PROTIP Phriday XV: The “Hell Froze Over” Edition

Bullshit- it's not Hoth until I see Tauntauns and the Empire...
Bullshit- it’s not Hoth until I see Tauntauns and the Empire…

It’s been 3 weeks since I’ve done this, so I may be out of practice… Who the hell am I kidding? I could do this in my sleep! Welcome to another edition of PROTIP Phridays- currently being brought to you from the frozen tundra east of Hell. Still somewhat stuck on the jobs and interviewing theme- blame it on my real life- but a few of these focus on our long regional nightmare (the recurring snowstorms and frigid cold) as well. Enough of the preamble- let’s get to it, shall we?

This Week’s PROTIPS:

PROTIP: Using your parent as a reference for a job is probably a bad idea unless your parents are famous or unless you’re applying to be part of another family. Employers probably don’t care how well you do chores or if you make your curfew regularly…

PROTIP: When someone gives you a job, the proper response is usually to say yes and mean it if you actually mean it- changing your mind and flaking on someone (especially in a small field) is a proper response if, and only if, you want to be blackballed.

PROTIP: If you’re walking on a sidewalk that is half covered by a snowbank and coated with ice and you REALLY want to piss everyone around you off, get three of your friends and walk fast in a row so you take up all of the walking space.

PROTIP: If you’re going to associate weed and patchouli oil with people who wear dreads, Giuliana Rancic, people who wear dreads get to associate your overdosing on bronzer with gold chains and Drakkar Noir.

And you used to look like THIS?... It's none of my business, though.
And you used to look like THIS?… It’s none of my business, though.

PROTIP: Never buy an $800 laptop from a company whose commercials used to feature a stoner- and if you do, don’t be shocked when it dies in 12 hours. Dude, you’re getting a Lemon!

PROTIP: If you intentionally drive me up a wall with foolishness YOU caused, don’t be surprised if I put it in reverse and run you over for your troubles… Annoying me is NEVER a good idea when it’s -2 and I haven’t seen pavement in weeks.

PROTIP: There are hints and then there are hints- if someone avoids speaking to you for years, blocks your number, moves to get away from you and threatens to involve the police if you keep reaching out to them, you’ve probably passed the hint stage and gone straight to the “hitting you over the head with facts” stage.

PROTIP: Contrary to popular belief, answering the question “Why do you want this job?” or “Why do you want to go to this school?” with “I don’t know” or anything other than some concrete material is the best answer of all- because it makes room for someone else more deserving. Thanks and goodbye!

Your bad answers give me humor and inspiration to find new candidates- thank you for your service!
Your bad answers give me humor and inspiration to find new candidates- thank you for your service!

If you’re one of the people who are against watching Fox’s new show Empire but you bought an iTunes Season Pass for Scandal, Being Mary Jane or How To Get Away With Murder, you don’t have a problem with representation of Black people on TV- you have a problem with representations of unpolished Black people on TV who have money. Just keep it real- we’ll respect you more… (And yes, that does mean that a What I Learned About Student Affairs From…Empire is coming soon).

PROTIP: Finally, and most importantly, if you’re going to claim that someone is “dancing” and they are part of the African or Latin diasporas (don’t judge- stereotypes exist for a reason), please show them doing something more than raising their arms up and down while walking. We KNOW how to dance- and a bonehead like Aaron Hernandez doesn’t dance.

That’s it for this round of PROTIPs– pray for warmth to reach the Northeast next week and for hearts, minds and brains to thaw out soon! See you on Tuesday!


PROTIP Phriday XIV: The Social Network Edition


So PROTIP Phriday is back, as promised! I’ve decided to give you a taste of my PROTIPs from Facebook this week since that’s where I got started with them. I’m also gifting them to you because I think they’re good instructions for folks after some of the things I’ve seen in the past three weeks. Hopefully you’ll enjoy them- as you can see by the likes under them, others certainly did.



facebook_4facebook_5facebook_6facebook_7facebook_8That’s it for this week! Before I leave you I want to also wish my stepdad Stan a happy birthday- thanks for teaching me every curse word you know, that thinking for yourself is crucial, that sometimes it’s OK to have the unpopular opinion in the room and that manners and good behavior can take you around the world without a dime in your pocket (not that I always show them here). Hoping you’re feeling better and that you enjoy your day!


For the rest of you, enjoy the weekend- I’ll be back with something great on Monday!


