Michelle and Alicia: Sisters in SOTU Style

It was a shady, shady night folks! If you were watching President Barack Obama’s penultimate State of the Union speech, then you know just the moment I’m talking about.

Obama: “I have no more campaigns to run.”
Republicans: *applause*
All: *laughter*
Obama: “I know because I won both of them.”


Damn, Son!

But the real star of the night (for me, my mother and my sister, at least) was First Lady Michelle Obama’s fly suit. The grey, nubby suit was perfection on Mrs. Obama and seemed to be made to be worn by a powerful, self assured mother of two— gasp! I had seen that suit before! Michelle was channeling the other First Lady, Alicia Florrick.

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Movie Style: Selma

I am an ENTHUSIASTIC viewer of the Golden Globes. Every year, I take to the couch and limber up my fingers in preparation– this night is Twitter intensive. I have tons of opinions and dammit, I’m going to share them. This year, my dog in the movie race was the powerful and utterly moving, Selma. 

I had my reasons for going hard in the paint for Selma.

  1. Harpo Films. Oprah executive produces it? I’m there.
  2. Common. I’m afraid that if I have to explain this to you, than our relationship may be in trouble.
  3. Carmen Ejogo. I don’t have any explanation. I just kind of love her.
  4. David Oyelwolo. British accent. Beautiful man.
  5. Ava DuvernayRead this article, dare yourself not to cry and then you will have my explanation.
  6. An amazingly compelling and heart-wrenching true story.

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Another Again: Miss Jessie’s Titi Branch, Gone at 45

Titi Branch was a woman who could not be missed. Her explosion of gorgeous blonde highlighted curls made you take notice and say, “Who is she?!” When I first saw Miss Jessie’s co-founders, Miko and Titi Branch, I immediately said, “Damn, I’ll have some of what they’re having.” I discovered Miss Jessie’s during my short-lived stint as a long-haired naturalista. I was always on the hunt for products that would make my super-fine hair do things that it was not naturally inclined to do. I admired the sisters and their story, who took their home whipped hair concoctions and grew them into a successful startup with a product carried by national chains and a veritable lifestyle brand. The two of them seemed to be living a perfect dream– sisters working together and building wealth and acclaim.

I heard the news of Titi’s passing, an apparent suicide, via a middle of the night Facebook update. The Bloggers Like Me network  is a community of multicultural women throughout the country who share experiences and advice about life, business and of course, blogging. The BLM Facebook group is always a hot bed of activity and the news hit the group, some of whom are natural hair bloggers, pretty hard. She was someone who brought our beauty to the mainstream and helped to give women permission to love their hair. To me, the loss felt like another defeat.

Depression can be like a ghost. It follows you around, lurking in the shadows, hidden to everyone’s eyes but yours. Sometimes, it’s hard to acknowledge that what you feel is real and choose, instead, to keep it hidden, tucked out of sight, away from people’s prying eyes and solicitous questions. I know that feeling. I have been deep inside of that feeling. So when I hear about another celebrity suicide, another death of someone I admire, I hang my head and cry. Sometimes, it feels like the darkness always manages to win.

Fortunately, there is help available. If you or a loved one are struggling with depression and thoughts of suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at suicidepreventionlifeline.org or call them at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). People are there. Help is available.

Love and peace to the family of Titi Branch.

#BEbeautiful: Misty Copeland

Misty Copeland American Ballet Theater
Under Armour has found a winner in Misty Copeland. The first Black soloist in American Ballet Theatre, she is one hundred percent the definition of beautiful for me. I grew up as a little black girl in a largely white ballet world, depending on my mother to interpret costume requirements of “light pink lipstick and peach blush” to colors that would look good on her little brown baby. (I will say nothing of the constant search for nude dance tights when your skin cannot be matched to “beige”.) I remember growing into a little brown woman and watching my body change into “wrong”. I stopped taking ballet and found my joy in more diverse forms of dance. I am no Misty Copeland– I didn’t have the heart. She heard the “no” and changed it into her “yes” and ultimately, her success.

I had never really thought of Under Armour as a brand that moved like this– this video has changed my mind. Watch it below:

Photo: Misty Copeland 2013 Calendar, Photographer: Gregg Delman