Refined and Fly

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Wisdom Culture and To Be Blind, Deaf and Dumb
*This post was originally written yesterday, March 24, 2009


Peace. Today's mathematics is wisdom(2) culture (4) all being born to equality (6). One's way of life is the culmination of things you say and do, and when you connect those two principles, you see what you are capable of. Your wisdom and your culture should be consistent with each other. It's like you're doing stairs. Each step you take is 1 action, 1 form of wisdom. Keep climbing stairs consistently (culture) and you'll see your legs get all toned up (equality).When you look at yourself, and if you realize you are not as balanced as you could be, you are not applying yourself the way you should be, you are not being all that you can be, your wisdom and your culture may provide important signs or indicators for you. If the things you are doing consistently ain't addin up to success, look at your wisdom. If your wisdom ain't right, your culture will reflect the dysfunction, and vice versa on the positive side of that.

Since wisdom comes after knowledge, you have to have a wilingness, motivation or will, to manifest what it is that you have put your ideas into implementation, and to consistently put them into practice to see what you are made see if what you have to offer is something those around you will benefit from. The wisdom culture degree in the 1-40 asks "What was his idea of making devil?" Applying the degree to myself, "I ask what is my idea of achieving my goals?" When asking yourself this question, one has to be honest about your level of equality...what are your strengths? What are you limitations or challenges...things you need to improve. What are your patterns? Some of our worst roadblocks are the ones we set up for ourselves. They are often the most difficult to move because no one is holding a "sword over our heads" threatening to "take off our head" if we don't fix things. These are often things that we do or don't do that get in our way. Though many of us say we don't need a sword over our heads, or a big stick, or a battery in our back to be productive, some people (whether admitting it or not) do.

My self-acknowledged pattern is that in my comfort zone, I do things in phases. I may be really on writing raps for a while, then I'll stop. I may switich to writing articles for a while. Then I may stop. I may write poems for a while, then I'll stop. Looking at myself today, I don't place a moral judgement on this behavior. I don't consider it to be good or bad. It's all in one's perspective. On the one hand, I can look at it as me valuing a changing environment and responding to my internal clock of when I should and shouldn't be doing something. When I am focused on something, I do it well. On the other hand, those behaviors can hinder my progress. When I'm not focused on something, its almost like it doesn't exist! AKA single minded tunnel vision! Sometimes with equality, your biggest strengths, can be a "weakness" when applied to a different cipher or situation. Many concepts are dichotomous (up/down, left/right, etc.). With many things, there are extremes, 2 sides of the same coin. How I draw this up through today's mathematics is I have asked myself if that pattern of stop and go is conducive to my goals.

Once I realized the answer is "emphatically no," then I had to take control in retraining myself. I am setting and meeting deadlines, pursuing opportunities, creating opprtunities, and not allowing any real or self-perceived "unknowns" to hold me back. I am doing better at balancing my ciphers, completing my personal goals (I have no trouble completing things for other people), applying my own level of pressure to me so that I can make diamonds and not bust pipes. I am taking the plunge and am setting out to do some things I never saw myself doing. I still have a ways to go, but through my consistent application of this change, I will see the equality in me, and so will other people.

When you allow unknowns to hold you (i.e."this could go wrong," and other negative self-talk), you place a limitation on your own equality. Everything starts with knowledge, an idea, or your mental state. So if you tell yourself its not gonna work then it probably won't because you will not "give all that you have and all within your power" to make it work because you see the failure before the success. When this way of thinking becomes culture (you do it all the time), you never really see the greatness of all you can be. I am learning that risks are on the pathway to success and sometimes you may lose, but those losses should build up your knowledge and wisdom so you will be more likely to win the next time because you have applied those lessons to your life. We all have heard the phrase, "Life is like a chess game," and though I am nowhere near a pro, I tend to avoid taking risks on the chess board. Once I learned that about myself, I am learning to balance myself out by learning to take calculated least with some things. You gotta take steps right? And the more I take those steps, that will create the culture of exploring different avenues and furthering myself. There are lots of companies that after "years months and days", had to bring in a new CEO or implement strategic planning that turned everything upside down, or the CEO and board fired everybody and started over. Some of them never recovered and some of them grew in leaps and bounds. Sometimes you have to put all your cards on the table and see what you'll get or else you'll never know, and sometimes, not knowing can be worse than trying and failing. That's how lots of people end up living with regrets. You may receive a penalty or reward, but the justice you get is partially linked to my next topic...


