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I'm glad you are global.  That's what I like to see.  In my travels, that's the one true thing I've discovered.  We are all women, no matter where we come from.  We suffer the same pains and joys, we speak the same language without having to open our mouths.  It was a delightful discovery for me as I have women friends from all over the world, made up of many races and ethnic groups.  This is one of the many things I love about technology.  We can connect without meeting, physically.  Also thanks for the update.  That's always fantastic to see/read!

13 hours, 51 minutes ago on BB&W Continues to Touch the Lives of Black Women Across the Globe…

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@ShunJack What a beauty!

1 week, 4 days ago on If You’re Single….Get a Dog!

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If you love dogs, have always wanted one and you have the time to cuddle with, run with and play with a dog, get one.  I have two words for you: dog park.  When I took our dog to the dog park, I used to have all kinds of men approaching me and asking me questions about the dog and myself.  She was a rescue greyhound, friendly but not overwhelming.  I'm married so it was all about the dog, for me, but I had a ton of conversations with men when I took her there.  I would play with their dogs and always had treats in my pockets.  They all soon recognized that I was truly a dog person so that was a plus too.  I'm not saying to use the dog as a man magnet but if you love dogs, it's amazing how they can be just that.  Here's a picture of our baby, who is now gone:

1 week, 5 days ago on If You’re Single….Get a Dog!

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@Geekette221B Thanks for finding something useful in my narrative.  My husband makes it easy to say I love being married.  I loved my single life too but he has made these years so worth that big step and I have no regrets whatsoever!

1 week, 6 days ago on Open Forum: Okay; We Know White Men Married to Black Women are 44% Less Likely to Divorce. But Why?

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@mzsunshine Thanks so much for the acknowledgment.  I do share when I feel I have something of value to say and hope it helps even one person.  People don't realize that marriage takes work to make it successful.  Couples can choose to either grow together or grow apart.  My mom, who was married for 49 years to my dad (he died 8 days shy of their 50th anniversary), says that marrying one's best friend is half the battle.  I took that to heart and it has served me well.

1 week, 6 days ago on Open Forum: Okay; We Know White Men Married to Black Women are 44% Less Likely to Divorce. But Why?

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I'm not much on slow jams but Monsieur Nov's "Trop Fresh" is fantastic.  I love the lyrics... very soulful and sweet.

1 week, 6 days ago on R&B and Hip Hop Asian Artists Featuring Black Women: Is it Good?

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I do believe that commitment is the key and can attest to it.  My husband and I are going on 22 years of marriage.  In case people don't know it, we spent the first four years of our marriage living apart due to needs of the United States Navy.  Right after we "fit in" our marriage, in San Francisco, he went to a squadron in Hawaii and I was at the Naval Postgraduate School in California.  I saw him every three months, based on his deployment schedule.  When I finished school, I tried to get orders to Hawaii but was told I had to go overseas.  Don deployed out of Japan so I tried to get there but the Navy said South Korea instead.  Hey, at least we were in the same time zone!  Once I got settled in Seoul, Don called me to "surprise" me with the news that he was now deployed out of Kenya.  We were apart for one solid year.  When our assignments finally matched up, I was afraid we wouldn't know how to live together but it worked out wonderfully and here we are.  Commitment, love, trust and loyalty got us through.  Most people couldn't do what we did but we knew who we wanted to spend the rest of our lives with and it was worth it.  We are a team, always have been from the moment we met.  No matter what happens in our lives, we know we can deal best, as a team.  He's got my back and I have his.  More importantly, we are best of best friends.


1 week, 6 days ago on Open Forum: Okay; We Know White Men Married to Black Women are 44% Less Likely to Divorce. But Why?

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This is my s(hero), the Crimson Avenger:

3 weeks, 5 days ago on SirLoins Babe Wenesday: Super She/ros

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Best man candy ever!

4 weeks ago on Man Candy Monday: Able Bodied Men

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Now this, I can support.  It's concise, to-the-point and introspective.  As we say in the Navy, BZ (Bravo Zulu ~ Naval signal for "well done"). 

