Afro Punk Shenanigans🤘🏾

 

Afro Punk is something everyone should experience once in their life.The carefree atmosphere is swirling with creativity and great vibes. I could go on and on about how lit it was to see Sza float across the stage while simultaneously possessing the energy of the Energizer Bunny, or hear Princess Nokia announce that this was a place of love and healing then proceed to rap over Ratchet songs like “Bruja” (I mean ratchet In the best way possible) and have the crowd turn into a moshpit, however…you’ll have to experience that for yourself because this is a recounting of all the events that ensued After the excitement was over.loll
In the beginning of the Summer me and my pledge brothers, (I’m a member of Alpha Kappa Psi) decided to embark on this trip to Afropunk. As the date got closer we all figured out our best mode of transportation and lodging. Me and a few others decided to just make a day trip leaving early in the morning and taking the Megabus back to D.C. at 3am….I know, it seemed like a good idea at the time. So As the festival came to a close we realized we were all left out of power ,out of a charger or out of data. Smh Even the portable charger I bought for $25 there they swore would last all day was out of juice. So we did what any other red blooded American would do. We headed to the nearest Starbucks. However only to find that they were locking up and turning the lights off to make sure we wouldn’t try to come any closer. Then we got really desperate, checking trees with outlets that were all turned off. Thank goodness one of us was smart enough to ask a concierge if we could sit in the apartment lobby and charge our phones. And that is where the squatting began. We had to be there for atleast an hour. We stood out quite dramatically, our brown faces, colorful dashikis and Afro prints against the white wall and marble floors of the swank NYC apartment lobby. I’m sure a few who walked in wondered who the rif raff was sitting there charging phones and bickering about where to eat while sprawled out from post festival exhaustion. In the midst of a seemingly endless purgatory of regrouping I saw a very well dressed woman glide through the revolving doors of the lobby, IT WAS SHIONA TURINI !! If you don’t know, GOOGLE HER! I was awe struck, staring at her and wanting to say something but the only thing I could think of was “ Your So Bomb” and “I like Crop tops too” L.O.L. but my Icky all day festival grime just didn’t seem like the best first impression. So she flounced passed with a look of confusion and haste. It just goes to show you Afro Punk and NYC, really, can bring people together from all walks of life from the thrill seeking College student to the established Fashion editor and Stylist. Soon after we were asked to leave because the nice concierges’ shift was soon ending but not before he offered us donuts for our travels. And I’ll always remember him for that.

The place we settled on was Skylight Diner. A no frills spot in manhattan near our Megabus pickup spot. By that time it was around 11ish and our bus didn’t leave til 3:30 am. Needless to say we would take our time eating. We ate our food and joked a bit as we got our second wind of energy and the fatigue of the day didn’t feel so apparent. But for some reason when it was time to pay and leave around 12:30 everyone suddenly got so tired we just fell asleep on the bill. All four of our heads down in unison. I figured we can’t get kicked out if we’re all knocked out at the table and it’s not like the place was packed anyway. I mean if you can’t squat at a diner, Is there no safe place to squat?!?! The answer is Yes, NY is void of 24 hour Walmarts with soft furniture so we were really out of options at that point. Thankfully they left us alone, and there were a few groups in there catching Z’s before their Greyhounds. After we woke up and made a blanket run to Duane Reed time flew by and we were suddenly on our way back to D.C. I got home around 8:30am and stumbled in bed soon after. All in all It was a great weekend spent enjoying music, seeing avant garde melanated people and avoiding my responsibilities with people I can’t live without.But next time, I’m getting a hotel room!

Get Up!…and other encouraging words.

