Thursday, January 28, 2010

Last night after President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech MSNBC host Chris Matthews said this of the President:

''I forgot he was black tonight for an hour. You know, he's gone a long way to become a leader of this country, and past so much history, in just a year or two. I mean, it's something we don't even think about.''

Despite the fact that Matthews is a staunch Obama supporter, it's no surprise that the words "I forgot he was black" caused a ruckus, with many saying this quote implies that blackness is some deficiency Obama needs to overcome.

Regardless of your thoughts on Matthews, his comment and the world's reaction to it bring up an important question that was tackled in a recently posted news article titled, "Do Blacks Truly Want to Transcend Race?"

I, for one, do not. As many of the people interviewed in the aforementioned analysis said, I don't want people to pretend I'm not black. I want them to accept my race and not assume I'm incompetent because of it.

Blair L.M. Kelley, an associate professor of history at North Carolina State University agrees that it's important to remember race.

''When you say we're going to transcend race, are white people called on to transcend their whiteness?'' she was quoted asking in the article. ''When (black people) transcend it, what do we become? Do we become white? Why would we have to stop being our race in order to solve a problem?''

This is a topic I wrote about when I penned a bi-weekly column for Velocity Weekly in Louisville, KyIn that particular article my argument was that our country needs to embrace diversity, not ignore it. Pretending we're all the same does not celebrate people of color. It erases us.
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Posted by in ,  on 6:58 PM No comments

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tonight while watching the State of the Union address, I thought back to the fall of 2008 and remembered how hopeful people were. Once Barack Obama is in office, they said, everything will be better.  My belly dance teacher thought her business would boom again, my friends who'd been laid off were sure they'd find work, and my mom called me on election night and declared, "Things 'bout to change now!" 

My expectations were not as lofty. Not because I doubted Obama's sincerity, but because I knew, as President Obama said in his speech tonight, that change would not be easy. 

I must say I've been even less hopeful this past year. With all the bickering between political parties over bank bailouts, health-care reform and national security, my dreams of unity were dashed. I've been fortunate enough to hold on to employment during this recession. As you all know, I changed careers last summer. My husband quit his job so I could seize this opportunity, but he was able to find a new one. I can't deny we've been blessed. But I have too many friends holding a college degree in one hand and a pink slip in the other. There was a time when I believed that, as Obama said tonight, education was the key to ending poverty. But these days my faith in that notion is shaky -- and this is coming from a teacher!

I lie awake at night worried about health care. I worry I won't be able to afford my lupus medication and doctor visits -- and I have health insurance! What about my friend who's exhibiting a host of lupus symptoms, but can't be tested because she has no coverage? 

But our president is aware of the waning hope in the hearts of Americans, and I believe he truly wants to inspire us once again. Tonight he said he knows many doubt if he can actually live up to his campaign slogan of "Change You Can Believe In." He took the blame for not making the health-care reform bill more understandable for the American people. I applaud his humility. (I also appreciate that he basically told everyone one in the room to grow up and even called out the Supreme Court justices while they were sitting right in front of him. Awesomeness!)

Obama left us with words that I know I needed to hear. He reminded us that change will not be easy and that he cannot do this alone. He reminded us that democracy is "noisy, messy, and complicated." But he also reminded us of the resilience of our forefathers (and mothers) and made us a promise with the statement: "We don't quit. I don't quit."

 Well said, Mr. President. This girl is still in the fight. 
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Posted by in  on 10:31 PM 4 comments
If you know me or at least read my online rants, you know I love lists. When I'm having blogger's block and just can't seem to put together anything insightful or inspiring I turn to my Listography journal. Today's list is "Places I've Lived." Feel free to join the fun in the comments section.

1. Birmingham, Alabama -- This city of steel, sweat and sweet tea is where I was born and raised. As a kid, I couldn't wait to leave, but here I am, an Alabamian once again. There's no place like home. 

