I come from a family where even though they aren’t necessarily “Holy Rollers”, they definitely believe that G-d will pray everything away. Ironically I have been trying to “pray away” my crippling anxiety to no avail. But I’ll let y’all debate on that one on your own. That brings me to my true lord and savior Sweet Mary Jane, aka Marijuana. Again, my parents are the type that still think that marijuana is the devil’s lettuce, well call me the devil’s dame because this sh*t works for me! I’m not much of a drinker, maybe on the weekends I’ll treat myself to a glass (or two…) of Prosecco. Or if I go to a bar my limit is 2-3 vodka cran’s (yes basic AF, I know). However, one thing I always bring to the function is a joint. Not because I’m looking to get “lit”, but because it loosens me up a bit and helps me with my social anxiety.
However, one issue I kept running into was stress at work and day to day life. I know weed is very common now, however working in a corporate environment, I don’t particularly feel comfortable showing up every day smelling like Bob Marley’s basement. I’ve always been told that CBD products are a helpful solution, but as someone who experiences bad allergic reactions to nearly everything, it was difficult to find the perfect product. That is, until I found Chill Mary!
Chill Mary is a company started by Kimberly Crooks, a young black woman in her twenties, who like me, struggled with anxiety in a very fast paced work environment. As you can see in the photo above, Kimberly aka Chill Mary’s products are so “aesthetically pleasing”, I mean just look at the way it’s glowing with my little plants outside! And they’re also small enough to put in your purse or backpack. I love the fact that her products are vegan and non-toxic, because that’s extremely important to me! We’ve only got one body, so it doesn’t matter how young you are it’s important to pay attention to what you put in it. I don’t go around boasting that I’m soOoOoOo healthy but in reality, I am. I really take into consideration what products I use inside and outside of my body. In my search to find the perfect CBD products, I came across so many products with too many strange ingredients and some that hadn’t even been tested in a lab. I mean sheesh! Luckily, all of Chill Mary’s products are “curated with quality non-toxic, sustainable and vegan ingredients” as well as lab tested. Girl take all my money now! I’m never using anything else!!! In fact, I have been using the “Ease Me” Wellness Tincture every. single. day. My life has already improved so much. I love that it’s light and airy, but still does the job… (if ya know what I mean! *wink wink*). This product only has a few simple ingredients, which is exactly what I’ve been looking for; Organic Coconut Oil (MCT), Full Spectrum Hemp-derived CBD Oil. The Ease Me tincture is good for a few things, in Chill Mary’s description she approves this product for; “moments of anxiety, body recovery, restless nights, stress and when you wish people would say less.” LOL! As someone who is also very active, I feel the recovery after my workouts has been so much better. I’ve definitely been experiencing less pain during my workouts as well. My knees say “thank you Chill Mary!” Also, has someone who mumbles “shut the F up” several times a day, this product is perfect for me.
Another product I love is the “Best Bud” Facial Oil. As someone who suffers from very cystic acne, I’m always hesitant to try out new things in fear of getting an adverse and extreme reaction. Chill Mary strikes again, because I absolutely adore what this product has done for my skin! As I mentioned before, I love sticking to natural products when it comes to my body. Just like the things we consume, SO many beauty products have a bunch of ingredients we can’t even pronounce, that don’t even work! The “Best Bud” Facial Oilis made of Rosehip Seed Oil, Sunflower Oil, Fractionated Coconut Oil (MCT), Hemp Seed Oil, Cranberry Oil, Grapefruit Oil, Carrot Seed Oil, Full Spectrum Hemp-derived CBD Oil, Pomegranate Seed Oil, Rosemary Oil, Tea Tree Oil and Rose Buds. Now I know y’all can pronounce those! When is comes to skincare, there also aren’t a lot of products out there that tend to black women’s skin the way it should. The Best Bud Facial Oil has my melanin poppin okay hunnnnny! There’s even a nice little shimmer tint in this product which is so fabulous. Chile I cannot wait to show it off when the world opens back up again!
What also drew me to this company was the fact that Chill Mary is a BLACK and FEMALE owned business! Weed and CBD is nothing new to the black community. We’ve known about the positive effects of weed since the beginning of time. Ironically now that it’s legal, it’s a majority white dominated industry. So when I found out my good sis Chill Mary was a black woman, she had my FULL support. Besides the relationship between black people and the decriminalization of marijuana, it’s also just difficult overall for women, especially black women, to be taken seriously as business owners. Which is a crock of horsesh*t because we put in the most work. Anytime I see a black woman doing her thing in the business world, I will ALWAYS give my support because I know first hand how discouraging it can be. Which is exactly why you should go purchase Chill Mary’s products, I know she’s definitely got a lifelong customer out of me!
As a female owned brand, I love to shine a light on other women who are on their grind. It’s important that us women support one another in a world that just wants to see us fail! You all know by now, my brand Elite Urbanite is all about being “eclectic and culturally aware”. This means being in tune with many different trends while being a bit quirky or “different”. With no shame of course! This doesn’t just stop with music, fashion, or television, it applies to decor aesthetic as well!
A few months back I posted the before and afters of my apartment here, but I’m always looking for new design inspiration on Instagram. In my search I came across an awesome page called @retrodeo.la! Retrodeo LA is a Los Angeles based vintage furniture company owned by the lovely Emily Rose Watkins. She has a fantastic eye for style that is rare to come by, and I’m completely obsessed! Her most recent project was helping Big Mouth writer and instagram comedian Jordan Firstman achieve the Barbarella inspired bachelor pad of his dreams (here)! I was in awe when I browsed through all the unique pieces. I immediately wanted to do my whole apartment over! As someone who wants a Studio 54 themed wedding, Emily’s style totally fits my vibe, so naturally I reached out to ask her a few questions about her super groovy company Retrodeo LA, check it out below!
