June 24, 2006

Strattened things out

OkTataByeBye is running a travel contest/reality show, as some of you perhaps know. They have shortlisted 12 people, whose pictures you will find on their site, and whom you can read about with some judicious clicking of your mouse. It turns out I know three of these people, two whom I've met and one only by email: fine folks all and I wish them all the best.

This post is not about them.

This post is about a "weird travel adventure" one of the twelve, a Karishma Pais, relates here. It boils down to this: had to get to "Stratten Island" (sic), bought a bus ticket, bus seriously delayed, bought plane ticket instead, slept in airport, took flight, took another long bus ride, got there.

Yep, weird.

But her account has these lines:
    Reached the Greyline bus stop in downtown Chicago on time. It was pretty scary, since most of the other commuters were low income African Americans. Their size and perpetual scowls can be quite intimidating ... After haggling with another intimidating African American Female Manager ...

    [Italics mine]
I mean, really. Those low income AAs! Those BIG low income AAs! Those big SCOWLING low income AAs! And to think some of those big scowling low income AAs are actually FEMALE! Even MANAGERS!

How intimidating.

And I thought travel, especially "weird travel adventures", opened and broadened minds.

9 comments:

km said...

Ha ha ha ...STRATTEN Island? Thank god she wasn't going over to CRONY Island.

I don't wish to berate the author of that post for her "brotherhood of man" philosophy - oh crap, just did - but if she is travelling (and writing about it), the least she could do is get the name of the FRIGGING PLACE RIGHT.

radhaballavi said...

Am not surprised at all. In my experience Indians in the US (and here I'm referring only to Indians who have grown up in India and moved to the US) are supremely racist - not venturing into "kallu" areas, talking loudly about how a particular store which would otherwise be attractive for its bargain prices was off limits, because it's meant for "kallus", etc etc.

She also seems to have have got the name of the bus company wrong - shouldn't it be Greyhound? The only Gray Line buses I could find for Chicago are city sightseeing tour buses.

Jax said...

qpheh heh.... with a hole in the head, your mind can't really open up anymore can it?

gawker said...

she complains on her blog here "Yes they have spelt my name wrong in the link, trying to get them to correct it"

barbarindian said...

Kim, is it? What variety is she? Is it possible that the great Dilip D'Souza misfired his salvo at a totally wrong target?

Anonymous said...

We Indians are racist in India (Surds, Bongs, Madrasis, Punjus etc etc.) & we are racist when we go to the US (Chinky, Makku, Kallu).

Anjum said...

It's Ok, yaar. A person has the right to mention something that shakes them up, be it size, or 'scowl'. Few people would remember political correctness if they were to be surrounded by a couple of those 'specimens'.

Anonymous said...

I found Karishma to be an open,outgoing type.I think we could be magnanimous enough to excuse a few errors(none of us are without them).She didn't make up a pretty, painted picture.Do we wan't people to call everything and everybody rosy and sweet, or do we wan't the truth?It takes courage to speak the truth and speak it straight.

Dilip D'Souza said...

I'm sure Karishma is an open and outgoing type; she comes across that way in her writing. I don't believe we have to call everybody sweet and rosy, nor that we have to like everybody. I am truly sorry if what I wrote in any way affected Karishma's prospects.

But I think there are assumptions there that need to be questioned. That's all.