Random Rant

So we’ve all been posting over at Up Yours about racism and related topics. Unfortunately, I dredged up my old Two Strikes days, and it just made me bitter for a moment.

I will never forget when HRP once told me to go easier on Incoherent Twit because “you have had more opportunities in life than she has.” Yeah, I believe that was the quote. I remember falling off of the couch in a rage. She was mad because she hired Twit to write propsals (which I constantly edited), when dumb shit couldn’t write a fucking declarative sentence without omitting something crucial, like the subject or the verb. And I spent more than half of each day re-writing everything and making it sound like it wasn’t written in crayon on a refrigerator door. But what really frosted my flakes was the reality that I had had fewer opportunities than Twit, when you got down to it. She came from money. She had a kid at age 16, which her mom reared for 8 years so she could send Twit to college (although to hear her talk and see her write, her college should be damn ashamed to list her as an alumna). They had designer clothes and endless amounts of money for vacations and booze and pretty homes. I did not. I will admit to having been born in the projects and even having accepted welfare for a couple of years (the way the system was intended to be, lending a temporary hand during adversity), after my mom divorced my evil stepfather. I paid for college myself, even having to drop out for awhile to earn enough money to go back. And I still owe $25K that I can’t afford, but I’ll digress on that. 🙂

And what also burns my toast is that the agency, while doing a good thing in the community, was so anti-whitey that it was frightening — or maybe that was just the executive director’s influence and not representative of the rest of the (dis)organization. Then again, she had relatives and friends and churchmates smattered throughout the ranks, and so many were little walking-and-talking minions of hate, the disciples of the anti-Caucasianism that permeated the hallways. It killed me to give up my executive position to take a massive salary slash at another association, where I am now, but for as much as I bitch about the Veggie Patch, nobody here calls me out based on my color (here, they just pray that you have no ambition to succeed in life, but that’s another random rant for another random day. heh). Constantly, under HRP’s domain, I felt like I should have been obligated to apologize for my glow-in-the-dark skin and my light eyes, eyes that couldn’t mask my own resentment toward her for her ridiculous ways.

And the bitch probably didn’t *get* it when the pale-faced friends Doug, Tiff, Lindsay, Valerie and I (and there was another person, but I’m hard-pressed to remember the name. Tiff — who was it?) jumped ship in May. And then Andy resigned (he’s Asian, but we “claimed” him for our team), but he reversed it and from what I hear, he’s as miserable as can be. The unspoken rule at Two Strikes seemed to be that if you had a blood or spritual connection to the queen, you were set for life. The rest of us, well, picked up the slack, worked like dogs, were shat upon constantly, and were expected to smile like nothing was wrong. My friends and family even noticed that I could smile on demand, but that I “unlearned” my ability to smile genuinely.

Susan and F/OM are still there, but like me, I think they just got used to the fact that they get ripped to shreds on a regular basis because, well, they stand out. They’ve accepted it, I suppose. I don’t know. F/OM really does love his work, and I always loved him for busting his ass, keeping to himself and keeping the smiles genuine, no matter what truckload of cow manure the queen was dumping on his lap at any given time. He taught me well, though — just smile and say you’re sorry and get the hell out of the way. Stand your ground but pick your battles — save your energy for the war.

My sources from within tell me that HRP continues to badger her management, telling them that they don’t know what they’re doing (and with rare exception, I suppose she’s right, but even the strongest among them can’t survive with her thumb over their heads 24/7). I learned all of my leadership skills from F/OM, and if HRP taught me anything at all about being a leader, it was how to NOT be one. The day after I quit, I returned to perform some volunteer work for them at a community event, and even then, as she gave me a fake hug and one last snarl, I thanked her for the opportunity she gave me. I did not thank her for being a pleasure to work with. I did not tell her I would miss her. I did not claim that I was getting a better job. I simply expressed appreciation for my invitation to the dance, and I omitted the fact that I did more falling on my ass than I did dancing. I am just damn lucky there’s a lot of padding on this ass, or I probably would’ve been hurtin’ a lot more than I did then. 🙂

I realize that HRP had issues with “white folk,” as she called us, but I walked out of there (actually, skulked down the back steps just so I could avoid her one last time) on my last working day, I carried a scrap of dignity and a Santa’s sack-full of hatred down those stairs. And it is a daily struggle for me to remind myself that all people who look like her aren’t Satan incarnate — just her, and a handful of others. Now that I’m down here in the rainbow world of D.C. — where, at T.C. Williams High School, 63 nationalities are represented (compared to my high school’s paltry three nationalities) — I realize that I wish I had grown up here, just for the diversity. Granted, we have our trash down in Southeast, and I would never drive through Anacostia without body armor, but that’s no different than when I worked in the ghetto and had my car attacked when she was only two months old. But I wish HRP hadn’t tainted me toward her race, because I always find myself wondering if everyone of different races despises “white folk” as much as she and her extended family does.

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