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Random Thoughts (Blog)

Clearly, I am a White People

Posted on September 19, 2010 at 10:40 AM

Much like being way late to the party when I discovered the hilarity which is the "featured creatures" of PeopleofWalmart.com, I have stumbled across another brilliant Website/blog yesterday that I thought I would share. Now, this guy has already amassed more than 71 MILLION page views and has even been given a book deal (oh, that I should be discovered!), so it is quite likely that some of you are already familiar with stuff white people like.

 

For the rest of you, let me share some of Christian Lander's briliance and invite you to take a look for yourselves. He has compiled a list of 134 items (to date) that are devastatingly accurate in their assessment of what White People do enjoy doing, talking about or associating themselves with. It is written in the totally hilarious style of a non-White People looking to befriend or get better acquainted with or curry favor from said White People. (Lander is actually quite white himself.)

 

And going through his list, it’s clear that he has totally nailed me, and that I am, indeed, a White People. Here’s a sampling of things that I, you, we do indeed like. Please do yourself the favor of visiting his site and let me know where Lander totally nailed you!

 

Coffee (#1 on the list) - There is no doubt that white people love coffee. Yes, it’s true that asians like iced coffee and people of all races enjoy it. But I promise you that the first person at your school to drink coffee was a white person. You could kind of tell they didn’t enjoy it, but they did it anyways until they liked it. If you want to go for extra points – white people really love FAIR TRADE coffee, because paying the extra $2 means they are making a difference.

 

(Totally guilty here...in fact I have a blog category titled "Coffee" and as I'm writing this I am indeed, drinking a Fair Trade bean from World Market.)

 

Wes Anderson Movies (#10) - White people love Wes Anderson movies more than they love their kids. If a white guy takes a white girl to a Wes Anderson movie on their first date, and neither of them have seen it, they will immediately commence a relationship that is reflected in songs by Ryan Adams and Bright Eyes. Wes Anderson movies have this way of being sort of funny and a little clever, so white people in the audience will laugh like crazy. Also, if they don’t get the joke and other white people start laughing, they’ll all join in.

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004) “I know a lot of people said they didn’t like this film, but I thought it was fantastic.” (Note: it is acceptable to be critical of this movie).

 

(Uh, yeah. I love Wes Anderson, though I did put Darjeeling Limited on my Top 10 WORST list. However Rushmore, Royal Tenenbaums, and Bottle Rocket? Brilliant!)

 

Gifted Children (#16) - White people love “gifted” children, do you know why? Because an astounding 100% of their kids are gifted! Isn’t that amazing? I’m pretty sure the last non-gifted white child was born in 1962 in Reseda, CA. Since then, it’s been a pretty sweet run.But wait, aren’t there white people who aren’t doctors or lawyers, or even all that smart?

Well, here is another one of those awesome white person win-win situations.Because if a white kid gets crappy grades and can’t seem to ever do anything right in school, they are still gifted! How you ask? They are just TOO smart for school. They are too creative, too advanced to care about the trivial minutiae of the day to day operations of school.

 

(Lauryn is definitely keeping the pretty sweet run alive!)

 

Microbreweries (#23) - White people don’t like stuff that’s easy to acquire. Beer is no exception. So when they need a beer, they turn to microbrews who seem to be located almost exclusively in New England, Ontario, Quebec and Colorado. Being able to walk into a bar and order a beer that no one has heard of makes white people feel good about their alcohol drinking palate. Also of note: most white people want to open a microbrewery at some point. One that uses organic hops.

 

(See numerous posts on Gordon Biersch and Stone Brewery.)

 

Wine (#24) - There are a lot of cultures that like wine, but the way white people like wine is on a whole different level.

Within white culture, you are expected to know what a good wine is, what wine is not acceptable to like, and the names of prominent wine growing regions. If they are exposed as not being knowledgeable, they will look like fools and their peers will consistently make jokes about them liking Boone’s Farm, Thunderbird, Steeler, or Lakeport. This humiliation can crush a white person for years. When a white person offers you wine, you take a small sip and then say “ooh, that’s nice.

