Friday, December 27, 2013

What I Learned from The Best Man Holiday Movie

Normally, I reserve taking a trip to the movie theater for action films.  I just feel like I can get more bang for my buck to see/hear explosions on the big screen.  Comedies and dramas seem more appropriate for Netflix at home.

However, since I'm in a relationship now, those decisions aren't always mine.  So, when something comes out that she wants to see, then I make it my business to give her the same courtesy of going as she does for me.  This recently included the movie, "The Best Man Holiday."

It's a sequel to the 1999 movie, "The Best Man" which was about some dude who got married to a woman who cheated on him with his best friend.  Well, there was more to it than that, but I don't want to get into all of that.

Anyhoo, this movie has been rated only 5 or 6 stars out of 10 from most movie review websites.  I tend to disagree.  This movie had everything: singing, comedy, drama, tragedy, and even action.  

Because of the ratings, this movie will probably not win any major awards.  The actors, who were all on-point, will not be walking the red carpet with any hardware for their efforts either.  Mainly because most people prejudge this movie before even walking into the theater.  After all, it's a "black movie" to most of the critics.  That couldn't be further from the truth.  You could have substituted any race in this movie and it would have still been virtually the same.  

What I got most from the movie is that TBMH really taught some life lessons throughout those 123 minutes.  I can say that definitively because it hit really close to home in regards to one of the main plot lines.

* SPOILER ALERT * (skip to the Spoiler Alert ending if you plan on seeing this movie)

It hit close to home for me because it involved a man on the verge of starting the "cruise control" part of life who lost his wife to a slow death -- cancer.  Morris Chestnut's character, Lance, had to learn how draw strength from his wife's suffering.  She taught him how to love, forgive, and appreciate.  He did everything that she said because he knew that she was telling him "the right thing."  You tend to take things a lot more seriously coming from the mouth of someone who is dying.


The viewers of this movie will learn that, too.  At least I hope that they will.  Too often I see people who don't appreciate what they have in their family and friends.  They take people for granted with the utmost of confidence that they'll always be around.  They treat people poorly not thinking of how that person could be gone with the next breath.  They dismiss opportunities to spend time with someone because they assume there's always tomorrow.  They never miss a good thing until it's taken away from them.

That's not me.  Although there are some things I would do differently if I had a do-over with my mom and The Mrs. if they were still alive, I have no regrets.  I enjoyed them while they were here and never stopped showing my appreciation.  It doesn't mean that I didn't have lapses.  There were times I could have been a better son/husband.  But, I'm human.  Those things will happen.  I've learned from those lapses and it has made me a better son to my father and I'll be an even better husband when that time comes.

The main thing is that now that they're gone, I can look myself in the mirror and say with confidence that I showed them that I loved them both.  For those of you who have never lost a parent, child, close friend, etc., can you do the same?  

If someone in your household died tomorrow, can you honestly look in the mirror and say that "I gave them 100% of me?"  Will they take their last breath knowing that you love them?

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Want #Sex? There's An App for That!

People are trying to hook up faster and faster these days.  Sites like brag about how you can find people who are interested in sex with no dating mumbo-jumbo.  Skip the formalities and just say if you're down with the horizontal mambo or not.  Now there's a phone app that is actually supposed to be even more efficient.  It was an app created by a couple of guys whose focus was to empower women in their sexuality.  Um, okay.  It allows them to seek sex without the judgmental eye of society watching.

The app is called Pure and it has taken hooking up to the next level.  This app allows you to peruse photos until you find someone that you like.  It will search for members in your local area because if you're in Miami then you wouldn't want to waste your time connecting with someone that lives in Seattle.  So, after you find that person in your area, you'll have to wait and see if that person likes you.  If you're both attracted, then you can basically decide "your place or theirs" at that point.

Seems easy enough, right?  A few taps on your phone could lead to a night of this:

Or this...

Would you ever use an app for a one-night stand?

Friday, December 20, 2013

5 Blogs to Follow: @LadyT523, @VanityStrokes, @DirtyInPublic, @SingleDatingDiv @MarriageDr, Post #500

I wanted to do something special for my 500th post and I've decided to pay it forward.  I'm a firm believer in supporting what I like.  If I enjoy something, then I try to share it so that others may do the same.  Although I don't read blogs as much as I once did, I still take time to enjoy a select few.  I want to share some of the newer blogs that I read religiously because of their entertainment value and useful information:

The Tasha Mac Chronicles 

On top of being eye candy, Tasha chronicles her life as a single mother of four daughters.  She talks about how dating and home life for her is completely different from someone who may not have kids or may not be married.  Not only does she do a great job of "painting the picture" of her life, she also is a genius in regards to teaching life lessons.  She is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana, who because of Hurricane Katrina, now lives in Jackson, Mississippi.

