With (White) Friends Like These…

Let’s try a little experiment here. Being that, yes, I’m White, and yes, I love hip-hop, the new for-the-laughs single from Miami artist Deuce Poppi, “My White Friends,” immediately intrigues me. As an actual record, it’s far from awful; there’s a certain inconspicuous cleverness at hand, an undeniable sense of fun and a nice charm that makes the song genuinely feel like a thumbs-up to “White friends.” I can’t help but wonder, though, about the song’s seen-them-all-before stereotypes. It’s not as bad as that Poindexter at the end of R. Kelly’s “Ignition (Remix)” video, who busted those no-rhythm moves—damn, I wanted to snuff that guy.

Today’s experiment—to get to the damn point already—is to keep “My White Friends” playing in the background as I scribble random, instant thoughts. A stream of consciousness, channeled through barely-mediocre rap music. Sigmund Freud would most likely glance at me side-eyed, but whatever—his soul has rested in peace for decades now. And I don’t see any Ouija boards in the vicinity. It’s not that “My White Friends” offends me; I’m aware that Deuce Poppi is celebrating, not insulting (right?). There’s just been a reaction to the song/video that I can’t shake, and I’m here to work it out. One way or another.

“My White Friends”

For disclosure’s sake, spending more than 10 minutes analyzing Deuce Poppi’s “My White Friends” feels about nine-and-a-half too long, yet, nonetheless, I’ve watched the video a few times in a row at this point. Laughed at every obvious joke, each tired gag (sight and lyrical). Taken as an impetus for shits and giggles, the song is harmless; not as tongue-in-cheek as Afroman’s “Because I Got High,” but in the same class of goofy, disposable hip-hop.

The other night, as a sort of preamble to the experiment, I showed the clip to a couple of friends (one of them Black, the other Dominican), and both had a nice chuckle or three. One of them said, “That’s so funny because it’s so true.” To which I replied, “Really? Am I missing something? I’m White, and I’ve never been to one party like that.”

Not that I wouldn’t want to, though.

Being a Jersey lifer with years of Jersey Shore experience brings an inherent attraction to fake-tanned girls that emphasize the ends of sentences (“Are you serious?”) and willingly let guidos treat them like dirt. I think it’s some sort of irresistible kinetic force that incubates in the brain the second your yellow-license-plated ride turns onto the Garden State Parkway. Deuce Poppi would have a field day down at the Jersey Shore, actually. He’d be able to shoot My White Friends: The Movie on a shoestring budget; all he’d have to do is spit a few half-assed bars and the girls would flock to him like bugs to light.

In that Jersey Shore context, “My White Friends” is strangely accurate, an all-too-true examination of a specific type of White person disguised as a rap video. I have this one friend, right, who every once in a while is called a “Bizarro Jay-Z” (Seinfeld heads know what I’m talking about; a “bizarro” is a dead ringer looks-wise).

Anyway, Bizarro Hov has a one-track-mind, and it’s focused on blonde-haired females. And, the kicker is, he slays them on a routine basis. That seems to be a subtext that Deuce Poppi’s song is tapping into, whether Mr. Poppi himself realizes it or not. If this video had an unrated cut, you’d probably see Poppi in bed with three White chicks (no Wayans), because, frankly, that does happen. I’ve seen the preface of it many times (by “preface” I mean that I’ve seen the kid enter a room with more than one Becky, and then naturally went about my business).

I wonder, if Asher Roth (or someone of his natural born ilk) were to put out “My Black Friends,” what caliber of shitstorm would erupt? A guy like me, who is fortunate enough to have friends of all races and creeds, would relate to the sentiment in a way, but I’d still understand the bad-look-ness of the track. That’s just the layout of the land, the set rules of the game.

“My White Friends” is acceptable, and easy to laugh at for a White fella such as myself. The people I hang out with and the parties I crash have little in common with the characters and events in Deuce Poppi’s video, and that’s fine. Certain things just can’t (and shouldn’t) be done, like Jay Leno or David Letterman going too “hard” at President Obama.

