Tell It Tuesday: Meghan Markle's #BlackGirlMagic is a Reminder of This


By Ta-ning Connai

Black Girl Magic is a big gigantic rainbow! And if Meghan Markle were a part of my 90’s inner city camp crew called Unlimited Flavors, she probably could've squeezed right in between me (they named me Nutty Coconut) and this girl we called Vanilla Almond Swirl! We were celebrating our black girl magic way back before the hashtag, loving what brought us together while embracing the ways we all stood apart.

Who knew decades later we’d be witness to an average sistah just like us plucked from obscurity and thrusted into royalty! Racists tried to deem the newly crowned Duchess unworthy right from the start, but Prince Harry was like, “Not today Satan!” and he shut that nonsense down!

Tell It Tuesday: Gabrielle Union's 'Breaking In' Will Have You Giving It Up to Mom.


By Ta-ning Connai 

Gabrielle Union was recently spotted wilin’out, throwing things and dropping bodies left and right! NO, not in real life (that'd be so weird) but in her new movie, Breaking In, which was released over Mother's Day Weekend. Instead of the same old “if you try to hurt me, my dad the ex-cop is gonna postpone his retirement, come after you and your crew, I'm gonna go free, and y’all gonna be dead and oh so sorry" flicks, we are finally presented with an exciting, refreshing storyline that's quite believable too.

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Tell It Tuesday: The Lesson in Jada Pinkett Smith's 'Red Table Talk'

L-R: Adrienne Banfield-Norris, Jada Pinkett Smith & Willow Smith 
By Ta-ning Connai

Jada Pinkett Smith is the realest! She's the perfect mix of class and sass, and will go gangsta on any fool who thinks she won't! She’s the reigning queen of killer abs and balances work and fam like nobody's business. All of which is why she'll always be my #WomanCrushWednesday every day of the week!

Red Table Talk aired May 7th on Facebook Watch, giving us a sneak peek into the real life connections between Jada, her daughter Willow and her mom, Adrienne Banfield-Norris.

Tell It Tuesday: Will Kanye Ever Be Great Again?

Photo taken by Ta-ning Connai in her Santa Monica neighborhood
By Ta-ning Connai

As soon as we think we've recovered from Kanye’s last outrageous stunt...SURPRISE!....he hits us with another dose of untapped foolishness! He recently poured out some pretty glowing feelings about the POTUS and I suppose he had to ignore Trump’s racist, misogynistic and morally decayed views in order to esteem him that way. The suck up continued with words like “brother,” “love,” and “dragon energy” (huh???) followed by a pic of Kanye sporting a Make America Great Again cap (again). But this isn't a person simply exerting the right to his opinion or political views, as his wife Kim tried to defend. Sadly, his comments point to his slow, but deliberate path towards “white is right, black is whack” (a phrase going back to the 70’s), and that alone is more disheartening than who he would cast his vote for.

Tell It Tuesday: What Wendy Williams' Dis of The Clark Sisters Can Teach Us

Wendy Williams
By Ta-ning Connai 

The clapback of the week comes from a community highly encouraged to turn the other cheek. But it was Wendy Williams’ cheek that turned when church folk went psycho after hearing she dissed beloved gospel legends, The Clark Sisters.

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Tell It Tuesday: Oprah Shines Light on Cardi B, Reminding Us We All Have a Light to Shine

Cardi B via IG (left) & Oprah listening to Cardi B's album via instagram (right)
By  Ta-ning Connai

When I first saw the Instagram post of Oprah showing some love for Cardi B’s album 'Invasion of Privacy,' my first thought was, “Dang, Oprah done officially went hood!” Then my second thought was, “Dang, Oprah is ALWAYS shining light, even in the most unexpected places.” Now, when I say unexpected, what I mean is this...It's no secret that Oprah has never been a fan of Hip Hop. Known for her stand against profanity, the N- word and materialistic overload, we’re led to believe that the genre's prominent message conflicts with her Super Soul Sunday philosophy. Has she changed her position? I ain't got a single clue, but one thing remains the same...No one is more moved by someone else's success than the former queen of daytime TV. No one is more thrilled by a person's rise to the top than the rags to riches phenom herself. And no one has a tradition of lifting others up quite like the lovely Miss O. She brightens up the room when she steps up in the place and we should all be inspired to do the same exact thing.

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Tell It Tuesday: Mary J. Blige Shows Us How Our Brokenness Can Make Us Better


Mary J. Blige in April's Ebony magazine
 By Ta-ning Connai

No one masters the art of the comeback quite like Mary J. Blige. The woman who inspired the phrase Ghetto Fabulous has yet again risen from the ashes to live her best life ever in spite of the many burdens she's had to bear. Her most recent achievement is a soulful rendition of the 1976 Elton John classic, 'Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word.' Released on April 6 as a single from John’s star-studded tribute album Revamp, you best believe the R&B songstress gives it everything she's got.

