I Didn’t Mean To Say That.

Recently, the NFL handed out a two game suspension to Baltimore Ravens star Running Back, Ray Rice, for knocking his fiance unconscious and dragging her body through a hotel lobby, in February. Two games out? That’s it? To say he got a slap on the wrist is an understatement. The NFL sent a message, that a player can be suspended longer than that for smoking pot, testing positive for PEDS (Performance Enhancing Drugs) and being accused of crimes without any arrests or charges,- handing out more severe penalties for those offenses than for domestic violence. Current NFL regs suggest the league overlooks crimes against women for political reasons, or simply aren’t concerned about victims of domestic violence. Maybe it’s neither. Maybe it’s a little of both.Stephen-A.-Smith

Enter everybody’s favorite loud mouth, with foot in mouth disease, Stephen A. Smith. If you know anything about Mr. Smith, then you know that he likes to hear himself talk. Always passionate, no matter the cause, and quite entertaining. You can call him the more educated Charles Barkley… or not.

On Friday, Smith gave his opinion on the Ray Rice two game suspension. In the process, he pissed a few people (more like a quarter of America) off. Some thought that Smith was victim blaming; putting the onus on the abused, rather than the abuser. Critics described his commentary as being unsympathetic to domestic violence victims. Who knew? I’m sure he didn’t mean to offend you…
He later apologized for how his rant was perceived, and for not being able to properly articulate what he was trying to say. To sweeten the melody, he stated he knows all to well about the seriousness of domestic violence. He drove his point home by emphatically stating he was raised by his mother and 4 sisters. I think I almost shed a tear…

I won’t say whether or not I agree with what Smith had to say, but I will say this; that man is allowed to have an opinion, right or wrong. What I’d like to know is, what did he say that was so wrong? While I don’t know Smith personally, I would like to believe that he doesn’t believe all women are to blame for being abused; or that they should have to watch what they say and do, as not to provoke violence. I also would like to believe that he’s smart enough to know that an abuser doesn’t always need a reason to strike someone. I would like to think that he’s talking about instances where the victim is the aggressor, and may have even struck the other person first. I’m not in his head, but this is Breazy giving that man the benefit of the doubt.

I don’t condone domestic violence. As much as people say a man should never hit a woman no matter what, how many of you have male friends or family members that have messed with that one “crazy” chick? The one chick, who without valid cause, will put her hands on a man, daring him to hit back? Doing anything in her power to get him to act out of character? I’m sure a few chicks come to mind. These are the instances I hope Smith was referring to. Either way, he spoke his own truth…

What do you think? Do you agree with Stephen A. Smith’s opinion? Do you think that he was wrong?

Talk to me, I’ll talk back.

Breazy Cossell.

Is There Such A Thing, As Real Hip Hop?

Is there such a thing as real Hip Hop? One of the most, interesting, passionate and heated conversations out there, is what is considered HIP HOP . And while there is no right or wrong answer, whatever answer that is giving could possibly lead to someone being stabbed.real_hip_hop...

In one corner you have those (like me) that grew up during Hip Hop’s golden are 88 – 96, that frown upon what’s being passed off as Hip Hop these days. In the other corner you have the youngins that may not know about the golden era, (unless they heard about it from their older siblings) or Hip Hop’s early days, making music that relates to them.

And that’s where’s the disconnect comes in. The older generation feels like the younger generation doesn’t respect the origins of Hip Hop. And the younger generation feels like the older generation blames them for what we feel is a decline in music as well as everything that’s wrong.

I love the early days of Hip Hop, I think that is when Hip Hop was at its truest and purest form. But I also believe the older generation could lighten up blaming the kids of today. They are making music that they like to hear, not for out mid-thirties to 40 year old ears.

While I am somewhere in the middle, IMO I don’t think there is such a thing a real Hip Hop. Each generation has their own idea of what Hip Hop is. Try telling some who is born in 1997 about Grand Master Flash and the Furious 5 and they’ll probably give you a blank stare.

This is no different than me not knowing who the hottest new “Lil” __ is. After all today’s artists are making music that is reflective of their generation and not mine, and that’s ok. Acts like Public Enemy, NWA and LL Cool J did same thing.

