Podcast: Wailing On These Hoes

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Cuffing Season

As seen in Cognition Magazine


Well kids, it’s that time of year again. All the trees are shedding their green duds for golds, oranges and reds. There’s a light chill in the air and Starbucks is geeked up on pumpkin spice. Yes sir—it’s officially Cuffing Season and boo thangs all over are getting scooped up like so many fallen leaves. After a fleeting yet competitive Choosing Season, cut buddies are transitioning from temp to hire with the threat of colder nights and +1 parties from now until January but what I want y’all to be for real about this month is whether you’ve cuffed as wisely as you chose. I’d hate to see any of you embarrassed at Zulu Ball because you spent the whole summer bed-hopping with the fast, free and unfamiliar only to be forced to make a cold snap decision in October that you lived to lament in February. Personally, I’ve never had to deal with that regret first-hand because I don’t cuff ‘em. I catch ‘em, drain ‘em and release them back into the unforgiving wild. This of course doesn’t mean that I haven’t born witness to a slew of figurative yet painful social deaths brought on by (you guessed it) the poorly chosen cuff. Now, I’m not saying that some of you don’t genuinely adore that hood rat who behaves in public as though she’s never experienced the wonders of indoor plumbing or that whoadie who’s mind is absolutely blown by wine that’s corked in lieu of being accessed via a twist cap, but for those of you who feel like being for real, you KNOW you don’t wanna show up to your company Christmas party with THAT mutha fucka on your arm. I don’t care how good the lovin’ is, not much will help you recover from being the laughing stock of the Accounting Department. (And if THOSE cats can laugh at you, you know you down BAD, baby.) Naturally being the non-judgmental person that I am, I won’t sit here and pretend to know all of your individual mating proclivities or romantic needs, but I will help you ask yourself the right questions about who you cuffed and why.

First of all—how did you spend your Choosing Season? Were you outchea in these streets head first while taking no inventory of whose DNA you engaged or did you make eye contact with a couple people long enough to assess their character? Did you perhaps try going on an actual vertical, fully-clothed, honest-to-God DATE with ANY of these people? Ah yes—a  date. Some of you may not remember what that is but a date is when two people who kinda dig each other decide to get to know each other by having conversation in the midst of a joint activity (not sex) that allows them to interact on a mature, intellectual level. Meeting up at a bar with a gang of people does not count as a date. Light conversation between orgasms does not count as a date. All that fun stuff your moms and pops used to do before they got married like going to movies, shows and the park? Those were dates. Also, that shit you do with your best friend WOULD be a date if you both were romantically inclined toward one another but of course we know you’re not. (That one was somewhat judgmental, I admit, but in my defense, I meant for it to come off that way. Step into the light children.) One thing I’ve noticed about people these days is that actual dating has fallen by the wayside. I’m not chastising anyone because I am more than guilty of it too. All I’m saying is a date would help us better assess who we might be getting involved with so the sudden and inconvenient realization of “This dude/chick is a damn fool” doesn’t have to slap us clean across the face in a public setting.

Furthermore, if you decided to forego the dating process altogether, did you ever introduce the would-be cuff to your friends? (I don’t mean your favorite bartenders either.) One thing that may help the non-discerning gage the quality of their chosen boo is the by observing the reactions of their closet and most valued homies. True we can’t allow our friends to pick our significant others, but if they meet your potential mate and he/she is received with a chorus of “What the hells,” you may want to take a second look at that thang. Just a thought…

More important than your courtship “process”, when you chose your cuff what were your motivations? Were you scorned in the last boo draft have been determined to have your comeuppance ever since? Have your most clutch of patnahs acquired full-time bed mates to keep them busy ALL NIGHT LONG, leaving you to prowl the streets for some strange all by your lonesome? Have your siblings been telling your folks all about “The One” who the family is finally going to meet this Christmas and you simply refuse to be run through a gauntlet of degrading and invasive queries such as: “Where yours at?” “How come you never bring anybody home?” “Are you gay or just too fucked up in the head to keep some damn body?” I’ve been through all the same scenarios but none of them are good reasons to make a hasty decision in a moment of desperation that could easily last you a lifetime. (Y’all know unplanned pregnancies are a mainstay of Cuffing Season, right? Yeah… right.) Your cuff shouldn’t be picked based on some yearning to be in step with your peers or to live up to the stringent expectations of your family members. The easiest way to find yourself in a bad situation that you can’t find your way out of in one sound piece is to enter the situation with your own true desires on the back-burner. So don’t be pressed if you look up and it appears that everybody you know is cuffed this year. If your friends didn’t read this column they may find themselves lonely once again come Choosing Season 2013, you'll be back at it like you kids were never apart. And who cares if the little bro/cousin/successful overachieving sister caught ‘em one? Moms, Pops and G-Moms will have to do their very best to go on living WITHOUT all the melodrama circulating around your relationship status. They’ll get over that dumb shit. I promise. If they find themselves unable to chill on the subject of your love life, bring the hood rat/whoadie to dinner at the house and see if they ever bother you about getting married again. CASE CLOSED.

