Monday, May 31, 2010

3-Day Weekend Kills Monday Musings: News At 11!

So, um, since I am writing this at 9:13PM on Monday night, you've all guessed by now that there won't be a season finale to Monday Musings. I really hope you all enjoyed last week's segment w/Kitty Bradshaw because it is the last until we resume in September. My wish is that you will find something to keep you busy on Monday nights until then.

But I do want to take a minute to thank all of the wonderful people that made Season Two so very special, and a lot more fun than Season One:

  • Kitty Bradshaw
  • Natalie McNeal "The Frugalista"
  • Judith Angeles
  • C (my ex-husband)
  • Malik 16
  • Dorian Smith
  • Eb the Celeb
  • Nik Banks
  • Dan Tres Omi
  • Smarty P. Jones
  • 12Kyle
  • MC K-Swift
  • Claudia Mejia-Haffner
  • Darius T. Williams
  • The F$%k-It List
  • Irene
  • C-Recks & DrizaDre of Brothers' Blog
  • Mari

And I'm thinking up BIG THINGS for Season Three so don't forget about us! No, really, you'd better come back or I'm sending people to get you. DON'T MAKE ME!

*smooches...glad to have my Mondays free for the summer*
now I can devote more time to...talking to y'all on Twitter and watching bad movies on Netflix. OWWWW!

Friday, May 28, 2010

She's About To Experience Jaded: Live And In Person!

ME: My jaw is kinda achy...





See, now you're just begging me to blog this!

*smooches...asking y'all to pray for Smarty's soul*
clearly this is an old convo that took place BEFORE Phillip's untimely demise... *spills a lil liquor* may he rest in peace.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

In Memorium: Phillip BlackBerry, October 2009 - May 2010

*walks up to the front of the church*

"Hello everyone. I wish I could be addressing you all under happier circumstances. Unfortunately we are gathered here today to bid adieu to our very good friend, Phillip BlackBerry.

"Phillip, or Philly-boy as he liked to be called, was only with us a short time, but in those 7-months that he graced us with his presence we were better off. I can't count how many times he sent and received nude photos. Or how many times he formed the words: *DEAD* when BBMing with friends.

"Oh and the emoticons... Philly-boy liked the devil-horned one the best."

*wipes tears*

"I'm not sure if I can find it in me to replace Phillip at this time; our relationship was a tumultuous one but it was still special. From they day he came to live with me, donning his pretty pink coat and boasting global usage capabilities I knew we'd bump heads. But I've never liked my men to be push-overs and Philly-boy was no exception."

*begins to sob*

"I can't continue... I HURT... with a passion SOOOO DEEEEEP! Smarty, please, can you take over??"

"Good day, all. I stand before you today with a heavy heart. My BlackBerry Poindexter Too was asked to deliver this eulogy in memory of his friend, Philip, but he’s been having a hard time since he heard.

"We became acquainted with Philip sometime last year. The four of us often messaged back and forth about everything from writing to the men Jaded and I had no business dealing with to our daily life’s frustrations. We even had the occasional bat-shit conversations that ended up on Jaded’s blog. Yes, those were good times.

"We stand (sit) here today with little comfort as we are unsure of his sudden, untimely demise. Somehow, we’ll be able to move on without you. Though we know you are irreplaceable, hopefully, in time, we’ll be able to convince Jaded that she should get another BlackBerry.

"Farewell, Philip. We’ll miss you!"

"Ladies & gentlemen, today we lay to rest a dear friend."

*sobs uncontrollably*

"And I really just...I...can't... MNNNNAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA"

*throws self on casket*

*smooches...finding comfort in the fact that Roscoe is still with me*
You all had jokes about my old LG Chocolate, but look who's still standing after nearly two years and look who just up and DIED after only seven months...

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Wrasslin' With The Blues

It's that time of the month again. NO, not THAT time. That already passed. It's that time of the month when I start to feel down down down to the point where I make myself physically ill and don't want to leave the apartment. There's tears and pouting and yelling and a whole bunch of calling in sick and slothing it up on the sofa. I'm tired of trying to explain and or understand it; it just is.

