Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Be Happy

I want to thank my blog sister Luv who awarded me with this Happy 101 Award.  She actually awarded me weeks ago but I neglected to award myself. It's been a while since I've won an award so I'm happy. Thanks Luv, you're the best girlie!

What I've come to know is that everybody wants to be happy, even though we complain enough and cry enough... at the end of the day, we all want to breathe a breath of happiness. We buy clothes, perfume and all sorts of things to fulfill our happiness.  Some of us eat when we are happy and then some of us eat when we are unhappy... but that's another post.  True happiness has no price tag.  There's no road map and there's no location to find it.  In fact true happiness cannot be pursued outwardly but inwardly. 

Happiness can be fleeting.  With a simple word said or a word gone unsaid, happiness can appear and disappear with the swiftness... but then again that could just be the changing of moods and not happiness at all.

Being happy is a state of mind.  You choose happiness.  Just as you can choose to be unhappy.  It's your feeling, it's your emotion, feel free to engage or disengage. As for me I choose happiness.  In most of my experiences, no matter the test, I choose the positive end.  I will smile myself into peace. I can and I will encourage myself, most times I fake it until I make it... but no matter how long it takes, I make happiness happen.

So in order to complete this award acceptance, I must fill in my happy list... This list is really special because whenever I'm down, it's these very things that always lift my spirits.

What Makes Me Happy:

10. Good music...
Give me some Marvin, some Anita, Aretha, Musiq, Amel, Erykah, Jill and some other artists and I cannot forget gospel music and I need no cake, no wine and umm hmmm no man. I will definitely be happy.
9. A clean bill of health...
Having gone through a health scare in 2009 and now feeling sluggish and finding out that my thyroid is underacting (I make up and misuse words a lot y'all!)... a clean bill of health is something to rejoice and dance about.
8. Friends...
Jesus had his Peter, James and John and I have my Lili, CB and DC... I love my sister friends and I'd love a brother friend too if I had one.  Oh I have lots of people who claim me as a best friend but my 3 hold me down.
7. Nature...
Sit me down in some green, lush scenic place where I can inhale and exhale and be.
6. A good pursuit...
I am absolutely overjoyed by being the chasee, the pursued, the one who is desired and sought after. Nothing thrills me more than being on the receiving end of one's pursuit, and then once the pursuit is over, I shall bless them with all of my goodness.
5. Good chocolate cake...
The other day at work they brought out cake. Red velvet, chocolate and yellow cake. I tasted them all and let me tell you... every single slice of cake was nasty. I was very unhappy.  It doesn't pay to be a foodie unless you quickly toss out plates of cake that no one should have baked nor bought. So with that, I choose wisely and I choose good quality choc-o-la-te cake!
4. Pampering...
I love a good massage, manicure, pedicure and facial... which is why I usually give them to myself because pampering is a gift. It's more than a job, if that's what you've been hired to do, it's a talent. So if I find a good pamperer, they've got a customer in me, but if not, I can do my own and be happy.
3. Wine...
A sweet glass of red or white vino drives me over into Happy Lane.
2. Good literature...
There's nothing like a good book or a dynamic work of poetry. If I am upset or bothered by something, if I pick up a good book, the emotions suddenly dissolve.
1. Rainbows... 
I've had the pleasure of seeing quite a few rainbows in my life and I love them. They are beautiful and whenever I see them, I always feel that no matter what is going on in my life, everything is going to be ok.

To conclude, I can't help but think about and venture to youtube for Mary J. Blige's "Be Happy"... Life is too short to be tryin' to play some games...

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


I remember coming home from school.  It was probably 1990, maybe 1991 so I was in high school.  As I turned onto my block, I noticed that mid-way to my building, there was a crowd outside.  I wasn't afraid of a crowd of youth then so I approached.

On my block... my block?... there was Guru.  The rap half of rap duo Gangstarr.  He was surrounded by his entourage and every speaker in everyone's home on the block was put to every window and in synchrony they all blasted "Words I Manifest"... or at least that's what it seemed like to me.

