Author Archives: Dennis

Definition of Racism

“Am I a racist?” That’s what I asked myself yesterday evening. It was one of those late-night contemplations that never seem to amount to anything, so I decided to save this introspection to the drive to work the next morning. So today, I stepped in my car and drove to work contemplating if I am or am not a racist.

I guess in essence, everyone is a racist, but that has to do with some very primal instincts that humanity is slowly trying to shed. People have an inherent fear for that which they don’t understand. Things that look different must also think differently and are therefor, by definition, something to fear, or be distrustful of.

But in modern day’s society people are slowly getting over those fears as we slowly integrate to form what I like to call a “grey mass.” However, according to Eva, studies have shown that people will tend to sit next to someone of their own skin colour in the subway, rather than not. I asked myself that exact same question; do I often find myself next to my own kin, rather than others on the subway. And I could really find a pattern – not that means anything, my memory is totally shit – and I would like to believe that I am not that shallow.

I needed a better definition of racism, and this is the first thing I came up with; making judgement based on appearance.

Now this isn’t really fair since I am a terribly judgemental person and I make judgements based on appearance all the time, and not just racial appearance. I needed a more precise definition of racism, the following definition is what I came up with next; racism is making judgements based on race.

Okay, now we’re getting somewhere. However, making judgements based on someones racial heritage doesn’t constitute as racism, however. At least, it doesn’t to me. It just makes you prejudice since you have set pre-conceptions of a person based on his race. Pre-conceptions are relatively harmless unless turned into something that will influence your actions. So as soon as your pre-conceptions based on race leads to a change in behavior does your prejudice turn into racism.

But that would mean that there is no difference in positive or negative racism. Well, personally I don’t think there is, stricly speaking. Racism just has some really negative connotations to it, and rightly so since there are a lot more identifiable instances of racism that carry that negativity with them. Keyword; “identifiable.”

Merriam – Webster’s says; “a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race.”

Conclusion; I still have no clue if I’m a racist. And I still don’t have a clue what racism is. I’ll just use the following definition; “Racism bad, m’kay?”

Let’s go all the way.

Quote:
Let’s go all the way.
Life; more like monday morning
than like saturday night.

Rafting wild rivers,
and evenings on village squares.
Let’s go all the way.

Let’s go all the way.
Shopping in Hong Kong,
and dinners in New York City.

Let’s swing from Kudzu vines,
curl up the jungle like twine.
Let’s go all the way.

Let’s go all the way.
Visiting Musée D’Orsay.
Surfing San Fran Bay.

I just want to be
free with you and you with me.
Let’s go all the way.

A Lost Quality

I’m not a saint, and this is not a saintly journal entry. This is just me venting a few of my frustrations.

I am eternally grateful when people decide that they’d like to do me a favor, and I won’t thank them enough if they lift the weight of work and worry off my shoulders, or just go out of their way to make me a little happier. I like it when I ask someone for a favor and they decide to do it for me, I love it when they offer it themselves.

When someone tell me that they’ll do something for me, or when they agree to do something on request, I see that as an equivalent to promising me to do something.

“Oh sure, I’ll do that for you.” to me, is the same as “I promise you that I will do that for you.”

Lately, in the past year or so, I’ve come across a lot of people that will tell me that they will do something for me, and end up falling through on me. Usually these are people that are very close to me. Usually they’ll tell me that they won’t be able to do that particular favor right before I’m not able to arrange something myself. Usually, I’m able – with some heavy crisis management, trouble shooting and backroom dealings – get done what I wanted to get done in the first place. Usually I want to cave in their skulls with a brick.

If you are not sure if you can help me out, then don’t offer. Understand that when I accept your help, that I’ll rely on you to do the things you told me you would. I put my trust in you to do whatever it is you said you’d do.

If you don’t offer, I’ll find another way to take care of it. Don’t wait until the last minute to tell me you can’t help me, then I won’t have enough time to comfortably review my alternate options.