2. Tuscaloosa, Alabama -- ROLL TIDE ROLL!

3. Louisville, Kentucky -- My first stint in Derby City was for a newspaper internship. Big things happened that summer. And even bigger things happened when I returned to the city a few years later: I got hitched, I interviewed Ani DiFranco, MC Lyte, and Jamie Foxx (just to name a few) and experienced my first ambulance ride after getting hit by a car. Okay, that last one wasn't exactly a highlight of my time in Louisville, but it made for a great column the next week. 

4. Berkeley, California -- My expensive master's degree from the University of California at Berkeley will probably never pay for itself, but the chance to live in the Bay Area for two years was worth every penny. 

5. Seattle, Washington -- People describe cities with adjectives like fun, quaint, beautiful, liberal, etc. When I think of Seattle the first word that comes to mind is smart. I had such intelligent conversations with the people of that city. You'll be hard pressed to find many places with a library that looks this cool:

Now that I'm home again, people ask if I plan to stay. Sadly, no. I'm enjoying my time here and I plan to stay for a while, but I'm a restless soul. I'd love to live in Charlotte or D.C. I have a soft spot for Nashville, too. But I tend to end up in places I never thought I'd be. Juneau, Alaska, anyone?

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Posted by in  on 7:00 AM 1 comment

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Poor Rihanna just can't catch a break.

Late last week, word spread that her new beau, LA Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp, has a lot in common with Chris Brown. TMZ said Kemp's ex-girlfriend Felisha Terrell, had filed a restraining order against him for, you guessed it, being violent. Kemp's agent denied it, of course:

Matt dated Felisha about two years ago and decided to end their relationship. She chose to file a complaint and shortly thereafter, on her own accord, decided to drop it based on the fact that the statements made within were false. She has very recently said that she has no issue whatsoever with Matt and that she and Matt consider this to be a nonissue. Matt Kemp is a consummate Midwestern gentleman who has never displayed any act of violence towards a woman."

And Terrell's representative corroborated his story:

"During the course of the relationship there was a restraining order filed by Felisha but it had nothing to do with domestic violence…to be clear, Matt was NEVER physically abusive to Felisha, nor did she fear for her life. The restraining order was subsequently vacated. They both have moved on separately but remain amicable."

But here's where things get tricky. Terrell's lawyer came out with his own statement, crying foul:

"The temporary restraining order was granted because of an actual and real threat. The matter was quietly resolved until Mr. Kemp's agent began making false public hope is that Ms. Terrell tells her story, because it is a compelling tale of betrayal, abuse and survival."

So essentially, Mr. Lawyer Guy is saying there was a real abuse issue here, Terrell is just denying it. Sound familiar? That caused Rihanna fans to go nuts, fearing that she's jumped from one abuser to another.

Calm down.

I'll be the first to admit that something seems fishy between Kemp and his ex. But let's say for the sake of argument that there was an abuse issue in the past. The key word is past. Perhaps they've moved on, hence their refusal to go into detail about it. Hopefully Kemp used that as a learning experience and is now a better man. It's unfair to hold someone's past over them forever.

And as for Rih Rih, she has to grow up sometime. Her head is the size of a small farm animal - there is plenty of room for a brain in there. I hope that she has learned enough from last year's drama to remove herself from abusive situations. If not, sadly, she'll have to deal with the consequences.

But it's her choice. We can't make the decision for her.

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Posted by in ,  on 7:00 AM No comments

Monday, January 25, 2010

Well look who finally got out of the can:

Watch yo'self!


Mystikal, born Michael Tyler, was sentenced to six years in prison after being arrested along with two of his bodyguards for threatening to turn his former hairstylist in to police for cashing $80,000 worth of unauthorized checks from his bank account. The stylist said she was forced to have sex with all three men in exchange for their silence. As part of the plea bargain, all three pleaded guilty. Mystikal has five years of probation upon his release and has to be registered as a sex offender in Louisiana.

Ah, Mystikal. A pioneer in movement to dumb down hip hop. Now that he's back, we just have to find Mia X and we can have that long-awaited No Limit reunion.

