Wednesday, October 25, 2006

An Enlightening Conversation with My Boss Regarding Hispanics

Something Ace Cowboy wrote yesterday reminded me of a story. My story is in no way funny, and you should probably stop reading here. You will be disappointed. What Ace said:
. . and for the first time the Mexican assistant and I locked eyes and telepathically agreed: what the fuck? [ed. note, I'm not racist on that last point, the dude actually is from Mexico, the World Cup brought us together.].
About four years ago, I was in my boss'’s office sitting across from his gigantic, dark, rich wood desk. Interestingly, his chairs are kind-of extra high-back chairs. The back of the chair looms what seems to be about two feet above your head as you sit there. The effect of this is that the chair feels huge, and in turn, you feel small. It's all about the mind-fuck with the executives. So I am sitting there feeling very small as this 65 year-old man is leaned back in his chair asking me about my weekend.

He asks, "“Reid, How was the weekend? Anything exciting?"

"“No sir, just attended a wedding."

"“Well, son, that'’s something exciting, isn't it?"

It actually was kind of fun. It was the wedding of my brother'’s wife'’s sister. The groom was an Hispanic gentleman, and the wedding was full of traditions I have not since seen. The groom is also from Mexico. Mexico City to be exact. Soon after the wedding the bride and groom moved to Mexico City. During the conversation with the boss, I referred to the Groom as a Mexican. This, apparently, makes me a racist. The conversation continued:

"“Well I guess it was a little exciting. It was my brother's wife'’s sister getting married to a Mexican man, and . ."

"“Whoa, Reid. I am certain you meant to say '‘Hispanic'’."

"“Well, actually sir, he is from Mexico."

"“I don'’t care where he is from Reid, we do not use that term here."

"“We don'’t use the term 'Mexican'’?"”

"“Exactly, the proper way to refer to them is '‘Hispanic'’."

I sort of sat there staring at him with a dumbfounded look on my face. My first thought is that the entirety of my education in political correctness had somehow gone awry. I looked across the desk at the Boss'’s furled brown and disappointed expression. I thought about it for about 10 seconds. He clearly wanted me to apologize and admit my faux pas.

I slowly stood up. Walked over to his big fucking desk, put both hands down, looked him in the eye, and said, "“Listen you old fuck. The man is from Mexico. That makes him a Mexican. He is a fucking citizen of Mexico. He lives in fucking Mexico City for God'’s sake. He is Mexican. It is not derogatory to refer to him by the county of his citizenship. I mean, what the fuck?"”

Actually, what really happened is that I nodded my head in agreement as I said, "“I a’m very sorry sir, I certainly meant no offense. It won'’t happen again."” If there is one thing I have learned in my 6 years of working in the corporate world is that you don'’t get very far pointing out other people's stupidity, questioning the boss, or asking any type of question at all for that matter. You kiss ass. That is why they pay me the big bucks now.

The next week a booklet was circulated regarding "“diversity in the workplace."

So my little friends, what have we learned? 1) The boss is always right. 2) Sell your soul if you can get a little extra in Christmas bonus. 3) The more money you make entitles you to bigger chairs. 4) If you can't leave the bar with the one you want, just drink more until you don't know the difference.


Scruffyboots said...

I'm sorry, did you say 'Christmas' bonus?

"Whoa, Reid. I am certain you meant to say 'Holiday'."

Anne said...

I just asked one of my co-workers whose birth occured in Mexico if it was offensive to be called Mexican. He said..and I quote. "Some of my rich cousins take offense. But it really isnt. I mean..Im not from Hispania."

Of course I knew that he was not offended. I knew he had pride in his culture. How do I know this? Because on the back of his turqouise F150 it says MEXICO in flashy silver letters. Thats pride. He is proud to be a Mexican.

Ace Cowboy said...

You're quoting an idiot...

Garrett Reid said...

Scruffy: Top five comments. Seriously. I did mean to say "holiday" and I hope that I did not offend you or your chanukah/kwanzaa/yule/festivus celebrating family or friends. Have a Merry Day!

Anne: Funny that you mention the flashy silver letters on the back of his F150. I am getting some of the same to read "Big Pimp!" The ladies will love it.

Ace Cowboy: ". . and for the first time the Mexican assistant and I locked eyes and telepathically agreed: what the fuck?" Is the greatest snippet of a story ever snipped. Makes me laugh every time I read it.

Ace Cowboy said...

Thanks, bud.