No hate

Sexy beyond Size Two, a Friday Rant

Men themselves have wondered what they see in me. They try so much, but they can't touch my inner mystery. When I try to show them, they say they still can't see.

I say:
It's in the arch of my back, the sun of my smile, the ride of my breasts, the grace of my style.
I'm a woman phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

~excerpt from Phenomenal Woman by Maya Angelou

One of the good things about Twitter is that everybody can share their thoughts on everything.

One of the bad things about Twitter is that everybody can share their thoughts on everything.

You feel me? I thought so.

For the record, I'm not saying women shouldn't be healthy. I have nothing against fitness. I do yoga, cardio-boxing, all flavor of Wii Fitness, and sometimes I do more than give my treadmill a disdainful glance. But I'll never be whisper thin. It's genetically impossible. I'll always be top heavy and I'll always have to do crunches. My metabolism is the kind that reminds me of every single time I give in to a potato chip or M&M. But I recognize this and do what I have to do to keep it together. Bougie means trying to keep your cute up. So when I hear people (and definitely men) going in on women's appearances and specifically their weight it drives me crazy.

Listening to some of these folks would have you thinking that if you aren't a size 2, you aren't fabulous. Seriously, the scrubs almost tricked me into second-guessing my wonderfulness. I was talking with someone last night who had me cracking up saying it's always the scrubby dude acting like they gotta have Halle Berry on their arm and nothing else will do. Though I have to say, most of the fellas – those that I call "real men" that I hang out with here and in the real world - they like a woman with a little curve to her. Some substance. Someone who eats more than two triscuits and a tic-tac. According to a friend on Twitter: Most real men see quality and value. The scrubs are still trying to live out a fantasy. They want a women to make them look good to other men.

Hmpfh. What prompted this rant you may wonder? A few things caught my attention these past few weeks. First was the Lane Bryant commercial that Fox and ABC refused to broadcast saying it was too racy for primetime. You check it out and tell me what you think…

But this Victoria's Secret commercial directed by Michael Bey is less racy? Old girl is straddling a pool table with a long stick...

So why do the Victoria's Secret commercials warrant airtime but not Lane Bryant? Is someone scared of the real women curves? I'll let you marinate on that.

Second was the whole controversy about Gabby Sibide being "less than pleasant" at the White House Correspondents' Dinner and at other functions.

Okay so she's a newly minted "star" who hasn't learned the art of public graciousness yet (and she looks mighty salty here). But with these tales, the media just has to mix in something abot her weight. This phenomenon was outlined in a great post over at (not)HappyAboutThis. Here's an example of what the media has been saying.

"So, who was the weekend's biggest (no pun intended) disappointment so far?"

"Wow! FishbowlDC wasn't alone when we gave "Precious" star Gabby Sidibe a GIGANTIC (no pun intended...okay, that's a lie) thumbs down."

Okay so is the crime that she was acting bitchy? Or that she's fat and bitchy? I'll let you make your own conclusions.

Let me take a minute to touch on the nonsense surrounding "Just Wright". Apparently, some folks (laser beam side-eye) don't think it's believable that a baller would choose a Queen Latifah over a Paula Patton.

Come on already. Are we still here? Queen Latifah is gorgeous at any size. And I think we've all figured out that any man can fall for any woman if that zing hits. No one knows what causes it; if we did we'd bottle it up and auction it on eBay. There no rhyme or reason what makes two people click. Are we really so shallow that we think the size of the outer shell is all that matters?

One of my online mentees was thoroughly offended because her boyfriend cheated on her with an overweight girl. I asked her if she was mad because he cheated or because of who he cheated with? She was more offended that he cheated with someone she perceived as less attractive. She felt insulted. I informed her that what she should be is introspective. When a man cheats with a supposedly less attractive woman that generally means he found something in her beyond the superficial, something he wasn't getting with his current S.O. That, I told her, is a wake-up call.

Part of the aftermath of that stupid Nightline FaceOff shibacle was that some idiot actually said that Sherri Shepherd didn't deserve to get a man because of her weight. And then a whole bunch more idiots co-signed. Say what now? If it is your preference to date women of a certain body type, good on ya and hope it works out. But are you seriously saying that women of a certain size don't deserve love? GTFOH with all of that.

This whole culture where people feel guilty for eating one piece of cake (and tweet about it), when someone in a size 4 thinks she's fat, where some designers still won't make clothing larger than a size 10 when the average size of a woman in this country is a 14 is sheer craziness. The stupid jokes about Precious, the fact that when Erykah Badu's last video came out half of the comments were about her a$$ and perceived cellulite, and really with Kirstie Alley's Big Life?

