I Only Date White Girls, but I Would TOTALLY Sleep With You

Source: blogs.indiewire.com

“I don’t date black girls”. Good to know, I think, as I close my eyes. So I can roll them without him knowing. No need to actually make this tipsy conversation outside of the bar any more awkward than it needs to be. After all, I know exactly what’s coming next, and considering I met this guy all of thirty minutes ago when he asked me for a light, and while we’ve politely chatted about the recent smoking room ban in bars and strip joints, we haven’t gotten to anything so deep and meaningful as a name exchange. Oh, yeah, and my boyfriend is just inside, which he’s well aware of. Since, just after part one of our 30 minute smoking-alarmist discussion, he asked me if I was dating the black guy, who just so happens to be the only black dude, and the only other black person, in the bar. And who also happens to be on the other side of the room from where I’d been standing with my boyfriend while carrying on some vapid conversation on music or some crap that I usually lose interest in after about 35 seconds. Oh yeah, and did I mention that the black dude is a complete stranger I hadn’t even noticed, let alone spoken a (more…)

Shake Off Your Crab Bucket Mentality

Source: http://www.consciouscommunity-reno.org

There is a well known phenomenon with crabs. If you catch one, and put it in a bucket or barrel, it can easily escape and will. But once there are 2 or more crabs, you can throw that lid away…because no matter how close any one crab gets to escaping, its fellow prisoners will always do their Stockholm Syndrome-inspired duty and play no-nonsense warden, keeping your prisoner in the bucket for you. Today, I was thinking about this “crabs in a bucket” situation. Since I have never personally caught crabs myself, I began to ponder ways in which this whole thing could be one giant misunderstanding. I mean, it’s not like these little insect-like creatures have higher-level reasoning capabilities, right? Maybe they aren’t trying to keep their fellow prisoners captive along with them…MAYBE they are just trying to pull themselves UP, not thinking things through to the end. I even began conducting mini-experiments in my head of exactly how I could test this theory. I could try putting some type of net or something at the top of the barrel and see if the crabs try to latch on to it and pull themselves up. Or I could use a dummy crab attached to a cord, and when one of the other crabs latch on, I could keep pulling the dummy out, and see if the other crab rides to freedom. And then I found this video, and I knew I was playing myself. (more…)

Slam Sundays: Regression to the Mean

Source: http://www.thbook.org

Hey y’all,

So, I think I’ve come up with a MAJOR way to help race relations in North America. In research, Regression To The Mean means that eventually, the more tests you do, you’ll find your results will tend to be closer to average than to any extreme. After you’ve read this post, and watched the videos, I’ll explain how this concept could help society, as a whole.

Spoken Word, for me, is the only true way of bringing written words to life. The words, alone, are animated and embodied by the poet, and the experience is the same as being sucked solely through (more…)

Being Black is Not a Choice

Meanimated1I wrote this story almost a decade ago. With all of the discussions and commentary that I’ve gotten lately, I thought it would be a great time to just present you with a little personal story. I hope you enjoy it. 

I was 16 before I truly learned that being black wasn’t a conscious decision one could make, that it wasn’t about a way of life, but that it is a part of who you are no matter what else you do. There were only 5 other black children in my grade school, although race was never an issue. At least not at school. Of course there were those times when my race was most definitely an issue, times when I would walk into a store and the clerk would stare me down as I looked through the aisles at the toys and candy for sale. Yes, I had had times where a clerk would accuse me of trying to steal, for no other reason than because I was black. One of my best friends in grade school was told I was not allowed to come over to her house, or she to mine, because I was black. My grandparents had next door neighbours who used the word nigger rather frequently. But I always thought they were only a few ignorant people still stuck in the 1800s (more…)

Disagree With Black History Month? Want a White History Month, You Say?

image

I was born and raised in Canada. When I was a child growing up, there was no such thing as Black History Month (it was not official until December 1995, and so it’s first appearance on the Canadian calendars was February 1996- I was in Grade 6 at the time). Nor was there a place in the school curriculum where we learned black history. And there was no magical internet for any child to do an easy “Black History” search and see what came up. As far as I was aware, the only Black slaves to ever exist were the ones who ended up in the U.S., and all the black people in Canada immigrated at some point from the Caribbean, Africa, or the U.S. some time after the last documented war because otherwise, why was it that there were literally no black people in history? In fact, as far as I was aware, there was no such thing as slavery in Canada, either. That was an American thing. I got this understanding because, of the little I was able to retain about slavery from movies like Roots and books I had read, the saving grace to the slaves was the underground railroad, whose final stop was in Canada, where the slaves could be free. Therefore, Canada did not have slaves. It was quite simple to me at the time. And how very, very wrong was I? (more…)

Everyone Sees Race: Pretending You Don’t Is Ridiculous

erase race, make us all shades of gray
Is the key to erasing racism just erasing race? Erasing acknowledgment of the differences that make us unique? Would the world be better in shades of gray?

