Sunday, May 31, 2009

Goodbye was fun-ish for one night.

What is the problem with the night life in Philly? I don’t get it. This is a major city, nestled midway between New York and D.C., both of which have a healthy array of night-life options appropriate for their magnitude and population. Now I know Philly is no New York. Hell, Philly is not even D.C. But c’mon, the night life around here resembles that of a city with the magnitude of a dead duck. You know it’s a sad day when I’d rather be in BALTIMORE on a Friday night than stuck choosing between Guitar Hero and a movie and drink at The Bridge.

So what’s the problem? I’ll tell you what the problem is – Luxe Lounge. No, not Luxe specifically, but the kind of practices they are engaging in which will indubitably ultimately result in their demise. I’ve seen it all before. I hate to tell you Luxe, but unless you change your ways, you are doomed to fail.

First of all, you charge a $20 cover.
I’ve been to Luxe – twice. Neither occasion was anything to write home about. The first time I left within 20 minutes of arriving. The second time I muddled through, but felt like a sardine in a can, started sweating the moment I walked in the door, and some random lesbian ended up grabbing my ass. Not cool – and definitely not worth $20 of my hard earned money. You see, what Luxe and so many of it’s predecessors failed to realize is that there is a solid core of young black professionals (YBPs stand up!!) present in the Philadelphia area. For the most part, WE ALL KNOW EACHOTHER. We don’t like to be huddled up like sardines in a can, we don’t like to pay $20 for admission (many of us are grad/professional students - HELLO!!), and we certainly don’t like random gays grabbing our booties when we walk by. Nevertheless, you need us. You need us because we bring the two things to your club that will ensure its longevity: style and civility. Trust me when I tell you that Palmers and Pinnacle have the ghetto club scene on lock. If I wanted to sweat my ass off, have dudes rub their hoo-hoos on my behind, and flirt with common thugs – I’d go there. And I wouldn’t have to pay $20 to get in. But Luxe, I’m not your problem. Your problem is that 99% of the YBP community feels the same way. How long do you think it’s going to be before the word spreads that what you’re offering is no different than Transit or Fuzion? Why would we YBPs wanna pay $20 for that, when we can go to Bamboo or Walnut Room for free?

Second, your drinks are overpriced. Most of us YBPs have our own bars at home. We realize that we can buy a whole fifth of Jack for the $10 you’re charging for a Jack and coke. Smh. Nuff said.

Third, you’re frisking me at the door.
I respect what you’re are trying to do, but understand it’s sending the wrong signal. It’s telling me that you’re EXPECTING hoodlums to try to get into your club. I would hope that instead you’d be fixated on attracting the kind of civil and stylish crowd that would be a pure turn-off to hood rats. I’ve never been frisked at Walnut Room, Tragos, Bamboo...and yes, anything could happen at any of those places at anytime, but when you frisk it says to me that you’re trying to protect yourself from a liability – that you EXPECT trigger-happy, knife wielding fools to get stupid on your watch. I got news for you Luxe, frisking hoods doesn’t keep them under control. If you expect those kinds of fools to come through your door, than you must not be expecting me (and the rest of the YBPs). But alas, I accept that Luxe’ dubious location (next door to Pinnacle) may make frisking and purse-rifling a necessity. However, could you please hire some petite, friendly-faced, seemingly heterosexual, young women to frisk me? Why do I have to get frisked by some big-bodied, bald-headed, broad-shouldered, husky-voiced bitch? I feel even MORE violated by that than I would if some uninvited man felt up my legs and abdomen.

