Just Another Girl On The IRT

Freestyle musings from a pseudo-intellectual hellcat in high heels with Huxtable aspirations in a ghetto fab world. Proudly sponsored by bouts of bitchy mood swings, one too many swigs of Turning Leaf, the letters F & U and the madness that is the Rotten Apple.

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Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

Work in progress. Neurotic. Daydream believer. Bookworm. Addicted to the arts. Stubborn. Spoiled rotten. Lefty in more ways than one. Pop culture whore. Equal opportunity hater. Kid at heart.

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Previous Posts Diggin' in the crates... The honor roll... Sidewalk talk... Gossip folks... Know the ledge... The writing's on the wall... Subscribe & syndicate... As the page turns... Recognize the real... Speak your piece... Credits...

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

They lootin! Awww, made ya look...

Separate and unequal...Thank goodness we live in a country that strives to keep its news coverage fair and balanced. How the hell do you just find bread and soda at a local grocer wading through chest-deep water amid a natural disaster? Meanwhile let a darkie do the same thing as the only means of survival and he's depicted as some sort of Negranus Exoticus that escaped the county fair. What gives here?

Oh, darn...I forgot. It's the complexion connection that'll afford that kind of leeway at a TV affiliate near you.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 12:34 PM | 4 said what?!

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Sidestepping the sophomore jinx

Class is back in sessionPreppies rejoice! Basked in the afterglow of critical acclaim off his stellar debut The College Dropout, a couple Grammy Awards and 3 million albums sold later, uberproducer and constant self-promoter Kanye West has traded in the scuffed backpack for the accoutrement of stylized magazine covers decked out in YSL three-piece suits. You've certainly come a long way, baby.

And now comes the inevitable question: can he do it again? Well, sort of. The now sole (and still relevant) flag bearer for the Roc breezed through the financial aid lines but doesn't quite ace his final exam on the long anticipated follow-up Late Registration. His willingness to stretch the boundaries of his sonic comfort zone is certainly ambitious enough as he handpicked Fiona Apple's producer - Jon Brion - as his chief collaborator. Together their partnership adds stark instrumentation to West's trademark sped-up soul samples.

Lyrically speaking, while West can deftly slide his fair share of witty one-liners into a verse or two, stepping his game up into the AP class of word smiths like his mentor Jigga among others still remains his Achilles heel.

Grade: B+
Must downloads: Addiction, We Major, Touch The Sky, Gold Digger, Drive Slow, Hey Mama, Gone.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 11:22 PM | 0 said what?!

Monday, August 29, 2005

I passed up Entourage for this?

I could've had a V8...With Kanye West sprawled languorously on the throne of self-promotional fellatio across all media outlets, you'd think the salary cap of pointless excess has strained past the breaking point. Damn, I couldn't even type that shit with a straight face. C'mon, who are we kidding here? Even a category 5 natural disaster can't derail an excuse for downtown VIP soirées and yacht arrivals. The time has come again for the tradition of lackluster performances, contrived hijinks and enough celebrity cockstroking to earn Astroglide corporate sponsorship - it's the 2005 MTV Video Music Awards in all its faux-"we're gonna fight, for our right...to paaaaaaarrrrtttty!" glory. The irony that a video channel which now relegates the bulk of its music video programming to the early morning hours just puts the nail in the coffin for how irrelevant the VMA's have become. Since they struck gold in the early 90's with original reality-TV programming, pop stars have taken a backseat to photogenic "real people" who agree to have their lives taped in exchange for their 15 minutes of fame. Remember the glory days of Courtney Love chucking a compact at Madonna, Tabitha Soren unable to hide her "please Black man, don't hurt me" expression alongside [enter random name] rappers for the uneasy fish-out-of-water Q&A, Alison Stewart making even idle red-carpet chatter seem earnest, Kennedy dishing mic techniques for the future Monica Lewinsky's of the world alongside then-mayor Rudy Giuliani or a blue-plate special of bitchiness served up from that grande dame of deadpan, Kurt Loder? Now we're stuck with Sway — monotonous Turban Boy, the ritalin study dropout Suchin Pak and John Norris proving that queers just wanna have fun even if they resemble a 50 yr. old meth addict on the way to a Frankie Goes To Hollywood tribute night at Culture Club.

Each year, I make a semi-coherent promise to myself not to watch, but like all disasters live and in Technicolor — you just can't seem to turn away. So I figured the real test would be to make it through this 3+ hr. testament to bloated ego while sober. But even that seemed too big a challenge, so I settled on taking a shot every time a morally bankrupt musician began their acceptance speech with "First and foremost, I'd like to thank my Lord and savior, Jesus Christ..."

Since they've uprooted the locale from NYC to Miami, the bullshit levels taken a seismic increase on the Richter scale of excess with everybody and their baby's mama spreading the Crockett & Tubbs-inspired motifs thinner than a g-string on South Beach. This year kept the Russ Mayer homage of Faster Asskissers, Kill, Kill! alive and well. And who better sums up style over substance than Puff Daddy, um, Puffy, er...P. Shitty...I mean...Doo Wah Diddy.

In spite of his empty promise "to witness something you've never witnessed before," the soggy opener coupled with a dance-off with Omarion, donating his six-figure costing watch to the United Negro Consumer Fund, the unnecessary fashion challenge that made over master pimp extraordinaire Magic Don Juan into a Dr. Claw knockoff right down to his own personal Mad Cat just highlighted the fact this entire production was one waterlogged mess.

Burning questions that remained unanswered:

How many arbiters did Kelly Clarkson have to gang bang in order to upset Gwen Stefani for Best Female Video? Shockingly, the hollaback girl was snubbed entirely in the major categories and had her clip wins banished to the minor leagues for Best Choreography & Art Direction. That diss and dismiss is bananas... B-A-N-A-N-A-S. I demand a recount.

When is Diddy going to finally allow Biggie to rest in peace? Mr. New Negro, this wasn't the Oscars and your bucktoothed ass sure ain't John Williams — so what's with the orchestral medley of Ready To Die? Yes, the remix of Warning with Snoop was kinda tight, but that aside: there's a time and a place for everything. It was appropriate seven years ago. Now the current generation has a blank stare because the Notorious B.I.G.'s known as "like, some fat guy that got shot, right?" and the rest of us who know better see you as the buzzard pecking the bones for the last shred of sympathy left. I know Jay-Z threw a Kanye-like tantrum backstage since he was snubbed from indulging in his favorite pastime - reciting old Frank White lyrics aloud.

Paging Missy Elliott: I know Bow Wow's about the size of a hobbit, but the game to 1, 2 step Ciara out of her draws could've been a bit more discreet. She had the Venus fly trap deathgrip on the poor girl's hand like whoa. Props on her two moonman wins, though. Lose Control was another wacky visual trip that was one of the few truly distinctive videos in contention all night.