The only difference is the attitudes are different, instead of social political awareness; rappers of today are “turning up. Instead of unity today’s rappers are internet beefing and popping molly’s. It’s not fair to say that all of the newer rappers are like this. But because of what’s been pushed on the masses, through mainstream radio, you would think that today’s rappers are trying to out “ignorant each other” while creating drug abusing zombies out of their fan base

Now for those of us born in the 70’s and early 80’s our idea of Hip Hop starts and pretty much ends with the golden era. We believe that after say 98, the quality of hip hop has been on a sharp decline, whether that’s true or not, that’s an opinion that those of us who actually grew up with Hip Hop feel.

One thing we have to understand is that this is the newer generation’s time. I don’t expect someone younger than 20 to make music for someone who is 38. That’s impossible. Just like our parents talked down on Hip Hop in its earliest stages, calling that it a fad that wouldn’t last. That didn’t deter of from listening, loving and following Hip Hop. The same goes for what’s being made by today’s mainstream rappers. I may not be our idea of Hip Hop but for better or for worse it’s today’s generation’s idea of Hip Hop.

What do you think? I am I wrong? Do you think that there is one universal brand of Hip Hop?

Talk to me, I’ll talk back.

Breazy 5 Freddy.

We Don’t Wear Red Skirts for Ourselves

redskirt

I have this red skirt i bought last year to wear on Valentine’s Day. I did not have a Valentine, but I knew I looked good in it.

Now here’s the thing: I liked the way the The Res Skirt made me feel, and I did have a positive vibe going on when I wore it. But everyone can relate to this: you are looking good, but no one’s around. When you are feeling yourself this much, do you stop and think, ” Man, I look great in this skirt! I feel so good, I’m going to go home alone, drink some wine, and prance around the house glancing at myself in the mirror!”. Of course not. What do you do? YOU GO OUT SO PEOPLE CAN SEE YOU. How many of you have uttered the phrase “ I look too good right now to be in the house”?

Ladies, let’s stop lying to ourselves right now. While it may sound good in theory to say ” I wear skin-tight jeans for myself- I AM WOMAN HEAR ME ROAR”, it’s not. No one wears infection-inducing pants for themselves- they are worn because other humans ( and a few dogs) think you look hot in them. We wear what we think will attract others. It’s in our nature.

If we truly wore what made us comfortable all the time, we’d wear sweatpants. All day. Errday. Don’t believe me? Think about it: when you come home from work, what’s the first thing you want to do? Correct- you want to take off your pants ( this is a proven fact because it’s documented in a hilarious book written by Tina Fey entitled “Bossypants”- read it). And since most of us live with other people or at least a weird cat, you skip being pantsless and throw on some sweats. If I told you right now that sweatpants were the hottest wardrobe item that made everyone’s mouth water, Wal-Mart, Kmart, and all the other Marts would go out of business.

Before anyone jumps on me, screaming that I don’t know what I’m talking about, just think about a few things here: why do we wear make-up? Stilettos? Push-up bras with wires? Because they are empowering. comfortable, and embody GIRL POWER? I don’t think so. It’s because we want Justin from accounting to notice us in the break room. It’s because we want to walk by a group of hot guys in The Red Skirt that hugs our non existent hips, which is more enticing than sauntering up to said group in your freshman orientation shirt that you refused to get rid of. AND THAT’S OK.

So I will be the first to admit that I dress up for other people to see me. So what. Who cares. This doesn’t mean that I need other’s validation to define me, or even prove that I actually look good. But if wearing The Red Skirt lands me Mark Wahlberg’s dopple-danger, then my mission is accomplished. Actually, it doesn’t even have to be a Marky Mark look-a-like. It could be his brother Donnie’s twin, who was my favorite New Kid on the Block. Or anyone closely resembling Idris Elba, The Rock, Robin Thicke, Columbus Short, or my hot neighbor who stares at me in the hall will do just fine ( but I like it).

-KEEP IT A HOT MESS

*Photograph courtesy of Laura Byrnes Photography

In Case of Emergency…

 

emergency contact

I’m going to get straight to the point. I was on Facebook earlier today ( I’m usually on here 90% of my day- just kidding. Or am I?), and saw a hilarious meme that my cousin posted on her page. The comedian Mo’Nique was at the center, and several curse words surrounded her with a message for the women out there regarding sexual relations ( Google it- it’s pretty funny). Although my cousin’s message said it a bit differently, I thought this was great advice for my ladies out there: It’s probably not a good idea to be intimate with someone you can’t call in case of an emergency. 

