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Day 10 – Malaga’s

So after finally getting into work, I was already counting the hours until I met Tameka for lunch.  We meet, we moan. I hate being PA to a letch who runs the production studio I want to own and Tameka hates her job because I hate mine, cos really, she’s happy cos she gets to style sexy young things and sexy old things and most importantly sexy fit famous things cos she’s a freelance stylist.

Then after lunch Cassie who sits at the desk right next to me keeps sending me stupid emails, to which I reply with equally as stupid nonsense-ness.  Then with half an hour to go we stop all the madness and do ten minutes of pretend work, then stretch and say out loud to all the grown up well behaved workers ‘gosh I need a drink after all that work!!’ in a nudge-nudge, wink-wink, workload’s killing me sort of a way.

Meant to be words we flippantly utter as we exit the building, we are bloody agreed with by the rest of our colleagues who are quite surprised that the black girl crew are actually suggesting going for a drink. So they all shut-down, log-off and run to the door before we could change our minds.

If I’m honest though Soul,  the only reason I didn’t get Cassie to phone my mobile from her pocket so I could answer and fake an emergency to get out of the whole thing was because I needed distraction from thoughts of whether or not Marcus really, really was coming round to get his watch later.

When we entered, Malaga’s, ‘their’ local, me and Cassie held onto each other like over-age twins going to school for the first time after years of home tutoring…

We turn to go but…

…who edits stuff and is the archetypical graphic designer/editor, 28 yet reeking of eau de teenage student, with his retro t-shirts that speak of political issues of time ago, ripped and frayed jeans which are the same every day, and the requisite not quite long enough sleeved leather bomber jacket, that I quite like but worry about when he wears it and only that on top of a retro t-shirt in the dead of winter…

(One thing, Soul, I do envy of the Caucasian person is their ability to wear summer clothes in winter.) I’m sooooooooo jealous of…

…the receptionists, who wear one layer and a jacket with little pumps and no socks or tights, when a blizzard is a blowing. Cassie and I constantly mouth open and do the black girl act when we see them practically naked in arctic conditions.

‘Uh-Uh, girl aren’t you cold? Nah man, Cassie check these two goin’ on like it’s Jamaica outside. Laaaaaaater!!’ and Amanda and Jackie will laugh and shake their hair cos the black girls are paying them attention, including them and paying them a compliment they think, but are not sure cos it does sound like we’re shouting at them. But they laugh and laugh at our skiwear, and laugh as Cassie and I go to our desks taking off our thick woolly hats and scarves, shrugging out of our heavy, thermal, duck feathered winter coats like bears shedding skin, pull off two jumpers, and maybe a cardigan to then, reveal the sexy young bodies buried underneath.

(I hate when it’s winter. I have to rely on the little space allowed between hat, scarf and hood to entice a potential husband.)

Sorry. Back to Malaga’s. Bob runs to  order the drinks in so me and Cassie are trapped,  but we make a secret pact to leave in ONE HOUR.  So we clock watch and eye our surroundings suspiciously.

Oh the music, which I have rudely forgotten to explain was strictly ‘80s pop. For which I am happy. For which helps my time move along nicely in this world outside my world. For which causes my co-workers look at me surprisedly and relaxedly, realising that I’m not just into Gangsta rap and belting soul ballads.

Amanda and Jackie who you always speak of together the way they always say Cassie and me, then took it that one step further, dancing the old ‘80s pop way…

…and then I did battle…Wanted to dance Soul, SOOOOOOOO wanted to dance. If I was in a bar in the hood, with The Girls and the afro’d Backbones, I woulda been in the middle throwing it down, but in Malaga’s I couldn’t. I shimmied my shoulders with Cassie but refrained from getting up. Much to the protest of all our colleagues.

Soul. No. I couldn’t dance because then I’d be a puppet on show, a Minstrel doing the Cake-Walk for the master, throwing my hands up yelling Mammy. That expectation of dancing, singing, running and maybe…because Cassie was there…maybe, if she wasn’t there, and if I was a bit drunker, I would have danced and then felt ashamed at home, or when I was reading one of my cultural books, or watching my favourite film EVER…

CRY.EVERY.TIME

Anyway I resisted and I noticed the slump in everyone’s faces. I’m not being paranoid Soul. Cos Cassie and I discussed it. She’s a Black Panther too and if she saw it and I saw it then case closed. They slumped; they wanted to see a show. But we stuck to being the not so sociable black girls.

It was all soon shrugged off though, cos then it was Amanda and Jackie slow dancing to…

…with Bob sandwiched between in between them…

AKA ‘The Stuck up Bitch’, head banged with…

AKA ‘Mr Think I’m Gods Gift To all, with my paunch and bald spot, even to the two black girls who have pictures of famous black men half naked and perfectly formed over every inch their work space allows’.

Cassie and I watched and shook our heads at the wonder of how ‘they’ have fun, then…Soul…the DJ really took the piss he played a Madonna ANTHEM of mine…

Let me tell you about Madonna… ‘80s Madonna helped shape my life when I was growing up, along of course with Janet Jackson, Whitney Houston, and PRINCE (we’ll talk about him later).  But ‘80s Madonna had a rebelliousness I envied, think it was the black all in one she wore in…

I wanted the all in one and I wanted to Keep-uh My Bay-Beh ooooohh-uh-woooooh.

