Sunday, December 28, 2008

Random Thoughts & Questions ...

1. What would it be like if arachnids had wings?

2. Why is the vocoder in every song lately? I think it needs to die an awful death ...

3. Why is Plies still rapping?

4. In Cambridge, MA, bicycles rule the streets so much that even thugs ride ...

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

You're Hot Then You're Cold ...

I had a rollercoaster weekend, ranging from one extreme to the next, yet every rise and fall with The Voice only makes my feelings toward him that much stronger. I'd be naive to assume you can have an absolutely harmonious relationship. Life isn't a movie, a novel or a television show. Consequently, the more realistic our relationship is, the stronger we become.

Saturday: I arrived at The Voice's apartment per our usual arrangement. I was extremely tired because I had jury that afternoon (a prerequisite for all music majors in which we are obligated to play in front of several department faculty members and receive ratings for our performance) and then proceeded directly to work. We cuddled for a short while but eventually exhaustion overtook us. That morning, we headed to the barbershop and then stopped by my church so I could sit in on choir rehearsal. Several of my former choir members attended my jazz concert on Tuesday, so I wanted to thank them for their support. Furthermore, it gave me a chance to introduce The Voice to another facet of my life.

However, things didn't go smoothly. I noticed he was extraordinarily quiet most of the morning. Usually outspoken at the barbershop, he was demurred and silent. Upon our arrival at church, he was cordial but still subdued. Following rehearsal, we made a brief stop by my house to fill up my coolant tank. The Voice became animated for a short while, allowing my mom to speak with his mom via phone and even hung some candy canes on our Christmas tree.

Nevertheless, he reverted to his silent status after our departure. We patronized a restaurant in Roslindale named Delfino's which caters to a yuppie-type crowd. The cuisine is mainly Italian and the prices are fairly reasonable. However, I was unable to enjoy the meal because he was especially quiet throughout dinner.

At this point, I had just about enough!

As we departed the restaurant, I questioned him as to what was on his mind but he continued to brush me off as he previously done throughout the day. At this point, I was incredibly aggravated and cancelled our cinema plans. I decided to confront him point blank.

He remarked that he overheard my morning phone conversation in which I supposedly said,

"I'll be glad to have this break from him ..."

Now I know you guys only have my side of the story here however, I contend that was never said. Moreover, how could I say this when I used the infamous L word last week? Does that sound like a man who wants or needs time and space away from his boyfriend?

We went back and forth in the car, stressing our opinions and I continuously defended my words. Eventually the argument became pointless and futile. It was a draw. Too weary to continue, I told him to come to me with anything, anything that bothers him immediately; don't hold it in all day.

We eventually made up that night (hehe!) and watched The Family Stone on DVD (it's one of my favorite holiday movies of all time! If you haven't seen it, go rent it!)

Sunday: We lazed most of the morning in bed enjoying our own personal concert. We lay in bed, sharing the headphones and listening to songs on our MP3 players. As we each selected songs, we caressed our deep brown skin, enjoying the sensation, the lack of words between us and the beautiful music. Needless to say, we ended the concert on "The Way" by Jill Scott!

We spent the rest of the day shopping (well he did most of the shopping while I ran my mouth on the phone), a trip to Qdoba's and stopped by both J-Dub's house as well as my house. That night, The Voice got his locks twisted by his roommate (Lil' Hustla) and we all sat around watching Wanted (ugh! … see June post titled Wanted: Lazy Weekend for my opinion on that movie!).

While the weekend wasn't a total washout, we learned more about each other, our likes, dislikes, our attitudes, our limits and our expectations. This coming weekend, we are taking J-Dub's daughters to the Build-A-Bear Workshop and to see The Grinch Musical. We also have a Christmas party to attend on Sunday and I'm introducing Crazy to The Voice (that should be interesting!) There won't be much time spent together this and coming weekends as he is flying out for business just before New Years.

I hope everyone had enjoyable weekends and stayed warm, dry and got their Christmas shopping done! Only one more week! Have a great week!

Editor’s Note: This post was initially drafted two weeks ago.

School Update

As a quick addendum to the UMB concert update, I wanted to inform everyone that I achieved all A's across the board! This will probably bring my current GPA of 3.75 to a 3.80. Furthermore, I'm going to receive credit for a keyboard class that I was able to pass out of!

I believe (take note of the word “believe”) I'll be transitioning into my senior year this summer so things are moving along extremely quickly now. In addition to the excitement of graduation, I'm considering a summer internship. I've had my eye on an internship with Sony BMG for nearly a year however, I need to find out the requirements on either end (UMB and Sony). I'm still not completely certain what direction I want to take this degree. Still, an internship with such a prestigious corporation can't possibly hurt!

For the spring semester, I'm taking Psychology 270 (Statistics) as part of my Quantitative Reasoning Requirement. It's one of the last general education requirements left so the sooner I get it out of the way, the better. I'm taking jazz band again (provided another piano player doesn't audition better than me!) and continuing lessons with Professor Hand Killer (semester # 5 baby!)

Lastly, I received word from Prof. Hand Killer that my marks for my jury were exceptional. The scale rating is 1 through 5 (5 being the best) and I received a 4 from the head of the department, a 5 plus from my theory professor (he was a judge) and a 5 from the last judge. Not bad! I can’t wait to get started on my piece for next semester! She doesn’t waste time as she’s already sent me a new performance selection via the mail.

All in all, it should be an interesting semester!

K.C.'s Workout Plan (Pt. 8)

I'm going to give it you as straight as I can. I haven't worked out at the gym in a month (except for one trip on Thanksgiving with The Voice) yet I've miraculously kept the weight off. I'm hovering at 183 lbs. which makes my total weight loss since August a colossal 20 lbs.! Ironically, that was my goal when I began sessions with the nutritionist a few months back.

My health benefits commence in January so I've already made an appointment to see the doctor and I'm confident he'll be absolutely impressed.

If not, I know I am! My next goal is 180 or 175 but taken in baby steps.

My secret?

Having a boyfriend!

Nah, for real, the late nights at work, my hectic school schedule, the busy weekends and once-a-day meals are the most significant factors. However, I was enrolled in a nutrition course during the spring (2008) semester and currently concerned that I'm not getting the proper dietary supplements. While on winter break, I plan to return to the gym (starting Monday, Dec. 22nd) and endeavor to eat better.

So I'll keep you guys posted!

UPDATE: I initially wrote this entry a week ago and Monday, Dec. 22nd came and went. I’ve been exceedingly occupied with Christmas shopping and even endured some vehicular difficulties. I believe January might be a better time to return to the gym although it will be packed with New Year Resolution Makers.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

All That Jazz!

As promised, a clip from my jazz concert ...

This clip was taken by Java-Mama so don't go getting all critical about her video choregraphy skills or else I'll have to cut ya'll!

The video begins with me soloing on piano, followed by a sax solo and then a vocal solo (scatting). The song was "Nothing Personal" and does not feature lyrics; it was basically a jam song.
Oh, the hat I had on was borrowed from The Voice (was trying to be all cool and "hip"!)

It took forever to upload this to YouTube so hope you guys enjoy! :o)




At an awkwardly silent point during the concert, my barber yelled out, "GO K.C.!" Professor X responds on the mic, "Well, I guess, we know one student is getting an A!", to which everyone laughs. Man, it was nice to get that love and support!

After the concert, my family (Pops, Java-Mama, Rugrat), The Voice and his "tribe", former co-workers, Professor Hand Killer and friends presented me with flowers and a gift bag with a CD and a card they all signed! Talk about making my night!

Once again, thank you to everyone who attended and supported me! I appreciate this more than words can express ... :o)

Watch It, Bub!

