Category Archives: Just for fun

Mel B of the Spice Girls was the OG unapologetic Black girl

scary spiceICYMI, there are numerous reports circulating that the Spice Girls are planning to do a reunion tour this summer — another not-so-subtle reminder that us millennials aren’t getting any younger.

As a 90s baby, I was legit obsessed with the Spice Girls growing up. They were my childhood heroes, and I think the reason they appealed to so many young girls is because they were themselves and each member had something unique to offer, with Ginger (aka Geri Halliwell) and Baby (aka Emma Bunton) being the clear favorites.

But TBH, Mel B was the real star for the simple fact that she was the ONLY Black girl holding it down as Scary Spice in the best-selling female group of all time. The best part? She achieved all that success without compromising her Blackness as an attempt to fit in with her white bandmates.

Little brown girls everywhere recognized themselves when they saw Mel B being carefree and living it up on the screen, paving the way for singers like Rihanna to flaunt their #BlackGirlMagic and unleash their inner badass.

Here are five ways Mel B was the original “unapologetic Black girl.”

1. She rocked natural hair.

The only thing bigger than Mel B’s personality? Her hair. Seriously though, Mel B’s natural curls were always poppin’. Even as an animated fairy in the “Viva Forever” music video.

Oh, and who can forget when she slayed horn-like Bantu knots — a hairstyle that can be traced back to Zulu tribes of Southern Africa? Or this gorgeous braided crown she rocked in the music video for “Stop”? The braided crown was a bold statement since the video appeared to be set between the 1950s and 60s. This was an era when most Black women either chemically straightened their tresses or wore wigs to adhere to white beauty standards.

2. She spoke her mind.

The Spice Girls championed a new wave of feminism, but Mel B was woke AF. Case in point: When Mel B DGAF and shut down a TV host for bringing out a dance troupe of white people in blackface.

“I think they shouldn’t paint their faces. You should get proper Black people to do it. I don’t think that’s very good.”

Side note: Mel B revealed a couple years ago that she and the rest of her bandmates got their famous nicknames during an interview with a “lazy journalist that couldn’t be bothered to remember all our names.” And of course, you can’t be a Black woman who is loud, strong and outspoken without being perceived as hella scary, right? *rolls eyes*

3. She never disguised her Blackness

Who else remembers the photoshoot scene from the movie, “Spice World”? While Emma, Geri, Mel C and Victoria paid homage to iconic figures, such as Jackie Onassis and Marilyn Monroe, Mel B saluted Black icons like the legendary Bob Marley and the original diva Diana Ross.

4. She dared to go braless before it was trendy.

Rih Rih might have inspired millions of women to step out braless, but Mel B did it first, two decades earlier in the “Wannabe” video. Virgin executives were horrified because of Mel B’s, um, erect nipples peeking through her green tank top and wanted to re-shoot the entire thing, but the group wasn’t having it. The video was banned in certain Asian countries because it was deemed too risqué for younger audiences.

5. She was obsessed with leopard print.

Can we just take a minute to show a little appreciation for Mel B’s leopard print ensembles? An ode to the Motherland, baby! Mel B must’ve worn leopard print a million different ways during her Spice Girls heyday, and I loved every single one of them. From the iconic leopard print jumpsuit she made famous at the BRIT Awards to the sequin leopard print pantsuit she rocked at the Billboard Music Awards, Mel B absolutely NAILED every look.

Let’s give it up for Mel B, y’all!

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25 Things You Don’t Know About Me

Inspired by Us Weekly’s “25 Things You Don’t Know About Me” column…

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1. I’m an avid collector of vinyl records, tour programs, and fortune cookie sayings.

2. My favorite sitcom is Reba. I’ve seen every episode at least 20 times and can recite almost every single line.

3. One of the things on my bucket list is to consume a large pizza with everything on it all by myself.

4. I didn’t attend my first concert until I was 13. Not ashamed to say it was the Backstreet Boys.

5. If I could have dinner with anyone, dead or alive, Maya Angelou, Dorothy Dandridge, and Rod Serling would all be invited.

6. I haven’t had a grilled cheese sandwich in nearly a decade. That’s gonna have to change real soon!

7. The most-played song on my iPod is Madonna’s “Angel.” An oldie but goodie!

Mariah Carey Daydream

8. My favorite album of all time is Mariah Carey’s Daydream. One word: life-changing.

9. I self-edit every article I write at least 10 times before hitting “send.”

10. In high school, I had dreams of becoming the next Dianne Warren/Hype Williams. I would spend hours writing songs and video treatments.

11. One of my favorite movies of all time is Selena.

12. Growing up, I was a huge Nickelodeon kid. Rugrats, Hey Arnold, Doug, All That, Kenan and Kel — I loved them all!

13. The first movie I ever saw in theaters was Spice World.

14. I’m literally counting down the days until The Walking Dead returns. It’s the only modern scripted show that I actually watch.

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15. I’ve never seen Titanic, but I love Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On.”

16. One of my guilty pleasures is jamming out to ABBA music.

17. I enjoy watching those late-night Time Life music infomercials.

18. I must paint my nails a different color every week or else, I’ll get bored.

19. I love watching The Twilight Zone marathon every New Year’s Day and Fourth of July/Labor Day weekend.

20. My go-to scent is Marc Jacob’s “Daisy.”

21. I’m obsessed with maxi dresses. I own at least 10.

Daisy

22. My dream is to own the Birkin bag in black with palladium hardware.

23. I don’t have a favorite color.

24. The first place I want to see when I visit Europe is Italy. Cute guys, classic Italian food, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, cobblestone roads – what’s not to love?

25. I’m the type of person who listens to Christmas music all year round…like in the middle of June.