But are you awkward?
I've never considered myself awkward, but I can relate to the stories shared by Issa. Being around the same age, we've lived through similar eras and the trip down memory lane was comforting. There aren't many generations who will tote the technology line quite like us 80s babies, we know about the highlights of AOL chat rooms and were the earliest users of Facebook.
Issa's stories of early cat fishing are hilarious, but prove even back then people were faking the funk. Who knows if we'll ever escape the desire to hide behind a computer screen and pretend to be someone we are not, whether it be an 18/F/FL, who is actually a 13 year old girl, or a grown woman using an image from Google as her profile picture, the internet has its victims.
And 90s music! Okay I know each generation will claim the music created during their era is the best, but the 90s may be one of the last decades that can prove it with many different examples across all genres, especially R&B. Issa's lack of access to Parental Guidance music is a pity, but I don't blame her parents for protecting her innocence. Till this day, if I hear a song from the 90s that I sang at the top of my lungs with my girlfriends I question how the hell I knew the words to such a provocative song. I'm hoping I had no idea what I was saying at the time.
Her descriptions of the hair hierarchy and range of blackness are very interesting, they could be explored in a case study in great detail. It’s amazing how much we let hair rule our every move. The reason for me not knowing how to swim can partially be credited to the fact that I never wanted to get my relaxed hair wet. Now that I’ve gone natural maybe that’ll change… maybe. But no matter what, or who you are, don’t even think about asking to touch my hair… and definitely don't pet my hair. Me and Issa are on the same page with that one. And I think my blackness has varied over the years, but Issa’s descriptions are fairly accurate. As a culture we have so many variations. Shame on anyone who lumps us altogether as ‘just black folk’.
The chapter on Co-Workers is hilarious. As a person who has worked in many different environments with many different people, I have experienced just about every type of co-worker. And like Issa, I may have had a co-worker be a reason I’ve moved on from a company in the past. The co-workers I absolutely hate are the idiot and the know it all. Two extremes, but equally bad and annoying.
Issa Rae did an awesome job combining anecdotes of awkwardness in with her personal, hilarious experiences. This book will leave you in tears from laughter, and at times you'll empathize with Issa and her horrible experiences, unless you too can relate. Great read!
By the way, Issa Rae is ruling Hollywood right now and if you haven't seen her show on HBO, Insecure, you're missing out!