Seasonal sadness,

I call it sadness because its not like the debilitating effect depression has on you, but today was the first day that actually felt like fall. And I felt that twinge of drab feeling. Not that I don’t enjoy fall, i actually prefer the colder seasons. I was born in winter and love the style you can exhibit in the colder months, trench coats,boots, scarves glove bring em on! Football games, Homecoming, Holloween are all things that I associate with Fall. However it’s logical that a lack of Sun and vitamin D can cause one to be lethargic, and a little less enthusiastic. I know it’s harder for me to get out of bed and go to class when I feel the chill of the morning and it’s still overcast outside. So by recognizing these things I realize that I have to adjust my routine and make sure I’m not falling into the trap of temporary sadness. Here are some small things that can alleviate that feeling.

1-Get on an exercise plan, its known that the endorphins you feel when working out release dopamine and other feel good chemicals into your body. This can combat the lack of energy you have.

2-change up your routine, the monotony of the school/work week can get you down sometimes and make you feel like your not progressing. Switch it up and take a new ceramics or yoga class.Start creating. This will get you out of your own head and you may see things more clearly.

3-Find a Bae-Y’all know it’s cuffing season, I hope you’ve been evaluating all prospects, it’s time to Shoot ya shot.
4.-Get up early-You may already do this in your normal routine but forcing yourself up will keep a normal sleeping pattern. Oversleeping can make you lethargic and unprepared for the day ahead. Get a fresh start and drink a protein shake,pack your bag and get dressed!

5-Again, Get Dressed!-And No..leggings, fleeces and uggs don’t count. Fight the urge to just throw on what’s comfy. I mean really get dressed up makeup, hair,thigh highs the whole 9. Go the extra mile for yourself, when  you look good you feel good.

 

Making Changes

 

Veganism

untitledI have been pescatarian my entire life, meaning no meat only seafood. However after watching, you guessed it, “What the Health”, I decided to embark on a vegan lifestyle. I know it would be more challenging giving up dairy, seafood, and animal products all together, I really wanted to do it after seeing all the diseases and health issues associated with those things.Mercury levels in fish are very unpredictable and dairy creates mucus and bloating in your body. Dead animals also emit extremely high carbon dioxide levels and the mass slaughter of them damages the atmosphere. These are all things I know I do not want in my body anymore. I have struggled with weight loss as well so this could be something to help jump start that for me. A lot of diabetes and heart disease runs in my family as well and this is something that I have to take seriously. I was so gung-ho the first week, then temptations started to creep in, then cravings and convenience and before you know it I had fallen off!  Bread and carbs are a huge issue you have to look out for when becoming vegan, because those things turn into sugar which can be just as bad as processed meat and fish.  Other things to watch out for with vegan and vegetarianism are substitutes. Meat and Dairy substitutes can contain processed Soy which can increase estrogen levels in the body which can be detrimental through weight gain, hormonal changes and other issues. I believe a plant-based diet is the best option to live by but I am not the type to push this on other people because I am a work in progress myself. The biggest indicator is that I feel lighter and better when I am eating fruits, vegetables and other things that come directly from the earth. If that is how most strong animals get their nutrients nature must be trying to tell us something. There is so much to learn about this lifestyle change and it is not going to be easy but I will keep you posted on the process.

Increasing Water

I recently bought a 36oz  reusable water bottle. Now the challenge is actually using it! I’m supposed to drink a gallon a day which is 128 oz, don’t ask me how much I’ve been drinking. But that stops today!… kinda lol

Budgeting unnamed

This can be a challenging thing for me, ever sense I made my own money from my summer internship I thought I could shop and spend frivolously. Not that I don’t deserve it but it’s time to reel it in, since I’ve successfully updated my wardrobe (nods with pride)loll. I’ve realized that I am not a planner, I kind of like to do what I feel. As I’m getting older I do have to do some planning ahead. One of my biggest fears/pet peeves is having to worry about money or lack there of; it gives me this weird, suffocating feeling and its odd because I have always been very well taken care of and blessed to have hard-working comfortable parents who didn’t want me to worry about that. However as an adult Its now my responsibility to support my self more and ask for less.  So I’m making some changes with budgeting by:

  1. First, seeing how much I have.
  2. Then, subtracting any debts or future bills that are due the same month (one of my issues is waiting to long to pay for things and letting $$ sit in my account, it looks like I have more than I actually do).
  3. Then calculating my expenses ahead of time such as ubers, food, misc things like a charger, etc.
  4. Then I subtract that from my income.
  5. This is where I see my disposable income.

