Friday, December 27, 2013

No Daddy! I don't WANT bitches! : On other people and their expectations

When I was younger, I was told that I should want big houses, fancy cars, and bitches. I was rarely asked "what do you want out of life" and quite frequently asked "what are you gonna do to pay for your big house, fancy cars, and bitches?" I never wanted a car, a house, or a bitch.

My father tried to give me a car when I was in college and I didn't want it. I liked walking. I liked biking. I liked nature and I didn't like bills. To me, a car was simply a bill with an engine. St. Louis wasn't big enough to justify having a car as far as I was concerned and I spent so much time in class and studying that I wasn't going anywhere anyway. So I asked him "who's going to pay for the gas and insurance?" My father said, "you are." So I turned down the offer.

Later, I was blamed by my father and his family for being ungrateful. "Your dad got you a car and you didn't even take it. Why are you so ungrateful?" My feelings were that this old dude who I barely knew just gave me a really expensive bill. If that's being ungrateful, then I'm ok with that. I also never got the bill.

Other family members said, "why didn't you just take the car? That's how he shows love?" That's beautiful and all, but I'm not going to pay property taxes and insurance on somebody else's self-soothing attempt at loving me. No matter how you slice it, that shit's ridiculous.

I have no end to this story except that I still don't want a big house, fancy cars, and bitches. At age 31 going into 32, I'm preparing for the next phase of my life on a volcano with my woman, my big yurts, my fancy Fiat, and my cats.


Poetry In Motion asks: 
"I'm confused on the bitches. why would that have been something anyone would long to have? What was the thought behind that?"

Blue responds: 
"It's part of the American dream: picket fence, 2.5 children, bitches....When you have your own bitches, you're more in control of the breeding. Bitches are also cleaner than male dogs. At least that's what I've heard. I don't have nor have I ever wanted bitches. I'm more of a cat person myself."

Monday, December 23, 2013

I thought you were pretty and then I realized it was you!

I grew up in a culture where the little girls had long thick hair and learned how to braid and care for it early. Around 14 or 15, they would cut their hair into teenage styles and/or get a perm for the first time as a rite of passage...I never wanted to grow up. However, at 17, I was sick and tired of the bi-monthly weekend hair marathon that plagued my life. Day 1: wash, oil, and braid. Day 2: press. I had to ask myself, "why in the hell am I doing all this?" Originally, I saw a perm as a solution to my problem: if the napps were gone, I could comb my hair after washing it. However, nobody told me that perm maintenance was a pain in the ass. So I decided to get my first perm and after 2 years and 3 consecutive perms, I realized that I simply couldn't stomach the smell. So the perms stopped and my napps came back...only it wasn't the hair I knew. It was coarse and raggedy. One cousin braided extensions into my head so I wouldn't have to deal with it while I was studying in Madrid and backpacking around Europe. When I tired of those braids another cousin introduced me to the sew-in. I was confused and itchy for 2-3 months. Finally, once my safe nappies returned to me, I asked a guy from my church to start my locs. I didn't know what I was doing. I just knew I didn't have time for the weekend hair marathon anymore.

The scariest part of the ordeal was that during my pop culture exploration phase, I didn't recognize myself. I wanted me back. When I got locs, I felt like I got me back. It was a way for me to maintain the silhouette of "me" that made sense to me without all the work. However, During my hair journey, I learned quite a bit about people. It was an experiment of sorts, and these are the results:

1. Reactions I got when I had long thick hair:
"why don't you have a perm?" or "you would look so pretty with a perm."
"dang! Your hair is thick!" or "You got too much hair!"
"are you mixed?"
"You need to straighten your hair."
"You can't go swimming like that."
"You should let your hair down."
"That's not your real hair."

2. Reactions I got when I had straightened hair:
"You are so pretty."
"I thought you were pretty and then I realized it was you!"
"would you like to go to prom?"
"would you like to go out?"
"Your hair is sooooo pretty!"
"You think you better than me? You ain't cute."

3. Reactions I got when I had braided extensions:
"I want you to be my girlfriend."
"Who did your hair?"
Note: I spent the majority of that time in Madrid, so I didn't have a lot of reactions. I was usually ignored by non-American or non-African students and non-students. It was the most peace I'd experienced in life until then.

4. Reaction to the sew in (long black hair that curled at the ends).
"Is that a weave?"
"See, you're not like other girls. You know the value of hair."
"You look really nice!"

