What’s in a name? A paradigm by any other name would smell as sweet…
I was mildly surprised by the notion that anyone could believe “the diversity paradigm” didn’t exist. Ineffective? Probably. Missing in action, maybe. But nonexistent? No such thing? I’d never heard that before. Yet, the provocateurs in the conspiracy of this nonexistence theory sit at the very center of the Diversity profession itself. The challenge from the provocateurs came in the form of a demand to produce evidence that “the diversity paradigm” did exist.
The claim was serious. It was not a radio talk show prank. There was no demand for ransom. No accompanying threat over a kidnapped paradigm that I’d never see again unless it was paid. It was a sobering, straightforward assertion, plain and clear, that “the diversity paradigm” that I thought I had known of for twenty years did not now and never did exist. The assertion seemed an absurdity to me.
But what if they were right? Had I and others like me been victims of a mass deception or delusion? Or, was it possible that certain influential members of the professional diversity community had not a clue where the paradigm was–or even what it was? How could that be possible? I had to know.
My investigative jaunt turned into a mirthful multimedia tale, a sociological detective story that took no small amount of single malt scotch to complete. Preparation for the challenge of the sociological sleuth work took the form of two decades of working in, observing and studying the diversity field, as well as talking with numerous professionals engaged in the work of “Diversity” over the years.
If you typically enjoy a little mystery story and a bit of elementary sociology, and informational hyperlinks, then grab a double pour of a good single malt scotch, and you’ll enjoy the 80-page learning experience as much as I did. When you’ve reached the thrilling conclusion, you’ll know what The Diversity Paradigm is, finally, after all these years!
If you find sociology a complete bore, and you have no interest in The Diversity Paradigm, then forget about the book, savor the scotch and call it a night.
______________ * * * _____________
Instead, it found me.
She walked through my door like a tigress walks into a Burmese orphanage — strawberry blonde and legs for hours. No dame her age could afford a coat like that, and the kind of makeup she had on gave me a good idea how she got it. She had bad news written on her like October of ’29.
“How can I help you, Miss…?” I uttered almost involuntarily, before she could pounce.
“Cortez. Carla Cortez. A dear friend’s gone missing. I need a good private eye to find her.”
“Then why did you come to me?”
“Please don’t tease me, Mr. Jones,” she said, flashing the tiger eyes, “I know your reputation.”
“All the more reason not to have come to me, Miss Cortez,” grinning, trying not to look too terribly intrigued — or too intimidated by her. “How long has your friend been missing?”
“I’m not sure, exactly. She gathers no moss, if you get my drift.”
“Then, what makes you think she’s missing?”
“I usually hear from her from time to time. It’s been too long, and no one else I know claims to have seen her either. Then, there are the rumors. Terrible rumors.”
“Well…” she couldn’t bring herself to repeat them. “I’m worried, Detective. Very worried. I just don’t know what I’d do if anything happened to her.”
“So, Miss Cortez, who was the last one to see her?”
“I’m fairly sure it was my brother, Raoul.”
“Your brother knows her?”
“Not as well as you’d think after all these years. But yes.”
“What’s your friend’s name?”
“She goes by Dee. Her given name is Diversity. Diversity Paradigm.”
“You mean, ‘The’ Diversity Paradigm?”
“You’ve heard of her?”
“Decades ago. If I recall, she was a pretty famous model or something like that at one time, wasn’t she?”
“Something like that, yes.” The precursor of a wicked grin barely surfaced, mostly in her eyes. “I’d say it was more like ‘well-known’ in certain circles. But she was…discreet.”
“Was she, uh, discreet with Raoul?”
“They had an arrangement.”
“What’s Raoul say?”
“He says –” her eyes welling with tears, “There is no such thing as the diversity paradigm,” as she fell on my shoulder, sobbing softly. “Raoul said she never existed!”
“Never existed? How is that possible?”
“I don’t know. I just don’t know. He was so cold about it, so matter-of-fact. His voice still haunts me. Those low, ominous tones when he said, “There is no one way to do diversity.” It frightens me. I need help so badly. I don’t know what he meant by that, but it just frightens me,” she sobbed, crushing my flawlessly pressed lapels in her grip. “I’ve no right to ask you, I know I haven’t, but I do ask you. Help me, Mr. Jones.”
“You won’t need much of anybody’s help.” I said, smiling wryly as her L’Artisan Parfumeur Nuit de Tubéreuse Eau de Parfum overwhelmed my olfactory capacity. “You’re good. It’s chiefly your eyes, I think, and that throb you get in your voice when you say things like, “Help me, Mr. Jones.”
“I deserve that,” she brooded. But the lie was in the way I said it. Not at all in what I said. It’s my own fault if you can’t believe me now,” as she turned away. “Can you believe me, Detective Jones? Can you?”
With the caution of an antelope on the Serengeti at dawn, I slipped her my handkerchief as I muttered, “Now you are dangerous.”
CONTINUED…..in the eBook:
“The Diversity Paradigm –
A Detective Story”
Available to ORDER via email for $3.99 : CLICK HERE
Copyright © 2015 – Robert D. Jones – All Rights Reserved
Stay tuned for the eBook release.