Side Bar: Yesterday I went to Walmart with a strict budget of $10, as I shopped I added up everything I picked up to make sure it was within that budget and it ended up being $9.60, I was so proud! lol it’s silly I know but I really stuck to my guns and felt like I was adulting smh, sadly, No more Whole Foods for me!

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Or should I say lack there of. I recently created a tinder account…because I have never been much of a dater and I think its time to put myself out there. As a Capricorn(lovelovelove being one) we can be very rigid and stuck in our own routine and lives. We tend to thrive off of our alone time and introversion. This can be a great thing because we can be satisfied with ourselves and very confident. However being open to new things and people is the spice of life and we wouldn’t all be here if we weren’t supposed to have love and be with each other, I mean it seems like the cool thing to do. The issue is I.am.So.Picky. And if I like you,which is rare, I’m kind of obsessed. But the dilemma is those I like don’t see me, or come around late and my train has moved on! loll or those who are interested in me don’t give me that spark, but we tend to become friends if they’re good people. But I can’t force it. So I’m trying this new thing and actively putting myself out there, we’ll see how it goes. But in the mean time I’m gonna keep working on me, like Bey said “Me, Myself, and I.” And that’s more than enough to keep my hands full!

I Got Fired, and I’m Happy!

And just the other day I was worried about not having anything to write about. Lol! Life can be unexpectedly eventful. So here it is, I recently(meaning Tuesday) started working  in a customer service job for an Ecommerce company that specializes in distributing  Jewish products. My role was to take phone calls from customers and make sure their requests were recorded and sent to whoever was in charge of that category. My schedule was Tuesday,Thursday, 9-2 and all day Friday. TGIF. So on Tuesday (my first day) I came into the office. I’m saying office very loosely because it was really a warehouse/art studio space with a computer lab in the back, where we worked. I came in and there was a Jewish man at one computer, another young Caucasian women who I had gone through orientation with and next to my computer a young African American woman, lets call her M. Me and her hit it off pretty well and were exchanging pleasantries and giggling over the quarks of the other men we worked with, like the man who sat across from me who had dirty feet and slurped his food loudly! lol We noticed that their communication was always very tense and high strung, they never spoke to us in a crazy manner though. Finally my actual boss came in around 9:45-10, he was rushing around and finally introduced himself to me. From there he said he wanted me to hit the ground running taking calls and writing their information down on a spreadsheet. He was leaving town that day and had a lot to handle. So I’m thinking cool this can’t be too difficult. So here I am with no customer service training or information about how to solve any of their issues, look up orders and even really address them to answer questions. I had so many technical issues with my headset, however this one man was very sweet to me and took the time to fix things, it took 5-10 minutes. a couple of hours later the man who’d been sitting across from me finally introduced himself, I figured out today his role was a manager, let’s call him J. Then Thursday I came in again and did the same thing. Sat down got on the call center sight, had technical issues, chatted with M. etc. One thing I noticed was that every time M attempted to ask J a question about how to look up orders and actually solve issues with customers he would brush her off and say she didn’t need to deal with that even though it’s her job description. When I asked him that morning If he could teach me some quick easy things to help customers he responded with yeah, sure and never followed through. So me and M. just continued our work and chatted quietly about things we observed. M had mentioned to me that another new girl ,let’s call her N, had started yesterday and was late ,falling asleep and kind of a mess. The worst part was that J told her hiring manager everything and She.Was.Livid. Then the conversation turned to career and she very quietly told me she heard back from a position she had been waiting for forever and she was so happy, I replied saying yeah I applied for an internship too but was waiting to here back from the rep and that I would be conducting wine tastings. So today I get there early and did not have the code for the office so I waited. J showed up and let  me in asking how long I had been there blah blah blah.M and N came too. I got some coffee and started working. It was the first time I hadn’t had any technical issues, and M was basically training me and N, even though she had only been working there for 4 days. She told me to make sure my head set was charged, I closed out of all my tickets, and was showing us the order system they use. The boss was working from home that morning. Then I get a call from my hiring manager saying I need to leave the assignment now….I was super confused. Apparently the boss heard from someone that I was interviewing with other companies and got a job so I was planning to leave them. I guess someone overheard me and M talking and thought I said what she said or just lied all together,

