Fruitlessly Seeking Luvvie

There are a few bloggers that I keep up with, but there are a couple that serve as my muses….and I’ve been trying to meet both for a while. I met Vitamin Q a couple of months ago (difficult not because he’s local but because he’s reclusive), but I have yet to pin down Luvvie Ajayi. If you are one of the five people on the planet without Internet access who are not familiar with the creator of Awesomely Luvvie and Awesomely Techie, she is also the author of the upcoming release I’m Judging You, and the Mistress of Side Eye. Since Luvvie is based in Chicago and jetting off to some gorgeous locale or other every few days, my chances of running into her are slim and slimmer. Then last year, McDonald’s tapped her to be their 365Black Ambassador for last year’s Essence Festival here in my hometown….

A chance to meet Luvvie. 

For free. FA-REE.

Universe, you have my attention. 

Since she was basically posting her every move under the McDonald’s banner on every social media channel imaginable, I at least had a general idea of where to find her. And, since I was going early for the workout session anyway, I figured I’d have plenty of time to meet her before I had to leave to get ready for work. Yeah….I kinda forgot about the concept of New Orleans time–where a scheduled time can be anything from 10 to 45 minutes after what’s listed. But I’m a determined soldier, so I wait like the awkward, antisocial stalker I’m sure I looked like, scanning my quickly dying phone for updates and Luvvie sightings until my personal window of time closes. I leave disappointed into the oppressive summer heat and head back to my car, upon which I plug in my phone and find this tweet as soon as I get in:

Damn you, fate!

So, fast forward to this year where I’m again going for the fitness session (wanted to ask Shaun T. in person at what point he lost his mind), when Luvvie takes to social media with this nugget:

As I’m researching and plotting, I get a notification that nearly rendered me unconscious:

Oh HELLS YEAH I’m going! 

Well, this year I had ALL DAY, and only one other presentation I really wanted to see, so I figured between my friend and I we could track her down, make my life, and still have time to see Misty Copeland and Oprah Winfrey. I was even prepared technologically, as I had my wall charger and a fully charged power bank to keep tabs in the communications black hole that is the Convention Center. (Special props to sponsors like Coca-Cola and McDonald’s for having charging stations set up for visitor use–that gave me a few extra minutes.)

Missed her again. And it wasn’t for lack of trying. She had just finished taping a presentation (according to her Instagram), so at least I knew what she was wearing. Saw a couple of seminars that fit her MO but conflicted with other things (it’s very small comfort that I missed Todrick Hall, too). I walked by one of those stages going back to wait for Misty, and my friend and I took tag team seat breaks to stretch legs, charge phones and take care of other necessaries. But, as it happens, I fell victim to that New Orleans Time scheduling again, and as seats were filling up four seminars early for Oprah, I was kind of captive where I was. But I thought at the very least, if there’s one place I might stand a chance of spotting her, it was in the same room with Oprah. I grossly underestimated exactly how many people were willing to smash themselves into a ballroom just to see Oprah’s first appearance at Essence Fest. I’m lucky I saw my friend, and he was sitting right next to me. Looked for her after amongst the rest of the celebrities but no luck. And by the time Oprah finished, building security was herding everyone towards the nearest exit, and as my friend managed to score a free ticket to the concert that night, I had to get him home post haste.

Upon stalking social media after I got home, that cruel butch named Irony dealt me a couple of blows–first, Luvvie DID have a presentation in the grand room at the very stage I’d intended to stop and wait at earlier. Second, apparently one of those stretch breaks my friend took turned into a walkabout that found him a couple of celebrities and took him past that very stage. And the cruelest of all, Luvvie was in the Superlounges with the artists I’d have gone to see had I had a ticket….and less social anxiety. 

A family obligation kept me from renewing the search on Sunday, and an early Monday morning flight crushed the last of my hopes. I probably would have babbled like an idiot anyway…still, the fact that I’ve come thisclose TWICE and come up empty is just frustrating.

And Kim Fields too?!? We grew up together, through several models of TV screen!

Oh well…..at least there’s a book tour coming. And we friends now, so we go together for LIFE.

