I had a conversation along these lines a few months ago at Walmart of all places.

Now, I live in the sticks in a small village with zero Black people. We have a traffic light, but the next village up the highway doesn’t. No Black people live there either.

But if you keep driving for about a half an hour past that village, you’ll pass a lake with eagles circling over it and then arrive at quite a large town with a very small university, the aforementioned Walmart, and a sprinkling of Black folks.

(Think of us as the American Alberta.)

One day, carrying my groceries out to the truck, I overheard two Black teenage girls wondering why Karen’s husband doesn’t have a name.

I don’t remember how I joined the conversation, but I did and we all ended up agreeing that Karen’s husband is a lot more to worry about than Karen.

We suggested naming him, but none of us came up with anything that sounded right.

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