Or, let's not and say we did.

Mystikal has high hopes for a comeback. Initially, you might think it would be hard for him to find a place in today's music landscape. His last album, Tarantula, was released waaaay back in 2001 - there's a whole new generation of music fans now on the scene. But I think he has all the tools to make it big in 2010. Check them out:

1. Ridiculous catchphrase

You people can't tell me that you enjoy songs by OJ Da Juiceman and Gucci Mane because of their thought-provoking lyrics. No, I bet you bop along to them because you like that they randomly spit foolishness like 'aye!' and 'burrr!'

Well Mystikal has 'em all beat. "Shake It Fast" is nothing but a bunch of ad-libs. "Shake it fast!" "Watch yo'self!" "Showmewhatyaworkinwit!" I can't understand anything else in that song BUT those ad-libs. It would be an even bigger hit today than it was in 2000.

2. Marketable look

All of today's stars look like someone more famous than they are.

Nicki Minaj - Lil Kim

Kanye West - Steve Urkel

Mystikal - Miss Celie

3. Jail stint

Dude has sexual battery AND extortion on his rap sheet. What else do you need?

All the elements are there for Mystikal's rise to the top. Never mind the fact that he's a horrible rapper. But when has having talent ever been a requirement for stardom?
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Posted by in ,  on 8:00 AM 1 comment
This Rahway, New Jersey native has been dubbed "the face of the independent soul music movement" because of his large following. Back in 1994, Roberson had a hit called "The Moon" on Warner Bros. Records, but because of the desire for creative freedom, he chose to leave the major label to work independently.  He has also written songs for Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild, Dwele, and Will Downing, and has released 6 independent albums.  Enjoy!

-- Desiree

"Pen Just Cries Away"

Also check out "Borrow You"
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Posted by in ,  on 7:00 AM 1 comment

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Ladies and gentlemen, it's time for another edition of He Said, She Said. This occasional Georgia Mae feature allows our resident man blogger and I to discuss different, and sometimes opposing, thoughts on issues both frivolous and grave. Listen in on our recent discussion on what the phrase "Let the man be the man" really means. 

He Said:

Lots of philosophical questions get tossed around the Bowser household. Sure, most questions are something like "Where is the TV remote?," "Have you seen my cell phone?" or "Whatever happened to Men At Large?" Those questions are almost always answered by saying "check the couch cushions."

We have very large couch cushions.

Some questions require deeper analysis.

A couple of nights ago, the wifey hit me with this one: "Do you need me to need you?" 

Which left me confused. Brothers, when posed with such questions, seek clarification and choose your answers carefully, unless you want to catch a cooking utensil in the face.


She Said:

Let me explain. Since the issue of why so many black women aren't married is in the limelight once again I've been reading a lot about relationships. Last week I came across this headline on one of my favorite blogs: "Men Speak: We Need to Feel Needed." The post included a statement from an commenter, a black man who ventured to explain why successful men and successful women often clash in relationships. He said: 

The man has been trained to LEAD, be the man, take care, provide and become the head of household like his father, while the woman has been so independent since she left college, that she doesn't know how to treat a strong man. 

He goes on later to say: Ladies, you have to learn the "ART" of playing your role. 

Phrases like Let the man be the man and Ladies, play your role are like nails on a chalk board for me. What  does be the man even mean? Does being the man mean he must be the bread winner in the family? Well, what if a man wants stay home and be the primary caregiver of his children while his wife pursues her career. Is he less of a man? 

The commenter also said men are offended when their girlfriends don't ask them to wash their cars or fix their plumbing. I've known my husband for nearly eight years and I've never asked him to wash my car. Not because I don't think he's a real man, but because I know he's busy. So again I ask, Edd, do you need to feel like I need you and if so why?  

He Said:

OK, I get it.

Do I want your love and companionship? Yes, of course. Do I need you to need me? No.

