Imma Learn You

This is who I modeled my teaching techniques after

So, I’ve been absent from the blogosphere, MIA from GChat, and less engulfed in Twitter than I usually am for these past two weeks. Those of you who follow me on twitter are probably well aware of the fact that I’ve been teaching a Pre-Calculus class this summer and it’s been taking a lot of my time. The class was a part of a 2-week long bridge program for incoming freshmen. It doesn’t count towards their transcript, but the students and the program take it seriously nonetheless. It’s no secret that I really enjoy teaching and mentoring in general (see my School Daze post). Seeing the positive results that come from imparting not just knowledge and information, but also practical wisdom and advice to the youth is what ultimately motivates me to want to teach. I feel like I have a talent for communicating things to people in a way that’s easy to understand, an infectious personality that makes people listen to me, and a large amount of patience to see the job through. The only issue is, I’ve never actually taught a structured class until now.

I’ve spent time being a mentor-of-sorts, giving presentations and workshops, being a teaching assistant, and tutoring kids (including my little brother and sister). However, I’ve never taught a class on my own. I’ve never gone through the process of making a syllabus, putting together a lesson plan, assigning homework, giving quizzes and exams, and grading assignments. Let me tell you something: it’s hard (#twss). My first few lectures were atrocious to put it kindly. Now, I’m a known procrastinator (who isn’t?) and I’m no stranger to putting together a bomb ass presentation at the last minute. This was different though. I was tripping over my own words and finding it hard to improvise without sounding like an idiot. Needless to say, I had grossly underestimated how difficult of a task this was and overestimated my ability to freestyle my way through the lectures.

By the middle of the week, nothing had really changed. I kept trying to organize my lectures better, but didn’t see any improvement in my teaching. At that point, I had had enough of embarrassing myself and did something very uncharacteristic. I went to the Director of the program, the person who sought me out to teach this class, and…..admitted how ineffective I had been and that I needed help. FYI for those who may not be aware: I almost never ask for help. I’d much rather keep my pride intact than bring my flaws to light. It’s something that I’m working on though. Anyway, I felt like it was my responsibility to be honest even if I was condemning myself at the same time. The Director gave me a quick pep talk, got me to stop beating myself up about it, and offered some words of advice.

Now I don’t know if it was her words that did it or if everything just randomly started clicking for me, but after that day my lectures were pretty bomb. I was much more effective in my delivery and organization and was able to get the students to participate and be more engaging. I could tell that they were actually enjoying my class. Call me Stella, cause I got my groove back. No? Call me Austin Powers, cause I found my mojo. Try again? Call me Ron Burgundy, cause I have many leather-bound books and my apartment smells of rich mahogany. o_O

Anyway, I learned a lot these past two weeks about the process that teachers go through and what it’s like to teach. And even though I had a really rough time with it in the beginning, the positive results that I experienced in the end did more to solidify my passion than my embarrassment did to deter me. Teaching is tough, but amazingly rewarding. But for now, I go back to being a student again. #PHDeez

-TDA

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Packers

"See, honey, I told you everything would fit."

Not the fudge nor Green Bay variety.

I’ve lived in Pittsburgh for two years and during those two years I’ve lived in the same apartment. It’s treated me well and I’ve had some great memories here. Alas, every good thing must come to an end and I will be moving to my new apartment tomorrow. Why the move? I was paying much more for rent than I should be to live in Pittsburgh. Money talks. Anyway, as I was packing my belongings last night, I started talking to Suki on GChat. I was talking her about having to put together a plan of attack for moving my stuff in an efficient way onto my friend’s pickup when she gave me this little gem:

Suki: maybe u just need a woman to help u. guys SUCK at packing

Really? I immediately admitted that women are, in my opinion, better at packing luggage than men are. But loading up a car? Nope. I don’t buy that for a second. So I took it to twitter and most people seemed to agree with me. (Disclaimer: I’m not saying that men don’t know how to properly pack luggage nor am I saying that women don’t know how to properly load a car. However, women seem to be better than men and men seem to be better than women in those situations, respectively.)

