Monthly Archives: July 2011

A friend had this as her profile picture. It was evidently taken by a fellow Princetonian. My classmates are cool.

Reblogged from Sister Outsider:

10 rules for brilliant women people
1. Make a pact. No one else is going to build the life you want for you. No one else will even be able to completely understand it. The most amazing souls will show up to cheer you on along the way, but this is your game. Make a pact to be in it with yourself for the long haul, as your own supportive friend at every step along the way.

2. Imagine it. What does a knock-the-ball-out-of-the-park life look like for you? What is the career that seems so incredible you think it’s almost criminal to have it? What is the dream you don’t allow yourself to even consider because it seems too unrealistic, frivolous, or insane? Start envisioning it. That’s the beginning of having it.

3. Gasp. Start doing things that make you gasp and get the adrenalin flowing. Ask yourself, “What’s the gasp-level action here?” Your fears and a tough inner critic will chatter in your head. That’s normal, and just fine. When you hear that repetitive, irrational, mean inner critic, name it for what it is, and remember, it’s just a fearful liar, trying to protect you from any real or seeming risks. Go for the gasps and learn how false your inner critic’s narrative really is, and how conquerable your fears.

4. Get a thick skin. If you take risks, sometimes you’ll get a standing ovation, and sometimes, people will throw tomatoes. Can you think of any leader or innovator whom you admire who doesn’t have enthusiastic fans and harsh critics? Get used to wins and losses, praise and pans, getting a call back and being ignored. Work on letting go of needing to be liked and needing to be universally known as “a nice person.”

5. Be an arrogant idiot. Of course I know you won’t, because you never could. But please, just be a little more of an arrogant idiot. You know those guys around the office who share their opinions without thinking, who rally everyone around their big, (often unformed) ideas? Be more like them. Even if just a bit. You can afford to move a few inches in that direction.

6. Question the voice that says “I’m not ready yet.” I know, I know. Because you are so brilliant and have such high standards, you see every way that you could be more qualified. You notice every part of your idea that is not perfected yet. While you are waiting to be ready, gathering more experience, sitting on your ideas, our friends referenced in rule five are being anointed industry visionaries, getting raises, and seeing their ideas come to life in the world. They are no more ready than you, and perhaps less. Jump in the sandbox now, and start playing full out. Find out just how ready you are.

7. Don’t wait for your Oscar. Don’t wait to be praised, anointed, or validated. Don’t wait for someone to give you permission to lead. Don’t wait for someone to invite you to share your voice. No one is going to discover you. (Well, actually, they will, but paradoxically, only after you’ve started boldly and consistently stepping into leadership, sharing your voice, and doing things that scare the hell out of you.)

8. Filter advice. Most brilliant women people are humble and open to guidance. We want to gather feedback and advice. Fine, but recognize that some people won’t understand what you are up to (often because you are saying something new and ahead of your time). Some people will find you to be not their cup of tea. Some will feel threatened. Some people will want to do with your idea only what is interesting or helpful to them. So interpret feedback carefully. Test advice and evaluate the results, rather than following it wholesale.

9. Recover and restore. If you start doing the things that make you gasp, doing what you don’t quite feel ready to do, and being more of an arrogant idiot, you are going to be stretching out of our comfort zone–a lot. Regularly do things that feel safe, cozy, and restorative. Vent to friends when you need to. Acknowledge the steps you’ve taken. Watch your tank to see how much risk-taking juice you have available to you. When it’s running low, stop, recover and restore.

10. Let other women people know they are brilliant. Let them know what kind of brilliance you see, and why it’s so special. Call them into greater leadership and action. Let them know that they are ready. Watch out for that subtle, probably unconscious thought, “because I had to struggle and suffer on my way up…they should have to too.” Watch out for thinking this will “take” too much time – when the truth is it always has huge, often unexpected returns.”

 Original source, though I’m not sure she’d approve of me making it gender non-specific. TOO DAMN BAD. 

