According to the Mayan calendar 21-12-12, tomorrow, is the end of the world. We’ve heard this before and for whatever reason God has spared womankind. Until this afternoon, I assumed we’d get another reprieve. But now the signs point to the end being imminent. I say this with a heavy heart, ya’ll: Michael Ealy is married.
People.com reported that the actor, 39, married longtime girlfriend (4 years) in a private ceremony back in October. "Michael has always been a private guy, and he wanted to enjoy his time as a newlywed with his wife privately," his rep said. "Now that some time has passed and the holidays are here, he wanted to share the news with his fans that he is married and very happy."
A moment of silence…
Did you hear that? It’s the sound of a million hearts breaking in unison.
Five years ago, when Halle Berry announced she was pregnant, men figuratively wept, mourning the “destruction” of Halle’s banging body. She was full (and glowing) with child, and so many men could only focus on losing their ability to ogle her. Women called their outlook “stupid”, mocked it, openly laughed at their selfishness. And now, the boomerang we unleashed has returned.
Halle’s shape returned with a f%^ -you vengeance, placing all their worries about her “blowing up” in vain. Michael Ealy is gone, ya’ll… for good.
I was a little late falling into the trance of his aura. I’d missed his brief appearances on Law & Order and Soul Food when he was making his foray into acting. He first caught my eye in Barbershop, a film I have no recollection of other than him being the Brother with the blue eyes— blue like the clear water surrounding any Caribbean island— … and the cornrows. The hairstyle was past its heyday, but if he’d just “do something with it”, there was potential to be worked with. Most definitely.
Like some sort of “Catfish” participant, I fell in love with a man I’d never met watching “Their Eyes Were Watching God”. He was Tea Cake, his wife-B stained with sweat from a hard day’s work, wild-haired, hairy –chested, and sexy as all global get out. He was the young thang who courted Miss Janie, by bringing by strawberries, teaching her how to shoot a pistol, and tickling her feet with a rose. When Tea Cake finally put it on Janie, he leaned into lick her mouth and I leaned into the screen, mouth agape, wishing it was mine. I. Was. Sprung.
And I stayed that way. I sat though “Miracle at St. Ana” and “Seven Pounds”, both god-awful films, because Michael Ealy was in them, and because my love had tripled like the Grinch’s heart when I discovered he was from Maryland, just like me.
I watched “Takers” twice, watching Michael Ealy —not Idris Elba—swagger all over the screen in a tailored suit. I wore my stank face, the same one guys make when they’re walking behind a woman with a little waist and a big ass.
“They still make this model?” I wondered, practically drooling in the theatre. Michael Ealy, fitted in his crisp-tailored suit, moved in slow-mo across the widescreen and even slower in my mind. He has that sort of masculine fine, the kind that wears testosterone like it's cologne. I thought Denzel was the last off that product line.
It was around this time that I stared referring to Michael Ealy as “Motherfucking Michael Ealy!” He isn’t just a man; he is a god. He should have a befitting title to distinguish him from the mortals while he visits our earth.
I interviewed him for the first time during the press tour for the ”Takers”. I’d been a working journalist for a decade. Had interviewed hundreds of celebs without any hitches greater than a tape not recording, which happens even to the best. On a stage, in front of hundreds of people, I stuttered my way though the worst twenty so-called professional minutes of my life. I even dropped my notes, which Motherfucking Michael Ealy picked up for me. He touched my arm, turned those blazing blue eyes on me and asked, “You okay?”
He smiled. I sighed and managed and “uh-huh” and forgot about the audience.
I was dating CBW then—not in a relationship yet—and he was PISSED when he saw the photos (plural). A mutual friend sent it to him on Facebook.
“Why you got your ass on Michael Ealy?!” CBW demanded after
I insisted it was a joke. Harmless.
He didn't buy it.
When I was still working at Essence, Motherfucking Michael Ealy stopped by the office unannounced. His version: he was walking through Midtown and saw an office building with ESSENCE on the door. He knew he was welcome because ESSENCE had recently featured him as a “Do Right Man” in the August issue, and he’d worked with the magazine plenty of times before.
So he walked up to the security desk, and asked for the Entertainment Editor. The security guard called upstairs to notify her, “Michael is here to see you.”
“Michael?” she wondered. She thought it was an appointment she missed. She went to the door to wait on this Michael and it turned out to be Motherfucking Michael Ealy.
I was at my desk at the time with my back to the hall. I heard a man’s voice—sort of rarity in that office— but I was too deep editing a story to turnaround. A few minutes later, the Entertainment Editor called for me. “Demetria, someone’s here to see you.” She said it all chipper like.
I turned around.
“Hiiiiiii”, I said a little too loud to be cool. Motherfucking Michael Ealy spread his arms to give me a hug. I lept out my chair and into that embrace.
The last time we met, he f#@$ed up. I was hosting a press dinner for the cast of “Think Like A Man.” Lala, Gabrielle Union, Kevin Hart, etc. had managed to make it to the interview on time. I was doing all right moderating a celeb panel in front of a room containing my (highly critical) peers... until Motherfucking Michael Ealy walked in 20 minutes late and threw me off my game. I meant to say “thank you for joining us” pleasantly, but my nerves made it come out a little zippy. Not so good.
He caught up with me later on the red carpet. He was already in front of the long step-and-repeat, wrapping up his photos. I’d just arrived. I’m trying to “suck it in”, be graceful in my unbroken-in platform stilettos, hit all my angles that I practiced for hours at home to get right on demand. I’m turning my head just so for the photographers yelling “look here” and “Demetria!”, a nerve wracking experience if ever there is one. Who knows where these pictures will end up? And wherever that is they will live forever on Google images.
“Demetria” a voice says, not calls. It’s coming from the side, not in front of me. I hold my pose for the photographers. Out of the corner of my eye, I see it’s Motherfucking Michael Ealy callling my name. I keep looking ahead and tell him “one sec” because even Motherfucking Michael Ealy isn’t worth f#$king up my pictures.
He says, “I’ll wait.”
And he does. When I’m done, he’s standing there, still on the red carpet, hands in his suit pant pockets, looking all delicious and his blue eyes giving my face their undivided attention.
“Hey,” I say, again too energetic. I just cannot keep my cool.
“I just wanted to apologize for being late to your event, I did my best,” he says. “Will you forgive me?”
I smile with all my damn teeth. Flashes go off. I know in the moment those are some ugly pictures. “Of course,” I agree breathlessly. There go those teeth.
He asks if I’ll take a picture with him, and throws his arm around my waist to pull me in as we pose. My stance is off. My smile is crooked. The wrong leg is bent. Angle is all wrong and my dress looks ill-fitting. But I don’t care. It takes everything in me not to lean on his shoulder and sigh.
This here? Is a dream come true.
#TeamSingle lost a prize today. At least we still got Idris.
Demetria L. Lucas is the author of “A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life” (Atria) in stores now. Follow her on Twitter @abelleinbk