Maybe I Look White

That says it all really!

Somehow my blog took a curve down a lane I rarely if ever drive, posting about race relations. Since Monday and Wednesday’s entries tainted my race-free environment I might as well finish the week how it started to get it out of my system.

Yesterday my slightly beyond middle aged co-worker, you know the one I supervise that more often than not calls me kiddo, and I started talking about car accidents. Of course this raised feelings of agitation about my colon due in large part to a chick formerly called friend who decided suing is the true sign of friendship. But that detail is neither here nor there.

Anywho my fool me once story sparked Slightly Beyond Middle Aged Co-Worker into a story of her own. She told a tale of her youngest son getting into an accident of epic proportion with three of his friends in the car. Luckily everyone survived, no need for vehicular homicide break dancing in the psyche. PTSD is real and hashish. As a result of said accident the neighbor, one of the kids in the car with her son, decided to sue. And not just for a couple chiropractor visits I mean $5M policy limits. Me thinks she was exaggerating this figure grossly. At the height of the suing said neighbors refused to acknowledge Slightly Beyond Middle Aged Co-Worker’s (SBMACW) presence. Litigation brings out the best in people. Unfortunately I never heard the end of the story because things went way left at the climax.

SBMACW: They just stopped taking my phone calls. Wouldn’t even speak to me when I walked out my door. I mean are you kidding me? Our kids grew up together.
Me: For real? That’s what money does to people…or the potential of money. Was their son seriously hurt?
SBMACW: His leg did get crushed and he missed the better part of his senior year in high school recovering.
Me: At least he was alive. I mean it could have been a lot worse. He could have been killed. Sometimes you have to count your blessings. Money isn’t everything. Did they win the full $5M policy limits?
SBMACW: I don’t know for sure because the insurance company handled it. They got enough I’m sure though because they’re Jews and you know how they are with money.
Me: What? o______O turned around abruptly and began working again

Now I pride myself on blending in all groups. I’m just one of those people who blends, thanks in large part to attending a PWI, predominantly white institution for higher education. My fellow of color folk consider this blend, the code switch. I won’t go into detail because it really isn’t material to this post, another day, maybe not! Clearly I’ve mastered the code switch so much that even my white counterparts are confused. Maybe the typical veil of blackness I see every morning suddenly called time out mid day and the Slightly Beyond Middle Aged Co-Worker thought it was cool to air her prejudice laundry.

Pause…I’m gonna keep it 100 with you, I hold some prejudice in my bones. Some of it stems from personal experience and the rest from unchecked bias, sue me I’m human. Honestly I call bullshyt on anyone who says they don’t. But what I don’t do is let that prejudice run a muck and for damn sure don’t splash it around all willy nilly in the workplace. I’ve seen those sensitivity seminars and they bite major arse. Clearly SBMACW needs a refresher.

At least I know where she stands, although my spidey sense perked on her the minute she made it a point to tell me she had a black friend, I’m looking at you white liberals. I was eating cookies that day, maybe she wanted one, yo no se. Believe me random black people don’t hand out kool kid points for their friendship. We aren’t accessories that you adorn yourself with and pull out to impress your hipster comrades. I mean I don’t go around starting conversation with white folk and say don’t worry I have white friends wink wink. Does that make me down now? Can I also partake in Trader Joes and Starbucks? Ridonkulous right? Right! Consider that a PSA.

Here’s my issue with my co-worker’s comment besides the obvious…bish this is work. G-check your unsolicited unfounded racist bullshyt at the door. Once the comment left your mouth it went viral in my mind. It’s lost in a place of no return. What I previously only suspected, latent bigotry, is now confirmed. There are no two ways around it for me. Prejudice doesn’t tend to skip an ethnicity. If you feel that strongly about Jews enough to break the ranks and mention it to me, despite my blackness, you’re harboring ill will toward my peoples. And I don’t like imposters. I prefer fully transparent racists, straight with no chaser. It just makes my life that much easier.

What says you fine folks, should I have hit her with more than a cruel and unusual side eye? Do you think I under/overreacted? Do you think my co-worker even realized she was being offensive? As always to share is to care and hashish!

2 Responses to “Maybe I Look White”
  1. *Yoles* says:

    late i know… girl i’m glad you just kept silent and let the conversation linger off… yes i said off not on..
    hmm do i think that she felt she was being offensive.. nope not at all… everybody hates jews (tongue planted firmly in cheek-lest there be misinterpretation) so why would she think that you would ever feel that if she speaks about them that way that she has more racially biased statements in her arsenal?!?!

    that being said.. i’m not a bad friend but i am a realist… car insurance is there for a purpose… if i am riding with anyone and they cause and accident that results in my bodily harm.. I. AM. SUING now will i take it to the house so to speak.. nah but i am suing… just because i am a friend means that my livelihood, abundant god looks 😉 and whatever else should take the back seat to you?!?!?! like i said i would only sue you if you caused the accident and the harm…

    • Faith M. says:

      Hola Chica,

      I was a little taken aback that she’d even express those types of feelings to me especially at work. Initially I chalked it up to her age, a lot of folk in her demographic still call Asians Orientals. Not because they’re intentionally trying to be rude as much as they have no other frame of reference. But something about the way she said it stuck out to me and I just said dammit this lady is a low key prejudice especially when I ran it against the whole I have black friends comment. Sorry you don’t get brownie points.

      Now I totally get what you’re saying about suing for payment of your medical bills and loss of wages. This is something that can be handled by the insurance companies and shouldn’t impact our friendship. I would expect that as a friend you would make your intentions plan and I would have no other choice but to accept it especially if I were at fault. In my case I was at fault for the accident but there was actually nothing wrong with my then friend. In my co-workers’ case the young man did lose a major part of his sr yr in high school and should have been compensated. Not to the tune of $5m but definitely compensated and his medical bills should have been paid.

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