The Post Game Show

Thursday, July 31, 2008

365 Days

I remember driving down to Delaware State University that morning in my mom's Chevy Lumina with a troubled frame of mind, but a hopeful heart.  After a little over five years of campus living, the last three pretty much in an apartment-style setting, I was moving back home because my last two classes at Delaware State University only had two weeks to run and I hadn't secured a job as of that time.  I dreaded going home because of a mass amount of drama at my mother's house, not to mention I cherished what freedom I had at DSU, even though I couldn't stand my recently departed roommate.

The new tenant of the place, a Sigma known as R&B Bill was very cool to me in the few days leading up to my move so I was glad to not have to worry about some foolishness moving out.  The physical move didn't take very long at all.  The mental and emotional move was something altogether different.   I had to worry about how I was going to adjust, if I was going to be home forever, if I would keep the weight off....

365 days later...I live on my own, I work in my field, I'm 150 miles south of home, lonely as can be, but my life is peaceful.  They do say time flies when you're having fun or in the real world, and the two are indeed polar opposites of each other, but I never thought my life would change so drastically from one year to the next.

I think I just made up my mind last year that I was going to be successful and make things work at all costs because I had no responsibilities and nothing to lose.  What was the worst that could happen?  A few months at home?  Working in my field part-time while holding down a boring full-time job? Small potatoes in the grander scheme of things.

As Duck said in an entry of mine not too long ago, my last year or so has been marked with professional growth and now is the time for me to get on the personal growth.  I'm back on track with exercise and diet (1000 sit-ups a week along with the basketball, am I crazy?!) and I keep my hair cut low and my face clean shaven.  My complexion comes out better that way, LOL...while I'm thinking twice about making The Art of Seduction my dating and intimate Bible (thanks for the perspective, Miz!), I do know that it will take some effort and developing some sort of charm or courage to put my personality out there to attract women.  A year ago, I would've denied anything was wrong with me, but now I know it is indeed a two way street.

I actually dribbled around the court for about 15 minutes this morning, not shooting, not making any cuts to the basket, just pacing near the foul line, dribbling, thinking, contemplating, smiling.  I knew that while life is never going to be perfect and my past wasn't that bad, I'm happy with the present and the future that I have in store for me.  My, what a year's time can change.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Home Is Where The Heart Is

"When I think of home, I think of a place..." If you could hear me sing that in my best Stephanie Mills voice, then you KNOW what I'm talking about. Around this very time 2007, I was preparing to move all of my belongings out of my campus apartment at Delaware State University and heading back home, due to my lease ending at the end of that month and that I would be finished my final two classes in a little more than two weeks time. I felt like a failure in returning to my mother's house, a job after my imminent graduation unsecured. I was so anxious to get out on my own, so driven to leave the small-but-big city atmosphere of Wilmington, DE that I literally jumped at the first job that was offered to me. Close to 10 months later, I've learned from that mistake, and it is one I will never make again. I could rail against where I live now, but I'd rather remember home.

I'd rather remember my evening walks into downtown Wilmington, chaperoned by police cars and security units on bikes, desperate to keep the burgeoning business and arts district violence and crime free.

I'd rather remember the morning walks past one of the many banking headquarters in Wilmington down to the train station magazine store, picking up a new copy of KING magazine.

I'd rather remember REAL Philly Chicken Cheesesteaks from Hot Spot's on Miller Road.

I'd rather remember driving close to an hour from Wilmington to Dover to get my haircut at Jaze, the best barbershop in the state's capital.

I'd rather remember going to a Thursday night football game for the first time as an alumni of Delaware State University and having people go "wow Chris, you HAVE lost weight!"

I'd rather remember Rita's...sweet Rita's and her water ice.

I'd rather remember Philly girls. I miss my Rasheedahs, Aishas, Aleeshas, Kims, LaToyas, Shakimas, Lachelles, Janelles and Aliyahs. And yes, I miss their real, take-no-ish, this is me, I'm loud and proud with my dyed hair and Philly attitudes. So very real.

I'd rather remember CBS3 Eyewitness News with Angela Russell at 4 on the weekdays, Anne Marie Green on weekend mornings and Mary Stoker Smith on weekend nights.

