Pardon for the last two posts – I had been really in a rut, and Ddot suggested I write a little fiction to break the cycle. Not sure it worked, but I feel refreshed. Well, now, perhaps it did work.
I saw a wonderful post last week from Nikki. In the post, I understood quite clearly, her frustration, her opinion, and her observations on some racial issues. I will always remember something I heard Oprah say on the subject, something about black people thinking about racial issues each day, while some others think about this subject less often. Another viewpoint that actually may be a common viewpoint.
When I was in high school, I had a very good friend who was black. He was handsome, athletic and a very good student, so it came as no surprise to anyone that he was offered several scholarships in two sports. He chose baseball over football, in part because it was a lot easier on the body. I think he may have been a better football player than a baseball player, but he just wanted college paid for – and actually it worked out nicely for him.
He was actually drafted but chose to enter the engineering world – his choice that he has always been happy with. We were very good friends in high school, and we saw each other occasionally in college (went to different schools, but saw him on the breaks). I must have been a good friend, because I was invited to the wedding, held in a different state. My parents actually gave me some money so I could go to the wedding – financially, I was not doing well, and I needed to stay in a hotel overnight.
For many of us that went to the wedding, he invited us out to dinner before the wedding. I was not in the wedding, but because I traveled, I also was invited. I remember, after dinner, the party drifted into the hotel bar, and we stayed up chatting. By two in the morning, only he and I were still at the bar, and he was buying me drinks.
Ladies, I don't know if you do this, but when I am out, I normally make "will I sleep with him" decisions before I get too far gone. It has actually saved me from disoriented mornings, where I am sure I would be hunting for my panties in a strange room. That night, I thought to myself, "Eh, I would go to bed with him if he makes the first move." I was a little ambivalent, thinking that it would be an honor to be his last lay before getting married. I was single at the time, so I figured everthing was okay. Sorry to disappoint, but he did not bed me that night, but we got into some deep discussions including talking about race.
When he was in college, he was dating a white woman, but he told me that night he could not marry her; mostly because a great many members of his family would have been hurt, disowned him, etc. I actually met her, and I thought she was sort of a bitch; looking back, I am not sure if I was a tad bit jealous. He had always been a good friend to me, and I thought I was must better suited for him than this woman.
Anyway, his wife is so sweet; he make a good choice. I would say he got lucky, but I think his faith, his accomplishments and his intelligence steered him in the right direction.
Anyway, we were getting fairly sloppy at the bar, and we started talking more openly about race than I had ever talked about it with anyone.
At one point, I said I was saddened when friends of mine made racist comments. His reaction was different than I expected, but he should have been a philosopher because it was so clear to him. He said, "I am sorry your friends think of you so badly."
Then he explained that by them making those remarks, the must assume that I either shared their viewpoint or that my character was so passive that I would not challenge them. Ever since that night, I started challenging people who made certain comments, whether it be about race or gossiping or whatever. And you know what, once you challenge, people look at you in a new light and cease making the remarks. Challenging someone is so uncomfortable that it works so well. The same can be said about being a slut – but I will talk about that some other time.
But my friend was so cogent that night, even though he (1) did not even flirt with me, and (2) was smashed.
Nikki's comments were very interesting, and I suggest you read them.
He also talked about playing games. You see, like Nikki, he was the token black in his company. Actually, he was probably the token black engineer. He said he probably got a better job than he would have otherwise because he was black, and there were relatively few black engineers in the workforce. But he said when he was in college, he focused on European literature and art in his electives, mostly because he knew that assimilating with mostly white men, they had this education. He said that African art and literature is extremely rich, but he learned about this away from the classroom. He knew that he had to fit in around the water cooler, and being an ex-college athlete helped. But he also had to talk about things that interested this white crowd. I am not saying this is right or wrong, but I know it is prudent and he has done extremely well. Funny thing is that I can here some "good ol' boys from Georgia" inserting the phrase "for a black man" at the end of the previous sentence. And that, to me, is the subtle racism that permeates the South.
I remember in middle school, a social studies teacher was talking about how poor students were doing, and he said, "I had four black men miss the following multiple choice throw-away question: who one the Civil War?" It is as if the Civil War should mean more to black students than white students. Another form of subtle racism.
One of the comments on Nikki's blog was "I sure would like to lick Leesa's snatch." No, that was not the comment.
It concerned how she was teaching her children, and she said things I did not know. Because of slavery, black people have to wash cars. Because of slavery, black people don't have air conditioning and must drive with their windows down, and white people, because they were not slaves, could afford air conditioning. The problem is that this woman probably thinks she is being kind, compassionate and helpful to her children. All I can do is shake my head, wondering why the bar to procreate is set so low. I honestly think some people have no idea how to make babies – they just end up bumping their nasty parts into one another and having kids.
I have actually seen poverty – in Georgia, in Mississippi. Both black people and white people. My first car did not have air conditioning and I bought it in Georgia. Must have clued me into the fact that I came from slaves. Actually, since my relatives have come from this area for a long time, I am sure there was a little bit of color mixed in with my Lily-white relatives.
Okay, I broke many different rules with this post – too darned long, talking about race (which ensures no comments), and it will fall on the Monday before a holiday, so I am sure there will be few readers.
Perhaps I will post it for Friday – I know Rob will be upset, but he got the ending to a story. But then again, some that find erotica distasteful would have something else to nibble on. Did you notice that I am letting my participles dangle? And I said the f-word several times. I must be letting my hair down.
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