Saturday Video Shout-Out: Bell Biv Devoe reunion

In case you missed it, BBD reunited on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Thursday. (Of course, they never really retired, just keep touring as various iterations of New Edition, but that's not the point) I must admit, they did a pretty good job. Please watch the dance moves as they will feature prominently in my next episode of the Bougie Bachelorette Chronicles. The early 90s are back, enjoy the wonders of Poison:

Sunday Good News Story: A Step towards Peace in the Middle East

"I believe the children are the future, teach them well and let them lead the way..." Those song lyrics are ever apt in this good news story. MSNBC reports on teens that are overlooking generational conflict. A unique group, aptly called 'MEET' Middle East Education through Technology has brought Israeli and Palestinian teenagers together.

MEET is an innovative educational initiative aimed at creating a common professional language between Israeli and Palestinian young leaders. Working together with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), MEET enables its participants to acquire advanced technological and leadership tools while empowering them to create positive social change within their own communities. Check it out:

How cool is that? Hopefully, these teens will spread the word and some measure of peace can be found in the region. It's a step in the right direction anyway. To find out more, check out the official MEET site. 

Saturday Video Shout-Out: Ne-Yo

Champagne Life by Ne-Yo is a damn catchy-ass song.

Got penthouse property on cloud nine (Oh) 
I got the sun jealous 'cause the way I shine (Oh) 
And reserved for time 'cause that's how I do mine 
Nice meal and a good wine, definition of a good time 
I'm living out my dreams, watching them come true (come true) 
Baby, I'm a boss, I don't know what they do (they do) 
You've put down the ride, come on and I'll take you 

The long version of the video was doing too much so here's the short version. Enjoy.

Does anyone have any music to shout out today?

Random Thought - 10 minute vacation

This is the view from a vacation villa at Four Seasons, Jimbaran Bay, Bali. I want one.

I was running (literally) through Target Thursday. I had a grocery list, a schedule to keep, a looming deadline and fifteen different things on my mind. I was inexplicably irritated that I couldn't find the package of pre-prepped diced rosemary and herb potatoes. I was thirsty and still hot from the 100° heat outside. Plainly put, I was tart. I went in search of a potato alternative and as I wheeled around the corner something caught my eye.

Over by the fresh flowers an older attractive black woman sat. I don't know where she got the stool from but she was perched with a smile on her face looking at the flowers. As I wondered what sister girl was doing sitting in the middle of the aisle in Target, she dug around in her bag and pulled out a crumpled piece of paper. She smoothed it out carefully and propped it up next to some yellow daisies. Then she sat back looking at her picture nestled amongst the flowers with a smile.

Inching closer, I took a look at the picture. Recognizing it, I spoke up. "Oh the Grand Wailea Resort and Spa in Maui! Are you going soon?"

She said, "Oh is that where that is?"

I smiled with a little confusion. "Yes, that's the view out the back."

"I just like the way it looks. I saw it in a magazine and saved it. I don't if I'll ever get there so every now and then I pull it out, put it next to something pretty and take a ten minute vacation. I imagine myself right there, sipping on one of those pretty drinks with the breeze from water around me. So you've been there?"

"Yes ma'am a few years ago. It's lovely."

"I go everyday for ten minutes."

"Ten minutes, does it work?"

"It's like my power nap. While I'm on my little vacation I don't worry that my husband wants his dinner at seven, those kids ain't never gonna move out and I have too much month left with too little money. Gets me through the rest of the day. You should try it."

"I just might do that... you have a good vacation."

"I always do, sweetie."

At first, I thought it was a little sad that she couldn't take the real vacation but then it occurred to me - that woman looked happier sitting at her made up vacation spot than I had all day. Lesson learned. Sometimes a little bit of something good is all you need to get you through.

Do you take ten minute time outs during the day to recharge? What do you do? What would be your ten minute vacation picture look like? And Happy Friday.

Random Thought - What exactly does the NAACP do now?

I'm not trying to be flippant. I really want to know. I heard this question posed on a news outlet and the entire panel went silent. As I started to purse my lips I realized... I don't know either. Not really clear on what their action plan is.

Recently, they asked the Tea Party to stop being so mean. They politely requested that the Senate reinstate unemployment. They got "snookered" into almost ruining a good woman's reputation by a right wing blogger. They celebrated their 101st anniversary and FLOTUS spoke at the convention. That's all I've got. 

 I checked their website and reviewed their Action Alerts. It appeared to be cosignage of programs and policies that other people are working on. Then I looked at the Citizen All Action Alerts where folks report on police misconduct and hate crimes. But it doesn't show if anyone is following up on these reports.

