Archive for 2008

Finalists for Non-Profit Search

With over 500 suggestions for Non-Profit’s in need of help, it was simply impossible to select one.  Instead, SWPL has chosen eleven possible non-profits to receive all proceeds from the Stuff White People Like T-Shirt from FatAmerican.tv.

The  hope is that more people will be willing to check out all eleven and hopefully make much needed donations.

Remember if you donate before Dec. 31, 2008, you can claim it on your taxes as a charitable donation.

The Eleven Finalists are:

1. Kiva.org – Kiva’s mission is to connect people through lending for the sake of alleviating poverty.  Kiva is the world’s first person-to-person micro-lending website, empowering individuals to lend directly to unique entrepreneurs in the developing world.

2. Harm Reduction of Grand Rapids, Michigan (Needle Exchange) – “We work really hard to get clean syringes into the hands of injection drug users (IDUs) as well as providing people with safe sex supplies at no cost.  We do this to help stop the spread of HIV/AIDS as well as Hep C. Both diseases are on the rise and government efforts to stop them are not sufficient.  It has been proven by many studies that syringe exchange does help stop the spread of both diseases and it does not encourage drug use.

However, programs like these are very controversial, especially in places like Grand Rapids that are very religious and conservative. Needle exchange is not legal in the state of Michigan, we only have a special waiver for Grand Rapids. Because of this we are the only exchange on the entire West side of Michigan, I believe we are also the most northern exchange in Michigan.”

-Kelly Knutson, Volunteer

3. 826 National – 826 National is a nonprofit tutoring, writing, and publishing organization with locations in seven cities across the country. Our goal is to assist students ages six to eighteen with their writing skills, and to help teachers get their classes excited about writing. Our work is based on the understanding that great leaps in learning can happen with one-on-one attention, and that strong writing skills are fundamental to future success.

4. Heifer.org – Heifer International is dedicated dedicated to relieving global hunger and poverty. It provides gifts of livestock and plants, as well as education in sustainable agriculture, to financially-disadvantaged families around the world.

5. Invisible Children – Invisible Children’s goal is to create awareness regarding the plight of the people of northern Uganda, caught in the midst of a civil war between the government and Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army, a rebel group that makes extensive use of kidnapping children and making child soldiers.

In war-affected regions Invisible Children focuses on long-term development, working directly with individuals and institutions that are eager to realize their full potential. Through education and innovative economic opportunities, they partner with affected communities and strive to improve the quality of life for individuals living in conflict and post-conflict regions.

6. Children of the Night – Children of the Night is a private, non-profit, tax-exempt organization founded in 1979. We are dedicated to assisting children between the ages of 11 and 17 who are forced to prostitute on the streets for food to eat and a place to sleep. Since 1979 we have rescued girls and boys from prostitution and the domination of vicious pimps. And we provide all programs with the support of private donations.

7. International Justice Mission – International Justice Mission is a human rights agency that secures justice for victims of slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression. IJM lawyers, investigators and aftercare professionals work with local officials to ensure immediate victim rescue and aftercare, to prosecute perpetrators and to promote functioning public justice systems.

8. Southern Poverty Law Center – SPLC is internationally known for its tolerance education programs, its legal victories against white supremacists and its tracking of hate groups. Located in Montgomery, Alabama – the birthplace of the Civil Rights Movement – the Southern Poverty Law Center was founded by Morris Dees and Joe Levin, two local lawyers who shared a commitment to racial equality. Its first president was civil rights activist Julian Bond.

Note: if you make a donation before Dec. 31, it will be matched by a group of private donors.

9. Greenville, SC Free Clinic –  We offer services in the following areas: dental clinic, dental hygiene, ophthalmology clinic (general, plus a large variety of specialty clinics), medical clinic, health education classes, HIV testing, and a full-service pharmacy.  All services rendered at the clinics are free to all patients who qualify based on our eligibility requirements.  Total patient visits for 2008 will likely surpass 10,000. (general, plus glaucoma and retina clinics), medical

We first opened our doors in 1987 and have been operating off of private donations only (no government assistance) since then.  With the recent downturn of the economy, we have seen a decrease in donations and increase in patient visits — a combination that is not very sustainable.  Patient visits have increased 30% in the last five months alone, and we expect this trend to continue.  Our holiday fundraiser has also taken a noticeable hit this year compared to what we received this time last year.

