Who’s Talking To Who

Dear Readers, Hello, Hello, Welcome to another juicy topic with Dragthepen.

Today’s topics: COMMUNICATION. 

Call it what you like, talking, conversations, discussion chatting, gossiping, or having a dialogue. I say, PEOPLE ARE NOT HAVING MEANINGFUL CONVERSATIONS ANYMORE. There seems to be more ways to communicate due to the improvements in technology, but is this really communicating in a meaningful manner?

Webster’s dictionary defines communication as:  a process by which information, thoughts, feelings  is exchanged between individuals. Okay fair enough, however what I am referring to is the lack of meaningful exchange of ideas, information, thoughts and feelings. 

Some people hide behind social media sending instant messages, texting, emails, recording messages, voice message and videos, replacing face to face in person connection. How much of the meaningful exchange of ideas can we when sending text or IM. How many times have you had to call someone because they took your text, email or IM out of context? 

Relationships and communication are getting more complicated than they need to be. Some relationship experts advise women that if a man is only texting her and not calling this means he is not into her or he is married or has a girlfriend. I have observed people out on dates, girls and guys night out checking their cell phones, or interrupting dinner because of that important call they have to take. Oh, let’s not forget the Emoji using symbols, pictures and characters to express emotions. And here is the big one no one is spelling words completely: smh, lol, thx, wud, lmao, bff, rofl, lqtm, haha, brb, btw, eod, such a meaningful way to communicate, when the person has to text back what does that mean? When children and teens use their short cuts what they are doing is undermining their ability to express themselves in full sentences. 

Communication in the workplace is being reduced to sending emails, text messages, and since the pandemic we’ve become accustomed to zoom meetings that reconnecting  in person meeting as a team is becoming a thing of the past. What’s meeting in the zoom meeting is the camaraderie and in interpersonal relationship building. People talk to each other in passing shouting call me and let’s meet up, phone conversations are brief because people claim  to have a million things to do and being on the phone is preventing them from accomplishing their goals. Remember that song by the Godfather of soul, Talking Loud and Sayin ‘Nothing: Take a look around and you will notice that there is a lot of talking going on, but what are people really saying?

In the homes conversations have become non-in void. 

between partners. 

“ how was your day”? 

Reply, “ it was ok” 

“ what did you do”

 Reply, “ nothing much”

Or something like this 

“ how was your day”?

Reply, “ over and I don’t want to talk about it. I am tired and want to be left along”

 Conversation between children and parents

“ how was your day”?

reply , “ it was ok”

“ what did you do”

Reply, “ nothing much” 

Wives are not allowed to talk to husbands while they are  watching Television and at night no talking in the bedroom because one spouse claims to be too exhausted to talk. In the morning everyone is in such a rush to get to work or school that they don’t make time to say something kind to each other. How many times have we heard people who have left home and met with an unfortunate incident and the other spouse says, “I didn’t even tell him or her that I love her or him this morning”. Or “the last word I had with them was harsh.”

I don’t mean to rant. My goal is to bring awareness to how people take talking or the lack of meaningful conversations for granted. Some of my most cherished memories are the stories that my grandmother, father, Aunts and uncles passed on. They had meaning and were worth listening to.  We all have that one person who is no longer with us that we wish we could talk to. 

When was the last time you had a meaningful conversation? 

Thank you for stopping by Dragthepen.

An Ode to Technology

Dear Readers,

Think about this for a second, what would happen if you unplugged for 7 days? Meaning, unplugging from soical media, television, limiting phone usage, no texting, playing games, watching movies, using your mobile phone to make or receive calls from work, your children or spouse. Image the possibility of being in a house with no Tvs, laptops, iPads, play stations, not even a microwave, and actually cooking on a stove. Image being able to have conversations at mealtime, playing board games or reading? Scary isn’t it?

Think about how productive you could be if there weren’t any electric devices to distract you. If you had to have a conversation with your children or spouse, what would you talk about? When was the last time you read a book in silence or sat in the family room with your family sipping coffee, hot chocolate or wine eating popcorn and looking through old photos reminiscing?

When was the last time you looked at your To Do List, and promised to get through it, but you got distracted by social media or binge watching TV. So, the closets remain unorganized, the garage is still cluttered, the dining room table is over flowing with junk mail, and the dust bunnies are getting bigger and bigger. I know this is alot to take in, but have you thought about how we have allowed technology to interrupt our intimate relationships and mute the communication at home with family. I am shocked that people who live in the same house text each instead of taking time to have a face to face conversation.

Think about how technology has changed date night. I remember my brother giving me this dating advice, he said, ” if a man put his phone on the table during a date, get up and leave” why because his attention should be on me not his phone. How many of you go out for a lunch date, date night, or girls night out. While you should be present in the moment your continuously checking your phone, or taking pictures and posting them on soical media. Question, what is the first thing you do in the morning? If you answered, check your cellphone your not alone.

