Thank God this is OVER. Some people aren’t worth writing about :-). I do however believe in treating people like they treat others and hopefuly there’s a lesson in there. And, no honey I am not a social climber, I am very much an introvert.
I must say this is by far the worst person I have ever met and regrettably befriended, however her decision to call me the ‘n’ word in email form was her mistake. In 2008, I hope that people can be more accepting of people based on their color since color is something that we do not control, just like we do not choose our parents and class. Read on…
[This entry has been edited upon agreement. As it was intended to be a Post about the use of Racial Slurs, no one’s name or photos are here. However, if my name is ever mentioned by the person online ever, it will be reposted. Even if the images and names have been removed, just like the articles she wrote about me, mine will appear in cache from google for the duration of internet history. In fact, even if you delete things off the internet, they still appear. Ugh stupid people I swear! Oh well, “don’t fuck with nerds.” I’d share how to clear some stuff off google but at this point, I don’t give a damn.]
Today’s topic is about racism, it’s a very touchy topic because I like to live in my bubble sometimes and pretend it doesn’t exist. I don’t do this because I am naive… I do it because I feel pity for the people who are racist. It’s sad to believe that after hundreds of years of oppression and attempts to make things right, people are still very much ignorant to the fact that people do not choose their skin color or social statuses at birth. Racism is where “members of one race consider themselves intrinsically superior to members of other races.” There are groups of whites and groups of blacks that do believe that their race is superior. I am sure these groups also extend into other races, however I am only aware of those among blacks and whites. However, this post isn’t about racism in general – it’s about a client that I had who decided to call me the ‘n’ word.
I took some time to think about this before I posted it. It was triggered by the supposed client, A racist client , who I had to terminate services with because she was affecting other clients. I respectfully dismissed the project. The reason why I terminated it was because my services may not be right for her which to me, at that time, seemed to be the best idea for both of us. She couldn’t afford it, point blank (not that I am not willing to work with clients who can’t pay but I can’t deal with high demands from clients who can’t pay). I tried my best to alter her project to stay within budgets and she failed to meet the deadline which was the end of February.
Anyways, she was a cool hairdresser who we met late last year just before I went on my California trip. I must say I didn’t even get to know her very well, even if our friendship lasted less than 3 months. She asked me to help her create a site and placed $100 down, she also offered to pay for lunch one day even if we were going to pay for it ourselves. My creativity fee isn’t that little at all, I hadn’t even drawn up a contract with her as yet but she wanted me to keep it since she wanted to show that she was serious about it. Immediately, I decided to treat her as a client – I hardly knew her for a month at that time, we hung out at least 3 times.
Anyway, taking her project in mind one day, I did some sketches to keep her under a small budget because I didn’t want it to conflict with my other clients. It was a simple site that would display her hair business and gallery for her online presence. I thought that it was a cute site and consulted with other designers to make sure it was perfect, she also agreed.
She came over to my apartment twice to develop the site and I spent a couple hours each time to make sure we were on the same page. When she decided to change the entire design, colors, layout(grid), everything – I decided to draw up a contract projecting the cost and changes in order to protect myself (I did not want to work on a simple site for months for a very small budget as I said before, this is NYC – everything is expensive here). She took a look at the contract and asked to think about it. I allowed her a day, then she responded with an exact budget and how I could help her stay within that. I told her she definitely couldn’t go with the one she conjured up because it would take me months to complete. Plus, she wanted me to do photo editing which is priced differently and would go past her budget (ouch). So, I did send her to the template monster site and offered to set it up for 1/4 the price of her budget. Still working with the end of February deadline… she took 12 days to get back to me and tells me she doesn’t have Photoshop to set it up herself so she needs my help (of course she wants this for free), not only that, she wants photos that she didn’t want to pay for lifted off a Wedding site to use from a photographer whom she hadn’t paid for those photos (I’m sure he’d be happy about that).
Anyway, today she sent me an email calling me the ‘n’ word, well there was also Low Class, etc… I avoided the “skank” comment. With the world on the internet and the media blasting people who are racist (such as that guy from Seinfeld and Mel Gibson), I don’t know why people still do this… These are some excerpts:
“You have no choice but to stick to being Low Class
I am LMAO right now Low class is a loose term for what you are. Seriously I am into Black girls and I was all about your cute WHITE boyfriend. but truth is I DONT do business with NI**gers anymore and this is EXACTLY WHY>> Why did I think you would be any different…”
“And it was my pleasure to host you guys for Dim Sum. Only a typical ni**ger would suggest that I was counting the dollars of that afternoon. It was a good faith gesture that I wanted to spend time with you both professinally and personally. At that time….”
“…FYI it takes more than a fancy contract, over priced rates and a white boyfriend to deliver you from your socio-econimically disadavtanged destiny. Ciao Jerlyn”
Actually I wish she had spelled economically correctly. However, I don’t see where having a white boyfriend cause black women to get out of a disadvantaged destiny. I do ok with or without my boyfriend. Although we live in NYC, we budget ourselves and know exactly how much to save in order for each of us to survive if one of us gets through difficult times. We make our own money and we have never asked each other for money. We are also a very progressive couple because when we first started dating, he did discuss the possibilities of encountering such a situation according to where we went. Being from an island where people do not seem to care as much, I brushed this off. However, he was right.
I really thought that people, especially in a diverse place as NYC, were used to interracial couples. I also assumed that she would know that my boyfriend and I do not see each other as an “exotic” race that couldn’t be dated – we’ve never had a problem in our past dating members of different races. We even forget what color we are because we see each other every day and we do have our distinctive “culture” if you want to call it that… I am a Caribbean-born American Woman and he’s of English decent (it’s truly remarkable how we have integrated our “curry-making-meatloaf-baking” cuisine and “soca-hiphop-alternative-calypso” music).
I believe no matter how angry you are, you should bite your tongue if you are racist, this is why I wrote this blog. I think people who can be so explosive are likely to hurt others and do need help. Then again, I am not racist so I can’t relate with how she felt. I, however, felt that I did handle myself diplomatically when I sent her an email simply letting her know that I can’t do her project at this time (at least not this month when I seem the busiest).
I am curious to whether or not anyone else have had similar situations. I know mine isn’t as terrible as others that I have read about on the news, or read in non-fictional novels… I am aware that some people do get hurt in processes like this. Maybe you’re a white person who was treated unfairly by blacks, or vice versa, or Asian who was called a pejorative word, Latino who was treated badly… what is your story?