Birthday Words To Live By

 At 10:10 am, 40 years ago on a remote island in the Pacific Ocean, I made my debut into this world.Growing up, I don't remember ever dreaming about where I'd be or what I would've seen by this age. Whatever I dreamed, I'm sure it didn't involve sitting on the couch in a modest townhome on the outskirts of Washington, DC watching "The Curious Life of Benjamin Button." But as luck would have it, that's exactly what I was doing on my 40th birthday....more
I've been away from BlogHer for 5 months while I was in rural Africa. So I am saying hello ...more

The Naked Face of Evil

 If I ever cross paths with Keith Richburg, I'd ask him if he still believes Africa is a lost cause. By the end of his book Out of America: A Black Man Confronts Africa (1996), he was through with Africa. It had frustrated him, horrified him & nearly killed him several times. But that was the early '90s....more
 @Barbarahughes  Thank you for reading. How exciting for you. My daughter's teacher did a month ...more

The Novelty of Lagos

Eleven years had distorted my memories of Nigeria. Children, depression, abandonment of my PhD, the near death of my marriage all happened in the space between visits. Nigeria 2010 was better than I remembered. So was I.Chinua Achebe called Nigeria "dirty, callous & vulgar, a place of unrelenting selfishness." It's also a public urinal. Men piss everywhere (and I do mean everywhere!) By day 3, I could only marvel "how is this place not swimming in piss?"...more
Wow! I am not sure what would I do in your shoes. But, when the time come, I am very sure things ...more

What If...

What if I stopped rejecting my woman's body for women's history month? What if I stood naked in front of a full length mirror, looked myself in the eye & said what I've never been able to say to myself with a straight face: "You are beautiful."What if I thanked my body because it knows how to heal itself from injury & defend itself from germs? What if I thanked it because it rises to meet the demands I make on it, even when I don't give it the fuel it needs to function properly?...more
Yes, Ma'am! You don't find skinny fertility goddess statues in caves from way back, but rounded ...more

No One Outside Africa Believes Africa Can Fix Itself

 Hoping is hard. I learned that in 2008 when a Black man whose middle name is Hussein & whose last name rhymes with Osama ran for US President. And won. I'll never forget it. Hoping is hard - sometimes there is nothing harder. But you can't give in....more
 @HomeRearedChef ... thanks again for stopping by. I'm pleased you learned something. I try to ...more

Immigration and the B*stard in Me

If you were slapped, whipped, lied on, degraded, threatened, humilated, called a whore from the ages of 12 to 21, then you escaped & went on to live your American dream... you'd have a helluva story to tell. Your name would be Ola*. You started out in America as a child slave trafficked from West Africa to cook, clean & nanny for your cousin's family of 5. You'd be my age now. You'd be my friend & neighbor. Our daughters would be BFFs. ...more
 @Reshmi Hebbar I was able to make a clear connection to the Muslim community with this issue ...more

Black on Black Bigotry

She said the punk leaned over and said to another student - loud enough for her to hear - "Did you understand what she just said?" His tone was irritated. "Because I didn't understand one word." She never called him "punk" when she told me the story. I chose the label because it's the strongest non-expletive I could come up with that conveys both his petty ignorance and my aversion to comments like this. It infuriates me that such a thing could happen at my alma mater, the so-called "Mecca" for Black college students, Howard University....more
I'm Caribbean born and growing up in the islands my relatives always told me that Africans ...more

Redeemed by The Social Animal

 David Brooks spoke at a TED conference last year. I listened online & was impressed so I picked up his book "The Social Animal" & flipped through it. And wouldn't ya know it? On page 111, Eric Turkeimer's name LEAPS off the page. Eric Turkeimer is the reason I don't have a PhD.*...more

Cambodia and the Pull of Angkor Wat

 Since I'm the only person I know who would choose Cambodia over the Bahamas, I ended up flying to Siem Reap from Singapore alone. I would touch antiquity. Stand in the looming shadow of the sacred. I could hardly contain my thrill....more
Thank you for the beautiful post about an amazing place. Hopefully one day I'll travel there and ...more

Letter to Christians on Abortion: Put Up or Shut Up

 I wonder what most churches would do if Roe v. Wade was really overturned. What would most churches do about all those unwanted babies? Would we see an up tic in sermons encouraging Christians to adopt? Would churches sponsor mass adoptions? Or pour money into a Christian-sponsored fostering systems & orphanages or set up programs to support & mentor young mothers who got knocked up by a guy who's already out of the picture?...more
I find it ironic that your post has no reply. Yet.more