Black People : Author Terry McMillan calls it quits with inspiration for 'Stella'

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by Destee, Jun 29, 2005.

  1. Destee

    Destee destee.com STAFF

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    How 'Stella's' groove got away from her

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    There's a new "Tea Cake" twist.

    Back in the day when Zora Neal Hurston wrote "Their Eyes Were Watching God," the only thing Janie had to worry about was her lover Tea Cake leaving her for a younger woman. Janie was "around forty" and Tea Cake was "around twenty-five." It never happened, which is one thing that has made Hurston's 1937 love story a classic of black literature.

    But romance is a lot messier in real life.

    After convincing older women that they can find love with a man half their age, best-selling writer Terry McMillan's Tea Cake has run off -- with a man. Jonathan Plummer was 20 years old and McMillan was 43 when they met while she was staying at a Jamaican resort in 1995. At the time, McMillan had made millions from her novel "Waiting to Exhale" and was so popular she once complained that she couldn't walk through an airport without sisters stopping her.

    But apparently brothers in the United States weren't interested, because McMillan was in Jamaica getting turned on by a local just like legions of other lonely American women who go to the Caribbean looking for romantic adventure. Only McMillan did what a lot of other women wish they could do. She brought the young man home, put him up in her $4 million home, and married him three years later.

    Charges of homophobia

    Her widely read novel How Stella Got Her Groove Back is based, in part, on the steamy affair between McMillan and Plummer. McMillan is now 53. Plummer is 30 -- and he has come out of the closet. McMillan has filed for a divorce, claiming Plummer "lied about his sexual orientation" and that he married her "only to gain U.S. citizenship."

    Plummer says he was a "20-year-old kid" when he met McMillan and had "no idea that she was anybody other than an attractive older woman," and he didn't know he was gay when the couple met.

    He told her he was gay last December and she kicked him out of their home.

    Last week, a California judge ordered McMillan to pay Plummer $2,000 a month in spousal support and $25,000 in attorneys fees until there is a hearing on McMillan's annulment request, and until the court rules on the validity of a prenuptional agreement.

    Now, Plummer's calling McMillan "homophobic," and claims she cheated him out of royalties he was entitled to for "Stella." McMillan has a restraining order against Plummer and has accused him of embezzling at least $200,000 from her bank accounts.

    Plummer has his own restraining order and says McMillan is throwing things at him and calling him a "***."

    Nasty, I tell you.

    Still, the McMillan/Plummer split raises all kinds of questions: Did Plummer really commit fraud? After all, he was married to McMillan for six years -- longer than a lot of other marriages last. And shouldn't McMillan have known that a Tea Cake doesn't last forever?

    A lot of women think Plummer should have his butt kicked all the way back to Jamaica. Or worse. But, hold on a second. The Tea Cakes are always hot in the Caribbean, yet everyone has heard about some poor doe-eyed woman who brought one home and lived to regret it.

    The rules of the game

    Given the violent, anti-gay culture in Jamaica, if Plummer knew he was gay at 20, he certainly would have kept it on the "down low." Even now, the biggest dance hall hits in Jamaica are Beenie Man's "****," in which he sings about executing gays, and "Chi Chi Man," a song that advocates violence against gays. Getting Plummer deported, by crying fraud, might seem like his just deserts.

    But is it?

    Before playing, McMillan should have known the rules of the game.

    A lot of Island men make their way off the islands by being attentive and charming. They are selling romantic pipe dreams to any woman who is willing to pay for them, and McMillan was willing to pay. But she was buying Plummer's time. Not his soul.

    Before we stone Plummer to death for defrauding a sister, isn't it entirely possible that he didn't know he was gay when he met McMillan? After all, he was only 20 years old. Some gay people don't come out until they are 30 or older. And lots of gay men were once married to women and lots of lesbians were once married to men.

    Taking it in stride

    McMillan had already figured life out when she met Plummer. He hadn't. That's the downside of a Tea Cake.

    But if Tea Cake is an older woman's fantasy, McMillan is a young man's dream. She had the money to choose a young, glistening Island man and she provided for him and helped him obtain U.S. citizenship. Until a couple of years ago, when McMillan set Plummer up in a dog-grooming business, he was dependent upon her entirely.

    Whether Plummer turned out to be gay or just no longer interested, McMillan would still have felt betrayed. She took the same risk an older man takes when he falls in love with a young woman.

    Women just haven't yet learned how to take the leaving in stride.


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    Oh Gosh! ... oh gosh oh gosh oh gosh ... :bye:

    :heart:

    Destee
     
  2. panafrica

    panafrica Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    How Stella Got Her Groove Back With A DL Brother? Watch out Fellas....this new book is going to be scandalous!
     
  3. oceolo

    oceolo Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    That book would be a lot more interesting than the first one.LOL


    Plummer only did to Mcmillan what a lot of women have done to rich men through out history .
     
  4. panafrica

    panafrica Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Yeah but I'm sure Terry McMillan is a better writer than JL King. Brothers are going to be catching heat!! Good thing I'm not single!
     
  5. panafrica

    panafrica Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I remember how many flights to Jamaica Terry McMillan sold when the movie version of "How Stella Got Her Groove Back" came out. I think travel agencies should have cut her a few checks for commission! She also contributed to the recent trend of older women dating younger men. I wonder if this story will slow down the breaks on that?
     
  6. Nita

    Nita Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    rofl

    I can see the title now

    How Stella got her revenge back while waiting to exhale now doing 10 - 15 cause he likes ding -a-.....well you know the rest...lol
     
  7. Destee

    Destee destee.com STAFF

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    :lol: hahahahaha ... you are so krazeee !!!

    oh gosh ... this next book is gonna be good ... i hadn't even thought of that!

    lol @ Nita Mae ... you so krazee ... :lol:

    po' Stella ... :bye:

    :heart:

    Destee
     
  8. yaphet al-wynn

    yaphet al-wynn Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Weellll??!!! Isn't that special? Now Jamaican men are gonna be suspected DL now. What will Shabba and Shaggy do? Wait for Jonathan with pitchfork and machetes!!!!! Jamaican men as a whole ain't gonna take this suspicion of DL behavior lying down-count on it!!!!!!!
     
  9. panafrica

    panafrica Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Don't worry Yaphet Al-Wynn, all black men are now carrying this suspicion, it won't be restricted to Jamaican men.
     
  10. yaphet al-wynn

    yaphet al-wynn Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Truth be told, Terry just has a history of picking wrong men. Before I get jumped on-she has admitted that herself. But this time, the ego of pulling a younger man got the best of her.
     
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