The Break Up of My Life

On Saturday, January 11, 2014 – my boyfriend of 3.5 years (my best friend for over 4) told me that he is no longer in love with me thus breaking, shattering, and completely melting my heart. Everything about him was, and is in my opinion, perfect. He made me feel beautiful, loved, amazing, funny, – all of those gentle adjectives that we use to describe someone that you love. I said I love you first, but he was the one who showed it. He called me the love of his life, the woman he wanted to marry, to have his kids – everything – and then he walked away. Just like that. No real explanation. Didn’t provide much clarity as to when all of these thoughts and dreams completely changed. One week we were happy and in love – the next week he turned his back on me and walked out of my life.

So I am devastated. I imagine that I will cry every single morning for a very long time. You see, we spent much of our 3.5 years sleeping together every single night. That’s now changing. We made decisions together, many and most of them. We moved from one city to another together. There are so many memories that play like vivid movies in my mind that I imagine will not go away anytime soon. But we will see.

My family, is also devastated. He was apart of our family. He was in the mix, he was their son-in-law, nephew-in-law, cousin, brother – everything. They hate to see me cry, they hate to see me sad, but more than that I think that they hate to see two people who were so perfect for each other walk away just like it was nothing.

So now I am trying to learn how to rewire my life, my mind, my everything. Where I was concerned and focused on one amazing, gorgeous, brilliant, amazing man for over 3.5 years of my life I am now solely focused on me and that is painfully weird. He still has my heart, my thoughts, my love and I just hope that I get enough of it back one day to hand it over to someone else if he truly doesn’t want it anymore. Right now I am lost and confused. Every minute of every day will be a struggle for some time, but ultimately I will be okay – I believe that – at least I am trying to make myself believe that. 

I realize this isn’t the typical EGORICH post, and I also realize I’ve been MIA for MONTHS now. But maybe writing will bring me some peace of mind that I will be searching for in the coming hours, days, weeks and months.

-P

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The Art of Flopping

Billboard published an article today decrying the overuse of the term “flop” when describing a pop artist’s lack of success. The term’s use grew to exponential levels this past year, with the underperformance of several pop heavyweights, including Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber. Even Katy Perry, who scored massive (if arguably unwarranted) success with “Roar”, was subject to being deemed a “flop” with her second single “Unconditionally”, which has peaked at #14 on the US charts.

With the music industry in such a state of disarray, is it fair to really call anyone a flop?

Album and single sales and chart positions are the primary identifiers of who is deemed successful or not in the music industry, especially in the pop genre. As shallow and capitalistic as it is, it still matters, and there are a number of companies that make their livelihoods (including Billboard) keeping track of who is selling the most and topping the charts on a regular basis. However, there has been an overabundance of “flop” declarations within the last year. Fans, in a desperate effort to prove why their favorite is better than another, have screamed “FLOP” at anything not charting at #1 for ten straight weeks. Lady Gaga has probably been the most high-profile victim of this; “Applause” was deemed a massive flop, despite remaining in the Top 10 for months. Granted, it’s not as successful as “Bad Romance”, but it’s nowhere near a flop. Neither is Katy Perry’s “Unconditionally”. Sure, it’s nowhere near the hit that “Roar” was and “Dark Horse” is appearing to be, but Perry is still at the top right now.

If someone is going to be called a flop, then you have to look outside the Top 20, at least. For example, Ke$ha’s two followups to her 2012 single “Die Young” are huge flops. “Come On” peaked at #27, and “Crazy Kids” did even worse, peaking at #40. Those two singles ultimately killed her sophomore album Warrior and shoved her completely off the A-List. Luckily for her, she has bounced back with Pitbull and their smash hit “Timber”. Still, Ke$ha and plenty of other artists are true examples of what it really means to have a flop record.

But so what if an artist has a flop single or even a flop album? Beyonce’s 4 was huge disappointment, but then came the history-making BEYONCE. Some of the most iconic artists of all time have had their chart stinkers. Michael had “Invincible”, Madonna has “MDNA”, Mariah has “Glitter”.  What matters is their body of work, and whether they can recover from a flop. It’s still too early to count out Gaga and Katy and (I regret to admit) Bieber just yet.

For now, let’s just call it an underperformance and let them hope for the best.

EgoRamble: What The Hell Happened To Customer Service?

