Things that should be retired

5. The cover of Janet Jackson’s new album

She’s been airbrushed within an inch of horrifying.

I would also appreciate if Janet would stop trying to remake the “Janet.” album. It’s getting embarrassing.

4. The term “wifey” which is like saying “wife-ish.”

I feel the same way I feel about being called “boo” or “shawty.” These are all the perfect thing for you to say if you ever want me to speak to you again.

3. Menfolk who think is flattering to tell a woman you’ve just met that you’re a “queen.”

I get it. We blacks have self-esteem issues. It’s not a secret. Hundreds of years of being told you’re a bunch of hideous mud people will make you not dig yourself. But I’m not that miserable that I need to be referred to as “a queen.” I cringe every time I hear it because I want to go, “Is it that bad?” Or I think, “you’re saying that because you think I want to hear it right and then I might let you touch ma’ fun parts? Hmmm?”

I just don’t like it. It makes me think of white kids who I went to school with who claimed they could trace their family back to some dead duke in England. I mean, damn. That duke really got around if EVERY person I know is related to his ass. Hell, I got some white folks running around in my family so maybe I’m related to the Duke of Earl too.

Plus, it just smacks of desperation. You know you’re not going to treat me like a queen. What does that even mean? Let’s work on treating each other as decent people. A lot of black folk haven’t even passed the “treat each other decent” threshold. If we start out as royalty you’re just going to be disappointed when you find out the hair on my legs actually grows back.

2. Movies that are just different versions of “The Fast and the Furious” meets “Breakin’ 2: Electric Bugaloo

I’m sure “Never Back Down” isn’t just “Save the Last Dance” and five Jean-Claude Van Damme movies smashed together with a rap-rock soundtrack and actors blander than those who’ve come before them (Keanu, Paul Walker, Vin Diesel). Oh, oh! But this one is different! It’s about ultimate fighting and mixed-martial arts!

So … it’s “Saved the Last Dance” mixed with “Fight Club” but without all the interesting dialog and colorful characters and Edward Norton’s talented twitching and Brad Pitts’ method-acting abs? OK then.

And the number one thing that should be retired …

1. Fergie

I thought the Black-Eyed Peas were fine without her. Granted, they did become richer and more commercially successful after she was added to the group. But she lost me when she made “My Humps.” Not only was the song inane, but kind of gross (um, my ass and breasts are “humps” now? And “humping” is a euphemism for sex? And you’re doing your best impression of what you think a black girl on Crenshaw sounds like? Classy!)

That all said and done, I liked “Fergalicious.” The beat was hot. But you have no “humps.” And why are you always spelling things in songs? And why did you do a commercial where you were at spelling bee mocking the fact that you’re always spelling in songs? Why do I even know who you are? And why do you keep trying to tell me how attractive you are in songs when we both know that just isn’t true?

6 thoughts on “Things that should be retired

  1. She’s kind of gross to me. And totally unattractive. That’s why I didn’t get the “My Humps” song. I mean, it would make sense if one of the extras from random rap videos sang it. Or, I don’t know, if Beyonce sang it. I mean, she at least has has a figure. But then even Beyonce’s music isn’t that crappy.So it’s just gross to me whenever Fergie plays “sexy.” She’s hideous.

  2. I still have her “London Bridge” song stuck in my head from hearing it at the gym a few days ago. I keep catching myself singing it (not on purpose, for sure)…You’re right on the “Humps” song. The first time I ever heard it I had a serious WTF(?!) moment. –And to see *little* girls dancing around to it–ilgh!w/r/t “London Bridge,” the lyrics suck, but damn it’s catchy!

  3. The Black Eyed Peas changed and not for the better w/her presence. I loved “Behind The Front”. They made some excellent music on that album. I thought she was cool at first, but now I’m bored w/her and them.I’ve been going back and forth with a friend about Janet. The last good album from her was The Velvet Rope. My buddy thinks she should continue to get a “pass” for past efforts. I say no. She’s 41 yrs. old and needs to stop trying to compete w/those half her age. It’s dull.The whole “Queen” things is tossed around so much by some that it has no meaning anyway. Whatever.

  4. while we’re on the the subject of overused,meaningless phrases, I think we should add “strong black woman” to this list. A person who is truly strong dosent have to tell everyone, everyone already knows. It has also been so overused to the point that the term is meaningless. It is more of marketing scheme now anyways, used to sell books and movies to people so that they feel better about themselves. You can also hear the beat for Fergalicious without Fergie by listening to “supersonic” by JJ Fad.

  5. dewfish: You’re right. I’d forgotten that the song ripped off that beat (and the rap to a certain extent). I didn’t realize why I liked the song so much until someone put JJ Fad on during “Way Back Wednesday” on the radio. It had been so many years since I’d heard “Supersonic” that I almost forgot it existed.And I’m tired of “Strong Black Woman” too. Author Joan Morgan destroyed the phrase in her book “When Chickenheads Come Home to Roost.”

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