Sugar Shack

Good Evening! I hope to find each of you doing well this Sunday. I was reading an article not too long ago about a famous painting by an unlikely famous artist. Now that I have a little down time, I wanted to share it on my blog.

I love, love, love art and I have a strong fondness for African American art. Not only because I am African American, but because of the uniqueness and depth of African American art. Millions of people agree so I’m not alone in making such a bold statement.

The Los Angeles Times published a piece on the late Ernie Barnes’ Sugar Shack painting on August 28th and I just about flipped. I have admired this painting after seeing it for the first time on the show Good Times.

Sugar Shack is such a beautiful and enamoring piece amongst the majority of African Americans because many of us share same or similar stories of how our grandparents and great grandparents boogied down in a Sugar Shack. I know in my family, such places were also called juke joints, barrel houses or a hole in a wall.

I was not surprised when The Los Angeles Times reported how many people lined up to take a look at this painting up close and in person. I would too because it’s such a powerful painting that captures a major part of the Black experience.

Ernie Barnes, a professional football player, author and painter, was known for his unique style of painting. His artwork is just as unique as his back story. I invite you to read a little more on Ernie Barnes when you get a chance. You won’t be disappointed. In fact, you’ll be inspired.

To read more from The Los Angeles Times on Ernie Barnes’ Sugar Shack, click here.

Man, I would love to own an original piece of Ernie Barnes’ artwork. A woman can dream, right?

Until next time…

Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee

When you hear the last name Ross, most people think of legendary singer Diana Ross and for good reason. Diana Ross has broken down a number of barriers for African Americans in regards to her music, acting, and etc. Tonight, I’m going to introduce you to another Ross. Diana Ross’s big sister, Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee.

Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee may be the older sister of Diana Ross, but she is well-known for something else. A fierce and dynamic woman in her own right, Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee is known for her advancements in healthcare and medicine for people of color as a groundbreaking physician. She has earned a number of distinguished awards and accomplishments, one of them being the first African American and female Dean of a medical school.

Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee was first was selected as Dean of the Ohio University College of Osteopathic Medicine in 1993 and again in 2002 for the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine. Not bad for a girl who grew up in the Detroit projects.

Barbara on the right and Diana on the left.

Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee is even more well-known for her humble spirit and positive demeanor despite the amount of racism and prejudice she had to endure to get to where she is. In fact, such experiences shaped her into the phenomenonal physician that she is today.

Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee has never been prideful nor arrogant of her accomplishments and advancements in the field of medicine. How admirable and commendable of her.

At the age of 77, Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee is still working, advocating and helping to make advancements for women and people of color in the medical field. She is an ageless beauty in my opinion and in addition to that, she is smart and fierce.

Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee is a name many people within the field of medicine and Osteopathic Medicine are familiar with and for good reason. There are a number of things that are taking place today in the field of medicine because of her.

When you get some time, read more about this amazing woman. Ladies and gentlemen, you have just met the phenomenonal Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee. If you didn’t know about her before, now you do.

On a side note, I have to express how well Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee has taken care of her hair over the years. Even though she has chopped a good bit of it off, her hair is still beautiful and healthy with all that gray.

Until next time…

Don Cornelius

When you mention the name Don Cornelius amongst the Black community, there is no need for an introduction. For those who are unfamiliar with Don Cornelius, he was the writer and producer of the nationally syndicated dance and music show Soul Train.

Soul Train was formed because Don noticed in the late 60’s that there weren’t any television shows geared towards Black artists and soul music. With the creation of Soul Train, soul and funk artists could showcase their talents.

Prior to Soul Train, Black people were limited to occasionally performing on TV as guests on White programs. All that changed with Don’s creation of Soul Train. Soon, White audiences started to tune into Soul Train and it’s popularity skyrocketed. Eventually, Soul Train would even showcase White artists whose music was centered around soul, funk and R&B.

I loved watching Soul Train as a child because I loved seeing some of the artists I grew up listening to perform live. And who can forget the infamous Soul Train line and those Ultra Sheen and Afro Sheen commercials? Ultra Sheen and Afro Sheen played a part in Don’s Black is Beautiful campaign.

Listening to Don talk with his nicely shaped afro and smooth deep voice was a treat. I could listen to him talk all day. One of my favorite parts of Soul Train is when it was ending and Don would say: “I’m Don Cornelius, and as always in parting, we wish you love, peace and soul!”

With all the success and positivity that Soul Train brought to the Black community, it saddens many how Don Cornelius’s life ended. Don suffered with seizures, battled Alzheimer’s and his health steadily declined. He was in constant pain the last 15 years of his life and unfortunately he decided to end his life.

Soul Train will always be one of those shows that is cherished amongst the Black community because it was a show where Black people were portrayed in a good way. It also showed people how to have fun, dance and get down!

If you have never watched an episode of Soul Train, you are really missing out. To see a brief clip of one of my favorite episodes, click here.

The next time you are on YouTube, search for it. It’ll have you smiling and dancing before you know it. 👌🏾

To listen to a brief catchy remix of the theme song, click here.

Until next time…love, peace and soul!

Troubled Waters

We live in a world where people are quick to retaliate whenever someone offends them or wrongs them. When you are on the receiving end of such behavior, should you retaliate? My answer to that is No. Should you fret or worry over the offender? My answer to that is also No.

