NB: This may also apply to all sorts of other humans, including ethnic minorities, single-race people, and otherkin.
1. “Where are you from?”
This isn’t offensive if it’s asked respectfully, but it might raise my hackles if you demand the answer before knowing anything about me. Particularly if you follow it up with…
2. “No, where are you from really?”
YOU HAVE PASSED THE TEST. What all mixed people like to do, you see, is give a false answer the first time we’re asked this. But you saw through this ruse! We’ll be talking about your triumph at the meetings for years. Well done, you.
ALTERNATIVELY: Nope, I’m still from Swindon.
3. “No, I mean where are you from originally?”
Oh, before I was born?
4. “No, look, where are your parents from?”
This is an awfully personal line of questioning. Am I in some sort of trouble with the law?
5. “Are you sure?”
My god. Now you mention it, I never actually asked my mother to provide legal documentation proving her heritage. What a fool I have been all these years.
6. “Are you sure you’re not Arabic?”
Oh thank god. You must be the ethnicity expert I ordered.
… Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm …
8. “So, how white are you?”
About 4. I’m about 4 white.
9. “What are you?”
I’m splendid, thanks!
10. “I bet you just love this heat, right?”
You know I’m not from the actual sun, right?
11. “So, will your parents pick your husband for you?”
Maybe. I mean, they did a really good job with my name, so…
12. “Are you the cleaner?”
Yes, I am. I’ll require immediate payment up front, and then I’ll have to go “get some stuff” from my “car”.
13. “Do you wipe your bottom with your left hand?”
Only when your mother’s left hand is busy.
14. “How come you act white?”
I was going more for ecru.
15. “Why do you talk black?”
16. “How come you speak English so well?”
Sexual magic, nanotechnology, and glue.
17. “Is this OK in your culture?”
STOP! While I appreciate the cultural sensitivity, it might be an idea to find out, you know, what my culture is (or even if I have one) before you start feverishly pandering to it.
18. “Namaste/Kaabo/Hola. Did I say that right?”
I have no idea. I am from SWINDON.
19. “How do you say my name in your language?”
20. “What’s a nice Greek girl like you doing in this neighbourhood?”
I’m not actually Greek, Mr. Papadopoulos, but I too am wondering what I’m doing in this part of Swindon when the 13A doesn’t even come this way.
21. “Why don’t you just pick a side?”
Fine. I choose starboard.
22. “Is it true what they say about black men?”
I’m not really one for gossip I’m afraid.
23. “I can’t pronounce that. Do you mind if I call you Mike?”
Sure. I only tend to answer to “Wolfgang”, though.
24. “How many children do you have?”
I noticed you asked that other lady if she had children, but you’ve asked me how many I have. I suspect this is because you didn’t realise that I was being street when you overheard me talking about “the kids”.
25. “That’s not racist, right?”
Well, as a person of mixed race, I have been named the definitive arbiter of all things race-related by the U.N., so let me deliberate on this for a moment.
After some deliberation…
26. “Can I touch your hair?”