Webster Dictionary defines manners as follows:
manners plural : social conduct or rules of conduct as shown in the prevalent customs Victorian manners
For centuries, manners we are sign of class and distinguishes the difference between people with regalness and people with no real couth. After traveling the world, I have realized that different cultures have different manners and that is ok, but I want to focus on American manners. We have several unofficial rules that are supposed to be instilled into you from birth on. Unfortunately, as generataions pass on, some of these manners are not being passed down, mainly due to individuals wanting to be “different” from the generations before them. With time, comes change, but now...we are at a all time low when it comes to American Manner Practices. As I travel the country for work, I have observed Americans and how they interact.
The biggest note, is the tradition of manners being taught based on ethnicity. Some American ethnicities are over taught manners, while others are taught the minimum. After a long time of observing I figure out the differences, but all of my thoughts concluded into one overall thought.
Only African Americans are drilled on proper manners from birth until death.
This realization came from years of traveling the country and noticing different cultures all over. This post will not go through all the American customs that pertains to manners, but I will definitely mention a few examples that are prominent.
CHILDREN WILDING OUT IN PUBLIC (KID AT AIRPORT)
So a couple of weeks ago, i was in the airport. I had just landed and was heading to the escalator to catch the train to the airport exit. As I am stepping on to the escalator i noticed this kid (Caucasian, blonde hair, between the age of 9 and 15) who was RUNNING on to the escalator in an escape effort from his parent. I know what my non-Black readers are thinking “oh, he was just being a rebel! No big deal”. NO! It is a huge deal to us. If WE, as African Americans” did that we would be called savages, uncultured barbarians.
MADAME TUSADE’S - LONDON
So in 2016, i was asked to travel to London for my job on 2 occasions. The first was a spur of the moment trip, the second was better planned so i had time to figure out weekend activities. I decided to check out Madame Tousse’s Wax Musuem. I had never visited one and i figured, “Why Not??” It was a beautiful museum and i had a wonderful time, the only problem was that the tourists were literally pushing each other just to take a picture with a wax figure. It was interesting because most of the people in there this day were Middle Eastern, most of my people I knew from those regions are very quiet and peaceful. It was a true culture shot for me. I was something i brushed off after a few minutes, but it was still shocking.
GUY RUSHING ON THE TRAIN TODAY
As most people know, i like in Atlanta, and i travel a lot for work, so I deal with getting through the world’s busiest airport twice a week. With that being said, being the busiest airport means you have to deal with the busiest people rushing to board a flight. In Atlanta, we have a train underground, in the airport that takes us to all the concourses. The only problem that I have with the train is that everyone wants to get on and off the train at the same time. I wish there was a way that they could separate the floor by which concourse you're getting off of. Well this Caucasian guy is standing in the back left corner of the train and which was a dire mistake because of the fact that he only needed to ride the train for one, maybe 2 stops. So when his stopped came up, he pretty much tried to push everyone out of his way. I was standing in the middle of the train but the door was straight ahead. As I proceed forward to walk off the train he literally tries to run me over, being that i am a large black man, he backs off in fear and allows me to work forward. I rolled my eyes, and sarcastically gestured my hands so that he could go forward, he knew he had pissed me off and that is all that I needed to move on with my my life.
PREMIUM LINE PEOPLE
As a frequent traveler, we get perks for being loyal to a particular airline. With that membership, we get access to boarding the plane early as well as upgrades (I am actually typing this article in first class on a flight from Houston). Well, every flight, there are about 5 frequent flyers who always stand right in front of the ticket scanner so they can be the first people to board the plane, which makes no sense. Especially since all the first class cabin is always seated first and we get extra time before the rest of the people. It is ridiculous in all honesty, but these people always stand in the way of the pre-boarders (older people who need assistance, families with strollers, and passengers who need extra time walking to their seat). It very annoying but I mean these privileged pricks are not corrected by the gate agent.
GUY WHO REACHED OVER LADY SITTING DOWN
So this one was just annoying, and actually rude. I was sitting on a flight as we were boarding, this young lady was sitting in the aisle seat and a passenger (male) was either seating next to her or in the window seat. Anyway, he reached over this young lady to put here stuff down, instead of just saying excuse me or allowing the girl to get up so that he could get in his seat. Then he proceeded to cross over her to get to his seat...it was a HUGE invasion of privacy and personal space and i felt so sorry for the young lady.
IM ALMOST DONE...
I truly thought about this and i even asked a few people, but it proven that people of African descent are entailed with manners from birth on. We are taught that this will ensure us being safe in society, but in all honesty it doesn't. We are still shot by cops, made into criminals and looked down upon as less than. Unless of course, we assimilate and still get shot and held at a lower standard. It is actually annoying having all these social behaviors and we are still considered less than. It's crazy, even the black children who are considered “bad” have manners and presents them to people they respect, even if they act out.
We are the standard for class in my eyes and we should start acting like it!
