Academia, Love Me Back

TIFFANY MARTÍNEZ

My name is Tiffany Martínez. As a McNair Fellow and student scholar, I’ve presented at national conferences in San Francisco, San Diego, and Miami. I have crafted a critical reflection piece that was published in a peer-reviewed journal managed by the Pell Institute for the Study of Higher Education and Council for Opportunity in Education. I have consistently juggled at least two jobs and maintained the status of a full-time student and Dean’s list recipient since my first year at Suffolk University. I have used this past summer to supervise a teen girls empower program and craft a thirty page intensive research project funded by the federal government. As a first generation college student, first generation U.S. citizen, and aspiring professor I have confronted a number of obstacles in order to earn every accomplishment and award I have accumulated. In the face of struggle, I have persevered and continuously produced…

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The art of Savagery

*Cue Rihanna’s Needed Me*

DIDN’T THEY TELL YOU THAT I WAS A SAVAGE?????

The scene is set in a group chat titled ‘bad bitches’. Miss X, who will later be known as said savage referenced above, hits up the group chat to give them the latest update on her relations with bae a.k.a poor unsuspecting guy who is trying his best to not only impress but also express his feelings towards Miss X (see what I did there? 🙃). So Miss X goes on to tell the group chat about how ‘moist’, ‘soft’ and how much of a ‘pushover’ bae is and how after 5 months of him putting in his best efforts, wine’ing and dining, showing care & love etc. the whole shebang, at their just concluded date, he asked her to be his girlfriend and she said and I quote “ You’re nice and all but honestly not the…

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First Things First

Laughs & Lamentations

Got so much I have wanted to blog about this summer but time and other stuff have got in the way. I promise those will come later.I write this blog lying down on my bed, eating plantain chips and drinking OJ, I’m currently thinking about how overwhelming work has been these last two weeks  so I’ve given myself 20 minutes to finish this post. This is a long overdue blog about me finally achieving the thing I came to uni in this country to do, get a first.

“Are they out yet?”, my Polish room mate and friend, Szymon asked. “Nah”, I said, “I just checked it like 3 minutes ago”. “Oh shit, they’re out. I got a first. I actually did really well. Go on Bob-Soile (got to hear him pronounce this haha) check your. This is your year, man”.  My heart was pounding, I finally opened the page and…

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It doesn’t make sense. (Testimony time)

Ms Alheri

It doesn’t make sense that I’m sitting here, in front of a beautiful lake, admiring the creation of the Lord. No, not the admiration part, the sitting in front of a lake part.

It doesn’t make all my expenses are paid, and all I have to do is read my bible and books, write and just be.

Neither does it makes sense that I have an internship this summer where I’m earning in one month, what I earned in thirteen weeks last year.

I thought I had seen it all.

I have shared a few testimonies on this blog before. I have written the good things that the Lord has done for me, I have told you all how it doesn’t make sense that I’m where I am today.

I don’t get it, I just do not.

I rarely talk about the things that I do to keep my relationship with…

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What Lagos Does To You

VIVIDMETAPHORS

The conductor’s tribal marks – three long horizontal lines across each cheek – along with his wild eyes and scraggly beard, make him look like a tiger. The bus is full, so he supports himself against the door frame while collecting money from passengers. He does this as the bus speeds down the expressway, all the while calling out as we near every stop.

When I came to Lagos, I was always amazed – and worried – at how fast danfos go along this road, especially when there are bus stops every few hundred meters. Everyone else ever seemed to be used to it. The possibility of accidents definitely didn’t frighten them as much as it did me. The fear of labelling myself an outsider is the only thing that kept me from screaming every time a bus I was on shook or lurched, or almost crashed into another vehicle…

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Concert Dreams, Cheddar Bay Budget

R. Eric Thomas

Dear Beyonce,

Ma’am. Ma’am! I did not realize the registration fee for the revolution was going to be so high.

cryingwhiletyping Me logged on to Ticketmaster

First of all, thank you. You are a phenomenal performer, businessperson, icon and GIF-factory. We are lucky to share the Earth with you.

