Thursday, December 30, 2010

And The Winner Is...................

I know most blogs and/or television networks usually compile a "Best & Worst of (insert the year)" list honoring the highs and lows that occurred within the past several months. On the same token, I would like to highlight some of the questionable folks that graced us with their presence this year.

Jumpoff of the Year: Tiger Woods' mistress(es)

This year it seemed that everyone and their mama had done the unmentionable with Tiger Woods when the now infamous scandal first surfaced. Hell, if I weren't black, I would have thought I had an affair with Tiger Woods too. Since the initial spectacle, I haven't heard much regarding any other indiscretions from America's kinkiest golfer. Here's hoping that Tiger behaves himself in 2011.

Attention Whore of the Year: Raz-B/Kat Stacks

This one is a tie, simply because both o
f these wannabe celebs have been equally annoying this past year. They seemed to be in competition to see who could release the most Youtube and World Star Hip Hop videos "exposing" other pseudo-celebs, and both were known for being completely reckless with their tweets. However, since Kat Stacks has been deported (I think) we may not be hearing much from her in the future.....unless Venezuela has World Star Hip Hop. As for Raz-B....le sigh. In true attention whore fashion, he decided to close the year out with a bang by instigating Twitter beef with Chris Brown just yesterday. (And C.Breezy took the bait like a toddler snatching a handful of candy. But that's another post.)

Phonetically-Challenged Celeb of the Year: Waka Flocka Flame

Everyone's favorite dummy hood rapper Waka Flocka made lovers of the English language hang their heads in shame when he appeared on BET's 106th & Park, and could barely articulate complete sentences when being interviewed about his thoughts on voting and education. He gave us unforgettable quotes like "Voting cool" and shared his aspirations of going to college and majoring in Geometry. Sadly, I don't believe this is the last we will be hearing from Waka, as his hood-tastic music can still be heard on a radio station near you. God help us all.

Comeback of the Year: Chris Brown

I'm hesitant to even speak on this category, because Chris Brown's recent e-beef with Raz-B has me annoyed, but I actually think 2010 was a decent year for him, in spite of his immature Twitter outbursts. He re-captured the hearts of America by snot-slinging and hyperventilating mid-performance at the BET Awards and released a couple dope mixtapes. Not to mention the Grammy nomination for "Deuces," which is one of my favorite songs of 2010. I'll try to be optimistic and keep my fingers crossed that C.Breezy will cut down on the Internet thug nonsense, and focus more on his music in the upcoming year.

15 Minute Fame-Stretcher of the Year: Antoine Dodson

Welp, there's not a whole lot to say about this. I already gave my opinion on Antoine's increasingly desperate attempts to extend the hype that was created due to his "Bed Intruder" fame. I respect the fact that he managed to turn a tragedy into a profit......but enough is enough. It's time for Mr. Dodson to use that "Bed Intruder" money to start a business, and get the hell out of the limelight.

Clown of the Year: Soulja Boy

This could have gone to a few different celebs, but Soulja Boy gets the honor of being presented with such a prestigious award this year. After all, who else can say that they were caught on tape with hip-hop's most toxic groupie (i.e., Attention Whore of the Year winner Kat Stacks), accused of being a coke head by that groupie, then confessed on radio that they love that same groupie? I can't think of anything more clownish. Well, I can, but that's pretty high in the rankings of clownishness. Add the Twitter beef with Fabolous (what is it with these young male celebs?), garish displays of jewels and money, and shallow but catchy hip-pop music, and voila. 2010, aka the Year of the Clown for Soulja Boy. I have a feeling this may be a reoccurring theme for him though. o_O

Monday, December 27, 2010

2010 & Beyond.

Last year around this time, I did a New Years post listing goals I had lined up for 2010 and some things I had accomplished the year before. Looking back at old shit is so funny, because the end of 2010 is upon us, and I realize that I accomplished about.....5 of the goals on my list. Probably more like 4.5, but I'm trying to make myself feel better. I'll leave it up to you guys to guess which goals were achieved.

