Way Back Wednesday-World AIDS Day

Today is December 1.  A lot of people are gearing up for the holiday season.  Before we get to celebrating, we should all be aware that it is World AIDS Day.  This is the day each year that the world comes together to raise awareness about the AIDS epidemic affecting our citizens.  We recognize those who have succumbed to the disease, and we celebrate those who are still living with it. 

World AIDS Day was a concept first thought of in August of 1987 by two public information officers, James Bunn and Thomas Netter, at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland.  Through their work with Dr. Jonathan Mann, the director of the Global Programme on AIDS, World AIDS Day had its first official observance on December 1, 1988.  Throughout the years there have been various themes.  This year’s theme is Universal Access and Human Rights. 

This year, some of your favorite celebrities are dying so that children with AIDS can live.  Various stars, like Ryan Seacrest, Alicia Keys, Serena Williams, and Kim Kardashian, are participating in a digital death, meaning they will not use social media like Facebook and Twitter, until they collectively raise $1 million for children living with AIDS in Africa and India.   (Go here to donate.)  Also, various cities around the world are hosting events.  Be sure to see what’s going on in your city.

Mostly importantly, know your status.  Go get tested.  There are numerous clinics and hospitals around the country that offer free, anonymous testing.  It will take about 20 minutes to have your mouth swabbed (no needles!) and to get your results.  Be sure to take your partner or a friend with you.  To lower your risk of catching HIV/AIDS, always practice safe sex.   Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

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I Have Some Questions

For the past few weeks, I have had some things go through my mind.  I decided to share a few of them with you, my faithful, devoted, and opinionated audience.  If you have the answers, please share.  And if you have questions of your own, share those, too.  I may be able to answer yours!

-Why am I starting to like “Whip My Hair” by Willow Smith?

– Why didn’t T.I. hire Lindsay Lohan‘s attorney?

– Speaking of T.I., does he like it in prison?  Is that why he does stupid stuff so he can keep going back?

– Why are we salty about Alicia Keys giving birth…or is that just me?

– Why can’t I find a line of natural hair care products I like, especially a deep conditioner?

– Is Adrian Fenty going to be re-elected as mayor of DC in 2 more weeks-and bring back Michelle Rhee?

– Why do we love Twitter but loathe Facebook?

– Where is the 2nd CD in Maxwell’s trilogy BlackSUMMERS‘Night?

– And where is Jill Scott‘s The Light of the Sun?

– What’s the point of having an album for sale if you’re going to release all of the tracks as singles? (Think of Usher and Trey Songz)

– Dare I admit I’m beginning to like Nicki Minaj?

– And the most important question, what new updates are there regarding the death of Mitrice Richardson?

These are just some things that have been on my mind.  Are there any questions that you ask yourselves on a regular basis?  Maybe there’s that point in the day when you dare to let your mind drift off to this nice quiet place and you think of the most random stuff.   I hope I’ve put a smile on your face or at least got you to thinking, too.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

This Week in the News

Happy Friday, folks!  If you’re like me, you’re ready for the weekend! (But I guess I shouldn’t rush my life away!)  In any event, I’ve become privy to some pertinent and interesting information that I’ll share with you guys!

We all remember Jennifer Nicole Freeman aka Claire Kyle from “My Wife and Kids” (still mad ABC cancelled that show), the cute, ditzy, clumsy older daughter of Michael and Jay.  Well, Jennifer is all grown up and married to NBA point guard Earl Watson.  They are the proud parents of a 10 month old baby girl, and earlier this week, Earl filed for divorce claiming that Jennifer attacked him.  According to reports, after Jennifer received a late night text message at 11 pm on August 1, Earl took the phone, which resulted in Jennifer brazenly attacking him.  She hit and bit him.  Biting him resulted in blood being drawn.  She also attempted to throw an iron at him, but he stopped her.  Just this week, Earl decided to withdraw his petition for divorce, and the two have reconciled.  I hope Earl knows what he’s doing.  In most situations, abuse and violence only gets worse.  And society always has a tendency to empathize with a female victim of abuse and tell her not to go back.  I have the same advice for Earl;  if he does go back, Jennifer definitely needs to take anger management or some type of class to diminish these violent outbursts.

I won’t spend too much time on this, but radio talk show host Dr. Laura (Schelessinger) found herself in some hot water this week.  When a black woman called in to her show Tuesday to complain about her white husband’s friends using the “N” word around her, Dr. Laura went on a rant saying it’s confusing when black people say the word to each other as a term of endearment, but when other races say it, it’s offensive.   She then went on to use the word REPEATEDLY (read and listen to part of the conversation here).  In case any of you were wondering, it is NEVER ok to use derogatory names about ANY race.  I had a friend my freshman year of high school who was my buddy, and my friends and I nicknamed her “Black Girl”.  One day, she used the “N” word in front of me, after never hearing me say the word.  I kindly told her, “That’s not cool. Don’t say that around me anymore.”  She understood, never used the word again, and we continued to be friends until we graduated. (Haven’t talked to her in forever, but I do hope she comes to our 10 year reunion next month…oh, sorry, I’m getting off track.)  Moving on…

