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  • Writer's pictureArtisha Bolding

Ain't too proud to beg for what I call my own...

Updated: Sep 8, 2021

Ain't too proud to beg for what I call my own. TLC

The Temptations sang about their girl trying to leave and all they wanted was another chance- a little sympathy. Well my girls T-Boz, Left Eye and Chilli came through with a completely different request. They were talking about good lovin' in the bedroom. Ain't Too Proud To Beg burst on the scenes in 1992 when I was in junior high school, that was a lifetime ago. This was when I was still eating way too much junk food and singing way too loud to the radio. And of course don't forget listening to the songs I loved over and over so I could memorize the Lyrics.

One day on the walk home from school my two best friends and I were passing by a guy selling incense, oils, and cassette tapes. YES CASSETTE TAPES! He had the brand new TLC tape and I grabbed it as quick as I could. Ooooooohhh... On the TLC Tip had dropped in late February and this had to be close to April now because the sun was shining bright and we didn't have any coats on. I'm pretty sure I spent my McDonald's money that day. This was during the time when I would collect change and dollar bills from my mother's jeans before I threw them into the washer. Laundry was a chore that I didn't mind doing for this very reason. This was also the time where instead of a repeat button or icon there was a rewind button on the stereos and boom boxes. I was so excited to have this tape to call my own; I wasn't worried about a love of my own. Of course boys would try to sneak calls to my house, but mom shut that down super quick. And they'd try to sneak kisses from me on this same walk down the block to my apartment building. And only sometimes did I shut that down myself. It depended on how cute the boy was and if he dressed nice. I just laughed so hard as I typed that, but this was the basic criteria at the time. Thank God for growth!! I wasn't totally boy crazy yet, I was more into my friends. All I wanted to do was be loud, watch movies, listen to music, laugh and have fun.

I think all of our favorite food was McDonald's then. We wound up there just about everyday. I mean it was smack in the middle of our block, just calling our names. And TLC was definitely our favorite girl group. We would sing their Lyrics at the top of our lungs and we would always giggle about the sexy stuff. TLC was controversial because they looked young but wanted to be in charge of their image and their message. They didn't want to wear pink, they didn't want to wear dresses and they didn't want to play it safe. They wore baggy clothes with condoms all over them to promote safe sex. It was sort of a sounding of the alarm to enjoy your life and at the same time protect yourself. We were right in the middle of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and the messaging was very much needed. This was the year after Magic Johnson retired from the NBA due to being HIV positive. The whole topic was so taboo, but a few artists, athletes and entertainers chose to shine light on something that was killing Black people at alarming rates. TLC earned my respect for their attitude, sound and style.

As married woman who has a full time live-in lover I look at these Lyrics totally different now. I have navigated relationship issues big and small and what I know to be true is that the deep personal connection you make with a lover is unmatched. There is nothing like it in the world. And when you find your match, your one- you want to please and be pleased whenever you can. Pride goes out the door, well at least it should. Sometimes the man may be in the mood first, but there is nothing wrong with the woman making the first move. Let me Mr. B tell it, that excites him even more. And when you're seasoned and comfortable in your relationship you can joke around and play hard to get because you know "the gettin'"is happening. Ha! Whether we're playing "Spy vs Spy" or "Doctor and Nurse" we play so we both win. He is mine and I'm his and a little begging never hurt.


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