Anywho, I don't really feel like making a "list" of things that I want to accomplish for 2011. I have some things that I want to do of course, but I almost think that making a list puts me in a box and does not allow me to switch things up if needed. Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a planner. The fact that I plan shit to death is the reason why my life feels so upside down now, because I had all these grand plans that fell through. One thing that I'm trying to do is have a "general" plan, but also leave room to adapt in case every single step of that plan doesn't fall perfectly in place.

I also find it interesting that for the past two years, I have been in a completely different place (physically) than I was before. This time last year, I was working at my comfy job in the snooty suburbs of Georgia, living with roommates that I hated and who probably hated me. I was doing okay financially, but I was pretty lonely out there all by myself. I spent New Year's Eve at work, and on New Year's night I went out on a semi-date with a guy that I wasn't really interested in just because I was bored. This year I will be at work on New Year's Eve again. I'm living with family that.....annoys me, and who are probably annoyed by me. I'm doing okay financially, and surprise! Still lonely. I guess that's just the reoccurring theme for me. I'll have to work on that. I probably won't do shit on New Year's Day but eat and sleep, and then I think I have to work the next day. Boy, this sounds exciting, doesn't it?

Starting a new year isn't the same as it was for me before. I used to get all hyped about the big changes I was going to be making, and then I realized that most things ended up staying the same. If things go according to plan THIS year, it will probably be the most drastic change in my life so far, seeing that I'll be in the military and all. Everyone says joining the military changes your life, but we'll see. I don't want to get too worked up, only to find out that life on a ship is exactly the same as life in the suburbs of St. Louis or Atlanta.

A couple things that I really do need to work on though would be my fashion blog and getting in shape. I feel ashamed that I haven't put as much effort into my other blog as I wanted to. That has to change. As for getting into shape.....that kind of goes along with the whole "getting ready for the Navy" thing. I know they're gonna work my ass and I need to be prepared for it. I don't want to be the slacker who didn't do any type of physical activity before getting to boot camp. I can imagine that won't be pretty.

What was the point of all this again? Hmmm.....I have no idea. Just throwing out some thoughts on how I feel about the months to come. All I can do is look forward to what will happen and the experience I'm sure to gain no matter what path I head toward. Damn, that sounded philosophical and corny as hell. Don't mind me. I'd like to hear what everyone else is looking forward to in 2011 as well.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Doing Entirely Too Much.

So I spotted this coonery floating around on the Internet, and it's SO coon-ish I feel like a coon just for posting it. Oh well.

I feel like this video should be titled "When Having No Talent Other than Being a Hoodrat Becomes Painfully Obvious." Like, really Antoine? STOP! I am willing to brave the projects of Lincoln Park to find this child, grab him by the shoulders, look him square in the eyes and tell him, "STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Someone has to do it. If it doesn't end now, when will it ever end? What's next: Easter Intruder? St. Patrick's Day Intruder? President's Day Intruder? I can't take it; I don't have the strength. I feel like Antoine is that annoying ass kid in your neighborhood who still falls out laughing at an old joke that no one else thinks is funny anymore. No matter how many times you tell him that joke is dead and gone, he repeats it over and over and over again in hopes of getting a chuckle out of someone, ANYONE.

On second thought, Antoine may also realize that his 15 minutes are long past due. After watching the video a second time (judge me not), I noticed that even HE doesn't seem to be amused by his shenanigans. His demeanor is not as animated as it was in his "debut" video, and the fact that his rapping/singing/talking is offbeat as hell shows that he is not even bothering to make an effort at this point. I wouldn't doubt that some media higher ups are pushing this gimmick within the last inch of its life, but their attempts are pointless. This shit ain't funny, it ain't cute, and it OBVIOUSLY is doing nothing toward the progression of the black race.

Ms. Dodson, wherever you are, please come get your son.

Monday, December 20, 2010

To Club or Not to Club?

I have spoken about my views on religion before, and after a couple recent visits to a new church, there's another topic that has been on my mind for a while.

The pastor at this particular church has done a series of sermons over the past couple weeks dealing with completely "giving yourself to God," and whenever he talks about giving up certain things, he mentions the usual: drinking, smoking, sleeping around, etc. Then he asks this question in regards to people that claim to want a closer relationship with God, but continue to party every weekend: "How you in church when you was just at the club last night?"

