Wednesday, July 13, 2016

You Better Put Some Respek on My Name Bih...

Are you familiar with Facebook memories? Basically Facebook reminds you of what you posted, on this day, in previous years. Today Facebook reminded me of the time my boyfriend told me he wanted to marry me.

It wasn't a proposal. We were in Minneapolis for his college friend's wedding. During dinner he looked at me with a huge grin on his face and said, "I can't wait until all of our friends and family are celebrating with us when we get married."

Wedding Selfie
I smiled back at him but didn't say anything. Even though that's what I ultimately wanted it was hard to imagine my wedding day with him.

Because his mother hated me

Parents typically love me. I bring great gifts whenever I visit and tell interesting stories during dinner. But I remember the moment my boyfriend's mom began to dislike me.

I had accompanied him on his annual summer family trip to NYC to visit his grandmother. His Mom, Aunt, Uncle, Brother and I had all went to the huge Macy's on 7th Avenue1. Approximately 32 minutes after sampling some street meat from one of the plentiful food carts the city has to offer, I had to use the bathroom baaaaaaad. I told his family I'd meet them on the 4th floor and dashed to the basement bathroom in Macy's.

This part gets a little graphic

Did you know that a healthy poo is supposed to be long and S-shaped, like the shape of your intestines2In an effort to have a banging summer body, I had been pretty vigilant about eating veggies, probiotics and my fiber game had been on point for months. Needless to say my poo's had been long and S shaped for some time now. 

Unfortunately on this particular day in Macy's, my healthy poo was so long that it got stuck in the toilet and WOULD NOT FLUSH!

Man I must have flushed that toilet 50-11 times trying to get that poo to join the rest of the dead bodies in the Hudson River, but to no avail. I was afraid of the toilet overflowing so I made the executive decision to leave my past behind me and book it out of there. I waited until there was no one left in the bathroom and hurried to wash my hands. As I was reaching for a paper towel to dry my hands off a cleaning lady came into the bathroom and went into my stall. 

The stall where I had just deposited all my recent life regrets

I was so embarrassed that I nearly tripped over myself running out of the bathroom. I had just made it to the elevator when I turned around and saw the cleaning lady speed walking in my direction. As the elevator doors closed she was waving a mop in the air while yelling something indistinguishable at me in Spanish3 .
I had escaped poo-gate in the basement and safely made it to home appliances on the 4th floor. While looking for his family I discovered a bridal salon and had gotten distracted by the most stunning wedding dress I had ever seen.

That's where his family found me; fawning over a $3000 Vera Wang tea length wedding dress with an asymmetrical hem line. It was elegant yet quirky, just like me (tooting my own horn here obviously). My boyfriend and the rest of his family joined me while I slowly ran my fingers over the delicate satin bodice. I noticed his mom a few feet away from us, arms crossed, looking furious.

Is you mad, or is you upset?
And then I saw the cleaning lady from the basement bathroom. She had a determined look on her face and she was scanning the sales floor, presumably for me."We gotta get out of here!," I said in a panic, grabbing my boyfriend's hand and ushering his family towards the elevator.

From that moment on, his mother was never nice to me again. I don't know if she had a talk with the cleaning lady or not, but the atmosphere was dark and cloudy between us from there on out.

Over the years there were multiple instances where my boyfriend's mother would say something rude or just plain bitchy to me. And what made it worse, was that my boyfriend never told her to stop.

One time I had joked around that I had been teaching my boyfriend to cook because his food was a little bland. Not realizing I was joking, his Dad spoke up and said, "We love his food. We think he's a great cook." His mother narrowed her eyes at me and said, "Just because he doesn't use a lot of salt, doesn't mean his food isn't good4"

In an effort to smooth things over I said, "How about I make you all dinner tomorrow night? I'll buy everything and bring it over and you can take the night off from cooking. 

His mom looked me dead in the eye, put her hand up and said "I DON'T EAT ON TUESDAYS"

Ya'll... I ain't a killer but don't push me 

I was raised to respect my elders and so I felt as though Jesus was testing me. There were times when I wanted nothing more than to kick his mom in the teeth, but despite her unsavory behavior I couldn't place all the blame on her. Eventually I began to place the blame on my boyfriend because he let her treat me that way. He once even told me, "You know how my mom is. Couldn't you just say less whenever we come visit?"

