Monday, December 29, 2008

Female Versions


[beyonce on the set of her new vid, "Diva"]

A series of unfortunate events recently led me to have a listen or three to Beyonce's latest single, Diva. With my computer out of commission and the new opportunity to listen to local radio I've heard the song roughly one million times over the past week and a half. The lyrics are pretty trite, but, as with most of BK's songs, the hip-hop inspired, laidback boasting of the beat makes the song very singable. But could someone please explain to me why she has to be the "female vesion of a hustler?"

I get that she's been trying to pick up where Foxy Brown left off as the Bonnie to Jay-Z's Clyde since 2002, so calling herself some "version" of a hustler is cute and, I guess, fitting. But what's wrong with a plain old hustler? She's hard working, successful, with stacks upon stacks of cash that will probably someday outweigh those of her husband, so she really isn't the version of anything. It really annoys me because it's assuming that being professionally successful is a masculine thing, so therefore when a woman does it, she has to be some cutesy, non-important version. Beyonce, and whatever man wrote this song, please get over yourselves.

It's like when people call something a "black version." Girlfriends was the black version of Sex and the City. Brown Sugar was the "hip-hop" version of When Harry Met Sally. It's completely normal to make comparisons, that's how we process new concepts. But to say that anyone, or anything, is a version of something else is admitting that the original concept is exclusive to that group. Smart, sexy, successful women are exclusively white, while money-makers with a hustler's spirit are exclusively male. I got two freshly manicured middle fingers to hold up to anyone that thinks like this.

And while we're on the subject, let me air out another pet peeve: improper grammar usage. Female is an adjective, meaning it describes a noun. For example, a female dog.
1fe·male           Listen to the pronunciation of 1female Pronunciation: \ˈfē-ˌmāl\
Function:
adjective
Date:
14th century
1 a (1): of, relating to, or being the sex that bears young or produces eggs
[what Merriam Webster has to say about it]

There is no such thing as a "female," if you wish to talk about a woman, just call her a woman. Tell that to all of your brothers, boyfriends, cousins, and friends that insist on butchering the King's English. Just a thought.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

A-Changes...Again

I know that you're still reeling over the last bomb I dropped (because my life is soooo important to you, right?), but I've got another one: me and hair relaxers are officially broken up. Like most B-Girls, I've sported chemically relaxed hair for longer than a little bit. But after being incredibly inspired by my big sis, who traded her lovely, straight hair for a gorgeous, curly 'fro earlier in the year, I've shown straighteners the door.

Like most girls making the "transition," my newest pastime is obsessing over colored girls with curly, kinky, nappy, wavy, or otherwise non-straight hair. Here are my latest hairspirations:


[tracee ellis ross]

  • I completely heart nearly everything about this woman's style, from head to toe. I especially love her free-spirited, devil-may-care, curl 'fro.




[mane and chic]

  • I don't really know what this person looks like, but I'm really into her blog that she started to document her transition from relaxed to natural hair. She does really great product reviews, posts pictures of her hair's progress and provides cool background info on natural products. I check the site like twice a day, even though she only updates a couple of times a week. Don't ask me why.


[yaya da costa]

  • Do you remember this woman from ANTM Cycle 3? She was moderately fierce then and she's full-blown amazingness now. I love her hair and the incredible diversity of kinky hair that she exemplifies.

I swear I only have like an inch of new growth and I'm already turning into Sista Soulja. When my hair is actually 100% natural you won't be able to stomach me, lol.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Times, They Are A-Changin'

Ok, enough of the silence because I've got BIG news...I'm moving! 

Yep, yep, NYC will be in my rearview mirror come January as I'll be taking up a post at a women's mag down in Washington, DC. I'm uber-excited to go "home" and enjoy all the luxuries medium-city livin' has to offer (car, one-bedrooms, washer and dryer in house, etc, etc, etc). 

At the top of the year I'll be packing up my little Focus  (I just got it this week and I'm soooo in love with it, lol) and moving into a cute little spot in Silver Spring, Md. After years of reading design zines like Blueprint and domino, what I'm most, most, most excited about is getting to decorate my place from scratch. It's pretty small (check the pics below) and has a layer of the dreaded suburban carpet, but I'm up for the challenge of still making it look cool, urban, and chic, just like it's owner ;) 


[the living room, via the apt's website. please disregard the ugly furniture and plants]

[the bedroom. same with the furniture]

Luckily, one of my best buds, the genius behind Chestnut Orange, is also embarking on the one bedroom dance for the first time and is similarly design-obsessed. We've decided to kind of tag-blog about our adventures in home-land, complete with pics of the new digs. Keep a lookout for pics of the bare apartment next year, after I officially move in.

with lots of love,
whitney

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Hoot! Wild About Owls

Muchachas (and a few muchachos),

I am, indeed, still alive. I'm not going to bore you with excuses, but I will say that I have big news that I hope to announce very, very soon! Meanwhile, as I've been literally pulling my hair out over this ridiculously tedious story that I'm writing for one of my editors, I've taken solace in...owls?

