10 Cringeworthy Things Every Black Person Born Between 1975 and 1985 Did in Their Teens and 20s, Ranked

Love Jones screenshot
Love Jones screenshot

10. Performed spoken-word poetry that included either aggressive enunciations of “clitoris” or a line about how “justice” ain’t “just us” because it “just ain’t for us”


9. Strongly considered selling Pre-Paid Legal

8. Either had sex with Timberlands and socks still on or had sex with someone with Timberlands and socks still on

7. Believed he or she was the only black person who watched and appreciated Seinfeld

6. Had sore knuckles for an entire month after trying to reproduce the beats from Aaliyah’s “One in a Million” on desks, windows and lunch tables

5. Professed, aloud, a desire to go to “Africa” like “Africa” was Las Vegas or an island off the coast of Greenland or fucking Outback Steakhouse and not a big-ass continent with 54 damn countries

4. Convinced him or herself that turkey bacon tasted better than bacon bacon

3. Abruptly stopped wearing Tommy Hilfiger, not because it was overpriced yacht toilet paper stamped with “TOMMY” and stretched into polos and parkas, but because you heard he went on Oprah and said his clothes weren’t for black people


2. Quoted and/or referred to the Willie Lynch letter with 100,000 percent sincerity

1. Thought “online dating” was weird and for lames despite the fact that your Black Planet/MiGente/MySpace page existed solely to thirst trap and bone

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB, a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, and the author of What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker (Ecco/HarperCollins)



It’s not bad but I still want that pig killed, smoked and on my plate tomorrow morning! The pig, the whole pig and nothing but the pig, so help me God…