Sunday Bitching Session: Do You Know Bradley L. Dunlop III?
I find myself in the middle of this conversation at least twice a week:
"So, Goldie, where you from?"
"Originally, you mean?" (When I tell them the name of the city I live in, people just stare, so I assume originally is what they mean.)
"Ohhhhh. " (pause) "Do you know Tatiana Smirnova? I worked with her five years ago and she's Russian!"
"Sorry, no, I don't."
"You sure you don't know her? Tatiana Smirnova. A very nice lady. You absolutely sure?"
Yes, dude, I am absolutely sure. There are 43 thousand people of Russian descent in our area and yes, I am pretty damn sure I do not know each one of them. It was cute the first few times, now it's just bordering on offensive. I know you mean well, but it is really coming out all wrong. If you think I overreact, let's put a lil twist on this fine dialogue:
"So you're a WASP?"
"Yes I am."
"Say, do you know Bradley L. Dunlop III? He's a WASP too. Tall, balding guy. You sure you don't know him? Positive? He's a WASP just like you."
Or how bout this one:
"Say, I can't help noticing your skin color. Do you know Tyrell Williams? He lived on my street ten years ago before I moved. He's a really nice guy. No? Are you sure? I think you've got to!"
If you cannot say this to a person, then don't ask me about your buddy Tatiana Smirnova, because it is the same damn thing.
See, in a convo like that one, I cannot help feeling objectified. I am not my country of origin. I am not my ethnicity. I am not my hair color and I am not my boobs. I am a unique individual with unique interests, a unique family and an awesome blog (right?)
If you treat me as such, I will gladly tell you all you want to know about my ethnicity and home country.
This is all the bitching I have for today. Enjoy what's left of your weekend, folks.