I wish the world was more like a Zumba class

Over the past four years, my favorite place on campus has been the Rec. Good day or bad day I could always find a reason to go there. I’ve taken belly dancing, abs class, salsa, Bootylicious, hip hop aerobics, and nothing bring me joy like a good hard Zumba workout. If you ever wondered what diversity looks like peep your head into room 104 at 12:10 or 5:30pm.

You would see people dancing without a care in the world. Men and Women of all shapes, sizes, ethnicities, ages, majors and sexual orientations. It’s one of the few places in higher education where you won’t find yourself put into a box. No one is talking about what sorority they’re in, or how much their parents make and no one is judging you no matter how bad you think your dancing is. I’m not sure why doing squats to a T.I song and doing the cumbia generate a universal sense of belonging, but it does and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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What Natural Hair products taught me about Supply and Demand

I was at Target in Cedar Hill , Texas and I noticed how big the ethnic hair care section was.  I stopped and stared. The section in Target was not this large before I left for school, and the section in Lubbock, Texas isn’t this large.

This was what I remembered not too long ago, an endcap at the end of the aisle.

Now it’s in two places the end cap and the entire row with full product lines.

this is only a section of the products, but as you can see a significant increase from the endcap.  (Sorry for the blurriness, it’s awkward taking pictures of products)

Nubian Heritage has its own row, Shea Moisture has its own row, Mixed chicks has its own row that goes all the way down as well as a lot of other brands.

It’s not that they had a lot of hair products, but a lot of  it was for Natural hair and was even broken up into two sections “Natural and textured” and “relaxed”. This takes detail. If you go to Walmart it simply says “Ethnic Hair”  one aisle full of Ampro, Blue Magic, and God knows what else. These labels mean they did some research; They know who they’re targeting, what they want, and they’re not just gonna buy it because there’s a brown person on the label. Someone paid real attention to it.

Why?

Because Target is awesome, but besides that I believe it has to do with demand. Taking care of your hair is trendy right now. Women are going in droves to the store to get natural and organic products for their hair. If you’ve watched commercials for any type of hair they’re featuring natural ingredients. “with honey extract” “olive oil” and “grapeseed oil”.  L’oreal launched their “sulfate free line and have even expanded it (EverStrong, EverySleek, EvereCreme, and EverPure). (I love the EverStrong  in the green bottle) Consumers are more informed and more adamant about what they will and won’t use in a hair product. This is a perfect example about how consumers feel about multicultural marketing. It takes real work, consumers want companies to be authentic in trying to reach them.  It made me think of an article I read in Adweek a long while a go by  Robert Klara.

Which made think, if we were to show the companies that we as a minority community made it known to the companies that we wanted better for ourselves they’d be forced to fill that demand. Who remembers when you could only buy certain hair brands online?  Why is there a Central Market, Whole Foods, and Trader Joe’s  within spitting distance of each other in North Dallas, but in other areas only dollar stores, Popeyes, and liquor stores are the only thing that seem to be placed in our areas. It has a lot to do with demographics, but let’s not forget we have a voice outside of what statistics say.

What do you think? Comment below or tweet me at @Paige_Nash!

Top Five hair products from Target: 1. Fekkai Shea Butter Conditioner & Shampoo 3. Shea Moisture Anti Breakage Masque, 3. L’oreal EverStrong No Sulfate Shampoo 4. Neutrogena Triple Moisture Shampoo & Conditioner. I also purchase the majority of my oils there.

1. Castor Oil
2. Olive Oil
3. Lavender Oil
4. Tea Tree Oil

If you would like to know more about my staple hair products visit  (pinterest.com/thatnash/paige-s-staple-hair-products/)

CNN’s Black In America

CNN’s special “Black In America” aired tonight! I really enjoyed , but once I got on Tumblr I saw some of the negative feedback people were saying about the piece.

The piece in my opinion really was about how these individuals identified themselves and the emotional struggle that entailed. I would encourage people to look at it from a different perspective. Beyond being human we all having different things that we identify with; Female,heterosexual,Christian,Muslim,American,Nigerian,Texan, etc. Each one of those demographics is what makes this country and world what it is today. Each one of those groups has voice, issues, and opinions. I feel all aspects of the melting pot that we call America deserve to be examined. While Blacks are a smaller portion of America population , these issues are relevant. “Shadiesm”and Colorism result in things like bullying and low self esteem and a multitude of emotional hurt. Would you complain about a special about another demographic?