Women have a way with luggage that most men are just not able to duplicate. Every luggage bag that a woman packs contains 3 closets and 2 bathrooms in them. Either every woman’s luggage bag is also a doorway to Narnia or they’re really good at packing. I actually envy women for their skill. The only reason women take more than one luggage bag with them on a trip is that they have about 12 closets worth of clothes in their houses, which requires them to pack heavy if they want “options”. Men seem like they know how to pack luggage, but that’s because we only have to pack 5 items for a week-long trip. In reality, we usually just throw things in a bag, sometimes haphazardly. There isn’t really any blueprint to how we pack. We just kinda shove stuff in there because space is never really an issue. And if we need more room we press down on the items in the bag with our hands/feet/ass/child to try to flatten everything. That seems to work fine most of the time. Hell, that’s how I’m currently packing all these boxes for my move.

On the other hand, loading a car seems to be a different story. Men take items that need to be loaded into a car and all of sudden it’s a game of Tetris (relevant Simpsons reference). You can literally see men working out geometric equations in their mind while they do this. And no space is too small to fit something in (pause). I feel like women are a bit more cautious about breaking something (either the cargo or the car) when they try to load a car. Most of the time, men don’t believe anything will break. Because of that, we’ll use spaces that would otherwise be ignored. “See that 4 inch gap between the crockpot and the guitar amp? Yeah, that’s where the flat screen will go.” And somehow it ends up fitting.

But maybe I’m wrong. What do you guys think?

-TDA

Smartly Sexy

sexy strings!

Ya'll betta WORK those invisible strings. Rawr.

So we have in our midst a woman who needs no introduction. A woman who embodies the definition of “foolery” and who continually works to bring ratchet discussion to the forefront of our society. To her, foolery is not just a habit, but it’s a lifestyle. Please, join me in giving a great big fuck you welcome to Cheekie.

Or “sexily smart.” Either way. Choose your own adventure.

One afternoon, I happened to be aimlessly watching an episode of CSI: [insert popular city and/or witty term here] with my sister at her place. There was a particular character who encapsulated the very idea of a “know-it-all.” Like, he knew everything about… um, whatever he was supposed to know about. He deftly spit out jargon in such confidence, it could give you whiplash. My sister turned to me and said, “Ya know, I love dudes that know everything. Dudes who know just… a LOT about what they know. Like, that is so sexy to me.”

And I have to say, I agree with her. That IS sexy. It got me thinking about the different classifications on what makes someone “smart.” And the various labels that are attributed to a smart guy. The most common being, “nerd, geek, and dork.”

Though these are often deemed as interchangeable, they are anything but. Those who truly embrace these labels know the difference. And I have to admit, I find something I like in each one.

Allow me to dissect what I just said. Ya know, get froggy (see what I did over there?):

1. The Nerds. These are the truly intelligent, in the purest form. They know things that are commonly unknown (particularly useful things) and are pretty much the rulers of the world. Sans Oprah, of course. There is something completely irresistible about a guy who knows everything about something I know little to nothing about. Like, for instance, I’m more of an artsy person. Right-brained, yadda yadda yadda. A guy that knows how to logically stimulate my mind? A mathematical master? Swoon city. Yeah, basically I’m saying: Engineers NEED apply. NEED. This intelligence I adore applies to vocabulary as well. As a writer, I’m definitely a logophile (which sounds dirty; and I’m cool with that). So, I especially love when a man teaches me a new word or pronounces one of my favorite words in THAT voice (sidenote: I have a thing for the word, “poignant”, so fellas? Please send all audio files of you reciting that word to pinchmycheekie(at)gmail(dot)com. Merci and whatnot.), which sends me into daydreaming bliss.

2. The Geeks. These are the guys that are intelligent in terms of interests. Hence the term “movie geeks”, “Star Wars geeks”, “music geeks”, etc. What I love about this guy is the passion. Sure, said passion can delve into side-eye territory, but even then, there is something endearing about it. I am a self-proclaimed Disney and Pixar geek (though, I prefer “stan” since I’m dramatic) so I know a little about putting all of yourself into something. Obsessing over random facts, geeking-out (you see, again, what I keep doing there?) over national conventions, proudly showcasing adoration… the list goes on and on, my friends. There isn’t much sexier than a guy being totally enthralled in his interests. Watching a guy excitedly regale me with stories/facts involving his interest o’ choice is a special kind of aphrodisiac.

