Marie Kondo that Vision Board!

You’re likely stuck in the house. Time is melting away, and you’re clinging like hell to the remnants of your sanity. Order has gone, and the police are trapped in the sewers. A charismatic villain is occupying your living room.

Nope, that’s Batman!

If you’re not in a Christian Bale film, you’re likely social distancing, and spending way more time at home. This means you have the opportunity to update (or create ) your very own vision board.

Whether you’re using this time to learn a second language, start a new business, or just rest and connect with yourself , you can do with a bit of DIY, mindfulness, and spring cleaning!

Goals change. They should. They will. Your vision board(s) should change along with them. My old vision board was littered with lists and quotes that no longer applied. Offer letters for positions I left, and remnants of opportunities I once wanted. I even left space for new goals and unexplored terrain. Roze: The Final Frontier!

I was younger then. I’m wiser now. Now I’m looking down a path toward professional academia, my goals are changing, and the map will need match my destination. I’m currently “funemployed” (a term I made up to reclaim my time and denounce my ties to capitalism-driven productivity and burnout) and working to one day be FUNemployed!

In other words I’ve been social distancing since January; less by choice, than force. More safety and frugality for me, yay!

So, while our nation seems to be on the edge of a real-life purge, careening dangerously towards the themes of the 2006 comedic sci-fi film Idiocracy, we can still work to refine our goals, and update your vision board. What goals have you achieved? Revamped? Reassessed? Have our priorities changed? How has the Corona Virus made you rethink your future!? a vision board is an opportunity to Get creative and post your plan where you can see it. Probably on your fridge!

We can get through this together, and come out better.

I’m Addicted to Instagram!

*City Girls voice:* “Period!”

[In walks Rod Serling]

If you’re up at 3am wandering down the rabbit hole into the weird part of YouTube, you may find yourself watching a “documentary”. This documentary will at some point, if conspiratorial enough, suggest that the world you know is a simulation or otherwise unreal. It’ll point to some dystopian future where every corner is lit up with Times Square-esque billboards and advertisements are beamed directly onto your retina. 🛸 👽

Well, we’re not so far off. 🤷🏾‍♀️

Times Square is in our phones. Always beeping, always on, always accessible. I know, Despite how I sound, I own zero cats. 🐈 🐱

My Matrix is Instagram. It has me firmly by the spinal cord pumping #FOMO and #fitspo directly into my brain. It simultaneously connects and isolates me. It binds us with tangible proof of our shared experiences while celebrating our differences in culture and cause; all the while making us clones. 📠

I know these things. Deep in my big thinky brain I know this, and I still let it get me. 📱👉🏾🧠 I’m worse off than my preteen sister! I grew up with a landline and PBS. Bob Ross was my therapy! How did this happen to me!?

How I know I’m an addict…

1. I’m willfully on the app all the time. I use it to fill my downtime.

2. My thumb can find and open the app subconsciously. Sometimes first thing in the morning; unfortunately setting the tone for a frazzled and preoccupied day.

⏰ 📱🏃🏾‍♀️💨 instead of 🧘🏾‍♀️🙏🏾📿 ✌🏾

3. The number of accounts I follow is disproportionate to the number that follow me. Not that I track it for influence or money, but it shows me that I primarily consume media despite my talent and desire to create it.

4. I label everything #goals. What then must I think of my life if I aspire so hard to take pages from other people’s books? Instagram is a perpetual motion machine cranking out envy and comparison.

5. I am noticeably preoccupied. You know you have a problem when you are constantly stashing your phone. I’m afraid it’s affecting my productivity and ability to have quiet moments with others. Simple intimacy. 🙅🏾‍♀️

They say acceptance and admission come first.

In the spirit of coming clean, I’ll make a few more admissions. I’m also addicted to sugar, I binge watch, and I’m terminally tardy. Please send help. 🚨🚑

What I’m doing to get clean…

1. 9-5 fast. During the working day I delete Instagram. The temptation gets real around lunch time, but it feels good to be productive. I’ve also been purging. I unfollow the accounts I can’t see benefiting me. Ones that me feel like I’m not enough.

