Saturday, 9 June 2007

Race (Redux)

I've written before about my quandary over what to enter in forms for Race:. Where locals would just enter Chinese, Indian, Malay, and so on, I'm left with no obviously correct choice.

My latest perspective on this is the explicit acknowledgment that my Western origin should be exploited for its difference, diversity and ability to impress (!). Examples include a recent conference where I was told "we need people like you to come to Singapore" and at work where my boss wants to "capitalise on my ethnic background".

I feel special, but not in an entirely good way.

What I have noticed is a settling out of where I try to fit in and where I am happy to stand out as different. I haven't gone as far as wearing a bowler hat to customer meetings but it would be an interesting experiment. And as for the forms? Perhaps I should just put Different and go ahead and exploit myself.