Archive for July, 2009

I asked her what tribe you with, red dot or feather? Actually, I didnt, that would have sounded mad racist

I asked her "what tribe you with, red dot or feather?" Actually, I didn't, that would have sounded mad racist

So as you may know, your boy B St. Arruh is getting a little long in the tooth. Not the young buck I once was. I’m one of those people who now have to ask others what popular slang means, and I think it sounds silly, because back in my day, we called it….And then will misuse it in a sentence. “Yep. really wavey right now. I’m on a boat. It’s pretty nice.” Yeah, I’m that guy. And as with most guys my age, we start thinking about marriage more and more seriously. Fortunately, there’s been no shortage of news in the media related to marriage in the past couple weeks. So the next couple issues, we’re going to delve a little further into this marriage thing. There’s been some good stuff out there as far as whether men really want to get married in the first place, why some people have such miserable marriages, and of course, why Richard Jefferson skipped town on his little bride. We’ll get into that later.

But what about actually getting into a marriage. I mean is dating the way we go about it really the best way? You put on your good shirt. Grab your boys and go out to whatever the happening nightspot is, drink lots of alcohol, flirt with women, and then go out on dates with them. You start having sex, and she asks where this is going. Not wanting to give up easy access to sex as you please, you decide you can deal with her personality and on balance like her as a person, so you make her your girlfriend. You keep at this for however long, until the shine wears off and one of you decides it’s time to head for greener pastures, leaving the other heartbroken and destroyed. Cars are keyed, vases are thrown, but after a brief mourning period, you rinse and repeat. You do this for a while until you’re too old to go to those same clubs and you don’t understand the slang anymore and the parental units start dropping hints that they’d like a grandchild to spoil. And by then you happen to be dating someone, and they pretty much meet your qualifications. You can overlook whatever (insert bad habit, crippling personality flaw, disgusting physical feature, etc here). And there you go.

I was having dinner with some corporate folks the other day and my econ professor was there, and somewhere into the third bottle of wine, we got into the topic of marriage and he suggested we try the Indian method of marriage. As an economist, he was familiar with the divorce rates, and thought it would be a perfect solution to the marriage woes in our country. Woah, woah, woah. Arranged marriages? That goes against everything that’s good and right with this country! It’s anti-American, anti freedom, and anti-apple pie! We don’t want your Al Qaeda marriages over here! But then, one of my friends, who is Indian, explained what actually happens. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not so much that parents barter their daughter away for a negotiated number of cows, and delightful silk Saaris, so much as they act as sort of an advanced level matchmaker. When their yung’uns are of marriage age, they find out who in their circle has a similar age yung’un and they set them up on a date. The two actually do in fact date, but they do it a hyperaccelerated velocity compared to the American manner. The first date is often something akin to a pre merger due dilligence meeting. Making sure the other person is of the same bent, social class, and general wavelength. You find out what their occupation is, how much money they make, how many kids they want. Things that we think of as terribly rude to bring up on a first date, but think about, it. I mean these are all dealmakers or dealbreakers in a marriage, so why would we continue on if the answers are wrong. If you make it to the hird date, your fourth is pretty much picking out rings at Zales. From an NYMAg article a few years ago from an Indian woman:

I’ve never heard from an Indian man the New York beg-off phrase “I don’t think I’m ready for a relationship right now. I have a lot of things going on in my life.”Indian men also seem to share my belief that Westerners have made the progression toward marriage unnecessarily agonizing. Neal, a 35-year-old Indian lawyer I know, thinks it’s absurd how a couple in America can date for years and still not know if they want to get married. “I think I would only need a couple of months to get to know a girl before I married her,” he says.

In more traditional arranged marriages—which are still very much alive and well in India—couples may get only one or two meetings before their wedding day. In America, and in big Indian cities, a couple may get a few months before they are expected to walk down the aisle, or around the fire, as they do seven times, in keeping with Hindu custom.

But I’m not sure how well that would work out here. I think to some degree Indians are much more pragmatic. They get married because it’s the thing to do to start a family and they learn to love each other. They go into marriage seeing it as a duty and something to work at, whereas we have these hollywood-fueled dreams of passion, romance, and the best sex we’ve ever had with someone who’s more attractive, smarter, and sexier than anyone else in the world. I’ll talk about how narcissism kills relationships later. But for the purpose of this conversation, it means we’re always on the hunt for a better deal. We dismiss people from our relationship lives for the most insignificant of reasons. Too short, too fat, not good looking enough, doesn’t dress well enough, yada ya yada ya. If the dude ain’t Barack, and the chick ain’t Beyonce, we throw them back into the river because there’s always the chance something better will come along.

Latika!

Latika!

For some Indians, the conundrum is exacerbated by the fact that our parents had no choice for a partner; the only choice was how hard they’d work to be happy. My father saw my mother once before they got married. He loves to shock Americans by recounting how he lost sight of her at a bazaar the day after their wedding and lamented to himself that he would never find her again, as he’d forgotten what she looked like. So while we, as modern Indian women, eschew the idea of marrying without love, the idea that we’re being too picky tends to nag even more than it otherwise would.

What I do like about the idea though, is the ruthless efficiency of it. We’ve all wasted time, years maybe even, dealing with a person who we knew we wouldn’t end up with. Is this not the definition of insanity? I mean, I’ve done it. It seemed fine at the time. It was comfortable, and you like the person well enough, and you don’t want to hurt their feelings. I broke up with a girl once, and she couldn’t understand why. We had such a great time and all, but I explained that I didn’t see a future. She was like, “well, it’s not like we have to get married or anything.” And I started thinking, well if I’m going to not date other people, and we both know this isn’t going to work out, then well, what are we doing? So, from now on, I’m going Indian dating. I’m only going to date women I could see myself getting married to. If not, I will explain to them that their other options are friendship or casual sex, or neither, and they can go about their business while I try to find a more suitable wife. Who will join me?

Thts fried chicken, curried chicken, damn Im getting fat.

