Archives for category: Life in Cali

And you.
I will always love you too.
And that’s why I share these BHFOTD with y’all.
Or at least part of the reason.

So did you know that aside from BHFOTDs I occasionally do deathiversaries?
I don’t really think that’s a word, but it is now. Because I’m using it.
[that will never apply to irregardless. That will never be a word]
Usually, deathiversaries are because people ask for them,
but this one is because I was listening to Pandora and I don’t know if it’s just me
but they are always dropping random songs into my perfectly curated stations and

And EVERY TIME I hear Whitney Houston song, I think about that time that my cousin’s grandma drove all of us (plus sissie) to Laughlin and she had exactly ONE tape in her car and that album was WHITNEY HOUSTON and once we left civilization (/Riverside county/ outside of regular radio stations because really Riverside county IS NOT CIVILIZED)  we didn’t have any radio stations to listen to and so we listened to THAT ONE TAPE and I don’t know if you know this but it is around 6 hours to drive from Compton to Laughlin, Nevada and by that time I was SAVING ALL MY LOVE FOR YOU’d OUT. OUT, ya hear me?

That’s right kids! Today is the deathiversary of Whitney Houston. (2012)
Whitney Elizabeth Houston (born August 9, 1963) was an African American singer, actress, and producer.
Houston’s crossover appeal on the popular music charts, as well as her prominence on MTV, influenced several African American (and probably just OTHER) women artists to follow in her footsteps
And because I’ve got stuff to do and places to go (tonight I’m goin’ to see Lianne La Havas! Another black singer– a Brit! – who probably was influenced by Ms Whitney) it’s gonna be a lightning round!

DID YOU KNOW…She released seven studio albums and three movie soundtrack albums, all of which have diamond, multi-platinum, platinum or gold certification? AND:
1. Houston is the only (black/white/or any other color) artist to chart seven consecutive No. 1 Billboard Hot 100 hits.
2. She is the only (black/white/or any other color) woman to have two number-one Billboard 200Album awards (formerly “Top Pop Albums”) on the Billboard magazine year-end charts.
3. Houston’s 1985 debut album Whitney Houston became the best-selling debut album by a (black/white/or any other color) woman in history. Rolling Stone named it the best album of 1986.
4. Her second studio album Whitney (1987) became the first album by a (black/white/or any other color) woman to debut at number one on the Billboard200 albums chart.
5. Houston’s first acting role was as the star of the feature film The Bodyguard (1992). The film’s original soundtrack won the 1994 Grammy Award for Album of the Year
a. Her lead single from the movie The Bodyguard, “I Will Always Love You”, became the best-selling single by a (black/white or any other color) woman in music history.
b. With the album, Houston became the FIRST act (solo or group, male or female, black/white/or any other color) to sell more than a million copies of an album within a single week period under Nielsen SoundScan system
6. At the age of 15, she sang background vocals on Chaka Khan’s hit single “I’m Every Woman” (See what I did there?)
7. She started out as a fashion model in the early 1980s, and became ONE of the first African American women to cover Seventeen magazine

Look at that! Whitney at 17 on the cover of seventeen!

And that’s today’s lightning round of facts and firsts about Ms. Whitney Elizabeth Houston Brown.
Hope you enjoyed that walk down memory lane. And if you didn’t, I guess you can try again tomorrow.
When I send you another fact. Because sharing is caring guys. And I love you.
[I’m not sorry. I also can never resist]

So last Thursday, I finally gave in and downloaded Time Hop. After looking at all my friend’s Instagram pictures, I was like


One year ago: Selfie o’clock. I had braids. Same as I do now. Same color and er’thang.
Two years ago: I shared a hilarious story about this girl who punched a guy in the face as an example of victim blaming.
(“if you weren’t just standing there when i decided to start swinging wildly, you wouldn’t have gotten hit. it’s your own fault”)
Three years ago: I was complaining about it being OCTOBER 15th and 84 FUCKING DEGREES. SAME AS I DID THEN.
Four years ago: I went to a Foo Fighter concert. Same as I did Sunday. (The Love Ride was a blast. Same as last time)
Five years ago: I learned that music lyrics make excellent status updates on FaceBook.
Six years ago: Nesto surprised me with a pirate birthday party!

pirate lasses

I was completely oblivious to all of his scheming, so I was TOTALLY SURPRISED when we got there and everyone was there! There was food! And drinks! And piratey cupcakes!