 If we learn nothing more from the diva who has survived domestic violence, drug abuse, betrayal, disappointment and loss of every kind, we should at least learn this...brokenness can either break you OR it can make you better. And based on her continuous whirlwind of miraculous restoration, better she most certainly is!

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Tell It Tuesday: Denzel Washington & the Positive Impact of Mentorship

Denzel Washington 
By Ta-ning Connai

Summer is almost here, which means the movie Equalizer II is in our near future! This is where we get to see Denzel Washington play a good guy who does bad things to bad people for good reasons. Oooh now that's gonna be good!

Greatness seems to come easy for this 63-year-old actor; everything he touches turns into award-worthy gold. However, he's quick to credit his childhood mentors and the Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon. He says the program provided him an alternative to the prison life that snatched up quite a few of his friends, and he's been an avid spokesperson for the club. Imagine if that program hadn't existed, the world would be void of the many brilliant performances that reached deep into our souls.

Tell It Tuesday: Black Panther Scene Stealer Proves It's Never Too Late

Dorothy Steel Courtesy of Cindy Butler, left photo courtesy of Matt Kennedy  
By Ta-ning Connai

Dorothy Steel is a scene stealer and she's got a growing fan base to prove it. The 92-year-old actress had all eyes on her during her appearance as the merchant tribal elder in Black Panther, and she can hardly step outdoors without requests for selfies or her autograph. One would assume Ms. Steel was a seasoned vet, but she's only been acting for 4 short years! At 88, she embarked on an entirely new career when most people her age are settled into retirement. It was her participation in a play at a senior center in Georgia that sparked a love for the arts that she didn't know she had. So she came out of retirement (worked for decades for the IRS), got herself an agent, and the rest is silver screen history! God certainly has a way of reconnecting us with our dreams. Whether it's months or years, there's one thing for sure...it's never too late, but we might have to wait....

Tell It Tuesday: Will Smith's Got a New Song. But an Old One Changed My Life


Will Smith via IG
By Ta-ning Connai

Will Smith is an O.G. when it comes to success, but his stratospheric rise on Instagram is brand spankin’ new. His mix of life lessons and family fun have us all loving the newly revealed side of a man we only get to know via interviews and the silver screen. And the video he posted on St. Patrick’s Day ought to remind us that he can still serve up a catchy tune no matter how many decades have gone by. His new song Freak Accident will probably be the anthem for all the “ooops, I had one too many drinks” for many years to come, but my favorite will always be the one about the haven of beachy sands.

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Tough Times For Blac Chyna: Can Anyone's Reputation Be Restored?

Via Black Chyna's IG
By Ta-ning Connai

Blac Chyna had a mini meltdown on Instagram last week and you don't have to be a rocket scientist to figure out why. Unless you've been living under a rock, we all know about the Kardashian catastrophe that was doomed right from the start. The relationship with Rob was a no-no. To put it on air was a no-no. But to then try and sue Kris Jenner and her entire K-Klan? Now that's an absolute OH NO! And then when you think things can't get worse...a scandalous sex tape AND the resurgence of the meme “you can't turn a ho into a housewife,” which now has her face on it. And although she appears to be a victim of her own circumstance, it doesn't mean she should be viewed as the least likely to change.

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Tell It Tuesday: Pride Will Bring You Low, But Being Humble Takes You Higher

Kenan Thompson as LeVar Ball on SNL
By Ta-ning Connai

Egotist. Sexist. Obnoxious. Who knew that LaVar Ball and Trump had so much in common?! There's a Twitter War going on between them and they've both achieved buffoonery status being portrayed on Saturday Night Live. Kenan Thompson brought the house down yet again recently taking his parodied version of the Ball family mascot to TNT’s Inside The NBA. Even Thompson couldn't refrain from rolling on the floor with laughter, but in real life, prideful arrogance just ain't funny.

Tell It Tuesday: Between a Rock & a Hard Place? Here's How to Get Away!

20th anniversary of Lenny Kravitz's hit 'Fly Away' 
By Ta-ning Connai

This year marks the 20th Anniversary of a song that broke down barriers between Rock and R&B simply by coining a popular lyric we've all sang at least once or twice in our lives. Lenny Kravitz is the King of Cool and when he brazenly strung his guitar while chanting “I want to get away” back in 1998, he had no idea that both Headbangers and Hip-Hop Heads alike would give homage to the words from Fly Away in over 50+ songs (whew, I literally got tired of counting). And in 2010, he even stumbled upon the Voices of Praise Choir belting out a churchy version on the streets of New Orleans! No, he didn't exactly invent the term, but he sure as heck made it his own. Lenny, you da man!