Memo to Bang 'Em Smurf... er, I mean John Legend. Just how were you able to breathe with that belted Bebe blazer in a smedium on? And you really think the ploy from the Usher playbook of renting out an anonymous "supermodel" throws off the scent of gaydar wafting all around you? Come on now. The journey out the closet doesn't need to be so difficult. Just "take it slow, oh oh oh... this time just take it slow..."

Since Green Day grabbed the lion's share of moonmen for Boulevard of Broken Dreams, the headlines are likely to christen this as "the return of rawk!" but overall this was more of hip hop's retirement home with cameos from fossilized relics like MC Hammer, Grandmaster Flash and Luke.

Such a nice gesture of MTV to allow Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams to wave their goodbyes to the spotlight because once the Destiny's Child promotional farewell tour grinds to the final halt, it's a wrap for these two dead weights. You could almost see the light behind Beyoncé's dim eyes light up in anticipation. We're it not for the constant member merry-go-round, would we even give a damn? — the 30 second retrospective could've been canned entirely without the blink of an eye.

The good: In a word, Shakira. No extras, no backing troupe of dancers, just the kind of hip movements that are probably outlawed west of the Mississippi and electric chemistry with collaborator Alejandro Sanz on La Tortura. This bitch is fierce with a capital F. Isn't it telling that a Colombian pop singer has clearer enunciation than a gaggle of hometown high school dropouts masquerading as 'hood mobsters?

The Louis Vuitton Don & Jamie Foxx brought some much needed energy with a hyperactive rendition of Gold Digger. I could've done without Jamie losing steam to just rip open his shirt and segue into Hype Man-ville, but Kanye's stage presence can't be denied.

Jeremy Piven ribbing Lil' Kim (who apparently had to stoop to raiding Donatella's bargain basement in the same Versace duds Madonna sported 3 seasons ago in her GoodFellas layout) while presenting the award for Best Rap Video. "You know, she's about to go to the big house, for lying,'' he said. "I'd like to place a call to the warden and upgrade your situation.'' Don't think she'll want to hug that out, bitch.

Fat Joe going for the jugular in his ongoing feud with 50 Cent with the slyest jab of the night: "I feel so safe tonight, with all this police protection courtesy of G-Unit." Talk about defecating on ya microphone. Ice cold.

The bad & oh-so-ugly: Fitty gettin' all Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome in the wake of having his panties exposed for the world to see by Don Cartegena earlier. We all knew retaliation was imminent, but if you're wearing a man halter, pecs hoisted at full salute with Maidenform support in pleather pants coming off a wack ass medley with assorted lackeys and the phrase "pussy boi" is the best you can come up with as a retort? You might as well wave your wifebeater in surrender. What a cowardly backslide into the abyss of coonery.

There's no way the most bizarre one-man reenactment done "live" could go by without a mention...of course I'm referring to every father's worst nightmare: R. Kelly. Three words come to mind: What. the. fuck?! If I wanted to see the sequel to Shelly Garrett's Beauty Shop, I'll pay my way at the Beacon Theatre box office with the rest of the Mama, I Wanna Sing Because At Night I've Prayed And A Woman's Fed Up chitlin plays. Clearly the withdrawals from the underage poontang is driving this nigga over the edge since he was blatantly miming 4 different parts as if chapter 7 of Trapped In A Piss Soaked Closet was really high art.

Mariah Carey mistaking the National Hotel's poolside as the relocation of Miss America's talent competition. This vapid twit didn't disappoint with a gown straight outta Frederick's of Hollywood's seasonal liquidation sale and Tourette's hand motions. Her whole Krystal Carrington vibe is so yawn-inducing, I'd rather pluck my nose hairs while thumbing through a back catalog of Fingerhut. And when is the lie of "biggest-selling female artist ever" going to be untold? This heifer has more conflicting press releases on her sales stats than the department of Homeland Security.

And how fitting that one desperate tramp introduced another with the tragically overexposed Eva Longoria in a preshrunk ruffled one-piece that only put undue emphasis on her prepubscent figure. Didn't you see where trying to slink into J.Ho's double stick tape territory got Toni Braxton at the '01 Grammys? "I wasn't about to let a little hurricane keep me from wearing my bathing suit," - nice way to show your sensitivity towards the victims left in Katrina's wake. Honey, you're one more misstep away from selling oranges on the freeway...your clock's at 10:43 and counting.

Is it too much to ask that Tweedledee and Tweedledum better known as Bow Wow and Paris Hilton be forced into a South African landmine face-first? The display of carat jockeying over who had the better bling was textbook asshat pandering between a Teen Beat thug and a whorebag no one takes seriously.

Reggaeton must be stopped NOW. Was it really necessary to have Joey Crack give a long winded intro about a "historic showing" of the three leading stars in Don Omar, Tego Calderón and Daddy Yankee (who briefly put a charge into American Airlines Arena with his ubitiquous smash, Gasolina) and they didn't even perform together? And why waste props on these three when El General did this bigger and better already like a decade earlier? Haven't dancehall diehards suffered enough thanks to the likes of Lumidee and Nina Sky desecrating the Diwali & Coolie riddims respectively? Ricans will always find the loophole to be the proverbial roach in the cereal box every fuckin' time.

Who did Ashlee & Jessica Simpson really think they were kidding? Their attempt for street cred in "knowing what soul is all about...take it from two girls from the dirty South," rang about as hollow as the vacant space in between Jess's ears. These hoes must've had a peroxide drip because they wouldn't know rhythm & blues from a can of Bumble Bee.

Overall the best moments of the show were so fleeting, if you blinked you missed it. Like Paulina Rubio shaking off the crunk when Lil' Jon tried to get too cozy or Kelly Clarkson busting her ass during her ode to Waterworld in the closing performance. The air of unpredictability was unapparent in its premiere, so you can cross off sitting through a repeat devoid of the slipped 30-second delays and up-to-the-minute stage beef. The "who shot Suge" cliffhanger is more interesting than all the crumpers you can fit in a box. eMpTyV has gone the way of the Hunts Point crackhead - still delusional in believing their best days are still ahead when the evidence is clear they're more than a day late and a dollar short.

Rewatchability Grade: D

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link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 11:19 AM | 12 said what?!

Heroes in a half shell

Splinter taught them to be ninja teens (He's a radical rat!)
Leonardo leads, Donatello does machines (That's a fact, Jack!)
Raphael is cool but crude (Gimme a break!)
Michaelangelo is a party dude (Party!)
Got this in an e-mail from my homie that just moved to H-Town and laughed - HARD - for like 20 minutes straight. Didn't pick up on the Donatello connection before seeing this knee slapper of a Photoshop job.

I don't care how many records this cat's pushin now...there's just some things that are absolutes in this world. Mike Jones resembling a steaming pile of Taco Bell-induced diarrhea happens to be one of those certainties in life. And got the nerve to wonder why "back then they didn't want me." You're an ugly motherfucking bastard. Where's the detour in following that logic trail? I wouldn't fuck him with Paris Hilton's snatch.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 12:20 AM | 2 said what?!