Q: What event sparked your interest in starting your own brand?
A: I considered starting this brand when I moved into my first apartment in LA. It was the first time I had a space to call my own, and get creative with all the wild decor ideas I’d had floating around in my head. I started sourcing things from all over the place, and couldn’t stop! I’d get so inspired by all the vintage finds, I’d want to change my decor each week. As I started to swap things out, I began to sell things on, which later turned into ‘I just wanna find this cool stuff for everyone’. I’ve always been drawn to colors, and somewhat ‘loud’ styles, so starting a vintage homeware brand that reflects my personal style seemed like a match made in heaven.
Q: Who or what do you draw inspiration from when it comes to you & your brands aesthetic? (Any specific movies, tv shows, celebrities, etc.)
A: I draw a lot of inspiration from music, film and fashion. I originally moved from London where I worked predominantly in fashion and sang in clubs and bars in the evening. Fashion inspires my use of color a lot. I even sometimes drape clothes over items of furniture to check which colors work in my interior. Working in music, I’d always admired the style of Kurt Cobain, Elton John, Freddy Mercury, not just for the music, but they all have that eccentric ‘I’ll wear what I like’ approach which accentuates their artistry. I originally moved to LA to pursue acting, so film and being on set has been a huge inspiration! My last shoot was set in the 1950s, and the set designers did a phenomenal job. I’ve since sold some items to film sets, one of which is an upcoming Will Ferrel film. I wasn’t allowed to know deets, but I’m hoping I see Ron Burgandy using my side table for his glass of scotch so I can say I’ve made it. I’d love to involve myself more on film projects. I’m so busy looking at set design in film, I miss half the plot line. ‘Scarface’ brings huge inspiration. From the 80s Miami Vice feel, to Michelle Pfeiffer’s wardrobe. ‘The Shining’ is also phenomenal, especially that hotel carpet and pea green bathroom. A more recent watch was ‘The Queen’s Gambit’. The set and costume design in that whole series is unreal.
Q: Do you have any pieces or projects that you’re especially proud of?
A: I get especially enthusiastic when I find lip sofas or palm tree lamps! I feature these heavily on my page so I try to stay consistent. They are just so unique and fun. Who wouldn’t want to sit on a giant mouth or have a palm tree in their living room with glowing coconuts?
Q: What is some advice you’d give to other female business/brand owners who are just starting out?
A: To trust your own creative style, if you have a vision, use it. Don’t let instagram create illusions! Running a business, in my personal experience, is sometimes difficult and very chaotic. It’s the behind the scenes that we don’t see enough, which isn’t so glamorous. And be patient. ‘Growing’ your brand and learning along the way is the fun part.
Q: Lastly, knowing what you know now, what’s the best advice you would give your 13 year old self?
A: You’re gonna be filling peoples homes with cool vintage furniture one day, and you’re gonna love it, so quit worrying about what you’re doing with your life.
See what I mean! Look how cool she is?! I can’t wait until I get my own home so I can work with Emily to create the Studio 54 pad of MY dreams. Now that you know more about the woman behind the business, check out her page @retrodeo.la and get inspired!
Well, I’ve certainly had a lot of time on my hands this past year. Besides taking the time to better myself and all that jazz (blah, blah, blah)… I watched a shitload of TV. I’m typically not a big binge watcher, but like what the hell else am I supposed to do watch paint dry???
I’m sure for some of these shows I’m a bit late to the party (sue me), and for some of the others, a lot of y’all probably haven’t even heard of. Who knows, maybe after reading this list you’ll find a new favorite tv show! Though I watched a LOT of tv, I’ve narrowed down which shows I enjoyed the most. Check it out below – (don’t worry no spoilers!)
SUCCESSION – OKAY everyone around me knows that this is my new favorite show. I cannot stop talking about Succession. A few of my former co-workers had actually told me to watch this last year, but for some reason I just kept forgetting to tune in. I don’t know why but I can never remember to watch these HBO shows! I looove this show because it is fast paced and intense, but at the same time absolutely hysterical. The show centers on the “Roy” family and the patriarch’s plans to figure out who in his inner circle will ultimately succeed the company. Though Succession touches on elements such as substance abuse and family traumas, my favorite parts are when Tom and Gregg are on screen together! Who can forget classic lines such as “You can’t make a Tomlette without breaking a few Greggs” or “We Hear For You”. Also Nicholas Braun aka “Cousin Gregg” is my boyfriend in my head.
BOJACK HORSEMAN – Even though Bojack Horseman is a cartoon, it deals with some real deep shit. There were even times that I had to take a break from watching it because it was a bit triggering. For background, the main character, Bojack, is a down on his luck 80’s sitcom star who is trying to repair his career. A career that he destroyed on his own due to his bouts with depression, anxiety, drug abuse, and alcoholism. In the start of the show, it seems as though Bojack is just like any other washed up Hollywood asshole, but as the series goes on we learn more about why he is the way he is and that it’s never to late for second chances.
