oreo

A Matter of Tactical, Practical Brilliance or: How to Listen to Hamilton as an Oreo

The musical Hamilton is an amazing, wonderful, terrific…conundrum for an Oreo.

How does a belter Oreo daughter of a hermit and a
an alto dropped in the middle of a
confusing spot in the zeitgeist by providence,
with confidence in her voice
Grow up inside this moment and make the right choice

I’ll tell ya, it’s tricky.

One one hand, Hamilton is a Broadway musical–a totally Oreo-Approved genre of music. I think the only thing typically whiter than a Broadway musical is my singer/songwriter station on Pandora (don’t you take my Rich Voisine away from me). This is the same genre that gave us anglo tastic pieces like Spring Awakening, Little Shop of Horrors, and The Jazz Singer. Hamilton fits squarely into this genre, so for that reason it’s a great listening choice for an Oreo.

I would enter every room like this if I could.

I would enter every room like this if I could.

On the other hand, Hamilton is mostly made of rap.

But on another hand, Hamilton discusses some nice, dry Waspy dinner conversation topics: the Founding Fathers, the Treasury, best practices in shipping and receiving.

On the other hand, it’s mostly made of rap.

On yet a different hand, Hamilton is a totally hipster hero. He’s angsty, he got wealthy, but was still all bitter about shit. He had a great wife, but also dumb commitment issues. And look at that long curlyish hair. He defs rocked the man bun.

 

"What? You've never had a pickleback? Ugh. Yea, it's small batch craft beer followed by a shot of homemade dill brine. Which you have, right?"

“What? You’ve never had a Pickleback? Ugh. Yea, it’s batch craft beer followed by a shot of small batch homemade dill brine. Which you have, right? No? Whatever, I’ll just have this absinthe.” –Alexander Hamilton

On the other hand, remember how much you loved loved LOVED Rent when it came out and you sat at home with your CD and ripped the book out of the jewel case and learned all the words and cried every time Mimi said “Goodbye Love!” and then you saw it like 15 years later and even though you were super stoked that Adam Pascal touched you on the shoulder when you met him backstage, you were like “this play isn’t as great as I remember and why don’t these folks maybe just get a part-time something at The Container Store or Chipotle or sign up with a temp agency until they can get back on their feet?” Yeah, think about that and the fact that Hamilton is mostly made of rap.

 

It was a special time, Adam, but you know the rules. One and done. We can no longer speak of that glorious day.

It was a special time, Adam, but you know the rules. One and done. We can no longer speak of that glorious day.

 

But Hamilton is also catchy, it’s fun, it’s infectious, and it’s not going anywhere. And since you love showtunes, you have no choice but to listen to it constantly. So an Oreo’s got to figure out a way to listen to it without being all RBP about it.

Because let’s be real a second. –for just a millisecond. Let your guard they’ll see you spit a million beats per second. And that’s gonna change how they see you. No longer will you be a very special unicorn, you’re gonna be just like Leticia over there. With her braids and self-confidence. Hashtag, uncomfortable. So here are a few ways that you can enjoy this moment in musical history, but still keep yourself in good standing as an Oreo.

Alone

Look, we all have those things that we do when no one else is looking. And we’re totally okay with it. You’re not mad that no one sees you cut your toenails by using your other toenails. So there’s no reason not to play dumb at Karaoke and stick to your Carrie Underwood and Disney Princess songs instead of jumping in when the group goes all Guns and Ships on you. When you get back in your car, and far away from they prying eyes of people who know you, you can crank up Ten Duel Commandments in case you need to remember what to do if anyone claims they think you know how to flow.

Via King George or Eliza

There are a few songs in this show that don’t involve rap. If you must quote the show in front of other, do it with these tunes. That Would Be Enough or the many reprisals of You’ll Be Back capture great moments in the show without having to be all ethnic with their wordplay. An untrained ear might even think you’re singing Sondheim or Schwartz. Choose these songs and you won’t feel so embarrassed that you wonder if your hot blushing cheeks will buuuuuuuurrrrrrrrnnnnnnnnnn!