Tht's fried chicken, curried chicken, damn I'm getting fat.

So in the this episode of Romance and Finance, we’re going to focus on the neverending obsession we have with golddiggers. As much as we may say we hate them, let’s face it, we love talking about them. Without gold diggers, where would our economy be? What incentive would there be for men to work? To innovate? To buy Ferrarris? To sack Egypt? None. Before I begin today’s extrapolation, I want to share with you a little post from our friends at Dating a Banker Anonymous:

Dear Daba Girls,

I am a potential FBF (Finance Boyfriend), I am in my mid/late-twenties working as a trader for a bank in Zurich, which is certainly not as big or as happening as New York however, having lived in a big city, I like it here. The ski slopes are only an hour away during winter and in the summer, weekend trips around Europe are all too easy to organize. Bearing all of this in mind; there is still one aspect of my life which is incomplete and that is: I am still a “potential FBF”. I am having trouble finding a decent DABA girl to share it all with. I lie awake at night dreaming of being mentioned (anonymously, and although this may defeat the object of the whole exercise in the first place, she would of course tell me all about it afterwards and we would both laugh about it…) on your website by a young lady who desperately needs help trying to figure out new and exciting ways of spending my money and of prying me away from the office.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I lack attention from the fairer of the species, it just so happens that I am unable to tell the difference between those that are truly worth it (DABA Girls) and those that aren’t (Bottle-popping girls).  So for the sake of “potential FBFs” (can you think of a better term for that one?) around the world could you please give me some pointers as to how to tell the difference between the two?  How do I know that the girl I may be chatting to at the bar is actually a complete sleaze who is just in it short-term for the cash?  And more importantly, how do I send out the right signals to the girls that are actually worth it?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Yours truly,

Timo

Ah, finally we get some love from Switzerland, where the locals love cheese with holes, classic timepieces, and chocolate as much as we do. Not to mention the huge vaults filled to the brim with gold.  Don’t despair Timo. We can help.

Spotting a true DABA Girl is as easy as ABC (I’m watching the Michael Jackson tribute so just go with it). Take a cue from MJ and be on the look out for:

A: Authenticity. A true DABA Girl is authentic in all that she does. Her boobs, laugh, and intentions are real. Her intentions with you, or any guy, may include a little somethin’ somethin’ about a man that can ‘provide a certain lifestyle’ but she will be honest and upfront about it. On the other hand, if she tells you she is just looking for a soul mate and then claims to love action movies, you have encoutnered a bottle poppin’ girl charading as DABA Girl and your B.S. meter should go off.

B: Boyish charm. I’m talking about her alpha personality. A DABA Girl doesn’t need you to order for her (but you should), she’s self sufficient, opinionated, and confident. Beware, she’s not going to let you get away with much. Make sure that your information on the late Mr. McNamara’s career is factual (she’ll know if you’re just regurgitating yesterday’s article from the Times).

C: Coolness. A DABA girl isn’t desperate. She doesn’t care if she meets you or not. Most likely she’s dating three other guys already. You’re going to have to approach her.

Which brings me to these easy steps:

1: You’re zeroed in on your girl. Whether you’re at a bar and she’s laughing away with her friends or sitting at a cafe reading Isadore Sharp’s Four Seasons send over a drink or stop and say hi. Simple as that. Warning: DABA Girls are not girl haters and therefore do travel in packs.  To get to her you may have to approach a group of 4+ women. If this intimidates you, you are not FBF material, and you should stick to bottle poppin girls who generally travel in two’s to avoid competition.

2: Be calm and confident. A DABA Girl wants to meet a guy who is uber confident and won’t be intimidated by her. Don’t be a jerk, but a sprinkling of cockiness never hurt.

3: If you click, ask her if she would like to get together some time. Call the next day (note: I said call, don’t text or email). Take her on a date that you would like to go on. Don’t take her to Benihanas because you want to make sure she’s not into you just for your money. Don’t take her to a five star restaurant, you’ll look like you’re trying too hard. Take her to a restaurant that you’ve been dying to try or one that you love.

If you are indeed the potential FBF you claim to be, we assume you can take it from here.

See, I wanted to start this out on a nice, conciliatory note. A nice man with some money wants to find him a nice girl who will appreciate his money. Everyone wins. Hooray! Of course, that’s not how it seems to go down in my little world. For the most part, whenever the topic comes up during dinner, it quickly devolves into men describing every woman who wants more than a two-piece from Popeye’s as a gold digger and the women accusing the men of being cheap bastards who are too poor by several hundreds of thousands of dollars to even show up on any self-respecting gold digger’s radar. Which begs the question: What is a gold-digger? I mean I always thought it was fairly self-evident but apparently I’m wrong. Is Kelis a gold-digger? Or just a woman scorned who deserves a decent severance package after what her husband put her through? What about Heather Mills? Is it her fault she got married in a 50/50 jusrisdiction? More to the point, what about less celebrated, everyday women who have differing opinions on their financial responsibility within a relationship? Or who have an income standard for the men they date? Are they filthy gold digging whores? Or just women with standards? With that in mind, I’ll give you my take on the varying levels of diggery

Need I even add a caption?

Need I even add a caption?

1. Professional Gold Digger The Bad News: This is the type of woman who has the skills, mentality, and charm to rape your pockets. We’re talking ad infinetum legally enforced payments here. The Good News: She could care less about your broke ass. Unless you’re a banker, ballplayer, or some other level of highly compensated dude, she’s not interested. Your splurges are her everyday trick-off money. She’s been in a helicopter before, likely had sex in one. She not only has been in a Ferrari before, she knows how to work the paddle-shift and can parallel park three models perfectly (She has trouble with the Enzo because of the rear visibility). She doesn’t need a job. Why would she waste her time working some 9-5 slaveship when she could be shopping, starting an ill-conceived clothing line or running her man’s fraudulent tax shelter nonprofit foundation. When women berate men for worrying about gold-diggers because their incomes don’t qualify, this is the woman they’re talking about. When she’s with you, she’ll spend your cheese. When she’s not with you anymore, she’ll STILL be spending your cheese. For all intents and purposes, this chick really isn’t in the conversation because she really is out of your league.