Le Sigh. I understand that obesity leads to all sorts of health problems and generally doesn't look great. We all agree that longevity is a shared goal and looking decent in clothes is a plus but check this out: In 1953, Jane Russell (a size 18) and Marilyn Monroe (size 14) were the standard of sexy beauty. In 1976, the three Charlie's Angels were a size 6, 8, and 10. The redone Charlie's Angels in 2000 were size 2, 4 and 6. By 2020 are we just going to prop up cardboard cut-outs and call that sexy? I call bullshiggity. I'm over it… I wish everyone would join me there.

Comments, thoughts, rants? Floor is yours…

Calling a Spade… a Spade (to her face) – bueno or no bueno?

Today, we're doing a cross-blog topic with Single Black Male. It is of an NC-17 nature. Usually, I type the word b*tch with the asterisk. But today since we are discussing the unfortunate usage of the word, we're going in. Buckle up.

As a blogger, I'm often asked things that quite frankly throw me for a loop. Based on the comments from one of my posts, the question was asked – when is it acceptable to call a woman a bitch or a ho to her face?

My thoughts:

Hmm. Well, I have a series of standards on this one. First of all, let's be honest… some women display some decidedly bitch-like, ho-like tendencies. Just two weeks ago, we expounded on the irritating trend of Hoedom as a hustle. All this being said, when you are looking someone in their face (and yes, I KNOW this is sexist) I believe there is NO time where it's acceptable for a man to call a woman a bitch or a ho. Kinda like non-black people using the n-word (whole other topic), this one you have to leave in house.

And EVEN then, if you don't have some sort of relationship where that's an okay thing, you can NOT be calling folks bitches and hoes to their face. I'm sorry, you really can't. Now, do we need to discuss the difference between calling someone bitchy or a bitch? Understanding that it's still right there on the line of what can catch you a beat down from said female?

Of course I have a few friends that jokingly call each other bitches. "Bitch you know you look good." "Ya'll bitches never on time." "Queen Bitch is on her throne today." And EVEN then, after one or two someone generally says, "Um, Ms. Lady – we're not going to be too many more bitches tonight, okay?" And it's shut down.

We don't call each other hoes. No, not even if some hoe-shiggity is apparent. It's just not done. But again, that's just me and my friends. I'm curious to know how this dynamic plays out with other people. Here's an interactive quiz for your enjoyment:

I got into a discussion on Twitter about this and several folks had differing opinions. SBM had the strongest opinion. He believed that if a woman is acting like a bitch or a ho, she needed to be called out.

SBM's thoughts:

As my good friend OneChele mentioned … we differ in opinion.

Anyone who frequents knows we aren't afraid to tell it like it is and say what really needs to be said. But please believe I am not some e-Thug who keeps his mouth quiet out in the "real world." Please believe the SBM you get on the blog and twitter is the same strong minded, "always got an opinion about relationships", chivalry murdering, weave hating individual that you hate love so much on these e-streets. I strive to give you the same experience whether you're looking me in my eye or reading me on a monitor.

As a result … I will call a woman a hoe or a bitch … if the situation calls for it.

Please don't get it wrong. My mom and dad raised me right. Even in a time when too few rappers can define the word misogyny, and b*tch and hoe are thrown around with reckless abandonment, I neither participate or condone calling any and every woman a b*tch or a hoe. Just because you are female doesn't make you a b* or h*. Streetz detailed what makes some woman a b*, and I think we all know what a hoe is … so I won't reiterate.

But … there are certain situations where I feel that I, as a man, can call a woman a bitch or hoe to her face. These are never done with complete strangers, and I usually know the person. And I don't mean it as mean … but sometimes these harsh words give the "shock" value needed to rightly bring about change. Let's look at some of these situations.

– My female friend has just told me about the 5 different guys she has slept with this week. Apparently she needed to get something out her system (You'z a hoe).

– An acquaintance in the group is asking if it's wrong that she slept with a guy raw dawg, in the back of a car, while his friend drove them back from the club (*true story*)within 6 hours of meeting him. (You'z a hoe).

– A woman is telling me about the 5 anonymous person train that just "came through her station." (You'z a hoe).

– My date (on our first date) is talking about the 30 day marathon she did last year where she aimed to sleep with a different man every day of the week, and then call back the best for a weekend repeat (You'z a super serious hoe).

