Wednesday, April 20, 2011

"Because it's the right thing to do..."

Excuse my french, emotion and my passion/
but I wear my heart on my sleeve like it's the new fashion
-Lil' Wayne, "Dontgetit"

I'm going to speak right off the top of my heart tonight, so I apologize in advance. I'm not quite sure what the fuck I'm apologizing for, but for some reason, it feels like the right thing to do.

And that's precisely what I want to talk to you about. The "right" thing to do. All day long, all life long, we are conflicted. We're always trying to make sure that we're doing the "right" thing. (Well, some of us, I suppose.) But, "right" is just as subjective as "wrong." Think about it: what can we actually say is the "right" thing to do? We can't necessarily use the Bible--it's not the only holy book around, and Christianity is not the only religion, thus, what's right by Biblical standards will not ring true for everyone. Also, there are things that are supposedly* considered wrong in the Bible that I personally do not think are wrong. (i.e. homosexuality and premartial sex.) Okay, so what's next? Utilizing the law to determine what's "right?" Okay, well we do utilize the law, but laws are made by man, and man is a subjective creature. Remember, slavery used to be considered A-okay by law.

You glimpse my point, right? That "right" is technically subjective. What may be right for you, may not be right for me, may be right for the next person. And I say all that to say: how in the hell do we know what's right? Because it feels right? Well, if we go on the basis of this just feels right, how do we know it actually does? What if it feels right because we've been groomed by former conditioning of what "rightness" is supposed to be?

So, I wrote a couple of posts before this one that touched on issues essentially of nature versus nurture/"rightness": "Think as a lady, and be one, too" and "head game", specifically. In both of these posts, I attacked some very current threads in my life: the idea of programmed womanhood (how much is a result of our wiring and how much is a result of what we're told to be like), and consequently, the idea of what is considered "right" for a woman.

The reason I bring up this entire argument of what's right, and how you determine whether it is indeed, "right," is because this evening I was in conversation with my best sexy guy friend (we will start referring to him as BSGF) when I encountered an epiphany. As I was explaining to him my plans for a specific situation, I realized that my plans had no rationale. I planned on doing something I didn't want to do simply because I thought it was the right thing to do. It felt like the right thing to do. But truth be told... it isn't "right." Not to me, at least. It's not what I want to do, at all, so how could it be "right"? That being said, who is it right to?

So often, I explained to BSGF, I feel like women consistently make moves and try to prove points that often are illogical... but why? Because we feel like it's the right thing to do. Again, but why? Take for instance, what could be any girl's situation. You have sex with a guy once. You like the dude/think he's cool/whatever, and you don't want him to think you're "like that," so next time you want to have sexhang out, even though deep inside yourself (no pun) you enjoyed the last time you hung with him, you try to make him jump through some type of hoop. (Like going out for dinner, or coming over at this particular time, or having that "I don't want you to think I'm a ho" conversation.) But why? You've already had sex... the deed has been done, so what point is trying to be proven? That if you have sex with him after a date you're not a ho as opposed to having sex with him when there's no date at all? (Illogical.) And better still, whom is the point being proven to? Yourself? Because I can bet, it ain't that guy.

I'm not sure why, as a woman, I feel the tendency to prove a point (clearly, to myself and no one else, because it's not proving shit to a dude since it barely proves anything to me) that is unnecessary. Is it my wiring in the sense of my innate nature, or my wiring in the sense of the fodder I've been fed from my surroundings on how to be a woman? Is it both? Essentially, I am acting under conditions of "right" that I didn't set. There have been many times when I have done or not done things because they were the "right" things to do, when they honestly didn't feel right, and weren't necessarily things I wanted to do. But early in life (as women), I feel like we're also taught that active self-denial of our own pleasure is just part and parcel of womanhood. It fits, right? Bear the brunt of humanity, deny yourself pleasure and desire in the name of what's "right."

*-I say "supposedly" because unless I'm going to quote directly from the Bible, I don't feel comfortable giving an affirmative with no fact. You're always suppose to quote your source, and since I'm not taking the time to do that, we'll stick with "supposedly."

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Why Black men and not Black women?

I have a question for whomever wants to answer it: why do Black women hold Black men to impossible standards? In this case, I mean one standard in particular: interracial relations.

