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, July 11, 2008

Party Like A Parent

You know the saying what God has for you is for you? True words man, truer words. A couple of weeks ago I was with family gatherin and reunionin and shit. Let me stop right here and say that I was one of two female cousins over the age of 25 there. My male cousins are plentiful. And they were all there, either married with kids, bunned up with kids, had a child with them (cause they take of they kids) but mother of child/girlfriend/wifey was not present, or just bunned up without kids. I was pretty much the only “grown” person flying solo. So I was left to sit with the widowed old great aunties and reminisce on a simpler time.

Anyway. Once the old biddies went to bed immediately after sunset, it was me hangin’ with the youngins’ (and I’m really using this term loosely) who all seemed to have forgotten they had children. There we were ten grown folk crammed in a small hotel room enjoying an array of alcoholic beverages. It was all good in the neighborhood until… The children began running every which way. “Get in the bed,” the adults would scream. The four kids would jump and huddle into the double sized bed and giggle away. Until… They would get out of the bed and run around some more. And who could blame them? The lights were still on, the television was blaring, the adults were telling lively stories riddled with cuss words and appropriate hand gestures, while laughter erupted and hung in the air. It was a par-tay! Until… “Get in the bed,” the adults would scream. And so this merry-go-round ride went on until I got a headache and had to take it to my own bed.

Now don’t get me wrong, Rum Punch likes a drank and a good time. But I have always thought that once I became a mother I would have to tuck some of my “wild” ways away. This is not to say that good times would be gone forever. But this is to say that I always assumed there would be an appropriate time and place for these good times. And in my mind it involves the kids asleep at the house being watched by Big Mama while my huzband and I are at somebody’s house party, or on a mini weekend vacay with another couple getting our drink, party, love making (not swinger style though) and then our sleep on. I always thought that when you become a parent, you have to let some things go. If you’re sharing a room with your kids then you probably should go to bed with them at a decent hour. And you might not want to get intoxicated (and then some) with them around. And that’s reality so color me purple © Little Brother.

Now contrast this hotel experience with my trip to the beach that weekend with my older female cousin who is married with two young kids. They brought the world with them to the beach: umbrella, chairs, cooler, a huge bag full of shovels, buckets, toys and more toys. All I had was a towel and a huge bag filled with my ipod, cell phone and good reading material. Do I need to point out that this cousin was not in the hotel room living it up? I didn’t think so. Anyway. When it was time to pack it up, I looked around the kids were wet, sandy and hungy, it seemed like we had made a home right there in the sand, and then I thought, “who’s going to take all this shit back to the car?” Of course I took something, but my cousin and her hubby worked like a team. Loading everything up, taking turns to take the kids to bathroom so they could change into dry clothes, keeping the kids occupied while they quietly debated where we should stop to eat. Man parenting it ain’t easy, I thought as I fell asleep in the back of the minivan. I mean I was exhausted and all I had done was laid out in the sun.

And this brings me back to what God has for me is for me. Even though my ovaries start to hurt when I see a cute little baby on the train or getting christened or enjoying a stroller ride and I get that I want a baby twinge (which naturally leads to the gotta find a husband first tug), He knows I'm not ready to be a parent right now because I'm a true believer that once I join the motherhood club some things about me are going to have to change. To me being a parent means making sacrifices. It means growing up. It means maturing. It means being unselfish and thinking of someone else’s needs. And since I’m not ready to change yet, Rum Punch ain't even thinkin bout birthin' no babies. Well I might think about it from time to time, but I'm not actively seeking to make it a reality. Nope. I haven't completely wrapped my mind around the parenting thing. Right now, I'm loving stacking my dough, just packing a bag to take a last minute trip and then crashing on a friend's futon, doing what I want when I want. Partying like a single person without kids! Totally Dude!

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

Thursday, July 10, 2008

p-poppin' in a handstand

I never fully understood the male fascination with strippers. I mean I got it intellectually but I still thought to myself…

yeah…and…is it really that serious?

