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#88 Having Gay Friends

gayfamily.jpgIf white people could draft friends the way that the NFL drafts prospects it would go like this: black friends, gay friends, and then all other minorities would be drafted based on need and rarity to the region.

When choosing gay friends, white people like to base their decision on their own needs and requirements. Younger white people tend to prefer young, social gay people-this is their all important ticket into nightclubs and parties.

When a straight person goes to a gay night club, they are reminded of how progressive and tolerant they are. If they are hit on by a member of the same sex, it provides them with a valuable story that they can use to prove to their other friends that they are more progressive and tolerant. “This guy/girl hit on me, I said I was ‘straight but not narrow,’ and it was totally chill. Oh, you went to an Irish bar this weekend? That’s cool, I guess. ”

Older white people prefer to be friends with gay parents because it enables their children to experience much needed diversity with people who are, for all intents and purposes, exactly the same as them.

It is also worth noting that a gay friendship of any sort allows white people to feel as though they are a part of the gay rights movement. While white people love being a part of any movement, the gay movement is especially important to them because they can blend in at rallies and protests and spend an afternoon feeling the sting of oppression.

Gay friends are an essential part of a white person’s all-star diversity roster. But they are always on the lookout for the ultimate friend; a gay minority.

It is generally accepted that a gay black friend with a child is considered a once in a lifetime opportunity – like a quarterback who can pass, run, kick, and play linebacker. White people will crawl over each other for the opportunity to claim this person as a friend and add them to their roster of diversity.

Other minorities are also highly prized and assigned a ranking based on the level of intolerance in they face from their respective cultures and family members.

Once a white person has told you about their gay friends, it is recommended that you say “I wish more people were like you,” every few months. This will allow them to feel good about their progressive choice of friends and remind them that they are better than other white people.

If you follow this simple rule, you should be able to maximize all benefits of white friendship including assistance in moving and free drinks.

2256034027_f48985d435.jpgAs white people get older, they like to make clear boundaries between their professional and personal lives. They don’t mind talking about their personal life at work, but they hate talking about their work life when they are enjoying a weekend or vacation. But with blackberries and laptops, white people could be working anywhere, at any time. So how do you know when they are off the clock? It’s easy, check their clothes.

When white people aren’t working, they generally like to wear Outdoor Performance Clothes. The top suppliers of these garments and accessories include North Face, REI, Mountain Equipment Co-Op, Columbia Sportswear, and Patagonia.

When you see white people wearing these, it is important that you do not discuss business matters.  Instead you should say things like “where did you get that fleece?” and “what’s that thing holding your keys to your shorts?”  White people will be more than happy to talk to you about their sustainably produced possessions.

The main reason why white people like these clothes is that it allows them to believe that at any moment they could find themselves with a Thule rack on top of their car headed to a national park. It could be 4:00 p.m. on a Saturday when they might  get a call “hey man, you know what we need to do? Kayak then camping, right now. I’m on my way to get you, there is no time to change clothes.”

Though it is unlikely that they will receive this call, White people hate the idea of missing an opportunity to enjoy outdoor activities because they weren’t wearing the right clothes.

If you plan on spending  part of your weekend with a white person, it is strongly recommended that you purchase a jacket or some sort of “high performance” t-shirt, which is like a regular shirt but just a lot more expensive.

#86 Shorts

whiteshorts.jpgOne thing prized by white people is making the most of situations. They like to maximize opportunities for all that they are worth. It applies to jobs, vacations, investments, books, education, and perhaps most importantly, warm days.

After a prolonged cold snap, white people are very excited at the first hint of a warm day. It is their opportunity to go back outside, to enjoy nature and thrive.

In order to get the most possible enjoyment out of these days, white people turn to one of their most trusted allies: shorts.

It is a known fact that white people believe that they can bring spring early by wearing a pair of shorts on any day that is above seasonal temperatures. This myth runs so deep that they will often wear shorts the following day when temperatures drop, at which point they will refuse to recognize that it is cold.

