ALNfeels.

#FOMOFridays

Wowza. I haven’t done one of these in like a month. Haven’t had much fomo since turning a year older, but now that Spring (a.k.a Summer) is basically here it’s warmer and there will be a ton of delicious (see what I did here) things to get up to. All the shows to binge which are starting new seasons and new and old music which is always popping no matter what time of year.

Ding-dong, the old winter is dead!

Watching:

Most NB thing on my TV (well really laptop screen – but whatevs) this week is Insecure Season 3!!! I gobbled up episode 1 as soon as I knew it was out. Thanks to everyone who had it on blast on their instastories, I totally forgot it was coming out this week. If you’re a fan, go watch! Always good. I just want Kelly tbh!

Succession just came onto Showmax. It’s a HBO show which always promises raw drama. I watched the first episode. Good premise on a family business empire is to be handed down to one of 3 children. You think you know who it will be but it looks like it’s going to be a messy family feud to the throne. It’s a 1 ep a week one for me.

Doja Cat was a viral hit this week with her “Mooo!” video. “Got milk, bitch? Got beef?” I died!! She made the whole thing in her room in front of a green screen. Now we know about her, so good on her. I’m gonna look for her music for sure now.

Listening:

I’ve been all up on Super Soul Conversations podcast this week. Out of the 3 that came out recently I was devved by the one with Panache Desai where he and Mama O talk about Discovering Your Soul Signature. Desai is considered a spiritual teacher and in this particular episode he goes into the transformative power of energy, understanding emotino

My #1 homegirl Nicki Minaj finally dropped Queen last week. It’s been my bread and butter this week. It’s also fun for working out or running to. Personally I’m not crazy about long albums with unnecessary tracks and this one is full of them. Obvs Nicki’s lyricism and word play comes through and so does Roman at the end of on one of my fave tracks on the album, Barbie Dreams.

I mentioned Darkie Fiction’s Sobabini EP two weeks back when it came out. After they shut down Oppikoppi over the long weekend I had to go back and for another fix. It really easy one of the best SA releases this year, no lies. Every track is a winner shem.

Our fave My Little Pony songstress, Ariana Grande, released her fourth album Sweetener literally a few hours ago. I haven’t properly dug into it because of Friday meetings, yawn! But from what she’s put out as singles, I’m very into it. Pop will always be my fave so…

Doing (Weekend Tingz):

The Color Purple Musical is back at Joburg Theatre from tonight. I’m sure by popular demand because it was so very good when I saw it back in February. Looks like a 3 week run, so if you missed it or need a rewatch – do it to it.

Bioscope Cinema is hosting its #BigNightIn pyjama party tonight with all you can eat pizza and all sorts of other yummy treats from Manhattan Sweets .  No plans? Maybe grab a friend and check it out. Sounds hella cute. From tomorrow night they are showing a special screening of ‘Goldblatt’: A Documentary, a doccie on South African photography legend David Goldblatt who passed away this year. Definitely keen for a midweek viewing of this one. Bookmarked!

Art & Design Saturday at Keyes is happening as it does every month, this time they are focusing on ‘How Womxn Lead’. Looks like there will be discussions, panels, art and performances by fierce womxn who have created their own success in the art and design world.

For a bit of a jiggle and razzle to some amazing R&B-Soul, Funk and Hip-Hop vibes; Spindle Online DJ Magazine has Cuttaways tomorrow night at The Cosmopolitan in Maboneng. Great DJs at a dope venue.

For a young Sunday wine down (*wink wink*) La Bouqeira is having what looks like it’s first ‘Wine Party In Parktown North’. 1 ticket = wine tastings, tapas all over the show and some Sunday jazz vibes. Sounds amaze. We’ll see. Y’all know that wine goes all the way in then next thing you’re at Rockets Bryanston. Pause.

Anywho, have THE most amazing warm weekend. Knowing August we’re definitely going to get a young icy breeze before the month’s over. Hope not!

xo

ALN.

Standard
ALNfeels.

Category Is…

Inclusive Safe Spaces.

Ok… granted that’s not an actual ball category, it is however a very important topic for discussion. Probably more important for the folk who are sick and tired of being victimised in violent, rapey and femmephobic spaces. Lord knows this isn’t of much importance to cis folk who fit the so-called everyday norm of the gender binary or those who show acceptable levels of masculinity that afford them the privilege to move through such spaces with more ease.