You aint quite in the majors yet, baby

You ain't quite in the majors yet, baby

2. Amateur Gold Digger This is where we start getting into the danger zone. Unlike the professional gold-digger, the amateur doesn’t do this full-time. She keeps a job or income stream going because she recognizes the cyclical nature of gold diggery. Often one of these jobs or hobbies will include either a position which keeps her in close contact with rich men or some sort of modeling/stripping gig to keep her attractiveness front and center for those that would trick.

See me, rich man, see me!

See me, rich man, see me!

As such, her standards are lower. While she may be date the same dudes as the professional GD, she’s missing either the looks, skill, or mentality to convert this into a full time occupation. She may even be conflicted about being a gold digger and secretly want to be an independent woman. She never pays for dates, but will happily accept drinks from men she is completely uninterested in at the nightclub/lounge. She knows all the promoters and never waits in line.Occasionally, these women will go through  period of time of rejecting their diggerness, choosing to grow their hair natural, compose poetry, and smoke weed after being emotionally hurt by a rich man. This phase will lapse quickly as she realizes them chewstick/backpack dudes are every bit as shady, but all she gets out of them is a vegetarian meal at some organic restaurant and some brick-pack Georgia dirt weed. Weave and Louis Bag status will return quickly. This woman often equates her worth as a person with what she can get out of men and is prone to extreme moodiness and periods of depression when the money isn’t flowing at her and euphoria and happiness when she is receiving a lot of attention.

If I show him Im still flexible, hell buy me a drink

If I show him I'm still flexible, he'll buy me a drink

3.LeechProbably the most prevalent of the gold-digging species, this bitch is just cheap. She has a job but likely spends a good deal of her discretionary income on frivolous things. She despises being called a gold digger and will be the most vocal opponent of the use of the term in describing women. She justifies her bent by using cliches like “I’m spoiled” and “I like the finer things in life.” She enjoys the attention of men, and often engages in diggerish pursuit more for the sport of it than for any legitimate financial gain. While she talks a good game about getting money from men, she usually lacks the discipline to move up to professional status. Often, this is a phase enjoyed by women in their early 20’s.  She is usually getting boned by a broke ass dude on the side who’s either working on a record deal or doing some other economically irrelevant shit. This means that she can string men along for free dinners and gifts for quite some time without giving up any ass as she has a consistent dick supply. As a pragmatist, she recognizes that she needs to keep her shit somewhat together and that she will likely not be able to maintain a lifestyle off of a man forever. She is quick to call a dude cheap and argue that she could pay for some shit herself, but never does. If she takes leftovers home, it’s very likely that her producer boyfriend will enjoy them on your dime. Her monetary standards are fairly low and typically consist of subsistence items like dinners, groceries, and occasionally a nice gift. As such, these women are extremely dangerous to men making below six figures as they can quickly drain away income that could be invested. These are the kind of broads whose bladders be acting up right at the exact moment the bill’s about to arrive at a group dinner.

Now on to the second point: Why do men have such a harsh reaction to gold diggers? Two reasons. The first is that men ARE their money. That’s what we’re celebrated for, recognized for, and put on the cover of Forbes for. No one celebrates Diddy for his talent. They celebrate him because he’s paid. Gold diggers are by nature, a threat to that money, whether via a professional taking millions in the divorce and draining you monthly with alimony, or by a leech siphoning off what little entertainment cash you have. The second is that while we ARE to the public, our money, we’re still at the end of the day who we are as most importantly as people. We want people to like us for who we are, not for what we can do for them. That’s why a surprising amount of rich men end up marrying fairly plain or non-gorgeous women. It’s fine to trick off some dough to fuck a dime, but almost no one wants to wake up in the morning, look at the woman sleeping next to them, and know that if this bed in this bedroom in this four bedroom home in this gated community were in a one bedroom apartment in a sketchy neighborhood, they wouldn’t be here. That’s just not a good feeling. That’s why you so many men who have made it big also harbor a slight disgust toward the women who who approach them now. The “Back then” story is real to a lot of men, because we know at our core, we’re the same person, it’s just the circumstances have changed. So if someone wasn’t interested in you then, is it that they’re interested in you know, or interested in what you can provide. No one likes being used. I imagine it’s the same story to a lot of women who have lost a ton of weight. Now why we still act a monkey for y’all and try to impress you with our degrees and earning power given all this, I don’t know. I guess we’re conflicted too.

I be popping bottles, Ma! But dont expect me to pay for dinner. That would make you a gold digger, trying to go after the money Im trying to flaunt here. Unacceptable

I be popping bottles, Ma! But don't expect me to pay for dinner. That would make you a gold digger, trying to go after the money I'm trying to flaunt here. Unacceptable

So gosh. Folks really were feeling some kind of way about the last issue of the B St. Arrruh Chronicles. It always interests me that of almost any topic surrounding romance, the one which receives the strongest emotional reaction is finance. People go deep into their bunkers on that, and there’s usually very little compromise on the issue. Why is this so, you ask? Well, a couple things, I venture.

Whats the difference between an appelate judge and a supreme court justice? Like 30-40 million, cocksucker, beat it

""What's the difference between an appelate judge and a supreme court justice?" "Like 30-40 million, cocksucker, beat it""

1. The changing role of women in society. Let’s face it, we’re not quite sure what to make of it. By we, I mean women or men. Men don’t neccesarily know how to deal with a woman who is their financial equal or better, because that’s not really compatible with the traditional role a man being the leader in society. Money=power, so it shifts the dynamic. Women aren’t that comfortable with it either, by all measures. There are women who embrace this removal of barriers and expansion of opportunities wholeheartedly , and throw off or even look down at things considered womanly, like housewifedom or cooking and cleaning. There are also women on the end of the spectrum who want and expect a man to be the provider and will accept nothing less. Then there are women who enjoy the benefits of expanded opportunity but still want the benefits of the traditional role, and find that it’s hard having your cake and eating it too.

