Beyond Black & White » Relationships http://www.beyondblackwhite.com Chronicles, Musings and Debates about Interracial & Intercultural Relationships Mon, 01 Sep 2014 05:08:48 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 AAWG, ‘Savage Tango’ “Getting him to do more than smile.” http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/aawg-getting-smile/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/aawg-getting-smile/#comments Fri, 29 Aug 2014 04:24:24 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=32636 Reader: My question for today is: How do I get white guys to stop smiling and looking at me and step up and talk to me. What can I do besides smiling back to show that I’m open to the idea of talking to them? Michelle  Hey, I know you! How’s it goin today Ms. […]

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Reader:

My question for today is: How do I get white guys to stop smiling and looking at me and step up and talk to me. What can I do besides smiling back to show that I’m open to the idea of talking to them?

Michelle 

Hey, I know you! How’s it goin today Ms. Fashion Show!

Ya wanna know how I know you? Cuz you made yourself known to me first, that’s why. You’re the one who got that ball rollin and here I am all noticing you, happy to see you and givin ya nicknames and all that. Nice trick, how did you do that?

And you know…the whole thing is your fault. You started it! And now that you’re on my swirling radar you’re gonna let me finish it.

So lets just rewind a little bit then see what we can do about transferring what you did to me here in this place to Real Life, ok?

If you recall, I made a comment on something then you replied to me and things went from there. I’m just minding my own business doin my white guy thing and you managed to get yourself noticed. I happened to recognize an opportunity and went from there and now here we are sittin here talkin together about stuff.

Now what you did, you acknowledged something I said, offered a compliment and then followed it up with a question of your own. God, we white guys LOVE it when ya make it that easy for us like that. The door’s sitting there wide open and all I gotta do is walk on through it.

And I totally did…heh heh.

Man-smiling

So it looks like you want more guys to quit standing there in the doorway and start walking on through it, huh? Geez Michelle, where are you having this problem at? Are you standing in front of the corporate headquarters of E.D. Anonymous?

Well, ya worked your magic on me so let’s see how we can work that “walk through my door ” magic out there in The Real World today.

Even though this is about them white guys walkin through your door, lets start with you, ok? What kind of reason are you giving them to walk through that door? Now think about that for a second. Sure, you can sit there and say to yourself that you’re willing to have your door intruded upon in that manner, but you gotta decorate your doorway a little bit and make it look like one I want to go all barging into SWAT team style. Or Mormon Missionary style, I don’t care, whatever works for ya like that. I don’t judge ;-)

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And then you got to make it look like one YOU want me to go all SWAT team on. Or Mormon Missionary on…whatever. You want us white guys coming through your door one way or another.

The world out there is one big huge opportunity for this. Don’t limit yourself to this type of thinking for any particular time and place, like for example a bar or club. Hell, people expect to get all social in that environment. I’m talking everywhere else here. And I mean EVERYWHERE else. The second you set foot out your front door, you have got to be mindful of this doorway you and I are talking about here.

So walk around with that door wide open. Make sure you look pleasant, relaxed, open to something beyond a mundane “hi”. Look approachable. And by that I mean put that cell phone away, take off those sunglasses, rev up that smile and make some direct eye contact out there. Relax, slow down and just kinda glide gracefully through your day. Don’t deny us the privilege of seeing you at your best. Try to keep in a good and positive frame of mind and put out good vibes in general.

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Hey, personally here’s what I do myself and it has been good to me. It has been VERY good to me and you should try this today…

Smile. Smile and relax. Smile and relax and have fun. Smile and relax and have fun and then flirt like there is no tomorrow. People will remember you in a good way if there actually is a tomorrow.

 

flirting, attraction, dating, relationship advice, perception, allure, swirling, interracial dating, dating advice, research, statistics,

Ok. That’s your assignment for today. And tomorrow. And the next day, too. Ya know, just do it every day, OK? You’ve got a nice looking door there, Michelle. I walked through it. Now lets get some other whiteness walking through it as well.