I’d give you a link to our website, but we don’t have one.  With an extremely small paid staff of about fifteen operating all four of the clinics (we could not function without the help of our hundreds of volunteers), we do not have the financial resources or time to create a website.

-Lindsey A. Hammond, Greenville, South Carolin Free Medical Clinic
600 Arlington Avenue
Greenville, SC 29601
W: 864.232.1470 ext.32

10. The Community Cycling Center (Portland, OR) –  Founded in 1994, The Community Cycling Center helps broaden access to bicycling and its benefits through our hands-on programs, volunteer projects, and neighborhood bike shop.

11. Arizona League to End Regional Trafficking (ALERT) – ALERT, a program of International Rescue Committee – Phoenix, is a league representing law enforcement, faith based communities, non-profit organizations, social service agencies, attorneys, and concerned citizens. Through education, outreach and a variety of programs and services ALERT strives to end the suffering and dehumanization of victims of human trafficking.

Voting Closes Dec. 31st

Traditional Places to Donate


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Thanks to a partnership with Fat American (http://www.fatamerican.tv), Stuff White People Like is now offering t-shirts that are now available for pre-order.

The shirts are American Apparel (of course) and 100% of the profits will be donated to charity.  But we need help finding a non-profit organization in need of some assistance.

Please send an email to stuffwhitepeoplelike@gmail.com with “Non-Profit SUGGESTION” as the subject.  Be  sure to include a link and a short description of the organization and their work.

Click on the shirt for the link to order or

Click here for Grey

Click here for Black

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#118 Ugly Sweater Parties

uglysweaterOver the course of a calendar year, white people have ample opportunities for themed parties and drinking: Halloween, St. Patrick’s Day, and Cinco De Mayo are the most popular officially sanctioned holidays.  But that does not mean that white people shy away from creating their own impromptu themes for parties and evenings- mustache party! ’90s prom! Designing Women!

During the month of December, white people face an especially difficult challenge.  This is the time of year when parties and drinking are most appropriate, but the most obvious theme of Christmas must be avoided.  This is because Christmas forces Christianity upon others, and though their ancestors had no problem with this activity, modern white people are quite disgusted by the idea.  Hanukkah parties are fun, but a bit too exclusive, and a Kwanzaa Party requires an enormous amount of physical, mental, and ironic labor that can only be done by the most elite of white people.

White people needed to find a party that was completely without religious affiliations, but still connected enough to the idea of Christmas that they could serve eggnog and hot toddies.  The answer: ugly sweater parties.

These parties feature festive drinks, Christmas music by Sufjan Stevens, and most importantly, intentionally hideous sweaters.  These ugly sweaters provide white people with an invisible shield that protects them from any criticism that might emerge if any Christianity accidentally slips into the evening.

“Hey man, I love that Burl Ives song, but um, you let Silent Night slip into the mix.  That’s kind of awkward because, you know, the Crusades?”
White person points to sweater and makes a funny face.
Order is restored.

If you find yourself invited to one of these parties, you must begin your preparations immediately.  Craftier white people have been searching used clothing stores since last Christmas, and so you should not expect to find anything of significant ironic value.  Instead, your best hope is to see if any of your family members have an old sweater lying around.

“Hey man, nice sweater.  It’s so ugly.”
“Yeah, when my family first got to this country we had to shop at Goodwill, this is the first one my father bought to get him through his first winter here.  Good thing they didn’t have these parties back then, right? He would have died.”
“Geez, man, I’m sorry, you can cut in line for egg nog.”