Please feel free to let me know your thoughts in the comments section of this post and be sure to follow me on most social media outlets:
FB: Le Monsieur Eclectique
It’s crazy thinking about how people move to major cities and just expects that they are famous because of their experience. We are all searching for our own light and humility with confidence in your talent goes a long way.
I love my blog, I will tell everyone it is the greatest thing ever, but I am also open to critiques and making changes. If someone told me that my colors need to pop more, I woulda happily research eye catching colors and update my site. If some says my grammar is terrible, i would review my upcoming work and and make changes. I would even consider enrolling in writing classes, because I know I'm not a writer by training, I'm a writer by passion. Hell, I could use the lessons.
I see so many artists on social media putting their work out there but they NEVER ask for feedback. They automatically assume that their work is grade A and the best thing since the latest craze, but your singles are not poppin on iTunes, your video has 30 views and only a few people who actually appreciate your talent follow you back.
We have turned into a generation where we think we are the best, and we truly are not...
The fame will not just happen, it is not instant it takes a lot of work and if you're not willing to put in the work than make that skill a hobby, and not a potential career, which is not a bad decision. I know for a fact, my acting chops, my vocal ability and my love for the theater could mean i secretly want to be a theater actor and want to win a Tony. It's a wonderful idea, but not for me. I will continue to check out music and sing my ass off, and act out these parts in the privacy of my home (and my friend’s home), maybe some of you should consider the same...
In the realm of the “newly” discovered term “intersectionality” and the uprising of the free spirited Generation Y, a period of self realization is happening amongst the masses. With this, I decided to take some time to reflect and meditate on my intersectionality as a Black, Bisexual, College Educated Man of Eclecticity (not sure if that's a word, but it works) and I have found out the root of the problem...BLACK MEN ARE PROMBLEMATIC.
Yes, I said it!
As a black man I have realized the WE are probably one of the most problematic species in the human race. Maybe even more than the racist white man. We are lost and have been lost since our ancestors were dragged to America in chains and that trauma has been passed down both genetically and psychologically. We are chained to an idea that isn't realistic. In this post, I will briefly talk about the traits that I listed above and discuss a few issues black men have within our own community and the battles we place against ourselves. The anger that black men have towards one another just because they are different causes so many issues which made me think of the statement posted above. Alright, let's get started...
I know, it sounds contradictory but it's true. In this section I will talk about the “black” in BLACK MAN and by the way, this pertains to both skin color and culture.
Colorism haunts black men psyches just as much as it haunts our women counterparts. Last week, I was texting one of my friends and I told him that his facial bone structure and beard makes him resemble Kofi Siriboe (RA from Queen Sugar). I thought I was complimenting him, but he took it as an insult because growing up he was constantly told that he looks like “so & so”, and “he's cute for a dark skin boy”. I quickly apologized and told him that I didn't mean to insult him. I felt really bad and that's when I realized I was being part of the problem. Subconsciously, I saw Kofi and immediately compared them, which is a problem.
I remember when I first moved to Atlanta and I was constantly called “light skinned” because of my caramel complexion. This perplexed me because growing up in Louisiana, where “light skinned” meant you were African American, with very pale skin and yellow under undertones. I also hated that this was occurring at an HBCU, where we are all supposed to be the same.
Then there is the phenomenon of light skinned guys being bigger “players” than their darker counterparts because of the lighter skin and “European” features (lighter eye color, looser curl pattern, etc.). I live by the quote “a hoe is a hoe and a dog is a dog” and with the fact that my father has fairly dark skin and he is one of the biggest manwhores I know (he called himself that, not not me, but he is definitely a hoe). It's crazy how you don't realize that black boys were stereotyped just as much as black girls were.
Then there is the culture aspect...
Black culture is so diverse and intriguing. I mean, other communities have been appropriating us for centuries, but the more new trends and cultures we start the more tension and division we have amongst black men. The current battle is the new “mumble” rappers and freedom of expression clothes. I see memes and tweets where older men are insulting teenagers about their style and music choices instead of just letting them be them.
10 years ago, I was 17 years old and the trends were divided between the super saggy pants, extra large tall tees verses the preppy College Dropout Kanye look. It was interesting because my friends were teased because we wore clothes that fit while slightly older black boys/men tried to insult us by calling us “gay” (getting there, just wait on it) but they are walking around with their dirty underwear showing. It was so contradictory of one another and it caused a strong divide between us. Now the new trend is a more androdonous look, black men growing their hair out, dying our curls different colors and rocking all these natural styles (which I'm here for).This new generation is more free than any generation before and we should appreciate it and not bash them.
Now with music, this mumble rap genre is taking over and old heads are insulted. It's interesting watching history repeat itself over and over again.
