WE ARE: 5 women navigating our twenties in search of peace, happiness and love (or not). WE WRITE: about everything and nothing. From the insane to the mundane- you will find different paths taken, lessons learned and lives lived. WE THINK: you’ll enjoy it...Warning: Consumption of these views may leave you enlightened while intoxicated.


The View From Here will conclude on Friday, October 1, our third year anniversary. We would like to spend this month thanking all of our readers, followers, haters, visitors, family, friends, and fans for your continued support, encouragement, and comments over these past few years. Thanks y'all!
-The Five Spot

Friday, June 20, 2008

Jelly Bellies, Muffin Tops and Cougars, Oh My...

Good people out there, what you know good? Let's get started shall we. So it's summer time and the clothes have gotten shorter and tighter. But I see that everyone did not use their winter months wisely. Kind of like the ant and the grasshopper. But in reverse. Anyway. Is it just me or have y'all seen any of these fashion mishaps in your city, your town, your borrough, or your hood?

We can't let this happen! Let's work together to change the history of poor fashion choices! Yes we can!

Um yeah and these are the "clean" versions. I know y'all have seen worse at the club or on the block. Now first off this can't be comfortable. It's clear that these women's pants are too tight and are probably cutting off some circulation. Secondly, as I've mentioned before I'm a thick chick and I will acknowledge that I have a little bit of a tummy, so I definitely sympathize with my sisters out there. It's not a good look in general. But it's definitely not a good look when your clothes don't fit. And while I'm working on geting my tum tum down, in the mean time I have learned how to camouflage it. Now admitedly I'm no fashionista but um, I have learned over the years that it's all about blazers and shirts that float away from the body. And most importantly it's about buying clothes that fit. Even if that means having to go up a size or two. Yes, that's hard, admitting that you're really a size 14 and not a 10, but trust me it will serve you and society as whole. I think I speak for many people when I say that we don't need to see your jelly belly shake, shake, shake! So, good people out there, will you please help me spread the gospel? Will you carry this post in your pocket and if you a see a woman like this (or worse), please politely tell her to tune in to TLC's What Not to Wear every Friday night at 9 p.m. EST. And let them know that sometimes there are Saturday marathons! This has been your Rum Punch Public Service Announcement!*

I can't think of a good transition sentence...

So y'all Very Smart Brothas wrote a post a little while ago about the goggles. In addition to beer goggles, they gave other other examples of when objects in mirror may look better than they are in reality. One of them was drought googles. You know when you haven't gotten any in awhile and suddenly every person of the opposite sex starts looking yummy. Y'all, I think I'm there.

The other day I ran into a young man who I know. He is all of 19 years old. As we were parting ways, he going to the bus, I going to my car (cause I'm a grown ass woman who lives at home dammit) he maneuvered a ride home from me. So, while we were walking and talking, I realized that this young man is quite intelligent with a touch of innocence and naivete. Man, I could shape and mold him, I thought. To test my theory when we came to a puddle I said to him, "Now this is where you would lay your jacket down so I wouldn't step in the puddle." Never mind that he wasn't wearing a jacket. He rolled with it and said, "but instead of ruining a good jacket, couldn't I just carry you over the puddle." And I said, "Well I don't want you to hurt yourself." While in my mind I was thinking, "Okkkk! Play on playa." Or as Amaretto said: PIMP JUICE!

During the ride home we chatted and exchanged some more witty banter which let me say I didn't realize I had been missing. I mean he even used the phrase, by the by. I mean how cute is that? And I was thinking, "Whoa Rum Punch, get a hold of yourself. I know it's been a long time since you got some, but you can't start preying on the youngins'..." But I now realize why older women go for younger men. In addition to him being smart and funny, the best part was that he was malleable. I felt like if given the chance, if I worked it and twerked it right, I could totally make him hopelessly devoted to me. If I were a woman of looser morals, when we got to the house, I would have told him I was a little parched, so I could get inside, seduce him, and see what he was working with. But thank goodness things came into focus as I pulled into the driveway. I mean I don't want to corrupt young minds. Not yet anyway. Not when they can't even buy their own liquor. But when he graduates in a few years and he gets that first real job, if I'm still single, he might get a little graduation present! MEOW!

That's my time y'all! Happy Rum Punch Friday!

