What do you give the person who has everything, including white privilege?
How do you shop for someone who can get out of church at a decent hour, sit in Starbucks as long as they want and is bold enough to stand in the aisle at Bed, Bath and Beyond, look at the bath salts and think: “I wonder what it would feel like if I smoked this?”
Whether you’re playing secret Santa with your co-workers or you’re actually the acquaintance of that white person who always asserts that one of their best friends is black, this gift guide is for you.
And I know you think this is going to be a list of seasonings or dance lessons but, no...
Just seasoning lessons.
But this is actually a gift guide featuring products that you can give to your white friends. All of the companies are black-owned, but will make your white friend hug you and forgive you for laughing when she asked whether you used kale or iceberg lettuce in your potato salad.
Uncle Nearest Whiskey
Whiskey is all the rage right now, and the story of Nathan “Nearest” Green is essentially the story of black America. Green was a master distiller enslaved in Tennessee who shared his whiskey-making methods with a man whose whiskey eventually became the benchmark for American-made liquors. His name was Jack Daniels.
Now Uncle Nearest Whiskey can be purchased all over the country, allowing you to gift one to your co-worker who steals your ideas and pawns them off as their own. Hand this over to them at the company Christmas party and blithely say: “I saw this and thought of you.”
Yogi Dada Earrings
Every pair of Yogi Dada earrings are a work of art. These colorful, handcrafted works of art are hand-painted by a performance and teaching artist in Birmingham, Ala.
Drop a set of Yogi’s “ear bangers” or get a pair customized for your favorite Caucasian!
Tres Lindas Cubanas Cigars
Tres Lindas Cubanas was founded by identical Afro-Cuban twin sisters who broke into the premium cigar market by talking about race and colorism. Their line features three cigars: “La clarita”—which means fair-skinned—and is light-medium bodied; “la mulata,” which means mixed black/white as is medium-full; and “la negrita” means black which is their strongest, full-bodied cigar.
What better way to support your favorite colonizer than providing the cigars for the smoke-filled rooms where they plan their world-domination?
Banneker Watches was founded in 2003 by watchmaker Derrick Holmes and pays homage to astronomer, inventor, mathematician, surveyor, almanac author, and farmer Benjamin Banneker, who learned how to make watches when he was 21.
The clocks and timepieces integrate “luxury wood” into each design, which is perfect for people who believe there is such a thing as “luxury wood.” White people love saying “It’s time to make the doughnuts,” but how will they know without your help?
Brown Estates Wines
In 1980 a black family bought an abandoned ranch in California’s Napa Valley and in 1995 their kids got the bright idea to start making their own wine, making it Napa’s first black-owned estate winery.
Their newest vintage, Chaos Theory, has a “brilliant dark magenta core with ruby rim” that boasts: “lively nose of ripe Rainier cherries, blackberry compote, winter spice, and heavy cream leads to Asian apple and Meyer lemon followed by dark chocolate, tiramisu, and fresh baked croissants/brioche. Time in the glass brings forth rose petal potpourri, tea rose perfume, brandied cherries, and heavy whipping cream. Silky mouthfeel, medium-bodied yet markedly vibrant.”
Look, neither you nor I knows what any of that means but trust me, your white friend will love that shit.
Also, “Chaos Theory” is how Trump won the 2016 election.
Need That Tee
While NeedThatTee focuses on shirts with black themes, if you have a “woke” white friend who reads Teen Vogue, watches Game of Thrones and hates Trump, you can validate that they are down with one of these shirts.
Because the company’s owner was a technical designer for some of the fashion industry’s biggest names, the shirts fit perfectly and are higher quality than many of the products available online.
NeedThatTee also offers custom one-off designs, mugs and hoodies and some of the coolest slogan shirts that will make white people walk up and ask: “what does that mean?”
If you’re tired of Sarah coming to work asking if you want to try her bland green bean casserole, why not gift your spiceless compadre a lesson from someone who knows how to back that seasoning rack up? There are incredible black chefs who offer private cooking lessons.
Earth Candy Arts’ Jamila Crawford Pecou offers vegan cooking lessons with food so good, you won’t even miss the steak! The vegan chef to the stars’ Earth Candy Classroom offers vegan cooking lessons throughout the Atlanta area.
Side note: Jamila just also happens to be the wife of legendary artist and 2018 Root 100 nominee Fahamu Pecou.
New York’s Renee Blackman grew up in Barbados and is now one of New York’s finest private chefs. A Chopped finalist who prepares food for top-tier clients like Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham, Chef Blackman offers catering and private lessons.
In Cleveland, Sky La Raes’ Eric Wells can teach everything from fine dining to barbecue.
Now you won’t have to be afraid to go to Chad’s cookout!
Lauren Williams left a life in the NFL to earn acclaim as a chef. He offers cooking lessons and private dinners in the Maryland, D.C., Virginia area.
That’s the list.
Make sure you put your gift in a gift bag with a lot of extra paper and a real silk bow tied in a captain’s knot (white people have a disturbingly high appreciation for knots and gift-wrapping) and say something nice but bland like: “From me to you, I wish you many more happy yuletides.”
I never knew what the fuck a “yuletide” was, but white people love it!