interracial dating

7 Awesome Things About Slavery (Reprise)

This post originally appeared here.

It has been updated below.

Also, seriously, how do you pronounce it? Is it “ruh-prize” or “ruh-preeze”?

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Every now and again a public official will casually say that America was the best when slavery was happening. They usually say it has something to do with family values and God and MAGA.

 

This week it happened again and people are all butt hurt because Alabama Senate candidate and alleged serial sexual predator Roy Moore basically said that slavery was A-OK when asked what his idea of a perfect America was.

Here’s how that totally reasonable exchange went down:

At a campaign event in September, a journalist asked Moore when was the last time America was “Great.”

Moore said: “I think it was great at the time when families were united. Even though we had slavery, they cared for one another. … Our families were strong, our country had a direction.”

And just like always, after said public official reminds us that slavery was totes nbd, there’s a huge snowflake backlash and everyone starts talking about how “terrible” it was that families were stolen from their homes, ripped apart, horrifically abused so that farmers in America could grow crops without having to do all that “work,” and used to set up a system of economics in this country that relies on people doing very difficult labour for none to low wages.

And I’m always so surprised that people would say things like this.

Because there are so many benefits to slavery that people always overlook. Here are 7 of ’em!

1. Fitness plans. According to some stats I hastily Googled, almost half of all black people are obese. This article says that in 42 states, more than a third of the black people there are obese. And in 15 states, that number goes up to 40%. I imagine that means that those black people are so fat that…they probably have a number of health problems and are uncomfortable in tiny seats or skinny jeans.

But back in slave days, blacks were super fit!! You can’t have a high body fat percentage when you’re doing hard labor all day. Not only did they get some cardio in when they were running from dogs and bullets, but they also got some fantastic strength training by carrying around full bushels of crops.

And they didn’t have to pay for it! Today a Crossfit membership that offers this kind of HIT training is not cheap! But back in the day, slaves got all that exercise for freezies! #jelly

Not fat.

2. Zero Percent Unemployment. It’s not new that The Great Recession was hard on everyone. But statistics show that it was super hard on blacks and that the African American population has been slower to recover than other groups.

That’s so not how it was when slavery was en vogue. You’d be hard pressed to find a black person out of work then. And sure, they didn’t get paid and they had to work ridiculous hours and they were beaten to death if they voiced an opinion or tried to find their husband who had been sold to a different family, but you know how good an internship looks on a resume!

3. Travel Benefits. Trying to work overseas can be a nightmare! There’s Visas and sponsors to worry about. You have to figure out how to get your paychecks converted into the right currency for whatever bank you’re using. You can’t lose your passport.

But slaves got to work overseas and had someone else take care of all the particulars! All slaves had to do was mind their own business in Africa. Then, suddenly, they got a surprise trip to a whole new world with lodging already taken care of!

Sure it’s crowded, but think of the travel points!

 

4. Easier Investment Portfolios. Have you looked at a paycheck recently? They’re so confusing! There’s the gross pay and allowances and all kinds of taxes. And don’t get me started on how complicated it can be to have a 401K! You have to figure out who your dependents are and how much of what stock you want to invest in. And if your company does matching funds, what’s the tipping point when you start taking out too much…it just goes on and on and on…

But slaves didn’t have to worry about all that. No pay meant no financial headache! No one likes doing their taxes and slaves got away with never having to.

6. Lots of Time Outdoors. How tiring is it, being cooped up in an office all day! Fluorescent lights and distant windows and office chairs that never seem to be adjusted quite right. It feels so good to just get away at the weekend. Go outside, take a hike or even just a walk around the neighborhood. Camping is a huge industry–people love it! And those lucky lucky slaves got to be outside all the time!! And they didn’t even have to wear sunscreen!

7. Low-Sugar Diet. We’ve already talked about the obesity rates among blacks, but diabetes is sky-high, too. Diabetes rates are twice as high among African-Americans than it is in whites. And they’re more likely to have to have limbs amputated. No. Thank. You.

It’s hard to over do it on the sugar when you’re eating scraps of meat and bread, or not being allowed to eat at all, so slaves totally had it good when it came to controlling carbs! It’s soooooo hard to say no to dessert. But slaves never got the chance to say yes! How easy would it be to be healthy without all that nasty temptation everywhere!

8. Gated Community Living. Today, neighborhoods where lots of black live are all scary like Compton or Oakland or The South. But as slaves, blacks got to live in super secure, fenced-in areas that would be totes out of their price range today. Jealous!

I mean, no, they didn’t live in the big house, but they got to live behind the gate. Which is more than I’m doing, tell you that!

