Today I quit my job! What’s next?!

Growing up in Trinidad my backyard, like many, had a ravine behind it. My brothers and sister would jump from one side, our backyard, to the other side, an abandoned plot, for exploring adventures. I was tall enough and definitely had the strength to secure my landing. But I’d always hesitate. I would be the last one to jump. Everytime. The additional pressure of being left behind in a tiny jungle would push me to take the leap. I’d land safely. Everytime.

This week I took a similar leap. I’ve been tip toeing around leaving a job that had several major push factors. However, there was always something; I don’t have time off to interview or I’m too drained at the end of the day to do applications. Really it was fear that chained me by the leg.

My predecessors lasted much shorter than my 11 months but I’d hoped things would improve. Before I started a woman was hired . She started 2 weeks before me and was out by my 3rd week. She literally had a mental breakdown one day and I never saw her again. The workload weighed heavy and she snatched her purse and ran off. We spoke briefly on a few occasions before her swift departure. She wasn’t happy. She felt disrespected and undervalued by show of her wage and the condescending talks she’d get. She shared how this job matched up to her decades-old experience of similar work.

I was about to graduate college when I started working there part time and didn’t think I’d be there very long. Most of what was said to me was irrelevant to me, or so I thought. I was getting paid a cool $14/hr and thought I was being compensated fairly.

Circumstances in my life started to change and I needed more money quickly. This coincided with the great escape of my closest coworker. I took on more hours but my boss kept me just below full time so she wouldn’t have to provide benefits. She also gave me a raise. I was excited. So I took on more responsibility in addition to what I was initially hired to do. Months passed and I snowballed, picking up more and more responsibilities. I was getting worn out but needed every cent I could garner.

My relationships with my coworkers were always rocky because of fundamental disagreements and differences. This was exasperated by the income and racial divide in place. It was an all female office but labor was assigned, seemingly, based on race. I was hoping to influence everyone and build a united labor perspective to gain fair pay and treatment. That obviously didn’t work out. I came to the conclusion that while I could sympathize with the pressure my absence would create I had to leave.

I’ll write later post on the problems I faced there because it deserves specific attention. Today, however, I’m celebrating my freedom. The opening of a new door.

Moreover, I’ve been dreaming of taking my own path. I’m not a big preacher of following dreams and all that. I’m a bit of a critic of people that gain wealth and celebrity and give great speeches on self-determination. When it really comes down to luck and privilege most times. Anyway, I’m taking my own non-advice and taking a moment to do what I absolutely love.

There are few things in this world that gives me unabashed pride. One of them is my creative mind’s ability to consistently come up with fresh ideas. Another is my natural craving to write. Yet another is my loving relationship with Public Relations. This triple power has emboldened me to take this great leap of faith and trust in the Universe.

Look out for written pieces, photos, graphic designs, drawings and every other media I can use. I hope to share intrigue, conflict and joy with you in my own voice. I will always be honest and write what I think. I’m ready to work to fulfill my ideas while remaining responsible with what I create.

The feeling of a freedom like this, regardless of how short lived, is priceless. Today I am on my own to create something I’ve imagined for over a year.

The journey has jus begun.


Women’s March Movement Takeaways

As a womanist and organizer who studied the history of the women’s movement I love to participate in women centered events. I was closely involved in two national Women’s Marches in two very different countries; the mas loving somehow still conservative island of Trinidad, and liberal but segregated New York City in the United States. Here’s what I learned:

In January, NYC held it’s now annual Women’s March, originally spurred by the election of accused sexual predator, the honorable 45th President of the United States, DJT. Mostly white upper and middle class feminist organizers staged their march on the upper west side under the organization Women’s March Alliance, separate from a multicultural diverse rally downtown, organized by Women’s March NYC. This split trickled down from a clash arising in the women’s movement about anti-antisemitism and Israeli violence. In my view class distinction played a large role as well.

Originally spurred by Tamika Mallory alleged closeness with homophobic, anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan, anti-imperialist ideology coupled with protesting Israeli violence in Palestine, leaders of the Women’s March NYC was accused of antisemitism. At the rally a black Jewish activist would explain the difference between critique and hate speech.

