Episodes

Blessings on blessings on blessings. You can find all our new episodes below:

Episode 20: Black Sleep Matters

Sleep is one of the most important facets of human life. Unfortunately, access to sleep isn’t equal. Like everything else, it has racist undertones and histories. In this episode, we explain why Black sleep matters and how differences in access to sleep shapes our daily lives.

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren talk about how lack of sleep in the short term has afforded them time to get things done at the expense of their own wellness.

In the second segment, they discuss how lack of sleep and sleep disorders have extraordinarily dangerous side effects for racial minorities yet it is often overlooked or even expected.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren reflect on how they have come to realize the extreme importance of sleep in their lives, as evidenced by Angela Bassett’s de-aging regimen.

 

 

Articles for reference:
*Study finds connection between race and sleep
www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/lifes…noredirect=on

*National Sleep Foundation – What’s The Connection Between Race and Sleep Disorders?
www.sleepfoundation.org/sleep-disorde…eep-disorders

*Sleep Apnea Often Missed in Black Americans
www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/sl…in-black-americans

*My 2nd Goal for 2016: I Will Practice Mental Self-Care
watercoolerconvos.com/2015/12/31/my-…tal-self-care/

Episode 19: Stop Whoopin Your Kids

Parenting remains one of the most important and difficult jobs many people will ever have. And, learning how to discipline children without the use of corporal punishment can take some unlearning of the habits and norms many of us grew up with. We’ll talk about whooping, spanking, beating, etc. in this episode. Legggoo!

In the first segment, we discuss the listener question that prompted this episode and the common perceptions people have of spanking.

In the second segment, we discuss the studies around acceptance of spanking in the U.S., how spanking is still allowed in schools, and the country’s history of corporal punishment.

In the third segment, we outline our parenting approach and how we came to realize the many reasons why spanking is a bad practice for kids.

Articles for reference:
*Black Parents, Stop Shaming Your Children
watercoolerconvos.com/2014/05/03/bla…your-children/

*Americans’ Opinions On Spanking Vary By Party, Race, Region And Religion
fivethirtyeight.com/features/americ…n-and-religion/

*Hitting kids: American parenting and physical punishment
www.brookings.edu/research/hitting…ical-punishment/

*Poll: Most Approve of Spanking Kids
abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=90406&page=1

*If You Think Good Black Parents Are Unicorns, You’re Part of the Problem
watercoolerconvos.com/2015/06/16/if-…f-the-problem/

 

Episode 18: Do Good Work and Don’t Be Trash

In the first segment, we explain the meaning of the motto “Do good work and don’t be trash.”

In the second segment, we discuss how we model the motto in our daily lives from how Daren checks his privilege to how Jenn uses her platform to elevate the work of other Black women.

In the third segment, we talk through how not being trash requires being critical when necessary and why you should always put more emphasis on your work than accolades.

Articles for reference:
*How we use the term ‘hater’ to avoid reflection and self-improvement
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/07/12/use…f-improvement/
*Reckoning, the Combahee River Collective, and Black Women’s History Month
watercoolerconvos.com/2018/04/02/rec…history-month/
*On being Black, being disposed of, and seeking status
watercoolerconvos.com/2018/01/31/bla…eeking-status/

 

Episode 17: Janelle Monaeo-sexual

Jenn has an unhealthy obsession with Janelle Monáe so of course we made an episode about it. We also examine queerness and what it means in the lives of young Black folx today. Legggoo!

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren talk about Janelle Monae coming out as queer and what the resurgence of queerness means for this generation.

In the second segment, Jenn and Daren discuss queerness as a set of gender politics and a set of sexual politics.

In the third segment, Daren reflects on being a heterosexual Black man coupled with a queer Black woman and Jenn reflects on identifying as bisexual, then pansexual, and now queer.