I'd rather remember DirecTV at mom's crib. Boomerang and ESPN Classic all day, everyday.

I'd rather remember my first freelance assignments for two different newspapers in the same day.

I'd rather remember the Quiet Storm with Tony Brown on 105.3 WDAS FM...which I'm about to listen to online right now.

Oh, how I wish I could go back. But I need a job to open up that way in order for me to go back. From my mouth to God's ears, hopefully. In the meantime, I'll just reminisce and think of a way to get back to an area where all my family, friends, and real memories are located.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Book Review, or "It SEEMS easy, but...."

Before I begin, I must confess. Jameil was right. That poem was not about any particular woman, it's about the ongoing war between me, myself and I. So no faithful readers, I'm not in love, not in a relationship, not talking to anybody. Still in the same spot as I was before. Hopefully this book that I'm reading can at least assist in moving the process forward.

On a message board I frequent for reasons that can't be named, I came across a PDF file of Robert Greene's The Art of Seduction. Now, I had heard about this book before, not sure if anyone ever suggested I read it, but being a true bookworm, I'll gladly read anything once. That thinking came back to bite me in the behind when I picked up that book about brothers going to Brazil, but I digress.

Anyway, The Art of Seduction enchanted me from the foreword on. Greene expertly details the different types of successful seducers, gives famous examples of these types of people, what their strengths and weaknesses are. One that stuck out for me was the Demonic Rake, and the famous example was gossip journalist-turned WW I fighter pilot Gabriele D'Annunzio. He was considered, by late 19th century/early 20th century standards to be an unattractive man of no real wealth and was an annoyance to socialites and royalty who wanted to keep their business out of the streets.

So unattractive was D'Annunzio that these guys felt like he could be around their wives with no problem. Surely, a lowly, ugly journalist could NEVER draw any interest from beautiful, rich, high-society women. Well they shouldn't have left their girl 'round G, true playa fa real, ask the homey Pharrell! He would lavish the ladies with compliments tailored to their strengths, write passionate poems and letters to them, speak in this voice that couldn't help but captivate and boom...the knickers were his.

The similarities between Gabriele and Chris are there. For one, the original profession. Except I don't deal in rumors and innuendo, I deal with stats and scores (and how I love it!). Two, although a lot of you think there's nothing wrong with me physically, I feel inadequate when measured up against the tall, not-so-dark and handsome guys in shape that women can't get enough of. The similarities end obviously with Gabriele having the swagger to work these women into a frenzy with his words, in voice and on paper. I sighed longingly when I read that vignette about him because it seemed like he was an Italian me, but I just don't have the confidence to do what he did.

Another one of interest was "The Dandy." The Dandy is a person who is not held down by the ideal gender roles they are supposed to play in life, making for a flexible, androgynous character that appeals to the intended target. Damn, if that don't sound like my boy Prince. For about 30 years now, guys have wondered what women see in a 5'2 guy who wears high-heeled boots, some make-up and has a voice that doesn't necessarily scream macho. Well aside from being the most talented dude to pick up any musical instruments Post-Disco, his Dandy characteristics appeal to women who like to see more of themselves in men. Prince picked up on that, and he's been banging some of the hottest women in showbiz for YEARS. I don't think the Dandy method of seduction is for me, but I do see how it's worked so well for His Royal Badness.

Of course, for every Seducer, there is...the Anti-Seducer *dramatic music* And there are eight different types of anti-seducers that repel folks, and I fit a couple of these types. One is the Brute, and it's not as bad as it sounds. The Brute is basically someone who is impatient. That's apparently what makes for good seduction, the anticipation, the pursuit, things like that. I know I'm impatient, hence my issue with women wanting to get to know me or just be friends.

The Bumbler is definitely me, like I might get close here and there, but the Brutish tendencies tend to, well....bumble the opportunity to seduce. And yes, the Tightwad. One reason I don't date? It ain't cheap. I did say in my letter to myself that I had to stop thinking of dating as tricking or trying to buy a woman, but it just seems like "you want me to pay for this and you might not even be interested in me? HA!" Yes, I have a long way to go.