 

(Acceptable wines are red, and to a lesser degree full bodied whites. And the wine should now fruit name in the title such as Blackberry, or Strawberry. Preferably wine will also taste like it is being sucked out of a new French Oak barrel.)

 

80s Night (#29) - If you ever find yourself wanting to take your relationship with white people to the next level, one of the best places to meet a potential partner is at any 80s night event in your local city. White people cannot get enough of 80s music, partially out of nostalgia, and partially since it was the last time that pop music wasn’t infused with hip-hop or R n’ B stylings. Artists like Joy Division, New Order and Elvis Costello were all pretty well respected and had solid runs at the charts. Also, less respected artists like Wham, Rick Astley and Cameo are still easy for white people to dance to.

 

(While I've never hosted and/or attended an 80s night event, it DOES sound like awesome fun. And I am a big Elvis Costello fan. In fact, the majority of music that I like would fit nicely into an 80s playlist.)

 

Arrested Development (#38 ) – Even though most white people prefer to say that they don’t watch television, one thing they agree on is that Arrested Development was the best show on TV. They love it so much!

They love it for a number of reasons. Firstly, since the show was cancelled before it jumped the shark, it’s effectively like a rocker that dies at 27. Also, the show got terrible ratings, meaning that it wasn’t ‘mainstream,’ which makes white people love it unilaterally. They also love it because there are a few references to white popular culture, and if there is one thing that white people love, it’s cultural references that they understand.

 

(Ah, Arrested, you left us too soon! You and your irony and awesome call-back and call-forward jokes. You shall be missed!)

 

Netflix (#39) - White people are absolutely crazy for Netflix for a number of reasons. Firstly, because all of them are convinced that there is a global conspiracy to keep good, independent, groundbreaking film from mainstream distribution (multiplexes, blockbuster, etc). To them, Netflix (in spite of being a for profit company) is a brand new way for independent filmmakers to find an audience. By subscribing, white people believe that they are changing the film industry, supporting innovation, and contributing to a cultural revolution in film.

 

(Hi, I'm John and I've been Netflixing since 1998.)

 

Apple Products (#40) - Plain and simple, white people don’t just like Apple, they love and need Apple to operate.

On the surface, you would ask yourself, how is that white people love a multi-billion dollar company with manufacturing plants in China, mass production, and that contributes to global pollution through the manufacture of consumer electronic devices? Simple answer: Apple products tell the world you are creative and unique. They are an exclusive product line only used by every white college student, designer, writer, English teacher, and hipster on the planet. Apple products also come with stickers. Some people put them on their computer, some people put them on windows, but to take it to the pinnacle of whiteness, you need to put the Apple sticker in the rear window of your Prius, Jetta, BMW, Subaru 4WD Station Wagon or Audi. You then need to drive to a local coffee shop (Starbucks will do in a pinch) and set up your apple for the world to see. Thankfully, the Apple logo on the back will light up! So even in a dark place, people can see how unique and creative you (and the five other people doing the exact same thing) truly are!

 

(I have often written that I'm not cool enough to actually own an iPhone. Sadly, most of the products I review require PC programming and I'm just NOT going to buy the more expensive Mac so I can then turn around and buy Boot Camp AND a copy of Windows. However, there is always a twinge of jealousy when I see someone popping open their sleek MacBook. But at least I have myPad now.)

 

Sushi (#42) - Regardless if you are vegetarian, vegan, or just guilty about eating meat, all white people love Sushi. To them, it’s everything they want: foreign culture, expensive, healthy, and hated by the ‘uneducated.’ But there are different levels of white person Sushi love. At the bottom are the spicy tuna/california roll eaters. These are the people who get their fix at places named “Rock And Roll!” “Magic Sushi Company,” or Trader Joes-type supermarkets. Often times, this sushi isn’t the most authentic, but white people can’t get enough! So, how can this information be turned into personal gain?

White people are obsessed with finding good sushi, therefore if you offer to take them to ‘the best sushi place’ in town, you are sure to have them accept.

