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Lessons from Mommy

Where all my Nintendo 64 users at? You’re in the middle of an amazing race in Mario Kart and the game freezes, what do you do? That’s right! Take out the cartridge, hit it a couple of times, blow it, put it back in, restart and: “Welcome to Mario Kart!” Well, after two intense weeks of studying for midterms I was a suck-out bag juice and I needed someone to hit restart. That someone was my mommy!

Mommy and I  spent time playing phone-tag this weekend but when we finally connected, we were on the phone for two hours talking about everything and nothing at the same time. I hadn’t laughed that hard in a long time and that was exactly what I needed. She finally signed up for the floral arrangement course she’d been thinking about since I left for college four years ago. I told her I was proud of her for trying something new and joked that she learned it from me. That’s when it dawned on me that I had actually gotten it from her.

My mom grew up in a poor family and even though she wanted to be adventurous she simply could not afford it. She promised herself that her children would have the life she wanted growing up and she saw that through. I had my first dance class when I was four and I always had some sort of non-academic program every year since I was 6. These included cooking classes, art classes, foreign language classes and my personal favourite, music classes at Edna Manley College. I even went to cricket camp where I realised I was not made for sports.

In my household, getting good grades was very important but my mom taught me there was more to this world than work. She planted in me a desire to try new things and watered it every opportunity she got. Now, I fertilise the product of her hard work frequently by seeking out opportunities for adventures. I’ve taken up ceramics, latin dancing, and drumming, and each activity came with a new set of challenges that made the hard work I put in totally worth it. I have an evergrowing bucket list of things I will try eventually and I promise to take you all on the journey with me.

I would like to challenge you all to try something that scares you. Promise me you will stick to it even if you think you are terrible at it. You will grow, you will improve and your confidence will increase. We all need to find that one thing we absolutely love that can let the light in our darkest days. Wi cya jus a gwan an a guh suh. There’s more to life than the 9-5.

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Are we becoming too sensitive?

A recent trend on Twitter has been the question: “What is Twitter angry about today?” This not-a-joke joke emerged as it seemed every day there was some grand, world ending debate going on. We’d be in a huff about everything from standards of equality right through to the superiority of one music genre to another. At the end of the day someone makes an ass out of themselves and the discussion topic disappears for a few days or months. Missed it the first time round? That’s just fine, because you can rest assured that it will rear its ugly head several times in your lifetime. Everyone has to get a piece of the pie right?

All of this has me wondering, are we becoming too sensitive? In my cultural class the professor invited two Muslim women with slightly different beliefs to speak to the class. A common thread in their stories was how some people were often afraid to approach them, and those who did were afraid to offend them by asking them questions.

Isn’t it funny how our attempts to be politically correct are hindering our chances at making friendships and meaningful cultural exchanges? We’re so hung up on our differences that we forget we are all human beings trying to navigate this overly complicated world.

An example brought up in the class discussion was how we’ve moved away from saying Merry Christmas to Happy Holidays because not everyone celebrates Christmas. Our guest speakers mentioned how they would often respond to Happy Holiday wishes by saying Merry Christmas. For them, the focus is not on which holiday is being celebrated but on the wishes of happiness.

At the end of the day, if you look at how different cultures celebrate their holidays, family, friends and food are often at the core. Even if it doesn’t seem like it, we’re more similar than we think we are. Yes, our differences contribute to the beauty of the world but it’s full time we realised our similarities are what connect us to each other.

 

I hope this is what you needed to hear today. Go out and bridge the culture gap!

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Use Your Words

I’m finding in my old age (says the 21 year old) that I’m becoming increasingly better at holding conversations. A great conversation skill is being able to state your point, defend it, acknowledge that people have different opinions and respect opposing opinions.

I like a good debate. It keeps me on my toes and provides great mental exercise.
Picture for a moment a game of tennis. It would be a boring if your opponent refused to serve the ball because they didn’t feel like playing. Imagine them purposefully wacking the ball into the net to cut the game short. What if they deliberately hit the ball outside of the lines so you win?

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Annoyed? Well, it’s the same way with a conversation. Stop changing the topic by saying you don’t want to argue. Don’t stop in the middle or agree with the other person just because you want the conversation to end. A disagreement is not an argument. How is your conversation partner supposed to know what you’re thinking if you keep quiet?

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One of the things wrong with the world is that we don’t say what we want to say for the  sake of peace and sanity. What we don’t realise is that when we bottle these things up they slowly eat away at us and that is what we should be avoiding .

I’ll leave you with these words of wisdom, Always say what’s on your mind, and don’t beat around the bush #StopBushAbuse2017.

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The Relationship Struggle

The running joke of this week is that it is bizarre that myself and neither of my two older cousins are in a relationship. My aunt went as far as to say she’s getting us all gift cards for eHarmony for Christmas. Does eHarmony even have gift cards? I think my aunt was only 20% joking though…. maybe even less.

