Month: August 2010

The Minority Report – The Room

Amazing.

Welcome to The Minority Report – a super quick movie review…about movies that may or may not have come out recently…or that are good.

The Room.

The room is a 99- minute romantic drama set in San Fransisco (you’ll know this from thy myriad and unnecessary establishing shots), where, apart from one valet, there are no people of color. Not at parties, not in coffee shops and not along the hilly streets.

But, that reeaaallly doesn’t matter, because holygoodness, seeing The Room was one of the GREATEST CINEMATIC EXPERIENCES OF ALL TIME!!!

I will do my best to explain what I witnessed on Saturday night.

This movie is not a good movie. It may be the worst film ever made that also got some sort of distribution. The casting is bizarre, the acting is terrible and the “script” makes no sense. But the film has a HUGE cult following, thanks in no small part to creepy looking writer/director/star Tommy Wiseau. The man has made a career off one terrible movie and not in the acceptable Kate Hudson sort of way.

People begin queuing up for this event a full two hours before it starts. They bring spoons, footballs and a  memorized list of chants. It’s interactive in the way that a Rocky Horror Picture Show screening is–though sans transvestites and catchy musical numbers but with the unsexiest kissing of all time and two sex scenes that will make your sexuality, whatever it is, just disappear. Every few seconds, there’s something else to yell at the screen, throw into the air or pantomime at your seat neighbor.

Tommy even makes a weird appearance before the “film” starts. Speaking in his “European” accent of indeterminable origin, Tommy avoids answering questions while vaguely sexually threatening pretty girls who dare to sit in the front couple of rows.  If it’s your birthday, he’ll scare the beejesus out of you by “singing” what he claims is Happy Birthday to you.

I have never laughed so hard or so long at anything in my life ever. The screenings happen once a month and the next one is on my birthday weekend. So Los Angelinos, come join me and get ready to laugh your faces right off.

How does this tie in to TOE? Well, as I stood in line, unaware that all this goodness was about to happen, I did notice that there were no black people…which is odd, because don’t RBP love shouting at movie screens?

If you have seen The Room, please let us know about it! If you like to talk to movie screens, let us know about that, too.

Any ideas for other movies that would be great if interactive?

And please. Please enjoy this clip from The Room below.

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Oreo Advice – Navigating the N Word

No, please, say whatever you want!

As Dr. Laura reminded us this week, it’s Constitutionally important for non-colors to be able to say the n-word whenever they want. As an Oreo, you will be in a unique position to make those that feel marginally guilty about this to feel better and for those who don’t feel guilty to keep on feeling fine.

You see, non-colors generally won’t say the n-word in front of RBP (aka “LaT’Shawndreeans) because those folks are scary and will probably cut a bitch.

But Oreos, known for our tolerance discovered through assimilation will simply smile and nod.

You may, however, feel the need to point out some fairly obvious logic flaws in the arguments for using the n-word with abanadon, but control yourself. Otherwise, you run the risk of some suuuuper awkward moments. You know, more awkward than someone saying the n-word, say 11 times in what started as a polite conversation.

Below are some rules to follow to keep the conversation moving following the five stages of the n-word conversation.

1. ANGER: The conversation will usually start out with something heated like, “I don’t understand. Rappers and comedians say nigger all the time, why can’t I?”

DON’T point out the obvious by saying any of the following.

  • “That’s fine, but I’m not one of those rappers or comedians.”
  • “Sure, but who’s ultimately making most of the programming and/or distribution choices…who’s at the top of the TV networks and record companies…not other black people.”
  • “Rap and hip hop and cable is mostly consumed by white people, so they’re the ones being marketed to by the use of said word.”

2. DENIAL. What will usually follow is the personal approach that downplays potential emotional harm with something like, “There’s this guy at my office, Dwayne, he says it all the time, it can’t be a big deal.”

DON’T SAY:

  • “Okay, but I’m not Dwayne.”

3. BARGAINING: Then comes an attempt to compare a word developed to subjugate an entire race of people for generations to a high school prank and your conversation partner will say something like “..I mean, in high school, they called me Sticky Stick Stick, that hurt my feelings, but I got over it.”