For new readers, I would suggest that you check out these posts: "Can Football Help or Hurt My Relationship?," "Am I My Brother's Keeper," and "What My Daughters Don't Understand."

Stroking at Midnight

Twitter: @VanityStrokes

This Toronto author started in October and the blog world hasn't been the same since!  This site is steamier than your bathroom mirror after a morning shower.  Vanity takes some of her own personal experiences and shares them in a vivid and deliberate fashion.  She has a way with words that will paint a picture that any adult reader can appreciate.  Seductive blog posts like "What's Your Fantasy?" and "Caution: You Will Get Wet On This Ride" tells how it all started.  Give Vanity a try and enjoy your imaginative visuals that will raise your eyebrow on multiple occasions.
Twitter: @DirtyInPublic

Where do I start with this site?  I love what Dirty in Public has to offer.  Californian, Marrie Lobel, is the owner/operator of DiP and she always finds an intriguing relationship or sex topic to pique your interests!  She takes everyday conversation and presents it in a way that makes you think.  She does a great job of helping people understand either where they went wrong or how they can improve upon their relationships.  With posts like "Available for Sex: Leave the light on for me!"  or "The Other Woman: What she needs to understand!" which breaks down the #SideChickRevolution.  Marrie is as insightful as she is delightful.
Twitter: @SingleDatingDiv

This Canadian red hot really dives deep into the core of relationships.  Suzie takes a look at different relationship situations from all angles and offers a solution to those issues.  She also does a great job soliciting feedback from the readers which generates a lot of insightful comments.  If you have a question about your relationship, then send an anonymous letter to "Ask Single Dating Diva" to get honest options towards solutions.  You will also enjoy posts like "Dating a Work in Progress - Stay Away!" and "The 3 Date Rule Hook Up."
Twitter: @MarriageDr

He's the only guy on the list, but don't let that deter you.  Aaron Anderson is the real deal and probably the only certified one in the bunch.  He's a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and owner of The Marriage and Family Clinic in Denver, CO.  RelationshipRx always takes a positive approach to solving dilemmas which is what makes it so refreshing.  There are relationship resolution posts like "My Husband Wants Sex All the Time" to "She Never Wants Sex."  He also provides helpful tips to keep your marriage fresh with posts like "Six Naughty Ways to Spice up Your Sex Life."  It's the feel-good blog that everyone should have in their RSS feeder.

So, there you have it!  Five blogs that will educate and entertain you while I crank out my next 500 blog posts!

Do you have a blog of interest to share?  If so, feel free to add them in the comments below!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Do Other Languages Offend You?

(thinking to herself) "Oh, no she didn't wear that!"
Okay, so I'm sitting in an Asian restaurant last week.  A Japanese restaurant to be exact.  The waitress comes to my table and speaks very good English while getting my order.  I noticed about five minutes later that she and a co-worker were off in the corner having a good laugh.  They were looking towards a customer and giggling all while talking in their native language.

Were they making fun of the customer?

I haven't a clue and I can't say that it bothers me to know what they are saying.  I just assume that they're more comfortable in speaking their native tongue.  However, I do remember a story a former coworker told me once.

First of all, my former coworker is black.  I have to give you that background to help you understand the context of the story.  She was one of four other black women getting a pedicure at a local, Vietnamese nail salon when an older, black woman walked in and sat down next to her.  The older woman was wearing something resembling African tribal attire (really gaudy ensemble including a large hat).

After greeting the older woman (in the English language) and figuring out what services she needed, the Vietnamese lady working at the location proceeded to start the pedicure.  Another Vietnamese salon worker walked by, laughed, and hurled an insult in her Vietnamese tongue about the older woman's attire.  She assumed that since everyone in the salon was black that they wouldn't know what she was saying.

What she didn't know is that my former coworker lived in Vietnam for three years and is very fluent.  She told the salon workers (in Vietnamese) that they would do that lady's pedicure for free or she would tell the woman that they were insulting her.  Of course they were stunned (along with everyone else in the shop) that someone spoke the language and to make a long story short, they did do the older woman's pedicure for free.  The older woman never knew why she received the free pedicure, but she was appreciative on top of being confused.

A lot of English-speaking people are skeptical when we don't understand something.  We feel extremely disrespected to think that someone could be bad-mouthing us right in front of us.  A lot of times we assume the worst, but I think that story is an isolated incident.  With so many people being educated in foreign language, it's not wise to assume that someone doesn't understand what you're saying.

