black hair

Diary of a Mad Black White Woman – Hair Quiz

Dear Diary,

I know, I know, you’re already chastising me for ignoring the goals I so painstakingly wrote out in you just a few short weeks ago.

Nothing personal, I just gave it a thought and decided that I should try “loving myself as I am” for a while. And by “loving myself as I am,” I mean “I don’t want to get up an hour earlier every day, so maybe we just let these pants out; and am I really going to open up my Rosetta Stone Finnish every day? Isn’t that what google translate is for?”

raw

But there is one thing that I feel I have no choice but to commit to.

I changed up my hair recently and it has really captured the imagination of my friends. And coworkers. And absolutely and complete strangers. And TSA agents.

And I have heard their cries.

Normally, the hair conversation goes kind of like this:

THEM: Did you…. Change your hair?

ME: I’m sorry, I couldn’t hear you over the roar of this kettle. Shall I make you a cuppa, or do you have time for a proper brew?

And then we usually move on.

This time, for some reason, it’s been different:

THEM: You changed your hair!

ME: I’m sorry, I was re-watching my favorite dressage clips and couldn’t hear you over the beautiful tinkling hooves. Which do you prefer, a counter canter or a flying lead change.

THEM: Okay. I have to know…

ME: Well, the difference is simple. A counter canter–

THEM: So, this one… is it real?

ME: It’s pretty unbelievable to watch a steed take to the air like that, but yes, it’s very real.

THEM: I mean your hair. Is it real?

ME: Well, you can see it, so it’s not imaginary.

THEM: But is it like… yours?

ME: Well, as far as I know, no one’s coming to arrest me for theft.

It’s about now that the conversation tends to shift to anything else. Often because this is also when I start setting things on fire as a distraction.

raw

But now, even above the roaring flames, folks just keep going.

THEM: Okay, but like… I’m dying to know. Beyoncé’s hair. Is that real?

ME: I don’t know Beyoncé.

THEM: And like Viola Davis… I know she took off her wig in that one episode, but what about the like the Golden Globes… is that her hair?

ME: I also don’t know Viola Davis.

THEM: Yeah, but like.. .what do you think?

ME: …

THEM: …

ME: I think that I prefer the counter canter. It’s not a rated move per se, but it’s very necessary.

I’m not sure what has increased everyone’s attention to this detail, but I will do my Oreo duty to smile, nod, and do what I can. To that end, I have created the following quiz that I will be handing out to friends next time they ask about the hair of people I know nothing about. Will let you know how everyone scores next week.  xoxoxo

 

 

How Well Do You Know Hair?

It’s vitally important to know if a black lady’s hair is growing out of her head, or if it’s just attached there by magic and white tears. It’s also sometimes hard to tell what’s going on up there. So why not test your follicle strength with this very easy quiz.

Look at each photo, then choose the answer below it that you think is the best way to answer this conundrum. 

 

 

 

A. Real
B. Fake
C. I don’t know
D. I don’t care
E. Wait, what? Why does anyone care?

 

 

 

A. Real
B. Fake
C. I don’t know
D. I don’t care
E. Seriously, I’m not sure how this matters much at all.

 

 

 

 

 

(source)

(source)

 

A. Real
B. Fake
C. I don’t know
D. I don’t care
E. Honestly, this woman works incredibly hard smashing barriers left and right, do we really need to reduce her down to what her hair is forced to look like for the sake of being camera ready.

 

 

 

 

 

A. Real
B. Fake
C. I don’t know
D. I don’t care
E. Are your teeth real? What about your chin and nose bridge?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A. Real
B. Fake
C. I don’t know
D. I don’t care
E. What? It’s just a question.

 

 

ANSWERS!

If you answered mostly:

As, Bs, or Cs,  – congratulations, your guess is as good as mine.

If you answered mostly Ds – congratulations, your sentiment is the same as mine!

If you answered mostly Es – you might want to make some time for a proper brew and a think.

 

 

BONUS!

Another fun hair conversation I had this week:

HIM: Look at this picture of David Beckham

1427736546853

ME: I mean, I’m not complaining about this, but why are we looking at pictures of David Beckham? This is our office. 

HIM: What do you call this hair style?

ME: Cornrows.

HIM: No, that’s not it.

HIM: Yes, it is. Those are cornrows.

HIM: But he’s white.

ME: …

HIM: It’s not cornrows if they’re white, right?

ME: (cheerfully finds match)

 

Also, diary, “test your follicle strength.” I might be more proud of that than of anything I have ever done.

 

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

If I met you for the first time at a dinner party, what am I most likely to ask you? Let us know in the comments! 

Still confused about how hair works, check out these handy guides!

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

For Mor-eo Oreo: Follow The Oreo Experience on Twitter (@oreoexperience)

Leave a comment here or at any of the above and let us know what you think!
Advertisements

Awkward Questions and Answers About Black Hair (an FAQ)

m

Yesterday was one of those days when I walk into the office and someone says, “Did you… cut? your hair?”

I didn’t cut my hair.

“But it looks…different. What did you do?”

The answer to that question is not simple. Well, technically, it is. The actual answer is “washed it.” But to say that opens up way more questions and I have production reports to print out and copy.

Aww, haven't an allusion to Rob Schneider in forever! Those are still relevant, right?

These questions also present one of the trickiest things about being a dedicated Oreo. No matter how many show-jumping ribbons you’ve won, you are still have to deal with maintaining, and explaining, what’s going on up there.

