Friday, February 24, 2012

No Offense...

Wednesday I had a dilemma.

It was Ash Wednesday, and I got the "From dust you have come, to dust you shall return" ashes--

(Oddly enough, Dust in the Wind by Kansas is playing right now!)

Afterward, I went to my gas station of choice--the local Shell--which is run by an Indian family. The guy behind the counter said, "What is on your forehead?"
"It's Ash Wednesday," I said.
"Ohhh. Ash Wednesday!"
"What's Ash Wednesday?"
I laughed to myself and explained that Ash Wednesday is the day that starts the 40 day period known as Lent, a time of reflection and mourning that ends with Easter.
He looks at me and goes, "Oh."
I could tell he didn't really understand, but he didn't want to ask any more questions.

I didn't want to say, "It's a Christian thing" because I was afraid I would sound like I was saying, "You're not Christian, you wouldn't understand." I just said, "It's kind of a Lutheran thing..." which isn't really all that true.

He just said, "Have a good day."

I still don't think he understood, but I was amused that he asked. got me thinking. Why was I afraid to say it was a Christian thing? Are we so afraid of offending someone that we don't even want to talk about what we know? And I'm not talking about Christians. I mean everyone, people in general. Is it just me? Am I just so scared of making someone feel stupid or left out or marginalized that I don't want to tell them what I know or compliment them?

Like at work--

I always appreciate when a customer's deposits are correct. And after a while, I like to tell them that. Except, last week I went to say it and stopped. Why? Asian. And before that? Jew.

Why am I so scared of someone thinking I'm stereotyping them?

Blargh. Welcome to my brain.


1 comment:

David said...

More sin and vice for me then!