Plausible Deniability

I almost bought a watermelon today.

I know excuses are pitiful, but it was hot, I was hungry and the allure of a lightly sweet, hydrating fruit was mighty and powerful.

But I was strong. I left the display, went inside and bought a bushel of figs instead.

The whole experience made me realize there are some things that even the most devoted Oreo will have a hard time avoiding. I’m listing some here for your reference, hoping that you can forgive me my trespasses and looking for a program, 12 steps or otherwise, that can help.

lotions-wholesale-privateAshy Knees. When one has higher levels of melatonin in one’s skin, one should also have higher levels of lotion with them at any given time. We do our best, but sometimes extra dry weather, a sudden fall to the ground, or time spent genuflecting and praying to be released from our ethnic bondage will sap the skin of moisture. Don’t worry, we’ll reapply as soon as possible.

Hairanoia. As discussed earlier, hair is a very delicate subject for an Oreo. We go 6046through great pains to keep it in line….a very straight line…and stray jets of water, rainfall or the beach or a public pool can be disastrous. It’s not that we can’t swim, it’s just that like a Mogwai, water has the ability to replicate things about ourselves that are best left alone. Specifically, the curls that give away our true identities.

blackjesusLooking Bad by Comparison. If you watch movies, you will see that black people are relegated one of to two roles. They are either the obligatory thugs/criminals/ ganstas , or they are what is affectionately called a Magical Negro.

These MNs are found in movies like The Green Mile, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Legend of Bagger Vance, The Shining, The Hudsucker Proxy, Because of Wynn Dixie, Two Weeks Notice, Shawshank Redemption, Million Dollar Baby, Driving Miss Daisy (oh, hell, the whole Morgan Freeman oeuvre), The Matrix, O Brother Where Art Thou and The Stand, just to name a few.

These black characters exist to help white characters with whatever their problems may be without taking any reward or benefit for themselves.

The truth is, every black person is a Magical Negro. If you’re a scuzzy looking white person, you’re not nearly as frightening as that black man in line behind you, so consider the loan yours. If you’re a white lady with a few baby daddies, well at least those daddies don’t come from Inglewood, so line up for county services. If you’re a high school dropout with suction cups for hands, your resume is still more readable than Harvard graduate DeShawnda’s so get ready to roll over that 401K.

Sickle Cell Anemia. This disease exists only in persons of African descent. 76520-004-27CD47E9The upside: It renders us immune to Malaria. The downside: It exists only in persons of African descent, so the blood test that’s part of a yearly physical forces us to reckon with who we really are. Why must you betray us, biology?

gritsGrits. No excuses here. Grits are amazing. Small. Grainy. Filling. Delicious…and white. So hopefully that counts for something.


  1. Ah yes, the ‘magical mystical negro’. But, if Morgan Freeman needs defending, there are a few films where he goes a bit outside his comfort box. His very first major film, Street Smart, cast him as a vicious street pimp and earned him his first Oscar nom. My other favorite ‘unGodly’ Freeman performance is from 2000’s Nurse Betty, where he played a somewhat cooky hit man sent to murder an amnesiac waitress who thinks she’s the character in a soap opera. It also contains Chris Rock’s best film performance (for whatever that’s worth).

    There is the third major character for black people (and minorities in general): The guilt-ridden antagonist. This would-be antagonist, usually black or a woman, is either a member of the bad guys or a government agent who eventually realizes what they are doing is just wrong. In the end, they change sides and help the (white) hero at the last minute, sometimes dying in the process. Examples – The Island, Phenomenon, Conspiracy Theory.

  2. I’m sorry, but figs are not an adequate replacement for your sinful watermelon-y urges. Not because they betray your black desires, but because they are simply disgusting. Regardless of whatever possible cultural significance figs have that prompted you to choose them. So if you’d rather people think you’re a soulless fig eater than that you’re a soulfully abundant watermelon eater, than be my guest. But take it from me; figs are gross. Sorry figs, that’s just how I feel.

    1. Figs rock, Abhaya is crazy. But a BUSHEL??? I do hope you’re making them into a spread to serve with warm brie….

Leave a Reply to Julie Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s