Are We Twins? Dopplegangers? Or Just Two Black Chicks?

The phrase “you remind me of _____” is a tricky one. On one hand, you could be setting someone up for a spectacular compliment. Or you could be about to insult them royally. I think I experienced both this weekend.

I was chatting with someone I had just met and he said “Do you know who you remind me of?”

I crossed my fingers hoping he’d say Julie Andrews (she’s delightfully playful and silly and sing like the Dickens!) or Erica Jong (feisty, smart, feministy–I’ll take that) or Tina Fey ( I think I write like her…just whiter).

But he said none of those people.

Instead he said:  “You know the girl who played Angela on Boy Meets World…?”

I do know the girl who played Angela on Boy Meets World. That was my favorite show as a tween. It was party of ABC’s TGIF lineup and since I wasn’t doing things like going out or having friends over on Friday nights (because I was …um…just soooo popular that it was impossible to pick….um..yeah…) I watched a lot of TV. The actress who played Angela is Trina McGee and I loved her because she was a total Oreo! She was in an interracial relationship with the troubled best friend of the main character and had no friend of color to speak of. She was an inspiration and hero.

What she wasn’t, was someone who looks anything like me.

Here is a picture of me right now and  basically how I looked that night.

Totally candid.

Here are some pictures of Trina McGee.

Let’s see…

I have: a round face, short hair, round nose, hidden cheekbones.

She has: a long face, long hair, slender nose and a relatively defined bone structure.

Hmmm, I wonder what he thought we had in common.

I bet it was our pluck. It’s usually the pluck.

Who do people say you look like? Do you agree with them? And do you like it?


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  1. He said, “…remind…” not “look like”.
    I think far too many people limit their self-image to that of looks.
    I have cousins who cannot relate to white television or movie characters who are doing well but they have no problem identifying with ghetto hood rats – even though they have no personal knowlege of the hood.
    He mean that your personality and lifestyle are similar – not your looks. (I think).

    Back in the day, people would say that my boy Tim and I reminded them of the guys in Wham!
    (Not that we are gay (not that anything is wrong with that)).
    They would always say that we seemed to live the lifestyle of their music vidoes, dress well and get a lot of girls.

  2. I get told I look like Colin Firth or Neil Patrick Harris. I kind of agree. Don’t really mind much.
    We have strong jaw lines.

      1. Actually, I was told Bradley Whitford by his wife at the time. It’s all about the jaw line. Thanks for remembering.

  3. I don’t much look like anyone outside of my family… I think most agree that I look like trouble…

    But to be honest the “you look like” thing is much more harsh with Asians… they get that crap all the time…

  4. I get told a lot that I look like Naomi Campbell and Ainett Stephens which are great compliments, but I don’t think I actually look like any of them… this is because I did a bit of modelling and, well, these are the only notorious black persons (not RBP at all) in Italy famous to do that (actually only Naomi, Ainett is more a soubrette)

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