I was volunteering for Batala New York, an all women Afro-Brazilian percussion band, handing out fliers and making video recordings for the band. Prior to performance day, band members grew concerned from the avalanche of news coverage the division between the two women’s groups was drawing. To make matters worse, Batala’s inclusion in the uptown march felt haphazard and insincere. The massive enthusiastic crowd peered over line of police to get a glimpse of the band banging it out off to the side of the path of the march. Amused marchers stopped to take photos and videos or to dance but were hounded by police and organizers attempting to keep the flow going. It was the type of chaos that would be easily solved in brisk 30 degree weather, still police barked, “You’re here to march, right? March then!” to curious onlookers. I shook my head, saddened. Downtown a cozy group of protesters stood at the rally cheering on the unified message of solidarity while acknowledging our differences as women.

After the band wrapped up their set, a small handful agreed to bring some liberation music to the rally and we made our way downtown to Foley Square. We arrived to incensed speeches, the words echoed over the sea of pink pussy hats, hijabs and witty signs. The energy was warmer and obviously more inclusive that what I witnessed uptown. It made me wonder about the true nature behind such effort to shut down this event. The highlight was new kid on the block, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s call to action. She stood there as proof that we have to engage politically to benefit from representation in government. A fire was lit. Her message was received and the rally roared.

When the rally ended, the party started, as the Batalettes struck up powerful sounds, each taking turns to conduct in their own style. Such strong feelings of joy, love and comradarie emanated from their drums, attendees swarmed toward the sound and formed a dance circle. I was holding back tears. The fliers in my hands evaporated and I instantly understood the power of music to move people. For a moment we forgot the cold temperature and totally jammed out! We weren’t asked or authorized to be there, we didn’t ask permission, and the police kept their distance. It felt like home as the stage came down behind us.

Hundreds of miles away from NYC, on a warm clammy night a group of women gathered at Caiso House in Belmont, Port-of-Spain in Trinidad to prepare for the celebration of International Women’s Day. Music in the air we crouched over signs, computers and refreshments focused on our tasks. Some wrote empowering lyrics to popular soca songs, others made stunning posters with phrases both familiar and unique. Lead organizer, founder of Womantra, Stephanie Leitch buzzed around each team making suggestions, giving direction and lending encouragement. It was refreshing to see her calm and personable the night before such a important event.

The next day celebrations kicked off with a short welcome and a march before a diverse program. Despite little public buzz the event was well attended by those already connected to the women’s movement, progressive non-profits and government agencies. A massive truck packed with speakers boomed soca music alongside the procession. Stephanie fiercely held on to the truck with one hand and declared our power as women into the microphone in the other. 

Bileshia and Safiyyah holding up signs at International Women’s Day March in Trinidad

Unlike in NYC there wasn’t public debate or division but there was a deep divide growing at this march too. The LGBTQ community versus seemingly everyone else. The truth is “trinis” aren’t yet accepting of queer women and thus are uncomfortable in our presence. There has been a noticeable decline in Muslim attendance since the march’s inception 3 years ago meanwhile the rainbow colours become more apparent. Unfortunately, the heavily conservative Christian culture of most Trinidadians is a remnant of colonized rule. While making a lap around the Queen’s Park Savannah derogatory remarks and discriminatory attitudes could be heard coming from some Ministry employees. Their disapproval was targeted at a joyful participant donning a rainbow cape. Later Stephanie’s call to support all sisters, listing lesbians as one group, elicited groans and further disgusted “shoo-shooing”.

Tents were setup to distribute information and resources available but I found that most attendants had no interest in engaging and would often answer a question with passing you a pamphlet. While I was excited to see so many information booths I left each dissatisfied. One pamphlet about domestic violence assistance wrote, “We reap What We Sow” on the cover which left me confused and concerned. The main stage welcomed speakers of various organizations, powerful young poets and seasoned performer ​Cecilia Salazar. Themes of unity, sisterhood, empowerment and mutual support in all aspects of our lives kept us attentive and our spirits high till the end.

