Black girl?

I feel like Fannie Lou. I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired. You want to know what I’m tired of? I’m tired of being labeled as ‘ not your average black girl’. What is the average black girl? Why do I have to be mixed with something to have good hair? Like the average black girl can’t have good hair. Well, that’s because I’m not society’s average black girl. Or am I not the average black girl because I talk boldly and walk with confidence? Is it because your definition of the average black girl is one who doesn’t pronounce all of her words, and she’s considered loud and ghetto?
What is the average black girl? The black girl who straightens her hair good, but her good is not ‘good enough’? Am I not it because my hair is not afrogenic enough and kinky enough, but straightened and tamed? Hair styles intimidate you?
Oh no, maybe I’m not the average black girl because I have just a little attitude, but not as much as the other black girls you call rude. You know…. like the black girl over there who has to face society alone and be tough? You don’t know her struggle. Maybe her struggle is different than mine.
So tell me what is the average black girl? Luckily for me, I get a pass because the men in my house pants don’t sag. Or is it because I’m not the teenage black girl you see carrying a baby that might or might not be hers, but you wouldn’t know because you don’t ask?
Again, what is the average black girl? Am I not black enough? Or should I say dark enough, yet still not light enough to be white either? In your perspective, the average black girl can’t even get an academic scholarship because she’s only good for sports; last time I checked Michelle Obama made it without support.
What is the average black girl again?
Let me tell you, this so called ‘non’ average black girl is tired of being put in stereotypical categories. What am I? I am educated, confident, and classy. Just like any black girl can be. Just because my hair is not afro styled and free does not mean the next black girl who does is any less than me. Your definition of ‘the average black girl’ has the potential to be anything she wants to be. And just because she’s not your skin complexion and has long European hair doesn’t mean she’s different. What is a Hispanic girl? What is an Asian girl? What is a white girl? What is a black girl?
Why can’t I just be Feria?
Written by Feria Mays

March 24, 2017

A Review of Jason Wachob’s ‘Wellth: How to Build a Life, Not a Resume’



Jason Wachob’s Wellth: How to Build a Life, Not a Resume is an easy read broken down into thirteen chapters. The author defines wellth as ‘a new and more valuable life currency: a life exemplified by abundance, happiness, purpose, health, and joy.’ In the book, the author strives to show the reader how to make a mind-body connection that results in finding more happiness and overall contentment. Throughout the book, the author gives ideas on topics covering everything from eating habits to gratitude to help the reader learn how to invest in oneself. While he doesn’t bring new material to the table that one can’t find in other books on wellness in the self-help section, it’s still worth a read. Wachob places quotes throughout the text and also provides thought provoking self-reflection questions in each chapter. There are many points in Wellth where the author uses personal experiences to drive his point home; these trips down memory lane slow down the pace and are a bit boring. Overall, I would recommend this book to readers interested in personal growth and well-being. *I received this book from Blogging from Books for review.

The Mandela Effect 

Mandela Effect

by: Hayden  Mitchell

We have all had moments of forgetfulness. Moments where we are certain of something happening or being a certain way, but it is not. What happens when a mass of people have the same memory of something, but that something is not real? There is a term for this mass memory misconception: the Mandela Effect. The Mandela Effect is a term coined by self-described “paranorma consultant” Fiona Broome (Emery 1). The Mandela Effect is believed by Broome and her followers to be when “memories [are] out of sync with recorded history occur because our minds get entangled with alternate universes” (Ludden 2). There are many instances of the Mandela Effect which have baffled and intrigued millions.

The name Mandela Effect comes from the death of Nelson Mandela, the first noted mass memory mistake. Multitudes of people specifically remember Nelson Mandela dying in prison in 1991. The book English Alive states that Nelson Mandela died on July 23, 1991. This book was published on October 1, 1991, years before the now documented death in 2013 (Heugh 54). More than likely, information such as this would not be published incorrectly. This could be a coincidence or a misprint, but it does seem a little odd.

The most popular and common instance of the Mandela Effect that has generated the most online buzz is of a beloved children’s book and television series characters know to the world as the Barenstain Bears (Emery 3). The Berenstain Bears was an extremely popular children’s series, encompassing over 100 books and TV episodes. With this being such a vast and renowned series, many people read and enjoyed it, but did they all read the name wrong the entire time? Many of the people who enjoyed this series remember the title as the Berenstein Bears with an ‘e’ towards the end. I personally enjoyed this series regularly, and I remember it as Berenstein Bears. However, if a person were to look back on these books, the title would say Berenstain Bears with an ‘a’ towards the end. How can so many have misread the title of such a beloved book? It seems impossible.