A couple of days ago, I was watching a clip of Real Housewives of Atlanta, where Sheree Whitfield was fighting with this event planner. It was a hot mess, and at the end, she asked, “whatever happened to customer service?”

Well I have an answer: it went straight to hell.

I won’t go into many details because it is personal (and financial), but I just had one of the worst customer service experiences of my life with a company that claims to excel at it. Lies they tell. I was simply trying to help them verify my information, and the “senior analyst” had the nerve to basically call me a liar. Instead of trying to check the information that was given, or clarify herself when asking questions, she actually told me that I was wrong. Even when I told her what she was saying made no sense, in the most cordial way possible of course, she refused to budge. I have had a number of positive and negative customer experiences, but this was by and large the worst. It was irritating, condescending, and downright insulting.

Of course, thinking about it, the result of the call will be a good thing for me in the long run, but I am still upset that I had to go through it at all.

I can understand that financial institutions have to deal with messy situations all the time, which probably makes them weary. But I do not appreciate basically being called a liar on the phone by some crazy person who was unwilling to even get their facts straight.

This was not the best way to start the year.

It’s 2014: Can We All Be Over Justin Bieber Now?

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News outlets last week reported that Justin Bieber’s second concert documentary (quick side note for another blog post: why does he need a second documentary in the first place?) was a humongous flop. It seemed like a fitting ending to a year where Justin thought it was totally fine to pee in a mop bucket, call a fan a beached whale, and generally dress like a complete douchebag.

So, is he over in 2014? Let’s take a look.

Justin spent most of his time in the headlines for his behavior, like suggesting Holocaust figure Anne Frank would’ve been a fan of his (easily the stupidest, most self-absorbed comment made all year). Unfortunately, for him and for us, Bieber’s antics were wholly upstaged by Miley Cyrus. Hell, we’re still talking about her twerkfest at the VMAs. If Bieber thought he could force his way into celeb adulthood with some headline grabbing, he was sadly mistaken. Compared to Miley’s wrecking ball riding, everything he did, even a random visit to a Brazilian brothel, seemed boring and desperate.

What about the music? Well, to his credit, Bieber launched his Music Mondays series on iTunes, where he released a new song ever Monday for 13 weeks. It was certainly a different approach to releasing music in these leak-prone days, and all of the singles landed at the top of iTunes, but none really had any staying power. And his innovative strategy has been upstaged by Beyoncé’s now iconic surprise album release. As for Bieber’s place in the pop world, it’s pretty safe to say that One Direction has caught up with him. To everyone’s surprise (or maybe just mine) “Story of My Life” is seeing huge success on pop radio and their very good album Midnight Memories is selling like hotcakes.

Don’t get me completely wrong; although I find Justin Bieber absolutely abhorrent, I can certainly recognize his success and popularity. I can also recognize that he has basically squandered any goodwill he’s been offered in order to behave like a complete idiot. His rabid fan base notwithstanding, Justin Bieber is on the very cusp of being over in a larger scale. Out-scandalized by Miley and outperformed by One Direction, Justin really needs to take a chill pill, put a shirt on, and go back to the drawing board if he wants to survive in 2014.

Or he can keep going the way he is and I don’t have to deal with him in pop culture anymore; whatever floats his boat.

What are your thoughts on Justin Bieber? Done, or just getting started?

Some Ego Rich Resolutions

By B

So it’s the first day of 2014.

Ok, technically it’s almost over, but still, it’s a fresh year, which means it’s time to set incredibly unrealistic hopes and expectations for ourselves that we will forget about by January 7th.

I wrote in my DayOne app last year that I didn’t believe in New Years resolutions for that reason. Looking at it last night, I realized that I only made that proclamation because I was kind of depressed and was being overly dramatic.

Now that I’m in a relatively better space, I’ve decided that I do in fact believe in New Years resolutions, that they can be attainable, and that they are worth mapping out. So, here are mine:

BLOG MORE – stuff got crazy in the second half of 2013, but consider this post the official return of EgoRich!

Take charge of my money – I am tired of being broke. It sucks, especially because I don’t have to be. I’ve decided that I need to stop being afraid of looking at my bank balance and ignoring that voice in my head that whispers “you don’t really need this” whenever I’m at Macy’s. Progress today: I was thisclose to buying an Alfani sweater on sale, but I put it back.