4 weeks ago on To the Guys Ready to Swirl, ” I’m rooting for you, I really am. But we need to talk.”

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@MZ Elf Love this response and, no, you aren't alone.  I certainly respect a person's right to free speech but doesn't mean it will take with me.  The way of the world, I suppose.  

1 month ago on Ask a White Guy: The Online Dating Quandary

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I was in high school when they started up.  I didn't really get into them until I was in college, though.  Disco came along and derailed me.  "Dr. Love" was one of my favorite songs by them.

1 month, 3 weeks ago on TBT: KISS the Devil, Shame Your Parents

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@girl1015 Wow, what flavor of Kool-Aid have you been drinking?   This sounds, suspiciously, like the laughable crap I've heard on some of the DC street corners at the Metro; have you been hanging out with one of those Hotep guys?  This smacks of their pseudo-racial/racist theories.   Let me break it down for you as to why.


1.  "It's hard to fight White supremacy in the morning." ~ no need to fight it because I can rise above it.  The only supremacy I'm interested in is my own and my family's.  How do I gain that supremacy?  By educating myself, by succeeding in the life I've planned for myself, by reaching my personal goals, by protecting myself and shaping my own world to my liking.  There is no way, in the seven levels of Hell, one can take on an entire race because of the specious belief in their "supremacy".  Oh, yes, there are individuals who believe in White supremacy but they don't live in my world; if they tried to invade it, they would be dealt with by both me and my husband.  Funny thing is, in all the years we've been married (22), the only negative reactions we've had to deal with have been from BP.  Even so, I take people as individuals, not as monoliths.  Also, you'll be in that fight by yourself, even if those Hotep guys say they are your allies.  That kind of alliance is fleeting, as we have discovered.  I haven't seen very many BM even trying to "fight" White supremacy.  Some think to gain it by dating/relating/marrying WW.  I wish them happy and more power to them if it makes them feel better about themselves.


2.  "Lay down with it at night." ~ how does one lie down with an belief?  So you're saying that, by virtue of skin color, every White person is a supremacist?  Excuse me but what a crock!  Again, that's monolithic thinking and I'm not down with that.  Have you met every White person in the world?  Do you believe every White person is superior to you?  I'm going to venture a guess and say no.  If not, then what is the problem here?  


I respect your preferences.  If you love BM and want to be with them, that's fantastic.  I wish you well and every success in life.  But don't couch it in terms of accusatory guilt to BW who don't see the world as you do.  It's boring, trite and useless.  My suggestions are to get out more, travel and if you have traveled, travel some more.  Start talking to people outside your comfort zone.  In the end, we are all human and all have the same basic needs.  It takes a lot more energy to fight against a belief you can't change than to fight for a better life for yourself.  You are worth it.  Be an example to change the world.  That's how I live my life.  If people don't like it, they can bite me.

1 month, 3 weeks ago on New Anti-Swirling Meme: “How Can You Oppose Racism And Be Attracted To White Men?”

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@Kaiju_Bleu Wow, reads like a romantic short story!  Such a wonderful adventure!

1 month, 3 weeks ago on JQ Abroad Open Thread: Share Your Overseas Experiences!

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@SirLoinDeBeef For normal people, yes, that would have been great.  I think that would have gone over their heads, though.

1 month, 3 weeks ago on QOTW: “Help! My White Friends Ask My Black Girlfriend Dumb Questions!”

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@Browncow @Audenitag This has been my answer, followed with, "I also don't have a penis nor am I a BM so I think it's best if you ask them."

1 month, 3 weeks ago on QOTW: “Help! My White Friends Ask My Black Girlfriend Dumb Questions!”

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@EarthJeff Thanks.  He's definitely my knight in shining armor.  It does help that he has no tolerance for BS, especially questionable, racist BS.  He's gotten so good at spotting it, he sometimes gets it before I do.

1 month, 3 weeks ago on QOTW: “Help! My White Friends Ask My Black Girlfriend Dumb Questions!”

