Why This Seagram's Gin With A Complimentary Du-Rag Is The Blackest Thing I've Ever Seen

This bottle of Seagram's gin with a complimentary du-rag, brought to our attention when @itweetdafif shared it with Panama Jackson, is the Blackest Thing we've ever seen this week. Here's why.


1. There's a certain level of Blackness you need to ascend to in order to willingly purchase and consume a bottle of Seagram's gin. And this includes White people, Asians, American Indians, and the four or five Latinos in Pittsburgh. Basically, regardless of who you are, if you willingly purchase and consume a bottle of Seagram's gin, you are Dolemite. Not Dolemite-like. Or Dolemite-ish. Or even Ruby Ray Moore. No, you are Dolemite.

2. The spelling of du-rag is something every Black American has debated at least once. Some prefer it without the hyphen. ("du rag") Some say it's just one word. ("durag") Some spell it "do-rag." Others spell it "doo-rag." Those with degrees from moderately ranked mid-Atlantic schools even spell it "duo-rag." Since the makers of Seagram's Gin are undoubtedly Blackness mavens, however they spell du-rag is obviously the proper way to spell du-rag.

3. One of the great mysterious of Blackness — for both Blacks and non-Blacks — is the decades-long fashion trend of du-rags being worn as hats by certain types of Black men and people who want to act like certain types of Black men. From a functional standpoint, a baggy du-rag is about as effective as a baggy condom, but these people are obviously not concerned with function. Just fashion. But sans for like a month in 1995 when Method Man made it look cool, the du-rag as a hat has never not looked completely ridiculous. Yet the men who do this are definitely concerned with looking cool. This is a paradox.

4. We imagine some people were probably upset by Seagram's attaching a free du-rag to their gin, basically creating a "Fisher-Price Hood Nigga Starter Kit." And since it is racist as fuck, they're kinda, sorta justified. But sometimes pragmatism is more necessary than political correctness, and nothing is more pragmatic than (rightly) assuming that the type of person that would willingly purchase and consume a bottle of Seagram's gin could also use an extra du-rag.

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)



there's a certain poetry involved here. somebody made the decision at a meeting in some office somewhere that it was 1) profitable 2) smart and 3) okay to place a du-rag on a bottle of seagram's gin and sell that ho.

they won.

i don't know who "they" are. but "they" won. some nword and some white person who really wants to be an nword saw this on a shelf and bought a bottle of Seagram's gin, not bc of Snoop, but bc they needed a du-rag and a drink and this came with both.


they won.