so she knows you just got them two days ago.  When you return to the table she gets to clowning and spits a mouth full of food in your face.  What would you do???  She SPIT IN YOUR FACE, is there anything more disrespectful?  And while we are on the subject…Ladies, if you spit in a man’s face…or better yet keyed his mama’s car do you really expect to escape that situation with no bodily harm?

The bible says thou should not kill.  I agree, killing is something you shouldn’t do, but as Biggie said…there’s gonna be a lot of slow singing and flower bringing if my burglar alarm starts ringing!  There is a segment of the population, psychotic men, that need to beat on a woman to feel superior.  They deserve to have a pot of hot grits splashed on them. No woman should live in fear of a man that claims to love her.  For the purpose of this blog, I am not talking about the Ike Turner’s of the world.  I am not defending Chris Brown, nor am I vilifying Rihanna.  I just want us to take a moment and honestly ask ourselves if there is any circumstance that would warrant knocking a woman’s block off…or at least shaking one until her weave fell out!

February 12, 2009 Posted by | Celebrity, Life, News, Opinion | 8 Comments

Snitches Get Ditches…

By now most of you have heard about the Michael Phelps bong scandal of ’09.  Apparently he was at a party, and was photographed smoking weed out of a bong.  He subsequently released a statement about it being a youthful indiscretion blah blah blah.  Let me be clear, I could care less about his weed habit, and I am not about to pass judgment.  As an athlete, that is between him and his trainer (and those companies that are paying him millions in endorsement dollars).   My focus this week is on the circumstances that led to the Michael Phelps expose’…obviously somebody snitched!

If we are honest, we can admit (at least to ourselves), we’ve done at least one thing illegal (or morally reprehensible) at some point in our lives.  This action has probably never come to light to further embarrass us because it was done in the presence of friends.  See, when we are with our friends certain rules don’t apply.  We can be at ease around the homies because we don’t expect them to sell us out to the highest bidder.

When we are kids we learn nobody likes a tattletale, and as we grow up we develop a conscience and understand there are times when you need to open your mouth and times when you need to play dumb.  In the snitching code, would you or should you ever snitch on a friend? For me personally, I’m not going to willingly drop a dime unless it’s to save a child or save a life. Am I wrong?  What do I stand to gain from telling the manager at a local grocery store that I spotted someone in aisle nine stealing over-priced spices?  At the same time, is a ten thousand dollar come up a fair exchange for possibly ruining the life/career of a friend?  In this time of cell phone cameras and video chatting, it would be relatively easy to ensnarl someone in a major scandal (a la Michael Phelps), but would you do it?   To tell or not to tell, that is the question!

Ladies, if you saw your girlfriend’s husband hugged up with his secretary in a cozy corner of a restaurant, would you tell her?  Now what if you knew 100% beyond a shadow of a doubt that she would never leave him, and to add insult to injury you knew she would tell him you were the snitch (and thus have him hating you forever) would you tell?

Men, does the “playa” code exclude snitching…even when you can benefit?  If you met a female that you were very interested in, and you knew for a 100% fact that she shot you down simply because she was being faithful to a known cheater that spent all his money romancing strippers and chicken heads, would you tell?

Like I said, snitching to save a child or save a life should be a no brainer.  If you witnessed a serious crime would you tell?  Let’s say your life or safety was not in danger, and you would probably be preventing future crime by coming forward, would you tell?  As you watch the little excerpt below and reflect on your personal “snitch code”.  How gray is the line?  Do you always tell, or do you mind your business?  Would you want someone to snitch if it would benefit you, and how far would you go to protect someone’s privacy if their snitching helped you out?

February 5, 2009 Posted by | Celebrity, Life, Opinion, Society | 7 Comments

At Last!

And so I watched all the inauguration footage I could see on Tuesday, and still felt like I couldn’t get enough.  I don’t think I’ve watched that many consecutive hours of television IN MY LIFE, but this was a once in a lifetime event.  As President Barack Obama said in his speech…this is a new era!  It took 35 five words, but it’s a done deal.  Who would have thought that after all the months of campaigning, all the blogs, all the debates, all the pseudo-scandals, all the hours of camping out on CNN/Meet The Press et al, it would only take 35 words?

I remember Reagan winning in 1980 and 1984.  I remember the first Bush presidency, and of course I was able to vote for the first time when Clinton won in 1992.  At that time I was living in Maryland, and only watched inauguration footage long enough to see Maya Angelou.   Y’all know I didn’t watch one pinky toe worth of coverage when “W” won, so this was all uncharted territory for me.  I didn’t know what to expect, but I was too afraid to turn away because I didn’t want to miss a thing.

Now that President Obama is 2 days into his first hundred days as Commander-in-Chief, I will of course keep him and his family in my prayers.  I have nothing but optimistic thoughts about his presidency, and I believe in my heart that as a nation we are entering a new era.  If we all do our part we, along with President Obama, will turn this country around.  I also wanted to take a minute to reflect on my favorite moment of President Barack Obama’s Inauguration, and on a lighter note pick out a few of the more memorable moments too!

Hands down, my favorite moment was when President Obama stood there with one hand raised and one hand on the bible and said, “So help me God.”  At that moment it was official, and I clapped.

Now regarding the memorable moments, I must shout out the church ensembles.  The Obama girls in their cute church coats, and Aretha Franklin in that church hat!  I remarked on Facebook how cute the Obama girls looked with their freshly pressed hair and church coats.  Rick, my FB friend, admonished me for not mentioning Aretha Franklin….so here goes!

First I must look at Aretha in a historical context.  She’s not just the Queen of Soul.  She’s not just one that often takes fashion risks.  She is part of the soundtrack of the Civil Rights Movement.  Aretha sang at the funeral of Martin Luther King JR, so singing at the Inauguration of President Barack Obama was only fitting.  Now regarding that church hat….Black people love a church hat.  No matter the occasion; be it a funeral, wedding, christening, graduation or Communion Sunday, a big church hat is going to be somewhere on the premises.  So we might as well all get used to seeing more church hats paraded around political events, because so long as the Obama’s are in the White House, somebody will be wearing an ill-advised church hat…full of feathers, rhinestones, sequins, or some other tacky adornment!

Now I have been known to sacrifice comfort for fashion, so I know Michelle’s feet are probably still hurting today.  She strutted around in those pumps all day in the freezing cold DC weather.  Not only did she do the cute shoe thing, she also opted not to have on a real coat!  President Obama had his suit jacket and cashmere coat on, but Michelle was cute in her yellow ensemble.  PETA would have been mad at me, because I would have been walking that parade route with my full-length fur on!

And finally, I must give it up to Beyonce.  I am not a Beyonce fan (at all), but she did an awesome job singing “At Last”.  It was probably the most fitting song for President and Mrs. Obama’s first dance.  At Last, Barack Obama has been sworn in as the 44th President of the United States of America, and I could not be more proud.  So Epiphanyblog, those are my faves…what’s yours?

January 22, 2009 Posted by | Life, News, Obama, Politics | 4 Comments

In ’09

2008 is officially over and 2009 is here.  All things considered this year flew by!  One minute I was cheering for the Giants at a Superbowl party and here I am getting ready to cheer them on again! *fingers crossed here* It seems like just yesterday when I was rooting for Barack Obama and complaining about Tiny Tears (okay maybe I did do that again yesterday), and in twenty days he’ll be sworn in! We are all blessed to see another year, so let’s do our part to make it a great one. As I stated last year, I really don’t do New Year’s Resolutions.  I prefer to try to make reasonable changes so that the coming year will be better than the last.  In 2009 I plan to make a couple of adjustments.


  1. Talk is cheap!  Have you heard that song by India Arie and Anthony David?  Well the chorus is simply: “Can’t tell you nothing you ain’t already heard.  No matter what I say it’s nothing but words.”  Truer “words” have never been spoken.  We should all be tired of people saying what they think we want to hear.  Don’t tell me, show me!  At the same time, I know I am at times guilty of too much talk and not enough action. So in ‘09 I won’t talk about it, I’ll be about it!
  2. Monitor my priorities!  We go through life trying to do so much for so many people and at the end of the day our efforts go unappreciated or taken for granted.  People won’t hesitate to tell you “no”, or “I can’t” all the while expecting you to move heaven and earth to make it happen for them.  Why bother?  In ‘09 I will stop making people a priority when they only see me as an option. 


