All posts by Planet Noun

Founder, and Planet Noun podcast

Tidings of comfort and escape: The Southern Belle Insults series

It’s been an interesting season. My family is grieving my Mother’s death. She passed in the early fall, and it’s been a succession of firsts since then: My first birthday without her. My Dad’s first birthday without her. Their first anniversary—without her. The first Thanksgiving and the first Christmas. Our nieces’ first visit—without their beloved Grandma.

It’s been rough. Many moments of tears, anxiety, body-racking sobs, crying to my therapist between work meetings, crying on my sister’s shoulder, even more tears triggered by commercials, and…escape.

Escape is so nice. The chance to think about anything else but the sadness, anything but the void.

Wait, let me not be inaccurate. Its totally an opportunity to think about anything else—as long as it’s happy or fantastical. Anything that provides relief from the grief—even for a few moments or several.

So, to books I turn. And to TV, movies and streaming services. And to music.

And in the process, I’m making discoveries. And learning. And am being introduced to things and perspectives new to me. For that, I am grateful, while also being grateful for the beautiful gift of dear Mommy—the most beautiful person we all knew.

So, today’s first recommendation is a cute series by Keke Palmer with romance novelist Jasmine Guillory. A collection of short stories about a plain Jane grown @rse woman named…. Janet… and how a cadre of magical and dynamic wigs help her find her voice, own her purpose and change her life.

That’s all I’m going to say. That, and the whole series is narrated from the point of view of the most fabulous wig in the bunch—Lady Jacqueline. Lady J and her hair hat friends helped me laugh a bit deeper.

The Southern Belle Insults series is available for free for Amazon Prime members, and even comes with Audible narration.

I know I said that’s all I’m going to say. I guess it’s not. But no opining from me about these brief books, except to say they had this grieving woman laughing out loud. LOUD, I say.

Each book is roughly 30-ish minutes long—at least that’s how long it takes for the included Audible narration to deliver the stories at standard speed.

This series is inspiring because it’s friggin’ FUNNY and it, whether intentional or not, contains a clear message of female empowerment, advocacy, self acceptance and having courage to live out loud, while taking risks on purpose and with discretion.

This was definitely a welcome fantastical read. Another element of fantasy for me? Watching the OG Sex and the City. Why? Only because prancing around any city in $500 heels is fantasy-like to me. She (*points to self*) loves flip flops too much for that to even be real. ?

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September 11, 2021 at 11:34 AM (Journal entry)

If you’re of a certain age in the United States and beyond, you likely have a “Where were you when…” story regarding September 11, 2001.

Here’s mine:

I was living in Los Angeles, still in my parent’s house. My youngest brother opened my room door and said something like “Guess what? A plane crashed into the World Trade Center!”

Heh. I brushed that off, and likely expressed my disbelief, too. That jokester boy woke me up to tell me some nonsense. Sheesh.

I turned over to get back to sleep. His words were so easy to disbelieve because not only is he a jokester with an ever-present sense of humor, but he has such a natural smile. He was telling me, but I saw so many of his smiling teeth, it was hard to believe.

Besides, a plane crashed into the Trade Center before—a small Cessna-type thing.

But did he say commercial jets? Did he say two? This part I can’t recall. But something was different about the information he gave.

I thought about it. He’s a jokester, yes. He has an easy smile, yes. But even he wouldn’t joke about something like this!

So I turned on the TV…

Both towers, smoldering. Uncertainty over missing flights that might be headed to the White House and the Capitol.

Then word a plane slammed into the Pentagon.

Glued. To. The. TV. Who, when, what, how, WHY, WHY, WHY? Were the questions running through my mind.

Underneath my covers, watching…one network anchor was saying/wondering about something new happening at one of the towers… While he was talking, MY eyes and brain asked me “Is it falling down?” Then TOLD me “It’s falling down!!!!” First one tower, then the other.

Swirling about was the uncertainty about a flight somewhere…headed someplace. We didn’t know if a plane would try to do harm to Los Angeles, no one knew much.

I can’t recall when I found out about United 93 crashing into a field in Shanksville, Pa., but I do remember getting a call from a longtime friend from childhood.