 

 

Articles for reference:
* Why, As A Queer Black Woman, It’s Important That I Write About Culture
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/02/14/why…about-culture/
* To be a Black, Queer, Unrespectable Christian in an Era of Unrest
watercoolerconvos.com/2015/09/01/to-…era-of-unrest/
* I was most comfortable with my identity when I was anti-Black
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/08/04/com…ty-anti-black/
* Watch: Janelle Monáe – Dirty Computer [Emotion Picture]
www.youtube.com/watch?v=jdH2Sy-BlNE

Episode 16: When White People Call the Police

It’s time for us to have a serious conversation about white people using the police as their personal bodyguards.

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren talk about recent situations when the police have been called without good cause and why they are so problematic.

In the second segment, they discuss the disparate responses police officers provide to white people vs. Black people and how unnecessarily bringing the police into situations can often end with Black people dead.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren discuss their own personal experiences with the police and why they have so little faith in the police force.

Episode 15: When White People Like You

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren read a listener submitted question (the topic of this episode) and clarify that this question speaks to a larger question of the power of the status quo.

In the second segment, they discuss the theoretical implications of being liked and supported by white people.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren discuss not doing things for the white gaze, codeswitching, and creating spaces for Black folx first.

Articles for reference:
* Why White Guilt Is The Least Important Consideration In My Work
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/02/20/why…on-in-my-work/
* Why I will no longer use my unpaid labor to discuss race in America with white people
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/09/10/wil…-white-people/
* White “allies” and speaking the words of racial violence in the United States
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/08/23/whi…united-states/
* 5 Things Black Folk Don’t Have To Do For White People In The Era Of Trump (Or Ever)
watercoolerconvos.com/2016/12/14/5-t…trump-or-ever/
* The Folly Of White Allyship In An Era Of ‘Opt-Out’ Culture
watercoolerconvos.com/2016/10/25/the…t-out-culture/

 

Episode 14: The Oscars Episode

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren offer up both the official and #ThatBlackCouple versions of descriptions for some of the most buzzed about films nominated for Oscars this year.

In the second segment, they give their in-depth critiques of the most buzzed about films this awards season: The Shape of Water, Three BIllboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, and Lady Bird.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren reflect on how standout films Get Out, Mudbound, and Step have been mistreated by the film community.

Articles for reference:
* Reckoning with the anti-Black mathematics of mainstream awards shows
watercoolerconvos.com/2018/02/07/reckoning-anti-black-mathematics-mainstream-awards-shows/
* The Academy Awards Just Barely Moved The Needle On Hollywood Diversity
watercoolerconvos.com/2016/06/29/the-academy-awards-just-barely-moved-the-needle-on-hollywood-diversity/

Episode 13: D’Bleck Pantha Episode

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren talk about their experience viewing Black Panther and explain why they saw the film first as a couple and second with their children.

In the second segment, they discuss the merits and problems with Black Panther in conversation with responses written by Chris Lebron and Lawrence Ware.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren reflect on how Black Panther could and should change the movie-making business and why representation matters.

Articles for reference:
* We are not Wakanda. We are Erik Killmonger.
http://watercoolerconvos.com/2018/02/19/not-wakanda-erik-killmonger-black-panther/
* ‘Black Panther’ Is Not the Movie We Deserve by Christopher Lebron
http://bostonreview.net/race/christopher-lebron-black-panther
* ‘Black Panther’ and the Revenge of the Black Nerds by Lawrence Ware
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/16/opinion/sunday/black-panther-nerds-cool.html

Episode 12: Things to Leave in 2017 and the Black #GlowUp

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren talk about what they want to leave in 2017, especially white saviors and performative allyship.

In the second segment, they discuss things they liked about 2017 and how 2017 was the year of Black folx on their “glow up”.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren discuss things they are looking forward to in the Blacker more feminist future of 2018 including Black Panther and increased Blackness in community and culture.

In the fourth and final segment of the first season, Jenn and Daren talk about the podcast. They drag each other a ‘lil bit and discuss what you can look forward to in 2018.