I’m not sure wiser words were ever spoken. Although the sentiment comes straight from the desk of Captain Obvious, it is a topic that is debated on a daily basis with women ( and men) all over the world. We talk about it with our best friends. We debate whether to do the deed or not with the Peanut Gallery ( aka our BFFs). Some people Google the topic on the internet in order to read about other people’s experiences. We may even ask the Magic 8 Ball ( should I or shouldn’t I?).

There are moral implications on whether to do it or not. One’s decision can be religious-based. Mostly, it will be from your own experiences. In the end, you are going to make your own decisions on whether to do the deed or not. But the aforementioned advice is geared toward an extremely specific group of people. We can go ahead and take out people who are married or engaged ( you better be able to call your husband or fiancée’ in case of emergency!). I’m talking to the single people out there who have yet to either put a ring on it or have someone propose putting a ring on them. In today’s world of infidelity, sneakiness, social media, YOLO behavior, and no shame, it has become more difficult and downright scary to casually date and consider getting between the sheets with just anyone. Not that anyone should do that in the first place, but if anyone out there is still considering casually, um, DOING someone, think about this- if you can’t put them down with confidence as your emergency contact, don’t do it.

Think about it. Why would you want to be intimate with someone you can’t trust to come pick you up after Lasik surgery? The person who the nurse needs to call after you tried to make a four-course meal you CLEARLY have no business making, and now you wound up in the emergency room? If they can’t help you, why would you trust them to hump you? ( Sidenote: I know that was a terrible joke, but I just couldn’t help myself). There are too many people out there involving themselves with people who don’t deserve their time, and definitely not the right to listen to their homemade “Slow Jamz 4″  sexy-time mix. We need to get past being okay being with someone who will answer a “make me feel good text” in the middle of the night, but has no idea of your personal emergency escape route in case things gets real. It is an absolute privilege to share yourself with another person, and you should govern yourself accordingly. Otherwise, you’re just a plain ‘ol hot mess.

In addition to being a confident emergency contact , there are also a few other criteria I feel the entire single world should adopt when determining whether or not someone is worthy of getting in between your sheets, amongst other things:

  • If they personally don’t know another emergency contact of yours, don’t do it (and vice versa).
  • If you don’t know their last name, you might want to keep it closed.
  • If you wouldn’t trust them to be your Spades partner, just leave them alone.
  • If they don’t know your alma mater ( or haven’t cared enough to ask), please block their number.
  • If you wouldn’t trust them to come pick you up off the side of the road in case you get a flat tire, I hope you forget their name.
  • If you wouldn’t trust them to be your DD ( designated driver), don’t pick up the phone.
  • If you don’t talk to them on a regular basis ( every two weeks DOES NOT count), they are not a good choice. And I’m not talking about texting, I’m talking about picking up the damn phone and having a real live conversation.
  • If you would be hesitant to introduce them to your family ( and not because your family is crazy), you need to meet someone else.
  • If they don’t know what you’re allergic to, you shouldn’t be intimate with him/her. Seriously, someone that is getting THAT CLOSE to you should know you can’t eat strawberries.
  • If you truly do not care about them, don’t allow them to get that close to you ( now this is straight from the desk of Captain Obvious).

See? Hot Mess Life does care about you…

 

The Nanny From Hell aka Gangstaliscious.

Imagine you place an ad on craigslist. You’re looking for someone to be a long-term, live-in nanny to help with cooking and tending to your children. Someone replies to the ad. After doing a thorough background check, you decide to hire said person. Let’s say after only a month of working, the nanny decides to stop working. Not only does she stop working, she stages a protest by staying in her room due to health concerns. As if that weren’t enough, she demands that you bring her food and provide her with air conditioning. Sounds like your uncle that’s never around because he’s always locked up. The one you have to make excuses for, saying things like “he’s out of town”, knowing this is how he acts during his brief visits on the outs.

You are about to witness the strength, of street knowledge.

You are about to witness the strength, of street knowledge.

Well, this is what happened to the Bracamonte family of Upland, CA, when they hired Mrs. Doubtfire in drag look-alike Diane Stretton… aka “S.O.R.E” (Stretton On The Run Eating), aka “Super Thug” to be a live in nanny for their three children.

According to the wife, Marcella Bracamonte, everything was all good just a week ago. A month ago, to be exact. But soon after, she started showing her ass… <del datetime="2014-07-10T21:05:17+00:00" yelling f#ck your couch stopped working and decided to stay in her room. I wonder if in a previous lifetime her name was “Pookie” or “Ray Ray”?

So basically, she Deeboed the Bracamonte house.