Yes, owls! Part of my job is staying abreast of trends, i.e. scouring random websites for products that might work for some of the websites that I contribute to. And recently, they've all seemed to have owls on the brain...hoot, hoot? LOL. Here are some that I'm completely feeling:



[White Owl Lamp, tiny mcsmall]

Would you believe it's made for a kids room? Screw that, I'd take this eccentric-looking piece and totally rock it on my bedside table.


[Pewter Winking Bird Pendant, Lago Jewelry]

I tend to stick to basic black dresses (really, like every single day), so I love to buy stand-out jewelry to add a lil bit of umph to my wardrobe.


[Owl Umbrella Stand, Urban Outfitters]

I have a love/hate/love relationship with the pseudo-thrift store look of Urban Outfitters. But I love, love, love this umbrella stand. Looks like something straight out of Domino mag, right?


[Owl Stud Earrings, Juicy Couture]

Studs are great because you can get away with colors/designs that would just look silly if you wore them on larger earrings. These cute studs could make any basic jeans and tee look pop, or be that hint of go-girl push you need with a business suit (for something that's not too conservative).

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Happy 1016!

It's my Birthday! October 16th, the day I was born and this blog's namesake. Go do something crazy in the name of this occasion. My suggest? Take a vodka or tequila shot 16 minutes after every hour. Or better yet, just go get stupid drunk tonight...because I am!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Yo...


Got a semi-functional new keyboard and will be back soon...but, are you checking out my Twitter? I have the entire Mad Men clan, from Don to Betty to Peggy to people I've never even heard of...weird!

Monday, October 06, 2008

Thought You Should Know...



That this speech is absoultely awesome! My sis and I often talk about how pitiful it is when we see everyday, non-six figure salary Americans support McCain. This is a great example of regular men and women that realize how important it is to have a President of the people, that's not ashamed to be of the people, that will fight for the people. I'm talking about Obama. Check it out.

Thanks, kareemblack's twitter for hipping me to the vid.

Oh, and still on vacation since "the key" is still, in fact, dead.

LOVE,
W

Monday, September 22, 2008

On Vacation...


Well, not really, but I have taken a mini-vacay from updating this blog for several reasons. The main being that I can no longer type the letter "b" on my keyboard (though I've thought of lots of creative ways to get the letter into this post) and it makes it insanely annoying to type anything.

Secondly,
because between working a couple of in-office jobs and freelancing my ass off when I get home, I'm normally pretty konked and my brain's fried and unable to think up any witty/sarcastic (or stupid/mindless, it's your call) topics to post.

So, I'm waiting until I'm struck with inspiration, or have a day off, whichever comes first. Of course, hit up Uptown Literatti and my Twitter, which I, incidentally, never go more than a few hours without updating.

Kisses, hugs, smacks, tickles and all that.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

9.3.08: Currently Obsessed With


[somebody tell these shorties reach for the stars, instead they tell 'em how to reach through bars-Purple, Nas]



[Un-commercialized Great Ideas like The Communist Manifesto]


[Washington, DC-educated beauties like Georgetown University grad Amerie]


[And The George Washington University alumna Kerry Washington]


[Sasha Obama. SO adorable. And Barack, Michelle and Malia too]


[The return of 90's flannel via Gap]


[The soulful, raspy voice of Ray LaMontagne]


[And his very downloadable album 'Till The Sun Turns Black]


[J. Crew's little sister, Madewell, is a lot spicier--like all lil sisters]


[See their colorful take on the ubiquitous city boots and scarves]

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

You Be Lorraine, I'll Be Nina


[My girl Nina, smoking a spliff]

It's a new dawn/it's a new day/it's a new life for me/oooooo/and I'm feeling good- Nina Simone.

My very playful friends Mike and Char pegged themselves as modern-day James Baldwins and Lorraine Hansberrys, respectively. When we three started to hang Senior year at HU Charreah, graciously, told me that I could be Nina Simone. It didn't just come out of nowhere since Baldwin and Hansberry were good friends of Nina and the three frequently inspired each other. Balwin convinced Simone to use her art to promote social change and Hansberry inspired one of Simone's best known songs, To Be Young, Black and Gifted (after Hansberry's book of the same title).

How fitting since I absolutely love the sounds of Simone and hope to one day write stirring sentences that penetrate souls the way her voice does. My favorite Nina song is, hands, down Feeling Good. It's simple, soulful, peaceful and beautiful, from the serene, a cappella opening to the ballsy, brassy, high-intensity ending. Listen:

Feeling Good - Nina Simone

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Lingerie's the new Fragrance!


[Von Teese, "advocating glamour" modeling Wonderbra by Dita von Teese]

Celebrities and vanity projects go together like ham and cheese. Or like peanut butter and waffles. Once they build a viable "brand" as a singer, actress, designer, etc, it's nothing to add to that "brand" by stamping their names across everything from clothing lines to books to fragrances to cell phones, even ad agencies (see Jay-Z's Translation and Diddy's Blue Flame).

