[2017 Goals] Part Two: Health

Get a physical
Let’s jump right in: get a physical. If you’re lucky enough to have health insurance you are entitled to year physical free of charge. No co-pay, no deductible. If you haven’t had a physical in years (or ever), get one. Although you may feel healthy, you may have questions or concerns about your general health and seeing your practitioner that knows you and your family history, is the best place to go for answers. If you’re using WebMD, just go get a physical. Hopefully it’ll help ease your mind and provide extra assurance. Plus, a focus on preventative care and interventions is the direction our health care system is headed in. Be trendy.

Now, on to taking care of your body…

Getting back on track after the holidays can be challenging. You’ve been eating warm, comfort food for two months and it’s only getting colder. All your social gatherings have increased your alcohol and sugar intake and decreased the amount of time spent at the gym and eating healthy. (Don’t worry so much about the gym. It’s really about your diet, the exercise is supposed to be fun.)

Join a Diet Bet 
If you’re looking for a way to get back on track or begin your weight loss journey, joining a diet bet is a great way to maintain motivation. The average diet bet is between $25 and $35 and those that meet their goal get a cut of the final pot. I’m currently involved in my first one and so far it’s helping me get back in to my old gym routine and eat healthier.

Take a class – don’t join a gym (yet!)
Sure, gyms and fitness centers have fantastic deals every new year, but they’re so crowded with new members that it’s difficult to navigate and keep up a routine. Plus, if working out is new to you, it may take a little while for you to figure out what gym will best meet your needs.

Taking a class is helpful in determining just that. If you love spinning, look for a gym or spin studio that offers classes that meet your schedule. If you enjoy it and it’s convenient you’re far more likely to stick with it. If you take a spin class and hate it, try something else. Maybe power lifting is your jam or swimming or both!

If you hate working out, don’t quit – you’re bound to find something you enjoy.

Don’t restrict yourself too much
At every Weight Watchers meeting before Thanksgiving the leader asks you to design your dinner plate. How much of your plate is dedicated to turkey? Stuffing? Green beans? While some are conservative, I always filled my plate (and sometimes asked for an extra sheet). Thanksgiving is the best meal I eat all year and what’s more important than what I eat that day is what I eat every day after that.

Same goes for vacations, birthdays, other holidays. If you want a piece of cake, eat it, because chances are you’re going to eat everything else to satiate that need and end up eating the piece of cake anyway. I speak from experience here, you guys.

Cook More
If there was one thing I never had to do again for the rest of my life I would choose cooking. Thanks to companies like Blue Apron and Purple Carrot, you can have fresh ingredients with creative, healthy recipes delivered weekly to your home. Graze will deliver a weekly box of healthy snacks to your home (Use codeDANAB842P for a free box). It’s worth the extra cost and takes away the need to navigate a super market.

Since I still struggle with following recipe directions and identifying a cucumber from a zucchini, I’m prone to make bowls of stuff. Just use brown rice, couscous or quinoa as a base, add some chia seeds, throw in some veggies and a protein. It’s easy, quick and helps you use up all that extra produce.

The greatest discovery of last year came when I realized going to bed at 9:30/10pm is the best thing I can do for myself. A restful night sleep gives me the focus and energy I need for the day ahead without needing a 5pm power nap.

Last night I had to force myself to stay away past 8pm so I could do all my meal prep. I forced myself to stay awake to be a better adult. What a world.

Need to get organized for 2017? I’m giving away a free, fancy planner. To enter, comment below with either your favorite work out song or a link to a favorite healthy recipe. Share! 



(Opinions are my own. No monetary compensation received for writing about the above companies. I endorse the above products because I have used them.) 


[2017 Goals] Part One: Money

(Disclaimer: Below are some tips and tricks that I have used to create a budget, control spending and plan for the future. I’m not a financial advisor. (This should be obvious.))

Dave Ramsey is bae
All of this dude’s financial advice makes perfect sense to me. If you are someone with credit card debt (and who doesn’t have even a small amount after the holidays?), Ramsey has an excellent plan for paying it off while saving to prevent a future credit usage.