I'm a huge X-Men fan so I'm obviously tremendously excited about the X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009) movie due out in May. And it ONLY TOOK THREE MOVIES before they featured everyone's favorite Cajun, Gambit! Furthermore, I think I saw a young Storm (the little girl with blond hair) but I'm not sure ... anyway, check it out:

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Reading Corner: In Love With A Thug

I finished reading In Love With A Thug by Reginald L. Hall about a two months ago so you'll have to pardon my memory when it comes to the characters and the storyline. I loaned my copy to The Voice so I'll double check my facts before the final post.

Well, well, after all the book reviews I've written, I have to say that I didn't really favor this particular African-American SGL novel. In retrospect, I extended the reading over an entire month and procrastinated even longer before writing this review. I think my subconscious was screaming something at me!

The basis of the story?

The main character, Julian Jiles (aka J.J) robs a bank with his lover, Darnell. His partner is killed in a police standoff and J.J. escapes with the money and forges a new life. He achieves his life-long dream of owning a hair salon named Ché Mystic and then meets a "swaggalicious" young thug named Bryant who seems just a bit too good to be true. Is Bryant the soul mate that J.J. wants and desires or is he hiding a more sinister agenda?

First things first: I am guilty of effemaphobia (took that word from an episode of Noah's Arc). I noticed a post on (click here: *Emerald Eye Entertainment*) regarding the treatment of feminine behaving men within the SGL community. The main character J.J. is extremely dynamic, shifting from masculine back to feminine in mere seconds. I've been getting over my distaste for fem men over the years so bear with me; I'm a work in progress. I have fem mannerism from time to time so who am I to criticize others? Furthermore, since I've come out and attended gay clubs and pride parades, my comfort level for the extreme (i.e. trannies, cross-dressing, etc.) has increased. Consequently, I've achieved maximum “comfortability” to the point I perform public displays of affection (PDA's).

Anyway, I'm digressing.

So after my initial distaste of the main character’s outward behavior, I eventually just found him shallow and stupid. I'm all for supporting the black SGL literary community however, they need to step their game up. Now, Lin, Fred (and E. Lynn), don't go getting your feathers ruffled up! Anyone who reads my blog knows I'm a martinet for grammar, spelling and all that jazz. In essence, the narration and grammar transported me back to my second grade classroom.

"Mrs. A?! Can I please go to the bathroom?? Pleeeeassee?!?!"

(Whoa, flashback!)


I think Hall is tremendously talented in crafting a storyline. Nevertheless, I maintain serious issue with the plot. For example, a major character was killed in front of J.J. and Hall neglected to expound on the personal impact upon him. If a really close friend of mine was murdered, I don't believe I'd contrive an evening date and act as if everything is perfectly normal. Furthermore, J.J. didn't even mention the murder to Bryant that night!

Conversely, I did enjoy Hall's use of famous characters peppered throughout the novel. Mary J. Blige, Alicia Keys and Lil' Kim are only a handful of celebrities that appear in the story. The first time I encountered this phenomenon, I chuckled, thinking, "He really wants me to take this seriously?" However, the more I read, the more I became accustomed to his writing style and actually discovered that I enjoyed it. Kudos on the creativity and inclusion of celebs!

Moreover, he included himself in the storyline at the beginning of the novel:

“A fire erupted in a North Philadelphia home tonight, Osama Bin Laden is still on the loose, and author Reginald L. Hall is still continuing to sell millions of books all across the country.” (Ch. 3, p. 15)

Terribly self-centered yet creative!

Lastly, my significant problem with J.J. was his self-depreciating personality. He endured beatings at the hands of lovers and then justified it as love! Ridiculous! Hall describes J.J. as being fiercely independent and prideful at the beginning of the story yet he debases himself around the men he dates. Simply put, J.J.’s personality best compares to a rollercoaster. This turned me off about halfway through the book and I found it a struggle to continue to end.

The denouement was exceptionally rushed and I while I won’t give anything away, I’ll simply say it was clichéd. I applaud Reginald Hall for his valiant effort however, if you are seeking insightful characters and deep meaning, I’d search elsewhere. The story is a great afternoon read; extremely entertaining, adventurous and a nice break from reality.

I haven’t read much African-American SGL fiction lately. I’ve transitioned back to reading Star Trek novels (I need to change my reading style every few months to keep from getting stale). I’m planning to order several African-American SGL novels over my winter break so be on the lookout for more Reading Corner then!

Monday, December 15, 2008

To Trek Or Not To Trek ... That Is The Question

As you know, I'm a Star Trek fanatic however, I'm not terribly interested in the original series (i.e. Capt. Kirk, Spock, etc.) My initial reaction upon hearing the news that they were going to produce a contemporary movie based on TOS (The Original Series) was offense. I'm a conservative Trekker (if that makes any sense) and felt that remaking a classic pop culture icon such as Star Trek was disgraceful and insulting to the original series and actors.

However, I recently stumbled upon the new HD trailer for Star Trek XI (2009) and I have to say I'm quite impressed!



Nevertheless, I doubt I'll attend any screenings. I was going to boycott it but I have a feeling I'll be going solo. So I've decided to wait until it's on DVD and reserve judgement.

I'm aware that most of my readers are not ST fans but any thoughts on the trailer ... ?

Friday, December 12, 2008

Mr. Independent

I'm hoping that someone out there can help me out right quick with a situation.

Since I've been dating The Voice, my family has experienced an interesting reaction. While they have accepted him with open arms, I believe they're going through "empty nest" syndrome and I'm not sure exactly how to respond.

My mother and I are extremely close and I share a lot of information regarding my personal, academic and professional life with her. I often seek out her advice and we dialogue for hours on various topics ranging from our favorite television shows to relationship advice. However, I've been away nearly every weekend for the past three months. I usually reside at The Voice's place and while it is only one town over, I rarely come home.

When I do return home, both Java-Mama and Pops make comments such as,

"oh, it's nice to see you finally!"

or

"I think you live here but I'm not sure ..."

I neglect to respond to their commentary however, I'm finding that I'm becoming more annoyed. I enjoy my time away from home and it's allowing me an eagle-eyed perspective on my living situation. I am less constrained and more self-reliant when I'm away. I'm beginning to feel as though they want me to remain stifled and restricted.

Don't misunderstand me, I'm always free to come and go. Nevertheless, when you live at home with your parents, you're still bound to certain responsibilities. I haven't helped out as much around the house and since Rugrat began his job, he works odd hours and isn't around much either.

I'm more independent than ever since I began this crazy journey with The Voice. While I do depend on my parents for certain things, I feel a need to detach myself. When I'm leaving for a long day (back to back school and work) they act as though I'm leaving on a three week vacation. Furthermore, when I depart on a Sunday night to stay with The Voice, my mom proceeds to hug me as if she'll never see me again. I appreciate the love but I sense an impact on our relationship. I'm concerned that his uber-independent personality may lead him to attempt extrication from my family situation.

Now that I’ve explained the circumstance, I’d like to know your thoughts …

Should I leave it alone and let things run their course naturally (i.e. let my parents adapt on their own terms) or should I try to impose my order on the situation?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Merry Christmas ... To Me!

Last weekend, I got a new toy and who would've ever thought me, The Great K.C. (yes, thank you, thank you, yes, please hold your applause!), would break down and buy a (blah!) Apple product! I've been anti-iPod since day one and continue to utilize my Sony Walkman MP3 player. However, I've had my eye on the iPhone for the past few months. Furthermore, several of The Voice's friends possess iPhones and last Christmas, while shopping with Thai Guy, I toyed with one in the Apple store. Needless to say, it's been working on me for the past year!

