Black Girl Unicorn

Publicly Black Since '83

On Gratitude 

As the clouds gathered this afternoon I could see the storm progressing from my office window. Then the thunder came and I remembered that I ran out the house this morning without my umbrella. 

Here’s the thing: I lived in Southern California for many years, at the height of the drought, so remembering to bring an umbrella with me wherever I go is a habit I haven’t quite adapted yet. By the time I left for work I had resigned myself to being sopping wet on my commute home. 

And just as I was about to throw myself into the downpour a woman comes to me and asks “Are you going to the train? Do you want to share my umbrella?”

Y’all. YALL!!!!!

This angel appeared just when I needed a hand. And we ran across the street and into the subway with minimal dampness. 

I’m super grateful for her and all of those who know me who lend a helping hand during my times of need. 

Focused on Kindness 

My morning commute was beautiful. The express train was experiencing delays, which meant that when it arrived it was already packed. I got on and at the next stop someone got off leaving an empty seat behind. The brother closest to the seat offered it to me, so I sat down. 

While jamming to my Rihanna playlist, I noticed an elderly doña get on the train, so I passed on the kindness and gave her my seat. GUESS WHAT?! 

At the very next stop someone else got off and this other dude offered me the new available seat!

New Yorkers get a bad rap for our rudeness.  And as I always say, we aren’t rude, we are simply focused on our business. And it hasn’t only been my fellow commuters showing me kindness. 

Yesterday as I was dozing off at work I decided to head down to the Starbucks and get a giant black tea. My barista and I had a loverly chat about Bruno Mars and then when my drink was ready, the other barista told me “I hope you have the safest NY day!” 

The world is nutzo right now. This week has seen a few months worth of tragedy and scandal. For this young man to wish me safety was such a wonderful source of light in my day. 

So as the world is crazy, and we each are dealing with our own struggles it has been a true blessing for me to have these beautiful gestures of kindness to allow me to keep moving #onward. 
Featured Photo

No I will not Boycott the NFL For Kaep

There is no sport I love more than football. So the likelihood that I’m gonna stop watching games next season because Colin Kaepernick is seemingly blacklisted by all 32 teams in the NFL is not gonna happen. 

If you’ve read through much of this blog you likely understand that there are very few things that I truly enjoy. Football is on that list. And it’s not like I’m blind to all of the fucked up shit that comes with loving football. 

For one, the NFL commissioner, Roger Goodell, is a power hungry asshat of the highest order. Each game there is the very real possibility that a concussed player can die on the field in the middle of the game. There is a total and complete lack of understanding that women are people who deserve to be paid (cheerleaders) and should not be abused (Josh Brown).  There’s also the draconian policy toward marijuana.  I could go on. 

With all of this, football season is the happiest time of my year. My attraction to sport has always been the ways in which sports act as a microcosm of the rest of the world. That includes what is going on with Kaep. 

So yes I will continue watching football. Not only because I love football, also because boycotting is shortsighted.  You wanna raise some funds for a collusion suit? I can make some time to hear the logic behind that. 

But a boycott? No.  I still plan on running my Ladies’ First fantasy league. And I’m still going to continue saving my money for Sunday Ticket. Shit, I watched all seven rounds of the NFL Draft! It’s too late for me to boycott. 

And you are free to judge me. Just know that everyone (that includes you) has something they love that is contradictory to their professed politics. 

This is life. It’s complicated. And football is a beautiful game. 

Land of the Free?

The summer after my sophomore year of college I rode the train to Meridian, MS. I LOVE train rides, way more than someone who grew up riding the subway should. Anyhoo, one of the clearest memories of my time in Meridian was the very explicit presence of prison labor, what I call slavery.*

Fixing roads, cleaning train stations, those orange jumpsuits on Black bodies were all over contributing valuable municipal services in marked anonymity, watched over by visibly armed guards,  without meaningful compensation. 

So when Hillary Clinton wrote that inmates, read: slaves, cleaning the Arkansas governor’s mansion was tradition, I get that. I’ve seen the ways states and municipalities “keep down costs” by using slaves to perform essential public functions. It happens very visibly in the South, and is more concealed in the places I’ve lived. 

