Lookin For Me

I woke up to the sound of my 3yr old whispering in my ear.

“It’s my birthday Mama?”

“No. Your birthday party is Saturday. Wednesday, Thursday, Friday then SATURDAY!”

“Ok Mama.”

After dropping them off to school I grinned as I walked into my office building. Smiled at the receptionist. Remember I used to sit there? ~wink~

I heard her call my name and I backtracked. “What’s up?”
“I have something for you.”
“A present?”
“No. A message.” she answered as I took the small green slip of paper from her fingertips.

I read the message as I walked down the hall to my department. I laughed. Wow. This man has really been looking for me and he says the message is URGENT. Hmmm….

I logged onto the computer and at the same time pulled out my pad and pen to write down any messages from my voice mail. My phone is to my ear and I press 1 to listen to new messages.

One new message. 8:45 am.
~male voice~ “Hey Ms. Tee, this is Raymond. I’ve been looking all over for you. I heard you were back in town. Call me back here’s my cell and my work numbers.”

I smile. Raymond. Highschool friend. He was really sweet and cute too. He used to hang with a group of guys that were my little clique’s counterparts. So we ran in the same circle. In fact, he and those guys smoked us out for the first time in our lives. LOL! What a crazy day! I have spoken to him once since highschool but never kept in touch. I havent even SEEN him since graduation day. My bestfriend texted me the other day with his number and asked me to call him, but I forgot.

I check my work email. Three new messages in my inbox. One is from him. whoa.

He’s funny.

I call him.

“What’s up Raymond?”
“Well heyyyy! I’ve been trying to get up with you. I found you on the internet. Your work number and email was listed there. You have been doing a LOT of writing girl. I’m so happy for you. And you’re really good!”
“Thanks. It’s good to hear from you. I was down in Coconut Grove a few weeks ago when I went to see DL Hughley. I thought about you when I was down there.”
“Oh really, when? How was it?”
“A few weeks ago. It was okay.”

We chat for a bit more and I give him the house number and tell him to call me after 9pm.

I go on to do my daily routine of emailing Val all day and ofcourse doing some work.

By 4pm its all done and I go pick up my boys.

While they are eating dinner I notice a missed call from my girl Sylvia. I check the message.

“Girl!” she screams into the phone. “I just got a message from LaJuan asking me for YOUR phone number. He says some guy named Mario has been looking for you for years. Call me back girl!”

I raise my eyebrow while I dial her number.

“Girl, it’s me. Call my house phone. I got no reception in here.”

She calls my phone and I answer.

“So first of all, who the HELL is LaJuan?”
“Girl, he’s this friend of my ex-boyfriend. I introduced you to him once back in 2001.”
“And he has this friend named, uh Mario, who he says has been looking for you for a couple of years. He gave me his number to pass along.”
“He called me today and said, ‘You still friends with that girl, Ms. Tee?’ and I told him yes. So he said to pass on this number. Do you even remember a guy named Mario?”

I pause.

I do remember a guy named Mario.

“Yeah I remember a Mario. But that’s not his real name. It’s just the name he goes by. I haven’t seen him since I was 21. I won’t even tell you how we met. Is it a Miami number?”

“Uh, uh.. It’s Ft. Lauderdale.”

“Yeah, thats where he lived. Wow. I wonder what he’s been up to.”

“Well, obviously he’s wondering the same thing. Do you want the number or not?”

I pause. I hope he doesn’t try to holla at me. ~rolls eyes~ I’m not in the mood for that right now. ~these freakin assholes~ But he was a very nice guy back then. Introduced me to his parents after our 2nd date. He didn’t even try to hit. Very clean cut like I like ’em. Button downs, fresh sneakers, earring. The typical pretty boy. And he drove a Ac. But I was in college…he couldn’t keep up with me.


“Yeah, gimme the number. I’ll call him to see how he’s doing…maybe tomorrow.”


We woke up early.

Well, they woke me up early asking me if today was the party.

I heard my 4 year old walk into the dining room and squeal. Dianna and I had decorated the place the night before and there were red and black streamers and balloons all over the place. My sister chose red and black to match with the little Incredibles theme. It was cute.

We get dressed and go to the store. I’m hoping to use my last lil bit of money to get some party favors and build party bags for the kids. As we’re walking down the sidewalk in the shopping plaza my boys see a blue motorcycle parked on the sidewalk. They scream and run towards it, yelling, “MAMA! MAMA! It’s real! It’s a motorcycle!” I laugh and tell them, “You betta get your behind down.” People all around us are smiling at them. The sun is shining so brightly, it feels like it is going to be a beautiful day.

When I pull them off of the motorcycle we start walking toward the dollar store. There is a homeless man lying on the ground. My sons see him first.