Articles for reference:
* Doing The Work: White people must invest in anti-racism

Episode 11: Commodifying Black Pain

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren talk about the ways that mainstream media operates to exacerbate and benefit from the public performance of Black pain.

In the second segment, they discuss what Black Liberation really looks like given this type of system.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren discuss their experiences with internalized anti-Blackness, whether it be from them or others, and how to manage.

Articles for reference:
* Omarosa, Bethenny, and White Women Being ‘Mediocre’
watercoolerconvos.com/2013/11/02/oma…eing-mediocre/
* It’s time to talk about the Black elitism and anti-Blackness portrayed on ‘This is Us’
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/12/06/got…l-behavior-us/
* Anxiety, Death and The Moments When ‘This Is Us’ Gets It Completely Right
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/03/01/anx…pletely-right/
* It’s time to stop trying to integrate ‘SNL’
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/05/30/tim…integrate-snl/
* What does prison abolition mean to the mother whose son has been decapitated?
blackyouthproject.com/what-does-pris…en-decapitated
* Wendy Williams explains why she fainted on-air
www.cnn.com/2017/11/02/entertai…fainting/index.html

Episode 10: Why We’re A “No Football” Household

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren talk about emerging news around the medical issues that are associated with football, especially as it relates to CTE.

In the second segment, they discuss all of the problematic aspects of professional football that are damaging to Black folx and question how anyone can be for Black lives while also supporting an anti-Black system like the NFL.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren relate their personal experiences with football and athletics and how Black folx are encouraged into sports at the expense of their personal health and longevity.

Articles for reference:

* The Paradox and Power of the Black Professional Ball Player
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/03/23/the…l-ball-player/
* If Colin Kaepernick is for Black lives, he won’t go back to the NFL
watercoolerconvos.com/2017/08/12/col…rnick-job-nfl/
* Colin Kaepernick And Our Collective Denial That Football Is (Already) Political
watercoolerconvos.com/2016/09/05/col…ady-political/
* The Trouble With the Commodification of Athletes’ Labor
watercoolerconvos.com/2016/09/30/the…thletes-labor/
* Michael Sam Can Still Be a Hero in a Football-Free Household
watercoolerconvos.com/2014/05/17/mic…ree-household/
* Slavery Much? On Racism in the NFL, Richard Sherman, and Hypocrisy
watercoolerconvos.com/2014/01/22/sla…and-hypocrisy/

 

 

Episode 9: Implicit Racism, Microaggressions, and Millennials

In this week’s episode, Jenn and Daren talk about whether or not implicit racism and microaggressions are a thing. They also debate the “punch a Nazi” movement and challenge folks to punch their aunties at Thanksgiving dinner. Get into it!

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren discuss how subtle forms of racism show up in our everyday lives.

In the second segment, they dig deeper into what implicit racism is, how we conceive of “microaggressions”, and what racism looks like for Black millennials in the United States.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren talk about how we address these issues and what are some ways to combat these issues as we do the adulting thing.

Remember to give a five star rating on iTunes and Sticher!

 

Episode 8: Harvey Weinstein and Gaslighting as Culture

In this week’s episode, we discuss the increased numbers of sexual assault victims and survivors who are sharing their experiences with prominent men in Hollywood.

First, Jenn and Daren discuss the allegations against Harvey Weinstein and the misuse of power in Hollywood.

In the second segment, they dive into gaslighting, defining the term and illustrating how pervasive it is in our culture.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren talk about sexual harassment in intimate environments and why it is so important for men to be vocal about these issues.

Remember to give a five star rating on iTunes and Sticher!

 

 

 

Episode 7: #MentalHealthMatters

In this week’s episode, we discuss the importance of mental health awareness in Black communities. We pay special attention to the intersections of race, gender, and class and how they affect mental illness outcomes in the US.

First, we discuss how mental health has played a role in their lives. They talk through anxiety attacks, childhood trauma, medication, and long term therapy.

