The Incredible, Unparralleled, Indomitable Colson Whitehead

Ladies and Gentleman I present...

I know some folks feel bitter about me, as bitter as the first dandelion greens of the season. Yet these people are not without hope, hope that is drizzled on those dandelion greens like a dash of sweet pomegranate vinegar. Do they begrudge the scorpion its sting, or the duck its quack? How can I be other than what I am, The Guy Who Got Where He Is Only Because He’s Black?

Frankly it’s a lot better than my last two gigs, The Guy Who Left the Seat Up and The Guy Who Took the Last Beer, although I do suffer from a lot of work-related injuries, as you can imagine. For all this jibber-jabber about how I don’t understand a working man’s problems, you should take a look at my medical chart. I have carpal tunnel, tennis elbow, miner’s lung, scapegoat rash and vintner’s dropsy, and just last week I burned my thumb making horseshoes. The funny thing is, I didn’t want to be a blacksmith. But I heard they had an opening and I couldn’t help myself.

I put in a good day’s work, unwind with a little Marx, and then settle down for some well-deserved rest. I have a nice bed. It is a California king. It is stuffed with gold doubloons, the treasure I have accumulated by gathering the bonuses and raises that would have gone to Those Who Would’ve Gotten It Except for That Black Guy. The bed is quite comfortable. I sleep O.K.

It makes the head spin, this talk of who’s elitist and who’s not. I’m confused, myself. For years, they said you can’t have this because you’re black, and then when you get something the same people say you got that only because you’re black. I mean, here I am, The Guy Who Got Where He Is Only Because He’s Black, and yet the higher up you go in an organization, the less you see of me.

It’s as if Someone Out to Prevent Me From Getting What I Worked For is preventing me from getting what I worked for. If only there were something — a lapel pin or other sartorial accessory — that would reassure people that I can do the job.

First off let me say that I have a new signature: "It’s as if Someone Out to Prevent Me From Getting What I Worked For is preventing me from getting what I worked for. If only there were something — a lapel pin or other sartorial accessory — that would reassure people that I can do the job."

Second, I have a whole blog post I've been meaning to write on the influence of The Intuitionist on me. For now, let me pay Colson the ultimate compliment and say I wish I had the skills to do what he just did. I've been thinking op-ed on this for weeks, but everything I was coming up with stale. That folks, is why writers are underpaid. Incredible. Props to Too Sense for the link.