Monday, July 15, 2013

The Token ... Person

Last night I happened to watch a part of an episode of Hollywood Exes and I noticed something. The first two exes that graced the screen were Prince's ex and Will Smith's ex. Then came the rest of the exes until it just so happened that R. Kelly's Ex was the last one I saw. Looking around the room of exes, they were having a get together, I noticed that there was one woman with dark brown skin and less aquiline features. In other words, she didn't look like she had non-Black parents or grandparents. So, I wondered, is she the token dark girl? Is that a thing, the token dark girl? One of my guilty pleasures is the VH1 series, Single Ladies. The show is horrible, but I love it! During the last season, they introduced what may have been a token dark girl. During season one, Stacey Dash was one of the main characters, and I never thought of her as light-skinned, per se, but her light eyes and aquiline features sorta kept her from being a "dark girl" as I'm defining it right now. The woman who took her place is a smidge lighter and has bright blue eyes. She's not the one I'm referring to. The woman I'm referring to, has more traditional dark girl features and short hair as well. The woman is gorgeous, but interestingly, she's the only single mom of the crew, and has a loud mouth. There was an episode in which she insulted people left and right. With all of the VH1 shows with Black women, alone, I know that we're seeing more and more dark girls, even if they are portrayed in a frightening light, but this token thing has definitely got me to thinking.

I think the catch phrase is "token Black person", but as we see more and more people of color on television, that is becoming less and less the case. First let me say that it doesn't bother me when there are no people of color to be found on some TV shows. Friends is a good example. Yes, it was ridiculous for them to rarely encounter Black folks in New York, but the show was so damn funny, and the characters in their White skin all reminded me of my close Black friends (by the way, I am Monica; I am sooo Monica. It's weird how much I am Monica), that I barely even noticed the lack of Black people. But, there is also this fear that when a TV show is really good in all it's Whiteness, the introduction of a Black character might bring about some awkwardness as the least and offensiveness at the most that would ruin the entire show. So, instead of demanding the possibility of a fail at writing Black characters, I was okay with them just not being there, me not being offended, and the show remaining hilarious. Two Black women were introduced (kudos for that, you rarely see Black women when you do see Black characters thrown in), and they weren't offensive (or all that ethnic, in other words, nothing about them implied that had any connection to a history that was Black history),  they were beautiful dark brown women (Gabrielle Union (one episode) and Aisha Tyler (several)), so it was fine, but their is no doubt they were tokens because the public demanded it.

When it comes to tokens, my question has always been: Well, how much do groups of White folks encounter and befriend non-White folks? I have no idea what the answer to this question is. Clearly, my White friends have at least one Black friend, but they actually have more than one Black friend, and then their are the Asians and Latino/as, too. When it comes to my Black friends, there is no token color, we tend to extend from sable to tan (I thought about going the food colors route, but makeup shades felt easier), so clearly, my life does not imitate television, nor does television imitate my life. My next question is, what does it mean for us people of color when like Neo or the Highlander, there can be only One? (I guess Neo was actually a reincarnation...) When there is only one token, that means that either we consider ourselves People of Color and relate to whichever color is on the screen, or we don't. Which brings us to the more important question, what does the token do for us, People of Color, anyway?

When it comes to media depictions of Black folks, you always take the good with the bad, there is no choice. So, when Lisa Turtle is only desired by the freaky looking, weird food eating, odd noise making dork, who then goes on to find his own blonde dorkette, and only appears to have one actual date for whom she tried to change everything about herself, you just shrug and are happy that there is a(n upper-middle class, vapid) Lisa Turtle. (She and Zach might have kissed during one episode, but he was a womanizer who kissed pretty much every single chick on the show and that was one of those weird out of place summertime episodes that seemed to exist in another dimension (like the love affair Wolverine had with Storm).) So, ultimately, even though the Black tokens are asexual and usually unimportant, they're generally okay people and you're happy they're there.

So, even though Black tokens kinda just suck, they were like our sucky family, and now we see that things are starting to change. Two of my beloved television shows have Indian tokens. Big Bang is one. Raj is a cutie, who turns out to be pretty funny, but he gets the shitty end of the stick hardcore. *Spoiler alert* Until recently, he could not speak to women without drinking, he didn't have a girlfriend, when even Sheldon, who prides himself on his asexuality, found a serious relationship, and he is extremely effeminate, and frequently picked on because of this. On the other hand, Royal Pains has Divya. She is gorgeous, educated, witty, her clothing is to steal and die for, and of course, she is kind, gentle and lovable. What these tokens do for Indians or Asians as a whole, I have no idea. I know that for me, although it's nice to see brown people, I don't really relate. I love that both characters have a culture and family, but they are nothing like my culture or my family. And while I can relate to gorgeous Gabrielle Union, I cannot relate to gorgeous Reshma Shetty (Divya).