Instead I'm concentrating on ways to divert my attention until it passes and I'm coasting on an UP cycle again. Stuff like...

My babies. They are younger, sillier versions of Jaded that can find ways to cheer me up when I'm all bluesy. Like THIS VIDEO they made in front of a desk fan while listening to the Jamie Cullum CD they bought me. I just had to build an entire blog post around it.

Quality TV. Thanks to certain sites and Netflix, I'm able to escape from my sad thoughts and invest my time in some good writing/acting/directing. Just yesterday I finished the last episode of The Riches (I can't believe they canceled that shit w/out a proper finale! UGH!) and now the babies and I can continue on with Season 5 of ER. You know what happens this Season, right? Poor, poor Lucy...

Musica. Old and new. Thanks to Irene and Tyrone I'll be adding some new tunes to the iPod in the next few weeks. Thanks to Mami I have all our old albums and a TEAC record player on which to play them. Classics like

Los Hijos del Rey w/Fernandito

and Cuco Valoy

And Amanda Miguel

Boys. I know it might sound anti-feminist or even a little skanky to surround myself with admirers when I'm feeling down, but sometimes an ego boost is all a girl needs to get through the day. Just a big, strong manly man to take my hand in his, or hold me in his arms and tell me how great I am, or an inappropriate make-out session in the park. Yeah, that always helps a little.

Pampering myself. I haven't been to a hair salon in ages. I'm thinking now is as good a time as any to hike up to Washington Heights and let those Dominicanas work their magic on my tresses. I especially like the way they massage my scalp while shampooing my hair...just thinking about it is making me want it even more!

I'm hoping to have licked all these bad feelings by Friday. I can't be sad on a holiday weekend. I refuse!

*smooches...trying hard to remain in good spirits*
I have too much going on right now; there isn't any time to be depressed.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Birthday Fun: A Picture Post

As I said yesterday, I had tons o' fun on my birthday: great friends, family, food, dancing and presents. It was truly another one to remember.

Now I don't think I got pictures with everyone because, well, I was kinda busy having fun n shit, but you all know who you are and what event you came to and all that good stuff.

Here's a sampling of the shenanigans:

Me n Eb n My Boobs O_O

Mami n Nina; That Acosta gene is a STRONG one!

THIS!!...Why didn't I get his number again? Oh, right, because I'm lame...

My (Ortiz) cousin Will (BILLY!) mean muggin for the camera.

With my Boston Crew: Nina & Cathi

Evy & Peter & Eb, Oh MY!

The Japanese chef at the restaurant LOVED us :)

In KarrieB's defense, Irene just got through explaining that her Irish/German husband doesn't drink. We were ALL baffled.

Cathi & I taking our usual "In The Cab" shot!

Seriously, it was more fun than I deserved! I love you all so much for making this a weekend to remember, and cannot wait until my Fabulous Forty Birthday Bash: A yacht + buff, oily Brazilian men + the open seas... clothing OPTIONAL. Save the date...

* glad birthdays are only once a year*
my mind is young; my body? NOT SO MUCH!

Monday, May 24, 2010

A Thanks, A Show And A Few New Discoveries

Un Millón De Gracias
As expected, my birthday weekend was AMAZING. I'll write in detail about how fabulous it was later in the week but I did want to take a minute to thank everyone who came out to dinner and/or dancing, brunch, sent good wishes via text, Twitter, Facebook or called me up on Sunday, and of course for my lovely gifts. It was such a warm + fuzzy feeling to see and hear from all my peeps.

But I do need you all to take a minute and see how adorable my babies are. This was the card they gave me:

And these were the gifts I unwrapped:

Do they know their Momma or what? For the record, they're BOTH my joy, the one thing I seem to have done right.

Meet Kitty Bradshaw Tonight On Monday Musings
Bloggin ain't easy. You gotta put up fresh content regularly. You have to deal with crazy comments (well, not me, but some people do). And no matter your profession, you automatically sign up for the job of graphic designer when you choose to blog. Not. Easy.

