Twenty Questions For An Immigrant Of Color

1. “Such an unusual name! What does it mean?”

2. “Where are you from?”

3. “And that’s where your family is?”

4. “But where are you really from?”

5. “So’s our pediatrician! Do you know him?”

6. “Aww, such lovely blue eyes! Is she yours?”

7. “Is her mother also from that part of the world?”

8. “How often do you go back home?”

9. “Do they have camels there?”

10. “How do you say ‘camel’ in your language?”

11. “That looks interesting! What’s in it?”

12. “Must be spicy! Is it spicy?”

13. “You speak such good English! Where’d you learn it?”

14. “Still, it’s very impressive! Are all your people so articulate?”

15. “What do I see when I look at you? Just another human being. I don’t see color.”

16. “What are you implying? I have Black friends, you know.”

17. “You don’t think I understand your experience as an ethnic minority?”

18. “It was only a joke! Why are you so sensitive?”

19. “Hey, I was just curious! You’re not really upset, are you?”

20. “What’s a microaggression?

One comment

  1. I used to be asked a lot about tigers and elephants and spiders, whenever I said I’m from India. And me, from a maximum city like Mumbai, where the only life form visible is homo sapiens. First I used to try and explain that tigers live in (ever diminishing) forests and people live in cities and towns. Then I decided, “What the hell?” and used to make up one exotic story after another. 😀


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