Pamphlets and stickers provided by various booths
I’m positively optimistic about the future growth of the women’s movement around the globe as I’ve met so many uplifting brilliant women in person and even more through research. This work continues on through women presently building off women in the past and passing the torch to the women of the future.

Comparing these two very different women’s movement marches a few similar areas of improvement crop up in my mind. These are my thoughts on growing and strengthening the women’s movement:

  1. The movement has not reached the poor. Ads mostly placed on Facebook and word of mouth in pre-existing circles does nothing to expand the pool of attendees. Newspapers and local outreach would bring greater interest in this galvanizing movement. Often only educated women know about, understand, and attend such marches that don’t address poor working class women’s immediate concerns like housing or education access.
  2. There is a growing divide that needs to be addressed with the basic principle of common interest. While women are not a monolith and we are affected by patriarchy differently depending on our race, class, occupation, education level, gender expression and sexual orientation we are better off supporting each other. We must analyze what our interest as a group and aim high and hard to reach it. This work has to include women in poverty and address their specific needs. We are sistren in this fight and cannot be afraid of inclusion or differences because that makes us stronger.
  3. The educational aspect is missing and halts progress. We must continue to empower each other with education and sharing our experiences. Pamphlets are a good start but we must examine the contents and assess if its useful and what it adds to the movement. Education comes in so many forms we can utilize like music, curated books for reduced or no cost, zines, skits and of course impassioned speeches. We can share information on commonly misunderstood topics and issues of contention. Fear comes from not knowing, lets lift the veil.
  4. Provide the larger public with tools to overcome challenges. Tools like conflict resolution tactics can reduce violence, understanding child development can teach parents what their child needs at each level of development and self-care practices to ease mental and emotional stress. Nutritional and economic tips around budgeting, home gardening and lifestyle alternatives can make a significant difference in the health and financial well being of people.

A Stapler Short Story

This is the story of a parallel world so similar to our own, you could almost say it was.

In one of the most powerful cities in all of Dreamland lived a hardworking red stapler. It loved the electric energy of Central Dreamland and had aspirations of making it big. It wanted more than anything to escape the difficulties endured in cheap off brand variety stores. The dust caused asthma and the store keeper seldom paid the items any mind until they produced a sale. No matter the discount the store keeper was eager to get the supplies off his hands. The stapler thought that if it shined up and thought happy clamping thoughts everything would be great. It was sold for three fifths of a dollar.

The city was bursting with workers and commerce, yet, plenty equipment and supplies remained unemployed, even more underemployed and a rising number turned homeless. The stapler was finding it harder than ever to live comfortably. Some offices required staplers to staple so many papers in a day it was inanimately impossible. Inevitably, they’d be fired for not reaching the stated quota and the discarded objects would be out looking for another office within a week. Other offices boasted their training programs or exposure was better than being compensated with a decent salary. Most gave the bare minimum and threw out tools that became rusty or loud over time. Every business had it’s way and the tools were powerless.

The red stapler had to work very hard to keep up because it knew that there were replacements one click away. It rested very little and worked overtime as often as was asked. It’s job was to stand atop a mundane dusty office desk and stamp down on thick papers for hours. Day in and day out the stapler stapled all kinds of papers; memos, spreadsheets, check reports, marketing data, and customer feedback. The stapler saw mismanagement, inappropriate behaviour, and nepotism on a regular basis but wouldn’t jeopardize the disappearing ground underneath it to stand up against the bosses. It felt voiceless, used and betrayed.

In earlier days, the red stapler heard stories of creating collage art and keeping essay pages in order from back to school veterans on the shelf. Now it dreamed of creating beauty as the world around it grew uglier and uglier. It started with tally lines on a sticky note which puzzled the calculator. It began attempting curvy shapes. The pens were intrigued. Soon every staple job was a X. The big boss didn’t miss the new statement X’ed on all his reports. He sent out a memo.

All office supplies are to perform their duties as asked. No need to make things pretty, we’re all adults here.

