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The Cody Blog: The Supreme F and Avoiding Confrontation Thru Respect

Monday, May 16, 2005

The Supreme F and Avoiding Confrontation Thru Respect

So I'd put in a 65 hour work week by last Friday night, and I was beat. I went out for a workout and then stopped at my favorite Mexican food restaurant in NYC on the way home for a take out order. I go there all the time and the owners is from New Mexico, so I've gotten to be friends with her. She pours me a big ol' classic margarita (rocks, no salt) and I'm sitting at the bar waiting for my food when some ridiculously drunk dude sitting next to me taps my shoulder.

He slurs something out about the size of the margarita and we chat a little bit when I mention that I'm from New Mexico. He's like, "You must have had a tough time being raised there."

Me, realizing where this is going: "Uh, gotcha." And I turn away hoping to stop the conversation.

Him: "I'm saying, bro. You know all the Mexicans. That must have been tough. I've been to New Mexico, man. I know."

Me: "Listen, dude, let's drop this. I've had a long week, I just want to chill with my tequila." And I turn away again.

Him: "Look, man, I'm not trying to be racist, you know? And if you don't get that you're stupid."

Oh yeah, the "you're stupid" comment.

Me: "Excuse me?"

Him: "You're stupid."

Ever notice how final and aggressive it sounds when you put "the" in front of "F#*k"? It's not just any adjective that way. Not when you put "the" in front of it and make it noun. This ain't no gerand. This is the supreme F. The one and only F. As in...

Me: "You better just shut the F up. Just back the F up and let's drop this."

Him, now a little nervous (you know, mainly cuz I put "the" in front of F, meaning that we're not messing around anymore): "Dude, can't you see I'm just trying to play with you a little bit?"

Me (feeling nervous myself and feeling adrenalin flowing through my veins): "Can't you see I don't want to be played with? And can't you respect that?"

Ah, the respect term. Amazing how powerful asking someone to respect your wishes can be. This guy immediately said, "Yeah, you're right." and turned away, leaving me alone. I finished my drink, got my food and tapped him on the shoulder giving him a friendly nod as I walked out and went home.

Coulda been worse -- coulda ended up in a physical fight.

Coulda been better -- I didn't have the energy to fight for what was right at that moment (discussing the nuances of racism and what not), which probably would have been a waste anyway, as the guy really was hammered.

3 Comments:

Blogger BelowTheCrowd said...

All I can say is I've lived in lots of places, and there's always "somebody else" living there who somebody could figure out some reason to dislike.

Really, I'm more concerned with some of the lunatic fringe we've got here already than I am about any of the people who are trying to get in from elsewhere, whether Mexico, Haiti, China, etc.

That said, restraint is a wonderful thing.

5/16/2005 08:11:00 PM  
Blogger The Unknown Broker said...

I think the problem was that the drunk left out another key word in his diatribe: "new"


See, you thought he was hating on the Mexicans. He was really just talking about NEW Mexicans - you know that rough crowd from NM.

And really, who can fault him for that, 'cause I know this one guy from NM - tall guy, rangy kid, absolutely no skills on the court, good hedge fund manager, but did I mention no ups and no jumper?

HAHAHAHA !

I have another friend from New Mexico too. And he and his wife put potatoes in tacos. They need some hatin' on for that.

In seriousness though, good post. I live in the South, and of course we -- along with the rest of the country -- have made advancements in this area. But not enough. Not by a long shot.

It does not dismay me so much when ignorance spews from the ignorant. When some no-nothing drunk or 6th grade educated, inbred doofus says something foolish, I sort of figure it's par for the course.
What is more distressing is when an educated, successful, respected-in-community, businessperson type slides in some racist dig or joke.

When they do that I like to pull out my wallet and show them a picture of my sister, her husband (a great husband and father who happens to be black) and their two beautiful kids.) Such backpeddling and sputtering you never saw!

5/16/2005 09:29:00 PM  
Blogger BelowTheCrowd said...

I couldn't help thinking of your "friend" in the bar when I read the lead obit in today's LA Times.

I put down my own thoughts here: http://www.belowthecrowd.com/archive/2005/05/the_middle_of_t.html

5/18/2005 05:57:00 PM  

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