THE UNDOING – This show was fucking bonkers! The Undoing just came out on HBO Max back in October so there’s still time to catch up without being too behind. Hugh Grant and Nicole Kidman play husband and wife in this thriller filled with twists and turns. They live a perfect life with their son in the Upper East Side of Manhattan and work as an Oncologist and a Therapist. I mean just fabulous! However, like most thrillers… was it all *really* perfect? I won’t give away any more deets, but this show is a perfect example of how you never truly know someone as much as you think you do.
UNSOLVED MYSTERIES – I’m the biggest chicken in the world so I’m not even sure why I watched this show to begin with. I usually do enjoy a good crime show or mystery series, because I know they find the culprit at the end. As the name suggests, in this series… THEY DO NOT! Which makes it all the more frightening. To be fair, a lot of the cases are pretty unique and specific to the individual. However, there were a few episodes that had me boarding up my windows and doors.
THE IMAGINEERING STORY – Because I am a big kid stuck in a small adult’s body, I freaking LOVE Disneyland. It’s one of the first places I’ll be going when the world is officially safe to inhabit again. For those who are unfamiliar, an Imagineer is what they call the people who conceptualize the Disney parks. Obviously building a theme park is no easy feat, but seeing just how detail oriented this group of people have been over the past sixty-six years is completely awe inspiring. Definitely a must watch!
THE LAST DANCE – So, I was a wee child during the infamous Bulls era. Actually I wasn’t even alive for a good majority of it. However! I do remember all the hype and hoopla surrounding the pop culture phenomenon that is Michael Jordan. And of course, I love Space Jam. But what do I love more than any of that? DENNIS RODMAN! Though I’m not the biggest sports junkie, I do love how important this era was to pop culture and how much it changed the game of basketball forever. Tbh I got emotional watching that final game (like I didn’t already know how it ended) because they just showed so much heart and team work. Ugh, I can watch this one over and over again.
BILLY ON THE STREET – This web series originally started on Funny or Die back in 2011, but recently they’ve put it all on Netflix! My mom hates this show, but I love how absolutely ridiculous it is. Comedian Billy Eichner runs (yes runs) around New York City asking the nearest passerby the most ridiculous questions for a chance to win some money. And as many of you know, New Yorkers don’t have the patience for that shit. Which makes it even funnier. Sometime’s he’ll be with mega stars, and sometime’s he’ll be dressed up as C3PO. You never know what to expect when watching Billy on the Street.
THE DARK SIDE OF THE RING – To be completely clear I do not watch WWE. Especially not anything past the late 90’s. I always admired the pop culture connection between wrestling icons like Hulk Hogan, Macho Man Randy Savage, and The Rock but, I never knew how dark and twisted the wrestling world was behind the scene. For such a fun and outrageous sport, there is a lot of evil shit that goes down once the show is over. If you enjoy pop culture and murder mysteries, this is a great show to binge. Also no prior wrestling knowledge is required.
THE MANDALORIAN – I am a HUGE Star Wars fan. I mean I have a Darth Vader tattoo for christ’s sake. However, I HATED these last two Star Wars sequel movies and I’m not the biggest fan of the prequels. I can watch the original trilogy all the way through, and have, countless times. Thankfully, The Mandalorian truly makes up for the shitty movies that came after the originals and even evokes that feeling and incorporates elements of the classic Star Wars style. Also I think it’s so awesome that Jon Favreau has gained so much success and respect as a director, I feel like a proud parent. I can’t wait to see what he does with all the other Star Wars series spin offs.
THE OFFICE – If you don’t know what The Office is… get off my blog NOW! I’ve watched The Office dozens of times, but I just wanted to binge all nine seasons before Netflix took it away from us forever (because I’m not downloading Peacock).
Y’all. I’ve been trying, I really have… but the dudes on these dating apps have too much time to be fucking crazy and not enough time to get diagnosed by a therapist. For a while I used to think, maybe it’s me? Maybe I could change my approach? Well goddamn it I have tried it ALL. Hinge, Tinder, Match, Bumble, I’ve tried em all. For the most part, I’m pretty lucky though because I haven’t necessarily had too many crazy “dating” stories. As a matter of fact, my friend was just telling me how she had to LITERALLY run away from a guy on a date. Luckily she’s now happily engaged, so yay! Another friend of mine got a message on Instagram from someone she matched with on bumble a few months prior saying how she was in an abusive relationship with someone and that they lied to the cops about the whole thing to avoid getting in trouble. The gag is, she and my friend never met in person… I mean… can you say weird? I recently just updated my tinder bio to say “a lot of you aren’t quirky… you’re simply just undiagnosed”. Because it’s true, men need fucking therapy and need to stop using their lack of human functionality as ~personality traits~
You know, to be honest, I’ve been rejected quite a lot by people who were not on my level (let’s be real, they weren’t. I know my worth). I’ve even had these white dudes attempt to fetishize me on these apps, at this point I laugh it off, only after telling them to fuck off and blocking them of course. But I feel like after my past experience these 4 months, I’ve reached a breaking point. I thought I found a guy who was exactly what I was looking for, turns out… he was WAY better on paper than he was in real life. Buckle up bitches, this is only the beginning of the saga…!