The wisdom culture degree in the 1-36 states "well they were made blind, deaf and dumb by the devil when they were babies." Now guess what? You don't have to be a complete idiot in order to be blind, deaf and dumb. You don't have to be a complete "savage in pursuit of happiness." I don't have an elitist attitude toward the "85%" because I was of the same mentality (that is what I consider the 85, 10, and 5 % to be...mentalities, that many people can embody at different times) and I recovered. In some ways, I'm still recovering...I'm still growing. I don't think I'm better than anybody, I am just at a different point of the spectrum that has proven to be beneficial for me and those around me.

Some people who have a wealth of information are still blind, deaf and dumb. We know knowledge is the foundation for everything in existence and some people say that it is infinite (I personally do not ascribe to that...there is a lot of information out there and a lot that you can learn, but that doesn't mean you stand on it. That doesn't mean that that knowledge dictates your actions or is the foundation of your existence. Is everything you know your foundation? Is all the knowledge in the world a part of what motivates you to do and be? Like I said, that's my personal vantage point ),however knowledge is the first step! How I define being blind, deaf, and dumb is quite simple cuz Allah said to "keep it simple and teach it real" right?:

Blind- you do not see all that you need to see. Your sight may be skewed which can effect how you percieve your surroundings. Your vision may be limited

Deaf-you do not or have not heard all that you need to hear, due to lack of exposure (someone hasn't said it to you yet) or stubborness (someone keeps telling you and you refuse to listen and activate upon that which you've heard)

Dumb-you do not have the proper understanding to process a situation, internalize a lesson, or produce success. Even looking at kids, when they call another kid "dumb," it's usually because they lack understanding or comprehension in a certain area. The message isn't getting through yet. Or a person says or does poorly judged things or statements.

There are lots of different types of people who can fall victim to this (people who know a lot, people who consider themselves to be good people, people who seem to have it all together), and in some instances, these three traits can be situational (You ever met a woman who has it going on, educated, great job, etc, but makes the worst choices when it comes to relationships...she hasn't seen, heard or have an undersanding of the right things regarding that cipher which produces failure instead of success). Being "blind, deaf and dumb" ain't just reserved for so-called pork eatin, perm havin folks who yell at their kids! You might be someone who knows a lot but doesn't have a lot of money or is not in the position you want to be in in life. You still haven't gotten "there" and you don't understand why. Or you may have no clue of where "there" is and how to get "there." What are the elements that are stopping you from achieving your goals?

These terms can be taken offensively or may sound harsh, but when you look at them beyond "face value," and honestly assess yourself, and all that you are, and all that you want to do and be, you have to ask if any of these terms are applicable to any aspect of your efforts. I don't view these terms offensively anymore. I view them in a dichotomous manner or as issues that I need to remedy. If I am blind, how or what do I need to see? If I am deaf, what do I need to hear? If I am dumb, what understanding do I need to come to that has not crystalized yet? Being blind, deaf and dumb is similar to walking around in a haze. To see, hear and understand aids in giving you the tools to interact within your environment properly to be "successful in you undertakings."


I Medina Peaceful Earth

Monday, March 16, 2009


Women all over the world have been dressing modestly for centuries and continue to do so in 2009. It is absolutely nothing new.

A woman’s appearance and specifically her style of dress is an indicator of how she feels about herself, her thought process, her experiences, exposure and her values. When we get up in the morning and select what we will wear for the day, we are consciously and subconsciously sending a message to all those we encounter saying, “This is who I am!” So what message are you trying to project? What first impression are you trying to make?

When a woman puts on a power suit or business casual clothing, she is projecting the message that she is striving to look and be professional. When you see her you may think she may be going to work or to a conference or an important meeting.

When a woman wears a long silky dress with a shawl and heels, you know that she is probably going to a somewhat classy formal event.

When a woman wears a police uniform, you assume she’s a cop… unless it’s Halloween.

When a woman wears “African” garb, she projects the message that she probably has somewhat of an African centered view on life or she has a different cultural perspective.

When a woman wears a crotch length mini-skirt, a tube top, and some hooker boots, where if you bend over or sit without your legs crossed, your goodies are exposed for the world to see, what message is she conveying? Many of us are never asked, nor do we ask ourselves that question, and if we do, here are a couple typical answers:

1) “I wear what’s in style”
-Okay, so that means that your style is predicated upon the creative whims of fashion designers, many of whom are unalike yourself (many are gay white men) who place gaunt unhealthy looking women onto the runways to model their clothing (many of whom have boyish size 2 figures…hmmm), and the clothes go into specialty boutiques, into department stores, and on to your local mall retailers. And, scantily clad clothing is not the only style that is trendy.