“Mama?” My 4 year old asks me. “Is that man dead?”

“No, he’s not dead. He’s just doesn’t have anywhere to sleep.”

The man is lying on his side, his head resting on his outstretched arm. His clothes are filthy and he is only wearing one shoe. He’s a black man, very slim and very dirty.

As we pass him, he shifts and I can see his face. I notice big bumps all over his face. And more dirt. And…And…

I blink my eyes twice.

“Uncle Vick?” I whisper. He’s my Mama’s brother.
“Uncle Vick?”

He squints and gives me a look. He doesn’t seem to recognize me.

“Do you need some help?”

He doesn’t respond. He turns over and closes his eyes. My sons and I walk on.

When we reach the dollar store I call my Mama.

“Mama. I just saw Uncle Vick lieing down outside the store in the Plaza.”
“Lieing down?”
“Yeah. Like a homeless person.”
“Girl, he’s really sick. Really sick. He’s in his last stages of AIDS and he doesn’t want to accept help from anyone. He needs to be in the hospital. He needs to be taken care of but he won’t do it. Our only fear is that he will die out there in them streets and no one will know to contact us. Let me go call my sister so we can go look for him.”
“Alright Mama.”

By the time we leave the store, my Uncle Vick is gone. I have known he was HIV positive for years. Once I saw him in the streets and I gave him a ride and he told me that he had the disease since the early 80’s and he was still alive and kicking.

This disease is NOT something we only hear about on TV. It is real and it is deadly and it is scary. I hope no one is so ignorant where they would believe that it couldn’t happen to them. It happens all the time and you can’t even recognize it.

Of all the mistakes I’ve made. Of all the times I’ve done stupid stuff. Of all the people I have hurt, I would never want to add the word ‘killer’ to the list. Get tested.

I’ve been tested about 4 times and that mess is scary, but necessary.

4th of July Weekend

So on Saturday my sons and I went home to finish preparing for my 3 year old’s party. Every 10 minutes they asked me, “When are our cousins coming? When are you going to get them?”

“Go in your room and play. It’s not time yet.”

I’m mad because I actually have to prepare all this party stuff. I know this party is MY idea and all but damn, I can’t wait to afford some help around here. ~shaking head~ Honestly, my next goal is to get some weekly housecleaning help. My place doesn’t get ridiculous like it used to get back in Gainesville, I can have company at anytime without feeling embarrassed or having to run around and straighten up, but I’m not into cleaning my kitchen and I’m not into sweeping and mopping everyday. My living room, dining room and kitchen are tiled but our bedrooms have nice woodflooring. But that’s a whole lotta sweeping and mopping man. I’d rather be chillin.
When I mentioned my plan to my bestfriend Anna, she laughed at me.

“Girl, I can’t believe you actually wanna PAY someone to clean for you. Regular people would just, clean it up themselves and spend the money on something else.”

“But that’s THEM. Cleaning is something I don’t like to do. And as soon as I can afford it, I won’t do it anymore. I want it to be a staple in my budget. That is what I am pushing for. I can’t help it.”

She laughed at me again.

I don’t care.


I set up two tables in my dining room and put out the food. I didn’t go all out. And I told everybody before they came. I bought 48 hotdogs and some buns, some poke-n-beans and some potatoe chips. That’s it! Well, some other little snacks to nibble on like raisins and pretzels but nothing complicated or expensive. I put them hotdogs in a big pot and turned those suckas on. My lil sis bought the decorations and my Mama bought the cake. My stepfather bought the boys outfits to wear.

I figured that about 20 people would come, IF that. And if it didn’t rain, the kids could all go outside in the backyard and play, if it rained, then they could go into my sons room and play with their toys. No big deal.

It rained. It wouldn’t stop. It didn’t matter.

Family by family they came until my house was bulging with people. I had no idea I had this much family and they had THESE many kids! EVERY room was filled with people lounging and I was soo proud that my place is spacious enough to accomodate all 50 of them with no problem. Kids were playing in my sons room. People were chillin in my room talking. You’d find more hanging in the kitchen, some more people at my sons little table and then my dining room was packed with kids playing musical chairs. Ofcourse everyone else was lounging in my living room and listening to music.

I fixed myself a lil drank before the party so I was feeling nice and happy!

When it was time to cut the cake I stood my little 3 YEAR OLD (YAY!) on a chair in front of the table with his cake on it and we all stood around and sang to him. He stood there stunned. In fact, he was acting so shy the entire time, like he couldn’t believe that this party was all for him. He is so adorable.

Immediately after we sang to him, my cousin LV led them in singing the Happy Birthday song to ME! I stood up in a chair and danced while they sang.

“That’s right, It’s MY BIRTHDAY!!! Show me some love!” I squealed as I gyrated my hips. “I’m so cute. I’m so fly. I’m so…damn old.”