– A woman in a group of friends that I am part of (don't know her that well) is explaining how she threw her big mac back through the drive through window because they forgot the secret sauce (You'z acting like a bitch).

– You, a stranger, come into my face cursing and implicating that I cannot hold an erection or please a woman. All this because I wouldn't buy you a drink (You'z a bitch)

So, as we can see there are some situations where a woman simply needs to be informed to the error of her ways. Just like any questionable actions on my behalf would result in me being called a "bitch ass n***a" or a "man-whore/he-slut" … I strive for equality. I don't do it out of spite, to be mean, or to be disrespectful … but if you're acting like a bitch around SBM … be prepared to get your feelings hurt.

Well, as you can tell... we really don't agree on this one. And I'm also giving SBM a side-eye on his circle of friends. Here in BougieLand we tell it like it is, but we bougie so we say it nicely… SBM, you know I love you like a third cousin I scold at Thanksgiving and Easter but you need more people, sweetie. I say this with the love. The L-O-V-E. If you have words for SBM, leave them over there or over here or both.

I admit that I'm curious to see what kind of responses we get. Are we out there calling folks bitches and hoes to their face? The floor is yours.

Blogging backlash rebuttal: I don’t hate men. I don’t know what a feminista is. I don’t know from welfare.

I didn't set out this week to write a Black Feminist Manifesto. It wasn't my intention to rally up the Sisterhood with the "I am Woman Hear Me Roar" battle cry. Don't get me wrong, we are awesome though. We totally rock and if we wanted to get matching t-shirts and cabbage patch backwards down Pennsylvania Avenue to "Sisters are doing it for themselves"… well let me know when and I'll order up the frozen margarita machine. I really just wanted to squash the negative rhetoric, get a few things off my chest and share an anecdote or two. And I kinda thought I did that, with far more impact than I expected.

But… wow! Along with the great uplifting and supporting comments came the blowback. Thanks to my readers' passion for the subject, the post calling for a halt on the Black Girl Beatdowns was retweeted and reposted all up and through the internet. picked it up, it was "buzzed up" at Yahoo, landed on Digg, Facebook, Twitter, Technorati, Live Journals and places that I didn't even know existed. And I'm thankful, I really am. It's every writer's goal to have their work read. Of course we prefer if it is universally hailed and loved but understand when it is not. And this post most definitely was not. I read some of the comments, some of the tweets and all of the emails sent to me. And though I did not answer a lot of them directly, I thought I'd share a few of my favorites here with my thoughts. Okay, my super snarky thoughts. Ya'll know I try to avoid the super-snark but it's been a long day and I lack my usual diplomacy and tact:

Rebecca on Yahoo! said - Single black women would get more respect if they: 1) didn't have children while single. 2) didn't expect their mothers to raise their children. 3) not be so vocal about their private lives and/or lack thereof. said by a single white woman.

Hey Rebecca, thanks so much for your insightful commentary. Stereotype much? In response I say, I don't have any kids. Therefore my mother isn't raising my kids. And I'm assuming you would like black women to be less vocal about our private lives like… one of those Kardashian girls, Jessica Simpson, Paris Hilton… someone like that? They sure lead by example. Oh and thanks for letting me know you are single and white. I was really interested in that part.

Mr. PantsALot (almost enough said right there) emailed to say: Another mouthy black woman whining. Get a job, lose some weight, eat less chicken and learn to give decent head. Then you'll get a man. You and your blog serve no purpose.

Hi Mister Pants, I'm assuming from your note that if I were a size-four mute making seven figures, snacking on baby greens and swallowing cucumbers whole that we'll be cool and I will then serve a purpose? I'll get to work on that right away because you seem like a catch I'd hate to miss out on. Call me, boo!

On Twitter from a woman who proclaimed herself to be a modern day Incan-Amazon worshipper (I don't know ya'll, I just don't know): You should own your womanist, feminista standards instead of waiting for a man to define you. Men will steal your essence and block your path to the sun whose rays empower and strengthen us. Amazonian woman bask in our self-sufficiency and only ascent to their true queen status when they rid themselves of all men except the ones we birth. You are a sad excuse for encouraging women to depend on a man. Wise up before it's too late to reclaim your soul and body.

Uh Miss Amazon Chick: What? I'm confused and a little scared. There's something both condescending and Oedipal about what you spent fifteen minutes typing to me. I would ask more questions but I find myself terrified of the answers. Since it appears I will miss out on my true queen status, I'll settle for Duchess – wouldn't turn down Countessa status either. Good luck on that sun ray thing though.

