Monday, March 27, 2006

YO DJ?! That's my DJ!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!

*Ladylee standing in back of the packed auditorium, cupping her hands to her mouth so she can yell*

Yo DJ!!!

No answer....

Maybe I should yell a lil' bit louder!!!!

Yo DJ!!!

She only looked up briefly from the 1's and 2's...


I think she saw me, but she's just ignoring me...

I, like the crowd of thousands, am mesmerized by her outrageous transformer scratch over the thick 808 bass line.

Kivi kivi kivi kivi kivi...

It doesn't help AT ALL that that Original Oldgirl Sharon and that freestyle rhyme spittin' LadyBug are on stage with their breakdancing *cricket* hypemen dropping knowledge like nuclear bombs (all in rhyme and to the beat, of course)! And Super Shoe Queen blogger Serenity 23 is sashaying back and forth across the stage modeling her "Shoe of the Week".

Shoot. These broads are trippin'. And I know DJ heard me!

Maybe I should yell again!



*Ladylee catching a album straight in the grill, as she has been reminded by the DJ many times NOT to call her Celie.*

Humph... LOL!

*Ladylee giving DJ the crooked 2 fanger Celie point and ducking behind a crowd of people*

I guess she did hear me!! So now that I have her attention:

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DJ DIVA a.k.a DJ Clean Spirit!!!

All I know is that I am DOWN for the DJ. Nobody better not talk about that Dominican, Harlem-bred broad right there!

She's one of my blog mentors, the very first, of course...

And I must say, she has been one of the smartest, most eclectic people I've ever come across... She just got a degree (and seem to be loving every minute of the process). No one loves school more than she does (something is wrong with that, in my opinion... ewww!). She is a reading bandit, and deeply knowledgable on all things political, historical, and biblical. She's a damn walking encyclopedia! And she is the only female I know that loves all thangs musical more than me... She is Prince's #1 fan... She did a moving post on John Lennon on the anniversary of his death. I mean, who else would do a tribute to John Lennon on the anniversary of his death?

Not me.

Now that's a real music lover!!

We are often in contact via email and IM, and she is a frequent commenter here at my spot and she has always supported my blog activities. I have talked to her on the phone a couple of times... And I must tell you, my head was about to explode from all the SERIOUS knowledge she dropped...

Goodness gracious...

She disturbed me deeply once when she commented in one of her posts about knowing how to use a knife in a fight. And after I blasted her in one of my comment sections about the impossiblity of DJing in a pair of high heels.... She said something to the effect of "I can DJ in high heels, can kick someone in the back for bumping the turntables, and run like hell if some mess go down, all in a pair of high heels!"

Alright, then, well shut my mouth. I stand corrected...

I sit at your feet DJ!! You are teacher, I am grasshopper!

Have a Happy, Happy, Happy birthday, DJ!!!!

And thanks for your friendship and support!!!

From Your grasshopper,

That Original OG LadyLee!!

Thursday, March 23, 2006


My Girl…

The girl that has held me down for the past 25 years. Through thick and thin, through all the highs and lows…


She has been there for me all the way…

And today is her birthday, so….

Happy Birthday, LadyTee!!!

LadyTee and I have been best friends since 1981, when we started highschool, if I am remembering correctly. I have known her since 1978, when we were in summer camp and elementary school together, but she was always the young lanky girl on the side lines, watching everything go down…

Always quick to talk a bunch of sh**.

And she is STILL like that…

She turns 38 today!

But she is quick to deny that!

“I’m 29.95 and holding, babes,” she’s been yelling these past few years. “You’re 36, Ladylee. You passed me a long time ago, girl!”

Okay, LadyTee, I’ll let you go head on and yell that you’re “29.95”. I’ll give you that…

But in celebration of her birthday, I thought that I would list my top LadyTee moments over the last 25 years. I have around 30 crazy moments, but this post would be waaaay to long (and ya’ll know how long-winded I can be)… So I am narrowing it down to crazy moments of the early years of our friendship.

...Moments that we STILL go off on each other about. Moments we STILL laugh real hard about.

(Note: be forewarned, may contain language and/or subject matter offensive to some)

So without further adieu, my top Ladytee moments.