But tonight on Monday Musings you'll meet blogger Kitty Bradshaw. She makes blogging her job- seeking sponsors, networking to death and carefully looking to boost her brand. A California transplant in NYC, Kitty is coming up on her 2nd Blogiversary and has already done so much.

So tune in know you want to!

It's Like Someone Turned A Switch...
The last couple of weekends I made a few discoveries that I felt I should share with my Jaded Family. I think they all just appeared in my brain as my 35th birthday approached and I don't like to question free wisdom. You shouldn't, either.

1- You don't need gallons of alcohol to have a good time. Two weeks in a row I've partied hard with only about two or three drinks in my system. And still had a blast. Maybe it was the company I kept, or maybe I'm super serious about this Vomit-Free (rest of) 2010 promise I made myself, but yeah, no need to see double in order to declare a party a success. You heard it here first!

2- Gel inserts kinda help you dance longer than your knees would normally allow. Not that much longer, but I still recommend you get yourself some post haste! You can always deal with the pain later.

3- I am surrounded by awesome people. People who are doing the damn thing for themselves, who actually care about me AND I care about. People who know how to have fun and hold an intelligent conversation and I don't mind bringing around my mom (the ultimate judge). Not sure everyone can say that so I consider myself really lucky!

4- That void I've been feeling in the last decade is a result of my broken-up family. As I reconnect with them more and more I'm starting to feel better. We always had so much family around when I was a kid that it's no wonder I've been all disoriented without them. 2010 seems like the year this will be mended.

5- I'm really serious about wanting to expand my little family and/or remarry. Some of y'all thought I was joking but no, I really mean it. Will it happen? Who knows. But I do want it. And if the opportunity presents itself I will not shy away from it.

*smooches...making sure to have my fun now*
once I have my new babies you will NOT be seeing me out and about as much until the kid turns three. Babies come first in this family. Always.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Thirty-Five Years Young: A Post And A Soundtrack


is what 34 looked like. SMOKIN', if I do say so myself.

What will 35 look like?

Well, I'm hoping 35 will be a bit slimmer, and maybe care a bit more about what it puts in its body 'cause let's face it- plantain chips and Golden Oreos at 4AM are NOT part of a nutritional and/or balanced breakfast.

I'm hoping 35 will start meditating and practicing yoga again, if for no other reason than the selfish need to clear its head and have a limber body for...stuff.

I'm hoping 35 will take the time to really push its career to the next level; maybe submit a few stories to journals and make some good connects with an agent and/or publisher.

I'm hoping 35 will get its money right, and stop hiding from bills as if they were a short Mexican in a Queens nightclub tryna holla.

I'm hoping 35 will get to travel more; leave NYC and the US for a bit and see something new and exciting. It has been a while!

And of course, I'm hoping 35 will be at peace long enough to look love right in the face and say, "OK. I'm ready. Just... be gentle."

Most importantly, I'm hoping 35 will never lose its child-like wonder and youthful outlook on people and life. I hope it will still have a penchant for inappropriateness and practical jokes, and I really hope it will never tire of having a grand ol' time.

I just want 35 to look like me, only... happier.

*smooches...looking forward to cuttin it up with the homies this weekend*
And if you don't know what to get me, CLICK HERE to see my birthday wish list. Thank you and good day.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Under The Microscope

Hi, I'm Jaded, and I'm a control freak.

Everyone: HI JADED!

Picture a time when you were so in love- not lust, not smitten, not strong like but LOVE- that you just knew in your heart it couldn't possibly get any better than this. I mean, even after the newness has worn off and you've had your first fight and hit some bumps, you KNEW this was RIGHT and worth fighting for.

Then, one day, it's snatched away from you and you were never given or never acquired the coping skills to deal with such a loss. It makes you bitter and guarded and you develop this sadness deep in your bones that you cover up with sarcasm and humor and casual sex and drugs and Buffalo wings at 4AM. You lose your ability to trust your own judgment because you're afraid it will be wrong. You'd rather the answer be handed to you.