I had the best time!

I don’t remember all the details (see: drinks!)
But I DO REMEMBER that we almost got into a fight ‘cause some random white dude called somebody a nigger.
And that we left before we needed bail.
Escorted by Security. Through a side door so that nobody would punch him in the face on the way out.
Because God forbid you throw out the white guy using racial slurs.

What a terrible way to end a perfectly wonderful evening.
I had completely forgotten about that. Until Time Hop.

ANYWAYS. So many things have happened since then.

Like my cousin and I got called niggers at a USC football game about a month ago.
Oh. My bad. Did you think I was gonna say things have gotten so much better?

The hows and whys don’t matter. Because really? .
We were at a Football game. In 2015.
This wasn’t no Remember the Titans.

But from the minute he opened his mouth, EVERY comment was directed toward the two black women.

And what better way to put some uppity black women in their place by calling them niggers?

My friend, who is white, called him out on it. Because WHO DOES THAT?
(A: Rhetorical Question. We ALL know who does this. Welcome to being Black 101.)
She was horrified. And the only thing that she found more horrifying was that we were not horrified*(or really all that surprised) as well.
It was in every word he had said to us. “Rude”. “Disrespectful”.
(We were also fantastically drunk, by the way, because tiny shots are still shots)
Because he had been dismissed.
Because we weren’t scared.
Because when he said “what he oughta do” and we turned around to give him the hairy eyeball, he fell back.
Because we did not bow to his authority. And probably ‘cause we scared him a little.
You know black people being black is a frightening experience for some racists.
(Sorry, boss!)
(No. I’m not.)

Here’s what does matter:
I’m not less than you because I’m black.
I’m not any more (choose your own adjective) because I’m black.
I’m not obligated to make you comfortable/less fearful because I’m black.
I’m not willing to MAKE myself less than you because I’m black.
I’m not always gonna walk away from people who call me nigger because I’m black.
(Shout Out to friends/family who woulda had my bail ready)
(Also! shout out to white allies who DO come for their people when shit happens.)
(I appreciate her having our back. A LOT)


I suppose, though a lot of things HAVE changed.
I have definitely changed.
I’ve gained some new friends, lost some old ones.
I’ve grown. I’ve learned things about myself that I didn’t know 6 years ago.
I’m stronger. I’m more adventurous (YES, JACKASSES, IT’S POSSIBLE)
I’m more willing to try. More willing to fail.
More open to trying to understand.
More willing to fight for the things that I believe in.

But some things haven’t changed at all.
Racism is the same today as it was yesterday as it was six years ago.

*F.Y.I. – Things that ACTUALLY horrify me:
Needing to get my eyebrows done on picture day.
BBQ when I’m wearing white.
Crooked eyeliner.
Wearing dresses that flair on windy days.
Tall people.

I was dropping Nesto off to the airport the other day and he tells me this story about how he almost got jumped by undercover security once while he was waiting for me to pick him up at the airport.
He’s like, yeah so this dude walked up on me and was like, “are you traveling alone?” and since he didn’t know him, he ignored him.
And then another dude came outta nowhere and walked up on them
Nesto: “Is he with you?”
Dude: Yeah, we just wanna ask you some questions.

He interjects his story to say to me: Pro tip- If you’re ever find yourself in a position where you’re about to get jumped, take it to the street,
because then everybody can’t just pile on; they have to worry about getting hit by cars.

So when he stepped in the street the guy was like, HEYYY… we just want to talk to you.
And Nesto was like I DO NOT KNOW YOU SO FUCK OFF
Now there’s like 5 or 6 dudes coming toward him, and of course the airport people are starting to gather to watch ‘cause WTH?
THEN the security dude takes out his badge ’cause he sees that Nesto is not backing down.

They ask Nesto for ID and he provides his military ID and they apologize for getting him all riled up
Nesto tells the guy ”I was for real getting ready to take out at least 2 or 3 of your people before I went down.”
(Another pro tip from the husband: Stand with your legs spread so they can’t just take you out at the knees. Thanks, honey!)

