Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I Love My Black Folks But....

...the 2009 BET Awards, 'the hell was that???

Ok, let's backtrack. I don't watch BET. Haven't in about 5 years. Just hasn't appealed to me in a very long time for reasons I can't always put my finger on but Sunday night was the awards show and I wouldn't have known if it weren't for the constant Facebook updates by my BET-loving comrades. I kept hearing about this outfit and that performance but everytime I turned it on, I kept seeing some bullcrap: Soulja Boy (who was just awful) or some tired performance by a newbie artist (don't even know all their names).

Finally, out of sheer boredom, I tried to sit down and watch some since they were honoring The O'Jay's. But I barely got through a whole 30 mins without changing the channel.

Why did I see:

  • hoards of people standing up like they were at a concert

  • too many dudes in sunglasses, in the indoor arena

  • guys in T-shirts. This is suppose to be a formal event, right?

  • a large sign over top of the stage which apparently changed peridically to show advertising. When I saw a huge sign for Applebee's, I was too through! Why was there an ad there?

  • people in the audience texting on their phone

Ugh! What a ghetto event. I know they had the best intentions but I also found the Michael Jackson tributes hard to watch. Seemed too soon, not strong enough and the poor O'Jays were completely upstaged. I also heard about Joe Jackson's sad endorsment of his record business with a mere nod to the MJ tribute. Leave it to Joe and BET to give us this.

Anyway I'm through. BET just aint for me.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Michael Jackson Forever

Woke up this morning and realized it wasn't a dream.

Yesterday, after getting back home from a funeral and feeling this new lease on life, my sister called saying she heard terrible news. Skeptical, I said "oh no, its not true" and turned on the TV and logged on to CNN.com to confirm that he was in fact still alive. And he was. But I sat in baited breath for nearly 30 mins, while news reports came about how he was rushed to the hospital and the medical state he was now it. When they announced he was in a coma, my stomach turned and my throat got thick. When they finally announced that he died, every emotion I had, just burst out of me and I fell out in tears.

Michael Jackson, the King of Pop, my music legend, has died.

And my heart hang heavy was every wonderful memory I've had of his music flooded me.

The very first song, I remember singing the words to was Wanna Be Startin' Something when I was maybe 4 years old and my sister used to play that record. I remember when she brought a video tape home of Thriller and I was so excited but then scared to death when MJ turned into a werewolf.

I recall sitting in amazing with my mother watching the Motown 25 special where Michael showed the world the Moonwalk for the first time.

I remember a neighbor performing the whole dance to Beat It on my front porch and all us neighborhood kid sgathering around and watching in awe. I remember watching that video and coming away thinking gangs were stupid cause Michael said so.

I when the Bad video premiered on TV and my mom calling me and how everybody scattered to their homes to see it and how everybody at school was a buzz talking about it the next day. I also remember the huge crush on him I had at 8 years olf when I decided I wanted to marry him.

I remember when the video for They Way You Make Me Feel came out and how I hated that skinny bitch he was chasing, cause well, that was my man! I remember the kids in school trying to pick on me for loving him that much and how I stood my ground then (and now) and was never deterred.

I read his book Moonwalk cover to cover and watched countless hours of Moonwalker adoringly. He was like magic!

How could I forget the sheer excitement of watching hims dance in Smooth Criminal, when he defied gravity, dance the bad guys away and looked so sharp in his white suit.

I was there when Dangerous debuted and he had the first video showing this new morphing technology on his Black or White video.

I stayed up late at night during my moody teens listening to Stranger In Moscow on my Walkman, when I felt like I had no one in the world.

I felt a soft spot again when Butterflies got airplay and he showed a more romantic side on his Invinsible album.

It have continued to play my beloved Michael Jackson when I was feeling down, needed a smile, something chill to, groove to or wanted to shake my booty down to the ground. And throughout my whole life, his music has been there.

I stood by him during all the rumors, the jokes, the legal allegations, the craziness, etc. cause no matter what, he was the best artist of my lifetime, hands down!