Yes that’s right, this sweet and innocent looking woman is basically the Goldmouth to the Bracamonte’s Rayford Gibson. Asking, “You gon’ eat yo’ cornbread? Except without asking. Shit, with her shiftless attitude and shiftless work ethic, she is a walking “Niggas Be Like” meme.

And in true nigga fashion, she quit before she could be fired. The Bracamonte’s claimed they fired her on June 4th, while Stretton claims that she quit on June 6th, giving notice that she would be out no later than 7/6/2014. But her resignation would only happen if the media would leave her alone. Are you getting this? “The media needs to be completely gone. If the media stays away, I will be out by the 4th of July. But that depends on the circus not continuing.” So this geriatric babysitter gave a month notice (forget a two week notice) while living with free room and board.

I don’t know about you, but in the words of Cedric The Entertainer, “I wish a mothaf#cka that works for me, would” tell me what they won’t do… mooching off my free porn wifi and air condition while setting her time table for when she’ll leave my house.

While her employment status is no longer in debate, when she will leave the house is still debatable. The Bracmonte’s can’t legally force her out without a proper eviction notice. After the eviction notice is obtained, she would still have 30 days to vacate. Knowing this, Stretton threatened to sue them if they tried to remove her from the house. Along with her threat, she made a list of demands…

She wants the family to provide her with an air conditioned room, WiFi and a stocked bathroom.
She has also demanded that the family vacate the home all day and provide her with healthy meals – or $200 to eat out. She called Mrs. Bracamonte a Drama Queen during an interview. The irony…

As of the beginning of this week, Diane is still thugging in love in the Bracamonte’s home. The Bracamontes tell the media that they have not spoken to her in weeks, but she still lives in the house
There, aint no way in hell someone is going to be living in my house scott free, making demands of me.

I think Diane can teach these young thugs a thing or two about “hitting a lick”.

All in all, it seems that no matter the age, it’s still good to be white and privileged in America. I bet if she was black she would have been shot, with it made to look like an accident…

Breazy.

It’s Going Down, I’m Yelling Tinder!

tinder

Men: Remember when you actually had to muster up the courage to approach a woman at a bar or party, and give her your best introduction? You had to make sure that you looked your best, your breath was at its freshest, and you were equipped with your nicest smile? Ladies: Do you recall a time where you ventured out to a friend’s soiree, with excitement and anticipation that you might meet someone? A guy who’s charming,sweet, with the cutest dimples? a time where you put on your fanciest party dress ( not showing too much skin, but one that accentuated your womanly figure), and look forward to flirting with several men? Well, those days are over. You’re all now reduced to a Smartphone version of “Hot or Not”, which is a clear signal that romance is dying a slow death right before our eyes.

There’s a phone application lurking out there called Tinder, and if you are not familiar with it, it involves an individual perusing through photographs of potential “suitors”, and deciding to either give them a stamp of approval, or give them a big ‘ol “hell no!”, all within a matter of milliseconds. You can literally swipe left or right on your screen, and click on people who you might be interested in. Imagine that, being able to pluck out matches simply by looking at filtered photographs and not having to waste time reviewing a person’s dating profile. Who wants to read, anyway? I’m pretty sure Tinder is the love child of ADHD and it’s predecessor Grindr- a similar app geared toward the gay, bi, and curious community. A friend showed me how the app worked once at a football tailgate and we were 525 feet from his next potential date- the app literally shows you how many feet someone else looking for the same thing is away from you! I thought it was fascinating- frightening, but still fascinating. They work so fast, they don’t even have time for the letter “e” in the name of the application!

While Tinder has the look and feel of a hook-up site, there are many out there who believe that they can find “The One” while checking the “Yes” box on this app. Being the awesome pessimist I have become right now in my current dating life (I’m raking them in with that sentiment), I’m not so sure about this. Therefore, I never signed up for this site- I refused to waste my time. However, I became a bit more intrigued while having a night on the town last night with my friends while enjoying Miami neighborhood Wynwood’s monthly Art Walk. We were all at a bar, and a friend was showing the group her Tinder account, and we all became a sort of flash mob and collectively assisted her in picking out several future dates. She is an eternal spot of sunshine, and always has a positive outlook on things, so I’m happy that she feels a good guy can be found on this site. I hope she does find him so I can talk about him behind his back, all in the name of friendship ( that’s what ladies do, fellas). But for me, I don’t have much hope. If that wasn’t enough, I was approached by a lovely lady who recognized me from college, and after a while, I discovered she was on a date from the illustrious Tinder- and it was a second one at that! After I crashed her date and we all became BFFs, I concluded that they were getting along great, and had the potential to be a good match. But I believe they are definitely the exception, and not the rule.