In the second segment, we lay out a litany of stats to discuss the seriousness of mental illness within the Black community.

In the third segment, we go over ways to seek help and be helpful to those in our lives who may be working through mental illness issues.

Remember to give a five star rating on iTunes and Sticher!

 

 

Episode 6: The Problem with #RelationshipGoals

On this week’s episode, Jenn and Daren discuss the #BlackLoveDoc to show how the idea of #relationshipgoals is inherently flawed. Give it a listen!

First, Jenn and Daren discuss the “Black Love Documentary” that recently aired on OWN. They talk about the couples they loved, the ones they didn’t, and the depictions of Black love that they hope are represented in the next season.

In the second segment, they talk through why #RelationshipGoals is damaging and problematic both for those who are described with the term as well as those who use it to describe others.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren share personal stories of how #RelationshipGoals have been misapplied and how no one should aspire to have the relationship they have.

Remember to give a five star rating on iTunes and Sticher!

 

 

Episode 5: The Erasure of Black Women’s Work

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren discuss the Canadian Poet Laureate who stole ‘Still I Rise’ from Maya Angelou, the problem with those “Phenomenal Women” t-shirts, and the historical erasure of Black Women’s work.

In the second segment, they talk about the role of Black women in the workplace, very public examples of Black women’s erasure like the adaptation of Nnedi Okorafor’s novel “Who Fears Death” at HBO, and the ways patriarchy also operates to shut up Black women like Jemele Hill and Munroe Bergdorf.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren reflect on their own relationships with the erasure of Black women and how they navigate that in their lives and in their relationship.

 

 

 

Episode 4: “Pretty Pregnancy” and Unrealistic Expectations for Black Pregnant People

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren discuss how Serena Williams and Beyonce were treated during their pregnancies. Their experiences are indicative of how Black women really are damned if they do and damned if they don’t, and pregnancy and motherhood are fraught with racial and gendered biases and innuendo.

In the second segment, they talk about motherhood in very real terms. Namely, there is an immense amount of under-recognized labor that people with uteruses do when pregnant, the expectations placed on new mothers and others who give birth prove this. Pregnancy is not an accessory or a trend; it is a medical condition and should be treated as such.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren reflect on Jenn’s pregnancies, how partners claiming that they are “pregnant too” are dead wrong, and just how little education people have on the realities of pregnancy.

Episode 3: Coming of Age with the Toxic Masculinity of 90’s Black TV

In “First Things First”, we talk about how we were introduced to masculinity and the impact of growing up in single-mother households.

In “The Conversation”, we define toxic masculinity and give some concrete examples from television shows. Highlights include perpetually invasive stalker Stever Urkel from “Family Matters” and Overton and Kyle from “Living Single”.

In “The Reflection”, we discuss how grateful we are to have been raised by single mothers and explain how the absence of male figures in our households helped make us who we are today.

 

 

Episode 2: Talking to Children About Charlottesville

In this episode, we discuss the white supremacist march and rally in Charlottesville, abstinence parenting, and why it is important to be honest with kids about the political realities facing the world today.

In the first segment, we talk about what happened in Charlottesville and how it affects Black families.

In the second segment, we talk about an experience we had with our kids during a recent trip to Ohio that raised a debate over if racism is learned or if that even matters. We also talk about how that factors into Charlottesville.

In the third segment, we reflect on our experiences learning about race, gender, class, and other social issues growing up.

 

Episode 1: Introducing That Black Couple

In the first segment, Jenn and Daren describe how they came to be called “That Black Couple” by walking through how they became a couple in the first place. Highlights include when Daren had to literally be Jenn’s mouthpiece and their “Never Felt This Way Moment” at the back of a bus.

In the second segment, they provide a brief overview of the content listeners can expect to hear discussed on the podcast, including gender roles, class and capitalism, and sexuality.

In the third segment, Jenn and Daren explain the structure of their episodes.