I can't write this without giving a shout out to Mindy. It's hard to call her a token when it's her show, but even though she calls herself a 'woman of color' repeatedly, she's the only one on the show and her character actually resented the other Indian woman (a romantic rival) who guest starred. Added to that, all of her best friends are White women and I believe every man she's dated has been White, even though she was looking for an NBA player in one episode (because "Black guys love Indian girls! It's not racist, it's true!" I laughed because I agreed, but that's a different post). Her favorite movies are Meg Ryan romcoms and her character is from Boston with a Boston accent that she worked hard to get rid of. That being said, Mindy is awesome, I do relate to her, and I didn't mention any of that in a spirit of resentment, I'm just pointing out the facts about the character.

Back to the point: I'm not sure what a token is supposed to do for me. I'm not sure what they are supposed to do for Indians or Asians who are not Indian, and I'm not sure why I haven't seen many who were Hispanic (was "A.C. Slater" even supposed to be Hispanic?).  What I do know, is that as a woman of color, I don't relate to Asian, Hispanic, Native American, or Aboriginal women or men of color just because their skin is not white, and I'm more likely to relate to women because they are women, despite their color, if I relate at all. So, who are the tokens for and what are they supposed to mean? Is the token dark girl just another way to portray the Sapphire while pretending that you're not because she's surrounded by race-neutral women of color? Happily, women like Shonda Rhimes are changing the game, and we're beginning to see, not only different kinds of Black women, but we get to see Black women and Asian women and Hispanic women and White women all in the same room at the same time, speaking the same language, and loving the same stuff. Yes, Shonda takes it too far when her shows only allow one couple to be a same race couple per race, with every other couple being bi-racial, but Shonda is showing a world that's a little bit more like my world, which is admittedly a bit over educated in a bustling city, so therefore, not really your average world in America. Even if Shonda's world doesn't look like your average Latina, Black, or Asian woman's world, she's showing little girls that they don't have to be tokens.  And I think that matters the most. 

I'm not saying that there aren't People of Color out there who don't only have a group of White (or whatever) friends, and I'm not trying to negate the experiences of those folks, because they aren't tokens - asexual and unimportant, and if they are, they need to remedy that situation quick, fast, and in a hurry. I'm saying that we all need to remember as we watch and make TV, that characters shouldn't be there for color's sake. If race-neutral women of color tend to only hang out with race neutral women of color, then it's fine for that to be on TV. Friends can be both homogeneous and heterogeneous, but no one should be there to represent a color or stereotype. That brown face at the back of the screen (and yes, the Person of Color is always the furthest from center and/or farthest back) needs to actually be a person, a person with a life, a culture, a family, a sex-life, and ridiculous flaws and perfections, not a representation of nothing to keep the masses happy.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Why I Envy Amy Acker

I have a few television series that I own. I really love these series and all of them are sci-fi or fantasy (if that is the correct genre). I have some friends who also own some of them, some who wished they did, and some who find them all absurd. I love them. All. They have become my blankie. When I need comfort, a dose of the familiar, I pop in a DVD or click on a file, and I can relax and forget my troubles.

One of these series is Angel. Yes, the series about the moody vampire who once terrorized all of Europe, but now has become a dark avenger because gypsies restored his soul to ensure he lived in eternal torment for his crimes against humanity.  It's not my favorite of the bunch, but I do love it and what surprises me is the season I love the most is the final one. Its surprising because there were so many changes during this season. One character died (after half a season in a coma), another was transplanted from Buffy (I refuse to explain this), and we saw disturbing, but extremely intriguing personality changes in every single character.  One character was Fred Burkle, played by Amy Acker.  Fred was short for Winifred, and in season five, Fred died. Fred was this tiny, physics grad student who had been pulled into another dimension. In this other dimension humans were "cows" who did menial labor. Fred, the badass that she was, escaped from her captors and lived in the caves of this other place practically starving to death, but mostly surviving. In the final season of Angel, Fred is a kickass scientist at an evil law firm the Angel crew has inherited and are trying to use for good. As such, she encounters some evil that kills her. And even though it seemed impossible, Fred was really dead, all the way gone. But Amy Acker was not. Now she was Illyria, an even badder badass "Old One." A god(dess). Illyria was a couple shades of blue and wrapped in a maroon battle suit. Of course, she was disgusted with humanity and was bent on destroying us. Illyria was amazing as a god because she was unchanging - she was neither good nor evil; she was infinite and unapologetic. As a god in a human body, Illyria saw the truth, even the truth of her weakened state with crystal clarity. This means, that in all of her awesomeness, Illyria said some of the greatest lines I've heard on TV: "In my time, nightmares walked among us. Walked and danced, skewering victims in plan sight, laying their fears and worst desires out for everyone to see. This to make us laugh." And my very favorite: "Your opinion of me weighs less than sunlight."