Besides, some designers get ideas from the street or from the styles of original people, but do we ever get credit for it?

2) “I wear it cuz it’s cute (that used to be my favorite one to use)”
-Something being “cute” is relative. That is not a universal term. There is not absolute meaning to the word “cute.” You think something is cute due to the context of your life and what you have been exposed to, by which you develop responses, and as you get older, that combination of responses turns into “your style.” What you think is cute, someone else may think is unattractive and vice versa.

3) “What I wear has nothing to do with who I am (my 2nd favorite one I used to use)”

-Um, yes it does. We usually say this when we are getting defensive or have not gone through the recesses of our thoughts to get to the point of origin of why we dress this way. Your clothes are ABSOLUTELY, EMPHATICALLY an indicator of who you are, it’s just not the only indicator. Doesn’t how you eat, how you speak, and the music you listen to give others a glimpse of who you are and your way of life? Well, the same logic applies regarding your wardrobe choices. We oftentimes say this when we are challenged about our way of dress and are resistant to self-analysis and change. If you wear it because you wanna “use what ya got to get what you want”, though it’s usually a saying prostitutes use and is a dysfunctional phrase passed on from woman to woman (often times from uncivilized mother to daughter), at least you’re being honest. We have to stop deluding ourselves.

When we intentionally wear cleavage exposing shirts, it’s because we want someone to look at the ta-tas. When we wear those little crotch length denim skirts ( I mean doesn’t the name itself sound foul?), it’s because we want someone to look at our legs and the hill back there. These thoughts may all be subconscious and we may not think it when we put the clothes on, but after really thinking about it and being honest with ourselves, you tell me what you come up with. When you intentionally put that sexy ish or that freakum dress on(and don’t get me wrong, I like that song for the beat and melody, but I threw my freakum dress out a while ago(smile)), when a man sees you, he is giving you the attention you are asking for. When he looks at you, he doesn’t think of how intelligent you may be…he thinks of (surprise) SEX! So if a brotha is salivating over you while tryin to hold a conversation while staring down ya shirt, don’t get mad at him cuz he’s not looking into your eyes… check yourself first cuz he’s gonna look if you put it out there !

4) “Some women in other countries walk around topless, so what’s wrong with what I wear?”
-We are not in those countries. Different countries produce different cultures, different standards of beauty, and different perspectives on how a woman’s body is viewed. In the United States, a woman’s body is a commodity that is objectified through the process of long-standing sexism. Women are socialized to be sex objects and men are socialized to chase it, so when ya put it out there like that, you’re like a walking advertisement for some of the sexual pleasures he may get once he pulls you. In this country, it’s just too much to ask for a man who hasn’t yet deconstructed his own thoughts and life experiences yet, socialized as he has been, to not think that way when he sees a woman walking around half naked. Remember, he’s constantly exposed to the same images as you, and he is socialized to desire a woman who looks like that.

As a woman who has only been consciously dressing modestly for about four years now, thinking back to when I first decided to embark on the journey of getting the knowledge of self and striving to be a productive citizen in the Nation of Gods and Earths, I had to conduct an analysis of every part of myself, and a large aspect of that was getting to the root of my dress code. Women of my society who are called Earths, usually wear what is called “3/4ths,” because 3/4ths of the planet Earth’s surface is covered by water and as self-respecting women and Queens, we dress modestly and cover our hair to show the world a different paradigm of womanhood and a positive standard of beauty… that you can be beautiful, intelligent, smell good, and have ambitions without all your goodies hangin’ out.

Coming to this conclusion and accepting modesty as a part of my way of life was very difficult, but very rewarding in the end. It was difficult because I had to study myself, and through a logical process of being asked and asking myself questions, I came to the conclusion that I used to wear revealing clothes to boost my self-esteem and attract attention, because I was not as confident as I should have been with my other attracting powers. I knew I was fairly intelligent but I also knew that I had it goin’ on physically and coupled with media images and popular standards of beauty in the wilderness of North America, music videos, movies, Miss America Pageants, magazines, you name it, I thought that this was how I had to dress to get the attention I wanted. Showin’ skin was in baby! It was deep, and I realized that my thoughts and feelings about this went back as far as the third grade (be careful of what your little girls are exposed to! They are picking up messages that are integrated into their subconscious that will shape how they consciously express themselves.).