Now, let me first clarify by saying that I technically can only speak on behalf of myself, since I'm very well aware of the fact that there are plenty of Black women who may disagree with me. But, in that speaking on behalf of myself, I'm going to speak on behalf of something I have noticed.

It's no secret that I love men. I have realized this year that I have an affinity for men that far surpasses what I originally imagined. I love damn near everything about men: the way they smell (when they smell good), the way their bodies are shaped, their ruggedness, the simplicity of them (sometimes)... shit, I love them. I love men so much that I pray in the future that I have a son or two so I can have a hand in the raising of a man. (Not to have my sex be outdone, however, I also want to have daughters. I hope to have twins first, because I can't imagine choosing either a boy or a girl to be the oldest of my family; hence, both of them could share the responsibility.)

That being said, I also have a very special place in my heart for Black men. (And by "Black" here I mean African-American. They are not one in the same, so I wanted to clarify.) I love to see them do well. I want to see them do better. I have tried to guide some of the young Black men I've come across, and Lord knows I've loved me a couple of Black men. My father is a Black man and without him, there'd be no me.

But... that all being said about my special place for Black men, there's another special place in my heart reserved for another kind of man. In fact, this place isn't even reserved solely in my heart, but it's more like in that fleshy, soft, tender skin behind my kneecap. A weakness, you could say. An intense infatuation. I've got a thing for Hispanic men.

As a child, I can remember having a fascination for two cultures: my own, and that of Hispanic culture. At the time, the most exposure that I had was Ricky Ricardo on "I Love Lucy" but it was still exposure, and I was still transfixed. I can remember enjoying when he would break into Spanish at the drop of a hat and then go back to speaking English. I loved the music. The drums. The costumes. The mythical place he spoke of called Cuba.

As I grew older, I found myself infatuated with other cultures as well (I've got me a thing for the cultures of the Romance languages), but the base of my childhood interest was in my own far-reaching roots, and, not long after, that of Hispanic roots as well. My first love being Dominican clearly cemented such interest.

Now, I said all that to say this: anyone who knows me, or has even had a bit of passing interaction with me, is probably aware of my weak-behind-the-knees-ness for Hispanic men. Although I've been the butt of many harmless jokes because of it (from my best friend telling me, "U can't deal w/ a real, african-american in touch w/ his culture to save your life!" and my father spending a season telling people he worked with that I fancied Puerto Ricans [though he clearly got the country wrong]), I have never been met with any real problems because of it. No one has stared at me sideways, my family hasn't been up-in-arms about it, and no one has questioned my "Blackness" because of it. I've even been met with approval from girlfriends, one of whom expressed her "being done" with Black men, and that she herself was going to date white men. (Though I won't elaborate now, I will say that her comment made me feel some kind of way. It's an interesting dynamic to look at, considering the questions that will follow this sentence.)

That all established, if I was a Black man, would I have that privilege? The same best friend who made the joke about me not getting up with an AA man to save my life, is the same best friend (who is a strikingly intelligent young AA male) who was joking with me one day about being infatuated with a white girl, and though I legitimately consider myself as someone who doesn't care who someone dates, I will be 100 and admit that it bothered me.

The thought of my strikingly intelligent, ridiculously handsome, young, promising, Black male friend getting up with a white girl bothered me. I even asked him if she was blond. God forbid if she was blond. Is it right to feel this way? (No.) Why do I feel this way? (That's up for debate.) Why is it that I could feel uncomfortable with my friend even joking about being infatuated with a white girl, but I don't consider it a problem--and no one else seems to, either--to be infatuated with, lust after, and even fall in love with Hispanic men? Why is it that I can think of wanting to have brown-skinned babies who speak English from their mom, and Spanish from their dad without feeling any trace of awkward obligation toward Black men, but I know if the tables were turned and my friend expressed this same desire with a white female, I'd feel some kind of way about it?

Is it simply that it's okay for me, as a Black woman, to want to venture out of my own box, but I want to keep Black men firmly in that box, vowing to be attracted only to women who resemble me? Is it because "exotic" women are trendy and I'm not exotic? Is it the need for me to be in control that causes this need for me to be able to walk away but not be walked away from? What causes it to become such a personal issue?