But be WARNED though Soul, it’s only about, ’80S  to early ’90s  Madonna. When she started going into the Evita grown up sensible and together mama Madonna, and ESPECIALLY now with her current won’t let it lie-over exercised-can’t stay out the charts so trying to collaborate with anyone remotely cool ole mama Madonna

She became just another singer to me….(Be warned Beyonce)! (And okay this song is not too bad…but STILL! Work on a greatest eighties hits only concert tour and leave it at that Aunty Madge!)

But anyway Soul the Dj did it. He played all of my ’80s Madonna favourites in a fantastical medley mix. I had to get up, and I forced Cassie to get up even though she was only pretending to be forced, cos she like me went to posh nearly all white schools, had best white girl friends and spent 3 months being a Goth and loving Slash from Guns N Roses, so she understands and was PRETENDING to be forced.

So there we were getting on down  in the most conservative but song appreciating way we could, when the door to Malaga’s opened, and in walked my EX with a group of friends…

EXHALE….BISCUITS. CRISPS. CHOCOLATE…before I can continue Soul…

Ebs xxx

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Day 9 – Tight Teething

Ok earlier on, well, today I got up, I got dressed I washed my ‘fro, then stood in the mirror daydreaming about whether or not I should just…

Then I started crying.  Oh I don’t know Soul, maybe it had something to do with my effing Mantra that the radio decided to blare out at exactly the same time my mind flash-backed on the way my EX used to go on about how picky and tough my hair was…

He always said it was just jokes, but it wasn’t funny after the tenth-thousandth time! I just tried to say that out loud…it’s wrong isn’t it. Ten thousandth???

So I’m crying and remembering and crying and then I stopped crying because my Mantra morphed into a ridiculous, and dumb wanna-be R&B song that back in the day was the ignored track three on the cassette tape single…you know the one that you’d fast forward on your Walkman cos of it’s trashy Euro dance beat remix…

See what I mean!  I blame…

and…

AND ESPECIALLY…

EXTREMELY IMPORTANT MUSICAL SIDENOTE: Can all R&B/HIP-HOP/Black Artists Who live in Urban Town please gather in an orderly line and report BACK TO SOUL/ROOTS/AND PROPER DAMN MUSIC!

Like…

and…

alas I know I’ve lost the Black Eyed Peas forever, but oh for just a smidge of this…

ANYWAY totally impossible to match tears and forlornness, with anger, disgust and the burning desire to throw my radio outside the bathroom window to join it’s electrical cousins on the new dump growing in the middle of the estate. I NEED to get out of here.

Then the phone rang, and I had like 22 minutes exactly to get ready and down the road to get the 9:33 train without doing a Usain Bolt.  Then when I answered the phone, I nearly hung up cos they actually re-wound and come-again-selectored the dumb R&B song. I almost hung up on my Dad to call the radio station and tell them NO! Not on my morning.

But I didn’t cos it was dad and he sounded weary. Why? Cos of mum. Why? Cos mum and dad hate each other.

No.

Mum hates dad cos he wasn’t the man I want… sorry the man she wanted him to be, the same way my EX wasn’t the man I wanted him to be, which is why my mum hated him as well. But I couldn’t agree with her. Because I was a big woman who was born before my mum. Knew more than her even though she’s my mum.

I had ten minutes to go, but I couldn’t go, because dad was moaning about mum…

No I’m not a selfish, self-centered brat, but Soul. How can two people who have been divorced for twenty-one years, still affect each other so much. It’s like school playground stuff. He pulled her hair. She told the teacher. He pulled her hair again, she kicked him in the leg. Then somehow they got married had kids, had affairs. Had fights. Called the police. Scared the kids. Hugged the kids. Then divorced, and lucky me, I’m the ringmaster in their Circus of Madness.

Cos if you really check it, with only five minutes to go, which I said to dad, to which he said ok ok, but still managed to speak about mum for a further seven minutes…see cos in my opinion, they still love each other, but mum’s still hurt obviously, and dad wants to sweep it under the history carpet. Obviously. Without saying sorry I might add. Obviously.

So I’m dealing with dad, my ugly yet beautiful and strong natural hair, the dumb song on the radio, and then my other phone rings.  Dad hears my other phone ringing, and says, ‘don’t let me keep you. I’ll call you tomorrow. Give my regards to your mother.’  Seriously Soul, today’s morning has been of the most dramatic proportions.

Oh my gosh I have to say Soul I am madly in love with…

makes me want to flick and rotate like a first class video girl (the ones who don’t look like me).

ANOTHER EXTREMELY IMPORTANT MUSICAL SIDENOTE: Can we get a small mutha-effing moment of silence for the amazement that is Afrobeat/Hip Life/African Music being played on mainstream radio & TV.

Young Africans of today, ‘specially those of you living here in Western Lands. You guys just don’t know how lucky you are! Us older generations who had to endure the name  calling, the Ja-Fakin accent adopting, the changing of Ade to Andre and Ghana to Guyana just to get peace in our lives!!!

Fast Forward and now everybody from everywhere is saying Chale, and  now even deh white people’s are  telling small gerls, dat dey don’t know deh ting!

I AM SOOOOOO mutha-effing JEALOUS I wish I was 18 again so I can have just cause and reason to Azonto low to the ground in every single club, every single night, for every single hour.

Where was I? So yeah, the choone had me forgetting time and my other ringing mobile, cos I had to turn up the radio to it’s loudest which isn’t very loud because, I don’t quite know, and I couldn’t be effing bothered to lug it back to Argos cos I don’t have time for bring backs.

