I haven’t had a weekend off in at least three months. So when Friday afternoon rolled around and I realized that I can take THREE WHOLE DAYS OFF this holiday weekend, I was ecstatic. I made a list of errands as long as my arm and started in on them last night. This morning, before noon, I managed to get my handyman in to fix a drawer that wouldn’t stay closed; wrassled hoses to put fresh water into the hot tub that I drained Friday night; threw in a load of laundry; got to the gas station, the dry cleaners, the bank, the organic butcher’s, the grocery store, and then, as a reward, to the liquor store — before coming home to bake meat pies for tomorrow’s dark Moon meeting.
The liquor stores in my part of Virginia are all staffed by people from India. I don’t know why, but they are. I got a bottle of very good bourbon and got in line. The lovely lady behind the cash register was trying to explain to the old white guy, — and trust me, I know this type: he was a successful lawyer a few years ago before he retired and took over from his wife the job of going to the grocery store (his plastic bags with white bread, tomatoes, steak, and dish detergent were on the counter) and he made a pretty good living being rude and argumentative to everyone he considered his equal or subordinate — that the bottle of scotch he wanted to buy was not the one that was on sale. The clerk clearly knew her stock and even I could understand her explanation that the scotch he selected, while almost like the (less expensive) one on sale, was different. But Mr. Privilege wasn’t buying it.
After a minute, she took him back to the aisle to show him the difference. He stormed past me, knocking my purse off my shoulder and ignoring me even when I said, “I’m sorry; was I standing where you wanted to walk?” After a few minutes in the aisles, they came back with a different bottle and she rang it up for him. He continued to argue with her, just to show that he wasn’t going to be cowed by a simple brown woman with the facts on her side.
He left, another woman from the heart of Virginia got in line behind me, and the cashier said, “Sorry about the delay.” I said, “No worries. Those old white men. You know, they just have to be right.”
The woman in line behind me said, “Isn’t it true? So many of them are like that. I tell my husband, ‘You were born an old fart.’ They just can’t let anything go.”
I said, “Guys like that man, they were born privileged and they still can’t figure out why throwing their privilege around doesn’t work the way it used to.”
“No,” she said, “they can’t.”
And then all three of us cackled and had a good moment that gave me the goose bumps that are a sure sign of real magic worked.
So if you’re an old white guy acting like that and you imagine, as you get into your car with your cheap scotch, that you sure showed us, well, keep it up. The ONLY thing we three women had in common was how much we’re no longer willing to yield to you. But thanks for the sisterhood moment. You created it.
Picture found here.
And, ps, none of us looked like the women in the picture. I had on my Omega sweatshirt and my Wendy Davis running shoes. You get the idea.