The red stapler felt silly. Everyone was talking about it and staring. It felt like not going back to work, until the pens came over to say they thought it was a nice touch. Most agreed. They began talking about ideas they had and disclosed how they felt stifled and unappreciated. The red stapler was shocked that so many office supplies felt the same way it did. It was the beginning of something. The clock ticked a little bit louder. The office continued silent.

To be continued…

My mother tongue dances

I was raised in Trinidad where language lives a wild, musical, contangarous life. “Back home” we use pronouns irregularly (she hand vs. her hand) and often shortened words/ phrases beyond recognition (inno vs. you know). Also the word “thing” can be suffixed to any simple adjective or noun to identify something we can’t be bothered with naming. Not to mention the ways we describe things in a very localized and interesting way. The official language is English (Britain was the last to colonize Trinidad before Independence in August 1962) but we still maintain this dear creole cuz fuck the British and their pretentious English grammar. There’s so much dynamics in the way we speak, so much history, that we shouldn’t water it down.

I moved to the United States when I was sixteen, as an impressionable teen I tried to adapt to the colloquial language of my classmates. If people weren’t making fun of how I talked they were gawking at me, imagining some exotic fantasy. I started talking “American” although people would still tell me 2 sentences into a conversation, “Hey! Is that an accent I hear? Where are you from?”. The most embarrassing was, “Can you speak slower, I can’t understand what you’re saying”, “Your accent is so strong when did you move here” or my most hated, “Do y’all speak English where you come from?”.

I worried about keeping a job when people couldn’t understand me. I worried that I’d love someone who couldn’t fully understand my uninhibited tongue. Could their words limbo with mine?limbo

Fast forward to today when my accent has wowed every employer that’s taken me on and gotten me out of a ticket with police. I’ve learned to let people hear me and appreciate the beauty of my native words. Beyond any privileges my different-ness has allowed I love my country, my people, and my language. It’s a real intimate thing that sixteen-year-old me couldn’t appreciate. But I’m glad I do now.

I think about all the yanky-doodle things I hear on a regular basis in America and how Uzo Aduba wanted to change her name to make it more palatable to white people.

I can’t say how many times I was saying something and stopped short to change the words in my head so I’ll be better understood. But I’ve learned over the years that if you give people a chance they can learn to understand you. They have to. I have to make them. People of the global south have compromised so much throughout our history that its almost second nature. We bend backwards to speak in a way white people (mostly) can understand while compromising what we REALLY want to convey. My full flavoured language has a body that cannot be diluted thin enough for white anybodies to digest. And I will not force it to. I also will not stop using flavoured/ coloured/ favourite/ amoung or any other British words cuz it’s “the oppressors language and that’s cultural appropriation”. Fuck that. I’ll use oxford commas as I please because my language isn’t for “correct” spelling/ grammar, its a historical record and we’ve more than paid for the rights.

Playing with Fire

Out of boredom and sexual constipation I downloaded Tinder and although I decided I didn’t want to hook up with the folks on there I still had a blast and learned a lot.

Tinder is well known for a very specific reason. Its an app to get single people with somewhat similar interest that live close by together for anything from relationships to 10k followers on Instagram. The way the app works is that you sign in using Facebook, it grabs a collection of (admittingly pretty cool) photos of you to put on your profile. It also list your job, school or both. Everything can be edited if you don’t like the pictures Tinder chose or if you want your job and education to remain private. It’s up to you to come up with a interesting but clear bio of what your looking for. It’s also very easy to make people run (or swipe) in the opposite direction.

This post isn’t referring to EVERYONE on Tinder, but it is a pattern of behaviors I’ve notice during my time Tindering. The following is the quickest ways to lose right swipes on Tinder. Take notes.

