Give Thanks

Ahh Thanksgiving, my second favorite holiday. The overlooked holiday after the ghouls of Halloween and before the birthday of baby Jesus. Over the years Thanksgiving has become more about fighting for a flat screen television than sharing a meal with your family. Some stores are opening their doors as early as 6pm on Thanksgiving day. Sales are great and all, but can we finish dinner before going shopping?

Thanksgiving is my second favorite holiday not because of Black Friday deals but because of the togetherness it brings. Think about it. As annoying as auntie may be with her questions about your love life, she’s family and you’re lucky to have her. As long as grandma may take in the kitchen, feel blessed that she’s there to cook for you. These are the moments that Thanksgiving should be about.

My mom never writes down recipes and her mother never did either. The only way I’m ever going to learn how to make her famous mac & cheese is by sitting in the kitchen and observing. By doing so, I learn a family tradition and spend time with my mom, the way the holiday should be spent.

I don’t want to give a lecture, but I will say this. Ten years from now your kids are not going to want to hear about the iPhone you stood in line for. The greatest stories you will be able to tell them are when Uncle spiked the punch and Cousin graduated from the kids table. Thanksgiving should be about tradition, unity and well…thanks. Be thankful for the food on your table, the people sitting next to you, and the money you have to buy that flat screen television on Black Friday.

Happy Thanksgiving from YBO! P.S. If you like pumpkin pie over sweet potato pie we can’t be friends 😛

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Stop Frauding for Followers

You slave over your phone, fiddling with the intensity of the Ludwig filter, scrolling through Drake lyrics for a caption, waiting until 6:00 on the dot to hit “post”…all for a measly 63 likes. How can this be?! You looked amazing last night and were so creative in how you shared the selfie it took you 52 tries to capture. News flash, no one cares.

Social media has evolved from a medium to connect with others to a full-time, obsessive, competition. Every day I log on to my various social networks to see people doing just about anything for attention. Average girls pose practically naked on Instagram for hundreds of “likes”. That’s it. No medal for hottest selfie. No check for best use of filters. Just some hearts and thirsty comments under their pictures. Is losing your dignity and forgetting your morals worth the admiration of complete strangers? A few years ago just sharing nudes with your significant other was frowned upon. So when did sharing intimate pictures with the world become cute?

If you thought it was just girls looking for digital praise think again. I can’t tell you how many times I go on Snapchat and skip through 300 second long “stories” of guys waving around stacks of cash while drinking lean.  PSA: Showing your laid back and lavish lifestyle on social media isn’t making anyone jealous. In fact, the whole time it makes me wonder if you have any real skills or an actual job. Do you really want your personal brand to be “that n*gga that traps on snap”?

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Young adults today will do just about anything for attention on social media.

The point I’m trying to make is, my generation needs to stop frauding for followers. This means stop trying to be someone you’re not, stop trying so hard to win the approval of others, and stop degrading yourself. So you have 1000 followers, but are you educated though? You can twerk to Anaconda, but are you working toward a real career? Many people have become celebrities and made careers from social media. Take India Westbrook (indialove) for example who currently has 1.4 million followers on Instagram. She and her sisters have become so well known for the Gram that BET gave them a reality show about it. While it may seem like they made it big, none of them do much of anything or have substance. When their looks fade, what will they have to offer the world?

To that question you might answer money. They will have all the money they could want Christina. While that’s great for the Westbrooks, what about regular girls? You know, the ones who think they’re poppin’ because they have 5000 followers. The ones who think they can get a reality show too if their nipple rings on Twitter catch the right eyes. What will these girls have if they don’t get famous? Absolutely nothing but the admiration of other twenty-somethings, that’s what. I don’t know about you but that sure isn’t going to pay my bills. I’ll be happy with the 104 likes I get when I post a picture of me and my degree baby.

I can’t front. It feels good when somebody puts heart eyes under your picture on Instagram or you reach a certain amount of views on Snapchat. It might make you stop and say, “Wow all those people like my face?” or “So-and-so took the time to watch. They must really like me.” Unfortunately, the way most peoople get these results is less than honest or realistic. If you have to edit a picture so much you hardly recognize yourself or smoke in your videos to look fun, what is the point? You’re not being yourself and people like me can tell. Especially when you have booking information in your bio but don’t do a damn thing to get booked for. Social media was never that deep. So stop frauding for followers.