Fred was badass, but Illyria was amazeballs! She was incredibly different from Fred, but just as Fred had to readjust to the world after her unfortunate time as a "cow", Illyria had to adjust to a world that humans ("Motes of dust. Mayflies who die so soon after they're born they might as well not live at all.") ruled, in a body that could not even contain all of her power and left her diminished. And still, Illyria remains one of the most powerful and fantastic characters I've ever seen!

I don't think I will ever stop watching that final season of Angel every once in awhile to hear Illyria's imperial and damning judgments of humanity coming from Winifred Burkle's now bluish body. And I'm envious of Amy Acker because she got to be both Fred and Illyria separately and simultaneously. Specifically Amy and not any other actor, because she got to be two masterfully written characters that were one. And, I think it's not just me. I think there are times when we all wish we could be two (or more) people. Two people that in some ways have nothing to do with each other, but at the core remain us - remain me.

I know that I am extremely blessed in this life, but there are definitely times when I wonder if this is "real" life. There are times when I'm astounded that (according to my religion), I won't get a do-over when this turn is finished.  I am on a particular path right now, and although I've encountered too many obstacles, I like where this path is going. It's a pretty decent path. But there are times when I wish I could drop everything, travel to some foreign country and just walk the streets photographing everything I see. Or drop everything and head somewhere suffering people could use my help. Sometimes I wish I'd gone to film school and now lived in L.A. making much better movies than are available right now. Hell, I'd love to be making cheesy horror movies that would never be recognized for any semblance of artistry. Sounds like a blast!

I wonder what it would be like to get married and have a few kids or to never get married, not have kids, and therefore have money. But creating a family may or may not be on my current path. That is yet to be seen. Whether it be different paths I could have taken, or the uncertainties that lie ahead, I can't help but wonder, providing the multiverse theory is correct, what the infinite number of ME is doing in the infinite universes in which I reside.  What lives am I living? It would be awesome to just get a taste of what a different life could be. And this isn't a grass is greener on the other side type of thing. I don't want to become a different me for all time, I'd just like to take a peak. Maybe slip into my different life like a new dress. And women rarely like to wear any one outfit too often.

This isn't to say that one day I won't just take off and do something completely different with my life. Maybe I will. Maybe when my bills are all paid, I'll quietly disappear and be some other version of me for awhile. Maybe the next time I vacation, I'll try on a new accent and history and see where that takes me. In the meantime, I will continue to read books, watch sci-fi/fantasy, and gaze out of windows watching people pass wondering what it would be like to know them, love them, hate them. In the meantime, I'll gaze out of windows wondering if any other MEs are gazing out of windows, or laying on yachts, or scaling mountains, or flying planes, or sleeping under bridges, or walking red carpets. In the meantime, I'll continue to follow this path that brings me joy and pain, confidence and uncertainty. I'll continue to follow this path that God and I chose together to see where He leads me and how far I can take me.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Sex with Strangers

I went out Saturday night. It's been awhile since I've wondered the city alone, and it was a good time. First I started with dinner. Catfish and grits and a couple of happy hour drinks. Every once in a while, I would crane my neck and look around, unfortunately, this bar was not situated in a way that allowed for people watching. That aside, the food and drinks were delish. I finished and decided it was on to the next.