On Live Journal Mark shared: So you basically can't get a man so you hate them, why share your pitiful life with the rest of us. Who cares? This is why I date white girls. Yeah I said it and yeah I'm black. What about the fellas, we catch holy hell from the media too, I don't hear your whining about that. Get a life. Peace.

Mark, No one is fooled when you flame throw and then wrap up with "peace". Um, so you have never been on my blog and didn't take the time to look around, huh? You missed my whole I Love Black Men Week? You missed me saying you should get love where you find love, if your love is a white girl – more power to you. Bouge Rule #1 – Bouge is Love… you keep it classy.

For the record, I know black men are catching hell in the media. I see an Ivy League educated Noble Prize Winner in the White House catching hell all day, every day! Let's face it – this is a media-driven society and 24/7/365 news needs to be feed. Nobody escapes the media microscope. Personally, I was a lot happier when I knew a bit less of everybody's business. I just happened to write about single black females… because I am one. We write what we know.

Good readers, do not be dismayed – in one email Tisha from the ATL wiped all the "constructive feedback" from my head. Here's what she wrote.

Dear OneChele,

My husband passed away in Iraq over two years ago. Since then I have really struggled raising our seven-year old daughter. Not financially but keeping her grounded and positive without a strong male figure. She worries about me, I worry about her. I come home from work, get food on the table, get her settled and then finally pop open my laptop with a big glass of wine. The blogosphere is where I go to unwind. I'll come back to that in a second. My daughter and I watch the morning news shows together. One day last week when I ran upstairs, she caught wind of the story about single black females dying alone. On the way to school she told me she never wanted to get married and leave me. I asked her why and she said she didn't want me to end up alone eaten by cats. You know that was a bolt to my heart to hear those words coming out of her young mouth. I told her not to worry about it, it wasn't going to happen. That afternoon she came out of the school dragging some grown man with her. My child had walked up to one the teachers, grilled him and asked him if he wanted to date her mother. You know I wanted to die when she pulled that man up to the car. Man had the nerve to be cute too. Everyday since she asked me what I'm going to do so I don't get eaten by cats. Last night I read your blog. I printed it out and read it to her this morning. She smiled and said Oh Mama you can take your time finding a new man or you can be okay alone. I said yes I could. She was happy. Unfortunately she strutted up to cute teacher and told him My mama doesn't need you anymore, she's gonna be okay. So I thank you Ms. OneChele, your blog post gave me and my daughter what we needed to make it through another day. Thanks , Tisha in Atlanta

As I dab my eyes with the Kleenex let me say – Tisha, you're welcome… and you may want to holla at cute teacher… just sayin' your daughter may have picked a winner.

Okay BougieLand, thoughts or comments? Anyone have a CLUE what an Incan-Amazonian Sun Worshipper is? Don't you just love when a post all about keeping it peaceful causes folks to go completely left and back again? Fellas, get your boys Pants and Mark… please.

Trying not to hate on… Black Friday

I'm a girl who loves to shop. Window shop, power shop, little browse or stock up for a rainy day – I love to shop. So why, Black Friday are you determined to suck the fun out of it? Sure, I don't HAVE to go out there on the craziest day of the year… but then again I really do. I have to make sure I'm not missing something fabulous. But I have to make sure within reason. So, Mr. B. Friday – I have a few questions for you:

  1. Why do you have people believing the hype and waking up at 3:00am to get in line at Wal-Mart for a $35 laptop? You know you only have two of those and 4,500 over-caffeinated people are about to storm your doors to get it. Quit tripping.

  2. Why do these stores not hire enough additional workers? Yes, we're in a recession but people must shop. I don't care if I'm only purchasing one pair of $5 drawers from Vicki's to get my free gift with purchase, I don't believe I should have to wait 35 minutes for it.

  3. Why are people so darn pushy? I mean like-snatch-the-boot-out-of-my-hand pushy. Girlfriend, don't let the bougie fool you – I will CUT you over some stack heel buttery leather size 8 ½ joints in black. Try me and see.

  4. Who are you fooling with some of these sales? Macy*s, bless their heart, has a one-day only sale every other week unless you are just opening a side window and throwing purses, shoes and apparel out the window, not sure how much more you can do.

  5. Why do we even go? It's like getting sucked in by the hype. We truly believe this is the best shopping day of the year and if we miss it, we should just lie down and drink arsenic.

