Happy Birthday!

My little sister is 27 today!  If you have a confused look on your face because you thought I was just 27 or was still 27, we're 19 months apart!  So from March 30th to August 23rd, we sound like we're a year apart.  It REALLY throws the people who think we're twins. LOLOL  Here's a picture of my sister when she was just a few days old.  Meet your big!
I'm going to Raleigh in a few hours to take her to dinner.  Guess what?  The baby wants to try some food she's never had before!!  PAUSE!  JUST PAUSE Y'ALL!!  I COULD NOT BE MORE PROUD!!!  *tear!*  So we're headed to an Ethiopian restaurant.  Hope it's good!  The reviews are!  Yay!  Happy Birthday Elaina Paina!


Monday Mindspacing Vol. 93

1) My program has an intramural softball team and I'm on it.  Everybody was so shocked!  Haters.  Can I help my flyness?  That'd be a no.  But that doesn't mean I'm not a fierce competitor!  I had 3 hits in 4 at bats.  Yeah!  2 singles and I was batted in twice!  I slid in at 2nd and 3rd on one of those.  LOL Also, we were down 1-9 at one point and came back to win 13-9.  WHAT!?!?!  Get like us, son.  Get like us.  I had a ball!  Game 2 tomorrow night!
2) Funny thing about that game... one of my classmates said he'd never seen me run before.  I thought it was hilarious that he's known me 3 years and never seen me run.  Why would he?  IDK but it was still amusing to me!
3) Some days I want to just put my head under my pillow and not be bothered with anybody.  Wednesday was one of those days.
4) FB status of the week comes from Sha Boogie, "When my son becomes a teen I'm going to wake him up at 5am and make him sit at the kitchen table and watch me eat apple sauce, so he can know how it feels. One day.. Lol"  ROTFL!! DO IT!!
5) 4D ultrasound pics are super creepy to me.  Why does your face look like that???  That right there?  Not a baby.  That is an alien.  I'm content with waiting to "see what he looks like" when he's fully developed and out of my womb.  Don't say I'll change my mind when the time comes b/c you don't know that!
6) We haven't discussed lately that I'm ready for graduation.  That would be because I'm quite content to stretch out the time a slight bit more so I have more time to do this film.  Not add time, mind you, but just make the days feel longer.  I mean WHOA!  I know time sneaks up on you and all but YIKES!
7) I find misspelled words irritating, too, but it's obnoxious to correct them on fb & twitter.  If they don't know, you can't help them. If they do know, you're being what? Obnoxious.  Now is it obnoxious for me to point out the obnoxiousness? 
8) Too many of my friends are in relationships that are imploding or have imploded.  DO NOT WANT.
9) Ummmm... this whole monthly emotional roller coaster is REALLY annoying.  I seriously hate the mood swings.  And the ridiculous strength of each emotion.  And the even more ridiculous tv comedy-ness of it all.  Someone make it stop.  PLEASE.
10) I love "Say Yes to the Dress." However... that dress is not gonna be the thing that makes your life worth living.  $50,000 on a dress?  Are you serious??? Let's be real.  I don't want to spend $1,000 and when the time comes, I'm getting mine custom made.  So it's not a firm number but for that much money, I'm gonna be unique!!
11) I love talking to my mom about the Bible!  I love that she knows exactly what I'm talking about.  Ex: We were making fun of how my grandma says a Bible verse after the grace.  Actually we were making fun of the fact that for two days she used "Jesus wept."  Really Grandma???  The shortest verse in the Bible??  So I said, "She should recite Psalm 119."  Mom, "Oh Lord. We would be here all day."  LOLOL!  119 has 176 verses.  I just liked that she knew that we would be there all day... and not just because she talks slow...
12) Ever since Rashan told me Guy Fieri doesn't like eggs, I haven't looked at him the same.  Regular people get side eyes when they don't like eggs but a food person?  Suspect.  I can watch you but I'm looking at you sideways.  SMH 
13) Chopped All-Stars is AWESOME!!!!  It should ALWAYS be professional and extremely experienced chefs.  It's magnificent to behold!
14) Have y'all seen the 5:45 tsunami video (UPDATE: It's been taken down. :/ But here's a shorter CNN version.) of the ocean calmly rolling in and taking out everything in its path?  Riveting!  I created an entire narrative in my head watching it without sound.  For the record, this video falls in the category of things I could not do.  I have an inherent need not to risk my life needlessly.


