Monday, January 4, 2016

Daddy's girl

I know who my father is. My middle name is the female version of his first name, followed by his unusual last name. I inherited my love for basketball from him. The rows of wrinkles that form on my forehead when raising my brows is from him. No doubt, I am his child.

A daddy's girl?

My father isn't a prominent figure in my life. He isn't someone I will call when I'm in need. He's been very prominent in my sister's and niece's life, though. And I've accepted this. A couple of years ago, I had a discussion with him in regards to my relationship with my sister. I told him that there is no way my relationship with my sister, who is 13 years younger than me, should be better than my relationship with my sister who is 5 years younger than me. He placed blame on this strained relationship on her mother.

But, you're OUR father!

Then, hearing your father admit to letting that same woman keep him way from you, his first-born...

Makes me feel like I wasn't worth the fight.

So like I said, I've accepted our relationship for what it is. Am I shocked about this past weekend, when he didn't call me like he said he would to confirm a breakfast date he wanted to have?

No.

My relationship with my father is one of the reasons why I don't have kids, right now. I want my kids to have a better relationship with their father than I do with mine. I want to procreate with someone who is willing to fight for our babies harder than my father fought for me. If that means I'm not "fortunate enough"* to have someone come into my life, with whom I'd like to make that move, until I'm pushing 40...oh well!

Anything to keep my offspring from writing this same blogpost in 20+ years.

K to the...

*In quotations since society can make one feel as if having no kids means your life has no meaning at all.

Friday, January 1, 2016

"...maybe we can start again."

My time in Hammond, IN is coming to an end. I can’t believe I have been laying my head in Indiana for what will be 5 years when the lease ends. Though I’ve worked in the city the entire time, I still felt so far away from my family and friends. It wasn’t until my best friend, her husband and baby/my g-baby moved back to the states earlier this year that I had someone who stayed near me. For once, I could go visit someone on the regular and it wouldn’t take me 30 minutes to get to and from their house.

What prompted this change was spending a week at my grandmother’s while my car was being serviced. I got spoiled by the convenience of public transportation, a shorter commute to work, and being 20 minutes or less from everything. It was after that week, I knew I had to “come home.”

The time I've lived in Hammond was what I needed. I needed to step out of my comfort zone (it took months for me to get used to the quiet). I needed to go through the pain I experienced after moving to Indy to learn from it. I needed that time by myself to work on myself. Please believe, people don’t look at driving to Hammond like they look at driving to Orland from the city (though Orland is further). So I had plenty of time to myself. As an introvert, being alone wasn’t an issue. I did learn that people will go where they want to go. Once I accepted that, hearing “you live too far” stung less.

With the move, I have to recondition myself to city life. Some things I could get away with in Indy just won’t fly in Chicago. The block I’ll be staying on (shoutout to family owning property) is pretty quiet. However, no more leaving my radio faceplate on while in the crib. Look, I love my city. But I’m not na├»ve. I have to find another gym to join, meaning I will have even more “Basketball Chronicles” as I’ll have to gain respect from a new group of regular hoopers. I’m also looking to teach yoga in the city, in addition to continuing to teach in Highland.

A lot of changes on the horizon, but I’m not worried. Like my homie Alvin always say, “I’m alright, because God’s got me.”



Happy New Year!

K to the…

Monday, December 14, 2015

Hoopin Chronicles: Petty LaBelle

As the Sunday morning hoop session was winding down, I end up on a team with some young dude who isn't part of the usual Sunday morning crew. The first game, we won mainly off his 2-pointers that he was launching and another guy. Yep...he only passed to one other person on the team. Me trying to get open was basically pointless. I didn't touch the ball at all during the game.

So, the 2nd game starts. I don't even bother trying to get free; I'm just an on-court spectator. He dribbles towards me and gets trapped. There are two guys on him, and my man is on me. He makes the dumb pass and the ball is turned over. He says "You gotta keep going" or some ish. I'm like "I've been moving around all game (referring to the first one). Why don't you pass the ball? You have 4 other teammates."

Then he goes "This is why I don't play with girls." And repeated it!

Oh, nigga.

NIGGA!

I said "I'm no girl. I'm a grown woman. Watch your mouth."

For the rest of the game, he didn't say shit else to me. He was actually passing the ball to me. I hit a two and someone yelled "That's a grown woman right there!" Every time he made a dumb mistake I would yell "Damn, I hate playing with girls."

We lost the game.

But, I won.

Petty LaBelle
bka
K to the...


Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Tre'd up.

The day before my birthday, I received a call from my doctor's office with lab results. A week prior, I went in for my annual physical. I learned that I have a Vitamin D deficiency, which can be remedied by simply taking vitamins. I hate taking pills...seriously. But, it's something that has to be done. I also learned that my mom does the same, so it's hereditary. Yay, genes! 

While reading up on symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency, I began to figure out what was going on with me in the past few months. Symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency include aching joints and feeling "blue." For the past 3-4 months, this is what I had been experiencing. 

My right knee was bothering me in ways it's never bothered me before. I've been playing since I was 8, and the only knee problems I've ever had was "jumpers' knee." But, yoga wasn't helping with the aches I had in my knee. I initially thought my body was in shock after picking up this new hobby of running. So after the Hot Chocolate 5K, I went from running 3x a week to only once a week.

Also, I felt like I hadn't been myself the past few months. I initially thought I was suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder. When the sun was out, I was fine. But, it just seemed like there were more cloudy days than sunny days. It was like I was in a constant state of "blah".