I can understand this mindset. Many men, myself included, are often brought up thinking that being a real man means being a provider first and foremost. Keeping food in the fridge and the lights turned on is more important than anything. We men don't show our love for our family through gumdrops and rainbows - we show our love by paying the bills. 

But a relationship is a partnership. I don't need you to need me. I need us to need we.

Uhhh, y'all know what I mean. 

Here's an example - as many of you know, we recently moved to Birmingham when Javacia received a better-paying job. That meant I had to leave my job behind. In. A. Recession. And while no one outwardly said "Are you crazy?!" it was hinted at plenty of times. However, I guarantee no one would have batted an eye if I was the one who got a new job and my wife had to leave her career behind to follow her man. But I was cool with the decision because it was a great opportunity for her - and therefore good for us. And yeah, I struggled a bit emotionally while I hunted for a job because, again, we're wired to be providers. But I never took it out on the wifey or demanded that she "know her role" - her role was maintaining her new career, and she did it well. Now, we're both gainfully employed and it's all good.

The only thing I "need" from you is to continue being a good woman.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is expected to soon deliver an official recommendation on whether or not parents should have their baby boys circumcised. Meanwhile, the American Academy of Pediatrics may revise its previous stance. 
According to the Washington Post there is new research indicating that circumcision may have more health benefits than previously thought, including reducing the risk for getting the AIDS virus and other sexually transmitted diseases. 
These findings however, don't change the fact that this is a very controversial issue and emotionally-charged debate. While most people in American society upbraid cultures that practice female genital cutting, many also defend circumcision for cultural and/or religious reasons. Others say the procedure is not different from female genital cutting and should be stopped. 
Mark Alanis of the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston and author of a history of circumcision said this in the Post article:
"People care way too much about this little piece of skin... At the end of the day, it's unlikely to significantly change your child's life for better or worse."
What do you think? 

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Posted by in  on 7:00 AM 2 comments

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Check out this nugget I grabbed last week from USA Today:

After an exhausting 2009, Beyonce says she's hoping to take a little time off this year.

"It's definitely time to take a break, to recharge my batteries. I'd like to take about six months and not go into the studio. I need to just live life, to be inspired by things again. I'm going to do random things. I want to go to restaurants, maybe take a class and see some movies and Broadway shows."

And 150 million women rejoiced.

But don't get too excited, haters.

Still, Beyonce says it would be hard to be away. "It will be the hardest thing in the world for me to make myself not do an album and shoot a video and turn it in and say, 'I'm ready!' I already have all these melodies and ideas in my head. I have to tell myself, 'Sit down! Sit down!' "

This is all just wishful thinking by Bey. You can tell she's trying to talk herself out of the idea of taking a break in this very interview. She ain't going anywhere.

We've discussed the irrational hate for Beyonce before but if ANYONE needs a break, it's her. If not for her own sake, for ours. I believe one of the top reasons she's so maligned is that she's always around. Always. I don't think she's ever heard the phrase "absence makes the heart grow fonder."

Let's look back at what she has been up to for the past 10 years. For the sake of my sanity, I'm skipping her early Destiny's Child stuff to the start of her solo career.


- Starred in "Austin Powers in Goldmember" and released "Work It Out," complete with big hula hoop and even bigger hair.


- Her relationship with Jay-Z finally started to leak, although I think they were together at least a year earlier.

- Released her first solo album Dangerously In Love, flooding radio and TV with singles, including that ear-shattering "Crazy In Love." I wasn't a fan. See, y'all aren't the only ones who can hate on Bey.


- Destiny's Child's final album, Destiny Fulfilled, dropped.


- Released a DC Greatest Hits album, which included "Check On It."


- Starred in "The Pink Panther." Sadly I don't think the actual Pink Panther made an appearance.

- Released B'Day, which I contend is her best solo album.

- "Dreamgirls" is released, but that sneaky Jennifer Hudson stole all Bey's buzz, killing her chances for an Oscar - the only prize she has yet to claim.