Most importantly, if you happen to be one of the lost souls who have recently been run through the emotional ringer, I beseech you to not lean on the next most willing participant as a crutch to get you through this, your Cuffing Season of discontent. Loneliness can and will find you even within the confines of a committed relationship, shug, so it would most certainly NOT behoove you to settle just because you’re using the oldest and most ineffective trick in the book to soothe an aching heart. I know you’ve probably heard this before, but let me reiterate that time spent alone doesn’t have to be filled with woe and lament. Whether we be serial monogamists or have just experienced a flash-in-the-pan heartbreak, time with oneself can be truly rewarding. There’s no better way to figure out exactly what it is that you need out of this life than to learn it from YOURSELF. They say life is the best teacher but as sometimes co-dependent creatures, we want someone else to do the learning work for us. More oft than not that surrogate takes the form of a significant love interest. When Cuffing Season rolls around, it’s difficult to resist the allure of companionship even with a broken, battered sense of self and a fucked up perception of love, but please keep that ish to yourself. Nobody deserves the lack of trust, sincerity, attention that you’re able to provide in this delicate state and you don’t deserve to torture yourself by making the hollow attempt. Sometimes, we’re just not ready for what we want and in the lean times we must prepare for the harvest although the yield doesn’t bode abundance. If there be any lovesick sports fans out there you should know that an offseason is every bit as important to an athlete as playing the game itself. The offseason is primetime for conditioning and strategy. If you can manage to stay fit in the offseason, you may be in just the right shape to take home that ring when it’s all said and done.

So if this Cuffing Season you find yourself seemingly out in the cold, don’t even trip off that, love. You’ll just have more time to get this whole self-identity ish right and put yourself in the best position to cuff the right one. And if you really don’t care to heed these many suggestions I’ve made and simply MUST have a warm body to bring to that Halloween/Thanksgiving/Christmas/Mardi Gras/Valentine’s Day event, I’m sure you have a solid regular that you can call upon at the last minute (who’s more than willing to settle for being a mere ornament). Standing cut buddy = Cuffing Season Late Draft Pick. Ain’t no shame in it, love… warranted that you can at the very least be for real.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Ratchet, huh? Okay, LL...

While engaging in Twitter banter with a homey of superior rhetorical repute, I was introduced to my latest reason to wail mercilessly on these hoes: an egregious misuse of the word "ratchet."

But seriously though... LL, you done FUCKED up nah.

It would appear that the Ladies' beloved Cool J decided to take a step backward into the shadows of popular culture, drop his True Religions and dump out this hot steaming load of misogynist crap. When I heard this last week, I assumed that the entire female population had to already be in an uproar about it, and I would be tragically behind the gun on my Wail. After a tireless 30 minute Google quest for outcry, however, I found that NO ONE had ANYTHING to say about the fact that LL has not only degraded himself with these kindergarten ass lyrics but this song is a perfect example of everything that is wrong with pop (read "rap") music today. Of all the blog posts and commentary I read, the main beef contemporaries have with Mr. Smith's latest lyrical "effort" (because I can tell he didn't really try) is that his sound is "dated" and he made a useless attempt to cling to his bygone youth and musical relevance. I have yet to read a review that mentions the negative and damaging ideals promoted in the LYRICAL CONTENT of the song. This, of course, just further goes to prove that not only do people fail to consider the messages they're taking in but music listeners could genuinely give a hoot about what you say as long as you're the right person saying it over the right beat.

In music, film, television and all forms of modern media, young women and girls (especially the Black and Latina sort) are being reduced to nothing with a perpetual barrage of imagery that would insist their worth is defined by the bulge at the bottom of their backs and the pliability of their legs. Is it true that there are some broads who would rather flat back their way out of economic slavery than go to college, hone a talent or learn a trade? Hell yes. They are called prostitutes and some of them live quite well. Am I glorifying prostitution? A little… but have I propped up the profession as much as the very SAME people who scorn it MOST? Not by far. The men/boys/fools LL emanates in this song decry women for playing games of material gain using pussy like dice are the EXACT same ones who write elegies praising these "ratchet chicks" for their ability to dance upside down on a stripper pole. So what you're saying, gentlemen, is that you mean to manipulate images of young women so that they might do your bidding only to be later demonized for fulfilling your every desire of them. Right.

Furthermore... do I detect a hint of jealousy here among the machismo of hip-hop culture? Is this direct contradiction of tastes based on contempt for women because we hold such great power in what would appear to be an unimposing weapon? It must bother you that the market value of dick has been in decline for ages. It IS a man's world after all, so it would only be fair that MALE sexuality get top billing.
(You don't get pussy whipped, do you, homeboy? You whips PUSSY.
) I would be mad too in this topsy-turvy world where the womb trumps the almighty phallus. Having a penis must be so very frustrating with a stigma embedded in every inch (or lack thereof). With great power comes greater scrutiny, I gather. No matter how bountiful your bank account, as a man you will forever bite your nails in wonder of the favorable size of your member. To combat that potential lack, the great patriarchal consciousness remains diligent in its efforts to conceptualize as many ways as it can to inflict its own insecurity upon the very reason man has been damned to live in constant fear of his nekkedness--woman. If it wasn't for Eve trolling Adam way back when we'd all be bare-assed and contented in Paradise... hence the praise/shame approach to women who take matters into their own orifices to get the best of men who elect themselves masters of all they survey. As usual... man would have us believe that we woman have brought this villainy upon ourselves. But if I may, gentlemen, I do have a few pieces of advice to impart...