So I’ve been on and off these dating apps since god knows how long. Years. Eons. Decades!!! Kidding, kidding. When the lockdown hit I figured hey why not see who’s sitting at home lonely and single just like little ol’ me! Turns out, a bunch of goddamn weirdos! I went on two socially distanced dates, and have talked to about 100 guys at this point. Then suddenly one September afternoon I saw a super cute guy from Hermosa Beach on tinder who was… 5,265 miles away? For some reason my stupid brain told me not to trust my better judgement and I swiped right. As my girl Julia Roberts would say… BIG MISTAKE… HUGE! Once we started talking, I learned that his company had planned on moving him out here to extend their business to the United States. I probably should’ve taken me falling and nearly breaking my knee cap, my dog refusing to eat, and getting stuck in a Trump Parade on the way home from getting a new tattoo in ALL IN ONE DAY as signs to STEER CLEAR. But as I said my brain be on that dumb shit sometimes.
Ironically, this is not the first time a girl has written a blog post about how shitty this guy is (we’ll get into that a bit later), and I’m sure it won’t be the last. At first he was super cool, talked about common interests, super chatty (something I usually don’t like, but hey we’re in lockdown why not!) Turns out this was just the first sign of his narcissism. This is what a narcissist does. They come off super charming, tell you everything you want to hear, give you tons of gifts, compliments, a sense of approval… then BOOM ASSHOLE ALERT! I mean when it comes to dating, you would think someone would be doing these things to be genuine, but instead this is the first step of their attempt at manipulation and control. One of the first things I do at this point on the apps is ask them when their last relationship was. When Fluke Hoggs (that’s what we’re gonna call him, because that’s what my 4 months of chatting with him was, a fucking Fluke) told me in September that his last relationship was in March I was a little worried. He then went into his opinions of his ex and why they didn’t work out. He mentioned how much money he spent on her, and how he would have to listen to her problems… you know… like that thing that starts with a B and ends with OYFRIEND should be doing. He even tried to say she “cheated” but turns out, they weren’t even official at the time. So uh, homegirl was still on the market and allowed to do what she wanted! PERIODT. Coincidentally, the things he claimed she would complain about with him, I too eventually complained about. But of course when you ask a narcissist for things like communication and a sense of caring and understanding it comes off as “demanding” or “needy”. Give me a fucking break you cyborg. I, not knowing really either party too well, all I could do is take his word for it. Until I did a little digging and found out who she was (sorry girl). Honestly she looked normal to me, and someone I actually wanted to be friends with! She looks like a fun loving and hard working girl, and clearly she’s clearly got 100 times more personality than his drab ass has in his left pinky toe. But I digress. He also casually mentioned he had a “stalker”. Which of course, my reaction was huh? Not something you casually drop on someone. When I asked for more details, he said that it was a different girl he took out on a date from his job. They “hung out”, whatever that means these days, and then for some reason she cursed him out and her friends would even call his phone cursing him out. I mean… someone doesn’t just get treated that way for “nothing”. He even said she wrote a post on her own blog about him and his shitty ways. Something I’d actually love to read one day. And being that he ended up being a pathological liar, I’m sure way more than “hanging out” happened that night. But again, stupid brain said “Girl ignore it, live your life!”
BECAUSEEEE I’ve been on these apps for so long, I thought to myself “wow okay, he’s got a great job. He’s tall. We’ve got similar interests. And he’s kind. PERFECT!” I assumed his affection was all genuine. Turns out he was “lovebombing” me, a common tactic used by narcissists. They flood you with affection and attention in order for you to let your guard down and trust them. As I said, I’m not really great at dating so I figured why not accept the affection and let my guard down a bit. Another huge mistake. Because once a narcissist sees your guard is down, they think they’ve got you wrapped around your finger. I presume he took me being drained from a worldwide pandemic as “weak”, but honestly I just wanted someone to chat with besides my dog (sorry Oz). In fact, I couldn’t be more opposite. I am probably the textbook definition of “strong independent woman”. And damn it I’m proud of it! At a certain point I would mention that I needed space, but I was never granted that. Because after me voicing my needs, 5 minutes later he texted me saying he couldn’t NOT wait until tomorrow to talk to me… like okay go watch a fucking movie or something bro.
Though the compliments are nice, I eventually wanted something more than someone telling me how “pretty” I am or how “cool” I am or what lavish trips he wanted to take me on. Even after me constantly saying I didn’t really care about that. I want someone who cares about me and my feelings, or someone who asks about my day or my goals in life. Because I have so many! I want to continue my career in television and develop Elite Urbanite to the brand I want it to be. But again, a narcissist doesn’t care. Because to them, you’re the secondary or supporting character in this narrative. So once I began to speak up on my needs, the arguments ensued. One particularly ridiculous situation was when I looked at his friends IG story. First off, this “friend” was just someone he met on tinder that didn’t work out romantically, they never met IRL. Meanwhile I’m FaceTiming Fluke everyday, this chick knows who I am, I looked at maybe two stories then she wants to sound the alarm and wants to somehow correlate her anxiety with me looking at her profile. Girl, tell that to all those very obvious thirst traps you have on your page. Your 36 year old ass needs to go play with the grown ups. But of course, a narcissist with no empathy isn’t going to understand that her behavior (running to him and talking about me, someone she’s never met) is inappropriate and completely unnecessary. If she really wanted to be my “friend” like she said to him, why not just add me when you recognize the name? The part that was really uncool to me, was that he believed this random ass woman over me and tried to make me appear as the villian in the situation. I mean its fucking instagram… everyone “stalks” each other. Especially if your profile is OPEN.
