On chasing a mate.

In response to Brown Sugar's post, "Ladies, Stop Playing Wife If Your Man's Not Playing Husband", Bryan Wilhite over at Kintespace writes, "My Theory of Girl Chasing", a excellent post:

(Kintespace) This reminds me of the Garret Morris skit on the old SNL in response to a Rolling Stones lyric about Black women wanting to have “sex all night long”—just where are these women? Actually, coming from my west-coast North American perspective, I know where they are and I am not willing to go into debt (just from the acting lessons alone) to go there…

Firstly, for my Brown Sugar babe, my wild guess is that she has been biased by the college scene. You see, I ended up at UCSB in my twenties back in the late 1980s—the population of Black women was very small there. We did not dominate enough to have a “dating world.” On the east coast, a collegiate setting, packed full of educated sisters, would have placed me in that “wrong” place Brown Sugar is talking about. But, on the mean streets far from the campus, the only time I have seen (adult) Black women openly chasing Black men is when the possibility (real or imagined) of being near one million or more dollars is involved. Now… for non-Black women the story is a little different—and this can make me quite angry—which can be quite surprising to far too many Black women—because they are even angrier and filled with incorrect assumptions and frustrating inaction (but this topic is beyond the scope of this rant).

Now I have also seen what appears to be adult Black women chasing Black men—but it really wasn’t… What really happens (most of the time) is that Black women (all women) are competing against each other in a social setting (what Jimi Hendrix called “the scene” in that oldie but goodie “Foxy Lady”). The males (of any skin color) taken seriously for consideration in this social setting (is it the “club scene” these days? —or is it the college scene? —or is it the church scene?) are merely prized, token targets for the women. Often this activity is not completely conscious—it just happens. It is similar to the classic story of two blood sisters competing for the attention of one, designated guy. Oftentimes this stuff gets down to the level of natural survival instinct in artificial scarcity.

A woman can feel domination over other women by capturing a male prized by all within the scene. Because of this woman-to-woman competition, they are willing to do that “wrong” thing and chase. In my experience, young women with some kind of ‘childhood issue’ (usually related to her father) will chase a guy in private and in secret. Women—especially women of color with a strong missionary education—know how to deny themselves, very ,very well. Bulimia is just one way a woman knows how to starve herself—don’t think my big, thick sisters are not doing the same thang—but in a different way. In my idealism, no one—male or female—should chase or starve at all. But who cares about my non-Olympian ideals when a girl is training for the Olympics! From anon to agon!

For many, competition is everything. Recognition of supremacy is the American way. There is no point for many socially “well”-adjusted females to have a great guy by her side when “nobody” knows about it and “nobody” cares about it. To me, this is another way of saying that people—especially people “of color” who are proud to call themselves “normal”—do not value having a deep, rich, inner life. This is why the television is always playing in the background, keeping “us” company.

What can be extremely uncomfortable to more than a few of my insecure, socially-overactive sisters is their discovery that their “friends” are not happy for them when they show up at the house party with one of the few, undeniably handsome, do-right males on the premises (possibly the entire city). The always-deniable jealousy can get thick at times—to that level of savage, subsistence-level sibling rivalry. Certain sensitive guys may notice this when suddenly they are getting more female attention because the females saw you with one of the girl-“friends.” Stupid guys assume that this attention is for them—but it is really a woman-to-woman thing. I find this behavior demeaning and insulting (now).

What is important to understand here is that I am saying that most women are connected to a social scene. Most functional women are connected to some social structure. (But the terrible irony for me is that this social structure is often dysfunctional.) When you are walking down the street and you see the billionth “cute” girl still on the phone then you are literally seeing her connecting to a piece of that social scene. Here are the stereotypical social scenes women (and men) are connected to:

* The friends from school. This is my bias but most modern North Americans in the W2 world get their real friends from K through 12—this is because most, pre-pubescent children are not cowards and liars. Sadly, in the underclass world in general and the Black world in particular, many of these genuine friends are killed off in large numbers in various physical and meta-physical ways before we can be effective in adult life. This is why most adults reading this have no accurate, non-cynical idea why I am writing this.

* The “friends” from work. Increasingly, North American workers get almost all of their friends from working in a corporation.

* The “friends” from the religion. To me, since the rise of the mega-church this is just like the friends at work—except more open weeping is involved.

* The “friends” from the corporate-sponsored “community.” This is just another, smart-ass way of saying the club scene—even a DJ house party can have corporate, energy-drink, clothing-line overtones.