Education & Success
In the black community, I'm considered the boogie black professional-HBCU Grad, living in Atlanta, traveling the world, pursuing a masters from a PWI soon, dream car is a BMW Xseries or Audi, etc. which I have no problem saying I'm bougie, hell I was bougie when I was child living in a small house with my mom, grandparents and rotating visits and stays from numerous family members. I've lost so many friends due to my education and success as well. Jealousy haunts the black male psyche just as much as prejudice. On the flip side, educated people also harshly judge uneducated people. I roll my eyes and grind my teeth when I see a grown man write on social media in an illegible slang. It makes my eyes want to bleed and I cringe just trying to read through the language and interpret exact what they are saying. Instead of putting them down, I should appreciate this person’s culture and background. He is writing in a vernacular that I may have a hard time interpreting but then I realize that that particular message my not be for me. It is the elitism in the educated black man that is harming the community just as much as the uneducated ignorant individuals. The greatest lesson I've personally learned from this, and I hope others realize, is that common sense is a factor that needs to be taken into consideration. I've met and have known some intelligent men who do not have high school diplomas let alone college degrees but understands logic and I know people who have more PHDs in Physics, but can't realize basic human needs. It's astonishing that the mid section of the graph is very thin.
Oh boy. Ok...probably one of the most problem causing struggles...sexuality. This isn't just a gay verses straight conversation. It's an all around issue. I don't even know where to begin. I guess I'll start with straight vs LBGTQA+.
Hyper masculinity has destroyed the potential for the black men community to unite as a collective. A prime example of this ignorance is the assholes who were upset when they found out DeRay McKesson (one of most highly noted BLM advocates) was gay. Black men flocked to social media to protest marching and standing up for the cause with him because he was gay. As I gathered my thoughts to not curse out these idiots, I sat there like WHAT THE FLYING FUCK?!?!? This man is putting his life on the line every day in protest police killing US (regardless of sexual orientation) and y'all don't want to stand and march with him because he's gay?!? GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE. I think it goes back to psychology trauma parents put in black kids growing up. I remember growing up, I had this bully, he was smaller than me but always teased me. My mom, my teachers, and every adult pretty much told me to fight him and beat him up, but me being the peace loving 4 year old hippie I was, I was against violence. 15+ years later I found out he was gay. Then I went back into my childhood thoughts...if he was a girl they would of told me she just liked me but didn't know to express it. Which made me wonder...what if he just liked me. If we were taught it's ok to like someone who is the same gender, we probably would of been married by now and would of had the cutest got damn love story of all time. Instead, we were taught to hate each other, which was the problem. We were not taught to express our feelings, we were turned against each other a made into enemies. The hate of being affectionate towards other boys or men is another factor destroying our ability to accept each other for who we are.
So now that I've talked about Straight vs LBGTQA+ it's time to talk about the battles within the LBGTQA+ community. Literally every letter has an issue with another somewhere within the story line. Gay guys don't like bi-guys because they feel bisexual men are lying and that they are gay. Gays and Bi’s don't like trans because of who they are, queers are hated by all 3 and allies are considered closeted until proven guilty. It's ridiculous that we turned against each other even though we are all grouped in the non-heteronormative community. We as a double+ minority need to come together before we even work with the heteronormativity counterparts of ours. It's pretty depressing that we turn against each other. Then there is the hyper masculinity prejudice within the community.
Black gay men will be prejudice to feminine men, it's like they are subconsciously homophobic while being a homosexual. I've dated both masculine and feminine men. Not gonna lie, I struggled at first but then I realized that I have feminine traits as well and that there is not a got damn thing wrong with either of us. We all have a blend of masculine and feminine traits and it's a beautiful thing.
We also have to consider that there are straight guys with feminine traits that are bashed and insulted constantly. A prime example is my best friend. I met him our freshmen year at CAU. He had micro braids (but with only his hair) and a tongue ring. It's funny cause our circle just knew he was gay but in actuality, he wasn't. I even made fun of him after I came out and asking “so when you moving over bro?” but he never did because HE WASNT GAY. He was just his unique self and didn't give a flying fuck who thought anything about him. Now, he is in a beautiful relationship with an amazing woman and I couldn't be happier for him. I'm honestly jealous of their relationship, the way they love, accept and forgive each other is amazing. I can't wait to hopefully one day be in there wedding and I'll probably cry more than both of them. I'm there Ted and they are my Lily and Marshall (How I Met Your Mother reference).
IN CONCLUSION (ECLECTICITY)
If black men understood the concept of eclecticity maybe we would not be a problematic. There is no cookie cutter black man that exists that needs to be follow by every black man. Let's never forget, MLK was a cheater and Obama was a smoker and had to be educated on the importance of the LBGTQA+ community while president. If we can change, it has to be as an entire community. We need to open up our hearts and minds to the idea that not all black men are created equal. We all are beautifully unique individuals who may be very different from the black man standing right next to us. We need to take time to go into our own mindsets and dissect exactly where we are problematic and work to better ourselves on it and as a black man talking about black men this not coming from a place of hate but more from a place of discovery and enlightenment.
