I don’t even know how to make today’s adventure funny. It was just irritating and there’s no humor in it. Me and the kid went to the playground and there was an unusual number of parents there today. The playground we go to is in a pretty expensive neighborhood so normally you only see nannies at the playground with the kids. Most of them are minorities so we get along just fine. Today, however, the parents were there and the tone was completely different.
First and foremost I don’t appreciate them treating us like lepers. From the minute we walked through the gate all eyes fell on us. My daughter went in the huge 20 ft by 20 ft sandbox and immediately all the parents called their kids to go play on the swings, the slide or any area away from us. She’s one and half so she doesn’t really have a grasp on social settings. Some little girl emerged from underneath the slide and my daughter ran up to her and smiled. She didn’t say anything, didn’t talk to the little girl, just smiled. The girl’s mom cried out, “Kaitlin, honey, come back over here.”
There’s a huge paved area with Little Tyke cars, tricycles and other toys that people donated to the playground. My daughter went over there and it was like turning on the lights;The roaches scattered. My daughter is still in that oblivious phase, so she didn’t seem to mind that all the kids she approached were called away. She just kept smiling and playing in her own little world. As far as she knows, she had the privilege of playing with whatever she wanted without having to wait her turn. I, on the other hand, know exactly what it was.
It made me wonder what I’d tell her if she were older. The jury is still out on that one. A lot of people comment that I have forgotten where I came from or that I’m trying to be White because I live on the “uppity” side of town. This type of stuff happens to me everyday over here, so trust and believe that I never forget who and what I am. How can I?
By the way, Happy Black History Month!