First, put $1000 in savings for an emergency fund. This may take some time so do not become discouraged if this takes months or longer to do. By having these funds in savings, you’re prepared in the event of an emergent home or car repair or purchasing a big ticket item for a bridal or baby shower. If you want to save a little more to create a better cushion, do so, but it’s better to put your energy into the next step.

If you have more than one credit card, pay the minimum on your card(s) with the higher balance and contribute the most to the card with the lowest balance. This helps to build momentum which Ramsey states is key in making progress in paying down your debt.

The Envelope System
One of the reasons why I love this system is that I hate spending cash. I feel an immense sense of pride by just having cash on me. This helps control spending by allotting a specific amount of cash to different necessary (and unnecessary!) categories.

Every two weeks I put $60 in Grocery, Dining Out, Incidentals (cat food/liter, gas, toiletries) and Fun (movies, records, shows) for a total of $240. $60 goes a long way during those two weeks and helps me to become more creative when I am choosing how to spend my time socially.

Smarty Pig
I’ve been using Smarty Pig for a few years to meet my savings goals. Not only does it have one of the highest interest rates available, but it’s easy to use and let’s you create and contribute to multiple goals. If you’re saving for something big like a vacation or smaller like a special set of knives, you can create separate goals and add as little or as much as you’d like whenever you would like.

Much like Ramsey’s idea behind saving $1000 prior to paying down your credit card debt, you don’t notice the smaller deductions to your savings account and you’re also not spending money you don’t have when the time comes for that vacation or set of knives.

Honey Extension for Google Chrome
If you’re a user of Google Chrome, you need to add the Honey extension to your web browser. The extension automatically runs through every discount available while you’re checking out of whatever website you’re shopping on. This is especially useful for smaller companies and I have saved upwards of 25% from multiple websites.

This one is great if you have a lot of time on your hands. Earn Swagbucks by watching videos, taking surveys and shopping on eligible websites. Your earned Swagbucks can be redeemed for gift cards  or turned in to charitable donations.

Need to get organized for 2017? I’m giving away a free, fancy planner. To enter, comment below with your favorite money management website or tips for financial success. Share! 

2016 Concert Recap

This year has proved that I am a creature of habit. There are a few repeats on this list, but they’re well worth it. Boston Calling graced us with their Greatest Line-Up Ever. And I saw Beyonce (again)!

Curmudgeon Note: I feel like more and more people go to shows these days just to see if they’re able to talk over the music. My favorite venue, The Sinclair, has a separate bar area/lobby where you’re still able to hear the music and see the show while not ruining anyone’s experience. Literally no one does this. Just go home, turn the album up real loud and then yell at your friend about your upcoming business meeting or your wild card friend that hasn’t shown up yet. Spare me, please.

January 23rd, Torres (w/Palehound) at Great Scott, Allston, MA
Torres is not an easy sell to your average music fan. Her performance was just as raw as the tracks on her album and everyone stood in awe of emotion she put behind it.

February 22nd, Lee Fields and The Expressions at The Sinclair, Cambridge, MA
One of my favorite shows from this past year. Lee Fields can get it. The connection between him and the audience is palpable and he thrives off of that energy. This was a truly romantic evening.

March 31st, Yacht Rock Review at The Sinclair, Cambridge, MA
YBR is best enjoyed wearing aviators and a captain’s hat. The baby boomer woman inside of me freaked out over “Arthur’s Theme” and “My Old School” (or any Steely Dan song for that matter.) They put on a hell of a show, but I unfortunately left at intermission. They’re coming back this March, so check them out.

April 14th, San Fermin at Paradise Rock Club, Allston, MA
Prior to the show I ran into a friend of mine outside the venue who was also there for the show. She told me she bought a ticket because I had raved about them. Another strong performance. These are like the most talented musicians in the world, guys.

