Sunday, December 15, 2013

180. Alternatives

As funny as it may sound, I find myself worrying about C.W. from time to time, like yesterday. I was minding my own business reading a magazine when a lone figure walks in, plops down on the couch, and folds his hands in his lap. It is a man of indeterminate age, casually dressed in a flannel shirt, rumpled khaki pants, and running shoes. His eyes formed two lifeless orbs that seem to watch something far away, something that he really wasn’t quite certain existed.

“Don’t make sense to me,” he said, without looking at me.

I said, “C.W.?”

He said, “I just don’t understand.”

“What don’t you understand?”

“Why you people can’t see the truth.”

“What truth?”

“You know,” he said, turning toward me with no expression. “what they teach us on TV.”

I said, “Have you been watching Fox News again?”

“Haven’t you?”

“Uh, no,” I said.

“How do you keep up with current problems? For example, why is your species so concerned about the color of a person’s skin?”

I said, “Did they actually ask that on Fox News?”

“It is a choice,” he said. “A simple choice.”

“A what?”

“It is a lifestyle choice,” he said. “If a person chooses to have black skin, they shouldn’t be upset when they learn that Santa Claus is white.”

There are times when, as the young boy said when he fell into the molasses barrel, my tongue is not equal to the task. I simply stared as he continued.

“Some people want us to change our ways to fit them that choose other paths. It just ain’t right.”

“Us? Who is ‘us’”?

“You know,” he said, “the decent folks. Job creators, true believers, them that holds to traditional family values—the ones that want to save America from the dark forces. I’m talking about the ones that make the right choices in life.”

“White people?”

“That's always a good choice.”


“That helps. We do have some folks that choose to be wise women. Take Sarah Palin for example.” For the first time his face took on some expression. He smiled, winked, and made a clicking sound. “What a gal.”

If a person doesn't exist, does the color
of their skin really matter? - C.W.
I ignored him and continued. “Born right here in America?”

“Where else would you choose to be born?” He turned slowly and stared away again. Then he turned back and looked at me. “Say,” he said, “you ain’t one of them that believes in accepting makers of bad choices.”

“Oh no,” I said, playing along.

He seemed to brighten. “Good, he said, “come on, the Sean Hannity Show is about to start.” He stood, made a slow right face, and began to shuffle toward the door, still staring ahead blankly.

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