27.3.07

Another racist tough guy.

In 4th grade, I took a 6th grade math class and a 6th grade science class. I spent most of the rest of the day in a room full of social retards who required extra supervision, lest we destroy something or cause a scene. As a class, supervised by our teacher, we also attended a 7th grade gym class, and also ate lunch with the seventh graders. We had to get our food and then sit with the rest of the class at a table with our teacher, who would shoo away the normal kids who tried to sit too close. It was during our lunch periods that I first noticed the racist tough guy.

I encountered lots of racist tough guys when I lived in Indiana. This guy was notable only in the fact that he was the first of his variety of people I ever encountered. I never had any direct interactions with him, but I learned through casual observation that he was, in fact, a racist tough guy.

When I'd sit at our guarded table in the cafeteria, I'd sometimes notice the racist tough guy. He had a mullet, and looked bigger and older than most of the other kids. He acted like a loud, obnoxious jerk, and the ladies seemed to love him. They giggled as he made fun of smaller students. I feared him, but I also got the feeling that he was cool as hell. He seemed awesome, and he commanded respect.

In 5th grade, our class got a different teacher, one who would let us go to lunch by ourselves. We still ate with the seventh graders. My friend Mike and I relished the freedom, though we never really interacted with any of the normal kids. I noticed that the racist tough guy was still in seventh grade, and I tried to stay away from him while I was in the cafeteria, because though I would have loved to be his friend due to his level of coolness, I was also pretty sure that, given the chance, he would fuck with me.

One day there was a loud rumor that a fight was taking place outside. We went outside, where most of the seventh graders had congregated, somehow without attracting the attention of any authority figures. There was an island of grass and two trees, surrounded by an easily-overstepped chain and pillar fence, in the middle of the sidewalk leading out to the parking lot. Kids circled the island and whispered about the two kids inside of the chain fence, who were moments away from extremely brutal 7th grade violence. One of the kids on the island was the racist tough guy.

Supposedly, at least one punch had been thrown before Mike and I arrived. Supposedly, it was a very loud punch. All we could see, though, were two kids standing around and not fighting. They weren't even doing the standard adolescent boy fighting dance, where two participants puff up their chests and try to intimidate each other by looking tough. Instead, one nerdy looking guy with glasses stood spitting on the ground, while the racist tough guy gestured wildly and swore loudly to his friends on the sidelines.

"Fucking motherfucker wants to fucking fuck some shit! Who does this motherfucker fucking think he is? I'm going to fucking kick his motherfucking ass!"

The swearing and the standing went on for a few minutes while we waited for violence, and then whispers of authority figures spread through the crowd and everybody dispersed.

There was a public pool in the same town where they bussed me to school. It was half an hour away, but it was the only public place to swim that we knew about, so my mom took my siblings and I there a few times. The racist tough guy was there one time.

I never saw the racist tough guy swim. He sat on the side of the pool, stretched out on a beach chair and surrounded by girls, and ranted loudly about the Mexicans who were at the pool that day.

"Fucking spicks! They need to put up fucking barricades to keep these fucking spicks out of here! I'm sick of the fucking spicks coming in here and fucking getting everything fucking dirty! Where are my motherfucking barricades?"

The girls surrounding him laughed at his racist tirade. At some point, they looked at my mom, who is Filipino, and the racist tough guy whispered something to the girls. They snickered, not really trying to hide the fact that they were obviously making some ignorant joke at her expense.

When we went home, my mom couldn't stop telling my dad about how horrible it was, and how she had never experienced anything like that in her life. It's not something that happens in California, where my mom had spent her entire life until moving to Indiana about a year before the incident. My dad just told her that people are ignorant assholes, and not to worry so much about those kind of people.

We saw the racist tough guy in public one more time, when I was in 6th or 7th grade. Our car had broken down at a gas station, and we were sitting in it and waiting for my dad. While we waited, the racist tough guy pulled up in his car. He was with a girl I recognized, and who I always thought seemed like a nice girl. The racist tough guy got out of the car and made a phone call on the payphone. He was loud enough that we could hear him in our car.

"I don't fucking give a fuck!" he yelled into the phone. "Motherfucking cocksuckers need to fucking learn what the fuck they're fucking doing!"

"Oh my god," my mom said, "What an absolute creep!"

"Don't you remember him?" I asked. "That's the racist guy from the pool."

My mom didn't remember his face, but it was definitely him. When he was done yelling obscenities at whoever he was talking to, he smashed the receiver on the phone a few times, and walked back to his car, where he continued to yell obscenities at the girl as he pulled away. She looked really passive, just blankly staring forward as he yelled. I felt bad for her.

2 comments:

CSL said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog. I always think f that kind of racism in terms of being only in the south, which of course isn't true at all. Ignorance and hatred - what a lovely combo. I feel sorry for the girl in the car, too.

skinnylittleblonde said...

Ugh...I'd be willing to bet that the reason he seemed so much bigger than the other kids was because he was bigger...like he was probably 17 or 18.
When I moved to southern Mississippi there was a fellow very much like this. He was in 8th grade and 17 years old when I met him. I understand he atsyed in 8th grade until he turned 19 & was disallowed further opportunity to public education.
My pity for the girl in the car only goes so far. Hopefully she had sense enough to leave him behind. If not, she made her bed.