What Part of the Game?

Taking MY name in vain...


Over the course of the past few days, it has come to my attention that some fellas are out here in these innanets using me as an entree to meet and/or engage with women. Normally, I would say... okay, I see you player. 

But in these four cases, dudes have turned ratchet and used my name to do so. That's So Not Bougie. At all. And actually, even if they hadn't turned ratchet - what's with using my name to get your game on? No sir.

For the record, let me state that unless I reach out to you directly and say "Yes, this is a good person - date him with my blessing" I haven't endorsed him. The people that I have endorsed, I generally take the time to introduce them via phone, chat or in person so that a friendly hand off can take place before I step out of the middle. If this has not happened, whoever tells you that I'm cool with them is full of rancid shiggity.

While it's true that I try to be fabulous (and modest, ha!) and try to surround myself with the same kind of people, not everybody gets that inner circle stamp of approval.

Apparently it's hot in the streetz to tell chicks that I've met you, signed off on you and given my blessing. One, I'm not the Pope - I don't give valediction. Two, do your homework - ratchet always leaves a trail. Three, email me and ask - I'll shoot straight.

As for the brethren who tried it? I wouldn't try it again. 
Try me and see...
BougieLand - What part of the game?

Know who you're texting if you're sexting... Please!

It was early Thanksgiving morning and my cell phone was blowing up. Knowing that more than likely it was folks sending out their text edition of a Hallmark card, I put the phone on silent to ignore it and flipped over to go back to sleep. When I woke up a half hour later I had over 20 missed text messages. Seriously?

I scrolled from the bottom up: family, family, college roommate, friend, friend, number I didn't recognize. The number I didn't recognize had the caption beside it "something for you to think about" - really? Ooookay. And then foolish me, I clicked to open. The best thing I can tell you is that the picture was high definition. Then again, maybe that's the worse thing. Yes, some random dude sent me a picture of himself from the neck down in all his naked glory.

I didn't recognize him. I flipped to the next text and I guess this dude really wanted to get his point across because he took close-ups off all (ev.ery.one) of his various body parts and sent them along. I skipped to the  last note in the thread and read the following:

"Taneisha, I'm waiting for you to call me."

Oh. So not only did dude send XXX pics of himself before eight in the damn morning but he sent them to the wrong person? 

Of course I decided to have some fun. "Those pictures were supposed to make me call?"

"You were calling out my name last night. Don't even trip."

"Whose name did I say?"

"You're game playing today? You know this is Xxxxxxx."

Ha. Now I knew who it was and I was triply amused. "No, I didn't know it was you. Guess what?"

"What?"

"This isn't Taneisha."

"Who is THIS?"

"Not Taneisha. Happy Thanksgiving to you. LOL!" I turned the phone off. Of course he called, heard my voice and left some ridiculous message. I didn't care. Haven't dated the guy in forever.

But the moral of this story, BougieLand - know thy contact list. Know who you're texting when you're sexting. Please and thank you...

Thoughts, comments, insights on When Holiday Sexting Goes Wrong?

No Country for Sorry-Ass Excuses - Top Five


Earlier this week, one of the commenters shared that she found her man swirling cocoa with another woman all up in her apartment and the best he could come with was... "It's not what you think" - really, sir? That prompted me to share the top five lamest-assed excuses I've ever heard from people. Read them and weep.

1. "I did this for you" - Upon discovering that my boyfriend was hitting on my best friend and roommate, his explanation was that he wanted to be sure our relationship could withstand anything. Ri-ight. So calling my girl and leaving explicit messages (that he was in no way able to back up) on her machine where the whole house could hear them was his way of doing me a favor? In retrospect, he really did. I was done.

2. "You know the devil is busy" - This was the excuse I got when I found out that a friend of mine was a pathological liar. Like not nary one thing she said to me in an 18-month time span was true or based on anything like the truth. Lucifer is in these streets wreaking havoc, that's true. But old girl was just on a whole other level with it. You know what though? It was kind of diabolical.

3. "I might have misunderstand the parameters of our relationship" - Ah, the intellectual's excuse for why another woman's laundry was mixed in with his. I made sure to make clear the new parameters: I'm going over there, you stay right here. Next.

4. "I know what you thought you heard" - Riding in the car with this dude. His cell phone rings. He miscalculates the distance that sound travels and assumes I can't hear word for word what some random chick is saying to him. After her third explicit comment about what she could do for him if only he wasn't wasting his time with me, I suggested (loudly) that he turn said car around and take me home forth with. Huge (GIGANTIC) fight followed. It was the beginning of the end.