  1. If you are a 27 year old and your photo look like you took it with a Blackberry. Issa DUB! If you’re TRYING to attract people to your whole self please deviated from the under-chin, puffer faced grandpa selfies. You look like you don’t know what a smart phone is and the camera surprised you.front camera seal
  2. J.Cole said don’t worship false prophets so steer clear of the fake deep people on Tinder. These types usually have some vague quote in their bio that doesn’t tell you anything about who they are or what they are looking for. It’s meant to be an indication of intelligence but they just sound high and like they’re trying too hard. severe eyeroll
  3. Folks that try to “sell” themselves based on what they think you want will be swiped to the left, to the left, with swiftness. These Tinder salespeople, as I like to call them, talk about how cool, open and adventurous they are. Somehow every time you hit them up they been in the house all day. These are the types that only like food they mother made and scared of role play. Boy bye.giphy.gif
  4.  You know the people who have been on Tinder too long with no luck because their bio is angry and standoffish. LMAO who do you expect to attract with that thick coating of salt! Relax, no need to give suitors deadlines to hit you up once y’all match. Besides if it hasn’t been working out my guy, it might just be you.Lafaette sips tea.gif
  5. There’s also folks who, for hours, will talk about what they do “for a living”. Honestly, you sound like a scammer asking how much a person makes or what benefits they job provide. You could be proud of your job, that’s cool, but I mean is that all you bring to the table? People want to meet *insert name* not *insert profession*. Unmatch.bored to death.PNG
  6. And what is a hook up app without fuckboys? You can spot them if their bio says their nationality, horoscope, height or is just an array of emojis. Sometimes all of the above for good measure. Fuckboys come in all shapes, sizes, races and genders so don’t assume only fine Puerto Rican dudes are gonna waste your time.fuckboys.jpg


Have you been or do you know people that have been described in this list? Share it on Facebook, Twitter and if you’re on Tinder maybe this info will help you match more. See ya!

Who’s Your Revolutionary Heroine?

Women’s History Month Edition

The history of struggle and revolution has never been without women. These revolutionary women have varying points of view, end goals, personalities and backgrounds that many of us can identify with. But sometimes their politics might differ slightly or you think you’re just too different to recognize your champion.

I found mine and I want to share who she is with you. It is Women’s History Month after all, right?

The spirit of Claudia Jones guides me to be a tool for change, resistance and progress for marginalized communities. She was a Trinidadian born, revolutionary communist and feminist who was heavily involved in grassroots activism. She became active in Harlem, New York and was involved in the Young Communist League, Congress of American Women, National Council of Negro Women.

She understood and used the power of her journalism to battle injustice. She encouraged Afro, Asian and Caribbean people to resist imperialism and global exploitation because of her Pan-African ideas. She recognized that class exploitation, white supremacy and male dominance all needed to be addressed all at once to prevent false consciousness. To me, Claudia sees the big picture and instead of giving up because the problems were so complicated and grand, she continuously pushed towards a “socialist America”.

She is known for popularizing the idea of triple oppression within The Communist Party. The idea explores how black women are at a three way hinge of gender oppression (often within the race), racism, AND class struggle. Whew! It also acknowledges that black women need to lead the fight for change in all these systems. Don’t assume she expects black women to do all the work but understand that white women only set out to accomplish political and socio-economic equality with white men. Likewise black men fail to understand that white supremacy doesn’t account for gender discrimination and/or abuse within a race (black or white). Also black women experience poverty different because of this triple oppression.

She strongly believed that black women had to do the work for themselves and not be afraid of taking the lead where black men or white women imagined responsibility.She shared her views on race and class as fascism within American capitalism knowing it would land her in jail. And it did. She was described as being left of Karl Marx because she believed capitalism alone didn’t account for sexism and racism. After her health deteriorated while incarcerated she was released and later deported to England. She died in London and is buried literally left of Karl Marx  in Highgate cemetery. Her ideas were so well rounded, thought out and studied that you HAVE to at least read her most popular work, An End To The Neglect of The Problems of The Negro Woman.

I smiled reading about this incredible woman because I saw so much of myself in her. Sometimes I question my efforts for social change in the US when my home country has problems of it’s own. Claudia Jones’ life, however, revitalizes me and serves as a reminder that problems must be tackled at the intersection. American influence over the global south gains it’s power from capitalism so it must be uprooted…and then progress can happen around the world. At least I think so.

