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Jeans (photo: pie4dan/flickr)

Something we’ve all probably come up against at some time in our lives is the surprise of being categorized one way or another. Of course, being a liberal blogger is a natural, anyone who knows that about us will have some expectations about what we are like. Some have a positive image, some not, but it’s all about their belief until they meet with a real person.

As women, and/or as men, we all have such experiences as being expected to behave according to someone else’s idea of us. I even have astigmatism, and in truth, I did look down my nose at people until I got glasses in high school.

All of us have something in our background, though, that will prejudice another person toward us or against us, that just doesn’t happen to be what we’re about.

Sadly, immediately most of you realize that as a Texan, I get all sorts of strange reactions. A confession; I never roped a cow, and my only existing pair of blue jeans was given to me this month by our friend spudtruckowner.

I’m a child of the 60’s, a hippy and a liberal blogger, but I didn’t go to Woodstock. I was working and didn’t have the time. It may have been great fun to many who went there, but it sounded wet and miserable to me. I did get to a Boston performance by Bobby Dylan playing rock music, and some in the crowed did boo and yell at him. So I’m not a totally lost cause, maybe.

What are your confessions? Anyway you get someone else’s ideas imposed on you of what you ought to be, but aren’t?

My mother is part cajun from Arcadia, LA, and I’ve never had homemade gumbo or jambalaya except for what I made myself from a recipe I had to look up. I have family in California that don’t surf and actually aren’t very hip either.

It was nice visiting in NW PA earlier this month, and seeing more horse drawn buggies than cars along the back roads, and having fresh made maple syrup. But I have to tell you, I didn’t get a single bit of homemade cheese, not even curds.

When I went to Boston from the south, I thought I had reached Utopia until the day I drove into the city with a man from Kenya. Those looks would have competed with certain magazine cover photos taken in Little Rock when the schools there integrated.

As a colorful family saying goes, wearing a ring doesn’t make you a bathtub. We all know that it doesn’t make someone a thief to wear a hoodie (or an Armani suit), but that doesn’t stop the stereotyping.

Thinking through stereotypes can give us a clear view that we need to operate in a complex world.

Have you found out you were accepting someone’s label as true, when it was all just a prejudice?

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Ruth Calvo

Ruth Calvo

I've blogged at The Seminal for about two years, was at cabdrollery for around three. I live in N.TX., worked for Sen.Yarborough of TX after graduation from Wellesley, went on to receive award in playwriting, served on MD Arts Council after award, then managed a few campaigns in MD and served as assistant to a member of the MD House for several years, have worked in legal offices and written for magazines, now am retired but addicted to politics, and join gladly in promoting liberals and liberal policies.