Okay I must admit, this on-line stuff I take too personal. So here’s the story. I’m doing my thang trying to promote my on-line shop (http://www.eclecticsoul1975.com) on Tumblr (as seen on the bottom of this post). Okay so I am promoting my “African Dance Belt” cause I’m trying to sell those thangs right. So someone blasted me and said there is no such thing as an “African Dance” belt and Africa is not a country but a continent. Okay I know this much if I don’t know anything else “AFRICA IS A DAMN CONTINENT” but anyway I digress. Let me copy this person’s (http://thisisnotafrica.tumblr.com/) comment here:
There is no such thing as the ‘African Dance’ belt
Africa is not a nationality nor a country
You can opt for calling your stuff some thing else
At first I was like “Beotch” don’t tell me what the f*ck to call my creation. If you are into Love and Hip-Hop the original Mama Jones hook part of the song was playing in my head, you know the one she wrote about Chrissy. I was like don’t effing tell me what I should opt to call my shit that I effing make. “Say it my face, say it to my face”. It was during a time when we were evacuating because of Hurricane Issac so I could not leave that response because I was working with a cell phone with a thoroughly cracked screen. So I just put I will respond to this after the evacuation. I’m glad I did because I had time to think out my answer and not be so reactionary. In her or his own little way they were trying to teach me something I guess.
So after about a week or so I responded with:
Okay let me start off by saying I was totally on the defensive when I saw your response. Now that I had days to think about it (because of hurricane Isaac I was not able to write a concise response using my phone) I have to say that if I did have the computer access that I have now my response probably would have been ignant(spelled that way on purpose). So to this I say I am going to respond as if I am not behind a computer screen and if I was face to face with whom ever made this comment. First the reason I was offended by the way you blasted me because I felt, like many others that post on the social network , you had no regard for my feelings as a human being. If you are teaching me something approach as a student that needs to learn, not like some know it all who thinks they are better than me. I am a person whom seeks knowledge and understanding of all things. I do not mind someone correcting me when needed, but it is all the in the approach. I felt sooooo stupid with your response. Not only that you then tell me to call it something different, like you matter to me in my life. Approach is everything to me. Okay I’ll admit I did not know that what I was making was called an Indlamu as pointed out by another Tumblr user (http://datsyrup.tumblr.com). All I know is that I African Dance—-specifically West African Dance and more specifically West African Ballet. Out of all the things I know for the least bit I know Africa is not a country. The belt that I made and make is primarily used as I have witnessed many times, is for West African Dance. Now I see I was wrong by calling it an African Dance Belt. I called an African Dance Belt because when someone is searching for such a belt that is what they are going to search for. Now in the future and on my online shop I will put the correct name for it for people to know, but at this time I am not changing the name of the belt. I’ve had a conversation with the Ancestors and they said it is okay, and until otherwise I am lead so I will label what I make an African Dance belt with a side note. So in the future I suggest you respond to people how you would respond to them in their face. That’s all. And trust me I do thank you for blasting me, it only makes me better:)
Source: qweent (my tumblr)
I also followed up with a name change to the belt as well just because I thought this probably was the right thing to do to make sure my ancestors are always honored:
Okay so I have been trying to figure out a name that would be suitable for these belts I have been making for some time now. I have been called out on-line so I think it is important when you become informed, you act like it. So with that being said and with consultation from many sources (including the ancestors) I have opted to change the name of the belts that I make to “Mama Africa” Dance Belt. Why Mama Africa you say? It is a belt and I wanted to keep that part of it in the name, and my purpose for the belt as well as others is used for dance and the dance we used it for is dances from the continent of Africa. I consider the continent the Motherland and so you have it Mama Africa Dance Belts. That is about the just of it at this time.
Well anyway after doing some research (on-line only I may add) I have come across belts/skirts what have you, that are similar to the ones I make. The seed planted by (http://datsyrup.tumblr.com) lead me to research the Reed Dance that is performed by maidens, preferably virgins that occupy the regions populated by Zulus. Once a year maidens take part in this cultural festival “The Royal Reed Dance” festival or Umkhosi woMhlanga in the Zulu language. This dance has been performed by many generations. This dance symbolizes a preparation for womanhood. “According to Zulu tradition, only virgins are permitted to take part in the festival to ensure they are ritually pure”(www.zulu.org.za). In Zulu mythology if a woman is not a virgin her reed will break in front of the crowd and she will be embarrassed because of this. Traditionally during the ceremony the King may choose a bride from the maidens participating.
Also I researched Indlamu in which another tumblr user (http://datsyrup.tumblr.com) pointed out the name of the belt and it seems to me that Indlamu is a dance and not what the belt is called. Please if I am wrong or misunderstood your reblog, again do not hesitate to correct me.
But anyway, I will continue to research and become knowledgeable about this item I choose to make so that I will represent the true spirit of what it is.
So after that I keep asking myself why did I care so much about this call-out on-line from someone I don’t know and will possibly never know. Why was I soooooo offended. I think it may of had something to do with I see myself a smart, intelligent, educated, seeker of knowledge and I felt like this person called me dumb as hell in so many words. I just saw someone on a high horse waving their smart ass little finger at me. When I am wrong I do like for someone to tell me I’m wrong so that I will not continue to look at like a fool, but like I said I guess it was the approach. And know that I think about it, she/he whoever is probably young and does not know the value of constructive criticism. And on top of all that I sit here rubbing my palms waiting for a reply—none whatsoever. But any who I ask myself “Why do I care”? If you have any information about these belts or can guide me in any direction to find out more information about them please inbox or leave a link in the comments.
————————-> “LIKE” & “FOLLOW” ME<————————————-
Example of the Belts I Make