Friday, August 26, 2005

Coffee ain't the only buzz in Seattle

An older woman smokes a marijuana joint at Hempfest in Seattle, Washington. More than 150,000 people were expected to attend at Myrtle Edwards Park on the waterfront, August 21-22. Who needs a grandma baking cookies when you could have one that'll roll a proper spliff?

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 8:40 PM | 0 said what?!

One isn't the loneliest number

I'm a get up and go kinda girl....if I can handle something on my own, I will. No hangups about dining alone, going to the movies solo or doing it up at a concert with just me, myself and I. Probably stems from being an only child and a latchkey kid to boot...being a loner doesn't bother me in the least. Matter of fact, some of the best times I've had out socially was when I wasn't part of a herd of oncoming estrogen. A lot of times I've done it out of choice but more often than not, too many chicks I'm chill with are afflicted with an outbreak that's contagious if you remain in their company for too long.

B.A.S.S. = Broke-Ass Sista Syndrome.

In metro cities nationwide, it's a rampant epidemic of Celebrity Fit Club proportions. How many women do you know with the funds to get their weaves tightened up, the crust off their heels sandblasted, talons buffed down to a manageable arc, is always front and center to every sample sale in a 20 mile radius yet never has money to go out for drinks much less to chip in for gratuity? I'm nowhere near the tax bracket I aspire to, but I know when to put the breaks on and try to balance my frivolous nature with the black and white reality of the ass whuppin' monthly bills put on my spur of the moment tendencies. Suffice to say, I've known too many women that don't heed the same method and it's caused a fair share of problems.

Broke as a joke...So now, dropping dead weight without warning nor explanation ain't shit but second nature to me. I don't mind showing my girlfriends a good time, but mistaking my kindness for weakness by abusing the privilege of an occasional treat to a habitual trend? Ain't no postmortems on this one - your ass is grass. Do try not to catch a splinter from catching one to the dome while the swinging door hits you on the way out. Far too many times than I like to recall, I've gotten stuck in with the "oh, you got this one right, girl?" bullshit. Or the one about having issues with payroll, so the check ain't hit the mail yet. Yeah right, bitch. I've just about heard it all.

And it's always the ones who don't have but two nickels to rub together in savings yappin' about doing it way big. For example this broad I grew up with around the way is the prototype of B.A.S.S. behavior. I've gotten stiffed on recouping money owed from the shows she's tagged along to, the spur of the moment stops in Burger Joint at Le Parker Meridien and even the $10.85 to put The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill back in her CD collection. I've chalked those past lapses in judgment up to a learning experience and let that go. So, she calls me up and we're comparing notes for next weekend's plans.

Her: So what are you doing Saturday?
Me: I don't know yet. Nothing really set in concrete. I might stay in, but that's always subject to change. You working?
Her: Yeah, they've got me on my usual shift at the hospital.
Me: Oh word? Alright then...
Her: How was your trip you went on?
Me: It was great. Had a nice time. Very relaxing. I'm looking into doing another getaway soon.
Her: Where you going this time?
Me: I was scouting New Orleans before this hurricane popped up on the radar, so back to eying the Caribbean again.
Her: Who are you going away with this time?
Me: No one, really. I'll probably just fly solo and do me.
Her: You crazy?! You heard about what's going on abroad. That ain't safe, girl.
Me: Is my name Natalee Holloway? Common sense ain't left in my overnight bag... and come to think of it, prices for Aruba are looking right.
Her: Why didn't you ask me?
Me: You got the money set aside?
Her: Well, um...
Me: My point exactly.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 4:06 PM | 2 said what?!

I see London, I see France

My own public wardrobe malfunctionAiry sundress & strappy sandals + hurrying along a sidewalk grating with underground train whizzing at full speed right underneath me = mortification on too many fuckin' levels to truly comprehend.

Having cab drivers, street vendors and passers-by on the corner of Chambers Street & West Broadway get up close and personal with the cut and color of my thong was never on my list of things to do before I clock out, but I guess now I can cross it off now everyone's seen my Lower Manhattan.

Another platinum hit added to the "how many whiskey sours can I throw back before this shit becomes a hazy recollection?" playlist of my life.

Alas, even in the face of utter embarrassment - there's always a silver lining. At least it didn't happen during my bikini wax offseason.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 3:51 PM | 0 said what?!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

For sentimental reasons

Happy AnniversaryToday would've been my parents' 36th wedding anniversary. Although my Dad isn't physically here anymore, it's still as important to me to acknowledge the date as it was when I put together homemade cards with glitter and sea shells glued on the front. I know he's chillin' with a slice of black cake, a cup of punch a creme and swaying while Tony! Toni! Toné! croons in my Mom's honor. It's crazy how much times have changed where quickie hitches to the altar and even faster dissolutions have become the rule and not the exception. It almost seems like a miracle to remain with the same person for longer than 5 years nowadays. If I happen to get lucky and stumble upon true love one day, hope it lasts just a fraction as long as their marriage did. *raising my glass of Champale and sending up a silent prayer* Salud.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 4:49 PM | 10 said what?!

Pageant pretenses among starched shirts

Another day, not enough dollarsSo I got in at 9:25 this morning... okay, make that 10:03....alright, I fess up. I really sneaked in around 10:30-ish because I got carried away with hitting the snooze button for just "15 more minutes," had some serious hair issues of the "how in the fuck am I gonna detangle this mop in under a half hour!" kind and the Lexington Avenue lines have been screwed worse than Valerie Plame since this past weekend, so I was just caught in a torrential downpour of fuck-ups before even getting annoyed at the usual beatnik jerkoff at Starbucks who wants the "decaf Komodo Dragon Blend, half skim, splash of soy, double shot of espresso, foam in a separate cup."

Once I've gotten my A.M. ritual of checking my Hotmail, AOL & Yahoo e-mail accounts, scouting the MLB division standings/checking my horoscope in the Daily News and turning up my desk stereo to drown out the schizo goombah sitting behind me, the routine of pretending to look busier than I really am would kick into full gear. Today, my usual rundown was derailed when the company summons went out at exactly 11:00. The 2nd quarter staff awards were going to be handed out downstairs later this afternoon. Oh joy. I look forward to these pointless pats on the back to the brownnosing crybabies who pocket high-level salaries and do a fraction of the work with about as much gusto as my next pap smear.

Playing it off like I was on a call and the Best Copy Maker in a Pocket Protector competition just happened to slip my mind didn't fake out my supervisor either, since in mid-spoonful of yogurt, he poked his head into my cubicle and gave his famous "I'm trying to be chipper, so just nod politely and play along" Beetlejuice grin to remind me that my presence was required in the main conference room along with the rest of disinterested minions. Shit.