Work out and keep better track of my health – I actually pay for a gym membership at Planet Fitness, and I’ve only used it once. Sure, it could be closer to my job and all, but I intend on using it. At least once a week. I also want to make sure that I am not neglecting my health. I plan on keeping much better track of it this year.

Use my iPad more – I love my iPad, but I know that I don’t use it enough at all. I mean, it cost me $600 after all. You would think it would be a daily part of my life. There are times when it just sits in my messenger bag, collecting dust (unless I need to charge it). Considering most of my computer activity surrounds Facebook anyway, why not use my awesome device?

And finally…

Stop stressing over my friendships – if there is one thing that has snatched years off of my life clock, it’s worrying about whether someone I consider my friend is actually my friend. Frankly, it’s a waste of time. This will probably be the most difficult of my resolutions to keep, but I truly believe that I’ve reached the point in my life where I no longer want to keep giving to people and get nothing back in return. Similarly, I want to nurture the friendships I am actually sure of, especially since I know I have been neglectful of some of them.

These are my New Years resolutions, and I believe they are actually attainable. Feel free to share yours in the comments!

This Video of a Dog and Fox Being Best Friends Almost Made Me Cry. Test Your Soul.

Maybe it’s because I am tired, or because I am desperately waiting for happy hour, but this video of a fox and a dog playing in the woods of Norway literally made me shed legitimate tears. Like, if someone had walked by, they should’ve been concerned.

Literally the cutest thing I have ever seen.

If you feel nothing after watching this video, you might need to check for a soul. Just saying.

Dear Don Lemon (Again), You Are Officially Boring

I really don’t understand Don Lemon anymore.

And no, it’s not because many of his comments have essentially thrown the black community under the bus. Okay, it’s a little bit of that. What’s really frustrating about Don Lemon is that he is so damn bipolar about his messages. He doesn’t straddle the fence; he freaking leaps back and forth over the fence like a horse that’s been shot up with steroids instead of tranquilizers.

Look no further than his comments on the Tom Joyner Show, where he conceded that Stop and Frisk, the controversial New York law that has historically targeted people of color as potential perpetrators of crime, could be and has been abused by police officers. Then, he goes on to say it’s a necessary evil, arguing, in the most shockingly asinine way, “would you rather be politically correct or safe?”

Excuse me?

How do you say in one breath that the law is messed up, and then argue its necessity in the next? It’s almost as if he is trying his damnedest to piss off as many people as humanly possible. It would be one thing if he was just going to be a conservative commentator. Considering both his race and sexual orientation, it could actually be an interesting viewpoint. His inability to be consistent in his viewpoints has become tiresome, as has his attempts to “teach” people about things he clearly knows nothing about. Considering how his personal stock has dropped (I feel like Black Twitter drags him at least twice a week), it doesn’t even make sense to try and understand where he’s coming from.

If Don Lemon is trying to be controversial on purpose, it’s failed. On to the next one.

B

Ego Ramble: So… about Kerry Washington’s SNL Appearance…..

We’re back!

I know it’s been a long time since we’ve posted, but now that all of the crazy in (at least my) life has calmed down a bit, I finally have the nerve and energy to start blogging again!

So, about Saturday Night Live this past weekend…

Kerry Washington (aka Olivia Pope from Scandal, and veritable queen of our lives) hosted SNL this past weekend. From a purely objective standpoint, it was a decent show with some genuinely funny moments (the “Fox” spoof wins top marks by far) and some not-so-funny moments. Pretty much the case with all SNL episodes.

However, I couldn’t help but notice how SNL pretty much used the opportunity of Kerry Washington being there to tell every possible black girl joke that exists, and by the third skit, I was kind of annoyed.

I will say that I missed the cold open, so I didn’t see the “disclaimer”, which was really funny, but I think the point still stands. My thing is, even if SNL was making fun of themselves for their lack of black women on the show, that doesn’t mean they couldn’t have Kerry play anybody else besides the hoodrat, the angry black woman, the black intellectual, Oprah, Michelle Obama, and etc. What makes KW and her smash hit show Scandal so special is that race, while an important factor, doesn’t drive the show, it just exists as a fact of life.

To me, SNL pretty much relegated Kerry Washington to the opposite side of that spectrum, which was pretty annoying with it being hammered in with every sketch (except for that god awful cartoon game show skit).

