Monthly Archives: June 2015
This article originally appeared on tv.com on June 11, 2015.
Can we talk?
If you answered ‘yes’ to this question then you’re gonna love the new online talk show Words, Wine and Women.
The show comes from host and creator Tara Johnson, who recently appeared as a host on the ‘after-show’ online network AfterBuzz TV and co-host on Black Hollywood Live’s “Phenomenal Women.” Now, she’s gathered 5 diverse women to chat about edgy issues affecting today’s real woman.
I recently had a chance to interview Tara Johnson to find out what happens when Words, Wine and Women all come together.
Q: Tell us about your new show Words, Wine and Women?
TARA: Words, Wine and Women is an real look inside the raw honest fun that happens when women get together over a delicious glass of wine (or two) to discuss life, love, careers, parenting, dating, politics and everything else in between. Words, Wine and Women strives to create a community that celebrates the mystery, beauty and joy of being a woman.
Q: What’s different about your new talk show?
TARA: Several things make us different. The first thing is the women. Each of these women bring something completely different to the table – different life experiences, life views, career paths but I think each of us connect with our target audience. Plus, we’re just regular women figuring it out.
Our topics are different. Not that we don’t love pop culture. Who doesn’t love Beyoncé’s latest anything or Kim and Kanye’s latest escapade but we all know that those are not the only things real women discuss. We look for those topics that are not mainstream like medicinal marijuana for children. We question things in the hopes that you might look at some things differently like is technology helping or destroying present day relationships and parenting?
Lastly, the wine! Drinking wine isn’t different but I would also describe Words, Wine and Women as an infotainment program. Just like we offer our audience tips on online dating, we also want to bring in sommeliers who can educate our viewers on wine. I mean if you are going to drink it, let’s learn something too.
Q: Where do you find the topics for each episode?
The greatest thing about the topics we discuss is that we get them from everyday life. Anything can spark a discussion – a question, an article or a simple conversation. My co-hosts are so creative that the topics are endless.
Q: Were you shocked by anything you’ve learned on the show?
TARA: Yes, I didn’t know women could squirt! If you are not sure what that is or what that means, keep watching.
Q: What made you want to create a new talk show series from scratch?
TARA: I just thought there was a missing piece to how women are portrayed in the media today. So many of the depictions don’t look anything like me, my family or the women in my life. I wanted to create something that resembled how I interact and feel about other women and how the women in my life have supported, challenged and encouraged me. We don’t always agree but I’m definitely better for having those relationships and conversations.
Q: Tell us the biggest lesson you’ve learned from the project?
TARA: Starting anything from scratch definitely isn’t easy but it is worth every lesson, delay and trial. I’m simply a better person because of this project. I hope that translates into me being a better producer and a better co-host for Words, Wine and Women and each one of our viewers.
Watch Words, Wine and Women the series at: www.WordsWineWomen.com
As many of know (since this is the topic of the day) Rachel Dolezal recently came out as, what one could call, “transracial”.
The comparison to “transracial” has been made to “transgender”. Caitlyn Jenner recently came out as transgender. For the most part, the world applauded her for her bravery. This article at “The Wrap” contemplates the struggle I’m having within myself, “If I accepted Caitlyn Jenner as a woman, why can’t I accept Rachel Dolezal as African American?” My first thought was “Dolezal lied” and it makes me angry that she lied… to so many people. But didn’t Caitlyn Jenner (when she was Bruce Jenner) lie to protect herself from those who wouldn’t understand? And I thought about it more and I realized that gender is a 50/50 chance we all have at birth. Race is not. Gender is also something that can be easily changed through surgery, Race is not. There are performative aspects to both gender and race (many of them based on stereotypes of what we think gender and race should be or look like) but, race is part of a person’s heritage and a part of a person’s identity that is attached to family history AND attached to world history. Being transgendered is not the same thing as being transracial. Gender and race are two separate topics as gender is part of sexual identity.
What if Dolezal had been adopted into an African American family and had been raised by African American parents? Might I feel differently about her lie then? Ellie Freeman, who identifies as “transracial” has an excellent article on this. She explains, “Simply put, a transracial person is someone raised in a culture or race different from their own.” The reason that Dolezal’s lie is so frustrating and baffling is that, as far as we can tell, she seems to come from a privileged background and is associating herself with a race that has been historically mistreated. Why did she do it? When I’ve discussed this topic with friends, most everyone agrees that she could have been a successful civil rights leader without identifying as African American. I understand that Dolezal formed a connection with an African American man she thought of as “dad” and that her sons are African American. I can’t blame Rachel for wanting to find her place in the world, wanting to find people that she connects with. As Ellie Freeman explains, “It is normal, and quite healthy, to be interested in another culture than your own. But if the people of that culture cannot pick and choose their own race – whether it’s biologically or through shared history – then neither can you. All you can do is be a good ally.” In fact, it’s arguable that she’s undone any of the good work she did as a civil rights leader by not being honest.