Recalling everything she said is difficult, but it went something like this: “I was on my way to San Francisco, but we got stuck on the tarmac. We’re not going anywhere and I need you to pick me up from the airport.”

National airspace shut DOWN.

The rest of the conversation, I can’t recall. Can’t recall if she called from a cell phone, from an airplane phone, or if she called from a pay phone…but she called. So I got dressed, told my mom “I don’t know everything that’s going on, but I’m going to get Ivette from the airport.”

Crowded, LAX was. That’s not unusual, though. But it was weird. Surreal. Strange. Unbelievable.

I got Ivette and drove her home.

And the news kept rolling in…


Fast forward to 2021… I’m living in the DMV now, and working for a startup TV network.

Like all outlets, we were preparing to commemorate 20 years since 9/11. During this prep, I’ve had the honor of speaking to folks who are directly impacted by loss on that day as part of the pre-interview process. The loss is unimaginable, even after all these years. Got the opportunity to speak to someone who lost their sister in the Pentagon. A different member of this same family has another twist to the story:

Imagine learning that your mother died when American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon…only to find out that your friend was on board that plane.

Unbelievable. But true.


I’ve kept a series of consistently inconsistent handwritten journals since the 1990s, and I wondered if I wrote anything on 9-11. I looked. Turned pages. Checked a few different books.
Not one peep written on 9-11. But I did find an entry made about two weeks later. That entry started like this:
“September 11th turned out to be a rotten day…”

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EPISODE 40—Self awareness, navigating confidence & fear

Miguel Asua is a name you should know. As Notorious BIG once said “If you don’t know, now you know!”

Episode 40 features Miguel Asua, someone I met right before ‘Rona became a national emergency…but we’re part of the same team at work—at a new job I started just as the pandemic was starting to rage in the United States.

This guy wears a lot of hats: Writer…music artist…to video producer…. But let me stop typing so you can meet him yourself!

We talk inspiration, motivation, and his sense of self awareness that enables him to speak oh-so confidently about his strengths–yet with vulnerability about his fears and up front about his weaknesses..

You don’t want to miss this chat–on Planet Noun:

Thanks for listening to Planet Noun where it’s all about the People, Places, Things and Ideas that teach us, prompt us to make a difference and do more with what life presents.

That was Miguel Asua of Asua Films and the brand new podcast Behind the Credits with Asua!  

Brotha man makes music, too—so take a look and a listen:

Slow Mo by Asua. Take a peek at more of his videos here.
Interesting fact: Lambo was shot at Washington D.C.’s Black Lives Matter Plaza. Take a peek at his other videos on the Asua page on YouTube.

Until next time, take care!

Oh…As the late Nate Dogg once sang “Hold up! Waaaa-aiiiit!” HOW could I forget—a clip of that hilarious interaction with Gayle King that we talked about in the show!

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EPISODE 39—Rashad McCrorey and Pandemic-ing in Ghana?

Talk about doing the most with what life presents! Rashad McCrorey, our episode 39 guest, is doing just that.

McCrorey joins Planet Noun for another COVID catch-up. In this series, I’ve been chatting with past guests on Planet Noun—to find out how they’ve been faring during 2020, a year that’s been described countless times as “unprecedented,” and simultaneously likened unto a train wreck, dumpster fire, and a sh!t show. 

McCrorey is a travel company owner who is new to Planet Noun. We connected via Instagram a few months ago.  

His podcast preamble goes something like this: McCrorey went to Ghana on business—temporarily.  But then COVID-19 was declared a pandemic, and then a national emergency in the United States, where he was born, so Rashad McCrorey decided stick around in Ghana after the first wave of lockdowns was ramping up. He’s still there, and joined me via Zoom to talk about his journey. 

Well, let’s get to it…Meet Rashad McCrorey… on Planet Noun!

Rashad McCrorey traveled to Ghana on business earlier this year, then the COVID-19 pandemic hit. He’s been there ever since and is putting down some roots.

Thanks for listening to Planet Noun where it’s all about the People, Places, Things and Ideas that teach us, prompt us to make a difference and do more with what life presents.

That was Rashad McCrorey.  Here’s where to learn more about his life in Ghana, his travel company, and his social media info to connect there.

Thanks again for stopping by, and do me a favor. It’s the end of a tough year, but there seems to be some hope in sight with the COVID vaccine.  

