The sacred art of giving dap

John humorously notes that giving dap (sorry guys "fist-bump" is just dead wrong) is so widely practiced that even his thoroughly white lacrosse team did it. I don't doubt it a minute, but again that's the point. Just because many more people other than blacks are now giving dap, doesn't mean that it didn't start with black folks. Like I said, a lotta non-Mexicans eat enchiladas. That don't make enchiladas non-Mexican. Still, this whole thing has my head swimming now. It's quite possible that I have this backwards, I mean I first encountered the art of giving dap amongst black folks. But I also grew up de facto segregated--hell I first encountered french fries amongst black folks, so that isn't proof of authorship.

That said, the very fact that in all the instances where whites have claimed giving dap is common involve athletics is telling. Black folks give each other dap in all sorts of instances--not just competition. I may
give my man a "fist-bump" (arrrgggghh!!! it burns!!!) because my fingers are greasy, because I've got something in my hand, or just because I feel like it. In fact, one of the more awkward moments in black life occurs when two brothers greet each other and one isn't sure whether to use the open hand or the closed fist. You can end up with some pretty awkward exchanges--like shaking a dude's fist. Anyway, the place where "dap"  is most likely to be transmitted to other ethnicities is in athletic competition. So the mere fact that many of the cats who are questioning its origins are citing their encounters with dap in competition kind of makes me think I'm right.

When I got my first job around white folks, in the mid-90s, I had to stop myself from shaking my co-worker's hands every time I saw him, as was normal among the brothers. This has changed over the years, I think, with black culture going mainstream. So when I was working at TIME, for instance, I had some white friends who I shook hands with every time I saw them, because they were acculturated. Others I didn't because they weren't. But I shook hands with every brother I saw, whenever I saw him for the first time during the day. And then maybe again during the course of conversation. And then maybe again when I left. It just depended.

For those of you saying that you'd have to be from Mars to have never seen someone giving dap, dig this quote John dug up from over at from Human Events:

Michelle is not as “refined” as Obama at hiding her TRUE feelings about America—etc. Her “Hezbollah” style fist-jabbing—mouth-twisted anti-American speeches is STRAIGHT from ISLAM!

Oh my white people, we have so very very far to go...