1. Monday, January 30, 2006

    tony, why are there no sistas on the busblog? 

    i get email. i love my email. glenn reynolds doesnt have comments so he gets hella email. but i get my share even with comments.

    today i got this from a lovely reader and i asked her if i could respond on the blog and she was very polite and said yes. so here goes.


    I love your blog and I know you probably get this question every other day but I have to ask dont you know any hot black women? How come you never blog about them? How come you never post pictures of hot black women up on your site. I know its your site, your rules but a sista gets a bit sad that a cool guy like tony won’t put up a picture of one ebony goddess and say this girl is all that an a bag of chips! Maybe you dont know any!


    PS. I’ve been wanting to ask this for a long time but didnt want to seem to critical.

    OK first of all, thank you for being concerned about being critical, but it’s ok, i can handle it.

    secondly, people who know me know that im a very odd bird. VERY.

    even though i was born in the nations capital, a place filled to the brim with people of color, i was soon relocated to the lily white suburbs outside of chicago where i lived from k-12.

    my sister and i were the only Black kids in school for years and years. eventually a few trickled through but just as quickly their families ran away to a more… diverse… neighborhood leaving us being the only Black folk in school again and pretty much the only minorities.

    even though i am very lightskinned now, when i was a youth i had much darker skin and a very noticeable afro. plus because my sister was only a year younger than me, and even darker skinned, everyone knew that we were the Black kids, so despite the fact that some people might thing that i was “passing”… i wasnt passing for shit other than Black. which i was fine with. well, as fine as i imagine anyone would have been in my shoes.

    because we had moved to hangover park so early on, kindegarten, i didnt have to worry about making friends because we were all new to school. and immediately i had no problems being popular and liked because little kids are pretty accepting. plus i was good at sports and funny and extremely outgoing.

    that doesnt mean i wasnt met with some overt racism and some indirect racism. the best example of the later had to be in 8th grade. i had a crush on a girl and i wanted her to be my girlfriend. she liked me too so after school i chased her down before she climbed on the bus and i asked her if we could “go out”. she said she couldnt because her dad would kill her. believe it or not thats when i first really understood racism. being denied something simply because of ones heritage. truly ironic because this was happening right next to playground called heritage park.

    what was great though was it was a wakeup call to me that things were different. that there were differences in the world. and i was part of those differences, like it or not.
    but as i grew up there was nothing i could do about the fact that i was attracted to the opposite sex, so i had to keep plugging away despite the fact that now i had to somehow not just woo the chick but somehow convince her that her dad wouldnt be fucked with at work that his daughter was dating the only black kid in school.

    and let me tell you, the midwest at the time was many things, but tolerent it was not. everyone dressed the same, looked the same, sounded the same, and acted the same. so if a dudes young daughter was dating big afro tony it would definately be reported back to that father immediately and he would be joked with by his buddies, his neighbors and his boss.

    so needless to say, i didnt have very many girlfriends in highschool, despite being pretty much the same person i am now.

    in fact i only really had one. and the only reason, i feel, she said yes was because she was going to be moving away to california about three weeks after i kissed her.

    she was tall, blonde, had blue eyes, and long legs.

    even though her dad worked for the airlines and could let her fly wherever she wanted for free she couldnt fly back to my prom with me, because, well… you know why.

    but all those years whenever me and my buddies looked at girls, we never saw any Black girls because the only Black girl in my school was my sister. and the only Black girls i ever really knew were my mom, my grandmothers, and my cousins.

    so its not that i dont think that Black women arent beautiful, they just remind me of my relatives. and non-Black women remind me of all the girls at school who would flirt with me but wouldnt, because they couldnt, put out.

    now ive been conscious about the fact that i have a very diverse readership here, especially after being a panelist of the Blogging While Black panel at last years SXSW, a group of amazing people who i am so happy to reunite with in two months in austin. and part of that consciousness is knowing that just like i identified with Michael in Good Times because i looked like him, i didnt have the hots for his gf played by janet jackson because she looked pretty much exactly like my sister.

    so do i find Black women beautiful? of course i do. do i know any Black women?

    well lets go back to highschool. i left illinois the day after high school graduation and moved to california. but not just cali, santa monica california. not too many black folk there. then i went to uc santa barbara. it was either ucsb or ucla and if i had chosen the later i would have definately confronted this issue, but i chose ucsb because i was under the odd belief that if i went up there it would be easier to study because it was away from LA and right on the beach. plus everyone that i knew who went to ucsb adored the experience. just like how i feel about it now.

    at ucsb they had the 100 Black Men’s club. i seriously dont think we had 100 Black men at ucsb. total. so we definately didnt have 100 Black women either. so i have a feeling that i dont know any Black women really because ive never been around them.

    should i have more Black faces on the busblog? df course. and i thank you for remiding me to do it.

    to be honest i was thinking about putting up a picture of Oprah during that weird little scandal with mr Frey and i was thinking about putting up a picture of Da Brat when she was photographed kissing Liza Minelli’s ex. but i have a funny little rule on the busblog – i dont put up pictures of Black people that will make us look bad in any way. so im certainly not going to put up a picture of oprah to bash her or da brat kissing on some gay dude.

    im very protective of my people because i do know the struggle. and depending on how long youve read me, you’d have heard me defend OJ, michael jackson, kobe, mike tyson, and proclaim that every QB in the future should be Black.

    i even capitalize the b because it is a reference not just to a color but of a region. you capitalize African American, so why not Black?

    i love my people and if i run across some fine soul sista who treated me right im sure there might be a possibility of a love connection down the road – something my mom would love, especially if she wasnt half my age like these other skinny white girls – but something tells me the odds are low.

    however, if you run across any photos that you feel deserve a place on the busblog, feel free to email me a link to them and i will seriously consider it. as im always looking for good pictures, and it would be my pleasure to spotlight my nubian princesses far more in the very near future.


    culture kitchen + lynne d johnson + koganuts