Category Archives: Women’s History Month

Adventures of an Awkward Soul Sistah

Issa Rae

Before Issa Rae, it never would have occurred to me that I could get hooked on a web series on Youtube. But after being introduced to “The Mis-Adventures of and Awkward Black Girl” I was rushing to Youtube every week to see how J was going to deal with racial and cultural insensitivity in her workplace, making friends, dating interracially, dealing with obnoxious and annoying co-workers with odd and irritating behaviors (people who speak in really a really tone when they’re right in front of me drive me crazy as well) and also being conscious of the ways in which her own awkwardness defines her and her relationships.

Being a Black woman, working in an office, dealing with ignorance, pet peeves and tough dating choices is something that as women of color we can all relate to. But Issa’s exploration of the role in which “Awkwardness” plays in her every day life and her use of it as a metaphor for the discomfort caused by a range of social insensitivity was an application of comedy as it related to the life of a woman of color that I had never seen before in quite this way. What it means when someone really gets you has long been relegated to comedies like “Friends” and “Seinfeld” where the New York locations we natives are familiar with all feature prominently but our faces are for the most part are non-existent.

As producer, writer and director of “Misadventures of and Awkward Black Girl” Issae took it upon herself to fill a void in the white washed world of comedy and tell a story she had never seen told on network television. This web series was very much a do it yourself collaborative effort by a group of people who dedicated themselves to very involved and detailed shooting schedules while still working day jobs themselves. Thanks to the overwhelming response of viewers, followers and fans of the series, Issa has been able to finance entire seasons in response to the demand for more. Which reminds me I really need to catch up!

Since the success of this web series Issa has written a book, developed other youtube webisodes and also signed a deal with HBO to release a new show called “Insecure.”

I can’t wait to see where Issa’s adventures on a major network take her next.

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Seriously Funny Soul Sistah

tracee-ellis-ross

Daughter of legendary diva, Diana Ross, Tracee Ellis Ross is best known for a her role as the controlling but loving and supportive, Joan Clayton in the hit comedy, “Girlfriends”  and now as the hilarious mother and wife, Rainbow Johnson on the hit comedy “Black-ish.”

I won’t lie. Although I was super excited for the premiere of “Black-ish,” I wasn’t taken with the modern Black family comedy right off the bat. But my husband never misses it and since I love spending quality time with him, I now watch it every week. And I have to say, I really love it. It’s smart, funny, fresh, bold, a perfect vehicle for Tracee’s quirky brand of humor. One of my favorite Tracee moments so far is the one where she goes off on her husband’s mother, played to perfection by the great Jenifer Lewis for changing her daughters hair. Nobody performs a melt down on camera as hilariously as Tracee and she manages to turn the situation into a teachable moment about tolerance and boundaries at the same time. I love it when a woman known for beauty and style is just as comfortable being apart of and creating moments where looking ridiculous and silly are required. I don’t know how I would get through life without the ability to laugh at myself and make others laugh as well.

Tracee is the creator and moderator of her very own website, traceeellisross.com where she does commentary on everything from style, beauty, rap lyrics (She’s obsessed with T-Murda), her deep love of bowls and oh yeah, her bodacious booty. She is also a huge supporter of organizations like Black Girls Rock that promote acceptance and self love among women of color and uses her own unique brand of infectious humor, honesty and self acceptance to inspire and motivate. She is a true renaissance woman; outspoken, eclectic, mutli-faceted, and seriously funny.

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