I have no idea why Guru was on my block.  He wasn't even from the Bronx.  Anyone could tell from his rhymes that he was clearly from Baaahston.  As a successful rapper, he could have chilled anywhere, my block is nothing special so clearly he must have known someone.  As delighted as I was to see him, I had to head home.  If I called my mother a minute after 3:35, she'd go crazy on me. I could have tried to sneak back out, hang out with the entire block and Guru, but I opted not to.  Just seeing him, gazing at him (stalker-like) in passing, and having that moment engraved in my memory was enough.  I called every friend I had and my boyfriend and told them who I just saw.  You know they ain't believe me.

This mellow voiced maestro has a distinctive sound.... was essential to hip-hop... while everyone left the jazz sampling in the 90s, he continued creating 4 volumes of Guru's Jazzmatazz.  I don't listen to hip-hop as I used to and we all know that the time and quality that was once poured into the genre is presently lacking.  Just take a look at Guru's lyrics from "Manifest"...

I suggest you take a breath for the words I manifest
they will scold you and mold you, while I impress upon
you the fact that, I use my tact at
rhymin for climbin, and chill while I attract that
girl you're with, I got a sincere quality
I give her all of me, cause you're too small to be
tryin to riff, so let me uplift and shift my gift
Let's go to the fullest capacity
I got tenacity, because I have to be
The brother who must live and give with much insight
Foresight to ignite, excite and delight
And you might gain from it, or feel pain from it
Because I'm ultimate, and I'm about to let off
Knowledge is wisdom, understanding
Truth's the proof, so won't you throw a hand
in the air, put up a peace sign and be fine
If so we're feeling good we should we could we would
Stop, think for a moment OK?
And then sway while I convey that we must do away
with all the stress and the strife, so god bless your life
Use kindness, and never blindness
And you will find that this perspective is best, check it out
These are the words that I manifest, I manifest

On Monday, April 19, 2010, Keith Guru Elam transitioned from this life. He is, was and will always continue to be certified...

Thursday, April 8, 2010

brevity of life

i spoke to my love this morning and i didn't hear what i wanted to hear. i haven't held him or smelled his scent since december '09 and the distance has been weighing on me.  i'm thinking in my head and out loud that another month is passing and i'm not seeing you.  i know you miss me and i miss you dearly but we need to make something happen.  every other day i'm yelling and angry my needs aren't met and he's apologizing, sweet talking and making promises. empty.

shortly after the phone call ended, i received a text from one of my sisters from church.  the death angel has visited my fellowship and the family of one of our esteemed members.  we all knew he was transitioning.  he has been battling cancer for the past 18 months and the doctors sent him home on sunday night with painkillers and hopeful wishes.  today i received a text i wasn't prepared for, a text that makes all of my nonsense suddenly ridiculous. while i argue with my love and long to see him, hold him, i am grateful that i heard his voice this morning and i still have him in my life while my big sister in the faith is saying her final goodbyes to her soulmate.  the pain i have in my heart is now for her and her family.

upon leaving the restroom where i cried myself into a full-blown headache, i made another vow to live life to the fullest.  oh i make this vow daily! vowing to treat e'rybody right, love like i never been hurt, give until it feels good but i find that when i shut off my lights and crawl under the covers at night, i've yet to hit the easy button or signed off as a job complete.  i've still got work to do.

life is short.  we all know that.  my older faith brother was in his late 50s and i hope that before he breathed his final exhale he rectified all of the times he forgot to appreciate, failed to make amends and didn't say i love you.

my love has been the balm needed to make it through my season.  he's the one who tucks me in at night and who calls me early in the morning.  he's the one who makes sure i make it in to work on time and who checks up on me to see if my day is good.  he's the one who hears me sniffles and sends me money for a space heater because it's cold at my workplace.  he's the one who asks me, everyday, "did you write today?" and encourages me to do so because he knows that writing is my outlet. he's the one i prayed for, the one that's needed, the one that right now occupies my heart space, the one i love.  i am grateful for him.  truly i am.

RIP to "Earl the Pearl"... I already miss him dearly and because of him, today, I am reminded of what matters most.