40 Things You Don’t Know About Me: Shawanda Greene

by Shawanda Greene

Shawanda Greene

Had to give y'all a close up to hide the fact that I took this photo myself.

Like every personal finance blogger, there’s more to me than skin, bones, muscle, mucus, and money.

I’m a dynamic human being.

Over the years, I’ve tried to insert a little piece of me into every one of my writings, but You Have More Than You Think isn’t one of those hyper personal blogs where I discuss the day-to-day innards of my life.

Today, I’m gonna let my guard down and share some real stuff about me.

What I’m about to say may leave you shocked, offended, enamored. Hopefully, a tiny bit of each. However you feel, you will learn something about me you didn’t know before.

My Beauty, My Body, My Blackness

1. I can’t float. I’ve concluded this inability is because I’m black and water is racist.

2. My arms are freakishly long. My knuckles aren’t dragging the ground or anything, but I have the hardest time finding jackets that fit.

3. I’ve never had braces. :D

4. Despite the brilliance of my winning smile, I’ve had a cavity in practically every molar in my mouth.

5. I own the domain BlackNerdsDance.com. I’ve concluded the ability to catch a beat is genetic, and there are three black people in the world who can’t dance: Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey, and my best friend, Tia Jones. It’s hard to watch them dance and frankly, kinda sad.

Carlton Dance

6. I used to wear burgundy hair extensions. Shut up. Bitch, I was fabulous.

7. When I was a kid, adults frequently mistook me for a boy. Granted, my hair was pretty short. But dammit, morons, didn’t you see the earrings?!

8. In the gym, I’m an 80 year old man in a 30 year old woman’s body. Meaning, I have no shame. I grunt, sing, dance, sweat profusely. All of that. When it’s time to workout, I don’t fuck around.

9. Although my inner thighs will hold onto fat until my rib cage is visible, I can develop six pack abs fairly easily.

10. I’m 5′ 9.5″ tall. I carry it well.

11. I LOVE watermelon. When I was a kid, my mom would cut a watermelon in half and place it in the fridge. In the middle of the night, I’d grab a fork and eat directly from the center of the watermelon without removing it from the refrigerator. In the morning, the previously immaculate watermelon was mutilated. Its seeds and guts were spilled all over the bottom of the fridge. What was my response to family members who also loved watermelon? “Deal with it.”

12. I have the nappiest hair on the planet.

My Nerdity

13. I’m clinically gifted.

14. Sometimes I snort when I laugh.

15. I’m an eyeglass wearing, nosebleed having, fast acting inhaler using, mouth breather. If I wasn’t so sexy, I’d be a textbook geek.

16. I’m a whore for facts. I tend to have strong opinions. And I want them to be shaped by the truth – not someone’s biased interpretation of questionable information.

My Religion, My Politics

17. I’ve been told more than once, “I can’t believe you’re not an atheist.” I am not an atheist.

18. My fornicating parents lived in sin for a decade. At 11 years old, I gently persuaded them to get married…or burn in hell.

19. I think teaching creationism in public schools is a frickin’ joke. Don’t get me started on abstinence only education. Pfft.

20. Although fiscally conservative, you shouldn’t assume I’m also socially conservative. I think the government should mind their own damned business and so should Americans who aren’t directly impacted by the consensual choices of sane adults. Embryonic stem cell research, assisted suicide, abortion, prostitution, gay marriage, harm reduction, legalization of drugs, anyone? ANYONE?

21. The last fiction book I read was Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. I tossed out the 6th book in the series after my mother convinced me the books are demonic.

My Mama

22. My mom ironed my clothes until I graduated from high school. She’s pretty awesome.

23. My mother forced me to take piano lessons twice a week from the ages of 5 t0 10 years old. I hated it. When I asked her why I couldn’t play the guitar instead, she replied, “Because I always wanted to play the piano.” Why was I responsible for fulfilling her childhood dreams? Crazy lady.

24. I’d get a spanking if I didn’t perform well at piano lessons. No, it wasn’t child abuse. No, I’m not emotionally scarred.

25. My piano teacher was murdered when I was 10 years. It was devastating. I stopped playing the piano a year later. Ironically, to this day, I wish my mother had forced me to keep at it.