  6. Is it bad that I rarely buy Christmas presents on Black Friday? I usually take the opportunity to stock up on stuff for me and the house. I'm sure I should feel bad about this somehow.

Usually BougieMom, BougieSis and I venture out around nine or ten (none of that four AM nonsense). We shop with a plan and a purpose and more often than not… a list. Yes, we are those people. We attack shopping with guerilla warfare precision and follow a few rules:

  1. Breakfast first, you'll need all your energy and brain food.
  2. Buy what you can afford, and only what you can carry yourself.
  3. Walking shoes only, you fall out you will get left behind.
  4. Know what you want, we will not be wandering from store to store.
  5. No tears in shopping, if we missed the noon cut-off for the extra 30% off – it just wasn't meant to be.
  6. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Sometimes the parking gods aren't with us and perspiration is involved.
  7. No kids allowed, this shopping expedition is for the grown, serious and toilet trained.
  8. No body no crime: mess with the BougieWomen at your own risk – we will fight back (or shred you with our razor sharp witty tongues)
  9. No discount, no purchase – I don't believe in paying full price for much of anything.
  10. If we find most of what we want at brilliant prices at the first store, that's a sign and we're done OR When we are so hungry we are irritable, it's time for a break or time to stop.

So who's with me? Who's shopping today? Why and what are you getting? Who believes Black Friday to be the most overhyped "pseudo-Holiday" of the year?

Trying not to hate on… how cute the First Family is.

President Barack Obama with daughter Sasha, First Lady Michelle Obama, and daughter Malia, distribute food for Thanksgiving at Martha's Table, a food pantry in Washington. November 25, 2009.

I'm sure the Bushes did this and I just didn't care enough to pay attention. Sorry G-dub. Seeing this picture puts quite a smile on my face. First Fam for the win! (Look at how hard Barack is concentrating on getting his scoop right... love it!)

And for some more fun... here's the President's PSA with the NFL for Play 60, a program encouraging kids to get up off their vide0-gaming hindparts and play actively for 60 minutes a day. The commercial also features Drew Brees, DeMarcus Ware and Troy Polamalu. Enjoy~

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Trying not to hate on… Pilgrims

Somewhere along the way, Thanksgiving became a day to eat a lot, watch football, and try not to commit felonious assault against your relatives. Yes, this is what we have evolved Thanksgiving into, but let's talk about where it came from, shall we? From Wikipedia:

Thanksgiving or Thanksgiving Day, presently celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November, has been an annual tradition in the United States since 1863. It did not become a federal holiday until 1941. Thanksgiving was historically a religious observation to give thanks to God, but is now primarily identified as a secular holiday.

The First Thanksgiving was celebrated to give thanks to God for helping the pilgrims survive the brutal winter. The first Thanksgiving feast lasted three days providing enough food for 53 pilgrims and 90 Indians. The traditional Thanksgiving menu often features turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie. Americans may eat these foods on modern day Thanksgiving, but the first feast did not consist of these items. On the first feast turkey was any type of fowl that the pilgrims hunted. Pumpkin pie wasn't on the menu because there were no ovens for baking, but they did have boiled pumpkin. Cranberries weren't introduced at this time. Due to the diminishing supply of flour there was no bread of any kind. The foods included in the first feast included duck, geese, venison, fish, lobster, clams, swan, berries, dried fruit, pumpkin, squash, and many more vegetables.

Pilgrims is a name commonly applied to early settlers of the Plymouth Colony in present-day Plymouth, Massachusetts. Their leadership came from a religious congregation who had fled a volatile political environment in the East Midlands of England for the relative calm & tolerance of Holland in the Netherlands. Concerned with losing their cultural identity, the group later arranged with English investors to establish a new colony in North America. The colony, established in 1620, became the oldest continuously inhabited British settlement and the second successful English settlement (after the founding of Jamestown, Virginian 1607) in what was to become the United States of America. The Pilgrims' story of seeking religious freedom has become a central theme of the history and culture of the United States.

That all sounds well and good but as our dear, departed Malcolm X stated, "We didn't land on Plymouth Rock, Plymouth Rock landed on us." What a lot of these original (traditional) historic accounts fail to tell you is that the pilgrims were some grave-robbing, raping and killing, slave trading SOBs who were drop kicked out of their own countries. Smallpox was Eurpoean disease until they wrapped it up in a blanket (literally) and delivered it to Native Americans like a Trojan Horse. Here's some interesting history from the United Native American Bureau:

The year was 1637.....700 men, women and children of the Pequot Tribe, gathered for their "Annual Green Corn Dance" in the area that is now known as Groton, Conn. While they were gathered in this place of meeting, they were surrounded and attacked by mercenaries of the English and Dutch. The Indians were ordered from the building and as they came forth, they were shot down. The rest were burned alive in the building.

