Today’s Word is… ASTROLOGY

[Editors Note: An oldie but goodie...]

TWO SIIIIIIIIIIIDEZ

“Tristan? that’s like my favorite guy name”

<line so cheesy I won’t play myself by posting>

“You seem like a Scorpio”

“No I’m a Gemini”

“That would’ve been my second guess”

Now who she attracting with that line whats your name, whats your sign? I played along though, she was cute and I love bold women who approach so I don’t have to.  In reality I’m not into astrology, well most men aren’t, it’s a convenient icebreaker but any dude that interrupts your Sudoku to check his horoscope deserves the sidest of eyes.  Admittedly I’m slightly amused by astrology,  I will rep team gemini just like I repped classes of 2006 and 2010, team android and team darkskinned. Some horoscopes even hit the nail on the head, but even a dead clock is right twice a day.  As far as dating goes, in my experience Geminis are pretty much hit and miss, everyone seems to have a few Geminis they can’t stand.  They also have some good qualities that I will use at my own convenience, mostly tongue in cheek mocking those who read way too much into it.  Not knocking ones beliefs but I hate being generalized; stop being lazy and googling Gemini horoscopes and get to know me, the actual person who happens to be born in mid-June.

The main reason I don’t care for astrology is it seems every sign is sooooo great.  Most horoscopes are sugarcoating and pandering, the worst horoscope I ever read might have been: someone you know is having a bad day, avoid them.  Social media has taken the annoyance to another level with accounts who do nothing but spit out meaningless positive generalizations about a sign so people can say omg thats so me…yeah you and 56897394 other Tauruses, have a seat.  It’s almost like the evil queen’s magic mirror, tell me how sweet I am, tell me general things that no one else understands about me, tell me she’s not just being a b*tch the stars are aligned that way.

Relationship astrology is perhaps the worst of all.  From the exes birthdays I cared to or was easy enough remember, I dated mainly Libras, a couple Sagittariuses, two Scorpios and a partridge in a pear tree.

Astrology says 

Gemini and Libra have an easy rapport since they’re genuinely curious about other people. Libra loves to entertain, and Gemini is a people person, too. This sets them up to be great hosts, a couple that has lots of “couple friends.” At home, they’ll share the minutia of their lives, observations, jokes, analysis and brilliant inspiration

Stan says

Wrong.  I’m far from a people person.  Most of the time I had “couple friends” was with a Capricorn and a Scorpio.

Astrology says

When Gemini and Sagittarius come together in a love affair, it can be a truly spectacular match! These two are extremely compatible; any rough spots they encounter during the course of the relationship are sure to be smoothed over with a minimum of effort. Gemini and Sagittarius are great friends, besides being well-matched lovers.

Stan  says

Astrology says

Gemini and Scorpio share an endless curiosity about human behavior, which gives them a lot to talk about.  Scorpio will try to read Gemini at a deep level, while the nature of the Twins is to constantly change.  Gemini feels just as deeply as Scorpio, though they might dance around it, or fill the space with chatter as a defense.

Stan says

Okay maybe astrology wins one.

There’s so much more to astrology that taking billions of people and putting them in 12 categories so perhaps I’m woefully ignorant on the subject.  However, I still can’t take it seriously, you need more people.  I’m much more complexed than a birthday, no star alignment can figure me out.  I’m a product of my mother’s compassion and my father’s determination. I get annoyed easily but I just as quickly let things go.  I’m a hopeless romantic but have too much pride to show it to just anyone. And that’s barely the surface.  A “Gemini” is not enough to describe me. Oh and Scorpios aren’t as freaky as they like to take credit for. But you’ll never read that in the paper.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… OVER

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So it’s the same old story; boy meets girl, boy courts girl, boy dates girl, boy dumps girl.  Now its a shame she has to go through this, they don’t even talk, they don’t even kiss, and she never thought they’d be breaking up like this, but its over now….its over now.  Theoretically, no one owes the other anything once the relationship is over but there’s a decorum expected after a breakup.  Take some time to mourn the relationship, don’t try to reestablish contact when the wound is still fresh, don’t smash their homies or besties.  So then comes that awkward phase of seeing who blinks first and starts jumps back into that dating pool.  Personally I rather ladies first; in my experience I’m able to stomach that ego hit better than some of my exes.  They were so fixated on trying to salvage the relationship that if/when you date again its going to be a punch in the gut. I’ve been on that rescue mission before only to look up and see she’s already moved on……it sucks.