26. I started sleeping in my mom’s bed when I was 12 years old and slept there almost every night for a year. The sound of monsters growling in my bedroom walls triggered this strange decision. Mom says the sound came from rats chewing through the drywall. Oh, so, uh, that’s supposed to make it better? They sounded like monsters, mom!

27. I curse a lot when talking to my mother. I never curse at her.

28. While watching the Golden Girls, I heard the word “impotent” for the first time. I asked my mom what the word meant. Without hesitation, she said, “When a man thang can’t get hard.” I was 8 years old. Did I mention how totally awesome my mom is?

My Failures, Randomness

29. I got caught trying to steal one of my dad’s dirty magazines when I was about 6 years old. Porn, like money, does NOT belong under your mattress. I credit my father for that accidental nugget of wisdom.

30. I’ve been trying to make my booty clap since circa 1998. I don’t get it! I look like I’m having convulsions.

31. My family subscribed to the Disney channel back in the 80s when it was a premium service. Although I didn’t realize it then, I felt superior to my friends and extended family members because of this.

32. I’ve tried to become a vegan (for the animals) several times. Each time I’ve failed swiftly and miserably. The animals are too delicious.

33. My car is almost always a mess. I don’t offer people rides for this reason. When I’m in my vehicle, sometimes I feel like I’m, literally, sitting in a trash can.

34. I was arrested for underage drinking when I was 19 years old. The charges were later dropped.

35. Although my birth father and I lived in the same city throughout my entire childhood, we have no relationship whatsoever. I didn’t meet the guy until I was 10 years old. I’m cool with this.

36. My real dad, i.e., the guy who helped raise me, was 30 years older than my mother. He passed away when I was 13 years old. He was awesome.

37. I’ve never dated a guy with a tattoo. With gold teeth? Ummm.

38. I hate cottage cheese. The texture makes me want to puke. For some reason, fitness magazines and weight loss articles have been pushing this garbage since I can remember. Someone make them stop.

39. I can eat an entire pack of bacon in one sitting.

40. I thought Kurt Russell and Patrick Swayze were the same person for years.

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{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

JAMES April 27, 2012 at 9:10 AM

This comment made me laugh very hard, "In the gym, I’m an 80 year old man in a 30 year old woman’s body". Hey, if you can eat a whole pack of bacon in one sitting, you damn well better be grunting and snorting at the gym to work that off!


Shawanda April 27, 2012 at 3:08 PM

Mmm. Bacon. Just because I can eat an entire pack doesn't mean I will. Although, the only thing that stops me is, generally, there are other people who'd like some bacon too. :)


Alyssa April 27, 2012 at 11:30 AM

Ha! The Patrick Swayze/Kurt Russell thing got me for years! Mainly because I couldn't remember who was in which movie!

Finish the Harry Potter series. It's wonderful.

I'm a vegan in my heart, but not in my stomach. So I try to eat sustainable animals and less meat in general. But I will not give up Texas BBQ.


Shawanda April 27, 2012 at 3:12 PM

Looking back, I'm not sure how I could've confused the two. It's so obvious.

The best I can do for veganism is to try to eat animals who are raised humanely. The only reason I care at all is because of the horrendous treatment of animals on factory farms.


Financial Samurai April 27, 2012 at 12:39 PM

Hilarious! Love it! Never knew booty could clap. Also, didn't realize you were black! Thanks for sharing. :)


Shawanda April 27, 2012 at 3:19 PM

Well, technically, it doesn't make a sound. But if it did, the movement would cause your butt cheeks to make a clapping sound. :/

Although I'm sure most people know that I'm black (since I'm super unanonymous), I am surprised at the number of bloggers I discover who are not black or specifically Asian or a man, etc. I met J. Money from Budgets Are Sexy for the first time a couple years ago, and I was surprised he wasn't black. I just assumed any young guy who'd drive an old Cadillac was black.


susan January 5, 2015 at 1:20 PM

J. Money isn’t black????


Mandi @ The Sassy Fit Mom April 27, 2012 at 1:16 PM

Lol @ water being racist. Too funny! I too love watermelon–when I was pregnant, it was nothing to eat a whole watermelon A DAY :) My mom forced me to play piano too for the s ame exact reason. Co-sign on cottage cheese.. I can not WILL not eat it!