Sadly, we gotta recognize there’s some barriers out there when it comes to getting white guys to walk through an ebony door. Hey, it ain’t your fault, it ain’t my fault, we just have to play the hand we’re dealt here, OK? There’s simply racial, cultural and just plain old human nature related barriers we  have to work around here. We aren’t getting into that can of worms…hell, that’s a can of damn sea serpents right there. We ain’t touching that stuff, we’re just gonna acknowledge it exists and how we’re gonna get them white dudes coming around and walking through your door.

Now ya know what I like about your question, Michelle? I like the fact that you say, and I most assuredly quote,

“What can I DO besides smiling back to SHOW that I’m open to the idea of talking to them?”

This tells me a few things about you. A few things about you that I really like.

THING 1: You’re pro active. You want to “do” things. You want to step up and take care of business rather than just sit back and wonder what the hell’s going on.

THING 2: You are not only willing to take control here, but you’re gonna most definitely do it. You want to “show” you’re open and so is your door.

Kudos to you, Michelle! Gotta love those chicks who like what they see then decide to do something about it ;-)

 

Business People Conversing on Train

So here’s a few something’s to do about it.

If you’re open to the idea of talking to them, there ain’t no rule that says they have to talk first. They might not even know you’re in the vicinity and willing to engage in a little doorway play.

Don’t be afraid to get that ball rolling. I mean, ya went and did it to me! Heh heh…so try talking! Now I’m not saying go up to him all like,

“Why hello there, you vanilla Viking, you. Come get some cocoa.”

Save that for a Halloween party ;-)

Make a few casual, random comments and observations. It’s not that they have to be all profound and thought provoking, just a means of lowering that initial barrier and allowing things to run their natural course from there.

I’m sure you do the same thing with little old ladies, other chicks, the cashier, kids, whomever…whatever. Do it with some white guy who caught your eye and you want him coming on through that door of yours. No big deal, just a casual observation as you walk on by.

You see him getting in/out of a Jeep/BMW/Pinto…

“You know, I’ve really been thinking of getting one of those. Are they worth it?”

When it comes to white guys, their cars are a pretty safe bet to get that job done.

You know what worked on me once? I’m just minding my own business in the produce section and someone next to me said,

“Do you know if these sweet potatoes or yams?”

Seriously, that’s all it took, we struck up a nice casual conversation and 2 days later we’re having dinner together.

And no, we never actually did find out if they were sweet potatoes or yams. Heh heh…Like we even cared in the first place!

So like I said, it doesn’t have to be anything all profound and thought provoking here. Just an initial something to get that ball rolling. You’re just looking to show that you’re open to the idea of talking to them. Then let him go from there and begin the journey through your door ya got wide open.

Now let’s flip this around here OK? How about you give me something to make a casual observation and comment on. Hey, what’s the first thing I did when I addressed you at the beginning? I dropped a nickname on ya. You know why? Cuz you went and gave me something memorable to work with and I was all “Hey Fashion Show!”

See, this casual comment observational thing works both ways here. Give the white dude something to check out and comment on.

Like a Metallica tee shirt. Heh heh..now THAT would be interesting! God, that would be interesting. If I saw some Lovely Black Lady rocking one of those I’d be very quick to say something to her. Woman, I am coming through your door in 3..2..1…

Swirling Mission Control, we have lift off!

Yeah, you see where I’m going with this.

Or if you’re a little more low key, try something else you’re comfortable with. The general idea here is to give that white guy something he’s gonna notice and then he’s simply gotta say something about.

Bonus points for busting out of traditional stereotype territory. I’m just saying  ;-).

Now, sometimes you do have to be a little more blunt. A little more out in the open. We have those stinking barriers we were talking about. If you are so inclined be a little more direct and go the compliment route. Its a little more than that casual comment thing we were talking about. Feel free to ambush him with your feminine wiles. God gave them to you for a reason ya know.