So I got one! Trust, I'm in LOVE with my phone! My previous phones were bought as replacements (i.e. damaged, dropped, cracked, battery death, etc.) and I was coerced into getting something on the spot. This is the first phone I've owned that I can truly say:

"I wanted it just because!"

Plus, it's nice to be flashy and up with the latest trends. I'm utilizing nearly every feature and the sense of maturity I feel is amazing!

Nevertheless, if anyone out there has one, can you help a brotha out? There are some things about it that confuse me and I could use several pointers ...

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The L Word


"Love slipped from my lips, dripped down my chin and landed in his lap ... and us became new."

-- Jill Scott (Love Rain, Who Is Jill Scott?: Words and Sounds Vol. 1)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

UMB Jazz Concert (12/9/08)

The University of Massachusetts Jazz Band presents:


End of the Semester Jazz Concert

Tuesday, December 9th, 2008 at 7:30 PM
Snowden Auditorium in Wheatley Hall

Selected performances of Duke Ellington, Jobim, Count Basie and more! Music so good, it'll have you toe tappin', finger snappin' and maybe even wanna smack your momma! (not really recommended!) So come on out and support us!

Refreshments will be served following the concert.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Weekend of Thanks

Has everyone had enough turkey yet?! I'm just about sick of it! Java-Mama carved up the remainder of the turkey and concocted soup. Nonetheless, a "rose by any other name is still a rose!" and turkey, no matter how it's prepared is still turkey!

How was your Thanksgiving? Relaxing, I hope ...

I departed work earlier on Thanksgiving Eve and went to my baby's crib. Thanksgiving morning, we proceeded to the gym and I ran about 6 miles. Afterwards, I chilled at home and managed to catch up on some personal items. Pops wasn’t feeling well so Java-Mama, Rugrat and myself finished preparing the meal. Nevertheless, we had an exceptional dinner. Later on, I dropped by J-Dub's house and hung out with The Voice and his close friends/family. We sat around laughing, joking and sipping on pumpkin martinis while watching Beauty Shop.

The Voice stayed over my house. I permitted him to sleep in my bed (I only have a twin) and I settled on an air mattress. The next morning, we made breakfast (grits, eggs, bacon, pancakes, biscuits, and toast) for my family. My man can really throw down in the kitchen and there ain’t nothing sexier than a guy who can cook!

Therewithal, we went mattress shopping (his mattress is in bad shape) and after several stops, we eventually settled on decent one for a reasonable price. Unfortunately, it will be delivered this coming weekend so we have to endure back pain for several more nights. It was truly pleasant to shop with him on such a significant purchase. Furthermore, we were in a furniture store browsing through sofas, bedroom and dining sets, discussing how our apartment would look and who would decorate which room.

I went to work Friday night but returned at 3 AM and snuggled with him until the first rays of Saturday light dawned. After a trip to the barbershop, I took him to one of my four alma maters (yeah, I’ve been to four schools - and?) We toured Nashua, New Hampshire and Daniel Webster College. I hadn't been back to my school in years and quite a few changes had taken place. Many memories flooded back and I cherished being able to share them with him.

He got one of his tattoos touched up over in Salem and then I drove like the wind to Boston to check out Eddie Griffin at the Wilbur Theater (Comedy Connection). Ole dude was CRAZY funny and we had moderately appropriate seats in the front, albeit somewhat smothering. Eddie spoke about Obama, starving kids in Africa, Richard Pryor, Bernie Mac, his family and a wide range of topics.

As we left the theater, The Voice was virtually run down by a car and I stood by, completely paralyzed. He cussed the driver out (who turned without using a signal) and when we finally reached the parking garage, I almost broke down. Essentially, I realize he means a lot to me but the possibility of death or serious injury was too great for me to bear. When we got back to the house, we lay in bed watching The Reaping until he drifted off to sleep in my arms. I came mere inches to losing my angel and I wasn't about to release him that night.

Sunday we attended a Thanksgiving buffet hosted by a motherly friend of The Voice. She absolutely adores me (as did most of her guests) and said we made a handsome couple. We brought her flowers and wine as a contribution to the meal and I had an amazing time. Afterward, we did laundry and then relaxed at my house. Java-Mama and Pops pulled out the family photo albums and took a trip down memory lane which included a picture of Baby K.C. with my a** caught in the bars of the crib!

And no! I'm not scanning it and putting it on my blog! LOL

All in all, I had a spectacular weekend. Some laughs, scares, memories and some really spectacular food! The Voice flies out of town this week and I'm focusing on my class presentation that is due Friday. Furthermore, my Jazz Concert is next Tuesday evening (12/9) and my jury is next Friday (12/12) so I've got a LOT of practicing to do this week/weekend. Seeing my baby this weekend will be a sweet reward for all this hard work!

Have a great week everyone!

Friday, November 28, 2008

I Gotta Man ...

I haven't prepared a weekend update in a minute. However, it was an excellent weekend so I felt compelled to write about it.

Friday: After work, I arrived at The Voice’s apartment sometime around 3 AM. I hadn't seen my baby all week (he was out of town on business) so I was more than anxious to be in his company. As Akon states in his newest single, "I miss you much!"

Saturday: We spent the majority of the morning in bed, relaxing and catching up while he twisted his locks. Soon after, we made our debut as a couple at the barbershop (ironically, we went to the same barber for years and never encountered one another!) Later, we stopped by Qdoba's for some grub and then went our separate ways. The Voice returned to NH with his friends to obtain an additional tattoo.

Later that evening, we met at an event in Woburn that screamed "King of the Hill" all over it! His friend's friend's rock band was performing at a VFW post and we (four of us) were the only African-American's in the joint ... not that I have a problem with it. However, once the white folk started country dancing while intoxicated (they can't really dance when they're sober either!), we were all set.

Our diminutive entourage journeyed to the Roxy and got our drink and dance on. I hadn't been out in a while and was really looking forward to this. Furthermore, I had never been to the Roxy so I found the evening quite fascinating. The club is a renovated ballroom featuring a massive dance floor, high ceilings, and an enormous bar which dominates the rear of the club. The combination of flashing lights, strobes, colors, and the primped up boys transported me into an episode of Queer As Folk (Think: Babylon).

After swallowing a few more drinks, I was ready to f*** get into the groove. While The Voice and his friend roamed the hall, I danced with their other mutual friend until they returned. Subsequently, we danced together for a while until another entourage merged with ours. One guy from Entourage B (EB) broke rank, stepped to me and introduced himself as politely as possible above the blaring music. He flashed a flirtatious smile and endeavored to dance with me. I was instantly thrilled (I've never actually been hit on while at a club) but I possessed the one previously deficient factor while at a club: a man.

It was time to pull out my ace and fold.

While dancing, I worked my way over to The Voice and slipped my hands around his slim waist, grabbing him closely from behind. Our hips were in synchronous motion, my lips brushing the hairs on his neck and we embraced tightly. The music, our lust, the heat, our passion and connection drove me to kiss him. Needless to say, Flirti-Boi grooved his a** to the other side of the club.

Man, did that feel great!

By the end of the evening, I was highly inebriated (as was The Voice) so a member of Entourage A (EA) drove my car while The Voice rode with his other friend. Now, when I get tipsy, I feel the need to confess … and so began an episode of Taxi-Cab Confessions!

Did you really think I was going to tell you knowing full well The Voice reads my blog?! LOL Sorry guys, this one’s staying confidential! However, I said a lot of marvelous things regarding The Voice and trust me, when the time is right, I'll let everyone in on it!

