National Black Book Festival


Friday, September 14, 2012

And don't try it again on your Friends!!


As I wrote in my last blog, Jim, the guy from the singles group, is nice, great personality, and very, very funny, but his match-making skills are the pits.

The next guy he introduces me to is Kerry; tall, slim, dreadlocks in a ponytail and African American (damn time he found someone black).  He is new in Jim’s business.  Being that Jim was introducing me to another single guy, should have been the “clue” that told me to run away fast, but nooooooooo! I had to take another chance.  Jim tells me the guy told him that I was a beautiful woman and he wanted to meet me.  Hey, I can take that type of admiring comment every day, so I told him to have him call me.

Later that same day, while having dinner with my best friend, he called.  We chit chat for a few minutes then he suggested we meet and talk more.  Sure and I suggested we meet for coffee and talk.  First strike, he doesn’t have a car (Note to self, don’t date or even look at a guy who does not have a car!!)  You must have a car in South Carolina.  There is no “New York or DC Subway” or a regularly scheduled bus service in this state.  I see the struggle the staff has at the “Part Time Job at the Asylum” has.  The new girl, (yes, there is a new one, again!  Works until 9:30 at night and sits at the bus stop for an hour or so or wait the same amount of time for someone to pick her up.  Just wait until I get to her story!  Sometimes they are on the phone constantly calling and asking for a ride.  If they are lucky to catch a bus, the ride can take as long as two hours.  I don’t know how they do it.

When I heard that “first strike,” I should have run.  My best friend asked that I give the guy a chance because I am very hard on men and she did not want me to lose out on something that maybe, just maybe turns out great.   OK, I gave him a second chance.  After our dinner, I drove to his house.  When I saw that he was wearing white socks and black slippers, shorts with a T shirt, I still should have turned around and drove back, but my dumb butt continued.  I drove us to Waffle House, he paid for our coffee and I then drove us to a nearby park.  We talked for a few minutes on general things when he made the “stupid” remarks about how he needs a strong woman by his side.  How many got damn times do I have to hear that crap.  Shut the hell up with that line.  It’s old, dumb; stupid and we already know that, you damn idiots.  I stated that I’m sure he will find someone, but let’s talk about how long you have worked for Jim and how do you like working outside.     

He has not worked for Jim long, a few weeks.  Just arrived from New Jersey and living with his sister, a brother, her daughter and her daughter’s baby.  I realize that times are very hard financially for many people, but I have heard more and more stories of 4 to 8 family members living in one household.  It has got to be rough, but what can you do.  Kerry then dropped the bomb; he just got out of jail.  Has been in an out of jail for over 27 years, he’s 50 years old.  I didn’t get upset or shocked, nothing shocks me anyone.  I was just disappointed, again.  He has two sons, one in jail for murder and one still on drugs with HIV.  Damn, damn!!!

I literally breaks my heart that this man and so damn many millions of young and old black men who don’t have a smitten of chance to climb out of this hole.  I don’t want to go into all of the statistics, talk shows, movies, etc, etc, etc.  You know the deal, it just freaking breaks my heart.  I dropped him off at his house.  He asked for a hug and I oblige, but I knew I would not date him.  After two phone calls from him and he noticed that I did not return his calls, on his last call he said thanks for coffee and he understands. 

After that I dropped him off at home, I went home and cried my eyes out.  Not because I did not meet a great guy, but because this man’s life is over.  The job he has is helpful and he told me he wanted to move out on his own, but you know his chances as zilch.  I also realize he was looking for some place else to live and a woman.  Not this one.  I’m not taking a chance like that.  I been there, done that, saw that, see that every day and don’t want any part of that life.  What about his Social Security.  How is he going to live?  The best part of this, he is still coming to our church.  Jim and the other men in our church are trying to keep him on the path.  It’s not easy and I wish him the best and will continue to pray for him.  It just breaks my freaking heart.

I am a Big Fan of Stephanie Morris’s interracial romance books.  It’s sappy at times, but the stories go fast and exciting.  Here are a few of her books.  It’s a good plane, train, bus or car ride book.  You need those to keep your mind and body in check.

STEPHANIE MORRIS - BEYOND SEDUCTION - $4.99 - - - Autumn Harris made a vow not to have sex before marriage. Problem is she didn’t know it would take so long to find a suitable husband. Autumn comes up with a plan of seduction to help get rid of her “problem”, only to have sexy bachelor rancher Eli King step in to play hero and wreck her plan. Or maybe not… 

Eli King has been burned once before by love and plans to avoid a repeat at all cost. So when he steps in to rescue Autumn from being pawed by a creep, he has no idea he is walking into a harebrained plan of seduction. He agrees to help Autumn find Mr. Right only to realize he is her target and her plan goes beyond seduction.