2. Screen Time Limit. This new iPhone function tells you exactly how much time you spend BS-ing, and you can set a limit for app accessibility.

⚠️ Warning! ⚠️ It will cut you off mid-post, mid-comment, mid-like. It’s abrupt and effective, but not without temptation. You can delay and essentially press snooze on the limit for an additional 15 minutes, or for the rest of the day. AVOID SNOOZE!

3. “Productivity Blocks”. Set periods of time devoted to getting 🤬 done! At the end I can reward myself with a teeny bump of that good sweet social media. *snorts*

I’m slowly working on it. Choosing to redirect my energies. Sometimes I need reminding. Sometimes I slip. But more than anything I want to be creating moments worth documenting. But I won’t let chasing the perfect lighting take priority. I’ll actually reach out to people. I’ll work at my goals.

However, I will never stop taking pictures of delicious food. Never.

But y’all accept me.

Free yourselves. Find your hang ups, name them, and stare them down.

Update 11/8/18

Here’s an additional resource in the form of a podcast “Therapy for Black Girls” … or any colored persons…

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/therapy-for-black-girls/id1223803641?mt=2&i=1000417841627

Until later,

Update: 1/3/19

I’ve kept up with the 9-5 fast, but unfortunately that now includes Twitter; my paltry drug of second-choice. Thankfully, Snapchat is so unappealing that it has not yet hooked my attention.

I’ve also added an off-the-grid day. Usually a Saturday, most of which I spend with a dead phone. Guiltlessly binge watching on some other device, while washing/folding laundry or cleaning my bathroom.

Plot twist: you can both be a recluse, and a productive young person. Who’d have thunk!?

The holidays were rough. Tucked in at home desperatelyburying yo avoid the “What would you be doing if you were in Miami?” conversations. I spent so much time glued to my screen that I had to take whole naps to rest my eyes. Entire siestas to counteract the phone fiestas! I’m am torn between hiding away from, and actively participating in, my own life. A conundrum.

Caught up in the year-end twilight zone of reflection, aspiration, and regret, I spent what felt like eons looking over my accounts.

Why didn’t I post more? Why don’t I post more? Write more? Travel more? Why isn’t my Instagram more cohesively branded? My messaging more consistent? Why hasn’t my blog taken off? What aren’t I so flawlessly fleek celebrating the New Year in a distant locale?

The comparison monster stuffed my stocking with envy.

On an on. Please help! It’s an ongoing battle: getting clean.

How To: Comic-con vs Carnival

Sometimes we have a hard time putting ourselves in the fancifully-decorated boots of others. That’ll make sense later.

We side-eye the traditions of other cultures and forget that essentially, we are all the same. We don our respective apparel, and forget that somewhere else, someone is preparing for a yearly shindig of their own. Mine is carnival. Caribbean carnival, and particularly the one that takes place here in sunny South Florida. My friends and I partake, and only now am I starting to see that niche events like these can be vastly different, yet surprisingly similar to the ones we know.

Whether its a comic-con, a music festival, or yearly cultural parade, the world’s cultures offer us a deep and wide variety of events that strike up the same euphoria, and take you away from your everyday mundane.

Tell me if the following sounds familiar:

  1. You wait for this event all year.
  2. Your circle of friends scrimp and save; eagerly squirrelling away your vacation days.
  3. You pledge, fail, and pledge again to build a body worthy of display.
  4. After much debate and deliberation you choose the perfect costume and accessories.
  5. Your plane lands, and after hours of revelry punctuated by minutes of sleep in your respective hotel rooms, the big day finally arrives.
  6. Thousands converge on Miami to hit the stage in celebration of a rich and long-standing culture

I’m talking about the one C-word that brings masqueraders from around the world. Comic-con! July 1 marked the beginning of a four-day convention taking place on South Beach.