The Fresh Tour. Way back in 1988. I think that’s the name of it. Dougie Fresh, Ice-T, KRS-1, Eric B and Rakim..All I know it was the best concert I’ve gone to date. We caught Ice-T’s towel when he threw it out into the crowd (almost fought with some random chick standing next to us over that towel!) Me, LadyTee, and another friend, AJ, somehow made it backstage, and almost got dragged onto a tour bus (and you know what that means!). We almost got manhandled by Rakim’s bodyguard. (I had a slight bruise on my arm after being whacked for trying to grab Rakim’s butt.) I convinced one of Rakim’s crew to tell us the name of the hotel where they were staying, and we met them there. We convinced someone to let us know which room Dougie Fresh was staying in, and we sat outside of his door for over two hours waiting for an autograph. Some dude kept sticking his head out of the door saying that Dougie was in a meeting. (A meeting at 1 in the morning… uh, yeah right). Around two in the morning, some skanky gal came prancing out of the room, fixing her clothes. I had to keep LadyTee from snapping on her. Dougie stuck his head out of the hotel room door and signed autographs and let us run our fingers through his hair…

Then we had to go hunt down our friend AJ, who was held up in a room with a roadie… I think we lost a little respect for AJ that night.

Party Time. Back in 1983, my mother and stepfather were taking the baby (my sister) out to his brother’s house on a Saturday evening for a visit. The brother lived way up in Marietta somewhere, really far from College Park. Ladytee was spending the weekend with me, and they wanted to take us with them. We asked if we could stay home. My mother said okay, but we were sternly warned not to go anywhere. We agreed to that. They said they would be home at midnight. Well, about 15 minutes after they left, we went to the party of a classmate who lived a couple of blocks away.

We had so much fun. They played all our favorite music, and they had a lot of food. I mean all of our friends were there! That was the first time I had slow dragged with a boy. That had to be one of the best parties I have attended to date. Well anyway, we decided that we would leave around 11:30 p.m. so we could make it home before midnight.

We were walking along, giggling about the evening.

We were one house away from home, when a car slowed down next to us.

“What cha’ll doing out here!? I told ya’ll not to leave the house!” my stepfather yelled.,

It was my mother and stepfather.

Damn we got in trouble that night!!

Ladytee stepped up and took the blame (even though I was the one to convince her to go to the party!) My mother stayed pissed at LadyTee for 20 years. LadyTee is still skittish around my mother to this very day, afraid that the woman is going to have a flashback and cuss her out again!!

“I’m pregnant!”. Ladytee told me late one night in 1988 that she had missed her period, and we were thinking, trying to figure out what to do, and hoping she wasn’t pregnant. She was scared, so I told her I would go with her to Planned Parenthood. Well, I was in college then, and I skipped classes that next day, went and picked her up, and we caught the train downtown and went to Planned Parenthood so she could take a test.

Well, I sat in the waiting room looking out one of the 15th floor windows, waiting for her to come out of the exam room. She finally came out, looking sad…

“What they say, Tee?”
She sat down in a chair and stared out the window. “I’m pregnant.”
I just sat down next to her, and looked out the window.
“What you gonna do, Tee?”
“I’m gonna keep it.”
She started crying.
I started crying.
We both started wailing like we had lost our minds.
A nurse came over to calm us both down. She was finally able to get out of us that Tee was pregnant. The nurse looked at me like I was crazy.
“You’re not pregnant?”
“No,” I said between sobs.
“Then why are you crying?” The nurse asked.
“’Cause she’s crying!” I said before wailing along with Tee.

We managed to compose ourselves and leave. LadyTee had a baby boy in August of 1989.

LadyTee steps up to defend my honor. LadyTee and I had an English class together back in the eleventh grade (1985). I was fifteen at the time and she was seventeen. We sat near each other, so we use to pass notes in class. I’d been twerking a boy, initials “TB”, that lived up the street from me, and she didn’t know it. Somehow we got on the subject in our note passing antics, and I pretty much confessed in the note that I’d been sexing TB. I think I was angry that day, because the night before, TB refused to rendezvous at my house that evening (I think he had a test or something) and wanted to meet up later that week. SOMEHOW, Ladytee got it all twisted and misread the note. She thought TB was taking advantage of me, forcing me to have sex with him or something. (I still to this day don’t know HOW she came up with THAT). I just remember the scowl on her face when I turned around in class to look at her periodically.

Ladytee was plotting something. I just didn’t know what…

The next day, she was mad at me.

“Girl, I went off on your boy yesterday, when we got off the bus.”
I looked at her like she was crazy. I was hoping that she wasn’t messing up my action. “What did you say to him?”
She went on about how she had gotten off the bus and was gonna run up and swing on him for forcing me to have sex with him. I told her she was mistaken, and that there was definitely no force involved. I was very much down for it.
“That’s what he said,” she yelled. “He said you were the main one calling him up.”
“Yep! We got a schedule going” I said.
“Girl, you got me out there embarrassing myself!”
“I didn’t tell you to run up on him. That’s your fault.”
She dogged me out about the whole situation for a whole week.

