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Apartment 58

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Apartment 58

OK so my friend invited me to this champagne event at a new private members club and suddenly I remembered that I had always wanted to join one. I just haven’t found the right one for me. I’m not fussy (read as I’m fussy) but at the same time I’m not corporate enough for some and not creative enough for others. I’m that rare breed of a creative with a type A personality. I love a plan be it dating, work or even travel. Let’s get rid of this need to seem fun and spontaneous. Tell me what we are doing so I can dress appropriately folks.

But, back to the club. The concept is a cool one. Your home space in the middle of Soho. Bring your laptop or not, friends or clients and just hang or get work done. I’ve got to love it. I’m constantly in between meetings and coffees with nowhere to go. My Balans card has come in handy but this was exactly what I needed. They’re opening ones in Shoreditch and Notting Hill so there is growth and right now it’s affordable. I don’t think this will last for long.

The first clue that it may not have been my cup of chai was that it was attached to a Japanese restaurant. I’m not a fan of sushi at the best of times but when I asked for a menu and there were no chips on there I just felt myself sink. So I’m meant to spend time in a place where I don’t like the food? I thought it was cute that you ordered on an ipad but I wasn’t impressed with the limited cooked choices. I am African! I need my meat and starch to feel like I’ve eaten properly. Luckily you’re in Soho so you could nip out and get more options but seriously, why should you? I would be that member that others complain about who brings their own Nandos.

I can’t really comment on the members as there was no sense of congruity to the mix this being an event. The owners popped in casually and spoke to a few people (not me!) so there is a sense of intimacy without being too intrusive. I also don’t have a view on the decor except it seemed a little too 50s communist furnishings in places. I had flashbacks of bad Russian porn. But everyone else seemed to love it. OK, so I do have a view.

Free champers is always a plus and I’m told that the cocktails were delicious but I opted for the food. It was nice but when I was overcharged for the pleasure, less so. Quickly sorted we left and I was ambivalent because the other thing was…..I was freezing! Air con during the day I get but it was 9 O’Clock at night and I had my pashmina on? This was nothing like my home. British Gas and I both know how hot I like it.

I love the concept yes but the Soho one could never be the one for me. I will wait and see what the other two are like. In particular I would want to see what was going on with the room temperature and the food. What’s the point in me being in a place where I DON’T want to eat or I have to wear my coat?

So now I’m going to have to check out a few others because I’ve got the need to find the club that screams me. Within my budget this may just end up being me in the spare room instead of the lounge?

Happy private club hunting!

© Chelsea Black

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14 black romantic films for Valentine part 2

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I’m back with the 2nd part of the 14 black romantic films for Valentine. I have to precursor this with the following – There will be no Spike Lee. I’ve just never taken to his style of film making. He’s a legend but I don’t recall romance. I’m told Mo’ better blues may have gotten a shout but….yeah, someone else’s list maybe.

I’ve also purposefully not added any gay movies on here as that’s a list all of its own and some of you claim to be a little sensitive. These films can be enjoyed by all hence I’ve steered clear of the gangsta nonsense ones. Or and no interracial. I considered Something New with Sanaa Lathan but hasn’t she featured enough and she is so uptight in it that I just can’t help but want to stick her with a pin or something. I just want to lust over chocolate today.

Ok back to the list and let’s kick off with a couple of old classics.

  1. Boomerang – rom com

I’m not going to lie but, I watch this and I still root for Robin Given over Halle Berry. Halle was too….nice! ‘Yeah you’re sorry. You’re sorry and you’re tired.’ Classic line. But she went after a man she knew had been into Robin so…no sympathy here for Berry. But seriously it taught a generation how to seduce both men and women and again an amazing soundtrack. As a film it is untouchable! A must for the collection. I’ve pulled the Robin Given’s ‘forgive me’ raincoat trick more times than I care to admit and…it works. And great to see Eartha Kitt and Grace Jones in unforgettable roles. Ooh I may just have to put my vote in for this one tonight.

  1. Coming to America –  com rom

I argue with people over the inclusion of this one all the time. The American depiction of their own ignorance is enough to keep me coming back for more. Watch it for Randy Watson’s rendition of ‘Greatest Love of All’ Sexual CHOC’LATE stylee!!  It’s funny, self-deprecating and for the scenes of African decadence and royal bathing I include it. I just know my next wedding is going to have some Coming to America inspired moments. And let’s face it a lot of us are looking for our African Prince. Oh just me? Fair enough. But this is more of a comedy then a romance. Still worthy of a shout though. I personally think most men would have gone for the first wife option but hey, ‘whatever you like.’