See, that could have been spun either way! I think I want to give cosplay a try as well. It’s not just for Caribbeans, or for nerds. They can be experienced by anyone who wants to be taken away for a weekend. Whether its vibes or merch you want. If soca or anime gives you powers, give the other a try!

Allow me to provide you a bridge the divide for you. Caribs, here is a wonderful Trinidadian cosplayer that has been taking the scene by STORM!

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Panterona Cosplay

She makes her own costumes, and is shattering stereotypes left and right. Check her out!

And cosplayers, you can celebrate our rich combined heritages with us, while showing off your Marvel side with  Jamborii Mas Band that is featuring a superhero theme this year!

Check out globalcarnivalist.com for tips, guides, and calendars to playing mas the world over from an experienced feteran!

Whatever you do, try to see the oneness you share with everyone else because before you know it, the tabanca sets in and it’s time to start all over again!

Roze Goes…. to a happy place! I love carnival!

26 days till Miami Carnival 2018!

Black Music Month!

So typically, what you would find here is feature or brief review of one ore more musical artists and a few of their respective songs. A couple YouTube videos, or a hyperlinked set of lyrics.

Not this month. This time it’ll be a month-long list of songs and artists that mean something to me. Epitomizing black music for Madam Rozé.

Let’s check what Wikipedia has to say…

So to switch it up I’ll be adding to this post daily (hold me accountable, dammit!) with the answers to each day’s question.

I’ll post days 1-3 here exclusively, and if you follow me on Instagram (or vice versa) you can see my real-time answers that I’ll follow up with an entry here!

Black Music Month: #30DayMusicChallenge

Day 1. “Too Close” x Next

In my defense I was, and still am, an odd child. I truly believed this song was about personal space. I didn’t see the video until I was already a man (Bane reference) and didn’t put two and two together because of my math anxiety. Sue me! I love it now that I’m an adult!

Day 2. “He Lives in You” & “Circle of Life x 🦁🤴🏾

Trick question, it’s a tie. I literally get chills every time I hear this. I got goosebumps pasting this link. Real talk. Lion King is a staple for most 90s babies, and ain’t nothin black-er or more musical than animated lions!

Day 3. “Boogie Wonderland”

x Earth, Wind & Fire 🌏💨🔥

I sweater god! If Taylor Swift tries to get her hands on this for the next volume of “Now That’s What I Call Gentrification!”, I will write a letter to my senator! Big mad!

Day 4: “Hotline Bling” x Drake

The young lady Aubrey Drake Graham describes seems to living her BEST LIFE! She has chosen to reject the stay-at-Home “good girl” narrative he shaped for her, and is flourishing beautifully. Classics misogynoir and heteronormative toxicity! Plus he a dead beat anyway. But that damn 7th grade maths teacher dance is my weakness!

Day 5: “This Woman’s Work”

Kate Bush x Maxwell

Pray God you can cope! Let me spell out the long and sordid history of this quasi-confusing song! First written by Kate Bush for the soundtrack of the film “She’s Having a Baby”, Maxwell covered it in the early 2000’s, and he quickly became a black people standard! His video, shows one of grief and loss as a lover copes with the death of his partner. And Kate Bush’s video, and expecting father deals with the stress of his wife giving birth and his surge of emotions. Somehow! Black people have made this a “get you pregnant” mix tape hit, but it wouldn’t make sense at all given the information from these two artists. However, I love it nonetheless, and a black man’s falsetto is a beautiful coveted thing!

Day 6: Fav Hip Hop/R&B Collab

“Let’s Get Married” REMIX

X Jagged Edge feat. Rev Run

I almost HATE that I love this song. I definitely used to think “wow, he basically states that we’re playing around, and not getting any younger!”, and I found that to be a little callous! BUT age has wizened me, and it hits my ears a little softer each time. I mean I’m not doing anything, and I could use the tax benefits, so why NOT get married!? 🤷🏾‍♀️

Day 7: Favorite R&B Duet

“Alone Together” Daley x Marsha Ambrosius

I’ll be honest. Daley kinda Rick Rolled me. He hit me with the Bobby Caldwell. :whispers: “At first listen I thought he was a black man!”. BUT the beauty of black culture, is that is welcoming and pervasive! Mazel Tov!