- Rereleased B'Day. Who knows why. Maybe Papa Knowles wanted a new boat. Or hush money for his mistresses.

- Released B'Day Anthology, which included a ton of music videos. I just watched 'em on YouTube. Who would pay money for this?


- Released I Am...Sasha Fierce. Women everywhere began demanding men to "put a ring on it," despite still bashing Beyonce. Uh huh.


- Starred in "Obsessed." "You think you crazy? I show you crazy!" I hope she didn't think that prose would land her an Oscar.

- Rereleased I Am...Sasha Fierce for some reason.

Beyonce also plans to release her own perfume line this year and there are rumors of another solo album. Does the woman sleep?

Bey has constantly been in our faces since 2002 (although you can probably go all the way back to 1998...). And while her talent is undeniable, she needs to give her fans time to miss her.

80s babies, I know y'all remember Hi-C fruit juice. It came in a gigantic metal can. Well, when the Ghostbusters cartoon was popular, they released a green "Ecto Cooler" Hi-C, based on their mascot Slimer. My brother and I loved it. So my mom bought it all the time. ALL THE TIME - so much that we despised it. Even now just a mental image of the can makes me recoil.

No matter how much you like something, too much will make you sick to your stomach.

Beyonce is Slimer Hi-C.

Take your own advice Bey and sit down.
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Posted by in , ,  on 7:00 AM 1 comment

Monday, January 18, 2010

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This week on Progressive Soul Mondays is Conya Doss.  This Cleveland native has been on the music scene for seven years and has worked with such artists as 3LW and the late Gerald Levert. She has released four albums, three of which were released independently. Enjoy!

"Feelin' You" -- Conya Doss

"Can't Stop" -- Conya Doss

-- Desiree
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Georgia Mae congratulates Mo'Nique on her win at the Golden Globe awards last night. She picked up the award for best performance by an actress in a supporting role for her work in "Precious."

Other highlights of the evening:

Meryl Streep gives an emotional speech

Penelope Cruz disses P. Diddy

Celebrity fashion steals the show

Click here for a full list of winners and here for more photos.

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Friday, January 15, 2010

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In a recent roundtable discussion with the Washington Post's Anne Kornblut, author of  Notes from the Cracked Ceiling: Hillary Clinton, Sarah Palin, and What It Will Take for a Woman to Win, former White House press secretary Dee Dee Myers, former McCain-Palin adviser Nicolle Wallace and syndicated newspaper columnist Kathleen Parker discussed the evolving meaning of feminism.

Check out this video of the discussion.

The talk raised important questions for me:

Must feminism include reproductive rights? 

Do many GeorgiaMae readers consider themselves feminists? If not, is it because you perceive feminism as an ideology that's intolerant of your personal beliefs?

Does having several different models or meanings of feminism weaken the movement?

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Posted by in ,  on 7:00 AM No comments

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Although word spread late last night, I didn't hear the unfortunate news until this morning - we lost yet another R&B megastar. From

Teddy Pendergrass, the seductive American rhythm-and-blues singer who continued his recording career after he was paralyzed in a 1982 car accident, has died at the age of 59, media reports said on Thursday.

Pendergrass's son, Teddy Pendergrass II, told the Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper that his father died on Wednesday at a Philadelphia-area hospital. He had undergone colon cancer surgery eight months ago and his son said he had a difficult recovery.

Y'all know it hurts me whenever we lose a stellar soul singer. I nearly ran into moving traffic when I heard about Gerald Levert's passing.

And I don't even want to think about the day Keith Sweat leaves us. Perish the thought!

Still, I shouldn't be too upset. Teddy P has been struggling with medical conditions since the early '80s but he persevered, continuing to release quality music. That very work influenced an entire generation. Just listen anytime Jaheim opens his mouth - that's Teddy.

And Teddy's 1980's hit "Can't We Try" provides the fuel for one of my favorite songs of all time, Ghostface's "Camay":

I love that joint. Only Teddy could make those hooligans into gentlemen.

As you see, Teddy's gone, but his work lives on.