So I posed the question on Twitter - just exactly what color people are they advancing these days and how exactly are they doing it? The answers came back pink, purple and green. What ya'll got for me? Anyone? No, I'm serious. Do ya'll know how the NAACP is relevant and productive in 2010 America? And after the epic fail that this Shirley Sherrod hoodwinkery has become, where do they go from here? Please share your thoughts.

Random Thought - Beware the Baggage

So I was having coffee with New Dude and my mind was actually on about twenty different things. I finally noticed that he was silent and looking at me with arched brow. 

"So what's up?" He asked.

I shook my head. "Nothing just working through some stuff in my head."

"Like what?"

"I don't want to bother you with it." I shrugged.

He got super still and said. "But that's what I'm here for. To be bothered. I'm trying to be bothered."

Uh-oh. He pulled out the "tart" tone of voice. "Um. Okay."

"I'm not clueless or incapable of picking up on signs. You've got trust issues and you rarely take things at face value. You don't pour out your feelings or wear your heart on your sleeve. I get that. But damn, I'm trying to earn your trust here. I'm trying to be that guy. Put you first, pay attention, the whole nine but you gotta give me a chance."

"I do, I mean... I am!"

"You know half the time you are giving me a side-eye just waiting for me to say or do something terrible. And I have to literally pry thoughts and feelings out of you. I'm feeling like the chick. Sucks and it's unsettling."

"No. I don't really, do I?" I thought about it, winced. Owned it. "Damn it, I might. That's terrible. I'm sorry. I'm overly cautious probably."

"Michele, you're gun-shy as hell."

"Or we could call it that. I'll do better."

"I mean, I'm generally a nice guy."

"You are."

"But I already know you well enough to know that you were dying to tack on 'so far' at the end of that sentence."

I really had wanted to. It was on the tip of my tongue. "It's gonna take some mental adjustment. I appreciate the patience."

He smiled. "If you weren't cute I would have given up weeks ago."

"Ha! Wait, what?"


"You got jokes."

"Okay then, so what were you thinking about?"

And I told him. I talked for close to an hour straight. (Hey, he asked) I talked about family and finances and sports and weather and epic fail of the NAACP (whole other topic). And he was so happy that I was "letting him in", he had this huge smile on his face. When we got up to leave, he gave me this huge tight hug. 

I felt like pure shiggity. Without really realizing it, I'd kind of been perching on the edge of this relationship (not even wanting to call it a relationship) with one foot in and one foot already out just in case it all imploded. He knew it but didn't say anything until now. If you had asked me if I thought I was dragging baggage from the past into the future, I would have vehemently said no. But there it was. 

Damn baggage. Eventually you have to just let it go. What are ya'lls thoughts on that?

Random Thought – The Tea Party sucks

I don't want this post to come off all Palin (all rhetoric, no fact or intellect) but nor do I plan to give a dissertation on all that is wrong with the Tea Party… we could be here all year. But I am seriously starting to wonder if the Tea Party isn't turning into Klan Lite – all of the hatred, none of the hoods or hangings (yet). Who exactly is their leader? Is it just of bunch of angry Jim-Bobs and Bobbie Jean's that long nostalgically for the days of plantations and keeping darkies in their place? I don't know, I haven't done the research but what I do see looks like a trip to CrazyTown. Did I see someone really comparing the Tea Party to the New Black Panther Party? Is the revolution about to be televised?

Does it seem as though all the overtly crazy, racist "We Want Our Country Back" crap is starting to see the light of day and the "Regular" right wing is thinking now is a good time to back away? Let's be clear, there are conservative policies and values and then there's the fear and hate-mongering that the Tea Party is pushing (gleefully with poorly made and misspelled signs). Over at Rippa's spot, he talked about it. There was also a great theological and intellectual viewpoint over at The Watchman. The Negro Intellectual dropped serious knowledge in his open letter to Glenn Beck (I hate Beck, I really do). Jack & Jill Politics brought this video to my attention; it asks the question – What if the Tea Party were Black?

Now that's food for thought. I think the role of the moderate, progressive, liberal, or sane person is to fight widespread ignorance and hate with tolerance and knowledge. Point out misinformation on the regular and for God's sake, vote for some people who are about something real and substantive that won't set the country back to pre-Civil Rights Era. I don't know about ya'll but I'm appreciating my little freedom, I'd like to pursue my happiness from the front of the bus. Just sayin'.

Got thoughts on the Tea Party? Do share...

Short Random Thoughts Week on BnB

Woo-Hoo, I'm in the home stretch editing my second book and finishing up some articles so this week, feel the joy of "Shorts" – short random thoughts from the corners of my mind. Pop in and take a look. Who knows what'll rattle around in there.