Friday, July 24, 2009

The "Hair" Blog

As many of you know, I am natural. Natural hair is awesome but it's work. I am learning what works for my hair and what ruins it. Right now I am trying to figure out how to define my curls. I have small curls, like the size of coffee stirrers that you get from Starbucks. And it's not working out. Today I decided to clarify my hair via baking soda. I like to mix two teaspoons of baking soda with half a cup of tresemme moisture rich and half a cup of water. This usually last about 2 or 3 washes, so I store it in a plastic container. This is the first time I did this in a long time. My hair is now smelling like a relaxer. My hair feels super clean and believe me, if you ever wash with baking soda, you will be shocked at how dirty hair gets. I am so mad. I even put cantu shea butter on it to make it smell better and for moisture. I smell like a perm with cocoa butter. It's sad. But anyway for those who didn't see it, the afro (please note: this is a camera phone pic because my camera is not compatible with Vista. that's so not awesome):

It's not too bad. But as you see, it's a cottony bush. My hair is very soft and that's what I love most about it. and it's long. My hair stretched is to my collar bone. I am trying to grow it to reach my bra when it's stretched.
Anyway in my quest to get awesome natural hair, I took this quiz on total beauty: What's the best Shampoo/Conditioner for your hair?

My results:

1. Aveda Dry Remedy Moisturizing Shampoo: $24, sulfate free, so maybe I will try it
2. Mixed Chicks Deep Conditioner: $20 I believe, but I have heard bad things about the deep conditioner. I hear the leave in is great. However it works best on "mixed" hair I hear. I am no one's mixed. Or rather, I don't have "mixed" hair.
3. Neutrogena Triple Moisture Daily Deep Conditioner: $6, it's bought

So okay I will buy all three of these items in the next week and try it out. I am hesitant to spend $50 on hair products, especially looking in my closest. I have over 10 sets of shampoo and conditioner and other various hair products. The floor in my bathroom is covered in hair products from ORS to Carol's Daughter to Ojon. But it seems my problem is moisture. So I will try it and see if this helps. A month or so from now I will review them all on here to see how well it works out for me. Take the quiz (it's clickable) and see what you get. My best friend got a interesting variety. I think the quiz can't tell the difference between "relaxed" and "colored/dyed" hair. But let me know.

Monday, July 13, 2009

In The Ghetto...

Who will rep my people?

I grew up poor.

My notebooks were filled with my wishes and desires. As soon as I learned how to write, I wrote. A diary, a journal, a poem, a novel, a play. My mom was a "single" mother in the sense that my step father was addicted to drugs when he came back from being overseas. There were days I would come home and there would be nothing in the house. He would never steal my stuff, or my sister's stuff. He had some morals. He was a good man, the drugs just took his mind.

My father is a good man. His problem was alcohol. His problem is still alcohol. but he loved me and he tried.

But we were *poor*. My mother opted to spend the majority of her paycheck so that we had a decent house to live in. But that's all we had was that house. So I'd write stories and poems, filled with my wishes and desires. I would describe in great detail the beautiful clothes, the dope hair styles, the car I would have if I were rich. My best friend read my stories once and said I was a good writer. Then she says "You always describe dope ass outfits in your stories, why don't you dress like that?"

At 13 how do you explain to your best friend that those three pair of jeans "you always wearing" are the ONLY jeans you have. That those one pair of Nikes that your grandma bought are the only shoes. That you read SO MUCH because books were the only thing you could afford. A book was $4 and a video game was $50. I was on free lunch my whole time in school. I'd come home to an empty refrigerator, no lights, no water at times...and we'd go to my grandma's house to eat and bathe. My grandmother told me last year "I don't know how you survived that life Stephanie, I would have died." And I want to cry, because all I could do was survive.

That's why I can't leave. I don't live in the best place in Baltimore. I hear gunshots at night, I hear people screaming, children cursing, mice and ants. I always say the Lord found favor in me, I lucked up and got a full scholarship to college. That was the ONLY way I was going to college. I remember getting accepted to Howard and crying because I couldn't afford the tuition and they offered me a partial scholarship but I still couldn't afford it. When I graduated from high school, I had been working since I was 13 years old and had less than $200 in the bank. We used the money to bury a loved one who died.

And sometimes at night, I sit in my house and cry. No one knows my struggle and it's overwhelming at times. Especially when I am at work and hear how people think about the "ghetto" or "minorities". We are not animals. We are people. Broken people.

