1. Babysitters Club books: I was reading RedEye's Ernest Wilkins "Facebook posts that never were" and it made me wonder what would I have said as a pre-teen on Facebook. The first stat that popped into my head was talking about "The Babysitters Club" books. I was a superfan. I owned the movie. I went to the audition to try to be in the movie. I owned all of the mysteries, super special books and the entire regular series. My parents found two mini-series movies in the attic and gave them to me and I sat on my living room floor and watched them like I was a kid. Reading this Wikipedia entry made me smile all over again about how much I loved Ann M. Martin's books, and I used to have a fan letter she wrote to me. No clue if I still have it.
2. Twilight giveaway on Craigslist: I'm still Team Jacob, still own the "Twilight" books and movies and a few magazines, too. But I've outgrown some of the other fan stuff I had like my Taylor Lautner umbrella and blanket. I didn't want to just dump them in a charity bin though. I wanted to give them to a fan who would appreciate it. I posted an entry on Craigslist for free stuff and after three weeks of posting it in different spots to nothing but spam, I posted it under "free stuff" and got 45 e-mails in about 12 hours. I couldn't believe the response. Lucky #5 was the one who was able to pick them up, and this mom was so serious about getting these items that she sent me e-mails counting down how long it would take for her to get to our meeting location. She wanted the umbrella and her daughter jumped up and down and snuggled against the blanket. To see a mother and daughter that happy to get those items was better than my reaction to getting them as gifts a few years back. The little girl was so adorable, too. I was happy to see her grinning like that, but Taylor Lautner is pretty damn cute. Can you blame her?
4. "Common Law": When I think of Michael Ealy, I don't think of comedy but he is surprisingly good on this show. His facial expressions are better than some of his lines. I'm totally impressed because I didn't think he was going to pull it off. The pilot episode was all right, but the next two were the ones that really made me a fan. I'm still hardcore about his dramatic roles in "Sleeper Cell" (bought both seasons) but I like him in this role quite a bit. I hope this show lasts. Good to see him with his co-host from "Sleeper Cell," too. And my gawd, he is gorgeous!
5. Kendrick Lamar and Dr. Dre on "The Recipe": The song itself doesn't make me smile. It's not that type of song. What I like is that it got me excited about hip-hop again. There are so few artists that I enjoy listening to but I really like this dude. I'm hoping "The Recipe" isn't the only song I like but he sounds like he has his head on right. I listened to his interview on "The Breakfast Club" (which I keep claiming I'm going to stop listening) and I think he's got so much potential. The song is hot, too.
6. Nas and Chris Brown in "Right by my side": I am not a Nicki Minaj fan. The faces, costumes, lesbian-lyrics-but-I'll-get-mad-if-you-ask-me-if-I'm-a-lesbian lyrics are annoying. She keeps calling herself a "boss" but I don't know one boss who won't call out who they're talking about. Real bosses don't give a damn about being subliminal or keep starting beef only to say "she's not relevant." With that said, I'm not much of a Lil' Kim fan. I was when she was with Junior M.A.F.I.A. but not when she decided to look like Michael Jackson blended with Barbie. However, both artists are talented lyrically. I can bob my head to some of their songs, and I'll give credit all day to Nicki Minaj being the first artist to outrap Eminem on a collabo. Even Jay-Z couldn't do that. However, I was dumbstruck when I saw Nas as the romantic interest in Nicki's latest video. Not a fan of her singing but oh boy, that kiss at the end. I was grinning like, "Whoa, I haven't seen him this boo'd up since his real-life (ex) wife Kelis or that Aaliyah song." I loved the video, and Chris Brown cracked me up with his faces, too.
7. Moto Moto in "Madagascar 2": I loved listening to will.i.am. play the smooth hippopotamus role. "I live 'em big, I like 'em chunky." That scene with him and Jada's character Gloria kills me every time. I watched that movie for the first time a couple of days ago and enjoyed it as much as the first time. Bernie Mac, Chris Rock and Cedric the Entertainer (three of my favorite comedians) are in it, too, but Moto Moto's appearances were my favorite scenes.
8. Men at Work: I won't lie to you. I started watching this show just to see James Lesure because I think he's handsome and an underrated actor. And although I still have loyalty to shows like "Men of a Certain Age" for powerful story lines for guy shows, I can't deny this one is good for its comedy. I've watched the first few episodes and I'll be a regular viewer. If James leaves though, I probably won't watch. He's still who I watch the show for.
9. Secret: I found out a secret on Friday evening that made me grin from ear to ear. I knew it all along! (And it'll stay a secret so that's enough of #9.)