So now it’s quarter past 9 and now I have to sprint.  I miss the train. So then I do this thing that I always do in the missed train situ…Stand for about five minutes totally confused as to whether I stay and wait for the 9:48 which takes me part of the way, then I have to change get the Victoria line to get the Central to get the Northern ooorrr…

I run downstairs, get the bus all the way to the Central line and then get the Northern, which means less changing, and more time to go over stuff in my head…

Ooorrr I just wait for the 10:17 and make excuses.

In ten minutes I’m sitting on the bus with teeth grit till my jaw hurt. Cos there’s traffic and it’s nearly ten anyway so then I push off the bus, and run back to the station to get the 10:17 which makes me grit my teeth again cos I haven’t got a seat. Which I would have IF I JUST WAITED.

Soul I have patience issues. DON’T LIKE WAITING. I have to walk if the bus doesn’t come. Go to the next line or the next and then come back to the same one when I’m in Sainsbury’s, ring when they don’t ring.

I get to work, at 10:45, fifteen minutes late, and for all the tight teething it didn’t matter cos HE wasn’t in.

HE being The Lecherous boss who looks at my bum like it’s the juicy watermelon that it is, but not for HIM who is my lecherous boss to look at.

YEAH I KNOW I get to start work at 10:30 on a Wednesday…. don’t quite know why, but it’s a good thing…but not so good when I’m late for the late start…dyouknowaddimean?

Day 8 – No Pink Ballerina Dreams…

So I hung up on Dionne, and whilst I was tryna build up the strength to call Marcus, I watched a Sex and the City re-run. The one program where I don’t wish they were all black by the way…

(…cos can we get a decent black sitcom in this country already?)

But Sex and the City doesn’t do that to me. I accept Samantha, Charlotte, Miranda, and Carrie. Maybe because they are so darned relatable. I can be Miranda slash Carrie slash Miranda more Miranda, except she ends up marrieded and childed and good jobbed and I’m not there yet, but I look up to her life.

No.

I sometimes think of her when I’m feeling melancholy. But I don’t want to be her. Cos I am a Black Panther and I don’t care about white people’s lives. Cos they don’t care about mine. OK, OK apart from some like …

Anyway, so when I got half way through Sex and the City my mobile rang. My mobile rang. My mobile rang. I jumped cos I wasn’t expecting it to ring. I jumped because I still have that belief…

…or that my future husband who has been watching me from afar got my number from a friend and finally found the guts to call me… so I scrambled around trying to find it to answer it but I missed it cos my phone is never where it should be…and then when I did find it and checked it, it came up as a private number…which got me excited cos Marcus’ work number shows up as private…so I thought yeah it’s HIM…and then she did it…

…see cos as much as I love it, I also really hate when Carrie ends up saying something that makes me realize what’s missing, who’s missing, or what I’m lacking in my life which then makes me cry. But in true Carrie, dream life styleee in the next scene her life’s all romantic and fluffy and right and perfect again which as much as it gives me hope, it also makes me realize what’s missing, who’s missing, or what I’m lacking in my life…which again makes me cry!

So for a second I wasn’t going to phone him cos what was the effing bloody point Mr BIG! But then Mr Big in the END realises what Carrie had been shouting in every season of the show, so I manned up and I called Marcus, and was all like, ‘Oh hi, did you call a minute ago?’ But it wasn’t him. So through the pain and shame, I had to act like ‘oh ok well then I’m off cos I’m very, very busy’. But he said he was nearby, so I said ok.

So then I hung up, then had to run around madly. Wash my girly area again, shave my legs, quickly yet carefully. Get dry, then run back to the bathroom. Forgot  to do my armpits, and the belly bit underneath my belly button. My hair there doesn’t grow in a neat line like Mags and Tameka’s, instead it emerges in a thistly group like the hairs are plotting mass destruction

Then out and dried again. Run round the flat naked, pushing things, pulling things, throwing things. Washing dishes then, WHATEVER’ed the dishes, and shut the kitchen door.

Then stand confused for a bit. Then remember. Bag of snacks just at hand’s reach when I’m watching telly, pushed further under the bed.

Then makeup, just a little, then sexy underwear, black, lacy, sheer. He likes that. Then bum hugging tracksuit bottoms and skimpy vest top. Lie on the bed and wait, then get up take off bra so nipples poke through material.

Then wait. Then this comes on…

Makes me want to cry. While I’m waiting for Marcus to make sweet damn sex with me. This is what bugs me about me. I could be in the best situation, and then I want to cry. Then the situation becomes everything that’s wrong. None of the others cry when a good-looking man is on his way to pleasure them. But damn Lauryn with this damn song…which is my damn SOOOOOONG.  Then my effing mobile rings. So I have to wipe my face. And act like everything’s all good in the hood.

His head’s down when he comes in. not sad down, just not acknowledging me. Then we talk. Eye to eye. We go straight to my room. We have a smoke. He brings the weed. I don’t buy it anymore cos I’m trying not to be a part of the criminal world.

We get lifted. Then we do it.  All over each other. Around each other. All to the back drop of the music channel. Adverts and all.

At one point I nearly died. They decided to do an Alicia Keys Top 10 best love song thingy…so all in a row…

and then…

which made me feel conflicted cos this is what I play whenever I’m getting my NO ONE DON’T LOVE ME concert on…and then my Alicia song, my Alicia mantra, My Alicia We are the World’ came on.