You know once the cake and icecream has been eaten, the party is basically over. Families began leaving and the place cleared out quite a bit. You know who left first? MIMI! Yep, I said it, my girl MIMI came down to Miami and made it to my son’s party! Her booty is a lot bigger but she looks the same. I hugged her so tightly and told her to tell Leon and Mina (some friends from my old church in Gainesville) that I was doing well and I looked GOOD! LOL! She promised she would.

Who else came by? Raycita came thru! She had better come by while she’s on break from law school in Cali. Besides she is the godmother of my 3 year old, she knows I don’t play… She’s so skinny now. I’m like, dang girl, you need to eat. I have never seen her so small. But ofcourse she was cute.

Um, A few guy friends came thru. Dianna came thru even though she doesn’t have kids so I was pleasantly surprised. Most people bought me liquor for my birthday. How did they know what I wanted? LOL!

After the party was over all my cousins cleaned up my place for me. I tried to help but they wouldn’t let me. I stood there in my bedroom doorway and watched them. All I had to do was mop the floors (which I still haven’t done- LOL! Lord, please send me a housekeeper!)

As they were walking out the door my friend Lem showed up at 8:30 pm with a card and a hug. I was so tired but I had to take care of my sons. So I told Lem to wait while I bathed my boys and put them to bed. He sat in my living room reading while I did my motherly duty.

After they were down, I went in and half way chatted with him. I was so tired because I didn’t get my nap. ~growl~ And I was just a little frustrated that I didn’t have a babysitter so I could go out and dance.

But oh well. I had to stay up because my girl Sylvia was coming over. When she got there, Lem left and she and I drank beers and chilled until a little after midnight.

That was it for my birthday.

I didn’t do a damn thing for the rest of the weekend. On Sunday morning I called my Mama and told her I was bringing the boys. Their dad called and said he wanted to get them to spend the night. Suurrreee… I told him to pick them up at my Mama’s house.

For the rest of the day Sunday I just slept. And slept. And rolled over. And woke up and ate. And then slept some more. I didn’t get on the internet. No company. I didn’t do anything but sit in my bed and watch movies. I think I watched What’s Love Got To Do With It like 3 times this weekend. I am going to miss all these damn cable channels. But the bill is just too high! I can’t do it with all these movie channels, I have to cut back. Aww….

Maybe I’ll get Netflix again.

Monday was a repeat of Sunday. In the bed until their dad dropped them off at 8pm.

I enjoyed my Holiday although I would have really enjoyed some barbecue…How about u?

Meta Bloggin

Wanna know what the absolute BEST thing about blogging is? The feeling you get when you find a new blog that is off the chain!

It’s crazy how you can click a link and then get blown away by someone’s writing style. (If you truly enjoy reading, you KNOW what I’m talking about) It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, I bite my lip, close my eyes for a second, reopen them and savor every moment of the reading experience.

The first time this happened I was on Panama’s blog. After reading one of his entries I had to back that thang up and start from the beginning of his archives. I didn’t want to miss a drop. And it was worth every minute. Keep your eye on him.

I don’t do much blog hopping. I find most of my blogs from my comments section. Leave a comment and I will visit, eventually. And I get my Blogs of The Week from there too. The Blog of The Week is just a way for me to let you know that I found a great new blog that I want you to check out. The link doesn’t really stay on there for a whole week, it really depends on the next time I find a blog that I love, that’s when I will change it. This week it’s Beloved. Who is this chick and where has she been hiding? Or am I just late? She’s an adorable blogger with good energy and strong writing skills.

My favorite type of bloggers are the story tellers. The ones who relive their past or tell stories about things that happen to them day to day. I am a natural story teller and even if we were to have a conversation in person, I would spend the entire time telling stories to make my point.

I’m gonna have to say that there is only ONE blogger, hands down, who takes comedic story telling to another level. You know who I’m talking about. Hell yeah, Brutha “My legs are crooked but my jokes ain’t” Code. I came across his page and literally blushed until I had to click the X in the top right hand corner. Dude takes it “there”. But for some reason, you want to go “there” with him. He is what I like to call, a MUST LINK.

The most popular blogger that I have come across is indeed popular for a reason. From politics, to music to dating relationships to family, he satisfies every need and you flow with him through a myriad of emotions as he recounts different experiences using a sometimes self depricating humor that is riddled with honesty through self evaluation. He is none other than Humanity Critic. His writing transcends the color line and our little Black blogging community. (Translation~ Even the white people love him.)

The people I have met through blogging have been so crazy! Sometimes even crazier than me! Ejemplo: Cymple. I’m only calling her out because I know her like that. She’s loose! ~cheese~

And if you haven’t started reading Serenity23, you’re really missing out. There’s something about those chicks from Louisiana…Everytime I visit her spot, I raise my eyebrow. Tight work. I know a future columnist when I see one.