And for the comments of a post racial society, we don’t live in one. If you don’t believe me look at some of the tweets and Facebook posts after the election. Unfortunately, a lot of people go out of their way to make those who are non-white feel inferior today in 2012. It’s terrible, and I’d hope none of your reading this fall into that category.

I hope CNN (and other networks) continue to do specials like this, not just about black people; but other issues that affect us as in Americans whatever characteristics and demographics that includes. Because honestly a lot of us don’t understand issues that our fellow Americans face, we just pay attention to what affects us right here at this instant.

Twitter: @BlackInAmerica , @Soledad_OBrien @CNN, #BlackInAmerica
Tomorrow at 12ET Essence Magazine is hosting a Google+ hangout with Soledad O’brien.

 

Thoughts of a Graduating Senior

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  • What am I doing with my life?
  • Where do I even apply?
  • When do I apply?
  • Where am I going to work?
  • How do I negotiate my salary?
  • Where am I going to live?
  • How am I going to figure  all of this and pass this impossible class?

These are a few of the questions swimming in my mind as I approach graduation. I’m a May graduate so I still have a bit of time, but with every friend that accepts an offer I think I’m running out of time. (And will probably end up living out of a cardboard box.)

So let’s start at the top. “What are your plans after graduation?” This question has started to make my flesh crawl. “My plans are to be happy and successful” is not a suitable answer. As a freshman you probably could just say “I’m a ____ major and I want to work in the ____ field” Very vague, when you’re a senior people expect interview dates, a list of companies cities, and actionable life plan. So instead of giving yourself insomnia just spend a weekend brainstorming. Spend some time and think about what it is you love, what you’re good at, and where you want to be.

For me my brainstorming lead me to multicultural marketing. Most of my time is spent using my marketing skills to recruit students, finding out how to keep them engaged in my organization, and with Texas Tech University. I serve as the social media coordinator for two multicultural organizations and I’m constantly thinking of campaigns and positioning strategies.

  • Then next thing I did was talk to a recent graduate who was in that field.
  • Then did some research about a few companies that did that type of marketing.
  • Talked to hiring managers at former internships to find out when the general hiring time is for Marketing industry. (Or your University Career Center)
  • Now that you know what you want to do, you can take on projects to help get your more experience in that industry.  You might want to consider doing undergraduate research.

I don’t have all the answers, but I have a pretty good starting point.  The most important thing is to remind yourself to breathe! Have faith in yourself and the skills you’ve acquired at your school and search with a clear head. The last thing you want to do is apply for the wrong type of job and settle for something you hate.

Happy Hunting!

Media and the Olympics

I know I can’t be the only one who is exasperated by the scrutiny the athletes have been under.  The most irrelevant things have been highlighted this year at the Olympics. Topics like: Gabby Douglas’ hair,  Lori (Lolo) Jones and her virginity, Serena’s victory dance, Ryan Lochte’s love life and grill. Last night on Entertainment Tonight they even posted a break down of Natalie Hawkins’ (Gabby’s Mom) DEBT from her student loans to her T-mobile phone bill. They also spoke about Ryan Lochte’s mom facing foreclosure! Even when McKayla Maroney didn’t hug her Russian competitor Sandra Raluca Izbasa she was blasted for being “fake” and had to take to her twitter page to defend her sportsmanship. The personal lives of these poor athletes have been put under the microscope that we’re forgetting why they’re there; TO COMPETE! To go for GOLD, to break records and barriers! We’re letting these fluff pieces over shadow their hard earned accomplishments. They are not at the Jersey Shore, they are the best on the globe are we should celebrate their accomplishments!

If the Global Media wants to focus on something how about doing a story about

Did you know 7 Cameroonian athletes have gone missing from the Olympic Village?

What about the North Korean labor camps non-medaling athletes are being sent to when they return home?

How about more coverage on the inspiring independent athletes?

What do you think? Are we focusing to much on their personal lives? Comment below or tweet me what you think at @Paige_Nash

Positivity & Diversity on TV

Postivity and Diversity on TV

I wrote a post a while back about why more Black Entertainment is choosing the small screen over the boob tube a few months ago and today I ran across this article.

