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Archive for March, 2008

     What do Oodles, Flat Top, Prune Face, Cheater Gunsmoke, and Big Boy all have in common? No they aren’t rappers. They are characters in the Dick Tracy comic book series, and like black people they like matching from head to toe.

Black people match head to toe in assorted classic ways; a powder blue Nike track suit, Sean Paul cashmere pajamas, color coordinated sweatbands like AI and Melo on the Nuggets (see #1 Making Fashion Statements), or big single color suits like the gangsters in Dick Tracy. Black people will often invest in numerous pairs of shoes to match their baseball caps that will most certainly match their Tall Tees.

A big part of matching head to toe is color coordination. If you walk into a predominately black people club, not only will you find 50 cent, but you will most assuredly find black people that look like the 7 or 8 Crayola crayons you have been missing since grade school, or those really obnoxious M&M’s. You can admire from a far, but saying something like, “Look at all the colors,” is a bad idea as this statement will most certainly be misunderstood, frowned upon, and could result in a serious beating.
Metals are another element that black people use to match head to toe. Black people will match their gold sun glass rims to their gold grills and their platinum chains to their platinum rings.  Speaking of accessories, black people often go beyond matching just their person.  A black person will match their outfit with the interior of their car, the rubber bands holding their cornrows, the garnish in their drink, wearing green and it’s a lime, red and it’s a cherry etc., the food they chose to eat, and even their wallet, debit card, and choice of candy bar. If it doesn’t match, they won’t have anything to do with it, until they change their color scheme of course.

So if you are buying your one black friend something at the gas station it is important to remember what they were wearing, but if you forget your safest bet is always a Hershey’s Bar, they will always be wearing some of that color.

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#10 SOUL Food

SOUL Food, or Stuff Only Us Like, which is consistent with black people’s tendency to shorten words/names/etc., is American style cuisine traditionally associated with African Americans. The word “soul” was and is commonly used to describe black culture, for example soul food, Soul Train, and most recently, Soul Plane, a groundbreaking “black people” film that certainly would have won the award for best writing in a motion picture…. at the 2004 BET Comedy Awards of course…. if not for the steep competition that year of; Head of State, Deliver Us from Eva, Johnson Family Vacation, Malibu’s Most Wanted, and Barbershop 2. The award… went to White Chicks.

Back to the discussion at hand, black people, and their soul food. Stereotypically it is believed that black people adore deep fried chicken, purple and red drinks, and corn bread. This is true. Very true. However, to say black people like chicken is inaccurate. Black people like SOUL Food. Chicken is just a part of it.

Stuff Only Us Like or SOUL Food, was popularized during the 1960’s but it’s origins are believed to go all the way back to the 14th Century. The traditional soul food of today includes but is not limited to; chicken gizzards, chicken livers, chitterlings, corn on the cob, country fried steak, fried chicken, fried fish, fried anything for that matter, ribs, black-eyed peas, not to be confused with the band “Black Eyed Peas,” cabbage, mac and cheese, sweet potatoes, cornbread, hush puppies, biscuits with honey, chow-chow, grits, rice pudding, sweet tea, purple drink, red drink, yellow cake, and of course, an abundant supply of hot sauce.

If you are planning a SOUL Food dinner party, it is a good idea to ask your one black friend which SOUL item’s are still SOUL item’s. Most people have adopted fried chicken and cornbread, but your black friend will certainly tell you, “Purple drink, chicken gizzards, chicken livers, pigs feet, and hoghead cheese dat be stuff only us like.”

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