Thursday, September 25, 2014

I got called RACIST by a lady on the bus!!

Hey guys! Sorry this is kind of a little rant about what just happened today and not really about travelling, but I thought I needed to let this out or I just feel more and more uncomfortable.

I went shopping with two of friends today and we had to bus from where we live to downtown, which took around 40 mins. On our way back, we were just having a normal conversation about life and when it was more of a private subject we spoke in Chinese, just so not EVERYBODY around us knows what's going on in our lives. We were telling jokes and laughing, minding our own business. Then, I felt someone staring at me and when I looked in that direction, an African-Canadian lady in her late 50s was giving me a hateful stare. I don't know what was wrong but she just stared at me and made me really uncomfortable. Since she didn't technically do anything, I chose to ignore her. After most of the people got off, one of my friends and I were just talking so I told her about the lady who's still staring at me. After discretely making sure, my friend confirmed that I wasn't paranoid. Right after that, the lady tapped on my shoulder. I thought she was going to tell us that we were too loud but instead heard things I never want to hear again.
To sum it up, she basically said "You're stupid, you're speaking in Chinese and therefore are making racist comments about me!" "YOU'RE RACIST". Those three words made me so shocked, I was on the verge of crying. Never in my life, have I even dreamt of being called such a thing. Those simple three words were MUCH more hurtful than most things I've heard in my short life experience. Ironically, one of the other painful things I've heard was "Asian", which was a racist comment made by someone else. To be completely honest, I wouldn't have noticed her if she wasn't staring at me in the first place, mention less judge her by her colour. Extremely offended, I tried to tell her we didn't say anything about her but she would just get ruder and ruder so I raised my voice and said "Why did you call me a racist?!", making the entire bus look towards us.
The driver stopped the bus and asked if she needed to call security and before I could say anything, the lady answered NO. She then stood up and walked over to the driver in front of the bus and started rambling about how "racist" we were while the driver told her to calm down since she made her uncomfortable too. When the bus arrived at her stop, she kept on talking about it to the driver and the latter finally snapped back saying she was delaying service time.

Having lived most of my life in Canada, where multicultural elements are not anything new, I never thought something like this would happen. People in the neighbourhood are generally very nice too. It's hard for me to understand why that lady would think in such a way, but it's not completely impossible to have similar feelings sometimes.
Anyway, this rant is just to let out my inner rage. I hope this never happens to any of you awesome people.



  1. I'm sorry you had such an unpleasant experience D: Wow she sounds like she has some sensitivity issues. It's ironic because she herself was being "racist" by automatically assuming you were saying racist things about her, just because you were talking in Chinese lol. Btw are you planning to go back to Japan any time soon? ^^

  2. You might have accidentally said "ne ga" in Chinese and she assumed you meant her. A lot of folks who don't understand Chinese draw that conclusion and it sounds really close to the n-word. I made that mistake once, before I learned Chinese. I was horrified, but I was taught to turn the other cheek, so I didn't ask. I probably would have learned it then and not been so embarrassed haha!