But of course it won't ever, so you resign yourself to being this distrustful person (and that never works of course) and think you can be happy this way.

So you go on with your life as best you can with this inability to trust until one day it occurs to you: this isn't working. But DAMN if you know what's what!

And most importantly:

Obviously I have a birthday looming and it's making me overthink EVERYTHING, and after analyzing my life to death, because that's what us science nerds do, my close friends and I deduced that not only do I have an unhealthy obsession with being in control of everything, but I also have a problem letting things go.

Let's not forget how I almost let my longtime friendships with Irene and Cathi go to pot because I couldn't let go of what I considered a disappointment, or the fact that I refuse to make peace with my grandmother's passing, or that I still haven't really forgiven Mami for many things. It only makes sense that I not be able to undo the damage that initial broken heart caused, which in turn keeps affecting my ability to recognize, seek out and be open to a romantic relationship and instead find comfort in the physical pleasures.

But let's call a spade a spade here: I'm not getting any younger. Pretty soon it will be me, my Fiestaware collection, my John Cusack DVDs and a slew of cats living in a studio apartment in Bushwick.

Won't THOSE blog posts be fun: "Today, as we watched Better Off Dead for the 3,000th time, Mitzy coughed up the biggest hairball in the history of hairballs. I would've taken a picture for you but that bitch-ass Robo-Maid swept it up before I could grab my camera."

*smooches...frantically searching for my body's instruction manual*
if I can fix this I'll be ok
if I can fix this I'll be ok
if I can fix this I'll be ok
if I can fix this I'll be ok
if I can fix this I'll be ok

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

"Bitches Be Loco."

I'm finding it rather difficult to find things to say to you... know what that means? YUP. It's probably time for another break, starting Monday or Tuesday. Nothing is set in stone just yet, relax. And I don't care if the last one was only a few weeks ago- who runs this site: ME or YOU? That's what I thought.

Anyway, back to what I wanted to say.

I gots me a nasty case of the blogger's block, because the things that are running through my head right now are not things I want to share with you (SORRY!) and it's hard to concentrate on... wait, where was I going with this? Right. Estoy stuck.

This must be what journalists feel like in Cuba n shit. You have so much to pour out onto the page but the regulators, in my case, The Voices, are like, "Go ahead and step outta line and see what happens." I dare not find out, I tell you. DARE. NOT.

There's a roaring something inside me. A combination of worries and excitement and anticipation and impatience that manifests itself in very weird dreams and even weirder realities.

Like, I'm working again but playing "Catch Up To The Bills" is taking longer than I thought. My landlord can only take so much before he shows me the door. And Mami found my Uncle Julio in Indiana but the floodgate of issues and emotions that it brought up is probably more than we bargained for. And I've come to terms with what I want for me and my family and my future and it's scary as fuck to think that it may not all come true. That maybe I waited too long (for more babies, a writing career, etc.) and will now have to settle for a mediocre existence.

(Now I know my male readers don't want to know this but...) On Saturday night my period snuck up on me like a thief in the night with barely any symptoms to announce itself the way it usually does. I didn't snap on anybody, I didn't eat the entire house and most importantly, I didn't cry.

But it did put a halt on this euphoric haze I've been living in and force me to sit. still.

It occurred to me that I was too crazed and frazzled and swept away and caught up to have a minute of hormonal tears, and perhaps I really needed them. They cleanse me; clear my head of shit I need to get rid of and gosh-darnit it just feels good to cry sometimes.

So after an amazing night of great live music (Marsha Ambrosious KILLED IT at SOBs last night), I re-watched the season finale of Brothers & Sisters and cried. I cried for Robert (Rob Lowe) and Kitty (Calista Flockhart) and Uncle Saul (Ron Rifkin), and maybe even a little bit for Holly (Patricia Wettig) and then took a moment to cry for me and the things I want and will never have, the things I thought I didn't want and threw away and the ones I wanted and got.

Yeah, it felt good.

