Emotional Herpes

Here’s a neat way to look at your past relationships!

Yes, even yours grandma!

You ever feel like you’re always dating the same douche  in a different body?

You ever find yourself  stuck on the proverbial one that got away, sure you’d missed out on the single opportunity for happiness life would ever offer you?!

Then you’ve got a raging case of emotional herpes! Valtrex won’t help this, you’re actually going to have to figure out your:

Father issues!

Mother issues! (biological or religious)

Your sex issues! (yep, go ahead and figure out who or what you want to be doing it to.)

while you’re at it you might as well delve into your internal issues about:

Your drug/alcohol problem.

The job you’ve been on for a decade that you despise.

That mole on the back of your left ear.

Your cellulite.

That weird uncle who always demanded you pull his finger.

The fact that you pulled it every time he asked.

Your unnatural attraction to your 2nd cousin.


You’ll probably still date that douche in a different body again. You know why? Because we’ve ALL got emotional herpes. It’s a world wide epidemic since … ummm … I dunno … THE DAWN OF TIME?! When whatever it is that you are supposed to learn kicks in, when enough truly becomes enough, something incredible happens; The universe slathers you with emotional herpes valtrex.  All the blisters and legions of the past heal, and you move on to your next “lesson”.  Least that’s what I’m hoping ;).


A note of inspiration

Once upon a time before text messaging, email, and God forbid facebook; students would make great sport of sneaking messages scrawled on haphazardly ripped pieces of notebook paper to their fellow classmates.  The messages were called “notes”. Constant care was taken to navigate the note through the right channels, e.g. you did NOT want to pass the note to the kid that picked their nose, or the one who was too much of an airhead to be discrete, and definitely not the one who was always kissing the teacher’s ass as discovery and exposure was assured.

Call it nostalgia. Call it me getting old, but damn kids now just don’t know how to have a good time!  We lived and breathed to push information behind enemy lines during that french class while Ms. Whatserface (yep the memory loss is already setting in) would slash out french verbs with violent vigor, silver hair jostling to the rhythm of her wiggling body, only to have her protruding belly render them a smudge of chalk simultaneously. Looking back, most of that covert information was utterly meaningless. It was all about connecting. Getting what you had to say to someone else without anyone else finding out. It was a gratuitous ritual of our time. Which is alas, gone. *sniff, tear*

Being the fantastic semi-pro hoarder I am, I happen to have kept one of these precious relics.  This one was special and one that I have referred to over the years whenever I needed a tiny dose of confidence.  It was written about me by James Blair, a boy who waited on the school bus with me everyday while I was in elementary school. It’s always make me chuckle a little. Here, have a look … but don’t tell anybody, it’s top secret!







Ain’t it a shame that most of the “pain” we go through is self inflected bullshit that we blame on others? We’re like robots set to self destruct that have to tear into their inside parts in order to disable the bomb.  The trick is not to do so much damage in the disabling attempt. It’s been a peculiar day of small victories and minute defeats in my somewhat peaceful war against me. Bleh.  I’m going to bed.


“You can’t always get w…

“You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes … you just might find, you get what you need.” ––The Stones

What about when we do get what we want? Or what we think we want.  There’s often no satisfaction in it.  At least for me ––Wait, that’s another Stone’s quote.  Maybe they were drug fueled Zen Masters. Maybe they were just drug fueled.

Night all.


Growing Old

As I sat in the car today and listen to my mother talk about things she needed to do to get the roof on her house repaired my heart broke a little.  She seemed so … helpless.  Over the last couple years, due to some of the plans I’m making with my own life, I’ve been forced to sit with the realization that my mother is getting older. It’s like watching your favorite super hero give out on super power. When I was a kid, I knew she was invincible. I believed in her like evangelicals believe in seperatist Jesus. Don’t most kids though? Parents seem so “big” when you’re so small. If they’re really good they feel like they can protect you against any and everything.

Society never really prepares us for the emotional transitions of adult-hood, particularly the aging of our parents.  Sure, they tell us what adults should have, what they should wear, how their supposed to think.  Most of which has never served me in any meaningful way. I’m an adult with all the trimmings, but on a lot of days I don’t feel much older than 15. This works quite well for staying young at heart, not so much in the area of being fiscally responsible.  So how is an emotional “15” year-old cope with the fact that her Mom, her own personal Wonder Woman, is fallible?


