Monthly Archives: January 2017

Not My President



Every time I hear a news reporter say President, I still think Barack Obama. I can’t help it. Drumpf is not a President. He is a tyrant. I would say he was like a cartoon tyrant except that the damage he has caused the country in just a few short days of taking of office has been anything but cartoonish. He has climbed right out of the fears and fantasies of racist White men and women across the nation and made manifest all the stupidity, ignorance, thuggishness, brutality and immaturity of the worst grade school bully.

He is the worst of America embodied, and he is also the truth about the roots on which America was built. He makes me sick. And anyone who supports him is not anyone I wish to engage or reason with, particularly those who though it was remotely possible that he would do anything less than wage a war of hatred, violence and divisiveness.A vote for Trump was a vote inspired by fear, hatred, and ignorance. Fact.

After his latest firing of the Attorney General for not supporting his immigrant ban, I’m more convinced than ever Drumpf doesn’t give a shit about the Constitution. And since I doubt he knows how to write anything but reactionary tweets, I would say, that he’s taking notes on recreating his own version of America from “Birth of a Nation” DW Griffith style.

Now is the time for unity, creative resourcefulness and a vigilance to inform and stay informed. Last night I watched a clip of Spicer reasoning pathetically in front of the press that the immigrants who were detained, were held to protect millions of Americans and then went on to mention the Holocaust in what context I still am not certain because no network I’ve seen has played the full clip again. It’s like he gets out there in front of the press with no plan whatsoever, red faced and trembling and with no ethics or morals to speak of.


Tomorrow is the first day of Black History Month and personally I can think of no better time to celebrate and acknowledge a people (though I do this all year) whose history in America has been in many ways defined by resistance to the tyranny and injustice of an America that we have never really been able to claim as ours, no matter how much, how steadily and how proudly we have tried and despite the fact that our ancestors built it. Oh what a troubled thing is America. People of the Diaspora who were born to it, those who have immigrated here to make a better life for themselves and their families, those  who risk their lives to come here, fleeing persecution and so much more can never really escape it. We can only face the truth. And that one thing, for better or worse, is what dictator Drumpf is winning at.

The Women’s March AKA the White Feminist March with a few others sprinkled in

I went because my husband told me, his mother,  was going with a group of friends and I love my mother in law. Last month as we made our way across Times Square with to see Jitney with my mother in law and a group of friends, she stopped to dance to a live performance of Whip Nene. I’m fascinated by the youthful and serendipitous nature of both my my mothers, though I don’t always agree with all their opinions.

I also went in the capacity of someone who feels responsible to record historic moments and as you well know by now, this was one.

So here’s how it went for us. It was my husband’s birthday and his sister made brunch for all of us that morning. I convinced him that we should join his mom at the March for no more than an hour and then depart to continue celebratory birthday activities elsewhere. Around 48th and Madison, we met up with my mother in laws friends, people I hang out with at least once a year. They were the only group of Black people I saw that day. But like I said, we were only there for about an hour so for all I know, the Black Panthers might have joined it somewhere near 5th ave.

…but I doubt it.

The first people I saw as we emerged from the subway were angry white women holding signs with uteri that had fists and fuck you fingers, Gloria Steinham quotes, Princess Leia with a big gun which I heard a woman behind exclaim favorably about. Hmm…big phallic guns are okay in the hands of fictitious white female film icons. Check.

I saw a few men, lots of kids. And I saw a lot of signs with Black fists….which confused me because when I see Black fists, I think Black power, but no one that I saw holding these signs with Black fists were Black.

Around the time I saw my 50th ugly pink crochet hat of an undefinable nature I can only describe as pointy pink boobs I started to feel the nausea setting in. These women had come out in thick organized masses to protest Trump and all that made me think of was the thousands who did not turn out for Hilary. All I could think of were the thousands who would not show there faces at the Blackest of Marches supporting the protection of Black men against this administration.

My husband and I were both ready to go. I had taken enough pictures, seen enough and heard enough. We headed to Met Breur so he could see the James Kerry Marshall exhibit before it ends in about a week. We marveled at the large scale paintings of the Blackest Black people in every single depiction of Black life in Marshall’s upbringing pre and post Civil Rights. We lingered in front of the portrait of Nat Turner in front of his masters bed, machete in hand, his master’s decapitated head, pale and bloody. I still wonder at the curator of the show who I’m certain is white and I wonder if Marshall had to fight to get that piece in the collection or not. I never look at that painting thinking of Turner as a monster. I only think of the monstrous deeds of his oppressors.

