I want to be Your Friend

o-OLDER-COUPLE-facebook

“I want to be the friend you fall hopelessly in love with. The one you take into your arms and into your bed and into the private world you keep trapped in your head. I want to be that kind of friend. The one who will memorize the things you say as well as the shape of your lips when you say them. I want to know every curve, every freckle, every shiver of your body. I want to know where to touch you, I want to know how to touch you. I want to know how to convince you to design a smile just for me. Yes, I do want to be your friend. I want to be your best friend in the entire world.” ––Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi

Notebook Craze

150122_0001
A sample of the notebook craze

I appreciate technology really; I’m just as addicted as you are. But when I say notebook craze, I’m not talking about the computer, I’m talking about actual notebooks. You know, those pieces of paper held together by glue and metal rings, yea, those. I want to take the time to thank the founders of Dollar Tree, Dollar General, and Family Dollar for all the hard work you put into stocking your shelves with these babies. The $1 store itself has become a treasure of fresh inspiration for me, a living blueprint for whatever it is my mind feels like building up. Every new notebook is an opportunity to create something new. If I can spare it (which I somehow always can), I have to purchase a new notebook. Maybe it’s a small journal of a thing. Maybe it’s a 180 page 5 subject wide rule or 100 page composition book who knows. Perhaps I’ll get the same one as last time in a different color. I am after all looking to brighten things up a bit around here. How many? Two? Three? Four? “No, that’s obsessive, one step at a time EC. Just pick one you really like.”  One? “Yes, one. And don’t forget the dish washing liquid you actually came to get but somehow got distracted by the school supply aisle.” Oh yea, that.

Spiral Notebooks

But this is really only the beginning. I still have to take the notebook home, and that’s when the fun really starts! I still have to decide what kind of notebook this is. What will I carve on the front cover to illustrate this new beauty to the world? What kind of purpose will this new storage place hold for my thoughts? Maybe I’ll fill it with random fragments of sentences, little immature and underdeveloped thoughts. A preliminary of something great but that looks right now like a foreign language. Maybe I’ll jot down a scripture or two, or elaborate on full sentences and transform them into a poem or two, a short story or an entire manuscript. Or this could just be the “just in case” notebook. You know, the little notebook you carry around in your purse (or suitcase/backpack for the men) just in case something good happens.(Please tell me you have a just in case notebook). But then I have to get into the notebook, and let’s not even talk about the intoxicating aroma of fresh paper; the undiluted blank state of blue and red lines. So pure and inviting, let me just write my name real quick. There, now that’s art.

These are the kinds of thoughts that run through my head all because of notebooks. A simple mission turned writer’s paradise. Is it an addiction? You can call it what you want. I mean, technically I don’t really need another notebook, BUT it will soon be a question of how I ever lived without it. So I guess I need another one because I will eventually need it. Makes sense? No? Good. I still got it. 🙂

Black History Fun Facts: Hair Story

Today’s Post is part of a weekly series on The PBS Blog that will take place from now on through February: Black History Fun Facts. During this series, I will post some fun facts about a portion of African American History, ranging from Archaeological, Cultural, Biblical, and Historical facts every Friday.

PublicationbhffI will also extend this open invitation to anyone who would like to take part in Black History Fun Facts. All you have to do is use the #BHFF badge in your post, tag Black History Fun Facts, and pingback. And of course, make sure your post is about something, well….Black.

My pick for today’s BHFF is Hair Story: Untangling the roots of Black Hair in America:

hair-storyHair style and texture has been just as life changing and connected to the Black experience as racism and discrimination. Every movement in the history of the so-called African American people has had its own hairstyle. From the Afros of the 60’s & 70’s to the Jehri Curl of the 80’s, you can guarantee to spark conversation whenever black hair is involved.

revhair-story-coverIn Hair Story, authors Ayana D. Byrd, and Lori L. Thraps takes us through a chronological timeline of how Black hair has changed over the years. From Africa to present-day America, Hair Story is not just an exciting read but a great source of research. I enjoyed the blast from the past the ladies took us on and the pictures and hair recipes that complimented the document well. Every stage and every situation presented a physical manifestation of that era in the form of hair for Black people. While I do not agree with every account mentioned, Hair Story is definitely a book to have in your home library (you do have a library…right??).

Good Hair

51ixN5aBtgL

In 2009 Chris Rock reanimated the Hair debate in his comedy release Good Hair. Premiering at the Sundance Film Festival on January 18, 2009, Good Hair was released to select theaters in the United States by Roadside Attractions. According to Rock, he was inspired to make the movie after his then 3-year-old daughter Lola asked him, “Daddy, how come I don’t have good hair?” She has curly, wiry hair typical of many people of African descent. He realized she had already absorbed the perception among some blacks that curly hair was not “good”. As a result, Rock delves into the $9 billion hair industry, and visits such places as beauty salons, barbershops, and hair styling conventions to explore popular approaches to styling. He visits scientific laboratories to learn the science behind chemical relaxers that straighten hair. It is from this documentary that I went forward to do my own research on Hair. Interestingly enough, it is the same year I went natural.

The only thing this film lost cool points for in my book is that there were so many valid points that seemed to have to be hidden under the concept of comedy in order to have it mentioned on air. It appeared to me, that if given the chance, Rock could have explored more deeply the state of Black Hair. It is for this reason that I went in depth on my very own research in order to discover the missing pieces. However, I’m not throwing any stones because what Chris Rock and HBO produced was sufficient enough to jump start anyone’s thirst for understanding of Black Hair and it is a movie worth having in your collection.

And who can’t forget Tyra Banks show on Good Hair?

hqdefaultAlso inspired by Chris Rock, Tyra launched a show in May of 2009 that spoke about African American women’s hair. It featured a variety of women (some with permed hair some with natural hair) who engaged in hot debate over what is considered good hair and bad hair. Children of the women also got involved, turning it into an emotional roller coaster of history and identity.

For my natural hair, I use Amaziyah Loc Products:

1982339_291465157689630_658672872_n

And so do most of your favorite artist and sports players:

For me locs are much more than just a fad. They represent our culture.  We have worn our hair in these styles for thousands of years. Amaziyah Locs- pronounced (Ah-ma-zi-yah) is a Hebrew name that means “Made Strong by Yah.” I knew that the meaning was perfect for a natural hair care company specializing in Locs. It immediately reminded me of the story of Samson and Delilah. Samson was granted super natural strength by Yah in order to wage war against his enemies, such as destroying an entire army with only the jawbone of a donkey! However, Samson had a weakness: his hair, and without it he was powerless. When they were cut by Delilah, he lost all of his strength. Makes you wonder why there is a barber shop on every corner in predominantly “African-American” communities.

My favorite is the Loc N Butter but Amaziyah’s got plenty of variety to go around. Get the Loc N Twist, Loc N Oil or Loc in Butter:

fbed20_a7a38be902dcbff69630f25febdefc03

Why not close out with a little music? Here’s India Arie, I am Not My Hair: