Collected Quotes: Around The Way Girl

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Best Of

[…] what I look for in a friend: Loyalty and trust. The challenge to be a better me. The space to be unapologetically rough, rugged, and raw. I’m not biting my tongue around them, and while I know they won’t judge, I can trust them not to tell me what they think I want to hear. They work me, which I appreciate because it leaves the space for me to be me. This is important, because being fake with the ones I love isn’t an option – I’m not that girl. I get paid to pretend, but I won’t do it in my real-life relationships.
— “Chapter 12: My Squad.” Around the Way Girl – Page 221


I’m […] great at maintaining friendships, but when their shelf life expires, [I] have no problem tossing those expired friendships in the trash where they belong.
— “Chapter 12: My Squad.” Around the Way Girl – Page 225


[…] the natural inclination of adults is to devalue the dreams of kids who express an interest in pursuing the arts. Let a kid show any kind of special aptitude for math or science, and the world will move mountains to put him in programs that stimulate his gift. The same goes for children who express even a remote interest in subjects society thinks will lead them toward careers we all tend to consider exceptional: doctor, lawyer, professor, engineer, or if it’s the arts, a classical musician and the like. Hardly anyone ever encourages the child who can’t sit still, or who runs her mouth a little too much or who lets her imagination soar, to do what is perfectly natural and right to her: consider acting, singing, dancing, or otherwise make a living performing. […] it seems such a wasted opportunity, so incredibly unjust to steer a kid away from what makes his heart sing.
“Chapter 3: Drama.” Around The Way Girl – Pages 47-48


[…] fear is a liar [and] I make a point of calling its bluff.
“Chapter 1: Fearless” Around The Way Girl

The Rest

Chapter 13

These days, when I date, a whole different set of rules comes into play. I’ve worked my ass off for all that I have, and if I open my world to a man, first and foremost, I have to make sure he means me no harm. Once I’ve deemed him safe, I have to deem whether the potential mate standing in front of me is bringing something more to the table. By ‘more’ I don’t mean material things. I don’t care what car he’s driving or how much he’s got in his bank account, or how many homes he owns. I have property. I have art. I have my own money. Instead, I’m checking for whether he’ll feed me spiritually – if he’ll take care of my mind and heart. I want a man who is consistent, who will respect me, who will honor me by giving me his quality time, who is fun and funny and willing to be goofy with me, but who can get serious when it’s time to work out our issues, without running away. I need my man to make me feel like he wants to be with me and that he’ll be incapable of seeing any other girl in the world, because he will be focused solely on me and what we’re building together. I need a man who will call me on my bullshit and not let me get away with it because I’m Taraji P. Henson, the star – a dude who will challenge me to be my better self. I need that guy.
— “Chapter 13: Grown Woman.” Around the Way Girl – Pages 241 to 242


Chapter 12

[…] cousins – blood by relations but friends deep in the heart.
— “Chapter 12: My Squad.” Around the Way Girl – Page 215


[…] what I look for in a friend: Loyalty and trust. The challenge to be a better me. The space to be unapologetically rough, rugged, and raw. I’m not biting my tongue around them, and while I know they won’t judge, I can trust them not to tell me what they think I want to hear. They work me, which I appreciate because it leaves the space for me to be me. This is important, because being fake with the ones I love isn’t an option – I’m not that girl. I get paid to pretend, but I won’t do it in my real-life relationships.
— “Chapter 12: My Squad.” Around the Way Girl – Page 221


I’m […] great at maintaining friendships, but when their shelf life expires, [I] have no problem tossing those expired friendships in the trash where they belong.
— “Chapter 12: My Squad.” Around the Way Girl – Page 225


Chapter 11

I’m over trying to find the ‘adorable’ way to state my opinion and still be likable! […] I don’t think I’ve ever worked for a man in charge who spent time contemplating what angle he should use to have his voice heard. […] It’s just heard.
— “Chapter 11: On Being A Black Woman In Hollywood.” Around the Way Girl – Page 192 (As Said by Jennifer Lawrence)


[…] make it so they never, ever forget you, and then go claim what’s yours.
— “Chapter 11: On Being A Black Woman In Hollywood.” Around the Way Girl – Page 195


Not everyone is going to have the look of, say, a Halle Berry, or the ethnic ambiguity of a Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and they shouldn’t, considering the diversity of black women. We are light as your white neighbor and as silky and chocolate as the Congo, thin enough to fit in that double zero and curvy enough to fill out a size twenty-two, stretched tall and really squat, too, with weave down our back and with hair so kinky it’ll break the teeth out of a strong comb. Some of us are sweeter than a Georgia peach and as quiet as a church mouse, and a gang of us are loud as we want to be and quick to verbally slit throats. And this is just a small sampling of us. There is no one way to present a black woman; we have a voice and we have the right not only to have that voice but also see it reflected back at us on the screen.
— “Chapter 11: On Being A Black Woman In Hollywood.” Around the Way Girl – Page 201


Chapter 10

[…] he would say exactly what was on his mind, with no thought about feelings or repercussions, and being that strong-willed often ran him into walls he couldn’t knock down.
— “Chapter 10: Building Characters.” Around the Way Girl – Page 183


[…] my afro wasn’t so much a hairstyle as it was a crown [and] my walk not so much one foot in front of the other as it was a strut.
— “Chapter 10: Building Characters.” Around the Way Girl – Page 182


 

She’s trying to provoke him and get something from him – his loyalty and trust. He doesn’t know how to give that, because, like her, he’s a kid stuck in a very adult situation, having to make adult decisions when he’s simply not ready to do so.
— “Chapter 10: Building Characters.” Around the Way Girl – Page 181


Chapter 9

Acting is communication, not only person to person, but soul to soul-a physical, emotional, and certainly spiritual expression.
“Chapter 9: Breathing Life Into Art.” Around The Way Girl – Page 171

Chapter 4

All that time, I thought you were fighting and not listening.
“Chapter 4: Hustler.” Around The Way Girl – Page 87


She was nobody to everybody, but I made her somebody to me.
“Chapter 4: Hustler.” Around The Way Girl – Page 73


Chapter 3

[…] the natural inclination of adults is to devalue the dreams of kids who express an interest in pursuing the arts. Let a kid show any kind of special aptitude for math or science, and the world will move mountains to put him in programs that stimulate his gift. The same goes for children who express even a remote interest in subjects society thinks will lead them toward careers we all tend to consider exceptional: doctor, lawyer, professor, engineer, or if it’s the arts, a classical musician and the like. Hardly anyone ever encourages the child who can’t sit still, or who runs her mouth a little too much or who lets her imagination soar, to do what is perfectly natural and right to her: consider acting, singing, dancing, or otherwise make a living performing. […] it seems such a wasted opportunity, so incredibly unjust to steer a kid away from what makes his heart sing.
“Chapter 3: Drama.” Around The Way Girl – Pages 47-48


Chapter 2

I can give you a London accent, I can give you Becky the Valley Girl all day long. I can pull it back and get corporate when I need to, too. But checks are usually attached to that. I have to get paid to be that person. That is not who I am.
“Chapter 2: Authentic.” Around The Way Girl – Page 40


Chapter 1

[…] fear is a liar [and] I make a point of calling its bluff.
“Chapter 1: Fearless” Around The Way Girl

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