Sunday: After a late night injury (I sprained my thumb and that’s not good when you're a pianist), we tackled our hangovers. The Voice suffered worse than me so it was a particularly quiet day. After a stop at Irie's Restaurant (they offer Jamaican cuisine), we spent the evening at my house. The Voice napped and we watched the season finale of True Blood together. I've got various theories concerning that show but I'll make a special entry for my television shows this upcoming weekend (I've got a LOT of shows on DVR that I need to catch up on).

All in all, it was good weekend, because there wasn't one argument or disagreement between us. Our vibe is cementing and I sense we're quickly reaching that level where only a look encompasses total understanding.

I hope everyone's Thanksgiving was spectacular and I’ll see you on Monday! Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Halo

Last night, The Voice shared this song with me from the new Beyonce album. While he explained that the lyrics describe exactly how he's feeling about me, ironically, I'm feeling the same thing regarding him. I couldn't find this track on Playlist.com so I just posted a YouTube slideshow instead.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Simply Fierce!

This is exclusively for The Voice! It's growing on me baby ...

Have a wonderful weekend everybody! :o)


Beyonce - Single Ladies (New) [HQ]
Uploaded by wonderful-life1989

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Give Thanks

For the past few weeks I've been moping about, always concerned with what I don't have. I scrutinize other individuals and think, "wow, they've got the best job in the world!" or "why is it taking me so long to get my degree?" I study their clothes, cars, homes, affluence, vacations and conjecture deeply what went wrong with me.

Well, the Thanksgiving spirit has descended upon me and I'm removing my green contact lenses permanently. I'm continuously moaning and groaning about how busy I am or how time consuming my education and job are. I continually grumble about the late hours I'm working and the homework. Furthermore, I've even managed to find fault with my boyfriend.

I've decided to shut that personality component down for good.

While I'm pursuing my dream, I’ve become exceedingly blinded by greed and envy and lost sight of my blessings. For the longest time, I desired a boyfriend and God sent down The Voice. He is truly "heaven sent" and is helping to improve me with each passing day.

I quit my former occupation so I could achieve this degree. Music is life, it’s my passion. It consumes my soul and embraces my imagination. I am closer to God when I play the piano. There are a billion people in the world who would give anything to be in my shoes, chasing their long-lost dreams yet I am still discontented.

Consequently, I'm revealing to the world that I am incredibly thankful for the blessings that have been bestowed upon me. I possess a loving family, a compassionate, magnificent boyfriend and a job that pays well with great benefits. I'm in school, virtually a year from graduation and retain respectable friends who unfailingly have my back. I've a car, I’m not in substantial debt, I'm healthy, I'm skilled in art and music and most of all, simply blessed. There are much worse positions that I could be in.

I will no longer be concerned with how much wealth a person boasts or what fashions or gadgets they own. I'm going to "do me" and focus on my happiness. The Voice is infatuated with a song from T.I. called "Live Your Life" and even set it as his ringtone (I'm basically ready to smash his phone!) In the opening of the song, T.I. exclaims,

"… stop being concerned about what you don't got and be thankful for the things you do got"

Furthermore, part of the chorus says, "live your life, no telling where it will take you." I'm positioned on a monumental opportunity and it's time I started "living my life like it's golden."

Ultimately, I'm doing what I want to do and there are so many exhilarating opportunities waiting for me in the future. I may not become a great performer or a powerful record exec, but at least I know I'm living passionately. Toward the end of my life I will be able to say,

"I did it my way and had so much fun along the journey!"

With Thanksgiving approaching, who or what are YOU most thankful for?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I Did It!

I want to let everyone know that I successfully passed the Writing Proficiency Requirement! I didn't have much doubt (I know that sounds cocky) but nearly all of the term papers I submitted were highly graded. Additionally, I have an exceptional comprehension of the English language (i.e. grammar, spelling).

Here is some background info about the WPE. It can be completed in two formats. The first selection allows you take a timed essay exam. The second option calls for a portfolio consisting of previous term papers from particular courses. I preferred the portfolio and submitted papers from my former Cross-Cultural Psychology, Western Civilization, Art survey and Introduction to Philosophy courses. Furthermore, I was required to write a new essay based on several readings.

The topic of these readings?

"Should the war on drugs end?"

I argued against the decriminalization of drugs however, I did support improved rehabilitation programs and allocation of resources in other areas instead of fighting a failing war (i.e. “the war on terror”).

Whomp, whomp, whomp, whomp ...

I wrote the 5 page paper within two days and procrastinated to the Nth degree. Moreover, I was screwed by a former professor who I sought after for certification on one of my essays. She never got back to me. Unfortunately, I mailed the paper to her home address and now I'll probably never see it again. While I wasn’t fond of her class, I still received an A. So what do I care?! Nevertheless, I dislike when an individual proclaims their assistance and never follows through. Sure, I’m guilty of it from time to time, but I strive particularly hard to "do unto others as I'd have them do unto me." Consequently, it didn’t say much for her teaching ethics.

The WPE is a requirement of all UMass Boston students regardless of their declared major. If a student does not pass the WPE, they can be suspended from the university and must enroll in a remedial English course. Thankfully, I will never experience those consequences.

The next significant hurdle I must complete is Quantitative Reasoning (essentially a math or statistics course). I'm taking Psychology 270: Statistics next semester which will satisfy my QR as well as my last Math requirement. After that, I will be finished with all my general education requirements and can focus 100 percent on my major!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

All I Want For Christmas ...

My family celebrates an annual tradition where we exchange Christmas wish lists in order to facilitate our retail experiences. However, we haven't really begun this tradition due in part to our struggling financial burdens. Rugrat began a new job only a few months ago while I left The Fund to pursue my degree full-time. Nevertheless, we're determined to observe some type of Christmas even if we only trade two or three presents per person. Honestly, I take pleasure in the holidays (especially Thanksgiving) with my family and have come to appreciate the years we’ve spent together. Moreover, that's a divine blessing than most families receive.

Consequently, I've begun planning what Christmas gifts to buy for my family, The Voice and his closest friends as well as my few friends and extended family.

So, does anyone have suggestions for a first Christmas gift for my boyfriend? I've never sustained a boyfriend during the holidays and I genuinely want to give from my heart. I'm usually romantic but I'm running on mental empty (I'm typing this post during my break period at work ... so it's about 1 AM on a Saturday morning … you try focusing!).

For my own list, I'm thinking about books (Star Trek, black gay fiction ... the wish list is on Amazon), DVD's (Noah's Arc, Star Trek TNG Series), an iPhone, gift cards to shop for clothes as well as a digital music composition program. Additionally, posters, CD's and some new workout gear would be nice too. I'm definitely NOT in the Christmas spirit yet. I know it probably has something to do with Thanksgiving not having occurred yet.

Nevertheless, I think I've received just about everything I want for Christmas encompassed in The Voice. I've heard people say that all the time but for real y'all, he's got me wanting for nothing.

So what do you want for Christmas? What are you getting for your friends/family/significant others?

Friday, November 14, 2008

That Hump

I thought I was strong, however I nearly lost it all yesterday.

School.

My boyfriend.

Work.

Sanity.

All my "baffle them with your bull**** " finally caught up to me yesterday during jazz band rehearsal.

Java-Mama has repeatedly expressed concern that I was allocating far too much time toward The Voice. Naturally, I objected. Nevertheless, she was right (as mother’s usually are). I don't spend enough time practicing and let me tell you, when you're a music major, practicing consumes your life, your soul, your heart, your all.

However, I didn't heed the musicians credo and paid the ultimate penalty.

The professor for jazz band (aka Professor X) subtly stressed that the band is "only as strong as it's weakest link." Now, I'm a man who admits to his mistakes and endures the consequences. Whether they involve torture, pain, or simply a fine or bad grade, I'll own up to my faults. Naturally, I admitted to both Professor X and Hand Killer that I haven't been practicing like I should.

