Fourth of July Edition

bearI don’t know what I did incorrectly in my adult life. Okay, I have several clues, but I spent the Fourth of July not eating barbeque. In fact, it was a rather ho hum four-day weekend with minimal plans. Something weird has happened. I get bored. This isn’t me. I blame this on several factors. I am an introvert. An extreme introvert. Actually, I am downright shy, which in women mostly reads as cold and aloof. Being alone doesn’t usually bother me. However, here’s the problem. For two years, I had a long-term house guest that drove me batty. All I wanted was to moments of solitude. So living alone again was good. This was buffered by the fact that I worked with a bunch of chatty extroverts who satisfied my spurts of chattiness that occurred throughout the day. However, in my new office I am surrounded by IT folks who talk about IT stuff. Yea, no. I have no conversations about fun things like Mad Men, wine, Groupon or other randomness that pops into my head on a regular basis and now I get bored.

Television shows us that single people aren’t really single. You have your cadre of friends who regularly hang out in your apartment (Living Single or Friends), constantly schedule outings and events (Sex and the City or Martin), or see frequently at your local spot (Cheers). This is not in fact real life. Of course, we introverts don’t realize this due to an over reliance on television. We are a weird lot. We actually like going out, just not meeting new people or whatnot. We just like to have our sitcom troop of compatriots who are a steady and reliable presence in our lives. In hindsight, I never saw these characters at random cookouts, parties or other such events. It’s those darn extroverts that get these invitations.

So Fourth of July, I watched television. I had this wonderful idea to catch up on home projects and did none of them. I refrained from my favorite solitary pastime of shopping, which was a miraculous feat. Friday, I saw Despicable Me 2. It was cute but I wanted to see more of the girls. I really like the girls and it was too focused on Gru.

Saturday, I went to Baltimore to see The Wretched for big fun. Okay, I went to the African American Heritage Festival. The thing that amazes me about this event is how much it changes every year. I still remember the first time I went to see Erykah Badu, when I was stuck at the train station. The few constants I experience every year are somehow ending up on the freeway when attempting to park and people still wear inappropriate clothing for their body types. The changes:

  • This year it was free. For a couple years, they attempted to charge for entry, which didn’t go well.
  • No outside food allowed. This meant that I waited in line for 20 minutes for food that turned out to be sold out.
  • There was only one stage and one real headliner. Of course, there was some teen stage that I chose to ignore. Previously, there were several themed stages include national artists and underground R&B. This is how I discovered my hair role model, Deborah Bond, and others such as Ledisi, Conya Doss and Sy Smith.

This year I discovered that reality television really serves as an amazing platform. The crowd was pumped to see K Michelle, whose fame comes from being on the just awful in my opinion, Love and Hip Hop Atlanta. Even though, I don’t think many were familiar with her songs. People jumped up and were truly excited to hear songs from her latest EP. Granted the song content wasn’t my cup of tea, mostly about beef, strippers and hood rich activities. However, people loved her. The headliner was Fantasia. I really liked her on American Idol. I acknowledge that Fantasia, the singer, was overshadowed by Fantasia, the person. She was brave to admit she couldn’t read but that didn’t win her any favors with the public. She over the years became a punchline instead of a focus on her overall talent. Despite, her personal struggles, she puts on a great show. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I will admit I would never plan to see her through any other opportunity.

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One thought on “Fourth of July Edition

  1. “We just like to have our sitcom troop of compatriots who are a steady and reliable presence in our lives.”

    Yes, I think that is so true, as well as how it reflects in TV and the examples you used. It’s been occurring to me a little while watching BTVS. Buffy always has Willow and Xander to talk with, and Cordelia to feud with, at the Bronze. (Somehow, despite suffering a multitude of supernatural threats, the Bronze continues to have live music regularly, remain open to all ages and stay in business. How!? But I want one in my town.) I suppose even if not slaying vampires, introverts feel they are weird in their own way and it’s just more comforting to stay with your crew (who accepts you for who you are unconditionally) rather than open up with new people (who are strangers).

    But shifts are interesting…I guess even the most dedicated ‘crew’ changes over time along with how one figures out how they best like to break their solitude from time to time. I’m sure this quiet moment will pass, maybe it’s just like a transition.

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