Who am I? Really?

I’m sure you’re already bored of the coronavirus and lockdown conversations - it’s all you’re probably reading and hearing about. So I’ll spare you all of that and get to the point.

You’re welcome. (stay safe though)


So let’s talk about a black model instead! To recap, this blog is generally for people to get to know me as a mature model entering the industry, in conjunction with my model portfolio. However, I thought that the real way to really get a real picture of me (aside from enduring years of friendship, and my reviews page) would be to ask the people who know me. Or so I thought…


I created an anonymous survey and distributed it among my wider network - many of whom I knew would have some ‘honesty nuggets’ for me.


I received 60 responses in total - I was expecting about 10 so thank you so much to all those who gave me some time <3

Read on to get a view of me in 6 questions. If you don't know me by now...you damn sure will after you read this! Soz in advance - this post doesn’t have the flow and structure of my usual posts, and it’s a long one...

Althea James wearing a headscarf
C'est moi!

Q1 - One good fact about me…

The responses to this question pleased me as many cited things that are important to me.

6% say I’m funny - which means that the other 94% are as dry as old crackers for not also saying this.

6% mentioned that I take my powerlifting training seriously - one even called me a muscle woman. I dunno about all that...but then again the triceps are mint!

Althea James lifting a kettlebell above her head

17% affirmed that I am ambitious - saying that I am dedicated, I always try my hardest, I won’t settle for the norm.

18% acknowledged my positivity (caring, kind, approachable, considerate, always radiating a positive vibe).

40% offered personality traits. According to the respondents I am genuine, trustworthy, loyal, selfless, and I have a strong and independent personality.


There were also some miscellaneous titbits thrown in…

I look sweet and innocent but am definitely not! I am Caribbean (definitely a good fact about me). I am “a resource manager/assistant’s dream”, I am a real one in a world full of fake friends, I am someone’s beautiful niece (love you Auntie), and I am “thoughtful especially when it comes to the little things i.e. buying me a mini toolbox” (taa bestie).


Now let’s get to the nitty gritty...


Q2 - One bad fact about me…

Being a Scorpio, I’m sure you’ll know that this was my favourite part.

Not just because of Scorpio’s argumentative nature - but more from a growth opportunity. So it was kinda bittersweet for me that 50% of respondents couldn’t think of one.

However, a massive thanks is due for that very fact - as they could only see the best in me.


Soppy stuff aside...


7% don’t get to see enough of me, and 1 respondent said that I never come to work for them. Since the time of the survey, I’m pleased to say that’s now untrue.


5% made me feel the love. When there being only one of me is cited as a bad thing, how can I not feel the love? Someone feels I can be too kind and forgiving.


5% felt that my optimism, enthusiasm and drive is a bad thing. It appears that I set myself hard goals and need to give myself a break.

Althea James working on a laptop on a step
Always an opportunity, even if sitting on a step...

17% highlighted some things that I already knew: I am “easily distracted and can’t multitask”; others said that I am “occasionally too focussed on one thing”. I mean…

It hasn’t gone unnoticed that I am addicted to sweets (you’ll be glad to hear that I gave them up for lent - 2 days to go at the time of writing). I am “a little in your face”, I work too hard, and my time keeping was also mentioned (I'm assuming it’s being implied that my timekeeping is bad).

Althea James under a streetsign in California
I made it to Cali :p

The miscellaneous ones...I haven’t made it to LA (which is now untrue - love you hun), I hold onto emotions for too long, and I can be stuck in my ways.

There’s someone I haven’t suggested meeting up with, and someone else who has nothing bad to say because “I like you goddammit”.

And guess what?! I am “too punctual” (do these respondents live on different planets)??


Q3 - One weird/quirky fact about me...

Judging by the responses, there are many weird and quirky facts about me. So I’ve had to condense them down. So…

Aside from the 12% who can't think of any, big up the 5% who cited my quirky haircuts, and that I am “stunning beautiful without trying”.

8% observed my relationship with food - my love for bubble tea, my dislike for cheese, and someone who has worked with me said “your Costa breakfast rolls always made me super jel when we sat next to each other...ok that’s not really about you. More about me” - I had to include this one, it made me chuckle.

17% mentioned behaviours - the way that I bogel randomly with “gun fingers” (a few mentioned my bogel as it goes), I use my phone like an old lady, I think I can sing, I look like I'm not paying attention but I understand everything.

A lot of people called out my funny facial expressions and that I like to pull faces in photos.



18% are aware of my love for lifting heavy things. I’m the tiniest weight lifter that one of the respondents has ever met. A few would never think that I am a weightlifter as I am “unassuming”, I “do weight lifting like the mandem”, I “don’t mind training in less than salubrious places”, and someone said that I am the lovechild of Michelle Obama and Arnold Schwarzeneger.

Not to gloat or anything but someone believes that I am “probably stronger than a lot of men” - I didn’t say it, they did!


18% of the responses have been categorised as...you got it...miscellaneous! Apparently, I can always find one good thing to say about anybody, I have a smile that can light up a darkened room, I am great at remembering birthdays, I make people feel like we’ve been friends for years even though I have just met them, I’m always running late, I’m excellent at high fives, I dated someone’s secondary school crush, and when I was a baby I always had a snotty nose.


