How To Be Friends With People With Kids

I’ve had a kid for about 4 and a half years now. I remember when I first got my kid. She was all bright and shiny and fun. And she’s only gotten funner since. I mean this thing is a little person with opinions and causes and a fashion sense. She’s a people. It’s amazing.

For instance, in the car with my nephew, my mother, and my daughtephotor a few weeks back….as I tickled her feet to the point where she couldn’t handle it anymore, she yelled out, “stop it daddy, don’t turn me into your art!”

*dead*

I don’t even know what that means or meant.

*dead*

Well, having a kid is aces. Especially because you learn a lot about other people when you have kids. It is through this knowledge that I’ve ascertained since the stork dropped off my bundle of joy that there are two types of people in the world: 1) people that “get” and love kids; and 2) people that don’t “get” the big damn deal about kids at all.

The people that get kids are an easy bunch when you have kids. They want you to bring the kid with you at all times and know how to have grown up fun while kids around. They put the Henny down first, then play with the kids. They understand that your life revolves around the child so when you can’t be somewhere, they get it. They’re not disappointed…they know you’ll be where you can when you can be there.

The people who don’t get kids…this lot rightchea my nword? Well let’s back up…its not that they don’t get kids. They were once kids. They remember those days of carefree life. It’s just that they don’t “get” the whole kids thing while trying to live a wild and carefree life. Which is fine and makes total sense. For a lot of people, kids are this nebulous concept. For most of us, the reality of kids in our adult lives doesn’t come into play until that first friend has one and…

…disappears. Babies (and kids) become friend zappers and sh*t. But since that person disappeared, you just don’t factor them into as much anyway. So they’re your homey for life but your circle changes and you keep on keepin’ on with the folks that are still there. It’s like when Doughboy walked away from Tre in Boyz In The Hood. Except there’s no subtitle that says “Doughboy was murdered two weeks later.”

But like with anything, there are times when folks want to hang with all of their friends, and the kid becomes an inconvenience. The crew is trying to take a 2-week vacation to Mongolia. “I mean…your kid will be alright! It’s got a momma. It’s only 2 weeks, bruh! What your kid won’t be okay without you for 2 weeks?” So when you say, “but I won’t be okay without my kid for that long”…or “naw homes…kids got a schedule and I need to keep it” etc…they get the screw-face. Or when you go to events and there are zero other munchkins around and folks try to keep the convo appropriate for little ears until the first lewd comment happens and everybody realizes the kid didn’t explode, then the mouths get free – which is when all parents leave. Mind you, I get it. I was once a person without a kid who endured a person with a kid and was like…”i don’t get it…but I love your kid because you’re my brother so let’s go to the playground.”

Well, because I looooooooooooove you, here’s a few quick lessons for those in the latter group (the ones who don’t “get” the whole kid thing) who are wondering how to still be friends with their friends with kids.

1. Realize that all partying doesn’t happen at night, so hang during the day

Folks with kids tend to not just use sleep to refuel, they enjoy it. But more importantly, you can’t bring a kid to a club at midnight. For one, its frowned upon. It really is. Two, most clubs and places tend to be 21-and-up, or at least 18-and-up…that makes it difficult to bring the 4-year-old. Fake IDs work, but not all the time. So lunch instead of late dinners is the way to go.

In that vein….

2. Know that hanging with people with kids can be the cheapest partying you’ll ever do

Kids aren’t cheap. My kid has tastes already. ACTUAL TASTES. Plus, between school, piano, tennis, dance, cheerleading, etc…my kid is running our pockets. So what this means is that parents become the kings and queens of the cheap but entertaining date. Seriously, have you ANY idea how much fun a free ass fountain is? A fountain. Kids play in them for hours while you can sit and talk. Dude…hours. For real. Plus its outside. There will be other kids. Point is…it requires no real planning short of a time and a locale, no dressing up, nothing more than just chillin…and you can get exercise on those long walks that kids seem to love to take.

3. People with kids are extremely understanding about your time and events, so there’s no pressure

I’ve heard folks tell me – true story – that they wanted to hang but they only had a little bit of time because they had other things to do. My response, “that’s cool…do you homes. If you can’t make it or we need to reschedule…no prob.” Of course, if you’re ALWAYS flaking thats a problem, but folks with kids understand changes of plans. So if we’re all hanging and you need to go bounce to go have some body take jello shots off you, we got it…go have fun. We’ll catch up for tiddlywinks some other time.

