Angelia Vernon Menchan

Angelia Vernon Menchan is an author, publisher and public speaker who owns two publishing companies, MAMM Productions and Honorable Menchan Media. Mrs. Menchan is also a Budget Officer and former Job Corps Counselor. To date she has published twenty-three books of her own work, both fiction and non-fiction and more than eighty ebook novellas on You can access her bibliography on search words: Angelia Vernon Menchan

Contact information:
Phone numbers: 904 714 2272 904 303 2679

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


I spent most of my life, pretty quiet, some say reserved, or standoffish (HA)…that is not to say that I didn’t talk. Of course, I did, if I needed to talk for work, school et al, talk I would. And with people I know, I talked up a storm. But usually if I didn’t know you, I would smile, speak and keep it moving unless I was engaged in a conversation and then I would talk. But, something changed and in many ways it changed without me ever having to open my mouth at all. How? Glad you asked.

I started writing…and all of a sudden I was talking up a storm. I recall about four years ago, I was doing a signing and a guy who I knew said to me, “You are quiet, but your books speak loud and clear.” I simply nodded because I knew that to be true. I try to write as loudly and clearly as possible to tell the story and I will ‘say’ things in print that I would probably never give voice to in actual conversation. Thank God for writing.

Also, blogging has allowed me to talk a great deal and social networks as well. I get to say things as they occur to me and reveal myself in ways I never thought I would and I am okay with that. Because something I have learned as a missionary of sorts is that to help people, truly help them, sometimes we have to strip naked, down to our bare realness and tell it as it I.S. is. I have always been able to do that when mentoring. There is no shame in my game, when trying to talk to a young person who is going through something. If anything I have gone through or experienced can be of any assistance at all, I’m going to put it out there.

The same is true of the wonderful things that God has blessed me with. I am so grateful and thankful for my marriage, my family, my friends, that I am going to shout it to the rooftops how good it is. It is in no way trying to brag or act as though my thang is better than your thang, cause I don’t know what your thang is. And what I speak to is my truth, because that is the only truth I know other than the true word of God. There are so many times when I opine on my views on love, marriage or baby carriage when someone yells, “Hold up, wait a minute, that ain’t even much how it is…”

My response then becomes, “To who or whom?” Because suga, if I write it, it is how it is to me. And if you want to engage about how it isn’t to you, by all means let’s do that. But do me a small favor and don’t assume because it isn’t your reality, that it could not possibly be mine.

I recall years ago talking to a friend and co-worker about a life experience and she must have said, “Unbelievable…” a gazillion times. Finally, I said, “So…because it has never happened to you, it is unbelievable because it has happened to me. Of course, she said, “Um, no.” But her widened eyes and red face told the story.

Here’s the thing, if you share with me anything, I am always going to assume it is the truth, your truth; even if it has never happened to me, simply because you said it. Now if you are a known pathological liar, that’s another story. But I would never try to negate one’s experiences or poo-poo them (yes I said poo-poo) because I have never done it or gone through it. If it is a bad thing, I will try to learn from it and not go there. If it is a good thing, I will ask for pointers and suggestions on how I can get my ish together. That works so beautifully, don’t you agree…


Monday, April 18, 2011


I love talking to people about relationships and the like, especially friendships. I am always fascinated by people whose friends are all just like them. If they are rich, their friends are rich, if they are black, all their friends are black, if they are…well you feel me.

Personally, I feel we grow best when we spend time with people who make us think, stretch our awareness. I love sitting at the feet of my elders, soaking up their wisdom. I also, love chatting it up with 20 somethings and listening to their new and innovative, sometimes startling views of things. And at any time you are going to see me talking to the kids, sharing something with them and learning something from them.

I also like to talk to people who aren’t considered to be in my ‘circle’. And mind you I say this very tongue in cheek because I really don’t have a circle. What I mean by this is for me to engage a person doesn’t have to be black, female, middle class, live in a certain place, vote or think the way I do. They do have to make sense and be open-minded. I honestly feel that if we don’t surround ourselves with people who have more or know more, how will we learn? And if we don’t have people in our lives who have less or know as much, who can we assist or inspire?

I remember years ago a woman telling me that she wanted her son to marry someone who had equal or had more than him. I asked her how would she feel if her son fell in love with someone who had more than him and that person didn’t want him because he had less. She looked at me with complete puzzlement as if it had never occurred to her that her son could possibly be snubbed by someone in the same way she was asking him to snub someone. Funny, no?

Of course I am not talking about hanging out with people who will harm you or others. What I am saying that true diversity means being open to and acceptable of all people regardless of the socio-economic backgrounds, or ethnicity. Because everything that glitters ain’t gold and something that might look tarnished may be a real jewel. I see so many marriages where the woman was looking for money and the man for honey and several months in they realize they have nothing in common, especially if the money is spent, or the honey dried up.

