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Today, I met some old friends for lunch at the India Palace (near the intersection of Lindbergh and I-70). I used to work with these guys at McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing). During lunch, two of the friends said to me that they expected me to ‘look like a minister.’ I know, this warrants an explanation. In the black community, many African American preachers wear what I would call a ‘uniform’ – typically, a suit and tie; maybe a nice formal hat too (see old pictures of Dr. Martin Luther King to get an idea of the hats worn). These friends expected to see me in a uniform with a ‘pot’ belly to match. I am glad to say that I did not meet their expectations. I am glad to be an atypical minister (maybe this is a compliment). While some may think this is a ‘black thing’, think again. I take my clothes to a cleaners called “Happy Cleaners.” The owner is an Asian American (a really nice guy). He often tells me, “You don’t dress like a minister.” Frequently, when I go to his business to pick up clothes, I am dressed in jeans or shorts and a baseball cap. I don’t like being constrained to a ‘box.’ It’s ok to be atypical!

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