4. If you know the event is a ratchet-in-wait, its okay not to invite me to your BBQ/event/whatever, I promise I won’t mind…I understand (see #3)

That whole “once the first lewd comment flies it becomes a free-for-all” is very real and has happened a few times. I only attended because I was told to come through and that it would be cool. Granted, it wasn’t a bad idea to go, just having A child around a bunch of childless or childless-for-the-day people is usually more of an inconvenience for them than it is us. So its just easier to do a quick drop by or for us to catch up at another time so my kid doesn’t have to listen to Ace Hood and you all can talk about penises.

Those are 4 tips. Mind you, these only apply to people with common sense and those with kids who aren’t really focused on the life they are missing because of their child…those folks give zero f*cks and will bring their kid to the Lil Wayne/2 Chainz/TI concert and ask Lil Wayne to babysit while they party.

These tips are clearly not exhaustive. What others are there? What group do you fall into? Is there another group of people?

Kids these days…

-VSB P aka THE ARSONIST aka lower.case.p aka GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIRL HE A 3

 

Wanna Be A “Good” Guy? Assume Women Are Liars

"Hmm. Does it count against my number if he can only climax while sleep?"

“I rocked my American Apparel unmentionables for this?”

A couple months ago, a friend of mine (“Jack”) shared a story where he ended up sleeping with someone he knew he shouldn’t have slept with. The woman (“Jane”) had been a close platonic (Ha!) friend of his for several years. They shared dating war stories, knew each other’s families, and even occasionally attended church together.

But, one night a few months ago, a “let’s hit this happy hour after work” text turned into “eh, this happy hour is wack, do you still have that bottle of honey jack from the last game night” leading to “i’m too f*cked up to drive home, do you mind if I crash on your couch?” andeventually ending at “do you have any condoms?”

After breaking the seal, they’ve had sex at least once a week for the last three or four months. Apparently, she had feelings for him for some time. And, although she knows the feelings aren’t reciprocated—a fact he made very blunt after they slept together the first time so she wouldn’t get “the wrong idea”—she swears she’s perfectly fine with the arrangement. They’re still cool, they still share dating war stories, and they still (occasionally) go to church together. Only difference now is that he knows that, if the spirit moves him and he wants to get some ass, he can go over there at any time. And, not only has he hit her up after going on dates with other women, he’s gone over to her place before dates as well.

I imagine that most people reading this story have come to the conclusion that Jack is a major douchebag. Even those who might envy what he’s been able to do probably still think it takes a special grade of douche to sleep with a woman (a friend!) who has feelings for you even though you know they’re unrequited, and an even specialer, enhanced grade of douche—douche crack, I guess—to openly and brazenly date other women in her presence.

But, believing Jack is a limited-edition douche means that you’ve made another assumption—an assumption many of us also make even if we don’t want to make it and don’t realize we’ve made it:

Jane is a liar.

Our perception of Jack’s douchiness directly correlates to Jane’s feelings. We know Jane has feelings for Jack, so even though she swears she’s a-ok with being his f*ck buddy, we know she’s lying. She can’t possibly be telling the truth. There’s no way the satisfaction she gets from being a 3am on a Wednesday night booty call of a person she wants to be with is worth the shame of being a 3am on a Wednesday booty call of a person she wants to be with.

And, why are we so sure that she’s not being honest with herself? Well, she’s a woman, and, well, she’s a woman, and since she’s a woman, she’s not telling the truth cause that’s not how women “think” and “feel” about sex.

Now, if we believed Jane was being completely honest, Jack wouldn’t be seen as a douche, and this would just be a story about two adults who’ve decided to have some fun with each other in a mutually agreed upon and mutually beneficial way. But, since Jane is a woman—and since both socialization and experience has taught us that she’s probably not being honest with her feelings—the socially palatable (read: good) way for him to have dealt with this situation is to assume that Jane’s gender makes her completely unable to be honest about stuff like this. Basically, the only way for Jack to avoid being considered a douche is to assume Jane—and any other woman who’d say “I’m cool” in a similar situation—isn’t really a-ok with the arrangement, and not sleep with her. Basically, to be a “good” guy, sometimes you need to assume that women are liars.