3. The Dorks. This may arguably be my favorite. Well, not my favorite so much as it holds a special place in my heart. These are the silly, sometimes clumsy and rather awkward guys. Dorkiness is such a loveable quality. I especially appreciate when said dorkiness comes out in snippets; in unsuspecting moments. A seemingly cool guy unpredictably showing his more dorky side is like manna to me. Because I view it as him showing some vulnerability. Some quirkiness. And I love an all-around goofy guy. One of THEE hottest things to me is combining foolery with intelligence. I call it “intelligent ignance.” Remix a ratchet southern rap lyric using Ye Olde English and you have my heart. Basically, dorks get boob hugs. You too-cool-for-school mofos can kick several pet rocks.

Pinchers (or would that be That Damn Africans?), what do you think about nerds, geeks and dorks? Oh my! Male or female, is there anything about these three classifications that appeal to you? And hey, go crazy, add some of the sub-classifications (like “dweeb”) while ya at it.

Whisper that Pythagorean Theorem in my ear, boo-thang.

Love ya like soccer women love to celebrate a win by taking off their shirts,

Cheekie

Pool Parties And Titanium Fists

Apparently this is how my friends imagine I'm going to die

#Pause at that title.

I can’t swim. *stops to give everyone a chance to side-eye me*

Yes, I never learned how to swim. Ten points will be awarded to stereotypes. I took swimming lessons as a kid, but never finished them (I don’t remember why). When I got a little older, my uncle tried to teach me, but I could never learn how to float. My body would just sink every time. I’ve spent my life stuck in “wade in the water” status.

Fast forward to this past weekend. I went to a pool party hosted by one of my friends. It actually was more of a small gathering at the pool area at my friend’s apartment building. No matter. Almost immediately after we arrived, all the women jumped into the pool. The men? We sat at a table and chilled. Why? Cause most of us couldn’t swim. Of the four guys there, only one could swim. An additional 100 points will be awarded to stereotypes. We were all met with insults and boos from the women, who were confused why men who couldn’t swim wouldn’t be eager to jump into water. We were called “lame-os” and our table was designated “Loserville”, insults that got us talking about how ineffective insults usually are at getting a man to do something he doesn’t want to do. Oh, you calling me a pussy ass nigga?!? Well, I guess I’m a pussy ass nigga then. *George Jefferson strut*

While the women enjoyed the water, some of the 2520s at the pool asked us if we wanted to play a game of volleyball with them. Seeing as how we weren’t doing much of anything else except being verbally harassed by women who only knew insults from 1986, we decided we’d play. It was a fun game and not too competitive seeing as how most of us weren’t that good. I was one of the worst though. Every time I’d try to do a forearm pass, the ball would get knocked into the heavens without exerting that much force at all, thus leading to my nickname “Titanium Fists”. And TheChampmighthavespikedtheballinmyface, moving on….

After the game the men went back to chilling at our table. After a little while, I decided to jump into the pool. I figured I might as well take advantage of the fact that the pool has a shallow end that I’m not too short for (I foresee Cheekie making a comment about how incredibly shallow the pool must have been to accommodate me). The women cheered after I removed my shirt, I assume because they were fawning over my visible ribcage, and I made my way to the pool. I obviously spent most of my time standing in the pool, but at one point Gem and Saks did try to teach me how to float to no avail. I do appreciate them trying though.

Anyway, fun was had, jello shots were consumed, and no one drowned. That’s about as successful as a pool party can get (don’t refute that). One day I may learn how to swim, but until then I’m going to be whatever the opposite of Aquaman would be. That sounded better in my head.

-TDA

Sing With Me

Last night I went out to celebrate Miss Patterson‘s centennial at a local bar. It was a small, hot, dimly lit bar, but had a nice atmosphere to it. That evening was also the bar’s Karaoke Night. As soon as I heard the plans to hit up this bar for karaoke, I was ready to go innnnnnnn. (FYI: I kinda like to sing). Anyway, there were some great acts, good acts, subpar acts, but mainly “you just don’t give a fugg about our ears, do you?” acts. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to procure a recording of Miss Patterson singing to share with the rest of the interwebs. She sang Like A Virgin and was actually pretty decent. I missed her singing Push It though. I’m sure it was a winner. All in all, I had a great time celebrating a good friend’s birthday.