There were also some statements that I can not disagree with, so I thought I’d list them for you:

  • I do surveys and ask people to tell me 1 weird and quirky fact about me (lol to that person)

  • I “can only speak proper patois when I’m upset”

  • I am “Mouthie”

  • I’m “badder than spiders but afraid of them”

  • I’m “super friendly but will tell people about themselves”

  • My only comeback is “meemeemeemeemeemeeeeh”

  • I measure height in half inches, but should try cm - they always sound taller

  • I get visited by an angel every now and again <3

  • I fart a lot

  • I like to fart in the car when I am alone

  • “That giant bottle of water” on my desk that can be used as a weight

Althea James lifting a dumbbell shaped water bottle above her head

Q4 - What do you like about me the most...

It was hard to categorise the responses so I’ll pick some out.

I have a caring nature and concern about others’ well being.

I have a complimentary nature, I am honest, approachable, super friendly (to most), have a “go get it” attitude.

Some like my sense of humour (I’m hilarious apparently) and that I am an “all round good person”, I’m “chilled and have a very warm karma”, I always have something to say, I support my friends through the good and bad.

It has been noticed that I am ambitious and hard working, and have the ability to keep finding new goals and chase them - “not comfy not complacent”.

I am kind hearted, a great friend, genuine.

15% mentioned my positivity, 7% like my style and natural beauty - I have also been called an Angel, and I am “perfect” to someone.

Someone said that I “have a good soul (not a good sole - that’s a fish)”.


Q5 - What do you dislike about me the most...

Here’s the bit we’ve been waiting for…

A whopping 64% do not dislike anything about me. Aww thanks guys x

The things that are disliked about me are: how long I’ve taken to start this blog (!), the fact that I ask horrible questions like this, I “drink mineral water...should drink spring (Dr sebi)”, I’m a bully, and not nice when I’m “hangry”.

15% dislike the fact that they don’t see much of me, and that I’m often too busy to meet.

Someone doesn’t like that I am stronger than them, another doesn’t like our age gap, and someone dislikes “too much” about me…

Someone dislikes that I “can be picky and for a small part a little closed minded”, and another dislikes that I can be dismissive.



Q6 - What stood out about me the first time you saw/met me? (If we’re related, what’s your earliest memory of me)

Again, it was hard to categorise these answers, so here’s a few:

23% found me to be welcoming, approachable and friendly: “you always acknowledged me and said hello”.

8% remembered my appearance - my hair and skinny legs got a mention.

My personality was mentioned by 21% - my humour, facetyness, manners, can-do attitude, I don’t let anyone feel left out and I’m loud.


Some of the individual responses:

  • “A movie set on Fenham Road”

  • I cracked them up when we worked at DnA hair salon (I love you too)

  • “The way you gave me a shampoo - unforgettable”

  • I was very loving with my Dad

  • I dislike being called ‘Anthea’

  • I’m a “rude gal from South London but actually not rude at all”

  • People used to say we looked alike (which is amazing as I think this was submitted by someone who I always thought was beautiful)

  • I was also a cute baba


I’m a busy bee, I just went with the flow when rolling (Jiu-Jitsu), I helped someone to stop fiddling with their hair, and I tried to stare someone out and told them to get off my Dad’s bus.


My input:

If you know me, you know that there will be some items that I have to respond to. So…

  • I don’t dislike cheese per se. I dislike melted cheese.

  • People need to make up their minds as to whether I’m punctual or not...

  • To the person whose crush I dated - hun, I took that one for the team you bullet dodger you! (she confessed to me circa. 16 years later).

  • I don’t think I can sing, I just like to do it...to the detriment of those around me.

  • I don’t think I have man-strength...yet. I’m working on it though...

  • I wouldn’t say I like to fart when I’m in the car alone - I just do it. With chest.

  • I drink alkaline water actually (Dr Sebi).

  • I’m working on the dismissiveness as that’s something that I also dislike about myself.

  • I have been forgiven for telling a particular person to get off my Dad’s bus. I was very young. Like VERY young.

  • The fact that some view optimisim and drive as a negative thing actually worries me.

  • I feel like I slightly remember the movie set on Fenham Road, but I can’t fully…


Conclusion:

To be honest, if you were trying to get a complete picture of who I am through the eyes of the people who know me, you’re probably as confused as "bleep" now. I could probably sum it up for you by saying that I am complex.

It was insightful for me to see first hand how others view me. I know that many comments were in jest but they still shape your view of me.

I did learn after speaking to a couple of respondents that I need to phrase my questions better - I am very blunt! “Name an area in which I can improve” lands better than “tell me something bad about me”.

I also learnt that ‘anonymous’ only works when respondents don’t include private jokes/scenarios.

I think I also have a secret admirer...


Random link alert...

In the spirit of knowing our true selves (debatably), here are 10 Questions That Will Help You Find Out Your True Self. You're welcome.


Keep up with my selfie shenanigans on my modelling profile on Insta: @althie_model


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About the author [that would be me]:

I am a Senior Project Manager by day; by night (aka any other time), you can find me lifting heavy metal things (aka powerlifting), threatening to dust off my belt in the name of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (I will make myself re-worthy of my blue belt), or finding ways to get in front of a camera and labelling it as modelling in some way shape or form.

I put this blog together as an add-on to my modelling portfolio, and it reminded me of how much I love to write. I will continue to write as my model portfolio grows, just so that you can get to know the real me x


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