Why does it seem that Black men are vilified when they violate the sometimes-feels-damn-near-seems-moral obligation to pick Black women, but Black women are not?*

*--So, say ye, you don't practice this, right? Okay. Let's see. Say we have Sanaa Lathan and Taye Diggs, two should-be-well-enough-known-I'm-sure-you've-seen-them-before-in-some-damn-movie Black actors. (They are the first two that popped in my head.) So, take Sanaa's role in Something New, the movie that deals with a lot of what we're talking about. (She falls for a white male.) Now, the vibe of that movie is all like "you go, girl, you try something new and get you that white man who treats you right and is not looking at color." Great, right? Still supports your idea that this doesn't affect you, right? Alright. Let's switch Sanaa for Taye, and Simon Baker for some blond actress. Now, you tell me just how many of you and your friends would pay money to go watch a movie about Taye Diggs getting caught up with some blond girl. I can tell you right now, I'd probably catch it on DVD. Now, if this paragraph did nothing to you or for you, then I am clapping my hands for you. But I know there are people who would read this here paragraph, and have the same resistance inside your spirit that I felt writing it. I understand the resistance is incorrect; my desire is to understand what the cause of the resistance is. Because it's there. Oh yes, it's there for real.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

"I'm living for the memories of right now..."

Thank goodness for Twitter. It gave me an idea.

So, my time in Miami is growing ever shorter. This realization is leading to me getting all reminiscent and introspective and shit. I've been writing and tweeting all about how it's funny that we are constantly in the process of making memories we will long for later. It's something we don't think about in the moment, but it's absolutely true: at some point, every memory you have was something occuring in the present tense.

Anyhow, so I was sitting here, looking for an entry to re-post because I didn't like what I was originally going to post and because I couldn't at the time generate any critical thought when the waves of nostalgia and introspection came up behind me real slow like that dude at the end of Scarface when Tony Montana is flailing around all high and crazy and shit. (Okay, well that dude was walking for like a million frames. Maybe the waves came up on me a wee bit faster than that.)

I started thinking about a couple of the guys I know and how much I like them as people. Multi-faceted and deeply intriguing. The type of people I find sexier than a motherfucker. (Cue Prince.) Well, that thought led me to many other offshoots of thought: how they are the type of people I hope to always have around, how I wish I could take many of their characteristics and form one guy from them, how they make me damned happy to be single (how could one want to be booed up when there are multiple boos floating out there to be discovered?), but most of all, how this is a change of pace for me. Before, I frequently met people I hoped I would never encounter again in life. Now, I seem to meet people I hope stick around forever.

(I've still got my fingers crossed that some of the people in my past life will forget about me, change their names, and move to a remote island off the coast of Nowheresland, never to be seen again, but I know life doesn't work that way.)

Anyway, this sparked a thought in me. (As everything does.) Previously, I do believe I spoke on how you attract what you put out into the universe. I really didn't know exactly what this meant, because I'm not sure I was fully aware of what I was putting into the universe, or that how I was feeling actually created a vibration that the universe picked up on. But there clearly must be a difference in the vibes of then and the vibes of now, because the type of crowd you roll with tends to reflect who you are. Thus, the type of crowd you attract tends to reflect what you emit into the universe.

I can tell you now what I was putting into the universe: a bunch of really sad, insecure vibes. And I can tell you exactly whom I attracted: men who were nice and for the most part, decent people, but who were just as, if not more insecure than I was. Men who were interested in saving someone. Isn't it funny how people who can't deal with themselves are always trying to deal with others? It usually doesn't work very well.

I know for a fact that even though I have my many moments when I'm in some kind of emotional funk, I'm not that same person who was consistently sad; I'm not that same person who felt surrounded at times by people she didn't want to be. And the people that are attracted to me now are a reflection of that shift within myself. I'm confident. A hell of a lot more secure in myself than I ever was before. (Though I've still got a ways to go.) No longer the first person to put my own abilities down, but the first to correct your ass if you decide to put them down. Sexy. Wanting. Hungry. Challenging the mental status quo. I feel surrounded by people I genuinely want to be around. I know men who are sexier than I've ever seen. People who are more multi-faceted than I had grown accustomed to. People who challenge me. Men who don't have to save me, because I'm no longer looking for Superman to swoop in and save the day.

The type of people I hope I have around forever.

If you're not already aware, please monitor what you're emitting into the universe. You attract what you reflect. Don't believe me? You should.