We all have egos, we all have this myopic view of self that says “replace me? Good luck” (see 85% of women R&B singers) only to be humbled that they found someone more attractive, someone who makes more, hell just someone who makes them as happy as you did….maybe even more.  Rather than accept this, we try to rationalize; it was way too soon and must’ve had him/her on deck for months, they never loved me they used me otherwise they’d be still listening to Drake and lurking my Facebook.  We accept a breakup as they don’t want to be in a relationship not that they no longer want to be committed to us, the glaring difference between the two is that one is accountable one is not.  Its a copout most break uppers will take if offered, “I got some things going on” “if not for XYZ” and they leave the relationship with a glimmer of hope that someone will take and hold on to for dear life.  I’ve seen it…..I’ve done it. 

I was talking about this with a couple friends, the most respectful timeframe to give a failed relationship before moving on (had to give a definitively timed answer).  Not surprisingly the longest answers came from women, from 3 months to 1/3rd the length of the relationship (when we get to using algebra we doing way too much).  One said they wouldn’t even date a man less than 12 weeks removed from their last relationship.  Male consensus averaged to about a month, I said about 6-8 weeks.  Of course people grieve differently, but in a month or two most couples should either worked it out or accepted that okay, this is over.  You get evicted 30 days, you pawn something 30 days, 6-8 weeks is being generous by those standards.  Also, you’re not even owed that, it could be 6-8 hours and all you can do is buy the 11 millionth copy of Adele’s 21 and get over it.  Or just be so amazing it can’t possibly take 6-8 weeks to get over your ass. Like I am. Just saying.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… PRAY

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I’m not the most religious person as much as I’m spiritual.  I say prayers of gratitude, prayers for forgiveness, prayers for others, but seldom prayers for myself. Philippeans 2.3 says Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.  I’ve been unemployed, I’ve been homeless, I’ve been depressed, yet and still I just don’t pray for myself.  And to be perfrctly honest, I don’t like to.

Maybe I don’t feel worthy? All the perils of the world, does He really need to bother with my life.  Perhaps its not that  I don’t feel worthy as much as I always feel I got this.  That He would never give me anything I can’t handle.  I would always joke God has a spam folder, filled with nonsensical prayers like passing a test, sports victories, R Kelly’s Gospel album and anything Eddie Long has to say.  I would think I’m inbox worthy, I just want health and satisfaction, that’s slight work.

Maybe I don’t like feeling small- Prayer is humbling.  Theres a cognitive dissonance in knowing that there is a power much greater than my own action and to my first point, feeling like “I got this”.  There’s also the fact its easier to pray for others because its easier to see themselves as needing it than looking in the mirror and accepting that you yourself need that same compassion. 

Maybe I don’t want to be disappointed- a little over 5 years ago, I left my mother and prayed that she would recover.  She would pass the next morning and days later I would sit in a church and listen to how she’s somewhere far better than here.  Why pray for good health when this world is only temporary anyway (like literally 100 years tops, climate change is a myth tho)

In spite of this I don’t feel its selfish to pray for self.  We all need love, compassion, peace.  I had a discussion with a friend and she made the point that Spirituality starts with self – if you yourself cannot humble yourself to God, you cannot really help others in the truest sense. Having compassion for yourself allows you to extend compassion to others.  I’m blessed to be in a better position than others but that doesn’t exempt me from needing guidance and serenity that I hope for others.  So, maybe I should work on that.

#LettucePrey.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… ROMANTIC

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For the most part, I would say I’m a romantic. In an age of casual hookups, long distance twitter baes, these heauxs ain’t loyal, side chicks, a ridiculously low value of black women, convenient traditionalists, fake deep memes, and calling chivalry and effort “thirst”, its increasingly harder to hold on a rather simple concept of find one woman, court her, love her, build with her, and die.  I don’t consider myself a “hopeless romantic” which seems to implicate that such a quest is futile, or that it’s laden with delusion of finding your soul mate who is set at this simply unachievable standard based off books and TV.  Hopeless romantics “love hard” (I abhor that expression btw) and they go all in every time only to be shattered.  I’m not that extreme. 

I’m also a realist.  Which has also taken on a loaded meaning and suggests one who is jaded or bitter.  They took a shot at love, missed and now its f ck love as staff, a label, and a muhfuggin crew.  They poopoo on any semblance of romance with stats, anecdotes, surveys because if they got it wrong, it must not exist.  Some realists were former romantics and that also lends credence to the idea that maybe marriage is antiquated, perhaps mutually beneficial arrangements are the way to go.  Maybe as humans we just aren’t wired for monogamy.  I’m not this extreme either; its hard to ignore history and math but some things just aren’t made to be quantified.  People are different, exceptions can be made, we evolve, we adapt.