 

What’s your favourite thing about forced free labour? Let us know in the comments!

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Please also check out The Oreo Experience’s new webseries, BLACK GIRL IN A BIG DRESS. Join awkward African American Anglophile Adrienne as she navigates 21st century dating with 19th century ideals. All 8 episodes of Season One streaming now!

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Great Heroes of Black History Month

As longtime readers of this space will know, an Oreo is not likely to celebrate Black History Month. Summer Solstice, is fine. Nothing wrong with a Labor Day picnic. And I’m already happily planning the photo shoot for this year’s Boxing Day cards.

But Black History Month is not something we traditionally make space for. When black people go on and on about other black people…and especially when they go on and on about the historical treatment of black people, it makes other people very uncomfortable. It doesn’t matter if what said black person is saying is “true,” or “correct,” or “a helpful bit of conversation to help understand current events,” history and truth will always be around, so no need to harp on them. Comfort, however, is fleeting and should be cherished. Like a shooting star or the finish on a nice Southern French Negrette.

Yesterday, however, Vice President Pence gave us a lovely gift! He showed us that we can celebrate Black History Month by talking about White People!

pence_tweet-png_848779016

 

 

That’s way more comfortable than being all snowflakey/SJW/RBP about it. It’s perfect! We get a few more days to throw a lovely bash (who’s gonna pass up an excuse to pass the flutes!) and we can do it without upsetting the social order.

I hear what you’re saying, though. You’ve been indoctrinated to focus on black heroes during BHM. Effectively, unsung white champions have been Affirmative Actioned right out of the conversation. So they’ve been all but forgotten. What white heroes would we even talk about? We’ve got you covered. Below are a handful of white folks to lift up along with talking points about their contributions to Black America.

Ellen Clapsaddle

Look at this darling little white girl.

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She was illustrated by another darling white girl. Ellen Hattie Clapsaddle lived in the late 1800s and early 1900s and was the most prolific greeting card illustrator of her day. Black people, after being freed from slavery, developing economic communities of their own, standing up to the nation when those communities were torn down, and then building themselves up again would eventually mail postcards to each other. Thanks for the support, Ellen!

 

Hubert Cecil Booth

This is Hubert!

image2

Back in the day when everyone went by all three of their names, he was busy being three-named and inventing the vacuum cleaner. Most homes in the US have a vacuum cleaner and some of those homes have black people in them. Plus, earlier last century when black people could only get work as preachers or maids, some of those ladies used vacuum cleaners instead of having to break their fingers combing carpet by hand. Where would they be without this great man? Thanks, Hube!

 

This Guy

Look at this guy!

portrait-1880455_1280

 

Who is he and what did he do? Does that matter? I think what’s important to see here is that he looks like someone you could just have a conversation with. He probably keeps a level head and gently guides you to make decisions that don’t get everyone all riled up. Thanks, This Guy!

This couple!

Look at the love!

marriage-1880258_1280

These two are just starting on their lives together, but they’ve totally had conversations about adopting a kid one day. And they’re not totally opposed to the idea of adopting inter-racially. So there’s like a solid 70-30 chance that they’ll help reduce the inner city by one. Thanks, This couple!

Happy Black History Month, everyone!

For more BHM survival tips:

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What heroes are you celebrating this February? Let us know in the comments! 

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For Mor-eo Oreo:

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Vacation Rules

Just got some pictures and daguerreotypes back from a week away I spent with the fella’s family.

To be fair, there is a lighthouse in all of my vacation photos from where ever I go.

To be fair, I can’t take a vacation photo that doesn’t include a lighthouse. No matter where I am.

This is a branch of the family he doesn’t talk to or see all that often, so it was a great chance to reconnect. Even better, unlike visiting the distant arms of my RBP family where we literally had KFC for dinner (don’t worry, eating fried chicken on someone else’s dime is one of the exceptions that makes it okay to consume. Still, I didn’t like it), his extended family are the waspiest. They pronounce their “r” as “ah”s, they went to boarding schools, they start drinking at 4 p.m and don’t stop until after midnight. Hashtag heaven.

Of course, I did learn some things on my visit and will share them here. Feel free to use these tips on your next trip to New England. And please feel free to add any of your own.

Do try to date someone who’s family owns a house from the early 1900s. It will go nicely with your chalet.

Don’t continue to date them unless said house is at a cape or in the St. Lawrence River. Easy, land-locked vacations are for the weak.

Do remember to pack Dramamine. You don’t want to look like you’ve never been in an antique Chris Craft before.

