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Mo,

Not sure I’ve ever seen a black person leave a restaurant without taking all of their leftovers with them in a box. Ever! Is it to make sure you get your money’s worth? I don’t know a white person who ever takes a box of leftovers home with them. Help me and my fellas comprehend this as it has been a topic of discussion many times over happy hour beers.

Keep up the great work.

JD

You have no idea how much you proved me right by asking this question. When I was a kid my dad made a point to always take a box of the leftovers home after we’d eat out somewhere, embarrassing me in ways he didn’t even know. I’d take notice of only maybe 1 out of every 5 white people in the restaurant doing this, and even as a child I knew there was something going on here.

Fast forward to present day and the girlfriend will STILL look at me with a piece of her steak (medium, not well done) and some mashed potatoes on her plate and ask if she should take it home. “Babe, that’s literally like two bites of steak. Let it go.” And she will, but only after much anti-doggy bag training on my part. “Why can’t I take it home?” she’ll ask. Like she doesn’t already know the answer. “Because white people are looking at us.”

She always thought this premise was ridiculous. White people aren’t paying attention to what we’re doing. They’ve got their own lives to live. Like how wrong does she look right now? JD you’ve proven years of research on my part correct: white people ARE looking at us. And they’re noticing all that shit. And while I know that as a person — black, white, or whatever — I shouldn’t care how I’m being unfairly judged by others…I do. And in any halfway nice to legit nice restaurant, I must act accordingly. Outside-in with the silverware. Water glass diagonal with wine glass. No sugar in my iced tea. And most important of all, leaving with my dignity and not a doggie bag.

Do I feel like putting on heirs? Of course not. Would I feel a lot more comfortable being myself and eating my tiny piece of steak THAT I PAID FOR at home later? Of course I would. But I can’t do any of these things…because white people are watching. And apparently you’re watching very closely.