I walked a popular street and was stopped by a barber as I glanced in his window. He told me he was drawn by my beauty, I laughed out loud. I thought he was going to offer me a haircut, as most barbers who see my short do do. But he did not, he told me he was just about to clock out and asked that I call him when I decided my destination so that we could get drinks. I took his card and said okay. He wasn't unattractive, but not quite attractive. It may seem deceitful that I said I would call when I had no intention to do so, but I've found that even when I specifically say, "No, I'm not interested," guys still ask me to take their numbers, so instead of going through all of that, I just said sure, and kept walking. After a couple of blocks, I decided to go to one of my old standbys, which meant driving several blocks away.

At Old Standby, there seemed to be no AC, mostly women at the bar, and groups on the patio, so I decided to wander the street for awhile. I hadn't walked this area in maybe a year, and there were many changes. I gazed around as though I was a tourist because so much was different and new (to me). For instance, a spot I used to hang in in my twenties, then stopped as I approached my thirties, was now populated by folks in their fifties. Wow. At the top of the street I took refuge in a bookstore I had been to before, for the books and the AC. I love this book store. The books are used and half off, which means that although the collection is extensive, it's a bit random. Also, I love my Kindle, but nothing beats that old book smell. I haven't bought anything from this bookstore, yet, but I'm going to clean them out one day. After a bit of browsing, including the "sexy vampire" section, and cooling down, I crossed the street and commenced my tourist-like gaze as I walked back down to Old Standby. Just before I walked through the door, I noticed a guy sitting with some friends who was noticing me. He had also noticed me as I drove up. He was extremely attractive, so I gave a little smile after a little eye contact and walked through the door.

It was so hot, so my goal was to drink and sit very still. I had the bartender make my newest version of a mojito, one with Jamison and ginger instead of rum and soda. I wish I could say I created this delicious concoction, but I did not. One of my fav restaurants makes it with Jamison and ginger beer. Mmmm! Anyway, I digress.  So, I had my first drink, a little too quickly, and preceded to have a couple of glasses of water. I people watched through the big picture window that was actually just empty air to make up for what I found out was a very inefficient AC unit. For awhile people came and went and I just daydreamed, I may have been on the verge of heatstroke. I decided to take a restroom break before my next drink when I ran into the guy who noticed me twice. Well, I saw him go towards the restroom a few minutes before I headed up... Anyway, he immediately said that he'd watched me hoping I'd smile at him (my little smile might actually look more like a grimace, oops!), I told him I thought I had smiled, which lead to lots of smiling and him inviting me over to his table.  I agreed, and after my restroom break and ordering my second (fourth of the night) drink, I joined him and his friends. Turns out it was his boy and three women they'd just met. Interesting. The women were Ethiopian, but living in Minnesota for school. They all turned out to be cool people, which was a relief since it's always nice to hook up with cool people when you're out wandering the city alone. But, of course, it wasn't that simple. The guy friend was married, one of the women was engaged (she was gorgeous by the way, so yay she was engaged!), which left two other women, one of which was my rival, of course. She was sitting on the other side of the guy who'd invited me over and, before I sat down, was enjoying his attention. Suffice it to say, they left about 20 minutes after I sat down. It wouldn't have bothered me if they had not left, though, as hot as he was (smokin'!), I would have been happy just hanging out with cool people. But that is not how the night turned out.

Shortly after the women left, the married guy had to get home before curfew, so my guy asked me to go to his house. Of course not. Let me set it up for you. It was 10pm, he lived in the next city over, and neither of us own a car (I had used a car share earlier, one that could not be used outside city limits). Those were the logistics. Was I actually interested in going home with him? Nope, not even a little. He was fine, no doubt. He was from Senegal, very dark skin, nice, even smile, thick lips, a bit of a button nose, beautiful dark eyes, and he had a well groomed short beard with very low hair cut. He was about 5'8" or 5'9", and muscular, but not overbearingly so. I wasn't thrilled that he asked me to come to his house, but I thought of something a pastor actually said once, "Don't get mad when he wants to sleep with you, of course he wants to sleep with you!..." So, told him it was early and he should continue to hang out with me - in public. He agreed, even though that meant he was losing a ride with his friend.