Get Up. Stand Up.

I just had the best conversation with my son while dropping him off to school. A conversation that I wished someone had had with me when I was a kid.

Rewind:  When I was in about the 4th or 5th grade I had a language arts teacher named Ms. Fiaño. (I will not spare her the dignity of anonimity.) Ms. Fiaño had the old iron sides approach to education; “spare the humiliation spoil the child” was her way.  One day while I was busy being a chatty 4th grader with other chatty 4th graders, Ms. Fiaño decided it was time for someone  to pay the price for disrupting her lesson on dangling participles (or whatever the hell she was teaching that day.) She turned to me and said something like “Stacey, maybe if you could get your mouth shut you wouldn’t have gotten a 56 on the last test.”

Stone silence. All eyes on me.

I was mortified. This would not be the only belittlement I would suffer in her class, and I’m almost 100% sure that I wasn’t the only one but dammit this is my blog and we’re going to talk about me!

The point is her battle axy approach to discipline did nothing but further isolate me from her and any desire to learn what she was teaching. No, I shouldn’t have been talking in her class, but that  didn’t give her license to humiliate me.  Contrary to popular belief, humiliation isn’t always the best teacher. I’ve used the tactic myself in parenting, and now I find myself back peddling trying to convince my son that I don’t think he’s a total idiot. Sigh.  At least I finally got it, right?   Zi, if you’re reading this at some point in the future, I’m sorry.  You rock. Always have. Always will. The world is yours. Go get it!

Fast Forward:  My son has found himself in the position of having to deal with humiliation imposed by educators.  While I plan on dealing with it, because as a parent it’s part of my job to protect him, I also told him what I wish someone had told me.  You have a right to stand up for yourself. It doesn’t require disrespect or confrontation, but it does reinforce in you that you are a person worthy of respect when respect is given.

I think I planted a seed today.   I think.


Beware Ye The Ghetto

Question, where the hell does the concept of poor innocent white folks wandering into the ghetto only to be raped and otherwise pillaged come from? I, being a ghetto connoisseur having been born and raised in one, am highly confused by this. Mainly because in the 20 years that I did live in the ghetto not once do I remember any innocent white folk wandering into our hood being violated in anyway. Notice I said innocent white folk. Even if some Mary in search of her lamb did end up in my humble hood, at most she may have been heckled or propositioned for the sale of cocaine or marijuana (which was the main reason white folk would show up in our hood.) It … bothers? Me that this myth is perpetuated so often by people who know little or shit about ghetto people outside of what they see on television or in completely biased films.

My mom began work at 16 and at 42 was fortunate enough to be able to retire with pension even!  She was one of the first group of blacks even allowed at that time to work for New Jersey Bell.  My mother is proud, wants the best for her children, and has always—ALWAYS worked her ass off so we could have what we wanted, even when we didn’t deserve it. Yes, my mom was a ghetto mom. The typed often not mentioned when the ghetto is being trashed.

Nikki Giovanni once wrote (and I paraphrase) that she hoped no white person ever had cause to write about her unfortunate upbringing, as she grew up quite happy.  I echo her sentiments. Overall, my childhood in the Pioneer Homes was a happy one. We as a commuity were a family that defied convention while overcoming unbelievable obstacles on a daily basis. We laughed harder, played harder, cried harder, and fought harder than anyone I knew outside that world.

It was definitely not an ideal existence, and not one I would recommend raising children in, but it was mine. I have no shame about where I come from only gratitude for having survived it. I didn’t just survive either, I thrived! There are so many of us that grew up in the projects that I’m from that are living tremendously successful lives. I guess it’s like Tupac’s rose that grew from concrete. To get the best ghetto flowers, you gotta get through a lot of shit.

As to Microsoft’s patent on “Ghetto Avoidance”  software, which was the stimulus for the above on tangent rant, Fuck ‘Em. Perpetuating stereotypes while simultaneous taking advantage of the butt of those stereotypes, is the way of corporate America. Alack. Alack. To those who would seek refuge in such software, I’ll leave  you with this stirring bit of verbage brought to you by Naughty By Nature:

“If you ain’t never been to the ghetto, don’t ever come to the ghetto, cause you wouldn’t understand the ghetto, so stay the fuck out the ghetto.”-Treach “Ghetto Bastard”