What's up? By now my regular readers realize I completely fell off of doing the "LOL" series where I find five things that make me laugh every week. That's kind of a killjoy because anytime I laugh, I have to remember what amused me. But I still like doing these blogs every week and reminded myself of it when reading the March issue of Ebony
magazine. Their "Spring Clean Your Health
" recommended "Begin a gratitude journal. Keep track of what brings you the most joy." That's pretty much what I've been doing with the 2011 series "Five Things I'm Obsessed With
" renamed "Five Things I'm Digging
" and then the 2012 series "What are you smiling about
?" But there's some stuff that doesn't make me laugh out loud. They just make me want to give somebody a round of applause or a head nod of approval so I'm switching up the flow to incorporate all three -- things that make me laugh, things I recommend reading and things that I proudly co-sign. You know from the right-hand disclaimer that there are still topics I pretty much can't touch publicly (oh do they get a write-up in my print journals!), but these are recommendations (ahem, "head nod of approval") that I think are safe ground.
I missed three LOL weekly series so there will be 15 for this week. Let's nod! 1. Drake "Started from the Bottom":
I couldn't care less what anybody else says about him. He's one of the few rappers of today that I can tolerate. I think he's attractive, but I like his charisma, attitude and skill far more. (It just doesn't hurt that I like seeing him, too.) I cracked up with his friend making a reference to Alicia Keys' video "You Don't Know My Name
" with the "I look way different when I'm not in my work clothes." That cashier skit was entertaining, but I love the entire video and song. But my ultimate favorite line is: "I'm a worry about me, give a f**k about you." HEAD NOD OF APPROVAL!2. HP Envy M6 Notebook PC:
I'm feeling like a cast member on "Bourne Identity
" with the finger pad log-in option (it's going to make me lazy about remembering passwords though), but I am totally in love with my new notebook. I finally had to let my last one go after seven years of replacements, repairs and being loyal to Gateway, but after the letter "o" fell off in my hands, that was enough. I couldn't see putting anymore money into that notebook so I'm on to a new one. And Windows 8 is impressing me, too. I've only had this new computer for two days but I can't see how I could not like anything about it. HEAD NOD OF APPROVAL, Hewlett Packard. 3. LA Times columnist Gerrick D. Kennedy's column "Chris Brown and Rihanna: Let's Move On":
I am beyond tired of hearing slick comments about Chris Brown. He made a terrible mistake at the age of 19, but what he did was no different than what other young men (or women) do when growing up in a household with exposure to abuse. People are acting like what he did was absolutely alien to the planet. Was he wrong? Dead wrong. But I was over it a couple months later. And if Rihanna is over it, I think the rest of look like absolute idiots holding a grudge for her and acting like fortune tellers. Nobody can tell whether he'll repeat his actions but him. I keep hearing females say he didn't apologize to him. What makes you so important that he should? He doesn't know you. Never met you. He owes you nothing. He volunteered with the Jenesse's Center
. That's a huge step in the right direction. I actually asked a columnist where were her stories on Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson. She claimed she wrote columns about them but I never got a link nor do I see even an ounce of anger directed at the latter two celebrities the way I do Breezy. Let it go. HEAD NOD OF APPROVAL to Kennedy for his second article I agree with on the Rihanna and Chris Brown situation. Let them live. It's hypocritical to bully someone who you think is a bully and solves nothing. If anything you both leave pissed off. He's mad people won't let a four-year-old topic go. You're mad that he managed to win awards, sell records and get Rihanna back. And guess what? If you spent even half that amount of energy on your own life, you'd be a much happier person. If her family is still angry, I 100% understand but don't agree with them meddling either (unless there's a second incident of abuse). They have a right to be defensive of her. But the rest of us are here to be fans of the music.
I'm an oxymoron. I'd be classified as a loner but there are moments when I will decide to be dead in the center of a club dancing with a cutie or chatting it up on social networking sites or going on vacation and talking to random people. But as quickly as I socialize, I'll shut down without warning. I like social networking. It's a fun place to meet people and have public discussions about your favorite subjects. In elementary school, I had 50 penpals from all over the world (Ghana, London, L.A., Toledo, etc.) so I've always been an enthusiast about meeting new people and learning about new cultures. However, I am the type of person who would go on a vacation alone and enjoy "me" time. Did it. Went to Maui on my 30th birthday
for 11/11/11. ** One of the top five best moments of my entire life! Met fascinating people that I don't think I'd have stopped to talk to if I was with someone else. But in the back of my mind when I talk to strangers or when I wrote penpal letters (that died out by high school) or tweet or leave Facebook statuses, I never forget one thing: "I don't know you."
If you can't walk into my home right now, open my refrigerator and/or ask me about my parents on a first-name basis, you don't really know me.
There is this strange belief on social networking sites and in discussion forums that we really "know" people we talk to online. Makes as much sense to me as someone saying, "I know how to cook" when they really only know how to operate a microwave. This past week I've run into entirely too many people airing personal information on public sites. You don't have 3,000 real friends on Facebook so why are you telling them about how you're unemployed, a bill collector called and snatched up the last of your pay? Why air out to your hundreds of FBFs that your boyfriend invited his ex to a party and you've been dealing with him for __ years? I got tired of a Twitter user who would blow up my reply line when I didn't respond to her queries fast enough, retweeted me so much that my timeline looked like hers and I finally blocked her. She followed me four more times, sent a message through my website and then sent a public tweet upset that she couldn't follow me. I was really annoyed by the last stunt because now it brings unnecessary attention to me via her followers since I was tagged in the tweet, but I still won't say the username. Never met her. Never seen her in person. But people feel comfortable enough to make you feel obligated to talk to them because you "know" them online. The problem is you really don't. And I'm a big fan of the block feature. If I don't like what you're talking about in person, I'll erase you from my social circle so why would I humor the craziness from some random person online? GTFOH.
I completed a post about this for 2011
so I'll keep it going for this year, too. I started on Saturday night, Dec. 14, and finished at 3:51 a.m. on December 30.
ACTORS (ALSO HANDSOME MEN ~ "EYE CANDY" SOUNDS SEXIST)
1. Idris Elba
2. Ian Somerhalder
3. Michael Ealy4. Denzel Washington5. Ryan Gosling6. Yasiin Bey (aka Mos Def, equally excellent rapper and actor)7. Hugh Laurie8. Omar Epps9. Rick Gonzalez10. Richard Gere (I love those squinty eyes)11. Brad Pitt (without the beard and the bizarre Chanel No. 5 commercial)12. Robert Downey Jr. (I love everything he's in)13. Don Cheadle14. Lance Gross15. Terrence Howard16. Robert Pattinson17. Columbus Short18. Laurence Fishburne (Handsome guy in "Higher Learning" and "School Daze")19. Mekhi Phifer20. Taye Diggs21. Michael B. Jordan (the actor, not the athlete)ACTRESSES
1. Phylicia Rashad2. Nia Long
(I was so happy when she tweeted to me about my lucky day)3. Sanaa Lathan4. Erika Alexander5. Meagan Good6. Gabrielle Union7. Taraji Henson8. Dana Owens (aka Queen Latifah)9. Regina King10. Jasmine Guy11. Zoe SaldanaART1.
