As we have discussed, it is important to be the only person of color in the room at any given time or event. Having more than one of us around can lead to all sorts of miscommunication, embarrassing run-ins and tempt either of you to discuss common race-related issues that might trigger a long latent desire to read some Nikki Giovanni.
But sometimes a room is crowded, dark or split-level. So how do you both determine if there are any of colors in the vicinity and relax enough to proudly show off the pictures from Inverness on your iPhone?
Instead of prowling from corner to corner paper bag testing everyone you come into contact with, just look for a few key things to see if you are safe.
- 1. People never seem to quite finish the sentences: “So…you’re here with…..” or “You must be here to see…….” or “You must know Carol from……..”
- 2. You are at the Viper Room.
- 3. The DJ suddenly changes the music from relatively ambient Slowdive and Neutral Milk Machine and includes a random cameo like Baby Got Back. Then a dance circle forms around you. Don’t panic, after they see your first perfectly precise box step, they’ll get the idea.
- 4. People ask you oddly practical questions out of the blue like “Excuse me, do you know where the bathroom is?” “What time does are you closing tonight?” and “Can I give you my coat?”
- 5. You cannot quite find the words to describe your complete and utter sense of relaxation.
If these elements are in place, enjoy your party! And be sure to try the tapenade.