Movies 2011, Week 11

March 20-26, 2011
A good week for movies and I started on Thursday!
59) Unstoppable. Denzel Washington is trying to stop a runaway train.  Pretty awesome.  My biggest qualm is with the portrayal of media coverage with shots people would NEVER have and a company that would NEVER release that much detailed information.  Even non-news people can see that.  Clearly Jay Pharoah was playing in my head AD NAUSEUM during the film and I couldn't stop laughing! LOL  In spite of the ridiculousness, still enjoyable. 3.6 stars
60) Bachelor in Paradise. Bob Hope stars as a writer who finds himself the only bachelor in a community full of married people.  He's welcomed by the women and hated by the men.  Amusing enough.  3.4 stars
61) The Departed. There are no words.  Awesome, awesome movie about a rat in the police department (starring every white actor ever). LOL  Extremely violent so prepare yourself if you've never seen it but worth every Academy Award it was nominated for and then some.  5 stars
62) The Hand That Rocks the Cradle. Film about a psycho who vows revenge when her husband and her baby die within weeks of each other.  Pretty good.  I'd seen part of it before but always missed the crucial beginning.  3.8 stars
63) Inside Job. 2011 Academy Award-winning documentary about the economic collapse of the last few years.  OMG eye and ear wash!!  Why are there so many people in this film?????????  Way too much information.  2.4 stars
64) Protocol. 1984 Goldie Hawn movie about a cocktail waitress who accidentally saves a dignitary's life and finds herself caught up in a compromise that uses her as a political pawn.  Amusing enough to watch and be entertained.  3.4 stars


30 Before 30 Update

I like to complete things.  We know this!  This desire means the goals on my 30 Before 30 list that I'm still working toward HAUNT me!  Because even though some of these things see progress daily or weekly, I'm still weeks or months from the completion of the actual goal.  And don't get me started on all the near misses this month!!!  So to make me feel better, let's talk about all of the things I have in progress!

4) Ride a mechanical bull for at least :08.  THERE WAS ONE ON CAMPUS FOR SPRINGFEST AND I DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT IT!!!!  What kind of foolishness????  People in my program knew there was one AND THAT I WANTED TO RIDE ONE and DIDN'T TELL ME.  I HATE THEM.
5) Go on a helicopter ride.  Rashan wanted to take me on one for our Valentine's Day but they're prohibitively expensive around here.
8) Read the entire Bible. [Started 5/31/10]  It's coming along but not as quickly as I want it to.  I'm simultaneously trying to speed up and slow myself down.
9) Run a 5k. I was supposed to do one this month but I haven't been running.  Sounds like a bad idea.  I found one for next month, though so I WILL be doing it.
11) Go wine tasting in North Carolina Wine Country.  ARGH!!!  Rashan and I went to a vineyard this weekend and all the vines looked like THIS!  Brilliant blue skies, lush green grass and naked as a jaybird vines...... Pass on that tour!!!
12) Cook my way through Tyler's Ultimate cookbook.  I'm really terribly over this one and I'm only about a third of the way through.  There are some expensive ingredients and some things that really just don't intrigue me.  Le sigh.
14) Work out 3xs a week for a full year. [Started 12/26/10]  Enjoying this!  Especially since I'm getting to go outside some (something I very often don't like)!
15) Take at least one picture every day for a year. [Started 3/7/11]  I started a tumblr page to keep track of it all!  I don't like that you can't comment (what on earth is the point of that??) but I like that it's so easy to post pictures.  It will be all pics with a brief description.  Hopefully there are more great days than "I just need a picture day."  The beginning of any long challenge is pretty easy plus I got some cool tips on taking daily pics that I hope will help me along.
17) Go to a Duke-Carolina basketball game.  ARGH!!! This thing sells out THE SECOND it goes on sale so I didn't get a ticket.  :/
18) Learn how to hem clothing.  My cousins wasted SO MUCH of my time by showing up 3+ hours late OR NOT AT ALL to the point where I didn't get to learn how to hem clothing from grandma.  UGH!!
19) Ride on a hot air balloon.  Still waiting on this to come on Groupon/Living Social again.  More expensive than I want.
20) Make a house a home via decoration! I've been looking but I think this will be waiting a while yet.
23) Make AND KEEP a budget.  Oh my goodness!  I've been doing incredibly poorly with this.
25) Read 10 classic books: The plan for this is to read one a month but I'm stuck at Catch 22.  Great Gatsby is next.  I think it'll give me a boost.
a. Pride & Prejudice [6/6/10- LOVED IT!!]
b. Oliver Twist [8/14/10 Liked it a lot. The neat wrap up was rather ridiculous at the end. My 2nd e-book.]
c. Catch 22 (in progress)
d. Catcher in the Rye [1/13/11] I can absolutely see why this one was banned. I don't particularly enjoy being cursed out the entire time I'm reading a book.  It was a pretty easy read.  Very stream-of-consciousness which I was actually far more tolerant of than I've ever been before.
e. Grapes of Wrath
f. The Great Gatsby
g. Invisible Man
h. Lord of the Flies
i. Their Eyes Were Watching God
j. Uncle Tom's Cabin [7/15/10- Slow start, intriguing & at times infuriating middle, shark-jumping end. My first e-book. That experience alone was an adjustment.].
27) Get my name in the newspaper a minimum of 5 times! One down for the radio program I'm teaching. Wheeeee!!
28) Enter a food competition with my own recipe. I've composed a couple of recipes. I just need to find the right competition!
29) Watch AFI's Top 100 movies.  I needed to watch about 51 movies at the start of this and now I have 35 left.  I feel like this is moving sooooo slowly!