We went to another spot I really like and had another drink. And we talked, a lot. We exchanged pictures (phones) of our smaller relatives (my nephew, his nieces and nephews), and he told me I was beautiful and sexy, and when I modestly blushed (cause that's what you're supposed to do), he asked me how I felt about myself. I told him I'm awesome (we covered that last post), and he agreed. Then, in his African Prince accent (think Eddie Murphy in coming to America, but sexy), he asked me for a kiss. I gave him one and it was pretty fantastic. Shortly after that I made another restroom stop (although some say you shouldn't break the seal, I say the secret to feeling relatively sober is drinking lots of water and going to the restroom as much as needed), I asked him to dance with me and we got down as the DJ spun. So much fun and so sexy, which is why he took me aside and kissed me like he meant it. Damn, the memory is making my eyeballs roll back!  After more dancing he asked if I wanted to leave. I was sweating bullets, so I said sure. Outside, he asked his place or mine. I said neither. He said he was disappointed because he "desired" me.  Of course, I desired him, too, but I'm over the whole one night stand/casual sex thing. I could say I'm too old (for that shit), but that's not really it, because Viagra has proven that nobody is too old for sex. But, my experiences have led me to understand that sex with strangers is usually not a good enough time to take the risk(s).

First, pregnancy and STDs happen even with condoms. Second, when a woman goes home with a stranger, it's not certain that in the event she changes her mind, said stranger will oblige. Third, God said no. All that aside, what I've come to understand through my own experiences and the recounting of others' is that when you have sex with a stranger, its quite likely that things will happen that you don't like. The stranger could be an excellent person with excellent bedroom skills, but because you don't actually know each other, the stranger may like or dislike things you dislike or like. What you find abhorrent, the stranger might find delightful. What you find normal, the stranger may find tedious. Just because I enjoyed kissing this man, which I really, really did, there was no guarantee that I would enjoy inviting him into my body and that I would leave the encounter unscathed.  Had I gone ahead and invited him to my home, he did not rob me, and he was the most amazing guy in bed I'd ever met, chances are I would have never heard from him again, and would have spent the rest of my life pining after that Super Penis that got away. But, it's likely he would have just been okay and I would have spent the entire night uncomfortably awake because I don't sleep well with strangers in my bed.

I told him that I didn't want to have sex even though he was sexy as hell and I enjoyed kissing him. He said a bunch of stuff before he said, "That's your choice." We kissed some more. We walked some more. He tried to come home with me some more .. and more ... and more. I never wavered, he never asked for my number. 

The cool thing would be to say I'm not bothered. I did have a good time drinking and dancing and kissing, all in all, it was quite the excellent night, but I am bothered. Not so much that the guy was a jerk, because of course he wanted to have sex with me, but because it's expected that because I kiss a guy and do a little dirty dancing, I'm supposed to then have sex with him. I'm bothered that it seems weird (at least to some), that sex with a stranger is not automatic because I kissed him. Maybe people didn't have as thorough a high school biology class as I did, but just as the mouth does not lead to the  vagina, kissing does not have to lead to sex. Let me know if you need me to outline some differences between mouths and vaginas, because I can do that for you, or at least find a few informative links.

There are some, especially men, who might suggest that I missed out on an experience that may have blown my mind. While it is true that it may have been some to the moon and back boot knockin', it turns out that chicks are more likely to have a lovely time when they actually know the guy, so at the very least, I'm going to go ahead and wait until that third date. In the meantime, I'm good with kissing strangers.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

In This Body

Lately, I've been thinking about my body - well, constantly. Like most women, I'm on a diet that I don't follow, so I think about my body and how maybe if I concentrate hard enough, I'll be able to wish it thin. I know that doesn't work, I've been trying to do that for the last twenty years, and so far, all that works is the proper diet and exercise. And that does work, except now that I'm (a'hem) older, things are a bit more difficult. But! I'm not writing this to talk about my diet and exercise, I want to talk about my actual body.

First, I'm cool with my body - mostly. I am definitely not above the constant brainwashing that insists I will only be physically perfect after I've bought a number of products designed to make me perfect, but, let's just say I have high self-esteem. That being said, I'm going to start with the parts that could use ... improvement. My arms. Hate 'em. They are super fat and make my boobs look even smaller than they are. And my arms are this way no matter my weight. But, I do love that I actually have functioning arms, don't get me wrong. I am very grateful for my mobility. Now that that's out of my way, let's move on to my thighs. I actually love that I have giant juicy thighs, it's so a Black thing, but they're not so firm and there's, there's, don't make me say it - cellulite. Okay, I said it, damn! Moving on! My belly is next. Your average chick doesn't like her belly, even when it's relatively flat. It's just a truth in life when there are so many commercials that tell us all our bellies are automatically too fat and flabby (so try these pills, this surgery, this girdle-type thing that looks like it's made of useless nylon). Back fat. That's all I'm going to say about that.