So, it's not surprising to learn that the likes of Dita Von Teese and Janet Jackson, both buxom women famous for, ahem, stripping down, are launching lingerie lines! Can you tell that I'm excited? One, because I hope that the lines will feature more sizes for the better endowed section of the female population.


Janet's, entitled Pleasure Principle (GENIUS!), is in conjunction with Australian designer Bruno Schiavi and is scheduled to hit the shelves (of where, I don't know) late this year or early next. But just in time for Valentine's Day, right?


[Janet with model wearing pieces by Pleasure Principle and designer, Schiavi]

The model looks great and all, but if 40-something year old Janet doesn't model the goods herself she's a fool!

And Ms. Von Teese (who I become more and more obsessed with by the day)'s line will be distributed through Wonderbra and will feature all the glamour and romance of the 30's and 40's with lots of comfort. I'm loving it already. Really.

More details to come! + Check out this throwback video:

JANET JACKSON - Pleasure Principle - JANET JACKSON

Monday, August 11, 2008

Fall has Fallen!

Well, at least clothing-wise. I've told you guys over and over how much I luv Fall. There are so many great things about it, the new school year, the state fair, my birthday, Halloween and Thanksgiving. The colors are so rich and beautiful and the weather is the most perfect. It always makes me think of rainy nights, wind, Howard's Homecoming and riding boots, but not necessarily in that order.

Since I've been clocking hours as a part-time Banana Republic employee I've been anxiously awaiting the debut of it's fall pieces and when I walked into our store this weekend I was very pleasantly surprised. The bright yellows and pinks and oranges of the summer had been completely replaced with our transitional stock of burnt orange, pea green and chocolate brown blouses, jackets, boots, and dresses. Yes!

I was in a frenzy to finally use my discount and tried on lots of cute dresses that could work well now, in the fall and for a really big interview that I have coming up. I decided on this:


[Island Green Twist-front Dress]

I thought that it was chic and sophisticated enough for my interview but that I could also pair it with gladiator sandals for work or something more casual. Plus the material is cool enough for August but wouldn't leave me freezing should I drag the dress out with tights and boots for October or November.

But before I decided on that dress, I looked at lots more, like these:






I'm like going crazy with delight that two of my favorite colors, green and purple, are so prominently featured at Banana this season. And, even though they are not in my budget for another few weeks, I tried on nearly every pair of the new fall shoes that we got in and decided that, when the time is right, I'll definitely pick up a pair of these:


['Cecily' pull-on flat boot]

and these:



['Bree' wing-tipped high-heeled oxford ]

What are you anxious to pick up for fall?

Thursday, August 07, 2008

T-Shirt Wearers


Refer to the my thoughts on this commercialization of great ideas.

But Jay's white tee is fresh :)

Monday, August 04, 2008

8.4.08: Currently Obsessed With


[Vogue Italia]


[New York's daily fashion blog, The Cut]


[Nia Long, the Love Jones years]



[My Isaac Mizrahi for Target's Bronze Faux Reptile Skin Sandals]


[Hot Pink nail color by Nicole]


[The 1st Season of HBO's Tell Me You Love Me]


[Chloe Sevigny. And the name Chloe in general]

Saturday, August 02, 2008

22 22's: Brittany

When I Was 22: Take a look at a few great women that have recently passed 22. Share their wisdom, laugh at their pics. Enjoy!

22 22's: Brittany (2)


[Dallas, circa 2004, at 22]

Full Name:
Brittany M., Esq.

Birthday: April 23

Birthplace: Houston, Texas

Currently Resides: Dallas, Texas

Famous For (Then): "Still dating my high school sweetheart, six years strong." Being my sister!

Famous For (Now): Blogging it up with 6 other EBP's over at The Real 7. The nickel jar where a 5 cents deposit is made for every time someone utters the phrase "Do you do Criminal Law?"

[Puerto Rico, 2007. Notice the giant hand clawing!]



Notorious For: "Telling it like it T-I-S. " Being the 'Miranda' of her clique. Snatching all the good genes before I was even born....

The Good Life: "[When I was 22] I had no idea how good I had it! Sure, I was broke and studied all the time, but I didn't have a job and I had way too much fun with my 22 year old classmates!" Yeah, yeah, but she's a big time law-ya now, so, I don't want to hear it!

Favorite Quotes: "It ain't always been easy!" Yes, I uttered this while being intoxicated for the very first time. It was kind of funny but strangely poignant.

Biggest Lesson: "That was a time of anticipation for me, as well as a fear of the unknown. I learned just how resilient I was and that everything really does work out OK in the end."

What I Miss About Being 22: "My dress size and lack of responsibilities!"

[with Me, Miami circa 2006, when popped collars were still relatively in]