Photo by paperladyinvites

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free_mumia_1For the most part, this list has offered ways to befriend white people one at a time.  However, if you want to befriend a large number of white people at the same time, the easiest way to do it is to go to jail for political reasons.

White people love political prisoners because they are individuals who have been locked up because their beliefs or their presence stands in defiance of an unjust system. In fact, most white people would love to be locked up for their beliefs provided that they could go to a jail with private toilets, plenty of books and no rape.

Instead, white people are forced to turn those dreams of oppression into something more productive.  Specifically the belief that one day their law degree, graphic design skill, or ability to attend a concert can be used to free a political prisoner.

If you happen to be this individual, then you have no further work to do.  White people already like you and will provide for you financially in the form of book deals, commencement addresses, and documentaries.  But do not assume that these are the only people who can benefit from their time in jail.

Political prisoners make excellent choices whenever a white person asks you to name a personal hero.  If they drop an answer like “Kurt Cobain” or “Toni Morrison” you can easily trump them by offering up a name like Mumia Abu Jamal or Nelson Mandela which will show white people that you are smart, well informed, and political.  Or that you own at least one Rage Against the Machine CD.

But what if you pick the wrong political prisoner?  Impossible.  This is because political prisoners do not exist until a famous white person has drawn attention to them. Until that point, any person who has been locked up for their beliefs is just a regular prisoner and subsequently not worthy of graffiti stencils.

Conversely, if you ever find yourself needing to end a friendship with a white person you can simply say something like “well, he’s a criminal he belongs in jail. I don’t care what the Beastie Boys have to say about it.”

End of friendship.

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Stuff Environmentalists Like


On Newsstands Now.

Read the first installment at PlentyMag.com.

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de_la_soul_1All music genres go through a very similar life cycle: birth, growth, mainstream acceptance, decline, and finally obscurity.  With black music, however, the final stage is never reached because white people are work tirelessly to keep it alive.  Apparently, once a music has lost its relevance with its intended audience, it becomes MORE relevant to white people.

Historically speaking, the music that white people have kept on life support for the longest period of time is Jazz.  Thanks largely to public radio, bookstores, and coffee shops, Jazz has carved out a niche in white culture that is not yet ready to be replaced by Indie Rock.  But the biggest role that Jazz plays in white culture is in the white fantasy of leisure. All white people believe that they prefer listening to jazz over watching television.  This is not true.

Every few a months, a white person will put on some Jazz and pour themselves a glass of wine or scotch and tell themselves how nice it is.  Then they will get bored and watch television or write emails to other white people about how nice it was to listen to Jazz at home.  “Last night, I poured myself a glass of Shiraz and put Charlie Parker on the Bose.  It was so relaxing, I wish I had a fireplace.”  Listing this activity as one of your favorites is a sure fire way to make progress towards a romantic relationship with a white person.

Along with Jazz, white people have also taken quite a shine to The Blues, an art form that captured the pain of the black experience in America.  Then, in the 1960s, a bunch of British bands started to play their own version of the music and white people have been loving it ever since.  It makes sense considering that the British were the ones who created The Blues in the 17th Century.

Today, white people keep The Blues going strong by taking vacations to Memphis, forming awkward bands, making documentaries, and organizing folk festivals.  Blue and Jazz music appeal mostly to older white people and select few young ones who probably wear fedoras.  But that doesn’t mean that young white people aren’t working hard to preserve music that has lost relevance.  No, there are literally thousands of white people who are giving their all to keep old school Hip Hop alive.

Even as you read this, white people are telling other white people about the golden age of Hip Hop that they experienced in a suburban high school or through a viewing of The Wackness.

If you are good at concealing laughter and contempt, you should ask a white person about “Real Hip Hop.”  They will quickly tell you about how they don’t listen to “Commercial Hip Hop” (aka music that black people actually enjoy), and that they much prefer “Classic Hip Hop.”

“I don’t listen to that commercial stuff. I’m more into the Real Hip Hop, you know?  KRS One, Del Tha Funkee Homosapien, De La Soul, Wu Tang, you know, The Old School.”

