Friday, May 30, 2014

The Weekly Sneak: Why the Caged Bird Sings

By the time I was coming around to her, Miz Angelou was already a Grand Dame. She had that patrician thing going on, a stentorian voice full of gravitas and particular pronunciation.  Not to mention a head of hair that essentially said: 'don't mess with me. I might be warm and loving but if you piss me off I will crack your bones and bury you where even your maker won't find you.'*

And then, you know, teenage girls discover her and suddenly catch an American accent and a deep relationship with spoken word. To this day, I can't stand hearing 'Still I Rise' performed out loud, it makes me crazy. Of course I love it, even though I think the end kind of gets soggy, but there should be a moratorium on public performances of that particular poem.** 

Anyways, so I read her books. I'm so, so glad and thankful that she wrote her biography. 

Coming to an East African near you this week:
"One greyish kind of day in Washington a couple of years ago, a woman read a poem at some guy's function. It was all about passing it forward. It was quiet and deep and I heard it. It had strength and censure and I heard it. It was simple and timeless and I heard it. So I would like to quote, in memory of Miz Angelou, just the one line of Elizabeth Alexander's offering on that day: “A teacher says, take out your pencils. Begin.”"
*Scary Feminist Hair is an old and very rich artform. Think Grace Jones. Or Hilary Clinton's perfectly sized mid-chin helmet. Et cetera.  

**She's already dead so she can't kill me and bury me where even my maker won't find me :)***

*** Actually, I would love to see Still I Rise performed with great subversion by everyone who ISN't a Black Woman. Now that, folks, would be balls. Wait, I meant to say 'art'.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Do the #CharlesBump

Hey folks, 

So Charles is leaving NMG and I would like your help in sending him off in style. If you are a reader of The East African, please double your physical consumption of the newspaper for next week's edition. If you read online, buy a paper. If you buy the paper, buy 2 copies. If you buy 2, then buy 4. You get it. It is called the ‪#‎CharlesBump‬ campaign, to register our appreciation to him at NMG where they are most likely to feel it: in their wallet  Please do it whoever you are but I am inviting Tanzanian consumers especially to help out if you can. Thank you. 


PS: in case you have ever wondered, the answer is yes. he's probably a large part of the reason why a number of us rogues and reprobates, women and youth, non-Kenyans and non-males and non-Bantus managed to find a home at NMG. He's pretty awesomesauce and I intend to embarrass him with gratitude for the coming day or two. 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Easy Does It.


First of all, thanks for letting me take a break and still coming back to check on the blog from time to time according to Blogspot's inbuilt stats thingy-majiggy. I thought for sure this thing would #dead after a few months of inactivity, but no. Y'all are generous folks as readers go, and I owe you some explanations.

I got tired and took a break. For years My Lady of the Concerned Smiles and La Dee have been hounding me to chill out and lead a healthy life-affirming lifestyle. Being a Capricorn, I ignored them because we think we're born knowing everything there is to know and advising us is a job that only the most loving, patient and non-violent folks on the planet can stand.

Well, it turns out that they are right*, and the self-imposed sabbatical has been just as sweet and healing as they tried to tell this stubborn chick. Thanks for still reading, there will be more posts coming and please remember to take the advice of those that love you. If you're a Capricorn and having trouble with it here's my contribution: just take the damn vacation, the world will still be here when you get back.


*...sigh, I am getting used to the taste of Crow.

A little birdie told me...

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