Apr 262009
 

PiggyI like being an adult better than I liked being a child. When I was little, I couldn’t choose what happened to me, where I lived, what was for dinner or other things. As an adult, my life in my choosing. I live where I want to live, eat what I want to eat and go where I want to go. Right now, I’m a writer living in New York City because that’s what I want to do. And, one of the perks of the freelance writing life is this: I can write about whatever the hell I want to write about. Stick with me. This is going somewhere. Okay, so, rewind. Years before I switched careers, I lived in the Netherlands and worked an office job. Random fact: When you’re hanging out in Holland and speaking Dutch on a regular basis, you learn new Dutch phrases for which you never had an English equivalent. For example, even now, when people talk about food borne illness, it reminds me of “mond en klauwzeer” (not “foot and mouth disease“) because it broke out while I was in Europe and I had to research it. That bored me. I don’t find sick farm animals entirely stimulating, and I hated that I had to do work that required I find out about mond en klauwzeer even though it didn’t interest me simply because it was my job.

Swine flu. Again, I’m not particularly interested in sickly moo-moos and oink-oinks. BUT … We already know animals contract STDs / STIs. And, of course, we know people have sex with animals. So, the only way I’ll write about swine flu is if I choose to do it because: (1) I — or someone I know — gets it or (2) people start fucking pigs with it and their genitals fall off from a rare and unknown sexually transmitted infection. I think THAT would be in interesting read. I like writing things that people consider “an interesting read.” It makes me happy. So, I guess that was a totally random post with a larger message: Live the life you want to live and do what you want to do. Heeeeeeey, I should title this post “Bestiality, Swine Flu and You.” ;)

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Photo credit: image by Steve Woods.

Apr 222009
 

THANK YOU to my favorite people and friends at YourTango for the shout out here and here about my How to Date a Black Woman post. It created a little buzz over on Yahoo’s front pages about relationships and other lifestyle-related stuff. So, if you liked the post, please vote it up. Today, I’m doing a bit of reporting for an upcoming article I hope to pitch to Slate. (It’s not about dating; it’s about politics.) Also, soon, I hope to file my latest piece for my regular spot at Huffington Post. More details soon.

In the meantime, because I’m researching and writing my ass off for pieces to be submitted to other media outlets [ ... and trying to figure about what's going on with my fucking comments section. Switched back to the old system until I get it figured out ...], I don’t have a full Funky Brown Chick post for you today. Keeping with the recent “interracial dating” themed items from the past few days, I thought I’d do a “roundup” of a few posts I’ve written about the topic:

  • Manly Mondays — my weekly celebrations of all things MANLY — includes black, Asian, latino, international and [gasp, gasp] white dudes.
  • The post where I remind you that “interracial” doesn’t always mean “black” and “white.” What about our lovely Asian men?
  • Remember black men love good-looking white guys who like brown sugar.
  • Oooh, ooh, ooh and let’s not forget the one about assumptions people make about white men who marry black women.
Apr 202009
 

Cupid

Whenever men who aren’t black ask me, “What’s it like to date a black woman?” I respond by joking, “I wouldn’t know. I’ve never dated one. Ask a lesbian.” ;) For the curious among you … Voila! Finally, the wait is over: a list of DOs and DON’Ts, your  5 Tips for Picking Up Black Women:

DO make it simple. If you’ve never dated a black woman before and you’d like to ask someone out, simply say something like: “Hey, are you free on Friday? Maybe we could be grab coffee or drinks or something?” Yep, my sweeties, it’s that easy. If you still need help, watch VideoJug’s How to Ask a Woman Out on A Date.

DON’T overcompensate. Rattling off endorsements like “I’ve always luuuuuved looking at black women” or “Black women have more flava” will only make you look like an ass. On a related note, under absolutely NO circumstances should you bust out in a spontaneous freestyle rap to prove how “down” you are. [le sigh ... if I had a dollar for every time ... ]

DO be truthful. Should the topic come up, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with saying, “I’ve never been on a date with a black woman before because ___.” Chances are pretty good your date will respect your honesty. By the way, on a related note, don’t lie. No one likes to be led on. So, if you don’t really want to DATE a black woman but you’d just like to FUCK one, there are plenty of places and opportunities to do that. Place a Craigslist ad. Look into raceplay communities.