But I love nothing more than to see the little girls across the street "keep smiling and shining". This is where I belong I feel at times. No matter how hard it is.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Hypnotized: The Poem (remix version)

This is a poem I wrote last year sometime. A few people loved it, some thought it was gay and sappy. As I reread it (as I do with everything I write), I found myself dislike all the pop references I made in it. I felt like I tried to hard to make it like spoken word. I don't do spoken word, I write. I don't want my poems to read like I should be on a stage at a coffee shop snapping my fingers. That's not me. It doesn't feel classic, so I re-did it. I have about 5 other poems that I really like in the stash box. At my grandmother's house, I have a whole book full. My novel is half done. I am not sure on how to end it, that is still my hold up. But I smile as I read the chapters, so it must be decent. The novel is very urban, and I tried to limit my use of the "n" word but I always fall back into my southside Richmond ways. In any form style.

Hypnotized (the remix)

He hypnotized me.
he intrigues me
he makes me feel good!
Eyes are the windows to the soul and his pierce through to mine
I can't imagine never meeting him, never knowing who he is
I tried to avoid him, but something always reconnects us
It's not about love, it's not about sex
There is a connection
At least that's what he said
He said he knew me from another life when we met
"We must have been married, we must have had kids
We were in love then"
Why can't we be in love now?
I laughed but I felt it too
Is it possible we were together in another life?
I don't feen for his body,
I want his mind
I want him to bless me with all he knows
I want us to build and grow together and do what we were put on this Earth to do
"We are here for a reason" he says
I say he is a King, his presence is beyond overwhelming
He said that I am star, that when I am around I shine so bright, that's all he sees
And it's not about sex, but I give him MY sex
My lips touch his and my eyes beg for him.
Our hearts beat in sync as we reach the height of passion only known by few others
I don't cry out, but I pull him in.
And I hold him tight, I will never let this man go.
Because he intrigues me
He hypnotized me.

*sidenote: This shit is copywritten under my pen name so I dare a mofo to steal this shit.*

Monday, July 6, 2009

Underground Hip Hop: General Steele

General Steele is one half of one of the greatest, or should I say REALEST, underground hip hop groups, Smif N Wessun. I don't even have to tell you how I feel about Smif N Wessun. If you read my "Love of My Life" blog then you know I have been a fan since I was 14 years old. Ever since I saw "Wreckonize".

In any event, the General is doing his own thing and has a new cd called "Welcome to Bucktown." The cd dropped May 5, and I think it embodies the grittiness of underground hip hop mixed with Steele's classic flow and hard hitting beats that make you want to blast this in your whip on a hot summer day. That's the best I can explain it.

anyway, music video "WELCOME"

General Steele on Twitter
Bucktown USA

Oh yeah, you can live chat with General Steele and Buckshot (almost) every Friday from 12-2 (or whenever they decide to log on...) It's always interesting.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

What is the point of boyfriends/girlfriends?

Sidenote: This is an extension of my post *over there* but I know a majority of my readers don't visit that site, so I will bring it over here and add a little to it.

I have been thinking about this for a long time. I honestly don't see the point of people "committed" if they aren't getting married in the future. I don't see why a person (male or female) should say "hey you are the only one until the perfect one comes around..." It's crazy. If I am dating a guy and I don't think he's the one, or vice versa, then I don't care if I am the only one or not. I'd rather do me, and let him do him and we can do us when we are together. Let's enjoy our time together, and as long as we respect each other, it's all good.

I think monogamy is a wonderful thing...however, there are people who decide to be committed to some loser for the sake of raw sex or comfort. Many people hate to be alone and feel safe being in a committed relationship. I am not knocking that. It's just not for me.

If I meet you and I am feeling you, and you feeling me, then we can do this. Some may call this "casual" dating. And most people would say "why would you want to sleep around?"

okay hold and sex are two different things. I love going out with different people. I like having options. I like dating. When it comes to sex, I am picky. I don't have sex with every guy I am dating. Sex is a sacred and wonderful event. I am all about free love, I think men and women should sleep with who they want as long as they are safe about it.

In my lifetime of dating (I guess the past, 16 years?) I have had only 4 boyfriends. All of whom I thought I would marry one day. Each man I was with for at least 2 years, and for whatever reason it didn't work out. If I dated a man and asked if he would have want to get married and he said no, then he would never become my boyfriend. Now there was a guy in college I met and he laid everything out there, and said what he did and didn't want. And we ended up "dating" for 6 years. We never had a problem or an issue. No arguments, no problems. When we were together, it was wonderful. When we were apart, I went on with my life and he did his. There was no stress. That's how things should be.

Dating for years is not my cup of tea unless it's leading to a ring on my finger. If that is not your intent, I am fine with that. Just be honest. We can have fun, but I don't need to be your "girlfriend", I am perfectly content just being your "friend".

or maybe I am waiting on some ole' Keri Hilson "Knocks You Down" type action?