Category Archives: Laughs

Amazing Blogger Tag!

I’m alive! I am getting over a head cold precipitated no doubt by burning the candle at both ends AND in the middle. Back to back weekends in New York (weekend update coming soon) and a hellacious pace at both clients. I don’t get sick often and pride myself on fighting illness off pretty well, but this one laid me out flat. But, I’m alive!

First order of business, everyone go and order your Ubuntu shirt now, then come back and let’s jibber jabber. My Semester At Sea colleagues John Paul and Shannon are serious about this thing. Plus there’s a cute pic of Archbishop Tutu aka “Toots” so…Go. Seriously!

Okay, now that you’re looking good in your new socially-concious duds, let’s get on with the gettin’ on.

I was tagged by fellow blogger, former Gadling colleague and LA hangout buddy Adrienne as an Amazing Blogger! This honor apparently comes with the dubious duty to “confess” seven “weird” or random facts about myself. As if yall didn’t already know enough? First, I’m going to tag…Liz, a funny girl from Canada (or America North as I like to call it) as an Amazing Blogger too!

1. I have two middle names. The first is the one that you know me by, the second only 10 people in the world know. I only recently found out at my mother’s mother’s funeral, that that second name comes from my great-grandmother.

2. No, I will not tell you what it is. And yes, thanks to the Homeland Security Act it is now on my Driver’s License.

3. I always travel with small candles when I am staying at hotels. I like the calming ambiance, the fragrance, and even if you’re alone it’s kind of sexy! But I also travel with febreeze and house-slippers, so maybe I’m just a nut.

4. The middle name that you know me by means something positive in several languages:

Yoruban: Champion or “First”

Spanish: Day

Hindi: Candle or “Light”

So I like to champion the first light of day, which makes sense, seeing as how I’m an early bird.

5. I do not like the texture of apples or pears, and am in fact, allergic to uncooked apples. However, I do, on occassion, enjoy a slice of apple pie with Vanilla ice cream.

6. I pretend to be competitive, but really I couldn’t give a $h1t most of the time. Except, when it comes to Uno and Dominoes, then I’m insufferably competitive.

7. I made my entreprenuerial debut when I was 9, selling hamsters/gerbils to neighborhood kids for .50 cents each. That is, until my parents found out when one got loose in the house, and all hell broke loose. My second venture was selling colored paper for .05 cents each during the paper-airplane, four corners/truth box craze of ’83. I was 10. At 11 my parents had to shut down my marble re-sale ring because kids were pilfering their parent’s rent money to buy a pringle’s can worth of rare marbles for $20-$50/can. So, I think I’ve always had the entreprenuerial bug.

Yall tell me some weird facts about YOU! Come on now, this is a Community, with a capital “C”!

Get Your Bookworm On

The Between Boyfriends Book: A Collection of Cautiously Hopeful Essays

Erica and her boo were talking about their reading habits, how it developed, what they’re reading now and the obstacles to a more robust bibliophilic life. They’ve also taken up a reading challenge which I think is a cool way to push yourself.

I developed the reading habit early on, praised for my abilities in first grade, that compliment fueled an above average vocabulary and a voracious appetite for books. My room as a teenager would be pretty spotless, but if you looked under my bed…dozens of books. My favorites were Judy Blume, Madeline L’Engle and then Stephen King. But I read almost anything, trashy romances, Reader’s Digest Condensed Books, whatever.

I never developed much of a TV habit, even now I haven’t seen my favorite shows (Grey’s Anatomy or 30 Rock) in weeks but I almost always have a book going. I just finished Tourist Season: Stories by Enid Shomer, which I’d recommend if you are into short, character driven stories. I liked it but probably won’t read it again. Prior to that I was reading The Between Boyfriends Book (hilarious!) and Female Chauvanist Pigs (hilarious but smart!) at the same time, which I tend to do, read a “light” tome and something “heavier” at the same time. Sometimes I’ll have 3 books going at once.