DO have an open mind. People are such unique and interesting creatures. We all come from different ethnicities, economic classes, educational backgrounds, religions (or not) and regions of the globe. And, of course, we’re all raised by totally different, crazy families. As a result, we each have very specific ideas about how the world works. When dating anyone, regardless of background, be prepared to brush up against ideas that may or may not run counter to your beliefs. In that case, resist the urge to think your way is automatically “right” and theirs is “different” (read: “wrong”). You might learn something new.

DO treat your date like a DATE. Duh, right? As a general rule of thumb, ask yourself: When someone goes on a date with you, who do they expect to show up? Tip: If you answered “you” instead of “your ethnicity” you’re right. I could be completely loony and totally off base with this, but I think most people want to be cherished / loved / cared for / desired / etc. for who THEY are. So, it’s kind of impossible for me to provide an exhaustive list of what works for every black woman because each of us is very different. YOUR date will have her own unique interests, likes, dislikes, values and expectations. Spend a little time getting to know her. Act like it’s a, you know, DATE. ;)

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Photo credit: Image appears on Interracial Cupid

Apr 142009
 

Before I sat down to write the “How to Date Black Chicks” post, I scanned through new(ish) comments left on old(er) posts. SIDE NOTE: I’ve considered removing the date and timestamps from all my posts because the conversation often continues days, weeks or even years after I publish them. This, of course, is welcome. I read all comments — regardless when they’re left. Anyway, so, in January of this year, I wrote a post called “Is Marriage Worth It? I Say No.” Today, I read this new comment by a guy named Greg:

I returned this evening from dinner with a good friend. We are both in unsatisfying marriages and asked ourselves the same question. Amazing that I literally stumbled into your post after returning home.

I didn’t come up with a good answer when talking it over with my friend. I doubt I could come up with one now. All I know is that I have the choice to end it but, for some reason, I stay.

Perhaps the reason why has something to do with my parents’ marriage. For most of their 40-some years together, my parents cobbled together a relationship fractured by bitter fights, alcohol, financial troubles, infidelity and more. Some of those years, they barely spoke to each other. When they did, they occasionally discussed ending their marriage. But, they didn’t.

As life went on, they began to mellow. The struggles of all those years seemed to smooth their rough, unformed edges and polish their souls. In the end, they seemed to see something of the best of each other reflected back. It wasn’t passion so much as it was truth — the truth that, no matter how ugly things can get in a human life, the capacity to forgive and be forgiven will eventually bring out things far more beautiful than we imagine possible within ourselves. They were devoted to each other in those final years.

My parents passed away within 6 months of each other. My father was first to receive a diagnosis of terminal cancer. Distraught, my mother preceded him in death by dying suddenly four weeks after they were informed of his condition.

Were the last years of their life together worth the hard decades that preceded them? Could they have been happier if they had made different choices, perhaps avoiding marriage altogether? Could they have made something more of their lives? Perhaps. But the same could be said of any life. As one singer noted, “a thousand futures pass away with every choice we make.”

Instead, they stared down the stark consequences of the choice they made and the individuals they were. And, step by bitter step, they fought, forgave and forged on until, perhaps not even expecting it themselves, they became the people they aspired to be from the start — beautiful in each other’s eyes.

I don’t know if the same will happen in my marriage. The dynamic is different. We’re different people. Hanging around funky brown chicks may do wonders for me. My wife would probably see it differently.

Still, thanks for the question! And, thanks for a great blog filled with honesty and openness. I stumbled on you in a Twitter trend on as I fooling around with a new cell phone. One thing led to another…

Absolutely. Beautiful.

People who know me well know I’ve had waaaay too many hurtful experiences to pretend the world is perfect and/or relationships are always pretty. So, I’m usually drawn to the brutally honest, really deep and incredibly touching things some of you share about your personal lives. I know a lot of you disagree with some of the stuff I say (i.e. my ideas about marriage & kids … oh, and, yeah, I figured some readers would find yesterday’s How to Date a White Guy post a bit less “funny” than others) — but I’m okay with that. The world’s most interesting when people respectfully disagree.

I’ve said it too many times to count, but the comments section is one of my favorite things about this site. So, whatever, just a quick message to say THANK YOU for reading and sometimes commenting. File this one under Reader Appreciation.