DON’T say something like:

  • “Dude, why do you want to say this word so badly?”

4. DEPRESSION: That’s when they realize their civil liberties are being trampled and they’ll say something like “Hey, we have free speech here. I can say whatever I want.”

DON’T point out that even though “congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free speech thereof. Or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances” that that doesn’t mean that people are protected from someone disagreeing with them.

5. ACCEPTANCE: Then finally, they’ll acquiesce because the opera or lacrosse game is about to start and they’ll say something like, “I mean, I don’t get it, but I guess I just won’t say it. I mean, it’s just a word, it’s not like words can actually hurt you.”

DON’T then call them an fucking idiot cunt and then when they get offended tell them that it’s just words. Because that would just be rude.

What do you think? Whether you’re an Oreo or not, do you think we should toss the n-word back into an accepted lexicon like we did with “bitch”? Why do you think other ethnic groups do not seem to be having this conversation as loudly…we don’t see tons of Jewish comics debating the merits of the k-word.

And if you do wanna use it more often, just substitute it for “black guy” in any of these jokes, invite an Oreo to your next tapas tasting and have a ball!

Dr. Laura

Dr. Laura Schlessinger is quitting radio in December after saying the n-word a bunch of times to a caller who was

Talking sense into black people.

black.

Please, oh please, read the transcript here. So worth it.

In the broadcast, a black caller asks if her white husband’s white friends are in the wrong for making racial jokes around her, berating her with stereotypes and sometimes using the n-word.

Here’s are some gems from the conversation.

CALLER: How about the N-word? So, the N-word’s been thrown around —

SCHLESSINGER: Black guys use it all the time. Turn on HBO, listen to a black comic, and all you hear is nigger, nigger, nigger.

CALLER: That isn’t —

SCHLESSINGER: I don’t get it. If anybody without enough melanin says it, it’s a horrible thing; but when black people say it, it’s affectionate. It’s very confusing. Don’t hang up, I want to talk to you some more. Don’t go away.

I’m Dr. Laura Schlessinger. I’ll be right back.

I must say, I was pretty upset when I read this.

This caller is obviously a fantastic Oreo and she’s not embracing it!!!

First, she married a white guy. Kudos to her for trading allegedly smaller manhood size for definitely bigger circles of social acceptance.

Second, the fact that her husband’s friends use this kind of language around her doesn’t prove that they’re jerks…it proves that they’re comfortable around her! I bet they don’t use those words around RBP (aka The Others) because RBP are scary, will get mad and might cut you if you say such a thing.

But an Oreo, knowing that it’s more important to save face than make a point, will keep quiet and let you ask how she washes her relaxed hair.

Why get mad at Dr. Laura? Some of her best friends are black. Really. She talks about it in the transcript.

SCHLESSINGER: No, no, no. I think that’s — well, listen, without giving much thought, a lot of blacks voted for Obama simply ’cause he was half-black. Didn’t matter what he was gonna do in office, it was a black thing. You gotta know that. That’s not a surprise. Not everything that somebody says — we had friends over the other day; we got about 35 people here — the guys who were gonna start playing basketball. I was going to go out and play basketball. My bodyguard and my dear friend is a black man. And I said, “White men can’t jump; I want you on my team.” That was racist? That was funny.

So if anyone knows what’s appropriate in mixed contexts, it’s L.S.

CALLER: I can’t believe someone like you is on the radio spewing out the “nigger” word, and I hope everybody heard it.

SCHLESSINGER: I didn’t spew out the “nigger” word.

CALLER: You said, “Nigger, nigger, nigger.”

SCHLESSINGER: Right, I said that’s what you hear.

CALLER: Everybody heard it.

SCHLESSINGER: Yes, they did.

CALLER: I hope everybody heard it.

SCHLESSINGER: They did, and I’ll say it again —

CALLER: So what makes it OK for you to say the word?