The reason why I put the “friends” in quotes is because as soon as my lady’s “friend” is laid off, excommunicated or can no longer afford that new silk number for the club that night, the “friend” vanishes from her so-called life. So, to me, chasing a woman means following her through all of these social scenes—often very dysfunctional social scenes that I despise—and (sometimes literally) standing around waiting for her to see that her superficial social life is totally bullshit. But after all of these years I am still not gentle with my words: calling part of my woman’s foundational identity ‘total bullshit’ gives her an excuse to hate me instead of the artificial social systems that continually fail her. Again, I have violated the sacred trust. A “smarter man” knows to just shut the f’ up and get that ass while he can. An even smarter man would live alone in the mountains with rent raiment eating locusts.

But I am not so smart and it is far easier for her to hate me and start a new life with a new “man” putting the ridiculousness of her youthful (and sometimes not-so-youthful) social experiments behind her. My ‘reward’ for chasing this girl is that she grows for the better as a person—but she takes her newly grown self into a new “pure” relationship where she can do no wrong (she hopes). She’ll have a better (false) sense of control there (she hopes). I have learned that an American sense of control is related to American slavery—the archetypal slave master’s sense of “liberty and freedom.” It, of course, is ridiculous and insanely ironic to associate a Black person’s sense of domination with the stereotypical slave master’s—so you, reader, have a choice: you can call me ridiculous and insane or you can call an entire social structure with millions of eagerly-participating, properly-assimilated people ridiculous and insane. Hmm… which one of the choices is easier? You know, fried locust might taste like shrimp…

Do I sound bitter? Let’s get some American perspective. Note how I excluded the “friends from family” in my list above. The high divorce rates and employment-related migrations make family friends a rare, precious possession. I can’t go around feeling like a victim when so much poverty is obviously all around me. I don’t care how much fiat money you have: I know what poor people look like. The teachings of my African ancestors show me how to see. Precious few people transcend poverty with active imagination. This situation is by design. This is not some “curse” put on lonely me. It is the manifestation of oppression.

So, anyway, since sweet Brown Sugar covers the female perspective on chasing boys, I’m free here to flip off a few toward chasing girls:

* I’m sure there are all kinds of boy-girl chasing but where I come from much of the male ‘dedication’ to this activity is based on the sexist principle that women need “help” making a choice. And there is nothing like a little aggression and persistence to lubricate the decision-making process. Sure, I agree you can find women who get “turned on” by this form of aggression and high-energy dominance. Some Black women when pushed by my “rhetoric” often move to get “above” me to take this to a level of solemn, sacred seriousness—because this sexy violent place is surely where the “real” Black man resides. Why am I remembering Alexyss K. Tylor right now? This implies that all of what you may be reading here right now is total bullshit because a “real” Black man would not even waste his ass-smacking time to write shit like this—or even write at all… I look forward to seeing the 10-year wedding anniversary photos based on this theory of Black masculinity.

* In the same vein where flows “the love for the chase” are the same intoxicants that drive soldiers back into the action and hunters back for another chance to kill. To me, the purpose for chasing girls was to get the right one very quickly and settle down. It was through great disappointment to find out how many women “love” the chase itself. Why give up something when you do it so well? Aren’t we going to be young and bling forever? For Black people to deliberately ‘settle down’ in a strategic manner means to accept the real situation of being Black in the white world. For many of my brothers and sisters, this is just too much to bear—party on!

* The desire to show off in front a Black woman means you have already lost. You are already putting yourself in the place where you actually think you can explain yourself to her (likely in a very artificially limited amount of time). She should already have an accurate, basic conceptual model of you by the time you say, “Hello.” When you find that she does not, do not consider yourself her missionary teacher. Accept being a total stranger and respect her ability to see (and not see).

* The woman you want should already have a pretty powerful idea of who you are before you even try to introduce yourself. You think this is bullshit? Just ask some experienced female strippers (who have made a lot of money) to profile men they have never met and see how accurate they are. The ex-wife of Mos Def is coming out with a tell-all book. This might save us some footwork.

* Most women would consider themselves “professional” in the white, corporate sense of the word. This means that I can present myself in serious sincerity as a business contact to a “professional” woman and then move on… Instead of chasing, all we guys need to know is where we can leave our curriculum vitae with contact information. To think that “real” Black women are not this professional means you are hoofing it in poverty. You want to be with someone who knows how to take care of business. What is quite bizarre is that some Black women will treat everyone in this professional manner except for Black males. I have learned the hard way that it is not my place to attempt to correct for or protest against this situation (real or “imagined”).

* Chasing another person usually takes you away from the place where your identity flourishes. It is usually an act of passionate, low self-esteem. There are exceptions. But it is best to cultivate the courage to stand in your place—even when this means your ass will stand alone for many, many years. It is best to think of this situation as wilderness survival in solitary confinement—even when it appears that “civilized” people are all around you in some bustling, fictional 21st century metropolis with shiny iPhones and shit.

That last bullet was easy for me to write now that my hormones are trimmed out… When my sex-drive was pubescent through the roof I was more than willing to humiliate myself for some woman body…

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