Don’t get into the water! Even if the boat capsizes, do not go in! You’re bright. Figure it out. You may float on it, hydroplane over it, or drink next to it. But one drop of natural river water without a tonne of conditioner at the ready and your freshly pressed hair will kink right up and leave you looking like a q-tip. No one can unsee that. Especially wasps.

I don't care how many floaties you have to stuff in that hull. Do not let yourself get wet! (source)

I don’t care how many floaties you have to stuff in that hull. Do not let yourself get wet!
(source)

Do laugh at their jokes about how you are the only person of non-European descent who has ever visited the house. It is pretty funny when you think about it.

Don’t be surprised when even though your boyfriend has slept in the main, appointed quarters of the house his entire 4-decade life, he suddenly finds himself relegated to the servants quarters because he’s with you. It’s not personal, they’ve just instituted some new rules….this year. House virgins have to sleep in the servants’ quarters with the peeling paint and mold on the walls. That way they “appreciate it more” next time. You’d do the same with your chalet.

Do use the time to catch up on your reading. Proof is still excellent…or maybe it’s Doubt. I get those confused. You know what, bring both. Also, Faust.

Don’t be surprised when the patriarch of the family hands you a book and says he thinks you’ll love it. Spoiler alert, he’s going to give you a spoiler alert and it will sound like this: “It’s really interesting. It’s about sailors who were shipwrecked and became slaves. But here’s the thing. They were white slaves. White. Slaves.”

Do agree that white slavery is definitely the weirder slavery.

Don’t be surprised that two more days pass before the master and mistress of the house talk to you directly and that it only happens after they find out you ride horses.

Do be prepared to show photos of show ribbons or the conversation will be brief.

Don’t take offense to the hundreds of questions everyone has about your hair when you curl it that one time.

Do not let them touch it. No one needs that can of worms.

Don’t forget to drop words like “Main line,” “Colby College,” and “made pony.”

Do go ahead and answer when your boyfriend’s mom continually calls you by the name of his first black girlfriend.

Don’t correct her. Once it happens five times in a row, it’s just going to be awkward to change the pattern.

Do not hug and kiss goodbye at the end of the trip. That kind of showiness is for Southerners.

Don’t forget about to start planning next year’s trip early! And just wait, you might get moved up to the nice rooms.

What was it like the last time you visited your in-law types? Let us know about it in the comments! 

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The Black Guys I Know

One of the most popular questions I get as an Oreo is;

“You’ve never dated a black guy?”

And then when I ask them if they want to see my piccolo or otherwise try to change the conversation, the next question usually is:

“Piccolo? Is that a euphemism for something?”

And when I say no and smile inside because I think I’ve distracted them, they say:

“But wait. Really? Reallllly? You’ve…never…dated a black guy?”

That’s when I usually try to direct their attention to photos of me at a Renaissance Faire and ask them to help me pick out bodice patterns for next year.

“How is that possible…?”

First of all, I haven’t dated tons of guys who share individual traits with me. I’ve never dated someone from my hometown.

Maybe because I looked like this when I lived there.

Maybe because I looked like this when I lived there.

I’ve never dated another Journalism Major from The University of Texas at Austin. I’ve never dated a guy who was 5’5” who wore a small in women’s blouses. I’ve never dated someone with a birthmark on his shoulder, a bellybutton ring or a hatred for the Oxford comma that rivals mine. I’ve never dated someone who’s the offspring of an engineer and an accountant and I’ve never been in a relationship with an only child.

Second, it’s not like there are all these hordes of black guys who I’m denying access from the top of my ivory tower.

Though if we do build an Ivory tower, can we use this pattern? (source)

Though if we do build an Ivory tower, can we use this pattern?
(source)

Though if you know an ivory tower for sale, hook an Oreo up!

Honestly, apart from my own family members, I don’t even know that many black guys. And the ones I do wouldn’t be viable options even if they could sunburn.

If I were to try date a black guy (#spoileralert, never will, it’s against the rules) these are the only options I could choose from:

  • That quiet kid at work who sat down the hall from me last year – Much too young. I’m not opposed to dating someone my junior, but there’s maybe a 10-12 year age gap here, which—as you can tell by looking at me today—makes him like 12 years old.
  • That one guy at the office I see coming into the same entrance to my building – I think he’s gay.
  • That older guy at work who wears the fun t-shirts – Married
  • That guy who works one floor down from me – Moving to the northwest in a few months. I’m much too needy for that.
  • That guy with the round face and beard – I think he is also gay
  • That guy at swing dancing – We don’t even talk. He Balboas, I don’t Balboa. When we tried to dance once, he was so annoyed that I don’t Balboa that we nearly stopped dancing halfway through the song
  • My hairdresser’s son – He really is 12
  • That priest – He’s already pledged his life to someone else. Way to c-block, JC!