I can imagine that many of you don’t think this is a fair assessment. Shit, I said it and I still don’t. But, it’s only unfair because, out of me, you, Jack, and Jane, Jack is the only one we know is telling the truth.

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

And You Say She’s Just A Friend.

If you do this, you are wrong. Stop it. And get some color.

Here’s a simple question for the single masses: if you happened to get into a committed relationship tomorrow, exactly how many people would you have to stop talking to outright because your relationships could be deemed inappropriate?

Take your time. Think on it.

*humming Curtis Mayfield’s “The Makings Of You”*

If I did an actual honest assessment of most of my opposite sex relationships, then there’s a good chance I’d need to drop kick a solid 98 percent of my female friends to the curb. Ya know, should I get into a relationship.

Here’s an even more interesting piece: I don’t even know how half of those relationships got to the inappropriate phase. Or if they’re even really inappropriate. Most of them would probably just bother anybody that I’d be dating. It’s no like all of my friendships are filled with sexting and slumber parties that involve naked twister. In fact, most of them are chock full of conversations that are relevant to life and dating. It’s just that every so often, they can veer into questionable and head right down into “make the preacher blush” territory.

And I think that 99 percent of functioning, datable men have this same problem. Hell, I’ll bet that even men in relationships have this conundrum. Because from what I’ve learned, most women aren’t really that concerned with making an off the cuff remark on occasion. And there aren’t many dudes who are going to check that kind of behavior because…well…why? It doesn’t happen frequently and he doesn’t plan on digging deeper into its origins or meanings so…live and let live.

Here’s another thing to wonder about: I’m almost sure that women would be on a seek and destroy mission when it came to those relationships they didn’t feel were appropriate now that their man has a woman. But I can’t honestly ever remember caring really that my girls had single male friends. Maybe its the assumption that all men are dogs and need to have the temptation removed for them. Kind of like the idea that women don’t trust other women when its the man’s actions that would be the problem. Twiddle dee dum.

And maybe its the idea that men are so self-centered that we’d never really suspect our women of stepping out on us anyway, so it doesn’t matter. I’m not much of a jealous guy anyway so maybe I’m projecting here. Cinema.

I’ve lost my point.

So if men have these inappropriate relationships with beaucoup women, do these same women deem their own relationships inappropriate or do they feel that because they can manage them it doesn’t matter. Can they really manage them? Or does it not matter because women get tunnel vision once they’re in relationships and through attrition get rid of all of their friends anyway leaving only their man to be their homey/lover/friend because R. Kelly created the term on a lonely night when all the kids were at Christmas pageants?

Hell, what do women deem inappropriate within the confines of a “friendship” anyway? I know what constitutes inappropriate but I don’t mind it at all. And if a tree falls in the forest and a badly written essay about what a white man would do if he were a Black child is the only thing around to hear it, does the essay even matter? Lauryn teaches me that nothing even matters, at all.

I asked a lot of questions. Mostly because I’m curious after looking at my own life and having a conversation or two with male and female friends of mine. And it hurt a little that I’d have to get kicked to the curb. But it makes sense. You make one too many “what you can do with that boob” jokes and next thing you know the new beau ain’t really feeling you dun son.

So I ask you, VSBers, how many relationships do you have that would have to end if you got into a relationship? And if you are in a relationship, do you have any that could be deemed questionable if your boo thang found out? If so, why maintain them?

Holler at me.

-VSB P aka THE ARSONIST aka TANGLE JIG P aka YUNG P DA FLY THIEF aka GIIIIIIIIIRL HE A 3

For the DC massive: If you’re looking for a good deed to do this Christmas season, consider heading out to support Karaoke for a Cause on Thursday, 12/15 from 6-10pm at Liv Nightclub (11th and U, NW). You can bring a toy or a $20 donation for Southeast White House as one of VSB’s own commenters, Crystal Marie of awordorthree.com is helping put on the event. This is not a VSB event, but it is something that all VSB/VSS can get behind because its intended to help the less fortunate out. And if you can’t make it but would like to donate, click here.

The Inventions and Innovations of Women

Some of y'all are writing this note RIGHT NOW.

