Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Ignorancist Mission #1: Failed

Yesterday I went to Walgreens to print out some picture cards for Christmas. Thus began my first ignorancist test. I asked the cashier to call someone to the photo counter and waited for that someone to arrive. A couple of minutes later a man who seemed to be the "manager" came out of the back office and asked me if I had been helped. I told him that I was waiting for someone to help me with my photos because I didn't see a place for me to stick my flashdrive to download my pictures. He said he didn't think that it was possible for me to use my flashdrive, and I explained to him that the person I spoke to on the phone earlier from their photo department told me that I could. Here's how the conversation continued:


Manager: Was the person male or female?

Me: Female I believe.

Manager: Young or old?

Me: Silence

Manager: White or Black?

Me: Silence again with raised brows. In my head I was saying, "You've got to be kidding me! Is this fool for real? How the heck am I supposed to know if the person was young, old, black, or white. I did not call via video phone. Apparently there is some code in speech that allows us to know a person's age group or "color" just by hearing their voice, but I'm sorry to say that I am not aware of it.

Manager: Couldn't tell, huh?

Me: Shaking my head no, with the same expression on my face.

Manager: I'll get someone to help you.


He disappeared into the back again. I waited a minute and decided to leave. Mission failed! My dilemma: Do I waste my time on this man who I will probably never see again in my life or do I talk to him about how his line of questioning was inappropriate and really ignorant? I felt like I should be exerting my energy on people who I actually have to interact with regularly. But now I'm thinking, would it really have been a waste of my time? I don't know. It's really not about me.

3 comments:

Christie-A Work In Progress said...

If at first you don't succeed, try, try again! This was funny!

from the desk of ....me said...

Don't think of it as failure. Let's call it a missed opportunity. So next time, you'll be more careful to take advantage of ALL your opportunities to bring light and rid the world of some of it's darkness.

MBB Founder and Editor Denene Millner said...

Eh--I think it would have been a TOTAL waste of your breath and time. I'm just mad nobody could come out and help you! Sheesh!