A Dream

I’m going from memory, as it’s been a few weeks since I had this dream and it’s all quickly fading away. This dream has been bothering me for a bit since I don’t know what it’s supposed to mean.

***

I’m sitting in front of a computer screen in a hotel room. The double bed behind has my suitcase on it, unopened. I think it’s my first night here. It’s completely silent except for raindrops beating against the window to my left. I look outside, I’m about twenty-five stories up, and look out of Kowloon Bay, Hong Kong. It’s night time and the streetlights run like veins through the city. I think I’m staying at the Regal.

I sit back for a while staring at my own reflection in the window. I’m not sure what I’m thinking off. I get up out of the chair and slowly walk towards the bathroom near the front door of the room, meanwhile unbuttoning my shirt and taking off my clothing. I step into the bathroom and notice that it’s a small affair with a bathtube, a shower that’s integrated with the bathtub, a small sink with a mirror above it and a toilet. I take my complimentary soap, towels and robe and put them on top of the toilet and I step inside the bathtub and turn on the shower. Hot. Steam starts filling up the small room. I step into the shower and wash my hair. When I’m done I reach around the white shower curtain towards the sink and try to find my toothbrush and toothpaste. I can’t find it so I pull back the shower curtain, letting water drip out onto the floor. I notice that the mirror hasn’t fogged up, and I look up expecting to see my own reflection…

…and then I see her standing there, on the opposite side of the mirror. She’s smiling at me, a friendly smile. She is holding a square, low whiskey glass in one hand and she has her other casually folded over the other. I smile back at her, as if it’s normal and I find my toothbrush and paste. I decide to keep the shower curtain open as I continue my shower. Every now and again I look over and find her still standing there, in that mirror world, looking at me, sipping her whiskey. She seems to enjoy it.

I get out of the tub and start to dry myself off a bit. I put the towel around my waist and get the other towel to dry my hair. I walk out of the bathroom and into the small hallway. There are a few shitty paintings on the walls, small posters really, framed and I can see her in their reflection, looking back at me. I walk towards my bed, and I can see her in every reflecting surface, walking with me. It’s comfortable to know that she’s there.

I look up to the full-length windows, and the sliding door that leads out onto the small balcony and I can see her standing there, in mid-air, past the railing of the balcony, floating above Kowloon Bay. She’s beautiful. With the towel still around my waist I walk over to the door, slide it open and step out onto the balcony. As I stepped out I noticed that there were no city sounds around me, and I saw the balcony “stretch” out, elongate and shoot out away from me. She was no floating above the balcony floor. Still calm and smiling, still holding her glass.

I walked up to her, my feet on the cold stone tiles, and she settled down on the floor. I stood opposite from her and I smiled. She unfolded her arms and held out her free hand. And then jammed her index finger in my left pectoral, just above my nipple. The sounds of the city washed over me like a tidal wave as I tried to draw breath. The pain was so intense that I lost my footing and fell down to my knees. She walked a few steps back to admire what was happening.

The burning pain in my chest moved to my stomach and I double over. Now the viewpoint shifts. Slowly the viewpoints starts rising up and I’m looking down on the scene from about twenty-five feet up. I can see myself in pain and I can see her standing there. The city sounds suddenly stop and I see myself looking up into the air, arms out wide, shouting in pain. My eyes are bleeding. Blood dripping down my cheeks like running mascara. In the background I hear Samuel Barber’s Agnus Dei playing. I hear laughter through my own shouting, and I look over to see her laughing at me. Laughing at my pain. Mocking me.

I look back and I see myself still kneeled down, still looking up into the sky, arms wide and suddenly I see myself rise up, as if picked up by an invisible thread attached to my chest. My head and arms hanging back, my legs hanging slack. The music reach a crescendo as I hang about twenty feet up in the air, fighting against the force that holds me, my eyes still bleeding her laughter still in the background and then all goes black.

I wake up.