I guess I should back up here, and give a little background on my clubbing experience. I have never been the "party girl." I've lived in St. Louis all my life and never once stepped foot in a nightclub, probably because I sincerely hate any and everything associated with St. Louis and have never wanted to waste my time. Add the fact that I have 0 friends here and.....well, you get the picture.

Then I moved to Orlando for a semester. I worked as an intern for Disney World, I didn't have a car, and I was under 21, so my clubbing options were limited. I soon discovered that the hot spot for Disney interns was a Disney-owned assortment of clubs known as Pleasure Island, or "PI," as my friends and I affectionately called it. The main spots that I frequented were the BET nightclub, as well as Motions, a more ethnically mixed nightclub. Thursdays were the most popular nights at PI, and in spite of working 12+ hour shifts on most days, my friends and I would muster the energy to board the "Party" bus almost every week and head out for a night on the town. There were always plenty of.....interesting characters on the bus, so I don't recall too many dull moments going to and from PI. I got my first dose of the lame and amusing pickup lines/stalker moves that guys try in a club atmosphere, and I actually enjoyed myself while being liquor-free. A couple years later, I found out that PI had been closed down, and it bummed me out a little to hear that my old stomping ground was no more.

I moved back to St. Louis from Orlando and went back to my quiet, party-less lifestyle, then I made another move a few years down the road; this time to Atlanta. I had heard all about the hype of partying in the "A," so I was ready to get out there and see what all the city had to offer. Immediately, my roommate and I became well-acquainted with Underground Atlanta, which was not the upscale, swanky atmosphere I had envisioned before I moved away from home. It was mostly occupied by ATL hoodrats and men who looked too old to be posted up in a club for Thirsty Thursdays. Oh well. I tried to find some different places to go to, and the foolishness began.

My weekends over the next year-and-a-half in Atlanta consisted of getting dressed up in my Saturday night's best, pre-gaming with my friends, then heading out to whatever random club that promised via their fliers "ladies are free before midnight." We would show up at the club, stand in line for over an hour, and eventually find out that the club was now charging $10, $15, or whatever they felt like charging depending on who you knew or how much ass you kissed. Sometimes we would suck it up and pay the cover charge, then go inside to listen to some Gucci Mane or Wacka Flocka bullshit, and buy some drinks to keep the buzz going. Sometimes my roommate would work her negotiating skills and get us in for free, then we would go in and listen to some Gucci Mane or Wacka Flocka bullshit, and get drinks to keep the buzz going. Other times we would decide that $20 wasn't worth it, and take our asses to Taco Bell and go home.

I said all that because, after hearing that message by the pastor, I brought it up with my mom and she inquired why it would be a big deal to give up club going since it was never very enjoyable for me in the first place. I didn't have a real answer to back up my reasoning, but my biggest concern with it was (and is) that it all seems so.......FINAL. I have always been the chill, go-with-the-flow type of friend, so to go from being down for whatever to saying, "No, I can't go to the club because that's not pleasing to God" seems so out-of-character for me. My mother's argument was that I don't have to tell people I'm not going to party with them because of my religion--which is true--but that still gives me this "holier-than-thou" feeling that I'm not quite comfortable with.

One thing I'm curious to know though, is when did partying become a "sinful" thing? I'm sure most Christians would argue that it's the breeding ground for a lot of "sin" to take place, like drinking, smoking, and sex, but what about those of us who really just go to hang out with friends? I can honestly say that I have never gone to a club looking to hook up with any dude. I know damn well that a nightclub is the last place to go looking for love. As silly as club-going could be sometimes, I often found myself going out because it gave me some interesting stories to tell. It's sad, but true. Like right now.......I don't go anywhere, I don't do anything; therefore, I don't have shit to blog about. Mom's advice is to surround myself with some young Christians, but most of the people I meet who are my age and have "given themselves to God" dress and act frumpy, and listen to gospel music exclusively. I like 6-inch heels, hip-hop music, and making fun of people who do stupid shit. Yeah, don't know how long those friendships would last.