Femme bodies have always been and continue to be targets of assault and violence by hateful energies that are fuelled by fear, self-hatred and a hunger for exerting an ignorant power this society has taught them they are entitled to. That’s just the thing with this kind of negative power – it feeds on those who have been identified as weak and unworthy. Trust and believe that femme energy is none of these lesser words the majority relentlessly associates with it. It is in fact the more positive power. This is something I’ve learned from my own experience.

To nurture this seemingly unpopular power a handful of femme, queer and trans identifying peeps in Jozi have gone ahead and created their own inclusive and safe spaces. Spaces where self-expression is encouraged. Where vulnerability, creativity and femininity is praised and tolerance of nonsense from the negative power is very low if any at all.

I still remember buying a tight white lace top and stashing it in the back of my cupboard for months before I eventually got the courage to wear it at my first Cunty Power last year. The courage wasn’t because I was wearing a lace top. The courage was deciding to present and express myself the way that I’d always wanted to. It was a understandably tough for me. Especially the moment we had to leave the safety of the space I was in to go to Great Dane. It was ‘Same Sex Saturdays’ but I had never dressed like that publicly, at least not outside of a costume party. As fierce as I looked, I couldn’t help but shrink and feel some type of way because of the space I was in. Which mind you was mostly gay men, but femmephobia is no joke. Some of it was my own internalised stuff for sure but the night took an magical turn to where this girl walked up to me, took my hand and told me how beautiful I looked. She then put on a red beaded bangle on my wrist and went on her way. That act of love and connection did something to me. I’ve never looked back since that day.

Embracing my femme energy and loving the versatility of wearing whatever I want regardless of what the store clerk or gendered shop signage says is the very reason I choose spaces that deliberately and explicitly protect people like me. Anyone who knows me will know that I religiously go to Pussy Party at KCB in Braam. The message of PP is very clear – protect, uplift, nurture and love of femme and queer bodies. Anything against that is refused. It is undoubtedly my second home where I get to dance my queer ass off until the early weekday morning with zero fear or apprehension. Maybe a teensy bit of fear of a violent hangover the following day, but that ain’t never hurt nobody.

Just a month back a spectacular event was born in Joburg called Vogue Nights. Ever since I watched ‘Paris Is Burning‘ (available on SA Netflix 😉 ) only a just few years back actually, I’ve been obsessed with ball culture, voguing, metamorphosis and the notion that you can choose your family. Vogue Nights surely gave me that hope and promise that sizoba grand. The voguing beasts from V.I.N.T.A.G.E Crew turned it out on the floor battling MrAllOfIt and other gorgeous divas dressed in beautiful silks, fishnets, shiny gowns and colourful hair. I myself played it down a little because I had a dinner in Rosebank before and wasn’t about to put myself in any kind of a situation with Uber drivers or bigoted patrons of Doppio. That of course is my own struggle and another reason I live for these events that tell me it’s OK to be you, to be extra and to do the most. I did however put my choppy black wig, called Yolanda, in my pocket which later came out to play downtown with all my other femme, butch, queer and trans brothers and sisters.

The M.I.A. concert, KOP JHB, Afropunk and other iconic events I’ve been to in the past year have been shameless at promoting and supporting the LGBT+ community and putting strict disclaimers that do not tolerate any sort of ill treatment of any human, period. Many will try and play ignorant or make excuses for the toxic spaces that turn a blind eye to what they know is true. Some will demand to be educated on this matter instead of taking their own initiative to learn from global standards institutions such as the Afropunks have set in their governing principles.

What I really do hope for is that the many and the some will do better in striving for inclusiveness and safety for the folk that attend their parties, events, homes, restaurants and bars. It’s time we connected on the real things and allow one another to have fun without compromising any bodies (femme or otherwise). It’s hella idealistic hope for sure, but It’s hope nonetheless. We’re pretty much nothing without it.

xo,

ALN.

femme power

Standard
ALNlewks.

Weekend Mirror Style

Fully back in the swing of things. New week, hopefully new moves. Losing my holiday glow already from being back at work. Yawn! I’m just glad it seems to be getting a little bit warmer. The last time I did a WMS post it was basically Game of Thrones up in Jozi. I don’t watch the show (don’t @ me!), but it always looks snowy and cold af.

Anywho… LEWKS!