Even though he claimed he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me, I felt like I could never say yes. How can you let the first woman you ever love openly disrespect the last woman you'll ever love? 

In the 8th grade I stood up to this really mean girl named Meesha, who was always making fun of me. I remember her looking really surprised after I put her in a place. After popping a piece of fruit stripe gum into her mouth she said, "You know I still don't like you, but at least you stood up for yourself. I can at least respect that." 

Today's Facebook memory was a bit hard for me to see. You see, I decided to type this post while taking a break from packing. My now EX boyfriend is in New York on his annual summer family trip and I'm moving out of the apartment that we shared together for the past 5 years.

For the majority of those years I felt like I had something to prove to his family. Partially because of one fateful poo on a family vacation, but mostly because his mother could not stand to see her son love someone other than herself and also because her son was too chicken shit to be unapologetic about his love.

But with age comes wisdom. Unless you're Stacey Dash

Be with someone that loves and appreciates you no matter what
Be with someone that is not afraid to defend your honor (Jousting matches are a nice way to do that)
Be with someone that accepts you AS-IS, damaged goods, no returns once you bought it, as long as they help you to become a better person (This is not directly related to this blog post, but a helpful piece of advice nonetheless)
Remember that you are always enough

And If they can't do those things then you're better off without them. Even if you're Stacey Dash

*"Respek on my name" is a quote made popular by Rapper/Producer Birdman of Cash Money. Birdman didn't appreciate the way on air personality "Charlamagne The God" was talking about him and was telling him to show him some respect.

1. Macy's is great, but personally I don't see the purpose in shopping at a store that you already have in your hometown. Especially when you're in the fashion capital of the world. 

2. Your poo regimen is a great indicator of your health. Here's a website to see how your Poo stacks up ;) The SCOOP on POOP

3. Actually I speak some Spanish but you don't have to be fluent to know that whatever she was saying was not pleasant. I believe I heard her say, Muy sucia...amongst other things

4. I think that was her low key way telling me she thought I looked bloated?

Friday, March 11, 2016

Lifestyles of the Romantic and Pragmatic

The worst thing about finding out your best friend is getting married is now you have to lose weight too. I've been busy finding myself, which includes eating whatever I want, swiping left and not having to shave 80% my body hair just to have 50% of it grow back halfway through a date. Now I have to worry about what I'm going to look like in your wedding photos.

The night that my childhood best friend broke the news of her engagement to me, I could hardly believe it. Gabi was the first friend I made in the 7th grade after moving from Long Island, New York to Charlotte, North Carolina. We sat next to each other in AG English1 and used to pass notes about teachers we hated and boys we liked in a composition notebook.
We used our planners to pass notes in class our entire school career 

Flash forward almost 20 years later and we're sitting across from each other at a gastropub discussing how Gabi's fiance had proposed to her.

For the past couple years we haven’t been as close as we were growing up but I still consider her a best friend. So much so that I could barely focus on her story because I was getting nostalgic about our friendship. We’ve been through so much over the years...

Like watching TV on the phone together: In middle school I would call Gabi up Monday through Friday at 4:00pm and sing the opening theme song to Sailor Moon at the top of my lungs over the phone. Except when it was storming outside because Gabi was afraid that lightning would come through the phone and electrocute her2

Our first jobs: Gabi is a few months older than me so I always felt like she got to do everything first and her life was way more put together than mine. She was the first to drive and worked at JC Penny. She probably came home smelling like a mixture of Japanese Cherry Blossom body spray and loose change because she worked in the shoe department. I worked at Subway and walked to work after school because my bike had gotten stolen. I would come home smelling of cold cuts and bleach.

Losing our virginity: Don’t worry Mom, this part never really happened. At least it won’t until someone asks for my delicate hand in marriage, I do declare. *clutches pearl necklace*

And all of the glorious crushes on guys we’ve had from 1996 through 2015; Me more than her because I’ve been boy crazy since the 7th grade.