I feel that it’s important for me to share this on all my blogs because I don’t want any of my subscribers or followers to stoop to such a low level. I often give experiences of my past when I allowed my violent temper to get the best of me and I’m ashamed by how I used to act. I haven’t behaved in such an embarrassing way for over ten years and that makes me feel awesome!

I’ve had people lie on me and some tried to get me fired for something I didn’t do. At one point in time, I almost left this particular job where this was going on. Why did I stay? Because of the advice of my parents.

My parents told me not to “run” so to speak, but to keep on living my life right. In time, they assured me that some of those very same people who tried to hurt me or hold me back will soon be gone themselves. Not only that, I’ll be blessed in other ways. The catch? I had to stay to see it come to pass.

Well, I’m here to tell you my parents were absolutely right. Some of those very same people were forced to move on, others have been “catching it” in other ways (including some of their minions) and as for me, I’m blossoming with my writing and other potential opportunities in the works.

If you ever find yourself in a position where you are wronged, don’t retaliate, don’t worry and don’t you fret. Time has its own way of handling such things. You just have to do your part by continuing to do the right thing. 😉

Until next time…


This is getting ridiculous. If you’ve been paying attention to the news lately, you are probably familiar with Blackfishing. For those of you who aren’t, Blackfishing is when a non-Black person “pretends” to be Black or half Black. Why? Because it makes them look more appealing or “exotic” when they darken their skin with tanning products and contour their features to look more “Afro centric“. How disrespectful.

Some have went as far as buying butt pads and getting butt and lip injections to fool other people into thinking they are Black or half Black. Why? Because round buttocks, full lips and curvy hips is very common amongst Black women; physical features that have been mocked for centuries. To “seal” the look, they sport the most popular hairstyles amongst Black women. How disturbing because some look absolutely ridiculous.

As more are being “called out” on their Blackfishing behavior, some have tried to lie by saying they get really dark when exposed to the sun. Nah, not that dark. That backfired in the worst way because other users uploaded damaging photos of them. When they have no other lies to spew, some finally admit what millions of people already knew: they like appropriating Black culture and “certain” Black features. Say what you want, but that also shows they suffer with low self-esteem.

These Blackfishing women have no problem appropriating Black culture and “certain” Black features, but they don’t want to accept everything else that comes along with it like daily racism, prejudice and discrimination. Oh, okay. I see. Nah, not really. At the end of the day, Blackfishing is disrespectful, it’s deceitful and it’s downright offensive. As for those who fake being Black or half Black for profit, they should be ashamed of themselves.

Black people have been hated and envied for centuries and it’s still prevalent today. Now we have to contend with non-Black people “faking” to be Black or half Black. Take pride in yourself. Don’t try to look and be like somebody else. Don’t live your life as a lie.

Until next time…


I was having a discussion with one of my good friends the other day about a matter that had been weighing on her heart. This friend of mine lives in another state, but we talk and communicate frequently. Before blogging about this “issue”, I asked her if she would be OK with me sharing it. She agreed without hesitation; hence this blog post.

My dear friend was a little discouraged because a Black female colleague was making fun of her natural hair. What made it worse is that this Black female colleague was laughing it up with some of their non-Black colleagues. How sad. My friend, who has a head full of hair too, rocks her long natural hair in braid outs exactly like this…

Beautiful isn’t?

For a moment, my friend contemplated relaxing her natural hair, but thankfully I was able to convince her otherwise. I shared with her my own experience of how a Black woman at my job made fun of my natural hair. It doesn’t happen often, but every now and then I encounter it.

This particular Black woman was also going around making negative comments about my hair to other non-Black colleagues. She told them that I should straighten my hair because Black folks real hair don’t look right. How sad and self-hating.

Even after hearing that, I was still kind to her because I felt sorry for her. Why? Because comments like that reflect a form of self-hate and low self-esteem. It’s nothing wrong with a Black woman wearing her hair relaxed, but if she demeans her own race’s Afro-textured hair, that’s a problem. A self-hating problem. Thankfully, most Black women aren’t like this.

However you choose to wear your hair, wear it proudly. Don’t bash a person because they choose to wear their hair relaxed, natural, permed, curly or any other way. If they like it and are comfortable with it, that’s all that matters. At the end of the day, it’s all about self-love and there is no need to spew hate at that. 🤗❤️🤗

Until next time…

Hidden Nursery Rhymes

Good Evening everyone! I typically don’t post twice on Sundays, but my previous post, Beauty and Race, triggered a curiosity in some of my non-Black readers. They wanted to know if I would be willing to share any more historical hidden facts regarding race and racism. Seeing how I like to use my blog to also educate in between my writing, I was happy to oblige. When we know better as a human race, we can do better as a human race. ❤️

I decided to share a clip of famous nursery rhymes that were originally penned by the composer to degrade, make fun and humiliate Black people. These nursery rhymes have since been “Whitewashed” for political correctness. You may be familiar with some of these. My hope is after you have learned the history behind these racist nursery rhymes, you will help tell others. Click here.

As a bonus, I’m going to share one more clip. Can you spot the “humor” and sarcasm in this second one? Click here to see if you can.

Until next time…