You like his cool tie? Let him know it. You like his shirt, shoes, bad-ass leather jacket…whatever. Let him know you noticed it. You don’t have to go  trying to pick him up, just let him know you see what he’s doing and you like what you see. The worst that can happen is like, what… “Thank you” ??

You know, like I said earlier you did just that with me here. You addressed me, you offered a compliment, and then you asked me a question.

And by God! As soon as I saw your name I knew who you were! Job well done, Michelle! Job well done!

So smile. Relax. Make eye contact. Enjoy yourself. Good vibes are contagious. You’re having a great time, your door is wide open and the right kinda white guy is gonna recognize that and go walking on through it ;-)

Cheers to you and stay Swirly, my friend!

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How Yours Truly Played Cupid with New Power Couple, Film Maker Chris Silber and Dr. Misee Harris http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/truly-played-cupid-new-power-couple-film-maker-chris-silber-dr-misee-harris/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/truly-played-cupid-new-power-couple-film-maker-chris-silber-dr-misee-harris/#comments Thu, 28 Aug 2014 17:01:41 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=32821 I first met Chris Silber during the release of My Last Day Without You, a movie loosely based on Chris’ personal story. Soon after, Chris and I became quick friends, and I got the chance to meet Jolieta, the beautiful spirit who inspired the movie. By that time, Jolieta looked frail, but she was still […]

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I first met Chris Silber during the release of My Last Day Without You, a movie loosely based on Chris’ personal story. Soon after, Chris and I became quick friends, and I got the chance to meet Jolieta, the beautiful spirit who inspired the movie. By that time, Jolieta looked frail, but she was still sweet and smiling. A few weeks later, I learned that she lost her fight with cancer, ending her and Chris’ 15-year union. I saw Chris handle the loss with dignity and optimism, and celebrated his wife’s memory openly.

But I knew Chris was lonely. He’d been happily and faithfully married to a woman he fell in love with on first sight. So I decided to play Cupid. I told him about a pretty brilliant and pretty looking young woman that I thought would be a good fit–the one and only Misee Harris, DDS, television personality and up-and-coming actress. I arranged the introduction, but I wasn’t 100% sure Misee would go for it, because up until Chris, she hadn’t ever dated interracially.

For the life of me, I couldn’t understand how this beautiful, brilliant and super-sweet Southern belle wasn’t already happily hitched! She’s a dentist, inventor, and entrepreneur. Why hadn’t she been snatched up? I first wrote about it here.

I tried to get the couple together at the Swirlr premiere party, but alas, they missed the first opportunity. The did connect on Facebook, however, and that’s when Chris learned of her interest in acting. Chris finally connected with Misee when she came up for consideration for a comedy series he was creating, Live from Schittburgpremiering in September. And that’s when the sparks went all the way off!

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There was some bumps in the road, though. I remember having to coach Misee on the dating habits of successful European men, because she wasn’t used to all the spoiling. “I’m used to asking my guy if he wants me to buy him those $300 Nikes that just came out!!” she said. Like many black women, she thought it was her job to jump through hoops of fire and audition for “wifey.” I also made her pick up a copy of Swirling: How to Date, Mate and Relate, Mixing Race, Culture and Creed. 

Once she got over her initial wariness and allow herself to be wooed, and loved, their relationship really began to blossom. I remember smiling when I got a note from her saying, “I’m so glad I listened to you, Christelyn! Chris treats me like a queen!”

I got to see their love first hand when they came out to my neck of the woods to my favorite winery for dinner. They were almost syrupy with their affection and were clearly in love. They also have an incredibly robust sense of humor and they had me falling over laughing. Misee has also been greeted with open arms by Chris’ two children. His youngest is especially smitten.

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There is truly a connection, and I’m rooting for them.