And my all time favorite...
5. "I can explain" - This appears to be a catch-all no matter what ratchety foolishness the other person has been up to. What I love about this one is that frequently, there really is no valid explanation. All the person can (and should) really do is hang their head, say "I'm sorry, please forgive me" and keep it pushing. And yet, they feel compelled to pull some flavor of explanation together. 

BougieLand, doncha love these?! Any more for the list? Have you heard/used/ignored a few of these in the past? Lamest explanations for ratchet-assed behavior... whatcha got?

Are you focused on the Plan instead of the (Wo)Man


I know a lot of married people. A lot, a lot, a lot. And for those in my age bracket, I'm sad to say that about 70% of them are not happy. I mean like Not. Happy. At. All. My older brother and I were talking about it and we've heard a lot of the same stories. Some people didn't want to get married in the first place but thought "it was time". Others knew early in the marriage that it wasn't going to work out but decided to adopt a "wait and see" attitude. Others have grown apart. Others just kind of let things dissolve into "whateverness". 

I'm just wondering how many people get to the point where they are just ready to kick the Life Plan into effect. Get married, have kids, live happily ever after and so they just shoehorn the person they are currently with into the Plan. Women have the added pressure of the biological time clock detonating at any given moment and we've all surely seen how that affects life mate decision making.

If I had a dime for every time I heard a guy say, "Well, she had put in the time and I was going to get married eventually anyway." Or every time a girl admitted, "I was just ready to get married." Good people, we call that settling and that rarely works out well in the long run.

Having been proposed to a few times (truly not bragging on that),  I have to ask myself - what are you waiting on and what are you looking for? And I know that I'm waiting on the absolute sense that I'm marrying the right person for the long-term not just someone it might be cool to be married to for a little while.

I've given enough speeches about how there are worse things in the world than being single so I'll just save that rant. Instead, I'll get your opinions - Do you think too many people settle for the good of The Plan? Or do you think too many people hold out for that perfect soul mate? Just curious about your thoughts. The floor is yours.

Why are you counting?


I think it was @VeronicaMarche who tweeted something yesterday to make me recall this guy...

I remember a second date with a guy a few years back. Over the appetizer course, he explained to me that it usually took him two dates or the equivalent of knowing a woman for an average of 17 days before he got them into bed. He went onto explain that most of his relationships lasted about six to nine months and over that course of time, he generally liked to average stirring the cocoa about five or six times a week. Sometime between serving up #60 and #80 women tended to tire of him. He didn't know why. Shocking.

I was fascinated, repulsed and totally through with old boy all at the same time. The only question I could ask was, "So you count?"

"Of course, these things are important to keep track of." Are they really?!

BougieLand?! With the exception of teenagers who don't know any better, long-distance lovers on a countdown or folks working on fertility/ovulation... I don't get it. Who counts days until, days in between and how many times over the course of a relationship? And how do you count? Exactly? Are there bonus points for marathon sessions? Do um.. multiple boil-overs of cocoa count separately? Subtractions for do-overs? And what is the point of counting? Tell me why?! Please respond. 

Let's compare: Worst Pick-Up Places Ever!!!


When guys ask girls why they are "so mean" when all a fella is trying to do is say hello, I ask gents to look to your other less sophisticated brethren and point the finger of ratchetery exactly where it belongs. Some of you fellas could stand to share some of your cocoasmoothe with the raggedy amongst you.

I had reached my early 30s thinking that the dude who tried to pick me up outside a women's gas station restroom (like saw me go in and waited for me to come out to holla) was the tackiest pick up ever. Little did I know what the future would hold. So I present to you, without further ado my top three worst places where guys have tried to holla:

#3 The OB/GYN waiting room: Yes, I was in Dr. ViJayJay's waiting room when a dude who came in with SOMEONE else waited until she stepped to the back to slide down two seats. "Hey, am I encroaching on another man's territory if I ask how you doing today?" Everyone in the waiting turned to look at him like - fo' real doe, playa? Thankfully, they called me back and I never had to formulate an answer.

#2 The hospital hallway outside of radiology: Picture it. Me, less than 24 hours after surgery. Just finished a photo spread of my internal organs. Posted up in the wheelchair waiting for a tech to wheel me back to my room. My hair was doing it's best Bam-Bam impersonation. My lips were crusty from God knows what. And yes, I was rocking Hospital Gown chic, an oversize tent hanging off one shoulder while two blankets gave me a swaddled look. Anti-nausea patch behind one ear and morphine drip in my arm. So sexy. "Hey Ma, you waiting on somebody?" I blink blearily, "Huh?" "Just saying if you wanna break outta here and go do something, I'm your man." I blink again, "Huh?" He laughs, "Come see me in a day or two. I'm Willie. Everybody know me round here. I'm good people. Holla!" Off he went and I thought I dreamed it until I got a card from the hospital staff the other day. Willie signed with "get at me" under his name. And I repeat, "Huh?"