Do you get offended when people, who speak good English, speak their native tongue around you?

"Ay, que feo!"

Monday, December 9, 2013

In The Year 2100, Blacks Will Only Be Seen in Museums

I know that the title is unsettling.  I heard my father say that recently. He said that at the rate black people are destroying their communities, that 100 years from now we won't even exist.  Think about that for a second. That's a strong statement!

If you're not black, then you may feel uncomfortable agreeing with that thought or speaking on it. If you are black, then you should feel uncomfortable in knowing that although it may not be true, you can understand the concept.

Here in Jackson, MS, a 15 year old girl was shot outside of Wingfield High School after a fight. She died later at the hospital from a gun shot wound to the chest. Shortly after this tragedy occurred, videos surfaced showing multiple fights at that high school from this year and last year. At least eight videos ranging from classroom brawls to outside gatherings.

Kids fighting is nothing new.  It happened when I was in school, too.  I think that the difference is today is that it's glorified on an entirely new level in 2013.  Teachers no longer have control over classrooms due to the policies put in place that restricts them.  Parents have no control over kids at home because most of them are either single parents or too immature to be a parent.

So, if kids are steadily engaging in acts of violence and parents don't know how to guide them to behave like human beings, then why shouldn't my father feel the way that he does?

Nelson Mandela just passed away a few days ago.  He represented something we may never see again in any leader, regardless of color: restraint.  Mandela could have easily lashed out against white people for putting him in jail for almost 30 years.  But, he decided that it wasn't worth it.  He spent the remaining years of his life trying to install peace into society instead of the opposite.  Sometimes your worst enemy will learn to love you if you show compassion.

For every Mandela, there seem to be 10,000 non-Mandelas born each day.  Black people who just don't believe in leaving the world in a better place than how they found it.  My generation (70's babies) were the cause of that.  We were the generation that decided that we would allow our kids certain freedoms that our parents wouldn't allow us.  Now we have a generation of kids who only want what they want regardless of the end result.

It's that mentality that makes being violent feel like option number one instead of a last resort.  It makes taking care of your kids seem like a burden instead of a responsibility.  It makes dating the opposite sex seem like a game instead of an opportunity to find someone to share your life.

How can a race of people possibly survive against those odds?  Maybe my father was right.  Neither one of us will be here to verify in the year 2100, but maybe this blog post will serve as notice to those who will.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

The 2013 NuRenaissance 11th Annual #Art Showing & Gala w/ @NuRen_Artist

Come support the arts as Myron McGowan presents his 11th Annual NuRenaissance Art Showing & Gala! 

Not only will you get the opportunity to see some of M&M's newest (and some classic) artwork, but you'll also get treated to the stories of the inspiration behind them! There will also be other local artists presenting their pieces, spoken word performances, and more!

 Come out and support local talent and the arts and you may even see me walking around perusing the artwork!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

For Once, #NFL Sunday Was Meaningless #BAMAvsAUB

I sat on my couch as I usually do on Sundays, but it felt different this time.  There was something missing.  I watched Arizona v. Philadelphia, New England v. Houston, Chicago v. Minnesota, and a few other games with close scores in the 4th quarter.  But, I still felt as if something was missing.  The DirecTV NFL Sunday Ticket is way too expensive to not be satisfied, so what gives?  Why am I bored when watching my favorite sport of all-time?

Because Rivalry Week in college football ruined it for me.

It didn't ruin it in a bad way.  It actually was a good thing.  This weekend was the best weekend of college football that I've ever seen in my life.  So, after experiencing game-after-game of heated, long-standing, NCAA Football rivalries going down to the wire, I could only come down off of that high when NFL Sunday arrived.  The feeling of elation that I felt for some NCAA teams and depression that I felt for others could not be matched by the NFL.

Look at these scores from the games that I watched:

Duke over North Carolina, 27-25
* Mississippi State over Mississippi, 17-10, Overtime
Oregon over Oregon State, 36-35 
Georgia over Georgia, 41-34, Double Overtime 
* Ohio State over Michigan, 42-41
* Auburn over Alabama, 34-28

(*-came down to the last play of the game)

If you have a chance to catch the ending of any of these games, then treat yourself!  Even if you only watch the last five minutes of each one, then that will be enough to satisfy you.  And if you watch the 4th quarter of the Alabama / Auburn game, then you may see the most exciting 4th quarter in the history of football (pro or college).

Last weekend was the last full schedule of college football games for the season and it did not disappoint!

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