Even so, it’s still rough going, so drop a kind and positive word to someone in your life whether it’s by email or you can slide into someone’s DM’s with kindness and encouragement—expecting nothing in return. Or if you know them IRL, a word via phone, voice note—just to brighten their day.  

Until next time, take care!

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Rodd Quinn’s journey from pen sketches to full time artist?

Meet Rodd’s piece titled “Lost in D.C.” And there’s a story behind it…it’s literally lost–at last word, it was somewhere in Washington D.C. Learn more about this missing work of art on Rodd’s Instagram profile. (Photo courtesy of Rodd Quinn)

Welcome to Planet Noun where it’s all about the People, Places, Things and Ideas that teach us, prompt us to make a difference and do more with what life presents.

Episode 38 is another installment in the COVID catch-up series…I’ve been chatting with past guests on Planet Noun—to find out how they’ve been faring during this rough year…known as 2020.

This time, I’m catching up with someone I met a couple of years ago…at what was my full time job…. We met at an event in Washington, D.C., and I wanted to interview him for a story I was going to file with the radio station where I worked. 

That’s where it started…and we’ve been chatting online about him coming on the show…then the pandemic hit….and at last… here he is! 

Rodd Quinn. (Photo courtesy of Rodd Quinn)

Rodd Quinn’s his name…and I was intrigued because during the interview for work, I found out he was a traveling artist.  Look…by now, you know that anyone who has the courage to follow their dreams — intrigues me!

Well, let’s get to it…Meet Rodd Quinn… he joined Planet Noun— from Laredo Texas…

Take a listen to the fascinating story of Road Quinn–a traveling visual artist who I met him while covering a street festival for work a couple of years ago.

Thanks for listening to Planet Noun and our guest was Rodd Quinn. Learn more about him and his adventures on social media:

You can find him at a couple of spots on Instagram:

Don’t forget to follow us on Social Media… Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. There are links to those platforms in the side nav bars. We’re on SoundCloud–that’s one way you can listen to the show. You can also stop byApple Podcasts and rate the show. OHHHH, and we’re on Spotify now. That’s another place where you can listen.

Thanks again for stopping by!

Hey, do me a favor and you, too: Drop a kind and positive word to someone in your life–whether it’s an email, a social media message, a word via phone, a voice note—just to brighten another’s day…and expecting nothing in return. Even a smile works–and if you’re wearing a mask–smiling eyes will do!

Until next time, take care!

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EPISODE 37: How 1 pandemic won’t stop the show

How 1 thing, 1 day, 1 time is still a monthly matter–but with masks and social distance. The 25th Project masks up, tweaks protocols and keeps the service moving.

Welcome to another installment in Planet Noun’s COVID catch-up series—chats with past podcast guests to find out how they’ve been faring during this rough year.

This time, I’m catching up with Jay Herriott from The 25th Project—an organization that started by helping the homeless at least once a month—on the 25th. The inspiration stems from the last time Thanksgiving’s roving date matched up with the static date of Christmas…the year both were on the the 25th of their respective months.

Jay says the organization and its volunteers are still fulfilling their mission—but to keep everyone involved safe from volunteers to the homeless people they help, they’ve made tweaks recommended by health experts. Other than that—they’re keeping things moving.

Thanks for listening to Planet Noun where it’s all about the People, Places, Things and Ideas that teach us, prompt us to make a difference and do more with what life presents.

Here’s where to learn more about Jay Herriott and The 25th Project—on their website. You can also listen to Jay’s Planet Noun interview from last year, learn more about the initiatives they’re undertaking throughout the year—from the Thanksgiving and Christmas meals, their ongoing propane drive during the winter months as well as their yearly Soup and Socks drive.  If you feel so inclined, drop them a donation.

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Insiders, outsiders, travel, COVID and a book

Welcome! This episode is another installment in our COVID catch-up series…I’ve been chatting with past guests on Planet Noun—to find out how they’ve been faring during this rough year…known as 2020.

This time, it’s a first time guest to the show…but THIS dude…I haven’t seen in SOOOOOOO long. We overlapped at college for a bit where we sang in the same choir…then poof!  No sightings for many years—until Facebook came along.  Still haven’t seen him in person since the 90s.