And Ill be goddamned if my rims aint too

"And I'll be goddamned if my rims ain't too"

Bottle Service $1500...Stuntin on you h*es, priceless! Actually, more like $2217.38 when you factor in credit card interest, bounced check fee, late fee on credit card...shit

Bottle Service $1500...Stuntin on you h*es, priceless! Actually, more like $2217.38 when you factor in credit card interest, bounced check fee, late fee on credit card...shit

2. The role of Consumption in black social life. Boy, we love money, don’t we? Actually, we must hate it as much as we love it because we give it away like it’s burning a hole in our pockets. You know where I go everytime I need a pic to make a point bout black folks’ culture of crippling consumption? ATLPics.com. The most relationshiply challenged city in America and also the gaudiest in the Southeast. Don’t know if there’s a correlation there, but if someone wants to run a regression analysis, I’m all ears. But on a macro level, Black Americans like to show off accoutrements of wealth I would argue, more than any other people in the world outside of maybe Dubai. It’s our thing. Every rap song I can think of makes at least one allusion to a name-brand product. I saw an MTV Cribs the other day where Soldjah Boy  was showing off his bedroom making a particular point to mention the fact that he was walking on a $2,000 Louis Vuitton rug and slepping on a $100,ooo Gucci bedsheet set. The “rug” he was walking on was actually a beach towel (maybe $350 max).

“Dih whut it feeyah lahk to wawk on $2,000”

Monkey. Why the obsession? My theory is because we’re so ashamed of poverty. as a Black American, you’re never more than two steps away from poverty. Not you yourself, maybe, but on any given day, if you turn on the TV, you will see someone who looks like just you who is poor. And you’re ashamed of it. Your parents may have been poor. And you’re ashamed of it. If you’re poor yourself, you’re probably ashamed of it. So you try to convince people you’re not poor by adopting what you think are the habits of the rich, and ensuring that everyone sees this. Why do you think they elevate the bottle service tables at clubs? So people can see you. Why do they put sparklers in the bottles now? So people can see you. The club owners have realized that you’re not paying to get drunk, you’re paying to have people see you being able to spend lots of money frivolously. Theories aside, it is what it is. Statistically, black males spend 32% more of their income on “visible consumerism” than whites. Argue all day about the cause, but it’s a reality.

3. Trust We don’t trust each other for shit. One of the reasons for the above issue is that we don’t trust each other to be truthful about their wealth.  So unless it’s it in the form of something we can see or feel, we don’t believe it. Warren Buffett drives a Buick and he’s worth about 50-100 Jay-Z’s on any given Sunday. But Jay-Z won’t be seen in anything less than a Maybach because if he did, we’d assume he was going broke. Shit would be all over Mediatakeout. We also don’t trust each other with our feelings. We assume bad intentions on the part of other black people until we’re proven wrong. Go ahead and walk down the street in some strange black residential neighborhood. Folks will eyeball the shit out of you because their assumption until otherwise proven wrong, is that you’re there to do them harm. Likewise, in the dating pool, many people have seen and had so much wrong done to them and others that there’s no value to be had in placing trust with another person regarding your feelings. We’ve made shady the new norm. As AllieXXX noted,

Aaaaahhh mannn! How far will men go to get woman? I don’t care what you guys say…the reason you work so hard for the flyy whips, clothes & jewelry, is to stunt and ATTRACT WOMAN. You men know good and well how we feel about wealthy men with status. Now, men being so aware of how we woman feel about powerful men, pushes some to feel like they have to put up a front. Some of you lame ass dudes front your self right into debt too, spending money that you DO NOT have. Where the FUCK do they do that at? Pshhhh, apparently all these LAMES are in our upscale night clubs every Friday & Saturday poppin mad bottles, in the latest fashions, & RENTED exotic cars. Along with all them “diamonds” in their chain, there’s always some young DUMB BITC\H trailing behind his ass because she think he got some cake.WAIT — don’t get me wrong I wont refuse a drink from yo broke ass, but I WILL keep it moving.Ive found out about a few men on the South Beach scene that aren’t what they appear to be threw coworkers …like “I dance with your baby momma, you NOT THAT NIGGA”. Ughhhh, y’all know the ones umm talking bout, the ones that claim they ‘ballinn’ yet works a whack job and stuntin with good credit. By Sunday night he done maxed out his gold card tryin’ to bag a bitch. Either that or him and his friends put their checks together for a table.LADIES BEWARE OF THE WEEKEND BALLER.

And then there’s Absolut Brooke who I mentioned in a previous post who  mentions

“I’m looking for love. Real love. Ridiculous, inconvenient, consuming, can’t-live-without-each-other love.” -Carrie Bradshaw

until then..there is louis vuitton, whom has never failed me.

Now, I’ll admit these aren’t women who are neccesarily representative of mainstream black women but their lack of faith in the opposite sex is hardly a rare concept. So then you get women who don’t trust men with their feelings and thus don’t neccesarily like or respect these men, but will accept physical consumer goods from then. And then you get men who don’t trust that the woman in question actually is interested in them for anything more than their ability to contribute physical consumer goods. Isn’t that ironic? We spend all our time trying to prove how much money we have, but then get mad at you because we think you’re only after this money we’ve spent all night trying to prove to you we have? Don’t you think? Someone tweeted today about how all her white homegirls from grad school are engaged or married but almost none of her black ones are. When it boils down to it, I think the reason we don’t is because we find it so hard to trust other black people with our feelings, lives, and futures. And why shouldn’t we? We’re a shady ass bunch of people on some level. We got Steve McNair caking up some jump-off and trying to get rid of her when the shit looks like it’s about to hit the fan. Weezy’s knocking up not only his girlfreind but his side girlfriend at the same time. Superhead’s giving brain to anyone who’ll give her a place to stay and then outing them in her book for a couple bucks. Kobe’s off cheating on his wife. But a $4 million ring will make her shut the fuck up quick, won’t it? And these are our celebrities. Our role models supposedly. As Fly mentioned last week:

I was taught to allow a man to spend his money on me, because if he’s not spending it on me then I can bet that he’s spending it on some other woman (or rims or jewelry or shoes or whatever the hell else that makes these men feel flashy). Call it what you like…

So clearly she doesn’t trust this man, and guess what? He probably doesn’t trust her either. Good luck getting married, having kids and maintaining a relationship! Or, actually, maybe don’t, lest you end up like Nas and Kelis. We got Kelis trying to stick Nas for just the baby money but $15,000 in trips and entertainment a month. Shit, we got Nas cheating on his wife while she’s pregnant. And let SBW tell it:

Kelis is MARRIED to a millionaire who (allegedly) cheated on her and was abusive (that’s y she filed) an isn’t fotoing any of the expenses for his unborn child. In that situation you hit a man where it hurts – his wallet

Yup. That’s what it’s become. Ladies, we hit you where it hurts: fidelity. And you hit us where it hurts: our pockets. An eye for an eye leaves everyone blind, I guess.

Coming soon: The gold-digger issue!

I aint saying she a golddigger....but $15,000 a month for vacays and entertainment? Maybe Im suggesting, implying, leading...

I ain't SAYING she a golddigger....but $15,000 a month for vacays and entertainment? Maybe I'm suggesting, implying, leading...

Stay tuned as we break down definitevely and authoratatively the great gold digger dig off of 2009. We’ll explain the difference between a professional gold digger and a common leach, how to spot gold diggers, and how to attract gold diggers. Gold diggers, we’ll show you how to find men with loot who want to trick it on YOU! We’ll find out why everyone’s so damn paranoid about gold-diggers and why they’re far too poor to even worry about it! Ladies, we’ll discuss how you can dig for gold without the unfortunate stigma attached! Join us soon!

She was gonna get with the other black guy worth $400MM, but, oh, wait, there wasnt one

She was gonna get with the other black guy worth $400MM, but, oh, wait, there wasn't one

So yesterday on twitter, had a great little back and forth with some of the homies and homettes about paying for dates. As one might expect, the discussion split among gender lines pretty quickly. The guys all said they appreciated when a woman actually pays for a date. Not the first date, mind you, but somewhere during the courtship, it was pretty much unanimously agreed upon that it’s a good look to “get this one”. at some point. The ladies were atually a little more fractured. You had the fundamentalist hardliners, who like Hamas, refuse to compromise and believe the male should always pay. They argue that by paying for a date, the woman is:

1. Emasculating the guy, since that’s traditionally his role

“@bsleet definitely not about you being less valuable, but it is about some gender roles that predate us all. no woman in her right mind pays”

“@FarajiFTW i think your bar is set pretty low. only men who fuck with lames expect to be paid for. ..”

“@cakemama cake should not be money. let cake be how you spoil a dude with care, not how you emasculate him by paying for shit”

2. That fly, educated, fine women shouldn’t have to pay because the man will want to take care of them:

“@farajiftw at the end of the day no man expects a fine/fly/smart woman to be paying for their dates. now if she’s not fine/smart/fly…”

“@farajiftw when you know what you’re bringing to the table, you don’t pay for a dude to stick around and find out. period. only a lame pays”

3. They bring value to the table not in terms of monetary contribution, but other shit:

“@farajiftw my value is my company and these dope assed titties you ain’t seen naked yet. hate to sound prostitutional but thats the way it b”

“@FarajiFTW you don’t know what i bring. i bring some shit too the table that niggas didn’t even think to ask abt.like damn she that AND that”

@farajiftw its not about abilites, she can pay for her own meal, but would u rather her cook or u? something to b said for…

RT @CharnikaMonique:im allabout traditionas well @adwoa14 i believein him playin hisrole and meplayin mine somewomen take indepdent thng2far

But then there was the more pragmatic side. We’l call them Fatah. They’re a little less traditional and more prone to being financially invested:

@farajiftw i’ll be crucified but…any guy that i have let pay for *everything* i didnt really feel too much

Icon_lock@farajiftw never tried it…we both just took turns taking each other out…a dutch hybrid. that worked well

@adwoa14 i’d assume that most men don’t date just to have another mouth to feed…if that was a case they could just have a child

me NEVER paying is like cooking while you’re at my house and only making enough for me…it’s just rude

@adwoa14 dates too…not the first few but eventually something has to give if y’all keep on going out

I think its an interesting conversation and speaks to how the shifting role of gender in the workplace, academia, and real life is impacting dating. As far as my take, it comes from experience. My relationships in which a woman has been willing to pay for a date have given me a certain comfort level that she’s not just there for free dinners or to leach me dry. They’ve been on the whole longer and more productive relationships, and they’ve also been the ones in which I ended up comiting to and putting a title on it. The relationships in which the woman has never paid or never offered to pay were typically ended up as jump-offs or casual side deals. I also typically ended up being much more willing to invest financially in a woman who showed a willingness to do the same. It may be just a byproduct of them being more involved relationships, but they got trips, gifts, and Morton’s. The ones that never paid typically topped out at oh, maybe say Mexican Cantina. Not saying that’s the final word or everyone’s experience but that’s mine. I think there are both men and women on both sides and I respect it both. If you like it, I love it.

That said, if you’re a “traditional” woman in terms of the finances of dating and you’re in the upper income stream, you’re gloriously fucked (Assuming you’re banking on dating a black man). Here’s why. The whole women’s lib and women’s rights movement has been predicated on the advancement of women toward equality with men in terms of education and career achievement. The idea is that there should be no income differential between men and women. For the black community, we actually may have overshot. Black women may be actually wealthier and have better paying jobs than black men when taken as an aggregate. A Brookings institute study in 2005 found that the individual income differential between white men and white women ages 30-39 was almost $20,000. For Black men and black women, the difference was less than $4,000. Since we’re talking about the upper middle to capitalist class here, those numbers are going to skew differently, but let’s take a look at the education statistics:

In 2005, only 28.6 percent of Black students enrolled in master’s degree programs were male, and Black males constituted only 3.1 percent of all master’s students in the United States

Read that shit slow so it sinks in. Only 28.6% of Black Master’s students are male. That means roughly a 3:1 ratio. I hate being the guy to harp on the “shortfall” as my female friends call it. I think it’ s unfortunate, but I see lots of women making it through that and finding a man all the time. I have tons of friends with advanced degrees or bachelor’s but make advanced degree money who are single. It ain’t like they don’t exist.