Which seems to play into how I’m regularly pardoned from jokes about White folks spoken in my presence; the jokesters look at me matter-of-factly and say, “Oh, you’re not really White, so don’t worry about it.” I must’ve heard that line a good 50 (maybe more) times in my life, and the aftermath is always the same—I’m left perplexed. How am I supposed to react? I laugh, of course, because I get the point, but is that being said at my expense or as a compliment? Laughing with me, or at me?

I don’t speak in slang, or dress like I’m “trying too hard”; I shop at Old Navy, for crying out loud, and rock a petticoat often in the winter. “You’re not really White” comes with the territory when you’re the only White guy in your crew, the one they nicknamed “Buckwhite,” a play-off of Little Rascal Buckwheat (one of that troop’s two Black kids). And, yes, I really was given that moniker back in college.

If Deuce Poppi were to kick it with me in Hoboken one Saturday night, would this song still apply? Would he want to rewrite the lyrics, having seen a whole other side of the White game? Or would your boy Deuce ask me why I’m investing so much mental energy into his dumbass gimmick of a single? “Damn, man, I didn’t even think this much about it.” I’m sure he would, though we’d no doubt settle the discrepancy over a mean game of beer pong, bro. Or a Jager-bomb or two. —Matt Barone

  • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grands

    As a Black dude who watches Seinfeld religiously, I’ll give you a “Get Out!” for the Bizarro reference.

    As far as the song, maybe if I were a little younger, I’d be able to appreciate it more.

    “…over a mean game of beer pong, bro. Or a Jager-bomb or two.”

    ^^^That’s funny.

  • Enlightened

    I can’t watch the video right now, but I will chime in and say that kickin’ it at parties with white people in college gave me a whole new appreciation for beer.

    Until this day, it’s still my spirit of choice. My one potna even learned how to take a whole cup of beer like a shot from white friends. I still don’t know how he does that shit, but he will take a whole 12 oz. plastic cup of beer and turn that shit up like a shot, and put the cup down and it’s gone. That shit is crazy.

    I won’t even mention the gettin head from white girls thing. I ain’t gon’ even dirty up your post like that.

    • Enlightened

      on that beer shit. Let me be clear. I don’t mean turn it up like a shot and guzzle the beer… I do that.

      I mean that nigga just turns it up and the beer is gone – no swallowing, no nothing. Just gone like a shot.

      Is it just me? I’ve never seen that shit anywhere else before.

  • Jhon da Analyst

    Does Jerry Seinfeld still owe Kenny Bania a meal?? Or is soup a meal?

    • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grands

      Good question…The Soup Nazi would probably say it’s a meal. But, the thing with Bania is, when it comes to being a douche, he’s the best, Jhon! The best!

      • SOUTHSIDE A-TOWN

        ^^ LMAO!!! damn, that was brilliant. i fux w/ Seinfeld too. ironically, i’m watching it right now on tv as i type.

        • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grands

          Giddy up!

        • Jake Steed

          Thats gold,Grands! Gold!

  • Da Truth

    I can’t lie I thought this song was going to be wack but it’s actually better than what I expected.

  • Lunatikstwocents

    I can relate to this song lol..

  • SOMETHIN NEW

    Crank that Soulja Boy + I love college = My White Friends.

    Duece Bag Poppi = Epic Fail

  • real talk

    a guy like Deuce Poppi can make this song and be very serious about it. I don’t think it’s as tongue in cheek as you think. You happen to be white and have at least some idea that a certain group of white people act this way, so you can kindle chuckle at a song made at their expense.

    regardless, should he pop up in Hoboken I think he’d find those white people just as interesting as the people in the Jersey shore.

    just do a little google search on this topic though…. white people have been made to feel bad or guilty about their social mores and culture for so long. And black culture, well black culture is celebrated and has been for years.

    You can’t pussy foot around this. Black culture is mainstream, it’s pop, and it’s boring now. It’s no longer cool to shine a light on black culture, because the light is already there.

    And this ain’t no racist shit either. It’s just what it is.

    Being white and white culture has been the anti-cool for so long that it’s now the counterculture. So fuck it, every1 needs to go make some white friends.

