So, on the way home from class this evening, I stopped at the gas station right down the street from my apartment.
I needed to pick up some type of beverage to mix with my vodka when I got home, so that I could enjoy a tasty adult-beverage while I did my homework.
Because while I strongly advocate drinking while doing your homework, even I don't drink vodka straight. At least not under normal circumstances.
I also decided to get a sandwich from Subway while I was there, so I wouldn't have to cook when I got home. But alas, we shall not discuss whether or not it is a good idea to eat food that is prepared at a gas station.
Instead, we will discuss what happened as I tried to choose a beverage.
There are a lot of beverages to choose from--many of which taste good with vodka--so I was looking around for a good bit. I'm sometimes quite indecisive.
However, I am not at all indecisive about letting strange men get into my car--especially at night--which is why I said no when a young man in a very over-sized furry hooded jacket asked me if I would drive him to Walmart.*
This is how it happened:
me: looking ponderously into beverage cooler, thinking 'diet vernors'? 'diet squirt'? 'what am I in the mood for'? then notice that a strange man I don't know has walked up very close to me--much closer than people you don't know normally get.
strange man I don't know: hey, are you going across the bridge?
me (inwardly):what bridge? who is this person? why is he talking to me?
strange man I don't know: the bridge over the high-way. I need a ride to Walmart.
me: oh--I'm going the other way. Sorry.
strange man I don't know: come on, it's only five minutes out of your way.
me: I'm sorry, but I'm really in a big hurry. But if it makes you feel any better, I once ran out of gas right near the Walmart, and it only took me about 10 minutes to walk here.
I smile and start to walk away.
strange man I don't know, not enough under his breath: It must suck to be so racist.
end of encounter.
Oh, did I forget to tell you that I'm a white girl and it was a black man that was asking me for a ride?
Maybe that's because it doesn't matter, or at least I didn't think it did.
I mean, come on people.
This problem has nothing to to with color. At all.
I don't care if you're a white man, a black man, a neon-green man, or even a man who is made entirely of diamonds.
You. Are. Not. Getting. In. My. Car. With. Me. Ever.
Because I Am Not An Idiot.
I may make an exception if you were dying on the side of the road, but even then I would be wary.
Because the world is not a safe place and you aren't supposed to let strangers into your car, for the love of all that is holy.
This may mean I am a cautious person.
This may even mean that I am a bitchy person.
But it certainly doesn't make me a racist person.
And it also helps to keep me from being a person who gets chopped into a million tiny pieces and dumped on the side of the road.
I think it basically makes me a person who remembers the things her mom taught her--like say please and thank-you, wash your hands, and for heaven's sake don't pick up hitch-hikers.
Now please excuse me while I go have a tasty adult-beverage.
*also, I don't like Walmart. Walmart is a cheap sexist bastard, and you shouldn't go there. So really, I think I did the world a favor by not driving the strange man to the evil Walmart.