Fourth, you’re playing Soulja boy and “Stanky Leg”. Really?? If you want style and civility to last in your establishment, YOU HAVE TO HIRE A DJ WITH A NOTED REPUTATION OF ATTRACTING SUCH. Remember when Tragos used to be hot every Saturday night? That had more to do with WHO was spinning and WHAT he was playing, than it did the establishment itself. Don’t believe me? Go to Tragos on a Saturday night now that THAT DJ has retired his post – tumbleweeds. Look Luxe, I’m pushing 30, I appreciate a little Marvin Gaye and Soul Sonic Force mixed in with my Jay-Z and Beyoncè. Judging by the elation evident in the YBP crowd when Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” comes on, they do too. If you want to attract us you gotta play what we wanna hear – and Soulja boy and “Stanky Leg” ain’t it. I suggest you hire a respectable DJ and put him on a regular rotation. How about your favorite DJ's favorite DJ – Brendan Bring ‘Em? Just a suggestion. At this point you’ll probably need to pay him boat-loads of money just to convince him to cooperate - since I’m sure by now he’s wise to the idea that you need him WAY more than he needs you.

Last but not least, you have no respect for the ladies. You know what makes men come to the club? Women. You know what makes women come the club? Men. The trick to ensuring the longevity of a night spot is simple: get the women and the men will come…and once the men arrive, the women will stay. That’s why pretty girls don’t have to wait in line and pay reduced admissions at most reasonable establishments. Generally, the bouncers just let us right in without too much hassle. Hmph. I took a solo sojourn to our beloved Luxe Lounge last night. I didn’t leave until after the game was over, meaning I didn’t arrive at the door until around 12:45. The bouncer (who recognized me as a friend of a friend) was super-concerned about checking my ID (presumably because his manager was in the vicinity). Two seconds later, the manager emerges with a girl he’s threatening to put out simply because she didn’t put her shoes back on fast enough after he told her to. I observe this and immediately reach for my cell phone; I’m having reservations. Seeing as how my first two visits to Luxe were nothing more than blah, there’s a $20 cover, and a future stalker on the horizon (**insider: that dude from Walnut Room), I’m not so sure this Luxe thing is what I really wanna do tonight. I text my boy (a Philly YBP) who’s already inside – “is it worth it”. I’m waiting for his response, meanwhile I make my way to the hgusky bitch who’s supposed to frisk me and rifle through my purse before I'm permitted the pleasure of paying the $20 cover. I grudgingly open my purse to her. She looks me in the eye, points at my mouth, and then at the trash. “What?” I asked perplexed. She smirks - “Your gum has to go in the trash”. WHAT! That’s absurd. Nah son. CURVE!! I turn around and head out the door. Two seconds later I get a text from the homie who I’d asked if it was worth it. His response: “borderline”. Right. $20 for 1 hour and 15 minutes of “borderline” – and that’s BEFORE I buy a drink. Nah son, I’m cool. Like I said before - CURVE! What a waste of time and an outfit – and you know how much women HATE to waste an outfit. **Sigh**

I hope you folks that did make it inside Luxe last night had a real blast – but I’m sure you didn’t. So like I said at the outset, goodbye Luxe – it was fun-ish for one night.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Lie to You

Ladies and gentlemen, I think I finally have the dating game figured out. My new strategy is simple: lie.

Yes, lie – because apparently honesty isn’t getting me anywhere. And I have considered the possibility that it’s all me, that I’m a poor communicator, that I’m not capable of saying exactly what I want, that I’m not pretty enough, that I need to lose weight, that I need to dress like a lady, that I need to stop cursing all the f*@#ing time. There is some truth in all of those things, but the reality is that’s only 20% of the problem. Now I get it. It’s not me – IT’S YOU.

When I say you, I mean all of you baby boys. You know, the ones who we good women give credit for being men the moment we meet you, but we forget that you actually might be a 35-year-old little boy. We forget that you were raised in the same streets as the low-lives that we wouldn’t give the time of day. We forget that, as much as you talk about how much you want a “real woman,” yo dumb ass might not actually be capable of handling one. We good women give you undercover baby boys WAAAAYYY too much credit.