If you don't like these monsters in miniskirts and Louboutins, stop building 'em homey. You want a  better brand of woman? Stop rewarding the generic ones so handsomely. You want us to stop making eyes at your wallets? Stop throwing your bank statements in our faces. It's not rocket science, man hoes. You want something better? DISCERN BETTER.

P.S: Would you people PLEASE stop comparing LL's cut to Brian McKnight's "Let Me Show You How Your Pussy Work" because quite frankly "Ratchet" is just offensive while Brian McKnight created comedy GOLD. I haven't laughed that hard since I first saw "The Human Tornado"...

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Only The FINEST of Breast Milk Baby Dolls...


As you all may know by now I have a general disdain for Bill O'Reilly and every word that spews from his bigoted mouth. Today is no different but this ONE time at least he was pointed in the direction of a valid issue even though in my opinion he assessed it in ALL the wrong ways.


Pop O'Reilly has taken issue with a breast-feeding doll that is in circulation on the European market but has offended the "delicate" sensibilities of American retailers. Boss Hog seems to think such a toy "sexualizes" young girls to the point of affront. I don't know what homey's opinions are on Barbie dolls with big boobs, anatomically ridiculous waistlines, curvy hips, long legs, short skirts and sky-high heels and what they do to chasten the millions of little girls worldwide, but something tells me he missed the mark on what is truly wrong with this breastfeeding doll: the shit is just weird as all fuck.

The problem with this toy is not that it sexualizes little girls or that it robs them of their childhood in any way. The problem is that somebody actually thought up a doll for undeveloped girls to pretend they have imaginary grown woman milk jugs and feed a tiny suckling inanimate object with them, hence "weird as all fuck." On top of that, it only further promotes the ideal that the main goal of ANYTHING with a vagina on this planet should be motherhood as though simple womanhood ain't quite cuttin' it. Are there any toys that promote fatherhood to little boys? Are there any get-a-good-job-to-take-care-of-your-family games out there? Of course not. In their play, boys are encouraged to live out fantasies not provide for and raise kids. Girls' toys encourage them to live out the patriarchal notion of a woman's fantasies (i.e., looking pretty and taking care of babies). Boys' playthings encourage them to be carefree and imaginative. Sure those toys reinforce macho ideals like being the strongest, fastest or most powerful but there's nothing in those messages about how to be an adequate father. Yet we wonder why so many young/grown men display such detachment from their children and women use their looks and their babies like bargaining chips for attention or worse, financial security.

What I dislike about the commentary surrounding the breastfeeding doll is the suggestion that Americans shy away from nursing and view it as socially unacceptable or somewhat perverse. Breastfeeding is the most natural part of motherhood. There is nothing perverse about it. What's perverse is that men, with the help of many women, have taken yet another stop toward reinforcing the idea of motherhood over womanhood. I don't have anything against motherhood but I feel like little girls have more to aspire to than being happy little baby factories. I don't have any kids myself so I don't claim to know what parents should teach them outside of making those muh'fuckas act like they have some damn sense in my presence. What I DO know is what it means to be little girl that had to clumsily work her way into the mandate of womanhood and I promise you I didn't have to practice breastfeeding on a doll to determine what these lumps are for. As a woman with her own tits I can say that one tends to figure out their many functions. I know we're trying to maintain the species but let's not get ahead of ourselves here. Before these little girls have been truly taught where babies come from you wanna throw the aftermath at 'em! That's kind of out of order don't you think? I'm not saying that this will send 10 year-olds flying into the streets to get knocked up so they can make a real baby to feed but damn... can we establish a cause THEN an effect in their young developing minds?

I do think Americans may be reluctant to engage in conversation with to their little girls on what leads up to the breastfeeding portion of the program and I can dig it. Kids that young may have a hard time truly grasping the breadth and depth of the concepts of human reproduction but there comes a time when that talk must be had. Developing structured sexual education programs nationwide to properly teach girls all the ins and outs of reproduction (don't snicker adults) as they approach/enter their child-bearing years wouldn't hurt either. With all this Maury Show and Teen Mom nonsense that would be a good move to help keep these knuckleheads from making all these damn Knucklehead Jrs. Children, male and female alike, eventually do need to learn about all the intended functions of their bodies but having 10 year-old girls wear halter tops equipped with pseudo-nipples holding a plastic baby wired for sound, suckles and all, up to their non-breasts mimicking the act of nursing is just ineffective as well as egregious or, as my sister Jacky would say, "Much too mutha fuckin' much."