Sunday, November 2, 2008

Speaking of racism...

Here's an epilogue to yesterday's entry about racism in Chile. It's a transcript of a phone conversation I just had with a woman who's renting out a room.

LEIGH: Hi, I'm calling because I saw an ad for a room.
WOMAN: Are you Peruvian?
LEIGH: No.
WOMAN: Why did you answer so fast?
LEIGH: Because I'm not Peruvian. You asked me if I was Peruvian, right?
WOMAN: Yes. Sometimes people try to pretend they're not Peruvian and you have to make sure. Are you Chilean?
LEIGH: I'm from the United States.
WOMAN: OK, there's no problem, then. It's Peruvians I don't want.
LEIGH: Actually, I'd prefer a place where all nationalities are welcome. Thanks anyway.

I'd say Line #4 is by far the most ridiculous part of this completely ridiculous conversation. I guess I should have put her on hold while I went to check my records.

2 comments:

Sara said...

Interesting. If I had posted, I would have written about last names. Often times my students will ask me my last name right off the bat, then relax immediately when they find out that I am from "good German stock".

Leigh said...

I feel like judging a person based on his or her apellido is ingrained here. It's enough to calculate the percentage of prominent families who have "rr" in their last names...