Second of all, what the fuck are you doing charging me all this money for your concert? Where am I supposed to get the scratch to pay for your Givenchy-brand event? Can I pay in Frank’s Red Hot? Do you take Red Lobster gift cards? Do you?

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No. You do not.

Ma’am!

I, like many of my compatriots, am woke af. Now. This morning I greeted my fiance with a hearty “Black Power!” (He is white. This was awkward. Yes we can, amiright?) But, ma’am, I got to pay for cable. And a wedding. And, Bey, your husband told me I had…

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Dear Chioma, how the hell has it been 10 years??

I woke up this morning and I forgot it was December 10th. And when I came on Facebook and I realized, I kept pushing the thought away unconsciously because I didn’t want to face my guilt… But you can only push so much. Chioma, I miss you. And I’m sorry I forget to miss you everyday. I’m so mad at myself for my limited memory that gets fuzzier and fuzzier by the year. At first, when I didn’t cry this morning, I hated myself momentarily because I thought I had “healed”. And when my eyes finally unleashed the imminent floods tonight, I felt guilty that in some messed up way, I was happy I was crying because crying proved I hadn’t healed. But still, the thing is I don’t want to ever heal. I don’t want my eyes to ever not be wet. I don’t want to ever reach the point where I’m okay and you’re just a fond fuzzy memory. 

I’d never actually read the details of the crash itself before tonight, and reading them in the WSJ article from 2007 that everyone shared today just completely broke me down. I am so sorry you felt so much pain. I am so so sorry. My heart is breaking because I can’t even fathom how scared you were and how much pain – I can’t, I cannot. I’m so sorry, Chioma. I feel stupid for the irrelevant problems that get me worked up everyday, or the useless things that make me sad. I wish I could travel to every home and hug every family member that lost their kid, their wife, their husband, their niece, their nephew. I feel so useless that my tears can’t heal their wounds or numb their pain.

As I cried tonight, I could just imagine you laughing at me and making jokes about how ugly my face was haha. Do you remember the day I was crying because I was homesick and you scolded me? You deadass shouted at me “So why are you crying? What’s wrong with you!? Oya after crying, then what???” And I was so mad at the moment and we probably beefed after that, but thinking back now, thanks for keeping it real sis lmao. I think we finally made up when you fell sick and I felt so bad and I wanted to tell you sorry so bad but my head was too strong. Someway somehow, we sha ended up apologizing and I got my best friend back. Idk why I have this one still-frame memory of you during this period. You were wearing a cardigan sitting next to Obioma during Interscience. 

I remember the night of socials when we came back to gist and count all the boys we had danced with. I remember counting a number between 24 and 27 haha, and I remember we discussed you dancing with Chizy or Damilola – I don’t remember which one but my bet is on Chizy? I think you guys had some subtle thing beginning to manifest- I don’t remember and I hate myself for my fuzzy memory.

I remember the morning of the crash when we hustled and strrrrruggled to drag Teju’s heavy ass box (that only Yoruba people carry) in the airport, so that she didn’t miss her flight. And I remember later that day when my mom told me there was a crash. She said the flight was from Abuja to PH but I wasn’t even worried because I just KNEW it couldn’t be yours. I didn’t blink an eye because I was SO positive. To me, it was an “oh no, so sad” situation. I never thought for a microminimillisecond that that was your flight. And when my mom confirmed the fears I didn’t even have, I remember how I felt like my chest was tearing into two. I remember not being able to make a sound as my chest kept tearing and tearing and the two parts kept pulling farther and farther apart. I remember calling the number you’d given me over and over again and finally speaking to your mom. I remember her crying as my mom cried with her on the phone. I remember later calling her on Christmas & New Year’s, and her telling me she and my mom were sharing me now haha.

Chioma, idk if we would ever have drifted apart with time. But I don’t think so. I like to believe that we would have come as a unit to terrorize New York together. You were my best friend, and I know it’s not just by chance that we had the same name, we were put in the same hostel, and we could talk about nonsense for hours and make each other laugh till we were out of breath. I’m sorry again for forgetting to miss you everyday but you know it will always be me & you. “Chibabes” for LIFE. And with Obioma, “Omababes” forever 😂. Rest in peace, nwannem, and rest in peace, all our angels. May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen. 💜