From Yolanda, who is everyone’s friend, to Dee to Suezette, everyone has a fascinating story to tell and everyday we sit in from of our computers to read to interact to share. The cool thing about these stories is they are all TRUE and in real time. Someone once wrote to me saying, “Your blog is like a reality show that never ends. And it’s cool because I feel like I actually know you.”

Do you understand how much time we spend with each other albeit in a non physical sense? We check up on each other everyday. We laugh together, we celebrate together. Have you ever been driving and you remember something someone wrote on their blog and you laugh out loud? Did you go to the grocery store and see some mangoes last week and think of me? We all have a direct influence on each other whether we realize it or not.

We are the blog nerds of the world. We share our lives with each other. We get on each other’s nerves. We form friendships and sometimes lose them. But that’s okay, because at the end of the day we are still the same. We are bloggers.

This is what we do.

This is who we are.

And I’m proud of it.

I mean, it could be worse, we could be addicted to crack.

Being Elizabeth

One of the guys who was ‘Lookin for Me’, well, his name is Raymond. We met freshman year of highschool and clicked immediately. He was tall and skinny and goofy with a cute smile. When he found my info on the internet and gave me a call last week I was happy to hear from him.

I am so glad we were able to chat a bit. His clique often hung out with my clique. (I hate using that word in reference to myself and my friends, it sounds so exclusive and we were NOT like that at all, but it gives a good idea of how we rolled.)

We couldn’t help but discuss the death of one of his crew, a guy I had known since middle school, Willie J. Willie was even my 7th grade boyfriend for six whole weeks. But he died a few years ago. Rumor is he died during a bad drug deal. No one knows for sure. All we know is that Willie started into drugs heavily while in highschool.

“There was a lot of shit going on when we were in school Tee.” Raymond said.

“You know, I must have been so self absorbed I had no idea.”

“You didn’t notice it when he just started looking crazy? He was on that shit back then.”

“I didn’t notice. And no one told me. I sometimes felt like my friends hid stuff from me. Like when BOTH of my bestfriends lost their virginity I didn’t find out until years later. Years! I still don’t know why they hid stuff from me.”

“There was a lot of shit going down but you, you were different. We all knew how sensitive you were. Man, we were all smoking weed in highschool, me, my boys and YOUR girls too. But we didn’t tell you because, you know how you were. We just didn’t want you to have to be involved in anything like that. We knew it was wrong and if some shit went down with a teacher or something we didn’t want you to have to take the wrap and get in trouble over some stupid shit.”

“What? I thought that time we all smoked out at the Metrorail, I thought that was ALL of our first time smoking. Why does everyone feel like they have to protect me all the time? Do I look that soft?”

“Tee, come on. You sensitive man and you always wanna do the right thing. We wasn’t gonna try change that. We just kept the dirty shit away from you, so you wouldn’t have to see that.”

There I was this hot highschool chick with my head in the clouds. I had created this fantasy world which consisted of being popular, talking on the phone with my friends and getting as many phone numbers from cute boys as I could. I had so much fun dreaming about being a celebrity and getting my hair done that I never noticed that all around me, kids my age were dealing with some grown up shit.

Drugs? Yeah right. No one I knew did drugs. Or so I thought. Sex? Not me and my girls. We’re too good for that. Or so I thought. Pregnancy? Sorry, it didn’t happen in Sweet Valley High, I surely thought it would never happen to anyone that I hung out with.

I wanted my life to be like those books. And I sorta managed to create that in my reality.

I always wanted to be like Elizabeth. She was smart, fun and nice to everyone she came across. She was level headed and always did the right thing. She was popular and had a bright future. It was easy to see that Jessica was the wild twin and that would get her into trouble sometimes. I didn’t want to get in trouble. I wanted to succeed in life.

If you study the main characters in those books we loved as young teens you will notice that the characters had the same traits. You were either an Elizabeth or a Jessica. Betty or Veronica. I chose Betty.

Sure, she was always one step behind Veronica in clothes, popularity and winning Archie’s heart, but she was sincere and smart and hard working and I believed that in the end Archie would wake up and see all that he was overlooking in the equally beautiful but understated Betty.

Elizabeth didn’t grow up in the projects like I did but that didn’t stop me from dreaming as big as she did. I didn’t see my surroundings as a barrier or a pit, I didn’t see them as anything but the backdrop to my success story. Because of these books and characters like Elizabeth I was able to see myself doing great things. And even though I had never met anyone who went to college, I knew that I was going. I knew that I was going to be somebody special.