Like most readers I have both a physical pile of “To Be Read” and an Amazon Wishlist full of dream books. I’m starting Kickboxing Geishas tonight which I’m looking forward to and I owe a copy of FCP to a friend who is in grad school, but I might have to buy her her own copy because I CAN see reading this one again.

Some of my favorite books of all time:

The World According To Garp, A Prayer For Owen Meany, IT, The Secret History, The Vintner’s Luck, Their Eyes Were Watching God, Honeymoon With My Brother, PUSH, Holidays On Ice, A Memory of Running, Children of Ham, The Alchemist, Vagabonding, The Power of One, The Bible (seriously) and The Way Forward is With a Broken Heart.

One book I’ve tried to read twice and just give up on: Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt.

Book Bandwagon that I haven’t jumped on: Harry Potter.

Let’s hear some of yours…

Oh and also, if you are a reader have you ever seriously dated a non-reader or someone with lopsided reading habits from your own? For example, one of my exes didn’t read alot of books but was a ravenous newspaper nerd, another ex doesn’t read alot of fiction but is into finance, real estate and personal development stuff. I was joking with a friend recently and we both agreed that we have fallen a little bit in lurve with someone based solely on their bookshelf. I know, I’m so shallow!


Not Drunktastic


Sorry I’ve been off the grid the last few days. Work is getting busier by the week including new trips on the horizon (a return trip to Miami and a trip up to Toronto and Montreal). After the hustle of the last few weeks I was ready for a mini-road trip and headed down to Maryland where I met up with The Entreprenuer (TE) and The Attorney (TA). TE is a photography aficionado and TA is a “culture vulture” so we hit the Corcoran Musuem for the Annie Leibovitz exhibit: A Photographer’s Life.

The exhibit was really amazing. I loved her portraits of Jamie Foxx, Oprah, Colin Powell and a couple of shots of Serejevo and Rawanda the most. Wandering the museum with TE and TA was also a pleasure because we all felt comfortable going our own way so that we could linger where we wanted and get drawn into whatever compelled us. I loved how most of the photographs were black & white, but every now and then there’d be something in glorious color. Likewise most of the photographs were pretty large, but there were groupings of small prints that forced you to get intimate with the exhibit (wait, that didn’t come out right).  There was also an Ansel Adams exhibit in-house and that was interesting though I’m not a big fan of landscape photography.

We ended up acting a fool and having a good time which led us to drinks and bad, bad (but oooh so good) food at Gladys Knight’s Chicken and Waffles in DC and a late night, raucous showing of Tyler Perry’s new movie: Why Did I Get Married? Now if you’ve ever been to an African American film, at an African American theatre, with a packed African American audience, I don’t need to tell you what went down. Let’s just say that everybody had a good time and thought that the characters on the screen could hear their individual comments.

Sunday, TA insisted on watching Inside Washington so I mustered up the energy to hit the workout room and put in some time on the treadmill to combat the previous evening’s fried goodness and preempt the afternoon’s revelry.  TE picked us up and we headed out to Linganore Winery where we met up with The Politician (TP) for the Jazz and Wine festival. And by festival I mean hundreds of people, in camp chairs with coolers full of crackers, cheese, grapes and summer sausage. It was great to see a diverse crowd (ethnicity, age, families, LGBT, groups of friends, etc) and to relax in the sunshine on a near perfect day listening to the David Bach Consort and wondering when exactly we became our parents? Wait, we’re not our parent’s yet but these two are.

Despite the wonderful nectar available (I highly recommend the Skipjack, TE’s favorite and the Sangria, TA’s favorite) no one was “Drunktastic” at least not in our group. But there were a few others who may have been. To include the 3 women next to us who drank at least 5 bottles of wine, the old white dude who kept hitting on all the older black women, the barefoot hippie teenagers twirling and kicking up dust, and the saxonphone player who kept coming out into the crowd to check out women. I joked at one point that there was only two ways that the day could be better, and one of them actually came to fruition. And thats all I’m gonna say about that!