That seemed to balance out our day a bit before took a car home where we could see on the news and social media platforms,  how huge the turn out was for Women’s Marches in other parts of America.

Large groups of people galvanized towards change have always energized and inspired me. There’s no way around that feeling of being surrounded  by people who are single-minded in a fight against someone like Drumpf (I have a Drumpfinator app and I’m sticking with it.) That being said, I could not all good conscience stand in alignment for more than an hour with many of the ideas expressed at the Women’s March which are not inclusive of my interests and the interests of Black men whom I love. After awhile, nausea turns to resentment and resentment turns to anger and I didn’t feel like being angry. It was my boos birthday and it was also the day right after the inauguration. I need to let the realities seep in at a pace I’m comfortable with, as much as I am privileged to allow.

But I am starting to feel like the Drunpf Presidency may be one of the best things that has ever happened to America. Clearly, Obama was too diplomatic to make America behave in the way it has always imagined itself to be. Drumpf has already shown us what it really is. And it’s only just begun.

My President is Still Black

Because I’m in denial.

In 2008 when Obama won the presidential election, my husband and I were living in Harlem and there was dancing in the streets. Dancing, singing, people blowing horns and beating drums. It was a magical moment, a beautiful feeling, surreal almost. It was a wonderful place to be at such a historically significant occasion. He won. We won.


In an album in my flickr account which I titled, “A New Day” are photos from the day my BFF, family friends and I and drove to DC for Obama’s inauguration. It was bitterly cold and we stood for hours but it was all worth it to witness this moment in time. When Aretha Franklin sang, my shoulders shook. The ushering in of more than I could comprehend, the hopes and dreams of slaves and ancestors swept up in the oath of America’s first Black President.

Listening to Obama’s farewell speech last night, there were things he said that made me proud, things I disagreed with, things I’m frankly tired of hearing but more than anything else, I didn’t want it to be the last time I heard him speak as our president. Like the shouting masses in the Chicago crowd, words like last made my heart sink and they echoed my sentiments when they screamed out to him pleading and jeering at the idea that this was goodbye.

When I think of what we have in store with that…person, it’s like a nightmare on the horizon that I cannot comprehend. I have been tuning into all my feel good go-tos in the past week or so. Just listening to music that makes me feel ecstatic and joyous and filled with hope and watching things that make me feel light and childlike. Because in the next four years, feel goods will be a requisite to survival for all people of color. But then again, it always has been for us. That’s how this country was made.

Orange You Glad it’s Winter?

It’s not lost on me that ever since 2014,  when warm orange became one of my top favorite colors, I began to notice it everywhere. It doesn’t matter where I see it, nature, clothing, culture corporations, fashion, logos, it always makes me feel good. And food of course is no exception.

One of my favorite things to do is get a good sized Butternut squash from the supermarket, peel it’s pale skin and cut it into thick cubes by hand. I enjoy this process because I love to see the deep orange color inside reveal itself. I feel similarly about cutting into avocados, since green was my first favorite color as a young person and I can spot a shade of avocado green anywhere. I’ve been on a Butternut squash craze since the beginning of last year. It’s just such a good winter food, so versatile and filling and comforting. And it’s been scientifically proven that the color of foods affects our well being as well as your cells. So when I cut into butternut squash, I’m aware that the color starts to affect my senses before my taste buds.

Outside of baking and roasting, I haven’t been super creative with butternut squash but this winter I plan on pushing myself into more challenging recipes. Last night I roasted cubes of butternut squash to go along with a Bulgar wheat salad I made from the grain that had soaked overnight. The last time my mom visited us, she left a large bag of Bulgar in the cabinet. She used to prepare this a lot for us a lot for us and it’s also very easy to make. I achieved a taste practically identical to the recipe my mom used and I was really pleased about that. I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to try it myself. It’s so simple to make and right now, in terms of improving my intake of real food, simple is what I’m going for.

The other great thing about Butternut squash is how long it keeps. We’re unfortunately notorious for letting vegetables we forgot we had rot in the fridge, particular the green leafy ones (Sad face). But a container of cubed butternut squash will last for days in the fridge. I’ve had squash sit for weeks on the living room table and it’s always perfectly preserved when I decided to cut into it. Winter squash has to be tough on the outside to protect it’s softer center for weeks at a time. Squash is kind of like winter itself. Although it feels and appears barren and unyielding from the outside, all the good stuff is still around, it’s just turned inward, being protected, energizing and preparing…

I hope you’re feeding  own inner and outer warmth during these cold days. We’re all going to need it.