Greene also outlines victims, 18 in all, that would-be seducers should hone in on and go for the kill. I fit the mold of The Disappointed Dreamer. My dreams of being adored by women for just being myself have not come true, hence my feeling horribly about myself. Another one might be the Drama Queen, but I prefer to change it to King, thankyouverymuch! O.K., so this one IS me. I've been hurt, can't let go, and hold everyone else responsible for it. I'm still learning and still growing, so I can admit I've probably bumbled a few chances because I didn't get my way right away and it reminded me of another situation, probably at Del State, that went terribly wrong. And I'm also The Professor, who tends to over-analyze everything. Nothing else needs to be said about that one, LOL.

Finally, Greene gives the 24 steps to seduction, which pretty much involve pursuit, falling back, making your victim chase you, and then going for it all. This is where I really sighed and was drawn in because it seems like something anyone could pull off. It takes confidence, self assurance, a game plan, patience and a willingness to please. I only have the last one. If I could get the first four in my life, I'd have better luck dating and all.

I think that's why The Art of Seduction reeled me in the way it did - It was supposed to. I could not lose my place when I went to work briefly last night, so I left that page open on my computer, and when I was done covering the softball game, I came right back to the house and kept reading. That's what a good seduction does, keeps the person interested so they can feel comfortable and then you draw them in even further. That's a skill I wish I had, and maybe this book can help me develop it, somehow.

Saturday, July 12, 2008


You don't love me, and quite frankly and that's sad
after all we've been through
the good times we've had
this union was destined to stand true
we're supposed to be inseparable
but there's a war going inside none of us are safe from
the damage could be irreparable
the heartache we share is second to none
We can fix this, we need to fix this, we owe to ourselves
I love the mere thought of loving you and no one else
Yet you deny me like a child out of wedlock, and your love you refuse to surrender
You promised to be gentle, you knew my emotions were tender
Still you walk away when I ask you to come close
You said you'd love me more, but you end up hurting me the most
I don't know where we went wrong, but I'd love to go back in time to stop the strain
because right now my heart can't take too much more of this pain
When I look at you, I see all the great things that make me love you
And as your reflection, I hope and pray
that one day,
you'll look back and see those things in me, too.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Weekend's Almost Over

Considering this week has the potential to be seriously busy at work, I figure I may as well post. About what? I don't know, so this might be all over the place, but one thing I pride myself on doing is if nothing else, I entertain and educate through this here blog...edutain, if you will *wink*

Let me start by saying that I've always been willing to admit my flaws, and my obsession with getting those flaws out there has contributed to my ongoing battle to gain self-confidence, I know that. However, one thing I won't allow is people coming at my neck and trying to embarrass me in pathetic attempts at revenge. This person knows good and hell well that I'm talking about them, and since you compared me to a monkey who flings feces when he's angry, let me chuck one last handful of number two your way; For someone to be older than me, you act like the very immature and childish trollups that have made my life a living hell. Say what you want about me and my perceived lack of understanding, but your pitiful little comment is Exhibit A why things fell apart before they even started. So feel free to go find another blogger to stalk and lead on. This particular bank is closed.

In other news, the longer I'm away from home, the more I realize that I had to grow and move sometime. While I'm less than thrilled with things right now, the truth of the matter is living in my mother's house and still working part time would make things even worse. There is the blessing of coming back to an empty apartment where I commence to turning on my kind of music without any problems, a place where I'm free of unexpected annoyances except for me stubbing my toe every 10 seconds. That, along with losing weight again, are the two little things that make me smile. Well that, and a haircut.

I'm not a Tennis guy (obviously unless Venus and Serena are playing), but today's Wimbledon Men's final was the stuff of legend. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal engaged each other in a battle that obliged us with seven hours and five sets of non-stop action. Nadal finally won something on grass, ending the Rog's five-year run as men's champion. There are some moments in sports truly justify ESPN branding them an instant classic, and this was sho'nuff one of them. I'll still take an NBA game from the late 70s-early 80s as must see ESPNClassic stuff though, LOL

I'm having a ton of thoughts about my professional future and where this road leads me. Hopefully not to a dead end...things are so crazy now, only God knows where all of us in this particular business are headed, but I really can't see myself doing anything else, so I hope to make it work and survive.