I know I’m a little late, but I didn’t congratulate the new married couples: T.I. and Tiny, Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz, Martin Lawrence and Shamicka Gibbs, Carmelo Anthony and LaLa, Brian Austin Greene and Megan Fox, and a host of others.   I heart love, and no matter their journey to the altar, I love when couples get married. (If you thought that was a jab at a certain pair, it was.  You get one chance to guess who…)

I know there’s some news I didn’t touch on, like the death of former U.S. Senator Ted Stevens, the confirmed death of former beauty queen Mitrice Richardson, and the baby girl born on 8/9/10 at 11:12 pm.  So feel free to share on any news that I’ve missed.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

BET Awards Recap

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I must say I am thoroughly impressed with BET. I, along with some more of my friends, were happy with what we saw last night on the BET Awards.  Chris Brown is back,  Prince is still fine, and Nia and Larenz took me back to “Love Jones”.  Despite the lows of the evening (believe me, they were there), the highs were great and plentiful so I was a happy camper.  (Warning:  There may be some spoilers mentioned, but you should still watch the show if you haven’t already.)

I had the pleasure of watching the awards show with one of my sorority sisters, and as the night went on, I was able to share with her some Twitter commentary and put some of our lively conversation on my Twitter feed.  The first thing that I felt BET should have kept under wrap was Queen Latifah’s singing.  Now I’m sure her jazz album was great (haven’t heard it), but her opening number left a lot to be desired.  Another thing I didn’t like was Queen Latifah’s changing into all of the characters she has played…uhhhh…#notagoodlook.  I was too through when she came out as Cleo and T.I., aka my baby daddy, kept calling her “Chloe”!!  When she FINALLY came out in her elegant black dress close to the end of the show I was thinking, “Now why didn’t she look like THIS the whole night?!?!”   Another low was all these performances during the pre-show, especially Souljah Boy and Roscoe Dash, aka Sisqo’s little brother.  I didn’t see all of the pre-show, but the little I saw didn’t need to be seen.   Nicki Minaj…Darling Nicki needed to sit down somewhere.   My first thought when I saw her on the red carpet was she looked like a hood bride.  Other colorful anecdotes I heard were “she looks like Carrot Top and Lil’ Kim’s love child”, “she looks like Wilma Flintstone”, and other little comments that were extremely hilarious.  Another fail, as we all know, is Jermaine Jackson’s hair…need I say more?  I don’t think I do.

Now, the highs…there are so many that I don’t know where to begin.  Maybe we should start with the opener, Mr. Kanye West.  I don’t know what it is about him, but he is one of my favorite rappers.  His new single is great and his performance was great.  Kudos to BET for selecting him as the opening act.   Chris Brown, Chris Brown, Chris Brown…first off, that boy is talented; I don’t care what anybody says.  I hate the fact that he wasn’t able to partake in the tribute to MJ last year, but his performance last night was ELECTRIFYING!!!  That is the tribute that is due to a true superstar performer.  (I told my sorority sister that Chris has been practicing since last year getting ready for this moment!)  I was so happy to see Chris back on stage.  I don’t condone violence of any kind, but the man paid his debt, he admitted that he was wrong, and if the world can forgive R. Kelly then they should certainly forgive Chris Breezy.  With the crying on “Man in the Mirror”, I think that was genuine, more so for him realizing what he did wrong and growing up.  The ultimate surprise of the night was El DeBarge!!!  I was NOT ready!  He was great, and it’s good to see that those drugs did not affect his singing ability, unlike another singer who shall remain nameless…He sang some classics, and let everybody know that the light skinned brothers are coming back! (But for me they were never out.)  Nia Long and Larenz Tate…need I say more?!?!?  They both look like they stepped out of the 90’s (meaning they have not aged one day), and didn’t miss a beat with their renditions of Nina’s Poem and Darius’ Poem.  I want to watch “Love Jones” right now…The Prince tribute was great.  Janelle Monae killed her performance of “Let’s Go Crazy”.  If you don’t know her as a performer then you would have looked at her like, “Who is this chick with the bouffant and WTH is she doing?!?!”  But I was thoroughly impressed.  I don’t know about you all, but I was not ready for Ms. Alicia Keys to climb on the piano in all of her preggo glory, minus her shoes.  (Yes, she was gorgeous and glowing).  She did a bang up job on “Adore”, and as she ended her performance Prince was looking around for Swizz making sure it was ok for Alicia to be all over the piano!   And Patti LaBelle tore up “Purple Rain”.  She brought Prince (and almost everyone else) to his feet and almost made him cry.   When Patti kicked off her shoe, Prince ran up and got it! I loved it!!! And Prince is still one of the sexiest men alive.  I don’t know what it is about him, but he’s great in my book. 

All in all, I am very proud of BET for the production of last night’s show.  Yes, there was some coonery and buffoonery in some parts, but that’s bound to happen at any award show.  And for those of you that missed it, don’t worry.  I didn’t mention EVERYTHING that happened, and BET is sure to replay it about 50 times this week, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to see it and make your own assessment.  So what was your favorite part?  Who looked great?  Who needed a mirror?  What was the most memorable part, good or bad, of the evening?  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.