Old Goth is Old. Complaints from the Black Goth Department.

If you are of the opinion that Goth is a phase, please go read this. I’ll wait.

Now, let’s talk about being an Old Black Goth.

In my early 20s during my pre-Internet life there were certain things about my Gothness I just accepted.

Things such as:

White people with their versions of dreadlocks.

Zero to a wee bit of representation in media.

Being exoticized.

Nazi Fetish, Nazi imagery, Nazi regalia is “just to be provocative”

These things are inside the subculture. Back in the day when I was a lil baby bat, these things vexed me a lot.

These days, yeah whatevs.

Except the representation. Goth has a reputation for being more open about bodies, etc. but, yeah not so much.

Even all these years later, if we’re looking for images of androgyny better be tall and thin or tiny and thin or just you know, pretty thin.

Lately I’ve been getting back into make up and again, I see these beautiful tutorials and nary a one says anything about making it work for skin other than white skin. Not. One.

Also, lately in the last few years as Goth and Witchy looks have turned mainstream, shops are NOT stocking all available sizes in brands that make above a size L. Dollskill is terrible for this. They stock Killstar brand clothing (which I am OBSESSED WITH) ahem. But none of the Xl/XXL sizes. And a lot of Killstar stuff is stretchy so more sizes can get their ham in it. So why?

It is 20 goddamn 17.

Can I tell you that in the late 90s, a lil fat booty Goth babe like yours truly could buy ALL sorts of brands of goth clothes?

And another complaint. Every single witchy, dark, magazine is so white. Except for like ONE article from a while back about a Black witch. It is kinda getting me down lately. I’m feeling very much like, yo um…where are your non white people? You know we exist right?

There are a number of dark oriented magazines I’ve been reading lately on the interwebs. From the purely aesthetic ones, to the sexy ones to the cultural ones to the ones talking spirituality, they all mainly

Let’s look at all the witchy goodness happening. Most of the imagery revolves around pretty white girls in instagram filtered photos with stiletto nails, lots of AHS inspired hats, lots of Baba Yaga, the triple goddess, etc. On a casual look, I can find eleventy million hot takes and essays about it but, while traditions, looks and what not differ there are not a lot of folks who don’t fit the common aesthetic.

Once upon a time, a few years ago now one of the glossy goth magazines got bold and talked inclusion and diversity. The article was kind of okay? As I recall they didn’t seem to have spoken to any Black Goths but linked to them which is a problem. After that, their look didn’t change. There weren’t Black goths featured, there weren’t hot fat folks in fancy digs, they did what a lot of other things that brand themselves as diverse do.

They did one thing and called it a win.

Right around that time I pitched, probably ten magazines op eds about those of us who aren’t pale willowy sorts. I never heard a word back from any. I wrote letters and emails.

Crickets.

For me personally, sometimes this shit is hard as fuck. I’m feeling that way now. Because my interests from a very young age have fallen outside of the little box that folks think Blackness is, sometimes I feel starved for community but leery of it as well. On one hand, I LOVE talking Alt shit. Makeup, clothes, music, but I also am very fully aware that the need may arise for me to gird my loins regarding my Blackness. I am fully aware that I will encounter microagressions, that I might have to yet again explain why it’s not cute to be a racist, etc.

There are some communities around for Alt/Goth folks of color, but, personally there was a bit too much internalized white supremacy going on in those groups and nah son.

Like any other microcosm of society, the ones I like are going to replicate the sins of the macrocosm. That said, emotionally it just makes me sad and tired.

That’s where I am right now.

Sad and tired old Black Goth.

I’ll feel better, these things come and go.

Now that my life has shifted to a more daytime dwelling schedule. I might get my partner Uniballer dressed up and take him to a meet up or maybe get us out to the Goth club once in a while.

I will probably return to reading my dark magazines. I found some great fashion stuff to look at on Tumblr and I’ve been doing some more wardrobe rebuilding.

Hell, I might even start writing essays about this stuff and trying to Black up some Goth mags.

For right now, I feel better I got it off my chest.

Until next time my loves.

Coming soon I have some new beauty reviews and if the universe works with me, some face of the day photos and stuff. I will probably bring back the goth fantasist posts too.

 

 

 

Oh Such Woe.

Today we’re gonna talk about some of the more irritating to painful parts of being a POC who has an interest in anything Alt. We’ll say Alt as code for all things punk, Goth etc. Subculture, body mods. That kinda freaky stuff.

If you’ve been here a minute you know I’m almost 40 and my interests in Alt flavored fashion and whatnot extends back more than 20 years.

I do live with intersecting marginalizations but today I’m gonna focus on Blackness and how my Blackness intersects with how I experience any Alt community.

Lately I’ve been dabbling in some Alt flavored communities and blogs. I have to laugh a little bit. Though a lot of the crowd is younger, it is still almost just like it was when I was younger. I see a lot of appropriation without any thought whatsoever, that said there’s also been some conflation with things like body mods and funny colored hair being compared to Black folks losing jobs, being kicked out of school etc for wearing their natural hair.

I already had to bounce out of a couple of groups because I’m too tired to be the lone voice. I did it once, tried to explain how choices we make to change our appearance do not equal out to how the appearance of Black folks is policed everywhere. Yes, you may get some side eye if you’re a White person with a shitload of visible mods or with funny colored hair but, you probably won’t be consistently dehumanized, vilified and frankly abused by only slightly closeted racist if you try to do something about it. The two things are not alike.

I think I’d forgotten how much of this being in the Alt community I get exposed to. Casual racist shit (G*psy slurs etc) and the pushback in even asking someone to be thoughtful about calling a look tribal or whatever bullshit.Even the gentlest of p0rodding to be a little more cognizant of stuff causes such tantrums.

This is the shit that put me off of these communities before.

Whether it was an issue of watching blatantly joyfully racist people be tolerated and welcomed because they showed their tits to having to AGAIN talk about why yes Goths don’t have to be thin milk pale waifs, and yes Goths can have kinky curly hair, and YES fat people can be Goths and YES it’s okay that there are many expressions of Gothness and blablablabla.

Maybe I’m just an old cranky Goth but goddamn.

And I tell y’all, if I see ONE more damn time people talk about how open any Alt community is I’m going to pee on somebody’s shoes. That is just not true. There is a veneer of openness and diversity that is often not supported by the White folks in said cultures and communities really doing the work. By doing the work I mean can we not excuse any level of racism? Or can we not when there are folks who are other fuck with them when they say, hey can you not do/wear X thing it hurts me?

Nah son.

Any subculture is just a microcosm of the bigger culture and that needs to be acknowledged.

And while I’m talking, can I say how much Tim Burton fuckin hurt me? Burton has been an aesthetic influence on me forever. And yeah, you know what I KNEW he didn’t give a fuck about POC at all. I knew that. I’ve seen his movies. But, did he really have to say all that?

Fucking A yo. I mean, yeah I know that most of my ALT flavored faves don’t give a fuck about POC. I know that. I just, hearing it so explicitly and so sort of casually just breaks my heart. The complete erasure of my existence in everything I like is hard. It’s what put me off of reading/enjoying a lot of things and it’s not cool. I hate it. It hurts me.

I’m even kind of at the point (again) of stopping reading/following a bunch of Goth stuff I like because there’s just zero representation or even vague nods at there being other Goths than every thin White basic looking White girl in a corset. Like…it is 20 fuckin 16 can we not?

All this said, I will be making more Gothy/subculture posts cause why not?

Next up I’ll try to do a photo/step by step make up tutorial for my favorite Gothy easy look for brown skin. We’ll see how I do.