When you encounter a cold white person in shorts it’s best to say “I can’t wait until it’s warm enough to go windsurfing.” They will likely give you a high five.

#85 The Wire

wire-poster.jpgThough white people have a natural aversion to television, there are some exceptions. For white people to like a TV show it helps if it is: critically acclaimed, low-rated, shown on premium cable, and available as a DVD box set.

The latter is important so that white people can order it from Netflix and tell their friends “they are really into <insert series> and I watched ten episodes in a row in the weekend. I’m almost caught up.”

If you attempt to talk about an episode they have not seen yet, they will scream and cover their ears. In white culture, giving away information about a film or TV series is considered as rude as spitting on your mothers grave. It is an unforgivable offense.

Recent series that have fallen into this category include The Sopranos, Six Feet Under, and most recently The Wire.

For the past three years, whenever you say “The Wire” white people are required to respond by saying “it’s the best show on television.” Try it the next time you see a white person! Though now they might say “it WAS the best show on television.”

So why do they love it so much? It all comes down to authenticity. A long time ago, someone started a rumor that when The Wire is on TV, actual police wires go quiet because all the dealers are watching the show. Though this is not true, it seems plausible enough to white people and has imbued the show with the needed authenticity to be deemed acceptable.

The popularity of this show among white people has create a unique opportunity for personal gain.

If you need to impress a white person, tell them you are from Baltimore. They will immediately ask you about The Wire and how accurate it is. You should confirm that it is “like a documentary of the streets,” the white person will then slowly shake their head and say “man” or “wow.” You will be seen in an entirely new light.

If you are not from Baltimore but the white person you are talking to is, they might start asking you a lot of questions. In this situation, you should just say you left when you were young but you still have a lot of cousins there but you don’t like to go back to visit. This will remove all doubts and they can go back to telling you about how John from Accounting needs to “stop snitching” about their two hour lunch breaks.

Note: Tonight (Sunday March 9, 2008) is the series finale. It would be considered proper etiquette to ask a white person about the show on Monday.

#84 T-Shirts

tshirt3.jpgMany people and cultures view t-shirts as a simple piece of apparel that can be acquired cheaply and worn in casual situations. For white people, it’s never that easy. The t-shirt is one of the most complex and expressive items in their entire wardrobe.

Your choice of casualwear says a lot about you, and there are stringent rules and hierarchies associated with T-shirts that you must know before venturing into any white-dominated social situations.

T-shirts fall into three categories: vintage, new, and unacceptable, with the latter category compromising the bulk of the world’s supply. Within each category lies another, more precise subset of rules and rankings. Make no mistake, this is complicated.

The most prized t-shirt category is vintage. As shown earlier, white people need authenticity like they need oxygen and to have an original vintage t-shirt from the 1970s or 1980s is a very powerful social status symbol. The ideal shirt will have a funny logo, a year attached to it, and will be as thin as rice paper. In the event that two white people have shirts that meet this criteria, the superior ranking is given to the person who paid the least for the shirt. Acquiring a shirt at a vintage clothing store is seen as less respectable than sorting through racks at the Goodwill.

The second category of t-shirt is new and there really are only two options. The first is American Apparel, a company that constantly reminds you it is based in downtown Los Angeles. They are considered an acceptable white company since they produce things that are very simple, but also very expensive. The second acceptable new shirt is Threadless. This Chicago-based company produces artistic and funny t-shirts that are acceptable for concerts, Whole Foods and 80s night. White people like these shirts so much because they are designed by white people, for white people. Sort of like a white FUBU.

Finally, and perhaps the most important to be aware of, is the unacceptable category of t-shirts. There are a few simple rules to follow in order to avoid wearing the wrong t-shirt. First, if it’s made of a stiff, thick cotton, throw it in the garbage immediately. White people t-shirts must be made of the softest, finest organic cotton. This is law. Unless it is vintage, the shirt cannot be made in a foreign country (unless you can certify its labor conditions). The shirt cannot contain a current sports logo. Shirts with sports logos are acceptable, but they must contain a logo that hasn’t been used in 15 years. Last and not least, it cannot be baggy. Your t-shirt must be tight-fitting for both style and mating purposes.