Besides, doesn't the Bible say something like "Eat, drink, and be merry"? Last time I checked, that sounded a lot like partying......

Eh, I don't know. I'm just getting over a cold so I'm kind of loopy right now, and I apologize in advance if this post is all over the place. Is it reasonable to expect 20-somethings to completely give up on the nightlife in order to get closer to God? What are some NOT so "holier-than-thou" alternatives to partying and getting wasted?

Monday, December 13, 2010

An Uglycleanbroke Review of "For Colored Girls."

I know, I know....I'm late as usual. I finally got the chance to see "For Colored Girls" last weekend, and I'm just now getting a chance to sit down and put together my thoughts about the film.

I read several reviews of the movie before seeing it, from my fellow bloggers as well as film critics, and the reviews were mixed. People's opinions on "For Colored Girls" were very black and white; they either loved it or hated it. There was no middle ground that I could see. I must say that I am on the side of those that enjoyed the film. I feel like all of the actors gave solid performances, including Janet Jackson, who I have never really cared for as an actress. I was also pleased that Tyler Perry didn't pop up anywhere, either as "Madea" or as his usual bland, unneeded supporting character.

I've heard some say that the movie was "depressing," or it shed a negative light on African-American women as being "victims," but I disagree. It's true that the tragedies in the film often outweighed the happy moments, but isn't that similar to everyday life? Is it really that far fetched to see women of color dealing with issues like abortion, sexual abuse, and cheating lovers? Is it not true that HIV is one of the leading causes of death among African American women?

What I don't understand is that Tyler Perry is always criticized for his portrayal of black people as over-the-top and ridiculous, and now that he's taken a more serious approach.....he's being criticized because the subject matter is TOO serious. It's the classic case of "Damned if you do, and damned if you don't."

The one thing that irked me about the movie was how the dialogue between the characters segued into each "colored girl's" monologue. It was a little awkward simply because it was so easy to distinguish where the modern language of the script ended, and where the book's original poetry began. The sudden change gave me the feeling of watching a musical, where the characters break into song in the middle of a conversation.

Overall, I would say "For Colored Girls" is definitely one of Tyler Perry's better films, and I appreciate that he made the effort to do something different from his usual coon-ish comedies.

Uglycleanbroke rating:
★ ★ ★ ★

Monday, December 6, 2010

Oh Keri.

I know I'm late commenting on this, but I figured better late than never. By now, I'm sure most of you have seen (or heard about) Keri Hilson's latest video "The Way You Love Me." If you haven't seen it yet, you can check it out here. The sexually charged lyrics and dancing in the video sparked a lot of controversy, and Keri Hilson subsequently did an interview explaining her "vision" behind the video.

I commented on a couple blogs about the video, so I'm kind of repeating myself here. One of my comments was in response to a video made by Youtuber Kingsley and his response to Keri's video:

The issue I have with Keri Hilson's video is not that it was overly sexual. If she wants to throw her p*ssy around, that's her choice. The problem is that the video concept sucked. The lyrics sucked. I said the same thing about Kiely's "Spectacular" video. Both looked low-budget and other than the over-the-top raunchiness, they are ultimately forgettable. Plus, Keri is a songwriter; I expect more creative lyrics from her.
Although some of Kingsley's remarks sound a bit "stan"-ish, I agree with him about how drastic it is that Keri went from "Don't feel on my booty" to "Fuck me, fuck me!" She did an interview just last year about how she did not want to be overly sexed (which can be found here), and she has completely contradicted herself. Some people argue that her record label may have put her up to emerging with this new image. I honestly don't care WHAT her record label may or may not have told her to do. She's a grown woman. And in the event that her label DID tell her to go in this direction, they completely failed. Like, who is going to buy this? *Most* heterosexual women won't, because seeing another woman p*ssy popping does nothing for them. Men may beat off to the video, but they won't go out and buy her album. That leaves the "gays," who have already pledged their allegiance to "she who will not be named on this blog." (Y'all know who I'm talking about. Who do folks ALWAYS compare ANY female R&B singer to???)

Ultimately, Keri may have lost her original fans, who are not feeling this new wannabe sexpot image, and she's not gaining any fans because no one believes her.