Monday Mindspacing Vol. 92

1) I'm turning into the person I never thought I would be... the person who never checks voicemail.  It started with me missing calls and just immediately calling said person back and has morphed into me checking vms maybe once a week.  SMH.  Just wrong.
2) I love Rashan.  I never want to spend another week without him.  I didn't see him for 8 days when I went to Charlotte and Mississippi and it was TORTURE!!!!  I'm so glad we don't have to do that on a regular basis anymore!!!!
3) Did y'all forget I have another blog?  Pay attention!  Food & fashion.  To The Record Dish!
4) I love, love LOVE Duke bball!!!  I have for a long time.  And yet I was completely unconflicted when  they played my alma mater, the illustrious Hampton University, this past Friday.  HU all the way baby!  I knew there was no chance but I watched the first half and the first 3 minutes of the 2nd half and I couldn't take the pain anymore.  They eventually lost by 42.  Ouch.
5) Every time I go to my friend's house I leave my phone or almost leave my phone.  What is the problem???  I guess after we've talked for 6 hours or more straight, the last thing I want to do is talk more. *lies*  It also takes me a good hour to calm down enough to sleep.
6) Sometimes I think my trainer's trying to kill me... Friday? I had to gingerly lower myself every time I wanted to get lower than standing.  Such a mess.
7) Guess who got the DVR down to 4%?????  MEEEEEE!!  Now guess who could ignore the tv for a week?  Same.  I'm done with non-All-Stars Chopped and non-new Iron Chef America and non-new Throwdown. 
8) Me and Rah's Valentine's Day was fab!  I should post about it... add it to the list.
9) I had the most awesome week for research last week!!!  I found TONS of my ancestors by searching thousands of pages of online census reports from 1870 to 1930.  It's so cool!  I quickly got over the fact that it being handwritten means you can't search by keywords when I kept finding familiar and unfamiliar but ancestral names!!  So this was one of the cooler ones I found. 
My great-great-great grandfather, Brit Hilton, is on this page!!  He was once a slave who couldn't read or write but his grandson grew up to be a teacher, great-grandson became a preacher and presiding elder, same for his great-great grandson, ALL LANDOWNERS.  And now two of his great-great-great granddaughters are teachers and he wouldn't be able to fathom what me and my sister do! (She's a web and graphic designer.)  HOW AWESOME IS THAT!?!?
10) Have I told you lately how much I don't like "Breakfast at Tiffany's"?  I'm convinced the clothes and Audrey are the only reason people like that movie.  Do you know how upset I was when I found out she was a #glorifiedhooker?  That is not cute, ya dig?
11) I didn't get the hype of the super moon.  It looked like a normal bright full moon to me.  Apparently I wasn't looking at the proper time...  Ah well.  Remind me in 18 years, please.  Thanks.
12) Sometimes I feel bad for being a hater. Then the hatee does something dumb and I think, "This. This is why. I do this for your own good."  LOLOL
13) I have no patience for grown people who need to announce every weekend how drunk they are.  That is foolish.  Please go somewhere with that.