*We at 5 and possible are not responsible for any conflict that occurs after you confront a woman with a jelly belly or muffin top. Proceed with caution and at your own risk.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

asleep in Sunday School

One of my favorite movies (at the moment) is Kno.cked Up. Me loves it! It’s funny and full of moments that are so true to life. And while I was watching it over the weekend for the 50-eleventh time (cause I’m a loser with no cable), I had an ah-ha moment.

Eureka….eu—freakin-reka! © Seth Cohen. This whole movie is like last week’s post come to live. Made possible by white movie actors, of course. For those of y’all who haven’t seen it, slacker Ben meets on-the-come-up Alison randomly one night at the club. They head to her place for a little naked goodness but right before the deed is done, their wires get crossed such that Ben goes it raw dog, and Alison ends up preggers. The scene where Alison breaks the news to Ben that she is with child is classic. Missed sex education much, kids?
Alison: I'm pregnant.
Ben: Fuck off!
Alison: What?
Ben: What?
Alison: I'm pregnant.
Ben: Pregnant... with emotion?
Alison: Pregnant with a baby.
[Then they talk about how Alison thought Ben had on a condom and he tells her that in fact he did not, leading him to ask her how come she didn’t realize he didn’t use protection.]
Alison: I was drunk!
Ben: Was your vagina drunk? You think I'm an inventor? "He created a dick-skin condom, He hollowed out a penis and put it on", what the fuck?
I die laughing every time I watch that scene. Alison and Ben try to make a go of the relationship since they will be tied together by this baby for the next 18+ years. Despite some rough (and wildly hilarious) patches, they end up happily ever after since it is a movie and they are white.

Folks I know who find themselves in this same predicament -- guy meets girl at club, they f*ck once or often like it’s goin out of style, somebody forgets their sex education 101 and girl ends up pregnant. That shit usually ends on a sour note. Because the two people are probably totally incompatible and just haven’t had enough time to figure that out because instead of getting to know each other they were just f*cking. NOTE: taint nothing wrong with sexual relations between two grown folks but when you slip up and create a life, shit gets complicated. Or even if they kinda sorta could possibly have been feeling each other, the stress and strain of an unwanted pregnancy can, I’d imagine, drive any normal person insane. In the movie, Ben hints at the shame of Alison's being an unwed mother but in real life I often wonder, WHERE WENT THE SHAME?

Cause young unwed women coming up pregnant happens a whole lot more amongst the young black crowd or more among folks that I know (which is the young black crowd). I remember the days when folks, especially church deacons and deaconesses looked at you crazy when you came strutting into the church with a bump under your shirt. Like oh hell no little Ms. Hot in the Pants did not walk up in my sanctuary pregnant and we know she aint been married by Pastornem. And you shore couldn’t come back to church till that baby was out. If ever. We’d whisper about them and speculate during Sunday School what the future held for them now that they had been ruined. Notwithstanding the inherent sexism in these judgments, I honestly believe that the shaming which these girls had to endure among their church community impacted not only that girl's future sexual behavior but also the behavior of younger onlooking girls. It engrained in me the idea that I should keep my legs together and if I so happened to open them, I should make sure not to come back with some visible evidence that I had opened them.

Nowadays, young unwed mothers get way too many congratulations. Of course, I’m not saying that we should bring out the scarlet "BM"and "BD" and brand folks foreheads so we all know that there is a baby running round which they created outside the bounds of marriage but I think that we have gotten way too comfortable with this situation to the community's detriment. Folks are so brazen and bold that not onlydo they have that one but then they continue to pop out another and another and another, as if to say MARRIAGE BE DAMNED.

And being a young unwed mother with a sometimes in the picture baby daddy is difficult and not ideal, especially if that becomes your norm. How does that affect your kids and their ideas about what a healthy love relationship should look like when it's time for them to get into one?

I know this may make some folks upset, in part because we ALL know someone who had a baby outside of marriage and therefore it is personal to us and we don’t want to judge people we know and love. But on a macro-level…ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

“This isn't funny. This guy's got twelve kids, that's not funny. That's a lot of responsibility to just be... laughing about. This is sick.” –Ben

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Round 'em up. NOW, part ii

I told you, we would revisit this topic and the time is now. To the ire of some, they were not feeling my opinion on the matter. But in the nation’s capital the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) chose to do as my post is titled – Round ‘em up NOW.

“It was a warm afternoon in the District's Trinidad neighborhood, and a group of boys was walking shirtless in the streets, some with pants hanging down below their behinds.”

This is part of the problem – I didn’t say the origins of the problem, but problematic nonetheless.