I know these things.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Gainesville, we meet again my love

Approximately two weeks from today, I'll be back in a town I once despised with all my immature, broken heart. I'll be visiting Gainesville, Florida, the home of my Alma mater, the University of Florida (Go Gators!), to attend a graduation ceremony. I'm curious to see what it's going to be like to be back in Gainesville as a grown-up, as someone that has been out of school for three years, as someone who's no longer heartbroken. You really don't understand. I feel like I talk about having been heartbroken so often, but that's because for years, that was my existence. So to not feel that way, and to truly not feel that way is... liberating in every sense of the word.

I have been back once or twice since I moved away, but I feel like during those times, I was still inevitably caught up and all inside my feelings, even though they weren't about the same ex from so many years previous. (Feelings are feelings, though.) And I certainly wasn't the type of grown-up I feel like I am now.

It will be nice to be back, to NOT be in my feelings, to be celebrating in all types of ways for many different reasons, to see some of the ladies that made my last year at UF something special, and maybe if a little sugar daddy* drops a stack on me, I can get another tattoo. *crosses fingers*

Anyhow, I decided to repost one of my favorite posts from the Halloween I spent in Gainesville. I don't know what it is about Halloween that has made it a social fail for the last three years kickin', but I'll try to do better this year. At least it's usually always a fail but with great company.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Halloween in Gainesville

In the story of the life of Malorie, Halloween in Gainesville unfolds in this manner:

1. No work on Friday. This leads to great excitement, and driving to Gainesville.

2. Hair is behaving and looking fierce with no headband. This leads to further excitement.

3. Due to disgusting hangover earlier in the week, no alcohol is planned for consumption.

4. Best friend and many other friends are in Gainesville. They are all excited to see protagonist. This leads to great lengths of excitement and mushy feelings.

5. Once in Gainesville, protagonist meets other very cool friends of best friend. This makes Halloween party seem even more exciting.

6. Protagonist is tired and falls asleep on couch. Ends up sleeping on couch.

7. During middle of the night, protagonist feels swallows mass amounts of phlegm. Doesn't know where phlegm has magically come from, but continues sleep.

8. Morning. Protagonist feels like there is a rock inside skull. Congestion and lack of ability to breathe leads protagonist to Walgreens.

9. Buys sinus medicine. Thinks it is an allergy to best friend's puppy.

10. Day progresses... feeling gets worse.

11. Falls asleep on floor watching Florida Gators lacerate Georgia Bulldogs. Protagonist feels sleep will help. T minus 5 hours until Halloween party.

12. Protagonist awakens from nap. Feels worse.

13. Protagonist cannot breathe and still has headache. Decides to use steam inhaler to loosen mucus. Still T minus 5 hours until Halloween party.

14. Protagonist makes sudden movement and spills the scalding water from the inhaler on her leg. This proceeds to burn the protagonist through jeans.

15. T minus 4 hours until Halloween party: protagonist receives visit from friends. Holding ice to burnt thigh, protagonist realizes laughing is not possible due to condition of non-ability to breathe.

16. Friends leave. Protagonist decides to shower to assist with curing process before party.

17. T minus 3 hours until party: protagonist is wrapped in a blanket, now feeling feverish along with burnt thigh and headache. Protagonist decides there is no dog allergy, but contemplates whether it's swine flu, regular flu, or just plain death.

18. Protagonist decides party attendance cannot be completed.

19. Protagonist drinks tea and watches Coming to America complete in pajamas, head rag, and blanket.

20. Protagonist sleeps. Friends leave apartment to attend party.


True story if you've ever heard one. I hope Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. enjoyed my ten dollar donation to their party I couldn't even attend.

(by the way, I didn't have the flu in any variation, I just caught a fierce cold which is now subsiding.)

*--no sugar daddy. Remember this guy? Once was enough.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

thoughts on a weekend

I had an entirely different post in mind earlier, but I'm no longer feeling it.