May 5th, Lapsley at The Sinclair, Cambridge, MA
First of all, I want her chambray duster. Scratch that, I want to be cool enough to pull off a chambray duster. Lapsley was still a teen at this performance, but, much like Adele, her songs make you think that she has lived a lifetime of heartbreak and relationship strife.

May 12th, Mirah at Club 939, Boston, MA
Confession: I bought tickets to this show and was really looking forward to it, but the Spurs were facing elimination in the NBA playoffs and I didn’t want to miss what would end up being Tim Duncan’s last game ever. From what I heard – It was wonderful.

May 27th-29th, Boston Calling Music Festival at City Hall Plaza, Boston, MA
To write about every act here would be just too much, but my favorite performances were Courtney Barnett, Charles Bradley, and Lizzo with top honor going to Janelle Monae. Least favorite performance was Robyn, but I know that her club remix tour was not intended for me. We cool, Robyn.

May 29th, Charles Bradley and His Extraordinaires at The Sinclair, Cambridge, MA
Okay, so I love Charles Bradley. Even though I saw him earlier that day at Boston Calling, I needed to go see him at The Sinclair. He is ROMANCE personified. He’s also the first man to ever give me a rose and only one of like two dudes that ever gave me flowers. Step it up, Future Boyfriends. You need to be on par with Charles Bradley. (Side note: Charles was diagnosed with stomach cancer this past fall and has been undergoing treatment. Reports have stated that he is doing really well. Get well soon, Charles xoxoxo).

(I want this to be my wedding song.)

June 3rd, Beyonce at Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, MA
QUEEN! I’d seen Beyonce on her last solo tour at the Garden, but she is meant to be EXPERIENCED outside. Fireworks! Pools filled with water being splashed around in and kicked into the audience! Songs about people getting the f*ck outta your face! Seeing this show with some of best girlfriends (who are also some of the strongest people I know) made this night spectacular.

June 19th, Wye Oak at The Sinclair, Cambridge, MA
I’ll admit that I’m not a huge Wye Oak fan or regularly listen to their music, but they put on a wonderful performance that was much more upbeat and engaging than their music would let on.

July 15th, Rebirth Brass Band at The Sinclair, Cambridge, MA
They’re just so great.

July 23rd, Flight of the Conchords at Blue Hill Bank Pavilion, Boston, MA
Sad to say this show was disappointing. They were hard to hear and understand outside at the pavilion. They played only a few songs, one of which clocked in around 17 minutes and was about Bret being Jemaine’s son or something.

July 28th, Garbage at House of Blues, Boston, MA
Holy cats does Garbage still kick ass. I’ve been holding out hope for a reunion tour that I could attend. Like I’ve said in the past I have to really, REALLY like the performer to step foot in the House of Blues (which was hot as hell this night, of course). I was having one of those moments where I didn’t realize how many of their songs I knew or were popular. It’s like P!nk. I like every song of hers, but I’m not aware of how many there are. I still want to be Shirley Manson when I grow up.

September 13th, Jenny Lewis at the Wang Center, Boston, MA
This was such a special performance as she played all of Rabbit Fur Coat in order alongside the Watson Twins. After a brief intermission she played songs from her other two albums and Rilo Kiley’s “I Never.” I hadn’t payed that much attention to RFC, I think I am the only one who prefers Acid Tongue, but it was such an emotionally charged performance (especially the title track) and I gained a new appreciation of the album.
Also, an oil painting opened for her.

November 19th, Letters to Cleo at the Paradise, Boston, MA
omg omg omg omg omg
FINALLY! I ended up with an extra ticket to this show and was shocked that I couldn’t find someone that wanted it, but it doesn’t matter because I got to see Letters to Cleo how I was supposed to: at the dank Paradise.

November 20th, Letters to Cleo at The Sinclair, Boston, MA
While it was great to see them tear it up at the ‘dise, I met Kay Hanley and was leaning on the stage for the entirety of this show. I could barely see at the Paradise (a normal occurence) so to see every expression and gesture shared between them was terrific. It’s obvious that they still love performing with each other. Plus, had a wonderful girl squad for this one too.