And will always be there.

I think it goes without saying much more that the man, the artist, the music meant everything to me. And no one can take that away from me.

He will live on and so will the music.

Forever in my heart.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Hell That Is Job Hunting

What started out as an optimistic search for my next exciting, fulfilling career has now turned into the bane of my very existence, and yet, one I can't really get away from if I have any hope of getting gainful, full-time employment again: job hunting. It's driving me completely nucking futs. Here is the worst of it:

Long, drawn out applications
You know its bad enough being jobless but some applications are too daggone long. I've filled out applications for the government that have taken 45-55 minutes at a time. I'm exhausted afterwards. The most hair-pulling aspect being that most of these applications ask you to upload an electronic resume only to then ask you to fill out a tedious application where you then are asked to type in ever field from your resume all over again "name__address__ number__, school's name____, supervisor's name___, her number___, zip code___ etc). ALL of that is on the resume but they still need to typed a 2nd time. Grrrrrrr.

Being asked things twice
And I don't mean what I just mentioned above. I ran into this while filling out another federal job application last night. Because I was applying for two grades, I needed to send two applications. During the first, it asked me to write, in 300 words or less, of a personal experience on the job. I had two questions to answer. I gave it some thought and penned my best response at that moment. I then moved on to the next grade only to find out they asked the exact same questions. And there was no saving or back button, so I had to think hard and try to remember verbatim what I'd written 10 mins earlier. And usually the first time is more eloquent. Had I of known they do that, I would have saved my first response on the computer somewhere. Maddening!!

Faxing stuff
What is the point of this?? I applied to a job that then required you to print out a documentation form and fax it in for confirmation. All day long I tried to fax it while the fax on their side never picked up. Puh-lease! Stop wasting people's time with this. And why can't I stick it in the mail? Why fax anything?

Registering for sites just to apply to jobs
Another step that I swear will only create more wasted web space, but I continually run into this. I'll go to a job board like Indeed.com, find a job that looks promising, click the apply button, only to be redirected to some recruiter's website where I then have to register a user name/password and fill out my life story plus the story of my conception and birth just to apply for one stupid job. I have registered now for a dozen of them by now and I can barely keep all the names straight if I need to opt out later. Far worse is when you spend all this time registering and you're now ready to apply and the damn site hasn't even stored what freaking job brought you there in the first place. Hello?? Remember? I came here with the job already found? Webmaster?? Somebody? Whoever the hell, needs to check that site and stop enabling this nonsense. I just wanna apply for a job, not join another useless organization. Productivity people! We have a black president now! We can overcome shoddy webmastering too!

Fake ads
Probably my worst offense and most have come from Craigslist which I barely look at anymore (see previous post on more). But early on, I'd run into many ads that listed descriptive qualifications, education, duties and responsibilities only to find out its a work-at-home scheme, a scam to get you to enter your info in some site or get you to buy some service. Also in this category are marketing jobs that are really sales jobs. I'm not stupid, marketing and sales are very different and if its a commission-based job, just call it what it is, a sales rep position and stop trying to pass it off as an "marketing" position.

Old ads
Also ran into this problem early on and that is with applying to ads that have long been filled but somehow still pop up online. I found a wonderful position one night and stopped what I was doing to prepare a resume and cover letter to perfection only to hear from the hiring manager the next day informing me that it was indeed filled weeks prior and that some sites hold on to the ads indefinitely. Slightly heartbreaking, though I got over it.

Scammers and other time wasters
I've also had a few alleged recruiters calling me to discuss a potential opening at their company (or for positions not even created yet), speak to me for nearly 20 mins. only to never hear from them again. I had a recruiter email me about setting up an in-person interview for a position I'd applied for. He gave me two available times. I agreed to one of them. Never heard back. I mean ever! WTH!!

Well that is enough of my rant for today. It could always be worse right? I mean I could actually be employed and faced with dealing with all the discontents that comes with that daily.