5. Reactions to my new locs:
"Are you a rasta now?"
"Are those braids?"
"Eeew!"
"You look a mess!"
"Why would you do that to yourself?"
"As long as you're happy..."

6. Reactions once the locs grew longer:
"Your hair is sooo pretty!"
"What's up Queen?"
"See, we as African peoples have to come together."
"What do you know about the 5%"
"That's not your real hair."
"Who did that?"
"Got a lighter?"

This all transpired over the course of about 9 years from 1999-2008. My conclusion:
1. people are full of shit.
2. All I really want is to recognize myself. Every once in a while, I do. The journey continues.

Love,
Blue

Friday, December 20, 2013

FOX NEWS, please shut the fuck up.

I admittedly and proudly get all of my news from comedians. They're the only people telling the truth as far as I'm concerned. But that's not the point. The point is all this hoopla about Christians, Christianity, and Christmas. Here goes something I think:

If the popular representation of Christianity weren't so extremely white, blond, blue eyed, racist and delusional, majority culture would take what was said more seriously. Everyone speaking on behalf of Christianity in popular media look to the rest of us like the kind of people you want to generally avoid in daily life...you know, those people...when they start talking you suddenly remember that you have somewhere else to be, something else to do, or in desperate scenarios, you'll just go on a rant about the bonfire of aborted fetuses and Bibles that you and your family danced and sang around last night just before having sex with each other.

It seems that because of racism, homophobia, and overall closed-mindedness, Christianity is looking very one dimensional and completely insane to the majority of Americans. Though I am no longer a Christian for all intents and purposes, I am absolutely respectful of the religion and practice as a way to find balance in one's life...or salvation from sins...whatever rhetoric you need to use to get into heaven. However, for the sake of all Christians in America who don't necessarily want to be perceived as brainwashed delusional lunatics, Fox News, I plead to you:

SHUT THE FUCK UP! Your audience is getting smaller and crazier...and it shows.

Love,
Blue

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

My Human Being: Why I'm Not Doing a Damn Thing



Most of the "we're Black and living in an oppressed state and therefore we should represent ourselves better to create better communities" literature and banter comes from the perspective that I should have to DO something to be a good black person. I used to be a doer. I did all kinds of things. In fact, I got awarded and praised for all the shit I did. But doing shit left me tired, unfulfilled, jaded, and overall pissed at everybody who didn't appreciate the shit I did. So I have changed my perspective.

These days, I don't believe in doing anything. In fact, I believe that doing less enables my true nature to emerge. The less I do, the more beautiful the world looks, as it is allowed to be itself without my influence...so I get to see the world...not my imposition on the world.

Also, doing nothing saves energy for me to do what I want to do when I want to do it. I only like to do a few things: cook, make music, and take baths. Everything else is either me preparing to cook, make music, take baths, or cleaning up from cooking, making music and taking baths. When I'm doing shit I don't want to do, I wanna get it done asap so I can spend more time not doing a damn thing.

So what's your point Blue? My point is this: real freedom is not having to do a damn thing...especially not for a damn body else...to justify existing in my skin. Real freedom is my human being.

Love,
Blue

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Holiday Expectations

Greetings everyone. As we head out to our various dinner locations, let's take a moment to acknowledge our expectations.

1. As a youngster in these mean, mean streets, I remember getting scolded by various adults for being an "embarrassment" at Thanksgiving. Well, chances are, those adults had expectations of how I was supposed to act on Thanksgiving and those expectations were in place to establish impressions among others. Generally, if someone is capable of embarrassing someone else, the underlying belief is that the embarrassing person is a "reflection" of the embarrassed. To chastise and criticize an embarrassing person is, therefore, to chastise and criticize a reflection of self. So don't wait until the holiday party to care about your reflection. Model good behavior consistently throughout the year and your reflection will not be an embarrassment.

2. I used to play out in my head the way social circumstances would transpire. As a result, my social anxiety would increase drastically and by the time the social circumstance was underway, I was a reckless mess and the experience was exhausting and unpleasant. In hindsight, had I done the same things, but not prematurely created a non-existing social circumstance based on my expectations of what should happen, things would have gone smoother. So I live in the moment. Nothing goes as planned. Things go as they go. I keep my head in the game so I don't burn the food.