When Plato said that “necessity is the mother of invention” he inadvertently had three major groups in mind: Black people, hoodrats, and women. While it is possible for one person to be a part of each of those groups simultaneously, I’d like to specifically speak to the last group, thee of the boob.

Hate it or love it, women are the most interesting creatures on the planet. A woman’s ability to run both hot and cold at the exact same time is truly a thing upon which to marvel. Only a woman can do something completely insane and somehow manage to make it another person’s fault for her being in that predicament. So what she murdered that stripper; YOU shouldn’t have been sleeping with her. To woman, the crime is merely a role player in the drama that is her rationality. What she needs from you is understanding. It’s as simple as 1,2,3. Understanding is what she needs.

And that’s not just understanding from men, by the way. That’s from everybody.

Please direct all hate mail to deeznuts@saultnuts.com

All jokes aside, in my travels throughout Womania, I’ve noticed that there are certain inventions that either had to be created by women or concepts that are solely woman-centric. More than likely because men just wouldn’t ever think of them. Woman. Brilliance. Same sh*t.

Here are a few examples of inventions or innovations that are 100 percent woman-centric:

1. Ex-bestfriends

Women actually have these. Men, we have dudes we ain’t as cool with as we used to be. Or dudes we just don’t f*ck with at all. But there’s no title. No declaration. Women on the other hand? EVERY WOMAN HAS AN EX-BEST FRIEND. In fact, I’m fairly certain in Woman School, there’s an entire class dedicated to that day that every woman becomes full bird and has to kick a friend to the curb and denote her as an actual ex-bestfriend. And that’s her actual title in conversations. “My ex-bestfriend, Quilta, and I used make beef patties with processed crab meats. Bawse.” In fact, I’d bet good money that when you meet a woman if you want to know what kind of person she is, all you have to do is say, “so tell me about your ex-bestfriend, I know you have one.” After she gets pissy at you for making assumptions, she’ll likely talk to you for a solid 20 minutes about this friend that is no longer. Because at the end of the day…that “b*tch” was trippin.

2. The Mute function on Twitter

Passive aggression, thy name is women. I remember the first time I saw the mute button on Twitter. I had no idea what it mean or what it was for until I asked a homegirl of mine who explained it to me. So wait, you don’t want to hear about your homegirls good times or she’s trippin so f*ck her, but you also don’t want to unfollow her because then she’ll know if she ever brings up your profile, so you just mute her timeline until you’re ready to actively be apart of her life again? Unfollow is bad luck. Smart folks mute back. Must have been a woman that started all that.

3. The inconvenience phone call

People say that  you should beware of a scorned woman. Poppycock. You know that some bad sh*t is going down if you scorn a woman. You can’t beware something that you can’t stop in the first place. You can only hope she has something to lose so she stops short of a felony. However, let your woman RANDOMLY feel inconvenienced by ANYTHING and dude, you’re getting a phone call. She feels inconvenienced so she has to inconvenience somebody else. Or LET him know how much she’s being inconvenienced by either his lack of presence or lack of compassion to know she’s being inconvenienced and not call and console and apologize for something that isn’t his fault. Basically, women are the worst sports on the planet. I remember one day I was listening to Hot 99.5′s Kane Show in the morning. The morning host, Kane’s wife called up the station pissed. She was at home with their two kids who were screaming in the background. So what did she do? Call him to let him know that she was having a bad day because he needed to know. Almost in a sort of, you’re out having fun and here I am doing the hard work. You know how if there’s a way that race can be a reason something happend, its a likely culprit? Well, I think for women, inconvenience is their beef 99 percent of the time. Hmm…which leads to another type of invention…

4. The f*ck-up-your-fun call

Every man is familiar with the rampant “you don’t care about me” phone calls during that one night a month he goes out with his boys. It’s like the second you go do something you had to seek permission for, the texts start. “When are you coming home?” Or the phone calls start. “You didn’t put the dishes up”. Which leads to man’s most important invention of all time…the Loud-Arse-Universal-Hush-and-Fun-Diversion-Tactic-That-Works-25%-Of-The-Time. Or LAUHFDTTW25OTT for short. A man see’s that his girl keeps calling he knows he has to answer so he hushes his boys (and strippers) the f*ck up so it doesn’t sound like’s having fun. Which never actually works because well, women aren’t stupid. And plus, fun or no fun, when she makes that call, its going down. Joc.

