What I said, again.

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Wed Nov 10 20:29:01 UTC 2010

Spoken by an aspiring comedienne on Comedy Central:

"I'm white. [almost-imperceptible pause]. My husband is Jewish."

It got a decent laugh.

Of course, "I'm white. My [significant other] is [in some sense,
NOT-white]" lends itself to pre-interpretation on any number of
levels, here in "post-racial" America. Indeed, even if the speaker in
this instance had said only,

"I'm white. [almost-imperceptible pause] My husband is white."

it's very likely that the audience would have laughed just as hard,
since, having primed itself to hear some form of [NOT-white], the
audience would still have been caught with its prejudices hanging out.
All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"––a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
–Mark Twain

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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