#StoroSosa is a series of short bite-sized snippets as I weave stories through smoke rings.
‘Another glass of wine?’
He held the bottle in his hand, ready to pour.
‘No thank you. Alcoblow is an unforgiving beast’, I said
‘Oh I don’t need to worry about that’
I raised an eyebrow inquisitively.
‘I have red plates. They never stop red plates’
My eyebrow inched further up my forehead
‘Well, I don’t have that luxury.’ Sarcasm, oozing from every syllable, dripped off my tongue
The pizza had arrived, but we stepped outside for a few minutes. He pulled out a zippo from his pocket and handed it to me.
The conversation, as with smokers after a certain age, turned to the ways in which we compensate our bodies for killing them, in this case for both of us, it was yoga.
He talked. I listened. He talked. I pretended to listen. He talked. I stopped pretending to listen. He talked. I wondered if those were his real teeth. They were awfully white. Like maybe they glowed in the dark. I imagined how terrifying it must be to be in bed with him, with the lights off, all teeth, fluorescent, bared. He talked some more.
Then he said something that yanked me out of this downward spiraling daydream.
‘ What I most love about yoga is how much it challenges me. I am excellent at everything I do in my life, but at yoga, I suck. On top of that, there are very few occasions in my life, when I get to be taught by someone like that.’
‘What do you mean?’
‘Well, I work for the UN, at a very high position, and at yoga, I am being taught something by a young woman. That doesn’t happen often you know.’
‘I don’t quite understand’
‘At work, I am at the top of my game, an expat man living an international life, and here, for the first time I am being taught something by a young woman, you know. That never happens. There is the whole gender thing, the age thing….’ he trails off.
The class thing. The race thing.
‘You mean, you are surprised to find that a young black woman who you consider poorer than you has something of value to offer you? Open your eyes man.’
He sputtered. Red pinotage splatter stains appeared on his salmon pink shirt.
I couldn’t stand there any longer. I stubbed it out. Walked away.
That pizza stank of privilege.
photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/colonel1shot/11890387553/”>Colonel1Shot</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons