Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Getting Profiled

Yesterday morning, I was profiled.

Yes, believe it or not, in Cat Spring, TX; population 75; after having lived here for nine years, I was still profiled.

I was in the midst of my morning workout, about half-way through my cool down, walking around the block.  A grey, Lexus SUV was driving through the neighborhood.  I recognized the vehicle.  I had seen it numerous times driving by my home.  I nearly always wave at whoever is driving.  Apparently, the driver didn't recognize me.

He slowed down to a crawl as he observed me and my behavior. 

I processed what was going on.  I knew exactly what was going on.

Our paths actually would intersect in just a few moments.  He continued driving very, very slowly toward me.  I kept walking.

I noticed the driver roll down his window--perhaps to get a better look?  As we passed one another, I raised my hand in that friendly gesture called a wave.  I said, "Good morning."

Recognition came to his face then.  He knew who I was.  He returned the greeting, and proceeded merrily on his way.

What would cause him to profile me in such a manner--especially when he had seen me numerous times before?

Well, I wasn't exactly dressed like I normally dress.

You see, when I work out in the morning, I have some general workout attire: shorts, sleeveless shirt, socks and tennis shoes.  However, there are a couple of accessories as well.  I wear a bandanna around my head to stave off the copious amounts of sweat which begin pouring off my forehead.  I also wear a set of black workout gloves as I incorporate push ups into my routine (it's on asphalt which is murder on the bare hands).  I am sure the sight of me walking around in Cat Spring in such a manner is a bit outside the norm.

It obviously was for the driver in the grey SUV, and I don't blame him for profiling me.  He's being neighborly.  He's helping to make sure his community is safe.  He recognizes when things seem a bit out of the ordinary.

And why do you think I reacted in a friendly manner?  Would have it been appropriate for me to address him and say, "What's the deal slowing down and looking at me like that?  You got a problem?"  I surely could have, but what would that have accomplished? 

Cordiality, civility, friendliness, neighborliness.  Important attributes when living in a community together and seeking the greater good.

Just sayin'.

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