Does life imitate art or does art imitate life? To me the truth to this adage is somewhere between the two concepts. We have always been taught that although life contains adversity, eventually we all will obtain our happy ending. Is that really so? Do we all elicit a happy ending?

I can relate to Sex in the City, just like most of the women in the universe. Each of the characters is an archetype of almost every woman I know. Some women are combinations of characters, and some are just carbon copies.

We are all pretty well acquainted with Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda. Their story lines made me laugh, cry, as well as stand up and cheer for what seems like all of my adult life. During my 20's I was so much like Samantha exploring my sexuality with absolutely no apologies. I didn't seek validation from a relationship and gathered some serious skills in the sack during this journey. Now that I am older, I see that I am hands down.. Charlotte York.

Charlotte and I are romantic optimists with traditional values, however just worldly enough to know when to relax our views. Her "rules" of dating are eerily close to my own and our predilection towards preppy chic as well as the color pink make us kindred spirits.

Just like me, Charlotte believed in her "Knight in shining armor". She thought if she worked hard enough, followed the rules, and did all the right things, she would have her happy ending. Well, it didn't quite work out like that. Her first marriage was a disaster. A total and complete catastrophe. Furnished with a shriveled up old harpie Mother in Law from Hell who could suck the life out of a corpse. (boy can I relate). On paper, the man she married was perfect for her. She had the wedding of her dreams, the ring of her dreams, the apartment of her dreams, and the husband of her nightmares. To outsiders they had the most magical life together. Unfortunately, it wasn't so. Charlotte's failed marriage rocked her to the core because it forced her to take off rose colored glasses. Life isn't as intelligible as fairy tales would like for you to conceive it is. Sometimes hard work and sacrifice earns you... MORE hard work and MORE sacrifice. Charlotte didn't let these lessons deter her. She decided to work towards her happy ending. The man she was least attracted to became just the husband she desired and deserved. So in the spirit of Charlotte York, I am going to work towards my happy ending. Hopefully, I won't have to change my religion. I really like bacon.

I have completed my blog entry for the night and it struck me like a bolt of lightening or the drugs Nurse Jackie seems to enjoy taking. Everyone reveals a bit of themselves through the social media sites. But each site reveals only a facet of one's personality. On MySpace I am who people believe me to be through clues or inferences on my page. I think I have visited MySpace oh... about 1 time in the last 7 months. On Facebook I am the person people think they know. My page is littered with people I actually know in real life. Just different snapshots of my life. So the girl people knew in High School is not the same person others knew in college and is not the person people worked with at Duke which is definitely not the person I am now. However, each Facebook friend is rooted in the piece of me they believe they know. Now Twitter.. My beloved twitter. I am the snarkiest bitch on twitter you ever want to see. I shield ALL people I know in real life from the Twitter me. On Twitter I just tweet random silly thoughts into an overly crowded room and wait for replies. I've made connections deeper than some relationships out here in the real world on twitter with people I will never ever see. I like that. Meeting them might ruin the mystique then I would be disappointed. Real life people disappoint you all of the time and there is no "block" button for them. So on twitter I am very candid. My blog. Oh how I love my blog. I neglect it, write when I am moved, and congest it with things I don't tell anyone. My blog is my innermost secret self. The one few people know about. My life is fractured into shards containing different parts of myself. This blog, is the only pure representative of what I am thinking. And nobody on Facebook or MySpace even knows it exists. And that is just how I like it.
It is rare to find a perfectly flawless gem. To the naked eye a jewel could be perfect yet, under scrutiny it may be full of inclusions, cracks, and all types of flaws. Friendship is very much like being a gemology. You see many many many gems in your career, yet only once or twice will you find that extraordinary stone which you have waited all of your life to wittiness. Throughout my life I have encountered more than my fair share of people. Some became friends, some were acquaintances, and yet others were "moving wallpaper" as I like to categorize them. Yet, when I least expect it, I encounter a friend of a lifetime, a friend for my lifetime. My lifetime friend is Anne. Our story begins like most stories do in the most forgettable of places ever. Work. One would think after she decided to quit in a brazen manner, we would go our separate ways. Yet, with each year the story of Anne and Cicely continues to unfold. Every major and minor event which has occurred in my life I could always count on Anne to be there for me no matter what personal or financial cost she incurred. Anne is a true friend. A rare friend. A forever friend. It is on the weekend of her birthday that I reflect on not only all that she is to me, but all that she has taught me. I am so very thankful that she sauntered into my life and wasn't too intimidated by my plot to get her fired before we became friends.