The next day, the Governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony declared: "A day of Thanksgiving, thanking God that they had eliminated over 700 men, women and children. For the next 100 years, every "Thanksgiving Day" ordained by a Governor or President was to honor that victory, thanking God that the battle had been won.

The Pilgrims of New England, who came to this country in 1620, were not simple refugees from England fighting against oppression and religious discrimination. They were political revolutionaries and part of the Puritan movement, which was considered objectionable and unorthodox by the King of the Church of England. They were outcasts in their own country, plotting to take over the government, causing some of the settlers to become fugitives in their own country.

These Puritan Pilgrims saw themselves as the "chosen elect", from the Bibles' Book of Revelations and traveled to America to build "The Kingdom of God", also from Revelations. Strict with the scripture, they considered an enemy of anyone who did not follow suit. These beliefs were eventually transmitted to the other colonists, and the Puritan belief system quickly spread across the New England area.

Source: Documents of Holland, 13 Volume Colonial Documentary History, letters and reports form colonial officials to their superiors and the King in England and the private papers of Sir William Johnson, British Indian agent for the New York colony for 30 years. Researched by William B. Newell (Penobscot Tribe) Former Chairman of the University of Connecticut Anthropology Department.
Yes, the Pilgrims were some Original Gangstas, ya'll. I'm giving all of them the side-eye for the whole "manifest destiny" ideology. After reviewing the overwhelming evidence on the web about the history of Thanksgiving, I'm just going to go ahead and hate on the Pilgrims.

What do you think? Should children be taught the REAL story of Plymouth Rock or is it better to just leave well enough alone?

Trying not to hate on… Big Warehouse Stores the week of Thanksgiving

Dammit Walton Family. Yes you, Sam's Wholesale Club. You know I'm trying not to hate this week. But no! You don't wanna act right. You just couldn't make it easy on me. Last minute Thanksgiving shopping should not be a living nightmare. Okay sure, I should have bought this stuff over a week ago… Don't. Judge. Me. I'm not the issue here, it's your big concrete and steel warehouse full of nonsense that is the issue. So I have a few questions:

  1. Why is the parking lot hassle enough to make me wish I stayed home?

    Pulling in and finding a spot should not be as difficult as winning the lottery though both feel pretty futile. Holiday parking should be a competitive sport covered by ESPN. The person to snag the spot closest to the door without injuring self or vehicle wins.

  2. Why is the Salvation Army chick so pushy?

    Is it me or have the bell-ringers gone a little gangster? Sheesh! I understand it's for a good cause and all that but how do you know I haven't given at the last FIVE stores I went to looking for whole grain stuffing mix? I could be all tapped out and on my last dime and you are still going to laser beam side-eye me on the way in and shout out a snarky "Happy Holidays to you, ma'am" on my way out.

  3. Why is there a line just to get up in the door?

    Dear Membership Card Checker Person, we both know you don't care if the picture on this card belongs to me or my dearly departed 97-year old Aunt Vi. As long as my card is approved at the end of the day, you gives a damn. So why you trippin' on the entrance. Just wave folks in and say "Welcome to Sam's", could you please?

  4. Why were people playing bumper cars with the carts, is it that crucial? Do we look like we are going to take the last can of cranberry sauce?

    Apparently it was crucially important that two melanin-challenged people get in the door and to the cranberries prior to BougieSis and I. The dive-bombing was a bit much and the blatant swerve and cut-off was inexcusable. Calm down people, it's just jellied fruit.

  5. To the lady who looked insulted when we took the celery she was apparently coveting… what's wrong with your life that you are so focused on celery?

    Seriously, first she stood angrily waiting while we debated the need for three bunches of celery. Then she gave us a nasty stank-eye when we selected the one package she apparently wanted to take home with her. You know what, if your stuffing isn't all that it can be because of your celery deficiency, feel free to blame it on the two bougie chicks who slowed you down for 45 seconds.

  6. Excuse me miss, I just overheard you say it's just you and your husband? What are you planning to do with 6 jumbo cans of super-sweet corn and 2 ten pound bags of brown sugar?

    I don't really know what else to say about that except somewhere in the distance, some is putting SuperFreak on repeat. They giving thanks for real.