Now, let me tell you want I love about my body. First and foremost, my booty. Man, I love my booty so much! That might read a little weird, but if you saw my booty, you'd love it too. Like my arms, no matter my weight, my booty is big - but also firm, so firm! I also love my skin color. It's a dark brown with a gold-ish undertone. Love my face. It's a good face. My eyes and lips in particular. 

I'm aware that I skipped over some body parts, but I'm hoping you're starting to get the point. While there are some parts that call for improvement, there are some parts that are just fine - as is the case with every other human being on the planet.  And yet, I've had some interesting encounters while in this body and on this journey that I thought I would share.

First, I've been fat and I've been thin and I've been fat and I've been thin and I've been fat again. Right now, I'm not my ideal and although I'm not plus size, my doctor would like me to drop a few(?) pounds. That being said, I am pretty health conscious, too many fatal conditions run in my family for me to not be, but at the same time, there are times when you get sick of working out and when you want to be able to eat the crap the skinny chick at the next table is stuffing into her pie hole, and there are times when you get sick of feeling guilty about those times.  And yet, I've felt judged on so many occasions. The funny part is that the judgment has come in both directions. I've had people ask me once I've lost weight if I really thought I could keep it off, with the unspoken part being: cause, you know  losing weight was a fluke and you have no discipline. I've had people insist that I not diet because I shouldn't deprive myself, even if diet just means not eating a cookie for dessert. Then there's the whole, "You're unworthy of happiness and love if you're overweight" message we constantly get if we turn on a TV/PC or walk down a street with a few billboards. So, I now find myself in this weird space where I have to remember that so many people expect me to devalue myself while that is the furthest thing from my mind. I am awesome, fat arms or not. It is hard to look at all the skinny (and I mean skinny, sometimes unattractively so, at least to me) chicks on TV knowing that they are a beauty ideal that I don't fit, but it would be so fantastic if people realized that most of us live in real life and what's the average woman's size (in the US) up to now, 14 or 16? Not that we shouldn't be health conscious, but c'mon, let's get real about what that really means.

Most people get the whole fat/thin thing. What I've found really interesting living is this body is that people are afraid of Black chicks. I am so serious! I've had plenty of instances where men have almost gotten whiplash turning their heads away from me to avoid eye contact and possibly a polite hello in passing (one encounter happened last week), and I've also had a man look at me quite terrified when I asked if he was single while we were talking about nightlife in the city. I thought it was a relevant question considering the conversation, clearly not. Now, at this point, you may be thinking that afraid isn't quite the word, especially when considering that these aforementioned men were Black men, but, another encounter that happened last week, involved two White men walking past two of my colleagues and myself. These White men walked past the three of us, did not step on our toes or even lightly brush our arms, as a matter of fact, we wouldn't have even noticed them had they not suddenly fallen into many apologies - for walking by us.  Now, like I said before, I have a pretty face (take my word on this) that is prone to smiling, as do my colleagues, so we were at a loss. My colleague even asked, "Are we that scary that they have to apologize for walking past us?"

Now we have to be real about stereotypes. We have all encountered "scary" black women on television, featured in programs like, "The Jerry Springer Show" and such. It doesn't help that many of them are brought to us these days via "reality" TV.  Then there are traditional characters, like the "sapphire", the Black woman who will cuss you out simply for looking her way. BUT, in the encounters I've mentioned, the men either didn't know me (or my colleagues) well enough to assume I'd fit into any of those categories or after conversation, definitely knew better. Oh, and I'm just over 5 feet tall, so um, not about to randomly attack any men. So, the fear then becomes not that I'm going to cuss them out or perpetrate violence against them, but perhaps its the fear that I might actually want them. So, these men are allowed to have self-esteem high enough to assume that I want them, even from a distance, but its assumed that I will resort to scary behavior in my desperation to have them. And all of this because I live in a brown body that isn't always thin. This seems like Bizarro World to me. Only in Bizarro world would someone value you more if your hair is someone else's hair (White girls get extensions, too!), your boobs, butt, and nails are made of plastic, and you work really hard to make sure your bones poke through your skin (that isn't layered with plastic). But, nope, that's just today's standard for women in countries where starvation is a choice.

Despite this, I'm so lucky because, like I said before, I'm awesome, and really, I'm the only person who has to know this. So, I hope no matter the body you live in, you realize your awesomeness and avoid those commercials with the nylon girdle-type thingy.