Movies 2011, Weeks 9-10

Wow!  It's been a while since I posted one of these, huh?  Well, here it is!  Maybe next time I'll have more films!
February 27- March 5, 2011
53) Inception.  AWESOME!  I loved the mind-bending aspects of it.  I will admit that I started to want them to wrap it up a little faster around the hour 40 mark when I knew there were still 40 minutes left.  But I would definitely recommend this to people and definitely watch it again.  You just know it's the kind of film you could see something different after 50 watchings of it.  I also loved the end.  Subtracting a bit for length.  4.7 stars
54) Temple Grandin. HBO film starring Claire Danes (who won a Golden Globe for the role) as an autistic woman who became an expert and educator on animal husbandry and autism.  Really good.  Touching.  5 stars

March 6- 12, 2011
55) The Sandlot. A kids movie about  OMG what annoyingly bad narration.  No child of mine will ever make it to even 5yo w/o throwing a ball.  Male or female!  Unacceptable!  I needed to watch this as a kid to have the appropriate appreciation... But still, "You're killing me, Smalls!" = AWESOME!  I say it all the time  b/c of one of my UF classmates and had never seen the movie.  The ending somewhat redeemed this for me but still... 2.9 stars
56) The Rainmaker. Matt Damon & Danny Devito star as attorneys taking on the man for some poor people.  I enjoyed it thoroughly.  A tad long.  4 stars

March 13- 19, 2011
57) Life As We Know It. Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel star as people who hate each other with mutual best friends who become joint guardians when their friends die.  Even though I got it from Netflix, I was really surprised to like this movie.  It's cute and well-played.  3.9 stars
58) Days of Wine & Roses.  1962 film starring Jack Lemmon about two alcoholics and how their illness destroyed their family.  Really good, really raw.  I wasn't expecting it to be nearly this good.  Wow.  I wanted to know what happened after the end.  4 stars


Mississippi Mania!

I had a blast this trip!  It's hard to put it into words so I'll let the pictures do the talking with just a little help!  I took all of the pictures except of course the ones I'm in.  My mom took Jameil in action shots.  First, the set-up as I prepare to interview my Aunt Shirley.
 Welcome to Mississippi!  
This sign becomes more joyous to me with each trip!
 A rural part of I-20 in Mississippi.  So different from 20 in Atlanta, right??  Hilariously so!
 Flowers in bloom in my grandma's backyard. Love it!
 My grandma with the statue of Medgar Evers in front of the Medgar Evers library.
 Me and my new BFF. My cousin's 2 yo ADORABLE son LOOOOOVES ME! So cute!  He loved me just as much when we met a year and a half ago.  Just as cute then!
 Me and some of my cousins
 Me and my cousins in the interview set-up
 4 generations of women + D who REFUSED to let us take a picture without him! LOL
 Me and my uncle David on our family land.  With the wild boars and deer and bears! Oh my!  Snakes and wolves, too.  You see how uncle dave is running?  This dude was like that all day!  It was awesome!  I loved it!
This picture right HERE?? I was MESMERIZED down there!  This is where my Grandma who called herself "The Pink" and "The prettiest woman in J.asperCounty."  Hilarity.  I could've kept walking down that road forever.  First time I ever felt like I could live part-time in Mississippi.  This is where I'll have my winter home. 
 Me and Uncle Dave at the former site of my great-great grandma's home, Grandma Duck!  This is where my grandfather grew up.  My mom and her brothers used to play in the yard here.
 It was sooo pretty!  And this pic doesn't do it justice.  There were tons of flowers in bloom.
 A lake near my family's land.  Loved this, too.