And maybe, just maybe this literary fantasy world I lived in made me a bit naive. But it also gave me a vision for a better life. A life outside of inner city Miami. And an attitude that nothing could stop my flow. The propensity to believe I could change the world and the courage to go out and try to do it.

He’s All Yours

What the hell is that?

It’s completely dark except for the green glow from my modem on my computer desk. My house phone is ringing. Man, what time is it? I stretch my neck to my right to see my alarm clock.


My phone is ALL THE WAY over there on my desk. It’s lighting up. It lights up again. I pull my covers back and sit up. It’s still ringing. I walk over and look at the caller ID. I roll my eyes.

Chile please.

I go back to bed.

I’m having an unusually non productive day at work. Lunch time hits and I walk out the door. My cell phone rings. One look at it and I frown.

It’s him again.

I’m not gonna hide behind my phone. I push the green button.

“Hello.” I say.



“So, what’s up witcha?”

“Nothin, what do you need?”

“What do you mean what do I need? You don’t want me callin you no mo?”

“I TOLD you that last time!”

“You serious?”

“I TOLD YOU I was serious!”

He hangs up.

What? Did he think I was playin? Does he think I’m desperate? Dude has the SAME SPIRIT as my children’s father. As soon as I recognized it, I had to stop all communication. I seem to attract men who want to criticize me and remind me of all the things that are WRONG with me. I know there are things I need to work on but I don’t need some man to let me know, I already know.

He’s all, “You’re gullible. You’re too nice. You’re too sexy. You think too much. You think you’re better than a regular nicca. You’re uppity.” Can I say he’s INSECURE?

PLUS, dude called me last week telling me that he quit his job.


Stop the presses!

~shakes head~

Hell no!

I mean, everyone goes through hard times but I know ME and I know that I can not have a person in need around me because I will give. That’s just my heart, but I can’t do that with a man because I already have my kids to take care of. I will not take care of a man too. So NO we can’t kick it when I’m gone all day working my butt off and you’re chillin with your boys. I don’t expect anything from you financially but I will not be taken advantage of. I pray that I will never allow my desire for love and companionship to cloud my good judgement and have me lay up with a man who is not even doing anything for himself. I will not try to fix a man or wait for him to get his shit together. Come correct or I’ll be by my damn self, complaining but still maintaining.

I will not fall for it. Even if it means calling my friends at night and whining to them. I will not compromise just for some company. If I don’t let it get started it can’t go anywhere.

I’m done with lunch and I sit back down at my desk. My phone rings again. It’s him. I ignore it. He leaves a message.

I check my messages.

I roll my eyes at the voice and think, “Not again.”


“Hi, this is Kizzy, *****’s girlfriend. I don’t know what’s going on between you and him but I saw your number in his phone and we need to talk. Call me back on his phone. I’m sure you have the number.”

I roll my eyes.

Why do hoes like calling me?

I’m not calling her back. I don’t even like this dude.

A few minutes later my phone rings again. His name pops up. I dont answer.

It rings again. His name pops up. I don’t answer.

It rings again. His name pops up. I open my phone and walk outside.

“Hello.” I say and roll my eyes.

“Is this Te, Ty…?” she asks, trying to pronounce my name.

“Yeah this is me.”

“Well this is Kizzy, *****’s girlfriend. I have his phone a lot and I see your number in here and I know he probably never told you about me but I need to know what’s going on with ya’ll.”

“Man, stop playin…” I say.

“I’m not playin. I’m not coming at you rude or disrespectful cuz I’m a lady. I could have come screaming and cussing. He told me you are an old friend and you called his Mama house looking for him and his Mama gave you his cell number. Is that true?”

I laugh a little and then cough to cover it up.

“Believe your man girl. That’s all you. We have absolutely nothing going on and never have. He’s all yours. Handle your business.”

“Alright then girl.”


We hang up.

Now, why do I feel in my heart that this was a joke. I mean, he JUST called me less than an hour ago and I remind him NOT to call me again, and then all of a sudden he has a girlfriend who calls me back. This dude DOES NOT have a girlfriend! If he did he would not have asked me to be his girlfriend last week. Any man who already has a girlfriend DOES NOT want another one… I think he asked a homegirl to call my phone and pretend. See, dude needs a job cuz he obviously has too much time on his hands.

And what’s up with these chicks callin my phone? And it always happens with men I’m not even trying to be with. One guy’s girlfriend actually started emailing me and shit after she checked her man’s email and saw one from me. ~sigh~

Stop calling ME and tell YOUR MAN to leave ME alone!

Who is she?

Superhead they call her. Excuse me, Superhead is what she calls herself. Her nickname was chosen to describe her favorite activity. Mmm, hmm.

Ms. Karinne Steffans.

She is a self described, “hip hop whore,” having serviced nearly the entire entertainment industry and has written all about it in a new book.