"Thursday Night Book Club
" (based on original work "A Friend in Need
" by Cassius Marcellus Coolidge [Literary Arts Society])AUTHORS1. Karen Siplin2. Langston HughesBEAUTY 1. Blistex Lip Medex (the only chapstick I use)2. Bonne Bell lipLITES clear gloss3. Cover Girl Professional natural lash mascara4. Fashion Fair
"Dark Brown" lip liner5. Iman
"Brass" lipstick6. Posner Luxe Lids Eyeshadow Chocolate Collection 45001BOOKS (OUTSIDE OF MINE)1.
"Wolves: Capturing the Natural Spirit of these Incredible Animals
" by Shaun Ellis and Monty Sloan2. "Hot Cripple" by Hogan Gorman3. "I Got This" by Jennifer Hudson4. "I Suck at Girls" by Justin Halpern5.
"Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness?: What It Means to Be Black Now
" by Toure6. "The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey
" by Walter MosleyCHICAGO1. Loving Hut restaurant2. The New 400 TheaterCOMEDIAN1. Kevin Hart2. Chris Rock3. Bernie Mac (R.I.P.) 4. Jamie Foxx5. Whitney Cummings
6. Betty White ("Off Their Rockers
" was gold because of her; talk show interviews are always funny, too)FASHION1. Jennifer Lopez purple dress (on homepage slideshow)2. Daisy F
uentes green and blue dress
(on homepage slideshow)3. Camel 4" boots4. Black sweater dress (My mother's old dress that I'm rocking the hell out of at the age she used to wear it)FOOD1. Runaway Potato at Loving Hut2. Spicy BBQ at Loving Hut3. Lemon Tofu at Loving Hut4. California Rolls at Chi Tung5. Thai Fried Rice with tofu at Chi Tung6. Crab Rangoon at Chi Tung 7. Filet o' Fish at McDonald's (Yes, I realize this makes me a pescatarian)8. Market Pantry russet boiled potatos9. Archer Farms salt and vinegar chips10. Archer Farms blue corn with flaxseed chips11. Macaroni & Cheese (Mom's at Thanksgiving)12. Dressing (Mom's at Thanksgiving)13. Collard Greens (vegan version)14. Sweet potato baked potatoes15. Sweet potatoes (Mom's at Thanksgiving)16. Market Pantry baked potatoes with margarine and imitation bacon bits17. The reaction at work to my vegetarian chili (Cooking isn't my favorite thing to do but I totally enjoy it when people like what I make)18. Pittman & Davis lemon squares19. Vegetarian lasagna (I only eat lasagna at Christmas; it's a tradition)20. Chocolate mint tea with soy milk and green or brown tea from Argo Tea21. Garbanzo/chick pea salad from Argo Tea22. Fresh croissants from Argo Tea23. Quaker Snack Mix (Baked Cheddar Flavor)24. Vegetarian platter from Boston Market (mashed potatoes, cornbread, vegetable stuffing, green beans sweet potato casserole)25. Vegetarian bacon strips (MorningStar Farms)26. Vegetarian Chik Patties Original (MorningStar Farms)27.
Vegetarian Original Sausage Patties (MorningStar Farms)28. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Sundae (Weight Watchers Smart Ones)FRAGRANCES
1. Fergie's Outspoken 2. Victoria's Secret Heavenly3. Glade's Clean Linen candle4. Glade's Cool Serenity candle5. Glade's Cashmere Woods candle6. Glade's Moonlit Walk candleHAIR1.
Hot 'N Gold Ionic Soft Jumbo Bonnet Dryer2. Vitale relaxer3. Vitale olive oil hair mayonnaise4. Shea Moisture's Deep Treatment Masque5. Sofn'free Milk, Protein & Olive Oil Strengthening CremeHEALTH1. Weight Watchers program (I lost 31 lbs. I love the Points Plus program. I'm not a member anymore, but once I mastered the nutrition and fitness guidelines I was set!)2. Flirty Girl Fitness complimentary week of fitness classes3. The exercise routine on "The Family Hustle"
with T.I. in the health club4. The exercise routine with Yolanda on "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills"5. The exercise routine with Shaun T on "Steve Harvey"
(Eventually I'll buy "Insanity
.")6. "Diet and Exercise Diary" Hinkler journal from Barnes & Noble clearance rack7. Shaun T's "Hip-Hop Abs" tapes
(I still enjoy exercising with all of them)8. "The Trainer's Edge: Killer Abs and Back" with Michael Olajide 9. GAIAM "Fit Body Yoga" featuring Gwen Lawrence ("Core Definition" is still the hardest one to do)
10. Weight Watchers Point Plus calculator11. SuperTracker Food Tracker from USDA (I use it almost daily)HISTORIC ICONS1. President Barack Obama2. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.3. Harriet Tubman4. Malcolm X5. Frederick Douglass6. Rosa Parks7. Nat TurnerHOME DECOR
1. My new brown couch
2. Glade electric warmer plug-ins3. Mavea water filterLIQUOR (OTHER DRINKS)
1. Chocolate martini at Olive Garden
2. Godiva chocolate martini at Chi Tung3. Whiskey sour (My favorite go-to drink since college)4. Captain Morgan's red wine5. Arnold Palmer Half & Half iced tea6. Lipton ice tea7. Bigelow green tea8. McDonald's iced coffee (medium, no liquid sugar)MEMORIES (HAPPY ONES ONLY)1. My mom and I going to the NBC studio to see "Steve Harvey Show" live2. Flirty Girl Fitness spa manicure and waxing for my birthday3. Drinking Captain Morgan's red wine with my grandfather in his backyard
(the dogs next door hate me but they behaved as long as he was around)4. Giving up my Loving Hut boycott and going two times over my birthday vacation (still can't believe I talked my meat-loving co-worker Darcel and cousin Hareder into going)5. Olive Garden trips with Mom (always messed up my fitness journal record but any dinner date with my mother is a good time)6. Manicure nights at Aunt Marguerite's apartment
(R.I.P. September was hard
)7. Working late night shifts after moving to the fourth floor and a management change (I love the night shift and would never work a day shift in my life if I could help it. I was very cool with the management change and like my new floor better, too.)8. Visiting the Black Ensemble Theatre for the first time to see "The Marvin Gaye Story: Don't Talk About My Father Because God Is My Friend" for my mother's birthday9. Showing up to work to see a beautiful bouquet of flowers from my co-worker Jenniffer after my great great aunt passed; I was not expecting that at all. 10. Going to my brother's Halloween birthday party; I had a great time, saw a bunch of his in-laws that I hadn't seen in years and enjoyed terrorizing one of my cousins, too.11. Cutting up all of my store and regular credit cards (The Frontline episode about how much credit card companies scam you really woke me up. I have been far more disciplined with my spending and am actually paying off cards instead of increasing balances.)12. Being so loyal to walking Faith anytime I visit my parents' house that I went out with two-inch heels on while it was storming, grabbed my umbrella and a thick coat, and still walked that dog (who stopped at every single tree and pole) on Thanksgiving night13. Getting the birthday card in the mail from my brother with us as kids that said, "I got your back" on the inside. I thought that was pretty cool and I wasn't expecting a card at all because he's not usually a card sender. He sent two. (In my defense, I swear it looked like a stuff monkey!)14. My boss reenacting what it's like to walk a family member's dogs (She's funny regardless but she's even funnier when she tells a story.) 15.
