Thursday, February 16, 2012

Racis’ Thought o’ the Day

Today’s post was supposed to be a discussion of the data mining program I wrote for the previous two posts.  While I was attempting to use it the other day, however, I discovered that the website had changed it’s HTML format in a way I haven’t figured out how to exploit yet.  So in lieu of a exposition on Excel VBA, I offer the following question for general consideration:

Do white people smell funny/bad/distinctive to black people?

This question involves one of my earliest childhood observations about race, yet it was something that, at least among upper middle class whites in the South, nobody ever talked about.  I mean, it was so obviously going to be a sensitive issue. 

The only public mention of the issue I can recall was in a short story I read in a literature class in college.  It was in (I think) an anthology entitled (I think) Tales of the Southern Gothic, although 15 minutes of googling has failed to turn up a book by that name.  One of the contributors was still alive in the 80s and came to speak to a packed auditorium on our campus.

Anyway, this was primarily an issue among blacks I knew in school in the South, but it hasn’t really been one since then, mostly because I don’t know a lot of blacks now, and the ones I do are other professionals.


Anonymous said...

According to the characters in "Roots" (who were black), we smell like a wet chicken.

But that was before daily showering and deodorent use became fashinable. Also, we don't wear as many layers of wool coats in the summer as we used to.

Anonymous said...

yet it was something that, at least among upper middle class whites in the South, nobody ever talked about.

Yeah, hilarious; no one ever talks about this elephant in the room. And lest anyone think we're being childish about this, we're not - it is factually true that blacks emit a biochemical odour that is unpleasant to whites. This is the numero uno reason I have never understood how white women can tolerate interracial relationships.

I did read once, on some website, that whites have a "smell" that is offensive to *Asians*. This makes sense, but the guy making the assertion was a miserable jealous (Asian) omega male, so his account is suspect. Anyway, great question.

Justin said...

Phi, you are violating a major PC taboo, here, discussing the REAL LIFE reasons to be racist. According to PC propaganda, racism is based on ignorance and stupidity.

In reality, we are racist for specific reasons grounded in real experience. Only if discussion of those real reasons is absolutely prohibited does the PC propaganda work.

Dr. Φ said...

That's a good point. As we grow up, most of us pay more attention to personal hygiene than we did as children. I don't recall noticing white BO as a child, but the truth is that we all probably stank. Still, black BO had a distinctive smell.

I'm more sensitive to BO now as an adult because I encounter it less frequently. And I tend to notice it in whites as much as blacks. But inter-racial BO is still distinctive to all races.

Anonymous said...

Go live in Eastern Europe. That will knock the sensitivity right out of you.

I Bosnia, we could smell the Russian army tent 50 yards away. I am here to tell you, stinky white people are plenty offensive to other white people.