 

(You can see my post "how to say I'm gay at a sushi restaurant" but my best sushi experience was with Mike "Sparky" Detmer from Niles. That is one White People that knows his sushi! And if you can take a White Person to a place where they will actually make fresh wasabi at tableside, you will give that White Person a story to tell for many years to come!)

 

Living by the Water (#51) - It is hardly a secret that all white people love being near water. And why wouldn’t they? It has so many of the activities that they love to do: swimming, kayaking, canoeing, sailing, and it’s a perfect place to read next to.

But before we move on, let’s not gloss over that last point. White people love to be near a body of water so they can read a book, while sitting nearby. The process of reading is somehow heightened through the process of doing it near some water. Extreme reading! To a white person, a view of water from your house is the greatest achievement in life. And you should remember this when discussing your hopes and dreams with white people. It is also important that you choose a water sport (swimming, fishing, kayaking, etc) that you pretend to like.

 

(The opening sentence is SO me. I like to go and lay BY our pool so that I can read. I don't actually like to go INTO the pool, but the reading enjoyment is definitely heightened by being NEXT to the pool. It is difficult to explain; except to other White People.)


Juno (#57) - Juno, starring Halifax’s Ellen Page, is a critically acclaimed comedy about a wise cracking teenager, dealing with an unexpected pregnancy. As 2007′s Indie hit, it is alternative mainstream and white people love it when low budget movies do well, even though the $7 million budget is enough to feed thousands of villages in East Africa for a year. White people, especially ones over 30, also love movies that take them back to a time when there was zero hip hop influence in white high schools. So although the character of Juno and her high school are very unrealistic, older people identify with her and wish that their unappreciative children would be more like her.

 

(Ellen Page was perfectly snarky and ironic, but I think she needed Michael Cera and Diablo Cody's lightning-fire dialog to make the whole thing... Uh, yeah. I liked Juno.)

 

Knowing What’s Best for Poor People (#62) - White people spend a lot of time of worrying about poor people. It takes up a pretty significant portion of their day. They feel guilty and sad that poor people shop at Wal*Mart instead of Whole Foods, that they vote Republican instead of Democratic, that they go to Community College/get a job instead of studying art at a University. It is a poorly guarded secret that, deep down, white people believe if given money and education that all poor people would be EXACTLY like them. In fact, the only reason that poor people make the choices they do is because they have not been given the means to make the right choices and care about the right things.

 

(See my post "Will consult for food" where I advise those sign people on what to write on their signs for a more effective message.)

 

Bad Memories of High School (#83) - The 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.

 

(See "The Becky Frodsham Effect" for almost an exact re-telling of this. Although, the cool kids in my high school actually DID like the Cure. Which meant that I, in fact, did not. Sigh...)

 

Children’s Games as Adults (#102) - By far, the easiest way to befriend a large group of white people is to organize and then participate in a game that is normally played by children. Unlike the practice of having their parents help with rent, this activity is a pleasant reminder to white people that they have not fully severed their ties with childhood.

When it comes to outdoor games, the most popular one remains kickball. If you do not know enough white people for a large outdoor game or do not have access to adequate space, you are not out of luck. White people are also quite fond of indoor activities, especially ones that can be easily combined with alcohol. Therefore it is a rock-solid guarantee that you will gain white friends if you suggest a social gathering where people drink and play old board games like Candyland, The Game of Life, or Mouse Trap. Just the suggestion of an event like this will get them more excited than word of a new Trader Joe’s opening.

 

(I love playing kid's games with Lauryn! Especially Candyland and Chutes and Ladders -- a game that can be maddeningly difficult to win! Damn that one chute that drops you down like 50 levels!)


Black Music that Black People don't Listen to Anymore (#116) - All 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.

 

(I actually DO think I enjoy listening to Jazz, though now I'm wondering if it is just a latent White People tendency coming out. I thought that I actually enjoyed Miles Davis' "Kind of Blue" and Bill Evan's inaccurately entitled "Everyone Digs Bill Evans" which actually should be called "Many people dig Bill Evans" or "People not named Dana might dig Bill Evans" but maybe it has all just been a clever ruse to seem more interesting and cultured to other White People. However, I will cop totally cop to pouring myself a glass of wine of chilled martini while doing it. While releaxing and leisuring on the couch. Though I would never, ever, never do it "on the Bose." But many White People would...)