There I was, sandwiched in between Carter* (the resident Al Reynolds with more bounce to the ounce in his runway/corridor strut), Bart* (as Wonder bread as they come, raging brown sugar fetish and the uneasy aura that he was one twitch away from shooting up the entire building) and Natalie* (chatty brunette who's so Hylan Blvd, I oughta nickname her "landfill," completed the Lindsay Lohan meal plan to morph easily into the Abercrombie & Fitch-swathed clique of the other Beckys in my unit). Son of Sam's heir apparent is totally fixated on my boobs while Carter and Nat are deep in conversation about whether velvet's making a comeback this fall. And I'm trying to rationalize the possibility of sleeping with my eyes open.

Ow! The fuck?!

I realized Nat just nudged me in the ribs and I'm ready to clock this bitch on reflex alone when it dawned on me that I must've let out a snore that was a bit too audible with everyone pretending to pay attention.

Whoops. My bad.

After feigning "ooh, I want that!" interest in the ultra lame prizes that went to the victors in the winner's circle this time around, I waited for the names which became all too familiar in these forced congratulatory settings to claim their moments of glory.
Kathy Brubecker*, come on down!
Matthew Ogden*, step right up!
Dan Himmelstein,* job well done!
ZzzzZzzzZzzzZzzzz.....The random idiot's spotlight at the office podium went a bit like this:

You love me! You REALLY love me!"Thank you! Oh! Thank you! I can hardly conjugate verbs! I feel so blessed! And this statue - it's so suspiciously phallic! Oh, thank you again! I just want everyone to know that even in my wildest AA meetings, I never would have imagined that this could ever validate my mediocrity. And to the other suck-ass nominees, I want each of you to know how totally wonderful your lackluster applause makes me feel right now!

You know when they first told me I was nominated, I just had to take a Xanax and think about how great my experiences have been. I guess it all just makes me feel kinda special...and a bit misty. Down there.

You know, there are so many ass-kissing leeches to thank! First off though, I want to pay off the senile old farts of the branch offices, who looked deep within their lint-encrusted navels before giving me this fantastic award! Also, I want to thank Jesus, for being such a powerful force in my life. And to Mom, who taught me to take life by the fifth of bourbon. And finally, to all the bosses I slept with - I couldn't have done it without you!

Thank you America, and good night!"

As we all filed out, the division director walked alongside me and asked if I had my name submitted for a mention yet. I politely told her no, not to my knowledge. She smiled and said, "well, I know you're up to the challenge... your time will come" and patted me on the shoulder with those pearls of wisdom.

A plastic yellow star with an array of gift certificates to Shit 'R Us all at my disposal. Who said climbing the corporate ladder doesn't have its perks? I'm more determined than ever to have my moment in the sun while I'm reaching for interoffice immortality. One file folder at a time.

(* names changed to protect the ignorant, speech credited to Chickenhead.com.)

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 3:26 PM | 3 said what?!

Saturday, August 20, 2005

He shoots, he scores!

The end of innocenceLooking for a comedy that's both raunchy enough for the guys but still sweet enough to make the chicks happy? Go see The 40-Year Old Virgin.

It's the best film out of the screwball sex farce genre since The Girl Next Door (a flick which should have done better business at the box office) with a talented cast headlined by The Daily Show's Steve Carell, Paul Rudd (Clueless, The Object Of My Affection, Anchorman), Romany Malco (Weeds) and the fantastic Catherine Keener (Being John Malkovich, Full Frontal).

Thanks to the genius of Judd Apatow (behind the criminally slept-on series Freaks & Geeks), Andy Stitzer, as played by Carell, isn't written off as a bumbling idiot who's still waiting to be deflowered this late in the game. These two were smart to mold Andy into a character that the audience can genuinely like and identify with so that you are never laughing at Andy, but rather laughing at the situations Andy finds himself in. He's an all-around decent guy - weird fixation on action figures aside, he just hasn't figured the social skills to move past first base.

The talked-about chest waxing scene made me laugh so hard, I almost peed myself in the theater.

"Kelly Clarkson!"

It's naughty, bawdy and filled with potty humor, but underneath it all lies a tender love story that's universal. Ben Stiller, you better be looking over your shoulder because there's major competition for title of Goofiest Man in Cinema now.


link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 7:56 PM | 7 said what?!

Bring back the pain

Everybody hates ChrisNew Rule: Chris Rock can never EVER be booked as a guest on Real Time With Bill Maher again. I was hella psyched when I checked the show schedule and saw that he would finally be on the roundtable panel for the midseason premiere. It turned out to be like sitting through the Super Bowl, the appearance was all hype, no substance. Instead of chiming in with actual relevant commentary, all this bucktoothed bastard could do was turn into a shrill sycophant complaining about gas prices.

Say what?! The man who made so much sense breaking down the myopic viewpoints of blue state vs. red state thinking during Never Scared? The comic who actually had something a bit deeper to contribute to Comedy Central's political coverage during the presidential campaign push of 1996?

Seriously, who laced his Kool-Aid with that bad heroin? The whole episode bombed worse than a Bad Company/Head Of State double feature.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 12:10 AM | 8 said what?!

Friday, August 19, 2005

Hustle & Blow

I was researching a topic on the web with ESSENCE.com as a pit stop in collecting some info at the office after the population of merry co-workers in my department filed out to get their weekend started right, when an online survey caught my eye. By now the name Karrine Steffans is as well known a trademark of hip-hop debauchery as Freaknik, so I couldn't help but notice the multiple choice poll question asking for feedback.

More than half of the respondents hailed Ms. Steffans's autobiography, Confessions Of A Video Pigeon — er, I mean...Video Vixen as a "survivor's story."

Hm. At first I couldn't quite wrap my mind around being in agreement with such a sizable majority of sisters who were ready to bestow Bronze Star-worthy praises, but after reading passages like this:
Glass vases filled with marbles crashed all around us as he began tossing linens from the bed. As the marbles scattered, we laughed in unison ... I remember the exact moment that I first laid on my back for him ... My legs were wrapped around his waist and just before his body was to merge with mine, I noticed his upper right chest. On it was a tattoo with the words "Pain is Love."
Introducing Superhead...The testament to Ms. Steffans's will to overcome insurmountable odds is clearly evident in her eagerness to trade coochie for Gucci. Finding that inner strength to bed Ja Rule, Irv Gotti, Jay-Z, Damon Dash, Shaquille O' Neal, Bobby Brown, Fred Durst, Vin Diesel, Usher, P. Diddy, Dr. Dre, Ice-T, Xzibit, DMX, among many others takes a level of fortitude not found in your garden-variety video ho.