Please feel free to let me know your thoughts in the comments section of this post and be sure to follow me on most social media outlets:
FB: Le Monsieur Eclectique
On Memorial Day I turned 27. This yeah I decided to write a letter to my 7 and 17 year old self. I think it's necessary to look back on your life and reflect. I remember 6, 16 and 26 were all rough years for me but I had to remind myself that 7 and 17 were me coming over rough times in my life.
To 7 year old Erick-Joseph...
Hey there buddy. How was your party? Did everyone show up? I know Momma, Grandma and Grandpa made sure you had a great time. I know your dad didn't show up and that's okay. He may show up next year. Are you excited to enter the 2nd grade after this summer? I would be, you get to hang out with Aarron and meet new people too. I know skylar is still bothering you, but it will get better. You don't need to fight back like everyone tells you. He just says mean things, and everyone wants to you to beat him up. In all honesty, he just likes you but doesn't know how to express it. I'm so sorry about losing Sensei Ed. I know Whitney and Kaydra are taking it hard and remember what he told you at that last tournament: "I promise, you will get your trophy". You will get more trophies and awards than you can ever imagine, for the rest of your life. Oh, and when momma asks if you want to take tap dancing classes don't say no...DO IT! I guarantee it will change your life. Also, work harder in your piano classes. Mr. Forman thinks you are really good! Keep pushing. Just know that I love you dearly and never forget to love your self in all your “goldenness”.
Your 27 year old self (I Know you're really old now)
To 17 year old Erick...
Los! How do you like the new name? Well it's not new now, it's been a couple of years since it was given to you. I know you're excited! LT of the Drill SQUAD dude! Major congrats. I knew you could do it. This year was a rough one...dude you considered moving in with Dudley. Family was rough for us and nothing seemed to go right with them. I hate to break it to you it won't get better. It will be a easier to just separate yourself now from them so you can truly grow.
Atlanta is a good move man, and CAU is a nice school, but is this whole double major a good idea? You may want to rethink it. And as you get ready for applying colleges, remember to thank everyone who has helped you along the way. Plan college apps in the summer though to save time. Your hustle doesn't stop after high school so you gotta pace yourself.
Finally...your crushes...I know the whole SQUAD fiasco got you shook up. Listen, FUCK ALL THAT NOISE. Like who you like. Your family may not agree with it but fuck them, they are ONLY holding you down. I guarantee you will feel a huge weight lifted off your shoulders about this. Showing people who you are will only make the real ones love you more. You are an amazing individual and that's all that matters.
I love you. Take care of yourself. Drink water. Keep working out, even after practice.
your 27 year old self
Yesterday was the first day I did not have a single moment of feeling depressed in a full 24 hours. For those who don't know, I have been battling depression for 10+ years. Some days are great others are terrible but overall I'm finally making the proper strides to bettering my mental health.
Well yesterday was one of the best days I had in a long time. I woke up at like 12:30 due to the partying I did the night before. I walked to the bathroom to get get my morning started and I remember I took off my dread sock (It's like and Durag but for locs) and ran my fingers through my hair. As I looked in the mirror all I could think was “Damn, I'm handsome as fuck” and I was truly feeling myself while looking in the mirror.
I knew I didn't want to stay home. I was also hungry but my funds were telling me I need something close since I am over my limit of car service rides I give myself each week. So I knew it had to be walking distance. I proceeded to walk to the pizza place about 3 blocks away. This was my first time going there but I figured why not. I ordered 2 slices and a Blue Moon (which is like 1 of 3 beers I actually drink). I turned on Mack Wild’s new project “AfterHours” and vibed out as I ate and of course scrolled through social media. It was nice to be out in public, just on my own. No struggling to hold a conversation or anything.
After I finished eating, I planned on walking to the coffee shop across from the pizza place and just chill and work on a few work related projects as well as some stuff I had put on the back burner. So I walked in, ordered a tea (Currently quitting coffee) and found a seat. I spent about 90 minutes in that seat but then became uncomfortable. As I stretched, a guy that was sitting in this HUGE and comfy looking chair was packing up to leave. Once he cleared his space I jumped at the chance to move into that seat. It was probably one of the most comfortable chairs I had ever placed my butt in. I sunk into the chair, got extremely comfortable and continued to do my work. I must of sat in their chair for another 3 hours in such a relaxed state. I almost fell asleep.
Around 6ish I received a text from my roommate informing me that he will be leaving tonight for work, meaning I would get the entire house to myself! I made it back home right before he left, we chatted for a couple of minutes and then he took off. I cooked dinner (Grilled chicken, brown rice and tomato soup) and watch “Once Upon a Time” as I washed my last batch of clothes. It was nice having peace and quiet.
