On Being an Alien


It’s important to remember that aliens are not all from space. Or from Mexico, if you’re an Arizona politico.

The non-specificity of the term led to a co-worker at Business 1st taking offense at his residency status.

“I’m not an alien!” he complained. “I’m from India!”

I explained that Americans were linguistically lazy people, who had shortened the explicit phrase “space alien” to the generic “alien”. He wasn’t satisfied, but I distracted him with the subtleties of “cheesy”.

“So cheesy is bad?” he asked.

“Unless you like cheese,” I explained. “Then it’s good.”

He never asked me about language again.

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