Bougie remix

Bougie remix: Columbus Day, really?

from the archives... my 2009 thoughts on Columbus Day:

As Americans, we love us a holiday. My oh my, an excuse to turn a weekend into a three or four day break from the paycheck plantation? Sign us up. I remember as a child asking if I could celebrate Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah out of respect for my Jewish friends. BougieMom said if I wrote a five page essay describing their origin and how they were celebrated, then sure. I went to school.

In Texas, we have a number of bullshiggity holidays that continue to raise an eyebrow: San Jacinto Day for one, Confederate Heroes Day for another. Yes, Confederate Heroes Day (celebrating Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee – look it up, I can't MAKE this stuff up) which falls on near January 19th of every year. The catch? For years in Texas, you could choose to take either Confederate Heroes Days or Martin Luther King Day… guess how the office diversity looked on each of those days? Nationwide, there are some holidays that have outlived their usefulness and become a reason for a parade and creative cocktails (think St. Patrick's Day). No, I'm not including Juneteenth (now known as Emancipation Day) as a bogus holiday, ya'll need to get with that… seriously. No better excuse for a BBQ and a radical fist pump in the world.

But of all the holidays that need to be stricken from the books, I have to vote for Columbus Day. Haven't we proven that old Chris didn't really discover anything? I mean, how can you discover something that already exists? Didn't he basically jack some folks, plant a flag and declare it all brand new? Suppose I roll up in your living room and discover your 52" plasma, if I stick a flag in it and kill some brown people, is it mine? I'm just wondering. I know the Italian-American community has embraced this holiday as a cause célèbre, but what is really being celebrated? From the Wall Street Journal:
Much controversy exists over Columbus' expeditions and whether or not one can "discover" an already-inhabited land. The natives of the Bahamas and other islands on his journey were peaceful and friendly. Yet many of them were later enslaved by the Spanish. Also, it is known that the Vikings explored the North American coast 500 years before Columbus. [sic] But 22 states don't give their employees the day off, according to the Council of State Governments.
And in other places, Columbus Day is under attack. "We're going after state governments to drop this holiday for whatever reason they come up with," said Mike Graham, founder of United Native America, a group fighting for a federal holiday honoring Native Americans.
His group's agenda: Rename Columbus Day "Italian Heritage Day" and put it somewhere else on the calendar, then claim the second Monday in October as "Native American Day." South Dakota already calls it that.
Other organizations want to rename the day "Indigenous Peoples' Day," as several California cities, including Berkeley, have done.
Columbus's defenders aren't prepared to watch their hero's holiday sail off the edge of the earth. They say he should be celebrated for risking his life to explore the world and for forging modern ties between Europe and the Americas.
His supporters acknowledge Columbus took slaves back to Spain and opened the door to conquistadors who killed Native Americans. But much of the criticism is built on "judging a 16th century man by 21st century standards," says Dona De Sanctis of the Order Sons of Italy in America, a group of half a million Italian-Americans that tries to defend Columbus' legacy.
At Brown University, the rename-the-holiday activists "stressed this was against Columbus, but not Italian-Americans," says Reiko Koyama, a junior who led the effort to persuade the school to change the name to "Fall Weekend." Brown happens to be in Rhode Island, a state with the largest proportion of Italian-Americans in the U.S.
Lookie here: Pookie, Ray-Ray and 'dem "discover" new stuff on the regular; four hundred years from now will we have a National Grand Hustle Day? Just sayin' – since we're all so worried about political correctness these days, it might be time to take a look and see which of these "national holidays" still make sense. Any thoughts on Chris C.'s holiday? Any other holidays need the side-eye?

From the Archives: A few things I need in a boo...

As we're revisiting Bouige Blasts from the past, this one about me foolishly attempting to chase a wannabe robber (he's currently serving 12 - 15) caught my eye. Enjoy:



There are plenty of things I love about being single – autonomy, no sharing of the remote control and the ability to skip shaving my legs for a day (or two) without complaints. [Don't judge me!] However, as we head towards the fall/winter season and the holidays, there are definite reasons for landing a significant other (aka getting booed up). But not just any boo will do. I have very specific requirements for Mr. Good-Bougie. This week I'll look at a few of them in my own special "OneChele" way.