Once dinner was done, it was time to pack for the upcoming week. I always dread packing my carry on for my next week of traveling but it had to be done. So I packed my bag, cleaned up my room and was in bed by midnight to catch a few hours of sleep before my 7:30 AM flight. I pretty. I have fell asleep instantly with a smile on my face and actually dreamt even within those 4-5 hours which never really happens. And who would of thought...this all happened because I woke up, looked in the mirror, and affirmed myself.
For those who don't know, I travel A LOT. Mainly for work, bit occasionally for fun. Today was not one of my fun trips. I also live in Atlanta, which house probably one of the largest airports in the world, meaning A SHIT TON of people with frequent flyer status. About 85% of people with status are white, and within that 85%, 77% is male, within that 77% about 40% are douchebags, but are you really surprised?
Between May 8th & 11th of 2017. I experienced 5 of these douchbags inadvertently and in this post, I will walk you through each one.
The TSA Precheck Douche
The majority of frequent flyers use TSA Check, for those who don't know what TSA Precheck is...go google it. Anyway, in Atlanta the Precheck section was recently upgrade with a new conveyor system which was designed to speed up the line and it sort of does...when everyone follows direction.
Well, I was in line waiting for my turn to push the cart and this very disgruntled, older white man pretty much just tossed his items into a bin and didn't even wait for the conveyor belt to pull said bin. His bin was actually getting caught in the conveyor and almost fell off due to him not ensuring that his items was securely moving. It almost fell off completely (I secretly wished it would have). Luckily, someone was nice enough to adjust his bin, but he held up 5-6 other people because he just couldn't wait another 30 seconds. He caused several people to wait longer (myself included).
The Train/Escalotor Douche
So the Atlanta airport has an underground train the shuttles people to each terminal. It's pretty simple, every 90 seconds a train pulls up to each stop, you get on and get off at your concourse. Then you take the escalator up and walk to your gate.
Well this morning, I stepped on the train and I usually walk to the middle section of the train to allow other passengers in. It seems that every time I on this train, there is a male of certain color that seems to not have manners and say “Excuse Me”. I am convinced that every train contains 5 of these guys. I actually ran into a few others like this person on my way back home. For some reason, these gentlemen don't realize the order the train drops off. They seem walk to the back of the train even if they have only one stop to take. Which means once those doors open they storm through people without any hesitation.
If you don't run into the train douche, you will definitely run into the escalator douche. This guy will try and cut you off with his luggage because he HAS to be the first person to stand in line to get on the flight. The guy I had today wasn't too bad probably because the next guy was the ABSOLUTE WORST.
The Breakfast of Champs Douche
So every Monday, when I have enough time, I stop a grab breakfast. Depending on what terminal I go to determines my meal. Concourse B has a Popeyes the serves breakfast, but today I was at Concourse A so I figured a Qdoba breakfast burrito would suffice.
So I'm at the cash register getting ready to hand my card to the cashier when this white man charges up to the counter and basically makes the lady stop what she was doing as he complained that his burrito was “poorly” wrapped and falling apart. Which was weird because my burrito was completely intact and rolled so perfectly that not a thing leaked out even while I ate it. This man continued to complain until he would get his refund. I get why he was upset but he could of waited until she was done ringing me up. It was incredibly disrespectful.
Rude Seat Mates
So as most people know, I'm a big and tall guy (6’1” 300+ lbs). So I'm usually never comfortable in a seat. Even in Delta Comfort+ i usually have just enough leg room to go stretch out to avoid catching a crap. Well this past week I was hit with a double whammy of rudeness that tested my strength.
The first was a man that instantly disgusted me. I'm sitting in my seat, minding my own business, waiting for the 2 passengers to arrive that sit next to me. My head is down, I have one headphone in my ear so that I can hear when when my 2 row buddies join me. When all of a sudden I hear and see an old, wrinkly hand tap on the chair in front of me twice. I was instantly pissed because that registered in my head as a motion someone does for a child or animal and I was instantly ready to fight this gezzer, but I remember all the crazy things happening on airlines and I did not want to be shot and killed for this simple gesture of impatience. To make matters worse, the man DID NOT HAVE ON DEORDANT and smelled very, very, very, very ripe. So not only did I have to calm down, I had to smell the foul odor that sweat old white guys make which is by far the worse scent I have ever encountered.
Then, the guy in front of me decides he wants to act as if he is in first class and proceeds to recline his seat to the max length and kept trying to recline it farther if he could. I legit wanted to push him in the back of his head and smack him across his face, but I didn't.
What I could of done
For Instances, I could of said something but in all honesty, I'm tired of constantly correcting these individuals. There are too many white male douchebags to correct them one by one. I make sure that people know that I am a good/great person and I know how karma works.
It is so interesting to watch and observe the actions of white people, this isn't me being racist or anything. I am simply paying closer attention to the actions of a race that is currently messing up and destroying the peace and harmony that the world could have. I mean genetically...I'm not even going to go into it.