Reading "Keeping the Promise
"; I miss Mr. Ellison. I've worked with a lot of PR reps but he was the most efficient, polite and fascinating to talk to about his own writing history. R.I.P. I'd read everything he ever wrote.16. Making the November page in my mother's 2013 photo calendar.
I made one side super silly photos of us and the other pretty photos, but the silly photos are the best ones (IMO). My favorites: Her puckering her lips out and me hiding in a box.17. Surprise visit from my brother-from-another-mother Shuntal at Christmas. I haven't seen him in person in at least eight or nine years. It was very good to see him although he came for other circumstances. 18. Hanging out with my cousin Yolanda on Christmas Eve. I never see her on Christmas, only Thanksgiving, and I really had a good time catching up with her.19. Catching up with my old girl scout leader Lela (won't include last name) is always fun. I was a girl scout from the age of 9-14 but I have made a point of staying in contact with her. She's hilarious and always a pleasure to be around. 20. My grandfather accusing me of biting my dog on a calendar photo. I told him Faith nuzzled up to my face. His response? "Well, somebody's got to initiate the kiss." 21. Surprising Aunt Marguerite with a visit from my grandfather for her second 100th birthday party
(Doesn't a centenarian deserve two parties? I think so!) Click here
to see the video of some friends and family singing to her.22. Setting up my cousin Hareder's website for a pageant (I learned a lot more about her and enjoyed reading her responses to FAQs. It was educational and far more enjoyable to create than I expected.)23. The look of shock when I saw the guy who came to pick up my old couch from a Craigslist posting. Man, he was cute. I never told him that, but I was equally impressed seeing him in a suit the second time around when he came to get the throw pillows that I didn't need.24. The look of appreciation from the mother and daughter who picked up the Taylor Lautner umbrella and blanket I gave away on Craigslist.25. Seeing Al Green live at Ravinia (I'd never been to that concert before; it was cool even on the lawn)26. Christmas card from Georgia B. every year (I'll always enjoy hearing from the family, and it makes me think of grandmother every time)27. Getting a call from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois as the first Go Red Fan of the Week winner for the "It's Heart Awareness Month" competition; It was for my photo with Faith (with me wearing a red sweater) and I won a gift card
.MOVIES1. "Think Like a Man"2. "Marley"3. "Breaking Dawn (Part 2)"4. "The Notebook"5. "Taken from Me: The Tiffany Rubin Story"6. "Crazy, Stupid, Love"7. "Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned"8. "Justin Timberlake: Futuresex/Loveshow"9. "Friends With Benefits"10. "Higher Learning" (my favorite movie for two decades)11. "Love Jones" (timeless movie)12. "Something New" (Made me a Sanaa Lathan fan for the first time)13. "Iron Man"14. "Iron Man 2"15. "Losers"16. "Lincoln"17. "Flight"
cstatic to see John Goodman in a recent film)MUSIC (singles and artists)
1. Afroflow "Call Us By Name
"2. Afroflow "Ethiopia (Everything Will Be All Right)"3. Afroflow "It Makes You Feel Good"
4. Afroflow "My Element
"5. Afroflow "Warrior's Rhythm"6. Akon "I Wanna Love You"7. Akon "Mama Africa"8. Akon feat. T-Pain "I Can't Wait"9. Akon "Rain"10. Al Green and Queen Latifah "Simply Beautiful"
11. Andre 3000's verse on T.I.'s "Sorry
"12. Beyonce "4"
13. Bob Marley "Waiting in Vain
14. Bob Marley "One Love
15. Bob Marley "Three Little Birds
16. Bob Marley "Redemption Song
17. Bob Marley "Satisfy My Soul
18. Bob Marley "Turn the Lights Down Low
19. Bob Marley "Jammin
20. Brad Paisley "Alcohol
21. Brad Paisley "Ticks
22. Brad Paisley "Waitin' On a Woman
23. Brad Paisley "Oh Yeah, You're Gone
24. Brad Paisley "The Pants
25. Brad Paisley "I'm Still a Guy
26. Brandy "Two Eleven
27. Brandy "Afrodisiac
28. Brandy and Monica "It All Belongs to Me
"29. Bruno Mars "The Lazy Song"
30. Chris Brown "Fortune
31. Chris Brown "Marvin's Room
" on "Boy in Detention
32. Damian Marley "Move
33. Damian Marley "Mr. Marley
34. David Banner "Malcolm X (A Song to Me)
35. David Banner "Swag Remix
" from "Sex, Drugs & Video Games
"36. David Essex "Rock On"
37. Drake "Comeback Season
"38. Drake "Take Care" (the single)
39. Elle Varner's "Perfectly Imperfect
40. Finatticz "Don't Drop That Thun Thun
"41. Fugees "Killing Me Softly"
42. Frank Ocean "Thinking About You
"43. Game feat. Meek Mills "Scared Now" (Sometimes it's hard to shake a ratchet song.)44. Herbie Hancock "Chameleon"45. Herbie Hancock "St. Louis Blues"46. Herbie Hancock "Watermelon Man"47. Ice Cube's verse on "You Gotta Lotta That"48. Ice Cube "Hood Mentality"49. J. Cole "Can't Get Enough"50. J. Cole and Drake "In the Morning"51. Jay-Z "Dig a Hole"52. John Legend "Green Light"53. John Legend feat. Pusha T on "Tonight"
54. Jerrod Niemann "What Do You Want
55. Justin Bieber feature on "Ladies Love Me
" from Chris Brown's "Boy in Detention
"56. Luther Vandross "I'm Only Human"57. Maino "That Could Be Us"58. Marcus Canty "Won't Make a Fool Out of You"
59. Marvin Gaye -- anything by him
60. Mary J. Blige "Someone to Love Me
61. Mary J. Blige "Just Fine
"62. Michael Jackson "Butterflies"63. Michael Jackson "Stranger in Moscow"64. Miguel "Adorn"
65. Nas "Life Is Good
" (album)66. RaVaughn "Same ol BS"
67. Rihanna "Unapologetic
68. Sade "Love Is Stronger than Pride
"69. T-Pain "Five o' Clock"70. T.I. feat. Cee
"71. T.I. "Wonderful Life"72. T.I. "Hallelujah"73. Timbaland feat. Drake "Say Something"74. The Game "Scared Now" (Every blue moon I grow attached to a ratchet song.)
75. Usher "Looking 4 Myself
" (album)76. Yasiin Bey (formerly known as Mos) -- anything by him77. Young Jeezy "I Do"NEWS1.
