I have been going to Harvest Market since 1985, when it opened. Yet, in the last couple of months, I have been treated incredibly rudely by checkers there who assume that I am not local. This morning, for example, I made a comment about the weather and how it would be nice to have rain, and the checker said, I kid you not, “it never rains in the summer here. If you were local, you would know that.”
My jaw actually dropped. Even if I hadn’t been local, that would have been an incredibly rude and condescending thing to say. As it was, considering that I know this checker has been seeing me going in and out of that grocery store for years because she’s been working there forever, it was extremely jarring. The fact that this isn’t the first time a checker has treated me like shit under the assumption that I am not local just made it all the more irritating.
What the fuck is going on here?
I think that it’s indicative of the growing tensions between locals and newcomers. I’m assuming that people think I’m not local because of my age, or perhaps because of the way I dress, although I was pretty shlubby this morning. But I am sick and fucking tired of it. I am sick of being treated like I am not local because I don’t pass some kind of “local” litmus test, I am sick of my local friends being treated like citidiots because they apparently don’t fit into the framework of what a “local” is by the narrowminded definition of some people up here.
I happen to think that a lot of the influence of outsiders is harmful, and that a lot of the people who relocate here are not respectful to the local culture, and are clearly not aware of what they are really signing up for when they move here. But that doesn’t mean that they should be treated rudely, and as I recently pointed out, it’s actually not possible to tell if someone is local just by looking.
What do I need to do, screenprint my fucking birth certificate on a t-shirt and wear it everywhere?