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Posted by in , ,  on 10:36 AM No comments

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Lady Gaga, this is all your fault.

Whenever an artist hits it big, it's inevitable that 500 copycats will come out of the woodwork.

How can we forget Pretty Willie, Nelly's doppelganger from 2002? Actually, he was pretty easy to forget. Or Guerrilla Black, the guy who looked just like Biggie, sounded exactly like Biggie but, uh, sucked? Asher Roth went from being the next Eminem to being the next Snow.

Eh, that's harsh. At least Snow had one good song. And while we're talking about that guy, were we really supposed to believe that a guy who looked like he walked off the set of Saved By The Bell was worried about the cops?

But I digress.

Lady Gaga must have really hit it big, cuz she now has a clone she can call her own. Ke$ha. For those who aren't familiar with this young lady, just check out the photo above.

With a ridiculous name like that you'd expect the girl to have green press-on nails, a grill and hair dyed with Kool-Aid. I'm shocked they didn't call her Yung Ke$ha. But nah, she's more Fergie than Fantasia.

And like her fellow clones, she's horrible. Ear-shatteringly AWFUL.

Don't believe me? Check out TiK ToK, which has been the No. 1 song all year. Her album, Animal, debuted at No. 1, ending Susan Boyle's eternal reign on top. I checked out the track listing on Animal, look at the names of these songs - "Your Love Is My Drug," "Hungover," "Boots & Boys," "Backstabber," "Party At A Rich Dude's House."

Can't wait to hear 12-year-old girls singing about being hungover at a rich dude's house.

While most clones tend to fade away, this Ke$ha already has a following. And with the marketing machine behind her (she's all over iTunes' Top 10 music lists - that's no coincidence) she might be around for a long, LONG time.

Be afraid. Be very afraid.
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Posted by in ,  on 7:00 AM No comments

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The American Red Cross has a short code set up that allows you to donate $10 to the Red Cross International Relief Fund through your cell phone. Simply text message the word "Haiti" to 90999 and the donation will be added to your cell phone bill. 
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Posted by in  on 7:12 PM No comments

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Despite rave reviews from critics and friends with good taste, when I saw the movie "Precious" last year I expected to be disappointed. Before seeing the movie I read Push, the novel by Sapphire on which the film is based, and I was blown away. Sapphire's use of raw, real language and vivid descriptions took readers inside Precious' mind and inside her world. While reading the book I felt unbelievably connected to the character of Claireece Precious Jones, truly the sign of a well-written work. I thought there'd be no way the movie would measure up. 

I thought wrong. The film surprised me and was just as compelling as the novel. I believe the movie was such a success largely due to the outstanding job by Mo'Nique, who plays Mary, Precious' abusive mother. Mary not only uses her daughter as a punching bag, but also looks the other way as her man molests Precious and impregnates her -- twice -- and tries to use her granddaughter as a cash cow to milk more money from the welfare system. 

A.O. Scott, a film critic for The New York Times, wrote that Mo'Nique played Mary with "operatic fervor." Mo'Nique's performance is breathtaking, authentic and haunting and has everyone talking Oscar. 

Mo'Nique, however, has made it clear that though she cares deeply about "Precious" and is honored to among those mentioned for a possible Academy Award nomination, she's not on the Oscar campaign trail. 

You see this is the time of year when actors who are among the hopefuls hit any red carpet they can find and tell anyone who will listen how thrilled they would be just to be nominated. 

In a recent New York Times profile, Mo'Nique says frankly she doesn't have time for all the brouhaha and really doesn't get why it's necessary. Busy taking care of her family and taping six shows a week for "The Mo'Nique Show," her daily talk show on BET, Mo'Nique feels her performance alone is all the Academy should need to determine whether or not she's worthy of the award. 