Confessions is hardly the first journey through the inner sanctum of the show, the after party and the hotel — Pamela Des Barres covered the basics of groupiedom in her 1987 narrative during the free wheeling era of the late 60's and 70's, I'm With The Band. Take a trip to the Big Apple, La-La Land, Sin City, or the ATL and you'll find gorgeous women at a dime a dozen who've had their dreams scattered like trash in a back alley while trying to break into the biz. However, the main twist to a time honored tale of a young girl with fractured sense of self who stumbles into the Babylon of entertainment, looking for love in all the wrong places is it's the maiden voyage for a woman to kiss & tell so publicly in the realm of rap. The shopworn song and dance of a hooker seeing the error of her ways and turning her life around is the stuff of Oscar nominations and the supposed nip & tuck to spruce up such an uninteresting topic is this being acknowledged as the first Blaxploitation version to hit the mainstream, with herself cast as the example to starry-eyed little brown girls watching the gyrating bodies on BET, all that glitters isn't gold.
"Where young girls once aspired to be models and ballerinas, they now aspire to be hip-hop video girls. I sat down to write this book because I think my story can serve as a warning to anyone aspiring to the kind of life I have led.

Like so many young girls, I grew up wanting to be famous. I used to watch television and dream about the Beverly Hills lifestyle seen in all my favorite film. I reached most of my goals, but I didn't do it in a conventional way. I did it using the oldest trick in the book. Sex.

I was known as 'Superhead,' the insatiable lover of many Hollywood stars, sports figures, and some of music's most influential performers and executives.

My hips have swayed and popped on MTV while I danced on tabletops and poolside in some of your favorite videos.

The top reason a woman finds herself in a rap video, sprawled undressed over a luxury car while a rapper is saying lewd things about her, is a lack of self-esteem. No one who values, loves, or knows herself would allow herself to be placed in such a degrading position."
— excerpt from the introduction
The chickenhead's guide to the rap game...You only need to take one glance at the suggestive book cover to see that theory go up in smoke. Reclining on a modular chair, weavealicious with blond locks splayed over one shoulder, glossy lips pursed and clad in an impossibly tight bodice cut low enough to give an eyeful of heaving silicone.

Karrine Steffans, post-feminist icon? Riiiiiiiiight. As much as she waxes poetic on independence, self-love and respecting your body to women during every promo stop, her come-hither pose flies in the face of her disingenuous stance.

She uses her troubled childhood as the launching pad for the downward spiral into the self-destructive behavior that has made for juicy tidbits which kept urban message boards buzzing all summer. And the early years of her life reads as a Lifetime movie of the week: emigrated to the U.S. at 10 from St. Thomas, raped at 13, stripper in L.A. at 16, moved in with veteran rapper Kool G. Rap at 17 — 10 years her senior — with whom she had an abusive relationship that produced a son. Her upbringing was certainly tragic since she still is only at the ripe age of 26, but are we to give passes to everyone who's come from a tattered family structure? Where is the line drawn from blaming any and everyone for their life's missteps and taking responsibility for your own actions?

The proud trick turned authorInstead of seeking professional help to work through these myriad of issues, she freely made the choice to be a skillful jump-off. She leapfrogged onto the casting couch merry-go-round with eyes wide open. Far from being empowered and "owning her sexuality," she's simply a coward. Too scared to look at the damaged young woman staring at her in the mirror and flaunting her celebrity misadventures by name dropping the entire Def Jam roster as recipients of her oral talents.

And nothing sells like airing dirty laundry. Confessions has now replaced The Coldest Winter Ever as the ghetto read du jour. It has remained on The New York Times top 10 nonfiction list for the past 5 weeks since its release in late June. Big screen adaptation rights are in the works. Gossip rags have reported that a reality series may be hitting the airwaves faster than a quickie hand job. It's also interesting to note that while Steffans is spending so much time now denouncing the lifestyle she chased without abandon and her contempt for hip-hop on the whole, guess who her book is strategically marketed to? She's gone from Superhead to Superfly in pimping the 'hood for publicity.

While her overnight celebrity may appear glossy from the outset, all the press releases and money in the world can't earn you respect. What is she going to tell her 7-year old son when kids taunt him at the playground with the cold, hard truth? When he finds out why he was left for months at a time while his mama bounced from coast to coast, sleeping with anyone at the drop of a hat, getting drunk, popping ecstasy pills and servicing second-rate rappers? When he comes across her scantily clad photos proudly emblazoning Superhead across her surgically enhanced chest? If he ever happens to stumble on her taped romp with porn star, Mr. Marcus?

This behavior doesn't scream survivor to me. COAVV is the culmination of all the anger, dissatisfaction and resentment not towards the men who used and discarded her once the pillow talk was over. It's with herself for not having the discipline to take the road less traveled, for not using what's between her ears instead of what's between her legs to further her "career." Superhead's old enough to decipher right from wrong and made up her mind that it no longer mattered, because her lifelong abusers held the chips and she consciously succumbed to it. She submitted and accepted it since her feelings of self-worth were nonexistent and instead of turning that negative around, she opted to wallow in it, relish in it and it became her reality. Every day women struggle with their own private pain and somehow manage to wade their way to the light at the end of the tunnel without delving into degradation. I tip my hat to these unsung heroes for they define what being a survivor is truly all about.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 8:45 PM | 11 said what?!

Blood on the dance floor

This time it's personal"Bring it on. You want a dance-off, come on up here. I'll give you a dance-off."Kelly Monaco

I don't know about ya'll, but in my neck of the woods − those are fighting words. If you thought the little soap star that could robbed crowd favorite John O'Hurley of his rightful place as winner of ABC's sleeper summer hit, Dancing With The Stars like I did, get ready because these two are back to settle the score.

This rhythmless hussy tried to be slick by camouflaging her less-than-impressive footwork by keeping the costumes short, the plastic pageant smile aflutter and recruiting every housewife and twitchy queen in General Hospital's fan base to cast their ballots in her favor. She'll have to 1,2 step her way to a repeat win without the help of the clueless judges who by some brain fart awarded three perfect 10's the last time around.

I'm thinking redemption is a-coming and J. Peterman has the lovable moxie to awaken the ghosts of Jennifer Grey's career to pull off a killer paso doble. Olé!


link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 2:29 PM | 3 said what?!

"I like backpacks and I cannot lie..."

Ohmigod, Becky!
Look at that Target commercial. It's so sterile... and Disney.
I poured out some Crooked I in mourning when Ice Cube traded a parched jheri curl with an "fuck the police, I ain't scared of you, Whitey" scowl to shape-ups with a smile in order to solidify his crossover in Hollywood. I've watched the "you have to see it to believe it" novelty of Snoop Dogg loungin' with Lee Iacocca on the 17th hole in a weird juxtaposition of Pimps Up, Caddies Down for GM, but this may just be the the cherry on the sundae of them all.

Sir Mix-A-Lot has now traded booties for cooties.

An anthem for the splendiferous wonder that is the Black woman's derriere is now a soundtrack to snot-nosed brats nagging parents nationwide in anticipation for back to school.

Let us now bow our heads in silent prayer.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 12:46 PM | 1 said what?!

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

"We always hang in a buffalo stance..."

As if the internet wasn't already flooded with the dimmest bulbs on the block thanks to Rent-A-Center extending an all-access web pass to the 'hood, all hell broke loose in Richmond, VA when a district school liquidation of used Apple iBooks for $50 turned into Monday Night RAW at the Raceway.