Calling this style of music ‘old school’ is considered an especially apt name since the majority of people who listen to it did so while attending old schools such as Dartmouth, Bard, and Williams College.

What it all comes down to is that white people are convinced that if they were alive when this music was relevant that they would have been into it.  They would have been Alan Lomax or Rick Rubin.  Now the best they can hope for is to impress an older black person with their knowledge.

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language_labThroughout history, white people have a pretty poor record when it comes to promises (see Americans, Native for examples).  Thankfully, modern white people are trying to erase the shame of the past by making promises to themselves that they will never keep.

Writing a novel, going vegan, or sending their future kid to public school are just a few of these great breakable promises.  But by far the most common self improvement promise is to learn a new language.

This plan is first formulated when white people realize that two years of college Italian does not confer fluency.  For the most part, these classes will only teach a white person how to order food in a restaurant, ask for a train schedule, and over pronounce words when they are mixed into English. Amazingly this small amount of proficiency is more than enough to warrant inclusion on a resume under “spoken languages.”

For many white people the lack of a second language is their greatest secret shame.  It fills them with so much shame that they will literally spend the rest of their lives promising to learn a new language, but not so much shame that they will actually do it.
When it comes to learning a new language, white people can follow a few paths, the most common of which is to try to learn a language that is popular in their current city.
For example, white people in places like Los Angeles or Austin, TX will often promise to learn Spanish in hopes of being able to ask local taco stands about whether or not their carne asada is grass fed (”¿Ha leído usted Michael Pollan?”).

In order to reach this level of fluency and obnoxiousness, white people believe they must put themselves into a local immersion.  This means a promise to watch only Spanish language TV, listen only to Spanish language radio, read Marquez in his native tongue, and watch foreign films with the subtitles turned off.  There are some instances of white people doing this for almost a week!

When this technique is unavailable or fails, white people will immediately turn to books and computer software as a last ditch effort to make good on their promise. After about a week, most white people will give up and blame someone for their failure (”this software is terrible,” “there aren’t enough people in Portland who speak Farsi!”). But rather than discarding the books and software packaging, white people will simply put them in the most visible part of their book shelf.  This allows white people to believe that they have not failed since they can resume their studies at any time until their death.tacotruck

Since learning a new language is something that most white people fail at, it should be approached with extreme caution. When you hear a white person say that they speak your native language, you will probably think it’s a good idea to start talking to them in said language.  WRONG! Instead you should say something like “you speak (insert language)?” to which they will reply “a little” in your native tongue.  If you just leave it here, the white person will feel fantastic for the rest of the day.  If you push it any further and speak quickly, the white person will just look at you with a blank stare.  Within a minute you will notice that blank stare has shifted from confusion to contempt.  You have shamed them and your chance for friendship is ruined forever.

Finally, though they won’t admit it, white people do not believe that learning English is difficult. This is because if it were true, then that would mean that their housekeeper, gardener, mother-in-law (if   they are an elite white person) are smarter than them.  Needless to say, this realization would destroy their entire universe.

The best technique is to just tell white people what they really want to hear: “You should move to (insert country) so you can really learn the language.” They will agree instantly and lament their employer’s lack of an office there.  Share this lament and you can enjoy a gigantic increase in trust and friendship from that white person.

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#114 America


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#113 Halloween

When it comes to holidays, there are few that white people like more than Halloween.  This is in spite of the fact that white people are required to spend almost the entire year preparing for it.  But unlike Thanksgiving or Christmas, the preparation requires little emotional labor.  Though it does require extensive physical and mental labor along with a fair amount of research thrown in for good measure.

Halloween is so important to white people because they have to wear a costume.  It is a chance to literally show everyone how clever you are without having to say a word.  This makes it especially important to single white people as one well thought out costume could produce enough romantic interest to last through the winter.
For this reason any white Halloween Party is less of a celebration than it is a contest.  And as with any contest, there are a lot of rules.