Friday: Back at work, but it was Friday so not much work was done… Lesbi-honest. What did work though was the outfit I threw on. Started with the camo pants and eventually worked my way into this lewk with a pink Topman sweater over a white button up and tan Chelsea boots. The denim worked better than any other coat with these colours. 🙂

WMS - Wk 31 (1)

Saturday: 3 hours boozy brunch with my best, Sunni, under the winter sun was the best start to the day. I was pretty hammered from the bubbly and sunshine by the end of it. Best! Then I hit the burbs for a friends farewell. After my post about Clueless 30th last week I was inspired to do a white cropped sweater over a pink striped button up both from Cotton On. Cher Horowitz did a ton of these on the film. Lower half was my trusted ripped jeans and grey camo D+D loafers.

WMS - Wk 31 (2)

Sunday: Mellow day spent with friends for a cute 6 year old boy birthday. Getting dressed was a scramble. Black is always the easiest option for me when I have no idea what I wanna wear. Was feeling particularly femme so I did a black Puma crop with a black ankle length cotton skirt and grey wool jacket. Silver NBs with red laces added a bit of something something to all the dark colours.

WMS - Wk 31 (3)

Great weekend. Stayed off the streets on account of energy. But we shall rebuild! Have a goodie cuties!

xo

ALN.

Standard
ALNlewks.

Lebanon VayCay Style

Seeing as I didn’t really watch or listen to anything new – Oh god wait! Darkie Fiction dropped their EP last week! I LIVE! You have to hear it. It’s so epic and goes down real good. Dripping with all the local flavour. Search ‘Sobabini: A Mzansi Revolution‘ on all streaming sites.

As you can tell there is no #FOMOFridays today. I’ve been away. Which leads me to this post! Mama had to serve some lewks while holidaying in Lebanon. It was hot and humid AF, but I managed to look cute each day. You guys would laugh at my little notebook in which I itemised each outfit day by day. Trust me it makes packing so much easier!

Thursday: Arrival day was great! Settled into the apartment and got some shut eye as we got there crazy early. The day was long and consisted a lot of sitting in traffic. It was all worth it when we got to the most amazing Mediterranean restaurant with the best food EVER. I wore my pink on pink delight shirt and shorts from Asos. On the feet I slipped into these embossed tan Duke+Dexter loafers. Nice overcast day which ended with a walk around the old city of Byblos with it’s gorgeous churches, cobblestone roads and harbour.

Lebanon-Day1

Friday: Boat day! So initially it was planned that we’d spend the whole day on this great party boat and frolic in the still Med sea to our hearts content… until the sea decided not to be still. Plan B was chilling on the stony beach in Batroun. Honestly a better alternative. The day was the best! Boozy, tiny cozzies and loads of food. Wore as little as possible. The vintage silk kimono from Vintage Goddess is all you should care about here. Hehe.

Lebanon-Day2

Saturday: Go Aya, it’s your birthday! I knew this day was going to be lush and delish all the way up in the mountains of Bkessine village. It was certainly no village by any South African standards. I had my girl Buhle of Fashimo Styles make me this two piece African print number. Initially had it untucked, but a tuck always wins. How gorge is this print from Nigeria??

Lebanon-Day3

Sunday: Funday. Woke up late. Chilled and fooled around at the apartment making videos to Darkie Fiction songs and eventually hit the city of Beirut. Loads of walking around and taking snaps of the coolest area called Mar Mikhael. Finally got to wear this Hawaiian-esque shirt from Zara with white shorts, white leather Converse and topped off with a vintage Fila corduroy cap. Easy breezy, beautiful.

Lebanon-Day4

Monday: Final day in the city was another chill one. My outfit certainly wasn’t! Lol. I had a choice between orange high-wasted pants made for me by Buhle or white linen pants; all white was going to be overkill so I went with the orange. Winner! They looked so good with a loose white linen button up and camo print Duke+Dexter loafers. Great day of art museums, margaritas and the constant hunt for WiFi.

Lebanon-Day5

I had THE best time dressing up every day like it was my bday (one day was of course). Lebanon was so gorgeous with so much history and variety. The men are so HOT and everyone is so friendly and warm. Imma give you the full lowdown in a future ALNgoes post.

Have a great weekend!

xo

ALN.

Standard
ALNfeels., ALNthrowbacks.

AyaWasLikeTotally30…

…3 years ago. Yesterday I got one of those ‘Facebook memories’ reminders of a picture of my personal best dressed faves; Inge, Dylan and Amanda dressed as the iconic trio from Clueless, at my 30th birthday party in July 2015.

I really just wanted to do a young throwback of this just so I could share this invite I made for the party. If you know me well, you’ll know this is one of my favourite films EVER and it had turned 20 years old when I was turning a whole 30.