“One of the boys had thrown a plastic soda bottle at a youth passing by on a moped, nearly causing a crash. "Unsupervised teenagers -- that's part of the problem,"... "Now, how they're getting a hold of all these guns and drugs, that's the other part."”

Just a neighborly observation as told to a columnist for the Washington Post.

Now, remember these quotes as I make my point ….

In a neighborhood that is in the backyard of the US Capitol, during the past two weeks there was a spike in homicides. So, the chief of police and the mayor’s chief legal counsel devised a plan Neighborhood Safety Zone to contain the number of homicides in this neighborhood. Over a 6-day period, they imposed a military-style ID checkpoint on a street in that neighborhood. In effect, stopping all motorists (however pedestrians could walk on by). The efficacy of the plan was criticized, considering that pedestrians were not stopped and if a motorist was denied entry at the checkpoint – they could enter the neighborhood via other streets, alleys, etc. Now some residents were peeved and others were relieved. During MPD presence, no homicides occurred.

I must admit the mayor and chief of police strong-armed residents of the embattled district. The mayor’s office didn’t inform the city council of his intentions let alone residents of that district. But then again, the mayor of cafĂ© au lait has operated in this manner since the inception of his mayoral term. His claim would be: In the name of efficiency – I gots to do what I gots to do—and for the most part—his newly minted citizens (circa ‘90s +) don’t mind his style. They like when the job is done.

Lest I forget to mention, that the neighborhood is slowly being gentrified. A new train stop was added a few years ago. Residents built a new charter school – so a change is comin’

Remember the quotes above

The issue of civil rights vs. civil liberties is not new in this country. It is a crude idea for the government to intrude in your neighborhood while you pay taxes and such, however you better devise a plan of your own and become proactive 'cuz if not the government will adopt their own plan to the ire of many.

Now critics to my original post can twiddle their thumbs all they want, but the government ain’t waiting for ya to figure things out. So, either we round ‘em up NOW and salvage what’s left of our neighborhoods and rebuild or they will round ‘em up NOW.
It’s your call to make.



P.S. Congratulations to the Boston Celtics, stone-cold crushing LA!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

In Treatment

So I’ve been feeling kind of blah lately. I know, what the hell does “blah” mean? Rum Punch and I have been trying to define it for the past few weeks to no avail. It’s like being bored, annoyed and anxious all rolled up into one. Sometimes you shed tears while sitting up in your room, yet you are still able to laugh at jokes, and even be the life of the party. If you’ve ever felt this way then you understand, and if not, sorry that’s the best I can describe it.

So anyway, this feeling of blahness became more intense yesterday. And sadly this intensity was ignited by the actions of a male. *Sigh* I know, I’m suppose to be this unique and strong single female and yet I have a starring role in a typical story written centuries ago. Boy meets girl, girl likes hanging out with boy, boy wants more, girl says no-maybe later, boy goes crazy and wants to throw rocks at her. And as common as this story can be it doesn’t make it any less sad, nor does it not cause a girl to question some things in her life. Like, am I a good person? Was I too much of this… too little of that? Was I that annoying heffa I said I never would be? Is Pepsi really better than Coke? And down the rabbit hole girl falls.

And so, girl recognizing that she’s losing some of her sanity over foolishness, knows that it’s time for a little therapy. During these epiphanies, some of us head straight for the refrigerator. Yummmm. Ice cream, cookies, cakes and pies…oh my! Or maybe getting a steak medium-well and a baked potato loaded with cheese and bacon! Food is truly the most dangerous form of therapy, but ain’t nothing like be fat and happy saying fcuk that diet while sitting on the couch, watching Good Times. And then there’s retail therapy! Hi-ho, Hi-ho it’s off to the store (or the online store) we go! Something about getting a cute outfit (or several) can really put things into perspective and remind us that this is why, this is why, this is why we hot. And honestly I subscribe to both forms of treatment on occasion, but last night I needed some good ole music to make it better.

I went to my CD collection (yes, it’s still 1998 in my world) and got my girls Jill and Mary (the My Life album, not those other ones) out. Sometimes Erykah is in rotation, but I wasn’t feeling quite
“Green Eyes" bad, seriously folks, use that song with extreme caution. And for some reason I threw Sade into the mix. The Best of Sade to be exact, from “Cherish the Day” to “No Ordinary Love” I was singing and feeling fine. Then got to The Sweetest Taboo. What the hell ya’ll?! Do you know that song? It is the TRUTH! With the rain in the background and this woman is sangin’ and the band is playing like God’s standing in the corner saying if you want live you better do the darn thing! Please imagine me with my headphones on (for my roomie’s comfort-because I was blasting the stereo) hands in the air singing “You give me the, sweetest taboo. That’s why I’m, in love with you…” But then there was a lyric I ain’t never noticed before in which Sade says:

“I’d do anything for you. I’d stand out in the rain.”

