Phase II
September 21, 2005

Navel-gazing therein.

I am living proof that even the most quick-tongued individuals take lots of time to think. I sometimes think I'm too pensive for my own earthly good. So when I disappear for a few weeks, it's not because I've fallen into a hole somewhere as some emails have suggested (although the drama of that is rather appealing in some sick, twisted, Aubrey Seiler-type way); it's due to a number of reasons. These reasons could include but are not limited to: bread-winning, mental exhaustion, having nothing nice to say and therefore not saying it at all, distaste for certain commenters, disgruntledness with people who would rather worship political position rhetoric than think or act like Christians, time spent thinking, and most importantly, having a life. Personally, I have never had a problem with the "having something to say" part. In fact, I have written lists upon lists of topics that I may never ever get a chance to address in this forum. My problem is not a bad one to have, I suppose, but it generally consists of me having so much to say that sometimes, it's just easier not to say it. Does that make sense? Probably not.

Read on.

I sometimes think life would be better if I just didn't care so much about all this. Don't be fooled by my fashion rants and penchant for making fun of rappers who can't rap. As many a reader has reminded me, this blogging thing is a very serious endeavor. I've taken on the burden to ensure this joint runs in the spirit of excellence I'd like to be attached to my name. While that yoke should be easy, I am a procrastinating perfectionist, which is the worst kind of procrastinator. Simply put: I'm not out to shoot blanks.

Do you ever wish you had a secretary for your life? Nothing fancy, just someone who can call in sick to meetings, organize my closet, read the books I wish I had to time to read, remember all the birthdays of everyone who will hate me when I forget, tell me where to show up every day, allocate my time, and organize and answer email. In fact, I would pay big money just for that last one. The condition of my inbox(es) are is horrendous. Note to self: cancel all NAACP Google news alerts.

I've found the hardest part of adulthood not to be paying bills or buying property, but instead managing time and the lack thereof. This is code for learning how to effectively say "no."

In about three days I will be 24 years-old and I'm feeling just a little bit anxious about the whole thing. I can't imagine how I'll feel when I turn 50. One of my best and worst qualities is that I set ridiculous standards for myself every year. Don't get me wrong, as a fan of life, you'd be hard-pressed to convince me that the number 24 isn't about to be made "the new black" because I'm associated with it. Don't hate. You should love your number too. And despite what Sir Robert "doesn't have the sense his momma gave him" Kelly may say, age is more than a number. So around this time every year, I get very pensive and retreat into my pathetic shell, only to emerge a few weeks later with the mantra, "Get yourself together, Ambra."

In an unexpected turn of events, the publishers have come knocking and I really never thought I'd say it, but I think it's time to write a book. As terrifying as that sounds, I think I am going to explode if I don't. Five years ago, as a timid college drop-out, the thought first struck me and I began writing what has to be one my most horrible pieces of literature. Back then, I wasn't even close to being ready. Today, I am, and now my mind is just spinning.

Why I am sharing this here, I do not know. I sat down at my laptop and this is what came out. I guess I thought you should be the first to know. No; this doesn't mean I'm giving up my weblog. That would just be too easy.

I guess I say all this to say: Thanks for getting me to this point. You simply have no idea.

Posted by Ambra at September 21, 2005 11:33 PM in Life
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Your sharing is a gift to me, Miss Ambra. This latest post is probably my favorite. Thank you.

I don't understand how it is that some artists/writers are recognized and given a platform for greater exposure, while others who are every bit as talented fail to get that "break". My sincere hope for you is that you find fulfillment in whatever opportunity comes your way.

As a wise old parish priest would always say to the faithful, "God love ya". I know He does.

Hehehe, let you know in a couple of weeks what it feels like to turn 50.

The publishers came knocking? What happened? Did you know this was going to happen (since you talked before about bloggers getting published), or was it a surprise?

Keep the working hard. It pays off. The vicissitudes of life are nothing to sneeze at. Trust me, I feel you, between school, work, writing, and trying to stay healthy, I feel like Mr. Fantastic being stretched the the point of inelasticity.

When you write, just keep it real and don't put to much pressure on yourself (you book that is). My first book a poetry book will be out at the end of this month. And I am in the process of writing a book called 'The Urban War' on black Americans and the qwest for elevation. You just have to start and let God work through you.

We got your back sis.