I talked to TB later on the phone. He warned me to get my girl under control, because she talk a lot of sh**, acting like she was gonna jump on him, or something.

That let me know that LadyTee was truly down for me. She weighed ninety-five pounds soaking wet back in those days, but she wasn’t a fighter. Ladytee is real good at threatening folks and talking sh**.” And for that, at least, and especially since I determined that she didn’t mess up my action, I am truly grateful.

Ladytee snaps on me to this very day, over 20 years later, whenever she thinks about the whole situation, though.

Here, doggie, doggie. I was knocked out sleep one Friday night back in 1991, when my phone started ringing off the hook. My mother never answered the phone that late at night, as she knew it was for me. All I know I was sleeping good… you know, that good sleep, when you think the ringing phone is a part of your dreams… THAT kind of sleep.I knocked the phone off of the nightstand trying to answer it, and I remember having to feel around on the floor and grabbing the phone up by the curly cord so I could answer it. I caught a glimpse of clock on the nightstand. It was a little after two in the morning.

“Lee…” she whispered.
“Yeah, Lee.”
“What girl?”
“I got something to tell you,” she whispered.
“What’s wrong?”
“I got something to tell you,” she whispered again.
“Girl, what?”
“I just did it doggie-style.”


I remember laying there, staring up at the ceiling, which was all prickly and illuminated by the streetlight near our driveway. I didn’t say anything.


“Lee? You still there?”
“Man, I know you didn’t just call and wake me up to tell me that!!"
“I just had to call somebody. Whoooo, it was so good. I had to call you.”
“So what, Tee? Who cares?”
She hesitated. “So have you done that before?”
“Yeah. Duuuh.” I said sarcastically.
“Oh, why you didn’t tell me, girl?”
“Look girl, I just didn’t. Look, call me in the morning.”
“Oh… alright then. I’ll call you back.”
“Bye.” I hung up on her.

I think I hurt her feelings that night. I didn’t care, because there have been several times that I have called her and awaken her by mistake, and she has completely snapped on me and/or cussed me out.

I heard many unwanted details that next day. That’s got to be something, you know, when the loving was so good that you had to make a phone call right after the act, while dude is laying there right next to you sleep. Shoot, I can’t remember being that elated before…

She still calls me and awakens me, though not for those reasons… I think she has learned the lesson of keeping that ish to herself.

We're older now, and our antics are a little less wild... And like I said, Ladytee has always been there for me. She's always been a good listener, allowing me to cry on her shoulder when I needed someone to listen and just let me cry. She was a pillar of strength throughout my marriage woes and divorce. When I was away doing post-doc work in New Orleans, she stepped in and took care of my sisters needs, like getting her ready for prom, etc. I remember a time, back in the early 90's, when I was in college and I got jealous because her and a group of our friends partied so much and convienently forgot about me. We talked about that last year. She said that her was her doing. The others wanted to come get me, but she always told them that I had a test or something.

"You didn't need to be partying with us, Lee. We were up to no good. You needed to get your lesson. So I told them you were busy. You didn't need to hang with us while concentrating on your schoolwork."

Now that's a true friend...

Just want you to know, LadyTee... on the occasion of your turning "29.95"...

You've been such a great friend... Hope I've been the same for you, girl!!

I love you, I love you, I love you!!!!

Have a Happy Happy Birthday, Girl!!!!

Love Ladylee :)

Sunday, March 19, 2006

So Fresh and So Clean!

I was in my favorite market yesterday, Whole Foods, and I decided to do something I'd never done...

I bought some fresh cut flowers.

You know, I've always laughed at people whenever I saw them buying fresh flowers....

I would think quietly to myself, "That's stupid! They're flowers, they're gonna die! That's so stupid."

And here I was... looking at some Oriental Lilies. (I think that's what they are.)

And actually buying them...


They really look nice on my living room coffee table, don't they?

And they smell so goooood!!!

My living room smells so fresh and so clean! The scent just overtakes the room... Oh my!

I tell you one thing... you'll never catch me laughing at folks buying fresh cut flowers again...

Because I would only be laughing at myself!

Friday, March 17, 2006

Book Review - Michele Matthews' Confessions of a Beautiful Woman


This isn't a post about Usher...

I was trying to download the cover to Michele Matthews Confessions of A Beautiful Woman, and Blogger wasn't having it...

Ya'll know how bi-yotchy Blogger gets sometimes!