Pfff, I only wish.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Tales of the Unemployed II: Craigslist is a Joke and Where is All the Vodka Going??

Back on the scene, crispy and clean-- actually more like crunchy and a bit more on the broker side. Either way, I've been gone too long and I feel like I have some 'esplainin' to do but rather than to bore you good people with my diatribes, since I've been struggling with obvious blogger's block and felt inspired at the moment, I'm just going to spew out whatever's been on my mind. That ok? Good!

So 4 months in and nope! No job yet. Plenty of interviews but the same ol' BS, the economy, blah, blah, blah. You know the story, Meanwhile I have been keeping busy with personal projects to strenthen and enhance my work portfolio which includes studying web design, working on a writing portfolio, volunteer work, regular running sessions at the gym and various other things I'd have on my to-do list for the past several years. I guess I could say I'm being my own boss. But lemme tell you the pay and benefits are terrible.

First, I am so done with Craigslist! Maybe because marketing is easily tied to sales and scams but 90% of the ads I've come across are scams. They look like regular and reputable job postings but what you get back is another work-from-home-after-you-pay-an-initial-startup-up-fee garbage. And the level of ridiculousness in the ads are laughable. For a master's and 5 years exp, one ad promoted a pay of $12 hourly while another would train and touted "no exp. necessary" and work for home with potential to make, ya know, like $150,000 annually. Who is falling for this crap? Not Park Heights!

While I spend my days feverishly job searching and clearing my throat when the phone rings (professional voice ready! then dealing with the letdown when its just my mother), I've also caught up on lots of mindless TV. My latest drug of choice: Real Housewives of New York. Ugh! I cannot stop watching the madness. It is great. First, its a nice diversion from dreary Bmore life but I've also found watching these tight-bodied, successful ladies inspiring, especially my girl Bethenny; running her own business, with more one-liners than a seasoned comedian and the body of a supermodel. Where do I sign up for the seminar? No, seriously, seeing all that she's accomplished has motivated me to do more like starting my own side business and building a website. And the catfights! Too inticing. Kudos to Bravo for giving me a new fix in between Nip/Tuck seasons. Nothing like a good shot in the arm.

And speaking of fixes, I don't know where all the damn vodka and tequila in this peice is going? A whole bottle gone in less than a week. I'd love to know who around this mug is drinking up all my good stuff! And who knew tequila costs as much as it does. On my way to a "Brokeness" party I got my lil feelings hurt when I decided to be the margarita girl without considering the price of alcohol these days. I mean dayyyy-yum!

So that's pretty much my wrap-up. The kitties have been keeping me company during the day and my daily dose of lovin' comes to me as a chubby, fuzzy, lil furball curled up on my lap with her lil head and paw propped up on the keyboard (love my Muffin), purring and letting me know she's at home. Whomever does not like cats has never known a truly lovable one. And that's a pity.

It could be worse, so much worse, so I'm thankful for the gifts, small and large and making good use of my professional break. Cause when I'm back, I'm gonna be so back... and crispy clean, looking lean and hopefully making some mean green. (sorry for the wack rhyme, couldn't help it).

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Michael Jackson's Final Curtain Call?

And I got a bone to pick with that!

So the King of Pop makes his big announcement today that he's making one last tour, 10 concerts in July, in London. London? London only? *serious eyeroll*.

First off, I have been an MJ fan since birth, I supported him through his first child molestation allegation and have every album since Off The Wall and some Jackson 5 stuff too. I have not yet had the pleasure to see him in concert and would love to but I don't have the ends right now to fly to London. Why the hell is he confining his tour to one arena and one outside the US. Hater! I swear! Why is London getting all the love?

Pfffffff. I guess my MJ concert dreams will remain just though. Oh well. Curtain call!

Monday, February 23, 2009

My Oscars Boycott

...yeah a day late and a dollar short. Shoot me, it was a busier weekend than I'd anticipated.