Oh! And I also hung w/Pserendipity, Aidan, Love Girl & Nerd Girl and we had a blast!  This was a really, really good trip!


Monday Mindspacing Vol. 91

I just made it!  Did you miss me!?
1) I can't eat green bananas.  GROSS!  But because bananas taste better when the skin has some brown, they are softer and I can see why people hate bananas.  I can always taste when a banana is too green even in recipes.  Not cool.  Banana-flavored things?  Nasty.  Especially alcohol!
2) My mom really irritates me in the car on long trips.  We can't escape each other and she has to nitpick.  Then we get to Mississippi and she won't let me be without her!  If I leave the house, she wants to come, too.  -_-
3) Was last week really spring break?  Because I got very little break.
4) I need another good sleep like I got Wednesday night.  That sleep was AWESOME!  So marginally uninterrupted.  Even at grandma's.  Le sigh.  Come back to me!  I love you, sleep!
5) Rashan and I want VDay on a weekend and I was on a shoot this past weekend (our originally scheduled time) so we're celebrating Saturday.  He's planning everything!  Wheeee!  I'm so excited!  :)
6) I used to love my middle name.  In middle school (at the start), I decided the name I always hated, Jameil, was OUT.  I asked my mom, fully expecting a denial, but she said yes I could go by my middle name.  Took all the fun out of it.  Know what else did?  The 100 or so people from elementary school who'd known me 2-7 (it was a K-6 school at the time) years who couldn't stop calling me Jameil.  :/
7) My tweeps (TWEEPS!) kept me SANE w/o internet and cable at grandma's in Mississippi!  God bless you all for @ replying to me!
8) Son... if I don't workout at least twice before Wednesday?  Bad for business.  It is a ..S..T..R..U..G..G..L..E.. to get it in before the end of the week, ya dig?  STRUGGLE!
9) I hit the grandfatherlode while researching my granddad at my mom's house. WOW!  I found his birth certificate and at least 9 pictures of him I'd never seen before.  When I first started this, I only remembered 2 pictures of him.  I'm now up to about 15.  Maybe at this rate I'll see 30 pictures of him before I turn 40... LOL.  But seriously, I'm psyched!
10) I'm a room-filler.  Not just with my personality, though that, too.  I spread my stuff out all over wherever I am.  It is seriously a struggle when I travel to wrangle my stuff to keep it from spreading.  NO matter how little stuff I have.  SPREAD!  It's nuts.
11) My Uncle David took me to our family land.  Son.  He says, "We're going down here and I don't have my gun."  SKRRRRRRRR! Nervous laughter. "Why do you need your gun?"  "There's all kinds of animals down here. Bobcats, sometimes snakes-- moccasins, wolves, alligators."  For real?  More warning please!!  LOL  Yes, I went down there anyway.  Partly b/c I've never seen the land and also because I had a camera.  So if anything happened, at least it would be preserved for posterity.  YES I KNOW THAT'S CRAZY!!
12) Rashan and I have given up on a Winston-Salem restaurant with good service and better than good food.  We're headed to Greensboro ASAP.
13) I kind of halfway got sucked into "My Fair Wedding" at my aunt's house.  Sorry, Nai.  BUT my dvr is near 50% and that will never do.  You know I like mine to stay below 10.  Yeah.  I can't.  Sorry another wedding show Rashan is delighted to not be consigned into watching or being in the same room with.  A week away is a killer.  Plus I don't like how uninvolved the groom is.  Tasting w/o Rashan?  Do you know how important food is to our relationship???  Shooooo.