STEPHANIE MORRIS - A MATTER OF HONESTY - $5.99 - - - When I’m really tired, I usually read a romance book to keep my mind on something other than work and I’m really beginning to enjoy reading Stephanie’s books.  All of them are interracial.  The formula may be the same for romance, you know, she meets the guy, he sorta saves her or she sorta saves him and they fall in love.  Secretly, they fell in love at first sight.  How come that has never happen to me?  You think I was some Star Track creature or maybe it’s my mouth.  I do have a tendency to tell people to go to hell.  Not nice, not nice at all.

Lauryn, 22, African American, was found (Or you can say “saved”) from under the rubble of a dump motel after a tornado hit Norman, Oklahoma by Steve.   He is 30, white and “one of the most handsome man she had ever seen in her life.”  You believe that, don’t you!!!  

After he “saves” her, and she was laid off from her low paying job, he offers her a job as housekeeper/nanny to his young daughter.  The mother did not want anything to do with the kid, so he needs some one to take care of her.  Ms. Morris moves the story along as romance stories go and the pace is pretty fast with titillating love making scenes, but it’s a love story and cute.  Lauryn is prudent about being so close to such a good looking man and being that she is not experience in lovemaking, she is wondering why she is having these deep feelings for a man she just met.  At times she is too swishy-washy, but she’s a kid.  Steve, on the other hand, is also leery and hiding a secret.  She doesn’t trust anyone after the treatment from her father and he doesn’t trust anyone after the treatment from his daughter's mother.  The story is anticipated, but it has some soft and easy sexual scenes as well as fast, easy and sweet.  The ending, though, is not what you expect.  Just the way romance stories should be.  Not to analyze, but to enjoy and go to sleep with a nice story on you mind.  

STEPHANIE MORRIS - STAKING HIS CLAIM - $5.99 - - - Here’s my recap - Leslie’s life is not the way she wanted it, so, she goes home to family to get it together.  You know the story, she meets older white guy, Blake Eaton and it’s on.  This was a quick read (My flight was only 2 hours and the second flight was about 45 minutes), but I finished it and it was sooooo! gooood!!! I’m ordering the rest.

Right now I’m reading, and I’m loving it so far.

STEPHANIE MORRIS - TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING - $4.61 - - - When recently widowed Joe Murphy "meets" Shawna Mitchell in an online forum, all he's seeking is advice on keeping his home and his family together. Shawna's compassionate e-mails become his lifeline, and as months pass their correspondence grows deep and warm. Discovering that Shawna lives only blocks away. . .well, it feels like more than luck. It feels a lot like hope.
With three children to raise, Shawna has no interest in getting close to another man, let alone one who's got three kids of his own. And the fact that Joe's white can only complicate matters more. But now, as they navigate family dates and vacations and their own doubts and fears, Joe and Shawna find themselves moving toward a future that's bright, new, and totally unexpected. 

EMEKA GODWIN - DIARY OF AN ANGRY PASTOR - 99 Cents - - - I did buy the book.  Is he trying to be another Carl Weber?  Maybe, but I’m going to give it a try.

When you learn that one of your prominent deacons is having series of affairs.  When you have a gay activist threatening to stage a protest in front of your church.  When your richest parishioner decides to stop paying his tithe to your church, and when a fight breaks out in your church and shots are fired.  Naturally, you become an angry pastor. 

Diary of an Angry Pastor is a humorous story of a pastor who wanted to transform the little black church he inherited from his father into a multi-racial, mega church. After so many challenges, this pastor realizes that leading a church was not going to be as easy as he had envisioned.

I want to dedicate this blog the the people who worked on the Day Of Caring on September 7.  The day that anyone volunteered to help build, reading, mentor, fill book bags for kids to take home for the weekend.  Laugh, cry and get a jump start on living for people instead of things.  It was the best day for me and I always, always enjoy reading to the kids, figuring out what books to buy to bring back to them and laughing with them.  Our kids, they are truly special.  I of course promoted the That Big Book Sale in Charleston and the National Book Festival in DC.  

Got to get one in for Black History Year
There are books and movies where you go back over and over again, TERRY MCMILLAN - DISAPPEARING ACTS - $10.95 Paperback is one of those books and movies, with Sanaa Lathan, before she did Something New and kicked ass in AVP: Alien vs Predator.  Wesley Snipes, after New Jack City, which I loved him in and Blade.  It just sticks to your heart and keeps you coming back.  I’m back to reading it.  I think it comes on cable once in a while, not sure since I don’t have cable.  

He was tall, dark as bittersweet chocolate, and impossibly gorgeous, with a woman-melting smile. She was pretty and independent, petite and not too skinny, just his type. Franklin Swift was a sometimes-employed construction worker, and a not-quite-divorced daddy of two. Zora Banks was a teacher, singer, songwriter. They met in a Brooklyn brownstone, and there could be no walking away.

In this funny, gritty urban love story, Franklin and Zora join the ranks of fiction's most compelling couples, as they move from Scrabble to sex, from layoffs to the limits of faith and trust. Disappearing Acts is about the mystery of desire and the burdens of the past. It's about respect, what it can and can't survive. And it's about the safe and secret places that only love can find.