Among the highlights of this fire sale turned embarrassment that left 17 people injured:
"This is total, total chaos," said Latoya Jones, 19, who lost one of her flip-flops in the ordeal and later limped around on the sizzling blacktop with one foot bare.

"They bum rushed the gates and I was knocked over, fighting for my life," said an exasperated Alice Jemerson, an elderly lady. "All these people were on top of me."

Blandine Alexander, 33, said one woman standing in front of her was so desperate to retain her place in line that she urinated on herself.

Jesse Sandler said he was one of the people pushing forward, using a folding chair he had brought with him to beat back people who tried to cut in front of him.

4-year old Apple laptop = $50
Going rate scalpers offered the lucky ones that managed a purchase = $200
Making an ass of yourself in the name of landing a bargain = priceless.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 6:14 PM | 4 said what?!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The artist now known as "Who gives a shit?"

We now interrupt your regularly scheduled programming with this now breaking news story.

Sean Combs has undergone another name change.

The producer/record exec/"rapper"/restaurateur/fashion designer/mogul already known in entertainment circles as Puff Daddy, Puff, Puffy and P. Diddy wants to you call him by his new moniker.


I personally think it doesn't have the same je ne sais quoi of Career Killer, Sample Maestro or Family Court Defendant. Note to woodchuck: pseudonyms aren't chosen, they're given by others. Only losers give themselves nicknames and constantly spin it into something press worthy. Doesn't he have something better to occupy his time? Like hiring a ghost writer to pen another ode to J.Ho, digging up Biggie's remains to auction on eBay or finding new ways to rip off of Russell Simmons (like the stench wafting from the train wreck that is The Bad Boys of Comedy)? The stress of lumping up a girlfriend with no backbone (how's the broken nose healing, Kim Porter?) clearly is putting P. Shitty in an early tailspin of nutty niggum-itis.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 4:05 PM | 5 said what?!

Monday, August 15, 2005

Laughing gas

Cry me a river...Over $3.00 a gallon?! How am I going to do all my errands at one strip mall? Egads, this is a travesty!

America, get the fuck over yourselves. It's a dirty fact of life called inflation. So deal with the penance of cause and effect.

We've got more pinheads on the road with gas guzzling 4-wheel drives (a.k.a. "fuck-you-mobiles," so succinctly coined by Bill Maher) that drain what little resources we have available with $50+ fill ups at your neighborhood station whose major purpose for having a sport utility vehicles is for cruising the streets blasting the new Green Lantern mix tape.

The resident poser in a cowboy hat who got reselected for another term by our red-state brethren was as good at drilling productive oil sites for Arbusto as Paris Hilton is at keeping her sexcapades off camera. Why is the American public outraged at the government now?

The leader of the world's "last superpower" whose family fortunes were made through being leading refinery pimps throughout the Lone Star state wouldn't have any incentive to invading a sovereign nation that posed no threat to us albeit being an obvious oil-rich source in the Middle East. Nah, couldn't be!

Have we also forgotten that the dimwits at GMC, Ford, Chrysler and Buick were vehemently opposed to innovation that would've put the United States in the driver's seat (pun definitely intended) for fuel-efficient engineering? Their greed and determination to keep us reliant on oil instead of alternatives set the stage for this quagmire at a pump near you. While the Japanese sits back and laughs at our willingness to keep our heads up our collective asses, the gap between our sinking currency value in comparison to the Euro and rapidly rising costs of living put us further behind the 8-ball.

Doesn't it give you the warm and fuzzies knowing our soldiers are fighting a just cause against the real enemy? Who's up for putting some 22's on a Hummer now? Anybody? Hmm?

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 2:20 PM | 0 said what?!

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Extreme Makeover | Blog Edition

I think the Aqua baby tendencies in me got to kickin' up since I was bored with the prior look, so a complete visual overhaul was due. It's a bit Sweet Valley High - pink bunnies and all, but it's hard to find polished layouts that are still feminine without kittens or some other furry shit all over it. Besides, Happy Bunny has edge, so screw you. Anyhow, I'm keeping the plastic on my upholstery for the time being with these new digs. Comments, wisecracks & obligatory jokes can be inserted below.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 3:33 PM | 0 said what?!

Friday, August 12, 2005

Catch A Rising Star

These are a couple of digital clicks I took of Leela James at Tower Records' Greenwich Village branch locale on June 27th during an album signing/in-store performance on which I previously wrote a review about here. But aside from soaking up the soulful sounds, showing up early for an eagle eyed view does have its privileges, so why not share the fruits of my two-hour-stand-in-high-heeled-boots labor?

I finally got around to finishing off my camera's memory stick and actually reading the damn manual, so I'm snap happy like hell. Think I just found my new obsession to keep me busy... Enjoy!

Leela @ Tower RecordsLeela @ Tower Records
Leela @ Tower RecordsLeela @ Tower Records
Leela @ Tower RecordsLeela @ Tower Records
Leela @ Tower RecordsLeela @ Tower Records
Leela @ Tower RecordsLeela @ Tower Records

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link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 3:15 AM | 4 said what?!

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Postcards from the edge

I can be a pretty understanding broad most of the time. Patient to a certain point, willing to compromise even. However one thing I absolutely detest is when dudes refuse to own up to their jackass ways and scramble for wriggle room out of every situation instead of simply taking the "L." So an acquaintance [translation: on/off fuck buddy I deluded myself into thinking I was in a relationship with for way too long than I care to admit] calls me today at work after ignoring my last few calls just to "see how I'm doing." Negro please. Nearly two full weeks passed since I returned back from vacation and you usually only call for one of three reasons:
So don't try to come at me sideways with nonsense....I'm onto you like Lo Jack, quit frontin'. Or maybe it's because your boy flew the coop yesterday and you wanna compare notes on how many details I'm withholding (Oh yeah, it's that bastard... dum dum da dum dum dah! The plot thickens...)

In any case, the moody wench bubbling just under the surface couldn't help but retort, "I'm broke, all outta useless factoids and reloaded with 3 new vibrators, the fuck you want?" Of course that opened up the floodgates of "what's your damn problem?!" peppered with the annoyance de rigueur, "is it that time of the month?" No bitch, I'm not riding the crimson wave — I'm just sick of your shit. The main thing that was buggin' me was that the entire time I was away, even though I had no mobile service whatsoever for 8 days straight... who was one of the first people I dialed up once we touched down in Miami for a connecting flight home just to say hello? Yep, you guessed it. Subsequent calls went unanswered so I was like, whatever. Then he finally got back to me on Monday morning to do him another favor, I politely told him to go fist himself.

I was pegged unreasonable since I couldn't understand all the stuff going on in his life at the moment with his daughter being in the hospital. Now hold up, before you jump to conclusions and brush me with the "stop whining, you heartless bitch" brush... I'll have it duly noted that his kid being in the hospital has never stopped him from making one too many inconsequential requests before, so I really don't think I'm asking too much by just simply picking up the damn phone to see if I was still breathing.