*Writes down 'vicissitude'*

Happy B'day, Ambra. And I must tell you what I tell everyone on this special occasion lest I be accused of partiality:

"Man, you're old!!"

Don't beat me up for that.

Now it's time for me hunker down for the onslaught of Rita.

Hmmm.. Organized Confusion!

You know I thought I was off the mark when you said you were a Republican. Now I know. I think what has happen here is some of us have forgotton what the blog was all about.

It started as simple inner thoughts, where If someone felt what you had to say, then you got a response.

Now!, everyone has something to say, and no one really cares. So the cure? Give blogging the next ten years of your life, and you become numb to yourself and others. My 2cents.


Hey Alex, are you fleeing your homeland?

Herb: huh? What in the world are you talking about? When did I say I was a Republican?

MJ: I rarely expect anything that has to do with this blog.


I should've, but now it's pretty much impossible.

So many people are evacuating the coastal areas (about 1.9 million I believe) that all ways out of Houston are in gridlock traffic. Some people are sitting in traffic so long that they're running out of gas.

I believe what is normally a 6 minute commute up I45 here has turned into a 6 hour commute. I think if I left now I'd simply be worse off that hunkering down in the upstairs bathroom.

Patience, they say, is a virtue.

Happy Birthday--you are truly only as old as you feel.

Congrats on the book--good luck!

Thank you for posting.

As aggravating as regular posting to a blog can be, it can be a discipline to help improve your writing. Would you be ready to write a book if you had not been writing for

Happy Birthday young lady! If I could give you a present it would be a young man with a sly smile, someone who appreciates the strong woman that you are and knows when to put an arm around you to support you when you need it. Aaah, you can throw in a cute butt too.

09 22 05
Hello Ambra:
Glad you are back. I was wondering what happened to you:) We were all missing you on the blogosphere:)

Relax, It was a compliment!

It only means that your just of the ones that actually wonders what your purpose is here on earth.

The republican quote was yours, earlier post, your site.

I do enjoy listening to you, you remind me of my own process at times..

I really thought you were older though

Happy Birthday!

Happy 24th, and go get 'em A. The ability to express one's self on paper is a gift- the discretion concerning how to use it is a mission.

MarcV wrote: If I could give you a present it would be a young man with a sly smile, someone who appreciates the strong woman that you are and knows when to put an arm around you to support you when you need it. Aaah, you can throw in a cute butt too.

Hear hear!

Herb, I still don't know what you're talking about. In what quote did I say anything of the sort?

Great to see you back, congratulations, and happy birthday:)
You know your hardest decision will be deciding on a cover for your book! Got any ideas for the look yet?

I know what you mean about being a procrastinating perfectionist. I lay in bed at night and think of all the things I want to write about and then when I actually sit down to do it I know I could never do it justice so I just quit. It's really terrible!

Congrats on the publisher's call -- what will the book be about?

Hope you have a wonderful birthday!

WOnderfully articulated! Keep up the Excellent work!

Post Change: And I'll explain it!

Republicans versus Democrats? Pro, Cons.

Don't be a republi-phoab (new word)

Contrary to the standing lying government spokesmen, and women. I do believe if I were to pick a side it would be the republicans. Democrats can be too damn liberal. Being too liberal can destroy a nation...

Don't get it twisted I love my folks but sometimes they can really be destructive.

Real Love

Hear me now?

In the immortal words of Dr. Frankenstein, "She's alive...SHE'S ALIIIIIIIVVVEEE."

And you were calling whom "old head"? (I've still got you by %& years, but my wife tells me I still do alright for a *^ year old black king.)

Now, happy nappy birthday. And now that that's outta the way...


Growin' up is hard, ain't it? But listen, don't sweat it so much now. Just wait 'til you've got three children (one of whom is a 13 year old girl--LAWD, HELP ME!), three back-to-school nights in one week, an acre of land you gotta keep the neighbor's bamboo from swallowing up, chronic Lyme disease to contend with, an almost 50-year old prepossessed frat brother to deal with who doesn't know the meaning of the word "altruism" even though he tried his best to “beat” it into you when you were on line back in '81, a slightly receding hairline and a gut that doesn't respond to 100 crunches like it used to!

Ok, I'm done with that.

Coincidentally, your soon-coming new age is also the title of my tied-for-favorite TV program.

