Medgina’s Musings: Racing for Change

race talk

by Medgina Saint-Elien

Hey guys! Medge here — back at it again with my musings! This time around it’s about a subject that you either may not know too much about or you may know about or just don’t want to talk about it, or some other happy medium.

We’re talking race in America.

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Selfishness < Self-Care

self care
by Medgina Saint-Elien

Remember that dramatic stage we all went through in middle school? The super exaggerated emotions and actions we took when trying to express ourselves (i.e: wearing all black on V-Day)?

I’ve always felt that way about Valentine’s Day. I may sound like a Debbie Downer but I didn’t see why it was such a big deal.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a hopeless romantic. Hardcore, hands down, I’ll fully admit it.

My problem with Valentine’s Day is what it’s been made out to be. Corny and commercialized. It’s all about finding someone to love you and if you don’t, it’s a huge problem that needs immediate solution. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be loved, it’s a natural response. BUT why can’t loving yourself be enough for once?

This post is for those who want so much yet don’t know themselves. I’m talking of identity and measuring your worth. In an age of hunting for approval and looking for love in all the wrong places, you have to stop to consider yourself. It isn’t selfish, it’s self-care.

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#goals | Medgina’s Musings

#goals

by Medgina Saint-Elien

Hey guys! I hope everyone had an amazing start to the New Year.

One of the first things I thought of doing was writing down a list of goals that I want to achieve for the year and would help me in the future too.

I have a love/hate relationship with “goals” because it’s become a movement and not in a positive “go get ‘em tiger” way.

A girl posts a picture of her hair. #goals. A guy posts the details of what a perfect girlfriend would be. #goals. A litter of puppies in a basket. #goals. Do you catch my drift?

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Deck the Halls | Medgina’s Musings

deck the haulsHello, it’s me.

I’m the girl you attacked on Black Friday. Don’t you remember? While you were throwing clothes on the floor and pushing people out of the way, I stood there with a coupon in my hand and smile plastered onto my face.

I’m writing this letter to express how happy I am to work on the holidays :)…

That was my customer service facade.

Now, here’s the truth – why do we have to act like extra’s in a Hunger Games movie whenever there are deals for the holidays? You just had a Thanksgiving meal!

This was the first time I worked on Black Friday and I had hope. Yeah, the videos that surface of customers getting trampled and employees in survival mode are intense but I honestly believed it wouldn’t be that bad. The crowd outside the store was huge but I trusted in all of you to be the anomaly.

I understand my role as an employee for sure. It’s all about the customer but that doesn’t mean that I suddenly serve as a punching bag (literally…for some).

The doors opened and the madness ensued.

Why did you toss merchandise on the floor? Why did you get angry at me for the prices like it was my fault?

Black Friday was rough. Traumatic even. Thankfully, I believe in second chances so this Christmas, I’m going to give you tips on how to give the best presents without ripping my hair- sorry your hair out 🙂

1. Shop online.
2. Read number one. Do you know how much easier it is to shop online? You receive amazing deals and unique finds that you wouldn’t find in the store.
3. Be creative and do something for the person that they’ll appreciate.
4. Calculate the hours in the day where the store of choice won’t be ridiculously busy.

To anyone who has ever worked during the holidays, you have my respect and condolences. I see you and recognize that sometimes, you took on roles that were not in your job description. You held your tongue when someone gave you a bad attitude and kept your shoes on even when your feet were screaming.

Real MVP’s.

I hope we can take a step back and realize the purpose of holidays: spreading warmth and cheer. Don’t get lost in the hype, or find yourself waiting in long lines and not knowing how you ended up with ten bags in your hands. You will find the perfect gift and truthfully, it doesn’t have to be bought all the time.

Much love,
Medge

Defying Broadway

defyinggravity

Hey guys! It’s Medgina again 🙂

If the title doesn’t sound familiar, it’s inspired by the song “Defying Gravity” from Wicked (which is one of the longest shows running on Broadway). The word defy signifies power. The song is basically saying that if you can “defy” something as strong as gravity, nothing can stop you.

That’s the point I’m trying to get across- anyone can defy whatever obstacle that’s holding them back. Scratch that, don’t let anything hold you back because the obstacle shouldn’t be there in the first place.

I was/am obsessed with musical theatre (I even mess with the idea of writing a musical). There are a lot of great things going on in theatre/film right now and I knew I had to speak on it.

My musical would motivate me to take it beyond myself and into something everyone can identify with. It’s not about race or beauty. It’s the fact that anyone can be a star and shine because of their talent, not how they look.

There are about 35 all black casts shows on Broadway, some focused on historical truths, struggles, Motown and remakes of other productions. It’s amazing to own a space that is so hard to own at times which is why when an actor defies the usual expectations Broadway, it’s an even greater celebration.