So I went and got the next best thing... Usher's Confessions album (or poster)...

Close your eyes and imagine a woman sitting there instead, looking all thoughtful, like she has some confessions she's just gotta get out...

Okay, back to the discussion at hand...

I attended a reading in early February given by none other than novelist Pearl Cleage. I am a big fan of her books, as I have read them all, sometimes twice, but this particular reading wasn't from her novels...

It was a reading of some of her essays and one of her poems.

Pearl spoke of her thoughts and feelings on different subject matters...

I, Ladylee, found all of this a bit intriguing... and I wanted to find more books by women expressing their thoughts and feelings on various topics in the form of essays and poetry.

So when Michelle Matthews (blogger name: "Chele"; blog: "Forty Something") made a quick announcement in a blog post that she would be releasing a book of poetry and essays titled Confessions of a Beautiful Woman, I thought to myself...

I gotta get THAT when it comes OUT!

Because if it was as emotionally charged as her "Forty Something"blog... Oh my!

I mean I absolutely LOVE her blog... She puts all her feelings out there on the table, something that I myself RARELY do at this spot. (No, I don't like getting spanked by ya'll for having a few feelings different from the norm! I choose to go blog out of control in the comment sections of other bloggers instead...)

One day she's happy... Another day, there is sadness. Another day we see her spirituality. Then another day she's pissed off. Another day, she's questioning her feelings about certain things she's facing in life...

All and all, she makes this Oldgirl say...

"Damn, I feel that way sometimes! Thought I was the only one to ever feel that way."


She's a whisper away from being handed her Original Oldgirl platinum card, good worldwide...

*Ladylee frantically searching her pockets for an extra Original Oldgirl platinum card*

Alright, I am straying away from the subject. This is suppose to be a review of her book of Essays and Poetry, Confessions of a Beautiful Woman.

I can't find just one word to describe this wonderful collection.

I can find a few words, though: amazing, beautiful, poignant, painful, pure, thoughtful...

But most of all... honest.

She really put her whole self out there with this collection of over 30 poems and essays. I could write a post on how each one touched me. I really could.

That would be 30 posts... That would be a bit too much...

So I will talk about those poems and essays that had the most profound effect on me....

I loved the poem "The Struggle", especially because of it's deep spiritual overtones. Michele breaks down, in a few words, the struggles we all deal with: struggling because of our prideful ways, struggling deep down in our spirits, the constant struggle within ourselves and with our raging emotions.

Shoot, this poem made me realize and take stock of how much I've been struggling internally over a few things... I had one of those moments where I thought...

"Damn, I thought I was alone in feeling this way."

I enjoyed the essay "10 Things I Wish Mom had Told Me". This essay brought a whole 'nother meaning to that old cliche "Hindsight is 20/20". Heck, I must have read this essay a good ten times. It was that much on point. Two of the 10 "things" resonated strongly with me...

#10 Don't give your heart away to someone you aren't sure will take care of it.

#4 Develop a relationship with God, before you try to have one with a man.

You got that right...

Geeeezzz.... could've saved myself A WHOLE LOT OF HEARTACHE if I knew THAT!!

Outstanding in it's concept is the essay titled "Patience". Michele breaks up all the familiar cliches (Patience is a virtue, Everything in due time, etc.) and brings home the point that developing in patience only makes one stronger.

Now there is one poem, "Just Wastin' Time", that felt like the author took off her cutesy high heels and strapped on a pair of fresh Timbalands, grabbed a mike, and completely goes off on some young knucklehead who tries to peep a lame game to her... She tells him in, uh, so many words, not to waste her time... I was waiting for a hard 808 bass beat to jump off the page when I was reading that one! Oh my!

What I love most is how she ended the book: with several beautiful love poems. It was as if, throughout the beginning and middle of the book, she took me through a huge gamut of emotions, and then at the end, she brought me in for a real soft landing...

Yet again, making me feel like...

"Damn, I've sho nuff felt like THAT before!!"

The author does an exceptional job through such an eclectic mix of poetry, essays and random thoughts, expressing her anger, joy, regret, grief, love, sensibility, contentment, sadness, and passion... all of which, I've come to understand, from her confessions, gives a woman her beauty.
Such strong confessions they were...

Such strong confessions straight from the heart of a beautiful woman indeed.

Now, I downloaded this book... but after reading it a few times?

I need a hardcopy for my bookshelf!!

Go check it out... you'll love it!

Monday, March 13, 2006

The Mystery of Pickled Pig Parts

Dedicated to sherri, Ms.

Sherri, Ms., left an extremely nostalgic comment on my "Something Special" post...