I feel that this application speaks volumes as to the state of the dating world today, romance, and the never-ending search for love that so many of us seek. First of all, it’s on your phone. Granted, it’s not on your phone if your’e 55+ and you have one of those Jitterbugs issued to you by AARP, but I’m speaking to a younger crowd (I still consider myself a young buck). Seriously, how in the world did we end up in place where it is the norm to just look at pictures of people and think we could find our soulmate? I’m assuming a lot of people are not looking for soulmates, but forever romantics will always put themselves out there, eternally hoping to meet their significant other. How do we hope to accomplish this in a social media society that swipes across your face, to the left, to the left, in hopes of uncovering some  god/goddess doing their best duck impression in the most sophisticated bathroom they can find?

When did the mystery disappear? It’s fallen by the wayside along with chivalry, talking on the phone for 6 hours with your boyfriend on a pay phone with just one quarter, manners, discretion, meeting the parents on the first date because you had to ask for permission to go out with someone, making people wait, and a world free from the concept of “hooking up”. Honestly, I find it quite frightening that the state of love is up in the air, dancing between the past of true romance and the future of casual hot mess. This could all be stemming from my sad little heart, so perhaps my cynicism is over looking the potential happiness people can find in today’s age of quickly making up your mind (and I mean QUICK) on who you are willing to date. You’re speaking to a woman who has deleted all of her online profiles, ended all of her “situationships”, and is bitterly working on her cougar persona in 5 years. I’m hurting ya’ll.

But can you blame me? What do you think of the state of romance and love these days, where instant gratification and putting your best profile picture forward rule the love world? Is it just a sign of the times? Do you think that you can find Computer Love? Or are we trying to find love in a hopeless place?

 

Check out my place at www.hotmesslife.wordpress.com, where I will eventually post my adventures from Tinder ( yea, I’m going to join- RELUCTANTLY).

Should Natural hair Be Exclusive to Black Women Only?

Being a blogger, I like to think of myself as well read, at least when it comes to other blogs. I try to not limit myself to similar content blogs that I would post. Rather than opting to stay inside my little box, I’ll read blogs ranging from science, to hip hop and even on natural hair. So recently, I felt I had to add my two pieces when I came across a bit of back and forth between Jamilah Lemieux and Nikki Walton, the owner and writer of http://www.curlynikki.com.Waterlily716-350x420-7

Nikki Walton interviewed a white woman named Sarah about her “natural hair journey.” After having read both Nikki’s interview and Jamilah’s rebuttal, I was left with a sense of division and I don’t mean along color lines, but within our own community. From my perspective, I don’t feel that Curly Nikki, was in any shape, fashion or form trying to equate white women’s hair struggles with that of black women’s, nor was she going out of her way to include Sarah into the natural hair family. Simply put, she was interviewing a woman, regardless of race, about going natural and embracing her hair

Of course, not everybody saw it that way, with some such as Jamilah taking offense to Sarah’s interview and adopting an exclusive mindset where, natural hair is and should be reserved for black women.

While I don’t have a dog in the fight for should the natural hair club be exclusive to black women only fight, or inclusive to other races, I will say that I was surprised at the level of emotion displayed by Jamilah. I can understand her desire to keep something that we created, “ours,” but that would mean that black women are the only ones who wear their hair natural. Now, what I don’t understand is the need to “call someone to the carper,” especially about how someone chooses to run his/her blog. Not wanting to acknowledge another race’s natural hair is one thing, but I don’t see the need to judge or criticize those who think differently than you.

I am a man who doesn’t have the same concerns when it comes to my hair as my natural or processed sistas. I guess this is why I have never given a second thought as to whether other races should be included in the natural hair discussion .

I will say that being ignorant to the argument allows me to step back and be indifferent. Honestly, I don’t see what is the problem, and I am sure that black women aren’t the only women who wear their hair natural. Now I understand what’s natural when it comes to other race’s hair may not be what we consider natural. But does that negate the fact that women of other races still choose to stray from the straight, processed look, while opting for the natural?

What do you think? Do you think that white women and other races should be excluded in the #teamnatural camp? If so, then why? If you disagree, why is that?

Talk to me, I’ll talk back.

Breazy Dean