Month: June 2011

Trailer Trashing – Transformers, Larry Crowne, Monte Carlo

Hey, look at that — free time! Quite the concept this “free time” business. I should look into it more often.

I should also get caught up on my pop culture.

Movies are a great way to solidify your Oreo experience. The repeated images of certain types of people doing certain types of things really reminds us who we are and who we can…or probably cannot be.

So let’s see what’s opening this weekend!

Transformers: Dark of the Moon – Robots do battle in what is clearly an intricate and well-developed plot… Is it weird that I had a huge crush on StarScream when I was a kid?

Stuff White People Get to Do in This Movie – Be astronauts, threaten Shia LeBoeuf, lie to robots, wear Kevlar, replace Megan Fox while still keeping eyes wide and mouth always slightly ajar, para-glide, seriously–in every shot she’s in in the trailer, the girl’s mouth is open and she’s not speaking what is up with that?, be both able-bodied and sit in a wheelchair, save the day.

Stuff Not-White People Get to Do in This Movie – wear Kevlar and deliver bad news.

Is there a medical reason why her lips can't touch? Should we start a fund?

Larry Crowne – Julia Roberts, Tom Hanks and Magical Black People, oh my!

Stuff White People Get to Do in This Movie – enjoy a simple, but oddly fulfilling job, be employee of the month, hold the power position(s) at a large company, be a Dean/Principal figure, be adorably bumbling, dislike their challenging, but unfulfilling job, enjoy ice irresponsibly, utilize public transportation, ride scooters safely, change the tough chick’s heart despite her best attempts, demonstrate hilariously uncharacteristic sexual abandon, enjoy love with a hint of embarrassment.

Stuff Not-White People Get to Do in This Movie – marvel at the ability of the white guy to be employee of the month, deliver sassy advice to the white guy, help the white guy realize his fashion and romantic potential, be made an example of, be unnecessarily jealous.

They're so in love and they don't even know it!!

Monte Carlo – Wait, what? Movies can cast quasi-minorities in lead roles in films that have nothing to do with them dressing in drag?

I know, TP, I was confused and hurt, too.

And instead of magical black people, there are two magical white people? AND the main character with a Mexican Spanish last night is pretending to be a white princess?? I can only hope that one day my Oreoness takes me to a place where I can pretend to be  a white princess. AND Catherine Tate is in this movie?!?!? Cue Oreo explosion in 3…2…1…

Granted, the feminist implications of this film are pretty terrible (“teehee, despite all my hard work and brains, i just want castles and jewels and pretty and boys and boys!”), but that’s for a whole different blog. I’m still thrilled about the CT cameo. I ain’t even bovvered to pay money for that!

 

For more talk about trailers, click here and let us know what you think!

In case you caught that Star Scream story and want more about TOE’s dubious crushes, check out this story!

******

For Mor-eo Oreo: Follow The Oreo Experience on Twitter (@oreoexperience)
And subscribe on youtube! (Check the youtube page for the brand new music video “White (on the inside) Christmas!”
Leave a comment here or at any of the above and let us know what you think!

 

Advertisements

Winning!

Two compliments I received this week warmed my Oreo heart and reminded me that second degree scalp burns and sunscreen-induced temporary blindness are totes worth it.

The first one came after a show I did on Friday. In that show, I sang some Gilbert and Sullivan (Three Little Maids, FTW), reminisced about television shows like Donna Reed

Not to brag, but I can Mikado all. Night. Long.

and Dobie Gillis and played my flute.

Then the next day, this conversation happened between my friend and her mom who saw the show.

FriendsMom: That Indian girl was funny.

Friend: What Indian girl?

FriendsMom: The one who played the flute.

Friend: She’s not Indian. She’s black.

FriendsMom: Really?

Friend: Yeah, you know how we had that scene where we made fun of her for acting so white even though she’s black….?

FriendsMom: Huh. I thought that was just a joke. She’s really black?

Friend: Yes.

FriendsMom: …Like half black?

Friend: Just eat your Panera Bread.

That was good because even though I talked about being black, she didn’t think I was. But ultimately, it was just kind of good because she still thought I was a brown. Ick!

Last night, however, was perfect!

It was karaoke. Showtunes were sung, trivia was played very badly (Really?? Black Red and GOLD in the German flag? Gold is basically the same as yellow, we absolutely should have gotten that one) and then the KJ made my whole night.

It's effing yellow!

It was getting toward the end of the evening. I had sung twice and also started the night with trivia and spoken directly to KJ Kelly more than once. So by the time the following incident happened, she had plenty of contact with me. And at the time in question, I was sitting not five yards from her.

