The Day I Looked A Mess...And Didn't Know It!

Many moons ago I had a male best friend.  He was my +1 to everything and I, his.  Everyone who met us thought we would make a great couple.  There was just one problem:  he and I were just not into each other.  He was like a brother from another mother...and father.  As the days turn into years since we haven't had any interactions, the "missing my friend" feelings don't give way.  There are just some heartaches and pains that you just don't get over. You just learn to live with it - redefine your new normal and try to adjust as best as you can.  That's where I am.


The Olive Garden "Never-Ending-Pasta-Bowl" commercial was just on my television.  Like with so many other things, I immediately thought of the him.  This particular time, the infamous outfit I wore when I took him to the Olive Garden to celebrate his 25th birthday.  About a year later, when it was time for his new birthday dinner, we laughed about my horrendous outfit and why he failed to let me in on looking a damn mess.  Hindsight is motherfu**er.

Jennifer Lopez was a huge sensation around the time I wore this horrendous outfit. Somewhere in my head I got the fashion-game phucked up.  I normally don't buy into fashion trends because of two reasons:  I don't have the svelte figure that you need to sometimes wear trendy clothes and I've always just loved classic lines and classic colors.  Some of my ways have carried over.

My mother has her say about a lot of the things that I buy (I'm sorta a shopaholic), but when it comes to shoes...she understands.  She always tells me the stories about the trips to Buster Browns and Stride Rite when I was a little girl.  Starting around 3 years old, we would go in the stores and I would always have to leave with three or four pairs of shoes.  While, I was never a child that threw temper-tantrums or pouted often, when shoes were involved I became another person. 

But I digress...

This is how I looked in my head; but that's not how it turned out.
I should have known my outfit was over the top and ridiculous when I walked outside to get in his car and he said, "Jenny from the Block."  I thought it was a damn compliment.  See this is how you know you are in deep denial - when a man who never makes any comments about what you have on suddenly does and it's not exactly clear as to what he is saying.  But, you couldn't tell me nothing.  I imagine that's how most people are when they think they are doing it BIG.  I had on a pair of white cargo pants that tied at the bottom, black "Manolo Blahnik-Timberland-like" boots, a blank tank top, and "Kangol-like" cargo hat with a ponytail resting to the side.  My make up was still fly - opting for warm classic tones - Orb eyeshadow, Phloof highlight, and C-Thru Lipglass.  I rolled up in Olive Garden, on Rt. 22 in Union, thinking, "This dude should be proud to be seen with me, good as I got myself looking up in here." *smiles* I'm sure he was thinking, "I'm so glad I'm not with this chick and if someone asks I can say, 'this is my best friend and she's treating me to dinner for my birthday."  Looking back, I don't even blame him.  Hell, I wish I wasn't in that restaurant with me.  I'm just grateful that we did not take a picture that night.

Now my question to my 22-year-old-self is, "The boots and the Kangol hat though?"  It might have been a decent outfit had I not done overkill:  no hat with a side ponytail or even a bun and some simple black peep toe shoes.  I learned a valuable lesson about fashion trends and overkill a year from that day... stay classic and stay away from trends.  You ARE NOT that girl that can pull of trends.

So for those of you that know me and wonder why all of my designer purses are black or most of my shoes are classic colors and not over the top, or why I only shop in specific stores, and why I don't wear a lot of accessories, I learned from experience and I'm applying it to my life.  I don't ever want to look a hot mess again...and NOT BE AWARE!

Because knowing is only half the battle....



I could not have been more than 8 years old the first time I saw Sparkle.  I remember the entire scene.  It was winter time, me and my cousin, Danielle, were not permitted to go outside.  My mom was cooking in the kitchen and my Aunt Michelle (Danielle's Mom) was in the living room braiding Kimberly's (Danielle's little sisters) hair with us.  Aunt Mickey was flipping through channels when she stopped at Sparkle.  Because the movie looked like a "classic" Danielle and I protested, "Let's watch cartoons."  Aunt Mickey not interested went on braiding Kim's hair.

I think because the movie begins with a church scene (and we were devout church attendees back then), we quieted down and watched the movie. 


Danielle and I were hooked.  Like, seriously hooked.  Eventually, they bought us the VHS tape.  And every weekend Danielle and I would watch Sparkle.  We took turns each weekend of who would be Sparkle and who would be Sister.  I don't think we ever even took the time to remember the other sisters name.  As time went on, we built up our stage presence living room scene.  We eventually got long gloves and faux jewelry for the music scenes. We knew the words to each song word for word, chord for chord. We knew all the choreography - those hand movements were seriously underestimated.  I would hate the weekends that I'd have to be Sister...because my songs would end at a piece of "Giving Up is Hard to Do" just before the ambulance sirens blared and Danielle would chime in with "Precious Lord" as she played beloved Sparkle.

We had lots of haters/supporters (can't really tell who is who when you're on the verge of a huge success) back then because our family would always talk about us.  They seemed to enjoy it.  But you know you can't tell a hater from a supporter when you're young and doing the damn thing. Nah mean?!
 If you're thinking that we can sing or that we have any kind of tone, then you would be absolutely WRONG!  But I digress because that has NOTHING to do with NOTHING. *smiles*

For "Look Into Your Heart", the one who played Sister that weekend would do Stix's verses. I lived for the weekends that it was my turn to be Sparkle: I'd wear a red shirt so I could be thoroughly prepared for my scene at Carnegie Hall at the end of the movie.

We probably did this entire scene weekend after weekend until we were about 10 years old.  Yes, we rode that play-scene for a long time. Well at least until we discovered Another Bad Creation.  This is why the remake means so much to me.  The idea of it takes me back to a place when my cousin and I were so close.  We had a very amazing relationship for most of our life - our experiences in this life are quite similar and we have always been able to truly empathize with eachother, even as children. 

Yesterday, my cousin Danielle reached out to me--I haven't spoken to her since April--and said, "You know we have to go see this movie together; for old times sake."

And you know what, I could not even imagine seeing it with anyone else.  I believe she and I are the only ones who understands how much we loved Irene Cara, Lonette McKee, Phillip Michael Thomas, and company in the original.

I'm looking forward to seeing the remake (and possibly a remake of our relationship).  Of all the people in this world, don't nobody know me the way she does! Nobody!


Rest In Peace, Common Sense

(My best friend's mother sent me this email on a forward)!

An Obituary printed in the London Times

Interesting and sadly rather true.

Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend,

Common Sense , who has been with us for many years.

No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape.

He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as:

- Knowing when to come in out of the rain;
- Why the early bird gets the worm;
- Life isn't always fair;
- and maybe it was my fault.

Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don't spend more than you can earn) and reliable strategies (adults, not children, are in charge).

His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well-intentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place.

Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition...

Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children.

It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer sun lotion or an aspirin to a student; but could not inform parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.

Common Sense lost the will to live as the churches became businesses; and criminals received better treatment than their victims.

Common Sense took a beating when you couldn't defend yourself from a burglar in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault.

Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.

Common Sense was preceded in death, by his parents, Truth and Trust, by his wife, Discretion, by his daughter, Responsibility, and by his son, Reason.

He is survived by his 4 stepbrothers;
I Know My Rights
I Want It Now
Someone Else Is To Blame
I'm A Victim

Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone.. If you still remember him, pass this on.