Shit Bougie Black People Love: 15. ’90′s Nostalgia

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Aside from Bill Clinton’s penis and Michael Douglas’ penis in movies starring Michael Douglas, nothing had anything good happen to them in the 90s. It was a truly awful decade. The clothes were shitty, everyone started drinking coffee, and everyone cool got shot or got AIDS.

Perhaps you remember this. Bougie Black People, however, do not. Bougie Black People love the 90s more than anyone loves any other decade, easily surpassing White people’s love for both the 1980s and the 1830s.

This love for all things 90s is only matched by their passion for bringing the 90s back. Hence the reason why, if you happen to ask a Bougie Black Person what they’re doing right now, you’re likely to get at least one of the following answers:

1. Taking a quiz to see which Living Single character they are.

2. Taking a quiz to see which Fresh Prince of Bel-Air character they are.

3. Taking a quiz to see which Martin character they are.

4. Planning a 90s nostalgia party.

5. Planning an outfit for a 90s nostalgia party.

6. Thinking about Lark Voorhees.

7. Listening to Mase.

(Read more at Ish Bougie Black People Love)

Shit Bougie Black People Love: 13. Being Racist

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Do not be fooled by their blazers. Or their support of gentrification. Or even their love of Phish. Bougie Black People love being Black. Collectively, they are Blackness mavens, preternaturally obsessed with the concept of Blackness and all it entails.

Naturally, they’re also aware of the rules governing Blackness’ placement in America. Especially the one where, as an extended apology for 400 or so years of systematic oppression, America has given Black people a guilt-free pass to say whatever the hell they want about White people.

If you happen to have a Black parent, a Black uncle, or even a Black high school principal, you’ve surely seen this practice in practice. You likely have fond memories about the first time Uncle Derek told you not to hug any of your White classmates because “White people don’t use washclothes.” (The fact that Uncle Derek had a White wife made this even more confusing.)

Bougie Black People have found loopholes in this rule, realizing that maintaining legitimate friendships with a member of each non-Black group (Whites, Asians, Latinos, etc) gives them a pass to say racist things when they’re not around.

Of course, it’s all just jokes. They don’t really believe that all Indian women are “built like snowmen.” They don’t really think all Mexicans have lice. They don’t really think all White women sound the way they do when they do impersonations of them. And they don’t really want to deport every Chinese man back to “whichever country Chinese people come from.”

Read more at Shit Bougie Black People Love

Defining “Bougie”

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Our I Love Bougie Black Girls Teespring campaign seems to be going pretty well. We’re ahead of schedule with our goal, and the idea behind the shirt seems to be pretty well-received.

(There are only eight days left, btw, so go to Teespring and cop an $11 men’s t-shirt, a $13 women’s tee, or a hoodie.)

But, there has been some confusion about what exactly “Bougie” means in this context. For many Black Americans — especially those from the South — Bougie doesn’t have the most positive connotation. So, to clear things up, here’s a bit of background and detail about my definition.

In Dec of 2011, comedians Kyle Humphrey and Graydon Sheppard joined with actress Juliette Lewis to create “Shit Girls Say”, a short YouTube webseries based off a Twitter account with the same name. The video went viral. By the next month, dozens of imitation videos had been created, including one (“Shit Bougie Black Girls Say”) written and produced by me — and starring a friend of mine — based off of a blog post with the same name.

The video was pretty well-received with over 750,000 views. Through the dozens of emails, calls, and texts I received about it, one theme was continually repeated:

“You were in my head. How did you know what to say?”

My answer was simple. To create “Shit Bougie Black Girls Say” I used my “cheat sheets” — the urban and highly educated Black women I personally knew. Despite the fact that these women hailed everywhere from D.C. to San Diego, so many of them shared enough of the same patterns, idiosyncrasies, and inclinations that they formed their own distinct subculture. It just hadn’t been given a name.

Hello, Bougie.

(Interestingly enough, the Bougie moniker was an accident. I meant to use the most common spelling of that word (“Bourgie”) when creating the video, and mistakenly left the “r” out. This mistake proved to be advantageous. While the difference in spelling is minor, the R-inclusive “Bourgie” are a completely different type of Black people than the ones I’m talking about. “Bourgie” describes a certain upper-middle to lower-upper class lifestyle more dependent on and defined by activities, ancestry, and legacy than actual income. These are the brothas and sistas whose great-grandparents were Alphas and Deltas, whose Jack and Jill cotillion was their prom, and who “summer” places where people who use “summer” as a verb “summer.” Basically, think of Whitley Gilbert.)

