You don’t have to justify yourself

The other day I was sitting at a bus stop. A lot of things happen when I sit at bus stops. So, I was sitting at a bus stop when this woman came up. Her bus was just coming up and she was climbing on when she turned and saw me. She stopped in her tracks.

I at first thought she knew me but when she didn’t say anything I knew she was just looking. She actually changed her mind about the bus and got off. I had never seen anyone do that before. After the bus rolled away she continued to stare at me. I ignored her as I do most people who stare at me.

All of a sudden she started firing questions at me as if I owed her an explanation for my being. People have done that to me since I was able to talk and I have usually answered them in hopes of enlightening them. This time I was in no mood. I am also usually polite to people because I realize that most people forget their manners when they see someone who makes them curious.

This woman to me was being downright nosy, and rude. She fired off questions about my parentage and didn’t believe me when I told her my parents were both Black. When she asked my why I was so white I told her I was an albino. She spit out, “What’s that?” I lost patience and told her to look it up. She kept asking me questions but I ignored her. She asked me if I didn’t like people asking me questions as if it was my job to answer and account to people like her. I told her no, I didn’t like it. She asked why but I don’t remember answering her.

As I said, I am not usually like that but I came to realize that I don’t owe anyone an explanation as to who I am. I told a brother this many years ago. It took me this long to take my own advice. I didn’t feel guilty about ignoring this person either.

There have been times when I chose to give people answers they may not have wanted or expected. For example: Someone asked me what race I was. I said, “The human race.” Someone asked me why I looked the way I did. I told them if they were bothered by my appearance then they should take it up with God. Maybe God would change me so that person would be happy. Someone asked me if there was a cure for what I had. I told them I didn’t know I was sick. Someone asked me if I wanted to be normal. I asked them what that was.

(BTW. Whenever someone uses the word “normal” what they really mean is “like them.”)

So, my lesson to you is this. You don’t owe anyone anything. You don’t have to explain yourself to anyone for any reason. If you want to enlighten people, fine. That’s what I do most of the time. But there comes a time when (maybe I am just getting old and crotchety) someone gets under my skin a little too much and I invoke my right to (politely or not so politely) tell them to phuck off.

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