Thursday, May 28, 2009

You Made Me Go There: Why Tracy Morgan is Bad for the Image of Black People


Some dude wrote this opinion on the Blackplanet news website (PAUSE: not like I got an account (I check) or anything):

Foes of Morgan’s portrayal might be quick to suggest that in the age of Obama, negative Black images aren’t really helping. These foes would also probably be missing just how much skill and timing are necessary to aptly feign ineptness as effortlessly as Morgan seemingly does.

He goes on to say that we should only be mad if Tracy doesn’t win an emmy.

Here’s the deal: I’m not even really mad at Tracy, because the fact is this dude’s got serious problems under his belt (see my previous post about Jay Mohr’s impression of him… and how homie was smoking dippers like it was nothing). I wish people would address the reason why Tracy is so funny is because he’s inappropriate, which is a result of him being high. We just laugh and watch as he puts himself at risk of becoming another comedian who loses their life to alchol and drug abuse.

Beyond knocking the “secretly intelligent humor” defense out the box, there’s the other important fact that everyone conveniently overlooks time and again: SATIRE DOESN’T WORK. Ask Dave Chappelle. Ask the creators of All In The Family, who satirically characterized the father as a racist to point out how stupid his beliefs were, but a study later revealed that people rarely got the hint. A more recent study of The Colbert Report again illustrates that people don't get the subtle humor of satire - conservatives actually believe Colbert is truthfully expressing his opinion.

As much as people would like to suggest that satire is actually subtle and intelligent commentary and critism of the world of around us, the fact is people are dumb, they don’t get it, and it doesn’t work. Tracey already (technically) got a Golden Globe, lets save the Emmy for after he sobers up and starts putting some real talent behind his act.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Korean Gospel Group Proves that Asians Are in Fact Great at Everything

Seriously. They were getting it in a major way. Had the ad-libs down and everything.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Who will "save" BET?


So here is my question of the day: what do you think is the cultural responsibility of black people towards BET? I know we always say that BET should be doing better to represent black people, but how many black people do you know who watch BET anyway? There seems to be a sense of pride amongst “educated” black people to shun BET, but then how are we supposed to improve the network if we ourselves won’t watch it?

Allow me to back track – so I follow the CW TV show The Game on twitter, and recently they tweeted the following:

The CW is a Network like NBC, CBS, & ABC. We want it to stay on The CW. BET is not a viable option at this point as it would be a step back.

Now I couldn’t do the ratings math, but from what I understand, outside of their reality programming CW isn’t that successful. I mean, Gossip Girl is a pop culture phenomenon, but not necessarily a ratings boon for CW as they would hope.

I know I've come down on BET before, but would moving to BET be the worse stigma in the world for The Game? I’m willing to bet people like Diddy and Rev Run DID NOT want their shows on BET, not only given the network’s poor reputation amongst the black upper class, but also because it wouldn’t help them “cross over” which is every famous black person’s dream.

But what about helping BET cross over? If we don’t provide programming for our black network, who will? Couldn’t Diddy have “taken one for the team” and put a show on BET in the hopes that it would attract some of his non-black fans and eventually help BET “cross over” into a network that happens to feature black people more so than others, but anyone could watch? Wouldn’t that be more of a racialWIN than all black people trying to fight tooth and nail to get their two cents accepted by the majority networks/institutions/establishments?

It kind of reminds me how the Civil Rights movement helped end segregation (yay!) but consequently also helped shutter a lot of black owned businesses (boo!). Isn’t this just another case of “white is right"? Or is BET just a network for the black "lower class", in which case upper class snobs should butt out and let the people enjoy their tv?

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Rules For When a White Person Can Say "Nigga"


Yesterday I had some serious LOLPEEING at Jay Mohr's impression of Tracy Morgan.

"I miss my daughter with the doo doo pamper." Hilarious.

Striking though, was that Jay Mohr said the word nigga. Like twice or something. And I wasn't even offended. Thus, I felt it necessary to point out why it worked when he said it, and similar rules for when my caucasian brethren can say nigga.

**NOTE** I'm not about to get into a debate about whether or not it's appropriate to ever use the word. So if you want that battle, you should check iwanttoarguetheneverendingarguement.com.

Moving on.

Many white people have bemoaned the fact they can't say nigga. Let me put it to you like this: you have a fat sister. You tell your sister she's fat. That's ok. I call your sister fat. You threaten to kick my ass. See the difference?

I can say nigga because I'm black. I'm in the family. You can't say nigga cause you're not black. You're not in the family.

However, there arises a few stray ocassions when you the white person can in fact say nigga. Here's how to pull off those situations with grace and class.

1. Repeating what someone (preferably black) said, excluding rap lyrics... most people look stupid repeating rap lyrics, but you will look especially dumb if you're yelling "ain't no nigga like the one I got" ridding down the pacific coast highway, blonde hair blowing.

2. If you're going to use it, don't sound fearful, say the word with confidence. When you sound scared, you know you're wrong for saying it.

3. Also, don’t sound cocky, like you say it all the time. Your usage should be a firm yet unfamiliar handshake.

4. Never EVER pronouce it as niggER.

5. You can only say it 3 times, before you approach excessive use, and someone thinks you're enjoying it too much.

6. Don’t assume that one successful usage means universal access. It is the lunar eclipse of conversation, use it wisely.



Monday, May 11, 2009

I Am Not... My Facebook Album



The other day, an embarrassing picture of me showed up on Facebook. I’m not so vain to believe every picture of me on Facebook has to be completely flawless, but in this case the photo had a shot of my crotch and I’m very particular about my goodies (not my goodies!).

So I had to tell this friend to take the picture down. And part of me felt shitty for being bossy about what photos I wanted up of me, but on the other hand, it was my crotch. Shouldn't we all be a bit choosier about the pics we share online?

One one hand, I'm all about freedom of speech. You want to dedicate a photo album to portraits of you hugging a toilet bowl, knock your socks off. But on the other, we all know a picture speaks a thousand words, and in this infinite and immortal internet universe, what you post on your Facebook can easily be taken out of context for an eternity.

Like the time I was engaged. My fiancĂ© was gay, and we made sure that the picture for our engagement announcement was one in which he was sitting in my lap. Clearly this was a joke. Anyone who knew us, and our humor, got that. But then my parents starting fielding phone calls congratulating them on my engagement. When they asked me to take it down, I realized how much is lost in translation online when you’re “friends” with virtual strangers.

Then one day, in a moment of Facebook conviction/annoyance/paranoia, I started going through my 300 plus pictures and 8 albums. My drunken birthday party revelries and affinity for giving people the finger were starting to cast a one-dimensional image of a drunken bad mouthed party girl. In my pursuit of “being fun”, I kinda was looking a little drunk and reckless too.

So after much deliberation, I took them down. Without pomp or circumstance half of my internet life was deleted. At first I felt some type of way. I mean, without all my pictures, how would people know what kind of person I am? And what would they think of me? Not enough photos on Facebook felt a lot like being the only kid without LA Gears.

But then I remember – oh yea. You can always meet me. Have an actual human to human interaction, then judge for yourself. I am not my Facebook photo album. I am a real person.

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