Bull in a China Shop: How habits that seem so innocuous to me can alienate people of color

Chapter 40 of Waking Up White: and finding myself in the story of RACE by Debbie Irving

Make a list of five conversation starters that have nothing to do with identifying a person by where they’re from, what they do for work, or any other sorting and ranking criteria. For example, think about how you’d feel asking or being asked, “So what was the most interesting thing that happened in your day today?”

  1. Have you tried out the food at (new restaurant) yet? Have you heard anything about it?
  2. I just picked up the (bestseller book). Have you read it? What did you think? What have you heard about it?
  3. I’m filling my evenings with Netflix, now that baseball season is over. Have you seen anything good recently?
  4. I understand the city council is discussing a new parking garage in (mid-town). What do you think about that?
  5. Have you seen the ads for that new gluten-free bread? I wonder if it’s any good.
  6. How ’bout them Cowboys?

If you would like to join me as I blog about my experiences with race, please read the book. It was life changing for me.

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