Chris and Misee recently “came out” with their relationship on InterracialDating.com, and their Facebook group to help promote an incredibly worthy cause, treating Miyya, a young girl seriously burned as a child, on a shopping spree. Here’s the statement from Dr. Harris:

Miyya is an amazing young lady who went through a horrible injury at an early age that scarred her for life. She could have become an outsider, people called her a freak. But Miyya did something courageous that will shock you. She is the most inspiring person I have seen in a long time. I searched for her because of this video. In September my non profit organization, Dr. Misee Harris Project Smile, will visit Miyya to give back a little of what she has given to so many people out there. We are currently raising money to give her and her younger step sister Jayla the time of their lives and to get her story out to many more people.

 

Beyond Black & White has contributed, and I encourage all of you to do the same. Let’s support and empower our young girls! Let’s show them that the world is their oyster! Give here.

Here’s some candid photos I took of Chris and Misee. She for yourself how strong their connection is.

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Congratulations to my dear friends, Chris and Misee!

This post was sponsored by InterracialDating.com. Come when you’re ready. You ready yet?

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Is It Okay to Discourage Your Daughters from Dating Black Men? http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/okay-discourage-daughters-dating-black-men/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/okay-discourage-daughters-dating-black-men/#comments Wed, 27 Aug 2014 16:03:53 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=32771 Hey Christelyn I have a question for you. It’s something that I have been concerned with for a while and since you have daughters I thought I would bring this question to you. I am a BW and I have a daughter from a relationship with a BM. I honestly do not want my daughter […]

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Hey Christelyn

I have a question for you. It’s something that I have been concerned with for a while and since you have daughters I thought I would bring this question to you. I am a BW and I have a daughter from a relationship with a BM. I honestly do not want my daughter dating BM. I don’t see them getting any better years to come and I don’t want my daughter to experience the abuse (physically, emotionally, psychologically) that they bring to the table. I don’t want to talk down about BM to my daughter but I am not going to sugar coat it either.One occasion she and I were driving and a BM pulled along side of me and was looking my way. I just ignored him and was saying to myself “keep rolling because I am not even checking for you.” My daughter looked at me with a shocked face like “MOM” I told her I was sorry but told her I was not looking for someone who plays loud music, cornrows,saggy jeans and a white tee.How do I talk to her and let her know about them with out bashing?  How would you feel if one of your daughters wanted to date a BM? I know some are good but a lot of them have deep rooted issues with black women. It’s very hard to find one good one in a barrel of bad ones. Thanks for your time and for advice is appreciated.
As a mother of three daughters myself, trust me, I understand your concern. You are smart not to speak ill of black men or demand she not date them, because teenagers take a lot of pleasure in driving their parents nuts dating people their parents forbid them to. The best way to answer your question is to tell you what I’m doing, with hopes that my daughters will follow suit. All the girls see me being treated well by my spouse. We work together, we clearly love one another, and they see their mom living a pretty darned good life. Their father loves them and is an excellent provider and protector, and is loving and affectionate. Even my oldest daughter, who is not his biologically, often calls him first to get advice, and that really makes me smile.
I’m teaching through example. They’re learning what a good man is by living with one full time and seeing what a healthy, functional, loving relationship looks like in real time. Now that’s not to say that my daughters will always choose the right guys. I’m almost certain they’ll encounter men who might wish to abuse and exploit them or drain them of their spirit. But in the back of their minds, they’ll know the situation won’t be right, won’t feel natural. They’ll know because they saw their mother treated well, and will know instinctively when a man comes along all shiny and glittery on the outside and full of crap on the inside.
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While I will never discourage my daughters from dating black men, I WILL encourage them to date ALL types of men. Black men will not be graded on a curve or given extra cool points or favored positions simply because they share a similar shade of melanin with us. Just because he has a job and hasn’t been to jail and no illegitimate kids doesn’t earn him superiority over another man who views those qualities as a basic minimum and sets his sights much higher. They’ll not get a cookie for doing what they are supposed to do.
My daughters will know there are absolutely no limits of their options based on race. They will know the world is their oyster and know they can bring home a boy whose purple with pink polka dots, and as long as he treats her well, he will have a place at our dinner table. Basically, I’m going to teach my girls they can do what black boys and men have been doing without expressed permission for decades–date whomever they damn well please.
So in closing, writer, make sure that your daughter sees you in a happy and healthy relationship with a man who loves your dirty drawers. Allow her to witness you being courted, wooed, and loved. Travel with your daughter internationally if possible. Show her the world is hers. Tell her there are no limits in her quest to find a man who will love and commit to her.
Focus on the possibilities.

