Return Of The Pope

Olivia Pope, that is.


Back after three weeks. ABC is gonna kill Scandal fans off with all these hiatuses, OK? But plan accordingly for next season Scandalians, because I don’t think that is going to change.

TV is different now, because the way we watch is different now, and networks are trying to figure out how to maximize profits and viewers (which is the same thing if they’re smart) in this new climate. A highly successful and popular show like Scandal will survive in these transition years, many others won’t make it. C’est la vie I GUESS.


Where To Recap:

At The Black Girls Club.

At Awesomely Luvvie.

At Racialicious.


Thursday nights (when not on hiatus) for those with television still being piped into their homes. Friday or whenever hulu puts the episode up for the rest of us. Get introduced to or reacquainted with Olivia Pope and her Gladiators in Suits via seasons 1-3 on Netflix – OH nevmind. Only season one is available there now. I won’t even ask why.

To understand the business vagaries behind the running of Netflix would render me totally wealthy and I’d have already started my own rival company and we’d all be super duper happy and then there would subsequently be an extreme imbalance in the ether and our universe would collapse in on itself due to utter joy and things making sense so I won’t try to figure it out and yay look I just saved the world.


I didn’t forget


That Olivia Pope chose swimming as her exercise of choice to battle those blues away. I used to be a competitive swimmer and yes swimming even rivaled my dancing for many years. I remember having to juggle swim meets with dance recitals. I finally chose dance over swimming my first year in high school. But. I still know how to swim, and I am forever grateful to my parents for teaching me and my siblings how to swim, and taking us to lessons to further our skills.

I highly recommend it as a wonderful way to get back into exercising, and a liberating way for POC especially Black people – specifically African-Americans – to reclaim their heritage of being The Best Swimmers In The World.

“In 1451, Europeans began their explorations of the west coast of sub-Saharan Africa and discovered that African people were by all accounts expert watermen and “the best swimmers in the world”.

The Europeans attributed these extraordinary swimming skills to constant exercise and “from being brought up, both men and women from infancy, to swim like fishes.” The exhibit goes on to explain how valued Africans were in the Navy and on fishing fleets.

During the period of slavery in the U.S., in the 18th century it was estimated that 80% of blacks could swim and only 20% of whites could swim, until it was determined that swimming allowed slaves to escape and was banned, relegating an entire cultural group to a higher risk of drowning deaths for many generations. (source)



In the Open Water of West Africa.

How did I get from a popular television show to the history of swimming as it pertains to the African diaspora? Everything fits together, nothing stands alone. Everything is connected. Everything is on Purpose. And I’m lucky because with my extra special bipolarific brain I can see those connections like golden filaments connecting our histories – and me to you who happened to visit here today – how fine is that?


Why Don’t Black Americans Swim?

  • Propagation of incorrect scientific theories such as black people being much less buoyant
  • Historic factors going as far back as slaves not being allowed to learn to swim
  • Denial of access to pools in 1920s and 30s (2009???) causing ripple effect to present day
  • Lack of municipal pools in predominantly black neighbourhoods in 1960s onwards
  • Perception of swimming as elitist or white sport

Make A Splash!

Join Olympic Gold Medalist Cullen Jones and Learn How To Swim!

  • 70% of African American children cannot swim
  • 60% of Latino children cannot swim
  • 40% of Caucasian children cannot swim
  • Ten people drown each day in the U.S
  • Drowning is the 2nd leading cause of childhood accidental death for children under the age of 14

Participation in formal swimming lessons could reduce the likelihood of childhood drowning by 88%.

About Awake BW

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