*smooches...thinking maybe I'm not as blocked as I thought*
you know Lady Estrogen- always being dramat... uh oh. she saw me write that. ABORT MISSION. I REPEAT, ABORT MISSION!!!! *runs away*

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Wants and Needs

"I want you to be able to anticipate my every need, and I will know you're the one when I'm willing to stay with you for however long it takes for that to happen."

* you snippets of what I hear in my head*
y'all thought I was joking about The Voices, huh? These bitches NEVER shut up EVER!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Excuse The Radio Silence Today...

But I's ti-uhed, boss.

We'll be back to normal tomorrow. And YES, Monday Musings will return next week. We are going through to the end of May, promise!

* tired I barely have the energy to eat these Reese's Pieces*
SIKE! Y'all know I'm gonna eat the SHIT outta this candy, right?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Inappropriate BBMs, Vol. 3

ME: I need some pizza in my life *sigh*

Pizza or penis? 'Cause I need the latter.

I have penis. I need pizza.

Oh. I got pizza. Looks like we both ain't shit.


*smooches...only half joking about that trade*
you can't judge me unless you've had NY-style pizza. It's so good you'd trade in the BEST penis in the world just for a slice!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Come Get Yo' Cousins Vol. 2: MY EYES!

Here go your cousins again, roaming free in the streets of New York sans guidance and giving me migraines. Will the torture EVER stop?

You see Suzy back there behind Jose? She's having a bachelorette dinner with her bitches, and apparently felt it was appropriate to wear a crown of Peni (pronounced "peen-eye", plural form of penis. Deal with it). I was NOT amused. And neither was Jose!

You'll be gentle? Really? I'm sure that's what Dahmer said to HIS victims, too. *makes the sign of the cross* The devil is a LIAR!!

What in the short-pant-ugly-socks-bright-shoe HELL is going on here?? And did he buy that vest in a size too small? I can't...

*smooches...almost fed up with people*
but they give me such good blog material so I can't be mad!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Today I Will (5/12/10)

(The history behind these activities can be found here, and if you click here you will see all the previous posts I wrote on them. Thank you to Irene for having the forethought to buy me this book for blog material.)

Activity #9: Today I will pack a bag so I am always ready for an adventure.

According to the book, "Truly, enjoying life requires creativity and a willingness to discover the opportunities for adventure that are all around us." I think that's a pretty cool way to live, no?

I can't really claim to be that adventurous: I've yet to try foods that aren't deep fried and dipped in Buffalo hot sauce (kinda) and my clothes are all "safe" and "earth tone" shades. I've never had the urged to jump out of a plane or go white-water rafting or any of those types of thrill-seeking activities. I tend to prefer my couch or the bar or my Mami's kitchen.

But activity #9 makes a good point about being spontaneous, and how it's "expressing a joy for life." I've been so careful for nearly 35 years... maybe it's time to go a bit crazy?

And I know y'all must be sitting there reading this going, "YOU? CAREFUL?" and cackling like little bitches, but it's true. So I'm gonna pack a little bag for when I need to just GO. It will have a book, a notebook & pen, a disposable camera (that I probably won't get developed for six years), a travel sized deodorant, lotion & toothbrush/paste set and a clean pair of underwear (non-matching, of course!). Everything else I could possibly need I can just buy when I get there, no?

What's in your get-up-and-go bag?

*smooches...trying to find jussssst the right bag to pack*
there are so many quirky bags in my closet. I can't decide!!!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Bullshit With Which I Will No Longer Put Up

1- K calling me on weekends she's with her dad to complain that N is misbehaving. IT'S NOT MY FUCKING WEEKEND. Talk to your father about that bullshit; I'm on a break.

2- Being uncomfortable so others can be happy. Fuck y'all. No mas.

3- Holding my tongue in order to keep the peace. I joke about machetes n stuff on here but I'm a very non-violent person in real life. I loathe conflict. But I've been pushed to the edge. It ends NOW.

4- Allowing others to ruin my day. Too often someone upsets me & I spiral into a stankness that cannot even be cured with the finest of Buffalo wings. I won't do that anymore.