Senior year Gabi signed my yearbook & made sure to list all the crushes I had from middle school to that point
We would do this thing where we’d conduct mock telephone conversations pretending to be each other’s crush. Kinda of like practicing for a job interview with a friend.

Me: Hey is <insert name of this week's crush> home?

Gabi pretending to be my crush: Who is this?

Me: C’mon Gabi. He knows who I am.

Gabi: Yeah but maybe he has a lot of girls calling him.

Me:  So you think he’s a player?

Gabi: No he’s not that cute. But you are cute, so don’t worry about it. Be confident.

Me:  OK. Let's start over. Hey, It’s Tiffany from Social Studies.

Gabi: Oh this is his mom. I’ll go get him. *Deepens her voice* What you want girl?

Me and Gabi: Breaks into uncontrollable laughter for the next couple minutes until Gabi hangs up the phone without explanation after she hears thunder outside

After I got the proposal details the first thing I asked Gabi was, “How do you know when it’s right? How do you know that this is the person you’re supposed to spend the rest of your life with?” Gabi responded with “Maybe I’m not the right person to answer that question.” 

Well if you're not the right person then who in tarnation is? It can't be me. I have a fall back marriage arranged with an old friend if we haven’t found anyone else by the age of 35. I also fell in love with a guy after knowing him for only 3 weeks, mainly because he called me baby girl and he was a fierce dancer. Hell, I fell in love with the cream cheese on my bagel this morning because it had salmon AND capers in it. I obviously need some guidance.

Gabi told me that her engagement made sense. He’s sweet and kind and treats her better than previous boyfriends. They get along well and don’t argue much and she wants him to be around even when she hates him in the moment. Don't get me wrong, it's not like Gabi turned 31 and thought "Hey I'm getting older. Here's a nice guy, I'll pick him." It's just that she's less emotional about her relationships than I am.

All of the things Gabi mentioned are important and obviously honesty, supportiveness, trust and communication go without saying. But I wanted to hear about the passion and the butterflies. I wanted her to say, “Guuuuurl I can not get enough of that baby arm he has between his legs". I want my friend to feel that giddy, take my breath away feeling that I've felt after drinking a pitcher of hard cider, downing 3 shots of Jameson and making out with a hot co-worker3

My friend Stephanie says she loves the way her husband smells, even when he’s been working all day and comes home sweaty. She told me she’ll be doing laundry, sniff the armpit of one of his dirty shirts and it smells like homemade hamburgers to her. It gets her blood going. That right there is the kinda love I want. That drunk in love with hamburger pheromone love

Mmmm. Juicy
After hearing Gabi justify her relationship, I suddenly realized that I'm a hopeless romantic. I want a guy to look at me the way I look at my food when the waiter is bringing it to the table. I want a significant other that will eat mini cupcakes with me at night while we're watching Cartoon Network. I want a humorous love story that my husband and I can share with neighbors at a block party. "...And then she tripped and fell face first right into the potato salad and that's when I got the inspiration to write Best I Ever Had. She was that special somebody."Drake playfully kisses me on the cheek and smiles at our neighbors, R. Kelly and Soledad O'brien.
You want another hot dog Kels?

Really Gabi should blame herself for my romanticism. She was the one who introduced me to Harlequin romance novels in the 8th grade. She had a stack of them in her locker and would loan them out to me one at a time as long as I would pinkie-swear that I'd return them in good shape.

To be fair, Gabi has always been way more pragmatic than I have. Once in the 11th grade, I got into an argument with a ratchet girl who didn't say 'excuse me' after bumping into me in the school cafeteria. Gabi whispered in my ear, "she's bigger and way more hood than you. Do you really think you'd win that fight?"

With all that being said, I'm happy that Gabi is embarking on this new stage of life and her hubby-to-be is really a lucky guy. Heck, she's lucky for getting out of this terrible buyers market (i.e. millennial dating culture) and finding someone that she wants to spend her old crotchity days with. I don't know for sure but her fiance also looks like he may be the proud owner of a baby arm so hooray for that. Gabi and I have a lot in common but it so happens that we think about love differently and that's OK.