Thanks for sharing!!



Shawanda April 29, 2012 at 9:07 AM

It's true. Something about the density of our bones. After the assassination of Bin Laden, I was listening to an NPR (or C-SPAN) interview where a former Navy SEAL addressed the question, "Why aren't there more black Navy SEALs?" He replied that although many of them can pass other parts of the training, "They sink like a rock" when they get to the part where they have to stay afloat with bound hands and feet. Wasn't the first time I heard something like this.


Pamela April 27, 2012 at 4:56 PM

"39. I can eat an entire pack of bacon in one sitting."

Oh hai have we met?? When I was a kid, my dad promised me bacon for my birthday. Damn skippy I held him to it.


Shawanda April 29, 2012 at 9:34 PM

Bacon. That's a pretty sweet birthday gift. Parents could save a lot of money with that promise. And I'm sure their kids would appreciate it.


MLISunderstanding April 27, 2012 at 5:43 PM

#28 made me laugh! My mom, when discussing pictures of a Halloween party with her colleague (my second-grade teacher), pointed our her friend who was right and a half months pregnant, "dressed like a hooker with a sign around her neck saying TEMPORARILY OUT OF SERVICE". I looked up from my book and asked, "Mom, what's a hooker?" (My mom calmly replied that a hooker was a woman who had sex for money.) I thought my teacher's eyes were going to fall out of her head.


Shawanda April 29, 2012 at 9:00 AM

LOL! Your mom is awesome. Your comment reminds me of an exchange between Michael and Gob Bluth on the extended pilot show of Arrested Development.

Michael: So this is the magic trick, huh?

Gob: Illusion, Michael. A trick is something a whore does for money.
(Gob then turns and uncomfortably stares at the children who'd overheard him.)

Gob: …Or cocaine.

Ha! Classic.


Daisy April 27, 2012 at 8:25 PM

Fact #41 – you have immaculate skin. Or so your photo proves. Jealous!

This had me laughing. Water IS racist.


Shawanda April 29, 2012 at 9:36 PM

Thanks! But I'd like to thank the geniuses at MAC Cosmetics and Bare Escentuals for their great contributions to society.


Michelle April 28, 2012 at 6:03 PM

I love learning more about fellow bloggers!


Lady kinnks April 29, 2012 at 12:54 AM

Are we the same person? Except the highlights…. I really enjoyed reading your facts…


Shawanda April 29, 2012 at 8:49 AM

:( I thought the highlights would make my post easier to read. Now I know.

Either way, thanks for reading and commenting!


YFS April 29, 2012 at 3:20 PM

I began to crack up when I read the failed booty clap attempts.. bahahaah

Hmm.. I also curse like a sailor when talking to my mother, same thing about the sperm donor.

Great write up! LOL..


Shawanda April 29, 2012 at 9:42 PM

Thanks! I figured most people wouldn't know what the heck I was talking about. "Booty clap? What?" Glad you came through.


Andrew April 29, 2012 at 4:22 PM

"Water is racist"? Is that why there are no black water polo players?
Mrs. 101 is similarly frank with our boys. Makes for alternately giggly and speechless moments.


Shawanda April 29, 2012 at 9:47 PM

Probably. One of my friends, a black chick, played water polo when we were in college. But she was really fair, so she probably didn't suffer from the same level of discrimination as darker skinned black folks. :)

Tell your wife thanks for being honest. I'm sure the parents of kids at your sons' school will appreciate the sex education organically passed on to their children.


Nick May 1, 2012 at 10:01 PM

"30. I’ve been trying to make my booty clap since circa 1998. I don’t get it! I look like I’m having convulsions."

Now that's a keeper!!! Never give up that dream..lol

Frugal, a sista, gym, financial literate, and working on a booty clap…I think Im in love lol

I'm a professional booty clap coach …call me :)


Shawanda May 2, 2012 at 8:41 PM

Ha! You should put a video on YouTube. I want to see a step by step tutorial. I'm sure there's a huge demand for that information. :)


Nick May 7, 2012 at 12:41 AM

YouTube pfft that video going to be strictly PPV (pay per view) $49.95 lol or I'll make a infomercial product like tao bo DVDs with different levels lol you can be my before and after model and with ya first name it'll have hella credibility hit me up ;)


Doug May 2, 2012 at 8:15 PM

You SO are an atheist. You just haven’t come to terms with your atheism yet. :-)
Doug recently posted..Remote Reboot X – new version not too far away…My Profile


Shawanda May 2, 2012 at 8:35 PM

Am not! I'm going to church and everything.


