saturday swag

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Black Feminist Film School Fellowship Fund

I love interesting DIY (Do It Yourself) crowdfunding projects.  I came across the Black Feminist Film School Fellowship Fund on Facebook. They are so close to their goal. Support if you can 🙂

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“The answer, the vision, the liberation. Black Feminist Film School is an initiation journey that will transform all involved toward love and light. I invite you to join in and support in the ways that make sense for you….Black Feminist Film School Summer Session (bffs Summer Session) will take place June – August 2014. We will be focusing on building skill and practice as Black Feminist storytellers using the filmmaking medium and accompanying art forms. Within the three month session we will cover all phases of filmmaking including research and writing, pre-production, production and post-production.” http://www.alexispauline.com/apgblog/cause-view/support-the-black-feminist-film-school-fellowship-fund/

I have a lot of respect for Dr. Alexis Pauline Gumbs. She’s an amazing young artist/organizer/radical activist. She is also a fellow zinester.  I have the SPEAK! CD that she and fellow women of color zinesters created a few years ago.   It should be added to folks DIY collection. Check out this great interview with Dr. Gumbs:


 

Memorial Day weekend

Happy Friday, everyone!

Today kicks off the Memorial Day weekend. Memorial Day is this Monday, May 26th:

“Memorial Day is a US federal holiday wherein the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces are remembered.[1] The holiday, which is celebrated every year on the final Monday of May,[2] was formerly known as Decoration Day and originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War. By the 20th century, Memorial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military service.[3] It typically marks the start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.”

The Memorial Day weekend is an opportunity for folks to enjoy three/four days off from work/school with friends and family. It’s also a big cooking weekend. I know I am missing my southern folks, right about now. On my dad’s side, we have a lot of family members who have served in the military. This tends to be a big weekend for them. They get together and reminisce and light up those grills! I can just imagine all the delicious BBQ being made this weekend 🙂

Any who, I thought this was a good time to share another recipe. I love southern baked mac & cheese. It’s a good side dish for parties/celebrations. I am known for my mac & cheese. It’s usually requested for summer gatherings.   Actually, I just made it last week for a potluck meeting:

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Tonya’s hearttack mac & cheese…don’t be skurred!

Now (hee,hee) I am not going to share MY recipe. It’s a secret. But I did find one on the ‘net that sounds pretty good. Enjoy and have a nice weekend!

Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 3 cups macaroni, uncooked
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1½ cups milk
  • salt & pepper
  • paprika (optional)
  • 1 cup smoked cheddar cheese, shredded (a must)
  • 6-8 oz. velvetta, shredded (feel free to cut back on the velvetta if you don’t want it to be super creamy)
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar (can use less if you don’t like a sharp taste in your mac n cheese)
  • 1 cup colby & monteray jack, shredded (cheese blend)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Cook macaroni until just al dente or a little under al dente. (Look on the back of the box to see how long you need to cook your pasta for it to reach al dente.) Be careful no to overcook.
  3. Drain pasta and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, add milk, heavy cream & cheeses (except for the smoked cheddar).
  5. Stir to combine.
  6. Taste the milk mixture and add salt & pepper until it has a good taste. You can also add in other seasonings like onion, paprika, etc. Tasting will help avoid having a plain, bland bake macaroni & cheese. Yuck!
  7. When you are content with the taste, add in the eggs.
  8. Stir well until combined.
  9. Butter a 9 x 9 inch baking dish.
  10. Add macaroni to the baking dish.
  11. Pour cheese mixture over macaroni.
  12. Make sure the cheese distributed well.
  13. Top with smoked cheddar cheese. (I add a little more Colby jack as well.) Sprinkle with paprika and/or black pepper, if desired.
  14. Bake for 35-45 minutes. Do not overbake. It may be a bit jiggly when you take it out of the oven. It will firm up as it cool.
  15. Let cool for about 10-15 minutes or until fully set.
  16. Enjoy!

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This recipe came from Divas Can Cook which is
Old School Cooking For The Modern Woman.
Read More http://divascancook.com/2009/12/southern-baked-macaroni-and-cheese-recipe.html

‘Supremacy’

Wow, I haven’t seen Lela Rochon in a film for a minute. She’s starring in a new indie film with Danny Glover called ‘Supremacy.’

“Based on a true story. A paroled white supremacist has just killed a cop, and takes a black family hostage over a long night of terror as authorities cordon off the neighborhood where he and his lady accomplice are laying low. Mount plays the role of Sobecki, a heavily tattooed maximum security prison inmate who’s the head of the Aryan Brotherhood and oversees his criminal empire from behind bars. He’s the kidnapper’s leader and not thrilled when he learns of his charge’s screw-up when he’s called in by authorities to negotiate with the kidnapper.” —http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/danny-glover-evan-ross-lela-rochon-are-a-family-held-hostage-by-a-white-supremacist-in-trailer-for-supremacy

Hmm…sounds interesting. I don’t recall this story being in the news. I guess I missed it. Then again, the poster reads “inspired” by a true story, so probably anything will go. Please don’t let there be a loveable/misunderstood white supremacist character, or else I am going to vomit.

