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  • We met at a party meant for those of African descent. Jamaicans, Africans, Texans... they were all there, milling about in a sub-culture that I had no part in. You and I, we were two of four light-skinned people present. Some would say it was our outsider status that drew us together.

    I claim it is because you were neither a) drunk nor b) high.

    The conversation was mildly interesting, though I think that the food was better. Small talk, really. Hellowhat'syourname, I'mfromAmericahowboutyou. Despite the inane introductions, I learned three important things about you that night: 1) you were not actually 30, despite the facial hair and thickset eyebrows, 2) you were quite passionate about the asses of Bulgarian women and their superiority to those of African-American ladies, and 3) your family background was suited (with some stretch of the imagination) for my impending anthropology research paper. That was enough for me to take down your phone number.

    And so I went on spring break, then returned, the deadline for my paper looming closer and closer. For a lack of research participants, I called you, and we bartered: an interview with you, in exchange for Chinese fried rice. I thought I had gotten the better end of the deal, until the interview.

    "And where do you see yourself in five years?"

    "In a field in New Zealand. A green field, like in Lord of the Rings."

    "What will you be doing there?"

    "Resting, relaxing... enjoying myself with some hobbits and elf-girls."

    Your cheek still astounds me today. I was trying to accomplish Serious Academic Work, while you thought it was some sort of game, feeding my poor digital recorder nonsense answers as if to try its (and my) patience. Suffice to say, your interview was useless to me, but still you managed to secure a second meeting.

    And then another, and then another, and then another.
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