"Adam Lanza, and others who committed mass shootings, were white males
" 2. President Obama speaking up about gun control3. Clarence Page's Page
from the Tribune4. "The Rachel Maddow Show"5. "The Last Word" with Lawrence O'Donnell6. Anderson Cooper
and his "Ridiculist
"7. BET's "Don't Sleep" with T.J. HolmesPOEMS1. "Harlem Sweeties" by Langston HughesPOLITICS1. Election night 2012
in the Tribune's newsroom2. Pres. Obama crying while thanking his campaign team in Chicago3. Chicago Tribune's Election Center updates on Election night4. Chicago Tribune's Local Election updates on Election night5. Bill Clinton's "brass" speech during Obama's campaign (I was too young to realize how fascinating and intelligent a speaker he was when he was president; I get it now)QUOTES1. "Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance." -Samuel Johnson2. "Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is not." -Henry Van Dyke3. "A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes." -Author Unknown4. "Your eyes tell more than your mouth can maneuver." -Shamontiel (I made it up in college)5. "Home is where the beach is." -Author Unknown6. "Keep smiling. It makes everyone wonder what you have been up to." (Sign I took from my grandmother's home when she passed away)RADIO SHOWS1. Power 105's The Breakfast Club
(interviews ONLY, DJ Envy is the only cool one) 2. Big Boy's Neighborhood3. Herb Kent on V1034. Boolu Master
mixesSKIN CARE1. Up & Up cocoa butter lotion (deep conditioning)2. Caress' Endless Kiss (Creamy Vanilla & Sandalwood) soap3.
Caress' Evenly Gorgeous soap4. Caress' Sheer Twilight soap5. Nadinola's
cocoa butter cream6. Tropic Sun Aloe Vera Gel7. Suave Cocoa Butter with Shea lotionTECHNOLOGY1. Shopkick app (The Smartphone coupons really do work; just scan at checkout)2. T-Mobile® myTouch® Q - Black 3. Instagram phone appTELEVISION1. "The Vampire Diaries" (only after Damon allegedly sired Elena and every scene with Klaus and Rebekah)2. "Whitney" 3. "Love You Mean It" 4. "Joan & Melissa" (I cry laughing at the medical marijuana episode when they jumped in fully clothed.)5. Luther on "Key & Peele"6. Tyler Perry's "For Better or Worse"7. "Luther"8. "Sleeper Cell"9. "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills"
(The other season extras
are entertaining)10. "Common Law"11. "Boss"12. "Frontline"13. "Degrassi: The Next Generation" (favorite episode is Jimmy [Drake] on the roof with Hazel when he gave her the necklace)14. "Friends" (The turkey "I love you" episode with Monica)15. "Ally McBeal" 16. "The New Adventures of Old Christine"17. "Daria"18. "Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell"
(I was ecstatic to see Yasiin Bey on the episode about Superstorm Sandy)19. Jamie Foxx on "Ellen" with the horse/black woman impersonation and talking about black women holding back while dancing20.
"The Steve Harvey Show
" (The microphone boy is my favorite episode!)21. Gloria for calling out Bambi on a wolf ticket on "Basketball Wives LA" and for staying on her work hustle and out of the cattiness that is that show
(I can't tolerate the Miami version at all even though Jennifer is cool)22. "House"
(I laugh every time House dances with that beatbox and his cane)23. "Roseanne"
(I tear up every time Darlene does that poem for her class)24. "The Golden Girls" (Fav episode: Dorothy and the Secret Service agent with the jewelry thiefs)25. "The Cosby Show"
(I own all eight seasons)26. "A Different World" (When will they release the other seasons?)TURN-ONS (physical)1. Men who wear their pants at a regular size (no extra sagging baggy jeans and absolutely no sagging skinny jeans)2. Men who keep their haircut neat (Even if you're rocking dreadlocks, keep them neat)3. Men who keep their facial hair neat (Still a big fan of short goatees)4. Tall men (I wish I could shake this one because it's so superficial, but I've always been a magnet for tall guys. I don't know what's up with 5'11" to 6"5 men but that's who I end up dating at least 95% of the time.) 5. Men with smooth, full lips (I still laugh out loud remembering the time my godmother Sheila yelled out, "I can't take it! Give him some chapstick!" at the screen when Wood Harris was on "Not Easily Broken.")6. Men who like to smell nice (body oil, cologne, whatever, just a nice fragrance)7. Smooth skin (I don't have a complexion preference. I've dated guys who were Bizzy Bone's complexion and then went straight to Morris Chestnut's complexion, but a smooth shave is sexy.)8. Men who enjoy smiling and have nice teeth (ex. Morris Chestnut, Idris Elba, Taye Diggs)TURN-ONS (mental)1. Men with full-time steady employment (I have no interest in grown-up dependents. I have been supporting me for a decade, but can you support yourself?)2.
Men who care about their health (If you think HIV/AIDS isn't real, have never been tested and randomly have unsafe sex, please keep your suicidal body away from me. When a guy doesn't care about his own health, there's 100% chance he couldn't care less about yours, ladies.) 3.
Men who know there's a time and place (and a level) for PDA (If you're grabbing a woman's butt in public, stick to chickenheads.) 4.
Men with positive role models in their lives (You can tell a lot about a man by how his father treats his mother [or stepmother] and how often his father was in his life. And just because a woman gave birth to you doesn't make her a great human being. Watch how he treats his mother and
men. You'll learn how he feels women should treat men from that, too.) 5. Men with their names on their leases (I'm too grown to deal with somebody's roommate and I haven't dated a guy who lives with his Mom since I was 20.)6. Men who like to be active/eat healthy (I've never dated a vegetarian [although I am one] but because I'm so adamant about regular exercise and eating healthy, it's cool to meet guys with equal mindsets. Guys I've dated have always been either athletic or into health.)7.
Men who own their own cars (Men with no cars think everyone is their taxicab, love to tell you where to go and never pay for parking. I tried being open-minded about this with two guys who had suspended licenses. It got old very quickly. It still boggles my mind at the guys I meet with no cars who are offended by public transportation. Buy a CTA pass and stop freeloading on everybody else's gas.)8. Men who understand and follow the motto that the words "woman" or "lady" are not synonymous with "bitch" or "ho."
They're two different groups of people. Listen to Jay-Z's song "Bitches versus Women." I agree with it. 9. Men who spend wisely (If you want to splurge, that's your business but please do something else with your money besides budget for strippers, weed, jewelry and video games. Savings accounts, 401(k) and CDs help you create a future.)10.
Men who like to read for fun (Newspapers [besides the sports section], books, magazines [something other than just entertainment articles])11. Men who
respect individuality (I applaud the Drakes of the world who will look at an industry and still be themselves instead of the carbon copy of what they think other people want them to be. Just be you. Somebody will appreciate it sooner or later.)12.