The debate is that we can’t get away from technology, I say, it’s not about the use of technology, but the over use and abusive manner that people allow technology to rule their lives. There are many societies around the world that have no access to technology, and people pity them because the thinking is that these individuals are missing out, the question is what are they missing? Yes, the advantage of new technology has made many areas of our lives better, but on the other hand, many of us have allowed technology to invade almost every area of our lives to the point that some individuals cannot function without their devices.

I began to pay attention to my technology habits and decided to make some adjustments. First, I don’t grab my phone upon waking, I find it’s interupts my morning routine. Instead, I set a specific amount of time to check emails or text messages. During working hours I disconnect from my phone checking for messages during my lunch break. I do another check for emails before leaving work and connect to soical media during my commute home. At home my phone is on vibrate and it’s usually not in the same room with me.

I am very selective about when I watch television and the programs, but I do a bit of binge watching on Friday evenings, my way of whining down. On the weekends I have a schedule for checking emails, working on manuscripts, my soical media postings and creating a podcast. My weekends are more productive, I feel less stressed and I have time to relax and be present in the moment when I am around others. This may sound ridge, but I choose not to be a slave to technology. I enjoy and take advantage to properly use technology to improve the daily activities of my life, but I am glad I know when enough is enough.

Designer Women or Vulgarity?

Dear Readers,

I am not a soical media influencer nor do I have millions of followers on my blog, Facebook or my YouTube channel Conversations with J. R. Floyd. As a blogger on a daily basis I conduct research via soical media as a means to create topics for my our soical media platforms. There is no topic that I shy away from because I like to think that my views will help others to engage in conversations that might encourage change and empowerment.

While strolling through various soical media platforms, fashion magazines, and the occasional awards or reality TV shows, I’ve noticed that women of color are exposing more of themselves.The trend of walking the red carpet with plunging necklines, exposed buttocks wearing designer gowns created out of sheer materials, or in some cases no material at all. My concerned is this since the beginning of time women of color have been degraded, sexualized, villainized, and treated as less than worthy. Black women have been contently reminded that they don’t possessed the same higher level of intelligence and capabilities of their white counterpart.Therefore, some women of color find themselves forsaking modesty as a means to make their mark in this world.

For centuries women have fought against the stereotype of only being qualified to
” be bare foot and pregnant.” Women have marched for the right to be ” seen and hear, ” and to be taken seriously, while struggling to prove that the female species is more than just pretty faces and body parts. The argument is that women should be able to wear whatever they want without judgement. While there might be some truth to this statement, my question is this, have society cross the line turning fashion and beauty into a vulgar display of over exposed women dressed in outrageous costumes void of class, modesty, and eloquent?

There is a moment of sisters who are embracing the image of European beauty in an attempt to rid themselves of any trace of African features.The weaves, wigs, and nails are getting longer and outrageous. Body parts are being stuff, and plastic surgery is becoming a norm, breast implants, removal of ribs to make waists appear smaller, butt lift, butt implants, cosmetic surgery for cheek implants, European nose, permanent eyeliner, skin bleaching, extreme diets all in the name of standing out and making a statement. Another concern for bringing up this topic is about the influence that these trends is having on young black women who are not apart of the Hollywood Celebrity Status.

Why are we so willing to turn a blinds eye to how young black women are spending an increasing amount of money and energy to turn themselves into “designer women?” To simulate and emulate what they see on TV, the images of hard core music video vixons, or their favorite reality celebrity. We should be concerned about the emotional, physical, and financial toll trying to keep up a certain image has on our young women. The fear of rejection of not being good enough or fitting into a certain image is real. I can’t tell you how many times as a black woman I have been rejected because I wouldn’t raise my hemline or expose my breast, change my style of dressing or do freaky things. The saddest side of this situation is that women are forming clicks that exclude other women who don’t measure up to the standards of the image of the ” designer women.”

The final part of discussion is the counter argument to the creation of the ” designer women,” is the case for body shaming. The flip side to this battle of the beauties, is society supporting and encouragement of plus size women giving them permission to be over weight, which we all know can and will lead to health problem. There point of view is that society needs to except them as they are. Although there are plus size women in Hollywood, however, look how long it takes them to understand that their health is the issues and not trying to prove that big girls can make it to stardom.

Will that’s it. Thank you for stopping by dragthepen

Myself and baby sis.

The Challenge

Dear readers,

I am thankful for a peaceful morning. We need to become aware of the effects of NOISE. Too much Chatter/ NOISE can be mentally damaging, NOISE prevents us from staying focus. NOISE is also physically draining. Some people are afraid of silence because they might hear what they need to hear and not what they want to hear. If your life lack clarity, I challenge you to try one day without TV, Radio, Social Media, turn off the Cell Phone, and Computers,  TURN OFF THE NOISE! Instead, take a walk, talk to your family, play a board game, read, or just sit in a favorite chair and BE Still.Today my strength is restore. I am grateful!

What Say You?