Shit Bougie Black People Love No. 34: The NABJ Convention

Leigh Vogel/Getty Images for WGN America
Leigh Vogel/Getty Images for WGN America

Perhaps you noticed that your bottomless brunch spot was a bit less crowded than usual Sunday afternoon, and all of the bottles of room-temperature water placed on tables were left untouched. And then, when attending Trap Pumpkin Carving class last night, you looked around and saw you were the only one there!


Disturbed and confused, you drove home and asked, “Where did all the bougie black people go?” For a second, you even thought there might have been some bougie-black-specific rapture. Until you remembered that God wouldn’t dare bring every bougie black person to heaven at once because that much Shea Moisture in one place at one time would make everyone slip back down to earth.

Well, don’t fret! They’re just all in New Orleans this week for the NABJ convention, and they’ll be back soon!

What’s the NABJ convention, you ask? Well, technically, it’s the National Association of Black Journalists’ annual gathering. But in reality, it’s the world’s biggest conglomeration of shit bougie black people love.

A gaggle of introverted, awkward and witty black people? Check!

Events incorporating name tags and SurveyMonkey? Check!

Random people with clipboards and lanyards? Check!

Unnecessary hashtags? Check!

Gift bags filled with shit you can easily regift to family members and fuck buddies? Check!

Brunches with Melissa Harris-Perry? Check!

Intense Google Hangouts and Slack exchanges with people you’re literally sitting right next to? Check!


Conversations about gentrification that awkwardly segue to Daenerys Targaryen? Check!

Niggas with blazers and slacks with exposed ankles? Check!

Nighttime debauchery excused away by daytime philanthropy? Check!

When your bougie black buddy returns from NABJ, you might be tempted to ask her what happened. But don’t—because what happens at NABJ stays at NABJ.


(Unless, of course, you happen to follow her on Twitter or Facebook or Instagram or Snapchat, where she undoubtedly documented every single thing she did.)

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB, a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, and the author of What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker (Ecco/HarperCollins)



“Niggas with blazers and slacks with exposed ankles?”

Who hurt you Champ? Let dapper brothas live they best life before months of cold and snow set in. Do I need to buy you some lobster fries to make it better??