Men who realize a date means going to a place where neither of us are looking at our own furniture, our own food or our own porch. You're a grown up. Leave the couch.13. Men with manners ("Please," "thank you," "excuse me" and "after you" never hurt anyone.)14. Men who believe in monogamy (I've never caught any guy I was dating cheating, but I've heard too many horror stories. If you plan on having sex with multiple women, save her the waste of time and energy. Date; don't be in a relationship. And don't even bother to ask me to date you if you have a girlfriend or wife. It'll never happen.) 15. Men who do not use the word "nigger" or "nigga" like it's a compliment. (It will never be and both men and women sound absolutely disrespectful every time they say it. The meaning has not changed. Expand your vocabulary. And I say this from the perspective of someone who used to argue about how it was okay to use it. NMU changed that.)16. Men who
can fix things, especially mechanics or appliance repair people (I swear blue collar jobs like this are so underrated. I totally respect white collar jobs, but men who can fix things are great
people.)17. Men who
are laid-back (I'm not the most nonchalant person in the world so I tend to shy away from other people who are glued to drama. The best relationships I've been in were with guys who preferred peace over looking for beef, and we parted on good terms and occasionally stayed in touch over the years.)18. Men who know who the hip-hop pioneers are and actually respect them19. Men who can beatbox (Maybe it's because I'm a fan of old school but my eyes bug out every time I hear a guy start beatboxing.)20. Men who like to dance (Whether you're a natural like Chris Brown, groove like 2 Chainz or just two-stepping like Jay-Z, as long as you can keep the rhythm, we're good to go. I like to see a guy let down his guard and just snap on the dance floor though.)21. Men who aren't the jealous type (Protective does not mean paranoid, and "platonic friendship" actually does happen. Don't let negativity overpower you.)22. Men who have a sense of humor (If you are funny, you will always be a step above any other guy I'm looking at. And if you make faces just to make me laugh, I will adore you even more.)WEBSITES1. SlicethePie.com2. Twitter.com3. Ada's Student Etsy store (also on my Mom's website)4. GrooveShark.com5. DatPiff.com6. iHeart Comedy Radio7. TIVO8. AOL Listening Party9. AOL Online Radio10. Project Playlist11. BarackObama.com12. WhiteHouse.gov13. Chicago Tribune's Health page (Yes, I update it therefore I am 100% biased)14. Chicago Tribune's Travel page (Yes, I update it therefore I am 100% biased)15. McDonald's Full Menu Food Tracker (Easier to eat healthy and know what you eat)16. The Good Men Project17. Shutterfly18. DreamMoods.comYOUTUBE (OTHER) VIDEOS1. Drake's interview with Katie Couric2. DMX sings "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"3. President Obama sheds a tear after being reelected4. Brandy's "Put It Down" video with Chris Brown5. Obama's Kiss Cam video6. "The Unexpected" sorority step routine on "Awkward Black Girl" (start at 2:28)7. "Think Like a Man" cast talks about battle with the sexes8. "Think Like a Man" cast with Regina Hall acting a fool9. Tijuana Jackson interviews "Think Like a Man" cast10. Jamie Foxx on Saturday Night Live as a Ding Dong
Today I listened to a topic on an online radio station about making technology work for you. Never got to share my thoughts (was on hold for 20 minutes, amazing to me considering the hosts are forever complaining about people not calling in and only responding on Twitter and Facebook, but that's another story). But I did want to post this blog for those who are genuinely interested in how to make technology work for something other than Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
When I first went to college, the first university I attended made laptops a required expense in my tuition. I thought that was unfair considering I had no interest in computers (this was in '00 though when technology wasn't as hot as it is now), but since I couldn't get out of paying for it, it sat in my dorm. I used it mainly for Blackboard, which teachers required for getting assignments, etc. But the more I kept playing around with the computer, the more I wanted to learn. Before I knew it, I'd created a website using Yahoo Geocities (which was "big" at the moment), how to do basic HTML design for websites and updating content management systems. I sincerely don't think I'd have learned all that sitting in an uncomfortable computer lab with a gang of my friends and strangers around me. It took a university putting it in my face for me to want to learn more.
And even though I wasn't into technology and rebelled against buying or learning any new devices, it has paid my bills for the past few years.
1. Android MyTouch Smartphone: I don't know if it's a lack of interest in the latest technology or the fact that I work with technology for a living, but I've never been one who has to have the latest upgrade or invention first. (Clearly you won't see me in line for the iPhone 5.) My grandfather got a computer before I did, and the only reason I got one was because it was mandatory in my college tuition. My mother has an e-book, and I still don't. I got a cell phone after much nagging about driving back and forth eight hours while in Missouri at school. The only reason I got an mp3 player was because I got tired of my CD walkman falling while I was working out and getting bored listening to the same 12-16 songs when I was out jogging or walking for exercise. So clearly I would be the last person to get a Smartphone. (My grandfather and I had matching flip phones. That's how much I rebel against what's "in," especially when I'm staring at computers all day long and used to be glued to a phone back in the day when I was a receptionist.) With all of that said, I'm obsessed with this phone. Now I finally understand the hype of these gadgets. I've messed around with the games, the music, the Internet, loyally check the weather application, everything. I'm still not going bonkers over technology and think texting is entirely too much trouble (why pay when I can send a free e-mail?), but I do understand the hype now. I bought it solely to have GPS (got tired of getting lost while driving) and for a camera phone, but I have yet to use either. I've been playing around with the rest of the applications on there.
2. E-mail invite from my cuz: I got an e-mail from my cousin Saturday afternoon dropping a super transparent hint about how we shouldn't just see each other at funerals. She always was a straight shooter. Good to hear from her (every time) and will be happy to catch up with her this week and hang out. It's always a lot of loud talking, a million stories about what drama we're going through, and cracking jokes and laughing. She and I couldn't be more different if we tried (physically and mentally) but I love her to death. She's great, even when she drives me nuts (on occasion, NOT NOW -- in case she reads this).
The Internet is handy, useful and sometimes educational. But it can also make otherwise social people become nosey and shy people just plain creepy. When I see an egg as your Twitter icon, I think you're creepy. Same goes for folks who hide behind celebrity photos or object icons. If you're that terrified to be seen, it's probably not a good idea to have a social networking
account, emphasis on the "social" and "networking." I got an e-mail from work a couple of days ago about me boycotting Amazon
. That makes sense if you're an Amazon viewer. I have 981 reviews. It's no surprise that I'll be seen. But the same e-mail said this person checked out where I work, found out I was a Scorpio and wants to know where else I shop.Folks, please stop opening conversations with zodiac signs. When Biggie Smalls did it, we rapped along. ("Most of these fellas think they be macking but they be acting/Who they attracting with that line, 'What's your name, what's your sign'?/ Soon as he buy that wine I just creep up from behind"
) And if you're on the Internet so tough that you found my Amazon boycott, where I work and my zodiac sign, why in the world would you need to ask me where else I shop outside of Amazon? C'mon, now, Ebay is not unpopular. I think by now we've all heard of sites and stores like Best Buy, Target and their websites. As far as I know, Half.com hasn't lost its edge either and iTunes is probably outranking Amazon's MP3 downloader. The shopping question is fair but the rest was just too creepy. And if you contact someone at work, you should be asking them about work! And now I get a Twitter follow from the same strange username (object icon, last name can't be a real name) not even a day after the e-mail. Slow down.
I've been a supporter of Amazon.com for well over a decade. The company was helpful in side income when I was in school (buying and selling used textbooks, selling collectible items and at one point electronics). I used to own an Amazon Store Card, an Amazon Credit Card, an Amazon Vine account, a Seller Marketplace account and an Amazon Connect account. So why would I boycott a company that I've been a supporter of for so long? Sometimes loyalty to a company won't matter to that company, especially if it can take your money and disregard your concerns in the first place. I have exactly 981 Amazon reviews on that site and have enjoyed reviewing books, music and movies over the years. I've also enjoyed networking. What I didn't enjoy was seeing a review about Toure's book "Who's Afraid of Post Blackness?" from this account.
Everyone has a right to his/her opinion, and I can deal with someone's opposing political views. What I won't tolerate is comments like,
"Blacks will still take the side of an obvious black criminal over the police officer who arrested him." (Inaccurate. Everyone is innocent until proven guilty.)
"For every Obama there are 10,000 black underclass who are dangerous to the wider community but especially to the black communities in which they live." (Absolutely no credible source to back up this random [and more than likely made-up] statistic.)
