Scarce Identity: The Purple Side

Scarce Identity: The Purple Side

d2ec576031cfa11b906fc4802eb54c13I wouldn’t say this is a Prince tribute, but between his continuation and reading Frank Ocean’s tribute post on Tumblr, it encouraged me reveal a few passing thoughts.  Since Prince unforeseen move, there is a plethora of articles, think-pieces, opinion post about his non-conforming identity as a black male.  Frank Ocean alluded to this throughout his entry,”He was a straight black male who played his first televised set with bikini bottoms and knee high heeled boots.” Prince even eased Franks own self awareness when he said, “He made me more comfortable with how I identify sexually.” Now, not to be all in the mix, but we know exactly how that went down when he pulled that New York style butch-queen stunt right before releasing his debut album. Thus, collecting his coin from the gays dashing away into the mysterious leaving his fans and the newly gay fans for dry. Hopefully, Prince didn’t teach him how to Forest Gump…I digress, though. Prince own morals permeated the lives of many in the idea of self expression. However in my coming of age when sexuality and masculinity becomes the point in question out of every pubescent’s mouth, my inner thoughts always asked how can they respect his expression and not mine?

The high heeled purple spirit in bell bottoms, hip hugging jump suits, and Halle Berry short cuts was not around when I had to prove my manhood. He was before my time musically. The only time I would see him would be flashbacks shown on MTV some random Saturday afternoon. In those moments when he is wearing one his iconic flamboyant attires, I am thirteen trying to put him in a category as many currently did to me. Is he gay? What is he? People are allowing him to do these things? Boys can wear heels, since when? What seems to be homophobic questions from a sassy kid himself, were nothing more than inquisitions trying alleviate the suppression I put on myself.  I had to be meticulous in the way that I speak, dress, and act. Picking the tone in my voice and the way my hands move about with my words was a process as delicate as plucking petals. I was poor at suppressing those categories, but in how I dress I had no control over and Prince’s tight assembles were in contrast to the standard black male uniform of oversize everything. I had no celebrity hero that was equally accepted into the straight community and LGBTQ+ community as flagrant as Prince. No safe haven for me to conceal behind or vicariously live through. Either way, people loved him for his mystery while in the same breath try to breakdown what they couldn’t understand in me and people alike, even my mother.

My dad thought he dressed a little too feminine for his taste, my mother loved his music, Daily News front cover is of him with his legs crossed in his legendary heeled boots calling him “Sexy” While I struggle to put on leg warmers in hopes that I won’t get menacing looks and sarcastic questions at the age of 23. Do you see where I’m going with this? What partitioned him from me, what made his being acceptable and praised and not the tone of my voice, or the fit of my clothes, my proper dialect,  the glide in my step, my interest in things feminine? Something as simple as going out with leg warmers on a brutally cold New York winter day was an audacious task. the alarming feeling of fear heating my chest, sitting in the back of my throat as I timidly decide if I should place my jeans over them or not. Would I get looks and sly comments? What would my coworkers think? Would my mom question my gender for the hundredth time as she did when I accidentally left foundation in the bathroom? Is it going to bring unwarranted attention? I went ahead and placed them over my knee after drilling to myself, “Don’t matter who says what to you, you bought it, you like it, it’s cold, wear it.” Then someone later asks, “What is that on your legs,” when clearly it is obvious. “Don’t girls wear that for dance?”  Although my sarcastic responses were so keenly sharp with shade, deep down I felt like I called it upon myself.

prince-08  In trying to decipher it all between him and I and others alike, I came up with the idea that Prince gave the straight community something to look past his gender fluidity: His music. As long as you give them something to look past you will be okay. Got to have that something else that will be big enough to water down their ignorance. You can’t just be a regular feminine black male. You need a superior talent. One can express freely as long as you can slay a weave, design their home, shady humor, make them best dressed at the Grammy’s, and write the best gossip column. Or in another case, sleep solely with women. That way the determining factor, who one lays down in bed with, will decide the likeliness of positive receptivity. A women can listen to Prince and wish to sleep with him, while a male can do the same and assume his lyrics are about females and feel comfortable singing them. There shouldn’t be a pass for Prince in heels and a guitar while men like E.J. Johnson; Magic Johnson son, is chastised. Along with  Miss Lawrence and Derek J being slandered because of  who they sleep with is the determining factor of acceptance.