Day 8: Fave Remix

“Hurtin Me” Stefflondon RMX

Sean, Paul, Popcaan, & Sizzla

Roze’s Remix criteria questions:

1. Does it smack!?

2. More or less than the original?

3. Are there too many cooks?

4. Does the feel of the song change?

5. Beneficially? Or harmfully?

6. Does it achieve more or less acclaim?

This remix smacks harder in my opinion. It’s new features only enhance the song, and the new vibe created with indefinitely extend the life of summer anthem! I get to wail the lyrics while drinking mimosas. We are DEEP into brunch season!

Black Love & Buttah Babez: Beauty Bae

I try to support small business. Especially when they’re owned by snazzy young black female entrepreneurs. Especially in the face of massive consumerism and ritual holiday competition.

My get-ready ritual is a science. It differs slightly depending on the season and occasion, but by now it’s muscle memory. So when I add a new product, and like it, It becomes canon. I’ve given ButtahBabez a try, and I’m so happy I did!

I discovered this guilt-free, ethically-sourced, homemade beauty boutique on Instagram, and was immediately attracted to the sample sale she was hosting featuribg a new formula; “Black Love”. Samples are my way of avoiding goop-hoarding. Y’all know I’m tryna live free and travel light! ::Points 👆🏾 tagline at top of website::



She was fast and courteous. She spoke to the at-the-time ashy, soon-to-be-classy young 👸🏾in me! In no time she had processed my order and my package was on its way!


The packaging was simple, transparent, and elegant; just like her product!

ButtahBabez did not disappoint!

GIIIRLL… THE SMELL!!

Like Michelle and Barack. Like Claire Huxtable. Like Oprah’s hair. Like the Three Wisemen Combo: Gold, Frankincense, AND Myrrh!

THE TEXTURE CHILE!!

Smoov like a whale’s belly. Whipped to perfection! Like rubbing Migos’ “Bad and Boujee” on your neck, elbows, and shoulders. I caught sight of myself and caught an attitude at my reflection. How dare I wait so long to try her products!?

But don’t you worry your dry lil’ knuckles!


BUTTAHBABEZ IS HAVING A BLACK ASS BLACK OWNED BLACK FRIDAY SALE!


Check her out on Etsy! She has even more than BUTTAHZ! She’s got masks, and scrubs, and an assortment of products with ingredients you can identify!

www.etsy.com/shop/ButtahBabezLLC#

Check her out! Tell her I sent you! Probably won’t get you a better price, but maybe it’ll get me a discount!

Roze Goes,

If I love you, I can’t let you be a chalkboard. And I do love you!

Roze Goes Footer

BEYONDSLAY: Miami Got Into Formation

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Strobing HEAVILY for Bey-bae! Highlighter on max, fro on lush.

Pre-Show:

I got to my seat WAY early and played chicken with the concession lines; debating with myself about whether or not Bey was worth missing or starving for. I starved, no question.

DJ Khaled, serial collaborator and Snap Chat Inspirational Speaker Inception-ed us by bringing out another unnamed DJ while he performed a slew of his favorite ad-libs and hype-man bits from singles spanning the 2000’s. He brought with him  a slew of artists that performed snippets and kept the crowd entertained.

Features

2 Chainz (the artist formerly know as Tity Boi), Yo Gotti, Lil’ Wayne (surprisingly NOT dead), and even (Father Time) Trick Daddy dusted off his old bones and performed his verse from the ever-popular urban-affirmation hit “I’m So Hood!”

Concert:

At the far end of the arena was the stage, and on it was a dimly lit giant white cube; an almost imperceptible seam running the length of it. Finally, the cube comes alive. Slowly, it begins to rotate and a fervor tears through the crowd. We’re all speculating.