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LOL, .  When Don and I were dating, his family were the  culprits.  He would always jump in when dumb questions were asked.  "Hey, Karla, why would Black people want to sip gin and juice?"  Don replied, "How would she know?  She doesn't drink gin.  And, for the record, White people drink it too.  Why don't you ask them?"  He gets super-irritated, even when I'm laughing at the stupidity.

1 month, 3 weeks ago on QOTW: “Help! My White Friends Ask My Black Girlfriend Dumb Questions!”

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I was a military brat and a Naval officer so, yes, I have traveled extensively.  I've been to every continent except Australia and Antarctica.  I've even been to places most people don't go like Greenland, The Azores, and Diego Garcia.  For 43 of my 55 years that's all I did.  I was in a different elementary school for every grade.  One of the reasons I joined the Navy was so I could travel on their dime.  Of course, I didn't really have a choice as to where I went but, more often than not, it was definitely an adventure.  I even "cruised" on one of the biggest ships in the world, an aircraft carrier; I met the ship in Mallorca, transited the Straits of Gibraltar, cruised through the Irish Sea, did an exercise in the North Sea, did a port visit to Tromsø, Norway and disembarked on the northernmost tip of Scotland, thus making my way to London.  It was amazing!  I even did a stint in Saudi!  I wouldn't recommend it for everyone and, if I did, I'd say go to college first.  But the travel opportunities were unparalleled.  To this day, I still have friends all over the world, including a former boyfriend, whom I met in South Korea.  He is married to a Chinese woman, an opera singer and lives in Shanghai.  Traveling is awesome, should be required for everyone and it changes you, as a person.  By the time I was in high school (went to Heidelberg American High School, in Germany), I had been exposed to many different cultures.  It made me more well-rounded and understanding.  If you get a chance, do it!


1 month, 4 weeks ago on JQ Abroad Open Thread: Share Your Overseas Experiences!

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Nice retrospective!  I was so deep into heavy metal by that time, I missed these guys.  Didn't even know Menudo existed until Ricky Martin came out with Livin' La Vida Loca.  Sure grew up to be some super hotties!

1 month, 4 weeks ago on TBT: Más, Mucho Más Menudo…..

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@Brenda55 I'm trying to remember my parents' Black friends' homes and yep, the putrid orange shag carpet, the Afrocentric artwork (particularly of Jesus) and the wall of mirrors rings a bell.  Also, the super, tricked-out stereo system, including a huge, reel-to-reel tape player, was a must in the den and a few hanging lamps too.

2 months, 1 week ago on Open Thread: Reader Questions Her Commitment to ‘Black Love’

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@Brenda55 @Karla @darkandlovely @The Working Home Keeper @sparel I didn't say it, she did and yes, that's what she meant.  The girl went to Howard and thought she was the epitome of Blackness.  When I told my mom, she laughed until she cried and asked me where I met these people.  If my house is White, then my mom's is super White!  @The Working Home Keeper Yes, I have some furniture that is IKEA but it's an eclectic mix.  My mom says it looks like a chic, sophisticated New York apartment.  I guess that's just too White for some Black folks.  Who knows?

2 months, 1 week ago on Open Thread: Reader Questions Her Commitment to ‘Black Love’

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@The Working Home Keeper Girl, I could tell you some stories...

2 months, 1 week ago on Open Thread: Reader Questions Her Commitment to ‘Black Love’

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@darkandlovely @The Working Home Keeper @sparel  Again, the question of "how Black are you?" makes my behind tired.  In fact, with all the crazy crap put out there by some BP, my a** is dragging!!!  Really, who are the judges of the "degrees" of "Blackness" or even what "Blackness" is and why should I care if I don't measure up to some nebulous idea of "stay Black!"?  