  7. What is the deal with the gallon size containers of anti-bacterial hand gel? [H1N1 fear is the truth!]

    On our way to check out we noticed a towering display of gallon tanks of "germ-b-gone" or whatever they want to call it. Good Lord! If this was all it took to stay alive, don't you think we'd all be bathing in it morning and night? As our checkout girl shared, people have been catching colds and flus for years yet the human race is still here. [yeah, checkout chick went all existential on us]

  8. Why did we spend more on wine than we did on actual food? [priority FAIL]

    We bee-lined straight to the wine section and spent more time and money there than anywhere else in the store. We must have weighed the merits of merlot vs. pinot noir for a good five minutes while the cart was crying out for some sort of poultry.

  9. We see you have moved all the "fun" toys to the front of the building, near the checkout lanes. Do not be slick. Are you trying to create family disturbances just for fun?

    Kids became transfixed just as their parents were ready to get the heck out of Dodge. It's a recipe for tomfoolery and prologue to catching a CPS case. Not a good look, Sam's.

  10. Why is the receipt review lady perpetually pissy?

    I would have to say that 85% of the time I shop at this Sam's the Jamaican woman at the exit door is salty. Her tartness was at an all time high today and she muttered to herself and walked in a staccato circle while reviewing the contents of the cart. "Have a nice day!" I said in a friendly tone as we began to push past her. If looks could kill, the forensic investigators would be fingerprinting the Sam's door right now.

Did you do your Thanksgiving shopping early or last minute? What's on the menu? Who's cooking? Does anyone share my love/hate relationship with warehouse megastores?

Trying not to hate on... Michelle Obama looking GORGEOUS for the State Dinner

The picture above shows the Obamas prior to the first State Dinner of the 44th Presidency. With them are Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his wife Mrs. Gursharan Kaur. Mrs. Obama's dress was designed by Indian-American designer Naeem Khan. Why is she 45 looking better than a lot of 30-year olds? Do you see her arms? The earrings? LOVE IT!

Why do they look like they are having more fun than anyone else in the room? After all these years, they still have that spark. Performing at the White House tonight are Jenmifer Hudson, A.R. Rahman (an Oscar winner who helped create some of the music for the film "Slumdog Millionaire.") and Grammy-nominated jazz vocalist Kurt Elling, and the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Marvin Hamlisch.

Okay, I'm hating a little bit. She looks great and it looks to be a lovely evening for all.

Trying not to hate on… Beyoncé and Jay-Z

Why is everybody so mad at Bey and Jay? Why ya'll hatin'? Every time one or the two gets mentioned, folks have a whole lot of yackity-yack. Sure her hair lives it's own life, she has developed an irrational fear of pants and he resembles Joe Camel but is that any reason for the amount of bile and anger directed at these two? Sure, they are little over-cautious and super-secretive on that whole "we're married and we live together" thing but can you blame them? They do not want any additional scrutiny then they already get.

Let's be clear about something, they make pop music. That means popular. Neither of them promised to save the world through music, re-invigorate R&B or bring Hip-Hop back to the real. They call themselves entertainers and let's face it… they really are. Whether you agree with Beyoncé's singing style or the freshness of Jay's rhymes, you cannot deny that they put on a good show. Come on now, check out this video and tell me it's not at least a little fun (damn tune is catchy as hell), '03 Bonnie & Clyde:

People tend to have a "love-her-or-hate-her" relationship with Ms. Knowles-Carter, I tend to flip-flop. I love the hustle but lately her songs have kind of left me lukewarm. This was the last song of hers that I actually really enjoyed (like pissed off how many men by blaring it in the car enjoyed), Irreplaceable:

Mr. Sean J. Carter tends to get mixed reactions as well. Some hip-hop purists feel like he sold out, some younger rap fans feel he's past his prime but I just think he makes decent tunes (for the most part) that I can rap along to without looking up every other word in the Urban Dictionary. I know people who hated this song with a passion but I found it quite infectious, Show Me What Ya Got:

Let's just be honest with ourselves, folks are hating on Mr. and Mrs. Carter because they live far better lives than most of us can dream of… and I dream pretty big. We wear clothes, they own clothing lines. We listen to records, they own record labels. We enjoy scents, they are creating custom colognes and perfumes with their names on them. We sit by a pool, they are cruising St. Tropez on Tiger Woods' yacht. We talk about the White House, they get invited in. Okay? Be happy black people got it like that in 2009 and quit hating. Unless you want to hate on Jada and Will, I could rustle up some arguments for that one.