I still remember being about 12 years old in boarding school and tagging along to the video store to hire the weekend movies. This was like ’98 so trust it was VHS upon VHS. Lord knows who I was with, but I forced them to hire Clueless among two other typical boy movies like Naked Gun or some hyper masculine action or sport film (those were all the rage back then – Kevin Costner I’m looking at you!). I had obvs seen the movie like a million times with my cousins so I was already fluent in eye-rolling, saying “what-ever” at every turn and pretending to know what Cliff notes or Haiti (said Hadey) was.

The movie played on a 51cm colour TV that sat suspended at the top right corner of the overcrowded hostel TV room with it’s wooden framed cushioned sofas, screaming red and gold floral carpets (which gave the worst f-ing carpet burns ever), oppressive white walls and it smelled of shampoo, soap and puberty. We had all just showered ten minutes before. I was obviously having the best time! Quoting every line and doing the whatever double hand gesture the hateful Amber character abused at almost every classroom scene. Surprisingly everyone else really liked the movie. Most of them commented on how they finally got all the random crap I always said. Even for a little bit I felt totally understood and happily continued to flip my non-existent hair over my shoulder whenever I crushed a maths test. Which was hardly ever to be honest. I was more of stage queen back then.

Wow. This post turned out to be a whole lot more than I intended it to be. Lol. Writing it had me go down memory lane to some really fond experiences at my time at D.V. Taylor House. Experiences with my then closest mates who actually always had my back through and through now that I think of it. Until high school came of course… then there were all sorts of plot twists and melodrama. Shout out to the OG dorm crew Senzwa, the two Mawandes, Dyasi, Anda and Phiwe.

Here’s the email invite I modelled after Cher’s speech:

ayaisliketotally30-invite

The rad flyer I made on PowerPoint:

AyaIsLikeTotally30

What a glorious moment during one of the darkest times of my life. Just 3 and half months before my mother passed and never got to see me turn the big 3-0. I know that I had to continue. Celebrate my life. Remember her influence and always know that I come from a place of love. It has certainly taught me to not cling onto big ages or events that occur in my life but cherish the joy and love every day offers, being authentic and honest, trying to be present, making the most of this temporary thing called life and even more so to be grateful for it.

Now at 33 I can say I live in gratitude of this body, this mind, my amazing friends, family, this earth and it’s beauty and of my gorgeous life giver who did the absolute best she could.

It’s all like TOTALLY great you know? 30 was a good start.

xo,
ALN.

Standard
ALNlewks.

Weekend Mirror Style

Ok so I had some drinks on Saturday. There I said it! Hahaha. I should’ve known there was no way I was gonna do an art fair without clutching onto a nice little summin’ summin’. It was freezing so I clutched onto some Shiraz. So… so long Dry July. The weekend was fantastic nonetheless. No hangovers to nurse at least. Kept shit classy.

Friday: This was another disastrous morning of trying to get dressed. I wore so many layers also! Looked at myself in the mirror and called myself a genetically mutated onion. So many colours! Anyway… it made sense in my head. Now that I look at the pic I’m like ‘Ummm’. Layered half was a tan poloneck, denim jacket and a pink bomber from Adidas Originals. The more summery part (lol!) were the camo skinny chinos with pale pink Fila platform sneaks. I was dressed. That’s all.

WMS - wk 30 (1)

Friday

Saturday: RMB Turbine Art Fair was a jam. I had my wine. Sipped it slow and enjoyed the art and lovely humans I ran into. There was a lot going on there I very much doubt I finished the whole thing. I looked cute perusing around in all black. The popping parts of this lewk were there dusty pink trench coat I got at a thrift pop up last winter and these sexy ass faux leather heeled platform boots from Zara. My thighs are still sore from this day. I don’t know how some of y’all rock heels on the daily!

WMS - wk 30 (2)

Saturday

Sunday: Errands, pick ups and more errands. That was most of my day. I put on a beret and everything. For what? Lol. Best part of the day was getting ice cream with my baby brother and niece albeit in Fourways. Jk, love it there 🙂 Catching up with my brother meant I had to watch the World Cup Final and learn about the players. Joy. Whatayagonnado? Lovely day in a white textured Chinese collar button up, faux leather jacket, ripped jeans and glossy piano black lace-up shoes. The beret from ivantage yakho was the real winner here.

WMS - wk 30 (3)

Sunday

Another seriously cold week in Jozi. July is out for terror. I got an icebox where my room used be! Stay warm. Look cute. Chew your food.

xo

ALN.