Theres a brother! Nope, Indian, theres one.. no, Greek, theres one..no, janitor

There's a brother! Nope, Indian, there's one.. no, Greek, there's one..no, janitor

But here’s where the screwage comes in: If you believe in the “traditional” method of “Man always pays”, you pretty much NEED to be with a man that makes more than you. It’s really that simple. Here’s why. If you make the same amount of money as the guy you’re dating (Women’s lib worked), by engaging the traditional “man pays” model, you effectively make him the poorer party in the relationship, simply because his expenses are higher. How much this actually eats into his wealth is a direct function of how much money he makes of course, and what his other expenditures are. But if you go out twice a week during the initial courtship stage, at an average of $60/event and go out 6 weeks before you make the go/no-go decision to be in a relationship, he’s in $720. Let’s assume since this is just the courtship stage, he’ll also see other women, using the same pricing model, but less often. If he goes out with two other traditional women, maybe once every two weeks, that’s another $360. That’s a total of $1,080. Let’s say for whatever reason, the decision at the end of that 6 week period is a no-go. You decide to not get into a relationship and so the cycle gets repeated. If he really has bad luck and runs through this cycle say five times a year, that comes to $5400. Let’s also say that you and this guy have similarly active social lives. I men, you actually have to go out to meet people since there are likely few eligible blacks at your workplace and you don’t shit where you eat.  You both go out to lounges, clubs, etc. As a man, his expenses are going to be higher as well. I’d guess unscientifically, a man spends twice what a woman would have to spend to have the same time. So let’s say you spend $200/month just going out to lounges, clubs, happy hours, etc. To have the same quality of time, he’d have to pay $400. He’ll have to pay covers where you don’t, buy drinks where you don’t, etc. Now this figure varies. I know guys who spend $200 the first 45 minutes they go out and I know guys that well, they don’t go out. But let’s say the $200 differential is accurate. You both make $100,000 a year, and pay 35% in taxes, so your take home is $65,000. You effectively make $7,800 more than he does. Having kept all that dating and meeting people money in your pocket. And let’s further assume, that like most of the midde class, he basically lives this lifestyle on credit. So he’s paying let’s say 9% interest on that figure, bringing the yearly outflow with financing costs to $8,502. This money’s gotta come from somewhere. It either means his savings and investing, his home, or his car are going to be at lower levels than yours. Further making him less attractive to you. So you NEED a man that makes more money than you! Which further limits the number of men in that category. And these men are also subject to the most competition. And you’re not just competing with other advance degreed women. He can date younger women, women with bachelors, etc, while you basically can only date up. His pool is virtually unlimited, while yours is very finite.

Now, you can argue that dating doesn’t have to be expensive and there are all kinds of sweet, thoughtdul things you can do that don’t cost a lot of money. That’s nice in principle, but hard to execute. Things that are nice by their nature typically cost more. Otherwise they wouldn’t be able to justify their price tags. If an Aston wasn’t a better car than a Toyota, no one would pay the $120,000 premium to buy one. If a dinner at Morton’s wasn’t better than a dinner at Chevy’s, no one would pay the $150 premium. There’s only so many times a guy can do the whole picnic/museum/walk in the park thing without being called cheap. That’s just reality.

If it sounds like I’m putting blame on women for this situation, I’m not. I think women ave done the right thing, which is to achieve academically and pursue lucrative careers. The stats above indicate just how much many of us as black men have dropped the ball. I think it’s an utter embarrassment that we’re being so outdone by women especially in traditionally male dominated fields where we should have a natural advantage. It’s also an embarassment that we spend 32% more than white men on “visible consumption” (think clothes, shoes, cars, watches, bottle service). Even when we get to income parity, we end up keeping less because of our expense structure. I think those of us that do have some means really need to redouble our effort to try to get the next generation of black males on the right track. As a mentor to a high school kid, I take some responsibility there but I’m not doing nearly as much as I could.

If you were looking for a solution here at the end, I don’t have one. To some degree, I think the traditional gender roles of dating and the reality of black upper class demographics and economics are just too far apart. It’s essentially a crapshoot for a lot of women who are looking for this dynamic as to whether they’re able to get it. To some degree, given the above stated assumption, there’s much more of an incentive for a man to date “down” the economic spectrum than across, especially if he’s a traditional man and equates taking care of a woman financially with a man’s role in the relationship. So for a man to date “down” to the level where many professional degreed black women are simply requires earning power that very few men have, period, and then much less so in the black community.  Discuss.

Also, if you’re a traditional woman in a relationship or marriage with someone who makes less than you, I REALLY want to hear from you!

Sir, sir, stop running from the camera sir! Thats not your wife, is it, sir?

We're here in Buenos Aires, Argentina searching for Cheaters. And guess what we found? Appalachian Trail, my ass.

Mayne. What a month for the other woman, huh? First John Ensign out in Nevada decides he’s going to get it in with a campaign staffer. Then your boy Mark Sanford decides he’s going to go AWOL from the state he runs for days to get up with his foreign trim. And then it really hit home. Steve McNair gets killed for assumably trying to break things off with his sidepiece. Actually, it’s not so much that it’s been a month for the other woman, it’s been the decade. John Edwards’ wandering cock basically blew out any chance he had of being President. Or VEEP. Or welcome in the Democratic party period. Billy Clint? was shooting nut off on side broads’ dresses like it was Oxyclean (RIP BIlly Mays). Michael Jordan? Getting it on the side. Li’l Wayne? Well, he ain’t married, but when you have two broads pregnant at the same time, my guess is someone musta thought they were the main chick. TI? Has said publicly that he gets it in with other chicks. But because Miss Piggy gets down on the threeway, it’s not cheating. Let’s talk about Eric Benet. Dude locked down the universally acknowledged most beautiful woman in the world (by universally acknowledged, I mean we argue about it all the time) and then CHEATED ON HER! Dog, I can see giving up a political career. Losing half in a divorce proceeding. But you found some better tail than the finest woman in the world? I don’t understand it. Were these dudes raised by wolves? No.