I had a friend, a BW, who told me I wasn't Black enough because 1) I had a cleaning woman come to my house, once a week (she was White, not that it has anything to do with it and very well paid; it was her business!); 2) My house didn't "smell" like a Black person's house .  When I asked her what that meant, she explained that I didn't have the aroma of fried pork, pressed hair, stale greens and ancient furniture.  WTF???; and, last but certainly not least, 3) My furniture looked like WP's furniture.  Now, see, here is an example of two divergent cultures sharing the same skin color.  We did not remain friends because of my, supposed, Uncle Tom attitude.  Whatev.  No loss for me.

2 months, 1 week ago on Open Thread: Reader Questions Her Commitment to ‘Black Love’

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One more thing.  Can we just stop with the "Black" love and "White" love?  Love is love.  The end.

2 months, 1 week ago on Open Thread: Reader Questions Her Commitment to ‘Black Love’

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@Brenda55 Girl, she's the one!!!

2 months, 1 week ago on Sirloins’ BB&W Babe Wednesday!!

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This letter is interesting, vey introspective; I can feel her hurt, uncertainty and confusion.  Here are my thoughts:


1.  You write, "I’ve always preferred Black men because of our history and culture and I am physically attracted to them. " and then you write "(i) crave that protection and validation from white men."  You feel it's wrong to crave protection but it's okay to like someone because of shared culture and history.  Where is the attraction to a person because of who they are?  Yes, I understand and agree there are physical attributes that can attract us but you said nothing about being attracted to a person because of their personality and their self-hood.  I think that bears some thought.  And, it's okay to crave protection.  it shows a sense of self-preservation.


2.  "Intellectually, I tell myself that it is wrong to seek that validation and that I need to judge people as individuals, but emotionally, I want that validation."  No one can validate you but you, so you need to find a way to marry your intellect and emotion.  Just like no one can make you happy but you, it all centers around you.  I think you need to get to know yourself before getting to know anyone else, Black or White.  Much of what you're going through is a b-word slap of truth and because you've never had to think about it, until now, it must be confusing as heck!  I get that.  But, somehow, you probably should figure out how to undo years of indoctrination so the new you can emerge and begin to live the happy life you deserve.


3.   "I  find some white men to be handsome, I enjoy their lighter colored eyes, (although i still love brown) but because of our history and cultural differences, I have always been turned off by them in a romantic sense. It seems there is just a gulf between white men/black women when it comes to their understanding of the black experience and that is because their white privilege blinds them."  Seriously, do you know any White men and I mean, have you had any as friends?  That's quite a leap to say there is a "gulf".  May I ask, what "history" have you, personally, had with White men?  I'm not talking about the history of ancestors.  I'm talking about your personal history.  When you can tell me that, then maybe we can revisit this one.  


4.  I always thought that Black men and Black women had a special bond because of  our culture and the way we’ve been treated globally."  I don't know about you, but I've traveled extensively and from infancy; I can truly say I've been treated very well, globally.  But, let's address the "special bond".  Culture is more than skin color or history.  It's things one may have in common, values, ethics, upbringing, education... even you said, "When I got older, I began to notice that a cultural rift between black women and black men was developing."  I hate to be the one to tell you this but that rift didn't start to develop when you got older.  It was already there and you failed to notice it because you were caught up in your "special bond".  I'm sure I'm much older than you are, at 55.  I was born in 1959 and have seen the evolution of that rift, from day one.  it did not start with your generation.


5.  "But at the same time, part of me is saddened because I know that institutional racism & white privilege are a large part of the reason that Black men haven’t been able to give Black women the support that we need..."  Okay, now, let's not get it twisted.  The cultural rift is not the fault of institutional racism and/or white privilege.  As my maternal grandmother used to say, this argument is making my behind tired.  Other women, below, have, rightly, pointed out that this didn't seem to affect our families before us.  They knew the world around them, knew what they had to do to get ahead and they did it, despite the idiocy of racism.  How can you acknowledge that and then use the very same thing as a pathetic excuse for any Black person's recidivist behavior?  Just stop.  Just as we are responsible for our own happiness and validation, we are also responsible for our own behavior.