However, my favorite part of the evening was, of course, when I got to get up and sing. Now, I’ve been singing since I was in the 8th grade and singing well since I was a sophomore in college. But instead of singing something by myself, I ended up singing two duets. One was Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell – Ain’t No Mountain High Enough. The other was Luther Vandross & Beyonce – The Closer I Get To You. Both are amazing songs performed by legendary artists. Now, I can’t even remember the last time I sang a duet with anyone in public, but it’s a very exhilarating activity to me.

Singing a duet is a pretty intimate experience. When you’re singing a solo, you are on an island. Just you and your instrument. Swaying this way and that way with your voice in exactly the way that you want to when you want to. You own it. Even with a choir or backup singers, a solo is all about the soloist and where he/she chooses to take the song. But with a duet, it’s a….marriage, if you will. It’s not all about you anymore. You don’t call all of the shots. You can’t take all of the spotlight. You have to give some power and control away. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve heard duets before that sounded more like two solosits who accidentally got booked for the same time slot. I don’t think that’s how it should be done though. You and your partner should act as counterbalances to each other. Feeling out each note and emotion in preparation to give support or take the lead, without ever giving a verbal command. It requires paying attention to your partner and them paying attention to you. Gently singing ad libs to add flavor to your partner’s words. Harmonizing with them to give the notes warmth. Belting out a note just before your partner finishes their line to let everyone know that you’re about to take over for a little bit. See, it has to be a give and take. When done right, what emerges is something that is much greater than the sum of it’s parts.

That’s how I felt last night. Me and my partner played off of each other pretty well, especially considering we’ve never sung together before (just because you’re singing a well-known song with someone doesn’t mean your voices will blend well). And according to the people there, we sounded good. Afterwards, it left me with a feeling of euphoria. To, in that instant, be moving in perfect harmony with someone. To be slow dancing without ever touching their body. That’s what singing does to me.

-TDA

Not Good Enough

*opens door, changes into a cardigan and sneakers*

Well hello, boys and girls. It’s good to see you again. I know it’s been a while. I missed you and I hope that you missed me too (don’t respond to that, Cheekie). I hope that you’re ready for a story. You are? Well that’s just splendiferous!

*hits the DVR rewind button to two years earlier*

The story starts about the time I began my new prison term life in Pittsburgh. I was still getting settled into my first apartment, learning the layout of the city, and trying not to get killed by monkeys in my research lab (wait, I’m still doing that). Then one day, thanks almost entirely to the fact that my car battery died, I met this woman who was also a new graduate student in the city. We started hanging out a bit and became decent friends. I was attracted to her and almost went into pursuit mode, but something stopped me. It was a weird feeling that I had never experienced in undergrad. It actually took me a little while to figure it out.

I didn’t think I was good enough for her.

When I looked at her and how she seemed to have everything together and then looked at myself and how I was still learning the basics of living independently, I called off the dogs. That’s not what she needed. At least, that’s what I thought. Thinking back on that decision I made, it’s a little easier to see that while my reasoning made sense, it was still a cop out.

First of all, I shouldn’t be making decisions for her. In my mind, dating me at the state that I was in would have been a waste of her time. I didn’t want to bring my naiveté into her life. I felt like I would just slow her down. But how did I know that that’s how she felt? How did I know that she would have minded dating a skinny, slightly awkward Ethiopian who didn’t know the difference between a frying pan and a tablespoon? Was I really protecting her or just protecting myself from feeling embarrassed?

Secondly, I ignored the fact that since I liked and respected her, that she might inspire me to be better more effectively than I could inspire myself, as well as the possibility that she might want to be an active participant in the process. You obviously shouldn’t look towards a relationship to motivate you to improve yourself, but that doesn’t negate the fact that you push yourself a little bit harder when a person you like & respect is in a place in their adulthood that you want to be in.

After a while she became really busy and we didn’t talk or hang out that much. *hits “Back to Live” button on DVR* She’s been a lot more free now during the summer and we’ve been talking and hanging out a bit more. I still like her so I’m gonna see if she wants to come over for dinner or go to the Pittsburgh conservatory or something. I still don’t have my life together like I’d prefer, but why let this opportunity slip away again? For all I know, I may have sent myself to the friend-zone because of that decision years ago. But there’s only one way to find out.

