There is a reason I stomp around preaching the benefits of developing an active social media presence (and defending my addiction) because sometimes it will lead to an opportunity, great or small. The right tweet sent at the right time with the appropriate handles addressed and relevant hashtags can get all the right eyes scrolling in your direction. I recently experienced this when I tweeted at current MTV Real World: Ex-plosion badass and visionary Ari Fitz concerning a small blurb I wrote about her in a previous post.
In what seems like typical Ari fashion, she happily responded to my tweet and eventually the questions I sent to her via email. She is a wonderful example of maintaining an active social relationship with her fans as well as those she has an interest in working with professionally. My questions were not the most eloquent or engaging considering they were hastily thought of in the context of my life experiences and what I’ve been reading lately, but still she took the time to reply in which I will share with you. As I addressed in the previous post, these questions (on a very basic level) revolve around the idea of intersectionality and how it poses difficulties navigating through the world of self-identity and dating.
Have you always been aware of your sexuality?
Ari Fitz: Not really. It was never a big realization for me. I just fell for a girl (like hard!) one day and when it continued to happen, I just smiled about it and kept going.
Were you hesitant when you discovered this aspect of yourself?
Ari: No, not really. It’s just another part of who I am, if anything if teaches me a new way to view identity, love, body issues, gender, etc. In short, I have a gift because of the way I love. It’s called unique perspective.
Were you raised in a predominantly white environment?
Ari: Nope. I grew up in Vallejo, Ca which was mad diverse. My best friend is 4’11 confident, tough and Filipina & Puerto Rican. I have really close good friends from where I grew up that are White, Black, Filipino/Pacific Islander, Asian, Hispanic/Latino, etc… Something else I’m thankful for that’s given me perspective.
Your ex on the show is white, have you always dated white women? Have you felt guilt for doing so?
Ari: Ashley is half Chinese and half “White” (Italian, Irish). She’s the girl I’ve dated that isn’t Black or Latina. She’s one of my best friends, she’s stood by me when I was absolutely nothing and she’s supported me since day one so I have absolutely no guilt about being involved with her.
Were you ever worried your partner would say or infer something racist and not be able to understand why that was problematic?
Ari: Sure and I’m equally afraid I might say something that offends her upbringing as Ashley was raised traditionally Chinese. She and I are human. She and I make mistakes. I know her heart is pure, even purer than mine at times so if she makes a mistake or says something “outta pocket”, I know that’s a conversation we can have and she’ll genuinely apologize/correct.
As you grew and became more educated and experienced adult life, has your perception of being a black and gay woman evolved?
Ari: Oh man. Yes, yes and yes. How could it not?
*BONUS* For shits and giggles, what are your opinions on sex toys? Welcomed in the bedroom?
Ari: Quick answer is, I love them and click on my Good Vibes page. Boom! 😉
From what I’ve gathered thus far it seems as though Ari Fitz is quite the motivated creative who is exceptionally conscious of herself and the world surrounding her. What more could you ask of a woman working hard to have her visions seen and stories heard? Stories that speak to a community who are otherwise starving for any kind of sustenance. Luckily for us Ari is developing a presence in the film community. Check out her short film The Anniversary costarring her equally gorgeous ex, Ashley:
I do believe she is currently working on a prequel to The Anniversary so look out for that. I don’t know about you all but I’m excited to see what the future holds for her. Keep up with her shenanigans on Twitter and don’t forget to watch her in action Wednesdays at 10pm on MTV.