I LOVE when Nesto randomly tells me horrifying stories like this, and then acts like he already told me.
(No. No, I don’t)

Cut to me on my way to work Wednesday morning.

I park on a side street and walk over to where I need to cross and some dude is standing at the light.
Him: *looks me over* I’m gonna cross the street
Me: Congratulations.
Weirdo: You may as well just arrest me

(It’s just me and some random woman waiting to cross the street)
Me: *looks around*….? WHAT? I don’t know what you’re talking about.
Then the light turns green, so I start walking ’cause FUCK THIS.

He starts crossing the street and I’m walking super-fast ’cause NOPE.
(I *can* walk fast if the situation calls for it, guys)
THEN he starts to RUN UP BEHIND ME
and I turn around and square up because IT’S TOO EARLY FOR THIS SHIT
He rushes past me, says EXCUSE ME and keeps moving.
And all I can think is HOW APPROPRIATE Nesto gives me this advice right before I ended up almost fighting some stranger in the street.

You guys.
I was anniversary-ing this weekend.
We went down to Humphrey’s (not just a concert venue, they have lodging!)
(Jill Scott is playing there today in case anybody wants to drive almost 3 hours to see her)
Saturday I did a little walking before Nesto got up because vacations away from the house mean sleeping in.
EVERYBODY WAS BBQ’ing down by the beach.
I came back and told Nesto he needed to feed me immediately right now.

And so. We go to Sister PeeWee’s Soul Food Restaurant:

Food: You ever been to a church where some ol’ mother of the church makes lunch during the break between morning service and afternoon service?
Like that. Only worse.

Décor: One wall was covered in Bumper Stickers, The other one was covered in pictures of family and friends. REALLY OLD FAMILY AND FRIENDS.

Nesto: *points to a picture of Marine* Hey! I know that guy. Because OF COURSE HE DOES.

Menu: Smothered Chicken/Pork Chops, Mac & Cheese, Rice, Greens.
“I woulda gave y’all some cornbread, but we ain’t got no mo’” – A DIRECT QUOTE

Also a direct quote: ‘Y’all want something to drank?”
**Pours two glasses of Kool-Aid**
(I swear I’m not lying)

Me: Trying to be game, because the Yelp reviews were thumbs WAAAYY up.
**Cue Rapper’s Delight**

Have you ever went to a restaurant to eat
And the food just ain’t no good?
I mean the macaroni’s soggy (and also it’s KRAFT crappy mac) the rice is mushed
And the chicken tastes like (gravy covered) wood?

-An interpretation (with some changes to describe exactly what I tried to eat) of The Sugar Hill Gang

I tried to eat it. I did.
‘Cause Nesto always calls me Bougie (I’m also the WORLD’S PICKIEST EATER)
so I was like MAYBE IT’S ME.

Nesto says all of the salt, vinegar flavor was in the greens.
And I don’t eat greens.

After that we stopped by the 7-11 ‘cause I needed water.
I could feel my hands swelling from all the salt I needed to get some of that food down.
And Nesto told me that he could feel his hypertension flaring. (LAWD)

Then we went for a drive where I couldn’t stop laughing because

Anyways, the next day, we went to Brunch. At our Hotel. Where they had live jazz.
And we were the couple who had been married the longest.
Twenty-three years of wedded “bliss”
(I’ll be honest. I’m no walk in the park, guys)
(But neither is he)
We were not the youngest. By a lot.

Everyone else was in their fancy sun dresses and slacks and stuff.
And us: Me in white shirt with BBQ sauce on it because
I have yet to master how to eat BBQ without making a mess
Him in a white tee and a pair of sweats.

I think that sums up who we are as a couple perfectly.

I went to a Dodgers game last night*. Which was not smart ’cause I still wasn’t packed completely for Coachella, but I would never turn down tickets because that’s ridiculous and also I can buy whatever I forget on the way and I can sleep when I’m dead.

Nesto bought us tickets, but then ditched me, so I gave the extra ticket to my cousin. Told her I’d meet her there since it’s definitely easier for me to get there from Beverly Hills than to go home first.