Standard
ALNfeels.

#FOMOFridays

Thank God It’s Friday. I used a fullstop  because it’s more of a statement of relief than it is an exciting proclamation. Lord this week!! My manager went on leave and I have been juggling all sorts of thangs above everything else I needed to do. Whew! Can’t wait to have a mid-year break from next week. Hope you lot had a better professional week than I did. I am grateful nonetheless – just needed to let it out. Let’s #FF!

Watching:

As per usual I was stuck to what to watch. So I scrolled through for a while and found The Good Place. I loved me some Veronica Mars back in the day, so seeing Kristen ‘do-you-wanna-build-a-snowman’ Bell is in the show, I gave it a go. It’s hilarious! She’s hilarious and its a good looking show. By that I mean, it has that Wisteria Lane-esque bright, colourful vibe. Did I mention it’s funny?

The Narrative has a new ep out where digital and creative guru, Malibongwe Tyilo chats to artist Nandipha Mntambo about her new fragrance. That’s right kids – you can do it all, do not hold yourself back. Also Mali is f&#*ing HILARIOUS. This channel is gonna be such a thing.

SA’s #1 new-kwaito duo, Darkie Fiction JUST dropped the video to their uplifting hero anthem Bhoza. This song changed my entire mood a few Mondays ago. Now this video has me quarter to tears! Fashion, location, nostalgia, voshos and obvs the ease and talent of these two youngens. Love em, love em, love em! Die over it with me and share it using #BhozaMusicVideo Don’t waste any more time click here now.

Listening:

Performance giant Manthe Ribane together with electronic producer Okzharp released Closer Apart last Friday. I gave it a full listen during a Saturday morning workout and it went in! I don’t even want to box it into anything, it’s just sonically beautiful and flows nicely. I hope this will spawn their very own national tour. Gagging for what they could produce now that they have a full body of work.

One of my fave vocalists (I’d even say top 10) is Olly Alexander from Years & Years. They’ve got a new album out (Palo Santo) and it’s quite good. It took me a second to get used to it because it’s so different from their debut album which had such great house influences that worked so well. I don’t quite know what to liken this one to, but I know it’ll grow on me.

Just to mention, I’m obsessed with an artist named Billie Eilish. Dark pop is officially my best genre. I always gravitate to tragic lyrics over unassuming pop beat (Robyn I’m looking at you girl). Childish Gambino dropped his Summertime Pack singles. Worth a listen- cos bae.

Onto podcasts (which are slowly becoming a thing in SA) this week I was given all the life from Super Soul Conversations. The latest ep Oprah spoke to Father Richard Rohr about finding your true self in a world where it’s more comfortable and easier to live as your false self. The false self being driven by ego, your persona, status and things. It was so enlightening and fits into everything I am striving for in my own spiritual journey. Mama O does all the things.

Doing (Weekend Tingz):

RMB Turbine Art Fair has officially kicked off. They had their VIP launch this past week and now we plebs can go enjoy all the creative work some artist have been cooking up for us. I’m heading there tomorrow, so let’s look cute and look at some cute shit.

Melrose Gallery at the arch is hosting a Mandela 100 Exhibition which will feature varied works in all kinds of mediums from celebrated South African artists including the fave Dr. Esther Mahlangu. It runs until mid August so you can pop in and check it out during this time. I’m sure there will be a ton of these centenary celebrations going on around the country.

Nongogo is back at the Market Theatre and I’ve heard it’s still so good. It’s brilliantly performed (the cast is to die for) and James Ngcobo did the direction for this Athol Fugard’s period play. I did a tiny review on it back in 2013 when I used to contribute to SABloggers. It’s the last weekend it’s on so do yourself a favour.

My babies over at the khona are having a cosy and deelish joint called Baby It’s Cold Outside at Kitcheners (KCB) on Saturday afternoon until late. Expect jams from 3pm that will warm your heart and fire up your soul. Si Noir, Baby Boosh and my homegirl LittleMissKay will be some of the faves on the decks.

Lastly… Beyonce is said to be coming to SA for the Global Citizen Festival (Dec 2) also in celebration of Mandela 100 in aid to end world poverty. I still don’t fully get this whole thing of all the work that needs to go into it… I really hope this campaign they are doing for free tickets has some sort of meaningful impact and people aren’t just spamming the internet for the sake of it. Maybe it works… I also know I don’t have the coinz for this fest. Blocked until further notice!

Go and have a faboosh weekend like the bhoza you are!

xo

ALN.

Standard