3. If your family or friend group is anything like mine, there are a lot of big personalities with different points of view. So what? I lock away all my weapons, pad anything with a sharp edge or tip, and let her rip. It is not my responsibility to protect anyone from anyone else...including themselves. And if I don't feel safe, there is a whole world full of trees, grass, streets, sidewalks, and city wilderness to walk around in for hours if I choose. I am not bound to any circumstance no matter what anybody else thinks.

4. People might die. It's no one's fault. When it's your time to go, it's just your time to go.

So now that we've acknowledges some expectations, we can take a moment to reset and enjoy the simple things...like cranberry sauce. Oh, and here's a lovely Holiday Tune by Yours Truly to usher in the spirit of Thanksgiving. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Does My Happiness Make You Uncomfortable?

There are a lot of people in the world who have a lot of pain and shame associated with being gay. As a new convert into the happy life, I tried to adapt the pain...you know, wanting to fit in with others who identify with me now, as though I changed...but whatever...

But I couldn't. I even tried to care what other people would think if I told them, but I couldn't. I tried to be nervous when telling friends, but that didn't make sense. Most of my friends were happy and even the ones who weren't were artsy new agey people who accepted everybody. So every time I told a friend, they'd say "Congratulations! I wish you happiness!" As a result, my experience was not as dramatic or life altering as I'd hoped it would be. Again, too much made for TV cinema during my formative years.

There seems to be an expectation for happy people to "come out of the closet." I just don't feel that need. I guess it's because I never was in a closet. I dated men, I liked dating men. Now I'm with a woman. It was a life change. There was some leftover church chatter in my brain, but I was already pretty much broken from that as a result of my transition out of indoctrination and into what I really thought. So maybe there is a "coming out of the closet" of sorts: The closet of being molded by the world I was in into something that doesn't make sense to me and then slowly navigating my way out in order to have a life that doesn't raise my cholesterol, make my skin break out, and lead to hypertension...

Trying to make sense of the senseless is a full time job. Not to knock what makes sense to others or their experiences, but my life is not about them. It's about me. And the indoctrination that I experienced does not make sense to me. It didn't when I was in it and now that I'm out, I can look back and see why I thought I was a bad person: because I could not be what I was "supposed" to be, no matter how hard I tried or how many zits and doctor visits I had. Not to mention that even though my indoctrinators knew what perfection was, none of them could demonstrate it. That was frustrating.

Love,
Blue

Monday, November 25, 2013

My Mentors

Those who I admired never thought about what the dreaded "they" were thinking. Those who I admired had bigger issues...issues like what color they were going to paint their studio or who's ass they were gonna kick if anybody even thought about interrupting a phone call with their child. Some of these people had odd tattoos and piercings in very obvious places, carried amulets for protection against evil spirits, and even had signs on their office doors saying things like "Don't even bother unless you brought chocolate." Not to mention the music you could always hear blasting from their personal space...

These people were often quick to call out anyone who tried to marginalize them or anyone else on the basis of hair, wardrobe, shoes, or anything else that did not matter. They were usually oblivious to others superfluous opinions and if they encountered rogue gossip, their knee jerk response was, "I don't give a shit about that shit." They were comfortable in their skin, they liked what they liked, and they could use their energy to make changes in the world. Hair, nails, shoes, clothing, a car, or lack thereof didn't have a damn thing to do with a damn.

These people came from all walks of life. They worked all kinds of jobs and had all kinds of incomes. Regardless of what they wanted out of life, they never felt they had to appeal to anyone's ignorance in order to achieve their goals. They were comfortable with who they were, they enjoyed what they did, and chances are, they couldn't be easily replaced because they were simply the best and everyone knew it.

These days, I find myself being a lot like those who I admired. When offered the option to be otherwise, my knee jerk response is, "I don't give a shit about that shit," almost as though the phrase had been locked away inside me since birth. When faced with criticism, especially superficial criticism, I am utterly confused. There have been times when I had to ask a critic, "Are you speaking English because I have no idea what you're saying." (I'm laughing right now because a photographer at a club once told me something and I thought the guy was speaking Japanese. For all I knew, he was warning me of threats to come. I just couldn't make it out. Then, he slowed down and said some words that still didn't make sense to me when put together in that order. I simply can't process bullshit). Sure, I have my insecurities, but as it concerns other people's ideas of what I should do, I remain happily oblivious to what's considered "inappropriate" in various circles. Way I see it, if no animals were harmed in the making of this production, the fuck's the problem?

Love,
Blue