My list is short and sweet.  Nothing over the top, just two things that should make 2009 a good year for me.  So Epiphanyblog, what will you do differently to make 2009 better than 2008?


January 1, 2009 Posted by | Holidays, Life, Opinion | 5 Comments

The State Of The Economy

I am excited that gas prices have dropped to their lowest point in five years, but it seems a little suspect that just five months ago they were at an all time high. I don’t fully understand what drove the prices down, but I’m not complaining. I know all those people out there driving SUV’s and luxury vehicles that only take premium gas are dancing a jig too!

Last week when I went into the grocery store I noticed the price of milk has not come down. The price of eggs has not come down. The prices of grapes, mangos nor tomato’s have budged and Lord help me the price of Gummy Bears is at an all time high. All of this is bad enough but there isn’t much I can do about it…I gotta eat, right?

This whole state of the economy situation came to a head today when I was forced to buy something out of the vending machine at work. I nearly fell on the floor when I realized they had raised the prices on every one of those tired off brand snacks by fifteen cents. I was beyond heated! I would have been okay to see inflation hit Nabisco or Hershey, but come on now…an extra fifteen cents for those fake out Austin Animal Crackers?!?! I used to blame everything on the high gas prices, but now it’s going to be the state of the economy. Henceforth and forever more (until I find a new cop out), I shall use the economy as a scapegoat for everything I DON’T want to do. Here are a few excuses you might want to use:

1. Due to the state of the economy I can only wash clothes once every two weeks and so with no clean clothes to wear, I must work from home for the rest of the week. (My trifling manager will love that one!)

2. Due to the state of the economy, I had to drastically reduce my cell phone minutes, which is why I never return your calls. (For that pesky someone that obviously can’t take a hint!)

3. Due to the state of the economy I have to pump all of my extra money into winning the Mega Millions Jackpot, so I can’t afford to buy another candy bar, case of oranges, or calendar to support your child’s fundraiser.

According to President-Elect Obama, the economy might get worse before it gets better. In light of that I’ve decided not to let the state of the economy slow my roll. What good is it to be broke and depressed?!?!?! Henceforth and forever more, I shall use the economy as a scapegoat for everything I DO want to do, and I advise you to do the same.

1. Due to the state of the economy, we need to keep every beauty shop appointment. If you look good you feel good, so go ahead and get that cut and color this week!

2. Due to the state of the economy, we all need a little therapy…retail therapy! I’m shelling out money for Christmas gifts so don’t I deserve to treat myself to something nice too…which leads me to my next point…

3. Due to the state of the economy, I’m eating lobster tonight. For all we know they might be rationing food in the New Year. You better get in where you fit in and get that Surf & Turf while you can!

Seriously though Epiphanyblog, how is the state if the economy affecting you? We know it has hit the governor of Illinois so hard he had to start selling senate seats, but I hope it’s not that bad in your hood. I really would hate to hear about an Epiphanyblog loyalist taken down over trying to sell bootleg movies on Facebook! So as we collectively pinch our pennies and make fiscally sound decisions; or splurge and rob Peter to pay Paul let’s take a moment to share our collective angst!


December 11, 2008 Posted by | Finances, Life | 3 Comments

My New Addiction

I don’t think I’ve done a “Favorite Things” blog this year, but something new just bumped Fantasy Football out of the top spot! If you know me, you know how I feel about the “Corporate America Hustle”. All I need is a reason to slack off and one was handed to me on a silver platter yesterday.  I was convinced to sign up on Facebook….and my life will never be the same!

Last week a friend told me about an annoying former coworker that had hit her up on Facebook.  She suggested I join too, so that we could commiserate.  I didn’t really think too hard about it.  I have a full plate already, plus I barely look at my MySpace page.  Then yesterday another friend was talking about it, and said how much fun she was having.  I thought:
1.    It’s the middle of the day
2.    I’m at work
3.    I have about 50 messages in my inbox that need my attention
Then I figured why not.  What better way to pass the time before I duck out early than by trying to connect with some old friends!!!!!

So I created my profile, and started searching for friends.  I actually saw a guy on there that I used to like in the second grade (we were the only two black kids in our class so the relationship was destined to happen).  The more friends I added, the more friends I saw.  It was like being let loose in a penny candy factory and finding all those discontinued snacks that you loved as a kid (BTW, I am on a HUNT for Chocolate Snaps and those skinny mini fruity tootsie rolls….if you have the hook up, let me know).

Social networking is one of the greatest things going out there.  It allows us to stay on top of important social issues (Barack the Vote) as well as keep up with who in your old high school crew just got married/pregnant/dumped.  As far as social networking sites go, Facebook is head and shoulders above MySpace (in my opinion of course)!  Facebook screams professional, while MySpace screams “booty call”.  Don’t get me wrong there are important networking opportunities on MySpace as well, but I guess I am just a little turned off by all the “posing” (and by posing I mean the “squat down jail pose” and the obligatory “booty shot”).  How can you take someone seriously when their friend box is full of pictures of scantily clad women?  He might very well be a man of God, but I think I’ll pass on the add when I see video vixens draped across pool tables and bending over to show their cracks/thongs in your top friends space!

If you went to UMCP, MySpace is the equivalent of taking Peter Pan home to NYC where Facebook is like taking the Amtrak from New Carrolton Station right to Penn Station.  (I was going to say it was like taking a flight from National to Newark Airport, but I thought that might be reaching).  If you live in Atlanta, MySpace is like shopping at Macy’s in Greenbriar, while Facebook is like shopping at Macy’s in Perimeter.

Regardless, Facebook is my new addiction.  It’s a fun easy way to re-connect with people from our past.  I actually connected with someone I used to beat senselessly in spades in college! I see people using Facebook to plan reunions and tastefully market their businesses.  There is comedy as well….one of my high school friends was quoting lines from Pootie Tang, and another friend invited me to join her TV trivia team.

You have nothing to lose…it’s free.  So please Epiphany, join the movement that is Facebook and let us all get addicted together.  Sa Da Tay!

November 20, 2008 Posted by | Laughter, Life, Opinion, Society | 9 Comments

In Loving Memory…

As a writer, I should never be at a loss for words.  I guess it’s tantamount to a stripper that has no rhythm.  Use of words is how I “shake my money maker”! In spite of that, yesterday I was at a loss for words.  A friend had died, and when I got the call I didn’t know what to say.  Surely it was a mistake, I thought.  But sadly it wasn’t a mistake, and sadder still my friend is gone.  This blog is dedicated to him, and all of you that may have lost someone near and dear too soon.

If you knew “B”, you couldn’t help but love him.  He was the strong silent type that could light up a room with his smile and laughter.  Our friendship basically was formed over our shared concern for someone that needed us at the time.

“B” was the type of friend you wanted around if you were ever in need.  Be it need of a barber, a diamond, or a good meal “B” had you covered.  He put us on to the best Japanese restaurant in Atlanta. When I was recovering from surgery and my cousin had to leave town on business, “B” was on deck with cranberry juice.  When I had a birthday BBQ, “B” got the chicken breast “hook up” for the grill.  We even had a secret baked beans contest because he thought the pineapple and ground beef made his recipe better than mine *not*!

What is it about death that makes us go through our mental Rolodex of memories? “B” died unexpectedly, but I know even when the death is due to a long illness we tend to be stunned when we get the call.  We immediately think of what we would have said if we had one more chance.  We cling to our memories as a source of comfort.  I’ll never forget the year “B” hosted the Y2K sleepover, or the way I made him laugh when I referred to his store as the “student union”. My memories of “B” are definitely a blessing, and I’d be even more of a wreck without them.

To everyone that has lost someone, as you move through the stages of grief remember how your loved one LIVED and NOT how they died!  We’ve heard the “til death do you part” phrase over and over again, but memories are yours to have and hold onto forever!  I’ve never been one to stand over a trash can fire and “pour a little out for the brothers that ain’t here”, but this blog was my way of honoring a good friend that died too soon.  My favorite “Off The Heezy” boy will be missed!


November 13, 2008 Posted by | Family, Friendship, Life, Love, Society | 6 Comments

The Thursday 10

This week’s blog is all about the 10 things I loved and loathed this week!

  • LOVED the Colin Powell Endorsement. The timing was perfect, and it further validated for some independents that Obama is the man to change this country. This endorsement from Colin Powell, should be the coup de grâce for the Republicans.