December 4th, Lizzo at Brighton Music Hall, Boston, MA
Lizzo deserves the world. I had been feeling down on myself for a number of reasons that weekend so to spend the night with a body-positive feminist who can rap as well as she can sing was pretty great. I’m so happy for her success and hope that she is showered with love for years to come.

Dating Bingo!

One of my goals for this year was to entirely avoid online dating. I managed to stay away from it for almost 11 months, but now I’m back. And it’s just as terrible as ever!

Below is a BINGO card created for you to use while you peruse Okcupid, Match, Our Time or Farmers Only. Once you yell BINGO your prize is drinking so much that you forget your password and can never log in to the site again. Go out and do stuff instead like swap war stories with others in the same position as you or take up a new hobby or float away in the ocean. Literally anything else.

This one is for the ladies seeking gentlemen. Guys, you can try to use it, but I imagine your experiences are different. Since I’m not a dude, I don’t feel comfortable creating one for you, but feel free to comment with your own examples. I’m equal opportunity and would love to create one for you as well.

Thanks to my friend Janine for sharing her experiences and creating this baller BINGO card. unnamed

Starting Over

Yesterday I volunteered at a half marathon in an attempt to meet new people. Aside from realizing that I actually have no interest in meeting new people, I became nostalgic for when I was at my fittest and happiest. I was running, I was hiking, I was zumba..ing?

It’s been about a year since I stopped monitoring my weight and I’ve gained back almost everything I lost. I use “almost” because I have not stepped on the scale lately. It could be more than my original starting weight, I don’t know. I’m terrified to look. The one thing I took away from Weight Watchers (other than those egg cups that you add water to are disgusting) is that I didn’t gain this weight overnight, so I won’t be losing it overnight either.

The weight came back while I was ignoring the gym in favor of my biostatistics class, falling in love, undergoing treatment for my back. My gym routine became boring because everything I had to do was low impact. My pants got tighter in the thighs. My boyfriend and I would crush a Bota Box over the course of a weekend. My shirts became too short and tight. I went on wonderful vacations and told myself I would pay better attention when I returned home, but I didn’t.  I stopped preparing my meals. Pumpkin Muffins came back at Dunkin Donuts. I ordered new winter jackets a size up and expected them to fit, but they barely zipped and buttoned. The entire time I knew that I needed to be paying better attention to my caloric intake and physical activity, but I had excuses.

And here we are. Again.

I made good on two of the promises I had for myself this year. I promised myself I would travel more and I put a lot of my focus into work and school which has been rewarding so it’s not all bad. My health isn’t the only thing that fell by the wayside this last year and I’m looking forward to getting back into doing the things I love that make me the happiest #shaqbrunch.

Right now there’s a lot of hate, anger and sadness going on in our country. In these situations it’s so easy to become fixated on the negative and wrapped up in proposed changes that affect our friends and loved ones. More than ever it’s important to take care of ourselves so we can be our best for other people. But don’t let your need to help others affect your own self-care. You are important.

[Review] Gwynnie Bee

Disclaimer: This post is in no way sponsored by Gwynnie Bee. I took advantage of their 1 free month promotion for new members. The opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own. The link to Gwynnie Bee posted is my personal referral link. 

Tim Gunn’s op-ed regarding the state of fashion choices available for plus size women is spot on. So much of what is currently on the market is unappealing to a national audience. There was a demand for more trendy and designer stores which has led to over saturation. It’s not that I don’t want to wear spaghetti strap dresses (even though I don’t) because of the way I look, it’s that they’re not work appropriate and I have yet to reconcile my relationship with cardigans. I struggled this summer trying to find appropriate wear to work dresses. It was frustrating AF.

Enter Gwynnie Bee a subscription based clothing rental website for sizes 10-30 . I’ll admit that I put all my biz cash eggs in this basket. If you’ve ever tried Le Tote (sizes 0-16), Gwynnie Bee  operates the same way. You create an account, browse their offerings, add pieces you’d like to receive to your wardrobe and once you have save 25 items, they’ll start shipping them out to you.