Why black British drama is going online, not on TV

The article talks about narrow spectrum of blackness on TV and how despite their efforts it was very hard to get TV Networks interested. Inspired by the success of The Mis-Adventures of Awkward Black Girl many other series are trying their hand at their work. The opposition TV Executives in the UK included “They’re not ready for black women. Commissioners say: ‘Can you make white people laugh?’ Or: ‘Middle England won’t like you.’”

Actor David Harewood has even encouraged Black actors to go the US because there aren’t many roles for authoritative,strong, black characters in the UK.,

Eva Longoria’s upcoming Devious Maids was nixed from the ABC line up. It received some major backlash for not showcasing Hispanic women who were successful like you would see in everyday life?

Tyler Perry also commented on the lack of uplifting diversity on TV in an ET Interview
“People don’t want the kind of positivity that was on “The Cosby Show.” So, if you look at the reality shows and the things that are going on, people don’t want that type of positivity anymore.”

Why do networks feel that this is the only available niche for minorities? Screaming, throwing bottles, flipping tables,fighting, and passed out on the jersey shore?

Where is the diversity in our network programming? I’m not talking about the stereotypical roles i.e The Sassy black friend, the smart Asian friend, and the Hispanic character you didn’t know was Hispanic until the credit came up at the end and saw their last name. In my opinion the television is one of the few places less where you can see almost ZERO diversity. My friends, my classroom, my church, the mall I shop at etc are all somewhat diverse. Everyone is not all one shape,size,ethnicity why doesn’t our programming reflect that?

So shout out Youtube for being a outlet to actually reflect real people, not just what networks want to see. I’m really excited that more people are feeling inspired and creating web series.

Here’s my favorite from the article check out and the original article:

and if you’ve seen a cool Web Series post it below or tweet it to me at @Paige_Nash!

The Underground Movement

When you think about television or shows there are very few options for black entertainment . We have The Game, Let’s Stay Together, Reed Between The Lines, Reality TV Shows, and a few token blackies in prime time TV.

(Ice Loves Coco, TI & Tiny, Carmelo & Lala, Khole & Lamar, Basketball Wives etc)

There has been an out cry from the black community. Where are the “Cosby Show“‘s of this generation? Where are the shows depicting successful couples without baby mama drama, over sexed athletes, and  petty fighting. Where are the shows that are interesting and culturally uplifting; yet still deal with real issues and topics? Where are the people like me?

They’re online.—-


About a year ago I discovered Awkward Black Girl through tumblr, and was immediately obsessed. As a fellow Awkward Black girl I loved seeing an entire show that focused on her “Adventures”. After electing Issa Rae my Spirit Animal I had a friend tell me about “BlackAndSexyTv” and The Couple and The Number.

So why are these shows on Youtube and not on the boob tube?

More Freedom

It’s clear that executives believe only “certain types of media” will be successful on television. There is a very narrow spectrum of how the Black Community is portrayed on networks. And unfortunately we usually support those “certain types” of shows.

” I think we, as black women, need to just create the media ourselves. If you have an idea, get a crew or get your friends together and make it happen. Right now, pitching your idea to a network exec or an industry liaison just isn’t working, because they have this limited perception of black women and what they THINK black women want to see on screen. I think the web is the best way to go right now, and I’ve seen a lot of GREAT shows come off of the internet”

“I didn’t see myself represented on screen, in television or film,” says Issa Rae. “I love these shows like ’30 Rock’ and ‘Parks And Recreation’ because they have this awkward humor. – Issa Rae CNN interview

I think we as a culture need to support these shows WATCH THEM, TWEET THEM, SHARE THEM. And if and when they transition to the small screen WATCH THEM. Turn off Basketball Wives and support quality programming. Stop being addicted to the trainwreck of reality tv and support the initiatives of uplifting Black Entertainment. When I was a child I watch Fresh Prince, My Wife and Kids, the Cosby Show. What will our children watch? Screaming women pulling each others weaves, and extensions out?

How many times have you been sitting somewhere and someone makes reference to a Tyler Perry movie like you’re supposed to immediately transform into Madea. I can’t name how many times I’ve said something and people of other races expected me to pull a gun out of my purse. I am not the Sassy Black friend I will not be your Wanda Sykes to your Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

Black People deserve entertainment that is as multifaceted as we are. People in general deserve entertainment that is not just scripted reality tv.

Awkward Black Girl Season 2 premiers in two weeks!