This isn’t to say HRC is evil. This is to say the system is. And it helps me make a broader point about systems:  Systems are not out there existing in the ether. They are made up of people, and strengthened or weakened by the decisions we ALL make. 

Example: many states across the country collect little or no state income tax. How do things get done in those states without those funds? Just think on it. 

Another Example: Pension funds  invest in highly profitable companies, which include private prison companies. Not just private prisons,  but health service corporations, telecom corporations etc. 

Yea our daily lives are all wrapped up in this systemic travesty. Some more than others, I mean I clean my own house. Not to act holier than Hill but I made my own breakfast this morning. 

I do take issue with her evident fear of the inmates though. Throwing in her experience representing criminal defendants to make her racialized (maybe I’m reading too much into this, but whatevs) fear of these people who ran her household seem less cringeworthy,  does not sit well with me. And that is my main problem with the statement: her perception of those men (maybe women?) comes across much like a first hand account of Miss Ann describing her slaves. 

And maybe that is the heart of my problem with Hillary, she tries so damn hard to come off as some type of liberal demigoddess when she is as contradictory and offensive as those she so vehemently claims to detest.  Like accept your flaws lady!  Sheesh. 

And in conclusion, how free are we really when this country and we as citizens and residents rely so much upon the forced labor of the presently enslaved? 

*The 13th amendment abolished slavery except as punishment for a crime so… its slavery. 

Everyone Calm Your Tits

My morning procrastinating on the Twitta was ruined because everyone  was watching & live tweeting the Comey Hearing. I was so mad I actually did work. 

I get it, Toupe Fiasco fired Comey because, as Comey alleges, he wouldn’t stop investigating Trumpito’s ties with Russia. Trumpito is cray. Russia is also cray.  Like, cray + cray = bad news. 

But I wasn’t gonna waste my time on no senate hearing, cuz NOTHING HE SAYS MATTERS! 

The evidence alone will not impeach then kick out of office 45*.  Every week something illegal breaks, and the repubs just cover their eyes & ears like schtupid monkeys. 

Let me be clear, we’ve moved beyond a question of whether illegal acts were carried out by the executive branch. If we take Comey’s statement at face value, evidence of illegality is there. The issue is who will enforce the law, who will enforce the Constitution? 

So until there is a real likelihood of enforcement as far as I’m concerned we should all just keep our tits calm. 

*Impeachment is just a formal investigatory process. For those that remember Bubba’s impeachment he kept right on working right through it. 

Not That Kind of Black Friend

It’s a tale as old as the the post-Civil Rights era: seemingly progressive white person does some awful racist shit, has friend of offended group come to prove white person isn’t a racist. 

Currently this cycle is being hashed out with Bill Maher and Michael Eric Dyson. MED turned to the Twitta to come to the aid of noted racist Bill Maher. I mean when Ben Affleck is yelling at you for your racist shite, you’ve definitely gone too far. 

Anyhoo, MED will be joining Maher’s show this week after Sen. Al Franken pulled out cuz Franken doesn’t wanna catch Maher’s racism (in my estimation). 

It’s at times like these that I find it is really important to remind my white friends, and really my non-Black friends: I AM NOT THAT KIND OF BLACK FRIEND! 

You do some effed up sh!t, guess who won’t come to your aid? *raises hand vigorously*ME! 

Just cuz you and I are cool does not mean you aren’t a piece of shite trash oppressor to others. And I will be damned if I leverage the support of my community so that you will still like me. NO NO NOOOOOO! 

Because befriending people of color by white folks, or Queer folks by straight folks  (et al) doesn’t completely absolve us of being good humans. YOU MUST DO THE WORK! 

And what MED is doing by cooning for Maher is letting him off the hook of doing the damn work. MED also is straining ties with his own community which is a bad move in these times of Trumpito. He needs us. 

So now that we’ve got that out the way, don’t say nigger if you ain’t Black. Don’t say “well no one should say it, it’s a terrible word.” Listen, until you are a Black child being called a nigger by some racist white man in New Jersey you don’t get to tell me or any other Black person what to say. GOT IT?! 

