“greens, please” the vsb guide to questions random whites probably shouldn’t ask
flashback to the late 80’s:
an adolescence champ and his parents are at the harambee, an annual summer street festival in homewood. (for those unfamiliar with the burgh, homewood is basically pittsburgh’s version of compton, right down to the topography and the fascination with the color blue. there even seems to be a disproportionate about of cats there named “kane”) as we’re walking around, browsing african art and teasing ugly babies, an excessively earnest 40-something white woman approaches us. the young champ was initially taken aback by the fact that the excessively earnest white woman was dressed as if she was out hunting dinosaurs…
…too young to realize that this is usually how excessively earnest 40-something white women dress in the summertime.
anyway, the velociraptor gatherer eventually nears, extends her hand, and introduces herself. then, out of nowhere, she reveals her devious plot:
“hey“ she asks with enough sincerity to drown a mule, “do you all happen to know where i can buy some greens?”
being that america has supposedly entered this era of transcendentally post-racial (ha!) elephant walking, i’ve decided to devote a day to help our much, much lighter brothers and sisters out so that we can all happily join the mulatto making orgy.
you see, there still remains quite a few things that many non-blacks are unaware of, things that could possibly create unwanted friction and throat-punches at a time when we’re supposed to be coming together. today, we’ll examine the most prominent of these things, the questions you’re probably not supposed to randomly ask a black person under any circumstances.
i’ve included the “randomly” qualifier because context matters.
for instance, asking a cordial black co-worker about the history and current relevance of hbcu’s while you’re sipping frappachinos and shooting the sh*t in the break room? good!
seeing a grambling sweatshirt rocking black chick at the bus stop, and asking her if the food they feed you at black colleges makes your booty grow? bad!
basically, if you’re the lone white at an excessively hot and potentially violent inner-city arts festival, its probably not the best idea to approach a middle-aged black couple and their pre-teen son to ask them how to quickly procure greens, black-eyed peas, weed, chitterlings, or any other soulfood, because it’ll probably make them wonder (to quote my dad) “why, out of all the thousands of people there, did she pick us to ask about greens?? i mean, were we the greasiest, green-eatingest looking n*ggas there or something? sh*t, its not like they don’t sell greens at giant eagle!!“, and you don’t want black people thinking that you think they’re greasy, green-eatingest looking n*ggas.
so, good people of vsb, to insure that no “greens” questions ever happen again, lets all give all of our white brethren a chance to join into the country-wide multicultural coitus by making a list of all the questions that you’d probably be better off googling instead of actually asking a random black person.