GB costs $90/mo for their three at a time option which I feel is far too much for what little options they have. I prioritized 10 of my items out of the 25 in my wardrobe, but none of the items I received were my priorities. The two sweater dresses currently headed my way are unwearable in this unseasonably warm fall. I sweat enough already.

A far as options are concerned they offer a wide variety of designers including Jessica Howard, IGIGI, Seven by Melissa McCarthy, Poppy and Bloom and Eloquii. This summer showcased a specially designed for Gwynnie Bee line from Rachel Antonoff featuring cute animal and fruit patterns. These brands can be challenging to find in stores and having the option to have them sent to you is a game changer.


A peek inside my Gwynnie Bee wardrobe. That dress on the left tho.

There are a few issues though. Many of the items they offer are rated low by members due to fit cutting down on the number of options available. The things you really want to receive are often unavailable when you want them. This has made finding 25 items that I would actually want to wear a daunting task. I was really hoping they would offer some basic outfit staples, but it’s mostly prints, dresses and awkwardly cut tops.

Returning items is a cinch. Once you’ve decided that you’re done wearing something (which you can return dirty, by the way), you notify GB through their website and they’ll begin prepping your next item. You mail back the dirty dress in one of the prepaid envelopes they’ve sent you and wait for the next package.

Overall, I really like the concept. I fluctuate between sizes and it’s nice to have temporary options available. However, I don’t think spending $90/mo on clothing is reasonable. Especially when compared to Le Tote’s $60/mo for a greater variety. I much prefer the Stitch Fix model of surprise clothes for $20 and buying what I want.

Right now I am giving GB another shot thanks to their half price WE MISS YOU promotion. I’m hoping to find one or two things to add to my fall wardrobe and try some styles I haven’t before. I’m not expecting to continue my membership when this promotion ends, but I could be pleasantly surprised!

If you’d like to give Gwynnie Bee a try and form your own opinion,  you can test it out free for 30 days here.




Oops! I Gained Some Weight!

Everyone make mistakes. Set backs in life are common. Sometimes they’re out of your control and sometimes they’re within your control. A few years ago I made a shawl that had a repetitive but complicated pattern. I had to rip it out completely and start over three separate times. It’s heartbreaking to unravel your work, but in doing so you dissect it and look for where you made those mistakes that threw off the pattern and pay a little more attention the next time.

We’re conditioned to fear making mistakes. Imagine what would have happened if Eminem took his one shot, his one opportunity to seize everything he ever wanted in one moment and failed? He’d probably learn something from it and try again. Take his battle rap skills beyond 8 Mile and into new territory. Maybe not, but let’s just take a moment to realize how great it is that we’re not Eminem. His life is complicated as hell.

Well, I’ve gained some weight. A severe back injury, budding relationship and my biostatistics class complicated my routine of healthy living. I stopped going to Weight Watchers. My Zumba teacher left my gym. My focus changed from wanting to spend time after work on the elliptical to watching 30 Rock reruns with my boyfriend (and eating pizza, usually. Sometimes Thai). I’ve traveled more in the last eight months than I have in the last five years and I ate well. Really well. My clothes started shrinking and walking up a flight of stairs became a chore again.

FullSizeRender(7)Yesterday at the gym I took a new set of before photos. I refused to look sad and dejected because I’m not. It took gaining a little weight for me to realize that. I made some mistakes that set me back a little bit and I’m okay with it. I don’t like the way I feel. The differentiation is important. I care enough about myself to want to make myself feel good. Wearing my blue dress with the little sailboats, hiking and dancing are things that make me feel wonderful so my goal is to get to a point where those things are enjoyable once again.

Reviewing the last few months has made me realize what it is that I had done wrong and, really, what I had been doing wrong through my five year weight loss journey. I’m a different person now and I am approaching my goals with a fresh set of eyes and a new perspective. Instead of feeling defeated, dejected  or even hating myself, I’m in love with myself. When we feel better about ourselves, whether it’s through our own volition or being lifted up by others, we succeed.