"According to Ebony Magazine, the three most respected black leaders in the black community are Jackson, Farrakhan, and Sharpton, three of a kind, anti-white, anti-semitic, and empowered through grievance." (I asked for a year/date of publication from him considering the rest of his review was so anti-black and I doubt he's ever picked up an Ebony magazine. He could not provide one. I also don't think that standing up for the rights of African-Americans makes you "anti-white." Al Sharpton for one has been very persistent about there not being a "black America" but a "United States of America."
)Now I can't stop someone from having an opinion, but if Amazon's policy is to not accept
reviews that are "obscene or distasteful content
" or "profanity or spiteful remarks
," then I don't understand how that review passed through. I've observed Amazon take down reviews from people for just not reading a full book, but a review saying "Only when this pathologic sense of grievance is left behind will the black community be able to join the rest of the civilized world" is okay? So we're not civilized either?
1. The Breakfast Club:
I have no idea why I looked up The Breakfast Club. I'm not from New York nor have I ever been to New York. I had never heard of Charlamagne The God, Angela Yee or DJ Envy, but I remembered this joke Charlamagne made on Twitter about how folks better not mess with Chris Brown at an awards show because he showed up in jean shorts. I thought that was kinda funny and from the amount of followers, I figured he was probably popular but I had no clue why. For whatever reason I still can't recall, I looked up The Breakfast Club on Power 105.1
Monday and I've been listening to this show at work everyday. They are hilarious, and I usually can't stand to hear people talk on the radio. I like these personalities though.2. Hood State of the Union:
I found out about this while listening to Charlamagne talk to T-Pain. He said something about T-Pain and Kevin Hart stealing an idea of his, and I looked him and Lil Duval. Although I didn't find the rap they were talking about, I did luck up on all of these ridiculous videos
about their views on entertainment. I laughed through almost all of them.
The reason I liked doing the "Five things I'm digging right now
" was because it forced me to find the "bright side" of something. I need to do that more often and thought that was a cool way of doing it (original idea courtesy of Andy Cohen). So in the same spirit of it and since I'm done with that for 2011, I'm going to do a list of 365 things I've been digging all year. They're not in order, just the first things that pop into my head that I liked the entire year. (I started today as of 2:30 p.m. I finished on 12/31/11 at 10:38 p.m., in between running errands. HAPPY (almost) NEW YEAR!)BOOKS1. "The John Carlos Story
" by John Carlos2. "Is Marriage for White People? How the African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone" by Ralph Richard Banks3. "The Vampire Diaries" (Stefan's Diaries only)4. "There Are No Children Here: The Story of Two Boys Growing Up in The Other America
" by Alex Kotlowitz5. "The Conversation" by Hill Harper6. "Michelle Obama: The First Lady in Photographs" by Deborah Willis and Emily Bernard7. "Change for a Twenty" (I genuinely enjoy my own books)8. "Round Trip" (I've said repeatedly it's better than "Change for a Twenty")9. "Love Your Life" by The Oprah MagazineCHICAGO (SURROUNDING AREA)
1. Looking out the window on the #147 CTA bus at Lake Michigan2. Walking the four-mile trail at Skokie Northshore Channel3. Walking the two-mile trail at Lincolnwood Channel Runne Park4. Quench! restaurant on 79th (Pretty inside with a seating area)5. Chi Tung6. Chicago Public Library7. The New 400 Theater8. RCN (cable)EYE CANDY1. Ian Somerhalder2. Taylor Lautner
(Facial hair compliments him; his athleticism makes him breathtaking)3. Idris Elba
(No matter how many times "Daddy's Little Girls
" comes on, I watch it)4. T.I.5. Chris Brown (He's growing up to be really handsome)6. Morris Chestnut7.
Justin Timberlake8. Brad Paisley (Dated a guy who looked exactly like a light-skinned black version of him; started heavily listening to country music from November to December)9. Paul Walker10. Alex Meraz (very good-looking in person)11. Ian Ziering (Didn't pay much attention to him on "90210" but when I saw him at Comic Con last year I was so surprised at how gorgeous he is. Age has done him well!)12. Trey Songz
(Super friendly and as attractive in person as he is on his videos)13. Joseph Morgan (Klaus from "The Vampire Diaries")14. The guy who lost his balance on the Red Line and fell on me (woke me RIGHT up, and his outfit was impeccable; I couldn't stop checking him out)15. Drake16. Richard Gere (He looks better with age, don't know how he does it)17. Tone Kapone (Don't listen to the radio much but I saw him at the 2012 Real Men Cook and the Sprite StepOff a couple years ago. He's really cute and I never knew what he looked like before.)18. Q-Tip19. Evan Ross20. Obie Trice (He's underrated in the hip-hop game and my gawd, THOSE LIPS! Every video I see with him in it, I look at his lips 75% of the time. He's kiss-worthy.)FASHION1. Multi-colored shell bracelet from
Queen Ka'ahumanu Center in Maui2. Ralph Lauren Polo Jeans Co. orange fleece3. Light yellow zip-up sweater4. Gray suede/sweater heel boots5. Brown suede/sweater heel boots6. Black sweater flat boots7. Black cape with gray lining8. Baby blue top with brown afro woman silhouette9. Multi-brown shades wooden bracelet from Maui10. Black hematite bracelet from The African Store
(located in Ford City)11. Kohl's shopping
(When there's a coupon, I never leave empty handed.)12. NY & CO shopping
(Sale or not, I never leave empty handed.)FOOD1. Archer Farms salt and vinegar chips2. Thai tofu fried rice from China Hut3.
Kona Hawaiian Blend Micro-Roasted Coffee (drank it every morning)4. Gardein stuffed turk'y5. Gardein Mandarin orange crispy chick'n6. Chocolate martinis at Olive Garden7. Salad dressing from Olive Garden8. Mushroom ravioli from Olive Garden9. Fresh bread from Olive Garden10. Water with a splash of lemon juice11. Avocado slices with tomato slices12. Tortilla chips13. Granola, fruit and yogurt plate from IHOP14. Hot water cornbread15. Black eyed peas (vegetarian)16. Collard greens (vegetarian)17. Macaroni and cheese (my mother's)18. Dried apricots19. Archer Farms dark chocolate cocoa mix20. Open Nature's Dark Chocolate Hazelnut Heaven (granola mix)21. Green tea22. Brown tea with lemon juice and honey23. Grapefruit juice24. Grapefruits25. Red apples26. Strawberries27. Bananas28. Strawberry banana smoothies29. McDonald's iced coffee (light ice, light sugar)30. McDonald's Filet o' Fish (the only fish I can handle eating for Omega 3)31. Starbucks hot chocolate32. Argo Tea iced coffee33. Corn on the cob34. Mashed potatoes from Ruby Tuesday's35. Simply Asia Spring Noodles bowl36. Watermelon37. Green grapes38. Red grapesFRAGRANCES1. Fergie's "Outspoken"2. Lady Speed Stick "Fresh Infusions"3. Cool Water4. Victoria's Secret "Heavenly"
(original fragrance)HAIR1. Vitale Olive Oil relaxer2. Parnevu leave-in conditioner3. Silk wrap caps4. Pantene shampoo for women of color5. Pantene conditioner for women of color6. Distinctly Basics by Rachel Rose black ponytail holders7. My haircut from Donte's on 9/17/2011 (thanks
Francine!)HEALTH1. Doing Beyonce's "Let's Move" routine for 30 days2. Swimming laps in the Maui Seaside Hotel pool3. Renewing my membership and working out at Bally Total Fitness (now L.A. Fitness)4. The results from my yearly physical (everything is tip-top, minus weight)5. Logging at least four workouts per week on TeamBeachBody
6. Julie's Health Club blogs
7. Chicago Tribune's Health page
8. LA Times Booster Shots
9. Updating @BlackHealthNews
on Twitter10. "Mistletoe may help kiss away some ills
" article (fascinating because I only knot about it for kissing)11. "Muscling past myths" (It forces me to get up more at work)HOME APPLIANCES1.
