What to expect from Because I Said So in 2009

I usually operate in an organized chaotic state which is evident in my restless posting style. For 2009, I am, going to pick a topic and stay with that topic for the duration of the month, peppered with mini loc updates. A quick preview January will focus on all things pertaining to Africa. From travel destinations, to conflict, to little know success stories from the Dark Continent. February will focus on relationships among Black women and men. Beginning from our childhood interactions, through the college years, and ultimately what makes us choose our mates. So stay tuned or tell a friend that things are changing at Because I Said So. A quick hint, check the Banner January 1st and every month thereafter to find out what the topic of the month will be.


Happy New Year!

The New Year is a time for new declarations and pledges. I, like everyone else, have made them and broke them. So this year I am trying something different. I compiled a list that should help other people know how to approach me in 2009.

1. If I have gone all day without eating don't even think of engaging me in conversation. You will know I am hungry because I will have
Tyrone Biggum lips, induced by the lack of food ingestion not crack consumption.

2. If you set a time or if you are hosting an event then please, at least be on time because, if you are late trust me the 'tude will be stank. I am usually 15 to 30 minutes early for everything, a nasty habit I picked up from my mom that I have yet to break.

3. There is such a thing as a dumb question. If I give you the head cocked to the side and one eyebrow raised you will know that you just asked it.

These are your guidelines for 2009 please, govern yourself accordingly. You guys have a safe and wonderful start to the New Year. I wish you all the best in the coming year.


Bernard Madoff and his Texas Connection

Bernard Madoff was arrested for "allegedly running a $50 billion "Ponzi scheme" in what may rank among the biggest fraud cases ever." The fallout of Bernard Madoff's scheme almost crippled The Innocence Project of Texas. The Innocence Project has freed more than 20 individuals in 2008 through DNA evidence from wrongful convictions. Their investment with Bernard Madoff almost cost them $400,000 in operating money, but the company was informed that they would be able to keep the money they had received to date. The Project believes they have enough money to complete all DNA testing underway so far however, if funds are to fall short they will seek help through the private sector. If you would like to learn more about the Innocence Project of Texas or how you can donate please visit here.


Merry Christmas!

Let Colorism Die!

Colorism within ethnic communities is nothing new. Within the Black community colorism was a way during slavery to separate, divide and confuse a race of people.

The prevalence of colorism within ethnic communities is still rampant. Months ago Yung Berg made the statement that he didn't like "dark butts" and that his women must pass the pool test. Fast forward a few months and there is R&B artist Ne-yo who tells a reporter that "all the prettiest kids are light skin". I sat there is stunned silence with my mouth ajar as I watched the clip, inwardly recoiling at the blatant ignorance and unaware self-loathing that such a statement would prompt someone to say.

When we ask other people to view us for whom we are on the inside should we not be able to ask the same of ourselves? We are no longer physically enslaved yet we find ourselves a slave to an old color caste system.

I believed we had made so much progress outside of the 80's when people the complexion of Debarge and Apollonia were all the rage. Yet, here we are again bombarded with psychological images that continue to define the standard of Black beauty under the shallow veneer of skin complexion.

I often wonder of the educational and social cognizance of artist like Yung Berg and Ne-yo when they make such absurd statements. At the end of the day light skin or dark skin you can still be called a nigger.

Image courtsey of Abagond


The Beauty of Natural Hair

Just thought I would share some of my favorite youtube videos on locks and natural hair. I would also like to say that I received two compliments today on my locs YEAH! The are coming along and I will do another post when I get them retwisted in January. I am hoping to stretch my retwist to 5 to 6 weeks so that I will have a healthy hairline. I would rather deal with fuzzies than have to combine a bunch of locs down the road. Speaking of combining there are three in the front that I want to make larger so when I go back to my loctician I will have her do that so I can avoid the two headed dragons.

The first video is inspirational, I look at this video often so that I can stay focused on my goal. The second video features Goapele's music, an artist that does not get enough play.


Wow! I bet Bush can not wait until January

I am no Bush fan but I am very grateful that this was only a shoe. The Secret Service needs their asses kicked for this. Their reactions were too damn slow for me they should have had Bush on the ground after the first shoe.

Big ups to the journalist (if he was a journalist) in the tan blazer and orange shirt who was able to stiff arm the shoe terrorist.

I would also like to say thank you President Bush for holding your own afterwards. I know it was just a shoe but hell I am still an American and I am proud that you pushed forward and showed no fear and ended your speech with great fortitude.


Is the Military doing enough?

During my grandfathers and uncles tour of duty I believe the ship rides back home helped to alleviate some of their stress. The month long voyages home helped to slowly reintroduce them back into a society were they are not constantly in a fight or flight mode. Today’s military personnel are in war zone one minute then the next on a flight route back to the States all within 24hours.