And it wasn’t when we were being all porn video. Nah we we were being all Koffee Brown, pretend husband and wife in love doing their thing…

…Oh yeah and about The Step Bang, we did it. He did it. Cos he wanted to get some edibles and edible them off me, but we, I, didn’t want him to stop cos I was nearly there, so he got up, with me, and step bang, step bang, step step bang bang…then ‘ouch’ cos he stepped on the plug of my blow-dryer that I hadn’t quite pushed under the bed far enough. So I sent him back to the room to rest and I got the edibles, that he didn’t edible off me cos the plug pain made him angry.

So then we just had Marcus sex and then he went. (Marcus sex means it was all about him.) Like no matter how good men are at pleasuring a woman, there are always those couple of times when they can’t resist acting like a schoolboy in a rush. The bang bang bang bang till they…and you haven’t…so you wait for more…but they can’t…cos they bang banged it all out.

So that was it. We didn’t even talk. And I didn’t care. Cos he finished on the bang bang…

So this time I was all ‘I hate you and this is the last effin’ time do you un-der-stand!!’ all in my head of course but it was a loudly thought thought!!!

I went back to bed, meaning to call Dionne but I couldn’t be bothered, cos there was nothing left to say. Just sat and watched the music. Wanting to cry, but not because of Marcus, he is an arsehole and an-nee-way I don’t even love him. That much, anymore, sometimes.

THEN he rang. But I let it go to answer-machine. Cos I am tough and I don’t care. Then I rang him back cos what if he was calling to say he loved me, or that he was downstairs with his stuff and wanted to  move in…

He said that he thought he’d left his watch, and he did, so yes he could. But not tonight cos he couldn’t be bothered. I didn’t mind that he couldn’t be bothered, cos I would be the same. Shut-up Soul. You don’t know me yet. But I may admit that I may have maybe come all the way back from effing Timbuctoo if I’d left something at his. But shut up cos you don’t know me.

Anyway the end of today’s story is that he’s coming round tomorrow. So Soul I need you to think and then tell me…

1) Should I stand at my door, watch in hand, then drop it nonchalantly into his hand, bid him adieu and close door politely yet firmly cos I am watching Eastenders.

Or 2) Should I stand at the door with watch between teeth, hand in hot pink lacy panties, other hand in afro, big smile around clenched watch holding teeth, or …3) …

Goodnight. Soul.

Good Hair VS. Bad Hair…

…CAN’T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG? (Soul Pages Archive)

Black people’s hair, loved by some, hated by most (of us), money making gold mine for the rest is an issue which plagues us from the crib to the grave, we’ve been teased, we’ve been commended, we’ve been in denial, we’ve been proud, we’ve, we’ve, WEAVE!!!

Chris Rock made the documentary Good Hair about it…(I  saw it at a private showing, me and my cuz were seated in front of Graham Norton …I would LOVE to know what he thought about it) Anyway,  although not as good as I expected, Good Hair raised some interesting much needed to be discussed topics.

Like the fact that most near all black female celebrities and actually nearly all black women period, do not wear their own hair in it’s natural state. The black hair industry is a multi-billion money making business where most of those billions of moneys do NOT line the pockets of blackfolks, (which is typical of our legacy…we buy but rarely own/invest/control).

Straight up Ebony fact, 99% of black women hate their hair. Why? Because the media told us to. The same  media who told us that unless you looked like Marilyn Monroe or Audrey Hepburn …

or some caucasian variation you were never gonna make it in Hollywood.

The same way rappers and their homies showed us that if you’re not the colour of honey or lighter you weren’t ever gonna be the main girl in the video (I realise I talk about this a hella lot! I swear I don’t have issues! I SWEAR!!!)

For which we should as black women say a big resounding SO WHAT EFF YOU ALL! But it’s hard DAMN HARD to not be affected when…

(and to drive it even more home…)

(…but to be fair I did find this Garnier advert…)

(Can I get a BIG SIGH though for those of us with deep-dark-jungle-no-mix type hair…who know we can’t never be a part of  the ‘Just Scrunch, Air-dry and Go’ crew).

Then we have to endure [insert celebrity here] swishing her long hair left to right…

(…totally hard to not feel downhearted that your natural hair can’t/won’t do the same)

…And whilst we’re on the topic of being oh so gloriously swishy and blonde…how much of a slap-attack is it when ‘certain’ celebs OUR ‘certain’ celebs I might add…endorse…

…even when clearly wearing a full head of  That’s-Not-Yours-From-Colour-To-Texture-Lace-Fronted-Weave! Can I quote? …’Colour that speaks out to say who you really are…) ERM!!! (LOVE YOU BEY. Congrats Bey…but ‘specially now you’s a mama of a lil black girl…it’s imperatively important…no more lies sister girl, NO.MORE.LIES)

So yes, is it any wonder the black woman turns to the horse, The Brazillian, The Indian, and now I hear even The Persian!!!

Or starts taking drugs in the form of Creamy Crack AKA The Relaxer to save her damaged soul?

Fair’s fair, some say…So what? Others say…And yeah to a degree, it is so what? So what if you weave your hair? So what if you relax your hair? SO WHAT!

It’s definitely easier to get up, whip off the headscarf, shake it out and go. It’s definitely easier to pick it up off the side dresser brush it out and put it on…especially in today’s on the go can’t stop won’t stop way of living.

BUT! As the Daily Mail decided to expose…After years of wearing her trademark Pocahontas style weave, Naomi’s losing / lost her hair. Women, black women are damaging their scalps and natural hair, with the weight, tension and erosion of all this tom-fakery. Which like an infectious disease has spread like wild fire across the the black world most negatively affecting our young girls.