In the end, I see the problem with the world is the white people who don't think about how they affect others. They don't take into consideration the thoughts, feelings and opinions of others. It's really disheartening, but it's whatever. I say this because while they continue to live in a life of ignorance, I continue living my life as a succesful black man in search of being care free.
I wake up and see your face.
Asleep. Smiling. So peaceful
I get out of bed. 4:00 AM
Hit the gym and then meditate.
You had a long night so you're knocked out
I shower and get ready for work.
Luckily the bed room is pretty much soundproof.
So the blender doesn't wake you. I chug my smoothie and get dressed. You always iron my clothes for me and you seem to always pick the right tie for my mood. It's like you feel my energy while I sleep.
Before I walked out of our loft. I see your note on the door:
I know I'm knocked out, but have a great day. I love you.
I smile and head to the elevator.
Conference calls. Board meetings. Lunch. Board meetings. Conference calls. Happy hour.
It's 7:00PM. Time to head home.
You have awakened. Written in your journal. Worked out. Ate lunch and then buried yourself in the studio. Ah, to love an artist.
I get home at 7:30. You show up at 8.
You always make sure we have dinner together.
You walk in, kiss me...I can smell the weed on your clothes.
It's fine cause you smell the cigarette smoke on my breath. It was a stressful day.
Thank God for meal prep. Neither one of us have time to cook. It's Thursday. Time for Scandal and How to Get away with Murder.
We sit on the couch and just enjoy each other's company and these veggies with shrimp. We only talk during commercial time, my rule, I'm trying to pay attention. You adhere and laugh at me when I get made when you ask questions or make comments in the middle of a scene.
The shows are over, you gotta head back to the studio. I have a few emails then off to bed. I close my eyes and doze off with ease. You come in at 2, shower and hop in bed and pull me in close
Then I wake up and realized that it was just a dream...
I wake up alone.
The gym never happens.
The meditation is my morning cigarette.
I still make my breakfast smoothie...at least something is real.
I rush to get to the office
Conference call. Stupid email. Stupid email. Stupid conference call.
I go home.
I come home at 9. Eat whatever I can find...it's ice cream tonight.
Scandal and How To get,away with murder.
Just me, Facebook, instagram and twitter.
Shows are over, bed time.
I go to bed gripping my body pillow.
When I can't sleep, I hop on dating apps
Swipe right, swipe right, swipe left, oh look a match
Let's say hi...no response
I turn over and grab my body pillow again
I close my eyes and dream of you
Until I finally pass out
My soulmate...in my head, but invisible to the naked eye
My dreams oh so beautiful...deferred
I had a random thought this week. I wondered what my friends thought about me and how they would describe me as a person. So I decided to just ask them. I sent a simple statement “describe me as a person”. From there I gathered all the responses. I asked about 20 people who I consider a friend or deeper. Even asked a couple of exes I'm cool with (one was super petty, but whatever). The friends range from less than a year to almost my entire life so it's a pretty broad range. From there, I took all the words and created a wordle to see which words stand out (also, I didn't feel like counting each word they use. The best part about it is that wordles automatically makes the most used words bigger. So I'm going to go over some of the big words as well as the smaller ones.
Driven & Honest
I'm not surprised in the least DRIVEN was the most used word to describe me. Most people meet me and they know I'm all over the place with ideas and accomplishing goals. Usually if I want something I'll make it happen. If I can't find a way, I'll make one (quick shoutout to my Alma Mater, the Illustratious Clark Atlanta University). I've come a LONG way and I am no where close to achieving my goals.
Now, HONEST through me for a loop. Most of my friends know I am very blunt, logical and not the best sugar coater, which somehow translates to honest. **Kanye Shrug**
Again, not the biggest surprise. I'm normally introduced as “the smartest guy I know” or “he's like super smart”. I mean my bachelors degree is in Physics but I feel like I'm constantly surrounded by people who are smarter than me. I also think the thirsty for knowledge is a never ending practice. I also appreciate common sense and a lot of people don't consider that as a sign of intelligence but I do. Some of the smartest people I know never went to college. Hell, my role model is my grandfather and didn't know how to read and write. But he did speak 2 languages, could do math better than 80% of my family and worked as an industrial engeering assistant who knew more than the guy with the degree paying the big bucks. THAT to me is the sign of intelligence. Most “geniuses” can not survive in the real world and that lack of common sense is a lack of common sense isn't really a sign of intelligence in my opinion.
I remember when I studied at GA Tech, there were students tha literally would get robbed late at night/early in the morning because they were walking home at 4 in the morning from the library. We would get emails at least 3 times a week informing the campus of a robbery. Not to mention, we had at least 4 different ways to get to our cars or apartments around campus safely (1 being the campus police driving you to your car). These were some of the “brightest” individuals in the country but they never considered to think about their surroundings, smh.
I make that point to say this...the smartest person in the room isn't the one with the most degrees, but the one with the best balance of book and common sense.
