Monday, January 30, 2006

"Conversate" Is Not A Word

"Conversate for a few, cause in a few, we gon' do what we came to do, ain't that right boo (truuuueee)." -- Notorious B.I.G., Lyrics to "Big Poppa"

Conversate. Is that a word? Has the dictionary been updated to include "conversate" as a word? The last time I checked (which was about 5 minutes ago), "conversate" was not in the dictionary. So why do we (black folks, that is) continuously use "conversate" in our daily conversations? Is it because we hear rappers use it in their lyrics? Or is it rooted in something deeper that relates back to the years of oppression we faced? Either way, I wish black folks would stop using that word. Yes, black folks. This isn't about white people, or Asians, or Latinos. This is about black folks (just scroll back up to the top of the page and check). So I don't want to hear that white folks use "conversate" also. And as a matter of fact, I can't recall ever hearing a white person say "conversate," but perhaps I'm just not hanging around the right white folks.

Now I'm sure that some folks will be offended by this entry, but they are probably the very same people that like to throw out "conversate" when they are trying to sound intelligent. Someone has already gotten upset and hung up on me when I told him this was the subject of my next entry. Of course, he has used "conversate" in a previous conversation with me. Is it just me? No, it can't be just me. Don't people sound ignorant when they say things like, "Yeah girl, you know I like to 'conversate' about world issues," or "I enjoyed 'conversating' with you?" No, you enjoyed "conversing" with me. I always feel compelled to correct them. Like I'm the friggin' word police or something. But dammit, it's frustrating to hear black folks sound ignorant.

Originally, this entry was going to focus on what seems to be black folks' perpetual problems with grammar, but I figured that a discussion about the use of "conversate" is deserving of its own entry. Maybe it's just me. If that's the case, post your comments and let me know.

On an administrative note, starting Monday, February 6, 2006, this blog will be updated weekly every Monday. That way, you can start your week with some intelligent (hopefully) discussion! :)


Tuesday, January 24, 2006

If I Get The Jamie Foxx Email One More Time...

If I get one more email telling me to support Jamie Foxx's NBC special, I will scream!!! (For those who have not seen the email, it claims that NBC is not promoting Jamie's special because he refused to add white people to his cast.) Yes, I am guilty of it too. When I first received the email, I too passed it along. However, I am also known to forward emails that address political and social concerns as well. I have received the email about Jamie's special at least 8 times in a matter of 1.5 days. I don't think I've ever received the same email that many times in such a short period of time.

Don't get me wrong, I like Jamie Foxx. I like his comedy, his movies, and his music. However, Jamie doesn't make or interpret laws. He doesn't put food on your table. He doesn't provide you with healthcare. He doesn't take care of your kids. So why all the fuss about his NBC special???

It's disconcerting that black folks will mobilize in a major way when it comes to supporting a black entertainer, but fail to mobilize on issues that directly affect us. Mainly, and arguably most importantly, black folks don't vote. Of course there are exceptions to that rule, but for the most part, black people do not vote. We constantly use excuses like, "My vote doesn't count" to deter us from entering the polls on Election Day. We sat idly by in 2004 and watched while Bush was elected into office. We are now feeling the effects of this lackadaisical attitude as another conservative Bush appointment is being confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court, and as he continues to appoint conservative judges to the federal bench. And as the federal courts continue to address (and possibly strike down) issues that are important to us, such as affirmative action, we will begin feeling the ill effects of our failure to mobilize and vote.

It's not that I'm against black folks supporting black entertainers, quite the contrary is true; however, I don't think we should do it to the exclusion of the issues that are vital to us. I love to see my people demonstrate passion on issues important to them -- the concern is that many times the issues that elicit that passion are of little importance in the big scheme of things.

-- Notta

This is me, Notta Golddigger.