And since I know Gabi is reading this, I want her to know that I've never been a bridesmaid. I know being a bridesmaid means that I'd literally be a slave maid because I wouldn't be paid for my hard work throwing bridal showers and bachelorette parties. I actually hear it’s an awful experience something akin to being water boarded while being forced to listen to Rihanna sing a ballad. But somehow I still want entry into this exclusive club.

If you can not accommodate me in your wedding party then that's OK too. I have already found a banging dress to wear to your wedding that will show my effervescent beauty without stealing your shine on your big day. I also promise to give the best drunken wedding speech your guests will ever hear.

1. AG English was Academically Gifted English. It was a class for smart kids or for kids whose parents didn't want them to be eventually filtered into the prison system

2. Gabi was adamant about her no talking on the phone during thunderstorms rule. I actually Googled it and there have been no reports of people being electrocuted through landlines during lightning strikes. Back in the late 90's there was really no way to find out if that was true unless Bill Nye had decided to do a show about it. So thank you Google. Bill Nye, you let me down man. 

3. This hot coworker is the same guy that called me baby girl and I subsequently fell in love with after 3 weeks. It didn't work out between us in the long run (week 4) because even though I knew how much he liked me, I don't think that he realize just how much he liked me. 

Monday, December 14, 2015

Stop Asking Me Why I'm Still Single

My father's side of the family is from the Caribbean and there are a lot of traditions, rules and strict codes of conduct we follow. Well, when I was a baby someone in my family forgot to invite an old family friend to my baptism. A serious no-no. This old family friend, who felt disrespected & snubbed, consequently decided to put a curse on me.* As a result, since the moment I turned 16 I've had a ghost following me around keeping guys from being interested in me.

At least that's what I tell people when they ask me why I'm single.

Honestly I don't even know what's an acceptable answer to that question. First of all it's rude as hell to ask someone why they're not dating, married or a swinger. It's basically asking somone to explain in detail what's wrong with them. Personally I think you should only ask someone why they are single if:

1. You are interested in them and plan on asking them out on a date

2. You know someone else that is interested in them and you're going to try and set them up on a date

Secondly Be a problem solver, not an instigator

If I always see you order a cheeseburger when we go out to eat, I'm not going to ask why you never order a steak. Maybe eating cheeseburgers remind you of a better time when things were fun and simple. Maybe you like the way the bun holds it down, keeping everything secure. Obviously you are not ready to move on to other cuts of meat just yet. You have your reasons, and we don't have to talk about them until you're ready.

Being the supportive friend that I am, I'm not going to ask you to leave your comfort zone. Just know that when you're ready to finally leave McDonald's and sample a real hunk of meat, you've got options. Next Friday night it'll be me and you in our go get em outfits with reservations at McCormick & Schmick's. I'm here for you girl. Appetizers on me.

Unless we're close friends I'm going to stay out of your love life. And let's be real, if we're close friends then I already know why you're single. You cray. I may ask you why you THINK you're single just to see how deluded you are but we both already know the answer, whether or not we're ready to say it out loud.

Perhaps I'm single because everyone I like:

Won't text back
Is too famous
Is too young
Isn't heterosexual

But truthfully I'm probably single because I travel a lot for work (no time to meet anyone), guys are idiots and I have trust issues.

It's not because I think I'm ugly, unlovable or because I have low self-esteem. On the contrary, I think I'm cute, funny, body proportional and I don't smell like cats. That's wifey material right there.

Recently I had a guy friend call me up out of the blue and confess that he's liked me for the last 5 years. He then asked me out on a proper date to grab drinks and go to Halloween party together, dressed as the cartoon characters Doug Funnie & Patti Mayonnaise. Well the day of the date comes around and I hear nothing back from this guy. He was a no-call no-show. I still went to the party and had a good time but was bummed nonetheless. About a week later I finally hear back from him through a GROUP TEXT asking if anyone of his 30 or so friends would like to go to a concert Friday night.

Halloween  Party bus 
Had an awesome time

If ghosting♧ me wasn't enough you included me in a group text? Talk about rubbing salt in an open wound. Hey dude, since we're trying our best to emotionally cripple people, the spare key to my apartment is under my doormat. While I'm at work why don't you come over and boil my pet bunny on the stove for good measure°.