Breville BEW600XL Hot Wok2. Brother MFC-440CN multi-printer3. Insignia 26" LCD TV 720P4. Full-size bed5. All 18 pillows on my bed6. Labrador Retriever comforter with pillows on my bedHOME DECOR1. Looking at Halloween decorations2. Black couple embracing and kissing (painting above my bed)3. Ebony cover of Marvin Gaye about "black cool"4. N'Digo cover of Pres. Barack Obama (Nov. 13-2008)5. Mos Def photograph of him sticking out his tongue while in a car driver's seat6. Wall photograph jewelry boxMEMORIES
1. Watching my 99-year-old Aunt Marguerite open her Christmas photo calendar
2. Solo travel to Maui to do what I wanted to do 100% of the time
3. Spa day in Maui (pedicure, manicure, head/back/shoulder/foot massage)
4. Going to Chi Tung with Grandad
5. Getting the surprise fruit basket on Christmas Eve delivered from my godfather
6. Having my mother home this Christmas, healthy and happy
7. Posing for photograph on the porch with Faith nuzzling my chin
8. Posing for photograph on the porch with Faith "smiling" and leaning by my face
9. Crying laughing about the health club story with Darcel
10. Kendell calling me up at work to invite me to his high school graduation
11. Watching Kendell walk across the stage for graduation (super proud of him)
12. Hanging with Mom, Dad and Grandad at Real Men Cook for Father's Day
13. Going to the midnight release of "Twilight: Breaking Dawn
" with my mom
14. Walking Faith (I do it 99% of the time when I'm at my parents' house)
15. Cracking jokes and chatting about entertainment with Yonnie and Kendell
16. Seeing what's new and strange in the world of Crosley (sp?)17. Chit-chatting with Mom in Olive Garden18. Hanging with Mom at Ruby Tuesday's and checking out our forgetful waiter19. Photograph of my mother and my godfather trying to look hip-hop (LMAO)20. Close-up photograph of Grandad and I at Real Men Cook21. Photograph of my mother and I on my 29th birthday with her leaning on me22.
Seeing my op/ed tattoo piece
on page 2 of the Chicago Tribune23. Posing for a bunch of family photos with my brother, mother, grandfather and father on Thanksgiving 201124. Getting a 365-day dog calendar from my mother, who knows I really want a dog25. Mild flirting at the health club (may not amount to anything but it was inspiration to work out when I first joined)26. Clearing snow away with a bucket because I don't own a shovel (my grandfather loves this story)27. Working from home for two days after Feb. 2, 2011 snowstorm28. My grandfather and father dancing in front of a crowd at Real Men Cook 201129. Fifth tattoo, fourth cover-up, love my roses (thanks Bobby Sax!)30. Dragging Fernie around to take the holiday photo for the Chicago Tribune31. Xephon adding me as a Facebook friend (very flattered by that)32. Dad calling me up to tell me how he wouldn't participate in Earth Hour33. Me taking Dad's call (#32) as an invitation to bumrush their house and unplug everything; he and I talked for an hour and a half in the dark34. Going through my letter box, reading all the letters and cards I got from family and friends while I was in collegeMOVIES1. "Hachi"2. "Eight Below"3. "No Strings Attached"4. "Friends With Benefits"5. "Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned"6. "Tongue Untied" Wanda Sykes comedy7. "Higher Learning"8.
"Daddy's Little Girls
"9. "Something New"10. "10 Things I Hate About You"11. "New Moon"12. "Twilight"13: "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse"14. "Sleepers"15. "The Client"16. "Runaway Bride"17. "Iron Man"18. "Iron Man 2"19. "Transformers"20. "Jumping the Broom"21. "Never Say Never" (The shoveling scene is my favorite; Justin Bieber is eye candy but I just felt too much like a cougar putting him there until he's legal)22. "Happy New Year, Charlie Brown"23. "Losers"24. "Gran Torino"25. "Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest
(singles and artists
" by Andre 3000
" by Rihanna
3. Rihanna's "Loud
4. "The Noose
" by Tech N9Ne
5. The "99 Problems
" remix in the movie "No Strings Attached
6. Mos Def (everything)
7. "In the Morning
" by Drake and J. Cole
8. "Can't Get Enough
" by J. Cole
9. "5 o' clock
" by T-Pain
'" by T-Pain
11. "Default Picture
" by T-Pain
12. "Momma Told Me
" by Crystal Waters13. "Pretty Little Heart" by Robin Thicke14. "Sexy and I Know It" by LMFAO15. "Birthday Cake" by Rihanna16. "Take Care" by Drake17. "Stay" by Tyrese18. "Syllables" by Eminem, Jay-Z, 50 Cent19. Obie Trice
(everything)20. Crystal Waters
(everything)21. Chris Brown
(everything)23. "Love Calls" by Kem24. "I Can't Stop Loving You" by Kem25. "I Like It" by Debarge
family26. "Perfect Day" by Jim Jones27. "Should've Kissed You" by Chris Brown28. "Dancing in the Dark" by Dev29. "Otis" by Jay-Z and Kanye West30. "Marry You" by Bruno Mars31. "Someone to Love Me" by Mary J. Blige, Diddy32. "All This Love" by Debarge33. "Love Me in a Special Way" by Debarge34. "Say Something" by Timbaland35. Drake (everything)36. "Complicated" by Robin Thicke37. "Lost Without You" by Robin Thicke38. "Pretty Young Thing" by Michael Jackson39. "Strangers in Moscow" by Michael Jackson40. "I'm Only Human" by Luther Vandross41. "Love Her Like She's Leavin'" by Brad Paisley42. "Somethin' 'Bout a Truck" by Kip Moore43. Afroflow (everything)44. "Woo" by Erykah Badu45. "Bag Lady" by Erykah Badu (Dr. Dre remix)46. Big Daddy Kane
(everything)47. "Got My Country On
" by Chris Cagle48. "Don't Worry, Be Happy" by Bobby McFerrin49. "Like We Never Said Goodbye" by Clay Walker50. "Better Than I Used to Be" by Tim McGraw51. "Radio" by Musiq Soulchild52. "Smack That
" by Akon53. "Back to Life" by Andrea Lewis54. "Run the World" by Beyonce55. "Motivation" by Kelly Rowland56. "Deuces" by Chris Brown57. "Look at Me Now" by Chris Brown58. "Fallin' Down" by Chris Brown59. "Cruisin'" by D'Angelo60. "Sergeant Louise" by Donnell Jones61. "Marvin's Room" by Drake62. "Doing it Wrong" by Drake63. "Show Me a Good Time" by Drake64. "Find Your Love" by Drake65. "Mahogany" by Eric B. and Rakim66. "Head to Toe" by Eric Roberson67. "Softest Lips" by Eric Roberson68. "U R the One" by Mos Def69. "The Panties" by Mos Def70. "Kiss Me on My Neck" by Erykah Badu71. "I Want You" by Erykah Badu72. "Collard Greens and Cornbread" by Fantasia73. "1, 2, 3" by Field Mob74. "Best Night of My Life" by Jamie Foxx75. "Yep Dat's Me" by Jamie Foxx76. "She Got Her Own" by Jamie Foxx and Ne-Yo77. Andre 3000 (everything)78. "Raindrops" by Jeremih79. "Leavin'" by Jesse McCartney80. "Ordinary People" by John Legend81. "I Ain't Going Out" by Jon B.82. "Pretty Girl" by Jon B.83. "What Goes Around Comes Around" by Justin Timberlake84. "Runaway" by Kanye West85. "Where Would I Be" by Kindred Family86. "Paris Tokyo" by Lupe Fiasco87. "The Show Goes On" by Lupe Fiasco88. "Human Nature" by Michael Jackson89. "Butterflies" by Michael Jackson90. "Smile" by Justin BieberNEWS1. Reading Clarence Page's column
