Relishing A Sister’s Misfortune.

JAY-Z, 4:44Like most of you, I have been caught up in JAY-Z’s latest album, 4:44, all weekend. The album is dope, as are many of the think-pieces I’ve been reading, dissecting its dopeness. The album spoke to me and my reality on many levels (a separate post forthcoming), but interestingly, a think-piece about the album, highlighting a somewhat separate (at least on the surface) issue, has me feeling some kind of way.

Sis, We Gotta Stop Letting Black Men Ruin Us – Crystal deGregory Ph.D. – Medium

An open letter to black women who’ve listened to Jay-Z’s 4:44 and are waiting on an apology from the men who did you wrong. This could easily be a conversation about how Beyoncé lost her mind, her career, or her literal life behind Jay-Z. But, thankfully, it is not.

Honestly, the entire article speaks to me, but this quote is particularly poignant:

“That’s right. We gotta stop celebrating ruinous men ruining any woman —even a woman who has betrayed our Sisterhood’s” sacred trust. We made him and his situation look so good that Sister really thought she was getting herself a prize — a poison that looked like it tasted so good, she was willing to steal it because of her own desperate thirst.”

Okay. Those of you who read this blog know that I have had my share of experiences with no good, “ruinous”, ain’t shit men. Most particularly, my ex-FWB. I knew he wasn’t shit when I hooked up with him, but as you may recall, my ex-friend highlighted just how ain’t shit he was, and set into motion a set of sneaky, snaky events that ultimately ended our friendship.

To sum it up, she slept with him, lied about it, started a fraud ass relationship with him, got knocked up, and the rest is history. You may also recall that she ended up reaching out to me a bit after the baby was born, humbling herself to “apologize” and tell me just how ain’t shit she found out he was (a “you told me so” moment from which I took copious amounts of pleasure) — denying their baby, “cheating on her”, knocking up another woman. Yadda, yadda, yadda.

Ex-FWB & some chick he knocked up.

Digressing a bit, you know when you’re bored, on social media, and you go down that rabbit hole, searching and scouring looking for shit? Well, last week, I went down that rabbit hole, and found this photo of ex-FWB from January, with some other broad he knocked up (likely, the woman my ex-friend mentioned). The petty in me wanted to anonymously e-mail it to my ex-friend. But, truth be told, she’s probably seen it. Point being, I took pleasure in imagining my ex-friend’s pain. Like a lot.

It was beautiful — glorious, really — being able to experience karma (and its justice being rightly served). However, reading the words in the aforementioned article really made me pause. I’m sitting with it for a while.

Don’t Flatter Yourself, Katy Perry.

Bon Appétit art, Katy PerryLet’s talk about Katy Perry’s ridiculous new video for Bon Appétit. I’ll be honest, the song it kind of catchy. But the video, though. It’s horrendous. It’s gross, and it’s thrown together in seriously poor taste.

But most of all, the subtext is so fucking played out. The whole men of color being characterized as insatiable (shit, cannibals in this case) for white women trope is ridiculously stereotypical, but it, coupled (in this case) with hip-hop artists and strip clubs (you know, the basic white woman’s guide to Black men) in the video is just…wack.

It’s no secret that I have no chill when it comes to calling out white women for appropriating our shit (you know, naming their Black babies after influential Black folks with whom they have no meaningful cultural references, etc.). As usual, I digress.

Scene from D.W. Griffith’s “Birth of a Nation”

But this extra layer that Katy Perry has added in Bon Appétit brings to mind images of D.W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation (1915), where Black men are portrayed as mindless, psychotic animal-like predators, stalking and chasing after white women. And the women are terrified.

But in her video, Katy seems to be loving it. You know the drill, white feminism — weak (failed) attempts at flipping the narrative, or something. Spare me.

Now, it’s hard to tell of there are white men included among the chefs literally mangling, cutting and cooking Katy while she writhes in pleasure, but all that I noticed were the Black and brown hands that the director chose to focus on. Oh, and Korean chef Roy Choi is thrown in, too, for good measure. And the whole thing bothers the fuck out of me.

Spare me with the sexual liberation and sex positive justifications for this mess. The fact of the matter is that not only are we tired of your appropriation (because you look foolish, Katy), but portraying men of color as cannibals, starving and famished for your basic ass is too much. We’ve seen that story before, and we’re tired of it. Also, don’t flatter yourself. You’re basic. And so transparent.

Take a look at this fuckery. Or don’t.