Professor X said, "the next five rehearsals are extremely crucial for our final concert and if you don't have your solos and parts down now, you'll be sitting on stage either jamming or looking like a fool."

Honestly, I'm extremely competitive and self-conscious when it comes to my talent. I‘ve been playing organ since I was six and self-taught myself piano around the age of nine just by watching the church musicians. I've performed at hundreds of functions throughout my life so stage fright isn’t an issue. I've become very confident in my skills throughout the years.

Consequently, I've also become incredibly self-critical and sensitive to errors when I perform. I was extremely embarassed when put on blast in front of the band however, I have no one to blame but myself. Simply put, I didn't practice so I got mud thrown in my face.

Amalgamate this incident with a few less significant frustrations throughout the day and thus a recipe for K.C's World Famous Pity Parties resulted. I considered giving up school, my job (I'm still adjusting) and even splitting with my boyfriend. Of course, I wouldn't really have given up all those things, especially The Voice, but when I feel my back is against the wall, I revert to my immature personality.

Fortunately, Java-Mama talked with me (via our crappy AT&T phones) and suggested a solution.

Get organized!

Duh!

Now, I'm intelligent. I've a 3.7 GPA, I've received copious awards, been accepted into several honors societies and excelled at nearly every occupation I've had, yet this thought never actually crossed my mind. She proposed drafting a weekly schedule and distributing my time more sensibly. Obviously, that is challenging when you're exceedingly infatuated with someone and crave the maximum time feasible with him. Our weekends are often spontaneous and impulsive and numerous modifications occur in our pre-determined agenda.

Furthermore, my frustrations derive from my indecisive post-collegiate career plans. However, we've got time to discuss that issue in profundity on another post.

The point I'm making is that I need to get organized. I ought to really arrange my time more prudently. I've never retained a full-time job while attending school full-time all while building a relationship. Additionally, I enjoy being busy. While these responsibilities give me a significant sense of maturity, juggling my time is more arduous than I anticpated. I can no longer practice at the last minute and I can no longer skimp on sleep for work.

The Voice sent me a text message earlier saying that perhaps he “need(s) to back off” and let me focus on school. My response? "No, that's not what I want; I simply require allocating my time more sagaciously."

So I'm inquiring among all my fellow bloggers out there:

1. How do you allocate your time and responsibilities?

2. Do you find it easy or hard?

3. Do you have any tips on how to successfully balance the "Big Three" in my life?

If I could get over that hump,
Then maybe I will feel better
Maybe I won't fall
If I could get over that hump,
Then maybe I will ...

(That Hump - Erykah Badu, New Amerykah: Part One 4th World War)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Never Felt This Way

So, I've finally admitted it to myself ... I'm falling hard and fast for The Voice!

For those readers who are unaware, I met a distinguished man who I've dubbed The Voice at a Labor Day weekend party and we've been seeing each other incessantly throughout the past two and a half months (but who's counting?!) And what a journey these past two and a half months have been!

The Voice is unlike anyone I've dated due in part to his tremendous maturity. After all this time, he continues to grow more thoughtful and caring with each passing day and has me considering the future in unexpected ways.

To recap, he treated me to Cirque du Soleil for my birthday. I returned the favor and set up a weekend filled with Cheesecake Factory, the Hilton, and a jazz club for his post-natal day. Aside from special events, I typically enjoy the trivial things he does on a day to day basis.

For example, spending a weekend helping his best friend's mother move or doing laundry together on Election Night (we were horsing around while doing it but who cares). I've been accepted among his intimate circle of friends such to the point that he and I are taking his friends’ daughters to see How The Grinch Stole Christmas: The Musical next month.

I’ve spent my weekends going out to eat, watching him get a tattoo (none for me thanks!), going to birthday parties or just chilling at his crib with his roommates.

Each weekend results in a total adventure and makes the separation a bit more unbearable.

And now for the great segue ...

(drum roll please ... )

I am not thrilled about our regular partings and this has led to several arguments concerning his new job. He assumed a managerial position at a non-profit group that requires him to travel weekly on flights out of state. Furthermore, starting in January, he's considered remaining away for several months since the travel is extremely taxing. When he accepted the position, I was elated for him and didn't have much say concerning his life however, he's repeatedly stressed that I've become an important factor in his life. Unfortunately, this led to a series of rolling arguments that progressed over the last two weekends.

No worries, we've patched things up, and we're working hard to start a relationship. This concept is new to both of us (we’ve both only dated guys for a few months at a time). Moreover, The Voice has me thinking about moving out. I'm at his house nearly every weekend; I'm beginning to feel like a visitor in my own home!

Nevertheless, that nagging inner worry-wart has me wondering if I'm truly ready for this. I've prayed for someone to come into my life and while it wasn't necessarily the most ideal time, I'm opening up daily to the idea of a true and honest relationship. Still, I'm afraid of my past self. I fear my previous mistakes and the infatuation that saturated my common sense. Everyone on both sides believes we're a excellent match yet I can't help but speculate.

I can be exceptionally immature at times. I have copped attitudes and had to check myself when I became too "snippy" toward him. We're learning how to communicate with each other as well as adapt, adjust, and accommodate our ways. We've been on this earth nearly 30 years apiece and it's not easy to go from

"I don't need anyone, I can do this myself!"

to

"I'm in a relationship, and I need to respect and consider my partner."

I don't expect I'll get this overnight. I'm incredibly intellectual and extremely passionate and empathetic with a enormous penchant for romance. I know I can do this! Furthermore, this “wonderful-ness” is facilitated by The Voice who has fast become my rock and truly my better half. When I'm frustrated or down, he is there. And when he gets very bossy and stubborn, I have checked him and kept him grounded.

So, I’m going to give it a shot; I think it’ll work.

Scratch that.

I know we’ll succeed!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Heaven Sent

I swear I feel the spirit everytime you I look at you
Cause I know that God is moving in my life
There's a certain type of healing every time you look at me
And I know the feelings neither wrong nor right

Chorus:
It's very evident that you are heaven sent
It's very evident
It's very evident that you are heaven sent
It's very evident

Looking at the sun is like looking at your face
It blinds me sometimes
Laying on your chest is like being in the council of the angel my God

Chorus

I'm riding with an angel on a wave of love
I'm riding so high, riding with an angel

(Heaven Sent - Donnie, The Colored Section)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

100

I finally made it!

When I began this blog several months ago, I never envisioned I would talk to my favorite authors and meet interesting people. Furthermore, I never imagined I would reach 100 posts!

I thought to myself, "I really don't know what I'm going to write about; I don't have a lot on my mind ... "

Since I returned to school, I haven't had the time to keep up with my blog in the manner I'd prefer. However, rest assured, that will change! I finally got my laptop and I'm discovering the joy of wi-fi so I can update my blog from school, at my boyfriend's house, at work or just wherever! Moreover, I purchased a 250 GB portable hard drive which maintains all my personal files from my home computer so hopefully you all will be hearing from me ... a lot!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Here I Am ...

Wow, I can't believe it's been so long since I've written on my blog!

First and foremost, my apologies to all my followers, readers and commentators. Obviously, school comes first but still, I have to say I missed you guys!

Now, it's been several weeks and a LOT, I mean GAZILLIONS of things have occurred in my life so I'm only going to touch on the most significant items such as school, work, The Voice, friends, family, and ME!

School: We finally passed the mid-term and there’s only a few more weeks to go (thank God!) The intensity in Jazz Band has increased. I've missed a few classes but I’ve managed to persevere. Our group chemistry is coalescing but we've quite a way to go before our final concert. By the way, our public concert is December 9th, at 7:30 PM on campus so just putting that out there! I'm also setting up a link to our band's blog page.