Live

If you can afford the $15,002,389,047,208,093,790 dollar tickets, you are 1%ing the shit out of life right now and have definitely achieved some serious Oreo status. Also, please be my best friend. I don’t love touching, but I’m a bangup pet sitter!

 

Ohmygod, let’s talk about Hamilton! What’s your favorite song? Where were you the first time you heard the show? Do you think it’s cute and just a tiny bit scary the way Lin-Manuel squeezes his elbows into his ribs every time he gets on a roll.

 

Let us know in the comments!

 

 

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For Mor-eo Oreo:

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

What Not To Say When Everyone In The Room Shouts The N Word, Then Suddenly Realizes You’re Also In The Room

Zumba. I love it. Especially on nights like last night.

Zumba is actually tricky for an Oreo. During the dance-style group exercise class, some of the moves can come dangerously close to looking like popping and/or locking. So as a good Oreo, I always try to stiffen up a little on some of the hippier moves so as not to frighten the other dancers or myself.

What I feel like when I work out

And then tonight, something wonderful happened. I don’t know what the song was (Sondheim didn’t write it, so I was at a loss), but everyone else in the room did. As we danced, they sang along and sang along and sang along and then everyone sang the n-word. In unison. Without missing a beat.

I couldn’t have been more thrilled.

Usually, when there’s an RBP in the room, people would shy away from one of the most offensive words in the English language. They’d think twice about loudly shouting a word that has probably gotten people killed.( At the very least, it’s gotten people into debates on Oprah’s couch–which for an Oreo might be a scarier place than the business end of a revolver.) Normally, if an RBP was in a room, people would maybe try to be polite — not out of fear of making a faux pas, but mainly out of some regard for public safety.

But not with me there. It was like they didn’t think I was black at all!!

Unfortunately, as quickly as my happiness was upon me, it disappeared. For mere seconds after they said the word, they caught sight of my reflection in the mirror and no one sang along for the rest of class.

What I probably look like when I workout

My apologies, ladies, for sullying last night’s good vibes. I will work on my layback and hopefully blend in much better next time.

Granted, some of the following did go through my head, but thanks to my Oreo training, they stayed inside and my outside voice never took control.

  • Why do you all know this song???!
  • Why did you include this song in your playlist??!
  • Is there a manager I can talk to?
  • What did he say after the n-bomb? I really can’t understand any of these lyrics.
  • Please don’t vote.
  • Don Sterling called, he’d like his favorite word back.
  • I’m concerned you might not have wrapped your heads around some basic points of everyday etiquette
  • This is a radio song, so you’ve said this like…how many time by now? And it hasn’t occurred to you to maybe… not?
  • This is a huge city on the liberal left coast for fuck’s sake! Get your shit together!
  • Oh yeah? We’ll your momma’s so fat, I”m very concerned for her long term  health.
  • You’re right, it is ~just~ a word after all, you stupid whale cunt.
  • Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never— *sobs*
  • Maybe I should just got to bootcamp. There’s not music in bootcamp.

Any of those responses would have seemed really RBP-like. Sure, the growing ulcer in my stomach might one day take over my entire digestion system. But I’ll look darn good while I’m convalescing. Yay, Zumba!

We’ve all been there. Someone has said something horrible and we’ve wanted to respond. But a response only makes people feel as awkward as you do.  And we’re better than that. What do you not say when someone pisses you off? Let us know in the comments.

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

Diary of a Mad White Black Woman: Fried Chicken Confession

Dear Diary,

I apologize. I am abject. I throw myself on the mercy of the court.

I would never have cooked it if a dear friend hadn’t asked. And I would never have eaten it if it wasn’t so amazeballs delicious… I mean… close to my face… I mean …the only way I could have saved those orphans. Yes! That was it! It was the only way! I swear!

I asked myself after eating if I felt more black. I replied to myself that no, I did not. I only felt ashamed…which is basically the same thing.