PROTIP Phriday XIII: So Unlucky It’s Been Abbreviated…

Protip Phriday XIII: So Unlucky

I almost didn’t do this post- as one of the leaders for Winter staff training in my office, my time to do things not related to work is about to evaporate until mid next week, but I figured that I could still come in here and at least put up a few PROTIPs after being so inspired by entitled Ivy League brats the best and brightest of the next generation who’ve chosen to e-mail me about their First World Problems this week. No, I don’t really care that the room you’ve been guaranteed and that you probably wouldn’t have had you gone to school someplace else has a roommate in it because I have a training weekend to run. No, I’m really not interested in hearing the 70-11 reasons you need to skip training you’ve known about for six months because I have Computer Science class homework to do before Monday. And no, I don’t care that you’ve had to deal with a minor inconvenience when there are people half a world away who probably just thank God they wake up in the morning healthy because I’m tired and don’t feel like it… so suck it up and deal 🙂

So yes, I figured some PROTIPs would be just what the doctor ordered before I immerse myself in college student drama again… there’s absolutely no way that they can STAY on break for another month (or six), is there? However, I’ve decided to post fewer than the usual ten- I’m hoping that I make up for it with some better quality material (and if not you, like the students on my campus, will deal).

Now that I’ve finished my rant…

This Week’s PROTIPs:

PROTIP: In a year where African-Americans have been attacked or ignored on almost every front and where you could throw a rock and hit a half dozen solid performances from AfAm actors, nominating a sea full of bland White people and bland White people movies for Oscars ain’t a good look. #BlackActorsMatter

PROTIP: As much as I advocate using the blogosphere as your soapbox, harassing and belittling people whom you want something from by calling them “sweetheart” when they are older than you, outrank you, and have degrees that cost more than your life is worth is foolhardy at best and a qualifier for a ticket to Podunk U at worst. Don’t wonder why you feel disrespected when you can’t bother to give anyone else respect…sweetheart 🙂

PROTIP: If you move back to your hometown after being away for a while and find yourself running into old acquaintances you’re not hoping to see, it may be time to think about moving. If you find yourself running into your parents’ old acquaintances.. not only is it time to move, but it’s probably advisable to disappear into the night to the nearest big city, even if you have to live in a cardboard box.

PROTIP: Taking tips from others about child rearing is a tricky business… but you can usually assume that any advice from people who regale others with tales from their childhood that sound like the beginning of a serial killer’s biography is best avoided. Unless you’re actively attempting to raise a mini-Bundy or Dahmer, that is.

PROTIP: If you, like Naya Rivera, think that hygiene is a ethnic-specific project and feel the need to share this insight with the rest of the world, do us all a favor and go wade in the nearest body of water until you’re bathing your eyelids. A good brainwashing never hurt anyone- especially the stupid.

PROTIP: The last time I checked, taking a job meant that you planned on fulfilling ALL of its requirements, not just the ones you WANT to do… unless you want to work somewhere where they pay you when THEY feel like it or when it’s convenient. But hey, I was raised by wolves and just happened to make it to not one, not two, but three top schools- pay no attention to me because I clearly don’t know what I’m talking about.

PROTIP: Finally, lucky number seven- if you’re one of those people who outwardly claim that you’re betting on good luck, karma, etc. to bring you the life you want on a silver platter, when in reality you depend on the kindness and naivety of others to get by while you get over, may you never have the misfortune of getting involved with me. I always bet on Black- meaning covering my own Black behind before worrying about other people and their bullish excuses- so please know that won’t work on me. KTHXBAI!

Hope you enjoyed this week’s shortened PROTIP Phriday- next Monday may or may not feature a post on my thoughts around diversity and some reflections on MLK Day. I’ll be spending my day on Monday reflecting, herding cats (read: training young paraprofessionals) and attending an event sponsored by my office featuring a screening of the documentary “The New Black” and a Q&A session with the filmmaker, Yoruba Richen- feel free to join me if you’re in the area (details below). Until next time, leave your entitlement and childhood horror stories at the door- see you soon…


Proof that I actually DO work outside of writing this blog… an event that I helped plan- join us if you’re in the Providence area.

PS: If you’re one of my students who found this blog after my mentioning it in “Don’t Be a Meme” this coming weekend, good work and welcome to GotDegrees! To prove to me that you actually found it on your own, text or e-mail me the word PROTIP. You may (or may not) get a prize…