1. “Degrassi: The Next Generation:” I couldn’t figure out why people were giving Drake such a hard time when he first came out. I’d never heard of this show, never seen it, had no idea who Aubrey Graham was and to this day still don’t know when/where the show used to come on. I started reserving copies of it on Netflix, and I love this show. Then again, I like all of those school sitcom shows like "The Wonder Years - Complete Series," "A Different World," "Saved by the Bell," "My So-Called Life," "Beverly Hills, 90210," the new generation of "90210," and the short-lived Showtime shows "Chris Cross" and "Ready or Not.” From Seasons 1 to 3 of “Degrassi,” “Take on Me” is my favorite episode, especially after the necklace scene. Very adorable! The show takes on some very controversial topics and does it in a way that seems real instead of an after-school special. Plus, Drake got way more swagger by the third season so I still don’t know why the complainers gave him a hard time. Now I found two ways of being a fan of his—acting and rapping. I'm now watching Season 4, and the shootout episode was memorable, tragic and excellent acting for the entire cast. I'm salty Hazel has so few times to shine on this fourth season though.
3. “Michelle Obama: The First Lady in Photographs” book: My mother and I were walking around at a couple of Border’s closing sales when I lucked up on a display copy of “Michelle Obama: The First Lady in Photographs” full of beautiful shots of First Lady Michelle Obama and plenty of affectionate shots of her with President Barack H. Obama. Every single time those two take a photo together, I am even more inspired by loving relationships. My parents have been married for 30 years. My grandparents were married for 49 years. I have some other married couples in my family, but it’s good to see people defy the odds of marriages actually working even through some challenging times. For Pres. Obama to look that into his wife at all times even with all the stuff going on around him, I have to salute her. Plus, she seems like such a beautiful person in and out. Needless to say, that last copy left the store with me!
4. “Love & Basketball” movie: I felt like this entire cast deserved Oscars. I never get tired of watching this movie, but I haven’t watched it in several months due to a 2011 memory that I certainly could’ve done without and wish never happened. That’s not to be disclosed in this blog (or ever), but what I will say is before 2011, I had nothing but fond memories of this film. So many of the scenes reminded me of my (male) childhood best friend who used to live next door to me. We’d sit in our bedroom windows for hours talking, and if you didn’t see us there, we were on each other’s front porch. Good dude. He was murdered while I was in college, and I have a photograph of him in my dining room from one of those days we were chilling on the porch. I didn’t even come home for Thanksgiving after hearing the news that year because I didn’t want to look over at his grandparents’ home next door and know that he wasn’t going to yell “Shamontie” (he never added the “l”) from the attic window. We were never in a romantic relationship, but we went to the same elementary school and had a few common neighborhood friends. He was really cool with my brother and my parents had fond memories of him, too. Plus, I had more than a few friends who had a crush on him. I’ll admit he was a cutie, but we were too good of friends to go down that road. Good dude. Great memories. R.I.P. Greg. And for the record, I thought Omar Epps and Sanaa Lathan were the cutest couple ever in any movie, minus Larenz Tate and Nia Long in "Love Jones."
5. Newman-O’s wheat free, dairy free crème-filled chocolate cookies: I know that doesn’t really sound like something to go “Mmmm” about, but I found these at Whole Food Market. I had the urge to eat Oreos—and I’m not much of a dessert person, I prefer chocolate candy—but I tried Newman-O’s out and loved them. After reading and creating a gallery on trans fat, I was looking for a dessert food that had less trans fat in it, and this (according to the website) doesn’t. I highly recommend them for your sweet tooth fix.