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Public Apology to Tom Hanks and Wife Rita

31 Mar

Oprah and beau Stedman Graham


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Reply: Marriage is for Blogger of Viral Post “Marriage Isn’t for You”

24 Nov

You all might’ve heard about the blog post read ‘round the world, but here’s the auntsavant’s last word on the blogger’s misleading message espoused in “Marriage Isn’t for You.”

Although, the married Mr. Smith’s intentions were good when he wrote the now viral blog post: “Marriage Isn’t For You,” Seth Adam Smith’s altruistic view on marriage wasn’t received positively by all readers.

Yahoo Shine summed up the general consensus of the massive responses the controversial essay invoked on Twitter, chiming in with an article titled, “Why Man’s Marriage Isn’t For You’ Essay Misses the Mark.”

And it does, almost entirely. Smith said his hope was of “helping someone going through a similar experience to turn around their relationship,” which he voiced on It apparently not only didn’t convey what he had hoped, but was also met with strong skepticism.

Citing a recent research study, Washington, D.C.-based licensed clinical psychologist, Andrea Bonior, PhD., told Yahoo “science substantiates that marriage is not just about one person’s needs.”

Though well meaning, this paternal advice could be better shelved under “old-school romance,” as Cosmopolitan noted in a similar reply to Smith’s spiel on marital edification.

READ: Why Winfrey Says She and Longtime Mate Stedman Graham Have Not Married

Oprah Winfrey acknowledged publicly that the main reason she and longtime mate Stedman Graham haven’t wed is because of “the very idea of what it means to be a wife and the responsibility and the sacrifice that it carries.”

Not willing to enter into a traditional marriage in order to try to please someone else or conform to societal cultural mores — she scrapped her wedding plans in 1992. An argument can be made for attributing the high percentage rates of infidelity and divorce in the U.S., to this type of matrimonial philosophy that advocates one spouse unselfishly put [his] spouses’ happiness above [his] own.

Why can’t both individuals strive to be happy without one person having to sacrifice their happiness for the other?

If two people are equally committed to their union, there wouldn’t be any need to settle for a 60-40 or 70-30,  or God forbid an 80-20 proposition. It would preferably be 50-50, and a win-win for both parties.


Lighten Up! It’s Not that Serious

2 Oct

Come on People: On the Path from Victims to Victors
by Bill Cosby and Alvin Poussaint

To reference Bill Cosby’s 2007 book, “Come on, People.”

To which I’ll add: Listen Up! People. Stop taking everything so seriously. Really.

Think about it? Many of the things that upset or stress us on any given day are probably not as serious as they seem.

We shouldn’t “sweat the small stuff,” as a matter of conscientious practice. A lot of people are either looking for a fight, argument or altercation, or expect one,  a majority of the time. Here’s a for instance:

As I was standing (in one of the multiple lines) in a local McDonald’s early one evening to get a cup of coffee, the woman in front of me stood to one side and motioned me to go ahead of her. She’d already ordered. But as I was about to step up to the counter, a man, whom I guess was with his wife, moved to the register before I got to it. I just glanced at the lady waiting for her food with a slight frown, and shrugged. “Oh well.”

The man then paused suddenly, slid back over to where he had been, threw up his hands and laughingly said, “I don’t want no trouble.” Naturally,  I took grave offense to that remark, especially since it was unprovoked—and unwarranted. Maybe the comment was in reaction to me wearing my sunglasses indoors? I don’t know. If so, that’s my choice. Did I appear menacing in my camouflage jacket? I thought it showed patriotism. It wasn’t as if I had on a biker jacket emblazoned with a skull & crossbones, a bandanna and a “badass” attitude to match. And I wasn’t a random black male with a “hoodie” on. No, that couldn’t have been it. The man was African-American. But that’s a whole other issue.

The point is I felt this stranger was attempting to assail my character. I felt compelled to respond. So I turned to him, lowered my shades nose height, and simply replied, “There’s no trouble,” and added that I hadn’t said a word to him. “It’s not that serious,” I repeated, as I ordered my medium coffee with cream, two Splendas and two sugars to go.

The take-away here, I believe, is that we should all make a concerted effort to:

1)      withhold silly presumptions about people we don’t know

2)      try to give people the benefit of the doubt

3)      not always expect the worst-case scenario and above all

4)      Come on people. Lighten up! For God’s sake.

Life is too short to go through it angry.

Besides, bear in mind that it takes more facial muscles to form a scowl than a smile. Yeah.

Younger people will appreciate this when the lines, wrinkles, etc., start to appear.

The 20s vs. the 40s and 50s

14 Oct

I enjoyed my 20s when I was in my 20s. Those days were a lot of fun—then. But I wouldn’t want to be at that age now, knowing what I know now, I told a neighbor friend as we discussed the subject of 40 and 50 year-olds engaging in behaviors that we or those we knew had engaged in over 20 years ago.

Balking at the thought, I said I can’t believe that adults in this age group still acted in the same irresponsible reckless way some of us did at the time. When we were in our 20s, we were either in school or finishing school. We weren’t concerned with bills or too seriously worried about our futures. We partied hard every weekend, Friday and Saturday night through Sunday mornings. We’d be headed home when folks were on their way to church. I remember the rays glaring down so strongly sometimes, it seemed as though God was scolding us.

Naturally, we felt a little guilt but we were living out our youth, celebrating coming of age by hanging out and participating in recreational activities like many other young adults in the mid to late 80s. Living la vida loca! Before the advent of Crack became an epidemic and ruined it ALL! Then it no longer was fun to be young and adventurous. That should have been enough to scare anybody straight. It was a real wakeup call!

When you get older you may not get wiser but you get more mature, and hopefully, smarter and eventually tire of it. Essentially, you want to progress not regress. Some people made ill-advised decisions and others encountered bad breaks, which set them back. In any event, Oprah often quotes Maya Angelou when she says, “When you know better, you do better.”

So you can’t blame middle-age misbehavin’ on post-youthful indiscretions, because we’ve been there and done that. And I repeat it was fun—then. But with age you acquire responsibilities, many in fact you may not have even foreseen. You realize your life has to move forward in order to meet them, I reiterated.

In conclusion I told this neighbor I would not want to be doing at 40 or 50, what I did in my 20s. That, Oprah, I know for sure.

p.s.  As you relate to young people, remember when you were their age…

Quoted from the Oprah Show

8 Oct

During an interview on the Oprah Winfrey Show, Jane Fonda said: “The challenge is not to be perfect, it’s to be whole. We have to live a challenged life.”

After hearing that I asked myself, what is a challenged life?

Is it the challenges we have to overcome,  those we need to face or is it us challenging ourselves?

What does it mean for you?

I think we are challenged by each of these challenges in our everyday lives. We have to summon up courage to overcome disappointment and loss. We have to face our fears, naysayers and those who would trespass against us.

I promise I won’t start sermonizing or get on my soapbox.

But despite it all we have to challenge ourselves to be better people, to not give up on our dreams and not to let others weaken our spirits or lead us down the wrong path. OK, bear with me. I’m almost done.

These are constant challenges, we as human beings must acknowledge and accept. They’re put before us as tests of our will.

By definition, survival of the fittest means only the strong can survive. So if we’re to exist on planet earth we will be challenged daily—by life.

Dig deep and get the strength to indeed, live a life that challenges you.


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