 Will the cube open to reveal Queen Bee? Is she going to emerge from under the stage? What song will she perform first?

The show opens with the Superbowl 50 controversial single “Formation”. Bey comes out with her dancers serving us all-black corseted Zorro realness!

Beyoncé: “Ladies if you think you slay, say ‘I slay.’ ”                                                                                      

Me: “I slay!”                                                                                                                                                          

Beyoncé: “If you came out tonight to have a good time, say ‘I slay.’ ”                                                            

Me: “I slay!!!”                                                                                                                                                                  

Beyoncé: “If you work hard, pay your own bills, and don’t need nobody else, lemme hear you say I slay.’ ”                                                                                                                                                                              

Me: [screams] ” I SLAAAYYYY!!!” [vomits]

The whole concert was an artfully arranged mashup of some of her greatest songs. From tracks on the recently released Lemonade, all the way back to “Me, Myself, and I”. She worked in contemporary hits like O.T. Genasis’ song “Cut It” retooled with her classic hair-flipping, shoulder-bouncing choreography. She even paused briefly to turn the cube purple as fans sang along to “Purple Rain” in a touching tribute.

You can read all about the lineup and her several costume changes anywhere on the interweb. What you can’t find anywhere else is the renowned Roze Goes significance.

Takeaway:

I left the concert reinvigorated. I was entertained and inspired by a black woman who is beautiful inside and out. I learned, and was reminded of, a few things:

  1. Everyone and anyone can slay, no matter your circumstance!
  2. Black women are what dreams are made of! The actresses, dancers, musicians, songwriters, choreographers, stylists and all others involved with this behemoth of a project. All invaluable. All purposed.
  3. I gotta get fit! That woman danced for HOURS, and didn’t once sound tired. Her thighs were immaculate!
  4. Issues, real life issues visit everyone. No one is safe, and not even money can insulate you from everything. Your life is just as important, and your problems just as real. You have the same 24 hours as Bey and can do with them whatever you wish.
  5. Use your gifts. Beyoncé put money in the pockets of all the professionals in the stadium that evening. There is no reason why you shouldn’t do what you can, and use what you can to be as fulfilled as possible.
  6. Blackness is performed however you want. She’s been catching so much flack for using profanity, expressing social justice themes, and shedding a light on a culture that she had always been a part of, but somewhat removed from. She is (and we are) collard greens, neckbones, negro, creole, conservative, or whatever have you.

 

Here’s what else you can’t get just anywhere. My fellow blogger Wise Kouture’s Formation Inspired look book.

She doesn’t know it yet, but she’ll be helping me put together my Birthday/Halloween Costume… {coughs Beyoncé!}

And finally, the thing that I think brought you all here…

 

As always, kiss you mom for me. Today’s my Mom’s birthday! Love you, Betty!

Roze Goes

Thug-olutions: New Year, Essentially the Same Me

I’m a thug [read emotionally intelligent and proactively self aware individual]. Thugs don’t make resolutions. They are everyday attempting to review and renew in order to rise from their ashes and reveal and shiny new self [see also Phoenix]. Thugs don’t wait until January 1st. CLEARLY they wait until The 5th! In my defense, I began working on these months ago. I’m sharing with you in the hopes of getting a few accountability partners.

My New Years Thug-olutions (featuring some help from Instagram and a Buzzfeed post I read) are as follows:

1. You owe it to yourself to research your passions. Don’t bury them; unfulfilled and sitting silent in the soul like seeds seeds waiting in dormancy.  

2. Enjoy your own company. Stop linking your enjoyment of experiences to the company of others. Friends can make good times better, you always have the company of your closest friend… You!


3. Get out of your head! Sometimes im so cerebral, it’s like playing chess with people that don’t know they’re in a tournament. Just open your mouth. Tell people what you want/think/need/feel. Those who matter don’t mind, and those that mind don’t matter!