I fought this concept and thought that my mental did not have to match my physical…that I could still be smart, nice, community minded and active, love and build with the babies, and wear what I wanted. Back then, I didn’t really understand the importance of consistency and discipline. Due to the barrage of distractions that we are exposed to and integrate on a daily basis, consistency is a challenge in the United States in 2009. I suppose you could say I was tryin’ to be revolutionary but sexy. Looking back, I now realize how much of a contradiction that was. Real revolutionaries had other things on their mind beyond striving to appear to be sexy all the time. Not to say that a woman can’t feel sensual or comfortable with her sexuality, however, there is a time and place for everything, and having “sexy” as one of the dominant themes of my existence didn’t really make sense. As my God says, “Civilized people do things inside.” That was not the legacy I wanted to leave behind.

Another dilemma I had was that I thought there was only one way to look modest and rock 3/4ths. Later on, as I grew and developed, saw different examples and looked within myself, I found that that was totally untrue. Me changing my wardrobe forced me to have to be more original. This is not to say that I couldn’t wear some of the styles that I considered fashionable, trendy, attractive or designer clothing, because I can, but I simply wear them in a different way…

There are lots of different options, but you, as the original woman, with her own level of beauty and uniqueness, have to be creative enough to put it together, and if you do it right, you’ll start setting trends! Where do you think the “earthy” look came from? People will start asking you how you put your outfits together, where did you get that head wrap from, lovin’ your accessories and matching purses, and complimenting your shoe game…

Give it a shot and you will see where your creativity takes you and just how refined and fly you can be!


I Medina Peaceful Earth

Peace everyone! Thanks to everyone who came out to the Sun Star show March 6. I had a great time and ya'll were a great crowd. Thanks to everyone who's been supporting my endeavors (music, Refined and Fly, community work) thus far. Here's some updates...

Check out my feature below in Nakturnal's E-Newsletter. Nakturnal is a female owned company doing great things in promotions, events and night life in Pittsburgh and the surrounding region. For more info about them check them out at

If you missed my performance at the SunStar Women in Music Festival at the Kelly Strayhorn Theatre, you can catch me at Nakturnal's event "Equinox" at Club Ava March 21, 10pm-2am AND as a featured performer at the Shadow Lounge's Curl Up Tuesday open mic event Tuesday April 28, 9pm.


I'm back in the studio recording, gettin it in and gettin it done! Only a couple sessions left! Look out for "Eyewitness" droppin April 6, 2009. The flyer's attached

Refined and Fly is my lifestyle company that advocates modesty and magnificence for women and girls. A refined and fly woman is a woman of distinction and elegance who represents class and confidence, knowledge and uniqueness, carrying oneself with grace and respect...and lookin' sharp while doin it all! She knows who she is and strives to be the best woman she can be and her intelligence is her #1 asset. We've got shirts on sale now, as well as some new upcoming colors and items for the spring season. If you want a shirt, i'll meet you or mail it to you, no problem, and I'll be selling items online soon. And brothers, don't sleep! If you know a a sister who fits the description or is striving to, or you just wanna give a young lady some positive encouragement, send her my way. Refined and Fly will also be hosting workshops and events in the near future. For more information on Refined and Fly Apparel, events, vending opportunities, etc, send your inquiries to Flyer's attached

CONTACT INFORMATION & SITES TO CHECK OUT for my music, photos, and blog for my perspective for anything related to Refined and Fly to get updates on what's goin on wit me

Click here for a live performance of my new song "Pathways" at the Sun Star Women in Music Festival

Click here for the "Pathways" song and video

Click here to see a rap video by students in my program (Community Empowerment Association-Asante Nation Safe Passage Program) "Remember Your Roots"

Click here to see another rap video by students in my program "The Facts" spittin that multiplication!

Check out Get Money, Teach Kids at advocating Education, Economics, and Community Development

Check out for the latest, merging Education and Entertainment

Thanks and spread the word!