A guy got up to sing some rap song and made mention of the fact that the n-word might pop up.

KaraokeGuy: Is that gonna be weird?

KJ: Nah, there aren’t any black people in here.

Sometimes, there are no words, only smiles.

No slacking off, though! This weekend, I’m doing a Farmer’s Market, Grease Sing-a-Long, Tree of Life screening and sunscreen shopping trip just for good measure.

**************************************************

For Mor-eo! Follow The Oreo Experience on Twitter (@oreoexperience)
Leave a comment here or at any of the above and let us know what you think!

Truly Magical Black Person

The following clip confused me. I am totally used to seeing black people with magical powers or skills-either of a biological nature or simply the power of unlimited patience,  unending empathy and down home wisdom. But when we see it on screen, those powers have a very specific purpose.

In The Green Mile where Michael Clark Duncan CAN use his actual magic powers to heal Tom Hank’s urinary tract infection and TH’s wife’s cancer, but CAN’T use those same magical powers to clear his name and get his ass off death row. In Ghost, Whoopie Goldberg CAN use psychic abilities to help Patrick and Demi find love across the time/space, life/death continuum, but CAN’T use those same powers to get herself into decent housing.

She was, however, able to get great lamé

In The Legend of Bagger Vance, Will Smith CAN help rich Brad Pitt be even better at being rich, but CAN’T come back to life or whatever. In The Help, a movie coming out later this summer, the black mammies CAN help white writer Skeeter find purpose for her life, but CAN’T make their own lives have purpose on their own. Bubba CAN give Forrest the idea for a wildly profitable seafood restaurant but CAN’T build that business on his own. J-Hud CAN get Sarah Jessica Parker back on track but CAN’T be written in to the rest of the script once SJP feels like herself again. Dick Halloran in The Shining CAN use this telepathic powers to make Danny Torrance feel better about his own powers but CAN’T use those powers to get the hell away from psycho Jack.

Yes, there is Johnny. You knew that because you're psychic. So why not take the next logical step and get a new job...or at least put in your two weeks, then cash in in your vacay.

In Super 8 (SPOILER ALERT!!!) Dr. Woodward CAN use his super smartypantsness to thwart a government’s attempt to  torture an alien indefinitely and give a bunch of white kids a raison d’etre, but CAN’T think a way to do it other than murdering himself.

So imagine my surprise when I saw this video of a black kid using actually amazing sonic powers (I am NOT kidding about this) for…himself!!

Hmmm, I wonder whose sidekick he’ll get to be in the movie version of his life? If it’s Jon Hamm, Chris Pine or Hugh Grant, I hope he needs a plucky magical black little sister, too!

Do you have any magic powers? Do you use them for good, for evil, or for white people?

Is it weird that I think the fact that I test super consistently as an INFJ is kind of a super power? Let us know in the comments!

**************************************************

For Mor-eo! Follow The Oreo Experience on Twitter (@oreoexperience)
Leave a comment here or at any of the above and let us know what you think!

Karaoke Fai….WIN!

I went to karaoke with a trusted member of my blanchetourage last night (Need a definition of “Blanchetourag”? Click here!). Wednesday nights at Sardos aren’t incredibly busy, so I was excited for the opportunity to sing more than once and to whip out some new showtunes. My friend said we were meeting some people there, and I was excited to meet them, too.

We got to the bar and I almost walked right out. The “people” we were “supposed” to “meet” were both black.

WTF?

Every time you trick an Oreo, a baby loses its wings

He knows me and that per the Oreo code it is so not okay to hang out en masse with other black people.

My friend mentioned that one of the girls was in a recent revival of RENT and my hackles went down a bit. The musical RENT does feature a lot of black people in it, but it’s very theatery and it’s Broadway and OhMyGodAdamPascalTouchedMeEnce!!! so I tossed her some Oreo points and let it go.

Dear Adam, the answer will always be "yes"

Then the other girl suggested the three of us go sing a song together.

What??

We were the only black people in the whole bar. If we went up to sing together, we’d totally really look like really black people. But part of the aforementioned Oreo code involves sticking to a WASPish code of uncomfortable politeness. So I had to say yes.

And I was totally rewarded for my efforts.

I worried we were going to end up singing something ethnic. Whitney Carey or Rhiannan or something like that. But the track started. And it was Hanson! Three black girls pretending to be two white boys and one white girl three white boys! I couldn’t totally get on board with that and I happily MmmBopped along. I also learned that an “MmmBop” was a unit of time.

