Exerpt of 'The BAP Handbook'

Butterfly's parents also want the best for their little girl, it's just that providing it sometimes proves to be difficult. Nevertheless, Butterfly is reared with the belief that a college education is the "equalizing elixir," the stepping-stone from obscurity to influence and power. Going to college grants her the opportunity to become whatever she wants: a doctor, lawyer, professor, accountant, the list is endless. Her achievements are limited only by her dreams. She goes to college and acquires the BAP knowledge.

Butterfly's metamorphosis usually begins in college (but it can start as early as junior high school or for the fortunate Butterfly in elementary school). Butterfly attends the "right" schools, hangs out with the "right" crowd, joins the "right" sororities, and dates the "right" men. The Butterfly's exposure to many of these experiences is by happenstance. Perhaps it is the friendship she strikes up with her college roommate, the interest she has in art history, or the young man who takes her to the theater. She watches how those around her dress, wear their hair, and carry themselves. An inquisitive soul, Butterfly is not afraid to ask for advice when she truly needs it. Her questions may range from "What should I wear to the Black and Gold Ball?" to "What's the difference between brie and camembert?" Her motto in life is "There's no such thing as a dumb question," and she's right. Her experiences and friendships increase Butterfly's base of knowledge about herself and the world.

While Butterfly's training on the ins and outs of BAPdom is top-notch, she regresses from time to time. To keep her in the proper BAP mind-set, Betty and Boho jokingly chastise her occasional misstep, but in the end, however, she passes her finishing lessons with flying colors.

Nevertheless, Butterfly will protest until collards are no longer green that she is not a BAP, but she is. Her outcry signifies that Butterfly never forgets where she came from, acts pretentious, or tries to pretend that she, or her family, is something she is not. Butterfly makes no apologies for her modest background and resents those who do. This honesty and integrity distinguish Butterfly from Bogus.

Beyond the age of twenty-one, it can be difficult to distinguish Butterflies from Bettys. Four years of college acclimates and comfortably ensconces Butterflies in the BAP lifestyle; they've got more BAPitude than some Bettys and Bohos (but hey, they learned from the best). Just as the fairy godmother's magic wand transforms Cinderella, college graduation allows Butterfly to emerge from her cocoon, spread her wings, and take flight.

Bogus: Mirror, Mirror, on the wall, who's the most genuine BAP of all?

Mirror: Not you, not you, not you, my dear. You're too busy hiding behind your expensive gear.

An imposter who is not an authentic BAP. Her BAP status is a figment of her imagination. (Based on the nursery rhyme "Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary")

Bogus, Bogus, quite misleading. How do you get through life? With overextended credit, you just don't get it We sure hope Bogus isn't your wife!

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