I hate when people say they don’t notice race. Of course you do. You’re not blind. Not only can you see the tone of someone’s skin, you can see the differences in their facial features, eye colours, hair textures, heights, and weights. You can hear the differences in tone of voice, accent, inflection, and word choice. You can look at 2 different people with generally the same skin coloring and guess that one is from East Asia, and one is from The Caribbean. There are cues and indications of race written all over us.

Why is it that some people think that saying “I don’t even see race”, or “I don’t even notice the colour of someone’s skin” is somehow complimentary, and is an indication of their lack of racist thoughts? I generally despise when people say that everyone is the same to them. Like somehow, any differences in people’s ancestry or cultural beliefs and values no longer exist. Are you so desperate to be seen as not racist, and so confused on what the definition of racism is, that you’d prefer for the concept of race and/or culture to just be eliminated all-together? Not only is that silly and naïve, but it’s downright insulting.

Race exists. And whether you want to condemn someone based on their race, or make their race disappear because acknowledging it makes you uncomfortable, you’re still expressing prejudice. What is your problem with acknowledging that someone is different from you in some ways? Does the fact that they are different in some ways make them lesser? (more…)

Slam Sundays: Black History, Past & Presence

Source: http://www.euclidlibrary.org/

Hey y’all,

So I’ve decided that this February I really want to celebrate Black History month in my own lil way. So the following Slam Poetry is an intro to a month of posts that relate, at least in some way, to black history, or to the Black Experience. I think, especially growing up in the me-me-me generation, that it’s easy to take for granted the things that we have, and to dismiss the true significance of the little things in life we get to enjoy. Scouring YouTube for Spoken Word on black history, or black history month, I listened to some pretty powerful poems, ones that reminded me of things that, while not forgotten, aren’t always contemplated.

Like the fact that in my lifetime I have never seen a “White’s Only” sign on a bathroom door, or on the door to a grocery store. Or a water fountain. Or anything at all. Although sadly, the rare person still tries to pull that crap. But that was (more…)

Open Any Bottle of Beer or Wine Sans Opener!

Displaying classic-ruby-wine-glass.gifUgh. The Sans-Opener part of the title is SOOOO pretentious, right? I know. But “without a” just seemed so long and blah. And I couldn’t think of another short, cute word that just said it all. So I went the pretentious route. So sue me. *tries to look indignant*…*hangs head in shame*.

ANYWAY…While surfing the web a few days ago, I happened upon a website called http://www.telegraph.co.uk/. It’s basically a sort of news blog/site that offers some less than traditional news. As I searched through the pages, I came across this video, and thought to myself MAN! Have I ever needed that video a time or three before! *wink wink – thinks fondly back to Wino Post* And since I STILL do not own a functional wine opener (well, I did. Then I lent it out to a friend…haven’t seen it since. And since she’s moved recently, it’s probably now gone forever. Sigh) I thought it was best that I save this video..just in case. And then I started thinking…I bet there’s all kinds of ways of opening wine…and beer…without an opener. And then the lightbulb…the weekend is fast approaching. My readers must like drinking, otherwise they’d never get through one of my posts! So then it’s really only the decent, neighborly thing for me to do…I must share my newfound wealth (hey now, knowledge is wealth) with (more…)

The Top 5 Designer Drugs Smart People Don’t Mess With

I’ll be honest with you: I have never tried a real drug before in my life. With the exception of marijuana and hash. Which I did in high school, but haven’t done in several years now. I really don’t like the concept, or the feel of drugs. The idea that something is going to alter my brain chemistry in such a way that I literally will not be able to think like myself, or to control anything that I think or do, leaves me uneasy. And slightly terrified. And, throwing in another piece of honesty here, I’ve always kinda imagined that, if someone was going to take a drug and then jump off a 20-story building cause they think they can fly, it’ll probably be me. So, to stay alive and avoid being broken, either mentally or physically, for life, I just say no to drugs. However, I’m not preachy or judgy about it. If you ask me my opinion I’ll tell ya. If you’re doing something that will endanger you, or people around you, I’ll speak up. And if you’re going to do drugs, I will not leave myself in a position where you can harm me in any way. Other than that, I’m all about live and let live.

However, this new trend of designer drugs sweeping the nations is from another planet. When you check out the videos below, you’ll see what I mean. Not that I thought people trying to sell their babies for crack or their bodies for some smack was cute or anything, but WTF are these new drugs turning otherwise decent human beings into? From terribly dangerous health positions to violence and cannibalism, it seems like (more…)

8 Year Old Boy Dies After Hanging Himself

Julianni Plascencia death
Julianni’s father Ronnie cradles his son in hospital

While loading my net home page, I usually glance over whatever news appears in the headlines (on msn.com). I’m pretty anti-news as far as things go, so usually I only come by what’s happening in the world incidentally or through word of mouth. Yesterday, I came across the story of 8 year old Julianni Plascencia, who died this past weekend. For a full account of the story, check out this link. As a summary for those who don’t have time to read through all the articles, this 8 year old child told his brother earlier that day that he was going to hang himself. His brother, not taking him seriously, still told him he shouldn’t joke about such things. Their mother had run out to the store, leaving the elder brother in charge. (more…)