The first thing you need to know that white people are the only people on the planet who will dress up as a concept.  So while  your initial thoughts about a costume might be “cowboy,” “policeman,” or “Count Dracula,” white people are more likely to think “math,” “the economy,” or “Post-Modernism.”

Dressing up as a concept is always a major gamble.  On one hand, there is the chance that you nail it just right and everyone in the room will recognize how you not only cleverly interpreted the idea but also executed it perfectly in physical form. If you get it wrong, you will be required to spend the entire night explaining yourself.  Then again, it is a good way to get white people to talk to you.

Things do not get any easier if you try to dress up like a character from a movie.  If you show up dressed as Austin Powers or Napoleon Dynamite you will be met with near-universal scorn.  You see, you need to find a character from a movie that enough people recognize but not one that’s so well known that makes it easy to find the materials required to create the costume.

That being said it’s a good idea to draw inspiration from older movies or television shows, specifically ones from the 1980s.  Some popular examples are: Pee Wee Herman, the skeleton costumes from Cobra Kai, or Marty McFly.  Depending on your race and gender, this could be your opportunity to become the alpha dog among your white friends.

You see, the only thing white people like more than costumes are group costumes.  So if you are an asian male of any background, suggest to your white male friends that you all dress up as The Goonies.  If you are a black female, offer to play the role of TOOTIE and go as the Facts of Life. Being a black male is considerably tougher, but if you are short enough the role of Webster could be right for you in an ensemble cast.  Sadly, if you do not fall into one of these categories your opportunity for a group costume is limited since there are no recorded instances of white people befriending asian women, latinos, Indians, or any other race during the 1980s.

Last, but certainly not least are white people who dress up as characters from books that have not been made into movies.

“I’m Esther Greenwood.”
“Who’s that?”
“Um, from The Bell Jar, hello?”
“I’m sad too.”

These  people are unlikely to be recognized as their characters, but are highly recognized as being smart. If you cannot pull off a group costume, this is your best bet.  Just pick ANY author who shares your heritage, find a character who matches your age and sex and remember their name.  Then show up in regular clothes.
This also allows you to make the awesome joke “Oh, you can’t tell?  I’m dressed up as a Sri Lankan woman.  It’s me, Matt.” (substitute race/sex as appropriate).  White people will find this hilarious, unless there is another non-white person at the part making the same jokes.

You should also be prepared for the inevitability of running into a white person in an offensive costume.  It is a certainty that any Halloween party will have at least one white guy dressed up as a recently (and preferably tragically) deceased or wounded celebrity.  Past examples include Steve Irwin costumes with a sting ray protruding from the chest, Roy (of Sigfried and Roy) with a stuffed tiger attached to the neck, and this year you are likely to see at least one white person dressed up as Heath Ledger.

With this information, you should have no problem fitting right in at a white halloween party.  But don’t try too hard at your costume, white people hate being upstaged.

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#112 Hummus

When it comes to food, all white people are either allergic to/or have stopped eating everything you consider delicious.  It’s a good idea to come to grips with the concept, because it will save you a lot of headaches.

But when white people come to your house, you are forced to deal with the problem in a very real, very immediate sense.  You will be trapped with their dietary restrictions and they will be trapped with the contents of your kitchen.  You can mediate this situation by stocking your pantry with dozens of complicated and expensive snacks.  Or you could take the easy way out and just buy a tub of hummus.

All white people like hummus.  In fact, if you find a white person who does not like hummus then they probably just haven’t tasted it or they are the wrong kind of white person.  In either case, they are probably not someone that you want to know.

Putting out a plate of hummus and pita makes white people very comfortable.  It reminds them of home since at any given time a white person has hummus in their fridge.  Even the most barren white refrigerator will have a package of the stuff next to an empty Brita filter.

White people are also relieved when they see hummus because they recognize the contents immediately.

Though you would never be able to guess it by their actions, white people are very concerned with perceived as “annoying” or “that guy” who has to ask about the ingredients of everything they eat. However great their concern over this, they are still more afraid of being “that guy” that eats High Fructose Corn Syrup or pork.