I must be a step behind because I am JUST hearing about this woman who reportedly says that she did it all so that her family will never go hungry again. Damn. Damn.

If I was having sex with millionaires and getting paid, would I tell everyone about it?

For $7.3 million, including a book and movie deal—- Why the hell not?

From an article in the NY Daily News.

The video-eye-candy-turned-author claims:

Shaquille O’Neal “was charmingly self-effacing about his sexual prowess and wanted to reduce my expectations,” she writes. But “compared to other men,” she assures readers, “he was nothing to complain about.” She says that Shaq was so impressed with Steffans that, the day after meeting her, he deposited $10,000 into her bank account.

Vin Diesel was “a beautiful man … blessed with an enviable eight-pack and an even more enviable [bleep].” A small part in “A Man Apart” allowed Steffans to discover that star.

After hearing so much about Fred Durst’s stature, she gushed, “to actually hold him … felt like a privilege.”

Sex with “insatiable” producer Irv Gotti “became more like a boxing match.” During their affair, Steffans claims, Gotti lent her to his friends as he saw fit.

After inviting her to his home at 4 a.m., Sean (P. Diddy) Combs kicked his manservant Fonzworth Bentley out of a guest bedroom so he and Steffans could spend 15 minutes making love. “You’re one of the best,” she says P. Diddy told her. Steffans writes: “I said the same to him, when, in actuality, he was average.” Ouch.

Steffans says she got around to Whitney Houston’s husband, Bobby Brown, in late 2002. Steffans says she never saw him do drugs. But she worried for his mental health during a frantic encounter where “he told me he was a member of Al Qaeda and that President Bush was looking for him.”

She made Ja Rule promise to “always come back.” But after he slipped out one morning before she woke up, “I looked around for something to take with me, something that would smell like him but wouldn’t be missed. On the floor I found a balled-up sock, and I placed it to my face and got the fix I was searching for.” Sniff.

Steffans also tells the whole story of her back-of-the-limo tryst with Usher. None of the stars’ reps we called yesterday responded by deadline. Their handlers can at least take comfort in knowing that, after years of self-destructive star-chasing, Steffans now says, “I am my own woman and look for no one to complete me.”

Two thumbs up for you chica. They can never make you feel ashamed if you don’t keep it a secret.

Book deals, movie deals, clothing lines, columns… damn…. homegirl is definately business minded.

Move on, make your mark and do your thang in your career.

Your past is your past. You can’t change it, but you can profit from it.

Here’s her interview. While you’re at it, Read this story and Check the comments.

Don’t Date Him Girl!

My girl Sylvia called me to ask for a favor.

“Please go to this website and type in his name and see what happens.”



See! Sylvia is always calling me with some craziness. She is absolutely hilarious! I can’t help but love her.

Hmm… I can think of someone to add to this list.

Can you?

Thoughts All Over The Place
excuse my rambling…

As soon as I sat down to start working this morning I turn on my radio and hear Confessions by Usher. This song really makes me stop and listen. I listen because it transports me back in time. Back to last summer.

This time last year I was driving down 17th avenue, all the way down to Liberty City where I worked at the newspaper as the Executive Assistant to the Publisher as well as writing my own column and other features for the historically Black newspaper. Remember that? Remember how much I loved that job? Remember when I had my own little radio show in the morning! ” These are the Headlines from The Miami Times, I’m T*******”. ~sigh~ I loved that job.

I actually contacted them last week after buying a copy of the paper. I noticed that everyone who was there last year was gone. I can only assume they have no writing staff left. Most newspapers get the majority of their content from a service called The Associated Press which is a news sharing organization. But no paper, except for the one I worked at gets 100% of their stories from that wire service. This paper needs help.

The Associate editor I helped hire is gone. The Managing editor is gone. The Editorial Assistant is gone. No one wants to work there. It has such potential. It has such a loyal readership. It’s the largest Black owned and operated newspaper in the South. The problem is, the Publisher. She’s just not right. No one wants to work for her.

I called them up and asked if they had ever developed written guideliness for freelance writers. I was almost sure they hadn’t since that was my next project on my to-do list when I worked there, and I was right. No one could answer any of my questions. ~sigh~

I remember my favorite story that I wrote about the transition of the poor blacks down to South Miami while developers are sweeping into the inner city to renovate. They, whoever “they” are, have torn down most of the housing projects and built new ones way down in South Miami, which is a totally different part of the world to those of us in North Miami. So anytime I run into someone who says, “Girl, I moved down South.” I know why.

There are so many more stories to be written about the plight of African Americans in this city. So many more questions to be answered. So much for us to learn. And with that paper, it’s readers read it out of HABIT. It’s a tradition to buy the paper every Wednesday if not just to see who is in the obituary section. The audience is there, ready and willing to read and listen.