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UK Girl’s Response to Skinny Pickings for Swirling Across the Pond http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/uk-girls-response-skinny-pickings-swirling-across-pond/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/uk-girls-response-skinny-pickings-swirling-across-pond/#comments Wed, 27 Aug 2014 05:48:20 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=32762 Hey there! I’m EmpressNK, a 30 something woman living and working in London. As you can see from my picture, I’m tall (6 feet in flats), and wear a lot of colour. I’ve been dating (and swirling) on and off for the last 6 years, with several fun interactions with WM, the most entertaining of […]

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Hey there! I’m EmpressNK, a 30 something woman living and working in London. As you can see from my picture, I’m tall (6 feet in flats), and wear a lot of colour.

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I’ve been dating (and swirling) on and off for the last 6 years, with several fun interactions with WM, the most entertaining of which was the Eastern European guy in a Latin club who booty-danced in front of me for an hour to get my attention.

I’m a firm believer in the statement “to get different results you have to do things differently”. So I recently reviewed my overall dating history to figure out what had worked well and why, and what hadn’t worked well and why. Then I started on my new approach of learning and practicing how to attract, connect with, and vet men in order to end up with the right guy for me, and have a happy fulfilling life regardless :).

There’s a lot of resources out there on how to attract men, a few on how to connect with men, and very few focused specifically on how to vet men. I’m finding that a lot of the knowledge I’m gaining is applicable to other areas of my life too.

I’ll highlight some of the most interesting / useful lessons I’ve learned so far, I hope they inspire or help you in your dating and general life adventures!

Having authentic self-confidence is crucial – it’s pretty much the foundation for everything else. I suspect that being physically fit is a strong component of this and so will be exercising more. Thank God I can use dancing as my cardio as I loathe treadmills :).

Boundaries are important, and only people who respect my boundaries are allowed into my life. Similarly don’t be co-dependent or let co-dependent people into your life. Invest in real, authentic relationships, not fantasy / fake ones.

Attraction is not logical. Your ability to attract men can be boosted by increasing your visual appeal, charm / charisma, and femininity (external and internal) but it still won’t be 100% logical or guaranteed. So embrace that fact, have fun with it, and don’t feel bad over who is or isn’t attracted to you.

Knowing how to send signals of interest to men, especially the non-verbal ones is like having magical powers if you know how to do it well. It’ll take me a while to get to that level but the successes I’ve had so far have boosted my confidence and determination to get better at this :).

Check out Christelyn’s recent video about UK swirling:

Go where the men you want to meet are, and interact broadly. When you go out, be sure to mingle, have fun, dress nicely (and appropriately for the event) and be sure to talk to some men, even if you have to start the conversation off with small-talk. Don’t spend the entire time talking with women you already know or just met – men will rarely approach you when you’re in a group of other women.

Perhaps I should illustrate my new approach with a recent example?

Last Friday I had a night out with my friends at a Latin restaurant & club, for dinner and dancing. I used the opportunities I had to walk around the place a couple of times so everyone saw me in my red floor-length dress with a slit up one leg. It was classy yet sexy – and quite a few men made sure to tell me so :). The sweetest compliment came late in the night from an elderly man who told me that when I’d first entered the place I brought a touch of class with me.

After my friends and I finished eating, I was on the dance-floor like a shot, with the only married girl in the group. The other single girls stayed at the table for another whole hour before even one of them was ready to hit the dance floor. I only returned to the table to take rest breaks and check up on them, the rest of the time I was dancing, smiling and laughing a lot.