And the NUMBER ONE worst place I've ever been hit on... The luncheon reception at the church after my father's funeral. I stepped out into the hallway just to get a minute where I didn't have to smile and act like I was pleased to be dining with 400 folks when my father was fresh in the ground. Not thirty seconds later, dude my father's age came sidewinding up looking all somber. "Did you know Doc?" He asked. "Yes." I replied. "He was the best." He said shaking his head. "The best." I repeated. "You know, in times like this maybe you need something to take your mind off it all. Just cut loose." I side-eyed the hell out of him, "You think so?" "Oh yeah, I know this little spot up the street where we could get a glass of wine, talk about the good times." My Aunt Vi stepped into the hallway, "Mich, we're going to go." The guy took a step back. "Oh, you the baby girl. Little Mich." I smiled, "Um-hmm." "Oh. A-ight den." Dude took off so fast in the other direction I had to wonder what my father had said about me. I had completely forgotten about that until making this list. Classic. Holla-Man Cat Daddy at the Funeral - sounds like a play, doesn't it?

Bougieland, whatcha got? What's the worst pick-up place you've ever seen?

Don't take this the wrong way but...


It was not my greatest weekend. Not to get too graphic for the gents but I suffered the kind of cramps that over-the-counter medications just laugh at while screaming, "I can't do nuthin' for ya!" That curled up in a fetal position asking Jesus to forgive you for whatever you did wrong to cause this kind of pain. Finally, Sunday morning I started pulling it back together. Enough to get a few things done, eat a little something and lay on the heating pad with my Kindle in my hand. So when the cell phone rang at about six p.m., I grabbed it without looking.

"This is Michele."

"Hey Michele - this is Yvetta. I'm not sure you remember me."

I didn't so I stayed silent.

"I am a friend of -fill in yada yada here- and we met at the holiday party. I got your number from -some random chick who is friends with David's boss' crazy-assed wife-" Okay, some chick who knows somebody who knows somebody who knows David. 

"Sure, what's up?"

Let's pause for a moment here. There are a few phrases that tell me that some bullshiggity is about to come up out of someone's month. Here's a short list:
  • Let me be perfectly honest...
  • Before you say anything...
  • Don't take this the wrong way...
  • What I really mean to say is...
  • If you want to get technical about it...
  • This is just my opinion but....
Um. All forecast phrases of shiggity. Let's continue.

"Don't take this the wrong way but... we were wondering what your long term plans are with David?"

Hmm. Don't take this the wrong way = Strike One. WE were wondering = Strike Two. Plans with David = Strike Three. 

"Who exactly is we?"

"Oh," she giggled, "there's a group."

"Yvetta?" I said in the calmest tone I could muster.

"Yes?"

"I don't know who raised you, how old you are or why you thought this call would be a good idea. But let me assure you that this is not cute, I am not amused and David won't be either. I can say for your information that women who act like this? Not his cup of tea. At all. If you are coming for him, step your game up. And let this be the last time your fingers dial these here digits. Are we clear?"

"Look here now..."

"Are we clear?"

"Yes ma'am."

Damn Skippy. Young assed chickies playing on the phone. For good measure I called DLC and broke him off a piece of my mind about his fan club. Let's just say no one rested easy that evening. Well I did because I was on the good pain meds. 

BougieLand. It must be asked: What part of the game is that?! What would you have done/said instead?

One of my Relationship Nightmares: Not As Advertised


I was talking to a girlfriend of mine this week. She sounded awful, exhausted and at the end of her rope. Quickly I knew this wasn't going to be one of those "hi girl, bye girl" conversations. Over the course of the next hour she shared what her life had become and I had to dig deep (I mean DEEP) to find a way to put a positive spin and some upbeat next steps together for her.

Long story short, she met and married a guy over ten years ago. He was tall, good-looking, professional, well-paid, with attainable goals and dreams and best of all, he loved her for her. Fast forward to today. He's still tall and he still loves her. Everything else has gone off the rails. He lost his corporate job (four years ago) at $120k and is doing some customer service work for about $40k and has given up the search for anything better. He's gained about seventy-five pounds. He comes home and instead of helping out around the house, he watches soap operas that he's DVR'd for the day. And he's lost all will to better their circumstances. They have not been intimate in over 6 months. Yesterday the house was almost foreclosed on and they had to call their mothers to help out.  

