Guests of the Inner Sanctum

Author Spotlight: Lisa G. Riley on, “He Called Me… Bayby”

One morning I woke up to find out that I’m a statistic. You know the one I’m talking about. It goes a little something like this: An African-American woman is more likely to find herself torn apart by a bomb in lower Timbuktu after a side trip to Outer Mongolia than she is to find herself married.

Well when I heard this, I did what every other unmarried A.A. woman I know did (And apparently, we are legion): I panicked. Desperately, I called married friends for fix-ups and I signed up for Internet dating. And then I did the worst possible thing a single woman can do. I submitted myself to the ministrations of older female relatives who had been begging me for years to “let me talk to Hattie (Pearl, Hester, Maggie, etc.). They’ve been trying to palm—uh get Pookie (Clarence, Tom, Debo, whatever) married for a min—whoops, I mean they’ve been trying to uh…uh…”

And finally unable to avoid my suspicious glare or keep up the absurd charade any longer, she decides on the truth, served up with a slice of major attitude of course: “Look, girl, he’s single with a J.O.B. You want me to call or not?!”

The good news about all of that is that some of it worked. The bad news is that none of it worked well. I started seeing a long, lanky artist who didn’t tell me until way too late that he believed wholeheartedly in the old adage “Love the one you’re with.” And since I live in Chicago, and he in California, there was hardly ever going to be any loving coming my way. Moving on.

Then there was the widower who was such good husband material that all he talked about on our date was his wife who’d been dead for two years. NEXT!

And lastly, we have the little Serbian, so called because he’s well…little and a Serbian. The only part of that sentence I had a problem with was the ‘little’ part, but I was willing to adjust. That was because I hadn’t had anyone look at me the way he had in a very long time. He looked at and talked to me like I had hung the moon and had tossed a few stars around it just for kicks. Oh, but then it happened. He got too close too soon; acted like he wanted to own me. Not only moving on, but boning up on stalking laws just in case.

And that brings me to the point I’m at now: still looking. I almost put a new ad on the dating site: Definition of an IDEAL MAN: Picks up socks, puts down toilet seat and takes pride in giving his woman orgasms.

But why settle?

There’s a wonderful song by One Eskimo featuring Candi Staton in which a man is asking a woman what another man had done to get her to leave him. All she says is he called her baby, but it’s the way she says it.

I’ve decided that I’m not going to settle for anything less than a man who can inspire me to say my man calls me baby (or darling, sugar, honey) in the same way she says it.

Lisa G. Riley is an author who writes multicultural fiction in several genres, including romantic suspense, erotica and paranormal. Her latest book, Give Yourself to Me, was released August 31st from Loose Id . Please visit her at or

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