  • You know, even though she irritates me to no avail sometimes, I'm glad I have my cat during times like this, when I'm on my period and I feel unwanted/unloved/in despair/needy for affection. These are the times when I just pick her up and rub her belly. She usually rubs her head against my hand, and tonight she rolled over on her back and stretched against me like a baby. I needed that. If she didn't shed everywhere I'd cuddle with her in my bed.
  • I went to a free concert this weekend (Alexander and Albert Markhov), and it felt good to dress up and do something admittedly more on the adult tip. This wasn't my first time doing something like that; I used to do "random" things like that often enough at home.
  • When/if I get married, I want a string quartet playing. There is something some kind of classy and beautiful about string instruments, especially the violin. It sounds like weddings were made for the strings, or the strings for weddings. Either way, it's what I want. There will not be Stevie Wonder's "Ribbon in the Sky" playing me down the aisle. That became cliche almost twenty years ago.
  • I know who, but I'm not for sure on why.
  • While driving today, I found myself longing for days I'd already lived and places I'd already visited. The funny thing about it is that I can remember the moments and how I felt while they were occurring in real time, and they didn't mean much more to me than just being the fun of the moment. Every day we are potentially creating memories of days that we will long for in the future. Deep thought.
  • I don't like champagne, but no champagne tastes better than free champagne that you got at a church. Don't ask. You definitely had to be there. That experience was one of those memories I'm creating for future days.
  • Laying out at the beach was relaxing and I had time to think, but, just because I enjoy my own company doesn't mean that I always want to bask in my own company solely.
  • In thinking about the many things I did this weekend that don't necessarily fit evenly with one another in one box--getting dressed up, drinking, listening to classical violin music, going to the beach to bask in the sun, staying up late, waking up early, volunteering most of the day on Saturday, spending hours in silence, spending hours in conversation--I find that these things seem to be a testament to the varied individual I am. I am many boxes inside one person. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know that to my next statement, someone would say "yeah, well everyone is just as you are," but sometimes I wonder if I'm going to be able to find someone who would be able to kick it with me on my level on the regular. Maybe my desires are unreasonable, and maybe I don't need someone to hang out with me all the time--maybe he can sit out when I go to the violin concert and he can watch some basketball, or something--but regardless, they're my unreasonable desires, dammit. What if I can't find that guy who is as many boxes inside himself as I am inside me? What if he can't find me either?
  • Thought that was going to be a longer post: cool people are everywhere, something *he* would say to me often, a way of him explaining why moving so often wasn't as unfathomable to him as the thought was to me. Though I still believe there was a little bit more to his description than meets the eye, the basis of that statement rings true. By this summer, I would have lived in three cities in three years, and will be working on my fourth city. I've got friends scattered everywhere myself. The reason I do, is because cool people are indeed everywhere. Here in Miami I have met some of the coolest people I have ever worked with; people I plan on inviting to those milestones of adulthood that should be coming up (well, I guess they should be) like weddings and baby showers. Hell, I wish I'd known some of the people I met here back when I was in college. Feel like I would have had a hell of a lot more fun. Regardless, cool people are indeed everywhere, and I pray the next leg of my journey involves some characters as well, though it's going to be pretty hard to top the characters I call a crew here in Miami.

Friday, April 8, 2011

"I wish that I could have this moment for life, for life, for life..."

I may feel like Miami is all style and no substance, but sometimes, just sometimes, that style is something I know in the future I'll long for.

There is no place I'd rather be in life right now. Almost 24, floating with the breeze, going where life takes me, learning, learning, learning constantly about everything you could imagine.

This is the type of life I didn't know I wanted.

Youth is not wasted on the young.

I'm not trying to waste a minute of this shit.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Three reasons not to date me

I was browsing the blog world today, and ran across a great post from one of the blogs I follow, Naked With Socks On. The post is titled "7 Reasons to Not Date Me (The Great Catch Myth)" and I thought it was a great exercise in keeping it honest with yourself. Though I doubt I will make it to seven, since I haven't been able to focus my thoughts on much since I sat down, I will definitely try to give you at least a couple. I am a huge proponent in being self-aware, and though I do stand by the fact that I am indeed a marvelous "catch" (if we would like to use such terminology--the sight of seeing that word and knowing that it is being used with me in mind actually makes me some kind of disagreeable), I know that there are some things about me that will not work for everyone.

1. I'm probably a lot more strong willed than you may want
Though I'm sure it may be very attractive to know that you have a woman on your side who can formulate her own thoughts, and is not shy about voicing them, I am very aware of the fact that I have quite the strong will. People like me are generally noted as "stubborn" or "obstinate." (A more formal way of saying stubborn.) I get it from my parents, both of them. I do not like to be wrong, and I will debate someone into the ground sometimes. I get heated, I raise my voice, I get mad expressive... yeah. I find it to be one of my more notable qualities, the passion I have, but it ain't for everyone.