The Ear Training / Music Theory classes are becoming a bit more difficult. I mainly want to get to the next level, weed out the non-music majors and get into the serious business! BTW, I played in front of the class and everyone loved it; seemed to make a few more friends on campus and whether I like it or not, I've created a reputation.

My Haydn piece is coming along positively nicely and Professor Hand Killer has given me a new classical piece (Schubert) to work on. I'm extremely saturated with music this semester. Sometimes I think I hate music ...

Work: I finally got a job! I'm going to be working for Quest Diagnostics, Inc. and my hours will be 6 PM until 2 AM. I know, I know, I'll probably be a “dead brotha walking” by 2009 but so are the sacrifices I must make. It's a full-time position, with great benefits and the pay is MUCH better than my old job. I'm relieved to have a job now so I can return to the doctor, buy what I want and need (i.e. iPhone, clothes, laptop, etc.), and get Christmas presents for everyone! I'll let you know more after orientation next week ...

The Voice: Well, well, well ... what can I say? This man has made me the happiest I've ever been in my life. He has my highs, my lows, my ups, my downs, my heart, my soul, my mind and my ear. When he's away, his absence is nearly unbearable. My weekends have been exceedingly busy and a constant whirlwind of poetry clubs, dance clubs, meeting his friends, shopping, dining out and simply hanging out. We recently passed our two month anniversary this past Thursday and what a crazy two months it has been! I possess three teddy bears, roses (he surprised me the other day at Outback), and a ton of memories. I feel as though I’ve known him my entire life!

For his birthday weekend, I checked him into the Hilton at Logan Airport, left two roses on the bed, champagne chilling on ice, a box of honey roasted cashews (yeah, he has strange tastes) and treated him like royalty. I purchased tickets to see Roy Hargrove at Scullers Jazz Club. Overall, each weekend becomes better than the last ...

Consequently, there is so much I've omitted on account of length (I could drone on and on for pages) but trust me y'all, he's captured my heart unlike any other man! BTW, my parents and friends have approved! Furthermore, there is more I'd like to discuss about The Voice but we'll save that for another post ...

Friends: Thai Guy has been going through some difficult times so I ask you all to keep him in your thoughts and prayers.

The Divo is nearing the end of his collegiate journey and I'm soooo very proud of him!

I'm contemplating one last attempt to reach out to D.G. I really miss her friendship. I know I'm stubborn (as a mule) but I also don't want 10 years of friendship to be dismissed just because of some stupid a** s***! I'll put up a post about her and you guys let me know what I should do ... okay?

Family: My cousin, The Black Elephant, has been added to my blog so check his page out when you get a moment! Yes, he's a Republican but if you are mature enough to remain open-minded, you'll find he's quite engaging!

Pops was in the hospital a few weeks back but he’s doing much better now. He's home and driving us all up a wall.

Rugrat got a job at Home Depot so I don't see much of him these days. He and The Voice have an ongoing rivarly (harmless banter) but it's resulted in Rugrat dubbing him the Predator (so named for his dread locks similar to the beasty from the movie). I suppose this means Rugrat approves.

And last but not least ...

ME: The most important aspect of this blog (that's a fact!) I'm down to 189 pounds and The Voice has encouraged me to return to the gym.

I ordered a laptop this week. I should have it next week and maybe I'll be able to keep up with my blog while at school or during my breaks at work.

I was in a car accident on Monday (there goes my spotless driving record!) however, I'm doing okay. This foreigner (I'll be P.C.) decided to stop upon merging with traffic. I slammed on my brakes and managed to stop but the vehicle behind me rear-ended mine. When we all got out to exchange papers, the foreigner took off. One of the girls in the truck behind me managed to get his license plate number but the state trooper told us he wasn't able to get anything on this guy. Oh well, I guess I'll sit back and watch my premiums go up! Oh yeah, my baby is fine, a few scratches to the bumper but that's about it. The other SUV? Lost a headlight and the hood was all jacked up. It seems Ford Escape's plastic bumpers are tougher than they look!

I visited the Fund today with The Voice as a way to close that chapter of my life; I'm ready to move on to Quest. I'm a bit apprehensive about the new job but I'm sure I'll be all right. I'm excited about juggling a full-time job and school as well as dating (I see our bond growing more profound and solid every week). I feel more mature as the days pass but still can't shake those misgivings I've spoken about in my past postings regarding the direction of my life ...

:: sigh ::

We'll see what happens as I take it one day at a time ... have a good weekend everyone! :o)

Monday, October 20, 2008

WPE

I've got my Writing Proficiency Portfolio (click here for more info) due on Friday, October 24th. It's a requirement of all UMass Boston students regardless of major that must be submitted by the completion of 75 credits.

The consequences of not completing this?

Suspension.

I need to really focus this week and get this out of the way so I'll return over the weekend. I know, I know, I keep saying I'll post but I swear it! If I don't, I'll give you my home address and you all can personally hunt me down and kick my butt! :o)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Mr. Carter's Opus

Yesterday, in my Eartraining / Sightsinging class, we had a few guests. Several high school students from the Noonan Business Academy in Boston visited to observe college courses. Most of the students were minorities (black and brown) and girls outnumbered boys. Overall, the teens were exceedingly intrigued by our class.

In an Eartraining / Sightsinging course, an individual is exposed to various pitches and required to identify the interval and know it's relation to other pitches, as well as read music quickly, grasp complex rhythm patterns, sing on key without the assistance of an instrument and recognize major and minor scales.

We have an extremely outgoing professor who made them feel really comfortable. He even got a few chuckles out of them when they tried to copy our musical exercises (they were kinda off key).

Toward the end of the class, he inquired about feedback and one of the young students made a statement that caught my attention.

"I've never been in a music class before."

My heart sunk ten levels.

As a musician, I believe there is no greater joy than music. The reality of this scientifically mathematical world descended upon me like a blue whale from the heavens. I haven't been in an elementary or high school in years but I have first person knowledge from acquaintances who completed high school lately. The recent emphasis is on state comprehensive exams (MCAS) that require students to display superior math and science skills before graduation. I understand that in the contemporary international market, we Americans need to step up our game. We are competing on a global level in technologically advanced fields. Still, art and music are as significantly important for human development. I'm not requiring that these students read music but they should at least be exposed to the basic theories.

Ergo (my favorite word lately), I've decided the direction of my academic career (yes, it's a career, especially after 13 semesters!) I want to look into music education. I know I need a graduate degree for that but hell, after this long, what's a few more years? I will talk to my professors and get some information. I want to know what inspired their respective career choices. What is their background in the industry? How did they get their start?

The phrase uttered by that student has haunted me all night and still weighs heavily on my mind. I assert that one’s purpose in life is to help somebody, love somebody, and to teach somebody ... I can't leave this earth until one of those purposes is fulfilled.

There is so much artistic talent waiting to be unlocked.

I believe I am the key.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Where In The World Is K.C.?

Hi everyone!

The rumors of my demise are quite exaggerated! Trust. I'm still kicking! LOL

My apologies to my regular readers (and followers ... when'd that happen!?) however, I've been extremely busy with school and of course with my boyfriend, The Voice.

There is a boatload to catch up on.

A preview: The Voice's birthday, class, job opportunities, The Diamond Diva, The Hilton, Philadelphia, breakfast in bed, jazz clubs and much, much more!