Good. Now let’s all continue our day being good humans. 

Ketchup & Hot Sauce

After school I stopped at the local ghetto Chinese restaurant and ordered a large fries with hot sauce and ketchup.  I being vegan didn’t order the traditional chicken wings. 

The smell of hot fried foods with the unique mix of hot sauce and ketchup will always take me back to 6th grade, and pimples, and soul crushing menstrual cramps that probably would’ve gone away if I didn’t delight in fries with hot sauce & ketchup everyday. 

To this day the aroma of ketchup & hot sauce can stop me in my tracks. Even in the subway, a kid going to town on ghetto Chinese in a black plastic bag (like the kid above) will take me back in the day when I was young. 

Goat Herders Matter

Can I get real for a minute? Are we in the trust tree? 

I fully understand how detrimental white supremacy is. I truly do. So take it from me when I say, HALF TRUTHS WON’T SAVE YOU! 

Barack Obama wasn’t the messiah of Negros, in fact he played Black folks more than any other group. He did his eight years, let’s move on.  Also, we (descendants of Enslaved Africans) did not all come from kings & queens. It is statistically impossible that all of the Africans forced to labor in the Americas were all kings & queens, especially when you deal with the fact that West Africans sold us to the white man! 

But one thing at a time. I spent this weekend at Dance Africa in Brooklyn and the levels of pride in half truths really annoyed me. All the Barack worship, and fake arse rage wrapped in respectability was on FLEEK.  Black people, my people we have so many reasons for pride. We don’t need to rely on half truths (aka LIES) to be proud of our heritages. 

Like it is ok to admit that Barack Obama rode into the Oval on the legacy of Black liberation movements of generations past and he did practically nothing to further those legacies. 

Is it also ok to admit that more of us descended from goat herders than kings & queens?

Like what’s wrong with goat herders? You ever had goat cheese? That ish is fuckin amazing! Goats milk is a natural marvel! All tart and creamy and digestible. We have goat herders to thank!  

I know folks like to stick with the Alex Haley version of capture, but it’s incomplete*. Yeah some Africans were captured. And some were already slaves sold to the whites by West Africans. And those West Africans had all sorts of ways to contribute to their communities. So let’s honor that contribution! 

And while honoring their contribution let’s get real about Bam too. It’s ok to say that it’s huge that four Black women lived in the White House and were not the help. Like that’s way dope. But that dude left much to be desired while talking down to Black folks. Don’t let the power of the presidency fool you. 

Power is nice, and so is respecting everyone. Our ancestors don’t need to be royalty to earn respect. #GoatHerdersMatter 

*Alex Haley also stole the story of Kunta Kente, to be completely honest. 

This is not an Ad

I’m a Yard (🇯🇲) which means I know in my heart that #BobIsAGod. Robert Nesta Marley, that Bob,  IS A GOD.  Also, this is not an ad, just me sharing my excitement for the first Black icon with a Ben & Jerry’s flavor! 

In case you don’t know, Ben & Jerry’s released Bob Marley’s One Love ice cream. It is a delicious concoction of banana ice cream, graham cracker & caramel swirls & PEACE SIGN FUDGE PIECES! Yo, YOOOOO its amazing. Even if you don’t like banana’s (like me) it will make your taste buds jump for joy. 

Bob Marley’s image and name is heavily protected*. So when the Marley family actually joins forces with another brand it’s a BIG EFFIN DEAL. What makes this even more awesome is every pint you buy contributes to the One Love Camp for the youth dem. 

Last year Ben & Jerry’s came out as the wokest company owned by two white dudes.  During the election they introduced EmpowerMint which is also a pretty good flavor. It is only fitting that they link up with the Marley Foundation with a delicious dessert that helps make the world a better place. 

Because it’s a limited batch, One Love is only available for a limited time. That means you you gotta run to your nearest grocery store and buy One Love Ice Cream and #TreatYoTastebuds right! 

*I could go on and on about how dope the administration of Marley’s estate is, and how dope the trademark protection is but I won’t because only other legal nerds care. Just know that it’s hard to federally protect a person’s image, and Bob Marley’s image is federally protected. #BobIsAGod

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