This is really what I have wanted for myself all along.

[WWE Cookbook] Christian’s Eggplant Parmigiana

Eggplant Parm is one of my all time favorite meals. I’ll eat it on anything or in any vessel. I’ve put off making this recipe because I know that it was going to come nowhere close to my step mom’s amazing version. My Death Row meal would be a Qdoba Chicken Queso burrito, three lobsters, a pu pu platter from a Polynesian restaurant and my step mom’s eggplant parm. I’d also have a classic whoopie pie, Cherry Coke and a Dunkin Donuts Pumpkin Iced with skim milk and a Dunkin Donuts glazed donut and a Dunkin Donuts pumpkin muffin. Oh, and potato skins.


Christian as World Heavyweight Champion (Courtesy of The Bleacher Report)

Christian wrestled for WWE for about fifty years. Now, he co-hosts the Edge and Christian Show on the WWE network where I have come to love him even more. I always felt that Christian was a hard worker overshadowed by Edge and buried by the WWE. When he won the World Heavyweight Championship in 2010, I was elated for him and, like everyone else, absolutely furious that he lost it the next night on Smackdown.

However, this facilitated a much needed heel turn where he kept demanding “One more match” and terrorizing Randy Orton (who has the visibility of John Cena without the charisma and ability to draw out sentences and keep talking about whatever it is that’s going on and whoever he is going to face that night and that he earned his right into that match because…zzzzzzzz).

During a house show I went to in Lowell, Massachusetts, Christian referred to the city has “a stinkin’ crap hole” which is now my favorite descriptor for anything (ex. “That Randy Orton promo was a stinkin’ crap hole.”)

IMG_7296This eggplant parm was not a stinkin’ crap hole. While it absolutely pales in comparison to my step mom’s masterpiece, it got the job done. Making this dish always seemed daunting to me, but it’s actually pretty simple.

I coated each piece of eggplant in an egg/flour mixture and let it sizzle in oil. The only issue, and as always, I blame this on user error, was that the eggplant pieces took longer to brown with some not coming close to being even. Some of the coating just crinkled right off.


The amount of cheese I used seemed like a great idea at the time but turned out to be a stinkin’ crap hole  way too much cheese. It was so heavy and nap inducing, but still delicious. Even the worst eggplant parm is still delicious.

This cookbook has a record of 15-5.

[WWE Cookbook] Steve Blackman’s Serious Marinara Sauce

Marinara sauce can be a polarizing topic. Thin or chunky. Meaty or Vegetabley. Everyone seems to have a personal preference. Recipes have been handed down for generations helping formulate a preference.

I didn’t grow up with a family sauce. We usually bought the Prego with mushrooms which was fun and what I continue to buy to this day. The idea of making my own tomato sauce seemed daunting. Grandmothers in movies continually had family members tasting their creations to gauge their known perfection. I didn’t have to have anyone taste Prego with mush
rooms. No secret recipe of ingredients. Just me, Prego and mushrooms…and whatever I was putting it on. (Secret: Usually a pizza or eggplant parm. I don’t like pasta.)

When I read the ingredients for Steve Blackman’s Serious Marinara sauce it seemed easy enough. Three major ingredients (onions, garlic, tomatoes) combined with olive oil, oregano, basil and optional salt and pepper.

The Serious descriptor came from Blackman always playing the straight guy in his tag teams. He was super serious. How serious?



Wrestler/Martial Artists/Bail Bondsman Steve Blackman spent time with WWF from the mid-80’s until about 2002. His Martial Arts expertise became his gimmick and was instrumental in his holding of the WWF Hardcore Title.

The title was to be defended 24 hours a day, seven days a week and was often won through backstage sneak attacks instead of in-ring competition. Blackman was able to defend himself with his MMA prowess and intermittently retained the title for six months before losing it to Raven in December 2000.

You also may have seen this absolutely bananas moment at 1:20:

I said he was super serious, you guys!!



Step One: Make sure when you cut the onions, you get them all over your floor.