NOW SWITCHING. TO THE SMALLER WORDS THAT STOOD OUT
I'm so shocked only a handful of people said this. It's interesting that most of my fiends don't see me as stubborn. Especially as I pretty much harassed anyone who didn't respond immediately. I sort of feel like stubborn and driven go hand in hand.
I think back to Steve Jobs’ book, it was flooded with points in his life where he was stubborn but driven. I believe his stubbornness is what enforced his drive. As I mentioned, once I have an idea or I want something, I will go for it regardless of who I upset. Also, I think about being called stubborn and I remember that I am stubborn so they can say this all they want and I would go about my business anyway. In short, FXCK YO FEELINGS. Just kidding. ;)
Optimistic yet Pestimistic
This came from one of closest and oldest friends (with her shady ass, lol I'm playing). This was a very valid point. She blamed it to the fact that I'm a Gemini (duality is a bitch), but she wasn't lying. I can pretty much be optimistic for an hour and then spiral down into a deep depression in a matter of minutes on the right day. Hell, in the past 36 hours I went from wanting to quit my job to loving my job. It happens. I will say this, having these qualities fighting back and forth makes my honesty a lot more potent. If a friend who presents a thought or idea to me I will them both positive and negative responses.
Yeah...I guess my friends wanted to be nice. I'm usually called out for being petty. I think it comes with intelligence. I really don't mean to be petty and sarcastic most of the time it sort of just comes out like that. My filter isn't the finest so shit just comes out. I feel that everyone should be sarcastic at some things. It's healthy. It's stress relieving I can't knock sense into people physically so I have to have witty puns and side comments. It's a coping mechanism for the lack of common sense people I'm constantly surrounded by.
I think that I also am affected by my friends. I'm surrounded by very sarcastic and petty friends so all I can say is that I AM A PRODUCT OF MY ENVIRONMENT.
it's amazing how my strong traits are almost powered by my weaker traits. The realization that your friends see you in different lights is amazing. It's eye opening and humbling (which NO ONE called me). It also gives me an idea of how the world portrays me.
I would like to say THANK YOU to all my friends who participated in this activity for me. I love you guys so much. I can't believe you all put up with me and all my craziness.
Also, I want to say this...to my readers...don't think I did this for not being able to identify my key qualities. I know my worth, my skills and the type of person/energy I put out to the world. I was curious to see what others thought, but this is not me trying to change. This is me understanding the world around me. In the beginning I called this an experiment and that is exactly what it was.
I will say it doesn't hurt to ask a few questions this though. It was invigorating and an eye opener on some cases. See, there goes the optimistic/pestimistic side again lol.
Au Revoir (Bye, Bye)
so...here we are again...
this week I wanna talk about my personality in social settings. On the outside looking in people can believe that I am a social butterfly. Hanging out with people, constantly...scandal/HTGAWM watch parties on thursdays, the life of the party in the office on Fridays, putting a smile on everyone's face, Saturday random concerts, and trips to the park, crazy partying and finally amazing brunches on Sunday. All while working 80 hours a week with 6 or less hours of sleep a night. LIFE OF AN OVERACHIEVER am I right?
yeah...I'm probably one of the most nervous people you will ever meet. Huge public places bother me, crowds low key scare me, clubs annoy me, I rather stay home and binge watch tv shows. If I have to be social 5 friends max for me, it's easier to keep the conversation going. House parties are annoying to me, there is never enough seating and people hop into cliques unless games are being played. I'm so over it most of the time that I think my friends know better than not to invite me.
So I wrote this piece months ago and never posted it. It's amazing how things have change in a matter of months. I am still socially awkward, but I do miss hanging out with friends. Sometimes I miss going to house parties and giving with people. I miss my friends. They all seem busy or just think that I'm super busy when most of the time I'm not. I blame my depression for not wanting to be out and about. Tonight was a night where I wanted to do things but no one answered. It sucked but I'm working on being more open and available to the possibility of being social. Even if I feel awkward.
So on December 29th, 2016 I decided to go on a social media hiatus. No Facebook, Twitter, IG, NOTHING. It was one of the most relaxing and annoying month in my adult life.
I continued therapy, meditation, working out, and connecting with myself but I knew I had to still stay connected so I only used my news app and read the news, along with my weekly podcasts. Which allowed me to stay connected.
Unfortunately...the news was EXTREMELY over saturated with the President that the people without common sense voted for. I'm sorry, I DONT GIVE A FLYING FUCK if he was a business man, a CHANGE from the politicians, or whatever you thought he was that the other candidates were not possessing; You asswipes voted for a racist, mysoginistic, xenophobic, homophobic white supremist. In the words of DJ Khaled "You Played Yourself". The people who shocked me the most were the immigrants and other minorities that voted for him. I hope he ships y'all asses out, just saying. To the people who voted for him in opposition to "Obamacare" and lost your ACA benefits...you clearly need a psychological consultation...but wait, YOU CANT AFFORD IT. Smh. Idiots. But anyway I digress...