Once we got past that I still continued to voice that my needs weren’t exactly being met, and that he suddenly was being a bit “unemotional” (thank you to his ex who used this spot on description because, whew). All I simply asked for was proper communication. For example, let me know when you need space so I can do the same. Let me know if this isn’t working for you so I can move on. Ironically, his brother seems to have a very happy and humble life with his wife and newborn son. But for some reason he would continue to bring up how much better his job was over his brothers, and how his sister in law was the real bread winner. He would even talk about how his parents weren’t the brightest, and how he doesn’t feel he needs to listen to them because they’re “Blue Collar”. Sheesh. I mean listen, not to brag, but I come from a relatively wealthy family and made somewhat of a career in television myself so… money isn’t really something I care about. Money is nice, but it doesn’t make you a good person. As we see here. I also thought it was a red flag that I, someone he never met, knew more about his past relationship than anyone in his fucking family… like what? It was strange for him to seem to close to his family, only to never tell them anything about his personal life and dating experiences? Or seek out advice? But ah yes, there it is again, another narcissistic trait. A sense of entitlement. He doesn’t feel he needs anyone else’s advice because a narcissist is “always right”. Several red flags were raised, but truthfully I didn’t think much of it because I wasn’t officially dating this person, it was just someone I had casually been chatting with everyday for a couple of months.
Around late November/early December I noticed his behavior began to change. To which again, I said if you’re not interested in this anymore feel free to let me know. I said, and I quote “I can’t be mad at you for not being interested in me anymore, I can only be mad about you not being honest with me.” He constantly lied and credited his sudden distance to “stress”. For background, he was promoted to a VP position at his company in order to help get the US branch up and running. Funny thing is, when I made a comment about work around that time… he apparently had been demoted to manager for over a month… something he “asked” for. Sir nobody asks to be demoted in a pandemic, knock it off. Unfortunately that wasn’t his only lie.
When I asked if he was speaking to other people he continued to assure me he wasn’t, and that dating was just something not in the cards for him right now. Between moving to the U.S. and trying to start up a new branch, I totally understood. He said he didn’t have the time or energy to date with all the stress from work. Regardless, we agreed to take it slow/keep it friendly for the time being until he got settled here in LA. Between losing both my job and my sanity during this lockdown, taking it slow worked pretty well for me too. If someone’s cool and we have a lot in common, why not see what the future may hold. Until his behavior began to get more and more suspicious. To which I said, I’m not sure if you’re speaking to other people or just not interested, but I’m tired of trying to figure out what this is. Which of course again turned into another argument filled with plenty of gaslighting. The first time I said I wanted to stop communication, he claimed I was trying to get rid of him. Which if we never met why should it matter? All this was, was a narcissist realizing he had began to lose control, and Fluke realizing that I wasn’t that weak person he thought I was. Sure, I’m laid back and unproblematic, but I don’t take kindly to bullshit. But again, stupid brain said why not keep it friendly. And with that, I expected him to flat out tell me he was no longer interested, I would joke about it and ask whether or not he was doing so, only to be told I was “demanding answers out of him” and “pushing a false idea”. This is the exact definition of gaslighting.
I had confronted him a second time and he finally admitted he had lost interest which is fine. Until he said he had lost interest over A MONTH AGO. Huh??? I thought it was very bizarre for someone I don’t know to continue to chat with me like there was a possibility of us getting together when he moved here. But when I said I assumed the reason was because he was talking to other girls, I was still made to seem as though I was “crazy” and “making things up”.
Because I am a top tier instagram spy, I found out that all that shit was a LIE. He had been talking to some hoe who shakes ass on IG for free and can barely form a fucking sentence. If that’s what you want buddy, go ahead, that’ll never be me. I don’t care that it didn’t work out, I’m pissed that I was RIGHT and that a man (actually a “boy” tbh) I have never met was so manipulative that he felt the need to lead me on and string me along for months, while still talking to other girls. Like what was the point other than being a manipulative dickhead? We don’t know one another, this could’ve been a clear and easy ending by saying “You’re great, but I’m not interested”. So, one day I woke up feeling petty and took matters into my own hands because nobody plays Tiffani.
About a week or two prior to the final fall out, I saw this hoe had added him on IG and liked almost EVERY picture of his. I mean… it was clear. Also to be fair, I have no issue with a little hoe activity once in a while. We all have our phases. But putting it on the internet for the male gaze and not doing it to empower yourself is completely different. Back to the story. So I kept an eye on her profile and mentioned it to my friends. I told my mom too, but she doesn’t really get social media and saw nothing wrong with it (love ya mom). There were actually a few girls I didn’t particularly trust on his page, but you know, that wasn’t my business… until it was. So one day I check the profile and see that she’s dancing around in a tied up shirt and a pair of panties (again, for free) to California Girls by Katy Perry with the caption “oh he’s so luckyy”. LOL stupid, but also I knew I finally figured this whole mess out. I mean why else would a girl FROM Los Angeles be singing this song unless it was for someone not from California? BINGO! Soooo, “my friend” messaged her and said “is ‘he’ Fluke?”. And because she is not the brightest tool in the shed, she said “how did you know?” Now this is something I’ve never done before and never will because I simply don’t have the energy. But Fluke needed a taste of his own fucking medicine and I did just that.