Do you know the sad reason I still drive an ’06 G35 instead of stepping up to an ’09 M35 like I really want to? Baby boys. Baby boys who pretend like they want to be with a woman who’s capable of doing her own thang, but in reality, a woman with her own sh*t intimidates them. For the life of me, I can’t understand it, but somehow my ride being flyer than yours translates in your weak ass mind to you somehow being incapable of taking care of my needs. Somehow my swag undermines your manhood – in your weak ass mind. I know it; I watched your whole game switch-up the moment you realized how I was rolling. Something in you said, “she’s not to be played with.” Now that you’ve dropped back on your pursuit, am I not to assume that it’s because you’re intimidated and afraid of rejection? Hey numskull, peep this: the ’06 G35 doesn’t change the fact that I’m a woman with needs, that I like to be held at night, that I appreciate flowers, candy, and hand-written birthday cards. Just imagine, if cats are intimidated by a bruised-up G35, how would they act if I roll up in a brand new M? Presumably the same way they acted when the G was brand new - scared.

Back to the undercover baby boy. He’s the one who brings his own to the table too, however, he’s not accustomed to meeting a woman who is as well. He goes on murmuring about being single, complaining that he can’t find a lady who is his match. Yet when he’s finally confronted with his reflection, he runs - just like the baby boy these streets raised you to be. Look, baby boy, I know what your problem is. You’re scared of rejection, you’re scared of losing control, you’re scared of falling in love. You’re so used to impressing simple women with simple sh*t - and you think you’ll have to do triple somersaults to impress me. You’re scared of doing gymnastics - probably because you don’t want to land on your ass. Can’t say I blame you. But why do you try to make me think I’m crazy? As if there is something wrong with me. Hmph, I ain’t neva scared (doesn’t that make me more of a man than you?).

*Sigh* I could see how I would intimidate you, or undermine your manhood – in your simple ass mind - like I said before. So I’ll tell you what I’m going to do for you from now know, to make it easier for you to feel like a man. So that you can go on believing that your presence alone is enough to impress me (even though truthfully, it really is - and I’ve told you that before, but now I see that I have to dumb myself down in order to make it less “too-good-to-be-true” for you). I’m gonna make myself an “easier catch” in your eyes, so I can stop looking like a whole heap of work to you, or like a “high-maintenance chick” as you’ve referred to me before (wow...I’ve been handling my own business for over a decade, but somehow I appear “high-maintenance” to you). I get it, you’re lazy, and not into gymnastics. Especially when there’s a “low-maintenance” broad who’d be happy to have you – and you don’t have to do back flips to get with her. So ok, here we are. Here are the new lies that I’m going to tell you. I hope they subconsciously boost your ego so that you feel comfortable enough to actually pursue me.

1. This is actually my dad’s car.
2. This was my grandma’s house.
3. No, I’m not in a dual-doctorate degree program.
4. What am I doing at UPenn you ask? Oh, I only got in to Penn because my Aunt works there.
5. I bought this Gucci bag on 52nd St.
6. I really don’t understand modern politics, or the theory of relativity. In fact, I’m pretty stupid.
7. I don’t know how to change a tire, or install an air conditioner, or stain in polyurethane, or hell, even screw in a light bulb. In fact I’m totally helpless. Could you please help me put gas in my car? Err…I meant my dad’s car.
8. I’m not cool. I don’t even listen to hip-hop - that Cam’ron cd belongs to my bother-in-law.
9. I don’t watch sports at all. Who’s Donovan McNabb? And what’s a safety?
10. I have no culture. What is this cabernet sauvignon and white zinfandel you speak of? Are they rock bands?

There. Am I now sufficiently enough of a non-challenge that you’re willing to put in the ounce of work in takes to get me? Right, that’s what I thought. Bitch ass n*gg*s. Smh.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Hey, McFly! Tell 'em why you really mad.

The manufactured outraged we witnessed around Barack speaking at Notre Dame over this weekend has really managed to crawl up the back of my leg and get my panties all in a bunch. What is wrong with you people? And when I say you people, I do mean that offensively. This man is the president of the United States of America, the first African-American president of the U.S. no less. I considered it an honor that he stood on the corner a block away from my house when he was just Candidate Obama! I could only imagine the glee I would feel if he actually shook my hand and bestowed upon me my bachelors degree.

