By Jason Tanamor
BT, one fourth of the Sellout Comedy Tour, a tour consisting of four black men who have quote unquote sold out of their race (which pretty much means they tell jokes that people of all races can laugh at), recently took time out of his busy schedule (watching football) to chat with me.
To break the ice, I asked him about his favorite NFL team – the Minnesota Vikings. Knowing that they had just blown one of the biggest games this season, I asked what he thought of the team. “Man, I don’t even want to go there,” BT said.
So I didn’t – yet.
One of the features comedian BT, along with the guys on the tour, likes to do in his act is a thing called, “Ask a black man.” The concept is pretty much just that – ask a black man. About anything. It could be about weather, sports, you name it, but BT’s favorite question he gets asked is, “When is it OK for a white man to use the N word?”
His response? “After he says, ‘You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can be used against you in a court of law.’”
We laughed, and then I decided to get into the fun. After I called him the N word, I asked, “Why do you always see really good looking black guys with bigger white girls and really good looking white girls with thug, scary black guys?”
“With the good looking white girls with thug black guys, more often than not, they’re going to be younger, the rebel.” BT said. “What better way to piss off your parents than to bring home a thug, and a black one at that. That’s like one, two, three strikes you’re out at the old ball game.”
“The other one,” BT said, “to me it’s more of a stereotype because I’ve seen a lot of good looking black guys with good looking white girls. In the beginning it looked that way, whenever you saw a black guy with a white girl, you were like, ‘What the BEEP?’”
The comedian went on to say that the stereotype is a thing of the past. “Who knows, maybe she can cook, has a job, and doesn’t mooch off of you,” BT said. “Whatever they do, they cater to your needs and vice versa.”
But sometimes, according to the comedian, guys don’t have time to put in the effort so they are just looking for the easy score, and unfortunately, big white girls sometimes are. “You know, I’m not proud of this, but sometimes you have to go with what’s available,” BT said. “It’s kind of like the eighth round of the NFL draft, you kind of have to go with what’s available. You might be looking for a quarterback, but sometimes you just end up with an offensive lineman.”
I said, “Maybe the Vikings need to play a bunch of big, white girls. Easy scores.”
“We (Vikings) need something though, we need something. That was pathetic,” BT said.
After a couple minutes of talking about football, including the Vikings, and Packers, and Bears, oh my, we got back to comedy.
I told him I had another black man question, a serious one. “How come there are a lot of black comics that continually beat the hell out of racial stereotypes, like black people have bad credit, a bunch of kids, stuff like that, but when black people in general, and I guess you can include all races, are confronted with stereotypes, they say, ‘That’s not us, that’s not what we do.’”
“I see what you’re saying, and I think it’s a quick fix joke, and if we can get away from that, it would be great,” BT said. “But it’s a quick fix joke, everybody laughs, and it’s almost like they want to live up to the stereotype in a way. Sometimes I watch guys that make me cringe and black comics play into every stereotype. But then they get mad when they see a black guy portrayed like that on TV. I mean, if you don’t want that, then don’t portray it.”
Check out either BT’s act, or the Sellout Comedy Tour for your chance to ask a black man.
Jason Tanamor is the Editor of Zoiks! Online. He is also the author of the novels, "Hello Lesbian!" and "Anonymous."
By Jason Tanamor