On my wish list:


They’re on clearance at Pier One and I ❤ butterflies so much. It’s a good thing you can’t buy online from Pier One…how many decorative pillows do I already own and never use? (Hint: Too many.)

And while we’re at it, when I was at Menlo Park Mall I visited a store called Teavana, which has some of the coolest tea sets I’ve ever seen in my life. Examples:

Totally reminds me of the lamp from Aladdin
Cast iron with elephants and $150. Sheesh.

Ain’t-Shit Brothas

Someone please explain to me why Negroes men of various races but usually Negroes who ain’t shit are always tryna talk to me. What about me gives any suggestion that you are worthy of my time and attention, ain’t-shit men? You would think my don’t-talk-to-me headphones, neat afro, pink lacy dress, pink hair flower, bead-and-seashell jewelry, and Black Snob bag would do the trick, but noooooooo. You sir [though a sir you certainly are not], will still stare at me while we’re on the platform waiting for the train, then follow me up to the same area of the double-decker train, then halfway through our ride move back so you’re sitting across the aisle from me, then tap on the seat next to me [where the bag is riding] and ask if you can sit there. Actually, you’ll basically whisper it so that I have to take my headphones out. And then when I say I’m good, and try to put my headphones back in and continue my life before I was so rudely interrupted, you will continue talking to me. And because I am incapable of being so directly rude, I cannot bring myself to put my second earbud back in. And suddenly we are having a conversation, though I am trying to be as monosyllabic in my responses as possible. 
Let me explain that you, sir, are wearing jeans, sneakers, a plain white tee, a chain, a cap, and sunglasses. SUNGLASSES. INSIDE. AT NIGHT. ON THE TRAIN. 
Why do you think it’s okay to just start asking me all these questions? Like where I’m going and where I’m coming from and where I go to school and what my major is etc. etc. Hmm, our conversation surrounding where I go to school needs quoting:

Juve [this is evidently what his friends call him]: Where you go to school?
Me: Princeton.
Juve: Oh, what school you go to?
Me: Princeton.
Juve: Oh that’s a school? Princeton College?
Me: -___________________________- Princeton University
Juve: Oh, but you said you live in New Brunswick? Why you ain’t go to Rutgers? Your GPA wasn’t high enough?
Me: Princeton is a better school than Rutgers.
Juve: Oreally? 
Me: It’s the number two school in the country. It was the number one when I got accepted…

…I can’t. This man. After thus establishing that I was way out of his league, he proceeded to tell me his life story about how in high school his GPA was a 2.5 and he wanted to go to Rutgers but they said his GPA wasn’t high enough so he went to Bloomfield College but only for a couple years and now he’s trying to go to Kean.

Another excerpt, though I can’t remember this part verbatim:

Juve: When’s your birthday?
Me: January.
Juve: January what?
Me: The 29th.
Juve: Oh so what sign are you?
Me: Aquarius.
Juve: [some of this part is a paraphrase] *pronounces Aquarius incorrectly* *repeats it* Y’all are some good people. Strong and confident. I got this cousin who’s an Aquarius. She lives in South Jersey too. She’s real good people. She always tellin me what I need to do and helpin me make plans and shit. Yeah Aqauriuses, y’all good people. You seem like real good people too. *pauses for two seconds* Why you ain’t ask me when my birthday is?
Me: …You were still talking.
Juve: *looks skeptical*
Me: When’s your birthday?
Juve: Oh, now you ask!
Juve: March.
Me: So you’re a…Pisces?
Juve: Yeah!
Me: I had this friend in high school who was a Pisces.
Juve: Oh, was she–she or he?
Me: He.
Juve: Oh. Was he good people? Did you like his personality and stuff?
Me: Yeah, he was my friend. 
Juve: Oh. Well look, I ain’t even tryna really talk to you or nothin, but I think you good people, and I could learn from you, cuz you focused, and you could learn from me, so I’m tryna ask if I could be your friend.
Me: -_______________________________- 

Then I get off the train and try to powerwalk away from him but he catches up to me and asks, “Damn why you walk so fast?” and tries to see if I’m catching a cab so we can split it and asks if we’re going to exchange numbers and I just look at him. SIR. HAVE YOU BEEN PAYING ATTENTION TO ANY OF MY BODY LANGUAGE OR MY SINGLE-WORD-RESPONSES? WE ARE NOT GOING TO BE FRIENDS. I WANT TO GET AS FAR AWAY FROM YOU AS POSSIBLE AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE. 