    Or go hang out at some “grown and sexy” lame ass urban party where everyone is wearing the same H&M bullshit clothes, drinking Nuvo and dancing to Jay-Z songs from 7 years ago.

    • gafinest08

      Real Talk, u on it. But let me tell u a lil secret. 90% of the shit white people do and get clowned for, black people love that shit once they do it. We get introduced to shit late, thats all. Im from GA and things such as beer pong, shydiving, skateboarding, etc., was considered “taboo” in my small town. Its like everything else, muthafuckas fear the unknown. Once I joined the ARMY, met some cool ass, crazy ass white people, it was on. There aint nothing better than going to Octoberfest in fucking Germany with an ass load of white people. Oh, there’s an assload of black people too, but the white boys and Germans have the best beer drinking games(where do u think that shit Beerfest came from). Im getting drunk just thinking about it. Also I can say there’s nothing better than screaming “EXCUSE ME WHILE I KISS THE SKYYY!!!” while exiting an aircraft in flight or helicopter, and get paid for it. And dont be surprised when u start seeing F250′s and Chevy Silverado’s with ten inch lifts being driven by black dudes. Them box chevys sitting on 28′s its getting old real quick. But u r right though. Everybody needs some white friends to get them on some other shit. Shit, im even thinking about buying me a chopper(the bike). Lol, Im bugging now.

  • $ykotic/Don McCaine

    I don’t see the problem with this. It looks like you’re reaching with this argument.

    Sh*t we just had a party like that on Saturday(hot tub, pool’s covered), with another mixer coming this Friday. We have fun in Rip City believe it or not. I stay telling my peoples that beer pong is the game if your money ain’t right. You win when you lose.

    And when I lived in NYC, I spent plenty/many weekends on York Ave, 1st Ave, & Amsterdam Ave instead of Marcy PJ’s.

    It’s a good visual to show others ain’t nothing wrong with being versatile like that. But of course I wouldn’t need to address them as white, or Asian, or Indian, or Hispanic. Just my homies.

  • Brooklyn

    i’ve never had any white friends, but them irish dudes seem like they’d turn a party out. i remember one night i took this girl to a sport’s bar for a date, and there were all these irish cats at the bar getting liquored up, and then somebody put on the house of pain, and them motherfuckers were standing on the bar and the tables, jumping around and wilding out. i was like, damn, these dudes get buck! if they acting like this on a normal saturday night, i can only imagine what they do for st. patrick’s day.

  • Jhon da Analyst

    @Grand$……So True…….Kenny Bania is the worst!!

  • capcobra

    “black friends” would be funny as hell but it gotta be a comedian or comedian type rapper..cause certain stereotypes be too serious..a white dude joking about shaneequa with 4 baby fathers or raheem that just came or tyrone without the job or jimmy at the job that wanna be white..that might cross the line a bit..but with the right lyrics it’s possible…sometimes i think eminem flow might be considered offensive to arabic or indian people..plus he ain’t use that flow til after 9/11..imagine him rapping with a “black” accent..all the yo son.cuz.god.b shit..he doesn’t cause he know that’ll be a white guy mocking a black dude..is that any different from a white guy mocking an arab?…that’s neither here nor there tho’..that’s good bud mixed with bagpipes from baghdad…good song and post.

    • Brahsef

      Word, it has to follow the same formula as “white friends”. Stick to cultural differences and don’t fuck with the negative stereotypes.

      I fuck with this song though.

      “I’m a cool dude, yeah, I drive a benz, but sometimes I like to hang with my white friends”

      Sounds like a Jeezyism right there.

  • 1hunid

    Being a ‘black dude’ that came up in the ‘semi’ hood being the only skater to now lookin the part of the ‘stereotypical black dude from the south’ the thing i want to say is white dudes DO know how to have a good time. I cant say the song is good but i can see where he was going with it. Even though i scare white people now, I like the fact that its a light hearted fun song. Its good for the said “shits and giggles.”