20 Things and All That…..Playing 20 Things You Might Not Know About Me Blog Tag

My good friend Monica just got into blogging and decided I needed a tag for this.  As I actually like her (and want to encourage her to keep at this blogging thing), I’ll be a good sport. 😀

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If any of you would like to participate, here are the rules!

1. Copy and paste the questions below and then answer and turn them into a blog post. Or, record a video answering these questions and upload it to your blog post.

2. At the bottom of your post, tag anywhere from 2-10 bloggers you want to see answer these questions. (I also suggest hitting up your tagged people via social media just to let them know you tagged them to do this tag challenge.)

3. Use the title: 20 Things You Might Not Know About Me Blog Tag. Once you’ve hit publish, leave a comment below with the link to your post.

4. Use the hashtag #20ThingsBlogTag when sharing on social media so we can all find your awesome posts!

Question 1: How tall are you?

5’3″ is what’s on my driver’s license, and that’s what I’m going with….

Question 2: Do you have a hidden talent? If so, what?

Most of my talents are visible: dance, writing, arts and crafts….so unless having this uncanny knack to walk into walls and furniture or somehow cut myself with every kitchen knife imaginable counts as a hidden talent, I’m at a loss.

Question 3: What’s your biggest blog-related pet peeve?

Deadlines.  All these amazing ideas and drafts and you have to actually act on them so the public can read them.

Question 4: What’s your biggest non-blog related pet peeve?

Um….my husband not replacing the toilet paper roll?  It would be different if he just didn’t replace it–it would still annoy me, but that’s typical.  No, HE pulls out a new roll and sits it ON TOP OF the roll that has exactly two squares of paper on it.

Question 5: What’s your favorite song?

Depends on the genre you want to go with.  I adore Judy Collins’s version of “Send In The Clowns,” and have worn the print off of several Broadway soundtracks.

Question 6: What’s your favorite Etsy shop that isn’t yours?

Don’t have an Etsy shop, but one of my former students does.  All But Flowers by Andrea Stevens–she does mostly floral décor made of paper but her main creations are brooch bouquets.  She’s also branched into brooch hair jewelry and flower ink pens crafted from duct tape–my two favorite items.

Question 7: What’s your favorite way to spend your free time when you’re alone?

TV, Facebook, reading…and the aforementioned dance and arts and crafts stuff.

Question 8: What’s your favorite junk food?

Reese’s peanut butter cups.  Don’t eat them as much anymore, as I could suck them up in large numbers, and they don’t taste as good as my thighs not rubbing together feel.

Question 9: Do you have a pet or pets? If so, what kind and what are their names?

Used to have fish as a child…too many to name.  The hubs and I had a beta fish he named Raiden, after the Mortal Kombat character.

Question 10: What are your number one favorite nonfiction and fiction books?

The fact that I can now call Suzanne Brockmann a friend has absolutely no bearing on my choices…. 😉  However, I can count Heart Throb, and both her Tall, Dark and Dangerous and Troubleshooters Navy SEAL series.  The nonfiction books don’t stick with me as much….

Question 11: What’s your favorite beauty product?

I am not a girly girl by any stretch of the imagination, so a “favorite” beauty product–or even the concept of such–boggles the mind.  But if I have to pick one, I’m going to go with the Sally Hansen nail strips.  The speed and ease with which doing my nails in various elaborate designs AND have them last for a while is just AWESOME.

Question 12: When were you last embarrassed? What happened?

Can I just say my entire adolescence and call it a day?

Question 13: If you could only drink one beverage (besides water) for the rest of your life, what would it be?

So many choices…..alcoholic choice is bellini, non-alcoholic is Celestial Seasonings Madagascar Vanilla Red Rooibos tea.

Question 14: What’s your favorite movie?

The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh.  Yeah, I know–if you follow me on the regular, you would probably have expected Beauty and the Beast to have crossed my lips.  And I do love that movie…but you asked for my favorite.

Question 15: What were you in high school: prom queen, nerd, cheerleader, jock, valedictorian, band geek, loner, artist, prep?

Nerd loner artist.  Still am.

Question 16: If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live?

I just want to be somewhere near the arts and the outdoors–New York City is growing on me, and growing up in New Orleans has given me a melting pot appreciation for all kinds of culture.  I really wouldn’t mind retiring to Natchitoches, LA, though–it’s where we fled after That Storm and it’s a good balance between metropolis and small town.  Plus I left some really great people up there….