4. Save some money! You’re 25 years old! Have something to show for it!



5. Take care of your body! It’s the vehicle by which you experience this wonderful three dimensional world! Be a good steward!

Drink some water! Go to sleep on time!

6. Talk good to yourself. Make YOU feel good! Flatter the person in the mirror.


7. Take responsibility for your part in relationships that have failed. I don’t mean get stuck in the past, but there are things you can learn from it. You’re not just the victim, you’re also a perpetrator … in part. You allowed that person to enter and remain in your presence. Make a list and act on the top three steps (you don’t know them because they’ll be the things you repeatedly failed to do).

For me they are

a. Ask hard hitting questions that get at the heart of others’ intentions. Friends and loved ones may struggle to find the words, but not hesitate or attempt to deceive.

b. Be happy in/of your self so that arguments and discord in particular relationships don’t make your whole life feel like a failure.

c. Take responsibility for your interactions. Be conscious of how your speech/interaction style affects others and what it says about you. Be honest, I think long-term, think about what you want from that person and your relationship with them.

Happy New Year, lil’ thugs! Go forth and prosper!


Roze Goes. The blogger formerly known as “Not-so-Negative, Nancy”

Hi … My Name is Nancy.

Negative, Nancy (In my best Sean Connery voice). All throughout middle and high school, people called me Daria. It would be years before I properly understood the reference. And yes. I am very much like her, olive-green jacket, army boots and all.

Except college has no lockers.

By the way this is an absolutely thrilling show about the travails of a young woman finding herself in the midst of consumerism,  pop culture, and peer pressure.

BLAH BLAH BLAH  Daria = cartoon Roze!!!

That being said, there always seems to be this cloud following me. And instead of being lined with silver  it occasionally rains asbestos. [I HATE clouds!!!]

Why is my life such a fart, you ask? {I have no idea how to punctuate that. Kudos to you, public school.} Mostly for a series of reasons I have concocted entirely on my own. It’s like A Beautiful Mind, except instead of making up secret operatives and omnipresent best friends, I hallucinate reasons NOT to be awesome. And then I ask strangers why they can’t see them. {If you haven’t seen this movie, EXIT! BLOG! NOW!!!}

Here’s a few of my hallucinations:

1. EVERYONE around me is in a relationship. … FALSE. It’s just hard to ignore obnoxious Siamese twins that spam Instagram with their organ-sharing gaiety.

2. The government is slowly stealing hours from the day. … FALSE. There are 24 of them, I counted once while “studying” for a final.

4. Discipline and perseverance will guarantee success in academia. … FALSE. … School is a trap engineered by alien scientists to stop us from building pyramids and communing with our ancestors.

… no wait, that was a real hallucination. I’m so sleepy…

5. I will never accumulate enough awesomeness in my mortal body to rival the likes of Beyoncé, Oprah, and Olivia Pope. … TRUE. [Can’t really contest that.] GAWD!! Scandal is cocaine and Shonda Rhimes is my PUSHER!!!

6. Professors think I’m only taking one class. HOW DARE your class need 6 textbooks!! I have 4 other like-minded instructors. I spend more time a day reading than Bobby Brown does trying to make his teeth touch! I have calluses on the index finger and thumb of my right hand, like I work out with q-tip dumbbells!

I can’t really think of anything else…

I keep asking my peers for bits of motivation, hoping I’ll stumble upon some golden truth that will cause all my chakras to align and I’ll ascend into heaven like Ray Lewis after the Superbowl. But that won’t happen. I won’t become a productive super saiyan overnight.

AAARGGHH!!! I just wanna wake up awesome one day.

The score will read Roze: 1 Life: 0. I currently reads an imaginary number for me. Like negative “i” or something as equally Ludacris. {That man will FOREVER taint the spelling of that word. Him and Fabolous}

I forget what I’m talking about. I’m tired! Bye!

… Apparently I over-use the word awesome. I’m getting help.