Familiarize yourself with this information as it will play itself out every time you try to pick a restaurant with a white person.

You: “Let’s get Chinese food”
White Person #1: “Um, yeah, last time I was there I tried to ask the waitress if they used any pork stock in the preparation of the vegetables and she didn’t really give me a response that makes me comfortable eating there again.”

By providing your guests with a plate of hummus, you can guarantee that you won’t have to have this infuriating conversation in your own home.  But that doesn’t mean you are safe.  To cover all your bases, it is always a good idea keep some Gluten free crackers in your pantry.

That way if you bring out a plate of hummus and pita and discover that one of the white people cannot eat gluten, then you are ready to pull off a truly incredible move.

First, pretend not to understand why the person cannot eat wheat.  Then go back to the kitchen and return with the gluten-free crackers.  Everyone will be impressed by your ability to psych out people with food allergies.

Wait one week and relive the story with different white people, it will make them laugh and secretly wish to be invited to your next hummus eating party.

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Tour Ends in Bay Area

Been a fun run for the 2nd tour. Thanks everyone for coming out to all the events.

Tour ends with two dates in the Bay Area. Hope to see you there!

Friday, October 24th – Berkeley, CA

Berkley Arts & Letters
First Congregational Church of Berkley
2345 Channing Way @ Dana
Berkeley, CA

Saturday, October 25th – San Francisco, CA

Booksmith Bookstore
1644 Haight St.
San Francisco, CA

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Portland Visit

Interesting facts about Portland Oregon

– named the “Greenest city” in America by Popular Science
– has the highest rate of microbreweries per capita
– citizens are not allowed to pump their own gas
– Rasheed Wallace once lived here
– home of the Reed College Ultimate Frisbee team
– and Stuff White People Like author will be making an appearance there on Monday (Info Below)

Monday, October 20th – Portland, OR

Talk & Signing
Powell’s Books
3723 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
Portland, OR 97209

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Houston Tour Stop

Friday, October 17th – Houston, TX

Talk & Signing
Houston, TX
3025 Kirby
Houston, TX 77098

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Author Appearances in Wisconsin

Christian Lander will be making appearances in the Badger state this week. Hope to see you there.

Wednesday, October 15th – Madison, WI

Talk & Signing
Madison, WI
3750 University Ave.
Madison, WI 53705

Thursday, October 16th – Milwaukee, WI

Talk & Signing
Milwaukee, WI
8705 N. Port Washington
Fox Point, WI 53217

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#111 Pea Coats

As the temperature starts to drop, many white people are forced to start wearing winter coats.  Though many will simply don outdoor performance gear, a great number will turn to the #1 white winter jacket of all time: The Pea Coat.

The Pea Coat was originally worn by sailors and members of the European Navy.   If you think about it for a second, this means that the coat is European, Coastal, and Vintage.  Three of white people’s favorite things.

Another common characteristic of the coat is that white people will write their names on the label inside the coat.  This is not done for fear of theft, but rather as a necessary precaution against party mixups.  You see, when a white person attends a party in the winter time they will often be required to put their jacket in a room with literally dozens of other pea coats!  Since these coats often contain ticket stubs to the same concerts and identical Trader Joe’s receipts, it can be impossible to find the original owner without a name written inside.

Like with sweaters, the process of acquiring a Pea Coat is almost as important as the coat itself.  Fashionable white people can purchase designer pea coats for well over $1000, but the top ranked white people purchase their at Army Surplus stores.  This makes them feel better than the white people have spent thousands of dollars on an identical piece of clothing.

But perhaps the greatest value of the pea coat is its ability to help you determine which non-white people have been accepted into the ranks of white people.  It is not known if the coat is given to them in an elaborate ceremony or if they buy it themselves, but in either case by wearing the coat they are telling the world that they have white friends.

Long story short, if you want to increase your popularity with white people this winter, get a Pea Coat.

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