10. Phylicia Rashad on Chicago Live!: I have yet to go to a Chicago Live! performance but I had every intention to go to this one. I forgot about it and I don't know if I was available. Either way it works I'm salty I didn't get to go but happy as hell to watch the video and listen to her talk about "The Cosby Show." She's right about current-day television sucking, especially the roles black women are playing (read: reality TV). But oh, I do admire her and own every season of "The Cosby Show." I've also seen every project she's been in.
11. Bowling on Mother's Day: It wasn't part of the plan but I had the most fun hanging out with my mother and bowling. We were supposed to go to the show and out to eat, but we both agreed that was our favorite part. We used to have bowling balls, bowling bags and bowling shoes when I was a kid but we went in there with nothing (I was wearing four-inch heels so I was all kinds of unprepared) but we had fun. We suck and we barely totaled 100 but we cracked up and cheered each other on, gutter balls included.
12. Daisy Fuentes dress: I bought this dress on a clearance rack for a major deal, and I wanted to wear it immediately. Thank you, Chicago, for letting me. I love it. It fits right. It's comfortable. I got plenty of compliments. Summer is here and I can pull out the summer dresses.
14. D'angelo interview with GQ magazine: Although I still have a bit of a grudge against GQ for the snide comments about the Mowry sisters, I was ecstatic to see a tweet about D'angelo doing an interview. It was 10 pages long and I read it at L.A. Fitness while listening to D'angelo and working out. The interview is good as is, but it's even better listening to "Brown Sugar."
15. Sleeper Cell (Season 2): The finale wasn't logical, but I loved the show. I think it was underrated and the entire cast did a great job.
16. "The Black Power Mixtape" DVD: The stuff going on during the DVD was nothing to smile about but was so fascinated to see interviews and hear the background stories of so many Black Panther leaders that I'd heard about but hadn't really seen. I'd hear a snippet here and a snippet there, but this was a really well-documented project that discussed not only racism but the way Dr. King and the Panthers' relationship worked and clashed. Overall, I was proud of their work separately and together. I do wish the turnout would've been different (no political prisoners) but that's spilled milk.
17. My doctor: Although I'd never tell him this and I'm not particularly thrilled to go to the doctor, my PCP is Gorgeous with a capital "g." I've had several doctors over the years in Missouri, Michigan and back and forth in Chicago but never one that looked like him. Thanks to some reconstruction going on in my building, I've inhaled something that didn't particularly make friends with my throat so off to the doctor I went to make sure my thyroid was all right. Of course I'm always respectful, professional and never told him he's nice on the eyes, but it certainly makes going to the doctor strangely enjoyable. On a less superficial note, he's one of the coolest and informative guys. Too many doctors are too quick to respond with cloudy answers and try to rush out of the room. He actually remembers me when I come in (only seen him twice though but I'm just impressed the man can say my name correctly). Anybody can check a chart, but remembering how to say my name after I've only said it once is talent. Nice guy. I'd recommend him. (I'd recommend my dentist, too, but he's as chatty as me. In the middle of cleaning my teeth, he started talking about back tattoos. Random!)
18. My great great aunt hugs: I'd gotten into a big argument with someone last week and my great great aunt (who is 100 but can hear pretty well although she tends to jump topics) caught on. She took one good look at me when I came back to her place, reached out her arms from her recliner and would not let me finish telling my story (about the argument) until I hugged her. I thought it was really sweet for her to be so observant because I wasn't yelling or crying or anything. She just felt my mood shift and in less than a couple seconds figured out something was wrong. I ended up hanging out with her and my mother (who spent the night) until about 3 a.m. just chatting. Very pleasant.
19. Quench! restaurant: I have been very vocal about how much I like this restaurant. I think it's imperative to have a healthy black-owned restaurant that has vegetarian dishes and this is the only one I know of that serves more than one or two items. I hadn't been there in awhile since the 87th street location closed down and the 79th street location was "being remodeled." I finally made my way to my regular location on 47th and Michigan and got a vegetarian jerk wrap. They're spicy. They're greasy. They're good. I like all of their vegetarian meals, and the customer service is phenomenal. I have yet to meet a rude employee at any of their locations and I respect Quentin Love and his staff for that. Click here for more about the restaurant.
20. Finding a new couch: I camped out on my floor for a few days before I finally had time (and a day off) to buy a new couch. JC Penney customer service is impressive. Brenda deserves a raise. Unfortunately I couldn't find a couch I liked there in the color I wanted so I ended up buying one from lukewarm Value City Furniture. Great furniture, reasonable prices but the customer service sucks. I went back to the same mall the next day to look at couches again because I was trying my damnedest to buy a couch from Brenda. Problem is I'm the one who has to live with the couch so I went for fashion over customer service. Oh well. I'll send Brenda a dynamite letter of recommendation.