SO. I got there, got my gift and got comfy in my seat while I waited for my cousin to get there. While I was waiting, the guy sitting directly in front of me wearing his Dodgers jersey (#42), as people do, called Security over to point out a guy sitting waaaay down in front because he was smoking a cigarette. Well. First he called over this lady and pointed him out. And she went down to check it out, then SHE brought Security over.

He starts whispering to security.
Security: Which one is he?
*more whispers*
Security: OH. The one in the 42 Jersey? *SMIRKS*
*coughs and looks away*


JR Day

I haven’t laughed that hard at anybody since that one time this teenager was being a jerk in the movie theater skipping up and down the aisles and generally being an annoyance to everyone fell down the stairs. All of them. Yes. I’m petty. So?

*Yesterday, was the Civil Rights Game/ Jackie Robinson day at Dodgers Stadium/baseball fields all over the country. It was pretty awesome. Mrs. Rachel Robinson received a standing ovation because we Dodgers fans love our own. *sniff* I may have gotten some dirt in my eye or something over in the Left Field.

“..We’ll all wear 42 , that way they won’t tell us apart.”

Also. Good Job! We won last night.

So. There’s a guy here at work.
He…Ummm…is not my favorite.
Mostly because I think he believes he should be my favorite.
And I have never given him any sort of indication that he’s my favorite co-worker.
Mostly because he isn’t.

He called me at work after he’d left for the day.

Him: Hey. Can you do me a favor?
Me: I don’t know.
Him: I’d really appreciate it if you did.
Me: Well. Tell me what the favor is, THEN I can tell you if I can do it.
Personally, I don’t think it’s mean to want to know what it is you want.
You’re the one asking for the favor, mother fucker.
I don’t owe you shit.

Turns out I *could* do the favor for him. He left his iPad at work and he needed me to lock it up for him.

But, seriously. DUDE. I’m not in the habit of just saying yes and I don’t even know what the fuck it is you want from me.
ESPECIALLY, work people who tap dance on my nerves just by existing in the same space as I do.

The other day my co-worker got an email. Another co-worker of hers is getting married in two weeks. (YAY!!) And her supervisor sent an e-mail requesting they defray some of the cost by donating money to the bride/co-worker. I would like to add this request was SPECIFICALLY for money. Not gifts.

So, lemme get this straight: You want her to donate money to help pay for a wedding that she is not even invited to?
What part of the game is that?
Somebody. Please help me out.

Because HELLLL NAW. She asked me if I got the e-mail too.
Me: Nope. And you better hope I don’t, because if I do, I’m gonna go HAM. AND? I’m gonna reply all.
Because FUCK YOU, that’s why.

If you can’t afford this wedding that YOU planned for YOURSELF, maybe you shouldn’t have it.
The Courthouse is pretty reasonable.
OR. You could elope.
OR. Talk a friend into getting an internet certificate so they can marry you. (Holy Briya at your service!)
OR. If you INSIST on having a wedding: Wait until YOU can afford it.


I get it. Weddings are expensive. That’s why I didn’t have one.
I got married while I was already on vacation on the beach.
The whole thing probably cost $300 bucks or so.
Including the very tiny wedding rings purchased on a Private’s salary.


Oh, you need to get your hair done?
You can’t pay your cell phone bill?
Would you walk up to a stranger on the street and ask them to buy you a new outfit because you can’t afford it?
No? Then stop it. STAAAAHP.
(And if you would, you deserve the junk punch that you get for asking)

You shouldn’t be trying to make any of these things somebody else’s problems.

That shouldn’t be what crowdfunding is used for.

I mean, YES. There are things/reasons/emergencies* that relying on the kindness of strangers/friends/family is not completely inappropriate.
Nobody ever PLANS to have wildly expensive emergencies appear out of nowhere.
And sometimes big dreams require big money.

But that thing where you think that somebody else is supposed to finance the lifestyle that you want to become accustomed to? No. In fact, not just no. HELL no.

Even though it may not sound like it, I say this with love:
Learn how to manage your money.
Learn how to save up for things that you want.
Get a better paying job.
Get A job.
Be responsible for the things that you want.

I know the internet makes it look easy. But. It isn’t. My paycheck won’t let me be great either. Anthropologie has pretty dresses. And the ones I love most are ALL expensive. So I have to wait until payday before I can buy it. Or two paydays. Or three. Or maybe I won’t buy it at all because in reality, I don’t really NEED an almost $400 dress.