I Medina/ Angel Eye

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Featured Artist
Angel Eye
The Courage to Believe
A transplant to Pittsburgh from the Bay Area, California, Angel Eye is an active member in Pittsburgh's community and one of the leading women in Pittsburgh Hip Hop. A member of the crew RXC, Angel Eye is a proud citizen of the Nation of Gods and Earths and a Program Manager youth and families at Community Empowerment Association. Balancing her time between the local community and her passion for music, Angel Eye has been rockin' the mic since the age of 17. She currently is working on her mixtape "Eyewitness" droppin' on April 6, 2009. You can catch her at her next performance on March 21, 2009 at Ava Lounge for the Equinox. On April 28 she will be featured at Curl Up Tuesday's Poetry Night@ the Shadow Lounge. Angel Eye is also slated to finish a book of poems and perspective titled, "Affirmations of a Brown Suga from Berkeley" by 2010. And if that wasn't enough to fill your day she currently is the visionary for Refined and Fly Lifestyle Company. Refined and Fly Advocates Modesty and Magnificence for Women and girls. You can check out Angel Eye on her myspace at
Ali Pace
Down with Fashion
The Courage to Believe
Ali Pace and her mother Annet Pace have been a design duo for over 10 years. What started out as fun and exciting ways to dress themselves for Halloween costumes and prom dresses has turned into a full on business. In 2005 the family opened up Bombshell Boutique in Shadyside. They ordered the hottest trends and incorporated their own style into the boutique. What better way to do that then to launch their own clothing line, Down with Fashion and sell it in their very own store. Down with Fashion is a fusion of Ali's love for the Broadway style mixed with the Rock and Roll aesthetic.
The Courage to Believe
Ali likes for her fashion to find contradictions that exists and exploit them in order to create something new and exciting. Down with Fashion isn't about following trends, its about making new ones.
Down with Fashion
You can catch Down with Fashion at their next show on May 7th at Diesel in the Southside. For more information check out their website at
or at
The Courage to Believe
Check out Featured websitesFollow-up Links
Greetings Pittsburgh!
Congratulations to Janera and Bekezela for a wonderful event. The Sunstar Festival this past weekend was really a beautiful event filled with lots of talented women. What a great way to kick off Women's History Month! Make sure you mark your calenders for the Equinox at Ava on March 21st.
Also, be on the look out for our Nakturnal photographers coming through to take pictures of what's hot in the city. Who knows, you might end up on our next eblast! Also we are starting to feature local artists, musicians, photographers, non-profits, businesses and entreprenuers. If you are interested in a feature on our eblast please email for more information! Remember to click on display images if you are not seeing any photos or flyers!
She Said
March 15, 2009 starting at 7pm
Byham Theater located at 101 6th St.
This event sells out every year. Our girl Kellee was asked to be a featured poet again this year! Don't miss it!
The Courage to Believe
March 21, 2009 from 10pm to 2 am
Ava Lounge located at 126 S. Highland Ave.
A celebration of females in the arts, this show will feature some of the finest female artists, musicians, fashion designers, photographers, videographers, graphic designers, dancers and poets in Pittsburgh.
The Courage to Believe
Classic Material
March 21, 2009 from 10pm to 2am
Shadow Lounge located at 5972 Baum Blvd.
Pittsburgh's premier old-school party, Classic Material is celebrating March Madness with all of the hits from the lengendary Kool Keith, MF Doom and Madlib. So come out on Saturday and enjoy the madness while gettin' down on the dancefloor.
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Saturday Tune Up
New Amsterdam Pub located at 4421 Butler St.
Saturday Tune Up
nice up people
Second Annual Hip Hop Buffet Series Award
Sunday March 22, 2009
St. Lawrence O'Toole Rec Hall located at 140 N. Atlantic Ave.

Hip Hop

Well that's it for this week! We hope you can join us this weekend at the St. Patrick's Day Parade where we launch Pittsburgh's first Pedicab service. Come down to the parade and be on the lookout for Nakturnal and Green Gear's Pedicabs in the Parade! Also don't forget to check us out at

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Nakturnal | 1936 Fifth Ave. | Pittsburgh | PA | 15219


Tuesday, March 03, 2009


Peace! Come check me out this Friday March 6, for the Sunstar Women in Music Festival at 8pm at the Kelly Strayhorn Theatre (5941 Penn Ave, Pgh, 15206) in East Liberty (Pittsburgh, PA).

It's $15 at the door, but you can get tickets in advance for $10 by simply rsvping to or call 412.363.3000 ext. 107 and reserve your tickets to be picked up at the door. The festival itself is Thursday-Saturday so if you want to attend all of the events, go to for more information.

I'll have Refined and Fly and Get Money Teach Kids shirts on sale so come check me out and support local Hip Hop, and specifically women in Hip Hop! There will be a nice line up of performances featuring yours truly. If you can't make it, forward this to folks so they can come out. My mixtape "Eyewitness" is droppin April 6 (finally!) so if I'm gonna keep doin this thing (cuz it is costly and timely) I need your support.

Also check my new song "Pathways" on and let me know what you think. A lot of emcees ain't story tellin' no more, but this is a story that some of ya'll might know.


Angel Eye/ I Medina