Category Archives: Relationship Advice

Don’t Judge a Book By Its Cover – Part I

How many times have you heard that saying? If you’ve heard it half as much as I have, you’ve heard it a lot! And I do mean a lot! But how many times have you had the opportunity to head this colloquialism and found yourself better for it?

Not often do I notice a pattern or theme in my life, but when I do, I find a sort of spiritual awakening and renewing by taking the time to reflect on the theme and allow it to soak in and water my spirit. The title of this article, Don’t Judge a Book By Its Cover, revealed itself as the theme for this weekend through three events or occurrences; Zimmerman was acquitted of all charges in the killing of Trayvon Martin, I hung out with the Mongols at their event in Palm Springs, and pastor preached about loving one another, as one of the pillars to Christian living in today’s world. Indulge me, if you will, as I share this theme and how these three occurrences have each had an impact on my spirit.

The first occurrence, Zimmerman being acquitted of all charges in the killing of Trayvon Martin, is a blinding notice of how pre-judging someone on their appearance (in this case, Martin’s clothing and race) can lead to irreversible consequences (in this case, the loss of a young life). The facts:

  • Zimmerman was out watching his neighborhood with a loaded weapon
  • Zimmerman was aware that several break-ins had been occurring, perpetrated by black men
  • Zimmerman saw Trayvon:
  • didn’t recognize Trayvon
    • thought Trayvon’s actions were suspicious (In Zimmerman’s call to the police he stated that he thought that this unknown person was up to something.)
    • then proceeded to follow Martin, despite being told my local police not to pursue
  • A struggle ensued between Zimmerman and Martin.
  • Zimmerman claims that Martin attacked him, he fought back, and killed Martin.

Now, with Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” Law in mind, one could have seen Zimmerman as the attacker, as he was the one out with the gun and subsequently became the one in pursuit of Martin. One could argue that Martin was standing his ground. After all, he was the one being followed. But getting back on topic, had Zimmerman not been judging Martin by his cover of black skin, it could easily be argued that this tragedy never would have happened. Recall Zimmerman’s knowledge of the break-ins, which were allegedly being perpetuated by black males, and Martin being a black male. Had Zimmerman not made assumptions, stopped his actions, or at least went about it in a different manner, say straight forward approached Martin and said, “Are you lost? Do you need some help?” perhaps things would have turned out drastically different.

The second occurrence of the weekend, I hung out with members of the biker club the Mongols. After a friend and I attended a concert, we decided to go out, hear some music, and experience a new cultural environment. We found ourselves at the Hyatt where the Mongols had assembled for an event. Upon parking and exiting our vehicle, their presence was firmly established. Their motorcycles occupied a lot of the parking areas and they were seen patrolling the parking lot, mingling in the lobby, and after we entered the courtyard of the Hyatt, they were the sole guest hanging out in and around the pool. That is until my friend and I arrived. Unsure whether or not we would be welcomed, we asked a Prospect who happened to be walking past us. I’m often nominated as the spokesperson for my social groups, because I am adventurous and seem to bloom where I’m planted. “Excuse me,” I said, “Do you think it would be alright if we hung out here with you all?” I’m straight forward.

Stay tuned for Part II & III

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Tips for Online Dating

In today’s busy world of working more than 9 – 5, suffering long daily commutes to and from work, and trying to squeeze a social life in there somewhere, many have taken to online dating. I personally think it’s a great way to meet people and see it as nothing but another avenue by which to extend your dating fishing line.

However, one must be wise if they should decide to take this avenue. Here are a few tips that I believe will help you to protect your privacy and allow yourself to be selective in whom you chose to have contact with:

  • Do not put our name or nick-name in your screen name – this may seem like a no brainer but you would be surprised at how many people actually do this.
  • Don’t put your contact information in your profile – not your phone number, e-mail, work e-mail (not that you should be doing that anyway), or any other personal contact information. If a person wants to contact you, they should pursue the avenues available through the online dating service.
  • Use photos that are not in use on your personal social media pages – photos used on your dating website profile should not be the same as those used on your facebook, twitter, linked in, or other social media websites. Why? People can do a google image search and find out more about you than you may wish them to know by your using the same pictures.
  • Use photos that portray you how you want to initially be seen and treated – Ladies, if you’re sticking your boobs out for the world to see, don’t be surprised if men are only contacting you to “hook-up”.
  • Pick flattering photos – usually, these are not photos you take of yourself.
  • Don’t choose photos with someone in them besides yourself
  • Don’t EVER post photos of your children – this should go without saying but again, you would be surprised how many people plaster photos of them with their children on dating sites. Yes, your children should be your main priority and together, you are a package deal. However, should you begin do date someone and become serious, there will be a time and place for them to meet and get to know your children. A dating website is NOT the time or place.
  • Don’t post ANY information about your children – That you have children and how many would be all that I share. I don’t even share whether they are male or female. Again, there will be a time and place for the sharing of this information if the relationship should progress in a serious direction, but a dating site where anyone and everyone has access to this information is neither the time nor the place.
  • Trust your instincts – if someone gives you the creeps, ignore them. My philosophy, “Better safe than sorry. Or in this day and age, ‘Better safe than a corpse.’”

Online dating can be wonderful experience or a taxing vexation of seemingly pointless diatribe. Either way, one thing it should not be is an opportunity for a predator.