Wednesday, March 02, 2011

I Had My Eye on a Star

The universe only knows how she pulled it off, but one of my colleagues who has taught African-American literature and film classes for years reached for the stars, grabbed one and had her come to give a talk at the university. In the US, Black History month is the entire month of February. However, on March 1st we are thrilled to welcome Jurnee Smollett to our campus. At first her name did not ring any bells with me, until I did a little checking. She starred in some of the movies that held the greatest impressions on me. At ten years old she played Eve in Eve's Bayou, the ten year character that the story revolved around. The Great Debaters was based on a true story; she played the part of Samantha Brooke. Aside from movies, she had been in numerous television shows. Most recently some may recognize her from her twenty-six episodes of Friday Night Lights or the newest show The Defenders.

So this bubbly twenty-four year old is one hot woman, but brimming over with personality. We watched a few clips from Eve's Bayou on VHS if you can believe it, but when it came time to work the computer to run the 2nd movie, the Luddites on hand could not manage the technology. They ignored my catcalls, so I refused to venture up to rescue them. Being stubborn and not listening to sound/visual advice has its own punishments.  All the better, it gave us more time with Jurnee. 

Her gorgeous husband was sitting right in front of me, blocking my view actually, but I could not get too heated up over that to care. Toward the end, Jurnee shared that her mother is Creole, African American, and Native Indian. Her father is Ukrainian and Polish. As soon as she mentioned her father's history, you could feel the Hungarian sitting at the edge of their seats with breathes held in bursting cheeks, routing her on to a great finish by saying her father has some Hungarian. Alas, no, it was not meant to be. 

Because I had to squeeze by her Mr. to get out, there was only about 2 feet of space between us, I had to say hello to them both. Utterly gracious, we were chatting away, when Ron who was not even sure he wanted to attended jumps into the conversation with "Hi, I'm Ron. I'm his partner." They did not blink an extra eyelash. What dawned on me is that even at my age, I can get star struck by incredibly beautiful black women stars. If you want to see wedding photos, click below.

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