-TDA

The Lottery and The “Numbers” Argument

This is it! This is the one! I can feel it!

I despise the lottery. No wait, I don’t despise the lottery. I despise the people who throw money away on Lotto tickets. My aunt, bless her heart, ALWAYS plays and I ALWAYS judge her (don’t worry, I do it to her face). A dollar here, five dollars there. All for the unlikely chance of winning the big one.

“You never know. I could win it. And then what would you say?”

“I’d tell you to wake the hell up cause you’re dreaming again.”

It has always seemed like a big waste of money to me because the odds are clear as day. I’ve got a better chance of making that kind of money by becoming a prostitute in Antarctica (true story). All of this comes back to the fact that I’m a pretty risk-averse person when it comes to certain areas of my life, including my money. (Being risk-averse is not being cheap or stingy. Some people confuse the two.) I don’t do high-risk, high-reward. I’d rather go for the more certain outcome, even if it seems less rewarding. It’s a positive trait at times and a negative one at times. I’m working on taking more risks in certain areas in my life though. Getting in my own way is not the business.

In other news, why are some women so eager to dangle on the metaphorical sack of this “numbers” argument? Yes, the raw number of “eligible” black men vs. “eligible” black women is in favor of the guys, but I’m not so convinced that it significantly increases our chance of finding someone to settle down with. I can understand the argument that it helps because men have more options to choose from. However, having more options doesn’t necessarily translate into a greater probability of a long-term relationship.

Let me put it this way: the people who play the Powerball and always play one ticket every now and then have a lower chance of winning a prize than the people who play multiple tickets frequently. However, the truth is that the odds of winning the Powerball grand prize are in the ballpark of 1 in 200 million. With odds like that, buying more tickets to increase your chances of winning would be a proverbial drop in the ocean. Sure, having more options gives men a better chance at having sex, getting a date, or even finding a girlfriend (i.e. one of the smaller prizes) because the odds of getting those things are already decent. However, the “numbers” argument doesn’t hold a lot of water when you understand how inconsequential it is to a person’s overall chances of finding someone they want to settle down with (i.e. winning the jackpot), especially when considering all the other factors involved.

And for anyone who’s thinking about rebutting what I said:

-TDA

Blacks-Only Cinema

The other day, I fired up the ol’ Netflix streaming and started watching Luther, a British psychological crime drama starring Idris Elba. Elba was nominated last year for Best Actor in a Miniseries or Television Film for his work in Luther and I’ve heard pretty good things about it in general. So far, I’m hooked. It’s only been on for one season, but if you haven’t seen it, I suggest that you do.

In the midst of reading some internet reviews of the series, I saw some news that puzzled me. Tyler Perry is apparently replacing Idris Elba as the lead in a reboot of the Alex Cross movies. That’s right, I didn’t get the order of the names mixed up. Madea is replacing Stringer. Put that in your pipe and smoke it. For those of you who don’t know, Alex Cross is a detective and protagonist of a series of novels by James Patterson. No disrespect to Perry’s acting chops, but based on both his and Elba’s past work alone, this doesn’t make sense to me. He could very well shock a lot of us on some “Heath Leger as The Joker” type steez, but I wouldn’t put my money on it, especially since the director is Rob Cohen, who’s biggest successes are The Fast and The Furious and xXx. “You know you done fucked up now. You know that right?”

This of course got me thinking of what other black actors could portray Alex Cross? The last two Alex Cross movies, Kiss The Girls and Along Came A Spider, had Morgan Freeman as the lead, but he’s obviously way too old to play this role again. I rolled through the list of prominent black actors who I thought could play a detective in a crime drama: Denzel Washington, Will Smith, Samuel L. Jackson, Don Cheadle, Lawrence Fishburne, Forest Whitaker, Jamie Foxx. But when you’re doing a reboot of what you hope will be a franchise, you want younger actors. So what about the following actors that could have played the part as well: Anthony Mackie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nate Parker, Columbus Short, Laz Alonso, and Derek Luke just to name a few. These are very promising black actors who have shown their talent, but still haven’t seemed to make themselves household names. Even Idris Elba isn’t as well-known as we think he is. While it would be easy for me to describe Hollywood’s propensity to not take risks on non-white lead roles as racist, it seems more likely that their greed chooses to follow the natural racial segregation of our society.