Because of unfortunate experiences like the one above (and trust me I have more stories like this one) I'm pretty wary of guys who claim to be interested in me.

Even if you grabbed the nearest Poké ball, pointed at me and exclaimed, "I choose you," I'm probably still going to ask you if you need to see my State I.D. to make sure you've got the right person.

At this point I'd rather catch flights than catch feelings but despite all the crazy experiences I've had, I'm still an optimist. If years of watching Sailor Moon as a kid taught me anything, it's that love conquers all and bladdy blah blah. I've still got hope that my Tuxedo Mask is out there looking for me. And if not, then I've got a pact (ie. arranged marraige?) with a friend to marry each other if we haven't found anyone by the age of 35.

*This may be the plot to Sleeping Beauty
♧Disappearing or ignoring someone without explanation 
°I really do have a pet bunny

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Forever 21

Every year around the 3rd week of August, I would order my little brother to leave the living room, get on 3-way with my best friends and sit in front of the tv to watch my favorite pop stars walk the red carpet. For my friends and I the MTV Video Music Awards were like a final hurrah to the summer and a welcoming hug to the new school year.

I wonder what Gwen Stefani is going to wear this year?

I can't wait to see the N'sync-Britney Spears mashup performance!

OMG Fred Durst is so hot! 

It's all embarrassing but I'm least proud about thinking Fred Durst was cute

I rarely, if ever watch MTV anymore but decided, what the heck after seeing comments about Usher "looking good for his age" on my Facebook timeline. Not even joking.

I barely knew who half the people at the VMA's were. Lucy Hale? Little Mix? Rixton? Your guess is as good as mine. I mean, Miley Cyrus won video of the year so basically that tells you about how much the world has changed since 9/11. Personally I feel like if you:

1. Were born before the mid 80's
2. Weren't a teen parent
3. Don't do a lot of babysitting 

Then you should feel seriously ashamed if you know who any of these people are. Except Iggy Azalea, I think she's cool.

Watching Nicki Minaj bounce her bum on top of an invisible anaconda and seeing Ariana Grande wearing a high cut, bedazzled leotard and gogo boots that Beyonce probably vetoed during her Destiny's Child days was unsettling.

Surely I haven't turned into the old lady sitting on her porch in the white wicker rocking chair, telling kids about back in my day... but honestly humans between the ages of 11 and approximately 23 irk me. What is a Vine celebrity? (I still don't know what Vine is. The new Youtube?) Why are parents letting their 13 year olds wear shorts with their cheeks hanging out or teaching their 10 year-olds to call me ma'am? Their metabolism and innate ability to operate on less than 4 ours of sleep when not yet a quarter century old? The little bastards 

A young guy at my gym (24 years old) told me he went out last night with friends, partied til 5am and came to work at 6. I wanted to pop an Ambien, drink a warm a mug of tea and curl up in the bed with my heating blanket just thinking about it.

Maybe I feel this way because I'm turning 30 in a little over a month and consequently I'm having a self realization/mini crisis moment. I feel like its finally time to put some things on the shelf and only dust them off for story time when I have to entertain grand-kids or court mandated juvenile delinquent volunteers at the nursing home. Hey sonny, let me tell you about the New Year's Eve when I drunk-vomited in my friend's sink and feel asleep on his kitchen floor.

Getting older doesn't have to be a death sentence just means you have to make some adjustments.  I'll admit that on occasion I shop at Forever 21 and I still make bets on which side of the Oreo is going to get the cream when I untwist it, but I've stopped reading Cosmopolitan magazine cold turkey. When I was in middle school I used to secretly buy them and stack them in the back of my closet after pouring over the pages of self quizzes and made to order puca bead necklaces. I realized I couldn't read Cosmo anymore when I recently read an article entitled "how to know if you're compatible with a guy based on the Snap Chat photos he sends you."

Anyways there's nothing wrong with getting older. Even with my sometimes creaky knees, hangovers after 2 drinks and that time my back went out, old age is a blessing not bestowed on all of us and I'm grateful for it. Now #TurnDown.