When I got back to the table for another rest break, I’d barely been sitting 5 minutes when a girl (a complete stranger) at a nearby table put her hand out and asked me to dance. So dance we did, we hadn’t even made it through one song when this good-looking British WM came over to us. After some confusion (I thought he had come for her, she thought he had come for me), she pushed me towards him and then it turned out it was there for me. Cue lots of “I like your red dress comments” – I can now confirm after that night and other experiments that red is the strongest colour for attracting men. Even men who usually don’t go for your type will look at you when you wear red (since you’re not their type they’ll quickly look away again lol), this just shows the power of red. If you don’t believe me, try it and see – get a red dress in a flattering shade, shape & fit to your body, wear it out with light make-up and nice hair, and count how many men look at you that day or night compared to a day you didn’t wear red.

Sorry, got distracted there…back to the WM, who I’d actually not noticed so far that night, as I’d been on the lookout for two tall Latino men I’d spotted earlier :). He asked me the usual questions – what’s your name, where are you from, what do you do for work, and volunteered his own information. It quickly became clear Mr Good-looking was not sober – he was quite respectful and fun to talk with, but I couldn’t count on him to initiate the next logical steps of a more detailed conversation or just exchanging contact details. So in the spirit of being proactive (but not desperate), I pointed out that I had to get back to my friends, and if he wanted to see me again perhaps he should ask for my contact details. His response was “I have an even better solution”, and he dug out a business card and handed it to me.

What was so different? The old EmpressNK would have gone to the club and focused more on the men there than having fun and being visible. The new EmpressNK checked the men out, but that was secondary to having fun – she actually danced more with her girl friends than with guys, but was smiling the whole time. She would also have written off the non-sober WM but has now realised that the majority of WM in the UK get drunk on weekend nights but that does not necessarily mean they are like that the rest of the week. The old EmpressNK would have fixated on the men she couldn’t have (Exhibit A – the two tall Latino men) and written off the men who approached her out of the blue (Exhibit B – the British WM), as she was ignorant of how men tend to have clear types and approach the women they find attractive. The old EmpressNK would have spent more time at the table with her non-dancing friends, reducing her visibility and accessibility to potentially interested men.

Like I said, to get different results you have to do things differently ;)

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QOTW: “Will I Ever Get a Date…Ever?!” http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/qotw-will-ever-get-date-ever/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/qotw-will-ever-get-date-ever/#comments Tue, 26 Aug 2014 05:43:36 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=32720 The note: Hi Christelyn,  I am a fan of your website and have liked it on Facebook, so I see regular updates on every venture you deign to put up. I am a Black girl living in London attending university to study Criminology and Forensic Investigation and I am attracted to mainly white guys. This […]

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The note: Hi Christelyn, 

I am a fan of your website and have liked it on Facebook, so I see regular updates on every venture you deign to put up. I am a Black girl living in London attending university to study Criminology and Forensic Investigation and I am attracted to mainly white guys. This attraction has always been there, when I was little I told my mother that I would marry a white guy because I liked the way they looked.
I believe that most swirling happens in the US and because I don’t live there it makes it harder for me to swirl. In London, it’s hard for a girl like me to even get a guy to look at me, let alone take me on a date or be in a relationship with. I don’t know what I am doing wrong. Am I not representing myself properly or am I just not the type of “black girl” that a white man would go out with. I have a broad nose, dark skin and stretch marks (I’m 19 and have never had children or any type of intercourse, It happened when puberty hit).
I am a first  date virgin, I have never been on a date with the opposite sex and I am probably never going to. I think this also affects how I interact with guys I like, they never seem to like me back. I have been friend-zoned like a million times and after my crush would find a girl and they would get together. I feel like the female version of Good Luck Chuck but I never seem to have good luck myself. What do you think would be the best course of action for me?
My take…

Yeah I don’t know what happened to the other file. Oh well. You got the general idea.