I also also learned later that “More Than Words” seems to be about a bj. 😦

“…if you only knew how easy
It would be to show me how you feel

More than words
Is all you have to do to make it real
Then you wouldn’t have to say that you love me
‘Cause I’d already know…”

Yeah, that’s not romantic, that’s about a beej.  Wish I had realized that in high school. Prom would have been much much different.

Lots of popular songs are confusing. And that’s one of the reasons I love showtunes, because the song “Popular” is not confusing at all.

What’s your go-to karaoke jam? (are we still saying ‘jam’?) Do you think Adam Pascal would let me More Than Words him? Let us know in the comments!

**************************************************

For Mor-eo! Follow The Oreo Experience on Twitter (@oreoexperience)
Leave a comment here or at any of the above and let us know what you think!

Awkward Conversations

This week, I’ve  had three interesting Oreo-related conversations. One of them really rubbed the wrong way. Transcripts are below. Unless otherwise indicated (or me), all speakers are white…natch. 🙂

Monday – during lunch

OreoExperience: “How was the college tour this weekend?”

Friend: “So, he decided against San Diego State. And I’m so glad! When we went there, there were so many Asians! I mean, who is my son going to hang out with when there’s nothing but Asians in the engineering school?”

I mean, just look how awkward this guy is. I would hate to be stuck in a library -- or on a time jumping island -- with this hottie, er...Asian

Tuesday – at the gym

Friend: “I just talked to Manuel–the guy who cleans the cafe up here–for the first time.”

OreoExperience: “Cool. He seems really nice.”

Friend: “He is. He’s been married for 15 years and he has a son.”

OreoExperience: “Lovely.”

Friend: “Yeah. And I was especially glad to hear that he only had one son. I mean, Mexicans have such big families and he obviously can’t support them working at that job.”

With the right conversation, this is not the only place you'll feel pain after spin class.

Wednesday – outside reception at work

OreoExperience: Thanks for bringing the release forms, I’ll get them to the right person for you.

NewWriter: Thanks, I appreciate it.

OreoExperience: Are you new to LA or have you been here a while?

NewWriter: Just a couple of years. I was doing production before and only recently started writing.

OreoExperience: Cool. Well good luck! It’s a tough business, but it’s pretty awesome.

NewWriter: Yeah. I have this one friend who’s Nigerian. And he told me about how when he goes in for meetings, people really intimidated by him and expect him to be like stereotypically black or something. Like he writes regular comedy, but they expect him to sound like Tyler Perry.

How. Dare. He?? My week was going so well!! 😦

Friend had the decency to not notice that I was also brown (on the outside) and therefore might be thrown off by stories filled with stereotypetastic overtones. She didn’t think for one second that while she was sad that her son would be the “only one” of him at his new school, that I might have little sympathy for that because I have pretty much been the “only one” in every school I’ve ever been to ever. shhh, black! YAY!! My Oreo work has paid off!! Bonus points because the disdain she intimated that she had for minorities reminded why I’m trying to hard to escape my ethnicity in the first place.

She got to dump about annoying things that people of color do; I got to validate my lifestyle choice. Everyone wins!

So thanks, NewWriter, for bursting my Oreo bubble. By attempting to compassionately connect with me about the bummers of racism, you shined a great big ol’ spotlight on my skin color that I have been (ironically) trying to keep in the dark for so long.

***

What was the last thing that someone said to you that rubbed you the wrong way–race related or otherwise. Bonus points if it was something from this blog. 🙂 Either way, let us know in the comments!

For more on Tyler Perry perils, click here.

For things people didn’t go ahead and say that I so wish they had, click here.

For conversations people wish TheOreoExperience  understood better, click here.

To see how to get started with your own Oreo lifestyle, click here.

**************************************************

For Mor-eo! Follow The Oreo Experience on Twitter (@oreoexperience)
Leave a comment here or at any of the above and let us know what you think!

Diary of a Mad White Black Woman – Doggie Style

Dear Diary,

I know that as an Oreo, I should favor tiny, teacup-sized dogs that fit in Hermes bags, take to wearing tiaras and always look scared to death to be alive.

Everyone in this photo is crying on the inside.

I do love all animals, so those shaky little pets are on the list. But, and I hate to admit this, I have a special place in my heart for Pit Bulls.

On paper, this is a terrible idea! Pit Bulls are often associated with the ghetto, they’re banned from many public places and when people see them coming, they often hold their children close and dash to the other side of the street… so Pit Bulls are basically the black people of the dog world. And since they’re kind of black, as an Oreo, I should avoid them at all cost.

Was either unexpectedly approached by a pittie or an RBP. Hard to tell.