"...I'd go so far as to eat one of those pig feet from the corner store to relive just one of those summer visits with my grand parents."

I shivered as if hit with a blast of cold air when I saw that comment...

She was talking about pickled pig feet. You know, you use to be able to buy them at the neighborhood bootleg corner store. They were always on the counter, near the cash register, in a big gallon glass jar, floating around in a pinkish liquid...


Do you know they still sell those... in the same big glass jars?

I have to admit... I haven't seen them in any of the bootleg corner stores I've ran into recently.

And I must say too that I haven't been looking for them, either. It has been a good 25 years since I had some pickled pig feet.

And apparently there is a difference between "pickled pig feet" and "pickled pig knuckles"...

(What the hell is the difference?)

Never mind... I don't EVEN want to know...

This particular company, Hannah's, sell the pickled pig feet for $21.00 a jar, while the pickled pig knuckles are sold for $27.00 a jar....

So obviously there's a difference...

Personally, I think I'd rather have a pig foot rather than a pig knuckle. Seems like there would be more meat on a pig foot rather than a pig knuckle, and--

(shoot, WHAT am I saying? That crap is nasty!)

And then I was chatting over email with Super Shoe Queen Blogger Serenity 23 and she made a statement to the affect of "Nothing beats pig lips and chips!"


I questioned S23 about this. She said they (pig lips) were hairy, which REALLY confused me. But she wouldn't answer my questions about whether there was such a thing as ACTUAL pig lips. I think I pissed her off because she screamed out at me over email...


Yeah, she was pissed.

So I wondered around work asking my fellow employees if they knew what pig lips were?

The common responses:


Did you say 'What are big lips'?
Is that some type of disease??

Sunshine, my bootleg manuscript editor, who is also from "the country", explained that pig lips were what they were: pig lips.

Damn, wouldn't you know that they also sell pickled pig lips.


I found a website,
The Chitterling Site (shut up, don't laugh), that had a great recipe for pickled pig feet.

Pickled Pigs' Feet


4 pigs' feet (split in half)
3 cups cider vinegar1 onion (sliced)
1 tsp crushed red pepper
3 whole cloves
1 bay leaf

Wash the pigs feet thoroughly. Place in a pot with coldwater along with the vinegar. Bring to a boil and skim off the foam. Add other ingredients and cook over mediumheat until thoroughly done (approximately 2 1/2 hours).Store in a container along with the liquid. If you havetoo much liquid, remove the cooked pigs feet and boil itdown a little. Refrigerate. Serve cold.

Yo Sherri, go head on and cook those up and let me know how it all worked out for ya!

And I hope you find a nice size glass jar to store those pickle pig feet in!!! I bet they would look just lovely on your kitchen counter!

Pssssst! Check it out--- Shunda's in the House!!

The hardest working sista in the ATL has a blog...

My book club president, Mrs. Shunda Leigh, owner and proprietor of Booking Matters Magazine, has a blog... "Mrs. Leigh's Place of Peace"

That's right...

The baddest sista in the ATL decided to take off her high heel and dip her big toe in the water...

Pssst... come closer...


Do this Oldgirl a favor.... Go make her day...

Go bumrush her, and welcome her to the blogosphere...

She's been blogging up a storm... she has, like, 7 or 8 posts in two days... You might want to let her know that she needs to spread that ish out a bit!

Dang.... She needs to kill that noise!

Just playing...

Do yo' thang, gurl!!!!

You Blogging bandit!!

Click on the highlighted sentence above for her link! Or click on her link in my blogroll!!!

Go check it out :)

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Something Special...

I was speeding down Lakewood Avenue in my Mazda on Saturday afternoon, heading to the Southside to run a few errands, when I looked up and saw this sign…

I’ve driven past this establishment several times over the past few months, as it is my shortcut to the interstate, but I've never paid much attention to it.

But look a little closer…


You know me...

I decided to go do a little investigating!

I decided to check it out!!

I walked in, and the place was nice and clean (that’s the first thing I look for). It wasn’t crowded. Only a couple of tables were occupied. There was a line of people at the counter, though, and people were coming in behind me. I wanted to take a couple of pictures, but I was hood deep... I thought they may think that I was trying to case the joint!

I finally got up to the counter and there was a soul food bonanza, all crowded onto a six foot long counter.

Oh my!!

There was enough food to feed a few Armies: mashed potatoes, corn, rice, potato salad, fried chicken, baked chicken, corn bread, dinner rolls, squash, cabbage, lima beans, collard greens, macaroni and cheese, candy yams, catfish, green beans, black eye peas, Salisbury steak, cakes and pies…

And of course, all things pork: a whole mess of chitterlings ("chitlins") , neck bones, ribs, pork chops…

…and the “pig foot”.