5- Answering calls/emails/texts/bbms from people I really don't feel like talking to. Sometimes I like to pretend it's just me in the world & if you're trying to contact me it fucks up the illusion. Pa' fuera!!

*smooches...thinking these next 35 years of my life are gonna be a DOOZY*
and I really don't care to hear how you feel about any of this, either, so I'm disabling comments. GOOD DAY.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Tonight on Monday Musings...

I'm beyond sick of all these so-called news reports about single women and why they're single and how they will be single forever and ever and a day because of high standards, low standards, stank attitudes, over-achieving lists, the media etc. BEYOND SICK.

It's like, really, CNN, you have nothing better to discuss these days? You do realize there are a crazy amount of natural & man-made disasters occurring weekly around the world, right? Can we focus on THAT shit and leave the trivial crap like "Why Black Women are Single" to the Oprahs of the world? Thank you and good day!

So let's put this topic to bed tonight on Monday Musings, shall we?

My fellow bloggers 12Kyle of The 12th Planet and ( a reluctant and stubborn) Eb the Celeb will co-host a segment on The Lists, Standards and Obstacles To Meeting 'The One' in which we'll be discussing dating standards, the infamous LIST and other bullcrap that supposedly keep men & women from actually dating.

Be there tonight or I will force you to listen to me sing select songs from the Bee Gees discography. Off key.

*smooches...almost too busy to write this post*
what is wrong with my life that I'm too busy to touch base with my lovely readers?! Aaaack!

Friday, May 07, 2010

I Remember: An Interactive Post (Pt. 2)

To see the first one of these, which I wrote back in July of 2007, click here. The premise is simple... I share a few memories with you, and in the comments, you'll share a few memories with me. Bet? Vamonos....

I Remember...

Crying outside of my apartment the day my mom left me alone with a newborn K after a week after giving birth.

Seeing someone carted off by the paramedics at a Menudo concert.

Running into Christopher Walken on Bleecker and Broadway months after seeing "The Prophecy" and screaming "NO" in his face before running away.

The "wrong number" calls we'd get from men for some woman named Denise, and the time I actually responded, "She's here but she doesn't want to talk to you."

Going to Six Flags Great Adventures with Titi Gloris & Minnie, and riding FREE FALL over and over again until we couldn't take it anymore.

Stealing handfuls of shredded coconut out of the kitchen while Grandma made all sorts of Dominican desserts.

When, at age three or four, N proclaimed to us: "My mind is a genius."

Playing jacks in the street by Abuelo's house in DR in the summer of '85.

Passing out in the bathroom after realizing I'd gotten my period for the first time, July 1986.

The first time I read my work out loud, butterflies in my stomach, and all the wonderful feedback & praise I received when it was all over.

*smooches...writing these down for when 'old timer's disease' kicks in*
I already forget about 40yrs my brain will be total mush!

Now you, what do you remember??

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Happy Hour Invite + Government Conspiracies!

Need More DRANKS In Yo Life?
A few weeks ago Ms KarrieB was guest bartending at a spot in the Financial District and of course, as I do for ALL my bartending buddies, I went to support. While there, I gave the hostess my email so they could send me event information, etc and guess what?? I won a free happy hour!

The deal is: from 6-8PM, all of my drinks are free, and anyone who says my name at the door will get a wristband which entitles them to 1/2 price drinks during my happy hour. COOL, RIGHT?!

So if you didn't kill your liver with Cinco de Mayo festivities, peek in at 1834 Bar & Burger, located at 62 Pearl Street in Manhattan, from 6-8PM. I will be there, eating my weight in Buffalo wings and demanding all sorts of drinks that don't go together.


I Didn't Want To Be Right
You've all heard about that "bomb" in Times Square by now, right? Right. Show of hands, how many actually believed that malarkey the police & the media were trying to force feed us? NOT I!! You know my policy on the government. Oh, you don't? THEY LIE! And this story just didn't make any sense.