But in her defence, Naomi’s a different kettle of fish cos she’s a model…As a model, it’s standard procedure that your look needs to change on a daily basis, and Naomi Campbell top Supermodel of the world that she is, would she still be Naomi Campbell top Supermodel of the world that she is, if she refused to wear her hair any other way than cornrows or afro? Those of you who’re America’s Next Top Model addicted already know what Tyra would say!

The same goes for celebrities, who are nothing if they don’t re-invent themselves every half year or so…

Without her weave Beyoncé just looks like a pretty chick from round the way.  But as  Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter the superstar, she has developed a signature trademark look which is dominated by her big blonde lion looking weaves! Would she have become as successful if she didn’t wear unbeweavable lace fronts? Hard to believe that she wouldn’t have as talented as she is but along with being light enough for white and black girls to aspire to be, staying blonde and kink-free  is also a key factor which keeps Beyoncé in that crossover zone, which is key to cementing your world dominance especially in this ‘Have To Be An All Singing, Dancing, Acting, Business Brand – to be successful’ world we live in today…

But what about the lil black girls who love Bey, but are dark like Kelly Rowland so undoubtedly have hair like….erm…erm…ERM??? (Name a dark-skinned black female celebrity age 18-30 with natural untouched hair…see whum sayin!)

And PR/Marketing/Branding aside though, I do get the impression that Beyoncé like most other black women would rather die than be seen out with cornrows or natural afro styles…and is that a good thing? So far Beyoncé only goes full ethnic if she’s trying to rock a certain look to make a specific point…‘Work it out’ being an example…

…she rocked a big Afro simply because her character in the Austin Powers film Goldmember did. Is it okay that Beyoncé  only represents natural hair when paid to do so?

But it’s not all about the celebs, what about right outside your front door? I remember back in my day, after you got too big for cornrows or in my case…

(Shout Out to all the African Girls who had their hair threaded…Extra Hugs and Shout Outs to those whose mums LIKE MINE sometimes didn’t join up the threads and would make you go to school like in the pic above!!!)

(MY NICKNAME FOR SOME TIME IN PRIMARY SCHOOL WAS …)

  Still bites…

So obviously we all used to eagerly anticipate the day we could stop wrapping our hair up in our towels flicking them side to side in pretence, and get to that next step of hair puberty which was the curly perm or Jheri Curl which gave you soft shiny not too afro-y curls…

…which worked for a while until… House Party had to go and ruin the curly perm rep…when pops cussed the dude with the perm…you remember…

(scroll to 1:05)

Right!!!

Some of us were allowed to sidestep and get single plait extensions, no longer than your shoulder and had to be burnt at the end to stop them from fraying so you smelt like you were on fire for the first few days of getting them!  But we were all mostly waiting for hair puberty graduation which was the day we got our first RELAXER! The day our hair could finally be straight and blow in the wind…(which rarely happened because regular re-touches cost money, so hard setting gel or overly above legal heat regulation tongs bought from the market were used to kill any sign of natural-ness,  damage was over created…re-enter the single plait extensions stage left…to support the new star of the hair show THE WEAVE)

Fast fwd to recent times and school girls are wearing weaves like it’s sposed to be! Even though they still got their first hair (you know the hair you had from child to teen before you experimented with the blonde to get the same hairstyle as Salt N Pepa)! First Hair (also usually the best and most missed)…

I know fashion is fashion and trends come and go, but some of these girls have eighties style baskets on their heads that look extremely separated from their scalps. It’s not just school girls either, it’s their mothers, sisters, aunty’s, grans also who wear weaves that look so bad that it appears they believe it’s okay to walk around looking like a crack-head who missed their hairdressers appointment cos the hunt for crack was too great, rather than wear their own hair.

It’s even trickling down to the babies, I’ve seen too many young kids, babies still being carried even, with relaxed hair or extensions…

Why put a child through this?

The amount of times I’ve wanted to slap a mother for the overgrown hairstyle on her child…what are you telling your child? And why put your child through that pain? WHY!

When you walk down the street, test yourselves, tally up how many black women you see with their own hair, and then see how many are wearing weaves, or  single plaits and then tally up how many of those weaves and plaits actually look good…I often wonder how can a woman comfortably walk around with…

…on their head but would die if anyone saw them with what naturally grows…it’s very confusing, and quite sad.

Sidenote: I personally, feel that plaits and twists and cornrows get a slight pardon because they’re ethnic styles so aren’t as bad in regards to cultural eradication as weaves are…relaxers…hmm.

And my opinion will probably be cussed out by devout weave wearers, because I guess I’m implying that if you weave your hair you’re somehow ashamed of what grows naturally. But that’s not what I’m saying, exactly…What I’m thinking is that  if you’re someone who can’t be seen without a weave…do you have an issue?

If you rock a weave sometimes, then rock your own hair sometimes (extra points if it’s natural) then I think I’m not talking about you.

But it’s the women who deign to be seen without a weave. Who rock their weave like it grew. Somewhere deep down, I feel like that woman hates their hair. Wait…stop seething…answer me this then…how many of you weave wearers buy Afro textured weave?