No I didn’t get a “pig foot” that day. I got a to-go vegetable plate of squash, mac and cheese, and green beans, with a corn muffin for $4.40. That was a good price, and the food was very good: not greasy or salty, but just right!

But what got me was that sign out front…

I thought of my late grandfather when I saw that sign. I laughed aloud. He loved pork.

I remember stopping by to see him one day after leaving work about five years ago. He had lung cancer, and had just gotten out of the hospital. So I made sure to stop by and talk and visit with him whenever possible.

He was leaving the house as I had just arrived, moving quickly down the front steps of his house, walking fast and hard. I watched him quickly snatch open the passenger door of his van and jump in. He was putting on his seat belt by the time I walked up.

“Grandaddy, where you going?”

“Tweet [my uncle] taking me to the store, Lee.”

I leaned against the van. I thought about jumping in the van and riding with them. “What are ya’ll getting at the store?”

“I want to make some barbequed pig feets,” he stated, all loud and proud. "Either you get in this car, Sweet, or go on in the house now!!"

I frowned and stepped back from the car. “Uh… alright. See ya’ll later, then.”

I decided to just go on in the house and hang out with Grandma while they did a “pig foot run.”

I went back to visit him the next day. He’d just finished baking a whole pan of barbeque pig feet.

Much to my dismay, he fixed a huge plate of pig feet and handed it to me.

“Sit down, Lee. Sit down and have some.”

Mind you, I hadn’t had pig feet in about 20 years, and I wasn’t screaming to eat any right then either. It took all that was in me not to just turn around and haul ass. But I sat there with him, and ate a plate of barbequed pig feet. It was an interesting experience, to say the least.

It was like chewing barbeque-flavored sponges and rubber bands.

But I remember that, even though I was completely repulsed by the taste of this special delicacy, I was just glad to share a little time with my Granddaddy, who was sick at the time, and had been undergoing chemotherapy for lung cancer.

The conversation that day and the sound of his laughter as we sat together at the small crowded yellow formica kitchen table eating our barbequed pig feet is something that I wouldn’t give up for the world.

It was something special, indeed.

I haven’t had a "pig foot" since that day some 5 years ago.

But when I saw that sign advertising the “pig foot”….

I thought about Grandaddy…

And how much I really, really miss him.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

My Smile Box

(note: I've been trying to put a post up for the past couple of days, but blogger will not let me upload my photos! So I will post something from my personal thoughts and diaries until the situation is corrected...)

I have a "Smile Box" on my desk at work...

The "Smile box" was given to me and my book club sisters by our book club president. We are suppose to keep the "Smile Box" on our desks at work. We were instructed to place postive affirmations, scriptures, etc., in the box, and whenever some B.S. pops off at work, we're suppose to go straight to our "Smile Box", open it, and spend a little time with those positive words that uplift us.

So here are a few of the contents in my "Smile box":

"It is NOT me!"

"I am NOT defined by my job!"

"I cannot control other people's motives. I just need to be concerned with being a good custodian of my own life."

"God does not consult my past to determine my future."

And a couple of my favorite scriptures:

Proverbs 13:20 (MES) Become wise by walking with the wise . Hang out with fools and watch your life fall to pieces.

Hebrews 13:5 (AMP) For He God Himself has said I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. I will not, I will not, I will not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let you down (relax my hold on you)! Assuredly not!

I like this idea. I open it everyday, if only for a few minutes. Sometimes I just need a little something to keep my spirits up...

Now an important question:

If you had a "smile box", what would it contain? What would you put in it that would uplift you, make you think differently about a difficult situation, or make your day a little brighter?

Monday, March 06, 2006



Can someone explain this to me?

Yeah, the other songs nominated for an Oscar were pretty crappy...

Yeah, I have to admit that...

But you mean to tell me that R.Kelly's song "I believe I can fly", a good positive song, couldn't get nominated back in the day...

But Three 6 Mafia's "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp" gets nominated and wins??


Who woulda thought?

Well... Congrats DJ Paul, Juicy J, and CRUNCHY BLACK...

*Ladylee slowly walking away and scratching her head in utter confusion*

Thursday, March 02, 2006

My Beloved Neighbors, Part 2... The House on the right.

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about my neighbors who live in the house on my left… the gay frat boys…

Yes, yes, my sister Kay is still complaining… A few days a week I have to hear her chime

“Lee, they were outside trippin’ last night!”

