Russian woman story
By Anna Sokolova
Stereotypes! Most people hate when somebody use stereotype regarding them. Not me! I love it! Stereotype work greatly in my favor most of my life. I embrace stereotype, welcome it with a big smile, and let it be. You probably don’t believe me. Right? Here are some examples, which can help you as well:
Let’s start with a time when I went to school and then university. First time the teacher or professor saw me in the class, what do you think they thought?
Tall, blond, blue yes. Yes, they probably went through “blond jokes list”. If you not familiar with those, here the one example of jokes:
A man was in his front yard mowing grass when his attractive blonde neighbor came out of the house and went straight to the mailbox. She opened it then slammed it shut and stormed back into the house. A little later she came out of her house again, went to the mailbox and again opened it, and slammed it shut again. Angrily, back into the house she went. As the man was getting ready to edge the lawn, she came out again, marched to the mailbox, opened it and then slammed it closed harder than ever. Puzzled by her actions the man asked her, “Is something wrong?” To which she replied, “There certainly is!” My stupid computer keeps saying, “You’ve got mail!”
You see where I am going with this? Basically, right away my teachers and professors didn’t expect much of me academically, probably were thinking that I will hardly pass the course. And then …. my first paper will get submitted with some deep and serious thoughts and arguments, may be with unexpected philosophical view. Or I will take my first test and will get all questions right. What a shocker! What a big surprise! What do you think happened after that? My teachers or professors basically will let me get away with a murder. I was safe to do whatever I wanted at that point. Now they were convinced that I am exceptionally brilliant person. Great deal, is not’s?
Here is another one:
One day I was handling garage sale from our house in Florida. The country looking older man pulled up in a track. After hello’s exchange, he asked me:” So I hear some accent. Where are you from?” “From Russia”, I said. His eyes become big and round. “Russia!!??”, he exclaimed. “You don’t look like Russian at all. We saw Russian women on TV. They all looked big, ugly, more looking as a man. Ha, ha, ha… You don’t look like that at all!” Do you think I got offended of his perception of Russian women? Not at all, it worked in my favor again. Still under shock he bought quit few items from my garage sale and did not tried to negotiate prices with me much at all.
What about this one?
Most of you probably know that after Soviet Union collapsed, some of the parts became their own countries. One of those part is where I was born and raised is called Kazakhstan. Has any of you seen or heard of movie “Borat”? For those once who have not seen it, movie painted picture where people in Kazakhstan still lived in dark ages, did not have any brain and no ethics. However it was done in a very, very funny way. Why do you think that after movie came out I started proudly announce that I am from Kazakhstan and not from Russia as I done previously? Right! To shock people, confuse them and get their mind completely messed up. I bet that people who just met me and found out that I am from Kazakhstan thinking: Is it for real? Did she really was sleeping in one room with a cow and so on? I instantly I become center of their attention; not just “some face”, but “very interesting face”. They ask me questions and listen with a great interest. I get to be in the control of the situation and can it turn it any way that I like.
Seriously, one day I’ve decided not to fight any of possible stereotypes of me and just go along with it, use it in my advantage. That worked great for me.
As myself, I am not trying to stereotype anybody. Human beings are too complicated, too interesting, and too exciting to fit in a small box of view. We are so unique that even two people from the same parents sometimes are different as a night and day.
Do you want a little advice? If you think that someone is stereotyping you, let them do it. If they don’t get to know who you really are, it’s their loss.
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