I knew I would need a hiatus to mentally prepare myself for the upcoming years. So I took one, but I would literally need to cut myself off of all forms of media which sucks because great things are happening (especially in the black community). The supremecy of "Fences", "Hidden Figures", and "Moonlight" taking over any and all award shows. (Dear management, No more slave movies, please). These beautiful albums that are being release that discuss our struggles, our joys, our happiness, even our ratchetness. Black peoples literally SHATERING all records. It's so disappointing we gotta over shadow this man constantly just to maintain our sanity. Like Daddy Pope says "You have to work twice as hard to get half of what THEY (meaning white people) get.
I will say this though. This foolishness will not halt my excellence. I'm focused and 2017 will be great regardless. I also encourage everyone to do the same. Just because you're not happy with the results of what this country is turning into, you CANNOT withdraw from this world and the opportunities that are available to you. Just keep your eyes wide open on everything:
I hope you all are ready, because people's true feelings are about to show so get ready...
P.S. To my white friends who were against the orange nightmare. This is your issue as well. I fine it ironic that when a minority individual does some thing vile you group them together, but when it's one of your kinds (yep went there) it's a lone person, a single wolf, etc. well...the MAJORITY of your kind (went there again) voted for him. Please GET YOUR PEOPLE TOGETHER.
This is my first time back on Wordpress in a long time. Almost a full year and with that time away, much growth has occurred. I started Le Monsieur Èclectique as a resource for men similar to what women have MILLIONS of. But as I grew I realized I shouldn't let my blog and what I express be pigeon-held because of my fears. My insecurities. I don't want to be a reality tv star but I do want to help people. I remember at a friends funeral the pastor began preaching and a point he made is that "people who haven't gotten over things never shows their scars".
This quote has resonated with me for a couple of weeks now and it's true. I have no issues talking about my drunk of a father, or the numerous times I was molested as child. These are "scars" but they aren't really "hidden". They were more in special areas that aren't always visible. And I only show them when they are revealed or asked. These scars I have no problem showing. Hell, I'm anxious to show them. It's surprising the other scars that I haven't fully accepted, like being openly bisexual, or confronting my family about how much I despise them, the internal battle I constant have with my weight, I'm ups and downs with depression and the list goes on and on. It's crazy.
Every year I realize that I move more and more away from the "American Dream" of getting a great job, getting married and then having kids. My past keeps reminding me that I was never cookie cutter. My failures were the realization that I'm still not happy. Just to highlight the top failures and show my scars:
So life is going on and this new chapter. My book of life is continuous growing with deeper chapters. That are full of twist and turns; the rest part is that I wanna take everyone on this new life with me. So as I start these chapters, look out for my thoughts and videos and posts.
Le Monsieur Èclectique
"The Eclectic Gentleman"
I still remember being held and holding partners at night...
Their bodies pressed against mine as I pulled them in while we slept and vice versa. It was pure bliss, but it wasn't...
You know how all those studies shows that sleeping in the same bed with someone makes you sleep better and shit. Well I'm convinced it's all lies. As much as I liked having someone in the same bed with me I actually get my best sleep alone. Which makes me question my overall mind when it comes to me and relationships.
Relarionships...the one aspect of my life I have no control over which is why I keep them as far away as possible...
Relationships go beyond a partner. Anyone you interact with is a relationship. Your parents. Your family. Your coworkers. Your acquaintances. Strangers. Enemies. Allies. Frienemies. They are all relationships. But, there is one relationship we constantly forget and it's not the your relationship with God. It's the relationship with yourself.
Your relationship with yourself is probably the toughest one you need to deal with. Some of the strongest people I know have the worst relationship with themselves. They are afraid to conquer that battle internally with their heart and mind on things could be preventing them from achieving their greatest self. I have several internal battles that are constantly going on that I wish I could just defeat. The relationship with oneself is the toughest but most lucrative battle to win. You see once you accept ones self and who you are, then there is a release. It feels like a weight being lifted off your shoulder and it's astonishing to say the least. My relationship with myself is one the deserves most of my time in my life currently. If I ever do decide I want to settle down, get married or even have kids, I do not want to enter into that/those relationships with a burden on my heart. I need my heart to be completely open and at this point in my life I am not. The battles I have with myself require attention. Attention that I truly haven't given myself since I was 12.
So now with my future looking bright ahead, I dedicate this time to myself now. Loving the relationship with myself. Being able to hug and hold myself with no problems. To be able to look in the mirror and love everything I see about myself both inside and out. My heart isn't broken it just needs to be strengthened.
All these books are not written by Black People but they were helpful for my Black Experience thus far. Anything with a ***indicates that several people have recommended these books including but not limited to senior executives for major companies, amazing entrepreneurs, and some of the most successful black people who work with or for major tech companies.