But my neighbors to the right?

They are the complete antithesis of the frat boys…

Oh they are homosexual, just like a good percentage of my intown neighborhood…

But they are a nice, quiet, loving Caucasian couple. I will call them “Paul” and “Stan”.

And the funny thing is that they look just alike. It is almost as if they said, when they became a couple: “Hey, let’s go get our heads shaved so we will look just alike.”

So it is difficult to tell them apart. Instead of me yelling “Hey Paul” or “Hey Stan!” I just wave and yell…


I always hear a nice “Hi ya, Ladylee!!”

I know one thing: they have busted up any of the traditional stereotypes I’ve had about gay couples. The more effeminent guy, Stan, is like Hefty Smurf, a jack of all trades. He
is constantly doing a lot of hardcore home improvements and landscaping, etc. The more buffed up masculine dude loves to cook, and is more of a housewife type. Kay especially loves the brownies he makes for us from time to time!

One day, Kay and I had returned from a little grocery shopping and one of the guys ran out of the house…

“Ladylee, we’re laying down hardwood floors! Come on over here and have a look!”

Well you know me… I am nosy. I sat my sacks down on top of the car and started to walk over there. My sister Kay stood there, stone-faced and looking crazy. She was shocked and silent, but she had that look on her face that screamed…

“Oh Hell Nawl!”

“Girl, bring your butt on here,” I ordered.

She reluctantly followed me. I walked into the house and I talked with the guys about their floors. I was way careful (as usual) to not say names, for fear of calling one of them by the wrong name. I usually just wait for one to address the other, then start calling names…

Well, Stan, the more effeminate of the two, got all excited.

“Ladylee, I looked over there, and I told Paul ‘Oh my God, she already has her curtains up!!’”

“No I don’t,” I said. “That’s called ‘Wait ‘til it gets dark, turn off all the lights and cover the windows with bed sheets.”

Stan had a look of horror on his face, which he quickly did away with. He didn’t notice that I saw it, but I did…

It was that look that whispered…

“I see black people from the ghettoooooooo….”

(Shoot, at least they were all brand new white sheets… None of the sheets were mismatched colors or had funky flowers on them… So, I, Ladylee, was at least being a little civilized).

They quickly moved back to talking about the floors…

Kay and I left… I believe Kay was holding her breath the whole time we were there. My sister knows me… I am bound to say something off the wall to embarrass her.

But the neighbors on the right are cool. Stan is taking college classes and I talk to him about that. He thinks I some type of guru or something because of my Ph.D.

And they are always so helpful!

“Ladylee, don’t you DARE buy a lawn mower. We have one here, and we will cut your grass for you! Don’t you dare get out here!”

“That’s cool!” I replied.

“Ladylee, once we get a ladder for our house so we can take care of our gutters, we are going to take care of yours too. So don’t you DARE get anyone out here to clean those gutters!”

“That’s cool!” I yelled.

Yes, they are some cool friendly neighbors!

But one thing that irks the hell out of me:

They are nosy as hell!!!!!

My builder was building a French drain along the left side of my house, and both Paul and Stan got into an argument with him about it. I stood there and watched, then jetted, because I had stuff to do over in my old College Park hood. I got a call on my cell phone from my neighbor the Infamous Hen-Dog about 20 minutes later.

“Ladylee, why is the police at your house?”

“What? Shoot man, Paul and Stan are out there fighting with my builder. Walk up there and check on my sister and see what the heck is going on.”

(I know my sister Kay. She so scary! I was hoping she didn’t pass out due to all the commotion!)

I rushed back home to find that all was well. My builder whispered…

“Sister, you gonna have trouble out them boys!”

“Whatever. They better cut my grass and get on somehere!”

Their nosiness continued….

My cat Jeremy died shortly after the whole incident with the builder, and I wanted to bury my cat in my backyard. I was a little apprehensive about nosy ass Paul and Stan coming outside talking trash about the funeral I had planned.

But I finally decided that…

It’s my backyard, my property, so I’m gonna bury my cat, doggonit.

Well I expressed my concerns to LadyTee, who was attending Jeremy's funeral…

This hyped LadyTee up, to the point where she was ready and willing to go off on Paul and Stan if they stepped one foot out their door.

Well, we had the small cat funeral: Just me, LadyTee, and her cousin Pokie. We hung around outside taking pictures.

Funny thing… LadyTee and I happen to be dressed alike: tan sweaters and black pants.

(Do you see where I am going with this?)

“They staring out the window, Lee,” LadyTee said out the side of his mouth. “And if they come out here talking shit, then it’s on and popping!”