Question 17: PC or Mac?

PC. Did Macs in college because I had to, and if I ever manage to get into editing like I always wanted, Final Cut Pro works best on Macs.  But for standard computing, I’ll stick with PC.

Question 18: Last romantic gesture from a crush, date, boy/girlfriend, spouse?

My husband would always go to the same bakery that did our wedding cake and order a small cake in our wedding colors for our anniversary.  I would complain about all of the sugar in the huge decorative roses so he eventually stopped doing it.  It didn’t occur to me until that moment that he was trying to replace our original cake topper, as shortly before our first anniversary That Hurricane That Shall Not Be Named struck, thus rendering everything in our refrigerator–including our wedding cake top–toxic.

Question 19: Favorite celebrity?

Again, depends on your concept of favorite….Lin-Manuel Miranda naturally is on that list, as well as my adopted mama Debbie Allen (which, if you were still wondering, partially explains #14).

Question 20: What blogger do you secretly want be best friends with?

Tie between Luvvie Ajayi (aka Awesomely Luvvie) and Vitamin Q (Williams).  Q and I are FB friends, and I will eventually wear him down.  Luvvie might get a restraining order because I fully intend to get all up in that closet and steal all of her ALPHETS (you’ll have to read her glossary if you don’t get that.)  Honorable mention goes to the mind behind my sassy little friend Angry Pear.

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This blog post is a part of the ’20 Things You Might Not Know About Me’ Blog Tag started by April from Blacksburg Belle. She began this blog tag experiment to build community among creatives, help us bloggers to connect more and get to know each other better. This month’s topic is all about sharing just a little too much information about yourself. If you’d like to participate or want more info,check out the beginning post right here.

Three To Get Ready

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3 years of Trash talk!

So apparently I’ve made (and missed) another bloggaversary. To be completely fair, I’ve been a little lax in the originality department lately, not to mention traipsing off to New York again AND crossing a live-in-person Wrestlemania off my bucket list…so it was an easy event to miss. And yes, once again I set my digital pen to tell y’all that I’ll try to do better. And I will try–it’s just this blogging thing really is WORK. Balancing it with real-world obligations isn’t easy either, and I’ve been experimenting with this odd little thing the cool kids call a “social life.” But I do rather enjoy occupying my little corner of the Interwebs, and hope to show you a little more of my Princess realm in the years to come.

YAY ME! I TURNED THREE!

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300

THIS.....IS.....SPARTA!!!!!!!

THIS…..IS…..SPARTA!!!!!!!

Had to mark it but have absolutely no imagination after lining up Marriage Minded Monday reposts and tracking the whole season of So You Think You Can Dance. Though it’s not all original content it IS a pretty big deal, getting to 300 posts in these last 2 1/2 years of blogging. I think I’m getting my feet under me here….

Let's kick off the next round!

Let’s kick off the next round!

The Terrific Twos

Two already? Terrific....

Two already? Terrific….

ter·rif·ic  [tuh-rif-ik]
adjective

1.extraordinarily great or intense: terrific speed.
2.extremely good; wonderful: a terrific vacation.
3. causing terror; terrifying.

So apparently I’m two years and two days into this blogging thing….

It’s been a terrific ride, by ALL of those definitions: I’ve had some intense and wonderful moments and it’s largely been a lot of fun. Mainly, this whole thing is still terrifying as all get-out.

I’m still trying to find my rhythm with this one but I think I’ve got a good plan in place. I’m trying to keep up the Marriage Minded Mondays and keep them pretty well balanced, I still have a few Trash Prompts in the pocket to publish, there are two really substantive interviews I’ve been stalled on finishing (once I give myself a swift kick and publish them, you’re gonna love them–they’re really good and quite informative), and I’m sure there’s some fodder out there for a new series of Dumbass Diaries. Not to mention I know for a fact there’s a 10th season of So You Think You Can Dance coming up, so…yeah, this two year old is picking up steam.

Now my other blog, Practicing Christian, needs some intensive care. I don’t know how other people with more than one blog manage to balance things….I had such ambitious plans for the beginning of the year, and have only managed a few reposts. I’ve done the background research on setting things up but I can’t figure out how to best set up a self-sustaining plan. I dislike the red-headed stepchild treatment myself, so I’m feeling mad guilt about neglecting my other “baby.” Something I still have to work on, I guess.