Damn. I would love to work there- on the side. They can’t afford me now.

Speaking of being able to afford things, God is good.

Ever been so broke that you are scrounging around for coins to put gas in your car? Yeah, I haven’t seen a day like that since last summer but here I am again.

I get paid tomorrow, but um, the daycare bill is overdue -$400, plus my household maintenance bills are around $500, so that’s $900 already gone even before I get my check. ~shakes head~

But you know what? I can’t even get upset, because even though shit is so tight now that baby daddy wanna pull out the game, I STILL PAY ALL MY BILLS!

But I wish it wasn’t like this. I wish he would work with me instead of constantly trying to control me. But oh well.

On the friendship tip, I am going through a rough spot with my bestfriend Anna. We fight all the time like sisters but this time feels different. I know I’m difficult to deal with sometimes and extremely emotional and stubborn and set in my ways, but damn chick after more than 10 years of being my bestfriend- don’t assume things about me. All you have to do is ask. Shit. Everyone knows I’m honest. Why didn’t you just ask me?

I have a guy friend who is straight but he goes to gay clubs. “You’re gay if you go to gay clubs.” I told him. He says he’s not… I’m trying to believe him. At the heart of it, I don’t really care if you’re bi, straight or gay- just don’t lie to me.

I had a dream last night about my son.

I dreamt he told me that someone at his school was touching his booty. I freaked out in my dream and started screaming and yelling. I am so afraid that my sons will be molested. No for real, I’m not rational about it.

I’m afraid because I believe that homosexuality can be a result of a same sex sexual experience at an early age.

When I was really young and I knew nothing about sex I was…well, let’s say an older girl used me for sexual experimentation. She did it a lot. And now that I am older I still associate sexual pleasure with women although I don’t desire a relationship with a woman. When I see her, I see the guilt in her eyes. And I feel the guilt in my heart. She knows what she did to me.

And after that happened, when I was a little older, a man took advantage of me too. This affected me sexually as I got older. The first time I spent the night with my children’s father (this was when he and I were just friends) he tried me, ofcourse, but the way he touched me was the same way the man had touched me. I froze. He probably thought I was trying to play hard to get. But if he had looked a little closer, he would have seen the tears in my eyes as I remembered being that scared little girl who couldn’t believe what was happening to her.

But little girls grow up.

And little girls move on.

And little girls become young ladies.

And little girls become women.

Women who still need to heal from the scars created in their childhood.

Women who seem weak in some areas but remarkably strong in others.

Women who want more than anything to feel loved and appreciated and whole. But are afraid to admit it.

Women who STILL GET PHONE CALLS FROM THE GIRLFRIENDS OF MEN they have no interest in.

Why did this chick call me AGAIN two nights ago? I’m on the phone with my guy friend and I hear the click of my other line.

Blocked Call- says the caller ID.

I roll my eyes.

“Hold on,” I say to my friend.


“STOP CALLING MY FUCKING MAN!” she whispers into the phone.

I hang up. That nicca don’t even have a job, you can have his ass! damn hoe!

I return to my conversation and my phone clicks again.

I answer and this time it’s silence.

“Stop disrespecting my house because I don’t disrespect yours,” I say calmly and hang up.

And guess who called my phone last night TWICE? You got it, he did.

I didn’t answer.

They BOTH stalking me. I think they BOTH want me. ~shrugs~ It has happened before. But that’s another post.

I am way too nice sometimes. That comes from years of being kinda mean and stubborn and trying to force my beliefs on others, now I’m way more chill. I like to let people be themselves and I’ve learned that everyone can make their own decisions and they don’t need me to tell them what’s right or wrong. Besides, sometimes right and wrong is subjective.

Wow. I had no idea that I had this much to say….

Turn yr speakers up

Now this is all brand new to me.

I meet men all the time, no big deal right. Some I like, some I don’t. Some don’t like me. That’s okay. That’s how it works.

But never in all my 7 months of dating (since I started dating again this year) have I ran across a man who won’t stop calling me when I ask him to. Yes, Mr. Unemployed called me again last night around midnight and I didn’t answer the phone. While I don’t mind the late phone calls if you’re someone I’m interested in, I am NOT interested in him at all and it boggles my mind. I’m not used to this kind of drama.

Usually it works like this:

I meet a handsome guy. We exchange numbers. He calls. I call. He annoys me or shows similar traits as my Baby Daddy, then I politely say, “Please don’t call me anymore. I don’t think this is something I wanna do.”

He usually says, OK, and then I never hear from him again. Never had a problem before. Why now?