When something makes me upset, I acknowledge that I'm upset, and then say to myself "OK, what are you going to do about it? Dwell on it, or change your mood?" It seemed like the pep talk wasn't working for me. Was I depressed? It's possible. But I do know ever since I've returned from vacation, my mood has gotten so much better. I started taking the Vitamin D supplement while on vacay. Monday, I came home and practiced yoga for an hour after work. I hadn't done that since July or August. And I slept peacefully, like I've always done after an evening yoga practice.

My vacation in New Orleans, along with my doctor letting me know what was going on with me was right on time. I feel like I'm getting back to myself. I really enjoyed my trip and really appreciate my peoples for hanging with me. 
The homies after dinner at Superior Seafood
Chillin' on Bourbon Street
Good times as the clock struck midnight on 12/4
 
Self-explanatory
K to the...

Thursday, October 22, 2015

"You Can Feel It All Over..."


Last Friday, my mom and I had the pleasure of watching Stevland Hardaway Morris aka Stevie Wonder perform the entire "Songs in the Key of Life" album, including "A Something's Extra" EP and other hits, while he was in Chicago. We jammed for nearly 3 1/2 hours.

In addition to a full band, including Nate on bass (listed in album credits), a bad ass horn section and background singers, Stevie had a full strings section from a local Chicago orchestra.

STRINGS!!!

LISTEN!!!

I played trumpet in high school for two years until my schedule forced me to choose between band and basketball. Needless to say, the horn section holds a special place in my heart. However, the strings...it's something about the strings that just makes a song sound so beautiful. I found myself looking forward to the next time the orchestra was accompanying Stevie's band.

I'm an all day sucker for live instrumentation, yo.

When Stevie was performing, "Ngicuela - Es Una Historia - I Am Singing", he was playing an instrument that I had NEVER seen before. Video was zoomed in on his hands so you can see him play this instrument and I immediately went "WTH is that?!" I searched online for two days trying to find out the name - harpejji. It was developed back in 2007, and Stevie was playing it like he'd been playing the instrument since his first album dropped.

Musical. Genius.

And possibly a psychic.

He told us that he wrote "Isn't She Lovely" before knowing the sex of his first child. He knew he was having a girl, and her name would be Aisha. I need him to holla at my bff and let her know if g-baby is having a little bro or sis.

Besides simply being in awe that I was watching a genius at work, other thoughts came to mind while watching him:

1. Is he visiting a doctor on a regular basis? We gotta keep him alive. He can't die.
2. He has to have, at the most, 30 locs left. He's draping, though.
3. How'd he know that girl's dress is red?*
4. *said multiple times* He is walking by himself. He can see. Playing us since 1950.**

Stevie stated the current tour was the last time he'd be performing the album live in the U.S.. I am so glad I was able to see him. Dozens and dozens of roses for a true legend...icon...genius.

K to the...

*I know someone told him
**I know he was counting steps

Friday, October 2, 2015

"Tell Diamond to get her funky ass on stage..."

This year, I popped my "strip club cherry" while I was Jacksonville, FL for America's birthday weekend. I came in with $50 in singles, and proudly left out with none of those singles.

Men, I get it.

I get it.

These women in Jacksonville were so hospitable, hugging and thanking us after they got off the stage. Seriously, I was impressed. Not only were they flexible, and smelled heavenly, but the tricks on the pole were what got me.

Yes, please...take all my singles.

All at once.

There was one who just blew my mind. Her name was Brittany (I don't know if this is the correct spelling; wasn't like there was a scrolling marquee. Or maybe it was, but I was just so amazed by what was going on...). Now, Brittany was called to the stage multiple times. When she finally got on stage and got on that pole, she worked that pole with so much attitude. Like "Let me give these people what they want so I can get back to my game of '2048' on my phone."

Now, when Brittany came on stage, I was out of singles (LOL) but my girls would pass me a few to give to the ladies since I was standing up.

At one point, Brittany gets off the pole; showing her flexibility, patting her pum pum...working for those dollars. She lays down, places both ankles behind her head, calmly folds a dollar bill length-wise and places it over her vagina opening.

"What is she about to do?"

*dollar bill floats up into the air*

"HOLY SHIT!!! That's it! We can leave!!!"

Thank you Jacksonville. Thank you Mascaras. And most importantly, thank you Brittany!

K to the...

Friday, September 18, 2015

"Keep ya heart, 3 Stacks..."

A couple of months ago, there was one guy on my radar with whom I would get in a relationship if he asked. Seriously. I asked on some "YOLO" steez if he wanted to go to Jamaica together for NYE. I really didn't want to be in Chicago for NYE. We are not going on the trip, due to circumstances that were beyond both of our control. And I'm OK with that. I do think us not going on the trip is a sign.

A sign for what?

After thinking about my last relationship, then when I re-dated someone last year after 10 years of sporadic communication, I've realized that I have to stop being so reckless with my heart. I have to get off that "Let's just do it...what do we have to lose" steez. I can't, and really don't feel like, dealing with another heartache due to some hastiness on mine and the other guy's behalf.

Nawl.

I know I'm not getting any younger, as I age like the finest Cabernet Sauvignon from Villa Sceriman winery (I need to figure when I'm going to drink this bottle I've been saving). But I damn sure don't have to rush into anything, or settle. I still have a few years before I give up on giving my G-babymama a G-baby of her own.

So what now? Just continuing to live, love myself, and Euro-step the bullshit thrown my way.

"Play your part, play your part."

K to the...