Me: I don’t give my number to strangers, sorry.
Juve: But how bout if I call you tonight and we can talk and then we won’t be strangers?
Me: I don’t give my number to strangers. It’s a rule.
Juve: Okay then I’ll give you my number…
Me: *rolls eyes*
Juve: You ain’t gon call me. How we gon be friends if I can’t have your number? 
Me: *crickets*
Juve: We ain’t gon be friends are we? 
Me: I’m sorry. I have to get home now. *walks away very quickly, laughing to herself about what a great blog post this will make*

MEN WHO AIN’T SHIT, CONSIDER THIS YOUR WARNING. YOU WILL NOT GET MY NUMBER. YOU WILL GET ON MY LAST DAMN NERVES. YOU WILL BE PUT ON BLAST. So the next time you see a fine-ass woman who obviously has her shit together reading on the train with her headphones in, LEAVE HER THE FUCK ALONE.

This has been a public service announcement.

I sent this email to my girl J…

…but I want to share it with the rest of you too, because this is something I’ve been wrestling hard with for the past 24ish hours:

So I’ve been thinking long and hard about this over the past 24ish hours, and this is my plan. There’s no way for me to have the total up front like I did last year (most of my savings from the summer will go to the Maya-has-to-buy-a-new-laptop fund), so I’ll have to get on the monthly payment plan. I’ve already emailed my supervisor at my library job at Lewis right now about continuing to work maybe 10 hours a week or so; haven’t heard back from her but there are lots of similar jobs I can apply for if for some reason she says no. I’m slightly worried about trying to manage a job and the rest of my life, but I should be able to use a desk job as mostly homework-doing time anyway, so it should be alright. I’m almost positive it will be alright, but if after a month or two I think this arrangement makes my life too stressful, then I reconsider and hey, I tried, and I’m only out [whatever the monthly amount is x2] and I’ve had two more months of great times with my ‘Drangler family. But I really think it will be manageable.
My mom’s going to freak out when I tell her and tell me it’s not worth it and I won’t have time and I’ll be way too stressed and lots of other things I’ve been tossing around in my head, but it’s my life. And over this past year, Quad became my life [though I want to make more of an effort to stop ignoring my pre-Quad friends and commitments this year, haha], and there’s honestly no way I can imagine choosing to walk away from it. It was only by the grace of some administrative oversight that I got to build my relationship with this club entirely on the University’s/Mellon May’s dime last year; I’m thankful for that because I don’t think I would have started it otherwise, but everything that the club has given me is certainly worth the absolutely non-crushing amount of money I’ll need to make working [the University/Mellon will still cover most of it] to stay in it. I don’t need any extra help; this plan is feasible.
Thank you so much for all of your help and whatever strings you were willing to pull, though. You made me feel all loved and valued and whatnot. Basically you’re the best, but I hope you already know that.


E> Maya ❤

PS: Besides, I can’t trust B**** to run study breaks or not insult everyone all the time or, you know, live a successful life without his other half! 

I will hate myself more for not trying than for “unnecessarily” spending this money now; I know I will.

Quoted from BougieLand

“Romance will bite you in the azz, blind you and make you stupid if you let it. You can’t be in love with love – it just doesn’t work out. Love the person, love the relationship… not the idea of them.

You have to take a step back from the emotion and the cocoa and the laughter and say – is this what I want? Is this going anywhere? Am I getting what I need or am I settling thinking he’ll eventually give it to me?” OneChele