As you can imagine, this has been hard for her to absorb. She, on the other hand, is still on a successful career track. She has shouldered the extra weight of fiscal responsibility by doing consulting in addition to her full-time gig. She is raising her daughter and his son (from a previous marriage) as best she can with a packed schedule and a heavy heart. Her health is starting to show signs of wear and tear. In short, he's falling off and she's about to fall out.

Now granted, I'm only hearing her side of the story. As she's telling me this, I'm freaking out inside. She did it all the "right" way. She dated him for two years before getting married. She met his family, his friends, his frat brothers. Brother is church going, family oriented, and college educated (not that that's an indicator of ambition). One of my relationship nightmares is that I marry a dude thinking we're both on the same page, headed in the right direction and planning on building a life together and then one day out of the blue he becomes sofa-surfing dude waiting on me to come home and fix his dinner. I. Can. Not. So as she's telling me to make sure I choose wisely all I'm hearing in my head is - there's no prevent defense for this? Is there no early indicator that your upstanding hustling husband is one day going to turn into an ambitionless couch potato? And what's the fix?

BougieLand: Thoughts, comments, insights?

BMcK foolishness and the #StaySexyStruggle


[Disclaimer - I have long been a Brian McKnight fan. I will admit that I own the entire BMcK discography. I could write a series of books just from scenes in my life with a Brian soundtrack. Okay? Okay.]

So whilst I was away, the Secret Service got busted over Latin American heauxnanigans because they were too cheap to come up off a fiddy. Romney stopped hiding the fact that he's a bigoted elitist idiot. The NFL Draft was more "we'll just have to see how this all works out" than ever. Deion continued his public (and ill-advised) beef with the next soon-to-be-former Mrs. Sanders. And one of my Neo-Soul heroes, Brian McKnight, done lost his damn mind.

Out of all this foolishness, the only thing I truly care to delve into is B. McK's descent into "oh no he didnt"-ness. For those unaware, Mr. McKnight, noted R&B crooner (self-professed poonhound and "relationship expert") decided to drop a little knowledge in the form of a song. In the preview of an upcoming "adult mixtape" Brian shared with the world a tune he lovingly entitled, "If you're ready to learn" - just a little public service announcement to the ladies who need to be more in tune with how their vijayjays work. Yes ladies - Monsieur McKnight wants to "show you how your p***y works" and even finds a way to add catchy rhymes and dulcet beats. 

In the wake of a social media beatdown, Bri-Bri took down the video. But, I'm here to tell Mr. McKnight: I understand, bro. Setting aside the fact that you are not a gynecologist, a sex therapist or even still a sex symbol at this point... I still understand, sir. That struggle to stay relevant, cutting edge, and engaging? 

I get it, Mr. McKnight. I get it. Once upon a time, you were the shiznit (that word dates both of us, I know). Time was the mere mention of Brian McKnight and one of his songs had a direct gravitational pull on Vicki's drawers. They fell, they flew, they disappeared. Songs raced up the charts, women fell at his feet, people stopped comparing him to his older brothers from Take 6 and the world of Mr. McKnight was platinum plated.

Something happened, I don't know. I saw something where Brian was a judge for a Miss Apple Bottoms jeans contest and that's when I figured his career and his #CocoaSexy had taken a turn. Sometime after Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda and before Fall 2.0 (which though not his best was at least decent) - something went awry. Was it the divorce, the talk show, the corner turn from dude in hat to cap-daddy? I don't know.

Allow me to share something with BMcK and my readers that people find hard to accept. Time comes when you are not the hottest thing in the room. It's tough not to want to get that spotlight back. Believe me. For all of us women who strutted around daring anyone to hate on our fabulosity, the moment when you walk in a room and not every head turns (or not a single head turns) because someone cuter/younger/skinnier/more vibrant walked in behind you - it's a reality check. The ability to be okay when you don't get twenty head turns but get that one slow smile with the appreciative head nod - grownupness.

I was talking to a male friend of mine the other day who finally turned a corner. He was standing in the hottest club with the hottest girls, drinking the newest premium vodka and felt both detached and exhausted. I laughed because I've been there. I've been up in the club/at the party looking around wondering why I was there.

Not that we don't love a good party, not that it's not important to look your best - but please, please learn when you no longer have to be the life of that party. Please recognize that it's useless to be forty competing with a twenty year old. I was talking to my teenaged niece about this. We were discussing the lyrics of a Pussycat Dolls song (I know but sometimes you have to speak at their level) - "Number One chick when I step up on the scene." I related that the day would come when not only did she not care about being number one, she wouldn't care about the scene either.