She’s even gotten my mom in on the conversation. On our weekly call the topic came up and mommy said she told my aunt it was their fault as parents for making us too comfortable. She has a point. I consider myself a happy person. I’m hopelessly optimistic. I’m not always happy, sometimes I overthink myself into a bout of sadness, particularly around that time of the month. Who doesn’t? I have a great support team who I can go to if there is something that bothers me. Most importantly, they aren’t afraid to tell me to get over myself. I am in no way shape or form short of love.

Consequently, I feel no push to go looking for love elsewhere. I’ve never had a boyfriend but I don’t really think I’m missing out on much other than heartache. Granted there is this growing curiosity to see if I’d make a good girlfriend or what the whole experience would be like. This curiosity isn’t strong enough for me to lower my standards and jump on the first smooth talking man to come my way.

I don’t think my standards are that high to begin with. My list of requirements isn’t really that long and they are by no means unattainable. My standards can be grouped in two subcategories: the must-haves and the if-he-doesn’t-have-it-then- it’s-fine-but-it-would-be-cool-if-he-did. My two must-haves are that he be someone who respects me and someone who will pick my brain. The would-be-cool requirements are:

  1. Hairy musician- Don’t judge me okay; I like a guy with hair. Beard, ponytail, locs- I’m not partial and musicians are just cool people in general. Most of my friends are hairy musicians so that might have something to do with it. This may just be a phase but come on, have you seen Bob Marley? I feel like if he is a musician, he’ll understand the role music plays in my life.
  2. Tall- I stand at 5’4″, it’s not very hard to be taller than me
  3. Doesn’t take life too seriously- I’m pretty easy going and I like being spontaneous. I’d like to have someone who compliments that. Then again I think he could learn to do this by association.

See, all very attainable! Not very hard. So until he comes my way, I’m going to sit back, relax and enjoy my cup of tea. No eHarmony gift card required. Seriously though, do they offer gift cards? Leave the answer or even your thoughts in the comments below! I’d love to know what you think!

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The Thing About Boys

I have finally accepted the fact that I just don’t have any luck with men. I know what you’re saying: “You’re just nineteen you don’t know what you’re talking about”. Maybe you’re right but I’m waiting for a guy that will be different. This is the typical flow of the conversations I have with my friend Shida (876LoveR) after being approached by or approaching a new guy. I know for a fact that I’m incredibly picky so I thought maybe that was my problem but Shida has some of the same problems I have! Is it that we’re friends because of our taste in guys or is it our standards or are all guys the same? So we decided to do this feature blog thing to rant and see if anyone feels the same way or is completely against our way of thinking. You can see her post here. Let’s begin shall we?

First Impressions Last

Something as little as the way a guy approaches me can be the biggest turn off. If I’ve never seen you before and you randomly send me a friend request on Facebook and I magically accept it why would you start the conversation with “Hey Bbz” ??? I am sorry but I am not your babe. Like I said I’m picky but seriously I don’t feel respected if the first thing he calls me is ‘Bbz’. For starters the least you could do is spell out babes, not that it makes it any better but it would show some effort. I’m also a little old school so I feel terms or endearment are earned but that’s just me.

No means No

So I’ve accepted your friend request on Facebook where I’ve posted pictures of myself for the past six or so years. I have the good the bad and the ugly (puberty was kind) right there just a few clicks away. Why then would you ask me to send you a picture? What do you mean by ‘Can you send me a sexy pic’? I just met you so why would you ask me to send you nudes? When I say no why are you asking me questions? No means NO. Not only do I find your questions ridiculous and annoying but your killing my interest in you with every question you ask. (Sidenote: does the fact that guys ask this mean that there are girls out there who say yes instantly?)

Pet Peeve

I think this is just a Lexxi thing but I think this is the most cliched line in the history of cliched lines and it really makes me grind my teeth. I’ll be talking to a guy and things are going well and I’m really liking his vibe but more often than not they drop this line and I’m just like NOOOOOOOO (arms dramatically outstretched). The line exists in multiple forms and is supposed to be a subtle way of checking if your single and I have no clue why I hate it so much but I do. Some examples are: ” What does your boyfriend think about you talking to me?” or “How is your boyfriend?” or “Your boyfriend is so lucky”. I really don’t mind if you just say; “hey, do you have a boyfriend?”

 

The Availability Issue

I’m not too sure if it’s a Jamaican man thing or if it’s universal but it’s like when you’re single the world and his wife would like to get into your knickers but the day you become available the boys that were climbing out of your mango tree are nowhere to be found.

Like I said though I’m very choosy so it’s probably just me. In other words I’ll probably be single until someone invents a build a boyfriend. Feel free to leave your comments below! 🙂

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