Think about it: terrorist bombers all over the world successfully blow shit up in crowded areas all the time. You want me to believe that this bomb fizzled by chance? No, my brother, let me tell you the REAL story.

That bomb was a plant. By the government. Placed in a busy corner of Times Square where it was sure to get noticed and reported and "investigated" by the police. News was to spread like wildfire scaring the bejeezus out of citizens who'd already begun to put 9/11 behind them. And for what? MONEY. So that Bloomberg and the Feds can justify an increase in "defense funds." If you think I'm lying, check the news and see where Bloomberg was on Wednesday. GO ahead, I'll wait.


Did you see? YUP. Bloomberg was in Washington, DC, asking for MORE MONEY for HOMELAND SECURITY. I can't make this stuff up. The best part is the poor patsy they got to take the fall... dude lost everything, which I'm sure made him the perfect target for the government conspiracy. Well I'm calling BULLSHIT on this WHOLE operation...fuck what y'all think!

*smooches...wondering if it's the liquor that has me all loca in the cabeza*
nah, I'm right. The govt is out to get us all. and YES your precious Obama is in on it, too!!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Latino Books Month

I'm going to make believe that Arizona is not a state in the union for a lil bit while I bask in another gift the month of May decided to give me- Latino Books Month. You mean we get ANOTHER month to bask in our awesomeness? Wow. That makes THREE. Who else has this many commemorative months? HMMM? EXACTLY!

Okay, enough bragging.

Wait, one more: IN YO FACE, BITCHEZZZZZZZ *dances inappropriately to bachata music in front of your parents*

Okay, now I'm done.

It seems like the best time to also remind you that I have a literary reading and "after party" this Saturday, and if you can be there it would be AWESOME.

And as your resident Literary Latina, I feel it's my duty to help you make some good reading choices to celebrate Latino Book Month. The following five recommendations are books from my shelf, so get a pen and paper and grab your library card- class is now in session.

1- La Fiesta Del Chivo/ The Feast of the Goat by Mario Vargas Llosa.
Celebrated as THE work of fiction that deals with the Dominican Republic of Trujillo and his successor, Balaguer, you should not only read this book for its historical relevance but because Llosa is a literary genius. Oh wait, most of you will probably only read the translation...damn. Well, lets hope the translator does his words justice.

2- Monkey Hunting by Cristina Garcia.
I love this book so much because the author, a woman, writes for all-male protagonists in such a rich and powerful way. I'm almost jealous. Monkey Hunting also follows the story of a Chinese/Cuban/American family and OH MAN, Garcia really knows how to drag you into a story. Trust!

3- El Llano en Llamas/The Burning Plain (and other stories) by Juan Rulfo.
Talk about meshing literature with social consciousness and the natural order/natural world; Rulfo is a master at it. All of the stories deal with rural people and their actions and interactions with their environment- good and bad. I promise you it's a great read.

4- Como Agua Para Chocolate/Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel.
Forget the movie (although it was a pretty accurate representation of the novel) THE BOOK. I...words...escape... It's the story of the De La Garza family- Mama Elena, Rosaura, Gertudis and Tita, and their unique dynamic. Being the youngest/last daughter, Tita is not allowed to marry because she must care for Mama Elena until she dies. You already know where this is going right? Or so you think...

5- The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz.
Look, I've already discussed this book with you ad nauseum: Diaz won a Pulizer for it, I discussed it on Monday Musings, etc etc etc... I hate having to repeat myself. But seriously, if you only read ONE BOOK off this list, it should be Oscar Wao. It's a trip back in time in DR complete with socio-political commentary, a history lesson and the tale of a misfit Dominican trying to find his place in this "new" world. Like me.

There are so many others I'm not even getting into that were amazingly awesome, but for lack of space (and time to write about it) I will leave it at five for now and recommend a new title every Friday. Deal? Deal.

But before you go, feel free to check out this AMAZING up-and-coming literary darling: ME.

*smooches...smothering myself in words*
I'm actually debuting a fresh, new, hot off the presses story this Saturday. You won't want to miss it :)

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Accountability, Folks. Learn It, Use It, Live It!

