I have to admit, I am a tad bit reluctant to share this story with the world. To date, its only be recounted once to my husband, and of course laughed at hysterically by those who were present. And no, the innocent will not remain nameless…
Allow me to introduce the witnesses, my best friends @cindasmommy and @littlemisphd (Feel free to follow them on the twitter). Little Miss PhD (and yes, she is a doctor) currently resides in D.C., and in her spare time, enjoys reading, watching fantasy nonsense on t.v., and dancing lewdly and suggestively in gold lame’. She invited me and Cinda’s Mommy (who is actually Jacinda’s Mommy) down for the weekend to do hood rat stuff with her, and also catch one of these vulgar performances. We were delighted.
After brunch (‘cause that’s what bougie chicks do – we brunch) that included all-you-can-drink mimosas, Little Miss PhD the Dancing Girl had to go to rehearsal, leaving me and Cinda’s Mommy to our own devices, which meant walking to the nearest Nordstrom to pillage their shoe racks…
The car was parked, we cut through this alley, and as we entered the back entrance of the theater and attempted to walk down the hallway, a small man quickly enters the hallway from the left…He entered the hallway so quickly that one could even say he “jumped” into the hallway…THAT is my defense (and the mimosas!), by the way, because he entered the hallway SO QUICKLY, it was almost cat-like…like a ninja.
So I said, “Wha-taaaaaah!”
You know, karate sounds…
Which would be totally appropriate as he jumped into the hallway LIKE A NINJA who wanted to karate fight. However,
He was Asian. And he wasn’t trying to karate fight.
Which makes this story totally racist.
Cinda’s Mommy collapsed in an adjacent doorway and began to convulse with laughter. We literally had to pull her off the floor. Little Miss PhD, in her effort to remove me from people who may know her, began to give VERY,VERY specific directions as to how to get out of the building before I could offend anyone else as there were also White people, Hispanic people, and other Black people who I could yell racial epithets at.
“Okay, go down this hallway, ok? You will see stairs, ok? Go DOWN those stairs, ok? There will be a door at the bottom of those stairs, ok? Go out that door and make a right, and Nordstrom will be a block on your right. Ok?”
The worst part about the story is that my ignorance was TOTALLY INVOLUNTARY, which, as far as I’m concerned makes it totally not racist. You ACT like a ninja, Asian or not, people will treat you like one and make karate sounds when you walk by.
But ESPECIALLY if you’re Asian.
I’m pretty sure they don’t ALL know martial arts. However this one teaches break dancing so I BET he could kick the shit out of anyone at any time…like a ninja… who just so happens to be Asian. I’d also like to add the fact that I don’t think he heard me in all the hustle and bustle in that hallway. And IF said Asian gentleman heard me, he did not respond…Which clearly makes him the better person. *clenches fist* Dammit!
Its situations like this that make me painfully aware of not only my very awkward, sometimes stunted social skills, but of my own deep-seeded (or is it seated? Ceded? Someone help me put here) biases. In the wake of the Trayvon Martin incident, I couldn’t help but reflect on the fact that what I had said was exactly the kind of thing that not only was something very similar to what an asshole would do, but also the kind of thing that validates stereotypes and invalidates the individual. If I had seen my own child do that, I would have been mortified, and they would have been IN TROUBLE… like flip flop in the bathroom kind of trouble. So, I really gotta do better.
And for the record, I’m not a racist. One of my good friends is half Japanese. And yes, I am fully aware that these are the very same things that racists say… So to all my Asian friends, I am sorry and I mean it. Don’t feel so bad about clutching your purses now.
BUT, in spite of my apparent racism, I still bought 3 pairs of shoes for $125…POW…