2. I do not have a five-year plan
So don't ask me what mine is. I know it's a very popular question to ask people "where do you see yourself in five years" but I greatly dislike that question. Sure, I think about what I want to do in the future, and I think about what goals I have and want to accomplish, but no, I don't know where I will be in five years, and I can't say I know where I want to be, either. No, I'm not working to be the Senior Executive of x and y company, no, I'm not working to be a lawyer or a doctor at this particular level within five years, no, no, no: I have life goals, yes, but do they necessarily have a timeframe? Nope. Am I trying to necessarily give them one? Nope. I'm sure someone could easily see that as a lack of vision, maybe even as immaturity, but I see it as me being free and going where life takes me.

3. I'm a writer, so at some point, if you've affected me, I will write about you
Doesn't mean I'm going to put you on full blast or anything, but I do write about a lot of people, a lot of the time. People that come into my life consistently affect it, and more often than not, that appears in my writing. It has made people uncomfortable before, and I'm not beyond understanding how or why it could. But if you cannot be agreeable with the fact that I write, and that if I like you enough, I'm going to write about you, you might want to go holla at that chick at the bar that works in pharmaceuticals.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


When's the last time you learned something about yourself you previously must have known, but never acknowledged?

When's the last time you stretched your muscles and body, slowly and gently?

When's the last time you ate for pleasure, not just out of the urgency of hunger?

When's the last time you let the sound of the rain coax you to sleep and the sound of silence gently nudge you awake?

When's the last time you sat back and observed someone--their motions, their words, their body, their spirit?

When's the last time you felt inexplicably pure joy for someone?

When's the last time you told yourself something good about yourself?

When's the last time you walked, drove, or let your mind wander with no intended destination?

What about the last time you told someone else something good about themselves?

Last time you said "I love you" and truly meant it?

Last time you had a good, soul-stirring laugh?

The last time something it was, turned out to be not at all?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

flying amongst the skies

I'm cheating. But I'm also tired.

Not tired of the challenge, but literally tired. And life keeps getting in the way. (Last night I wasn't at home until late, and if I'd had an iPhone or something snazzy, I could have posted. I'm going to check into this mobile blogging thing...)

Here's something from the vault.

Friday, April 10, 2009

"come fly with me, let's fly, let's fly away..."

i feel like i'm ready to fly.
don't worry, i'm coming back
i'll always be coming back,
sandy white beaches
and turquoise ocean,
palm trees waving in the breeze
and balmy evenings--
my heart will always be here
but i'm ready to fly
and i'm not sure to where
but i gotta get away
from disappointment
from loving those who won't love me
from frustration
from self-doubt
from the ordinary
from the box that people have put their thoughts in
from who i was.
it's time for me to fly,
and it's not a selfish journey--
if only you want,
you can fly with me
i want you to fly with me
say the word and you're with me
but i guess your journey
won't include me.
but i will drop a postcard
from the skies of my flight
and on it, simply your invitation:
fly with me.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


the point of believing

is to have faith

to believe in something i have no proof of--yet

to take a step onto a ledge i cannot see

to firmly believe that Someone is guiding the steps

that i clumsily take

not knowing which direction

is right

Saturday, April 2, 2011

state of the mind

There's something very common sense about relationships that seem to put them just beyond my grasp.

I think about the people I know who have been in relationships for long, long periods of time, or people who are consistently in relationship, and it is easy to see that they have the common sense that it takes to sustain in a relationship.

More likely than not, they are not neurotic, they have not been emotionally drained; they still view life with the optimism and non-melancholy hope characteristic of their type of person.

This is not to say that they are by any means not intelligent--no, not at all. They are some of the smartest people I know. Just in a different way.

I could be wrong, and I probably am, on many levels, but I do not contain this common sense. A person of intense emotion and frequent melancholia, I am intelligent, just as they are. But for whatever reason, I don't have what they have.

Doesn't mean that relationships and I are impossible. I think it just means that it's going to be a hell of a lot more of a struggle.

Friday, April 1, 2011

"I'mma take you on a trip... way back..." Well, not really. [thoughts on racism/prejudice]

This could be considered cheating, but I never gave stringent rules on how my 40-day posting would go. So, today, for a lack of things I feel like speaking on critically (some days, I need a break from my own mental and emotional rigor), I will repost something for you. This is a piece I wrote last year on racism and prejudice, and it's funny: a person I used to consider a friend proved my theory right that a lot of people have lost the ability to think and process critically, and that we have become a society of first-responders to trigger words and thoughts. He read my post sensationally, not for critical thought, and came at me with shade on my Facebook, of all damned places. Needless to say, that "friendship" was ended not long after that scenario, and I feel my life is better for it. Why'd I tell you all this?