And the part that really got my panties in a bunch was the fact that he was using a child as just the right ploy to deflect my anger and put me immediately into "oops, I did it again" mode. And damn if that shit didn't work...I inwardly cringed and felt guilty for being vexed. After thinking it over for a millisecond, I pushed the Shoebox Greetings pangs to the side and got even more pissed. His little girl stays in my prayers constantly, but should that negate my reasoning to think he's being an ass for the umpteenth time? Why the hell can't you just apologize for neglecting me without trying to clean things up with the jedi mind tricks? Forget this shit....lose my number and don't bother poppin' up outta the fucking clear blue yonder to start this back & forth emotional chess game again.

That is until *I* start humping the corner lamppost in frustration, and um... maybe we can negotiate new terms or something.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 5:28 PM | 0 said what?!

Hold the goddamn croutons, buddy!

I'm having a moment of silence for something very near and dear to me that is now gone for good.

And I'll take... with me the memories..Hale & Hearty Soups locations citywide have now taken Green Goddess dressing off the salad menu. Oh the humanity of it all! What am I gonna top my field greens, avocados, tofu, mushrooms, sultanas, carrots, cucumbers, bacon, mozzarella, tomatoes & corn concoctions with now?! No, I'm sorry Asian Peanuts, Southwest Chipotle or any other weird ass Iron Chef recipe you cribbed to try out on the customers just WON'T DO.

The carnivores reading this probably think I've gone off the deep end, but lemme put this in perspective for you. The chemical dependency that is Hidden Valley Ranch for the rest of the toothless yokels in America is what this creamy confection of a topping was for me. Besides, the title alone is so kitschy meets Gladiator, how could I resist? Lunch hour will never be the same again. What is we gon' do?

Bait & Switch: Passing by the Burger King on my nightly stroll to the train station, I noticed that BK's rolled out this new TENDERGRILL™ Chicken Sandwich... which to the looks of the poster is just the Chicken Whopper with a nip and tuck. Do these corporate bitches at the top think we can't figure out what's really hood? Putting grill in the name doesn't make it healthy...you're still liable to go into cardiac arrest soon after licking the traces of dijon mustard left on the wrapper.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 2:50 PM | 3 said what?!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Dreams deferred on a payment plan

Yesterday my best guy pal at work rang me up before my lunch hour to break the news that he was ditching this 9-to-5 in favor of greener pastures and his resignation was handed in effective immediately. Like a novice messing up the flow on the turntables, I wasn't prepared for the finality of that tidbit. Yeah, I knew he was unhappy, but hell aren't we all? It became almost redundant to complain since we hadn't really done much outside of paying lip service in constant bitchfests on company hierarchy. I can't hate on him making power moves...it's a good look for him professionally. Although I can't quite say it with feeling just yet, I'm happy for him and he has my support in whatever choices he makes.

By the time it came to do the obligatory — and dreaded goodbye this afternoon at my cube, we both were trying to keep it together and myself in particular didn't wanna be such a girl about it. Last thing I needed was to start blubbering right there in the office like a guest who caught the bad end of a Dr. Phil tongue lashing. The weird part was in the middle of all this sentimentality, there was something I tried to keep on the low reflected not only in my eyes, but in his too that freaked the hell outta me after an I'm gonna miss clownin' with your silly ass hug turned into an Um, ain't he squeezing me a bit too long now? embrace. I know what you're thinking, don't worry...I'm getting to that part in a sec.

Okay, I admit...he's hella cute and we share many of the same interests and we get along like peanut butter and chocolate in a Reese's cup. Why didn't we try dating? Well, there were three major obstacles: 1) we worked together in the same dept. 2) I was involved with (and um....still kinda) with a friend of his that also used to work here. [That's a long ass story I'll reserve for the next peek into the barren desert that is my love life].

Besides, not hooking up automatically extended the warranty on our friendship for another 3 years... but right there in that moment of "keep in touch" and "I'll miss you", we were both *here* on the brain wave communication. I should've fucked you when I had the chance. Goddammit.

Now let's see, where the heck was I? Just replaying that in my head is enough to get a broad sidetracked like a mutha. Changes in other people's lives always seem to spur a session of introspection and this time was no different. His exit got to me reflecting on exactly where I am and where I'm headed right now in my own life. I can remember seeing expectations through rose-colored glasses and writing down my life's script definitively as if it would function like your average to-do list and I could cross off my goals one by one in succession like the future was one trip to Target.
Surprise! This is the true story of 1 now jaded chick, picked to have her preconceptions reevaluated and expectations tumbled like a rinse cycle only to find out what happens when life forces you to make Spanish Fly with just lemons and sugar water. That's some real ass shit. The REAL WORLD. I mean, whatever happened to what I wanted to do before time TiVo'd the clock forward to worrying about mortgages, due dates, balance amounts and all this other shit you don't consider when the teacher asks, "so what are you going to be when you grow up?" Why did I get so accustomed to just getting a paycheck instead of doing what makes ME happy? When did I let a steady, but unfulfilling position lull me into a false sense of security?

If anyone would've told me I would wind up in an industry I really could give a rat's ass about, forcing myself to get up in the A.M. and feeling like I've turned into the weary specimen that dredge through rush hours daily, put on the wheel not knowing how to get off – well, Miss Cleo had to have a refund somewhere for getting her scam readings mixed up....but alas, here I am at a crossroads not really sure if too much time has passed by to still get out there and take hold of my still vivid aspirations pulling off at the corner of Get Off Your Ass & Make Your Own Destiny or just continue to go through the motions to pay the bills. Why is it so terrifying to let go of everything you know, all your phobias mentally shackling you to a standstill and just go for it? Not to just talk about it, but to be about it?
What you waiting
What you waiting
What you waiting
What you waiting
What you waiting for?
Tick-tock, tick-tock
Tick-tock, tick-tock
Take a chance you stupid ho
I'm still trying. Still fighting. If Holyfield can keep at it being 107 yrs. old, I don't think the shot clock's quite down to zero. How to get from point A to point B, hell who knows? I haven't figured out the map quest route, but I can't stop. Won't stop. Not yet.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 6:44 PM | 6 said what?!

Why slavery isn't like rooting for the Yankees

It's almost become a rite of passage for every quasi-minority group in America that seeks instant "street credibility" for having their plight given their rightful byline in the sun never fail to piggyback onto homegrown slavery as a common link in six degrees of separation. First it was the well-heeled feminists burning their bras in protest, then the gays and now PETA. Yes, the organization known for terrorizing fashion shows, drawing the ire of little old ladies in full-length minks with red paint splotches and deifying Pamela Anderson for expanding the boundaries of her overexposed ass on billboards rather than being caught dead in fur have become the newest contestant on a little game show I like to call "Pimp My History." Black people have seen their narratives tricked out more often than dubs sittin' on 22's in the name of "but, but...we've suffered too!"