Until I become independently wealthy, I can’t have everything that I want. And that’s the way it is. I’m not asking friends/family/co-workers to fund my insane lust for expensive dresses.
Because that isn’t how that works. *I* want it, *I* save for it. ME.

You want it? YOU save for it. *YOU*.

But don’t ask me. Because even if I *do* have extra change lying around (Which. Is HIGHLY unlikely with a college student living in my pocketbook), I want to spend it on me. Possibly my husband.

Not you. You go fuck fund yourself.

*yes. these are ALL my opinions

So I…have been busy this weekend. Today is Nesto’s birthday! His ACTUAL, not his Marine Corps one. I know some of y’all get confused ’cause we celebrate that one too. But. He’s a Marine. That’s how it works.

For his birthday this year, I took him to a Marine Corps graduation. Because he’s been trying to get to one and hadn’t been able to. It was my first one! Because when he graduated from boot camp I was…pregnant. And also I hated him then. But that’s a story for another day. AHEM.

ANYWAYS. THEN I took him to the USS Midway. Because he(we) love that shit. Interactive history is fun! I could touch stuff. And y’all know I can’t keep my hands to myself. It had retired military discussing planes! And Top Gun stuff! And it wasn’t even super crowded. Because I took Friday off special, so I could surprise him with all this.

WHICH. Is how I missed another important birthday/ Founder’s Day!

January 9th is the Founder’s Day for Phi Beta Sigmas! Happy (belated) birthday to my cousin and Unc!

And I would be remiss if I didn’t take this chance to shout out my sister’s brother Fraternity. Because I never pass up a chance to poke at my sissy. (Hey, Nisha!)

*Pushes up glasses*  Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity was founded at Howard University in 1914. The Founders wanted to organize a Greek letter fraternity that would truly exemplify the ideals of brotherhood, scholarship, and service.

The Founders wished to create an organization that viewed itself as “a part of” the general community rather than “apart from” the general community. They believed that each potential member should be judged by his own merits, rather than his family background or affluence….without regard to race, nationality, skin tone or texture of hair. They desired for their fraternity to exist as part of an even greater brotherhood which would be devoted to the “inclusive we” rather than the “exclusive we”. Inclusive. Yes. That means even you, white people.

The Founders also conceived Phi Beta Sigma as a mechanism to deliver services to the general community. They held a deep conviction that they should return their newly acquired skills to the communities from which they had come. This was mirrored in the Fraternity’s motto, “Culture For Service and Service For Humanity”.

(My family and their love of service. Huh)

Since this is the FIRST BHFOTD for the New Year (Happy New Year!!), let’s talk about some Sigma firsts, shall we?

  • First and ONLY Black Greek-Letter Fraternity to have one of its members on the face of a U.S. Coin. (George Washington Carver: The 1951 Half Dollar)
  • First Black Greek-Letter Fraternity to be recognized by Howard University, AND…
  • First Fraternity to have Presidents of other countries in its membership (Hon. Bros. Kwame Nkrumah, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, and Nelson Mandela)
    • (Nelson Mandela! Well, shit. You fancy, huh?)
    • (Rhetorical. Of course, they are. They’re my fam’s fam)
    • (And also ’cause….YOU KNOW)
    • (I can never resist. I’m not sorry)

I hope you enjoyed the first BHFOTD of the year. And a look into Nesto’s birthday adventures. See you in February!

I was talking to my sissie while I drove around town running errands(hands-free guys. Calm your tits). I got in a workout, a quick stop at the Farmer’s Market by my house and an even quicker trip to the mall to pick up a gift card for my neighbor’s tween-ager. Is that a word?
Whatever. You know what I’m talking about. And they’re worse to shop for than ACTUAL teenagers in my opinion.

I pass a police car. Because, listen. I don’t care if you ARE the officer of the god damn law. If you’re going 20 miles an hour for no apparent reason, there’s a pretty good chance I’m gonna pass you if the speed limit allows. I am NOT afraid of the police. I’m a grown ass woman.


I don’t think the police lady person cared for that too much because she went through too much effort to catch up to me. BUT. I got into the turning lane because THIS IS WHERE I TURN TO GO HOME.
I see her pull up behind me in the next lane to run my license plate. And because I’m an asshole, I made sure to look back and make eye contact. I also made sure she saw the “FUCK YOU” implied in my raised eyebrow.

