February 20, 2013

How I Fare Against Various Black Stereotypes

Report This Article
What is the issue?
How I Fare Against Black Stereotypes
I Google’d “black people stereotypes” to see a) what results came up and b) how many of them apply to me. The following are the stereotypes most commonly associated with black people (according to search results), and a lighthearted, brief description of my experience with each one.

The Ability To Dance

Sometimes it’s assumed that black dudes have skills on the dance floor or, at the very least, a decent amount of rhythm. It was clear to me from an early age that I was born without the luxury of a rhythm recognition component installed in my body. When episodes of Barney and Friends or Lamb Chop’s Play-Along would feature singing that inspired some kids to enthusiastically clap along or even rise up and do a jig, I turned into that bratty kid who was like, “Barney is lame, you guys need to grow up. I’m out — gonna go play with my Ninja Turtles.”

It’s a stereotype that I’m very disappointed to be unable to fulfill. These general expectations of black folks on the dance floor give me all the more reason to stick to Basic Head Nodding 101, as to not disappoint onlookers/embarrass my friends. The only time I’ve ever cut a rug was when I helped a friend install tile — other than that, I’m a novice. If you guys want a visual, I have the dance moves of Ellen DeGeneres — which are amazing and fantastic for Ellen, but the majority of the club isn’t impressed by a young brotha playfully dancing in crowds and over tables.

Always Late

I’d actually like to plead guilty to these accusations, when is the court date? February 20th at 9:00 AM? Great, I’ll be there ‘bout 9:47.

Stealing

In one instance when I was a teenager, I carried a pack of gum around the grocery store and, entirely by accident, forgot I had it. Eventually I exited without paying, completely oblivious to my chewing gum heist. When I got to the parking lot I realized what I’d done, so I brought it back inside to pay. Could’ve gotten away scot-free, but I returned it. No, doing the right thing isn’t worthy of recognition or an award, but that definitely snips the link between that stereotype and myself… although I just remembered I may have taken part in the occasional movie hop circa 2005-2007. And I do download things sometimes but who doesn’t, right? RIGHT?? Hmm… Yeah, upon further review the ruling on the field stands, I’m not a thief.

Rapping/Singing

Unfortunately when talking during casual conversations, I speak slowly, which leads me to believe that I wouldn’t be able to spit hot fire, so much as I’d drool lukewarm lighter fluid. It’s just hard to enunciate and be a successful rapper — not impossible, but it requires more effort than I’m willing to put in. Countless times people have played instrumental beats and encouraged me to attempt a flow, and what comes out is not your traditional, speedy, tongue twister type rhymes. Imagine Cleveland from Family Guy doing his best Eminem or Busta Rhymes impression and you’ve got me.

Basketball Skills

The only time I dunked was with the aid of a father-lifting-child-by-the-waist type boost. I don’t dribble like an And 1 street baller and I can’t perform any of the flashy, acrobatic moves that are often associated with black players. I like bounce passes and shooting set three pointers, which are moves stereotypically linked to white players.

Watermelon

Hate it. Hated it as a kid, tried it again years later — still hated it. However, watermelon flavored things are always the best.

Fried Chicken

Love it. If you don’t want to fit a stereotype, give me all of your fried chicken and I’ll gladly eat it for you.

Vote For Obama Because He’s Black

Meh, I won’t go into my personal political views or voting choices but at this point I feel like all of the ignorant fools who vote for Obama strictly based on his being black are balanced out by all of the ignorant fools who vote against Obama for that same reason.

Lazy

I’ve never been that because I’ve consistently had a job since I was old enough to be employed. Albeit I was a job slut who worked the same three types of jobs at like, 13 different places in a span of 5 years. But I’m totally against job-slut-shaming. It doesn’t matter where you wash the dishes, bag the groceries or answer the same, repetitive phone calls — it matters how you do it… Or something. TC Mark

image – Shutterstock
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 68,971 other followers