It is also imperative to understand that faux vintage shirts (“Getting Lucky in Kentucky”) are completely unacceptable. They are beloved by the wrong kind of white people, and must be avoided at all costs.

This information is best applied when you are planning on attending a social gathering. Your t-shirt says a lot about you, and if it’s the right kind of shirt it will set white people at ease. Also, asking a white person “where did you get that shirt?” will allow them to tell you a detailed story about how they acquired it. This will enable them to assert why their shirt has a higher ranking than yours and they won’t view you as a threat.

Never underestimate the importance of t-shirts to white culture. It is an essential tool in determining the social rank, desirability, and value of a white person.

hstourney2.jpgThe most time and cost efficient way of gaining a white person’s trust and friendship is to talk to them about their time in high school.

Virtually every white person you meet was a nerd in a high school-it it is how they were able to get into a good arts program and law school. As such, their memories of high school are painful, but not tragic since they were able to eventually find success in the real world. Exploiting this information is your one way to ticket into the heart of a white person.

Your first priority must be to steer the conversation to the topic of high school, which is not very difficult. If you are talking about music, mention the music you think they would have liked in high school and how you were taunted for liking those bands. If you cannot properly gauge the type of music a white person liked in high school, you should always say that you were really into The Cure. All white people know that liking The Cure in high school is an invitation to be tortured by the cool kids. This will bring about instant sympathy and respect.

It is also acceptable to discuss how you were in love with a cool kid who never loved you back. For added effect, you can mention how said cool kid is now doing very poorly and that you are excited for the upcoming reunion.

If these first two points were not enough to gain an adequate level of trust, you can close the deal by saying: “I was the only <insert ethnicity> kid in Improv/on the paper/on student council.” Wait for a sympathetic look and then you will know that you have forged an unbreakable and easily exploited bond.

For maximum effectiveness, this technique should be used in a social group setting where everyone can share their stories. By guiding the conversation, you will be seen as a natural and sympathetic leader. This can be easily exploited for professional and social gain.

Note: In the rare encounter that you meet a white person who was “cool” in high school, do not panic. There is a 100% chance that one of their other cool friends sold them out in a coup for control of their social circle. Failing that, you can exploit the inherent guilt they feel about their treatment of nerds.

#82 Hating Corporations

nologo.jpgOne of the more popular white person activities of the past fifteen years is attempting to educate others on the evils of multi-national corporations. White people love nothing more than explaining to you how Wal*Mart, McDonalds, Microsoft, Halliburton are destroying the Earth’s culture and resources.

While the growth of multi-national corporations can be attributed to a number of complex social, economic and political factors, many white people prefer to take the word of two trusted sources: No Logo and AdBusters.

Published in 2000, No Logo has been responsible for more white person “enlightenment” than any book since the burning of the library at Alexandria. By reading this one magic book, white people are able to get a full grasp on the evils of multi-national corporations and then regurgitate it to friends and family.

Advanced white people will supplement No Logo with a subscription to AdBusters, where they will learn how to subvert corporate culture and return it to the masses. Specifically, this means taking ads and redoing them to give a negative message about a product. Apparently the belief is that when other people see this ad, they will be hit with an epiphany that their entire existence has been a Matrix-style manufactured universe.

If you plan to engage in lengthy conversations or get high with white people it is recommended that you read No Logo or one issue of AdBusters. Failing that, it is acceptable to buy a copy to leave on your coffee table. When white people see it, they will recognize you as someone who can see through the advertising and has a proper perspective on life.

adb_cover.jpgWhen engaging in a conversation about corporate evils it is important to NEVER, EVER mention Apple Computers, Target or Ikea in the same breath as the companies mentioned earlier. White people prefer to hate corporations that don’t make stuff that they like.

Following these simple steps can help you gain the trust and respect of white people in a relatively short period of time.