#14: Laundry Day

Counting down my top 15 favorite things. Laundry Day is definitely going to be missed!

Never having to do my own laundry has been wonderful! Just put it outside your cabin and it appears magically clean and wonderful smelling 24 hours later! How will I ever manage without this magical thing called Laundry Day?

Port Everglades, Fl: Almost Famous

Just a quickie yall. On the move to the BAHAMAS! Don’t HATE, CONGRATULATE! Sorry, I got a little carried away.

[1] Funchilde and Megan got a HUGE shout out on the National Geographic Traveler blog! Holla!

[2] I have a couple of new posts up over at Gadling (my posts are here Mom), good grazing while I get my life together over here.

Travel Personalities, pt. ii


The main thing I like about traveling is the people. That said I don’t necessarily like ALL of the people all of the time, but everybody’s got a story and I’m curious enough to want to hear it. The people that cause me to roll my eyes are not suffering personality flaws so much as they possess some unfortunate personal/physical/hygienic issue that I simply cannot overlook. Here are a few of the types of travelers that I try to keep an eye out for (continued from pt. i):

2. The Bump’n Grinders: Simply put these are the people that stand so close to you when you are in line that they can read your passport number through your pants. This is largely cultural in nature. Latin Americans and Spaniards have a lower threshold for personal space. They are very affectionate, touchy-feely, and culturally comfortable with people standing very close, touching them and even jumping/cutting lines. Uh, and I’m a Crazy.Black.Chick. with the emphasis on Crazy and Black, for this sidenote. Studies show that people of different cultures, races and sexes, tend to put more space between themselves when interacting, than when talking to someone of the same race, culture and gender. As an African American Female I like about 17 feet of clear space in all directions around me at all times, my Latin American amigos…not so much. My remedy is to go on the offense. I now try to see how many different people I can touch or jostle at a time. And if you’re cute…no, that wasn’t me that pinched your bum bum.

**Why I’m going to hell: for pinching people’s bum-bums!

So you tell us about some of the people you’ve met on the road!

To Be Continued…

Travel Personalities, pt. i


I’m probably going to HELL for this but…

The main thing I like about traveling is the people. That said I don’t necessarily like ALL of the people all of the time, but everybody’s got a story and I’m curious enough to want to hear it. The people that cause me to roll my eyes are not suffering personality flaws so much as they possess some unfortunate personal/physical/hygienic issue that I simply cannot overlook. Here are a few of the types of travelers that I try to keep an eye out for:

1. The Hackasaurus Rex: This is the person that sits next to or near you on a plane/train/bus that has some (probably contagious) unfortunate upper respiratory disease that causes them to hack non-stop from Albany to Zurich. Absent earphones or earplugs you will not get a moment of sleep because of their persistent cough. They have been coughing so long that they no longer bother (much) to cover their mouth, and you can feel their amoeba attacking your white blood cells before the plane hits the runway. This person is usually between 40 and 60 years old and NEVER has any ‘Tussin, Vicks or cough drops.

** Why I’m going to hell: I recently sat next to a Hackasaurus. She looked healthy and bright eyed when I sat down. 20 minutes later I realized my mistake. I offered her the half-eaten roll of cough drops from my daypack. She took ONE. I was like “oh Hell-to-the-naw, you can keep the whole roll” okay I was only thinking that. She takes the roll and says “they work a little, but not for long. I have lung cancer.” Yes, people I know. Bad Funchilde, I hopefully somewhat redeemed myself by sending up prayers and good vibes for her. We did giggle a bit about some things during the trip but I wanted so badly to reach out and touch her arm and just let her know I was there and I heard her and I was grateful for the health she did have. Unfortunately, we were laughing too much for me to inject that sentimental nonsense into the moment. My grandmother is a breast cancer survivor, I lost my ex father in-law (yeah I’m confused too) and my Aunt Gloria to cancer. I promise, next time I see one of those yellow Livestrong bracelets I’m all over it!