I don't know. Felt like telling you a story about an ass.

Continue on.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010: Why racism will (probably) never die
(This is something I wrote at work this morning. Yeah, you could be offended, but probably only if you don't actually read through the entire text. My suggestion is to read entirely and not partially.)

I see how people become racist.

Not saying it's correct, but I understand how it occurs.

For starters, there's the lady who slammed on her brakes in this morning's traffic, even though I wasn't tailgating her, preceded to flip me off through her side mirror and talk shit to me. (Yeah, I called her a bitch inside my vehicle and laughed and smiled at her. She eventually moved to let me pass, probably to take down my license plate number or something equally as "professional." [I really wanted to say "something equally as white," but I figured that might be offensive.]) She was white. But, that could just be a coincidence, though I don't believe in coincidences.

Then, there are (some of) the people I live with, whose style of cleanliness is sometimes so different from mine that I wonder whether I've slipped into another dimension. (No Twilight Zone.) Garbage left in the house to stink up the living room instead of being taken out, dishes left for days, dishes put into the dishwasher only to emerge with food caked on them, bathroom trash never taken out, hair left in the drain, the absence of everything and anything good smelling, no vacuuming (ever), no sweeping of the floor (ever), no mopping, no cleaning of the countertops... I could go on forever. Well, they are white. Another coincidence.

There's the people in supervisory positions I've had mucho trouble with, who aren't that qualified to hold the positions they do, one who was even fired for her lack of professionalism that she took care to extend my way. (And this time, I actually mean professional, not "white.") Yep, they were and are white.

White people are always the ones cutting me off in traffic, always the ones slamming on their brakes to try to make me hit them, they are always the ones snitching on anything that doesn't fit their mold of "appropriate." White girls were always the ones at school getting drunk and screaming their way down Museum Rd., always getting drunk and throwing up on the sidewalk. White people are always dirty, white people always argue with the police. White people are always awkward, white people always need you to like them.

All white people are exactly as I just said.


Do I believe the generalizations I just listed? Not at all. Because they are just that--generalizations. You can insert a different race and different circumstances, and have an entirely new set of generalizations that seem to fit that race.

I listed all of these because I understand how people are prejudiced; how they become racist. The generalizations I listed are all things I've happened to observe or experience with individual people, all who happened to be white.

Being the knowing person that I am, I can separate individual white people from the entire group, just like I can do with any other group. But while I can do that, I understand how some people cannot--or choose not to--do the same.

If a person is continually exposed to negative experiences that all come from the same stimuli, they are going to be conditioned to believe that spoken stimuli will always cause them discomfort or negative experiences. They will lose the ability to tell anything otherwise. It's psychology, baby. If I pet someone's dog, and their dog bites me, I might be scared of their particular dog, but maybe not all dogs. But then say I meet another dog and that dog bites me. And then I see another dog and it bites me too. It's not going to take long before I associate the negative experience with all dogs, and probably not long before I decide that I don't like dogs all together. Is it right to judge all dogs based on the three I had bad experiences with? Is it fair? It may not be either, but it's going to seem rational to me, based on my experiences. Did I consider what breed of dog I was dealing with, or what the home conditions of that dog are like? Did I consider the age of the dog, or prior circumstances of the dog? No, I didn't, and logically, I wouldn't care. All I would know is that dog = bad, no matter what type of dog it is; no matter where it came from.

Although I like to consider myself knowing and educated, an intellectual, even, I have to fight against my natural human condition and remind myself when my white housemate is nasty as fuck or when a white sorority girl's biggest problem is a date for formal, or when that white, troll looking bitch with the muppet haircut taunts me while I'm just trying to drive to work, when all these things happen, I have to remind myself that it's not all white people. The same way that I have to remind myself that not all Asian people are smart, not all Black people are rappers, and not all short people are irritating.* But, it's certainly easy to forget this higher thinking when one particular stimuli offers the same outcome.

It might not be right, but it certainly is logical.

*--this has yet to refuted, but I put it in there for good measure.

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