#81 Graduate School

gradstudent1.jpgBeing white means to engage in a day in, day out struggle to prove that you are smarter than other white people. By the time they reach college, most white people are confronted with the fact that they may not be as smart as they imagined.

In coffee shops, bars, and classes white people will engage in conversations about authors and theorists that go nowhere as both parties start rattling off progressively more obscure people until eventually one side recognizes one and claims a victory. By the time they graduate (or a year or two afterwards), white people realize that they will need an edge to succeed in the cut-throat world of modern white society.

That edge is graduate school.

Though professional graduate schools like law and medicine are desirable, the true ivory tower of academia is most coveted as it imparts true, useless knowledge. The best subjects are English, History, Art History, Film, Gender Studies, <insert nation> Studies, Classics, Philosophy, Political Science, <insert European nation> Literature, and the ultimate: Comp Lit. MFA’s are also acceptable.

Returning to school is an opportunity to join an elite group of people who have a passion for learning that is so great they are willing to forgo low five-figure publishing and media jobs to follow their dreams of academic glory.

Being in graduate school satisfies many white requirements for happiness. They can believe they are helping the world, complain that the government/university doesn’t support them enough, claim they are poor, feel as though are getting smarter, act superior to other people, enjoy perpetual three day weekends, and sleep in every day of the week!

After acquiring a Masters Degree that will not increase their salary or hiring desirability, many white people will move on to a PhD program where they will go after their dream of becoming a professor. However, by their second year they usually wake up with a hangover and realize: “I’m going to spend six years in graduate school to make $35,000 and live in the middle of nowhere?”

After this crisis, a white person will follow one of two paths. The first involves dropping out and moving to New York, San Francisco or their original home town where they can resume the job that they left to attend graduate school.gradstudents2.jpg

At this point, they can feel superior to graduate school and say things like “A PhD is a testament to perseverance, not intelligence.” They can also impress their friends at parties by referencing Jacques Lacan or Slavoj Žižek in a conversation about American Idol.

The second path involves becoming a professor, moving to a small town and telling everyone how they are awful and uncultured.

It is important to understand that a graduate degree does not make someone smart, so do not feel intimidated. They may have read more, but in no way does that make them smarter, more competent, or more likable than you. The best thing you can do is to act impressed when a white person talks about critical theorists. This helps them reaffirm that what they learned in graduate school was important and that they are smarter than you. This makes white people easier to deal with when you get promoted ahead of them.

#80 The Idea of Soccer

soccer.jpgMany white people will tell you that they are very into soccer. But be careful, it’s a trap.

If you then attempt to engage them about your favorite soccer team or talk about famous moments in soccer history, you are likely to be met with blank stares. This is because white people don’t actually enjoy watching soccer, they just like telling their friends that they are into it.

In fact, the main reason white people like soccer is so they can buy a new scarf. As you may or may not know, many soccer teams issue special scarves, and white people cannot get enough of them!

Most white people choose a favorite soccer team based on either a study abroad experience or a particularly long vacation to Europe or South America. When they return, they like to tell their friends about how great “football” is and that they are committed to ‘getting more into’ now that they have returned home.

Some white people take this charade so far as to actually play in adult soccer leagues or attend a local professional match.

The best method for exploiting this is to ask a white person who their favorite football team is and how they came to be fans. This will allow them to tell you about their time abroad and feel as though they have impressed you with their knowledge. Once they have finished talking, it is acceptable to ask for favors.

Note: Europeans are actually into Soccer and are exempt from this entry, however they are free to use it to their advantage when in North America.

#79 Modern Furniture

When white people envision their dream home, a key part of the fantasy involves a least one piece of furniture designed by a famous architect from the 1930s.

Architects like Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier designed iconic modern furniture that has inspired virtually everything made by Ikea and Design Within Reach, both of which are key suppliers of furniture to white people.

But as with all things, white people will do whatever it takes to secure authenticity including paying thousands of dollars for a small piece of furniture.

