In high school, I took a fancy to an African American guy that ran in my extended circle of friends. I should start by saying that for every person I decided to date, I had to bring them by my parent’s house first. So he rolled up one chilly fall evening in a mini-van (news to me) to meet my family. He jumped out in a Fubu sweater and I knew this couldn’t be more perfect. The reaction value? Priceless. But I guess that’s really all you want at the young age of 16 anyways.
Aside from the obvious cultural differences, we didn’t end up having as much in common as I had thought, and the relationship dwindled into a two month ordeal…just long enough for me to attend his school’s homecoming in a sassy little number I had made.
What I do remember is this (and I will never forget it in my life): After a particularly boring dinner out at the local Applebee’s, we hopped back into the van so that I could be escorted home. He said he had something he wanted me to hear first. He turned on the cd player, where he has inserted a disc of his own. I won’t ever be able to capture this moment accurately, but he began to sing the lyrics of a song that went as such: “It doesn’t matter what color we are, the God we serve is the same,” while looking me dead in the eye. It took every last ounce of my being not to burst into a fit of laughter at this very genuine gesture. Amazing. Who can say they’ve been serenaded for a race disparity that they were actually trying to play down?
Apparently, I went ‘black’ and went ‘back.’