Last week I had a long anticipated appointment for a personal service. I’m not going to be specific other than to say it was either a facial, pedicure or massage and not anything to do with body hair removal. Just to be transparent and save you from pointless wondering.
The service provider was new to me – this was our very first appointment. Things began well enough with some background and chit chat. We knew some people in common and both had dogs and other mutual interests.
Our conversation went to the topic of my job and I mentioned some of the work I had done, and planned to do, with my students. I mentioned an Election Day lesson that I had taught last year, one that focused on historical access to voting, John Lewis and the repeal of critical components of the Voting Rights Act and the related ramifications in terms of disenfranchisement, particularly of people of color.
This topic prompted the service provider to say that “not everyone who likes Trump is a bad person.” Huh? I felt the hair on the back of my neck rise. Oh, hell no.
I didn’t respond, or take the bait, choosing instead to remain silent. They continued to state their position that the people who are demanding that the police be defunded are the same people who would “piss themselves” if someone were to break into their homes.
Because, you know, the same people who brought this country Insurrection, 2021 are the true supporters of law enforcement, right?
My mind raced. What do I do? Do I just stand up and leave? Do I want a person with whom I vehemently disagree politically to be providing me with a service that involves physical contact? Shit.
I remained quiet for the next few moments. Perhaps they read the room and realized that our beliefs diverged and that’s what prompted them to steer the conversation to children, specifically their own elementary age child.
They explained that their child attended a Catholic school, one that only went through middle school. “What will you do after that?” I asked. They immediately asserted, fully knowing that I am both an educator and a parent of public school children, that they would “…never send their child to public school. At least not around here.”
Ah, I see. Speaking of “here,” I’m never, ever coming back here again.
I paid for my service, including a customary tip, and left.
Driving home, I reflected on that old adage about not discussing certain topics like politics and religion. I wondered if I might have scheduled a return visit had that conversation not occurred.
Nah, the service provided was no better than the politics shared. No need to pay to revisit either.
Please consider sharing this post, or any others which you might appreciate. Thanks – Silvia