So I say all that to say, I fall in the middle.  I believe in the possibility of true love, not necessarily a soul mate.  It’s perhaps the reason that sometimes, even if everything seems good on paper, she’s just not……her.   Which is one of the most frustrating things about being a romantic realist; every one is the one, until she isn’t.  I’ve met incredible women over the years only to watch it go from 100 to a 0, real quick.  This doesn’t feel right anymore, do I cut my losses now or keep going and hope things change?  Is it fair to hold her to standard of gut feelings and projection?  If she was unsure about me, wouldn’t I want to know?  How would I process this information, would I try and disprove her doubts or just take my ball and go home?  These thoughts run through my mind as I tell her that “this isn’t working”, I try to explain but the reason will never be good enough, I was just bored/wanted to hit/ain’t shit whatever makes this easier.  And then…..back to the drawing board.

I look back on the moments I knew I was in love with someone, sometimes it was losing them in the first place, sometimes it was after a good laugh, or holding my hand, a funny look, a kiss, a gesture.  At that moment, I wanted to feel that way for the rest of my life but that’s where I was wrong, it’s more than a feeling (*opens Spotify cuz that song gonna be stuck in my head*) it requires work that I just expected to do itself.  Even if “the one” existed, I could blow it with her like any other woman and then what? Do I get a do over?  Pray for another one?  Or is that it?

Hopeless romantics and realists operate on two extremes but both think that things just ARE the way they are. A hopeless romantic just expects to see their soul mate across the room and live happily ever after, the realist expects a marriage to fail, men to cheat, women to take him down.  I believe that I just have to find one, and love her as hard as I can until I can’t anymore.  Its not destiny, its not statistics, its just…life.  And I plan to live it that way.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… BLACKISH

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So I ended up watching “Black-ish” last night.  I really hated the trailers but I gave it a shot, I’ve spent 30 minutes of my life doing worse.  I was also mildly amused by white people and for some reason Crystal “GOP BLACK chick”  Wright calling the show’s existence racist, especially since its just an overly neurotic Dad sitcom, a common trope in television (Home Improvement, Family Matters, According to Jim, My Wife and Kids, Modern Family also all ABC shows, and I didn’t even mean to, boom, nailed it).  Anyway, the show itself was….coo.  Not bad, not excellent, but coo.  What I found most interesting about the show was the initial scenes when the protagonist Andre, played by Anthony “I killed Law and Order” Anderson briefly narrates his black experience at work.  I don’t have a wife out my league and raising naive millennials but being the token black in a corporate setting? Now you’re talking my language, now you’re talking my language.  

At my job, I’m not only a sparce black but also one of the youngest there.  And I love my job, and I’ve grown used to a certain standard of living (glosses over me writing about leaving my comfort zone about a week ago *resists urge to toss hat and shmoney dance*).  But being the black sheep in the herd isn’t the greatest arrangement. So while Black-ish isn’t anything spectacular; I did appreciate those scenes For Colored Boys Who Considered Self Employment When Side Eyes and Blank Stares Wasn’t Enuf. The struggle is indeed real.

Especially when coworkers want to ask you about Ferguson and it feels like an interview more than a conversation.

Or you let your hair grow out and you’re asked what did you do to it to make it so curly

Or when you give the head nod to another brother and they ask “how you know them”

Or when you’re listening to ratchet music or a podcast and they ask what you’re listening to and you really don’t want to say

Or when they make a Chappelle’s Show reference and expect props…..okay, I usually give props.

Or its just assumed that I have at least a kid

Or they reference a Rolling Stones song and they are surprised by that same props

Or when you hear them refer to an athlete as a thug and you really wonder what they really meant.