A recent study by Andrew Weaver of the Indiana University Department of Telecommunications showed that “white participants were more interested in seeing films with white actors than films with black actors.” Weaver took 68 white undergraduates and made webpages for 12 fake romantic comedies with different percentages of white and black cast members. His results showed that the more black actors were cast, the less interested the white participants were in seeing it. In a follow up study where Weaver surveyed 150 white people between the ages of 18 and 69 that is yet to be published, the results were supposedly the same. The participants’ racial attitudes and actors’ relative celebrity didn’t have an effect. We’ve seen this happen recently with one of the biggest black actors of all time in Will Smith. The actor has admitted that race played a role in the casting of his love interest in Hitch. Studio execs were worried that a black leading couple would turn off audiences while a white love interest might offend US viewers. According to Weaver’s study, the execs were right. Even with Will Smith, a box office gold mine, the studio still saw it as a risk to team him up with a black love interest. Having said that, I would love to see this study done with participants of other races and compare the results.

Now, do I think that these results show that racial prejudice still exists in this country? Possibly. Do I think that these results could also be explained by the notion that people of any race flock to social groups and settings that they’re used to and often times end up racially segregating themselves in the process? Yes. Regardless, so long as audiences continue to believe that the intended audience for movies is determined by the race of the cast, studios will continue to not take many chances on young black actors and actresses in leading roles.

-TDA

With Friends Like That…

I remember seeing Kevin Hart’s I’m A Grown Little Man for the first time and being unable to control my laughter damn near the entire time (I still think I’m A Grown Little Man is funnier than Seriously Funny). I was literally crying during the ostrich story. One of his stories in particular caught my attention though.

“I’m good at seeing things. I’m good at noticing things. Like, I remember one of my friends got jumped one time. And I was with him. I ran. The reason why I ran is because I saw it coming.”
— Kevin Hart

In high school, I was walking with a teammate to soccer practice one day. He was an annoying kid who I didn’t talk to much, but for some reason he wanted to walk with me that day. As we were walking to the field, I noticed a group of guys who were about to walk past us. After a couple of seconds, I realized that they weren’t walking past us, but walking toward us. My spider sense and the Force went off and I immediately knew what was about to go down. Everything went into slow motion. Ominous music started to play like it does in movies when something bad is about to happen. It was clear to me that these dudes were going to jump him. It also became clear why he wanted to walk to practice with me: he was hoping that either these dudes wouldn’t jump him cause I was there or that I’d have his back and help him out if it came to blows. Uhhh…

The guys started to surrounded us, but I just kept my pace. I didn’t stop walking and I didn’t say one word. I knew that it wasn’t me who they were after and I didn’t want to give them a reason, so I thought that if I acted like I didn’t see them that it would convince them that I was a figment of their imagination or something. Jedi mind trick game proper. I ended up walking right through the crowd and none of the dudes even cared. #MissionAccomplished Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t just go to soccer practice and was like “Oh nah, I haven’t seen [teammate’s name] today. Not sure what happened to him. *juggles soccer ball on foot*” I went to the practice field as quickly as I could & told my coach what happened. Him, along with me and a few teammates, walked over to where I had left my teammate for dead, but by then it was over (don’t worry, he didn’t have any serious injuries).

My decision to not get involved was 100% selfish and 100% right. It was based on self preservation and I’m all about preserving self. Some might see it as a punk move, but I don’t think it was. Let’s review the facts, shall we? And the church said “Amen.”

  1. We weren’t friends. Not only that, but he was hella annoying, so part of me thought that he might have deserved the jumping. I’m not throwing down fisticuffs with you on some Batman and Robin type steez and risking my life unless you’re cool with me. He wasn’t. *shrug*
  2. There were like 6 of them. It doesn’t take a rocket surgeon to know that unless you live in a movie, 6 against 2 are not good odds. However, I knew that I had a 100% chance of survival if I ran away like a little bitch left. Survey says….
  3. You know how I’m short and skinny? Well, I was shorter and skinnier in high school. My fighting experience was limited to sparring sessions while learning Tae Kwon Do, but a) that crap doesn’t work in a street fight where bammas might have knives or guns and e) getting my black belt taught me when to fight and when NOT to fight. You can guess how I categorized this situation.
  4. I didn’t have any semblance of gangsta in need of preserving. My reputation was sustained.

