The 75th Magic City Classic was just that, MAGIC! If you’re not familiar with the magic which is “The Classic”, it’s a large, and long-standing college rivalry pitting Alaba…
The 75th Magic City Classic was just that, MAGIC! If you’re not familiar with the magic which is “The Classic”, it’s a large, and long-standing college rivalry pitting Alabama State University and Alabama A&M University in a battle of the best of football and half-time spectaculars, which also includes a week of epic tailgating, fashion, parties, comedy shows, concerts and more. Think of 75,000+ people converging in one place for one purpose….a GOOD time. And that would be the #mcc.
I had the privilege to again spend time in the VIP tailgate “Chill Zone” hosted by Coors Light. For a second year in a row, this experience did not disappoint! The adult beverage bosses served up a festive atmosphere right in the heart of the magical madness and had something to offer for all, even those non-drinkers like me. The floating crowd of alumni and supporters were welcomed into the zone to a feel which was like an uber-upscale family reunion with your favorite old and soon-to-be new friends. Per usual, there was delicious food. I mean the food was DELICIOUS!!!!!!!!!! (And I love food so I know food.) The picnic theme with burgers, hot dogs, pork sliders, pasta salad, garden salad, uber-SWEET corn on the cob, baked beans and plentiful liquid refreshments, of course including Coors Light, was the ideal back drop for the 88 degree October weather game-goers were surprised by. The food was hot, fresh and replenished often by a doting team who was always watching and making sure all was better than well. Little extras like that make a foodie like me really, really happy. Former Love & Hip-Hop Atlanta star and radio personality Traci Steele http://tracisteele.com/ was on the scene in a fabulous jumpsuit, might I add, along with legendary (and still cute) hip-hop DJ, DJ D-Nice, both bringing a party vibe to the hot “Chill Zone” which made one want to wobble right smack dab in the middle of the sun-drenched crowd. Joining them was life-style specialist Kenny Burns, and the return of none other than rapper and reality star Yung Joc, who, was one of my favorite entertainers at the tailgate last year too. Even in the midst of sizzling sun and scorching, hot temps, the Coors Light VIP Chill Zone was a breath of fresh air.
As if the celebratory atmosphere wasn’t enough, Coors Light extended their hospitality and HBCU support to the half-time show by presenting a $20,000 scholarship donation which was equally divided among the schools for students 21 or older. It just doesn’t get any more magical than that. Cheers, Coors Light! Here’s to more Classic magic.
“Nawwwww, girl. I don’t want to pray for him.” Those were the honest and eye-opening words a woman recently uttered concerning her ex-husband. A previously pleasant and light conversation with friends quickly shifted to talk about praying for an ex-spouse and the benefits, not just for the ex, but for the child involved, the person on the praying end of the prayer, the financial obligations remaining and the prayed for person’s overall peace of mind and well-being as a human being.
The back and forward banter, mixed with some hilarious one liners and some purposeful testimonies, continued as we recalled our own experiences with divorce and ultimately getting to the point of sincere and sometimes selfless prayer, which, was NOT/is NOT always an easy journey, at least for me. She explained her pain. We listened then explained God’s plans. She shared her very valid frustrations, mostly financial and time related as it relates to his time with his child. We listened, shared our own frustrations, which can continue years after the ink has dried, and still explained why prayer was the missing link in fixing what our mouths, our anger, our lawyers, and our own devised plots of “get back at ya” can’t do.
Prayer, as simple as it might sound, really does work. What I know is that a working prayer doesn’t always change the situation or the other person. Often it can, but I’d be lying if I said prayer for your ex-spouse will instantly make all things right in your world. What prayer can do is change our perspective, our focus, and our expectations of our ex, and it can up our expectations of God to do what He’s always done, and that’s FAR EXCEED what we think, know or desire any man or woman to do. Prayer will have us looking at and loving our former spouse like a brother or sister in Christ rather than someone who hurt, betrayed or disappointed us. Prayer will shut our mouths and stop our fingers when we want to go off via the world wide web. Prayer will give us peace (and provision) when daycare fees are overdue and we see our ex flossin’ on Facebook in Gucci and Ray Bans. Prayer will allow us to say “pray for your ex, girl” when we know those words would have never, and I mean never, come out of our mouths before. Prayer is our own personal ticket to peace regardless of the actions of others. It gets God’s attention to know that we know who’s really the Man, regardless of the actions of man. Ya dig?
Recently I had an opportunity to spend a Saturday morning with some young girls from Grace House and young women from the University of Montevallo’s Mu Mu Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. who were my captive audience for a training on Dining Etiquette.
It had been a while since I’d done any group talks and quite honestly I didn’t realize how much I missed it until sharing that time with the ladies and little ladies. Like, I really miss speaking regularly. Their questions and responses were thought-provoking, sincere, hilarious, encouraging, hilarious (I know I’ve already said that), gasp-inducing and inspiring all at the same time. They all participated and were engaged, and sent a clear message to me that, regardless of what the media says or what we might see regarding girls and young women, the return of the lady is inevitable.
