Things My Black Friends dont know

Let me start off my saying – this is NOT an opportunity for all the AP’s or other well-meaning white folks who read my blog to give commentary about “those black folks” or to talk about whether or not my friends are ‘real friends’. If anything what I want you to get from this post is about what the distance from black culture does to TRA’s, and I simply need to express that at times people are insensitive to adoptee pain.

I just came from reading one of my homegirl Ji-in’s blog entries, and as I was sitting and reading, nodding my head vigorously, laughing about the 2 pairs of Birkenstocks I owned my damn self, and thinking about my own cultural ‘discrepencies’. (ok so what -I hate chitlins, I know every song to Annie, The Sound of Music, and My Fair Lady,  and – and… so what if I owned every freakin Amy Grant album from “Amy” the debut album in 1977  until about 1986 when I officially stopped believing the church had something to offer me. )

While I was reading over her entry, it came to my attention that I was having a recent flashback (of like 2 weeks ago) to two conversations that happened within one day of each other, and during the time they happened, I was like, what the hell is going on?

and I promptly put them out of my mind.

I was in the kitchen both times, (which at this moment makes me also remember a blog entry I’ve been meaning to do about black women, adoption and food) and both times, I was cooking something.  The first, I was making some soup, and one person who is very, very close friend of mine said something about the way I was collecting things to put in the soup. There were some leftovers from something else in the fridge, something that had NOTHING to do with the kind of soup I was making and this person said we could just add that stuff to the soup. I was like, ummmm, first of all, ewwww and also hell no because those left overs should have been thrown away 2 days ago, so my bad for leaving them in there. My friend looked at me and said, “As my daddy used to say, was you raised by black folks or white folks?” and laughed. Now I know what the laughter is, and culturally, I know that she meant that black folks dont throw away good food (but neither do poor white folks..but thats another entry) – but the comment first, rendered me speechless and second, hurt me so deeply that I could only stay silent.

what are you tryin to say?

The second incident, was also centered around cooking, and also with someone who is very close to me. I cant remember the circumstances in the same way that I could with the first incident, but they said, “well, thats because my momma is black“. the first thing that came to my mind. . .

what the hell is going on?

Both of these comments came within like a 2day period. I was so hurt that I said nothing. I wont next time, it just totally caught me off guard. Lisa, you’re being too sensitive. am I?

So, what are you tryin to say? I’m not black? I can’t cook? My momma cant cook? You wont eat my food because my momma cant cook? or because my momma’s white I cant cook? but my birthdaddy’s black so doesnt that count?

fuck you. and take your ass out of my kitchen. and dont talk about my momma.

2 More Upcoming Shows! Yay!

Yay! If you missed it – I’ve got two more upcoming performances of “Ungrateful Daughter”.  If you’ve seen the show – please tell other folks and send me some comments, questions or raves 🙂 about what you saw!

and i actually have an assignment for you peoples. Those of you that have seen the show – do you think that a 9 year old could handle the content, if their parents were involved in discussions of race? I’ve always said that High School age young men and women could handle it, but I’ve never consdiered any younger. I mean, there is only one place where I curse, and otherwise its just full of layers. What do you all think? 

Wednesday October 18 – 8pm (doors 7:30) and

Thursday October 19 – 8pm (doors 7:30)

with “The Secret Circus” at the new Berkeley Marsh Theatre.

Tickets are $10-22 sliding scale. (students w ID $5)

 The Marsh Theatre at Berkeley is located at:
2120 Allston Way Berkeley (at Shattuck) in the Gaia Arts Center. (2 blocks from Downtown Berkeley BART). For more info about the circus – Go to our MySpace Page 

The Secret Circus is also a show I’m co-producing – whoa!!! So if you came ANY of the weeks that this show is running – your presence would be much appreciated! Check out the calendar on myspace!!

Ack – “Forever Family”?

Thanks to Roosh for this article on the front page of the SF Chronicle.

Somebody get these guys a flyer to come see my show,  and add a few books to that list of things you need for a baby. Good Jezuz.

This article does nothing to further a conversation about the complexity of transracial adoption. It is simply one more article that does nothing but celebrate the good whiteness of these parents who are doing ‘gods work’ saving these black children from the hell of whatever lives they would have had in the system.

My comments are mostly about the writer of the article. If she would have done even a little bit of research – in fact, even reading that wack article from the NYTimes that was on the front page a few weeks ago she could have gotten at least SOME perspective about the difficulty of inter-race relationships – particularly ones that are so wrought with family dynamics. It’s so difficult to talk about race with people who are so intimately tied to you, because you are extra sensitive. How can a young child be expected to divulge to a parent that they are embarrassed that their parents are white? And are they even being given the space to say that out loud without the danger of being told they are ‘ungrateful’ or having their loyalty to their parents questioned?

 

Fernandez gives us nothing about these questions or how these parents are attempting to deal with these difficulties.

 

Why the hell does she keep saying “children of color”? ALL of these young men are black! They aren’t a diverse mixture of races – they are all African descent.

Am I mistaken or in the 6th ‘paragraph’ – does it say, “Dogged by years of racial bigotry and sexual discrimination” ? . . . tha hell? huh? I get that this couple may have been harassed for living out as a queer couple, but I’m confused about the racial bigotry they supposedly have been ‘dogged’ by. Fernandez doesn’t even expand on this – because I think it’s a freakin typo, because both these men are white. Somebody correct me if I’m wrong. The one section where race is discussed in this article is where Fernandez talks to Jill Jacobs, and Carol Griffin the social worker who facilitated the adoptions of the boys. Jacobs dismisses the “outcry from the African American community” and Fernandez does nothing to discuss the other intricacies of why same-race adoptions are so difficult. Fernandez also says in one breath that race doesn’t matter (or is it sexual orientation?) yet reveals what Griffin discussed with Stewart and White:

For Griffin, placing the boys with Stewart and White was not an issue for her or her department. “What we discussed was how they were going to talk through the issues with the kids: You are white, they are kids of color, and you are gay. Adoptive parents tend to become color-blind. They don’t see race when they see their children. But everybody else does.” 

and that’s it. Fernandez moves on – ummmm. . . so what was Stewart and White’s response to this? Nothing? and was this seriously the ONLY conversation about race that was had? oh man…. My list for Gregory Stewart and Stillman White:

any additions that I forgot my friends?