Granted, strippers can do things that most women simply are unable to make their bodies do, at least not at that tempo or bending it that far back. I know they got skills beyond belief and are flexible beyond what nature intended. But still, stripper smipper.

I’ve been to a male strip show or two in my day and I just came away feeling busted and disgusted. Ok, Chocolate Thunder, you got the pecs, the abs, the gyrations, oh my! but after a while I feel a little violated. I don’t mind if my man or huzband goes to the strip joint so long as he don’t “frequent the booty clubs” too often while we be “raisin’ our own youngin” ya feel me. I prefer a little bit more artistic creativity in my dancers. A little more skill and ability in my entertainers, if you will.

Enter Chris Brown!

If there was a male strip club with 10-20 CBs flippin' and dippin' inside, I'd be there every night throwing my dollar bills in the air. This boy is amazing: half man, half man-with-no-bones-in-his-body! If you haven't seen his live show, I suggest you treat yourself to the good life. The boy puts on a damn good show. I'ma say he’s the best male entertainer out right now. Sorry Usher, you can sang and all but Youngin’ got you on the moves. Usher can dance, but Chris Breezy is a dancer. He has a natural ability that others have to rehearse and practice for hours on end to achieve. In the middle of the show, Youngin’ did this freestyle dancing set, takin it back to the days of .....girl, I must warn you....it's drivin' me outta my mind! YES!

He’s just so cute. I mean really so cute. He's got that shy smile that reminds you that he's only 19, but his moves hypnotize you and your mind goes to how low is that bandana hanging that means he's like a bandit, like like a bandit?

Over drinks later that evening with some guys who continually rolled their eyes as I reminisced over the fabulousness that was C. Breezy it came to me and I offered this analogy.

I said to my homie, you know how it is when you are just dumbfounded when Peaches or Diamond or Bust It Baby down at [insert your local strip joint here] makes her cha cha pull a blunt or whatever other forms of nastiness goes on inside those walls. And you can’t get that shit out your head for the next few days. And every time you hear that song she was twerkin to on the radio you get a back-shot. That feeling right there. That’s me dude. Seriously, I can’t listen to "take you down" without having to pull my car off to the side of the road and pray for forgiveness.

Let me go wash my memory clean of all these carnal thoughts and delete every chris brown joint off my ipod. But ohhh just one last time before I go…*

Ahhh finished…


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

good is indisputable

So, Omar Tyree is retiring (Flyy Girl) and is blaming his "urban" audience for not supporting him and our penchant for denigration-- oh, just read his statement for kicks.

Mr. Tyree, as an author define "urban"? The word "urban" is a catch-all phrase that means nothing. For some it's a code-word for black. For others it characterizes those who live within city limits. And yet, it could depict the sophisticated --for those of you that understand its origins as a deriavtive of urbane. So, Mr. Tyree whatchya really saying?

I read a few of your novels back in the day -- circa 10 years ago-- and never came back to read any other titles authored by you. For one, vacillating between your government name and your psuedoynm baffled me. And as an avid reader, I prefer novels that provide depth and range. So, your novels didn't cut it--granted I didn't read them all, but Leslie was the straw that broke the camels back. It was long and lacking. I apologize if I'm denigrating on your literary progeny--'cuz I'm not here to diss your craft. But like my girl Jilly from Philly said "Everything ain't for everybody." So, I reckoned your literary style wasn't for me and I steered cleared of your titles. But, your girl Bellini hasn't stop reading.

By the way, if they are any closet authors preparing their drafts or contemplating drafts on the topic of the drug game--please don't. That subject is so damn tired and told. Evolve beyond that, there are more things to talk about and discuss. Oh, but wait a minute -- according to Tyree the drug game is the cash cow? Tyree who is your audience-- when you write your novels who do you want and who do you envision reading your work? Oh,i forgot it's that urban audience. Mr. Tyree, I would have preferred your press release to state after 15 years in the business-- I am going on a hiatus, blah, blah, blah...a certain quality of panache is missing from your exodus...anyhoo...