Congrats to Kerry for a doing a great job with so-so material. SNL, I think it’s time you start expanding your recruiting efforts a bit.

Google’s New Inbox Is Changing Lives

I will freely admit it: I am an Apple fanboy, a stan even.

But last week, I did something that would normally have me burned at the stake by the Apple community.

I officially removed my Gmail account from Apple’s Mail app.

Why? So I can use the Gmail iOS app, and use Gmail’s amazeballs Inbox.

Gmail now automatically sorts your emails into specific categories, from Primary to Promotions to Updates to Social and whatever else you can think of.

It’s genius.

Once I discovered the feature was turned on in my inbox, I realized how completely changed my email experience was. No longer did I have to sort through 30 emails of Facebook updates and Macy’s flyers to find stuff I really wanted. And once I got through the important emails, I found myself actually perusing the other tabs to find out what the “junk” was.

For someone who barely found use in Gmail, especially in college, I became almost obsessed with my Inbox, and I decided that Google literally made Apple’s Mail app irrelevant in my life.

What was really funny was Macy’s emailing me to beg for a spot in my Primary Inbox.

Sorry Macy’s, and Facebook, but you are staying in your neat little tab. I’ll get to you in a minute.

WHY WE NEED TO STOP ON THIS MILEY ISH

I’ma be like every other blogger out there and put in my two cents about Miley’s performance.

Look, that girl is the devil. If you haven’t seen this

Buzzfeed: What Miley Cyrus Was Trying to Do At the VMAS vs What Miley Cyrus Actually Did then go read and laugh. It basically compares Miley’s  ‘Coming of Age’ performance to Britney’s like 10 years ago.

Too funny. Too real. Too true.

But here’s my thing. We bloggers can blog about that. We are pop culture, right. But why is CNN, FOX News, MSNBC and friends all on the air wasting precious air time and cost cable packages on psych panels trying to decipher Miley’s moral and mental state? I mean WHAT. Are you serious?

CNN said some ish this morning in this article: CNN’s Article aka Some ISH

These are responses from ‘outraged parents’ on the whole affair:

“I just find it extremely discouraging and difficult to hold out hope for the improved status of women in this world when even the most entitled among us so negatively reinforce the worst stereotypes and misogynistic attitudes about women,” said Belkin.
“Her behavior sets 50 to 60 years of women’s forward progress back a long way when you consider that her huge fan base really only consists of young and impressionable girls and horny young boys, who, unfortunately on many levels, are our future leaders,” said John Rodrigues of Boston, in response to a request for comment on CNN’s Facebook page.

*Pumps the breaks*
Okay, I’m sorry but you found it “difficult to hold out hope for the improved status of women in this WORLD” and you think her behavior “sets 50 to 60 years of women’s forward progress BACK”

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? My face below:

I mean…Seriously?

While the romanticized antics of these parents is duly noted, I think that it is a TAD dramatic considering that Lady Gaga’s entire posterior was exposed and UNCUT on TV–she was in a glitter thong–and ain’t no body talking about that. Additionally, how about EVERY NIGHT  on TV the female anchors/reporters on FOX, CNN and friends look like porn stars with their boobs pressed to their faces and hair straight as a pin and makeup all dark and colorful. Talk about setting women back. Women in the television news industry can’t even go on TV and be taken seriously in a suit anymore. They have to be 110 pounds with a weave looking fresh off the college campus.

I’m just saying, people, Miley isn’t the reason why women are experiencing inequality. If anything, she just looked stupid running around between teddy bears in her underwear. NOT TO MENTION the fact that Paula Patton probably wanted to throw down when Miley rubbed her barely there backside all up on Robin Thicke like it was nothing. – Nasty.

But more than that read this Solidarity is for Miley Cyrus by Jezebel Jezebel article. Basically they liken her perofrmance to being blatantly racist in nature because of the way it objectifies black women. I’m not going to get into a race discussion here, but it is an interesting perspective and worth reading.

ANYWAY. Bototm line? Miley is not going to ruin my life as a female. And if she does, it’s about time because you would think that Beyonce, Gaga, Britney, Jessica Simpson, Xtina…AND FRIENDS already have. Miley just wanted some attention and some press. She definitely got it. (Go Girl) But let’s just simmer down on this Miley is ruining the world for females ish.

 

-P