So I get off the phone and ask to talk to J. Of course he didn’t know anything and said I should talk to the other hiring manager, S, who I had interviewed with. I spoke to her and explained what I was told and that was not something I said but apparently the boss was not budging and thought I wasn’t dedicated and blah blah blah…So I packed my shit and left. Now here are some of the reasons I was relieved.

  1. I have 2 midterms next week
  2. I have professional events to handle for my Fraternity
  3. I have a business plan due next week
  4. I go out of town next Friday
  5. Ya Girl is Stresssseedd!!!

Lessons Learned

I still left this position with a good relationship with my hiring manager S, which is always good to have in the future. However I don’t think this was the environment I wanted to be working in, it was kind of unprofessional and odd. And I believe this was  a blessing in disguise, it just freed up so much more time. Of course money is great and needed! But I am blessed to have a supportive family and just wanted to have my own extra money and structure since my schedule is pretty light. But I will be compensated for my time! But mainly I feel like this is a sign that I need to not work for anyone. I’ve always known/been taught to be an entrepreneur of some sort and I have a class that is solely about that. I have a business plan due next week and need to start thinking seriously about that. This is the second time I haven’t had the best experience with higher ups and I feel like the universe is trying to tell me something. I still wonder who told, probably J. But moral of the story is…never trust a manager with dirty feet! Lol jp, but seriously listen to that inner voice that says something is off and understand that life is on your own timing. Nobody else’s. That’s something I got from my bestfriend Ty, today’s her birthday too, perfect timing.

9 Styles for Naturalistas

So I have been natural since the 7th grade. I didn’t do the big chop like most girls. I decided to use protective styles like braids and twists until my hair grew out. It was a long process and I went through so many hair phases. I definitely like to switch it up every time I change my hair but sometimes I find myself having a lack of inspiration and I’m sure my natural girls will agree. So here are some options that have worked for me that you can try as well! Warning: you are about to witness a barrage of selfies.

Crochet Braids

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Similar to weave, however, This style is done with a crochet needle that crochets an already curled piece of hair into the braid. I suggest getting Marley hair and wrapping individual pieces on rollers then dipping them in hot water so they are already curled, this avoids the hop water dipping after the hair is crochet in.

Corn rows

This style has beIMG_6153en very popular this year and girls are getting very intricate with the patterns. I kept it fairly simple here and added some gold shells for interest.

unnamed.jpgFeed In Braids

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Fast Simple, and very inexpensive. Just make sure you tie it down tight with a scarf at night. You can choose to flat iron your natural hair, I did because I wanted it to lay flat, however there are several textures to choose from when matching your natural hair.

Sew-in with Closure

 

This was very convenient for me because I did not have to worry about putting heat on my natural hair or trying to blend it with the weave hair. I used a lace closure.I got it redone after a month because my hair began to grow out and make it lift. I would not recommend keeping it for over 6 weeks depending on your hair growth. Wet it in the morning and brush it down while blow-drying to flatten it.

Sew-In With leave Out

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The other weave option allows some hair to breath while keeping the rest under tracks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Box Braidsbraids

This is a classic style, you can go the Poetic Justice route and get them larger or small. Some like to do square patterns and zigzags and colors. Have fun with it.