There are, however, some times when it’s okay to eat of the chicken… and sometimes I get it right…ish

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Making Friends… Sort of

Not sure that the newest member of my blanchetourage appreciates exactly what he has in this Oreo! (my apologies in advance for what is, apparently, a bootie pop)

Need to grow your blanchetourage (hopefully with better luck than I’m having)? Click here to find out how!

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

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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5 Reasons Being a Straight White Male is NOT the Easiest Game Play Setting

The long skinny ones always look so simple, but they’ll getcha. They always do.
(source)

There’s an article floating around the Intertubes at moment explaining how being a straight, white male (SWM) is essentially playing a video game on the easiest setting. The only video game I ever play is Katamari, so I’ll let the author of the post explain himself, because I’ll just screw up the lexicon.

He starts the article thusly:

I’ve been thinking of a way to explain to straight white men how life works for them, without invoking the dreaded word “privilege,” to which they react like vampires being fed a garlic tart at high noon….So, the challenge: how to get across the ideas bound up in the word “privilege,” in a way that your average straight white man will get, without freaking out about it?

First of all…WOAH! Taking on complicated, nuanced societal topics. Ummm, the Internets are for funny cat videos and re-purposed pictures of Keanu Reeves, thank you very much. The ego of some people using a free, worldwide distribution system to be all blahblahmyopinions! Ugh.

He continues:

Dudes. Imagine life here in the US — or indeed, pretty much anywhere in the Western world — is a massive role playing game, like World of Warcraft except appallingly mundane, where most quests involve the acquisition of money, cell phones and donuts, although not always at the same time. Let’s call it The Real World. You have installed The Real World on your computer and are about to start playing, but first you go to the settings tab to bind your keys, fiddle with your defaults, and choose the difficulty setting for the game. Got it?

Okay: In the role playing game known as The Real World, “Straight White Male” is the lowest difficulty setting there is.

This means that the default behaviors for almost all the non-player characters in the game are easier on you than they would be otherwise. The default barriers for completions of quests are lower. Your leveling-up thresholds come more quickly. You automatically gain entry to some parts of the map that others have to work for. The game is easier to play, automatically, and when you need help, by default it’s easier to get.

Second of all…WOAH! This sounds insane. Why are video games so complicated?! That’s why I like my Katamari. You just push a ball around and pick stuff up with it.

Now, once you’ve selected the “Straight White Male” difficulty setting, you still have to create a character, and how many points you get to start — and how they are apportioned — will make a difference. Initially the computer will tell you how many points you get and how they are divided up. If you start with 25 points, and your dump stat is wealth, well, then you may be kind of screwed. If you start with 250 points and your dump stat is charisma, well, then you’re probably fine. Be aware the computer makes it difficult to start with more than 30 points; people on higher difficulty settings generally start with even fewer than that.

As the game progresses, your goal is to gain points, apportion them wisely, and level up. If you start with fewer points and fewer of them in critical stat categories, or choose poorly regarding the skills you decide to level up on, then the game will still be difficult for you.

Third of all…WOAH!! “dump stat”? Haha! That’s a hilarious sounding thing.*

Fourth of all..WOAH!! This is just wrong! Look, I do everything in my power to escape the cruel joke the universe played on my by injecting me with melanin and making me look like an RBP. But being white is totes tough!! I mean, just look at the very well-reasoned comments at the bottom of that article and you’ll see! Not being a minority comes with some serious baggage.

1. Sunscreen. You have to put that shit on like every time you go out in the sun. Every. Time.

I’ve had one sunburn in my life and yes, I was thrilled that I got to stick my toe in the waters of white life, but that thing stung like crazy! And so much aloe! I had to drop like $4 just to feel better.

I’m not sure how I feel about the fact that you can put this plant’s juice both on your skin and also in your mouth. Seems like it should be one or the other.
(source)

2. Boring interactions with authorities. Imagine this: You get pulled over by a police officer and s/he just asks for your license and registration. Or this: You walk into a high-end store and NO ONE follows you around making sure you don’t steal things (this happened to me at Ralph’s the other week..No offense Ralph’s, but if my RBP takes over and I decide to rip off a store, it’s not gonna be for some fennel and sourdough).