SCHLESSINGER: — nigger, nigger, nigger is what you hear on HB —

CALLER: So what makes it —

SCHLESSINGER: Why don’t you let me finish a sentence?

CALLER: OK.

What do you think? Should she quit? Or keep working to make more Oreos via the airwaves.

Looking For a New Name

It’s been called to my attention that some people find the phrase “RBP” (that’s ‘regular black people’ for anyone new to the blog) offensive. Ironically, many of the RBP who find RBP offensive don’t mind using the n-word in casual conversation.

But anyhoo.

Just like affirmative action and Title IX, I’m of the equal opportunity ilk and I’d like to find a phrase that carries the same punch, but stings less. I’ve listed some suggestions below. Please vote on them to let me know what works.

What do you think? Any other suggestions to add?

You can also share your opinion with other polls!

Other names for the Oreo

Government programs and their level of socialism

Saving Face When You’re Face to Face

Remember: When in doubt, don't go out!

Sometimes, even when an Oreo takes the best of precautions, she or he may find themselves at an event in close proximity of another person of color.  Such was the case last Friday.

I went to see a friend’s improv show.  Black folks generally do not congregate at independent 30-seat theaters to watch silly make-em-ups, so I thought I was safe.

Until I saw the doorman. Black guy.

Le sigh.

He was nice enough, we had a pleasant conversation and I went in to watch my show.

Afterwards, the theater owner approached me and said that he saw me talking to the guy at the door.

“You two’d make a cute couple,” he said. “Too bad he doesn’t date black girls.”

My face lit up!

“Ha! And I don’t date black guys!”

My new Oreo friend overheard me and we had a great conversation about traditional Italian cuisine, Vespas and lucid dreaming.

And it reminded me that yeah, sometimes as an Oreo, you’re gonna end up in conversation in public with someone who looks like they could be related to you. People will assume this is the case or they will assume that you’re more interested in each other than in the freckled, ruddy headed kids next to you. So you must take precautions; and through your manners and conversation remind those around you that you are not RBP, but in fact, Oreos.

How? Easy!

1. Stand outside. If one of you is a woman, definitely take your conversation outside if you can. This will allow the wind to blow through your freshly relaxed hair. Natural styles and dreads do not billow in the wind. Showing off your chemically treated locks will show that you are not an RBP.

2. Strategically drop a business card. When the passerby who picks it up sees a title like “Executive Chef,” “Lead Architect,” or “Cranio-Maxillofacial Surgeon,” she or he can relax, knowing that they are in the presence of well-marketed Oreos.

3. Sing a little. First of all, everyone loves musicals, even if they say they don’t. So whether you break out some of Sondheim’s Company or Abba’s Mamma Mia, your non-soulful ditty will have everyone joining in and understanding who you really are!

For more on watching your back in public, see how to Go Solo; Why even a non-color can pose a threat; and why it’s important for other Oreos to follow the rules.

Make Patrick proud…or he’ll hack to you bits on a sheet of plastic. The upside? You’ll be listening to Huey Lewis–so sing along and maybe he’ll spare ya.

The Minority Report – 2012

The End is Near...for type casting??

Welcome to The Minority Report – a super quick movie review…about movies that may or may not have come out recently.

2012

(I know, I know, but I LOVE terrible disaster movies–Twister, The Core – I heart you!)

So, back to 2012–WTF?? Black president AND a black super scientist who’s in charge of saving the world and the white family is the one that’s all messed up, dysfunctional with the quippy sassy lines?? Roland, what were you thnking?

If it wasn’t a wonderfully terrible disaster movie, I’d have to take this off the Oreo-approved list. Though, the galacially slow pacing for the first 45 minutes with the totally-rammed-in-there character beats might take it off the list anyway.

But how can you hate a movie where the continents roll around the globe like they’re on a SlipNSlide??

But be careful, Roland. The casting shows a healthy respect for folks of color. And that shot of Africa being the center of the world (again)? If that catches on, everyone will want to be an Oreo, and that will make me, by default an RBP.

You’re treading on thin ice. Thin, made-that-way-by-global-warming-and-Mayan-prophecy ice.