 

 

 

 

2 strand twiststwists

This is done while the hair is wet, 2 strand twist small sections and then use rollers and sit under a dryer for a short, curly look.

Faux Locks

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This is a relatively new craze. It is done by wrapping kanekalon hair around  a box braid that is only  partially done. Try Goddess locks for a soft romantic look.

 

 

 

 

Puffpuff

This is always the go to default hair style your mom/dad put on you when you were little. Try Crème of Nature curl pudding or Ms. Jessie’s curly meringue to soften and stretch the hair. If you want a slick look use Eco Styler or Conditioning gel and wrap it till it dries. You’ll have the sleekest puff around.

 

 

5 Sunday Vibez

Sunday is a day for rest and relaxation. Here’s a handful of songs you should check out when your vibing to your Sunday routine.

 

zero 7

 

In the Waiting Line-Zero 7-

This down tempo track will be a great addition to relaxing on a Sunday. If your into Sia, Zero 7 is a group you need to know about. She’s done some amazing music in collaboration with them.

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Mr. Magic(Through the Smoke)- Amy Winehouse

One of the most unique voices in music, Amy Winehouse released her debut album ,Frank, in 2003 to critical acclaim. This soulful track will give you classic Amy, honest, bold and biting in her delivery depicting a relationship gone sour.

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Sweet Life-Frank Ocean

I was late to the party on the greatness that is Channel Orange. This euphoric melody mixed with Frank Ocean’s vocals is the perfect sound to carry you into the week ahead. “Palm Trees and Pools,” ahh I wish!

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Tell Me- Groove Theory

This throw back will forever and always be a R&B classic. Enough said, and if you’re into groove theory check out, Amel Larrieux. The lead singer has had a formidable solo career.

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Makeda- Les Nubians

This Afrocentric French duo has created one of my favorite albums of all time, their self-titled project is packed with melodies that keep you in a Sunday vibe. But keep an open mind. Warning: The song/album are entirely in French. Good thing music transcends any language barrier.

 

 

7 Sunday Vibes

 

Whether you’re cleaning your room, relaxing or finishing up some homework thats due at 11:59 pm these songs can for sure be the soundtrack to your chill sunday vibe.

1.Skywalker-Miguel
This light,fun,upbeat track makes you want to ride around all day soaking up the sun and good vibes, but what else would you expect from Miguel?

2.Honey Molasses-Jill Scott
Just hearing the honey drenched tone of Jill Scott’s voice automatically puts me in a sunday kind of mood. This classic never gets old.

3.Another Life-D’Angelo
You can never go wrong with anything from the man I’ve proclaimed to be the King of RnB Soul. This track from his last album will give you a hint of prince as well.

4.Borderline(An Ode to Self-Care)-Solange
The title is pretty self-explanatory. Sunday is the day for self care. Take Solange’s advice and mentally/physically/emotionally prepare yourself for the week ahead. Cus you know there’s always a manager,professor, or peer thats gonna try it! Lol

5.On & On (Jazz Mix)- Erykah Badu
This Fast-paced, Acid Jazz Rendition of her classic hit “On & On”, will keep you going on your work out or Sunday cleaning marathon.

6. Time Flies- Groove Theory
This throw back will have you reflecting on the week, month or year that flew by and before you know it, it will be time to start the week again. For some reason it makes me think of doing laundry. Take a listen and see what you envision.

7. Portuguese Love- Teena Marie
An exceptional ballad from the Ivory Queen of Soul. Her nocturnal crooning is the perfect soundtrack for cooking a romantic dinner for your significant other or jamming during meal prep.  Sing till your lungs give out!

 

My first Blog!

Welcome to  my blog Introvertdventures! Follow me as I chronicle my experiences as a Senior at Howard University. I will be giving you insight into my music taste, style, and lifestyle changes I experience as well as major events going on. I like to consider myself an introvert with extroverted tendencies so this will be a mix of my inner thoughts and opinions on the world around us. Stay tuned!