Although I am not a verbal person about my feelings and prefer to give extravagant gifts or grandiose material validations of my affections, I just want to honor Anne K for being the very best friend a person doesn't deserve to have. Nobody else deserves her either so I guess I'll be selfish and keep her. Thank you Anne, for the silly nights of drinking wine and giggling till we passed out, making "nightmare pillows", adopting that crazy dog that peed everywhere, getting rid of the dog that peed everywhere, listening to my impassioned speeches, bringing me cupcakes, holding my hand when I didn't even know I needed comfort, being honest when you knew it would piss me off, making me laugh till I cried, when I was crying you made me laugh, going out for steak when we were broke, shopping when we were broke, just being broke with me in general and all that entails, wiggling your toe, getting the dye job from Shay, taking pictures of ridiculous things, taking Willie to the beach, going with Willie to his final nap, not knowing the lyrics to songs, clowning me about the men I dated, going with me to Vegas, promising we will never ever ever go to Vegas again, keeping me informed concerning #stonewashie, living at Argo court, driving me around in a blue Honda Civic, letting me scare you with homemade ghost stories, going to gay bars, tripping over your own feet and falling into Nate's back, going to the Kanye West concert, being a good sport about the "Geminis suck in bed caucus", covering my shifts at work, and just covering my ass in general. I love you so much. Your friend. Forever. Cicely.

I have been writing some heavy blogs lately. So I decided to lighten up my page with a topic I can talk about for hours and hours without even growing weary of the subject. CUPCAKES. Yes. Oh how I love cupcakes. I compare my cupcake obsession to schizophrenia. The onset of symptoms of schizophrenia begin in adolescence and then grow steadily to full blown mania in adulthood. Same thing with my cupcake preoccupation. I am obsessed with CUPCAKES.. Obsessed. Whenever I go to a city I do not look into the club scene, I look into the cupcake culture! I have no problems paying upwards of $3 to $4 for a cupcake, but I will be damned if I get all gussied up, stand in line, listen to lame music, and pay $5 to $7 for a Jack and Coke when I pour them expertly at home. But I digress. My latest trip to Nashville produced the little cupcake gem called Gigi's Cupcakes. I drove around for damn near an hour lost as hell to find this place but like Odysseus, I finally found my way home. Gigi's Cupcakes is a haven for cupcake lovers in Nashville.
Can you believe how much icing is on these cupcakes? I was licking and licking and licking in pure bliss. I am not afraid of lots of icing. In fact I consider it a bonus. Like a man who is attractive and funny.

Although I have to give it up to the Mount Olympus of cupcake bakeries.. Sprinkles Cupcakes. Anne K introduced me to them years ago and I am a devotee to the death. I have been many places and tasted lots of cake. NOTHING compares to the perfection of a Red Velvet cupcake from Sprinkles. NOTHING. I said.. NOTHING. They are the best things I have ever put in my mouth. THE BEST.

Luckily the closest Sprinkles is in Dallas. Otherwise I would be there every week like people go to church. Actually. Perhaps Sprinkles Cupcakes is my church. Each bite brings me closer to God.

And now I pray to the great Sprinkles Cupcakes of Beverly Hills, please do not stop making your delicious cupcakes otherwise I will have no reason to continue living. (sign of the cross) In nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti. Amen

Dear G. I know you will never read this and believe me this is more for me than it will ever be for you. I was a possession of yours. One of the expensive things you liked to collect just to brag that you owned but never took the time or energy towards its up keep. I refuse to blame you for your neglect. It is completely my fault. I let it be ok. I let your behavior become common place . You teach people how to treat you. The lesson I gave you was one of which I am much stronger than I truly am. I let it be alright that I solved each and every problem, issue, crisis, and obstacle presented us. My job was to be the most perfect I could be. Not to let you see me sweat. I can do anything without help and with ease. I MADE it look effortless. Well it was NOT. I sheltered you from each and every storm our entire relationship. You were given the gift of the absence of misery. I sheltered this burden with a serene smile. That was entirely my fault. Once the cracks started materializing in my demeanor, I let you ignore them as you capriciously enjoyed your life. I let you Joy Luck Club me, let you devalue me. For that I was wrong. Let me regress to the beginning of the end. The end of me started with the origination of us. From the start I allowed you to make me feel I was not good enough, smart enough, thin enough, mannered enough, classy enough for you. This culture of always over achieving to please you was concocted from day one. I always felt I had to prove I was worthy of you. In reality, you were never worthy of me. I was more than you had ever had on so many levels. Your way of controlling me was to make me feel worthless. I was and am better than you will ever be. To make yourself feel BIG you made me feel small. I gave up things important to me to focus on things important to you. When you left the first time, I continued on with my life. Happy. So many wonderful experiences happened while you were gone. Then you returned. I LET you back in. Nobody takes the garbage out, then misses it and decides to return the rotting smelling mess back into the house. I did. I should have let my garbage remain on the curb for collection. You were so broken. It pulled at my heartstrings. I pieced you back together emotionally and financially. This was all done at my expense. I thought if I gave you what you needed, you would give me what I needed. You are selfish. I know this. I KNEW this. I still waited patiently. You showed me who you were the first time and I didn't pay attention. I saw what I WANTED to see. I hoped that out of friendship passion would spontaneously cultivate. There was never passion between us. The soil was not fertile in many ways. Over the years, you became more and more dependent on my competency. Over the years I became more and more drained by your dependence on me. WHY did I do everything? To impress you at first. Then out of necessity. You were more than happy to be the child, and I was a resentful mother. It was my fault for taking on all of the responsibility then being pissed you got to have all of the fun. I handed you pieces of me everyday to be discarded like used wrapping paper. There was nothing left. Not even the lovely bow which attracted you so much in the beginning. It was then that I realized you were killing me and I let you. To save myself, I had to kill us. I'm scared. We have been we for so long. But we killed me. We killed parts of you too. It is better this way G and I hope one day you will understand. For now I will take your hostility and your bitterness as I have learned to shoulder each and every burden you place before me with grace. But one day I hope you understand, I loved you. A warm friendship love which turned into resentment then hate. You hurt me, you destroyed me, but the phoenix is now triumphantly fleeing the ashes of her former life with wisdom way beyond her years.