Do you love or hate the Carters? Why? Is there another celebrity you love to hate? Do explain.

Trying not to hate on… the First Amendment

This week on BnB, I'm trying not to hate. We're all about the love. But since I mentioned it, there are a few things that are testing my pleasing personality. Here we go…

I'm all for the Constitution – woo-hoo Bill of Rights! But the thing about rights in a democratic society is that people tend to abuse them. Here in the blogosphere, it's no different. Lately, while reading other blogs and comments on other blogs (not here in BougieLand, we're all good) I catch myself thinking… free speech ain't meant for everybody. I mean it IS meant for everybody but some people need to just hold it in check.

I know it's horrible to say and I feel a little bit (but not very) bad typing it. But before I go further, let's go into some definitions.

The First Amendment to the United States Constitution states:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

From Wikipedia: Freedom of speech is the concept of the inherent human right to voice one's opinion publicly without fear of censorship or punishment. "Speech" is not limited to public speaking and is generally taken to include other forms of expression.

E-freedom, a combination of the words "electronic" and "freedom", refers to the right to freedom of opinion and expression through electronic communications technologies media such as the internet and telecommunication. These open, virtual, and decentralized network media provide individuals the unprecedented paths for dissidents, share ideas, critique government actions, publish, and access information.

Alright, now that we know what we're talking about, allow me to repeat… not everyone's ready for all that freedom. If for no other reason than to protect my nerves for being jumped on; I cannot help but wish that some people would self-censor. Aw OneChele, why ya say that? Let me give you three reasons why:

  1. People can be SO rude! I don't know if it's because the internet is relatively anonymous and people have cajones grandes when posted up in front of a monitor and keyboard but some people use their anonymity to get real out of hand on these internets. I completely understand that everyone is going to be of one mind on issue and truthfully, I wouldn't want them to be. But what is wrong with respecting a differing opinion and agreeing to disagree? [Author's PSA: just because someone does not agree with you does not make them stupid. Granted, they may well be but not merely because they deign to have a differing viewpoint.] If I had a dime for every time someone shared an opinion and then got blasted by some self-righteous commenter, well – let's just say I'd be retired to my private Caribbean island by now. AverageBro had a series called "The Problem With" last week that was very well done.

  2. People can be SO stupid! Not here in BougieLand, we're all brilliant in our own special way but have you SEEN some of the ignance out there? I can't even call it ignorance, it's too stupid for the "o" and the "r" to be included. All you have to do is visit Newsvine and scan the first ten comments on any article. Just at a glance, I saw Obama compared to Chavez in Venezula, I saw a mother concerned that New Moon would turn her child to the occult and a person claiming that Shaniya Davis got what was coming to her. What in all that is holy is wrong with people? My Aunt Violet used to say that common sense just isn't common any more but when did people stop thinking intelligently for themselves? I won't go into how poorly people express themselves. I stumbled into an extremely popular black website (that I won't mention cuz I don't need blog beef) that caters to a more, um – street crowd and I was in wide-eyed open-mouthed amazement at what I read. Not only were the articles slapped together and poorly written, the comments were off the chains. It was seriously like reading a different language. Please people, I'm begging you – try and communicate like you have beyond-pre-school education. My 5-year old nephew is running rings around 92% of those folks.

  3. People can be SO negative! What's wrong with putting a positive spin on a story every once and a while? What's wrong with saying something nice? Particulatly in the blogosphere, it seems that the only way to draw crowds of people to your site is to tear down someone else. Every other day, there's an episode of Black Bloggers Fight Club in Twitlandia and every single news story, no matter how insignificant is dissected and torn apart so someone can drain the last ounce of "snark" out of the witty jar. Newsflash folks – there's a fine line between sarcastic/snarky and cynical/bitter. And as for the comments, as I stated in number one – if you can't get your point across without the blatant rudeness, you're just not thinking hard enough. Now of course, we don't have anybody like that here in BougieLand and I'm grateful for that because I'm not really in this for the fisticuffs. Not everything is rant-worthy. Sometimes you just want to share a story or an opinion or just be plain silly. I understand that will not land me on the Top Ten Black Blogger's List but if ripping other people apart is what it takes to get there, no thank you.

Whew, I feel better with that off my chest; we can resume regular programming here in BougieLand. Tomorrow, why I'm trying not to hate on celebrities (and NO I don't mean Sarah Palin).

So tell me the truth, is it me or not everybody cut out to open their mouths (keyboards) and freestyle?