Or this: You’re a kid in school and when you act up, the teacher wonders if you have ADD, talks to your parents and comes up with an action plan and DOESN’T call you a thug.

Where’s the excitement in any of that? While yes, profiling is insulting, annoying and inaccurate, it does make your average minority’s life a touch more exciting. People do expensive things to chase adrenaline rushes all the time. Who needs skydiving when you can get a random gun in your face?

Of course, there’s always extreme ironing.
Yup. that’s a thing.
(source)

3. Dull, predictable hair care and beauty products. Sure, some white people have difficult hair, but you can generally go into any place that sells hair stuff and just buy it. You don’t get the action adventure of traveling to three separate places to find the right combination of products that allows you to actually reposition the hair on your head. And that sucks! We evolved from hunters and gatherers, we crave adventure and scarcity, we want to fight for what’s ours. And being brown forces you into hours-long pursuits to find stuff that works on your scalp and makeup that actually matches your skin.

Sigh. Oh, nude slash flesh-colored Band Aid…one day your name will be true for me. One day.
(source)

4. Not being able to get into college. One of the big comment trends in the above article is about how it’s harder to be white because thanks to Affirmative Action, poor, dumb brown kids are taking the place of deserving white kids at schools.

And that’s totally true. Because when I think of a college campus, I basically picture South Central. Nothing describes the look of a college campus more than “basically a still from The Wire” or “kind of like the set of a Spike Lee joint” or “wait, this is Harvard, I thought  it was Madea goes to Cambridge.”

I mean, goodness, look what Affirmative Action did to the White House.

Once the Ivy League. Now the Izivy Lizzeague.
(source)

5. The boring ol’ benefit of the doubt. When life is too predictable, with no bizarre threats to keep you on your toes,  complacency follows. Then depression and soon you’re writing passive aggressive blog posts and not living up to your potential. Just think how much more exciting it would be if you had odd systemic threats lurking around corners.

Like, you could be Florida’s George Zimmerman who tracked and killed an unarmed kid who was leaving you alone and then ONLY get arrested after everyone in the nation threatened to disappear your state. ORRRR you could be Florida’s Marissa Alexander who DIDN’T kill her terribly abusive ex-husband after he ran after her threatening her life and you could get 20 years in prison!!

C’mon!! Which makes a better facebook update: “still livin’ life, yo” or “holyfuckingfuck!! i’m going to be removed from my children’s life because I tried to protect them against a known abuser, thus making it more likely that since they’ll grown up without parents, they’re more likely to continue the cycle of violence that I was hoping to shield them from!!! hashtag HungerGames.”

#noonelikesaboringhashtag

Even with these burdens, I’m still committed to my Oreo lifestyle. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy not having to worry about the angry angry sun and getting jobs that I’m not qualified for, but if one more person at Zumba says something to me like “You sisters are so lucky–you can do all those moves ‘cuz you’ve got natural booty,” I might go all Marissa Alexander on them.

And Bonus: Slavery totally had TONS of benes that only a certain segment of the population got to take part in. And to think, RBP have the nerve to white about the peculiar institution like it wasn’t kind of baller.

I’m starting with a quick review of the Oreo basics. Won’t you join me?

Not sure you’re using the term “Oreo” correctly? If you’re still reading, you probably are. But click here to double check.

Why go white? Lots of reasons!

Stuck talking to an RBP or someone who thinks you’re one? Remove yourself in 3 easy steps!

What do you think? Is there an easier gameplay setting? Wanna hang out and play some Katamari together? Let us know in the comments!

*Seriously, though, what’s a dump stat?

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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!

Then and Now – Renn Fests, RENT and Sad Ass Rats and Puberty

I’m pretty sure that the first time my parents took me to a Renaissance Festival, they thought I would, like other (read: normal tweens) would find it to be a ridiculous exercise, and demand that we go do something  that other (read: capable of being popular) tweens would like to do like…anything else.

They were wrong.

So so wrong.