So I’m devising this FAQ to hand out whenever my hair changes. Feel free to print it out and pin it up on the wall for easy reference. If you are an Oreo yourself, consider these talking points.

Q: So…did you cut your hair?

A: Nope. Oh! Did you see La Traviata this weekend? Just gorgeous!!

Truth be told, I was hoping to see Die Zauberflöte.

Q: Huh. It looks different.

A: It kind of has a mind of its own. And how hot was it Saturday? I could barely enjoy that Farmers’ Market at the Marina. And now my mangoes are totally overripe. It hurts me to squeeze them.

Q: …was that some sort of euphemism?

A: Not at all. I’m just really bummed about how tender my beautiful, gorgeous mangoes are now. I mean, just look at them.

Ah well, when life gives you bad mangoes, grab some vodka and turn that sh*t into a 'tini.

Q: I don’t think that’s appropriate.

A: All right, well, I’m taking them out at lunch if you want to see.

(See what you’ve done? You’ve created a diversion! Congratulations!)

Q: Well, whatever you did to it, your hair looks great.

A: Thank you.

Q: So…what did you do to it?

IF THIS CONVERSATION IS HAPPENING AFTER A RELAXER….

A: I got it done.

Q: Oh… What does that mean?

Here’s where you have a choice. You can either say: “Well, I spent two hours having white goop spread on my scalp to make all those annoying tight little curls go away.” But again, that brings up a lot of technical questions that really take some time to get into and those production reports are not going to print themselves.

A: I just… get it…straightened.

Q: Ohhhh, so your hair isn’t naturally straight?

This is a dumb question. By and large, black people hair is not naturally straight. But it’s one that a lot of people ask. And once it’s asked, the floodgates tend to open. If there’s anyway to stop talking at this point, do it. Fake a seizure, have someone call your cell phone like you’re on an awkward first date, start bleeding.

If you can’t reasonably get out of it, play along. You’re a good Oreo after all and to act embarrassed or self-conscious or irritated that people can’t just leave your hair alone would just make you look all uppity.

A: No, it’s not.

Q: So, if you just grew your hair out, what would happen?

A: It’d just get big.

Q: Like would you have…?

A: An afro, yes.

Q: You know, I kind of think those little afros are cute. Have you ever thought about growing one?

A: Oh god, no.

Q: Really because [random celebrity of color] has one and she looks really cute.

A: Oh really? Well, have you thought about making a bow out of blonde extensions and putting that on top of your head?

Like this.

Q: Um.. no, why?

A: Oh, well Gaga did that at some awards show, so… you know

Note: Don’t do this. Oreos are sweet, kind, accommodating people. We do not make points or draw attention to gaps in logic.

Q: Really because [random celebrity of color] has one and she looks really cute.

A: Huh, I can’t picture him/her right now. S/he wasn’t in Terrence Malik’s latest, right?

Q: Uh… no.

IF THE QUESTIONS DO NOT COME AFTER A RELAXER….

Q: So what did you do? It looks… fluffier?

A: Just regular washing. Eventually, my hair just ‘goes back.’

Q: What does that mean?

A: It just starts to get curly again?

Q: Oh, so your hair’s not naturally straight.

And there you have it. Though sometimes, you’ll get a few other questions.

Q: Can I touch it?

A: Eh, I’m really weird about personal space.

Q: But c’mon, we’re making out. And I’m already touching your pretty pretty face. Can’t I touch your hair, gorgeous?

A: Okay, fine.#blush(ifIcould) #swoon

Q: Have you ever thought about extensions?

A: Every day of my life. Black hair is really difficult, time consuming and expensive to manage. You have to either buy specialty oils to keep a natural ‘do looking good. Or you have to spend hundreds of dollars to get your scalp burned off once every 6-8 weeks. Or you have to spend more hundreds of dollars to have someone else’s hair sewn into your scalp. And also you have to answer questions like these on the regular.

NOTE: Do not say that. Just say yes. Or better yet “mais oui!”

Q: How do you wash it?

A: With a very delicate regime of shampoo, conditioner and water.

Q: Did you see that documentary Chris Rock did, Good Hair? That was really interesting.

A: I’m not really a Chris Rock fan.

Q: No? I think he’s so funny! I love his stand up.

A: I mean, I would turn down a ticket, but I’d rather go see Eddie Izzard.

If you don't get the joke on this button, go Google it right now and watch the brilliance that unfolds before you. Don't worry, we'll be here when you get back.

Q: So what–

A: Agh, I hate to cut you off, but I have got to get these production reports done, put these mangoes in the fridge and find someone to frame this dressage certificate.

—–

The one good thing about black hair care is that it’s all pretty painful. Relaxers burn like fire, pressing burns with oil that feels like it’s on fire and extensions are woven so tight you get an instant face lift. It’s a little bit of perfectly reasonable self-punishment to bring absolution like fasting or the Silas belt from The Da Vinci Code.

But you do have to choose wisely and pick the pain that’s right for you. Use this primer to weigh the pros and cons and tell us what you think!

And as you know, we love awkward situations here at The Oreo Experience. Whether it’s a a fancy engagement party or during a hike to the Hollywood sign, embarrassing moments are awesome. What are some of your best cringe-worthy stories? Let us know in the comments!

And I’m not saying I didn’t trust you to look up that Eddie Izzard bit. Buuuuut, just in case you didn’t. Voila!

******

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