When I was asked to write this guest blog, I was humbled as well as delighted. Being the Feminist/Womanist that I am, it is always a pleasure to write about stars which shine brightly in my galaxy. I can remember the first time I read a poem by Nikki Giovanni. I was meandering through an old musty bookstore in Georgia uttering the mantra of all morose teenagers, “Moooooom I’m bored”. My Mother is Southern and does NOT play. She told me in that special tone to find a book, sit down, and be quiet. In my haste to stay out of trouble, I grabbed a book of poetry and quickly claimed a musty velvet chair in the dimly lit corner of the store. Uninterested, I thumbed through the seemly ancient pages till a title procured my attention. The title of the poem was “Ego Tripping”. As I read the words, I felt something change inside of me. It felt as if I was being scorched by the sun from the inside out. When the poem concluded, I felt a profound sense of loss, similar to the feeling when your favorite movie concludes. I wanted to reclaim the sense of being consumed by her words. “Ego Tripping” is full of life, emotion, wisdom. I couldn't’t get enough. Lines like “I am so perfect, So divine,So ethereal, So surreal, I cannot be comprehended except by MY permission” or “I’m so hip even my errors are correct” resonated into my soul.
After that experience, I couldn't’t get enough of Nikki Giovanni. I researched her as if I were her biographer. Anything remotely connected to Nikki Giovanni, I consumed voraciously and was still ravenous for more. I spent the majority of the summer trying to convince my family we were related to her, especially since our families are from the same state. Unfortunately, we are of no relation.
Nikki Giovanni has lived an amazing life which is eloquently chronicled through her poetry. She was an activist when activism was dangerous. Nikki was a feminist when feminism was unpopular. A womanist before the term was even conceived. Her poems are full of strength and never vacillating. She wrote about the black experience without watering it down for the masses, yet presented it in a manner in which it could be digested by all eager for enlightenment. Nikki Giovanni is courageous, fierce, bold, and most of all secure in her womanhood. That is why she will always be the fire in my soul.

I am blogging about my trip to Italy little by little. Today as I was looking at the pictures I took in Pompeii and something struck me. It was the feeling of being lost. Let me explain. The ruins of Pomepii are like a giant maze. I am not exactly sure how large the site is but let's just say it is massive. I was slated to take a guided tour of Pompeii with other tourists, but unfortunately only 7 of us wanted to take the guided English tour and we needed 10 people for the tour guide to bother to take us around. Being adventure girl, I decided to take a map, a bottle of water which cost 3 euros (damn near $6 dollars!) and the audio guide thingy and set off by myself. The day was sunny, warm and breezy enough to be comfortable. When I approached the imposing entry to Pompeii I could barely contain my excitement. As a child of the 80's I remember the cheesy movie The Last Days of Pomepii and I damn near skipped up the hill into the ruins. Pomepii is one of Italy's biggest tourist attractions and I was surrounded by people speaking every language under the sun who just like me were enthralled with this ancient city. I spent about an hour strolling the stone streets smiling at Japanese tourists who were trying to take my picture on the slip. All in all I was having an enjoyable time. I felt like I had gotten the gist of Pompeii and was ready to go have some of that lovely Italian wine I have become so fond of. This is when the story takes a DRASTIC turn for the WORST. All the streets look the same. I was wandering and wandering around Pompeii surrounded by people looking for the exit. About 30 minutes of this and the theme of the day morphed into the Busch Gardens ride Escape from Pompeii. I wanted OUT. It was getting hot, I was getting sweaty, my overpriced water had run out, and I was sick of looking at decrepit buildings. For me hot equals cranky. Panic started to set in. First of all, I couldn't ask people how the hell to get out of this place because it seemed everyone around me was speaking another language AND they were just as frustrated as I was. Body language is international and you can tell when someone is hot, pissed off, and tired of the people they are with. So I continued on my quest. Another hour passed and now I am really really really over it. I actually sat on a log and started to cry. What a sad sad sight I must have been. All J Crew clad covered in dust, sitting on a log crying. I know people thought I was crazy but I did not care. I was LOST. I wanted to go home. Life is like Pompeii. You wander around, surrounded by people, but you can be so completely lost. Plus the people around you are not able to help you because they are lost too. I don't want to get all spiritual in this post but I KNOW something very special got me out of Pompeii that day and it was NOT that jankey map they gave me which was impossible to read. I am thankful that no matter how lost or hopeless a situation becomes, all I have to do is let go. Once I do that, the map appears and I always find my way again. I eventually found my way out of Pompeii with some seriously dusty Chucks looking like a sweathog. Being lost is only as temporary as you let it.