Requirement #5: Security. No not financial or emotional, I'm talking actual firearm bearing, black suit wearing security. Allow me to share:

Last week, I'm at home upstairs in my office wrapping up some phone calls. BougieMom had lent her car to an in-law so she called me to come and scoop her up from the senior citizens' center where she plays bridge. (BougieMom's social life is better than mine. L Moving on.)

Now some background info, BougieMom is 77 and lives with me in a home large enough for us to sometimes ignore each others' existence. It's a two-story stone and brick structure in a gated community. When I am upstairs in my office, I can block out the world. I say all this to say, we have always felt extremely secure here.

So on this fine sunny day last week, I walked out of my office, across the game room and started down the stairs. Swinging my purse over my arm, I paused thinking I heard something. Please imagine my shock when I leaned over the banister to see a short pale acne-ridden white man standing in my kitchen. As I watched, he reached across the bar top and picked up the keys to my German luxury automobile and glanced around. His eyes landed on the flat screen TV we have in the breakfast nook.

I scanned him up and down and saw no noticeable weapons, a frail frame and I deduced that I outweighed him. In other words, I could take him if I had to. All of this brilliant thought in less than a minute. Now what I did next shocks me in hindsight and if asked ahead of time, I would have sworn that I would not have done this.

I opened my mouth and said, 'What the hell?" He turned and looked at me obviously shocked that someone was home. I went from stunned to pissed in no time flat and my inner Shaniqua came out. He made a move as if heading towards the garage and I said, "There's not a chance in hell that you can make it out of the garage in my m.f. car before I get down there and catch your ass." With that I flew down the stairs still talking trash," Not this house, not today!" As I hopped down from the last stair to the landing, he decided to cut his losses. "Shit!" he said before flinging my keys in one direction and running past me to the back door (answering my question of how he'd gotten in).

Still not thinking and still enraged, I snatched up the keys, ran out to my car and wheeled out looking for him. I skidded out of my garage and took a corner on damn-near two wheels, I dialed 911 and shared my story. Gunning it down the side street to try and catch him at the back gate, I gave a detailed description, "Meth-head tweaky looking narrow ass with dirty blond hair, bloodshot blue eyes, 5'8" in a grey tee and stonewash jeans."

I watched him jump the back gate and it occurred to me, "Chele, if you caught this guy, what were you going to do exactly?" I had no clue; I announced to the dispatcher that I was giving up the chase. Adrenaline still high, I retrieved BougieMom and told her the tale. When we got back to the house, we discovered that the lock on the back door was sticking and he was able to jiggle it to get in. Meth-head had opened some of her drawers and taken some cash she had in her nightstand but nothing else. We were counting our blessings when the police called me to say they had actually caught the guy (that never happens) and had him in custody.

Since I live less than two miles from a police substation and the guy had been on foot, they caught him meeting up with his partner behind a drugstore up the road. The duo had hit ten homes in the area. They were suspected of over fifty break-ins across the Dallas-Ft.Worth metroplex. Their m.o. was for one guy to go in during work hours and if there was a car, he could load your car up with your belongings and drive off. Then he met up with his friend who had a big rental truck to consolidate the haul… nervy.

He picked the wrong house on the wrong day. I went to the substation and picked him out in a line-up that same night. BougieMom and I have decided to just leave the alarm on all the time. It was only later when I thought about how many ways that day could have gone worse that I cringed a little. He could have had a gun, his partner could have been with him, my mother could have been home, he could have fought me, I could have fallen down the stairs (wouldn't be the first time).

Before you ask what in all that is bougie was I thinking, I'll tell you – I was thinking "the nerve of this guy! While I'm in my own home trying to earn a nice living and keep a roof over my mother's head to bust up in here and steal what's mine!" If I had it to do all over again, I'd hide in the closet and dial 911… maybe. Or if I had a man, I'd call him to come over and kick the guy's ass. SO while I'm making up my wish list of requirements for the pre-Christmas boo, I believe I'll add large, burly, intimidating or at least handy with firearms (or skilled in jujitsu) to the list.

BougieLand - what would YOU have done?