The thing that got to me was that he was not content with calling me a “black bastard”, as the rest of his ilk would have done. For those people, it is the word “black”, when attached to “bastard”, that holds the potent abusive quotient. In a manner of speaking, “bastard” is merely the packaging, the lead piping; the word “black” is the incendiary element in the pipe-bomb of racial abuse. Indeed, “black” for them is a term of abuse, which is why the pure racist, the bona fide article, is loath to use the word “black” to describe a black person they happen to be “fond of”. In such rare cases, they use “coloured”, or even “African”, in its stead.