I felt real shitty afterwards though. It wasn’t a proud moment for me at all and it took me a little while to shake the guilt of abandoning someone like that. But at the same time, damn that. Sometimes you gotta know when to save yourself.

What do yall think? Have any of you ever ran out on someone you knew was about to get jumped? Ever see a jumping about to happen and get your Kick-Ass on? Hell, lets put it out there. Have you ever jumped someone before?

-TDA

Aww Here It Goes!

One of my favorite childhood shows was Kenan & Kel. The amount of buffoonery and randomness was off the chain. Not to mention it was one of the only shows on Nickelodeon with a colored black cast. That and My Brother and Me are the only two shows that I can remember that had a black cast. But, if you’re a fan of the show, you know that Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell were working together on Nickelodeon long before this show. I’m talking about All That. Here are some of my favorite All That skits that include Kenan & Kel:

  1. Okrah
    If you don’t know who this is parodying, then you can’t be saved.

    Why I Love This Skit:
    • The intro murked me. That’s a vintage ’90s intro montage if I’ve ever seen one. No fancy text or colors. Just clips of the host expressing every kind of emotion while a piano and saxophone play in the background.
    • Kel’s delivery of the line “I feel the hurt” to every guest plays beautifully into the empathetic tone and facial expressions that Oprah always uses.
    • Okrah’s one out-of-control moment where she goes “sista” on one of the guests after trying to eat her fern.

  2. Superdude
    Superdude was my favorite recurring character on All That. The random ways he would introduce himself (e.g. “I can fly first class, I can fall down and not get hurt, I can cross the street without looking both ways”), his intolerance of dairy products, and the over-the-top cheesy dialogue made every skit entertaining.

    Why I Love This Skit:
    • The sweaty lady (a recurring character in Superdude skits). I die when she asks what lactose intolerant means while taking someone else’s sleeve to wipe that damn monsoon off her face.
    • Superdude is so super, that he knocks both of the bullies to the ground with tomatoes. In his hands, tomatoes are bricks.
    • The chick who came straight from Narnia to give a mini PSA about what “lactose intolerant” was and then the side-eye she throws at the woman who asks “Like ham?” #ByeBitch

  3. Cheese Police
    An obvious parody of the reality show Cops, the Cheese Police skit just does a real good job of taking the outline for a live drug bust scene and making it hilarious without being too over-the-top.

    Why I Love This Skit:
    • The camera work was spot on. The cameraman couldn’t hold still for longer than 2 seconds. It actually made the skit more suspenseful.
    • When the cops bust through the door and the first thing I saw was that girl with Cheese Whiz hanging off her mouth and her hair a mess, I lost it.
    • The epic scream the boy lets out after Kel reads off the fat content of the cream cheese. Kudos to the cameraman again.

  4. Mavis and Clavis
    Mavis and Clavis are wise-crackin’ senior citizens. They throw insults at everyone, talk as if they know everything, and never hesitate to give their opinion. Basically, they’re the black Statler and Waldorf.

    Why I Love This Skit:
    • I know yall peeped the “Wood Is Good” banner at the beginning #SubliminalMessages
    • When Miss Fingerly is escorted out of the room and subconsciously calls out Coach Kreeton’s name, Mavis and Clavis know the deal and start hyping up Coach Kreeton like many old black men would do.
    • Amanda Bynes’ character keeps questioning Marvis and Clavis’ expertise with wood like a little bitch and they keep telling her to STFU. I’m pretty sure Mavis almost swung on her when she said they couldn’t make anything better than her birdhouse.

  5. Repairman
    Repairman was one of the most over-the-top characters on All That. Dude was OD. But that echo is the stuff of legends.

    Why I Love This Skit:
    • “Woah! Check her out! Zoweee!” I know what you mean, bro. I be doing the same thing.
    • That old lady got fugged up!
    • It doesn’t get more gangsta than a black Italian throwing up the West Side sign.

Did you watch All That and Kenan & Kel? What were some of your favorite moments/skits?

-TDA