She wasn’t receptive at first to the receipts I showed her, I presume because she simply does not know how to read. Which is okay, some of us are a little slower to learn than others. But eventually she realized that he had been talking to us both at the same time, and lying about it. When I unblocked his number I didn’t have much to say, but I did let him know that I wasn’t fucking stupid and that I will find out the truth EVERY TIME. I also let him know that it was time for him to stop playing victim and using that “nice guy card”, because he’s NOT a nice guy. He is a narcissist who sells women on fantasies for his own personal gain. However, I’m not the one to fuck with. In true narcissist fashion, he didn’t take blame for anything he had done and tried to diminish my character. Bitch I survived 2020, you can’t hurt me! He even tried to say everything I told this girl was a lie (even though I have receipts) and that I was harassing people, which again nope. Just calling assholes out on their bullshit… all in a days work. He said he did nothing wrong by leading me on for months and blatantly lying about whether or not he was pursuing something else with someone else. He even said we were BOTH to blame because I “didn’t take a hint”. Maybe if he learned to properly communicate and say it with his chest like a MAN there wouldn’t be any issues. The difference is, that he can communicate, he just doesn’t want to communicate.
I’m not sure what did/or will become of him and “OnlyFree” (get it, like OnlyFans? But for free? I crack myself up… or maybe it’s just the Prosecco.. anyway LOL) but I totally get why he is drawn to someone like her. Her only purpose in life seems to be being taken care of and to be seen as a sexual object. Which is sad. She’s not ugly at all. I was even nice to her and said she wasn’t at fault for anything. I just simply was warning her about how this guy is lying to both of us and that he is manipulative toward black women specifically. I do know she read what I sent her, and thanked me for sending it her way. The following day she posted another weird dancing video (my friend hilariously said she dances like the batteries are dying) with some song called “Dead Man Walking”, so that’s kinda funny. Fluke knows he can have control over her because she essentially has nothing to offer besides her body. No thoughts, just vibes. As the kids say these days. So him and his money and stupid expensive jeans that he wouldn’t shut up about, are a huge catch to someone like her.
I’m sure she, who clearly has nothing but hood niggas on her profile, knows a ton about Nirvana and loves a good round of darts at the local pub… sike! While I don’t know the “stalker” at all, and I don’t know the ex personally, I can assure you that these were both women who went through very similar experiences to myself. Though it may sound like I’m bitter, I’m really not. Sometimes my dark sense of humor slips out and I can’t bring it back. Honestly, I just fucking hate liars and am tired of men labeling women as “crazy” when they’re the ones running around negatively effecting people with their undiagnosed mental illnesses. In 2021, I need men to seek therapy because I think I can speak for all women when I say we are tired of y’all’s fucking bullshit. Granted, I get people do have experiences with “crazy” exes, but when EVERY SINGLE ONE is crazy?… That’s a reflection on YOU and the way you treat people. I hope that the other two women I mentioned are much happier in their lives and have moved on to find someone who truly cares about them, because that’s what they deserve. And I hope this new girl finds a pair of pants soon because it’s getting pretty cold out here in LA. Though every girl would love to find a guy with a great job, who’s tall, who’s kind, and who can spoil them, it turns out that guys like that are WAY better on paper than they are in reality. Assholes like Fluke see these all as tools to control women to boost their own ego. I know personally I have things to work on, I can be aggressive and stuck in my New York ways, and when I meet the right Mr. Right I will do my best to make that relationship work for both parties. But as I’ve mentioned, Elite Urbanite is about empowering women, and if that means calling out narcissists in my free time, so be it. Until then, we’re stepping on necks all of 2021.
Y’all it’s been a tough year… I mean words can’t describe all the stupid shit I’ve been through. IG changed it’s policies making it more difficult for me to build my brand the way I’d like to, I talked to a guy for months, who ended up being a selfish fucking twat, I’ve been out of a job since March like most, but I mean… Christmas is finally here so… yay?
Idk, Halloween is more my jam. I’ve never really been big on Christmas. Not to sound like a freaking Hallmark movie, but I feel like people really miss out on the true meaning of the holiday. People think by getting their “loved ones” a new Bentley Truck or a Birken bag, somehow they’ll forget about all the stupid shit they did the other 364 days of the year. Or people spend a shitload of money on a Peloton or useless Apple products like an iPad that don’t even end up getting used after 3 months.
I love getting people gifts that are actually useful. Like last year, I got my mom a Click and Grow Smart Garden, where she can grow and make her own mint and basil cause she had been talking about how much she wanted to grow her own garden but never had the time. Christmas to me should be a reflection of your observation about the people around you and your capability to understand what they might need at that time or something that would be really meaningful to them. People always think my dad wants some sort of masculine gift like golf balls or cigars, but I know deep down inside he’s just a big kid so I often get him some sort of Star Wars or Superman memorabilia cause I know he’ll really appreciate it.
Now that I sound like the fucking grinch, I guess I should say a few positive things LOL… I do love Christmas music! Not the old funky white man songs or the corny ass Pentatonic songs you hear in Macy’s. I love a good mix of the classics for sentimental reasons, as well as some of the newer Christmas songs that artists of all different genres have created. That being said, take a look at my list of Christmas songs below if you wanna hear some new and exciting Christmas bops!
I know… I know… working out is probably the last thing you want to hear about. But with the holidays coming up, AND coronavirus still going on, it’s important to not pack on too many pounds. Regardless of losing weight (that’s truly up to you and your preference, nobody’s here to judge ya!) working out is always a good mood booster!
When I workout, I love to feel like I’m at a party. Check out my workout playlist below!
IT’S ALMOST THAT TIME!!! I have ALWAYS loved Halloween. I’m not even that big of a candy person, I love it purely for the campy-ness and fun nature of the holiday. I must say, I certainly did not think I would still be inside for Halloween, but here we are. Nevertheless, it’s important to make the best of it.