If they are able to acquire this prized furniture, they will forever refer to it only by the designers name. “I spend hours in the van der Rohe, just looking through these beautiful books of his work.”

Referring to a white person’s expensive chair as a ‘chair’ is considered poor form and will likely result in a loss of trust and/or respect.

The best strategy  for avoiding this faux pas is to look for the most uncomfortable chair in a white person’s home and ask “who designed that?” If they say “Ikea” or “Design within Reach” you can call it a chair, otherwise refer to it only by the name they give you.

It should also be noted that many white people are unable to acquire this furniture, but that does not mean you cannot use this information to your advantage.

In situations where you need to improve your connection with a white person, just mention how you hope to be successful enough to one day afford an original piece of furniture by <insert obscurely named architect>. If they have heard of the designer they will nod in agreement, if they have not, they will also nod in agreement and make a note to look it up later.

In either case, your status will rise.

#78 Multilingual Children

All white people want their children to speak another language. There are no exceptions. They dream about the children drifting in between French and English sentences as they bustle about the kitchen while they read the New York Times and listen to Jazz.

As white people age, they start to feel more and more angry with their parents for raising them in a monolingual home. At some point in their lives, most white people attempt to learn a second language and are generally unable to get past ordering in a restaurant or over-pronouncing a few key words. This failure is not attributed to their lack of effort, but rather their parents who didn’t teach them a new language during their formative years.

White people believe that if they had been given French language instruction when they were younger, their lives would have turned out very differently. Instead of living in the US, they would be living and working abroad for the United Nations or some other organization with a headquarters in Switzerland or The Hague.

Generally, white people prefer their children to speak French. Advanced white people will actually spend outrageous amounts of money to send their children to a Lycee or Ecole Francaise. But the vast majority will abandon their dreams when they realize that need a second mortgage so their child can have a better study abroad experience in France.

Languages such as German, Spanish, Swedish, or Italian are also acceptable, but are considered to be poor substitutes (especially Spanish). At the time of writing, it is still considered expert-level white person behavior to have white children speaking Asian and African languages.

There is only one way to use this information to your advantage: speaking another language means that white people are more likely to want to have children with you. It is seen as a cheaper alternative to language schools.

#77 Musical Comedy

One of the more interesting things about White people is that they love singing comedians.

This style of humor involves a person or group singing a song but rather than singing about something serious, it has funny lyrics. It’s not any more complicated than that, but white people can’t get enough of it. Weird Al Yankovich, Tenacious D, Sarah Silverman (sometimes), Flight of the Conchords, Dennis Leary, and Adam Sandler are all excellent examples of the genre.

It’s a pretty good idea because when you have jokes that aren’t that great and music that isn’t that great, you can mix them together and create something that will entertain white people.

So how you can use this knowledge to your advantage?

If you find yourself at a corporate retreat where you have to put on a skit for the other employees in your office, it’s always a good idea to suggest doing a funny song. The rest of your group will get very excited and start work immediately on some clever lyrics. Do not worry about the music part, if you have more than two white males on your team, it is certain that one of them can play the guitar.

#76 Bottles of Water

Water seems like a fairly simple concept. You turn on the tap, put glass underneath, and drink. Sadly, it is not this simple for white people.

On the whole, they are unable to put a glass under a tap and just drink. In fact, this is such a strange concept that the city of New York had to launch a rather large PR campaign to show white people that it was possible to actually drink the water that comes out of the tap!

Up until this point, white people were consuming most of their water in the form of expensive bottles like Fiji, Aquafina and Dasanai. To this day, many white people continue to get their water in this fashion, and it is important to be aware about how your choice of water can say a lot about who you are.

Logically, you would assume that drinking the most expensive premium bottled water (Fiji and Voss) would be enough to show the world that you are too good for tap water. And a few years ago, you would have been right. But lately, advanced white people have been getting very upset about all of the waste that comes with drinking 15-20 bottles per week.