Claudia may (or may not, that’s cool) hit you as close but there are thousands of women to draw inspiration, guidance and knowledge from. Before March is up and we’re on to pulling cruel “pranks” on people, find your revolutionary heroine. Tell me who it is and why in the comments. #revolutionaryheroinechallenge


Notes taken from my brain & Lynn, Denise. “Socialist Feminism and Triple Oppression: Claudia Jones and African American Women in American Communism.” Journal for the Study of Radicalism, vol. 8, no. 2, 2014, pp. 1–20.,

We’re ALL #HurtBae IRL

We’ve all seen the heart wrenching video of an ex girlfriend talking to her cheating ex-boyfriend courtesy of The Scene. The internet world moves fast so as a refresher; the girl confronts the cheating ex dude and it gets emotional (on her part). She cries as she reflects on their tragic time together as ole boi is chilling seemingly unaffected.

Social media didn’t waste time. They made parodies, found her Instagram and hailed her beauty, but mostly they pointed out how they would act “if it was me”. Everybody had an opinion. Women and men alike saying she’s dumb for not leaving him or how could he cheat on such a pretty girl (which is a whole other story). People’s imaginary situations made it seem like they were so strong that they would never allow a partner to hurt them.

But that’s sooooo not true. We all hurt and more times that not we put up with it.

Our partners hurt us and it isn’t always related to infidelity. Here’s 6 ways a partner can hurt you and still hold the Bae😘❤ title.

  1. They aren’t emotionally available– Speaking from experience mental health issues can be a factor in the lack of emotional availability your partner can provide, that’s something you can’t help. I’m talking about people who don’t have mental health issues but feel distant. Your partner may be waiting for a way out or is preoccupied with their own personal problems so the relationship suffers. You might feel lonely, rejected, unimportant, unloved, or you might feel empty.
  2. They aren’t dependable– In any working relationship everyone involved depends on the other(s) for emotional, physical, financial or religious support. Sometimes all the above. Think of a time when you counted on your partner and they let you down. Like, they were supposed to pick up the kids and they forgot. My parents are personally guilty of this😔. If your partner is consistently fucking up, is it worth it? Like overspending on the monthly budget every month or not putting in work in the bedroom. Being with someone who doesn’t have their shit together isn’t easy.
  3. They don’t have the same plans– You might be thinking long term but your partner is here while it’s good. Your mind is on vacation spots for the next year and your partner is planning for next Friday. You might want to travel the world but your partner needs someone more stable. As relationships mature one may want to explore their sexuality (maybe with multiple partners) while the other is uncomfortable with their partner’s curiosity. That doesn’t make them (or you) a bad person but it does mean you both have different #relationshipgoals.
  4. They get into drama– Particularly for LGBTQ folks in the closet, they have to walk a fine line between their relationship with their boo and their family/work/friends. First, your partner has to be able to keep a secret and secondly they have to be okay with being the secret. But on a less serious note, some partners may get into problems and cause beef. Then you and your auntie ain’t talking cuz your boo dissed her food. Messy. If your other half is always starting drama you might want to reconsider being with them or you’ll never get invited to Christmas dinner.
  5. They are a work in progress– Often times we get into relationships with people who are very different from us, be it maturity, intellect, house keeping habits, etc. However, what once drew us to these alien folk begins to drives us crazy after a while. I think women in particular hatch this plan of getting a regular degular and ‘cleaning’ them up in hopes of creating the perfect partner. Like K Michelle said, “Can’t raise a man” Relationships are hard enough tbh.
  6. They don’t give you the love you want– Know that nothing you do obligates your partner to do ANYTHING and vice versa. While relationships are about compromises you can’t make someone treat you better by treating them like royalty. Everyone expresses their love differently so if you need someone to hold you day in and out, you must seek out someone who gives love in that way. The flip side to that is they gotta be pleased by the way you give love also. For example, some want to receive love through gifts, while they give love with kind gestures. The compatibility has to go both ways. If the partner giving the gifts isn’t happy with kind gestures they aren’t receiving love in that relationship.

See? There are worst things your partner can do to hurt you besides cheating. Kourtney Jorge a.k.a #Hurtbae seemed to bounce back just fine after floundering for so long with Leonard so there’s hope. Obviously there are other things a partner can do to hurt you but I decided to focus on the problems that don’t get discussed often. Comment below of anything I missed that you think should be on the list.