But back to what I was typing, I don't really do the Oscars anymore, since they began plucking my nerves a few years ago. Yeah, call me a pooper but I just really get sick of the celebrity worship that goes on in this country at times and particularly during these really unstable and unsure times that are scrawled across the face of any newspaper today.

My beef this year is simple, while millions of Americans are losing their jobs, losing their homes and losing their minds, I just can't quite applaud with glee overpaid, overexposed and overrated, stanking rich folks, who are already on top of the world and given opportunities, luxuries and goods that the average Joe will never see in two lifetimes, the chance to win more accolades, praise and worship.

Nope! Can't do it.

And for what? These trash-ass movies I can barely sit through? I just don't really share the enjoyment of giving more to people that have more than enough. I'm suppose to celebrate?

Hollywood can kiss my entire ass!

Friday, February 13, 2009

All My Single Ladies: Happy Valentine's Day!

Yes, once again, its time for the much dreaded V-Day, Valentine's Day and while I know so many people loathe this day for its forcedness of trying to honor a supposed Valentine, I've always found this day fun (and not just because its my B-day) but because I think it doesn't need to be reserved just for lovers, but for friends or anyone you love.

For the past few years, I have tried to plan at least on outing with my single ladies to dance, drink and be merry and be each other's Valentine's. Who says that its only for significant others? It's a day to show whomever you love that they are special to you and I try to do that.

So for V-day haters, you can switch that around. Send your mom a nice card, drop a good friend a note to let them know they are appreciated, give your homie a hug, just show some love. Then buy yourself a box of candies, some flowers, treat yourself to a new outfit (got myself a new blouse and a bag) grab some good people and celebrate...yourself!

Be your own damn Valentine!

Happy Valentine's People!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Apartment Living Rant

  • I am tried of the ghetto people who live here who drive and park up on the curb and sidework (the curb is very low). It kills the little bit of grass we have and blocks people in!

  • I am tired of hearing the noise from the girl upstairs from me who babysits wild-ass kids and lets them run like monsters all over top of me!

  • I'm tired of the young neighborhood kids who play in the halls and the parents who don't do a thing about it!

  • I'm tired of people slamming their doors shut all.the.time!

  • I'm tired of hearing people's loud, stomping footsteps over my head.

  • I'm tired of people holding coversations in the hall which can clearly by heard from my living room.

  • I am tried of hearing people coming and going at all hours of the night and beeping horns on top of that.

  • I'm sick of hearing people having sex over my head at 5am.

  • I'm sick of needing quarters to do laundry.

  • I'm so over looking at plain white walls (that cannot be painted).

  • I'm tired of hearing people yelling their convesations across the parking lot, up to their balconies or anywhere outside of my building.

  • I'm tired of having no cross ventilation with only 3 windows (on the same side).

UGH! I know, its gonna be alright. Cause soon as I can, I will move to bigger and better. Got your own housing rant, feel free to unload here.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

25 Things You May Not Know About Me

Yes, I got tagged on Facebook and yes I do take the time to fill out those silly things. But relax, you won't have to worry about being tagged as your turn.

1. I really wanted to be a professional performer as a child and I think I get frustrated at time as having a "normal" life.

2. Most time I feel like a huge kid that never grew up.

3. When I was little I used to think that perhaps there was an audience watching me in my life on their TV just like how I watch sitcoms of people who don't know I'm watching them on mine. I also thought maybe my life was the plot of a movie without my knowing about it.

4. I have ADD when it comes to watching TV. I can barely sit through a full movie and oftentimes TV shows. It seems to be getting worse.

5. I have always been and still am a huge lover of porn.

6. I am very, very nearsighted and have been wearing glasses since I was 6. But I'm mainly in contacts. Can't do a thing without lenses.

7. I sing along to many commercial jingles. Including "Priceline Negotiator!"

8. I still have issues with my looks. I have my moments when I think Beyonce has a run for her money and others when I think I look like a nappy-headed pile of dookie.

