Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The Deepness

It generally takes between 15 and 20 minutes to get from home to Viva’s preschool. This morning, it was a very long 20 minutes, starting at the second stop light.

Viva: Mommy, why are you not brown?

Mama Blah [totally blindsided]: Whuh? Why am I not – brown?

Viva: Yeah. Why are you not brown?

Mama Blah: Um, hm. Well, I’m not brown because I came out kind of pink.

Viva: Why? I want you to be brown. Me and Daddy are brown.

Mama Blah: Um, hm. Well, honey, you can't change your skin color. [Apologies to Michael Jackson. Sorry, Jacko.]

Viva: Why?

Mama Blah: It just doesn't work that way. Some people are brown, some people are tan, some people are pink. You just are the color you are.

Viva: But I wish you were brown. Our family is brown. How come, why are, how come you can't be brown?

Mama Blah: Well, it all dates back to slavery and the one-drop rule.

Viva: The one-drop rule? Wasn’t that hogwash debunked years ago?

Mama Blah: Well, I think all reasonable people agree that the one-drop rule, aside from being specious, is an evil tool devised by The Man to keep us down. However, due to the historical societal acceptance of the rule, the family I come from is classified as black, and hence, I was raised to identify as a black person, despite being, well, pink.

Viva: You know, it occurs to me that this country is all kinds of messed up when it comes to racial issues.

Mama Blah: Oh, honey, don't even let me commence.

That was just for starters. Later in the conversation, we discussed God, saying grace, Christmas, Jesus, and Santa Claus. All before 8:30 in the morning.

Damn, this has been a long day.


sploo said...

What I think was at the root of Miss Viva's question was, "How did you get your hair like that?"

And that, mah friend is a long story.

Lisa Blah Blah said...

Indeed, she is asking the questions which have puzzle humankind for ages. And she looks to puny little me for answers!

Clearly, her disillusionment with me has not quite yet begun. I am Mommy, Knower of All Things.

Hear me roar. Or yawn.

E. said...

Heavy questions for one so young. The picture above is lovely, and after scrolling down and reading this post, I'm struck by the fact that Viva seems to be a blend of your light skin and Sweet Dub's deep brown (maybe that's just the light in that shot, though).

Lisa Blah Blah said...

e: Thanks - yes, it is a nice blend. Viva was still but a babe in that picture (4-5 months?) and had not fully, as they say, "gotten her chocolate." She is more of a deep golden brown now. Strangers ask if either (a) she's adopted or (b) I'm the babysitter. Sigh.