  1. Their eyes were watching god.  – rom

Before there was happily ever after we had stories from Zora Neal Hurston, Maya Angelou, Alice Walker and Toni Morrison. The way this man loved this woman and the woman loved this man is enough to make me ignore the fact that it has Halle Berry in it and doesn’t have the greatest of endings. But definitely a great love story.  I love couples that are hungry for each other. Tea cake!!

  1. Just Wright – rom com

So this film was an epiphany for me. I realised that I don’t want to be the Queen Latifah playing second fiddle to Paula Patton for the rest of my life. The message is simple. Don’t invite your pretty, scheming friends along to the party of the year when you like him and never, ever wear a blue evening gown that doesn’t give you a waist. (WARDROBE what were you thinking! It looked like leftover drapes). No wonder Common failed to sound convincing as he woodenly told her how beautiful she looked. No, she looked like she was wearing curtains. It was Common’s first lead role and he doesn’t truly suck so it’s definitely worthy of its place on the list. Just!

  1. The Wood

Omar Epps (Big Mike) in a much better role. I love this movie of first young love and the joys of growing up in IngleWOOD, California. There is that familiar feel of the new kid at school trying to navigate the girls, gang colours and which breath mints were the best for a school dance. Cute first sex scene, learning to dance and song’s like Luther Vandross’s ‘if this world were mine’. Taye Diggs is in this and is more than annoying as the drunken nervous groom but then disclaimer, I’m not a huge fan of his work. A must for the collection though as it shows the beauty of first love. If you are a fan of Love and Basketball then this one is a must. Cute naked butt scenes with a hose for those that need a little extra encouragement. Thought that might get you.

  1. The Brothers

Mixed views on this one. I love it but Bill Bellamy is annoying, Shemar Moore is cowardly, their depiction of women is wiggedy wack and DL Hughley needs to get over himself. It’s just a blow job. Apart from that I loved it. Oh right Morris Chestnut is in it. Slightly annoying too but the film is salvaged by lots of basketball playing with shirts off and humour. I love the Karate blonde but all the women are depicted as a bit too 2 dimensional. Another one you can watch with a partner as it’s not sweetly romantic. Unless you don’t give blow jobs in which case avoid!

  1. Two can play that game

I love this movie. Not a huge fan of Vivica A Fox but Morris Chestnut as the slightly guileless boyfriend and a cast of girlfriends makes this a must. This is passive aggressive game playing at its very best. It’s almost Shakespearian with the confidentes, witty banter and comedy of errors. I think this is the role Morris was born for although please be warned there is not enough flesh being shown by Morris. Instead Vivica does all the flesh showing and a great body too. Again one that you can watch with FuBo.

Enjoy and let me know if I’ve missed any. Also movies such as Poetic Justice and Hav Plenty didn’t resonate with me despite having cute leads. Nor those where you find yourself crying over the senseless death of the almost innocent (Jason’s lyric , Sett it off, Boyz in the hood and anything with a rapper trying to make their break.) Ghetto romance is not the way.

Don’t forget there are 14 Valentine’s day tips for him http://www.chelsea-black.com/ladies-what-to-avoid/ and for her http://www.chelsea-black.com/14-tips-for-a-long-lasting-valentine%E2%80%99s/ right here.

Happy Valentine’s day

© Chelsea Black

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14 black romantic films part 1

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Categories: DATING TIPS, Recommends, Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

I’ve already started checking my post for a card weighted envelope in red or pink. Sadly it hasn’t arrived and as I begin to suspect this is will be yet another year of fruitless Valentines for me I figure there is nothing for it but to get the girls together and have a DVD night in instead. So inspired by my twitter friend @ecforde here are my top 14 black romantic films for Valentine’s day. This just means that you get to perve at black men on screen and drool with your girls. These aren’t in any particular order as it’s like asking a mother to choose between her children but there isn’t a Tyler Perry in sight. I’ve tried, I just can’t. And some of them are partner friendly

I will consider doing top romantic movies at a later date because as I was going through them I realised that we don’t have the big epics. And there are no British ones. Or am I missing a pirate DVD hook up out there? Hook me up peeps. We are starved of romantic films and have to instead make do with the African Americanised version of love. I guess the moral of the story is to go out there and make your own love stories then write about them for the greater good.