While women were the initial focus of this designation, I soon realized that most of the “urban and highly educated” young Black men I knew—myself included—also shared many of the same characteristics, despite a reluctance to actually own up to it. We’d endlessly chide our girlfriends, wives, and homegirls about their irrational love for Thai food, their tendency to intentionally over tip, and even their deification of Olivia Pope. But we scour Groupon for the restaurant with the best Thai chicken satay with the same intensity they would—making certain to leave a 30% tip after dining—and, although most of us won’t admit it, we’re fans of Scandal too.

To an outsider, many of these shared traits may seem superficial. And, considering the fact that most Bougie Black People (BBP) don’t exactly come from legacies of wealth, socially irresponsible. But, closer inspection reveals that they’re largely rooted in a race-conscious pragmatism that allows them to be upwardly mobile while still staying connected to “regular” Black folks.

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

Bougie Black Pick-Up Lines

"You've been Black Girl Running in my mind all night long."

“You’ve been Black Girl Running in my mind all night long.”

Today is Valentine’s Day, a day which likely means one of six things to you:

1. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2. Absolutely nothing.

3. Absolutely nothing, but since you have a girlfriend/wife who’s all !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! about it, you pretend enough for one exclamation point.

4. Subdued happiness. Maybe Valentine’s Day isn’t your favorite day, but it’s cool. And it’s the one day you get to wear red pants without people thinking you’re Dominican.

5. Anxiety. You’re in a new situationship, and what happens today will determine the health and direction of it.

6. Sadness. Long, lonely, lecherous, getting to the McDonald’s drive-thru a minute after they’ve stopped serving Egg McMuffins, type sadness.

If you’re one of the first four, today’s post isn’t for you.

If you’re #5, let me give you some unsolicited advice. You know what day comes after Valentine’s Day? Saturday. Which, like Valentine’s Day, is just another day. Repeat after me: Just another day.

If you’re number #6, listen up. I don’t believe in pep talks. Shit, some days I don’t even believe in talking. I do believe in practical advice, though. And since you’re not currently in a relationship, I’m going to help you find one. Well, maybe you won’t find one.

But (piggybacking off #activistpickuplines), if you happen to be out today, and you see someone you’re interested in, and you suspect this someone is a Bougie Black Person, here are a few things you can say that’ll help your luck.

1. “Let me stamp that passport.”

2. “Did you get those jeans from Target? Cause there’s a bullseye on dat ass.”

3. “Do you like Thai food?”

“Yes. Why?”

“Cause I’m gonna Thai dat ass up.”

4. “Damn, girl. I’d like to Jack your Jill.”

5. “The only Foreign Exchange we’ll need is my ass on your face.”

6. “The gallery crawl in my pants is free all night long.”

7. “You know what NSBE stands for, right?”

“What?”

“N*ggas Sexin Bitches’ Ears.”

8. “I bet you love leaving big tips, don’t you?”

9. “Eight inches is the only number I’m trying to keep down.”

10. “It’s a Different World from where I come from. And in my bedroom.”

11. “I know you’re natural, girl, but come here and lemme relax you.”

12. “I’m gonna displace those panties. Call me the gentrifier.”

13.”The only gladiator I know is being glad I ate her.”

14. “Why don’t you and your friend come over, and we can have an all-night Groupon.”

15. “Is that a gluten-free lettuce wrap in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?”

16. “You remind me of my Naked Juice. Cause I want to substitute you for a meal.”

Did I forget any?

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

Shit Bougie Black People Love: #12 Gentrification

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If you ever ask a Bougie Black Person to explain his feelings about gentrification, he will pause, start to speak, pause again, and exhale before saying anything. He may even add a prolonged sigh. And, if lucky, you might even see him roll his sweater sleeves up and put his thumb to his chin.

This will give you the impression that the BBP is carefully choosing his words. Which he is. This subject obviously causes him much ambivalence and consternation. It may have even given him acid reflux. After all, while the BBP may be successful, he’s not very far removed from regular Blacks. A few of his cousins are still in the hood. As well as his barbershop. Naturally, he wants to make certain he answers this question with as much nuance as possible.

He’ll use words like “well” and “actually” and “white motherfuckers.” He may also use words like “displacement” and “Starbucks” and “property tax.” And, although he’s only been to Brooklyn once — and learned much of what he knows about Brooklyn when Mos Def was on Bill Maher — he’ll make sure to use Brooklyn as an example of the ills of gentrification. He may even say something about how they’re “tearing down basketball courts” to “make room for bike lanes and places you buy yoga pants and shit” and he’ll say this with disdain.

Then he’ll say “But…”

And then the truth will come out. He’ll admit gentrification has some benefits. He’ll mention a specific neighborhood, and he’ll talk about how the Whole Foods he buys his crustless quiche and couscous from was a crackhouse seven years ago. It wasn’t, of course. No one needs 20,000 square feet of space to do crack. But he’ll say it.

(read more at Shit Bougie Black People Love)