This So-Called Post-Post-Racial Life

April 3, 2009

Old School Friday: Man-Up

Filed under: Old School Friday — Tags: , — pprscribe @ 9:49 am

The Old School Friday theme for the week is “If I Were a Boy Man.” (I am adapting it somewhat. And for male OSF participants, the theme was the same except substituting “girl.”)

The inspiration for this theme is apparently a Beyonce song/video by the same name. This video I had never seen before checking it out for the purposes of this assignment. It is an intriguing concept. Good looking video. Still leaves a lot of room open for interpretation.

If I were a man… Would I grant myself license to do the things that (some/many/most?) men seem to get away with because they are men? Claim my male privilege, in other words? Or should I interpret the theme differently, and take this opportunity to be the type of man I expect and want in my life? Or–perhaps go total fantasy, and become the very man of my own dreams–a man who does not and could never exist in true life?

Hmmm. Well, I think I’ll go with the “real manhood” interpretation…who I’d want to be if I were a man who wanted to be all he could be for me. (Got that?)

“Be Real Black for Me” by Donny Hathaway and Roberta Flack
Can’t go wrong with these sentiments sung by Donny and Roberta. This song chokes me up every time I hear it. It’s funny (not ha-ha funny): a song with these lyrics probably could never make it on mainstream radio today–even (especially?) mainstream “urban” radio…

“Stand By My Woman” by Lenny Kravitz
As a man I hope that I would stand by my woman–or by my man, as the case might be. Admit when I have been wrong and done wrong, and put my life on the path of real change. If I had the body and presence of Mr. Kravitz, I also might do all of these things always with my shirt off and carrying my guitar.

Just a thought.

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell
I’ve been thinking a lot about Marvin. Probably because this week we observed the anniversary of both his birth and his death. What an incredible loss and a tragic end. Yet another aftermath of domestic violence that still goes so unspoken in our communities.

Anyway, another duet here. It is likely no surprise that two of my three songs are duets. For one, I really really really like duets–the old fashioned kind where folks collaborated and sung together, in person and where they were not trying to out-American Idol each other with competing vocals. But maybe I am saying something about “real” masculinity always containing elements of the feminine?

At any rate, Happy Old School Friday! Enjoy your weekend, genders all!


Please see MrsGrapevine for rules and registration info for OSF. Thank you to hosts MrsGrapevine and Ms. Marvalus. Check out other OSF participants–and join us next time!

PPR_Scribe’s previous OSF posts.



  1. Awesome picks! You can never go wrong with Donny or Marvin.
    I also thought a lot about and played a lot of Marvin this week. I saw a lot of people also blogged about him this week. Tragedy and loss that effected a lot of people…

    Comment by regina — April 3, 2009 @ 12:11 pm

  2. Smooth tracks this Friday. Happy OSF. I miss Marvin too.

    Comment by hagar's daughter — April 3, 2009 @ 3:31 pm

  3. Hi there,

    I am not into Lenny Kravitz’ music but I surely wish that he and Lisa Bonet had stayed together…

    *looong sigh*

    Comment by BlackWomenBlowTheTrumpet — April 3, 2009 @ 3:39 pm

  4. You really put some thought in this and took a philosophical high road – whereas I immediately went to my baser nature and panted after Pierce Brosnan, lol.

    I’m a bit ashamed of myself but never my adoration of Mr. Brosnan – and I still think If I were “LUCKY” . . . I’d be him or Meryl in Mamma Mia!

    Happy OSF and thanks for stopping by!

    Comment by popartdivatv — April 3, 2009 @ 8:32 pm

  5. I have been listening to Marvin all week myself…with a totally heavy heart.

    You have some excellent songs here…Great way to explain where your mind and soul took you…

    Happy OSF!

    Comment by Marvalus — April 3, 2009 @ 10:31 pm

  6. You created the Mr. Hard-to-Find pkg here. 🙂 Enjoyed your selections. Always enjoy Marvin and liked hearing the old Hathaway/Flack cut plus Lenny.

    Happy OSF!

    Comment by Verite Parlant — April 3, 2009 @ 11:30 pm

  7. What is going on up in here? You pulled out all the power people, my goodness. Out of your list, I like to sing like Donny, play like Lenny and look like Marvin. Oooh I would be too much. LOL

    Have a good weekend.

    Comment by shaeshae — April 4, 2009 @ 10:56 am

  8. I love the embeded music as opposed to videos. Great idea! Good song choices as well. Oh yeah, about the being a man thing? Don’t worry, it’s not as it’s all cracked up to be. There are many of us men who are like you still trying to figure out just what manhood is all about.

    Comment by RiPPa — April 4, 2009 @ 12:17 pm

  9. Thanks to all of you for listening in for a spell to my OSF selections! This one was a little tough–felt like I was back in high school trying to interpret an essay question for a comp exam. LOL But as always, the various results from all the participants were varied and interesting and inspired.

    Can’t wait to see what’s cooking for next Friday!

    Comment by pprscribe — April 5, 2009 @ 12:49 am

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