I had a bizarre experience recently. I attended a meeting and was subjected to an introduction that read like a tinder bio. The introduction that could have come straight out of a woke seminar but this meeting had nothing to do with the mandatory DEI training so many companies in Canada subject their staff to, it was a standard business meeting.
The man introduced himself with his name, title and length of time with the company. Standard introduction right? He then told us that he was a man, his pronouns were he/him, he then told us that he was a cisgender, heterosexual male. He then indicated that he was white and a settler living on Indigenous land. He then began to describe his clothing in detail including the color, the type of clothing and the pins that he was wearing. I thought ok, he has to be done… He then gave a personalized land acknowledgement and finally gave an acknowledgement that Canada is a racist country and he was committed to anti-racism and recognized several ethnicities that he says were discriminated against. He then said the whole thing again in French. No notes or cue cards that I could see, appeared to be well practiced.
It was possibly the most self-serving, narcissistic and sociopathic thing I have ever heard. The others in the meeting smiling and nodding along didn’t help. We’re at a business meeting, not perusing tinder profiles, the only thing missing was his star sign. It reminded me of the writing in American Psycho, this totally self-aware while being completely unaware tone used by Patrick Bateman. I asked myself why someone would do this? I think they want to appear so “in-tune” with the ideology. They want to have an excuse to cast off their own privilege that they have to acknowledge in their woke groups. It’s some type of power play to acknowledge their characteristics and broadcast them in a way that they can claim virtue. All the while pretending they are being inclusive.
I then began to wonder how far could they take it? How far could they go to prove how virtuous they are? How long could an introduction go until its obnoxious even to the woke crowd? Is there a limit? What is the upper ceiling on a virtue signal?
So for fun I thought of a few other categories that he was missing. Neurotype, income level, married or not, monogamous or not, HIV status, disability, religion, criminal record, IQ, star sign, tattoos, birthmarks, follower numbers on social media, technological prowess, fat or skinny, height, smoker, drug user, federal voting pattern, union member or not, can they do the whole thing in sign language for deaf people….. as you can see this whole thing is ridiculous and could quickly slide out of control.
The oddest behavior is describing the clothing that they are wearing. I’m not sure when this became a thing. I looked it up online to see if I could find an origin for this ridiculous behavior. I ended up stumbling across the practice. It’s called an “inclusive Self Introduction”. You introduce yourself then add a series of details that add up to your woke score card and signal to others around you how virtuous you are. It also signals to the crowd your fashion sense as well. I wonder when people will start brand dropping in the descriptions, passive advertising income opportunity maybe?
I did find a clip of Kamala Harris doing something similar.
It’s such a bizarre practice and adds nothing of value to the meeting other then to signal to others how sociopathic you are.
How does one respond to this situation? The easiest method is to ignore it, the worst method is to join in, subtle mockery is a good choice and that was my choice. When it was time to introduce myself I just said that I'm Russell and I have nothing more to add. A wildcard option would be to provide an introduction so insane that it irks even the wokest individual. The best option would be to get up and leave, unfortunately for most people that isn’t an option due to needing a job to afford things. That’s really where they get you, they know you need your job so this is just another thing you’ll endure to secure your bi-weekly pay cheque. You’re bound to tolerate or risk losing everything. Not much of a choice for most. It would be easy for me to tell people they should leave and quit for their principles but reality is, most of us need our jobs to support ourselves and our kids. In this economy it’s even more difficult to uproot and leave when job prospects (decent ones) are increasingly harder to come by.
I think maybe in my next podcast I’ll do an episode but the whole thing will be an inclusive introduction then I’ll inform the audience that I ran out of time for any actual valuable content.
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