What happened instead was that I immediately fell in love and vowed never to leave my corsetted haven again. I had come home and ‘twould be an impossible task to render me from the hearth that had been kept from me so long. And by “impossible…to render” I mean that 12 hours later my folks were super annoyed and it was bloody well time to go.

Every year I think to myself (read: speak aloud to myself much to the chagrin of other [read: normal] people sitting in my office around me): “Okay, we’re gonna go to Renn Fest this year…but the magic’s probably gonna be gone. It might be kinda boring. I’m sure it won’t be as fun as OHMYGODWEGETTOGOTORENNFEST!!!”

Every year I go back to Renn Fest and fall in love all over again.

I have changed…somewhat. Here’s saucy college Oreo Experience and my period-tastic blanchetourage:

What happens in the Queen’s Court stays in the Queen’s Court.

And here’s 2012 Oreo Experience. Still dorky, more understated.

Girls just wanna have fun…and personalized garlands sold to us by a man wearing pointy felt shoes.

And so it was that I spent a lovely day eating huge pieces of meat, lusting after perfectly boned bodices and watching men ram each other with their long poles.

That’s exactly what jousting is. Men. Ramming. Poles
(source)

And I realized that while I loved Renn Fests as much as I did the first time, not everything from childhood holds up so well. Here are some things I loved loved loved as a kids and had very different reactions to later:

RENT (Life is hard for artists)

What I thought when I first saw it: Yes, yes yes!!! Art is important, AIDS is terrible, homophobia is bullshit!!! We all need to WAKE UP and stop letting THE MAN dictate  how we’re supposed to live our lives!!

What I thought when I saw it as an adult: Yes, art is important, AIDS is terrible, homophobia is bullshit. Buuuuuut, how hard is it to just get a part-time job, you know. I know it’s not “ideal” but neither is meatloaf. Doesn’t mean we don’t eat it sometimes….Though I’d still pay $1,500 to sing a duet–any duet–with Adam Pascal. (Seriously, I would pay that. Does anyone know him? Have him email me! Not bad for like a hour of his time, yeah?).

Hell, I’ll even claim my blackness and do Aida if it means I get to do… that.
(source)

Willow (I loved them both, the bushel and the peck)

What I thought when I first saw it: I don’t know what sex is yet, but when I do know what it is, I will want to have it with Madmartigan.


Elora Danan’s real baby daddy?

What I thought when I saw it as an adult: Good on you, Warwick Davis! Way to keep your career going, that’s actually really impressive. Am I racist for wondering if he and Peter Dinklage know each other?

The Neverending Story (Open book, insert boy)

What I thought when I first saw it: Yes, yes yes!!! I want to dedicate my life to reading books in the attic so that I can have awesome adventures. Those eyeball lasers are the scariest! I am in love with Valcor.

What I thought when I saw it as an adult: “You’re letting the sadness of the swamp get to you??!” Who wrote this shit? Also, what the fuck are they standing on if “this is all that’s left of the world”?? How are they breathing? If “that” is all that’s left, then there’s no air, princess. And how exactly does shouting an unintelligible name save anything? Dammit, did we go through this whole bottle??

Crying because she doesn’t know how physics work.
(source)

The Secret of NIMH_(Really tough real estate market for rats)

What I thought when I first saw it: This movie is nothing but beautiful. Also, I’m don’t know what sex is yet, but when I do know what it is, I will want to have it with Justin.

You can call me Ms. Brisby if you’re nasty.
(source)

What I thought when I saw it as an adult: *sobbing* Her poor son..that poor woman. She’s… Her husband never… Their house is just… They come from a lab… *sniffling* Why did I have so many crushes on animals as a kid??

Who Am I Now? (Horrible video my parents thought would explain some of life’s tougher questions)

What I thought when I first saw it: …the fu–??!? Okay, I’m just gonna watch it one more time. Maybe it’ll make sense then.

What I thought when I saw it as an adult: …the fu–??! Ha!! If only I had made this a drinking game back then!!

And if you’re wondering if The Core holds up.. Yes. It does.

What did you watch as a kid that doesn’t make sense now? What stands the test of time? Let us know in the comments!

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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!