Happy Valentine’s Day my precious

© Chelsea Black

  1. Love and Basketball – rom

Apart from the immature strop Omar Epps pulls over putting his emotions before her career this is a great film. Soundtrack is strong (although be warned that the Maxwell version of Woman’s work isn’t on there. I know, I was bummed too). Sanaa rocks the tom boy basketball player and eventually you realise that love is a choice not a game that you can win. This is a must for the collection and one that you can even watch with your FuBo (future boyfriend) if you don’t mind it digressing into a game of one on one. Oh please be warned that Tyra Banks is in it but don’t let that put you off.

  1. Brown Sugar – rom

Sanaa again. I love this movie despite Taye Diggs being in it. He is so not hip hop!! He can’t even act gully. I’m more street than him and what I know about hip hop can be summarised in two words; the hook. That said it is a great story well told. Boris Kodjoe is in it which doesn’t hurt on the eye candy side. Basketball, Hip Hop and I’m told it was a Nigerian director (shout out to my Nigerian friends who insist on informing me of these facts. Kind of like the Greek dad in my big fat Greek wedding who thinks everything originated from the Greek)

  1. 35 and Ticking – rom com

Rarely do we see a film that focuses on women in their 30s and the biological clock. But this one does it well. Kevin Hart is hilarious as the guy who has a job at a bank. The script isn’t the tightest you will ever watch and it occasionally veers into Tyler Perry land but it’s funny in places about a subject that can be difficult. It has Dondre T. Whitfield in it which is enough for me to watch it. There is a hilarious date with an older guy and the neighbours from hell which definitely put this into the comedy section but there is little great romance. Still, I liked it enough to watch it twice and it examines the issues of parenthood and when individuals are ready.

  1. Jumping the Broom- rom com

Beautifully shot movie it starts off well and I enjoyed it more when I watched it with others as opposed to  watching by myself. I didn’t laugh when I watched it by myself the first time. The social divide between the two families of the marrying couple is obvious but still comical. But typically this is a T.D. Jakes movie so it does get serious and a little preachy. I’m told that he is a preacher but he is less obvious than he was in Not Easily Broken (If you are a Morris fan watch with caution). Watch it for Gary Dourdant, Laz Alonso and there is eye candy for the guys too in Megan Goode and Paula. Paula Patton’s character is a little tedious / passive aggressive but it’s good to see Angela Bassett and Loretta Devine at their matriarchal best.  Best lesson? Always have a little money aside that your partner doesn’t know about for a rainy day. And look at these beautiful men. Look at them!!

  1. Waiting to Exhale /How Stella Got her Groove Back –rom coms

Ignore Whitney’s acting skills and Taye Digg’s Jamaican accent and you have a moment in history where Terry MacMillan was the voice of American black women. I remember asking Mama Black for the books. She read them then made notes in pencil at the bits she loved or cried at, bless. So it was always books and movies that you were meant to share. Watch them for the examples of bad sex in Waiting to Exhale or for Taye Digg’s famous shower scene in Stella. Don’t thank me, just passing on the love. Stella was the first film that openly said to women go and get yours dear. Preferably do it on holiday though where it should stay. Oh and if you are into great sex scenes don’t forget to check out Disappearing Acts with Wesley Snipes and Sanaa getting deeply hot and heavy by the fridge. Ah Terry, you do love your sex girl!

  1. The Best man – rom com

Another one of those films I was supposed to love but was more annoyed by. Morris Chestnut plays a double standard Christian sportsman and Taye Digg plays a writer who writes about the group of friends. He had Sanaa but wanted Nia Long? Hmmmm if Terrence Howard wasn’t in it as the career-less friend (remember him playing that guitar? How I wished I was a guitar) I wouldn’t watch it as often as I do. This is the movie that gave us Candy, the dance. The morals of the story are simple: Women need to be perfect and virginal to be considered wife material, men are always going to want what they didn’t get and ignore the one that is there for them and that strippers deserve love too.

  1. Love Jones –rom

OMG I am adding this one because if I don’t the poetry sorority will kill me. But wait, Larenz Tate is not convincing as a motorbike riding poetry boy, Nia Long is too convincing as an attention seeking cow and yet somehow you root for them because you figure best they be together and leave the rest of us alone. I preferred the Isaiah Washington story line but alas I was made to endure the joys of Larenz trying to man up. It must be hard to be short In Hollywood and yet Morris manages to convince me that he’s all man (team Chestnut). But the story is tight and worthy of a watch. Great soundtrack led by Dionne Farris.

Ok that’s part 1 done. Part 2 to follow after I’ve checked out my post, broken down into floods of tears and then decided which one of the many men should have sent me a card but didn’t. I’m going to make sacrifices first.

 

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