But they are wolves. See, New Pussy is a drug.  I’ve never smoked crack. But I imagine the only reason that a man would smoke crack is because he can’t get New Pussy.  An unscientific surface study of most male crackheads would suggest that it’s been a while since they got some New Pussy. Well, cept for maybe this fella here:

I get it in

I get it in

Naw. IIIIIIIIII get it in

Naw. IIIIIIIIII get it in

Gotta love DC. (Read the full story here, it’s hilarious). So maybe crack is an acceptable substitute for some people, I don’t know. I don’t think women have any idea how intoxicating that drug is. How exciting it is to wonder whether or not we’ll score some NP. To see the NP dealer posted up on your block and have enough in your pocket to cop a bag. But the question becomes, at what point can a NP addict put down the pipe? In some people’s case, it seems like never. No matter what the consequences, what the devasation to their lives and those around them, “It just keep calling (them).”

My estranged brother Pookins St. Randy AKA Pookie

My estranged brother Pookins St. Randy AKA Pookie

I know people will argue it’s a question of discipline and people SHOULD this or should know better that, but in the macro environment, we recognize that cheating exists. It may very well be rampant, I don’t know how accurate polls are (I googled up one study that said 23% of men and 10-15% of women were at some point unfaithful to their spouse and another that said 33% of both men and women). I’ve never been married. I’ve been faithful as a boyfriend but I have no idea how I would react under the pressures and issues of marriage and kids. I hope I’d be able to walk the line. But clearly some people can’t.

Which brings me to marriage. My buddy, Belle, has been going on a tirade of late about cheating husbands. She even said if she was steve McNair’s wife, she wouldn’t go to the funeral. I think that’s a pretty venal reaction, and I doubt it’s true, but I thin it speaks to the hurt and anger cheating can cause. So what can you do if you’re just not a faithful person? Every guy I know wants to get married, no matter how unqualified they are to be a husband. They want a beautiful wife who loves them, and kids to raise and adore. Some of my friends are already married, some of them are well on their way. Some are fighting tooth and nail to stay single just a little longer. But knowing some of them like I know them, I gotta wonder. Some of these dudes are serial philanderers. Like that shit’s in their bloodstream. These dudes are just wolves.  I kinda almost think of them as the straight version of DL dudes. Like at the end of the day, try as they might to be faithful husbands and fit into the box everyone wants them too, they just need something more. Only instead of man-ass at a truck stop, it’s NP. And they’re all very successful, upwardly mobile dudes. Which means they have the male version of NP: Power. If NP is a drug, Power is the currency that buys NP. Where there’s NP, there’s Power, and where there’s power, there’s NP. You can’t separate the two. Doesn’t matter f it’s backstage at the CMA’s, in the boardroom, in the locker room, or on the campaign trail, the two will find each other. I’m not suggesting that the two MUST make an exchange. There are plenty of situations where the two pass right by each other and nothing is asked and nothing is given. But the potential is always there. Especially after the shine’s worn off of the marriage. The wife’s picked up a few pounds. The sex isn’t as explosive as it used to be. You start taking each other for granted. Maybe don’t feel appreciated like you used to. And you’re a wolf. Bill Clinton, make no mistake: he’s a wolf. Steve McNair rest his soul, was a wolf. John F. Kennedy, a wolf.  Nas, he’s a wolf. A-Rod, wolf. The list goes on.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Is there anything a woman can do to stop it? Is there anything the wolf can do? Or do the woman and the wolf just have to make a deal? He can still be a wolf if he brings home something she wants: trip to Paris maybe, $4 million purple diamond, a shot at the presidency? You tell me. Some women have already decided that all men are dogs. She calls the Wolves bad dogs. (NOTE, IF YOU CLICK ON THE LINK AT WORK, TURN THE VOLUME DOWN FIRST!) What’s your take?

Faithfully yours,

B ST. ARRRRUH

mmmmhhh. chocolate

mmmmhhh. chocolate

Jessica White makes me all shy and stuttery

So I got a comment on one of my recent blog posts (scroll down) and it was so bloody long, I decided to make it its own post. I think the commentor brought up some interesting points, so I though it would be fun to let it stand on its own and see what you guys think. I was going to write comment response but there’s a lot in here. I really think some of the thought process in here is super interesting and I don’t think the commentor is alone. I’m guessing a lot of people have these opinions.  Happy 4th!

Brandon,

What an interesting post. I both agree and disagree with varying points throughout your post (as well as the comments). I have an undergraduate degree in Economics from a top-ten institution. I. Am. Beautiful. And I am currently pursuing my Phd.

I must admit that miss “Single Black Woman’s” scenario has been my own on far too many occasions. I tell a guy I am working towards my Phd and he says “wow, that’s cool” and doesn’t seem interested any more. I have no clue why, and I choose not to concern myself with this question as it doesn’t concern me. I also, however, agree with “Miko” when he states that the laws of attraction (if they exist!) are far more nuanced and complex than we can possibly imagine.

Discussing my own situation (about which I am eternally positive) is not why I am responding to your post. I chose to write back because of the following words that arrested my attention:

“how people react to you is in direct proportion to how you make them feel. When you make them feel good about you and themselves, they will respond positively to you.”