Step Two: Cut up all the shit, put it in a pot, snap a picture and then don’t take another picture.





The plan was to use the sauce along with Christian’s Eggplant Parm Recipe, but the sauce came out tasteless, chunky and watery. I planned to grind it up in my food processor, but I was really hungry by the time this sauce was done so I used Prego with Mushrooms instead.


So, meh, even though this one failed, I may be responsible, but it seems unlikely. This cookbook now has a record of 14-5.



Always Read the Comments

As I sit here scrolling through the comment section of a story Fox News posted regarding the auctioning of the gun George Zimmerman used to shoot Trayvon Martin, I am reminded of sagely advice: “Don’t read the comments.”

It’s what we tell each other to protect ourselves. You know that nothing good or positive ever comes from reading the comments, so why do it? Those that spend their time trolling news stories and spewing hate are not worth our time. That line of thinking is a cop out. If you don’t want to get upset, then don’t read what people have to say. Lucky us! We can pick and choose the hate we’re subjected to and when we feel bad, we just close the web browser and put on old episodes of 30 Rock.

We need to be reading the comments.

While utterly tragic, this is not about whether George Zimmerman was justified in shooting Trayvon Martin in self-defense or if Zimmerman was the aggressor. Regardless of the events leading up to it, a black teenager was shot and killed and for whatever reason there are some that are using this as an opportunity to display their outright racism, hail Zimmerman a hero and justify the murders of black teens.

Here is what you need to be reading:

“Black lives splatter.”

This comment made me so sick to my stomach I almost called into work.

“At this point what difference does it make. Maybe it was just some guy looking for some thug that had broken into apartments in the neighborhood. Big deal”

Pretty sure it isn’t a civilians job to go out of his way to police the neighborhood. This is a terrifyingly passive thought. Big deal.

“I don’t know the neighborhood where this incident occurred but if a black male wearing a hoodie was walking through my neighborhood everyone living there would look at him with suspicion.

This comment will upset some people but it is what it is.  White people are not responsible for the image of black people.  All blacks suffer from the actions of the LARGE criminal element within that race of people.  Stereotypes exist for a reason.  If you don’t like it then CHANGE THE IMAGE!!!!”


“At least half of black 17 yr olds are thugs and going nowhere in life. Statistics prove this, so does observation using common sense. Sorry, try again”

There were too many comments about black people being monkeys and eating bananas that I don’t have enough hours in the day to cut and paste them here. One person advocated that Zimmerman’s gun belongs in the Smithsonian. The gun used to murdered a teenager does not belong in the same building as Julia Child’s kitchen. It’s not a tourist attraction and people shouldn’t want to see it. Some commenters actually agree with me about the gun because they think that the actual bullet would draw more people.

It’s also worth noting that these posts were riddled with poor grammar, sentence structure and lots OF CAPS TO MAKE A POINT!!!! Oh, and death threats! Anyone that was like “a person died” was called a liberal and then told to die by drinking a bunch of alcohol and going swimming (yes, really) or getting a back alley abortion (again, yes, really.) Oh! And my *favorite* was saying that liberals slept in bed with their moms until they were 17 and were all transgendered because “they think it’s all the same anyway.” These commenters were closed off to discussion and resorted to immature behavior because What They Know is Right and There are No Other Opinions. Being able to post freely on the internet helps, too.

I’m not a minority. I grew up in a middle class town that was 99.99% white. So I can’t even begin to imagine hearing or reading comments like this and have them actually be directed at me. Having to constantly prove the things that I am not to people who seemingly will never be convinced. Trying to overcome the hurdles of structural violence and watering down my behavior and culture to align with the majority so no one feels threatened. Even having discussions with people that have the best of intentions in advocating because they even don’t truly understand.

I don’t pretend to understand, but I can empathize, speak up and educate. We tend to turn a blind eye to this stuff and think it doesn’t apply to us, but it does. I’m white and my people are saying these horrible things. I need to care because, believe it or not, it can get a lot worse.