  • LOATHED the George Will and Rush Limbaugh commentary. Colin Powell is a retired general that is pretty much the highest ranking black man to ever serve in a Republican Administration and he’s endorsing a liberal Democrat, not the Navy pilot and fellow Republican. It didn’t take long for the right wingers to come out and try to minimize the endorsement and say Powell only endorsed Obama because he’s black. It is an insult and disgrace to assume that intelligent African American people will blindly follow each other down the road of damnation simply because we share the same skin color.

  • LOVED The Secret Life of Bees. It’s a cute movie, and if you read the book you’ll especially enjoy it. Queen Latifah, Jennifer Hudson, and Alicia Keyes all did wonderful jobs, and if you are a fan on The Wire….Mike is in this one too!

  • LOATHED the “I thought I was on a slave ship” defense. Brian Nichols’s defense team is trying to get a not guilty by reason of insanity verdict. To that end, they are trying to convince the jury that Mr. Nichols had “snapped” while in custody and thought he was on a slave ship. He killed all those people in an effort to free himself from the belly of a slave ship. Now, I took AASP 202 with Dr. Sharon Harley, not to mention countless other African American Studies classes during my time at UMCP. It has been a while, but never in any of my studies do I recall there being automatic weapons on slave ships! My memory certainly isn’t what it used to be, but I would almost bet my Maxwell tickets on the fact that there weren’t any Glock 9’s during the Middle Passage.

  • LOVED the exposing of Sara Who’s expenditures. Not Miss Small-town USA shopping in Neiman’s and Saks!!! They claim the clothes will eventually be donated to charity, but I can’t wait to see how the scandal of her toting her kids all across the country on the Alaska tax payers dime turns out!

  • LOATHED the overabundance of neck tattoos and bad weaves. Is there a 2 for 1 sale going on someplace in Atlanta? Pay $100 to get a quick weave done by Bunny and’nem, then get a panther tat on your neck for free. YUCK!

  • LOVED another week of Warren Sapp on Dancing With The Stars. I only watch the show long enough to see him dance, and this week he got down with the Hustle!

  • LOATHED the week of dud play by Fantasy Football Superstars. While I won in three of my five leagues this week, the inconsistent play of superstars like T.O., Peyton, Braylon Edwards, and LaDainian, have many leagues in an uproar.

  • LOVED to LOATHE The Real Housewives of Atlanta. It’s like a train wreck and I can’t look away. When I compare these women to The Real Housewives of New York it becomes painfully obvious that there is nothing worse than new money! I’m not going to name names, but unless you are a Rockefeller, Kennedy, or possibly Will and Jada, why do you need a “governess”? It’s true what they say…money can’t buy class!

Well that was my Thursday 10. You may not have time to run down a full 10, but what did you love and loathe this week?


October 22, 2008 Posted by | Laughter, Life, Opinion, Politics, Race | 6 Comments

Who Told Me????

My new catch phrase this week is “Who Told Me”.  When I experience something bizarre and am shocked by it, I ask myself “who told me”.  When I do something stupid (like attempt to drive to Atlantic Station in the middle of rush hour traffic), I laugh and ask myself “who told me”.  When someone crosses a line and does something inappropriate I might laugh and say “who told him”, because obviously he wasn’t thinking either!

Who told me I should be able to go to the grocery store and NOT get harassed by the cheesy men?  Some of you may remember my ordeal with the guy in the frozen food section a while back, so it was only a matter of time before Mayor McCheese in the bakery aisle tried to get his holler on.  I was wearing a cute Obama ’08 shirt while picking up a few items.  Mayor McCheese obviously spotted me when I entered his area and decided to follow me and comment very loudly to the person he was speaking to on his cell phone.  He kept referring to me as “number 8”, and I was thoroughly annoyed.  First of all stop stalking me, and second of all be politically aware, clown! 

I hate the post office.  I especially hate my local post office and wish to lobby the government to allow me to transfer my mail to a post office that is more customer friendly.  I am tired of my mail being delivered at 6:30 in the evening….but I digress!  My most recent trip to the post office was moderately pleasant until I got accosted by Tiny Tim in the parking lot.  Who told him he had any shot at getting my number while standing a 5 feet 2 inches tall.[for those that didn’t know, I’m 5’8”]  I smiled and politely told him “no thank you” when he offered me his phone number on a ripped piece of paper.  I thought that would be the end of it…..but who told me?????  Lil dude proceeded to call me a “mean lady” and yelled at me in his thick African accent as I pulled off.

Your weave is your business, and when I see a bad a weave I may snicker or shake my head, but ultimately it’s not my business.  Thinking Boomquisha and Key-LoLo would take a similar stance on my hair style……who told me????  Why did the ghetto wonder twins tell me my “sew-in” was cute, but I shouldn’t have let them cut so much off.  First of all, I don’t have a weave!  My hair isn’t long down to my butt, it is medium length and I have what I like to call a “white girl choppy” hair style.  At first I thought surely they could not be talking to me.  Boomquisha had a gold grill and blonde braids that she was in the middle of taking out.  Key-LoLo had a bad multi-color weave.  They were in the beauty supply store buying MORE FAKE HAIR.  I politely told them it was my hair, and not a weave.  They were skeptical, until I bent down to show them my actual scalp.  After that they were all “oh girl your hair is cute” (and yes “cute” was stretched to a two syllable word)!

Who told me to let the weird white guy take a picture of my feet????  I am sure I’m on some foot fetish porn site at this very moment, but it all happened so fast!!!!  I was minding my business (translation: trying to catch a good sale) when this guy came up to me to compliment my shoes.  I was so busy trying to find my size on the 40% off rack the holy inappropriateness of his commentary went right over my head.  When he whipped out a digital camera and crouched down to snap a picture of my stiletto’s I was slightly oblivious, but the seedy grin he had once he captured the picture was a tell tale sign he was a nut job!  If someone finds a picture of brown feet with lavender toes in a pair of black stiletto open toed shoes floating around the internet….please advise me post haste!

The NFL is at it again….who told him????  You may remember me talking about the Nutty Fruit Loop (NFL) from my job.  How about he had the nerve to send me an email telling me to schedule a conference call for him.  Again I ask…..who told him?????  I wanted to walk around the corner to his office and let him have it, but I had a better idea (translation: The Corporate America Hustle is in full effect)!  Nothing against secretaries and people that do schedule meetings, but that is not in my job description.  Y’all know all I need is a reason to slack off, and the antics of the NFL gave me one on a silver platter!!!!!

As you can see it has definitely been one of those weeks for me.  This started as a vent blog, but as I typed all of this out I had to laugh because it’s funny.  I walk around playing the part of the chick that has it all together….but who told me????  The lesson you should get from this weeks blog…take a minute to laugh at yourself! [and share with us, so we can laugh too]  Our lives are so serious and so intense, but sometimes you gotta laugh to keep from crying.  Yes the short guy in the post office parking lot did make a scene, but the sight of him in my rear view mirror cussing and carrying on was hilarious (especially when you add that accent to the mix).  Mayor McCheese in Publix did annoy me, but in retrospect, the lameness of his pick-up game was comical. There is humor in almost everything, so take a minute to stop….think….and laugh!  Life is serious…..who told you?????  Come on laugh it off…..I know you want to!


July 30, 2008 Posted by | Fun, Laughter, Life, Society | 5 Comments

What Happened to Customer Service?

Am I the only person that will stop patronizing an establishment because they can’t seem to get it right? I am over the fact that people no longer say please and thank you, but I still struggle with the fact that customer service is not what it used to be.  Let me apologize in advance to anyone I might offend with this post.  Unfortunately I think this needs to be said so feel free to ROAST me in the comments section!

            I hate Wal-Mart.  The layout is not aesthetically pleasing.  There are never enough registers open, and I often see too many children running loose as if they just got dropped there as part of some type of field trip.  You might call me a retail snob, but something about buying paint, panties, and a pork roast from the same store just doesn’t sit well with me.  On the flip side I’ve seen some very cute things come out of Target, so I guess I am a Wal-Mart snob…..with good reason!

