….for a White Guy.
So, I have had a few people request a post about my husband. If you ever had the chance to meet the man, you would know why people would be interested in hearing about him. He is definitely a character…to say the least. In fact, due to his personal nature and aversion to the Internet, he will now be affectionately known as Fuzz. This name change is only just one example of our differences in personality and culture, but rest assured that these differences are a constant source of entertainment.
As you have probably surmised from the title of this post, he’s a white guy. Polish/Italian/Lithuanian to be exact. While I never did set out to marry a non-Native person, I was open to the idea. I was never one to discriminate. I was an equal opportunity dater. It was just that around the time I met my husband, I had a string of bad dates.
The dates would always start off well but around the time we would get to the point to sharing more about our backgrounds, I would get something like this:
Guy – “So what island are you from?”
Me – “Island?!”
Guy – “Yeah, Hawaii or <insert your favourite Polynesian island here>”
Me – “Um, I’m from Turtle Island. I’m First Nation”
Guy – “Oh….”
Me – Awkward silence.
Guy – “So why don’t you have to pay taxes? Can you get me cheap gas?” or <insert your own stereotypical question here>
I never really did hear much from the guy(s) after this exchange. Their loss.
One fateful night though, I ended up meeting my husband in a bar. CoyoteRoxyRados (or what ever name it was called at the time). We were there for a birthday party and he and his friends sat at the birthday table. I figured that they knew the birthday boy but it turns out they just had no where else to sit. At the end of the night, Fuzz asked me for my phone number….Um, no. How about I take yours – with no real intent to ever actually use it, of course.
A few weeks later I was having lunch with a friend at our University pub. While we were eating, I noticed Fuzz and his friend sitting a few tables away. I said to my friend “Hey, there’s that weird guy that asked me for my phone number”. We had a good laugh and I stayed behind to do some homework while she left to attend class. Deeply engrossed in my homework (quantum physics, I’m sure – ha!), I did not even notice when Fuzz came over to my table.
He sat across from me and picked up a conversation that we had weeks ago. Admittedly, I was a little impressed that he had the nerve to come over after my rejection. After a number of times of chatting on MSN (remember that?), I agreed to go on a date with him.
We went to Applebee’s – fancy, I know. It was going well and then it happened…
Fuzz – “So, where are you from? I mean, what’s your background?”
I thought Uh oh. Here we go. But then I was surprised:
Me – “I’m from a reserve about an hour from here. I’m Native.”
Fuzz – “Oh, yeah? That’s cool. I knew a Native guy once. His name was Neil. He really liked cheese.”
Me – “That’s been your only experience with a Native person?”
Fuzz – “Yeah, why?”
……and the rest was history. Now, you tell me….would that not make you want to keep him?