The next example of the Mandela Effect involves another beloved children’s character, a silly monkey named Curious George. Curious George was and still is a favorite among children around the world, but did we all fabricate a tail onto his body? Curious George, if a person were to look at him now, is a cute, cartoon monkey… with no tail. Many people remember Curious George with a tail. Youtube star, Shane Dawson, recalls owning a Curious George stuffed animal and swinging it by its tail (“Conspiracy Theory”) ,but when he Googled ‘Curious George’, he found the same stuffed animal but without a tail.

One of my favorite examples of the Mandela Effect is from my favorite childhood movie: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Most of my peers have seen this movie, and we all remember the famous scene where the Wicked Witch speaks to her enchanted mirror. Most people remember the Wicked Witch saying, “Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest of them all?” I remember it like that, but looking back on the clip, the Wicked Witch says, “Magic mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest of them all?” (La Verne). As an avid Disney fan, I have seen this movie more times than I can count, but I do not remember the famous line as “Magic mirror…” until now. It could be summed up to childhood whimsy and misconceptions, but it seems strange, does it not?

There is a popular air freshener brand many people in the United States use. Many people remember this air freshener being named Febreeze, but all of those people are incorrect. If a person were to go to the store and pick up a bottle of this air freshener, the label would say Febreze with one ‘e’. I brought this up to many people, including the administration at my school, and everyone remembers it as ‘Febreeze’. This phenomenon could be accounted for by the pronunciation of Febreze, but how is it so many people specifically remember the labels and commercials spelling it as ‘Febreeze’?

Everyone who has heard of the Mandela Effect speculates whether or not it is real, and that is exactly what this is: speculation. Nothing I have said in this paper has been proven or disproven, it is all theories and personal accounts from people who believe they have experienced the Mandela Effect.

The Mandela Effect is something that confuses millions. We are made up of a collection of memories, and it is hard for us to believe these memories could be wrong. There is some ‘proof’ of the Mandela Effect out there, but whether one chooses to believe it or not is up to him. There are strange things in this universe we have yet to explain, so maybe there is a possibility of alternate universes. Maybe there are shifts in the time-space-continuum, or maybe humans are simply flawed creatures. Maybe our brains make up things without us realizing, and we choose to believe it. No matter the case, the Mandela Effect is an extremely interesting topic. Maybe one day, we will find out the truth.

Works Cited

“Conspiracy Theory- The Mandela Effect.” YouTube, uploaded by Shane Dawson, 30 Aug. 2016, Accessed 18 Oct. 2016.

Emery, David. “The Mandela Effect.”, 7 July 2016, the-mandela-effect/. Accessed 4 Oct. 2016.

Heugh, Kathleen, and Anita Kennet. English Alive 1990, writings from High Schools in Southern

Africa. Claremont: Western Cape Branch of the South African Council for English Education,1991.

La Verne, Lucille, performer. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Disney, 1937.

Ludden, David, Ph.D. “Ben Carson and the Mandela Effect.” Psychology Today, 9 Nov. 2015, Accessed 4 Oct. 2016.

Be anything.. Except a Teacher

There is a teacher shortage*, and it seems the mass exodus is only beginning. While many reasons are cited for this growing crisis, many fail to recognize an important factor: We teachers fail to inspire students.

There are some teachers who have lost their zest for their chosen career. For a myriad of reasons, teaching no longer appeals to them, and all too frequently they share this discontent, if not with words, with actions, with the very students they stand before.

Our collective attitude towards teaching as a profession is shameful, and we are discouraging our greatest students from seeking careers in the field of education. We teach our students to pursue not their passion, but the almighty dollar. And when we ourselves don’t show a passion or drive to teach, why would our students want to follow in our footsteps?

I’ve heard colleagues tell students: ‘Never become a teacher.’
I’ve heard parents say: ‘I don’t want my son to teach; I’m not paying for his college to be a teacher.’
When I asked a former student how many people told her teaching is a poor career choice, she responded: ‘A lot.. Pretty much everyone.’

Why do we tell our students this? Why do we, as teachers ourselves, dissuade them from following this career path?

A question for the naysayers: Who do you intend to teach your children or grandchildren one day? Our classrooms need knowledgeable teachers who care just as badly as hospitals need capable doctors and nurses. Sure, the weight on some teachers can be unbearable at times. I don’t dispute there are many school districts in which it’s less desirable to work. I have had friends who had terrible experiences and quit teaching altogether. But to tell a teenager, or anyone, teaching is a terrible profession? In telling students to steer clear of education, you become a part of the problem; you are contributing to this teacher shortage crisis. All those who cite lack of money- were you unaware of the pay scale when you chose this profession? Have you taken advantage of opportunities to advance yourself or grow? And if you’re miserable, why are you still taking up space in a classroom?