            I had the misfortune of being in a Wal-Mart on Saturday night (because Target was already closed).  I was with a friend picking up rings to hang window treatments.  We had a total of seven items.  You would think it would be a quick in and out for only seven items. *rolls eyes*

            Of the thirty available registers, there were only six actual cashiers working.  As is always the case with Wal-Mart, the seniors were at the doors patting people down as they left.  Here is my problem with that: I am all for giving jobs to the elderly, but can we let them do something that might get me out of the store faster?  All that stopping to count items is for the birds!  Put Grandpa on the register, or let him help Shanequa bag the items.  No offense to anyone reading this blog, but generally I tend to assign a very ghetto name to someone I see exhibiting ghetto behavior. (Again feel free to roast me when I’m through)!   

So I am in a ridiculously long line watching packs of Boomquisha’s stroll in with their neck tattoo’s and bad weaves.  No offense to people with neck tattoos, but those wearing bad hair weaves……you get no mercy.  The fact that I am on the 20 items or less line is apparently of no consequence to people in front of me with their loaded carts.  My neck is getting hot as I stand there because I’m so disgusted.  I can not believe it’s this crowded, and there are only six registers open. 

            It was like being on one of those hidden camera shows.  I just knew someone was going to pop out at any moment and tell me this was all a very bad joke….NO SUCH LUCK!  Boomquisha in front of me had a little boy spazzing out over some chips.  She thought his dancing and throwing up gang signs was cute until he started acting like he was possessed.

            I was two seconds away from dropping those stupid ring hooks on the floor and leaving when I spotted another register opening.  I maneuvered around the 3 B’s in front of me (Boomquisha 1 with the asymmetrical blue and black bad weave, her home girl Boomquisha 2 who also had a bad asymmetrical weave except hers was dyed the color of cherry Kool-Aide in the front, and Boomquisha 3 with the bad honey blond asymmetrical weave. Boomquisha 3 was so pressed to get another pair of those camouflage cargo pants out of Wal-Mart, she left her son in the cart while she ran back to find another pair.)  Sweet Jesus be Child Protective Services or the weave police or somebody to do a raid at the Walmart on Old National!  My pressure was up for about twenty minutes after I left that store.  I am not even going to tell y’all about the horror of customer service when I had to go back three days later to return those stupid rings.  I’m sure some people might think I am going overboard and Wal-Mart is not that bad, but y’all can have it.  It’s Tar-Jay (translation: Target), all day every day over here!

            Wal-Mart isn’t my biggest issue.  I think overall the atmosphere at Wal-Mart is a direct result of our society’s lack of good customer service.  I was a college student.  I worked the dumb campus jobs, but in everything we were told to be professional.  What happened to the professional personable employee?  If you don’t want to smile and be polite……get another job!  It is not my fault you are stuck on fries.  It is not my fault your manager scheduled you to close every Saturday this month, and it is not my fault your cousin forgot to pick up that jet black Yaki and thus your weave STILL looks a hot mess!  I just need you tell me where the box cutters are….and if you don’t know ASK SOMEBODY!

            Yes, another issue with poor customer services is the person that is content to say “I don’t know”.  WHAT?!?!?!?!?  “You don’t know and…..”  How does a person, at their place of employment, tell a customer they don’t know the answer to a question and then begin to walk away as if that was a suitable exchange of information?  I’m sorry, but that kind of mess never happens at Neiman’s!   Trust and believe if I ask a question at the Gucci store they are falling over themselves trying to get me a suitable answer. 

            I was in an electronics store yesterday looking for a certain type of camcorder.  I was in the camera section and my natural assumption was the person in cameras would be well versed in the products he was selling.  Unfortunately he was more concerned with my friends Gucci sneakers and getting to Miami for the weekend than giving me accurate information.   He had the nerve to tell me a particular video camera did not take still photos.  When I pointed out the sign right next to the camera that was marked “Digital Photo Capable” he just said “oh”.   I then asked him how many mega-pixels another camera had and he said he didn’t know.  I asked him to show me the box to which he replied “the box is all the way in the warehouse”.  Excuse me?  I guess he was still too consumed with getting to Miami and trying to cop some Gucci sneakers.  I had someplace else to be so I didn’t go into my usual “I need to see your manager” speech.  I politely walked out of the store shaking my head. 

            The list of places that can’t get my money is growing exponentially.  I can’t make them provide good customer service, but I can categorically refuse to give them any of my money.  So for those that are still reading, feel free decimate me for all the stereotypes I exploited in this post, but also tell me how you handle bad customer service!


May 21, 2008 Posted by | Life, Opinion, Society | 3 Comments

A Town Called Denial…

Why is it so easy for us to point out something someone else needs to do, yet we are content to live in a town called “denial”?  You all have read several blogs where I went on and on about Tiny Tears and how she needed to drop out of the Democratic Primary.  In my mind it’s a done deal, and she’s only kidding herself if she thinks she’ll actually win.  While I still agree with those sentiments wholeheartedly, in all honesty there are some things I have been content to kid myself about too!

We all saw Terry McMillan’s hot mess of a husband hiding in the closet long before he admitted it to the world.  When Star Jones married Al, many of us compared her to Terry McMillan and waited with baited breath until the inevitable happened.  Yes, we love love LOVE to boot someone else out of denial, but easily turn a blind eye to our own foolishness!   To everyone that has ever bought a pair of pants in a too small size because they were on sale, and then just KNEW they were about to drop ten pounds with a new work out regime….I’m talking to you!!!!!

Denial is comfy.  Denial is fun.  Denial keeps us in debt, keeps our kids acting like wild banshee’s and keeps too many people in bad relationships…..so why do we do it?  Ask yourself a question.  Do you really believe <fill in blank>?    If the answer is no, please cease and desist with it TODAY.  According to Alcoholics Anonymous the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem.  Just to be clear, I am not talking about the things we readily admit to.  If you are chronically tardy, and know it, technically you are not living in denial (about that).  On the other hand if you buy a fresh red velvet cake from Publix every week, but insist you are on the Atkin’s Diet, you are in denial.  If you think it’s NOT R. Kelly on that sex tape (because the creative mind that brought you I Believe I Can Fly and Step In The Name Of Love couldn’t possibly be a pedophile), you are the Mayor of a town called denial! 

Sometimes we stay in denial, because we think it’s easier than admitting the truth.  While squeezing into those size 9 ½  shoes might seem easy…wouldn’t your feet appreciate you more if you stopped denying the fact that you really wear a size 11?  If you know you have high blood pressure and hypertension, step away from the fried chicken and rib tips!  McDonald’s French Fries every other day will not help you shed those unwanted pounds, and you are in denial if you think the fact that you’re ordering small fries will make a difference.  Yes denial is easier, but the road to hell is paved with easy choices!

            So Epiphany Blog, this week’s assignment is “easy”.  We are going to collectively renounce our citizenship to a town called denial.  As for me, I’ve been living in denial….in the shopaholics subdivision.  Yes, my name is JerzeeChick and I’m a Shopaholic.  I always referred to it as having a shopping habit, but it’s pretty much an addiction!  Sweet Jesus be a 12 step program for people that shop too much!

There, I said it.  I’ve taken the first step, and if someone would be so kind as to provide me with the remaining eleven steps, maybe I can kick this thing.  In the mean time, what are you in denial about?  If you are the Rona Barrett of your office, yet refuse you admit you’re nosey…..sorry Boo you are the Alderman of a town called denial!  If you’ve been engaged to the same man for more than three years and really believe a wedding is forthcoming, there is a Denial Chief of Staff position with your name on it! 

Seriously though, we ALL have some pipe dream or bad habit we need to let go of, and the first step is to stop denying it. So come on Epiphany……don’t be shy J.  What have you been denying for far too long?


May 14, 2008 Posted by | Help, Life, Society | 7 Comments

Who’s In Your 5?????

Once upon a time, kids were scared to cut up in the presence of anybody’s mother!  Even if your own mom was miles across town, you knew Miss so-and-so had unwritten authority to open up a can of “act right” if you got out of line. Now kids will run past you in the mall, step on your feet, and not say excuse me.  They will fight and cuss in your presence and not bat an eye.  They blast lewd music in the church parking lot and make you wonder what pack of wolves raised them.  Sometimes we gasp and shake our heads, but at some point we always think back to our own behavior and confirm that we “knew better” at that age.  Most of us grew up in houses with mother’s that WERE NOT HAVING IT!  Luckily in addition to Janice, I had Aunties that DID NOT PLAY!