9. I was the class clown as a kid. At times, it sneaks out now.

10. I really regret not going away for college and experiencing a life outside of Bmore. My goal is still to leave one day.

11. I have a few secrets I plan to take to the grave!

12. I have a really strong singing voice but am terrified of singing in public. One day, I will overcome that.

13. I am forever a Daddy's girl and he was truly my soulmate.

14. I cannot count in my head for shit, which is why I hate numbers. I can, however spell easily in my head which is why I love words.

15. I was a habutal liar as a child because I loved telling stories and coudln't find the outlet to do so. So I made them up as real and told them to people. I once told my childhood best friend (Tracee) my father was a jazz musician and I had 10 brothers and sisters (sounded good to me!). I told another friend I was from Saturn and that I had special powers.

16. I have dreamt of owning a house of my own more than I have of getting married. I am obsessed with having a house. (one day)

17. I am a total internet junkie. I get withdrawal after a few hours away.

18. I cuss like a fucking sailor and I really need to stop that shit.

19. I snore, real, real loud. (ask Brien)

20. I am agnostic, nearly an atheist and I don't really believe in anything. Never have. Probably never will. Me and blind faith don't get along.

21. I was a horrible student growing up and hated every minute of school and have no idea how I actually got a graduate degree.

22. I have trouble telling time with regular clocks (again trouble with numbers).

23. I have never felt like I fit in with my family. I just don't feel like I am like any of them.

24. I have a fear of really, really large statues. I feel almost faint if I get too close to them.

25. I can't yet swim (but I plan to learn).

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Tales of the Unemployed

Well, I'm finally ready to come out to the world: I'm unemployed! Yep, you read right, this girl from Park Heights, who had been working steady since 1995, lost her job right before Xmas 2008. Sad but true. It took me some time to really come out to others for a number of reasons. But mainly, it just took some adjusting and I had to spend some time making peace with my new situation and grieve a bit. It's hard (out here for a pimp) right now and I don't deal with dissappointment that well.

So I've been pounding the pavement hard, which translates to hitting the keyboard seriously hard as in hunting down jobs online, networking, and reconnecting with people. Also been spending time reevaluating my skills, positive and negative to see what needs to be improved and if my talents can be better utilized in new and different area. It's been a weird month and a half but I resolved to start the new year off on a good note, proceeding forward with a vengence on my new future. And the feedback, so far has been very good.

And I'm not going to focus on the boo-hoo-hoos of being jobless but share with you the more interesting observations I've had being income-challenged:
  • the less you do during the day, the later you stay up at night. I have to force myself to bed before 1am and that gets harder and harder
  • Aflac are a bunch of assholes! I've told those fools at least 4 times I am not interested and they keep calling and emailing. Must be the suckiest job in the world.
  • my cats really act like fools half the time
  • Recruiters who call are more serious, recruiters who email are usually full of BS.
  • there is NOTHING on TV during the day. That is motivation enough to keep a day job.
  • my cats Muffin growls every single time the mail lady comes. Everyday. I wonder if she's been doing this for the 3 years she's been living here. Everyday??
  • Craigslist is hit or miss for finding jobs. Many scammers there, though they haven't fooled this one!

I also have to mention there are a few times when being job-impaired has its positives:

  • when the weather is crappy, I can decide whether to leave the house or not and usually that decision is a fat no.
  • sleeping in til 11 or noon daily aint half busy. When most are busting butts at work., I'm fixing eggs & bacon and checking into my Facebook.
  • there's no shame in wearing PJs and sweats most days. Or showering every other day. Why waste good soap?
  • I'm getting a lot of reading done.
  • If my mom wants to pass me a 5 for giving her a ride from work. Cha-ching!
  • the work stress that was causing me to lose my hair and consider a career in hardcore porn is OVER! And I never have to see my old supervisor again! Peace bitaaaaaaach!

I'll be back in the grind again one day. And when I do, folks better break out cause I'll be coming through like a true foo schnick!