Mo'Nique told the Times:
“Anytime I’ve been given an award, it has been because of the performance; what else goes into it?” she said... “Look, it makes me appreciative any time someone says they may want to honor your performance. I’m appreciative at any talk in reference to any award, but there’s not much I can do about it now. The performance is done.”
I hear ya, girl. Of course, some have accused Mo'Nique of having a diva attitude regarding the Oscars. "Deny her a nomination and teach her a lesson," quipped Jeffrey Wells of Hollywood Elsewhere. 

Actors Terrance Howard, who was Oscar-nominated for the 2005 film "Hustle and Flow, and Taraji P. Henson, who received a nomination for 2008's "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," told Mo'Nique that Oscar hopefuls are expected to campaign as if they're running for presidential office.  Her response?
“President Barack Obama had to campaign because he had something to prove: that he could do it,” she said. “Well, the performance is on the screen. So at what point am I still trying to prove something?”
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Posted by in , ,  on 7:00 AM 4 comments

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck southern Haiti today causing what the nation's officials called a major catastrophe. The quake, the largest ever recorded in the area, collapsed a hospital and crumbled  several other buildings, according to the The Huffington Post

The American Red Cross is pledging an initial $200,000 to assist communities impacted by this earthquake, and is prepared to take further action as local responders assess the situation. The organization expects to see immediate needs for food, water, temporary shelter, medical services and emotional support, and is accepting donations through its International Response Fund

Click here for other ways you can help and please pray for the people of Haiti.
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Posted by in  on 7:58 PM No comments
Editor's Note: Tara Walker continues to share with us her journey of locking her hair.

Happy New YearI’m still in shock that a new year is even upon us and I’m hoping all of Georgia Mae’s readers are as energized as I am about making this an awesome year. 

This month I decided to share a few pictures with you all to show how my locs have progressed thus far so that you can see a glimpse of what the locking process is really like. Sometimes people have so many wild and crazy ideas about what the beginning stages of locs are about, and some will even be quick to tell you that you’re doing something wrong. My best advice is to "do you" and don't get too caught up in the hype. If you decide to take care of your own hair without professional help as I did, you’ll learn to listen to your hair. It will tell you what it needs and doesn’t need, what it loves and what it hates

Don’t get me wrong--I’m not knocking loctitians nor am I saying that anyone who tries to help you won’t know what they’re talking about, but what I am saying is to really take the time to learn and understand your hair’s specific needs, because what works for your locked friend or your neighbor’s cousin’s sister-in-law may not work for you. 

Case in point: I wash my hair once every week maybe every two weeks and one of my co-workers that recently cut off her 18 year locs (which were beautiful) told me 'all that water' was keeping it from locking properly. Washing once a month or so was good enough until it was fully locked. When I told her my concerns of having itchy, dirty and, dare I say, smelly hair, she basically told me that the dust and dirt would help it lock faster. Cue the crickets. 

I really like this co-worker and consider her one of my few friends at the office, so I kept my cool and politely told her I'd take my chances. Had I told her what I really thought, we might not be cool anymore and I didn't think it was that serious. My hair is locking just fine and more importantly, it's clean! 

Let's get to the pics shall we? 

Here's a picture of one of my first buds. A bud is a meshed, tangled portion of strands that is one of the first signs your hair is officially locking!

Unraveling locs are very common in the beginning. It's no big deal.
 Many that would not stay twisted, I've braided instead and now they're fine, although they appear much smaller than the puffy twisted locs. 

My products!

My hair after a wash.

Here's a photo of my hair after 1 1/2 months into the process. Even now you can still see the twist pattern of my locs, but not as much as you can here. Within the next few months, the pattern should be completely gone and they'll look like locs and not extremely old twists

This was taken November 11. By now, a lot more of the pattern is gone. 

This is me on New Year's Eve before heading out to church. This was my first real style! The sides were flat-twisted, I made a 'part' down the middle in the back of my head and twisted all locs on either side going upward to create an updo effect. All the locs on the top of my head I set on the pink perm rods (I didn't have time for them to completely dry, or the curls would've been tighter). I think it turned out pretty cute, and I'll definitely try more styles soon! 
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