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Man Candy Monday: Able Bodied Men http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/man-candy-monday-able-bodied-men/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/man-candy-monday-able-bodied-men/#comments Mon, 25 Aug 2014 20:01:20 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=32655 From time to time it assists one’s palate to try new things. You who sit and drool over traditional favorites and refuse to consider anything outside the box don’t know what you are missing. I find that an open mind is the best accessory while tempting tasty male treats so this week’s Man Candy Monday […]

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From time to time it assists one’s palate to try new things. You who sit and drool over traditional favorites and refuse to consider anything outside the box don’t know what you are missing. I find that an open mind is the best accessory while tempting tasty male treats so this week’s Man Candy Monday is all about the ABLE BODIED MEN that make other men look like pig tailed school girls.

alex minsky, amputees, sexy men, men with tattoos, ink, man candy monday, flirting, dating, non black men, black women, interracial, dating, romance, swirling,

Alex Minsky is a former marine who lost his right leg in Afghanistan after his truck ran over an explosives. He’s now a fitness model with a huge social media following and pictures so hot they were banned from Facebook. See more of him on Instagram and Twitter

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Colonel Greg Gadson is an active duty Colonel in the United States Army and the current Garrison Commander of the U.S. Army Fort Belvoir. He is also a bilateral above-the-knee amputee, occasional actor, and motivational speakerHe served in the U.S. Army for more than 20 years as a field artillery officer and served on active duty for Operations Desert Shield and Desert StormOperation Joint ForgeOperation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

On the night of May 7, 2007, while returning from a memorial service for two soldiers from his brigade, he lost both his legs and severely injured his right arm to a roadside bomb in Baghdad. He became one of the first military personnel to use a next-generation powered prosthetic knee with technology to make it possible for amputees to walk with confidence and with a more natural gait.

Hugh-Herr

Hugh Herr, MIT, amputee, Wired magazine

By age 17 Hugh Herr was acknowledged to be one of the best climbers in the United States. In January 1982, after having ascended a difficult technical ice route in Huntington Ravine on Mount Washington in New Hampshire, Herr and a fellow climber Jeff Batzer were caught in a blizzard and became disoriented, ultimately descending into the Great Gulf where they passed three nights in −20 °F (−29 °C) degree temperatures. By the time they were rescued, the climbers had suffered severe frostbite.

Both of Herr’s legs had to be amputated below the knees; his companion lost his lower left leg, thetoes on his right foot, and the fingers on his right hand. During the rescue attempt, volunteer Albert Dow was killed by an avalanche.[1] Following months of surgeries and rehabilitation, Herr was doing what doctors told him was unthinkable: climbing again. Using specialized prostheses that he designed, he created prosthetic feet with high toe stiffness that made it possible to stand on small rock edges the width of a coin, and titanium-spiked feet that assisted him in ascending steep ice walls.

He used these prostheses to alter his height to avoid awkward body positions and to grab hand and foot holds previously out of reach. His height could range from five to eight feet. As a result of using the prostheses, Herr climbed at a more advanced level than he had before the accident, making him the first person with a major amputation to perform in a sport on par with elite-level, able-bodied persons.

After his climbing career, Herr began to focus on academics, previously an area of little interest to him. He earned an undergraduate degree in physics at his local college, Millersville University, and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering at MIT, followed by a PhD in biophysics from Harvard University.

Noah Gallaway,

Noah Gallaway,

Noah Galloway was injured by a roadside bomb during his second tour in Iraq in 2005. Now the double amputee is using his recovery process to inspire health, fitness and inspiration to himself and others like him. The 32 year old is the re-married father of three children and is currently considering going back to complete his education to become a school teacher. 

Jerome Singleton

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Jerome Singleton (born July 7, 1986) is a Paralympic athlete from the United States competing mainly in category T44 (single below knee amputation) sprint events. Because he had no fibula in his right calf, his leg was amputated below the knee when he was 18 months old.