Monday Mindspacing Vol. 90

1) My appetite for royal lineage and information is MADDENING!!  Mostly because if this was some regular American celeb I would not be able to express my disdain quickly enough!  I console myself by saying, "It's largely about history!" (true-- I started at King George VI and clicked on links and links and links backwards and forwards in his lineage and FORCED myself to stop... after about an hour... SHAMEFUL!)  "I don't care about their exploits," (extra true) and "I don't care about their love lives" (half true-- I like to see where the stories intertwine).  I really can't explain it.
2) Did I tell you I used to love me some PrinceWilliam?  His attractiveness has waned in recent years? months?  I feel like the day he announced his engagement was the day he became the most unattractive man in the world to me.  LOL.  MatthewMcConaughey did a similar thing the day I found out he got his gf pregnant (and by googling how to spell his name I see still hasn't married her... did you see how GORGEOUS she looked at the Oscars??? Idiot. Him primarily...).  But he's still pretty pretty.
3) These Monday Mindspacing things are becoming long enough to almost warrant a blog post sometimes!
4) Tomorrow I head to Mississippi for the 3rd time in 4 months.  This is the most I have been in a short period in my entire life BY FAR.  Previously I think my closest trips were 9 months apart.  It's also the shortest three intervals for my mother who has a notoriously shall we say strained relationship with her mother.  I think we'll both be ready for a break after this one.
5) Rashan hates it when I say tweeps.  Tweeps.  For you twilliterates (that one's free... thought I made it up but it's on the preeminate authority, Urban Dictionary), that's short for twitter people.
6) My tweeps know this but my blog la familia should also know.  I, Jameil Il Fabulosa, flipped a tire!  A 250 lb. tractor tire at that!  I also whacked it with a sledgehammer.  WHAT???  WHO ARE YOU???  My trainer had me going full farmer last week and I felt like I could birth cattle after that!  Okay maybe not PHYSICALLY birth cattle but if I was around a crowning heiffer, I'm pretty sure I could reach in there and yank out a calf w/o blinking!
7) I love that the days of the month are the same in February and March.  I have no idea why.
8) I'm gonna start sayin, "Ya dig" all the time.  I just like how it sounds.  Like I'm a cool cat, ya dig?  Already #winning.
9) Speaking of winning, y'all know I can't watch that foolishness but the twitter commentary?  The MOST. And the best!
10) Can we PLEEEEEEEEASE have a Cosby Show reunion where Buuuuuud Kenny & Rudy are now married???
11) Worst trait of fashion bloggers?  This "cool" distortion of the pictures to the point where I can't see the clothes.  Now I know you like your photoshop tools and that's all well and good but if I can't see colors or patterns anymore...
12) I went to CIAA this weekend and pretty much enjoyed myself.  It'd be better if I could get my friends to be slightly less stuck-up.  LOL
13) I take it back.  Let's all complain about gas prices!  This rise is just ridiculous!  Hate it!  Let's all get crazy!  Take back the night!  And the day!  And the everything! SC is 7 mins max from my mom's church.  I sure did go down there to save 12 cents/gal on gas!  Hmph.


March Goals

Let's go ahead and call my lack of achievements a complete and total failure for February.  Except working out!  I also read one book, struggled through three more simultaneously (which may be part of the problem).  I did some transcription but not nearly enough.  I joined mint.com and like it so far but it's a very involved process but I'll keep me up to date on my spending this month. We'll just repeat my goals, WRITE THEM IN A VISIBLE PLACE and #win!

1) Finish transcription (typing out what everyone said on camera) for both Mississippi trips, complete first rough draft of script, begin editing.
2) Send out at least 10 applications.
3) Apply to at least 5 more film festivals with my last film.
4) Read at least 45 chapters in the bible.  That will bring me to 730 total chapters read out of 1189!
5) Continue to work out AT LEAST three times a week.  I feel myself getting into the mode of exercise becoming second nature and something I want to do more than 3xs a week.  FABULOUS!
6) Plan more meals.  I still have horrible eating habits right that make my body feel less attractive than it could with the amount of work I'm putting in.
7) Make AND KEEP a budget.  I have never been good at budgeting.  If I manage to come in under a budget one week, I use the excess the next week.  This will never do.  This month I want to get this under control.  If any of you have any tips, please leave them in the comments!
8) Read at least two books.
9) Complete at least one 30 Before 30 goal.  I have my eye on the bull ride!  LOLOL  Or a dance class!  Something!