Aloysa May 3, 2012 at 12:26 PM

Curse a lot when talking to your mother? hahahaha Me too! What's up with that?


AmericanDebtProject May 3, 2012 at 1:59 PM

Didn't know these things about you…and they are awesome. I too love watermelon and all melons. Michelle Obama can't dance?! Oprah I get, but Michelle seems so hip and down…. :0)


fabulouslyfrugirl May 5, 2012 at 10:35 AM

This is awesome!

I love getting to know bloggers. I, too, have tried to become a vegetarian. I think my longest stint was about 5 years, then I succumbed… Animals taste good. I just try to have them in moderation.


Carrie Smtih May 6, 2012 at 1:05 AM

This post is fabulous! I love when you guys say "nappiest" that word always makes me laugh. I took piano lessons for most of my childhood too, but then my teacher moved away. I wish my parents made me keep going too. I also grew up in a mixed parental household after losing my mom when I was a teenager. My stepmom has been there through everything.


Buck Inspire May 8, 2012 at 3:53 AM

Wonderful picture. Perfect smile without braces? You're so lucky! I love watermelon too! The Carlton's too funny. This is an awesome list. Thanks for sharing and letting us know you better!


BusyExec May 10, 2012 at 11:14 PM

EPIC post..btw, love your site's new look!
My recent post Be Thankful…Our Parents Were Wealthy With Much Less!


Mo' Money Mo' Houses July 10, 2012 at 5:40 PM

I definitely share your #14 and I thought the same thing of #40! I still couldn’t tell them apart today!


Suburban Kamikaze August 5, 2012 at 4:03 PM

I love this list. And even though you are wrong about cottage cheese, this website is exactly what I need.

It was great meeting you at BlogHer12.

Suburban Kamikaze recently posted..More reasons to love the EnglishMy Profile


Shawanda Greene August 5, 2012 at 11:50 PM

Likewise! Thanks for dropping by. I was just telling a friend how much I learned in your short, but amazing, workshop. Hope to see you again next year!
Shawanda Greene recently posted..The Anti-Social Guide to Selling Your StuffMy Profile


George December 27, 2012 at 4:56 PM

The powerful results of simplicity! You are a living ,walking example of what
women should be instead of following the shallow and superficial “reality tv
shows”that they watch. Thank you for your ebook. God bless and take care.


Shawanda Greene December 27, 2012 at 8:46 PM

Thanks, George! And you’re welcome. Admittedly, I’m a huge reality show fan, but in no way do I mimic the behavior of these folks. I try to live a drama free life.
Shawanda Greene recently posted..A Quick and Dirty Guide to Passive Income StreamsMy Profile


Michael May 13, 2013 at 10:55 PM

I hope your Mom is still with you, – take advantage of her wisdom. Intelligence, as measured by tests, success, academics, possessions, status, Office (elected & otherwise), etc. is way overrated.

Wisdom is everything.

Here is a story about wisdom – So…..my Aunt Ruth, a simple country woman who was my Mom after Mom died, and is in her eighties, says to me one day, “Mickey, they changed my lard”. I went to the fridge and looked in the box and it looked the same to me. She said “No, it’s different. it used to be one big block and now they cut it into 4 sticks”. True enough – 4 sticks individually wrapped. So we went to store after store to find “her lard”. No luck. Finally I asked, “How about butter? We can get that in a block.” – I got the “Look”. I asked, “how about Crisco? That’s not in sticks.” She looked at me and sighed – “Mickey, I don’t use butter and I don’t use Crisco. The nearer the source, the better it is.”
That is wisdom.
“The nearer the source, the better it is”.
God, I miss her.


new york guitar repair September 25, 2013 at 2:47 AM

It’s all still Alice Cooper to me.


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