Singleton was born in Greenwood, South Carolina, and attended Dutch Fork High School where he played varsity football, junior varsity basketball and track. He holds a bachelor’s degree in math and applied physics from Morehouse College and a bachelor’s in industrial and operations engineering from the University of Michigan. He has worked as a researcher at NASA and CERN.

Fernando_Fernandes

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Fernando Fernandez is a former professional model and and reality show actor who appeared in Big Brother Brazil ‘s Globo TV. In  2009 he suffered a car accident that left him a paraplegic. He holds the titles of two world championship wins in South America as a two-time Paralympic in canoeing which he took up as rehab following his accident.

Howie Sandborn, amputee, military, sexy men,

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After joining the U.S. Army in 2000 as an Airborne Ranger, Howie Sanborn served two tours in Iraq and became a member of the army’s parachute team, the Golden Knights. Sanborn has performed 2,500 free fall parachute jumps at events across the country. About five years ago, he started participating in triathlons, which involve a combination of swimming, cycling and running.

He joined a yoga class on the base in Fort Bragg, N.C. to make himself stretch more in preparation for the events. He wound up going several times a week and began training to become a certified yoga instructor. In September 2012, when Sanborn was about 140 hours into his 200-hour yoga training, he and a friend went on a bike ride. A distracted driver hit the two men, and Sanborn became paralyzed from the waist down.

Colt Wynn, bodybuilder, parapalegic, sexy man, man candy monday,

Colt Wynn, bodybuilder, parapalegic, sexy man, man candy monday,

In November 1999, when he was 13, Colt Wynn fell 14 feet (4 m) from a deer hunting stand in a tree near his family home in Fleming, Ohio. The fall broke his back, leaving him paralyzed. During his initial hospitalization, he lost 38 pounds (17 kg). As part of his rehabilitation, he took up weight lifting to strengthen his upper body. He would later state that his determination to use weight lifting as physical therapy enabled him to leave his hospital three weeks ahead of schedule.

Within three years of his accident, Wynn competed in his first bodybuilding championship, the 2002 NPC Wheelchair Nationals, where he won first place in the middleweight division. He won the same division again in 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2007, and won the 2008 light-heavyweight class. He also won the overall title for the 2003, 2006 and 2008 NPC Wheelchair Nationals. In 2007, he won the IFBB Pro Wheelchair Nationals, earning his professional bodybuilding card. 

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Kurt Fearnley

Kurt Harry Fearnley  is an Australian wheelchair racer, who has won gold medals at the Paralympic Games and ‘crawled’ the Kokoda Track. He has a congenital disorder called sacral agenesis which prevented fetal development of certain parts of his lower spine and all of his sacrum. In Paralympic events he is classified in the T54 classification. He focuses on long and middle-distance wheelchair races, and has also won medals in sprint relays. He participated in the 20002004,2008 and 2012 Games. christopher_vanetton_blog

Chris Van Etten, model, parapalegic, man candy monday,

Retired Marine and amputee gone model Chris Van Etten. Visit him on Twitter and Facebook and watch him in his recent photo shoot here.

Brad Ivanchan, model, sexy, amputee, handicapped,

Brad Ivanchan,

Brad Ivanchan is a 23 year old wounded in Afghanistan resulting in double amputation after having survived a bomb explosion in Afghanistan. He is also a featured model in the Michael Stokes project highlighting those who suffered amputation injuries due to their time in the military.

There is often speak of how we’re all hoping to get to the point of acceptance to find love and companionship but I wonder how many of the ladies that visit this thread would be willing to date, marry and share a life with a man who was not considered able bodied by society?

On the contrary these men could have just as easily been your husband, the engineer that loves to rock climb, or the military man that was called to duty. Active and engaging men have lives that sometimes include danger and the risk of injury.

Would you be willing to look beyond the physical and value a man’s heart and soul? Do tell….

The post Man Candy Monday: Able Bodied Men appeared first on Beyond Black & White.

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