But I can’t help it. I love them!

Sure, they have big giant jaws…but those big giant jaws turn into big giant love!!

My what a big smile you have!

They also have big, giant hearts. Yes, these dogs are strong, but they’re also sweet, loyal, dedicated and often misunderstood…which is…you know, not at all how I see myself, even a little bit…

I didn’t realize how much I loved these puppers until my January video, Geeky Pet Names, where I got to work with Angel City Pit Bulls – a rescue org in Los Angeles that everyone should check out and support.

These dogs are also great metaphors. And as a I writer, I’m always looking for one of those that I haven’t exhausted. The video below is a great example of a how a little love and a little understanding can change a little life. It’s also a great example of something that will totally make me cry my eyeballs out at my desk at work. The meeting I’m about to go is gonna be totes awks now with mascara streaming down my face.

As an Oreo, I also know that I should stick to my WASPy roots and not display so much schmaltz and sincerity like I have over these dogs. So here’s me buttoning up my collar before I head off to the courts (that’s tennis courts, not courts of law, in case my black was still showing). After that I’ll swing by the club (yacht, not night) and see if I can’t get some little guy on a leash (no awkward innuendos in that last bit, right?)

-OreoExperience

 

***

Got a pittie? Tell us about ’em!

Got something that makes you cry at your desk? Tell us about that, too!

**************************************************

For Mor-eo! Follow The Oreo Experience on Twitter (@oreoexperience)
Leave a comment here or at any of the above and let us know what you think!

Mini Oreos

Little Oreos

Just a roundup of little things that touched my Oreo heart. 🙂

Bill Cosby Still Hates Black People, But Still Manages to Betray the Oreo Agenda

The Oreo agenda was firmly set with The Cosby Show back in the day. I remember my mom gathering us all to watch it when I was a kid. I always wondered why she seemed to be taking such copious notes. But it wasn’t long before I did, too.

In the last few years, Cos has reminded us over and over again that he’s totally embarrassed by Regular Black People. And really, who isn’t?

And this week he reminded us that he still does. Highlights of his speech at the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition Conference included referring to black kids with the distancing pronoun “it” and calling those children “dirty laundry.”

But there was one thing he said that was so much worse: “There’s no such thing as “talking white.”

WTF??

My whole identity as a child (and the nice reminder I got the other week) was based on the fact that I talked white. Mr. Cosby, please do not destroy decades of hard work with careless, unresearched sentences!

Another little Oreo. Man, that horse was a good sport.

Twitter is the New KFC?

Reports came out this week that show that Twitter is increasingly–and mostly–black.

It’s well-documented that most Twitter users are minorities, but Pew says the gap between African-Americans—the largest represented group—and white users is growing. In May 2011, there were 16 percentage points more African-Americans than whites on Twitter (25 percent African-American versus 9 percent white). Last November the racial divide was only 8 percent (13 percent African-American versus 5 percent white). One in 10 African-American Internet users visit Twitter every day, double the rate of Latinos and nearly four times the rate for whites, according to Pew.

I just got used to Twitter and now I feel like a plain ol’ RBP for hanging out there. More so because once I participated in #blacktagging – that hashtag take on dissing and The Dozens where jokes get passed around (mostly black Twitter circles) with tags like #wordsthatleadtotrouble and #ifhiphopwashighschool (my response to the latter: Flo Rida would have a hard time in geography class).

To my defense, I had just learned that Flo Rida was an entity and I was very busy being completely blown away that a person, their record label, their producers and friends would think that “Flo Rida” was a good name…for anything.  And that if they had to call it that, they wouldn’t at least change the spelling so that seeing it didn’t bring up images of hanging chads, Disneyland and Miami Snowbirds.

That is YOUR name, Sunshine State. Take it back!

It’s Fro-Yo, not “Fro”-Yo, You Know?

I went into Pinkberry Saturday night for a much-craved frozen treat. I chose what was meant to be an Oreo-appropriate location – Little Tokyo. There are no black people here. Just white people and Asians–who may actually be the whitest group of all (more of this later). This was the conversation:

Pinkberry Worker: Hi, have you been to Pinkberry before?

OreoExperience: You know, I’ve done Menchie’s and Yogurtland before, but not Pinkberry.

PW: Okay, well, our flavors are up there and you can get a sample any flavor you want. Like do you want to try the watermelon?

Beat.

OE: You know, I think I’m feeling like the tart a little more.

Sigh. I know I liked Yogurtland better, anyway.

But seriously, this stuff is like crack. Only without the baby mamas and unequal sentencing practices.