I do believe my thing for plus-sized songstresses has taken on a life of its own. First there was Jilly from North Philly, then came my other boo Chrisette Michelle. Now there's another Philly girl burning up the airwaves with her husky voice, and that's Jazmine Sullivan. You might've heard her song "Need You Bad," with the bootleg Patois spoken word and Missy Elliot-produced reggae riddim. If not, I'll be kind enough to hit y'all off with a link to listen to it. She has an amazingly solid voice for 21, and it turns out she's been holding it down for a minute, this is her big break of sorts, being signed to J Records, which is like Superstar Central and having Missy producer her lead single is major. Hopefully she'll make it and bring some more soul to the game.

Well that pretty much covers it, I figured I owed you guys something before I start a hellacious week of work, but as is the case with a lot of things I deal with, they turn out to be not so bad. I hope that's the case this week.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008 it me you're looking for?

The question comes up often when my well-meaning friends, associates and colleagues are kind enough to listen to my worrisome situations. A question that makes sense in the eyes of many, but has yet to be answered legitimately by yours truly. A question that needs to be answered if I'm ever going to get the ball rolling and start doing what normal people do, I think they call it dating.

"Chris....what type of woman do you like? What are you really looking for?"

I've never really figured that part out. Sounds really silly in the grand scheme of things, right? Well...take a walk with me. Y'all love to do that, right? Cool.

At first glance, I seem to be the (African) American dream in terms of what a single heterosexual male has to offer. College-educated, no children, a career that he enjoys, and his own apartment and automobile. However, at the risk of igniting Jam the realist (it's all love!), I will say that I think back to the Chris Rock special where he was like "Whaddya want? A cookie? 'I take care of my kids...' YOU SUPPOSED TO! LOW EXPECTATION-HAVING MOTHER****ERS!" So I don't hold myself up as being better than this man or that man because I did this and am currently doing that. Don't get me wrong, I'm proud of what I've accomplished so far, but I know it's not enough to keep a woman around for any length of time. Those are intangibles that merely serve to get her at least interested in talking to a man.

I think that's where the trouble for me begins because while I have those nice things going for me, I honestly feel that a woman who has HER stuff together could never be interested in me. The thing is, I know black women who've got it going on. My lady friends in Bloggerland and other places are beautiful, intelligent, educated, gainfully employed women who hold their own and don't need a man to survive. Yet and still, they are my friends and of course THEY'RE going to be kind to me...they care about a brother and if he can get it together personally. Who's to say a woman with their same characteristics, yet isn't familiar with me, is going to feel the same way? And everybody's like "well you should go where the women who've got it together hang out at!" And they would be right, but I end up being my own worst enemy because I don't feel I measure up aesthetically to what that type of woman, as dynamite as she is, prefers her mate to be.

So while shying away from women with careers, goals and homes of their own, I find myself chasing after women with multiple baby daddies, living at home with their parents, couldn't care less who Toni Morrison is and use slang and sailor talk all day long. While I may get lucky in a physical sense with them once in a blue moon, most of the time, those are the women who are the ones calling me out of my name and trying to play me for a fool. Now I know you're saying, "well Chris, wouldn't it make sense to stay away from these skip skap skallywop skanks?" (You can thank Vdizzle for that terminology, LOL) Yes it would, but there's that self-imposed wall again.

You only go after what you feel you deserve and/or what you think is easiest to get. It's like that age-old e-mail forward that says the best apples are at the top of the tree, but guys won't climb because they're afraid they'll fall and get hurt (send this to every girl you know who is a good apple and you'll have good luck in a week!...kidding). I'm that guy who is aware of where the good fruit is, but MAN, those branches are a long way up there. So I reach for the fruit that's been there a minute, but is indeed within reach and then I have the nerve to be surprised when the doggone thing is spoiled and sour. Not a good look.

So the obvious solution is one that I've struggled with since at least 16 years old...find some self-esteem and get out there and go after real women, not to mention stop trying to force the square peg in the round hole in terms of sex jumping off. I'm ready to start that process. I owe that much to myself.

So I guess as of July 1st 2008, Chris is looking for self-love, self-acceptance, self-esteem and self-confidence. Then he'll start trying to identify where the good women are hiding. Then again, who's to say they've been hiding at all? Maybe I've just been hiding from the group of women who've been waiting for me to come to my senses for quite sometime now.