As you all know Mother’s Day is Sunday.  To all the Mom’s out there: have a wonderful day.  We appreciate the love (sometimes disguised as discipline) you’ve shown over the years.  For this week’s blog, I’d like to shout out my Fave Five Moms!  BBJ aka Big Bad Jan (she hates it when I call her that) will always have the Mommy Emeritus spot in my heart.  If my life were a T-Moble cell phone plan, my Fave Five would be:


  1. Mommy: No matter how old I get, she’ll always make me bread pudding (*hint hint*) and will forever treat me like her personal assistantJ.    
  2. Aunt Fern: If I didn’t list her name first after BBJ she’d kill me J.  Also because she is the voice of reason when the drama gets too loud and especially because she taught me “…it’s not about the cowboys and the Indians”!
  3. Mary: This one is a little weird because technically she is not a Mom.  But she’s an Auntie, so she made the cut!  Mary is the calm in the midst of the storm for so many people in her life.  She’s a nurturer, and we all count on her wisdom.  To know Dweebie is to know Mary, and knowing Mary has definitely been a blessing for me….and I still want to be like her when I grow up!
  4. Miss Linda: Because she makes the best Peach Cobbler EVER! And also because she redefined Strong Black Woman for me!  Where others would have given up, she stayed strong and definitely came out on top.
  5. Karen: She’s my favorite Hey Mon! In spite of being a wife and mother she still has time to be a very supportive friend.  We struggle through lent together every year, and share a shopping addiction.  We mourned the end of The Wire, and look forward to the new season of Big Brother!  I call her when I’m in crisis and she always makes time….(now all I need her to do is read that other book) J

Mother’s are a blessing….just ask anyone whose mom is no longer with them!  To all of the Mom’s out there (and especially my Fave Five), thank you for all you do!  I chose the five women that support and inspire me the most. So Epiphany Blog……it’s your turn! Who are the Mom’s in your Fave Five?



May 7, 2008 Posted by | Family, Life, Society | 7 Comments

If I Could…..

I am sure many of you received the “close your eyes/you’ll like this” email this week. It’s a power point slide show filled with all the things we used to do. It talks about your mom yelling for you from the front porch and catching lightening bugs in the summer. It talked about the days of popsicles that had 2 sticks so you could break it in half and share with a friend. It mentioned Red Rover and Mother May I. There was even a little eeny-meeny-miny-mo! 

            If you’ve seen the email you can attest to how cute it is and I’m sure the nostalgic moment made your day. I pretty much smiled as I watched the slide show because it brought back so many good memories. In a world where gas is $3.55 a gallon, where tiny tears has no concept of “bowing out gracefully” and it took Star Jones how many years to see the light…..that little email slide show was right on time!

            I started thinking about those good old days and wondering what it would be like to go back. I wouldn’t want to alter anything just maybe spend a few days as my former self. So my question this week simple if you could re-live a period in your life, what would it be and why?

            I wouldn’t go back to elementary school. Don’t get me wrong playing hide and seek was fun but I’d rather go back to something a little more substantial.  Those transition periods in my life when I was moving from one thing to another for some reason hold particular significance to me. The summers of 1995 and 1996 were fun!  I was pretty much carefree. I could take I-95 to the turnpike whenever I needed to go home, and those were the summers of some of the best hip hop mix tapes ever created. (I still have my DJ Clue mix tapes somewhere around my house)!  *pauses to play the Get Money remix*

            If I knew then what I know now, I might have studied in college a little more, or maybe been a computer science major.  If I could go back, I wouldn’t have signed up for that first credit card freshman year!  The last thing I needed was ANOTHER squeegee bottle in my dorm room, and that first credit card was a slippery slope for me. Like most of us at that age, I had no concept of interest rates, credit reports, and late fees…..nor did I fathom how persistent those credit card people could be when you didn’t pay on time!

            If I went back even further, I might want to visit the summer of 91.  That was the break between high school and college when I was counting down the days until I left for school, but enjoying every minute of summer league basketball.  I am not sure where you all are originally from, but in my part of Jersey, summer league basketball was IT in the summer.  We had all the “all-stars” from Scott and Essex Catholic.  Those Seton Hall Prep boys could ball, and Orange High represented too.  Sometimes we would go down to the “hole” to watch the games, but most of my summer evenings were spent in parks or high schools in East Orange and Orange, watching the homies compete!  We’d watch several games, and then walk home (or jump on the New Jersey Transit bus).  Some nights I’d be lucky and get a ride home after a detour to Applegate Farms, but regardless, there was no better past time for us than watching summer league basketball games. 

            Will kids growing up now have those memories in seventeen years?  If the right club song came on right now I could do the “give it up” or “stolen car” all night, but will kids really be repping Soulja Boy in the year 2025?  How many of us are really going to want to lean with it and rock with it twenty years from now?  I know our parents probably said the same thing about hip hop back in the day as they did the “jerk” and “shot gun”, but I think we can all agree Slick Rick/Dougie Fresh/Boogie Down Productions/P.E./New Edition et al have stood the test of time!  Those artists created the soundtrack to our lives, and when we reminisce, often times it’s the music that makes us smile even bigger.  *pauses to do the wop*

            Okay Epiphany back to my original question….if you could go back in time where would you go and why?  I’d like to think I wouldn’t change anything, because ultimately all those experiences brought me to where I am today, but would you change your own history if you could?


 PS: Many apologies for missing the Wednesday Wind-UP this week.  The “NFL” drama kind of threw me off track.  At any rate, this song never released a video, but I thought it was worth a listen…


















April 23, 2008 Posted by | Life, Old School, Society, Wednesday Wind-UP | 7 Comments

Work Foolishness

I work with a bunch of fruit loops.  These people have no social skills and if it wasn’t so socially unacceptable I would walk around squirting milk on this band of merry misfits! I know we all say we work with crazy people, but in my case it’s actually true.  Here is my question to you Epiphany, how do you deal with work foolishness?

Some things I can easily avoid.  They love a pot luck around here.  Not just any pot luck, it’s a pulled pork love affair up in this camp.  Be it a birthday, holiday, or vendor sponsored luncheon these fools will cream their panties over those barrels of pulled pork (with a side of Brunswick Stew)…YUCK.  I don’t eat pork when my mother makes it, so the likelihood of me fixing myself a plate piled high with the pulled pork that the aforementioned fruit loops have breathed all over is slim to none!  Ugh….and they stay scratching, and rubbing and I haven’t spotted a bottle of anti bacterial in anyone’s office but my own……but I digress.

The purpose of today’s blog is to open the dialogue about office foolishness, and how it should be dealt with. What do you do when you notice people move around the stuff on your desk while you are on vacation?  Granted it’s not your bedroom or anything, but don’t you deserve to return to neatness and order whenever you walk up to your desk?  So what if the new temp used your chair while you were on medical leave, does that give him the right to throw away all your sticky notes and paint his name on your inbox with multi-colored white out?

Sometimes when I am working from home, one of the squatters from our other building might need to use my office.  I’m cool with that so long as he/she leaves everything in its proper condition.  On my bulletin board there is a sign that reads: If you plan on utilizing this office (or anything in it) while I am away, please be sure to return EVERYTHING to the state in which you found it.  Including: The Docking Station, Keyboard, Mouse, and Telephone!!  Please also take your trash, crumbs, water bottles, coffee cups and papers with you when you depart and refrain from removing my sticky notes!  My sign works rather well.  Only in cases of true desperation will a squatter use my office, and trust and believe they all know better than to leave their used Styrofoam cups on my desk!

So I can maneuver the potlucks, I know how to handle those Messy Marvin’s that want to use my desk…..but there is still one situation where the foolishness tends to rise too high too fast and I find myself annoyed and malicious!  There is a NUT on my team (we can call him NFL for “nutty fruit loop”). He probably hunts wild pigs (to bring in for the potluck) on weekends. I think he’s ex military or something, but he’s a big bruiser with a half comb over half spiked hair do.  He’s a know it all type that does not know how to talk to people.  NFL works my last nerve, because he’s always LOUD and WRONG (terrible combination)!  He has half the people around here running scared because he likes to raise his voice and talk smart in meetings.  The rest of the fruit loops around here just gasp and walk away, but I’m from Jersey!  Rather than let that NFL get my pressure up, I sent out the right email using the right human resources buzz words (you know the ones: bullying, inappropriate, hostile work environment).  Let’s just say JerzeeChick has a free work from home pass for a minute!

Some people might disagree with my methods, but I had two options:

  1. Step to the NFL and look like the unprofessional black girl with my neck rolling and my fingers snapping.  I could have broke him down and let him know who he was messing with for real, but I do have an image to protect J
  2. Let the system work for me!