All of our students are special to someone: an undeniable truth. Don’t they deserve the best?
And yet.
We tell our Valedictorians to pursue nobler dreams. When students with high ACT scores go into education, we respond, ‘She could have done anything.’
We tell our students becoming a teacher is a bad idea.
A bad idea?

•To create problem solvers
•To educate the very people who will vote on laws determining our fates
•To share the gift of knowledge we were fortunate enough to have shared with us

And teaching is a bad idea?

Bright students who show interest in education are persuaded to pursue something more worthwhile.
What is more worthwhile than teaching America’s children? Than teaching my children?

When my most capable students say they are thinking about becoming a teacher, I’m thrilled. Because that’s who I want in a room with my kids and future grandchildren. I want the smartest and most talented. I want the overachievers. I want the students who never settle for less than the best to lead the next generation.

Isn’t that what we all want?
*Joe Heim “America has a teacher shortage, and a new study says it’s getting worse.”


Angel Chennault





The sun sets, then rises over the metropolis. Millions of people, not lost but not found. Always walking, one way, then another. Never stop. Never look up. They look around, but they don’t see. They travel, but don’t experience the journey.

Makes my head hurt. The city is an endless source of beauty and excitement. Every day I get lost, just not physically. The sunset off the glass skyscrapers; the towering electronic billboards; a marching band parading through the streets; horse-drawn carriages; the flickering of the lampposts at night; the exotic aromas coming from every direction, they entice me; beckon me to explore them.

I take it all in wholeheartedly, but only at first. The years swirl around me. I don’t look around anymore, don’t look up. I’m always walking, one way, then another. Never looking up; traveling, but not experiencing the journey. Until yesterday: yesterday when she bumped into me.

Full of life, full of energy and wonder, full of happiness. She was a brilliant Rose amongst a barren field of dead, lifeless grass. She reminded me of the way I used to be, and then she apologized for running into me and walked off. I can’t eat, can’t sleep; I think of her. Until I forget about it. More years pass. One day, once more, I see her. Impossible, I think to myself. It’s her! But, she doesn’t look up anymore, doesn’t live. Another dead blade of grass.


Taylor Sims

Love You to Death

We nod our heads yes
While screaming for help beneath our lies.
We smile and we laugh hoping to mask our silent cries.
We hope and we pray for someone to notice the scars on our chests that wouldn’t dare be spoken.
We denied the claims, we hoped it would go away, we smelled of fear when someone touched our face.
He says he loves you but maybe a little too much.
If only he could trust you, then he would not be so tough.
He pleads and he begs promises to change, but smiles with envy when he sees a glimpse of your pain.
You beg and you plead because summer is near, you can’t hide behind the long sleeves, someone will sense your tears.
Do not go down stairs for your mom is here.
She will hug you so tight your bruises will sear.
Should we go to dinner, or will he be jealous there too?
These are things no one should have to do.
He throws your drink and says he’s sorry, but everyone is looking now
This couldn’t possibly be starting.
When your alone in your room, you cry yourself to sleep, but won’t dare leave him the risk is too deep.
You worry of his temper and what he might say, so you isolate from your friends and say they all have change.
Now you are alone and he uses this pain to make you feel worthless, less than, and afraid.u
He knows you can not leave so he hits you more.
He throws you on the floor, I guess it’s time for more gore.
You race to the bathroom afraid of more blood.
He breaks the door down and proceeds to lunge.
This isn’t new for he knows the spots, nothing above the neck or wrist, it’s meticulous, this art.
After you turn away and walk out slowly crying, you will realize the truth.

Tyler Dodd

Worshipping the Money

Walking into the church, filing into the pews,
Similar people sharing congruent views
A quiet homeless man whispers help in the street,
For a missionary church, the preacher sure does eat
Priest lashes out like a mortified saint,
Preaching about the hopeless, preaching about the pain
Talks about depression and how to battle that,
End of the sermon drives off in a Cadillac
Not just the preacher, also the congregation,
The top one percent of Mississippi population
The church gets richer, poverty increasing,
Church swallowed up by the demanding green demons
The poor still hungry, still trying to dine
Sunday morning, congregation drowning in communion wine,
God is no business, he wants the rich to give to the poor
And when the low come knocking, He wants you to open the door,
No more new things, bibles, or hymns
Until the church starts truly serving the least of them.

Max Cook