Photo from: http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/
Photo from: http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/

Any who, the film debuts at the Los Angeles Film Festival next month. I searched, but I couldn’t find any information about if/when it will be released in theaters.

Detriot

I love to eat, so I enjoy watching cooking shows. A couple of days ago, I watched a season of Anthony Bourdain: Part’s Unknown.” It’s currently streaming on Netflix. The show follows Chef Bourdain around the world, eating local dishes. While I tend to find Bourdain to be a bit obnoxious, I do like the fact that he is open-minded about trying different foods and not afraid to discuss the complexities of the cities he visits. After watching a couple of interesting episodes on South Africa and Tokoyo, I was surprised to see an episode on Detroit:

“Bourdain steps into the lives of Detroit natives and sees the glory days of the past at the famed Packard Plant, the current state of the city’s urban decay, and the promise of the future in the citizens who are rebuilding their communities.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthony_Bourdain:_Parts_Unknown

Bourdain grubbed on local barbecue and gourmet dishes. At one restaurant, his host was drinking an alcoholic beverage.  Bourdain asked what should they order to eat, the host pointed to the drink and said “this is my meal.” Bourdain looked shocked and hesitantly agreed to do the same. Ha, ha! That drink must be delicious.

The episode also looked at the neglect of too many neighborhoods in Detroit. As most folks know, Detroit has been hit with very hard times.  The city declared bankruptcy last summer. Many of the residents (83% black) are under/unemployed (18%). Of course (after doing some research), folks were a bit upset that the show focused so much on the devastation of the city.  I can understand folks not only wanting to be seen as the “broke” city. However, I think it’s important that the reality of what’s happening in Detroit is talked about. There are many people suffering/struggling. Folks outside of the city/state need to be aware of their plight. The abandonment of this city, reminds me of the abandonment of Hurricane Katrina victims. And we all know why that happened…

Funny enough, one of my favorite websites Our Legaci, posted a MTV’s True Life episode about this issue. The show followed three black teens trying to make a difference in their Detroit neighborhoods. Their activism/passion is why we can’t forget about the people of Detroit. I really felt for Alyssia and I hope she was able to also get some counseling to deal with her PTSD.  The episode is a year old. I hope there is a follow-up story on these brave young women.

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Click to watch video: http://www.mtv.com/videos/true-life-im-saving-detroit/1711609/playlist.jhtml

Randomness: Blogging

A couple of weeks ago, my blog celebrated its one yer anniversary. Wow, time goes by fast. I have enjoyed blogging. It’s been cathartic. I encourage other everyday black women, to start a blog. As a group, we have been marginalized in and outside the black community. However, this is a good time for black women. Technology has allowed us to finally center our experiences/voices. Don’t let starting a blog intimidate you. You don’t have to be the best writer. You just have to know how to convey your thoughts.

Here are a few personal suggestions on starting a blog:

1) Write about what you know: It’s cliché, but true. Be your authentic self. If you enjoy going to the movies,  do a review blog. If you like to travel, write about your traveling adventures. Folks will catch on quickly if you try to write about things you aren’t really interested in.

2) Share only what you want to share Don’t feel obligated to share everything. I write some off the wall things, but it’s also part of my real life activism.  You have to do what’s best for you/your personal reputation.

3) Write one post a day or every other day: When I first started blogging, I tried to write a minimum of three posts a day. I quickly burnt out.  One post per day or every other day is good enough. It’s also good to take breaks…so you don’t feel overwhelmed.

4) Be creative: Incorporate videos, images, audio, play around with the font (nothing too wacky, though 🙂 It makes things more interesting for readers.

Good luck!
Photo from: www.essence.com
Photo from: http://www.essence.com

Zoe Saldana as Nina Simone

So, Zoe Salanda decided to go ahead and look foolish in a new movie based on Nina Simone’s life. Yesterday, For Harriet posted this new image of Zoe from the film:

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😦

It’s bizarre that Zoe doesn’t seem to get why it’s wrong to dress up in blackface to portray a dark-skinned Black American woman icon:

“I know who I am and I know what Nina Simone means to me,” Saldana said. “I can only rely on that and maintain as much humility as possible, so that when I have to face the world and we have to then give the movie to the world to see, and share it with them, that if it comes back in … a negative fashion or positive, I’m gonna keep my chin up. … And Nina was like that too.”–http://www.ibtimes.com/zoe-saldana-defends-nina-simone-role-says-im-doing-it-my-sisters-video-1107937

Umm, okay. The irony is that Nina Simone had to keep her chin up in the face of the colorism/marginalization of Black women’s voices that Zoe is participating in. She really should have passed on this role. As a friend said, why would all the folks involved in this film waste time having to “transform” someone to resemble Nina(blackface, prosthetic nose, and such) when they could just have hired someone who genuinely looked like her.

Normally, I like Zoe. However, she’s a fail here.

Any who, I definitely plan to see this film. I want to get my laugh on…