"2. Reading Jon Yates' "What's Your Problem?"OBJECTS1. My birthday card from Dad, who wrote his own entries on the inside about the truth and myths of being 302. Mumble stuffed penguin (from "Happy Feet 2")3. Charlie Brown musical stuffed decoration4. E
lementary school graduation photos of Xakir (super handsome nephew!)PEOPLE
/MANNERISMS1. People who hold doors for the people behind them2. Women who think nothing of complimenting other women (no cattiness)3. Men who know "hello/how are you?" go much further than pick-up lines4. People who try to learn how to pronounce my name and don't give me unsolicited nicknames 5. People who say "let's go to lunch" and follow through with their plans to do soPOLITICS1. The troops coming home from Iraq2. First Lady Michelle Obama's "Let's Move" campaign3. The Obamas' new family photoSKIN CARE1. Aloe vera (everything from first-aid products to lotion)2. Cocoa butter (everything from lotion to soap)3. Vaseline cocoa butter lotion4. Vaseline cocoa butter petroleum jelly5. Suave cocoa butter with shea6. Palmer's cocoa butter formula with Vitamin ETECHNOLOGY1.
AmazonBasics 3-Button USB Wired Mouse2. Smoke Silicone Skin case for my mp3 player3. Insignia Pilot mp3 player4. Kevin Hart's YouTube Channel5. Following @OchoCinco on Twitter 6. TiVo7. TiVo's website to record stuff when I'm not at homeTELEVISION1.
"2. "The Vampire Diaries"3. Timbaland special on E! Entertainment4. Kathy Griffin's reenactment of her dog eating a used condom (hilarious!)5. BET Hip Hop performance with Heavy D doing "Nuttin' But Love"6. Somaya and X.O. scenes on "Love & Hip-Hop"7. Open mic night with Kyle doing scat music on "Living Single"8. Rudy meeting Stanley on "The Cosby Show"9. "The New Adventures of Old Christine"10. The "you lost to a girl" scene in "The New Adventures of Old Christine"TRAVEL1. Maui Mall
(walked over there every day for five days)2.
Maui Seaside Hotel3. West Maui Mountains4. Riding the Sugar Cane Train in Maui5. Writing for Chicago Tribune's Taking Off blog6. O'Hare Airport (never appreciated how great it is until I compared it to LAX)7. Maroon blankets that American Airlines give you for flying to Hawaii8. American Airlines for giving me an extra 2 days free of charge after late flight9. Yotel's Times Square in-airport cabins for overnight sleeping (cool idea, haven't used them but would have that time I had to sleep overnight in LAX, click here for more)10. Celebrity travel with Sinbad11. Celebrity travel with Larenz Tate12. Updating the Trib's Hawaii travel story galleryTURN-ONS (physical)1.
Goatees2. Caesar haircuts3. Khakis/jeans that are loose but sit on the waist4. Shades of smooth brown complexions (from buttercup to dark chocolate)5. Clean fingernails6. Direct eye contact7. Carefree, white teeth smiles8. Slim-to-medium muscular build9. Tall in height (although I've dated guys between 5'8 and 5'11 who were just as attractive)11. Holding a bookTURN-ONS (mental)
1. Bookworms2. Voters
(in all elections, not just presidential)3.
Direct requests for dates (no b.s.-ing around)4. Making money only in a legal way5. Paying bills on time6. Having your own place, with your name on the lease/mortgageWEBSITES:1. SoulVegFolk.com2. BlackMusicTube.com3. TeamBeachBody.com4. AOL's Listening Party5. AOL Radio6. Chicago Tribune7. Luis Gomez's "About Last Night"8. Twitter9. Jaehakim.comWORK1. Meeting the MoD team (some of the Breaking News team are very entertaining to work with)2. Working with Colin (He's one of the coolest bosses I've ever had; he means business but he "gets" my personality)3. Keeping in touch with my old bosses Sonja and Ruth (two other bosses I have nothing but good things to say about and still touch bases with to this day)
4. Going to lunch with Darcel (great person to vent and laugh with)
5. Going to lunch with Fernie (she's always got jokes)6. Argo Tea Iced Coffee from Charlie to thank me for training him (nice surprise)7. Training Charlie and Lauren when they were new (MoD team members both really cool people)8. Trading dog stories with Molly (both of us are hardcore dog lovers)9. Working with Danielle G. (She's always helpful since the day I started)10. Working with Mike Z. (If I need a photo, he's got it. One of my favorite folks at the Trib for being so easy to work with.)11. Chatting with Pam (Easy to work with, even easier to chat about everything from family to why we hate pants with words on the butt)12. Creating and updating the "Relationship & Sex News Gallery" (Interesting and educational topic that people need to be informed about, especially STIs/STDs)13. Working with Gilda Squire of Gilda Squire Media Relations again. She is one of the most professional publicists I've met, and I've worked with quite a few publicists.YOUTUBE VIDEOS1. "Puppy Christmas
"2. The last two boys on "I Told My Kids I Ate All Their Halloween Candy"3. Halloween light show to "Party Rock"4. "Rethink Breast Cancer presents 'Your Man Reminder'"5. Ian Somerhalder with Aisha Tyler on "The Late Late Show"6. Tahj Mowry singing John Legend's "Ordinary People"7. Tahj Mowry singing Michael Jackson's "Human Nature"
All right, this is my last "Five things I"m digging right now" for 2011 and for good. It's been fun doing these, but I want a new series in the new year. Anyway, here are five things I'm digging right now. 1. BlackMusicTube: I have no idea why I'm just now finding out about this site, but I was trying to find out where to listen to Tyrese's new CD "Open Invitation" after it didn't download correctly on my mp3 player. This site is even better than listening to AOL's Listening Party because there are more CDs to choose from, and I don't have to blow my money on stuff I don't like without listening to it.2. T-Pain's "Revolver" CD: This is the first CD I've enjoyed straight through from him. I usually just like the singles, but he did a really great job on this one. I still remember seeing him live in concert a couple years ago. I became an all-around fan of his as soon as I saw him live in action and stood up the entire time he was onstage.