I have genuine concern for the mental health of all actively serving military personnel. I am not quite sure how the military approaches mental health to my understanding it is on a volunteer basis. (If anyone knows differently please let me know). I personally believe that they need at least 3 months of mental health counseling after serving in an active war zone. My brother has been on leave for 18 days his wife just arrived last night and I believe they are both suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). We are urging them both to seek the aid of mental health services. In the meantime as the old folks say we can only keep them lifted up before God.


Illinois Governor Taken into Custody: What does this mean for Obama

According to the statement, Blagojevich is alleged to have discussed obtaining:

a substantial salary for himself at either a non-profit foundation or an organization affiliated with labor unions;

a spot for his wife on paid corporate boards, where he speculated she might garner as much as $150,000 a year;

promises of campaign funds -- including cash up front;

a Cabinet post or ambassadorship for himself.

What was he thinking?!!!


Will Obama Attend the People's Ball

Stafford Foundation Announces 'People's Inaugural Project' at Washington's Historic JW Marriott

Thanks to the foundation's $1 million investment, participants will attend the events and stay at the JW Marriott free of charge. A third of the tickets for all the Stafford Foundation events will be distributed to hundreds of marginalized Americans who have demonstrated a positive example by embodying hope and facilitating change in their communities. The Marriott will serve as the central point to welcome the group of diverse people who come to celebrate America's new president.

I saw this story on the news and my eyes actually got misty.


Loc Update One month

Ok Ash, this post is just for you. These pics are about 2 weeks old I intended to post them weeks ago but I'm always on the late show. After I went back to my lociticain for my re-tightening I had BUDS. For those not familiar with loc lingo buds are the beginning formation of your locs it means the hair is starting to tangle and loc. I think for a lot of people buds take up to 3 or more months to form however, Regina told me I had that good Negro hair (nappy as hell,4b) so my hair would take no time at all to loc.

When I first became natural I was in such a hurry to get to a nice size fro' that I did not fully enjoy the different stages of my hair during that period. I have decided to enjoy every stage even the extremely unattractive and fuzzy stage. I never expected to feel as if my loc journey would be some kind of spiritual journey as it is for so many others. However, I can tell you I am far more confident and excepting of who I am so through this process. I think it is the combination of approaching 30 and not being overly concerned with other peoples definition of beauty.

The first two pics were after my first complete month, my loctician started my locs off with double strand twist. At the close of the month I had a lot of lose hair that needed to be gathered back into the base.

These last three pics were after the re-tightening she used the latching method. The latching method gives me more freedom to play with styles because I don't have to worry about them coming apart like the twist.


A Tribute to Lauryn Hill

I miss Lauryn like crazy. I have been listening to my MisEducation CD and I realize that no one could come close to touching her, when she was on. Lauryn come back puuuullllleeezzee! I have included my favorite song Ex-Factor: I can not listen to this song without getting weepy. Not to mention she has the best locs ever!

Turn the Lights Down Low

The Final Hour

Ex Factor


World AIDS Day

JPS Health Network recognizes World AIDS Day

December 01, 2008

JPS Health Network will be hosting a memorial service on Dec. 1 to recognize World AIDS Day.

The hour-long service, which will start at 10:30 a.m., will be in the third-floor auditoriums of the John Peter Smith Hospital. Those who have lost their lives to HIV/AIDS will be remembered, and a list of names of those who died this year will be read. It’s estimated that about 100,000 within Tarrant County have HIV, which causes AIDS, and up to one-third of the infected may not know they have the disease. For more information on the event, contact Nicci Willey at 817-927-1025.

The following are events in Dallas in Observance of World AIDS Day

The North Texas HIV Service Providers Council will host its 2008 World AIDS Day event Friday, Dec. 5 at the Hilton Anatole Hotel, 2201 Stemmons Fwy. An information fair and AIDS Memorial Quilt viewing will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. A luncheon will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Jeanne White-Ginder, mother of Ryan White, will be the keynote speaker. Reservations are required. Call 214-521-5191 to make a reservation.

The DFW Stomp Out Syphilis Campaign is hosting a World AIDS Day balloon launch and educational presentation at noon on Monday, Dec. 1 at the MLK Family Clinic at 2922-B MLK Blvd. Keynote speakers for the event are Barbara S. Cambridge, Ph.D., professor at UT-Southwestern Medical School, and Fernie Sanchez, M.A., of AIDS Arms, Inc. For more information, contact Diedre Spears, or call her at 214-528-0144.

AIDS Interfaith Network/Manos Unidas , in conjunction with Dallas County Health and Human Services, will provide HIV testing at the Mexican Consulate, 8855 N. Stemmons Fwy., on Monday, Dec. 1 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, contact Edgar Carmona at 214-943-4444.

For additional post regarding HIV/AIDS you can read here and here.


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