As a stop on a national tour, PETA wheeled their exhibit, "Are Animals The New Slaves?" at the green on site in New Haven, CT under the guise of "spreading awareness" on animal rights in the most controversial of ways.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, a national animal rights group, posted giant photographs of people, mostly black Americans, being tortured, sold and killed, next to photographs of animals, including cattle and sheep, being tortured, sold and killed.

"I think it is an apt comparison," said Josh Warchol, 26, of Wallingford, president of the Southern Connecticut Vegetarian Society, which is aligned with PETA.
Animal crackersExcuse the hell outta me, but how fucking dare you?! You think the Middle Passage was some kind of exclusive club everyone was itching to get into like Bungalow 8?! The capture, dehumanization and atrocities committed on an entire race of people cannot be compared in any way, shape or form to cattle headed to the slaughterhouse, you walking shitheads! Maybe the memo got lost on the Pony Express, but if we don't embrace phrases like "working class" anymore, you bet your ass the whole "3/5ths of a person" mindset is just as archaic in spite of what was written in the goddamn Constitution, so trying to correlate the natural fucking cycle of the food chain to HUMAN BEINGS being brutalized goes far beyond the line of being merely insulting. Could you imagine what would happen if an entire showing of skinned rabbits were shown alongside victims of Auschwitz as some kind of parallel to the Holocaust on display for public consumption? The shit would be shut down faster than you can spell the Anti-Defamation League. The brazen disregard for our history is outrageous and offensive to the Nth degree, but even more disheartening will be the silence of the so-called "voices of the community" that'll raise hell over trifling ass shit like Pepsi dropping Ludacris' contract over lyrical content (how you doin', Hustle Simmons?) but on something as incredulous as this, nary a peep will be made.

And while I've got my fist raised atop my angry Black bitch soapbox, exactly when are screenwriters going to stop perpetrating the most annoying Oscar ploy in the book? The hooker/exotic dancer with a heart of gold. This shit even reads like a damn farce. Funny how when women of color are cast in the glow of the red light district, they're the potty mouthed wild child junkies with more baby daddies than Larry King's had wives, but plop a Rachel McAdams, Keira Knightley, Natalie Portman or any other fresh scrubbed ingenue in the same role and they're bucking for Best Supporting Actress. What. the. fuck. ever.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 3:20 PM | 1 said what?!

Monday, August 08, 2005

It's so hard to say goodbye... to a pioneer

Another day, another icon lost. John H. Johnson was a trailblazer not only to our community and in publishing circles, but the world as a whole – PERIOD. His determination to see us depicted in a positive way as a counterpoint to what was available in the mainstream revolutionized how we could invision ourselves. What Black family didn't have a back issue of Ebony on their coffee tables? Who can deny thumbing through Jet while on line at the supermarket? How long was it before M.A.C., Maybelline, Prescriptives & Cover Girl decided to throw their hats into to the ring for a more realistic shade selection of cosmetics when Fashion Fair already laid the groundwork years ahead? Men with his sense of vision only come around once in a generation if you're lucky. There's a long list of entrepreneurs who owe a great debt of gratitude to the inroads that were made thanks to Mr. Johnson. Farewell to a legend.

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link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 4:59 PM | 1 said what?!

Sunday, August 07, 2005

The end of an era

After announcing 4 months ago that he was diagnosed with lung cancer, Peter Jennings has lost that battle this evening at the age of 67. My earliest memories of being introduced to television news was with him at the helm. At 6:30, the law of the land (a.k.a. my mama) dictated that the channel remained fixed on ABC after Eyewitness News was over and no other face quite personified the network like his. I grew up with the smooth delivery, extensive knowledge of foreign affairs, special investigative reports that was as anticipated as any other prime time offering and easy demeanor that made you feel as if he wasn't just another stiff broadcaster giving you the day's events verbatim – but as a familiar face you invited into your household 5 nights a week. I will never forget the comfort I felt grieving through the darkest depths my city faced on that September day 4 years ago knowing that his on-air presence was unwavering and yet he allowed the human aspect of reporting to take precedent as coverage held court through the night while Lower Manhattan was clouded in soot, smoke and shock. His final appearance to explain his absence from the anchor's chair in such a time of fragility broke my heart. Stating that a giant has been lost goes with saying, but this is a man I truly consider an inspiration who was part of the embers that stoked my passion for journalism. The last of the greats is now gone. This is World News Tonight signing off... farewell, Mr. Jennings.

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 11:59 PM | 2 said what?!

Pass the dutchie pon de passenger side

Move over, Six Feet Under... and score one for Showtime. There's a new dark dramedy that's worth spending an hour getting to know with the debut of Weeds. Take a pinch of American Beauty's irony, add a dash of Desperate Housewives' tree-lined suburbia and a sprinkle of Arrested Development's manic energy and you have high times with a potent buzz. Headlined by one of the most engaging actresses in the biz, Mary-Louise Parker (why that schmuck Billy Crudup decided to ditch her while pregnant in favor of Claire Danes, I'll never know) as Nancy Botwin – a woman who suddenly becomes a widow after her husband drops dead during his morning jog. Left with two sons to raise alone, does she downsize and reprioritize her life? Of course not. Who bothers to scale back when you can take up pot dealing as a way to keep your white picket fence existence a reality. The show focuses on the shades of gray permeating the pristine facade of upper middle class living which is always seen almost exclusively in black and white. And speaking of ebony and ivory, race is an immediate subplot in Nancy's new gig as the dimebag delivery lady since her supply comes from a Black family residing on the opposite side of the tracks. One of the uneasiest, yet funny scenes comes at the very beginning when she viciously riffs back and forth with matriarch Heylia James (Tonye Patano) and son Conrad (Romany Malco) on African-American stereotypes that ends with her calling herself a "bitch ass bitch" in mock defeat. It's quite interesting and telling that she comes to view the James's as her sort of inner city refuge from the two faced gossipy atmosphere of her fenced-in neighborhood. Even more intriguing is the underlying sexual tension between Conrad and Nancy. I'm hoping that Jenji Kohan doesn't punk out with carrying out that as a viable storyline. Anchored by the gloriously devious Elizabeth Perkins who plays Nancy's frenemy Celia, the preview episode breezed through dishy topics like religion (comparing the Passion of the Christ to a "snuff film"), homosexuality (Nancy's teenage cohort on the white collar cannabis circuit who happens to be her accountant's son who also happens to be gay) and underage sex with the hazy nonchalance of a bong hit. Take a toke of this tripped-out view of a soccer mom with quite the double life. You're in for some high times, indeed.

As one series was introduced, another says goodbye with the series finale of Queer As Folk. After 5 years, the lives of a cross-section of same-sex friends and lovers in Pittsburgh comes to a close. Unfortunately for a series that pushed so many boundaries in earlier seasons wrapped things up in such a timid way without few surprises. Who would've thought that such a groundbreaking vehicle that came in like a lion would end up leaving like a lamb?

link | Shot from the lip by TriniPrincess at 11:49 PM | 0 said what?!