How many of you are breaking your bank accounts to buy Jungle Bush Texture from the Motherland hair, over that £300million for an ounce Brazillian hair…(I exaggerate the cost by a pound or two)…

And before you shout that white girls are wearing weaves just as much these days so tell them suttin too…erm…white girls and girls whose hair grows straight aren’t buying Jungle Bush Texture from the Motherland hair either they’re just enhancing what naturally grows,  not, changing up their whole dynamic…WHAT ELSE YA GOT!!!?  (I love you my sisters don’t hate me HUGS)

The same goes for a relaxer. Yes it’s easier, yes you can achieve a lot more universal styles, and yes those of us with Jungle-No-Mix-Break-A-Comb textured hair, a relaxer can ease that pain…but oh the burn, the damage, the burn, the cost?

Now I’ve been quiet one angle…Men. Black Men. Who claim to hate the weave, not so angry with the relaxer, not sure about single plaits, but are generally loud and clear about the disdain they feel for black women putting extra on their heads…

But…black men…you are also part of the problem, what with your ditching US for THEM type ways. Making us feel insecure and inferior cos our hair can’t flow, and our attitudes aren’t tame, and our tans too permanent.

I’ve spoken to many a black man who says WHY DON’T YOU LOT JUST WEAR YOUR OWN HAIR!!! To which I understand their pain, I truly do. But how many natural haired sistah’s only get approached by fellow natural, incense burning, spoken word speaking, neo-soul loving, right on political brothahs…

…when in true fact all you want is regular ole, slightly bad bwoy with a job though,  Marlon-Dwayne-Leroy-Andre from down the street to take you shopping in Westfields then drag you by your natural hair back to his place to knock the incense fumes out your…AHEM!!!

(Sorry to judge naturals, but you know you love Dwele /Jill Scott / India Irie…click your fingers in appreciation)  Jooookes Don’t angry spoken word and finger snap at me!!!

Seriously though, with young children easily influenced, especially in a world where the new ideal of beauty is rapidly becoming the mixed-raced/exotic face as cultures combine, mix and multiply, there’s a need to re-educate our young black girls to love what God gave them and more importantly learn how to manage it.

In 2012 the only advert on British TV, and has EVER been shown on British TV for black hair care (that I am aware of) is the Olive relaxer advert which actually only comes on the BET channel and then MTV Base (not sure if it’s still on MTV Base though) which both of these are satellite channels…you’d think for as long as Britain has had black folk (Click Here to know how long we been here) it’d allow for at least one black hair product advert….

…could we get a hair grease advert, at least a Dax  or an Ultrasheen  or even a Blue Magic advert!  We need to promote our hair in it’s natural state, the wonders of it, and how it works, moves and is manipulated into so many styles, other races are jealous.

How many of you have had that comment from your female white or other raced co-workers, ‘oh you’re so lucky you can do so much with your hair’ …and usually, when I have my hair out in it’s wild jungle afro, I get more comments of admiration from ‘other races’  than my own people.

But I know it’s not easy. In the corporate world natural black looks like the Afro and Dreadlocks are met with confused, and ignorant concern, and in some schools dreadlocks and cornrows on black boys are banned, which if I was the mother of a son with such hairstyle would forget all my upbringing and become very Tichina Arnold aka Rochelle fromEverybody Hates Chris on the headmaster who tried to get involved in my child’s hair. It’s not their business.

But if we let others control what’s right for us, then we’ve lost the battle our forefathers & mothers fought! Aint we?

In conclusion…black women be proud of what’s given to you naturally and more importantly  teach your kids to be proud then when they grow up they wont find it so hard to stand out and be an individual instead of brainwashed and confused.

It’s a weird and often-times emotional, confusing topic. And as usual if you bring it up people get angry defensive and annoyed…I’ll hand the discussion over…

Ebs

xxx

p.s…thank you Viola Davis…


Day 7 – Sidetracked…

HELLO. Wait let me re-read…I’ve just been writing and writing and probably haven’t been making sense.

Ok, I got issues!!!  Anyway today, I’m not in that frame of mind. There are good things in my life.

 1

2

3

4

…cos that’s all I really want to talk about and be grateful for…(we nearly did the step, bang, step, bang, step step bang bang. Damn I’m clenching).  OK so, when I got home and did the usual home thing…dinner, telly, bed, telly, phone, wrote in you, telly, phone, then bed…then I phone again to speak to Dionne, cos whenever I need to discuss my crappy position Dionne’s best to cry with cos she’s also in a crappy position…(she’s in 5th but still ahead of me cos if you remember I’m in LAST place.) AND (Dionne’s only in 5th cos, she was in a long term once, and wont settle for nothing less than that what she had back then)…and today’s Backbone’s aren’t really like they were back in the day…So Dionne’s had a lotta NEXT PLEASE’s since she decided to be single.   Cos otherwise, she doesn’t have the issues I have. Dionne’s really pretty, in the middle of light and dark skinned, and has nice…

OH! That’s another thing. NICE HAIR. I take it back. Dionne has hair which is nice. Or I mean her hair looks good regardless of the fact that her Indian grandmother, and Chinese great, great, great, great granddad may have straightened out her Afro a little bit. So she doesn’t really have to relax it. But does anyway. Whatever…

I’ve used relaxer, and I used to weave my hair down my back.  But Soul, people, our, people need to stop a little bit. I know it‘s hard but…I have nice hair there’s no mix in my blood, but my hair is nice. It’s thick, it’s healthy, almost grows quickly, and I’m proud of it, my jungle hair.  So I stopped the weave, stopped relaxing it and left it to just be. But as I need to grow my afro to one like back in the seventies proportions I do need help, so sometimes I do use extensions to cornrow and plait my hair into all the styles  from the motherland.