This isn’t about Prince. This is me trying to understand my self identity through him and question why society accepted him and cannot accept  me and others alike. No, I’m not crying out to wear heels. However, like Prince, he was an unapologetic spirit. I need to be that. Part of me is still healing from the past wounds as it still plays a part in how fully self express today. Part of me needs approval. I am working on that, I know I don’t need it. I don’t need Kid Cudi and Will Smith to make it okay for me to wear a crop top or Jaden Smith to pick a shirt from the girls section. I don’t need a rapper to be dressed in all pink for me to wear pink. I don’t need a straight male or women to vogue in order for me feel comfortable voguing in public. I don’t need Tank making a video about his salad being tossed for me to toss mine with organic toppings. I don’t need an presumably straight male to approve my fluid expression, my feminine side of a young black man. It’s the unwavering confidence in my self expression I am perfecting. Thanks Prince!

 

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My Opinion on Jurassic World: Let’s Cut The BullS**T

My Opinion on Jurassic World: Let’s Cut The BullS**T

So, I went to go see Jurassic World yesterday at 42nd street.  It was one of the last movies playing that Sunday night and I was very excited to be whirled into Jurassic nostalgia. My best friend provided free tickets, kudos to her.

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Now, I really want to get into the movie itself. No, I wont be spoiling. So basically, in summary, Jurassic World is like the new Jurassic Park. Same place, different name. Big bad dino gets loosed, eats a few things, dies, FIN! Literally, that was the entire movie. Don’t get me wrong, the special effects was one point (I guess).

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Here’s what I dislike in the movie. I was able to know what each of the main characters represents with in their first two lines.  I knew once the younger brother spoke he will be providing some profound “save the day” intellect, their aunt who runs the entire Jurassic world was probably going to be the antagonist, The hero was show cased immediately, just by how the scene went I knew!

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The story-line became very cliche. I don’t like the fact that these movies are so sexist! There always have to be this alpha male who has this grungy, dirty look with a beard. Of course they have to slap a love interest in there, in which they did at the very end, so fast. Why is that every action movie must have a love interest bounded by the shared tragedy. With the traumatizing events that goes on in the world, you rarely ever here people falling madly in love in the rate these movies make it out to be. The same formula is seen in so many movies it makes you not even want to watch them anymore.

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There was no real antagonist throughout the movie other than the focus being on that one big bad dino. As soon as the antagonist was revealed he died instantly.

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Why a girl can’t be the badass? Why must the hero always look good in dirty clothes? It appears the target audience was middle Americans.

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I can say this…The token black guy survived the entire movie! I was waiting for him to die to even add more to the cliche. I assume with Hollywood the more the cliche the more money granted for the budget. (You do know race plays apart in budgets). Also, they made a lot of Jurassic Park references which was dope to me.

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In the end, I would say its a movie you stay home to watch. If you have kids, they would love it!

A Rose In A Hard Place: Chapter 2

A Rose In A Hard Place: Chapter 2

 

read Part 1 here 

“What would you like to order?” The waitress asked in the most courteous voice. “I’ll take the Dancing Chicken with brown rice,” I ordered. “And I will take the Crying Tiger with brown rice as well.” Anya added. “And what would you like to drink with that?” “Two cranberry juices in the largest size you have,” Anya said. “But who said I wanted cranberry–” “Shh! be quiet girl and yes that will be all,” Anya said,  outpouring her smile that can steal Wall St Investors wallets. I shook my head and rolled my eyes from knowing how Anya already acts with her robust self. She grabbed her black lambskin Christian Dior bag from her hip and placed it on her lap and started ransacking inside. “Girl, what are you looking for?” I asked.  Anya pulled out her crystal craved flask. I know she was not about the spike our drinks with her liquor. This should not surprise me after the twelfth time she spiked our drinks at even the most tasteful restaurants. “That is so ghetto Anya put it away, like now.” I tried to obscure my eyes with my hand trying to hide away from the bashfulness. “Miss Thing…I make my own money, I have my own business, if want to bring liquor I will. Plus, this is not just any liquor. This is a twelve thousand dollar diamond distilled Kors Vodka.” Anya said.

I was nearly two seconds away from hurdling out my seat to slap some sense into her. Anya is still the same girl from our high school years when we used to venture up and down the streets of Harlem in our fresh new pairs of Jordan’s. Times have changed since, now we’ve moved up from the middle class . But damn, she still got that edge all up in her, especially in that luxurious vodka. I’m not even going to lie, I wanted a taste of this diamond vodka.

“You know,” Anya started, “You honestly should have gone with us on Jessica’s trip. We had such a blast! The men were dope, we got so many free drinks, I got into at least five clubs for free, and to top it off…I had this fine ass dark chocolate, football player looking, sex God tastes my treats!” Anya started to fan herself in excitement. “You know it’s been a long time coming since I had this kitty cat primed and polished. It was worth the wait. Can I get an Amen!”

“Amen!” I shouted, but this wasn’t I wanted to hear at this time. “But Yo! Let me finish telling you what happened.”