Now y’all already know I have mastered this Corporate Hustle thing so I am all for letting the system work for me!  Tell me Epiphany Blog….how do you handle work foolishness?


April 16, 2008 Posted by | Laughter, Life | 5 Comments

The Blame Game

Yesterday morning I heard a news story about the alarming drop out rates across the country.  It seems that the graduation rate of high school students is below 50% in many of our nation’s larger urban cities.  As if that wasn’t distressing enough, yesterday evening I heard a story about a bunch of third grade students in a small country town that plotted to attack their teacher  *gasps*!  It seems as though the teacher disciplined a student for standing on a chair in class….and it was on!  As many as nine children formulated a plan to take her down.  They had a broken steak knife, handcuffs, three different kinds of tape, ribbon, and a crystal paper weight.  I don’t know how malicious you were in the third grade, but these kids were on a mission to “teach” her a lesson.  They equitably divided the attack duties to make sure someone was covering the windows and someone else was cleaning up the blood when they were done.  What’s really going on?????

It’s so easy for people to dismiss the actions of the third graders as “isolated”, but once upon a time Columbine was isolated.  The incident in Jonesboro, Arkansas where the students pulled the fire alarm and shot at their classmates from the woods was “isolated” once upon a time too.  Be it rural areas or big cities, ghettos or suburbs; there is a problem with our kids and if we keep treating “isolated incidents” while never looking at the big picture it will never get better.  

As is usually the case in Atlanta, several radio shows had people call in to debate who was to blame in the case of the 3rd graders. A lot of people blamed the parents.  Some people blamed video games/rap music, but one fool had the NERVE to blame the teacher!  He actually said “we need to wonder what this teacher did to these kids to make them want to attack her like that.”  WHAT??????  He said he is a parent and he knows sometimes teachers don’t know how to talk to kids.  I am going to go out on a limb and say his kids are probably the main ones disrupting the class and acting like fools!  (Not that I am saying all teachers are perfect, but when you have to spend more time on discipline than you do on educating, you are entitled to lose it every now and then)!

What happened to children respecting adults…regardless?  When I was in school acting out was never an option, and I knew enough to tell my mother if I ever felt that an adult was getting out of pocket with me.  Back talk was not accepted in my house or in the presence of any adult that knew me.  Obviously that whole “respect you elders” thing was lost on these 3rd graders in Waycross.  Who do we blame for the apparent lack of respect with today’s youth?

I am not one to point the finger at music and video games simply because I think if you are on your job as a parent, you monitor and control what your child sees.  Not that you can shield them from all forms of violence, but you should at least keep it in perspective so that they understand the difference between fact and fiction. If you let the television and computer raise your children then you have no idea what they’re being introduced to.  At the same time, you can be the most on point parent out there, but your child can get caught up in some mess due to peer pressure.  Some people say kids will be kids and sometimes they just have to learn the hard way.  Now that crap I don’t believe!  Kids need discipline and structure, and that certainly should begin in the home. 

Thankfully in the case of the 3rd graders in Georgia, nothing happened because an adult was alerted to their plan.  Unfortunately the media attention given to this situation will probably give too many other bebe’s ideas about attacking a teacher they don’t like.  So what do we do?  The world most of us grew up in sadly no longer exists, but who do we blame?


April 2, 2008 Posted by | Children, Education, Life, Opinion, Society | 5 Comments

Arrogance vs. Audacity

Back in August I wrote a post about the arrogance of men. It was peppered with tidbits about the foolishness of some elected officials and how at the root of every public undoing there is probably some paper trail leading back to a dangerous liaison with someone other than his spouse (if you missed it, click on the Archive link on the right, and read the posts from August). Fast forward a few months as we see some people never learn. We also see while women may not be as arrogant as men, we do tend to exhibit a form of audacity. Most women know how to show out and shut it down….even when we are DEAD WRONG. It’s a gift I guess! Arrogance or audacity, which is worse?

We’ve seen a text message scandal with a prominent politician. Sending over fourteen thousand text messages to your boo is never a good idea when you are married, but to then lie about it under oath and think the truth would never come out….arrogant!!!!

We’ve seen a governor caught up in a prostitution ring. Did he not learn anything from the Heidi Fleiss and DC Madam debacles? Note to any politician dropping stacks of money on prostitutes……you’re gonna get caught CLOWN! Stop being arrogant, and invest that money in your child’s college fund (because WHEN you get caught your career is over).

Arrogance is bad, but is it really worse that audacity? Is the cheating politician really worse than the stupid/ignorant/controversial Geraldine Ferraro? She had the audacity to say Barack Obama has only progressed this far in the Presidential Race because he’s black, and refused to back down from her statements. She further went on to say everyone else was racist for taking her comments out of context. I’m sorry, but how can she call the Obama campaign racist when she said: “If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position. And if he was a woman, he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept.” So is she saying Obama is the affirmative action candidate benefiting from quotas or something? In this case her audacity trumps the cheating husbands. She finally resigned from her official post at the Clinton campaign, but she is still doing the talk show circuit defending her remarks…..AUDACITY!

Birds of a feather flock together. Last week Tiny Tears did it again with her audacity too. First there was that red phone ad (and for the record, I watched The West Wing faithfully and we all should know the president is not a unilateral entity making major decisions without consulting his cabinet. This is America, not Cuba)! Then there was so much fanfare regarding her alleged comeback (again, for the record, Obama had more delegates before last weeks primaries, and he still has more delegates now)! Not only is she claiming to have won Texas (Barack walked away with 99 delegates and she walked away with 94), she is also saying there should be a joint Clinton/Obama ticket with HER as president. Talk about AUDACITY….how does the person in second place try to put the gold medal around her neck, and hand the silver medal to the real winner?

As a woman, it pains me to say it, but the audacity displayed by these chicks bothers me far more than the arrogance/stupidity of the aforementioned men. Arrogance is defined as overbearing pride, while audacity is defined as aggressive boldness or unmitigated effrontery. So Epiphany blog my question is simple: arrogance or audacity, which is worse?


March 12, 2008 Posted by | Life, Opinion, Politics | 4 Comments

Turn The Other Cheek?

In 2002 the country was riveted by the disappearance of Laci Peterson. She was pregnant and missing on Christmas Eve. I remember watching the news as her family pleaded for her return. Initially her husband was not a suspect, but eventually her body, and the body of her unborn child were found and his alibi unraveled. He was found to be a liar, a cheater, and a murderer. When the jury returned a verdict of guilty and sentenced him to death, I wasn’t surprised and I certainly didn’t feel bad.

In 2005 when I saw reports of Brian Nichols’s courthouse shooting, I thought for sure he’d fry. It’s 2008 and he hasn’t even gone to trial yet, but if they do eventually give him the death penalty I probably won’t feel bad. It’s odd because I have always been a bit of a racial profiler when it comes to the death penalty. I never wanted to see a black man be sentenced to death (unless of course there was irrefutable proof that he committed a heinous crime against a child), but Mr. Nichols never inspired me to feel any compassion.

Last year Jessie Davis went missing in Ohio. She was about nine months pregnant, and we later learned that her two year old son witnessed her murder. Her boyfriend, an ex-cop, murdered her, and dumped her body. He was black, she was white, and I figured he would certainly get the chair! Shockingly the jury spared his life today. Even more shockingly HER mother took the stand during the penalty phase of the trial and asked the jury not to sentence him to death.

Like I said before I have never been a proponent of the death penalty per se especially as it relates to black men, but Bobby Cutts in my opinion was someone that deserved to die. He killed his pregnant girlfriend; in front of their two year old child. He rolled her body in a rug; in front of their two year old child. He left their son home alone in a dirty diaper while he went to dispose of her body. He took his homegirl from high school with him to dispose of the body. Not only is he a murderer. Not only is he a bad parent, he’s a JERK who knowingly ruined so many lives…and the homegirl is an IDIOT (If he will roll his baby momma up in a rug trust and believe a neck chopping is in your future if you EVER get out of line)! Her eleven year old child is now left without a mother while she serves out her sentence for helping Bobby’s dumb behind!

So here is my question: Where do you stand on the Death Penalty? In an effort to have the jury spare Bobby Cutts’s life, Jessie’s mom said, “I serve an amazing God, Bobby. A God that forgives and heals and restores people.” I believe God restores, and I believe God heals, but I also believe that if someone did to my loved one what Bobby did to Jessie, I could not so willingly turn the other cheek. Do you think it is ever okay to sentence someone to death, or is life in prison penalty enough? How capable are you of turning the other cheek?