Say what girl? Stop the music! Stand out in the rain? You got an umbrella right? Maybe a rain bonnet? Because get your hair wet? For a man? Puhlease! Has she lost her mind?


I guess that’s what sweet taboo will do to a girl. Or just simply loving someone passionately can cause a girl to happily go to the land of crazy. I don’t know. I have yet to find someone who is stand out in the rain, wet hair, I’m about to look like a microphone head worthy. But knowing that people can feel that way about somebody and not just blah all the time makes me feel better. Hopeful. And a little more sane.

See You in Seven

Monday, June 16, 2008

Crumbling Bricks

I love him. I love him not... I love him. I love him not...

I don't want to love him because I ain't got time for such matters right now. I'm mad busy trying to get my life in order. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and getting my body back in shape, looking for a new job, figuring out what I want to do with my life, identifying my dreams and taking steps to follow them... In a nutshell- working on ME. It's a full time gig times 3.

At the beginning of this year I met a brother whom I was instantly attracted to. I'm not sure how to describe it but the initial attraction was not physical. It was chemical, almost, if that makes any sense. He had this vibe about him that I had never encountered before and yet it felt entirely too familiar. I wrote it off as him just being a charismatic person and didn't give it too much more thought. On several occasions, he invited my homegirl and I to attend social events that either he or his friends were hosting. We mostly socialized in group settings with a quick phone call or email here or there. One night, we sat on the phone for two hours and talked about any and everything and nothing. It was then that I realized I liked him.

Now before I go any further with these [personal] thoughts, I'd like to point out that there have been many men that I have met, had great conversations with, had a couple of nice dates with, and then never called again because they just didn't do it for me. It doesn't take long for me to decide on whether or not a brother will get the boot. I don't need to kiss you, or ingage in any other intimate acts, to decide. I don't entertain a man's company just to ward off a little loneliness or to partake of a free meal/outing. And if I really need to get my rocks off I already have potential maintenance men, therefore the services of a stranger (read: guy I just met) are not needed.

Back to the story. So one day, about three months ago, I called brother man and asked if he'd like to join me at a sports bar to watch a basketball game. He was down and suggested we check out a band that was playing that night. We did both. What I anticipated to be an evening of fun turned into a 24 hour whirlwind of our energies merging. In every sense of the word. Mind sex with him is so powerful... it only further enhances any physical contact that may occur. And I had not felt such passion in years. No really. Y-e-a-r-s. My last serious relationship lacked passion. It was nice, loving, safe, and comfortable. But not passionate.

Sometimes I wonder if we fell in love that day and it just took us the next three months to understand what went down and believe that the shit was possible. Well, part of me is still not ready to believe. Guess that's why I am typing this post. Or maybe me typing this post is helping me to better understand what the hell I have gotten myself into...

I'm sure by now you're wondering why I would be bothered by what seems to be such a sweet thing. I have been blessed to share a slice of my life with a man who loves life, is hardworking, and has a good heart. He's smart as hell and very talented. He's generous and respectful and has been very good to me. He understands this storm within; most who I encounter never will. And he recently told me that his life is too complicated and that he's got too much going on to be able to give me the kind of undivided attention and love I deserve.

Not only am I not mad at him, I respect his honesty. I am only mad at myself for getting caught up, way more than I realized. My intentions have always been to simply enjoy what we had going on and ride it out. To enjoy it while it lasted. See I thought I was doing a good job of keeping my heart on lock. Until we had a conversation yesterday about loving each other. And while he was very open with me, I would not allow myself to reciprocate the feeling. I'm sure he could read my face but I my lips were frozen in fear. Talk about vulnerability in rare form.

He and I have been discussing an "exit strategy", regarding the way in which our relationship has progressed and our choice to shift its gears due to the circumstances. Why should I even entertain the notion of love if it will not or cannot be transmitted to the intended receptor? And why the hell didn't he just keep his mouth shut and let me continue to live in denial? Now I have to actually think about it.

It's easier to let go if I love him not.

My head hurts. Other organs shall soon follow suit.

Tumultuously Yours,
Dark & Stormy