Or when a black woman is hired they assume we’re going to date soon

Or you speak and everything grows silent and you wonder if its respect or fear

Or they say who you look like and you know it’s about to be any black person

I dont work in a racist workplace, they mean well but sometimes you just want to freeze time like Zack Morris and exit immediately.  Like Anderson’s character sometimes  I’m just thinking too much but most of the time I can just let things ride.  Another aspect of the show I hope they explore is how the kids of this new age sees race less.  I let more things slide than my father would, my kids will hopefully have nothing to let slide in the first place (wishful thinking).  Life is too short, sometimes the blinders are necessary for ones own sanity.  Society isnt perfect, like not even remotely but I’m strutting into a nice building listening to Jeezy and getting paid for it.  Things could be much worse.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… CUFF

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Cuffing season is upon us.  The time when you start getting less “where the wave at” texts from your homies, and more “I been thinking about you” texts from your exes.  The weather gets colder, TV gets good; tis the season to get chose.  But a season can’t truly be kicked off without predictions (sure to be wrong). 

#BoldCuffingSeasonPredictions

You’re much more likely to meet someone at the grocery store, gym or cafe.

Its just not going to work with that followed you’re DMing.

Quirky is the new hot

Instagram is like match.com for narcissists, buyer beware.

Dogs are the best wingmen you can have

Your ex hasn’t changed.  They haven’t.

Online dating will only work in major metropolitan cities

Whether one calls or texts will lend no credence to how they feel

There’s someone you don’t know yet but sees you regularly, do something different and get their attention.

Wednesday night is the perfect night for a date

If every third sentence is an innuendo, take the hint

Late subways, long lines, you’ll be surprised how common aggravations unite people

“Thick girls are made for cuddling” – A.L. Benjamin.  Still true.

A dope graphic tee is the best icebreaker you can have

You won’t be the only one until you ask to be

They’re not your ex.  They’ll never be your ex.

If you meet a guy on a dating site; they probably have an offline girlfriend

If you meet a woman on a dating site; they want a relationship, not you

Its 2014, no one loses numbers anymore.  Respond to their “who’s this” with a “never mind” and watch how quickly their memory jogs.

Men don’t mind being asked out too.

Most breakups happen on a Monday, I just found that interesting.

Most relationships are made or broken in 4-5 months, if you start now you can clinch a Thanksgiving playoff berth, a thoughtful Christmas gift and might even have make it to Valentines Day.  And then you mourn the breakup for a bit and youre back at it in the spring.  Ridiculous, perhaps. But hey, people seem to ride with it. And to those I say, Happy hunting.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… COMFORT

Editors Note: This was supposed to be a different post entirely and turned into just me thinking out loud….just ride with me for a minute

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So I was shopping for clothes, because fall is the season for stunting on muhfuggas.  After a long summer of not working out as much, ordering out because it was too damn hot, and getting plenty of play anyway, well let’s just say I put on a few pounds.  Now, since I lost the weight over a year ago I wore a L regular, I tried on shirts in that size and….I got them on.  They made due now but will I be able to wear them in November, not so sure.  (For the record, I’m going to get my shit together, more D&F posts and all that).  I opted for XLs to be on the safe side.  I wasn’t happy with where I was but there was only so much to be done at this point, so I will deal.  That’s what comfort ultimately is, you’re just okay in your ways.

Comfort is a gift and a curse, its satisfying to feel content with a situation but its also a trap; get too comfortable and you never change.  Jobs, dating life, living situation, eventually you just have to tell yourself this is cool, but its not good enough.  Its something I have to remind myself of constantly.  I spent last summer comfortable in a long distance situationship only to be gut checked and realize I wasted a summer being enamored with words on a screen.  I spent this past summer climbing up a corporate ladder while looking longingly at the escalator for creatives. And I spent this summer chilling out maxing relaxing all cool and now my shirts have an X in them again.  I regret nothing, but I still can say, I can do better than this.  

I’ve always been more realist than dreamer, as more INFJ types tend to be.  I don’t think I fear failure as much as I look and run 5 simulations before I leap.  I admire dreamers who just don’t care and just do.  Several childhood friends of mine decided to be rappers, they’re terrible but I’ve written songs and books that’ll never see the light of day so they are doing better than me in that regard.  Reine is a big dreamer and I admire that about her, even if some things are just flat out insane.  Realists are not always confined to comfort, I can recognize dead end situations and will hit eject and others well, if it ain’t broke…

I think we all need a healthy dose of comfort and unpredictability.  I want a steady paycheck, to go home to the same pretty face, to be confident in my own appearance and ability, but I don’t want to do the same thing for 40 years, I don’t want to be in a relationship I’m not happy in, or to be so comfortable that I’m 350 lbs and still making the same salary I did at 23.  Some people march to the beat of their own drum, they are a barista at Starbucks in Hollywood waiting for their big break.  It might work out for them but that person isn’t me.  And I’m comfortable with that.

-Stan-

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