Excerpt from Author’s Book | Rendition of Historic Black Wall Street, Tulsa, OK by Yoko Matsuoka

My latest children’s book, Rat Race: Journey of Hope, started off differently from my other stories. For one, it was my first commissioned work. A friend and fellow US Air Force Academy graduate had referred me to Trensek, LLC, a group of businessmen in Jackson, Mississippi, who were looking for an author to write a book on their behalf. After a few exchanges on LinkedIn, we set up an initial call to discuss the project.

It was November 2019. I remember I took the call from the Minneapolis airport (a bit of foreshadowing, I later discovered). The group wanted to…

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Bag lady you gone hurt your back
Dragging all them bags like that
I guess nobody ever told you
All you must hold onto, is you, is you, is you.
Erykah Badu

To say I’m a person who often pushes herself to carry all the bags while also picking up other people’s bags would be an understatement. Just a few years ago, I was working full time, managing a failing restaurant franchise, actively writing and publishing books, and serving my country part time the USAF Reserves all as a single mom with a house and two dogs.

Oh yeah, Erykah…

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Tigers — focused, lithe, and smart. Exceptional hunters — they keep their eyes on their target and don’t stop until they get what they want.

What do wet tigers have to do with women asking permission too much? Well, if you’re a grown up and not easily offended, just search “WAP” on YouTube and you’ll understand. If you aren’t, or you are, respectively, you might want to skip the video. IJS.

I’m kind of late to the party on this WAP thing. Not late in the way you might be thinking though, but that’s a different topic for a different…

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If someone were to say I had been living a life diminished. Good. Nice. Quiet. Respectable. Pleasing…

It would be an understatement.

The exhausting tragedy of racism pushed me into a shell of myself. Into a form I subconsciously thought would help. A form others might find acceptable. A form that would surely advance me and other Black people too.

Because you would see me and know... Just KNOW that Black people ARE good. I represent! Can’t you see? We are kind. And smart. And caring. And loving. I would be an example. …

The unexpected gift of time

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Before I begin, let me just put out in the universe my sincere gratitude, prayers and good vibes sent out for our women and men working on the front lines during our global response to COVID-19. You are all heroes in my eyes, especially the housekeepers and facilities staff in our hospitals. Keeping floors, equipment, and air clean in a hospital is neither sexy nor optional!

Thank you.

Social distancing. For some of us, this thing we’re all doing right now is the first time in a long time that we have more time on our hands.

If you have…

Photo By Tiffany Robinson

I enjoy walking my lab-mix, Zoe because it is often my best thinking time. If I’m stuck trying to solve a problem, nine times out of ten, I’ll come up with a solution while I’m walking. It’s usually a pretty peaceful process, minus a loud car or truck that comes by and scares my dog.

She’s extremely skittish.

Let me give you a little background on Zoe. We adopted her from a shelter when she was around 14 weeks old. We wonder if she was found under a highway or loud construction site, because the slightest noise will scare her…

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There’s a quote by Kelly Lee Phipps, “If you argue for your limitations, you get to keep them.” The first time I heard this quote it was listening to Marie Forleo’s book, “Everything is Figureoutable.”

That quote hit me like a ton of bricks.

If I argue for my limitations, I get to keep them? Whoa. Wait a minute. Pause the audiobook. Rewind, listen five more times, and then Google the quote. I read it several times over, and I thought to myself, So the only thing keeping these limitations attached to me is… me?

The funny thing is, I’ve…

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When I decided to start my first side hustle, it was a public health consulting business that I started with a few friends from grad school. None of us knew what the heck we were doing, but we saw a lot of private companies that were doing work in public health and we wanted to be part of that work too.

Talk about not having a clue about building a successful business — we didn’t know anything about getting set up with the Secretary of State or the IRS, what to do for taxes, and what legal requirements we had…

Tiffany Robinson

I’m an entrepreneur who loves her day job and follows my passion for writing during the “5–9” hours. Find my work here! https://webuyblack.com/lapeche-books

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