For those of you that have a craft that you want to share, sell, or suggest to the masses -- make sure it is GOOD. Not just good for the "urban" audience, not just good for black folks, but just plain ol'e fashinoned good. A good book is a good book-- it's hard to dispute.



Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Grandmomma's Hands

Over the weekend, I journeyed to the land of my forefathers… Okay, let me stop making it sound all Alex Haley-esque, like I went back to Africa and found Kunta-especially since I just went down to Tidewater area of Virginia for a family reunion. And beyond the gathering being a chance to watch my mom try to do the Booty Call. Or me begging my uncle to finally reveal that I am, in fact adopted because I can’t be related to these people. Or even during our family history having a cousin reveal that he might have married a distant cousin of ours… This weekend was a chance for me to have a face to face heart to heart with my grandma, where she handed me an old fashioned lesson about enduring.

Let me say that my grandma is one of my favorite people left in this world. It wasn’t always this way of course, especially when I was younger and I could only see her as that old lady who was my mother’s mother. And when my parents were going through their divorce, that old lady said a few unkind words about my father that had me crying and HATING her. But somewhere, thankfully, I got to know her as a person and realized that honesty is pretty much all a person is gonna get from her. Her truth is biting and the type that sometimes you just don’t want to hear. I guess because I’ve grown up in a sugarcoated culture it stings a bit more when granny keeps it real. Stop giggling so much-it’s not that funny! You better not embarrass me in front of these people now! Or that your food Ain’t hitting on nothing. But that’s just how grandma rolls.

And now that I’m older I’m privy to those grown up conversations held in the living room while the children run around outside (also, no more kids table-holla!). It was my grandma who revealed those secrets that paint a more colorful family picture…like who was gay, or an alcoholic and who was adopted into the fold. And somewhere during these care and share sessions, when she gets to something crazy that she just doesn’t understand she always says I don’t know, I guess I’m just old fashioned. And I never tell her she’s wrong, that she is the furthest from old fashioned. Born in 1928 my grandma is still driving her ’98 Volkswagen Jetta, checking her account balances online, and asked me to help her find her a pair of denim capris to wear with her calf boots.

Nor do I know many people my age whose grandma has a Master’s Degree…but mine does. And what I learned this weekend was that she quit her program two times before her final attempt. She told me how she would come home after work and class to find my grandfather reading his newspaper, and my mother and her two older brothers complaining about their hunger pains. And my grandfather’s response to the whole situation? Was that she should have been there to feed them children. Now, I loved my grandfather, but this was some bullsh*t! Two times my grandmother had to quit to tend to their children. Had to put her goals on hold. Had to wait and not faint. I told her that in today’s day and times that would have been grounds for a divorce! She laughed, paused, then said I suppose it would be now. I guess I’m just old fashioned. But you know on that last attempt your grandfather had dinner ready for me every night when I got home. Of course he was retired and the children where grown by then, but that food was good. And I’m glad I stuck with it because now I get an extra $2,000 in my check because of that degree. Well alright Grandma, make it rain! Make it rain!

Of course there was a message, encouragement and pieces of advice that I gleaned from my grandma’s tale, all of which I won’t bore ya’ll with. I’m just glad that old lady has become a friend who shares her stories that get me to thinking about my life and times. She makes me question what I feel I should be, what I should be doing, and what I’m willing to put up with because I’m an educated woman… As she casts her pearls onto me, I realize that I don’t know too much about nothing…and that’s the honest, old fashioned, timeless truth.

See You In Seven

Monday, July 7, 2008

Out of Office

Happy Monday to you all! I will be out of the office until next Monday due to a hectic schedule and lack of good post for the day. I hope this tune gets you moving in your seat.

Ahhh... the good 'ole days...

Tumultuously Yours,
Dark & Stormy