I remember how excited I was when I found out Keke Palmer would star in Rodger’s and Hammerstien’s Cinderella. It was a classic I used to wear out watching on my VCR as Brandy and Whitney Houston awakened the thought of not looking like what the role was “supposed” to be. Who says others races can’t relate to Cinderella’s story?

Media creates superficial information so people have misguided views of the world. Stereotypes are the easiest ways to generalize a whole ethnicity so viewers grasp what “typical standards” for said race are. By repeating the stereotypes, the identity of people are blurred and become a false reality. This is in countless musicals, play and books where an actor has to portray one hundred percent of every nuance in a civilization even when they’re just one percent themselves.

It’s aggravating seeing biased views on how an African American looks and acts. You have the sassy and soulful best friend who “keeps it real”, the “typical” funny black guy, etc. And we won’t forget that the only popular black princess known, basically spent one intake of breath as a human before she was turned in a frog…how do people realize their worth if they don’t see someone who looks like them as the star?

If popular culture continues to portray groups in the same light all the time, it will be hard to tell the rays a part. Stereotypes limit growth and builds ignorance that if one person behaves one way, everyone else does as well.

(I do realize that some shows have to cast based on race: West Side Story, Show Boat, Miss Saigon, Hairspray, Ragtime etc. because it drives the plot)

Currently, Brandy just ended her run as “Roxxy” in Chicago, Norm Lewis is “the Phantom” in The Phantom of the Opera, and Keke Palmer is going to play “Marty” on Fox’s live production of Grease.

There are people who are upset that the producers aren’t keeping things “original” and “classic” and I’m happy their opinion has not affected the choices. To the naysayers- if you don’t like it, don’t watch it 🙂

I’d liked to send a huge congratulations to a fellow classmate and theatre cast member Shanice Williams for defying the odds. For as a long as I’ve known her, she has took on the classic roles and made them her own proving that talent is more important than appearance.

She will be performing in NBC’s The Wiz this winter, December 3rd and I know that Broadway better watch out as she takes on the roles given to one face, and make it available for others.

We all have the ability to break down the barriers the world tries to place around us. There are times when I think I’m too young to do things or I wouldn’t fit in with those who are more experienced and Tarah just tells me; “If you’re meant to have something, God will give it to you despite what others think.”

Everyone deserves the chance to fly.

So defy and be green or brown or yellow because we all bleed red just like everyone else! You don’t have to play the role society hands to you.

Much love,
Medge

 

Grand Old Flag

musingsflag1

Hey guys! Before I begin, thank you so much for the support and positive response to my last post! Anyway, it’s officially summer and the 4th of July called for celebration as per usual. With the national pride in mind, I thought of my own roots and ancestry.

As a child of immigrant parents, it’s really easy to simply be “American” and forget that there is so much more to me that I have yet to know.

In elementary school, my classmates made it seem like I was wrong for being Haitian as if America isn’t a huge melting pot. Growing older, (with the feisty attitude I had), I embraced my roots but didn’t actually understand it.

Kids can be J E R K S (surprise) and will try to make others feel bad for the things they cannot change such as race. Take that Rachel Dolezal! I attempted to invent myself the way any typical teenager would, adopting what I learned outside instead of listening to what my parents had to tell me. Continue reading

“Freshman 15” (& I’m Not Talking Carbs)

mmfreshman15

Finishing freshman year has taught me a lot. Lessons on branching out, learning about yourself and most importantly: differentiating between who’s real and who’s not.

On my first day at Stockton, I found myself in a state of mind I never thought possible – antisocial. I didn’t know a soul and felt so out of place in South Jersey.

I was freaking out. I had no clue what was wrong with me. I prayed and it began to sound like repetitive lyrics because I wasn’t confident. I was so scared to leave my room. I called Tarah and she said, “Are you serious? Shut up and go outside. You’re just homesick.”

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AIA Welcomes Medgina’s Musings!

MMCollage

Hey Adorners!

Hope you all are feeling fabulous this lovely-ish Tuesday morning! For a while now, I had this idea. I was mulling it over for a few months and I decided oh yeah, I’m going to do this. Adorned in Armor, needs some newness, dontcha think?

AIA now has a monthly contributor – my spunky sister, Medgina!

I’m so excited to introduce you to her…she’s literally the funniest person I know and is wise beyond her years. No seriously, 20 year olds wanted to hang with her when she was only 14. So you will want to, too 😉

Medgina (pronounced like Regina with a M), Medge, Gina – or you can make up your own name for her lol will be posting once a month about anything she fancies – her musings. She’s an amazing writer and I wanted to expose her to my awesome audience!

So without further ado…welcome Medgina’s Musings! Continue reading