His name? Brian Watts… author and host of Knowledge is the Key on Envision Radio.  He’s also an author and an educator.  We talk about a range of things including how his love of travel led him to Kuwait, how getting pulled over by the police so many times factored into that decision and experiencing the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in another country. We also talk about his book—which delves into how parents can help their children to help themselves.  

Let’s get to it with Brian Watts…on Planet Noun!

Thanks for listening to Planet Noun where it’s all about the People, Places, Things and Ideas that teach us, prompt us to make a difference and do more with what life presents.

That was Brian J.T. Watts. Peruse his website to learn more about him. You can also learn more about his book titled “How to Help Your Children Help Themselves.

And here’s more info on his radio show, “Knowledge is the Key” from the man himself!

Thanks again for stopping by… until next time, take care!

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LaKeischa and the topsy-turvy upside down COVID year

Dr. LaKeischa McMillan catches us up on how she’s been faring and adjusting in this COVID year, and how she’s helping patients connect their health dots through a new book, and a women’s health tele summit.

This episode is another installment in the COVID catch-up series, where I’m chatting with past guests on Planet Noun—to find out how they’ve been faring during this rough year known as 2020: The year ‘Rona rode US hard and put us away wet.

The last time Dr. LaKeischa McMillan was on, we were talking about family health history. It was about two years ago, and the episode dropped just ahead of the United States’ Thanksgiving holiday.

Welp, this year, Thanksgiving will look a lot different for so many. Some (if you call the families of more than 200,000 people “some”) have lost family members to COVID-19, while others may opt not to gather due to concerns about asymptomatic spread to high-risk family members.

There’s a lot to talk about this time around, so take a listen to Dr. LaKeischa McMillan—on Planet Noun.

Learn more about Dr. McMillan and the different services she provides as an integrative GYN, an author and a speaker.

Let’s start with her book. It’s called The Other PMS: Your Survival Guide for Perimenopause & Menopause

She also hosts the Women’s Health Show every Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. on Facebook Live.

Keep up with her latest activities—including the multi-day women’s summit she’s hosting this week.

Thanks again for stopping by… until next time, take care!

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Finding joys and blessings in a janky year

Our guest for Episode 34 is no stranger to Planet Noun. Stacia D. Wright’s been on the show before. She’s an event and media strategist and owner of B. Reel Media Management, LLC. As I’ve said in previous episodes, small business owners fascinate me because of the risks they take and lessons they’re open enough to learn in order to keep progressing along the entrepreneurial pathway.

Well, this year has presented a ton of loss, lessons, risks and pivots–thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. We talk about a bunch in this episode: From how the pandemic has affected her business and family life, to Zoom school and learning to go with the ebbs and flows of her children’s new educational reality, to new ways of spending time with family, and how this year’s adjustments have led to finding unexplored treasures.

Yes, even though this year has been a train wreck for the WORLD in so many ways–woven into everything are blessings and joys.

Connect with Stacia on social media:

Facebook: @StaciaDWrightofficial / @TheDriveSDW

Twitter: @TheDriveSDW

Instagram: @StaciaDOfficial

Check out Stacia’s first interview on Planet Noun! In this chat from 2018, Stacia has a thing or three to say about knowing your worth, the value of your time and what you bring to any table. If you want to start your own business, her reminder: Working for others has invaluable lessons as well.
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Fall, winter, spring, a virus, summer, restful edges & Fall again

Hey folks!
So it’s been about a year since the first episode dropped with Lenina Mortimer. At that time we were talking about her new book.?
Well, one year later, it’s time to catch up. A round of guest catch-ups is something I was thinking of for some of the folks I interviewed a couple of years ago, but 2020 is so janky, one year ago feels like five! ?
Find out what’s been going on in Lenina’s world, her work, and lessons she’s learned from the pandemic and this period of social unrest and racial tension—on this episode of Planet Noun!?

Quick warning: This episode contains a couple of cuss words. Personally, I don’t care. This advisory is just in case you have little ones around who like to repeat things. ?

Welcome to Planet Noun, and enjoy!

Lenina’s also on social media. You can learn more about her and her coaching services.

You can also check out her first episode on Planet Noun:

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