I released my third book, “One Finger Left”, on Valentines Day. If you are in the Atlanta area I will be having a book signing on Sunday (March 2nd) at Vino Libro. If you are not local, the book is available on Barnesandnoble.com and Amazon.com. It is actually on back order on Amazon but they should have it back in stock soon. Also you can go to my website: www.vikkibell.com. Send me a comment with your email address and mailing address. I will send you a paypal invoice and you can pay via any major credit card. I will send you an autographed copy, and there will be no charge for shipping!!!





February 28, 2008 Posted by | Life, News, Opinion, Society | 4 Comments

Front Row Seating

My cousin sent a very poignant email recently. It was something she had received a long time ago, but she thought it was worth revisiting. The basic gist of the email was our life is a theatre and everyone does not deserve a front row seat.

If you visualize an actual theatre, and put yourself onstage, you want the front row filled with the people that you know love and support you. When you look out into your audience, the first faces you see should be the smiling faces of your biggest supporters. Those people that give you supportive glances and cheer you on at all costs deserve a front row seat. Those eye rolling haters need to be relocated!

Sometimes we get so caught up in the “hook up” mentality, that we forget everybody doesn’t deserve to be front and center. I hate watching award shows and seeing the rappers bring their ENTIRE CREW on stage, or talk about how they “keep it real” by surrounding themselves with the homies. Most of us grimace because we know better….or do we????? How many relationships do we hold on to simply because we feel obligated? Aren’t we basically doing the same thing? Sure, there is no Grammy being exchanged, and People Magazine isn’t there taking the picture, but if we are subjecting ourselves to the negative energy of some old friends or family members do we really know better? Why give someone such a prime seat in your life if their presence only brings you down? Granted they may have tenure, but that does not automatically entitle them to be in your front row.

Some people should be on the Mezzanine or Balcony level because their negative energy will only bring you down. Knowing someone since you were five does not automatically get them into the front row. We need to recognize that we can’t totally cut ourselves off from some of the negative people in our lives, but we can minimize their impact on our performance. Not putting someone in the front row doesn’t mean we love them any less; it just means we love them from a distance.

On this stage that is my life, I will reserve the front row seats for the people that inspire and uplift. I will put the voices of negativity in the balcony, and save the mezzanine for those that drain or discourage. I will put the people I WANT to be close to in my front row, and the people that I want to love from a distance can simply sit someplace else.

This logic works both ways. While we are busy booting people out of the front row, maybe there is someone that deserves an upgrade. Has someone you may have unknowingly relegated to the balcony caught your attention because they always seem to cheer louder than those in the coveted front row?

Take a minute to think about your theatre. Is your seating arrangement one that benefits you, or have you stacked it to your own detriment? Do you have all the right people in the front row, or is it time to open up that mezzanine/balcony and shuffle some people around?


February 14, 2008 Posted by | Family, Friendship, Life | 4 Comments


There is no title to this blog because it is more or less me rambling about the foolishness I experienced this past week. Let me start by saying everyday I’m given is a blessing, and I am grateful to be able to experience life, but do you ever just feel like Michael Jackson in the Wiz? Every now and then I want to say, “why are these crows bothering me” (scroll down and see yesterday’s Wednesday Wind-UP for further clarification)!

You can’t win, you can’t win no way, if your story stays the same
You ain’t winnin’ but it’s nice to see you, I’m awfully glad you came
Better cool it ’cause it ain’t about losin, and the world has got no shame…

For starters, why are people still using cheesy pick up lines from 1979? I’m sure you all know how I feel about being single in the city. Imagine my disgust and repulsion when a dude called me “a tall glass of water” today and proceeded to tell his friend he would “drink a whole tub of my bath water”. I threw up a little in my mouth! Who still says stuff like that? I’m guessing he has beads hanging in his house separating his living room and dining room. You can’t break even and you can’t get out of the game!

On to the next batch of “the world has got no shame” mess….Did you know Michael Vick’s DOGS are getting their own reality show????? What is this world coming to when some pit bulls can get their SAG cards and shows like The Wire are going off the air? I mean maybe the Barksdale/Marlow feud ending has more to do with the writers wanting it to end than the ratings causing it to end, but I’m just saying….. Pit Bulls have a show and Stringer Bell is resting in peace *cries a little bit* Later for watching Michael Vicks pits in rehab, I want to see Amy Winehouse on her twelve steps!

Moving on….I was happy to know that Obama won South Carolina, but I was a little perturbed when I saw the clip of Bill Clinton dismissing the win and trying to say it was simply racial (because Jesse Jackson did it in ’84 and ’88). Obama is a viable candidate (the Kennedy’s love him), and he happens to be black. I was too young to vote for Jesse, but I know I wouldn’t elect Al Sharpton as Alderman of my ant farm. Nothing against Al or Jesse, but I think we can all agree neither of them were destined for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue *grabs pom poms* GO OBAMA GO!!!!! (sidebar: Super Tuesday is in 5 days. Don’t forget to vote!)

And finally for my bit of “you’ll be spending your little bit of money while somebody else rides for free” mess, do you remember the Brian Nichols case? The short version is this: in 2005 he escaped from custody, shot up a bunch of people, and went on the lamb. For those of us that can’t get out of jury duty, and can’t get out of a speeding ticket, how does it feel to know they captured this fool ON TAPE fleeing the courthouse and several witnesses saw him kill a judge? And on top of that the judge presiding over his case recused himself today. Basically the judge gave an interview in which he said something about everyone knowing Nichols was guilty so his defense team had to plead insanity. WHAT?!?!?!?!? I’m sorry, but don’t they tell you in judge school something about remaining impartial? I don’t know what’s worse….R Kelly stepping in the name of love all over the justice system, or Brian Nichols Harlem Shaking his way out of the death penalty.

Okay, so I’m climbing down from my soapbox now….your turn!


January 31, 2008 Posted by | Life, Opinion | 6 Comments

I Won’t Grow Up!

I have been at war with my jobs PC support department all year (granted we are only 9 days into the year but that is not the point)! As far as work is concerned, my January is not off to the stellar start I had hoped (but trust; I will be working the Corporate America Hustle ALL YEAR)!!!!!! I remember when the first couple of weeks of the New Year were about wearing all your new Christmas clothes and writing those reports about “How I Spent My Christmas Vacation”. Now January is about last year’s numbers and closing the books for the fourth quarter. Being a grown up is quite overrated!


In 1983 I got my first Cabbage Patch Kid. She came with a silly name….Suzanna something. My cousin and I decided that was not a suitable name for a black baby so we changed her name to Kristen (because apparently Kristen was much more ethnic). I had a little carrier for her and a diaper bag too. I remember being very disappointed because my mother wouldn’t let me buy a box of pampers with my Christmas money. Even though little Kristen wore the same pamper day after day, she was fly in her fake fur jacket with the matching hat. I waited with baited breath until the birth certificate with her new name came in the mail. Now all I wait for is my W2’s (btw, can someone tell me why it takes them until January 31st to mail out). No more fashion shows for the first two weeks of school. The highlight of January has become gathering receipts and getting all my deductions straight for the tax guy. Yes being a grown up is quite overrated *sighs*.


I got the aforementioned Cabbage Patch Kid before they reinvented them with the corn silk hair. Kristen had that knotted up yarn mess that had a permanent part and was bald underneath. Any girl knows that the best part of having a doll is being able to hook her hair up in the styles your mom won’t let you wear outside the house (you know fifty-eleven multi-color barrettes and too many parts). Kristen was forced to rock those same two ponytails everyday, but I kept her bows cute! In 1983 my mom footed the bill for my hair (I had a head full of thick hair, and sadly Jan could barely make a straight part). Now I spend too much money at the beauty shop because I lack the patience and proper styling tools to contend with my thick hair. When I compare my 1983 hair expenditures (which were nil because I only had to pilfer ribbons from my own barrette jar for Kristen’s hair), to 2008 (deep conditioners, trims, touch ups), again I say being a grown up is very overrated!