So unless I want to be a homewrecker, a Mrs. Robinson or an RBP, there’s no market for me.

Even when I was dating online, I was never approached by guys of color. All of my friends regularly got pinged by a Jamaal or a Kendrick or a Michael. But not me. It’s like they knew, nay, respected who I was.

…Could have also been the fact that I put that picture of tweenage me on my profile and that I talked a LOT about Renn Fests.

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Who are the black guys you know? Do you want to date them? Let us know in the comments!

Remember that time Dr. Drew couldn’t get over my dating habits? Click here to reminisce.

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For Mor-eo Oreo:

Who’s the Creamiest of Them All? Oreo Showdown Me vs. Frank

I was incredibly proud of the heights of Oreodom to which I ascended this weekend. I was at a financier’s wedding in Wine Country that was totally hipstered out (bride and groom walked down the aisle to Bon Iver or some such, food trucks sported locally sourced, organic quinoa kale pizzas and for every tux trouser, there was a pair of Tom’s poking out of the bottom).

The attendants basically looked like this
(source)

At one moment, I took my glass of Northern California Shiraz in one hand, my Starbucks in the other and went for a stroll through the adjoining vineyard. I looked back at the scene and reveled in a couple’s lovely commitment to love and at my pulling off being the only black person in attendance.

It’s the little things.

Then something caught my eye. A black guy. Surely, I thought, he’s here to hand me the keys to my car or take away this biodegradable wine glass. But no… he was a guest like me. When I figured that out, the competition was on! I was not going to let this handlebar mustachioed, Steampunk suit sporting dude out Oreo me.

Naturally, I couldn’t talk to him directly lest people think we were extras from Real Housewives of Atlanta, so I ran my reconnaissance and found out that he was doing an excellent job at Oreoing.

He was an accomplished equestrian, a fine artist photographer, had clearly trained in ballroom dancing…and did I mention the handlebar mustache. I imagined him twirling it like an old timey villain if and when he found out he had bested me. He spoke French, made a delicious tapenade, had been a vegan since he was 12 and was from Connecticut!

Even I have a hard time matching those stats.

Damn you, home state! Why couldn’t you have been a Dakota?
(source)

I was about to tip my french veiled hat in concession when I saw his date… She was White! A black guy dating a white women. That is SUCH an RBP thing to do!! I win.

So instead of stopping, I grabbed another glass for a victory lap around the wine bar safe in the knowledge that I finally made up for the other wedding party that, despite my best bestest efforts, went terribly. An unfortunate loss for him, but it was a game well played, sir. Well played indeed.

And yes, I get the Catch-22 that Oreo guys are in. Date a black girl and people start thinking you’re just escorting her to her next john. Date a white girl and you look like an RBP. Oh well, we all have our crosses to bear. Anyone have any suggestions?

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How Many People Must I Hate?

So my video Why I Don’t Date Black Guys hit 100K views this week. And if you haven’t taken a tour around youtube comments in a while, you totally should. The youtube comment section is a very special place.

In honor of my 100K Day, I present this follow-up video….

…and these follow-up posts:

What ladies are doing instead of putting a ring on it. 

 

What happened when I tried to chat pleasantly about race and relationships on national television.

What do you think? Do people who share genetic traits have an obligation to reproduce with each other? Let us know in the comments! And thanks for watching and reading and helping us get to 100K!

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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

Dumb Things Black Women are Doing Instead of Getting Married

For the last couple of months dozens and dozens of columnists, bloggers and sociologists have been reacting to the horrible, shocking news that black women are making it into their 30s WITHOUT BEING MARRIED!!!

These people have spent hundreds of column inches and hour and hours of readers’ time wondering how this travesty of gendering could possibly have happened. While it’s true that  “people” aren’t getting married as much as “people” used to, it is especially upsetting that black ladies aren’t engaging in an institution that only has a 50% success rate.

When asked why this is the case, people have suggested that it boils down to one very inconvenient intersection of facts. Black women are unable to get married, they say because:

The pundits have questioned what we can do about this crisis. And yes, they’ve called being single in your 30s crisis.” The same word that they use to describe the country’s unemployment situation, AIDS in Africa and Lindsay Lohan. In fact, that’s why I was made fun of for not dating a stranger and then ignored on television by a beloved celebrity asked to appear on a daytime talk show. (Read more about that here).

