Friday, May 20, 2011

Some Drunk White People Are Very Very Special

(Still dutifully researching "Drunk White People". Have a bunch of them passed out in my basement RIGHT NOW, but studies remain inconclusive. However, send me your tales of Drunk White People preposterousness and I'll let you know when the official academic logs and reports come out. Look quizzically at a drunk white person, take mental notes, and we can change the world! More drunken TAN content to come! See below for more background.)

More on the you can not pass out around white people" beat. A few days ago T tipped me to a bizarre story, almost a direct re-enactment of this Chappelle joke: 25 year old white guy passes out on a friend's couch, wakes up to find his peeps have drawn human genitalia on his face, then proceeds to pull out a POCKETKNIFE because, apparently, Murfreesboro Tennessee mf'ers don't play that. A pocketknife.

The Smoking Gun picked the story up a couple days later with an amusing addendum:

In a TSG interview, Masse denied pulling a knife, but confirmed that a penis had been drawn on his face and that it "took some scrubbing" to remove the image, which apparently was applied with a Sharpie-like marker.

(Ha. how much for the impressionist peen, sharpie-on-canvas?)

I honestly believe that if we could figure out how the psychology in a series of events like this works we could end racism. Or something similarly monumental. There is definitely some gold in the deranged pathos that leads to getting joy out of drawing a penis on your friend's face.
I am an eccentric, with a mind that wanders into strange territory, but I have never, NEVER, felt the urge to draw a penis on another person's face. WTF? The only other explanation for this might be some manifestation of alpha-domination syndrome; like dogs or cats trying to sit in the power position. Obviously that plus the alleged pocketknife would indicate that "modernity" still hasn't caught on in all parts of the country.

Old school knife-fighting aside, I continue to platform this -- Chappelle might call it "carrot in the ass disease" -- as a singularly caucasian phenomenon. I thought maybe this train of thought was the white analogue to nonsensical flareups at hip hop shows; someone steps on your sneakers and ARRGH you throw a chair at them, for example. But I don't think that has the same WTF quotient. Hip hop fights are just like bar fights, it's all testosterone spontaneous combustion. But this Penis Picassoing of the face and then sticking around to admire your work? That's soooooo weird....

I don't think we should ignore these people. If we study their ways we'll likely uncover something very important about ourselves.

photo via: Jez Gallery of Drunk Dudes


  1. i have to hand it to you, TAN, you nailed this racial analysis. i cracked up when i saw the article. so on point.

  2. I am brand-new to your site and LOVING it! I'm going to have to do a lot of back-reading.

  3. My ex used to do shit like this to his frat brothers. They'd all gather and f--k with the ones (pl) that had passed out that night. Being good in bed can only make up for so much.

  4. Broussard1/27/2008

    As a white guy, I can report that the "carrot-in-the-ass" phenomenon starts very young. I remember when we had slumber parties in fifth grade the one who fell asleep first was in trouble, the rest of us would inevitably spend some time trying to get him to piss his pants by putting his hands in warm water (it never worked). By the time we were having bachelor parties, people who passed out drunk early were being subjected to "teabagging" et cetera. I can't explain any of this. Never occurred to me that it's sort of weird until I read your stuff on it. I really don't know what's up with this. Anec9dotal observation: Asian males will also go crazy for this.

  5. "I honestly believe that if we could figure out how the psychology in a series of events like this works we could end racism." -- interesting premise -- I like it -- 'honest' or tongue-in-cheek -- the idea that by breaking down heretofore only grazed by black comedians and James Baldwin white cultural practice and ethics we can somehow destroy racism -- the recognition that whiteness is all of-a-piece, or interrelated...

    But -- the dick on face/carrot in ass/general misbehavior of white drunks comes from 1. the carte blanche (pun intended) that racial privilege affords, right? POC generally engage in this and other miscreant behavior less because they have more at stake -- they had better "act right" in public or else there could be consequences -- many young white men live relatively consequence-less existences... 2. For young white males, repressed anxiety about homosexuality -- hence, also, the pocket knife. Where's the mystery there?

    But speaking of the sexual aspect of it, do you think that black males and white males deal with that homosexuality anxiety differently (maybe drunk Black people would be less likely to draw genitals on faces their cohorts' faces, but would a black man be less likely to respond violently to someone who punctuated his heterosexuality like that? Is there a racial aspect to the sexual aspect? What say you, TAN?)

  6. Sara B: thanks for the thoughtful comment.

    I have an entry in my book on the "no homo" stuff. But in truth, I haven't really thought about how, or whether, the homosexual anxiety in young white males is qualitatively different than in young black males. In Chappelle's bit, the end result is the same: any challenge to a man's sexuality is met with violence. "death sentence on the street", pocketknife or otherwise. so per your comment, privilege is the reason it doesn't come up in black communities. but then seemingly both communities deal with the same discomfort w/r/t sexuality.

    also, I guess there's a part of me that would just be upset about someone drawing anything on my face, or really violating me in any way, while I was sleeping. this is alluded to by chappelle as well, how it's a very intimate violation. by friends. maybe even fitting in the language/construct of rape? this raises a question of maturity, i guess. why would anyone older than a teenager bother a friend while they're sleeping?

    i'll keep mulling... and watching


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