But I hate when The Girls and The Boys pause and look at me like I’ve stepped out of the deepest darkest bush when they pick me up to go out…

I’m proud of my mini-fro…but my friends, and especially Chris who is the worst for critiquing black girls for looking too black…

So Dionne, pretty, nice…hairstyles. We spoke. I told her my plan to call, she told me her plan to finally let the man who’s been bugging her for a year now, bug her.

Oh yeah how could I forget another reason Dionne’s stuck in fifth is because of her little darling monster.  She’s scared of unleashing  J’ah’Marnii in case he scares any potential man away, and I think, although she wont admit it, that Dionne’s still in love with J’ah’Marnii’s dad. She always references him, saying if she didn’t take crap from her baby father, then no new man’s gonna try and take the piss with her.

But J’ah’Marnii’s dad never took the piss with her; he treated her in a way that made me want to cry when I got into the safety of my bedroom. Or throw myself in a heap in the middle of the common room.  All through college Dionne was never about, always with J’ah’Marnii’s dad who I had secretly liked first when we all saw him in the common room, on the first, no third day as college goers. I had my fingers crossed but…Yeah college was a sad, sad time for me. It was all about Dionne and Tameka and Margaret who had this whole TLC, SWV, SALT & PEPA club  thing going on. Whereas I was in the ‘…oh yeah! She is cute…’  club. When peeps finally saw me behind The Girls. SIGH.

Anyway, Dionne caught Daniel  (J’ah’Marnii’s dad’s name) and it was Daniel & Dionne all through the two years of college, and then the three years of us splitting up to go uni, get a job, go on the dole, go to America for a year and come back to go on the dole, and then just as Dionne gets pregnant…

Dionne’s Daniel, her Backbone, is now part of the legal slavery system which welcomes our Backbones with such wide open arms. Daniel always said the next one was the last one and that last one so was. It was the biggest full stop of a last one.  Dionne has tried to wait, but Daniel’s not Daniel anymore. Daniel talks about coming out next week, when that’s soooooo not happening.  Sometimes, for no reason he starts crying.  Dionne says he slurs his speech at times from the meds they use to calm his temper. She still goes to visit him, but not as often, and probably not again, after last time he shouted at her.   J’ah’Marnii started crying. The screws came and held Daniel down, and that’s when he started laughing.

So me and Dionne, were going over and over our positions, and wait…Sorry, Margaret just phoned, there was an old skool song on one of the other channels. We reminisced for a while. Days were good back then. We were in middle school. Then again they weren’t so hot for me. Mags has memories of Johnny, Kenny, and Danny. Mine are of wanting Johnny, Kenny, Danny, Montell, Andre, and Craig…

….who was so blond hair and blue eyed I couldn’t resist (…but he was an add on, when I wanted to cry and feel sorry for myself that little bit longer.)

Sorry.

Me and Dionne talked, until we worked ourselves up into an ‘Ok we are going to call them.  Tell me how it went tomorrow yeah?’

I need to pause and watch Southland ( The BEST after The Shield, and of course after The Wire…and then we can’t forget Damages…)

Ebs xxx

Day 6 – More Marcus…

Hey Soul, I missed you. I was deep, deep, deeply in Whitney Houston Concert mode. Still hurts, still emosh, very big sigh.

But anyway. Where was I? Oh yes. Marcus…who said he could only treat me shallowly, and I apparently agreed…I said I wasn’t ready to get in deeply with someone because my EX took too much, and now I needed someone to just give…and until I found that someone, I needed to have sex.

Okay nah…if I say it like that, then I’m giving the impression that it was all perfect and mutual and above board.  And you know Soul that it’s not that simple, never ever never.

We met in a club. I was drunk because of my work-pal. She’s cool.  If she were one of the girls and in the competition she would be fourth I think, but anyway. I met Marcus in the cluurrb and I was drunk because of Cassie.

 

I was confident, because drink makes me forget that no one don’t love me, and the videos don’t love me.

So with all my drunken confidence, I went up to Marcus, even though he was cuter than life and did not look like he would ever love someone like me…The DJ was taking us back…

…so using the power of the schwexiness of that choone and my bum (because that’s what the Backbones of my society like…the bum…and I have a bum that crosses the dividing lines of love)  me and my bum dropped it like it was hot all up down and around Marcus.   Which was no mean feat as I had heels on and they were high and tight and my bunions were screaming and Marcus was cuter than  life!

Quick version, I danced, he responded, he took my number and gave me his.  At that point though, I was still in EX mode and although Marcus was ticking boxes left right and centre, all I could think about was my EX.  All my EX’s friends were at the club but he wasn’t…

But anyway…When we leave the club Marcus calls me like in an hour of him getting home.

I smile a lot in the cab with Cassie. Then me and Marcus, or Marcus and I…whatever… stay on the phone until the morning. Real morning.  Not after club morning, I mean time to say bye, because he has to sleep before he goes to work in the evening, and because I have to jump into the shower for a minute, then get dressed in a minute, and my hair did in a minute and then get to work in thirty minutes because that‘s all that’s left.

Soul, I was amazed Marcus wanted to talk to me for that long. I was just waiting for when he wanted to put the phone down, because I was never gonna hang up, I was ready to call in sick and stay on the phone until the wedding…

Quick version.  We phone a lot, we relate a lot, a lot, our souls are twinned, and his sign is compatible with mine, and his looks are good, and my look suits his good look, and his sex fits my sex.  And we have sex a lot.