I could sit here, all day, and pick this apart, offering my thoughts and arguments but I've got stuff to do.  The letter writer sounds like a nice person with a lot of potential and, like every other human being on the planet, deserves happiness, but it must first come from within.  I hope she can work her way through her turmoil and get there.  I never had the turmoil she is experiencing and I was taught, by those very parents who dealt with Jim Crow, etc. to see me and to see how I could make myself happy, emotionally stable and free.  I am an accomplished woman and have been married, to a WM for almost 22 years.  No drama, no "white privilege", no cultural differences.  You see, we shared the same culture, despite the difference in our skin colors.  We recognized that and that's what brought us together.  Hopefully, the letter writer will get there too, whichever way she chooses.

2 months, 1 week ago on Open Thread: Reader Questions Her Commitment to ‘Black Love’

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I hope you know, this is not just for men.  Someone, here, is my new girl crush.

2 months, 1 week ago on Sirloins’ BB&W Babe Wednesday!!

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Love this.  The more we speak on it, the more of a juggernaut it will become ("juggernaut" is my word of the week!).  I dropped ten pounds just by changing one meal and following this dictum from Micheal Pollan: "Eat real food, not too much, mostly plants."  I also follow his seven rules: http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/news/20090323/7-rules-for-eating.

2 months, 1 week ago on More Black Women Taking Up the Fight to Tackle Obesity

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@Brenda55 Woohoo!  Go, Miss Thang!

2 months, 1 week ago on More Black Women Taking Up the Fight to Tackle Obesity

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@SirLoinDeBeef @Brenda55 I'll only speak for myself and since I don't label myself as such, I can't answer that question.  IMO, objectification is subjective.  One person's objectification is another person's pride in their glorious body. 

2 months, 1 week ago on Caption This. ESPN, The Body Issue.

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@Justme65 Hmm, that didn't cross my mind, LOL.  I guess we'll never know but if they did, at least they left the mag clean!!!

2 months, 1 week ago on Caption This. ESPN, The Body Issue.

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@Justme65 Of course not!  It was office trash and clean.  Don wouldn't have touched it, otherwise.

2 months, 1 week ago on Caption This. ESPN, The Body Issue.

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@Brenda55 Yeah, go figure... later, saw Serena's cover, on eBay and Amazon, for insane amounts of money!  Someone has some "splaining to do!

2 months, 1 week ago on Caption This. ESPN, The Body Issue.

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I make my own moisturizer of vegetable glycerin and rosewater.  I spray it on my locks in the morning and go on about my business.  Glycerin is a humectant so it draws water to it;  it's so humid here, in VA, my hair stays moisturized very well with this spray.  Once a week, I use an oil I make to oil my scalp (mixture of self-extracted saw palmetto, pumpkin, Jamaican Black castor oil, Argan oil, Amla oil and camellia oil).  I put a heat cap on for an hour after oiling my scalp and then I'm done.  My sister loc technician said I have the best hair out of all her clients.  I do use Carol's Daughter Co-wash for cleansing my hair but that's the only thing I buy, already prepped.

2 months, 1 week ago on Two Non-Bandwagon Products I’m Using to Keep My Locks Moisturized this Summer

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I actually called around to bookstores in my area (after visiting five and no joy) to have them put me five issues on hold.  The issue that came out with Serena on the front sold out in two hours around here.  I was lucky to get one when someone left the issue in the trash, at Don's job, and he snagged it.  I also have it, digitally so I could get all five covers but my five copies are Venus only.  I'm giving them, as gifts.  She's stunning!

2 months, 1 week ago on Caption This. ESPN, The Body Issue.

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Sigh.  I keep asking myself when this reality show "trend" will end but it's obviously a juggernaut and here to stay.  Yay, Netflix!

2 months, 1 week ago on Why “Marriage at First Sight” Is the Worst Thing to Happen to TV Since “Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire”

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Simply gorgeous!

2 months, 2 weeks ago on Sirloins’ BB&W Babe Wednesday!!