To Be Continued….

So, tell us about some of the whacky characters and charming people you’ve met on the road! 



Cuernavaca: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly


I was deathly ill for the trip to Cuernavaca, so I don’t remember much but here’s the run down.

The Good: Because I was quarantined for three days, I had ample time to finish reading The Chronicles of Narnia (774 pages!), 100 Years of Solitude, and The Memory of Running (a new personal favorite).

The Bad: I had such a bad fever that I had to put on every item of clothing I had brought with me when I went to bed. I haven’t had a fever like that since 1977. It was that bad. A Canadian nurse that we ran into said there was some type of virus going around.

The Ugly: I sweated through ALL of my clothes in two days and had to stumble around in my exhausted stupor to find a llavanderia (laundry) to have all my clothes washed when my fever broke (3 days later).

When I was finally fit to move among the living, I caught up with Andrea and Jorge at the local spot on the Zocalo only to find that I shouldn’t drink because of the virus. So I watched everyone else drink the (literal) buckets of beer served at the expat hangout. Jorge and Andrea were with 5 others that I didn’t know but was quickly introduced to as the “third amigo” I feel bad saying this but this bar was my least favorite place we had ever been to and I realized it was because it was PACKED with Americans! I mean there were even a dozen African Americans in this place, it was like little Chicago up in there. Fortunately Andrea got us the hook up (yet again) and this dude gave us wrist bands for free drinks before midnight at the club down the street if we made it there by 10:30.

The Good: Andrea’s hook up got us free drinks and we didn’t have to stand in the line outside!

The Bad: Jorge’s idea to spring for the VIP lounge and a bottle of Jack Black at a club whose tagline is: “The Sunny Place for Shady People.” There was no way anything good was going to come of this.

The Ugly: Getting dry-humped and kissed by a VIP interloper (Edgar, pictured above), who I then determined to be rather cute and fairly intelligent so I quickly foisted him off onto Andrea. They made a connection and hung out for the next 3 days until it came time to say tearful goodbyes and she cursed the city of Cuernavaca and its men.

*Bonus: What the hell kind of dance is that Jorge? 


I’ve Been Called Worse

When I went to Kenya with NOLS in 1997 we spent alot of time hiking through rural areas. The country is stunning in ways that I dare not attempt to articulate. It is a land with a proud history of resilience and rebirth. The charm of Kenya extends to its people without a doubt, and their warmth and hospitality are rivaled only by their humor.

We were fortunate to have a maasai guide with us. I don’t remember his given name, but his English moniker was Robert. I lost my journal at the end of the trip and it still hurts my heart to this day that so many details are gone. I remember Robert very well though, he was of course very tall, easily 6’5, with skin that looked silky-smooth and the color of freshly melted milk chocolate. One day Robert took us to a boma (village) of some of his relatives. His family members poured out into the center happy to see him, and they welcomed us with such fanfare and goodwill that we all smiled and tried to communicate our gratitude despite the language barrier, and felt only slightly less ridiculous in our western style long pants and a rainbow of nylon backpacks. It was clear that though they were kind, Robert’s family were not only laughing with us, but capitalized on every opportunity to laugh at us. One male family member, who I assumed or intuited to be an uncle of sorts, continued to circle us and clap us on our shoulders in a good natured welcome. The whole time repeating a swahili phrase that had the rest of the family nearly in tears. Continue reading I’ve Been Called Worse

Back up off me

You shine in your ability to realate to and understand others. Good at seeing others’ points of view, you get how people think and feel. You have an uncanny ability to sense true feelings, intentions, and motivations. A natural born leader, you are great at teaching and mediating conflict.

You would make a good counselor, salesperson, politician, or business person.

 mmmkay, I’m gonna get right on that.

**graphic courtesy of: Copyright