And then it all STOPS. I didn’t say anything.  I didn’t do anything. I just rang when I was supposed to. I didn’t argue for real for real…Oh my gosh no wait…I mean…is she for real?

Like I know I’m about 100 years too old to care, but Really Nicki Minaj? Stupid Hoe? Like for real? Wait, wait (sorry Soul) I have to ring Mags, because we always do the music video thing, because she’s the most like me. (Except she’s not in  LAST place)

Just spoke to her quickly; she saw it, just a bit though because she‘s going out. This is why Mags is in first place. She goes out, not with other girls but with her man.

I think I may need to find a new time to write in you Soul!  After work I’m tired, I get easily emotional so I abruptly end our conversations.  Maybe after dinner…I’m most always happy after eating…hmm…

Anyway something goes wrong in mine and Marcus’ relationship. Rings all the time, then he doesn’t ring so much, and then he doesn’t ring at all, because I do all the ringing.  And I only do all the ringing because he seemed to forget how to ring. So I accept that.  And I accept that he doesn’t like talking on the phone for long (even though in the beginning I remember he did).  I accept that he doesn’t like going out with girls he’s just ‘seeing’ because it gets confusing and people talk (I remember he didn’t care when we went out twice in the beginning). I accept that he has to come round really, really late because of his busy work schedule (even though he’s been in the same job since we met and he used to be able to make more time).  And I accept that he doesn’t always talk before or after we have sex because he has to go soon (even though sometimes I used to fall asleep in his arms he talked so damn much).  I take all of that acceptance and accept the fact that he doesn’t want to be my husband and move me up in the game.  Accept that he just wants to bang me and pretend that that’s what I wanted anyway.

So after it all went pear shaped I decided to back off, and every time is meant to be the last, and since I said NO MORE, (mentally because I don’t want to jinx it) I’ve gone back FOUR times.

But today will be the last, because on the journey home, I realized that I was using Marcus and he was using me. Which was not meant to be so apparent; it’s supposed to be hidden underneath love, and marriage, and kids and all.  Anyway it’s late…

Trust this to come on when I’m in Marcus mode. OH WHITNEY! OH MARCUS! OH WHITNEY! OH MARCUS! OH WHITNEY! OH MARCUS! OH WHITNEY! OH MARCUS! OH WHITNEY! OH MARCUS! OH WHITNEY! OH MARCUS! OH WHITNEY! OH MARCUS! OH WHITNEY! OH MARCUS!

Ebs xxx 😦

Whitney Houston 1963 – 2012 (My Tribute To My Legend)

ABSOLUTELY. EFFING. PISSED…

So waking up to get a drink, I checked my phone…cos I’m nosy like that, and was baffed to see that I’d gotten so many BB messages…so going in, eyebrow raised, thinking someone had gotten ahold of one of those foolish broadcasts I was sceptical and ready to DELETE…but no. Instead I get the news that hit me like it was fam.

My Whitney? Ms Houston? The voice? That woman with that insane voice. Gone? Nah. Hit me like I knew her…but as a fan I did. She’d been a part of my life since the age of younger than I can remember…Whitney Houston’s music has been deeply embedded into the soundtrack of my life…If ever there was a voice I ALWAYS wanted to mimic with my deep ole gruffness it was Whitney’s…when you’re talking about soul, passion, range, quality, style, blues, funk, and pop you have to look to Whitney.

Coming from a bloodline of talent…Mother Cissy

Cousin Dionne…

Godmother Aretha…

How could you dare not be able to sing surrounded by all of that! And sing she bloody did!  I don’t think American Idol and countless other vocal talent shows would have been the same without someone destroying a Whitney Houston song….or at the very least emulating her with almost perfection…

Coming from a time when you didn’t have to be an all singing, all acting, all dancing brand machine that you see and expect of artists today, Whitney Houston was known and loved and worshipped simply because of her voice…

Dedicated to her career and life like a typical fan, when that infamous period of darkness occurred in Whitney’s life like myself people the world round urged and prayed for her recovery. We all know someone or have someone close to us who has a problem with substance abuse, and the pain and stress it causes those who have to watch the person deteriorate can be soul destroying…that’s how it was watching Whitney lose her way…but when she got it back, the outpouring of support for Whitney’s return to the top was testament to the effect she’d had on the world.

I remember having the chance to go to see Whitney in concert back in 2000 but because of health reasons I couldn’t make it…as a person who NEEDS to see all my favourite artists live and up close I’ll forever regret that I didn’t say eff that and go and see her. But back then I had no inkling I’d never see her…

My words are rambly because I’m in over shock…I think possibly more than when Michael Jackson passed. With Michael as sad as I was, I was happy he’d finally found the peace he so needed. With Whitney, I thought I’d be attending a Whitney Houston Greatest Hits tour…I really did.

My favourite Whitney Houston songs…

You Give Good Love

The Greatest Love of All (this song is the most defining song of my childhood)

How Will I Know?

I Get So Emotional

Where You Are

Love Will Save the Day

All the Man That I Need (These Words! THESE. WORDS!)

We Have Something In Common (the irony is not lost. But at the height of their relationship, this is one of the best love duets ever!)

That performance right there…

Shoop

Step By Step

Didn’t Know My Own Strength (I heard this for the first time when she performed it on Oprah, I thought this was it. She’s Back!)

I Will Always Love You (whether you think it’s cheesy or not…this song…)

My ultimate, heart, love and prayers go out to Bobbi Kristina, and Whitney’s surviving family.

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