Now, I’m going to be honest. I don’t work in the most traditionally “professional” environment. A suit is a style choice, not a requirement. Dress Down Friday is really dressed down (it’s actually my favorite day to work because I can wear jeans. Yay, Me!!). There’s less pressure than most places. I mean really…compared to other places that I’ve work, this job is a dream. All they ask is that you DO YOUR JOB and BE RESPECTFUL. You wouldn’t think that is a problem but…
Let’s talk about last Friday. On the whole, it started out pretty quiet. No bosses were around. The atmosphere was pretty chill. People were conversing freely while typing. And then, it happened. The moment where being comfortable and keeping it real went so horribly wrong.
A couple of co-workers were having an obviously personal conversation about child support and dead beat daddies, when one of them thought that it was appropriate to say that six letter word that should bring traffic to a halt in any professional setting. Think about it…Think about it…You got it!!! The d%^$ N-word!
Now, the first time she said the word I thought that maybe she was caught up in the passion of the moment and it just slipped out. However, after the fourth and fifth time, I wanted to curl up in a little ball and find a home under my desk. Did I mention that these were two Black females?
Now, I am a Black female and I refuse to be hypocritical. I’m not going to pretend that I never said the N-word. However, I’ve always thought that there was a little red dashed line that everyone knew not to cross -the line that separates home/street conversations and professional conversations. As Asia Star says, “What type time you on?” When was it every okay to use that word in an office building? How are you that comfortable that you can blurt it out loudly in a room with a racially mixed crowd? Why are you not embarrassed? These are all of the questions that I thought to myself as I typed furiously and tried to distance myself from what was happening behind me.
I’d love to say that this is the first time that the word has been used by these same women in the same way. In fact, I actually had a conversation about how inappropriate the use of the word was in the office with them. It’s obvious that was a waste of my time. So…I guess I’m going to have to use other methods because I refuse to have these ladies embarrass me again. It’s time to make our work environment a little less comfortable. From now on, I’m going to try my best to call them on every racially insensitive statement that they make. I’m going to tow the hard line because obviously common sense isn’t part of these women’s make-up.
Now, Em’s thinks that I’m doing way too much? What do you think?
~Real Talk with BrixNStix