But looka here protesters - you are so transparent.

Some of you are legitimately outraged at the Church itself because of the overt hypocrisy the Catholic school displayed by choosing a well-known pro-life headliner for commencement. I get it. Take your protests to the Pope. I didn’t hear a peep from him during this whole mess. The fact of the matter is nearly 50% of Catholics don’t consider themselves pro-life (a polite way to say “I’m pro-choice”), and Obama garnered more than 50% of the Catholic vote in the last election. The Catholic Church has a fair amount of soul-searching to do when it comes to this issue. I completely agree with you - back-pedaling and duplicity are never characteristics you’d like to see from the holy-high. But here’s an idea: knock on your local cardinal’s door instead of making a spectacle of some poor kids’ moment in the spotlight. There’s really no need to have yourself LITERALLY carried off the campus in hand-cuffs (ref). What did that solve? Obama still spoke, he still got his honorary degree, and the Pope still hasn’t pontificated one peep.

The rest of you aren’t outraged about the issue of abortion at all. You people - and I do mean that offensively - are even more disgustingly transparent in your preposterous manufacturing of outrage. Look, I know what’s really got your goat. The holiest of holy – NOTRE DAME – the Fighting Irish – the holy grail of academic institutions as far as some of those rednecks who wouldn’t hesitate to call me a n*gg*r in a heartbeat are concerned – saw its purity desecrated via the descent of (gasp) the first BLACK president!! I know - it was already a blow to the gut when a black man became “the man”. Now, just to add insult to injury, this coon’s gonna hand lil’ Sean McLaughlin and Erin O’Reilly their coveted diplomas! On top of that, they’re gonna just GIVE the n*gg*r another goddamn degree! As if he needs it! Especially considering all the hard-earned dollars you had to spend on lil’ Sean and Erin’s tuition because you and your wife of 20 years made too much money to qualify for financial aid!! What a slap in the face, RIGHT?!

Yeah...I thought this was about your position on abortion, right? RIGHT!!!

Manscaping - my take.

Dear Catrina,

Is manscaping OK or too femme? Manscaping being a man keeping his Bush in order!



Hmm. The first time I encountered a partner who engaged in such activity, I must admit I was taken aback. He quickly noted my astonishment and scrambled for justification – “the hair gets caught in my underwear while I’m weight lifting, it’s just easier to shave it all off.” Good enough excuse for me – proceed! Hey, I’ve often said I’ve never known a dude not to hit it because there was a jungle down there, I guess the opposite is true for women *shrug*.

Yet, my opinion of this guy definitely changed after that episode. I started noticing other slightly feminine things he did…shaving his chest, holding his pinky up while he drank from a glass, making noises while we – uh…too much for facebook :-p. Anywho, the accumulation of such actions caused me to be quite turned off, which in itself is a minor miracle – dude was 6’3, 215 lbs, beautiful smile, and the epitome of tall, dark, and handsome.

Every man can be caught doing something every now and then that might come off as a bitch move (such as drinking a cream soda, or chewing Big Red – LMAO! INSIDER!), so I try not to measure fellas against my definition of masculinity. However, I truly do suggest that men tread carefully when deciding to shape up down there. Be forewarned: many women may interpret this as you caring too much about your appearance. Vanity is almost always a trait that women are repulsed by in men. We prefer that you are completely oblivious to your beauty, even if you’re an Adonis. See, we women pretend that we are frustrated by the minuscule effort men put in to their appearance everyday. The truth is we actually find it sexy, natural, and it sometimes even makes us feel like more of a woman. It can actually turn us on when you’re hairy, funky, and dirty (well, maybe not all three at the same time, but you get the picture). When you're clean, shaven, and soft as a baby’s behind, you remind us of ourselves – and if we were sexually attracted to ourselves, we’d be lesbians.