Now on to more important issues: HOW 'BOUT DEM REDSKINS (offensive moniker notwithstanding)??!! I believe grilled Seahawk is next on their menu, right?

But for-real for-real, you (and Jesus) is just alright wit me.

Congratulations indeed on the book deal! If you peer a little deeper into that good navel, you'll realize that somewhere deep down, you did expect this to happen. All successful people have that feeling deep in the core. Still a surprise when it happens tho, I imagine.

Can you divulge the general topic yet?

Oh, (in case I don't get back here in time) happy 24th! It's a good number. Trade ya?

**Point of clarification**

No book deal yet folks. Just interest.


you are truly a fine writer with flair and energy (you keep me entertained and reading). Having said that, I think a "ficition" book would be a great start. non fiction would get to serious and that would probably cause you to take way to many breaks and the book wouldnt come out for years.

I have been following your blog through MM's page and i look almost daily to see the insight of a fine young american. I am married to a woman who has a daughter a year older than you who reminds me very much of you, although she is completely opposite in many respects. But its inspriring to see your generation so smooth and articulate. very cool! anyhow....

so if you need a swift kick in the arse to get going here it is, i know you will do well!

i'll be waiting to buy it.

24. Elders. Hours in a day. Carats. Teams in MLB from circa 1969-77 (and Willie Mays' uni #).

congrats ambra on the potential book deal(s). I'm very proud of you and I want you to keep going and never let this writing thing of yours die. when i was younger i too did opinionated writing and i had fun with it. but now i work as a smalltown newspaper reporter and in some ways it feels like castration or some sort of botched vasectomy. everyday i go out and i report the facts and keep my analysis out of it cuz that's my job. but with 80 percent of what i do and what i read that other reporters in this media do, i have comments i want to make and i can't make them in the paper or elsewhere in my attempt to be nonbiased and make this paper look (i mean be) nonbiased. i say you write this book, a voice is a terrible thing to waste.

Jayda Kaine, listen to you, "When I was younger I too did opinionated writing." Boy, you're younger than me!! Stop all that. Are you still in Richmond?

Parker wrote: non fiction would get to serious and that would probably cause you to take way to many breaks and the book wouldnt come out for years.

But this is me we're talking about. This entire website is nonfiction and I've managed not to take myself too seriously on a semi-regular basis. I wouldn't even begin to know how to attempt fiction. I barely even read fiction, let alone write it. I'm too impatient for make believe characters. I think were I to ever delve into that arena, it'd be for theatre or something. That's the only possible way I could see that working.

Esther never expected to do what she wound up doing either. She only wound up saving her people.

How did the publishing world find you? Through your blog, column, and/or radio appearances?

Happy Birthday! Good to hear about the book - you can do it.

When you are 50 you'll feel like you're 24, only you'll hurt more.

I keep looking forward to all the good things about getting older... having my life under control, gaining wisdom... I just keep waiting.

Long time, no speak!
Many happy birthday wishes to you, Ambra. And congratulations on the book-to-be. (I want to be like you when I grow up.)

nah i'm in henderson, nc now.

mj I don't know. The only fomula I can ever give people is "Time and chance happen to all." The favor of God rests upon His people.

Off topic, but GWB needs some prayers. Would someone please pray that he let some emotion ride his words and to give up a bit on the notes and the over prepping from staff and advisors.

Die hard republican here but he is suffering from over thinking when he talks. Give up the notes Mr President Plz

Happy B-day Ms Ambra

Congrats on the book offers. What an achievement for such a beautiful and bright young lady.

I think saying "no" in our society is an art form. I remember a minister from Africa say that we have a lot to overcome (walking with God) in America, cause we have so many choices, and things to distract and get us off track. It's a constant thing to evaulate, and re-evaulate. It mentally makes me tired, especially when life throws you a curve ball and you get knoced down and need to get back up, hopefully without breaking too many strides.

Enjoy the ride of the process. Love you

Aw man, you missed your chance!
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Why I'm Not a Republican Parts I, II, III, IV
Reflections on the Ill-Read Society
The ROI of a Kid
The Double-Minded Haters
Hip-Hop in Education: Do You Wanna Revolution?
Oh parent Where Art Thou?
Requisite Monthly Rant: the State of the Nation
College Curriculum Gone Wild
Walmart Chronicles
An Open Letter to American Idol
Gonorrhea and the City