Doubletake

June 22, 2007

“Damn, look at you two!”

Dh and I were driving in DC on the way to visit my mom, when a homeless black man blurted this out at a stoplight.  It was so ridiculous we had to laugh.

His reaction is not uncommon, though he has so far been the only one to actually say anything.  We’ve gone to restaurants, had the hostess look from dh’s face to mine in utter confusion and hesitantly ask, “Two?” 

I was telling a co-worker my experiences and finished up by asking, “Why is it so hard to believe we are together?  It’s not like we are the only interracial couple in this area!”  She brought up a point I hadn’t considered. “You’re black and you’re muslim.”  She went on to point out that alot of people still associate a black american muslim with the NOI (“Nation of Islam”), and that knowing the NOI’s unfavorable view of whites, were understandably confused.

I believe she was right about it.  That has to be the source of confusion for some people.  But that’s not the whole story.  Some people are still surprised by a white man with a black woman, regardless.  And depending on their own issues, disturbed by it.