Good people of VSB, those are just a couple of women’s inventions. What are other fine innovations and inventions that women have created? Make Plato proud. And to be fair, ladies, what are completely male-centric inventions and innovations?

-VSB P aka THE ARSONIST aka MR. MAKE IT RAIN aka GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIRL HE A 3

Check out Panama’s recap of Braxton Family Values episode 3 and latest blog post about women’s obsession with engagement rings and trapping men over on Guyspeak. Peep game shawty.

For the DC VSBers: Come out to the latest edition of REMINISCE (Facebook event link), the 90s party,  brought to you by Very Smart Brothas x Shine On Me x Just Cause Productions. This month’s party will feature a special tribute to Heavy D and a focus on Uptown Records (Waterbed Heav’s recording home). That means Mary and Guy and Father MC, etc. That means a good time. Get yo’ azz on out to Liv Nightclub on Saturday, 12/3. Free before 11, free drank before 11, and no dress code. And Champ will be in the building too. Sadatay. And invite all of your friends. Let’s make it a night to remember.

What Friendship Means To Me, By Panama Jackson

Here at VSB, we spend a lot of time talking about relationships between men and women, man and nature, and the most important, Soulja Boy and Edgar Allan Poe. Relationships are the cornerstone of community. This is fact. But you know one of the most important facets of any relationship is? Having real friends to keep your dumb a** in line when you do something stupid or who can keep you level headed whenever you feel as if you’ve been wronged or unrighted, depending on if you ever made it past 6th grade.

All this talk about friends has made me hungry. Except that’s not true at all. But it did get me to thinking about how you know somebody is really your friend as opposed to just some random associate. Of course, this could vary between men and women but I assume that we all have some ways of knowing who our real friends are. Allow me to provide a few ways:

1) You’d ask them to check your email for you

Say you get caught out there and you need somebody to go in your email right quick. Shucks, I’ve had girlfriends I wouldn’t even ask to do that, but my homies? Sure. No problem. There’s something about email. Heck, I don’t even want the Pope up in my emails. I just can’t trust him not to check out that folder entitled “Things You Shouldn’t Look At If Your Name Ain’t Panama Jackson”.

2) Like email, you’d let them check your bank account balance

Whew…this one is major because letting somebody know how money you have is generally a major nono. I remember asking my dad how much money he made once and he cursed me out mumbling something about grown folks business and getting the monkeyshine sh*t slapped out of me for every talking bad about Jesus again. And I’m not even Lil B. I don’t even look like Jesus. If I did, I wouldn’t say so either.

3) They can come into your home and go into the refrigerator without asking

One of my best friends from high school would do that. Walk right into the house and go to the fridge and nobody batted an eye. I had an ex try to do that after being at my house no less than 100 times and my mother kindly asked to speak to her in another room and said something about disrespect and slapping the monkeyshine sh*t out of somebody that looked like Jesus. I’m still not sure who that person is.

4) They can hang out with your sister/brother and you don’t worry about anything popping off

I have a bunch of sisters and I have boys who I’d trust to take them to the movies (no Bangs). Well, that is unless they were trying to take them to like a dollar movie that had old Red Shoe Diaries episodes or some such f*ckery involved. But hey, you can’t win them all and you cannot dance unless there is music. Though, the prevailing thought is that you should dance as if nobody’s watching and if nobody’s watching then there’s probably not a DJ so maybe you’re dancing to the song in  your heart. Our soul. I’m confused.

5) You wouldn’t bang their girl (guy)

This might be a guy thing, but your real homeboys…you wouldn’t even consider banging their girl. That’s the true measure of friendship. I’m not sure this one holds true for women since anecdotally, women can be some uber trifling and conniving individuals when it comes to sleeping with comrades. I’ve seent it with my own two eyes before. Shucks, I’ve had the roommate of an ex ATTEMPT to sleep with me before. Good thing she looked like Norbit. Eeeeew.

My good friends of VSB, what let’s you know that somebody is really your friend?

-VSB P aka THE ARSONIST aka TANGLE JIG P aka GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIRL, HE A 3