I know that SOME police officers get off on seeing if people are bold enough to pass them when they’re driving like assholes. (Yes. Yes they do. One of the many jobs I had growing up was at the CHP, and I remember them laughing about it)
And yes. I am bold enough. But here’s the thing: Why SHOULDN’T I pass you? Why are you going out of your way to intimidate people? Why are you running my plates hoping I got tickets or warrants or a REASON for you to pull me over?


So. Nah. I’m not scared for you to run my plates. I don’t have a reason to be. And really, even if I HAD gotten pulled over, I probably still would’ve been low-key talking slick. ‘Cause I’m an asshole, but I’m not STUPID.

FOR THE RECORD, I’ve had more positive experiences (and by that I mean not awful) with law enforcement than bad ones. I mean, at least once a year (at our annual tailgate) some asshole calls the cops because LOUD PARTIES ARE LOUD.
And the cops are pretty good natured and polite when they come over to tell us our jackass neighbors (the ones who weren’t invited) want us to be quiet in the middle of the afternoon because we’re having too much fun.
(Relatedly: why are all the cops in my neighborhood UCLA alumni/fans?)

But one thing I can say about all of the bad experiences is that they’ve been bad because of the police officer.
Because they start off bad. Because they jump out the car talking shit from the very beginning.
And I have questions. SO MANY QUESTIONS:
Why is that a thing? Why am I supposed to show you respect when it is not reciprocated?
Why are so many of y’all so quick to act a fool and then want to claim self-defense/threat to your safety when y’all come at the public (of color) sideways from the jump?
Why are y’all out here wilding out like y’all don’t know the age of camera phones are upon you and mother fuckers are tired of your bullshit and are now filming you for their own (and others) safety?
Why do y’all act like y’all don’t have any idea why most of the public (of color) can’t trust y’all?
Why do my white friends with black babies need to worry about having “the talk” wherein they gotta tell them that yeah, sometimes the police will target you because you’re black.
Why do black/brown people grow up afraid of the police?

I’m SURE THEY’RE NOT ALL LIKE THAT. But really, who has the time to figure out which ones are the cops and which ones are the decepticons when they’re all wearing the same uniform?

I love musicals. Because I love to sing along. Luckily, I’m part of a family who are ALWAYS singing something. ALL. OF. THE. TIME.

So this weekend when my Sister From Another Mister was all #auntiesbabies are gonna watch The Wiz (and also the Wizard of Oz), I got all excited ‘cause OOOOHHH… I hope it’s on Netflix.

It isn’t.

I HAVE IT ON DVD, but I couldn’t find it. Probably because Nesto hid it from me. Because I suppose there’s only so many times you can listen to me sing, YOU CAN’T WIIIIIIIN, without wanting to punch me in the throat.
I’m kidding, of course. Because we’re adults, and adults discuss their problems rationally and probably don’t dump buckets of cold water on people while they’re showering or take unflattering pictures of each other sleeping and post them on the internet, or stand over them with air horns while they’re sleeping to wake them. Because that’s just ridiculous.

Moving on! The Wiz was NOT on Netflix, but you know what was? SGT PEPPER’S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND. It’s in all caps because I can never resist singing it. LOUDLY. So I watched that instead. Because Nesto was not there to stop me.

Some random things:
• Steven Tyler in 1978 was pretty damn handsome. Not my type, but still a pretty good lookin’ cat.
• This movie is both the worst and the best.
• My favorite thing about this movie is the very end when all these random musicians (Minnie Minnie Minnie…MINNIE!!) are doing a sing along to SGT PEPPERS LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND.
• I was probably an adult before I realized THESE WERE ALL BEATLES SONGS.
• My second favorite thing is that Earth Wind and Fire are in this movie!

Which brings me to the facts. Or something:

FACT: I’m gonna go see them at the LA County Fair this September. Because I can! Because I love EWF.
FACT: EWF is the first African-American act to sell out Madison Square Garden.

And there’s your fact ladies and gents! Random and for no reason at all, except to say: Earth Wind and Fire. SQUEEEE!!