There comes a time when the #StaySexyStruggle is real. We get real jobs, find ourselves in long relationships, have kids, gain or lose weight, tangle with family, juggle money problems, battle illness, stare down drama, bounce back from disappointment... it goes on and on. And with each thing, some of that #StaySexy slips away. Look, it's hard to step back into those stilettos when you've been rocking ballet flats. Fellas know that if they get used to sweatpants and t-shirt life, it's hard to put the suit and the dress shoes on. And really it's not even so much the exterior, it's the #StaySexy attitude - a mindset that you are the best that you can be and everybody better love it or leave it alone. Life sometimes erodes that. You have to hold on it. But you gotta learn to #StaySexy in your own lane. 

I don't care if you still have the body, a 50-year old woman should never be dressing like her 25-year old daughter on club night. There is an entire set of comedic routines based on that "old dude in the club" steez for a reason. Does anyone remember the discomfort when Justin Bieber and Usher did a song/dance routine at one of those reward shows about a year back? Watching the two of them - Usher looked liked a creepy older slower uncle. And Ush still has some sexy left in him, just not while standing next to a teenager. Like Madonna at the Superbowl? Madonna still has some hotness but the lazy gyrating next to people who weren't born when her first album dropped did not reflect well on her. Diddy Dirty Money? He looked dirty alright. Shall I go on?

Okay, on the flip - who watched last week's Grey's Anatomy? If you missed it, Chief Webber (James Pickens Jr) finally got his groove back (yes, I'm dating myself - stay with me) by having some super steamy grown folk time with Mama Avery (played by the still vibrant Debbie Allen). Now that's what I'm talking about. Grown folks don't talk about it, they be about it. 

Bri-Mac: What we do here, stays here man! (it does not go instructional on YouTube to piano accompaniment)  C'mon - that's like a grown and sexy anthem! But this right here? The crooning about ladyparts and how they work might be sexy if you were still 22 (I so very  much doubt it but let's move on) - but at 40+ it just comes across as a desperate attention-seeking stunt from that old guy at the club. Don't be that guy. (And for the record, yes - I called out Trey Songz when he thought he invented sex too) And in the meantime, #StaySexy, my friends.

Who understands what I'm talking about with this #StaySexyStruggle? Can I get a witness? What the hell was Brian thinking? Thoughts, comments, insights?

No sir. We have zero tolerance for these shenanigans


Many thanks to @CreoleinDC and @SingLikeSassy for bringing this one to my attention. Sometimes, you read about foolery so out of pocket that all you can do is spotlight it and say - if you see this dude coming, run the other way.

I'm on the fence about sites such as Don't Date Him Girl. On the one hand, there are a lot of flimflam fickle felons out there trying to make a dollar out of your fifteen cents. On the other hand, just because some dude didn't ask you on a third date - that's no reason to smear him publicly. This case, however; if it's true? Is worth spotlight and discussion.

Apparently some dude going by the aliases Brian Wedgeworh, Brian Lapsley, Otis Anderson, Brainard Bell, masonicnupe on Match.com and KoolKhemist on Plenty of Fish (among other names); has made a career out of scamming women out of their money and moving on. He claims to be a six-figure earning chemist for the CDC (not true), a double degreed Kappa (his father pledged, he didn't) and/or an FBI agent (really?). Some lowlights of his criminal career:

  1. He offers to pay your bills and when you give him a deposit slip, he not only bounces a large check through your account, he steals your identity. But before you figure that out, he plays the "I lost my wallet, let me hold a li'l sumthin'" card.
  2. He claims he daughter was molested and his father has died to gain your sympathy and trust. Apparently his father is still alive and nobody knows whether he has a daughter or not.
  3. He swears to be a God-fearing man and will pray with you so you fully understand what a good man he is. 
  4. He infiltrates every part of your life, church, home, family, job in the hopes that when you find him out... you'll be too embarrassed to go to the authorities.
  5. Dude is known to troll in Atlanta, Birmingham and areas of Florida. 

Look, I don't know what's really up with dude. I Googled BriBri and he appears to be a fugitive from justice in several states with at least seven aliases. After peeking at his mugshot, ladies - he's not that damn fine. And your bullshiggity alert should be on threat level red the minute he starts talking money. Run, don't walk, away quick fast and in a hurry. Let's do better than letting scammy trolls like this play with our hearts and pocketbooks, shall we?

Gents and Ladies, what do you think of these "tell all" websites? Do you Google your dates at some point? Check their social media pages?  Why or why not? Have you encountered folks like Brian/Otis? Any advice for women (or men) who do? Do share...