I have some free time on Saturday so I'm going to try my hardest to line up some posts and let you know what's been happening in my world ... thanks for all the comments and like Trey Songz said:

'Cause I don't want to leave (Ooo girl)
But I gotta go right now
I'll be back to hold you down (I don't wanna)
I don't want to leave no
But girl I gotta go right now
But I'll be back before you know it

(Trey Songz: Gotta Go - I Gotta Make It)


I'll see you guys on Saturday!

Monday, September 29, 2008

My Addiction

Happy (Rainy) Monday morning everyone ... it's been a quick minute since I've posted and most of that I blame on school but the rest on The Voice (LOL!). I think the video below sums up the past two weeks with him.

Nevertheless, I have a LOT I need to get off my chest. Everything from my school/work update, my workout update, my television updates (Desperate Housewives, ER, SVU, etc.) as well as needing some advice on The Voice. So hopefully I'll have a good post or two up this week. Have a great week everyone!


Ryan Leslie (Feat. Cassie & Fabolous) - Addiction [ver.2]
Uploaded by BlackAndree

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I Wish A MoFo Would!

This is specifically for The Voice ... an oldie but a goodie!

... Just a few more days baby ...

Certified Honest Blogger

I'm an honest blogger! Never had a doubt in my mind since I've always kept everything here absolutely, 100% true.

So big thanks to Young, Black and DL for the recognition!

When I began this blog, I was innocent, pure, uncorrupted. After several book review posts, I was contacted by L.M. Ross and Frederick Smith. Initially, I was deeply concerned because I had written some "not-so-nice" things in reference to their novels and was worried that I had offended them. Consequently, I learned that I had to remain true to myself and write from my heart and soul.

As The Voice would say, "Life's too short to be worried about what other people think."

After that, there's nothing else to add. So here are the rules:

1.) When you receive the prize you must write a post showing it, with the name of who has given it to you, and link them back.

2.) Choose a minimum of 7 blogs (or more) that you find brilliant in their content or design.

3.) Show their names and links and leave them a comment informing they were nominated as an 'Honest Weblog.'

4.) Show a picture of those who awarded you and those you gave the prize (optional).

5.) And then pass it on!

Now I've seen other bloggers with this award, and some I have included an additional 6th rule ...

6.) Write 10 honest things about yourself (optional).

Okay, my obvious top choice for honest blogging is Young, Black and DL (Young, Black, and Downlow) since he's consistently keeping it real. His stories / adventures are highly interesting and snap me out of my reality for a little while. While I don't always agree with his ways, I respect him for his honesty.

My choices for bloggers who have brilliant content and design (and honesty) are as follows:


While Young, Black and DL didn't do the 10 honest things about himself, I am going to step out on the runway and strut my stuff!

1. I am extremely introverted and self-conscious (click here for more).
2. I'm a crossword fanatic (surprised I didn't get fired from work after all the puzzles I did).
3. I actually want to visit Ireland some day (yeah, I know, black people don't usually say that!)
4. Since Young, Black and DL blew up my spot, I was celibate for over three years (obviously, not anymore).
5. I'm a huge mythology buff and even crafted a make-believe television series (e.g. Buffy, Angel, Charmed) during my free-time.
6. I can be massively arrogant from time to time.
7. I occasionally find some women sexually attractive even though I consider myself SGL and haven't dated a woman since 2001.
8. I hardly ever finish anything I start (MANY unfinished projects lying around the house!)
9. I'm a major procrastinator.
10. As much love as I have for my people(s), I sometimes get embarrassed by black (and SGL) people.

Damn, that was hard! I really had to dig deep and let me tell you, being honest with yourself isn't the easiest thing in the world. There are things you really don't want to admit and other things you would rather not share with the world but I had to remember that's what my blog is about: becoming beautifully human.

Monday, September 22, 2008

The End Is Near

This semester is moving along quite swiftly and believe me, I'm counting the semesters, months, days, hours, seconds until I can get my degree and BOUNCE!

For those individuals living under a rock, I left my cushy five year plus office job (with benefits) to attend school full-time. Many of the courses I require for my major are only offered during the day so I had to make a difficult decision.

Obviously I chose school.

This semester, I'm taking Ear Training / Sightsinging I and Music Theory I as well as participating in Jazz Band. I’m also taking private lessons. My private instructor, Professor Hand Killer, allowed me to skip Keyboard I (she teaches that course) due to my advanced skills (DUH! I mean, like, I've only, like, been playing the piano, like, for over, like, twenty years!) I also wish I had skipped Theory I and Ear Training I since I know a lot of the material and thus far, I’m finding it WAY to easy. While it's too late to drop it, I'm utilizing it as a refresher course and I'm sure I'll get an easy A out of this.

The Jazz Band is another story. All music majors are required to take six semesters of performance ensemble and since the other options were Chamber Singing or Chorus -- well, you get the idea. The course isn't as easy as I thought. The professor has me learning some really difficult piece (click here) which he wants me to play at the beginning of EVERY class! (sigh) However, I'm making friends fast and it'll be fun to play alongside horns as well as talented singers and musicians. Our final performance is in early December and since my jazz skills are crap, I've got to bust my a** like never before!

The Haydn piece, Piano Sonata in E minor, H.XVI, Opus 34, 1st movement, (click here: first three minutes are what I have to learn) that I'm performing for the jury at the end of the semester is also coming along really well! I’ve finished learning it and my fingers are swollen from all the hard practicing I've put in. I'm extremely determined to get higher marks this semester.

Being on campus during the day is exceedingly overwhelming. I have been at UMass for over a year, however I took courses through the Continuing Education Department so many of the classes were at night, on weekends or off-campus. Furthermore, I had many older students so the atmosphere was more mature. Unfortunately, the courses I'm enrolled in this semester are populated with freshmen and sophomores and many younger students. I feel as if I'm in my first year of college again; many of the students are running their mouths, joking around and asking obnoxious questions. I miss the previous semesters but I can't dwell on that: I have to remain focused.

The good news ... I did the calculations and it seems I may be eligible for a spring of 2010 commencement. After this semester, I'll have over 80 credits and you need 120 to graduate. If I attend full-time during every semester, I'll be done quickly! There are a few variables that I'm still not certain about. Nevertheless, I'm about 90% sure I can be finished by 2010, give or take an extra semester. I really want to walk the stage. I know my family would be proud to see me walk so I'm working exceptionally hard to finish by 2010.

I'm still not sure what I want to do after graduation. Even before I met The Voice, I had considered graduate school. A few of my friends either have their masters or are considering getting it. However, I'm not 100% sure what I want to do in the music industry. I have considered working in A&R or marketing and even flirted with the idea of being a teacher. Nevertheless, I know that possessing a higher degree looks better and hopefully opens more doors. Still, I can't go jumping that broom yet. I must continue my focus on getting the BA first and then we'll talk!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Movie Night

So did everyone enjoy their weekend? (yeah, I know, I’m late!)

I relaxed a bit and (of course) got to know The Voice better ...

Friday: I went out with a few friends while The Voice went out to a club/party with his friends. It was nice to hang since I don't want to neglect my good friends, plus I needed a break from The Voice. We went to the Cheesecake Factory on Wednesday night and I gave him a ride home on Thursday night. After I got home, I worked on a song (while tipsy) I wrote several years ago titled September Love and got a few more lines written. I reckon I'll be 82 years old by the time I finish composing this song!

Saturday: I had the laziest morning possible. Spent the afternoon / evening with The Voice at the gym (see previous post). Oh yeah, I got my first ever parking ticket! Damn! I know I'm experiencing a lot of "firsts" with The Voice but c'mon, I wasn't hoping that would be one of them.