I will be having my family over to celebrate the best day of the year. I’m going to make some sweet treats and have my movie marathon prepared, my personal choice is “The Shining”. However, we can’t have a party without good music! So I’ve curated my own little ~spooky~ playlist to enhance the festivities, check it out below!
I’ll never forget when I was in the 3rd or 4th grade, I was playing Power Puff Girls at a friends house and we were choosing which one we wanted to be. I always loved Buttercup, because she was a badass, so I said “I call being Buttercup”… then before I finished my last breath, she said “Well you can’t be buttercup” and when I asked “Why not?” she said “You can’t be her because you’re black.” So for a while I always had a bit of a complex when it came to dressing as “white” characters. The truth of the matter is that I could dress as whoever the fuck I wanted to, but the older I got I always tried to make sure my costumes represented black women in some way. Though Princess Jasmine isn’t necessarily black, every black girl was inspired to see a Disney princess of color after decades! I was thrilled to finally dress as her last Halloween. Though I’ll be keeping it simple by just wearing a witches outfit this year, take a look below at some black girl magic halloween costumes to try out!
It’s 2020 and we’re still fucking concerned about skin tones. With George Floyd’s death there was such an outpour of emotions and sympathy towards the black community. Unsurprisingly just a few short months later, we’re back to where we were. Actually more like one step forward, a million steps back. Of course we’ve seen plenty of issues with police brutality, even with the help of internet awareness we are able to expose the atrocities going on in different African countries as well. But for some reason, retailers and even the black men and women within our own community are still focused on the matter of dark vs. light. Like what the fuck? Are y’all living in the same world that I am…. because we have much bigger fish to fry babes.
Yes, I know colorism is an issue in many different cultures around the world. But that NEVER makes it okay. It makes it worse honestly. But I as a black woman, can only speak on what I’ve seen within my own culture, rather than attempt to speak on what someone in the Brazilian or Indian culture might experience. Those who benefit from it use it to get ahead and pursue all sorts of opportunities. These people are able to “pass” as ethnically ambiguous, or even a completely different race. I knew two girls from my high school who were half Latina. From the outside, they just looked like your average white girl. Which of course made it easy for them to assimilate with the preppy white culture we grew up around. What bugged me, was that they only used their ethnicity when it was convenient. For all intents and purposes, they referred to themselves as white girls, dressed, and acted the part as well. But when it came to college applications and things of that nature… THEN suddenly they were Latina. I mean come on. Not only is that problematic for the obvious reasons, but completely denouncing one half of your gene pool just to fit in is sad. I know part of it necessarily isn’t even their fault, that’s the way this society unfortunately is built. However, that doesn’t mean you have to sit around and comply with the cards society has dealt you. On the flip side those who DON’T benefit from “passing” are constantly held back and deterred from opportunities just because someone took a mere glance at them and made up their mind of what type of person they are.
I see these issues most prevalent in matters of beauty, employment, and dating. In my own culture I constantly see mixed race women or light skinned women being praised over brown or darker skinned women. In movies and tv shows it’s always a crew of light skinned women, or the token black friend has straight hair and light eyes. Clothing brands will constantly use women with straight hair or more Caucasian features. Make up brands don’t even make shades past a certain tone! I mean how ridiculous is that. Because all of the uber corporate beauty brands never even bothered to think about dark skinned women, they had to make due with whatever make up there was available, even if it was 5 shades too light! Thank goodness for Rihanna and Fenty Beauty for bringing this to light, because who knows how long it would’ve taken for them to realize. Though we have seen many more brown skinned leading women, they are often met with comments like “she’s so brave!” or “she’s so beautiful!” So just because she has more melanin than the girl next to her she’s brave? Or just because she’s darker than the girls we typically see in movies means she should be treated like some exotic being? Cut me a fucking break. The sad part is that many of these women end up being fetishized for having darker skin, and are STILL left out of the conversation when it comes to beauty standards.
Over the past few years we’ve seen so many “African American Studies” teachers be ousted for being white. Like, I’m constantly baffled on how the fuck that even happens! If there were more black people in the room when these people were hired, we wouldn’t find this happening as much. I always think about all the brown and dark skinned teachers who applied for the job and were overlooked. The very obviously BLACK women who were overlooked for a position that ended up being given to an imposter. Clearly these interviewers assumed that these were light skinned women that were just the “right amount of black”. See what happens when you comply with colorism?… You end up looking foolish! Even crazy ass Rachel Dolezal was the CHAPTER PRESIDENT of the NAACP. This woman called herself Nkechi Amare Diallo! But because her chapter was located in Spokane, Washington (a very white area) she was just the “right amount of black”. Side bar I’ve been laughing at this fucking picture of Rachel Dolezal and her braids for 30 minutes now. I caaaaan’t. Whew.