All I am saying is that if all your friends drive the same kind of car, or wear the same kind of clothes or are the same complexion or ethnicity, et al, you might be missing out on some really cool people or some extraordinary opportunities to grow or give….

But surely I don’t know…


Tuesday, April 12, 2011


This morning on my drive to work, I was listening to the TJMS and one of the topics was how Jamaican musicians were bleaching their skin because they thought it would make them more popular. That lighter skin made life easier. The radio personalities commented on how horrible the bleaching had turned out, one said it looked as if the bleacher had a nuclear accident.

Years ago I read an article about the same process happening in certain parts of Africa and then I wondered do the people not see how horrible it looks and why would someone do that to themselves. Some literally had bleached their skin raw. But of course my question was rhetorical, because I have always known that some Black people will do almost anything to appear lighter or have straight hair.

Back in the day people was putting straight lye, potash, people on their hair to straighten it, at the risk of burning their scalps. And as a child growing up, I recall the jars of Nadinola that was guaranteed to brighten the skin.

I remember when my eldest son was about seven, he found a jar of skin whitener, yes it said whitener, at a relative’s home and he ran out with it, asking, “Why you trying to whiten your skin.” You could have heard a pin drop. The relative smiled slightly, finally saying, “It’s just to make my skin prettier.” That hurt me to my core because whether she knew it or not, she was saying, the lighter or whiter the skin, the prettier.

It made me remember growing up in the sixties when the word black didn’t mean racial pride, to call someone black was to invite a fight or a least a cussing out. And once the black power movement came about nothing really changed, I can recall as a teen one of my friends mentioning how Eldridge Cleaver always talked black power, but he had found the lightest skinned wife he could. *sigh*

And it seems that nothing has changed today, in 2011 and it is universal, not just African Americans, but darker hued people of all races and nationalities. I can only wonder where it will all end or if it will. I hear many young, supposedly enlightened young people still determining beauty based on skin color or hair texture.

One day at church between services I heard a couple of young men say, “For a dark-skinned girl, she sure is pretty.” The other replied, “Yeah she fine, but she too dark.”

I was shocked and shook because here I was woman in her 50s listening to teens say the same crap that their slave ancestors had said generations ago. I was shook mostly because I knew they felt like that because they had been taught that and as long as it was passed from generation to generation it would always be an issue. And that young people around the globe would literally maim themselves to be considered better because they were lighter. Lord, have mercy!


Monday, April 11, 2011


Sometimes I am shocked by the things people feel they have the right to say or ask. Today I was walking from the bank and this woman I didn’t know from a can of paint asked, “Is that yo real hair, if so is you mixed or something and where you from?” Excuse me?

“Well, I’m just axing because the back is so short I know you dii’nt have a curl in there, so is it?”

Not being in a gracious frame of mind, I smiled and got in my car. Driving away I was thinking of yesterday when a friend told me about moving to a new city and being questioned about where she was from, as if she had moved from Mars, not just another state. And really dumb, insulting questions, such as I thought people from there did such and such. Excuse Me?

To top it all off, this morning I read a blog on mybrownbaby that mentioned an older woman telling a young mother that her biracial child was a half-breed. Excuse me?

Are these people serious, has the world become such that we feel we can ask total strangers anything and expect them to answer. In many cases, the questions or statements are downright insulting. Or is it that we live in such a culture where we tell so much of our business on social networks and the like that we feel we can say or ask any old thing, even face-to-face?

I knew that when I became a writer people would want to know certain things and would ask all kinds of questions and I was prepared for that. However, I am never prepared when asked a question by a complete stranger who hasn’t even bothered saying, “Hello, how are you, go to heck, or something?”

I must confess I am not all that comfortable with being grilled about intimate things with people I know. I am of the mindset that anything needed to know will be told. I don’t grill people or ask a whole bunch of questions. I have discovered that you can learn so much more by being quiet and observing. And frankly, I could care less about whether someone’s hair is real or not. And I certainly would never offer up a skewered view of a child’s racial identity or indicate to someone that I thought all people from a certain area were a certain way.

Also, I don’t care to be grilled about other folks business. This morning a co-worker came to my door, I could see from the look on her face she was ready to get gossipy.

“Umm, Angelia, do you know why so and so is going to be off so long. They are on the calendar for weeks.”


“Oh, Okay, I just thought you might know since everything is signed off on by you.”

“Sorry, I can’t help you.”


Hmmph indeed, as I said before if people want you to know something they will tell you, if they don’t they won’t. And I am going to go out on a limb and say that no one appreciates being accosted by a total stranger and asked a bunch of asinine questions or hear a bunch of even more asinine opinions. Think what you want but keep it to yourself.