The leading edge of white people have started to use sturdier, refillable bottles. But do not assume this is from the tap. Most white people need to run their water through some sort of filter (Brita or PUR) before they put it into their bottle. This allows them to feel good about using a refillable bottle, but it also makes it more complicated, which they also like.

Previously, the gold standard was the Nalgene bottle, however recent studies have shown the plastic can leak toxins into the water. Currently, white people on the cutting edge are really into metal bottles of water with a twist cap. It is recommended that you buy one of these as soon as possible.

Having one will give you precious leverage over any white person who is drinking from a plastic bottle. “Oh bottled water? really? I mean it’s cool, but I kind of thought you cared about the earth.” If you see someone drinking a Fiji water, you do have the opportunity to go in for the kill. “Do you know that your bottle of water has a bigger carbon footprint than me? I think they were originally going to call it ‘aboriginal blood’ but that bottle was as close as they could get. You know, legally.”

Again, this should only be used in extreme situations.

Following your confrontation, the white person is likely to have a metal bottle just like yours. If this happens, there will be an implicit pact whereby they will do favors for you provided you do not tell everyone they got their bottle after you.

NOTE: whoever makes the metal bottles did not pay for the link.  They just had the best pictures.

Often times, white people get frustrated with the state of their country. They do not like the President, or Congress, or the health care system, or the illegal status of Marijuana. Whenever they are presented with a situation that seems unreasonable to them, their first instinct is to threaten to move to Canada.

For example, if you are watching TV with white people and there is a piece on the news about that they do not agree with, they are likely to declare “ok, that’s it, I’m moving to Canada.”

Though they will never actually move to Canada, the act of declaring that they are willing to undertake the journey is very symbolic in white culture. It shows that their dedication to their lifestyle and beliefs are so strong, that they would consider packing up their entire lives and moving to a country that is only slightly different to the one they live in now.

Within white culture, it is agreed upon that if Canada had better weather it would be a perfect place.

Being aware that this information can be used quite easily to gain the trust of white people. Whenever they say, “I’m moving to Canada,” you must immediately respond with “I have relatives in Canada.”

They will then expect you to tell them about how Canada has a perfect healthcare system, legalized everything, and no crime. Though not true, it will reassure them that they are making the right choice by saying they want to move there.

But be warned, they will reference you in future conversations and possibly call on you to settle disputes about Canadian tax rates. So use this advice only if you plan to do some basic research.

Note: Canadian white people threaten to move to Europe.

Note: Europeans are unable to threaten to move anywhere.

#74 Oscar Parties

One of the best places to gain a white person’s trust is at an Oscar party. An invitation to one these parties is basically your “foot in the door”.

Vocabulary is one of the first things to be aware of at an Oscar party. Never say “movie”, always say “film” and know which awards use the term “Best” and which ones use “Outstanding Achievement”. Saying “I hope Atonement wins Best Art Direction” will guarantee that you won’t be invited next year.

Attire is very important as well. Either dress in an fancy suit / gown or wear something that relates to one of the films nominated for Best Picture. So for the 2008 Oscar Party it might be best to put a pillow under your shirt and come as a pregnant teenager in tribute to Juno (by no means should anyone bring an actual pregnant teenager). You can impress white people even further by bringing in a food or drink item that relates to a film. Again using Juno as an example, if you were to come to the party with jugs of SunnyD, it would highlight your keen observation of detail when it comes to watching films. Then they will see that you watch films the same way that they do. Also be prepared to be involved in an Oscar Pool, but make sure you don’t win. If you do, just say that you were lucky.

However all of this preparation will mean nothing if one does not act during the most important part of the night: when the nominees are read for Best Foreign Film. At this point someone will get angry and state that some movie that no one has heard of, was snubbed. When this happens just nod and agree. Mention that it sounds interesting and that you will watch it tomorrow, even if you have already seen it and know that its boring.

Basically what separates Oscar Night from other party nights is that it allows white people to express themselves through their tastes in film. If they see that you are someone who agrees with a majority of their opinions, then they will be your friend and provide you with ample opportunities to sip wine and attend film festivals together