“Calm down, girl,” I responded.

Paul and Stan came outside and stood on their back porch. They were smiling real hard.

“Oh shit,” LadyTee said under her breath. “They think we together! They think I’m your woman!”

I did all I could to keep my composure, because it was the funniest thing I’d heard all day. I could see how they would say that. We were dressed alike (this wasn’t planned). nd she had her arm around my shoulder. But shoot, we homegirls just taking pictures.

Well, the guys came down off their porch and talked and talked and talked…

LadyTee was standing there, ready at any second to snap if they said anything about me giving my cat (her nephew) a proper backyard burial.

I could have cared less.

Since then, they’ve been cheesing hard everytime they see me now.

“Hi ya, LadyLee!”

“Hey!” I always yell back! (I still can’t tell them apart. They look more and more alike everyday!)

I’m cool with them… it’s all good… I think they think they have a gay sista living next door.

I hate to break it to them, but, um I don’t like women.

Heck, they can think what they want to think, though…

As long as they cut my grass and clean my gutters!!!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

A Whole Mess of Salmon...

I got caught off guard last week, by our friendly work librarian Regina.

“Hey Girl!” She chimed, as she ravaged my candy bucket, scavaging enough Dove Chocalates to hold her over for a few days.

“Yeah, what’s going on?” I asked.

"Oh, nothin' much."

I looked at her suspiciously. I knew this was a damn lie from hell. She wanted something...

“I need your help!" she finally said. "I need you to make some salmon croquettes for the African-American History Month Luncheon.”

“No!” I yelled.

“Oh come on, girl!” she said with a broad smile.

Obviously she hadn’t heard me, so I yelled loud enough for the whole floor to hear me.

“Hell NO!”

“Alright, why don’t you all just circulate the sign-up list around the floor for me.”

Cowgirl Cre (my work cubicle mate) and I looked at each other with raised eyebrows. If there was one thing I hated, it was being responsible for making sure a list or card got passed around without getting lost.

“Man, go head on with all that! Go on now!” I pushed her slightly. "You always come around here bothering folks, man!"

She waved me off. “Okay, Ladylee, I’m gonna put you down for a pan of salmon patties.”

I proceeded to have a complete hissy fit.

“Dang, man! Dog! You trippin’. Dang!!”

She wrote my name down on her makeshift list…

“Alright ladies, ya’ll have a nice day!”

She swiftly walked away, apparently satisfied that she'd accomplished her goal of hoodwinking me.

That’s Regina for you: she is the community servicewoman on the job, and she’s always participating in and planning the different extracurricular events on the job… She's the one who comes around with a card to sign, or a sign-up list for some potluck thing going on at work.

She is so gung-ho…

Humph. I’m just here to make my money and go home. Anything extra is completely ludricous to me, and leaves me quite horrified, I must say. I rarely show up for anything voluntary.

One thing I can say about Regina: she has learned over the years not to be threatened by my temper tantrums…

So early Tuesday morning, I woke up and prepared a whole mess of salmon.

People like them a lot, and have asked for the recipe…

And now I give it…

Hopefully, the peasants will stop bothering me….

Salmon Patties.

One 14 oz. can of cheap salmon (Double Q is good), deboned and drained.
1 large egg
½ cup of finely chopped white or yellow onions
2 heaping tbspn flour
4 heaping tbspn cornmeal mix
¼ tspn season salt
Vegetable oil for frying (about 1/2 cup).

Heat the oil in a skillet (medium heat). Alright, mix all the remaining ingredients together. The mixture should clump together loosely. If it doesn’t, add another tablespoon of cornmeal. Shape into flat roound patties (about 3 inches in diameter) and fry on medium heat. Turn the patties over when the edges are brown. They should fry approximately 3 to 5 minutes on each side. Remove them from the skillet and drain on a paper towel. Salt and pepper to taste...

Now if you mess that up? You just need to go sit down somewhere. You just need to stick to making toast or something, because you have some SERIOUS issues!

And you want a recipe for the biscuits? Don’t hold your breath… Go to the refrigerated section of your favorite grocery store and get a can of biscuits. Follow the directions on the back of the can. How about that? You can’t mess that up!

I don’t make homemade biscuits, you see. The ones shown above are a brand called Mary B’s, and I found them one day in the frozen foods section of a neighborhood bootleg grocery store. They taste damn near homemade, and that’s good enough for me!

So Regina…

The recipe is out there now, homegirl….

And check it out...

Don’t let me catch you on my floor, looking for me, ever again!