Yes, we debated who was better, Beyoncé or Kevin Gates (who? what?), but we also talked about which fork to use, what’s appropriate to discuss at the table, how to slice a bone-in, fried chicken breast with poise and elegance (and still get all of the skin and juicy, meaty goodness) and how to engage in effective networking at “fancy” functions. Sure, we talked about why it’s not a good idea to place gum behind our ears or on the rim of our plates, why “smacking somebody” is not the answer or why we can’t take crab legs from a buffet, but we also embarked on a stirring dialogue about the fact that each and every one of them will be someone BIG someday and deserved a seat at the table, and not just a seat at the table, but some undeniable influence as to what was being served, and preferably positioned at the head of that said table. We absolutely laughed out loud, when teaching each other how to gingerly bite a green, frosted cupcake or cut it with a fork, then sip tea with or without a pinky up. We discussed at length how not to pull out the hot sauce in our bag (swag) to saturate our food at a fru-fru function, and talked about how it’s okay to be classy and respectable and unique and still cute and noticed even in this bare as you dare, be angry, be loud, frown all the time, forget manners, and pop off at will world.
That time with the girls was the perfect balance of what makes a lady. A REAL lady is a woman who is able to put her best foot and best face forward, regardless of her setting or personal circumstance, regardless of her upbringing, regardless of what media or social media says and regardless of what she might have seen before or hasn’t received from others. And a REAL, REAL lady can do that while feeling comfortable and confident never forsaking that fact that she belongs.
So, here’s a snippet of what we discussed. Want more? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Table Talk in the Business World
- Avoid: religion, politics, sports team talk, inappropriate jokes or topics of conversation.
- Share the conversation (Don’t be a talking hog).
- Plan to talk. Know what the topic of the event is and have conversation ready to share.
- Know the organization or product you’re representing or supporting.
- Take a deep breath and breathe, especially if feeling out of your comfort zone.
- Just say no to the telephone while at the table. (That includes snap chatting, texting during the event, answering your phone during the event, not turning off or silencing your phone and any other things we think we can’t go without for that brief 2-3 hours.)
- Know that you belong at the table, and the head of the table is always for the taking.
Keep going. Hustle. Grind. Do it. Get it. Make it Happen. Move Something. Move On. Move Away. Move Forward. Handle Yo’ Business. Change. Shift. Ask. Adopt. Adjust. Adapt. Pray. Faith. Forge A…
Source: I Hope You Get What’s Coming
****LPA…Long Post Alert
Let’s just be clear. For many, money is a large part of divorce. It’s about as large a part of divorce as it is the engagement, the marriage and possibly the myriad of reasons which lead to the divorce in the first place.
Six years into this thing called divorce I’ve witnessed firsthand in my life and at a glance through the lives of others in similar situations how the needs, requirements and mandates following divorce can wreak far-reaching havoc on the lives of those who have already experienced havoc in their life at the figurative hands of the divorce. From paying to divorce, while possibly still paying for the wedding, to paying for the divorce when you still wanted to be married, to child support, to shared responsibilities with the children outside of the ordered child support, to joint business and financial obligations, to alimony, and more, again, for many, money is a large part of the divorce. This is especially true when the one with lingering financial obligations to honor the divorce decree fails to oblige and honor.
Let’s just be even more clear, money becomes a more heightened matter when the one with the legally mandated responsibility to provide short-term or long-term support stops it, reduces it or does both while going around flossing in Gucci, Gold or Gators, all the while knowing he or she has not done what he or she is legally and morally supposed to do financially.
If you’re the one on the receiving end hear me clearly. I know it’s hard. I know it’s hard and unfair and another blow to whatever you’ve already experienced to have to juggle and finagle, and go without, and explain to children, and borrow from loved ones, and beg creditors, and down-size, work two jobs, and stay up late, and wake up early to try to provide or merely make ends meet while trying to keep your Christianity in tact and a smile on your face. Get rid of blame, anger, bitterness, people in your ear telling you unwise and ungodly things, or punishing the ex-spouse by not allowing him or her a role in the children’s lives when in fact you are punishing the children. I know it’s hard, but keep doing right. In the words of the late, great Whitney Houston, “It’s not right. But it’s okay.” In the words of the even greater Philippians 4:19 from the Bible, “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
If you’re the one on the legally and morally mandated giving end hear me clearly. I know it’s probably hard to feel like you’re still connected to something or someone you wanted to be permanently disconnected from and to have to do right by that which, in some way went wrong or you might have been wrong. I know it might seem unfair. I know it might be hard to balance your present life while still honoring the requirements from the past. I know some might feel like you don’t “owe nobody nothing else”, or you’ve already “done enough”, or you’re “tired of this”, or you just want to be “done with this”. I can only imagine what your mind or other influences might be telling you as to the reasons for not doing what you’re required to do. I’m not one to judge. However, the best way to be “done with this” is to do right and see the decree to the end. The best way to not be “tired of this” is to change your perspective on the ex-spouse and whatever hindrances might be overruling your wise decision making regarding him or her. The best way to “do enough” is to do everything you’re supposed to do, especially when children are involved. The best way to “owe nobody nothing else” is to give them what they are owed. The best way to balance the present while honoring the requirements from the past is to handle your business in the order in which it came so that God can bless you with more. I could quote the late, great Johnnie Taylor right now and his perspective on divorce/separation, but I won’t. (Google it if you want seriously catchy tune about divorce/separation in your head.) Instead, I will again go to the Bible and remind you that the same Philippians 4:19 which will work for the one waiting on you to do, will also work for you. Use it! Get rid of blame. Get rid of being angry at yourself for your actions which might have resulted in these decrees. Get rid of being angry at your former spouse for having to still provide. Get rid of people in your ear telling you to dishonor what is required. Get rid of thinking you’re punishing the ex-spouse when you could be punishing the children. Get rid of avoiding responsibilities. Get rid of stubbornness and bitterness and simply do right please ma’am or sir, so that something beautiful can grow for you too from the seeds you’re still planting in the life of someone you once loved.