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Although the flight attendant's comment was, most likely, innocent, I would expect more from people who work with the public, on a daily basis.  I'm not one who does but even I know to think before I speak and am good at doing it, on my feet.   As @Brenda55 said, all she had to do was say, "Welcome!  What a sweet baby!" and move on.  And, I get the writer's reaction.  It happens, it keeps happening and one day, it's just too much.  I don't have children but I have biracial nieces.  I spend quite a lot of time with them and my oldest niece has grown to be fast on her feet; she's a smart cookie and has heard the comments, more than once.


They were staying with me while my sis and BIL went on a second honeymoon.  We decided to go ice skating at the local rink.  While I was helping my youngest niece, who was three, get her skates on, a woman came up and said, "You're such a wonderful nanny.  I've been watching you and you are so good with the kids.  Would you consider changing jobs?"  Before I could light into her, my older niece said, "Mommy!  Don't talk to her!  She's a stranger!  Remember what you said?  Stranger, danger!"  She said it loud enough so that the people around us started looking, curiously.  The look on the woman's face was priceless!  She apologized, profusely, and scrambled back to her kids as quickly as possible.  Even the manager came and asked us if we were having a problem with the woman.  It was all I could do not to start laughing.


Although the outcome was humorous and very embarrassing for the woman, I was still mad.  That wasn't the first time it happened and that was just not the day.  Thankfully, my niece saved the woman from getting a verbal beatdown because I was ready to give it to her.  We still laugh about it.  I'll bet that woman will think twice now before approaching a BW with biracial kids.  Lesson dealt by a babe in the woods.  Lesson learned the hard way.

2 months, 2 weeks ago on That Awkward Moment When Numbskulls Assume Your Biracial Baby Isn’t Yours…

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@Brenda55 Thanks for pointing out that both these people are jerks.  Girlfriend wasn't in it alone.  Frankly, she should have passed and not used OK Cupid as a teaching moment.  Vetting can include passing on someone you know isn't right for you.  

2 months, 2 weeks ago on Ladies, Do NOT Date Interracially if You’re Too Suspicious of White Men. Please. Just…Don’t. (Letter)

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Best man candy edition ever!!!  Thanks!

2 months, 2 weeks ago on Man Candy Monday: Hollywood Hotties Then, and Now

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@MySmile I heard the same about Asheville too.

2 months, 2 weeks ago on Interracial Friendly States, City by City, County by County!

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Sure did, for me.  I was swirling in infancy.

3 months, 1 week ago on The Evolution of a Swirler: One Guy Tells His Story

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@DWB That's probably next on the list.  I don't know if they do that at the Cali Disneyland but Orlando was out to make as much as possible.  I guess they felt they were missing out on photo ops and money so they took advantage of the fact that little kids love to get their photos with the characters.  I took the pic of Daisy on-the-fly with my iPhone.  I had to be sneaky because I saw Disney employees telling others it wasn't allowed.  After all the money people pay, to get in, they should be allowed to do cartwheels at Cinderella's castle!


3 months, 1 week ago on Why I Said “Goodbye” to Disneyland, Forever. They’ve Raised Their Prices Too High to Justify.

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Yeah, I'm done.  As a kid, my fam went every week when my dad was stationed in LA because he got tickets free.  As an adult and living in Tampa, Florida, I went to Disney in Orlando about once a quarter.  I've been to four of the five Disney parks in the world, including the now-defunct park in Paris.  Don and I went to Disney in Orlando, last year to meet his brother and SIL  The only reason we went was because Don had never been.  Even with military discounts, it was expensive for a three-day pass!  What really got me is we had to sneak and take photographs of the Disney characters.  They have bodyguards now and if you want a picture, you have to have it taken by one of the official photographers.  They actually had lines to get a photo with Mickey or Minnie.  We've decided we're done with it.  I've got tons of photos and a video of the parade... if I get misty-eyed, I can always take them out.  

3 months, 1 week ago on Why I Said “Goodbye” to Disneyland, Forever. They’ve Raised Their Prices Too High to Justify.

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