When and Where I Enter (a no phone distractions reading)

Well hey, it’s Black History Month so we gonna get into some Black literature and Black feminist thought (mine to be specific). An old man lent me this book in a totally non-weird situation and I’ve fallen in love with it. So instead of saying he lent it to me let’s say he GAVE it to me. My first thoughts were to write an analysis or reflection of the brilliant work of Paula Giddings’ When and Where I Enter. But page after page went on and it was saturated with potent points on the intersectionality of race and sex that no analysis (unless its a graduate thesis) would do justice to it. So instead I decided to write about me reading the book. I’m a millennial so ofc- me. Anywho, I think everyone and anyone needs to read this book, completely undisturbed, and I’ll tell you why.

*Sparkly transition in to a flashback* Like last week my phone was stolen and due to overwhelming anger and low funds I refused to buy another. I swore I’d live like the ole days and listen to performers and beggars on the subway or pay attention to where I was walking. That didn’t exactly make my day so I pulled the old man’s “donation” out and took it with me to work. As a twenty-three year old I usually read with headphones in for white noise so I can focus on my reading. Well I’ve found that I’ve been doing it wrong! I read a lot more and gained a deeper understanding of what I was reading when Drake isn’t crying in my ear at the same time that Patricia Collins was filling my brain.

Part I opens with a powerful ass quote from Toni Morrison that would make a great bio for a dope black women empowerment Instagram page. It says”…she had nothing to fall back on; not maleness, not whiteness, not ladyhood, not anything. And out of the profound desolation of her reality she may well have invented herself.” Sheesh! I read this over and over and felt the truth hit my core each time. The ideology of a strong independent Black woman can be an entire college program and Giddings would definitely be required reading. If you think about it, Black women don’t take after anyone or anything but themselves. We create, we take charge, we defy and we protect ourselves and others (even those who don’t have our best interest at heart). When and Where I Enter erected a pride and respect for Black womanhood that I was merely familiar with.

Everyday I squeezed onto the 2 train, and whether I was sitting or swaying with the sharp turns of the reckless conductor, I was glued to sentence after sentence. Giddings made use of every word, each one had a real impact on the entire text. There was so much history and stories of Black women killing it that I found something fresh and new to love as these complex womens’ lives were shared with me in 357 pages. And don’t get me wrong, I didn’t just absorb everything the book expressed without critique. In my head I was making counter arguments paragraph by paragraph but the chapter wouldn’t end without addressing my thoughts and setting me at ease.

But more than the theoretical, critical and historical (supa-hot)fire Giddings laid out was her unapologetic sass framing her honest and intelligent research. I would be snapping my fingers with one hand, clutching the text with the other and “mhmming” from the Bronx to midtown Manhattan. I gave no fucks about my fellow confused straphangers. Lowkey Paula and I were politicking through the yellowed pages. I caught myself laughing out loud at some points, smirking at her wit but also feeling deep sharp pain reading the cruelty she documented.

I hope this has convinced you to get acquainted with Paula Giddings and all the Black women she features in her book like, Maria Stewart, Ida B. Wells, Mary Church Terrell, Susan B Anthony, Anna Julia Cooper and soooooo much more. If not, at least silence your phone while reading for a more comprehensive interpretation

First blog post- Ayyy!


My name is Safiyyah …um, I started this blog as a way to express my opinions, experiences and talk about my life. I love writing and discussing topics ranging from sex and health to relationships, activism, the arts and politics. I avoided sticking to a niche category because I wanted this blog to serve as a complex representation of Black people, queer identity and political affiliation. Fuck stereotypes tbh. No one exist as just a Democrat or a gay person or whatever other identity they can take on. We are all full blown humans with unique interest, talents and energies.

I share a little in the about page but I’m a pansexual Afro-Caribbean woman living in New York City so my blog will cover topics from my perspective.

I hope you enjoy my content, I hope to improve- It’s gonna be great! Check out my other social medias and comment or w.e. ILY.