Jessica asked, "Aren't you black? I know your wife is white and I thought you were black."
Now comes the awkward part. I love to joke and tease, and several responses ran through my head. I thought of repeating TV's Gary Coleman's phrase "Whatchu talkin' 'bout?" I remembered Dick Gregory referring to white people's "skinny little nostrils" and considered drawing attention to my own. I considered clapping my hands and swaggering like a favorite former student with autism who had a style of walking that my African American assistant referred to as "pimpin'." I even though of saying "why thank you!"
Instead my 5 second delay allowed me to say "Gollly!" in an exaggerated 1950s voice. So what pops up in my head when I think of black people? A combination of stereotypes, physical attributes, and struggle to maintain proper racial etiquette: DON'T SAY ANYTHING STUPID, STUPID!!!