 

Sea Salt (#119) - Regardless of how much a white person cooks or how long they have lived in their current home, they all have a tube of sea salt in their pantry. In fact, it’s one of the few foodstuffs that white people will actually bring with them when they move. This is because sea salt is expensive and while white people have money, they didn’t get that way by throwing away $7 packages of salt. When white people think about regular salt, all they can think about sodium and poor health. When they think about Sea Salt they think about France. So it’s no surprise that it has become so popular.

 

(I think we actually have two tubes of Sea Salt on hand right now. You know, a spare in case we use up the first one and can't run out to the store before another Sea Salting emergency comes up.)

 

Mad Men (#123) - Television is one of the keys to a white person’s heart. A proper reference to Arrested Development or the lending of a Wire Season on DVD are considered two of the easiest and most cost effective ways of getting a white person to like you. But with both of those shows off the air, their utility is being quickly depleted. Thankfully, there is Mad Men. Mad Men is a TV show on cable with low ratings, multiple awards, critical praise, and full seasons available on DVD. It’s no surprise white people love it. And while you could apply the previously mentioned techniques to gain white friendship, Mad Men has an entirely new world of possibilities.

 

(Again, so nailed here. We love Mad Men. See multiple references throughout. Although we missed the entire first season, a Kaleidescape server -- that came pre-loaded with the entire season -- brought us up to speed in a hurry and had us hooked!)

 

The Idea of Soccer (#80) and The World Cup (#133) - Many 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. Every four years the planet comes together to celebrate the World Cup and since white people make up a portion the world, they are not immune to the excitement. However, before you start planning out long watching sessions with white people you should be aware of exactly why white people get so excited about the World Cup. Though you may be waiting on bated breath for your favorite sport on a global scale, white people like the World Cup because it allows them to pretend they are European for a few weeks, and more importantly, it allows them to get drunk at odd hours. Virtually every white person you speak to about the World Cup is incapable of remembering any actual event that took place during a game but can, with near total recall, remember how they got very drunk on Sangria during a Spain-Paraguay match at five in the morning.

 

(While my post "I backwash into the World Cup" clearly states my position on soccer, as a White Person, I do love events where I can gather with other people to share in yelling and drinking. If soccer happens to be on TV at the time, then tell me who we're rooting for and VIVA LA FUTBOL!)

Categories: September 2010, Books

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5 Comments

Reply Keely
1:18 PM on September 21, 2010 
Since I see that The Nancy hasn't commented on this one yet, I'm gonna to do it for her. Something like a year or more ago, Nancy read this list and stumbled upon #33 "Marijuana" and astutely quipped "Um, I'm pretty sure that black people like this too." TRUST. She called it. The Nancy has the Stuff White People Like daily calendar and has been known to dedicate pages to me, such as "Not Watching TV", "Old School Hip-Hop" and "Vintage Clothes". Yes, she has tried to convince me that I'm white. Thankfully, I have the Urban Dictionary daily calendar to counteract her onslaughts. From my calendar, we have learned that what I really am is a "butterfaith" (categorically perfect...except that religion gets in the way) who's often "just selling popcorn" "like it was my job". Tru dat - I got nothin' but "831" for that girl!
Reply The Nancy
10:38 PM on September 21, 2010 
Keely 831-2! John, the 2011 calendar will be available soon.
Reply Josephine
1:19 PM on September 26, 2010 
I'm surprise singing karaoke to Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" isn't on the list.
Reply Lauren
3:15 PM on September 30, 2010 
Great. I don't partake in any of those things (except fondness for AD).
I must be Asian since I only drink Iced Chai. Plus, we can't get enough of 80's music either (like white people).
Reply John Sciacca
3:21 PM on September 30, 2010 
Yay! Lauren, Lauren Ruffrage, Keely's Friend is back! The empty void in my life is once again temporarily plugged!