  • gafinest08

    White people can get so crazy, it’ll will make u nervous. U have to ease into that shit. Shit they consider fun might require a fucking ambulance after the fact. Also, if u partying with white people, don’t be the first one to do shit. They’ll set yo ass up in a minute for some dumb shit. All in good fun though.

  • latino heat

    did anybody know Deuce Poppi was still rapping? i haven’t heard shit from him for years.

    white people can do some serious partying / drinking though. my only white homey who i’ve known for years had a birthday party back in May and i did my first keg stand there. i thought keg stands were just some stereotypical shit white people only did in movies. but no, they really do that shit. i pride myself on being able to hold my liquor with the best of them and still be able to drive home safely at the end of the night. on this night though we went through bottles and bottles of Jimmy Walker. something my usual homies are way to cheap to drink. even his 23 year old brother who i’ve known since he was about 8 drank me under the table. when i tried to go home they gave me a pillow and a blanket and told me to sleep in the spare bedroom because i wasn’t driving anywhere that night.

    so from what i’ve seen it really isn’t a stereotype. white folks can party.

  • OneNess

    If Chappelle did this everyone would be in stiches though. I ain’t mad, southern rap videos show black people acting ignorant as fuck all the time, why not expand to white folk?

  • http://crimcitywimp.blogspot.com Ross

    There is some pretty hilarious Dave Chappelle stand up about how every (black) person needs a few white friends.

    youtube that shit.
    I think it is on the “killing the softly”, live from DC special.

  • yoprince

    wow. deuce poppi is still rapping. that’s news.

    i enjoy this song. it’s not really off base at all for ppl like 25 and younger, and particularly for southerners where a large part of social life is still pretty segregated UNTIL you start partying.

    i went to college in VA and white ppl showed me a whole different level of partying. way more drinking. WAY MORE. a much higher variety of drugs. and the whole making out on the dance floor thing.

  • Roy Jones Bitch

    bwahahahahah this is funny!!!!

  • Toya

    Man, I love white people! Stuff black people take for granted, they appreciate greatly and practically worship. Beer, mac and cheese, corn dogs, cake… the list goes on and on. I have way more fun with them than my black friends because it’s okay to be goofy around them.

    • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grands

      “Man, I love white people! Stuff black people take for granted, they appreciate greatly and practically worship. Beer, mac and cheese, corn dogs, cake…”

      ^^^I’m not sure if you were meaning to be funny, but that shit is hilarious! Beer, mac and cheese, corn dogs, cake….wtf? Lmao! We don’t like cake? What do you think we eat @ birthday parties, ribs with icing? You must not know any Black wino’s, because those dudes drink beer like manna from God’s liquor cabinet. As for corn dogs, Black & White people go to HotDog on a Stick just to watch the girls pump the lemons.
      I know you don’t mean anything by it, though. Good shit…

      • Master CHeef

        I think she means white people still get excited about it, though. White will start turning cart wheels at the mention of mac n cheese, break dancing and hollering at the top of their lungs like it’s their birthday.

        • $ykotic/Don McCaine

          “ribs with icing”.

          Wow.

      • yoprince

        “ribs with icing”

        priceless.

        • Capital G

          *dies*

  • http://xxlmag.com Blakout615

    Lol @ ribs with icing

  • http://hotasballs.wordpress.com steezolini

    its still corny, but it’s a good time..

    ribs with icing this year.i swear.

  • Brahsef

    Damn Grands, I gotta cosign people on that being one of the fuckin funniest sayings I heard in a bit. “Ribs with icing” LOL. That ultimate itis.

  • tommy gunz

    did he crumble crackers in the soup?

    that could be a meal

  • BOSS D.R.E.

    LET’S GIVE IT UP FOR JERSEY ONE TIME!!!!

  • Smel

    “Ribs w/icing” 2nd funniest XXL comment of 2009.

    2nd to “Not a hoe my child….not a hoe”

  • http://www.32weekspregnantultrasound.com/is-my-baby-breech-32-weeks-pregnant-with-1st/ what to expect 32 weeks pregnant

    Thanks for the great desings.It will help me to redesign my jobs site