Back to the future

It’s Sunday afternoon and I’m still fuming about something that happened more than 36 hours ago. Allow me to vent, if you will. On Friday night we had a “farewell” celebration, it’s complicated because around a third of the office are being made redundant. The remaining two thirds are being TUPE’d to another employer but doing the same job. I’m one of the “lucky” ones being TUPE’d.

The evening was great, we had a 70’s/80’s theme and everyone made the effort to dress up. Paul and myself were in matching outfits as we were meant to be members of a moderately successful 80’s boyband “Summer of Sunshine”. Will I post a picture here? Our silver jeans deserve a mention I suppose, ok here you go.

80sBoyband 003

We had the whole back-story going, how we’d shortened our name to Sunshine when the other 2 members split in ’86. How we’d been most recently going down a storm playing the clubs in Benidorm. How we’re hoping to appear on the next series of “Re-born in the USA” but can’t say too much about that. It was a lot of fun, during random songs I’d be like “OMG I love this one, do you remember, we covered this one on our third album!”

So anywho, back to this story. We had the “150 people allowed” room in the Pub to ourselves and you needed a ticket to get in. However, towards the end of the night a few colleagues turned up with friends in tow and they were allowed entry. One of said colleagues, a black guy of African descent, had brought along a blonde haired, blue eyed type that struck up conversation with me. Although a little worse for the numerous sex-on-the-beach cocktails, (what else would an ageing boyband member drink?), I started to feel uneasy about the conversation.

He is talking and seems a nice enough guy, I agree with him on several points about music and other random nonsense. Perhaps sensing my approval on these minor points he presses on to more important issues, immigrants, blacks and other things I cant even repeat here. First off, I’m asking myself if I’m hearing him right, next I’m convinced that I’m in a scene from This is England! I’ feel like I’m in the middle of a B N P training video šŸ˜¦

Now, bearing in mind I’m stood with this guy on one side and on the other side of me is Paul and 2 very good friends and colleagues who happen to be Indian nationals, I’m getting annoyed. Really very annoyed. Not wanting any trouble I made some vague noises and go to chat to someone else that “I just have to talk to!”

Shortly afterwards I pay a visit to the toilets and find the the same white guy pacing up and down talking animatedly into his mobile phone, “get down here it’s gonna kick off” and other scarey words. He’s accompanied by a couple of mates, including the colleague I mentioned, strange that a black guy is hanging with them but who knows whats going on there.

I left the gents as quick as I could and went straight to my Indian mates, drunkenly trying to explain that we should leave now. One of said friends decided to nip to the loo to check it out and when he re-appeared, also agreed that we should leave now. Outside, we grabbed a passing black cab and dropped them off on the way to our house, so all ended well.

It annoys me that this happened. Perhaps, all the more because we were enjoying a 70s/80s night, a time when Race was a major issue. The harsh reality is that in 2009 it is still a major issue for some people.

I probably should have some sort of profound point to make here at the end but really I’m just ranting about an unfair situation.

I’m left with these questions.

My priority was to safeguard my friends, without causing confrontation, was that wrong?

I worry that I should have done more, confronted them about their attitudes but what would that have achieved and what would have happened?

5 Responses to Back to the future

  1. Jo (Laquet) says:

    I wouldn’t have confronted them, it would have been too confrontational for me BUT like you I also would have walked away protecting friends and not advocating/observing.

    Loving the outfits BTW – just darling!! ;o)

    Jo (Laquet)s last blog post..Unconscious Mutterings #318

  2. Stella says:

    I think you did what was best for you and for your friends.There’s no point getting into a barney with ignoramuses.

    Stellas last blog post..Bits ‘n’ Pieces, Bits ‘n’ Pieces….

  3. Karl says:

    That’s a very difficult situation. I may well have done similar. It’s amazing when people assume you’ll agree with them on everything and sometimes quite difficult to put them right because they’re motoring away. Somehow getting in “I don’t see it that way” takes a lot of doing. On a good day, I’d think – well they’re not being polite assuming I’ll agree with this crap so I shouldn’t worry about assertively putting them right. I don’t have to go to the trouble of defending my view (they started this and thye’re not interested anyway) but I certainly don’t have to be dragged along with theirs.

    I can totally understand you still being unsettled about it. I think I’d try to ask the black colleague what on earth all that was about?

    TUPE and redundancies – hmm lovely stuff. Hope it goes OK for you both.

    Anyway – so thrilled to realise you’re huge celebrities. What day’s bin day chez vous? I need to get there to look through your stuff before they whip it all away.

  4. Lesley says:

    Yes, I’d have done the same as you I suppose. But the danger is that we turn into the silent majority and the dangerous thugs end up thinking they run the place.

  5. Rob7534 says:

    There was a time when I would have kept quiet about such things, but I think I would have called the Aryan-Wannabe on his bullshit. Often enough, unless he’s shaved off his hair and sporting Third Reich Tat’s, they are not likely cause a major disturbance. They know their opinion is NOT mainstream, hence they way they tend to slide into the topic.

    But I’ve become very outspoken lately, as our political climate has turned rather shrill, I’ve come to believe that calling Repub’s on their nonsense is best for the country. In fact, I feel it’s rather my duty to do such! HA!

    I give you MAD props for the silver jeans, but what – no suspenders? Not even the Fedora hat? Now that’s just lazy!

    Rob7534s last blog post..Best Acceptance Speech EVER!

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