What about you? Ever feel like getting away? No, I don't mean like a vacay getaway, although that would be nice. I'm talking about getting away from the things that hold you hostage. If I'm talking to you, just keep on listening, I wanna help you solve that problem...

Tell It Tuesday: Idris Elba & the Proposal That Shook the World!

Idris Elba & fiance Sabrina Dahowre
By Ta-Ning Connai

Last week the black community was delivered some devastating news…

Idris Elba...Gone Too Soon

NO HE'S NOT DEAD, he's off the market, but you'd think he kicked the bucket based on the sudden hysteria connected to his name. How can one man’s public proposal make one woman so happy while simultaneously shattering the matrimonial hopes and dreams of black women across the globe? And why so many predictions for a negative outcome? Do we REALLY need to go there, hoping he cheats on his fiance? And why all the insults towards her? What in the world did she ever do to us? I'm just wondering how this will affect his box offices sales,‘cause you know us sistahs will put on a petty protest and make the brotha wanna repent for trespassing against us.

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Tell It Tues: Let Go of the Past & Don't Look Back



By Ta-Ning Connai

We all have a past. Some are tainted by shattered dreams, lost love or unbearable regrets. Others have enough scandal, dirt and drama to beat EMPIRE in the ratings. Fortunately for me, I'm just glad I didn't catch a case like Cookie or be left for dead like Lucious, 'cause that could've been me with my formerly crazy self! Whatever the case, the past can be haunting, with a grip that can cripple us and keep us from forging ahead.

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Tell It Tues: What I Learned When All My Hair Fell Out!


By Ta-ning Connai

When the hottest trendsetters like Zoe Kravitz, Solange and Rhianna chop it all off, or debut a new color, it's no wonder that women everywhere feel the fire and follow suit. And while I can relate to the exhilarating debut of a fresh new do, I will never forget my worst hair day EVER- the day all my hair fell out! And what I learned as a result...

Tell It Tues: Natural Born Cheaters? Men & the Stigma That Haunts Good Ones



Jay-Z on CNN with Van Jones
By Ta-ning Connai

If Beyonce can get cheated on, what kind of hope is left for us mere mortals? I mean, her name probably stands for Sexy Singing Goddess of Music and Dance! Yet all that amazing mix of talent, beauty and love didn't stop Jay-Z from committing the devastating act that he openly addressed in this past weekend’s interview with CNN’s Van Jones. I am HIGHLY impressed by the remorse he expressed and his determination to repair the marriage he nearly destroyed. And as much as I'd like to keep having an attitude with him, I have no choice but to finally let it go. Whew, I feel lighter already!

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Tell It Tuesday: The Ugly Side Of Beauty

K. Michelle before butt implant removal
By Ta-ning Connai

Looks ain't everything, yet the women of reality TV and the pop culture icons of Instagram seem to think otherwise. They are the self-proclaimed leaders of the new so-called Feminist Movement who obsessively promote themselves and all things shallow, while promoting a sisterhood amongst their fans by encouraging them to embrace their bodies, love themselves and feel empowered by taking half-naked selfies ALL. DAY. LONG. Now wait a minute...you’re a champion of self acceptance, yet you didn’t accept yourself until AFTER all your major cosmetic procedures??? Oh ok.

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Tell It Tuesday: Is #MeToo For All Women? What About #ThemToo?


By Ta-ning Connai

Hellllloooooo Everybody!
Wow, I feel like when a singer steps out onto the stage for the first time, looks out over the crowd and says to themselves, "MAMA I MADE IT!" Yeah, I'm a drama queen, but darn it, that's exactly how I feel! No I don't sing, and thank God you'll never have to hear me try. And even though I've done A LOT of different things (I'm like a cat with 9 lives!), I always wanted my own column with an awesome online magazine! Ooooooh Weeee, welcome to TA-NING'S TELL IT TUESDAY!

Um, I think I heard someone say, "Who the heck are you and what do you have to say?!"

My name is Ta-ning Connai and basically I'm a self-proclaimed "bridge" between the secular world and the church and I do my best to bring understanding and relatability between the two. The gap is way too big and it's causing people to fall, be hurt and get lost. I'm soooooo through with all that, aren't you?!

Now here's what you can expect...A mix of spiritual grit and humorous wit, while I take on topics like the pressure behind beauty trends, getting cheated on, haters, sexual harassment and more. Sometimes I rant and rave and throw my hands in the air, but it won't be as fun unless you do it with me. So come on, read along, and let's do this!

And speaking of sexual harassment, today's article is about how some women have it worse than others. So, whether you're a woman who says #metoo or a man simply trying to understand...there's more to the story, and I'm gonna be the one to tell it...
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