Friday, March 14, 2008

Palefaces Anonymous

"Hi, my name is Heather and I am a whitey."
"Hi, Heather!"

Not that you couldn't tell simply by my nearly-transparent skin color, but I never realized just how white I was (am) until I came across this, my new favorite blog: STUFF WHITE PEOPLE LIKE. This site describes virtually everyone in my family, high school, college, and until recently, my community, with amazing accuracy. Out of the 88 things as of this post, I think there are only three that don't apply to me, and that's mainly because of gender. Some that really pegged me were: farmers markets, (am bummed there's not one close by) David Sedaris, (love him), marathons, (I tell anyone who will listen that I ran one), recycling, (duh) threatening to move to Canada, (I do this all the time), and hating corporations (I love to rail on and on about them and brag about why I don't shop at Wal*Mart). Even more embarrassing is how I can't seem to stop telling people about all the traveling I've done, my favorite breakfast places, how I totally want to buy a Prius or other hybrid car, or how I'm thinking of going back to grad school.

I think the funniest thing about finding the site is that I was on another blog that I had just found, called Fake Plastic Fish. This blog is written by a woman in the Bay Area (my previous, crunchy-granola stomping grounds) who is trying to reduce her use of plastic as much as possible. She has stopped using pretty much everything that comes packaged in or is made from plastic, from grocery bags to toothpaste. She had a whole entry on water bottles, and how she uses a metal water bottle, which is currently all the rage. I remembered seeing one of my (white) coworkers drinking from one, and I rushed over to her cubicle to find out where she had bought it and if she liked it. She told me all I needed to know, adding, "You know, this is also on this website called 'stuff white people like'." I laughed and asked her to send me the link.

While I was waiting for her to send it to me, I continued perusing the other, eco-friendly site. I was very excited when I saw that the blog had a link to a site that not only had the metal bottles, but also had alternative cloth bags to use instead of the plastic ones for fruits and veggies! Thinking myself sooooo green, I quickly went to the site and started putting stuff in my online cart. I had even chosen some dye-free, all-cotton bags to buy to use instead of Christmas wrapping paper (I'm serious), when I saw my coworker had sent me the link to the other site. I clicked on it and almost choked. Here was everything I had thought made me so cool, green, enlightened, globally-conscious, and an all-around good person, shown in a very different light. I have to admit, it was quite embarrassing.

But there's nothing that white people like more than irony and showing they are self-deprecating (hey, that should be on the list, along with SuDoku, knitting, and text-speak), so I laughed and shook my head with each and every post. (Geez, I've even been to the Tsukiji fish market!) At any rate, I highly recommend this site to everyone, if only for a good laugh. But I think many people will find it rings a little too true for them, and that might wake up some of us "enlightened whites" to the fact that we are not as amazing as we think we are.

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