It stands to reason that people are very concerned about this. After all, we all know that marriage is the absolute best thing that can happen to a woman, so we must find out why women are avoiding such a blissful state of being. I mean, they could just settle after all. But the fact that they’re not implies that they’re acting on their own agency.

Soon they're gonna want jobs and birth control. Ugh!

Here is a list of 10 tons of dumb things women are actually enjoying doing instead of racing to the altar. If you see a woman doing any of the below, for the love of all that is holy, stop her immediately and put a ring on it!

  • Getting advanced degrees (hard to plan a wedding and a dissertation at the same time)
  • Catching up on their reading.
  • Enjoying hobbies
  • Relying on themselves for happiness instead of romance
  • Dating in a measured and paced way
  • Not living in 1954
  • Learning another language
  • Sleeping in
  • Travelling
  • Taking up Yoga
  • Moving up the corporate ladder
  • Working on a business plan
  • Making amends with their families
  • Getting out of debt
  • Trying roller derby
  • Considering taking a class in comedic burlesque
  • Enjoying coming home to a quiet, still apartment
  • Volunteering
  • Learning to sew
  • Making meaningful friendships
  • Planning themed happy hours
  • Attending comedy shows
  • Considering season tickets to the LA Phil
  • Practicing safe boundaries
  • Getting involved in a local campaign
  • Occupying Wall Street
  • Wine Tasting
  • Summering
  • Relaxing
  • Attending Evensong at their local Episcopal Parish
  • Enjoying satisfying, yet casual relationships
  • Trying out that new restaurant
  • Taking on a couple extra projects at work
  • Swapping out their spring clothes for fall
  • Getting caught up with their lady doctor appointments
  • Trying puppetry
  • Hiking
  • Finally signing up for piano lessons
  • Remodeling the kitchen
  • Doing something about that bald patch in the yard
  • Working out which business contacts it’s necessary to get holiday gifts for and which ones can do with a card
  • Setting some goals for 2012
  • Wondering why that latest doomsday guy was given air time on NPR
  • Being bummed that the David Sedaris reading in Irvine on 11/19 is sold out
  • Canceling some magazine subscriptions
  • Taking a bartending class
  • Learning to play video games just to see what all the fuss is about
  • Arguing about why Ides of March was really not that good
  • Loving that new machine at the gym that makes you feel like you’re running in sand
  • Helping some friends with their marketing plan
  • Understanding that a piece of paper isn’t necessary for everyone to feel like they’re part of something special
  • Making sure they don’t make the same mistakes their parents did
  • Understanding the finer points of semi-colon use
  • Trying vegetarianism
  • Reaching some personal goals
  • Debating whether to get an iPhone, Droid or just a plain non smart phone
  • Practice dressage
  • Not making their squish mitten look like a 12 year old’s by ripping all the hair off of it
  • Making DIY cat box cleaners
  • Catching up on the AFI Top 100 List
  • Babysitting the kids of those who did procreate
  • Taking architectural tours of local neighborhoods
  • Getting another tattoo
  • Learning how to make falafel
  • Learning how to spell falafel
  • Checking out that new whisky bar
  • Heading up to a food truck festival
  • Accepting that they just plain ol’ don’t like sushi
  • Feeling self-confident
  • Making up for lost time
  • Not needlessly spending hundreds of dollars on Feb. 14
  • Attending Comic Con
  • Triathlons
  • Having leftovers last 3-4 days instead of 1
  • Mudruns
  • Buying underwear that’s comfortable and maybe sexy, not the other way around
  • Going to see Bring It On: The Musical against their better judgement
  • Independent filmmaking
  • Pooping without having to shut the bathroom door
  • Enjoying the company of other people without the complication of worrying that they’re not good enough if they don’t have a romantic partner
  • Did I already say making Quiche?
  • Not dealing with someone else’s morning breath every day
  • Getting up early because the world is lovely at 5:30 a.m.
  • Getting too involved in comment arguments on facebook (Batman IS a superhero!!)
  • Restoring leather goods
  • Visiting vintage stores
  • Trying a trip via train
  • Finally ignoring the text from their handsome, but narcissistic ex
  • Finishing that novel
  • Starting another one
  • Fucking relaxing
  • Not spending $50,000 on a white dress and party
  • Only having to coordinate one calendar
  • Staying up to 2 a.m. reading Cracked.com
  • Farting sometimes without wondering if it’s unsexy
  • Accepting or declining invitations without having to call anyone else first
  • Not wondering if the last text or lack thereof means anything

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What other bullshit things are women doing instead of getting married. Let us know in the comments!

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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!