We decided to have movie night at his crib so ordered food from Texas Roadhouse (he was feening for some more catfish!) and then went to Blockbuster. We rented The Lost Boys: The Tribe, Meet The Browns, First Sunday and Vantage Point. Needless to say, The Voice slept through most of them (mmmm-hmmmmm!). We swooped up our food, then bedded down for the night. His roommates were out so we had the place to our self. We watched the movies while we chowed down and let me tell you, after an eight mile run, that steak was food sent from heaven!

First Sunday: Didn't care for it, wasn't as funny as I thought it would be. It had a nifty message but was still corny as hell. I'm also not a Tracy Morgan fan and Katt Williams was beginning to annoy me!

Vantage Point: LOVED IT! I got sucked right into it and had my eyes glued to the TV until the end! The Voice? Slept through it.

The Lost Boys: The Tribe: I'm not a fan of horror flicks but I make the exception for vampire movies (I’ve seen all the great ones) so we watched half later that night and then the rest the next morning. I'm ambivalent about this one. I thought the vamp make up towards the end was a blatant rip-off from Angel and Buffy (I'm a hardcore fan) and the storyline was very uninspiring. It was like spring break with vamps. In essence, thongs, boobs and fangs.

I haven't seen Meet The Browns so I'll probably check it out then next time I'm over his place.

Sunday: We lay in bed most of the morning talking about all sorts of stuff until I had to leave for my second job. When I returned, The Voice was in the process of dressing for the arts festival we were going to attend. However, we ran late and truthfully didn't feel up to it. So we lay in bed (again) watching Primeval and True Blood while enjoying our remaining time together.

Later that evening, my family and I went to Smokey Bones to celebrate both my Pop's birthday and mine (the same day). Once again, I stepped out my element and ordered baby back ribs and enjoyed each and every one! On the way back, I stopped by The Voice's place to pick up something I had left and then stayed up chatting with Java-Mama until 1 AM.

Monday: Dragging, dragging, dragging! I hope Tuesday is better (it was). Had a pop quiz (ugh!) and while I got an A on the test from Friday, I wasn't prepared for this one. I need to buckle down more (I'll talk about school more in another post). Moreover, I start a campus job / work study next week so I know I'm going to really feel it!

Have a great week everyone!

Monday, September 15, 2008

K.C.'s Workout Plan (Pt. 7)

My weight loss is proceeding quite nicely and I'm happy to report I'm hovering around 195 (on a good day!) It's definitely not an easy goal to achieve but I'm working at it slowly. Nevertheless, since returning to school, I'm finding it harder and harder to maintain a well-balanced diet. I don't like cafeteria food (haven't eaten it since high school) so I make my own lunches or go to Subway.

Furthermore, I attained a rather sweet milestone this past weekend! Saturday evening, The Voice and I went to the Seaport Hotel's corporate fitness center at the Waterfront. First of all, I'm not sure I even want to go back to Bally's after going there! The locker room looked like some fancy hotel room or designer closet with wooden cabinet style lockers, mag-locks, carpeting, mirrors and other amenities. The showers featured shampoo and conditioner and every client received a complementary towel. And the treadmills? I actually had my own television!

Maaan, a brotha could get used to that real fast!

Okay, back to the milestone. The Voice is a more seasoned runner as he has participated in the Boston Marathon and as well as shorter races throughout the New England area. I didn't want to compete with him but somehow I ended up running for an hour and half and averaged about eight and a half miles! Normally, I can maintain five miles but his presence (and my slightly competitive nature) drove me further than ever before! Trust, my sore leg muscles are my own personal testament to how hard I pushed!

Anyway, I'll let you guys know where I stand by the time I go back to the nutritionist in a few weeks ... keep your fingers crossed for me!

Friday, September 12, 2008

My Birthday (Part 3)

At 1 AM, I hopped in my car and cruised around. I called a friend and vented and he gave me some really good advice. You see, I'm not an outgoing person and I was concerned The Voice got the wrong impression after the party last weekend. The Voice called me a few times concerned and I returned around 2 AM after everyone was gone. I didn't want to bring up my "baggage" but he was insistent that I tell him what was going on.

I confessed and he reassured me that he likes me the way I am, whether I'm outgoing or not (duh! obviously he does or else he wouldn’t still be chilling with me!) He held my face in his hands and told me that I need to stop worrying about every little thing, stop analyzing everything and simply live in the moment. He emphasized self reliance and plain, simple fun.

"You're not the only one out there with issues and insecurities," he reassured me.

We lay on the bed and as he held me, he recited one of his poems, which assisted in lifting my spirits. Needless to say, he worked his thing too well and this led to other "things." Consequently, I promised him I wouldn't just up and leave like that again.

While I was profoundly disappointed in my actions, I discovered that The Voice is a communicative person, willing to work through an issue. The fact that he's still interested in me after my little stunt says a lot about his character (and patience). Most guys would have said "peace out, yo!" Still, I'm slightly intimidated by his social skills. As I stated in a post back in June (click here), I'm extremely shy, quiet and introverted. I'm not as adaptable as he is with any situation but I can hold my own.

Furthermore, he owes no allegiance to anyone but himself and I'm in awe of his free spirit and independence. Conversely, I've forgotten how to have fun. I used to just roll with the flow but the years have made me bitter, serious and cynical. I find myself overly conservative when it comes to just letting loose. Perhaps The Voice and I are beneficial for each other. His personality is presently affecting me, inducing me to step out of my routine and while I don't want to change him, who knows? Maybe he's getting something from me ...

Well let me wrap this three part series up. I awoke early Sunday morning and put my church suit on. I kissed him goodbye and drove out to Framingham for church. I arrived prematurely so I waited in the parking lot, observing the squirrels and birds in an adjacent field.

Suddenly, I decided to have a chat with God. It had been a quick minute (major religious issues here) however, I felt I needed to thank Him for bringing The Voice into my life. I was fairly ashamed by my actions from the previous night. Essentially, I've moaned and groaned over the past several years about how I wanted a boyfriend. I'm finally dating someone who has most of his s*** together, is in school working on his masters, not afraid to show affection in public, has a real job, likes me the way I am (LOL weird indeed!), has a variety of interests, and has his own place (my checklist was nearly complete) ... and what did I do? I found negative flaws and whined like some unappreciative b****. I checked myself accordingly and thanked Him for listening and watching over me and allowing us to be in each other’s lives.

I returned to The Voice’s apartment and found him watching the movie, Enchanted. He was too cute laying there in bed watching a Disney movie, especially after all the bravado and masculinity he exuded the night before. I love it when a guy can tap into their childhood and yet remain mature. Many people define sexy in relation to the body or sexual acts but I'm a fanatic of the intellectual. In my opinion, sexy is the way he taps into his feminine and childhood sides and is still the man in charge, the way he expresses himself lyrically and socially, the way he sleeps, the way he breathes, the way he lives life with love.

That is sexy to me.

He spent Sunday doing laundry and I brought him back to his place and we chilled for a bit. I apologized to his roommates for bouncing the night before (I didn't want to offend them, especially if I'm going to be coming around often) and then we watched some of the VMA's as he drifted off to sleep.

I can't wait until the next time I see him (UPDATE: we’ve chilled several times this week including dinner at the Cheesecake Factory). This past weekend was one of the best birthdays I've EVER had and I can't thank him enough for coming into my life. Whether we end up as friends or more, I'm glad I met The Voice and he's fast become the rock I need during this unstable time in my life. Consequently, I'm hooked and want to learn more about him. I enjoy our vibe and the way he makes me re-examine my soul, my mind, my heart and my life when I'm around him. I have two left feet when it comes to dating (I know I’m not the only one out there!) so I'm moving as slowly and deliberately as possible ...

"Let's see what's out there ... engage!" - Captain Jean-Luc Picard (ST:TNG)