I will give you credit for stating at the end that your advice can be applied to all genders. I find your advice curious though for a several of reasons. Your entire post is not directed at both genders. It is aimed directly towards women (I will presume women of African descent). This robs those words at the end of your post of their meaning. I also find these words to be inherently contradictory, as the title of this post reads:

“It’s not that we’re intimidated, You’re just a bitch”

I understand that this is a blog and where you have to balance several (perhaps competing goals). Your apparent ease with labeling women with this awful and derogatory term would suggest that men in fact, do not have to follow this advice of emanating positivity and “making the other person feel good about themselves.” At the very least, you do not have to follow this advice.

Response: The post was really directed towards women because they’re the ones who have complained to me (or generally) that one of the hindrances towards their relationship successes is men being intimidated by them. The day a critical mass of black men tell me the same thing, I’ll write a blog about that. Awful and Derogatory, Schmawful and Shwerogatory. I personally think women have kind of hijacked the word bitch to make it much more onerous than it is. it becomes this symbol of righteous indignation. It certainly wasn’t directed at a singular person, and I wouldn’t call someone a bitch directly. Most people who try to take super offense to that term are just looking for something to be offended by so they can get their righteous indignation meter rising (See Sean Hannity). I was originally going to go with douchebag, but it just didn’t have the right ring to it.

This brings me to my third and final point and I will phrase it in the interrogative. First, it is worth teasing out some of the advice you give. You recommend that these high-achieving, (implicitly) cold and bitchy women put forth more positivity and make men feel good about themselves. And the way you put both of these in the same sentence almost conflates the two, as if they were one and the same. Yet, They are not (although they can be done simultaneously).

That went over my head. I’m gonna need one of my Ph.D friends to put that in laymen’s terms for me. Miko, where you at?

This is not, however, my point. What I wish to know is: Why should a woman need to make a man feel good about himself”? More to the point, Why should a woman who is unacquainted with a certain male individual need to make him feel good about himself? It seems to me that support is something available to give and receive once two people know a few things about each and actually have a relationship. And this does not have to be official as two people who are only distant acquaintances can still be supportive of each other.

Um, because she doesn’t want to grow old alone with a whole bunch of cats? To me, this seems like simple common sense. When I meet people, I try to make them feel good about our interaction, particularly if it’s someone I want to build a relationship with (friend, business, networking, whatever).You phrase it as though I expect the woman to throw rose petals at dude’s feet and clean the royal penis. I think it’s fairly clear that what I’m saying is simply that people respond positively to kindness and friendliness. This may be news to you, but you’re never going to get the chance to have the support in a coupling/partnership you talk about if people’s first impression of you is that you’re mean and unfriendly.

In the situation you address, where two people meet each other for the first time, you seem to suggest that the woman at the outset of the interaction make the man feel good about himself. This firmly supports an unequal balance of power as your post says nothing substantive of the male individual returning this gesture (which, is a bit much to ask during a first conversation). Yet, You insist on this point 3 times during your post.

By emphasizing this point, and implying that professional, educated women are negative, cold “bitches”, you perpetuate the power dynamics and backwards, chauvinist, sexist systems of interaction that so many women have worked diligently to reverse.

Cry me a river, why don’t you. Seriously? You not being disrespectful, entitled, or cold puts us on the path toward the revocation of women’s suffrage? As far as the male “returning the gesture,” it’s implicit that by him opening the conversation or approaching the woman, he’s being open and friendly with her. Granted, we all know this isn’t always the case, but for the sake of this conversation, we’re not talk about arm-grabbing guy in the club with the velour tracksuit and dress shoes.

No woman, or human being, for that matter, exists to make a male, “feel good about himself”. If we are partner’s/couple, and there is a relationship, this is perhaps both implied and expected.

In my opinion, a woman should scowl from time to time. My question to you is, why is it that if she scowls or if she is upset, she is a bitch? Could it be that she had a hard day at work? Could it be that her male boss made an inappropriate advance? In my opinion, entitlement (can) and should be used. It is a strategy for making it in a world where we were not meant to survive any way. (That goes for men of color too). And I do not advise taking that armor off. Because I cannot go into my place of work without SOMEONE looking at me as though I do not belong there. I cannot turn on the television without having a stereotype of my own body looking back at me. As I said before, we were not meant to survive. Excuse my platitudes, but life is full of ups and downs and no one can exude a relentless positivity at all times. And you know as well as I do that everyone tries to put on their best when they go out. And Trust, women as know what they want, and they will let go of the armor for the right guy!

Curses! By the Gods of Saturn, This Armor wont let the love in!

Curses! By the Gods of Saturn, This Armor won't let the love in!

By failing addressing to dysfunctional histories of relationship dynamics between men and women of color, (which would take into account a host of other social and economic factors) you miss many components of the difficulties faced by BOTH parties. Most importantly, FAILING (completely) to address the racisms and other obstacles that both men and women of color face on a daily basis as they rise is unacceptable.

Oy. This goes back to my point of why Africans and Carribean folk do better than us. They’re out there getting it while we constantly look for obstacles. “Not meant to survive?” Give me a break. That may be true for you, but I wasn’t meant to survive, I was meant to thrive. I play to win. I’m here to raise the champagne bottle on the podium. I grin when I fight. Are there going to be people in my way? Of course. We live in a capitalist society. We’re ALL competing for limited resources. My competitiors can and will use race, class, and every other trick in the book to get what we both want, but I would be a fool to let that paralyze me into inaction or hiding in my armor. The thing about armor is that when you have too much on, it gets so heavy that you can’t swing your sword. Entitlement as a strategy? Word? Let me know how that works out for you. As far as the “dysfunctional history of relationship dynamics between men and women of color,” how does that macro view affect your micro world? Are you seeking to repeat history or are you going to blaze a new, more productive trail?

I .Will. Not. Lose. Ever! Fuckers!

I .Will. Not. Lose. Ever! Fuckers!

While I applaud the spirit of your post, I believe that there are many women who would disagree with both your analysis of the situation (woman as bitch, ready to fight a way) and your recommendations.

Ph.D Bound


Thanks for your timely and interesting commentary. I disagree with you on about everything, but I think your voice is an important one in this discussion and I imagine many people share your view.