"Penny, I understand why you and TwoFive think I'm a racist. I don't think I am, but I get where ya'll are coming from. I mean, I was raised in a period where things were just different. But I'm not mad at you for calling me out like that. Hell, I actually respect you more for it..."
This one-sided convo last week with a coworker came out of the clear blue sky (a handful of us were discussing the Win.ter O.lympics, yeah, go figure). His comment stemmed from the drama that was the 2008 election campaign and his (we'll call him ConFed) stance that if O.bama won it was because WE (blacks, and yes he actually said this) would come out in droves to vote for him. This cat is a Fo.x Ne.ws Cha.n.n.el stan. We had to hear this shit ev-er-y-day until the powers that be (for fear of mutiny, lol) pulled him aside to 'counsel' him. From what I've been told, he was quiet only when we weren't around. Who knew it was that serious? We actually had a meeting about this nonsense, the whole this-is-no-place-for-politics-or-religion-and-we-have-to-work-together speech. As you can imagine, fools were EXTRA salty on Nov. 6, 2008; you could feel the tension in the air.
ConFed and TwoFive are children of the 60's/early 70's; one white one black, and I get that their life experiences are totally different. All was well until O.bama had the audacity to run for President, and then the truth reared its ugly head. There was a thin veil of civility among people who, once before, had no qualms about meeting for lunch or attending a sports event together. The unspoken mantra to 'agree to disagree' almost brought folks to blows.
Ma Dukes, who retired from a job she held for 30 years, said some of her friends were trippin' too. Again, I ask, who knew it was that serious?
ConFed's pressure eventually returned to normal, and while we're cordial with one another, things will never be the same. When the earthquake hit Haiti a month ago, he made some disparaging remarks about that too (cue ol' dude from the 7.0.0 Club), but I was neither shocked or saddened. Why? Because I expected nothing more from him. He tried to appear compassionate when they pulled the little boy out of the rubble a week later. I smiled and kept it movin'. Please, if it wobbles and quacks like a duck it's a m*f*kn duck. Bitch, you's a racist!*
Race is not an issue for me, especially on the job. When it comes to my paper, I can work along side the devil (and have come across him times a-plenty on my journey) ConFed is a card carrying member of the Confederation, hence my blog name for him. BTW, he says he LOVES black women and swears that TwoFive reminds him of a woman he dated back in the day. TwoFive almost lost her lunch at that one. He actually wants to discuss the media's fascination with the single, lonely black woman with me and was on the receiving end of a serious side eye.
*Confed has always been opinionated; I'm only highlighting what I consider the turning point in his relationship with his black/brown/yellow/green/blue coworkers. He tried to talk slick about MiJac and almost caught a beat down.