While at Dinner with Evelyn & her hubby & family, I learned of a mutual friend from high school that is currently living a pretty good life with her wife/partner and three adopted children after serving time in the military and finishing her studies. I was truly happy to hear about this because I remember this particular girl had the most awful home life.

I won't go into details of what she told me in confidence in high school, but believe me when I say it was bad. And look at her now- not hooked on crack on the corner, not selling her body for money, not dead in a ditch. She's a veteran with a loving family. Seriously, folks, if she can make it anyone can.

It got me thinking about all the excuses heard around town for why one isn't successful or happy in life. More often than not it's always someone else's fault, right? "The MAN is keeping me down." "My mother/father/brother/sister never loved me." "We were too poor for me to go to college so I did what I had to do." Please exit stage left with all that bullshit; no one here cares.

Last week Irene wrote a great post on her fitness blog titled Why Did I Get Fat? where she faced the real reason behind her weight issues. Then she followed it up with No More Excuses where she confronted all the things she tells herself to keep from doing the work it takes to get fit. And I applaud her for it. How many of us own up to what we caused to happen in our own lives?

Sure, maybe your mom beat you as a kid, does that mean you have to go out and terrorize everyone with random acts of violence? And maybe you were teased about your hair or skin tone or nose or butt, does that make it OK for you to turn yourself into some surgically enhanced shell of your former self? Maybe you were dealt a bad hand, does that give you the right to sit and sulk about it for ever and ever and never make your situation better?

It's NEVER okay to not own up for the role you played in your own undoing. NEVER. Why am I broke? Because I wanted to buy THINGS instead of saving for a rainy day. Why am I fat? Because I'd rather have taquitos & candy for dinner than take the time to prepare a healthy meal. Why am I a single mom? Because I didn't insist he use a condom & I accepted his marriage proposal even though I didn't really want to.

See what I did there? Took responsibility for my shit.

I wish there were a class I could teach so that others would do the same. Once you hold that mirror up to yourself and face facts, well, sheeeiiitttt, you'll be well on your way to finding a solution. I promise you.

If my old friend from high school can overcome her terrible beginnings, I know you can, too.

*smooches...not in the mood for excuses*
I don't tolerate it in myself & I WON'T tolerate it in others.

Monday, May 03, 2010

Let The May Festivities BEGIN!

Hello my dearies!

First off I want to apologize for canceling Monday Musings two weeks in a row. Last week I was busy meeting a deadline; this week I will be spending time with my girls + some friends and won't be home in time. I'll catch y'all next week, tho.

Technically, the season should have ended already. If you remember correctly my last show in the spring of 2009 was in mid-April. But I will extend it to the end of may before I go on my summer break. And YES, I am following the TV season schedule. What of it?

Now that that's out of the way...

Do you know what MONTH it is??? Don't act brand new- you know it's only TWENTY DAYS until the whole world takes a few days to celebrate the fact that I was born. Shut up, they DO!

And from the looks of my calendar, I share this Birthday Month with so many other worthy folks!

So what's in store? Well this week there's Cinco De Mayo PLUS my reading on Saturday (with a small "after party" to celebrate the website's launch) and then Mother's Day grubbage. Then I'm treating myself to a plethora of cultural events & concerts throughout the city with my babies because it's long overdue. Next up PLEASE BELIEVE that I will ring in the Big 3-5 in typical Jaded fashion (minus the falling asleep at 7A like I did last year) followed by a Bloggers' BBQ on Memorial Day weekend.

Oooh, you're intrigued, you want in, I can feel it through the computer! Don't worry, honey-bunnies! As soon as things are finalized I will send out invites to those in the Jaded Empire. Cool? Cool.

*smooches...liking May a helluva lot more than April*
and don't even get me started on the crap-tasticness that was March!

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Jaded Photographs 2010: May Edition

Lesson Learned

*smooches...promising myself a vomit-free May*
I mean really, I'm too old for this shit...