Even when it comes to dating, black men are always talking down on darker skinned black women. They’d much rather date someone who is light skinned to the point where you can’t even tell they’re black, or someone that is ethnically ambiguous or ~exotic~ YAWN. Don’t even get me started on the fragile black male ego though, that’s a whole other post. Everyday I see somebody’s dusty ass son talking about how “unattractive” darker skinned women are. I see so many Tiktok’s about black guys preferring white women who want to be black like Kylie Jenner. I get everyone has a preference, but you don’t need to bash people in the process. I am a light skinned black woman so even I benefit from colorism at times, but I’m not a fucking weirdo and would never pretend I’m other than black to appease someone else and “fit in”. I always hear lighter black women saying “they’ve got Native American in their family”, turns out I actually do. However, I am black. At this point the connections to those genes are so watered down that it wouldn’t even make sense to claim them. Everyone in my family, besides my dad (who’s side has those Native genes) and myself are dark skinned. All of my black friends are browb/dark skinned. So I can clearly see the difference in treatment and its fucked up. When an employer looks at me, they think I might be mixed and for some sick reason that equates to being “better”. Now I, of course am a pretty smart cookie, but I have seen plenty of other women who look just like me, or are even lighter get access opportunities they don’t deserve. Though society sucks and will continue to suck for a while, the only way to combat this is to keep calling it out. If you sit by and accept the benefits rather than speak out for those in your community who are being overlooked, things will continue to be misaligned.
Anytime I meet new friends, co-workers, or even when I go on dates, the common ice breaker is “what is your favorite movie?” For years I didn’t know what the answer was, because honestly there are so many movies that I haven’t seen. No particular reason other than the fact that I have the attention span of a baby squirrel, therefore I CANNOT sit through some of these nearly 3 hour movies. Now at the ripe age of 25 I finally have a (very short) list of my favorite movies. These movies are ones I can, and have, watched over and over again. The common theme with these movies, despite the difference in their subject matter is positivity. I love movies that either encompass some sort of lesson, or are just down right silly! I’ve probably seen some of these dozens of times because I know they’ll cheer me up if I’m in a shitty mood.
I was gonna give y’all a top 5, but fuck it… let’s make it even and go with 6! Check out my list below and watch my favorite scene from each film!
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KILL BILL VOL. 1
Kill Bill Vol. 1(2003) – My dad was the one who actually suggested I watched this movie. As a kid, I would always sit and watch all of the Old Bruce Lee films with him on repeat. So obviously he knew that I would love Kill Bill. I was pretty much speechless the first time I watched this movie. I LOVE how badass and understandably vengeful Beatrix Kiddo was. I mean if a group of your trusted allies tried to kill you, put you in a coma that almost killed your baby, and then lived to tell the tale…. wouldn’t you want to seek revenge on those motherfuckers too?! Despite the fight scenes and occasional gore, her “never give up” attitude has always stuck with me. This is where Kobe Bryant actually got his nickname “The Black Mamba” from! Though this is my top choice, it wasn’t hard to pick a favorite scene. Beatrix or “The Bride” let’s all her badassery out on The Crazy 88’s AND Gogo, proving to O-Ren Ishii she is NOT the one to be played with!
WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS
What We Do In the Shadows (2015) – This one was another family suggestion, this time from my silly brother! I was a little apprehensive at first because most of the time vampire movies are a little corny. However this Aussie Vampire mockumentary is one of the silliest movies I’ve ever seen. Honestly I was cracking up just trying to find a clip to include in this list. The humor is definitely for a very specific and quirky audience, and it is right up my alley. Often times we see vampire’s portrayed as brooding and mysterious, but this group of vamps are quite the opposite. The clip below is the perfect example, Vampire Style!
Blazing Saddles (1974) – Now this particular movie has gotten a lot of backlash with the world coming increasingly more progressive by the minute. I get that people like to go back and call out how certain themes in old movies were problematic, but the difference with this movie is, that is the EXACT reason why it was made! Mel Brooks made this film to spoof Western films (and actually most films during the time this one was made) and their blatant racism. Because I know that this is clearly a spoof and not meant to offend anyone, I’m able to watch this anytime I need a good laugh and a dose of reality. My favorite scene in particular is when Madeline Kahn’s character Lili Von Shtupp does a very lackadaisical performance describing how tired she is of, ahem “dating” countless men, it’s pure comedic genius.
WILLY WONKA & THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory(1971) – This is one of these movies that I can say I’ve seen way more than 20 times in my life, it always puts me in a good mood! It’s a feel good story with a lesson that still applies to adulthood, cheating and having a terrible attitude will get you nowhere in life… it may even get you trapped in a chocolate factory! Besides the heartwarming plot, I was always so blown away with Gene Wilder’s whimsical portrayal of the candy magnate. As a kid, the clip below used to scare the shit out of me… now, I love it!!! It shows just how extremely outlandish and wildly unpredictable Mr. Wonka was! (Honestly those bad ass kids deserved a good fright.)
Beetlejuice(1988) – Another whimsical classic! My favorite holiday is Halloween, so of course this my go-to movie during spooky season. However the problem is, that I love this movie so much I just end up watching it over and over again and never get to the other ones on my list! I’m a big fan of Tim Burton and his extreme attention to detail. Also, I was introduced to the lovely music of Harry Belafonte because of this very scene. Though I love Halloween, I’m not huge on horror films, I’m a bit of a chicken. Luckily, this movie is the perfect amount of dark and quirky, which actually happen to be two words I use to describe myself.
THE WIZARD OF OZ
The Wizard of Oz(1939) – I’m a bit of a dreamer so this movie has always resonated with me. I constantly think of what life would be like if I woke up in a completely different world filled with such vibrancy, color, and kindness! Of course, I’ve gotten older so my interests have changed in some ways (i.e. Kill Bill), but this movie will and always has made me teary eyed every time I’ve watched it (which is possibly over 100 times). Though there have been countless remakes and spin offs, nothing will compare to the original. It has a 98% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, a nearly perfect score that I couldn’t agree with more. This very scene shows how ahead of their time they were!