Still finding my legs and my voice like any other two-year-old, but with practice I think I can go from wobbly knees to a full sprint. Thanks for hanging with me on the journey–let’s see what new kind of trouble we can get into. 😉

Smiley-tantrum

Keeping it 200

Never could have made it without y'all.....

Never could have made it without y’all…..

From the first default “Hello world!” through article reposts, pictures, videos, rants, social commentary and general slices of my all-over-the-place life, I have somehow, in this almost 2 full active years of blogging, reaches my 200th post. It’s pretty cool, actually, since days ago I got my 10,000 page hit and I’m managed to interest 70-something people (plus 59 on Facebook) in reading what I have to say…and liking it from time to time. I’m starting to get a better feel for where I was to take this blog, and some of the things I want it to be. Plus, in the spirit of the New Year’s arrival, I’ve come up with a few blog resolutions:

    1. I resolve to keep the Marriage Minded Mondays going. I know I need some help in strengthening and uplifting my marriage, and I’m sure a lot of other people out there could use some new perspectives, as well. And even if you aren’t married, you can at least get some tips on how to relate to others or even how to relate to your married friends who might need a sympathetic ear.
    1. I resolve to try to be more conscious of current events. That one is gonna be hard, as I have spent a good part of my television career working at news stations and pointedly ignoring the newscasts for anything other than broadcast technical quality and REALLY hard to ignore stories. Plus, that’s what my news junkie husband and best friend are for….
    1. I resolve to create a more active atmosphere for discussion. I appreciate that folks take time to read my (often long-winded) blogs, and I’ve gotten a lot of positive praise and kudos. The love from Eliana Girard, Cole Horibe and Lin-Manuel Miranda (whose tweet of my Hamilton review still tops my stats as the busiest day) still has been psyched, and I’m really pleased when you guys ring in on the comments. I don’t know—I guess I’m greedy. As much as I want to continue sharing my thoughts with you, I’d really like to hear more from y’all as well. Even my spam has gone back to being boring….
    1. I resolve to open myself up a little more on here. I’ve already opened up a vein or two and passed along a few of my interests and opinions but I’d like to share a little more of myself with you guys. Not too much, though—my mother DOES actually read my blog and there are still a couple of things I’m saving until she’s dead. Or too senile to read. (Not wishing EITHER on you, Mom…. :-D)
    1. I resolve to find a good balance to maintain all of this, as I try to balance blogging and real life. Particularly since I’ve been wanting to better develop my spiritual journey blog, Practicing Christian. How I’m going to actively maintain TWO blogs and a real world existence is beyond me, but I hope I’m up for the challenge.
    1. I resolve to keep passing along new projects and interviews with Lin-Manuel Miranda. Oh come, on, y’all have been reading a while—you HAD to expect this one….
  • Thanks for getting me here, everyone….I’ll try to keep you interested.

    So, about this Versatile Blogger thing…..

    (AP Photo/Rob Carr)

    Air Cooled Underware nominated me for a Versatile Blogger award, and I have to say I’m flattered. It’s really cool that somebody’s reading me and thinks I’m a Renaissance woman. Well, I am….but it’s nice that it’s noticed. So in keeping with the whole Versatile Blogger protocol (which I had to look up), here we go:

    (Not everyone is necessarily into the VBA thing; that’s cool–if I nominate you, it’s because I honestly think you’re great, not because I expect you to follow suit.)

    If you are nominated, you’ve been awarded the Versatile Blogger award.

    Thank the person who gave you this award. That’s common courtesy.

    That’s done. Or at least it was implied by the flattery. But to be clear, Thank You.

    Include a link to their blog. That’s also common courtesy — if you can figure out how to do it.

    Done. What’s next?

    Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly. (I would add, pick blogs or bloggers that are excellent!)

    OK, this might take a little thinking. There are a lot of blogs I subscribe to and read—some a little more actively than others. But these are a few that I carve some time out for:

    Girl On The Contrary

    Funny and random as all getout, and a twisted sense of humor. In other words, my sister from another mister.

