Stereotypes, and Damn stereotypes
I was in Ibiza quite a few years ago, and had the good fortune to be present at a hypnotist’s show.
I say “good fortune” because I am admittedly quite cynical about stage hypnosis.
So there I was, in the audience, getting to see up close and personal how this worked.
The hypnotist selected 10 people to sit in chairs in two rows of five up on the stage, discarding any who were clearly drunk (apparently trying to hypnotize a drunk person doesn’t go too well).
Anyway, this guy told his victims he was going to count backwards from ten, then they would fall into a trance.
At this point, I was thinking: I’m watching this – if it was that simple, wouldn’t I too be in a trance once he’d finished counting backwards?
He duly counted backwards, heads flopped forward, and he told his audience they were all driving a bus, with lots of fluffy cute rabbits on the road.
Cue lots of steering wheel movements and gasps as some bunnies were unavoidably run over.
One girl started crying.
I was unmoved.
Then the hypnotist clicked his fingers and told the group that everyone in the room was naked.
A girl at the front of the stage turned, looked directly at me, and gasped.
She was asked what she was looking at.
She pointed at me, and said “He’s huge.”
Still wasn’t convinced by this demonstration of the hypnotist’s power.
This girl was perpetrating a BIG stereotype attributed to black guys in particular.
I tried to look disgusted, but only succeeded in sitting there with a smug look on my face.
That’s right ladies. It’s all me.
I’m pretty sure that every black guy on the planet is not walking around like Lexington Steele (I have NO idea who that is, just a name plucked at random…) – for all she knew, I could have been hung like a gerbil.
Oh well. Some stereotypes I’ll have to learn to live with.
Until I’m rumbled….
Copyright © Mark A. McPherson 2011.
All rights reserved.