I remember back when people used to pass notes. If a boy liked you, he might send a note through your best friend asking you to go with him (I am not sure where we were “going” but I digress). Now you get the guy in the club that says “What ‘cho name is”, or in my case the guy in the frozen food aisle that doesn’t believe me when I say I’m a vegetarian because in his opinion “I don’t look like I ever smoked no crack”. Boys in high school had game, now the men you meet only know how to “play games”. We used to fall asleep on the phone talking to people that liked us, now we might get a text message or a forwarded email in the middle of the day. Being a grown up sucks sometimes!


Do you remember what it was like to go to bed at 2am and still get up in time for an 8 o’clock class? Nowadays, if I am up until 2am for any reason, rest assured I am calling in or working from home the next day. Better yet do you recall what it was like to EAT ANYTHING you wanted whenever you wanted and suffer no repercussions? Now we have lactose intolerance and acid reflux to contend with (not to mention the fear of a bulging gut). What about when Tylenol and hot tea cured everything? An occasional swig of Robitussin or Triaminic would keep you straight back in the day, but now we have God only knows what cluttering our medicine cabinets. I would gladly kiss the elliptical machine goodbye and go back to the days of gym class and cheerleading practice if I could.


What happened to us? All things considered, I think we were a much healthier generation than kids today. We actually danced at the parties *does whop and cabbage patch for emphasis*. Most of us walked or caught the city bus to school (which still required a little walking). We had to do stuff around the house (kitchen cleaning, yard work, and changing channels as needed). Our snack selection was limited (Bon Ton potato chips, crunchy cheese doodles, Drakes Cakes, Blow Pops and green apple Now-A-Later sticks). On paper it seems like we did everything right, yet here we are. Most of us would kill for the mind (and body mass index) of our youth. If I knew then what I know now, I would have kept Kristen (because I’m sure she’s worth a fortune on EBay now), and I would have enjoyed being a kid for as long as I could! If I had to do it all again, I would take a page out of Peter Pan’s book:

I won’t grow up (I won’t grow up)

I don’t want to wear a tie (I don’t want to wear a tie)

Or a serious expression (or a serious expression)

In the middle of July (in the middle of July)

And if it means I must prepare

To shoulder burdens with a worried air

I won’t grow up, never grow up, not me!


January 10, 2008 Posted by | Fun, Life, Old School | 4 Comments

….In 08

2008 is here.  How many New Years Resolutions have you made?  How many have you already broken?  Personally I try not to make resolutions because it’s all just a set up.  I used to make these great declarations and then by Valentine’s Day I was back to my old routine.  What’s the point?  Granted sometimes when you want to start “fresh”, January 1st is a good time to do it, but what are you doing to make sure you stick to the resolution?

If you have resolved to lose weight, please tell me you are doing more than getting a new gym membership.  The people that hit the gym hard in January work my nerves!  I go to the gym year round, but from the first week in January until about mid February, I can’t get a parking space or a treadmill between 5 and 6 pm, because all y’all NYRP (New Years Resolution Perpetrators) are out in full force.  If you really have resolved to losing weight, start living like a skinny person.  Hit the malls hard and start buying outfits in the size that you aspire to be.  A pair of $200 jeans two sizes too small hanging in your kitchen will keep you from snacking between meals!

If you have resolved to finally open your own business this year, order your business cards and open that bank account.  You can talk about your business plan all day and all night, but if you don’t actually do SOMETHING different than you did in 07, you are gonna be saying the same thing when 2009 begins.  If you want to be a caterer, stop talking about it and start selling cakes at work.

If (for some reason which I don’t understand) you have designated 2008 as the year you will find a husband *sighs*, try a new approach….i.e. STOP LOOKING!!!!!  A watched pot never boils and you always find exactly what you need when you’re not looking.  By the same manner also, if 2008 is the year in which you plan to find a wife, here’s a piece of advice…..chances are you won’t run into her at the strip club.   I’m not saying you should go out and buy a wedding dress (please Lord, don’t do that), but if you aspire to be in a committed relationship maybe you should work on those aspects of your life that may not be conducive to happily ever after!  For example: if you are still creeping with your baby mama, you are NOT ready for a serious relationship *rolls eyes*!

Don’t get me wrong, some New Years Resolutions are good.  A friend was telling me she was resolved not to settle in 2008.….Excellent Resolution!  So many people didn’t get to see 2008, so the least we can do is make the best of it and not settle for the foolishness that slowed us down in 2007.

As for me, in 2008, I am taking a page out of MJB’s book (I told y’all I was a big time STAN for Mary J).  I’m a GROWN WOMAN!  I’m going to work what I got and show myself love!  (I got to enjoy myself regardless).  I appreciate my life, and at the end of the day it’s JUST FINE. 

Like I said, I don’t really do resolutions, but I like to reflect on the previous year and decide what I can do to make the New Year better.  We are all blessed to see 2008.  Whether 2007 was a banner year, or one filled with drama and strife, it’s a done deal.  We can’t go back, so let’s realistically look forward.  Resolutions aside, what are you going to do in 2008 to make it a better year than 2007?


January 3, 2008 Posted by | Holidays, Life, Society | 5 Comments


The word fascination is defined as: the state of being intensely interested or attracted.  The year 2007 was one filled with fascination for me, and in the grand tradition of all the magazines and journalists out there that do a year end review, I decided to highlight those things, good and bad, that fascinated me this year.

1. Our society can sometimes be fascinated by the tragedy’s that befall the common person.  For about five minutes we are glued to the television, and then something new pops up and that particular tragedy’s fascination fades into the background.  The senseless act of violence perpetrated on Dashon Harvey, Terrance Aerial, Natasha Aerial, and Iofemi Hightower  is something that will never fade into the background for me.  These children walked where I walked and played where I played and were victims of a few sick individuals’ lapse in morality.  While their story is no longer headline news in Newark, New Jersey it is something I will never forget. 

2. How is it that R. Kelly is a free man?  Okay, innocent until proven guilty, but how can his trial continuously get pushed back?  How can this fool Step In The Name of Love all over the justice system?  More importantly how can we still support him?  The fact that people still buy his concert tickets fascinates me.  The fact that other artists still tour with him fascinates me.  I know, I know…..innocent until proven guilty, but if it was your sister or your cousin on the tape would you really be able to get your 12 Play on? 

3. How is it that Michael Vick got fast tracked to the federal penitentiary?   “The R” is still living life in the fast lane, while number 7 is on lockdown!  Granted Michael pled guilty and thus sentencing was apparent, but I’m just saying…..Dogs vs. Little Girls?  The dog people were up in arms at the mere thought of Michael Vick maintaining any endorsement deals, but the outcry was minimal when “The Pied Piper of R&B” announced this most recent tour. The priorities of mainstream society *translation: the moral majority propped up on their soap boxes* fascinates me.

4. Barack Obama fascinates me!  I don’t know how you feel about his political platform but the mere notion that we might have a black president in my lifetime is intensely attractive.  I won’t insult the man by saying “he speaks so well”, but I do think he is politically brilliant in that he has ideas that could really do something to build a better country for our children.  Not trying to campaign for him (I’m no Oprah after all), but I hope you will at the very least hear the man out, and if you like what he has to say VOTE IN THE DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY!!!!!!!

5. I am not trying to say women are the Delilah to every political Sampson, but the Arrogance Of Men continues to fascinate me (please read my blog from August 9th for further clarification). 

6. We see the violence in Darfur, and we know how HIV/AIDS has ravaged the continent of Africa, yet our government continues to pour money into a civil war we can’t win.  I support the troops…I support the theory that we need to BRING THEM HOME!!!!  I am fascinated by the tomfoolery that is the Bush Administrations policy on foreign affairs and how they conveniently decide to mind their business when the lives of African boys and girls are at stake…….but turn into major but-in-ski’s when there is oil to gain.

            We all watch the news, and/or read our favorite online reports daily.  Some over do their Media Take Out diet, while others keep the CNN and MSNBC ticker scrolling across their computer screen.  (Information is so readily accessible; you can’t help but be drawn in by something). We all have a story that held our interest or attracted us this year.  Was it the talk of Beyonce and Jay-Z’s secret wedding?  (It had better not be the fact that Brit-Brit’s sister is pregos).  Are you waiting with baited breath to see how Oprah will influence the 2008 elections, or are you still tripping over the fact that an NFL coach bounced like a thief in the night?     My question to all you Epiphany Bloggers is simple. What has fascinated you this year?


December 20, 2007 Posted by | Celebrity, Entertainment, Life, Opinion, Society | 6 Comments