    My Inner Chick

    Just as funny and random with an added consciousness—she is a vigilant supporter of domestic violence outreach following her sister’s death at the hands of her abusive husband. Many of her entries deal with the loss and pain she still feels.

    The Redneck Princess

    I had to—it was a given that the White Trash Princess reach out to the Redneck Princess. She has a wide variety of subjects and several daily themes (recipes on Mondays, photos on Fridays, etc.)

    Angry Pear

    Technically my new favorite comic strip. This little sassy, sarcastic and, well, angry pear gets into the most interesting situations. She never fails to amuse me.

    We Are Respectable Negroes

    One of the more comprehensive blogs on black political consciousness—I should read it way more often than I do, though I receive it in my inbox regularly. There are a lot of news and political items covered that I would otherwise know nothing about. And as I hate actively following and interpreting weighty topics, anything that will help me better understand them without a few brain cells exploding in protest is a good resource.

    The Crunk Feminist Collective

    Black consciousness with a feminine touch—many of the same topics as WARN but a lot of women’s issue-centered news.

    I Breathed Again

    The very personal journey of my new online friend Jason Walker, who details his struggles with panic attacks, his re-entry in society and his quest to finish school and obtain his degree.

    The Respect Dare by Nina Roesner

    She doesn’t post new material as regularly as she did when I first subscribed (she pulled back from blogging time to spend with her family, and rightfully so), but at a point of intense strife in my marriage her personal and Biblical advice was needed and helpful. She occasionally reblogs older posts to keep the blog active—and the information is just and timely and informative as the first post.

    Moments of Exhilaration

    Written by a former lawyer turned stay at home mom, it chronicles the interaction with her young daughter and the feelings and struggles she’s dealing with.

    The Sassy Curmudgeon

    More general smartassery, but her blog lately has taken a MOE turn, as the curmudgeon in question just became a new mom.

    Insatiable Booksluts

    Three ladies who are voracious about reading, this blog is devoted to reviews about new and classic books.

    Kamran Assadi

    A new young friend of mine, he writes poetry and reviews all sorts of under-the-radar musicians. Also, as a recent new dad, he posts his adventures in being trained by his infant daughter. 😉

    Black and Married…with Kids

    Pretty obvious since I frequently reblog them. This site publishes a host of advice articles by a number of authors regarding relationship building, development and repair.

    Red Lips and Academics

    I follow a few egg-headed chicks (being one myself, I like to mingle with my own kind), and Miss Laura’s chronicles as a (relatively) new teacher and as an intelligent female in the dating world are introspective, wildly entertaining, and goshdarn funny.

    The Food and Wine Hedonist

    The title has food, wine and hedonist in it. I don’t really need another reason. But the quote from “The Jerk” clinched it for me….for I, too, was born a poor black child. 🙂

    Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link to this site.

    I will at the very least let them know about my posting. Some I know right off the bat will not follow suit, and as I mentioned above, I’m cool with that.

    Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

    This ought to be interesting:

    I love to dance. Been doing it since age 2, and have become fascinated with all forms of world dance.

    I’m addicted to social media, mainly Facebook. I’m trying to break the habit. Can’t quite get into Twitter, though. I may have to in order to grow this blog when the time comes, but I don’t see the appeal.

    I love watching the Olympics. Though I have certain sports I’ll watch, my main must-sees are the opening and closing ceremonies. There’s just something about the pageantry—I even have a few recorded.

    I am a Jeopardy! FREAK. I have been wanting to be a contestant, but I’ve only passed one test, and my chosen field and workplace disqualifies me at the moment. I will resolve that before I die, because there is way too much useless information bouncing around in my head.

    I hate heights. Fear has morphed into a healthy respect, particularly if there’s a guardrail and a really high fence. If I have a large cocoon of safety, even in my own head, I will gingerly test the limits. But things like bungee jumping, dangly rollercoasters and that clear observatory over the Grand Canyon? HAYAL NO.

    I love children, but have run as far away from the “family business”—teaching—as possible. Save a volunteer daycare stint and a run as a dance teacher, I have not and do not intend to venture into the classroom. The children are our future but so is my sanity. And I have precious little and a slippery grip as it is.

    I had an incredibly hard time coming up with seven things.

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