Americans all claim to be fascinated by diversity, but the popularity of Coates’ old-fashioned black-white tunnel vision demonstrates once again that the conventional wisdom hasn’t become more sophisticated in the past half century. It’s always that Selma bridge in 1965.
In contrast, around 1966 the 7-year-old Quinn’s family moved to Brooklyn’s deteriorating Park Slope, then one of the most ethnically mixed (and junkie-infested) spots in America.
He loved it.
Through Aug. 16, Quinn is doing a one-man show Off Broadway about what he learned growing up there, The New York Story, directed by his old pal Jerry Seinfeld. (As you may recall, Seinfeld complained in June about how political correctness is increasingly constricting comedy; if you are interested in guessing what the usually diplomatic Seinfeld thinks in private, you might want to listen to what the outspoken Quinn says in public.)
White people do exciting shit boring, and black people do boring shit exciting. We will skateboard volcanoes and base-jump off a canyon but cause someone to fall asleep when we explain it to them.
Black guys can do nothing all day, but when you hear them explain their day, it sounds like they’ve been skateboarding volcanoes. (…)
Arabs are the most intense people on earth…. If you start a joke, “You ever notice when people do X?” and mention something annoying, you don’t hear laughter. You hear stony silence, and then, “Why would you allow that impudence to go unpunished?” (…)
Jews only listen to other Jews anyway, so this is falling on deaf ears, I realize that…. Their big word with each other is “recommendation.” Do you recommend we go see that show? You say it was a good resort but would you recommend it?