Maybe he was right when he said we come from totally different worlds. True, I was born and raised in the inner city, but uh, I wasn’t exactly involved in it. Never saw a drug until I was about to turn 17. Never been in a physical altercation before I met my Baby Daddy. I was never attracted to the boys on the block. I used to see them in the morning before school and think, “Damn they up early. They could be going to someone’s job if they wanted to.” That street life never appealed to me.

But THIS guy. This guy happens to be one of them.

Yep. I was talking to a hood. A white tee wearing- throw back jersey wearing-I’ll beat yo ass if you scuff up my shoes-tattoos on his neck and arms-tricked out Monte Carlo driving-I’m wasting money at the strip club-Hair breaded up-Baby Mama having-thug.

It was kinda exciting at first. I mean, to actually sit and talk with someone who knows all the street slang, puffs and chills hard- damn. What a difference! It’s been a minute since I did that. College thugs don’t exactly count.

But now…this dude won’t stop calling me and I’m not answering the damn phone. I don’t get it. You see so many issues with me, why the hell are you still calling? Oh, cuz you didn’t get no booty? Your bad, not mine. You shoulda kept your mouth closed a little longer dummy. I mean, does he think I’m gonna change my mind about him? What’s the deal for real? Chile please…

HEYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!! ~turning up my radio~

I love this song with Ciara and Missy Elliot! I STILL haven’t gotten the chance to go out and dance to it yet but I will. It’s gonna be so much fun!!!

I don’t understand how some people can work in silence. As soon as I get to work I immediately turn up my speakers and I never turn it off all day. Silence annoys me. I feel like someone is on my back if it’s too quiet. Plus, I don’t want anyone to hear my personal conversations as I get the emergency calls from my girls who want to tell me all about their latest dramatic episode.

What can I say? I love my job. I can’t believe I get PAID to do what I do. I mean, in elementary school english when I was learning the fundamentals of writing a letter, I never thought I could make a CAREER out of it.

Yes ladies and gentleman, I write letters for a living.

In fact, I’ve been working on this one letter for two days and it’s almost done. ~shakes head~

But it’s NOT that easy! Well, yes it is. I just have to take what my Director wants to say and convey it professionally with absolutely no grammatical mistakes. The tone must be just right and it must be easy to understand. After I write the letter a group of us look at it and make changes and then I look at it again to make more changes on how things could be said even better.

When we’re satisfied I create a database in Excel for all of the recipients and then do a mail merge to import the data. After checking each individual letter for mistakes in form, I can print them out and print out labels and then stuff envelopes and mail them. This process can take two full days if I’m working on other stuff too.

Ahh… the life of a glorified secretary!

Besides writing letters and supporting everyone, I’m learning something new and I am soo excited!

I’m learning about prospect research. See, development is about FUNDRAISING, but we aren’t doing cold calls asking for cash. We carefully devise a list of potential donors and then I research them using fancy programs and insider information. I’m looking for the value of their homes, how much they owe on their mortgages, if they have a family foundation. I’m looking into newspapers and public records trying to find out if the person is a philantropist. And if they are, then who do they give to and how much have they given in the past. I look for clues everywhere. Like on their personal checks. Some may have their alma mater on their check. So I’ll go to their school’s website and look at their annual giving report to see if they gave money to their school. If so, how much?

The whole point in all this research is to match the potential donor with a specific need for our organization. If I find that a person is interested in the arts and has given generously to other arts programs, I will recommend to my Director that the person be approached for a gift for OUR arts program. And if they have given $50,000 in the past, I’ll recommend asking for that same amount.

But we don’t ask for money off rip like that. No, no. no. We began by cultivating the potential donor. Which means, kissing their butts, acting like we’re friends. Getting to know them personally and making a personal connection with them. Finding some way to show them that we have something in common. It may be kids with similar ages, a favorite football team or a hobby. The thing we must remember is to be sincere. The fundraising industry is for people who genuinely like people. People won’t give to you if they don’t like you. I smile even when I don’t feel like smiling. And I act excited when I could care less.

But I must say, this job has opened my eyes to a completely new lifestyle. It’s like my standard of living has been raised. Becoming a millionaire is not far fetched to me. I’ve met plenty of them. They are people just like I am and I have realized that rich people stay rich due in part to their connections. They hire each other to do stuff. They scratch each other’s backs. Why would a 21 year old chick who JUST graduated with my same degree have a job that makes more than I do and that I would LOVE to have? Simple. She knows somebody who knows somebody who got her the job straight out of college. And she’s as cute and as sweet as pie.

I give myself some time. I’m not even in my 30’s yet. By the time I’m in my mid-30’s I hope to be able to turn around and help someone else move up. Some brown skinned chick with high hopes and little else to depend on.

Someone like me.

I just remind myself to sty focused, stay loyal to my family and keep showing love to those around me.

Success on a greater scale will come, Eventually.

Right now I’m enjoying my lil piece of the pie.