Random Saturdays — A Coming of Race Story (pt 2)

This is a continuation of a previous post.

The final blow came about a year later, in the first grade. I lived across the street from some crappy kids whose mom married a younger man and relied on the housekeeper to raise her kids. Her youngest daughter, Tricia, was a bitch. Flat out. No better word for it. (Shut up. You didn’t know her.) I was standing on the curb in front of my house and she was standing on the curb in front of her house. I don’t remember what happened beforehand, but I remember her yelling, “Go back to where you came from, Chink!” I yelled back, “I’m not a Chink! Go back to your house where you came from and learn about different races, stupid!” She kept trying to convince me that I was a Chink and I kept yelling all of the reasons why she was mistaken.

I went inside before my dad even turned the porch light on that night. I told my dad what happened and he assured me that Tricia was a racist little bitch just like her trashy mother. Then, he told me that while I was not a Chink, I was Chinese.

Me — I thought I was Filipina and German.
Dad — You are, but your mom’s mom was Chinese and her dad was Spanish . Your Granddad (my dad’s dad) is German and Cherokee Indian and your Grandma (my dad’s mom) is Italian, Irish, and Scottish.

I remember thinking, “Oh, so I guess this means that I’m not Black.” it was a sobering thought. Black people do so much cool stuff! They dance and sing and tell good jokes and run and play basketball and use hair picks. I couldn’t think of a single thing that an Italian-Irish-Cherokee-German-Filipina-Chinese-Spanish girl was supposed to do. Plus, where the heck was I supposed to go when people told me, “Go back to where you came from!”

Years later I found out that my mom’s dad was Malaysian, but did speak Spanish. The Christmas before she passed away, Grandma told me that she was Italian and Irish and that Granddad had a great-uncle somwhere along the lines who married a Cherokee woman. This meant that I was Chinese, Filipina, Malaysian, German, Italian, and Irish. My dad’s newest thing is trying to convince me that we’re also part Welsh. Ain’t nobody got time for that! I am no longer accepting additional ethnicities into my definition of self without DNA evidence. Although, when my dad married my step-mom, I did start telling everyone that I was finally Black.

I drew this my junior year in HS from a photo of myself at about age two. Look how Black I was as a child.  The jacked up facial features were due to my subconscious mind's continuous attempt to process my non-Black-multi-racial heritage and had nothing to do with my lack of skill with chalk pastels.

I drew this my junior year in HS from a photo of myself at about age two. Look how Black I was as a child. The jacked up facial features were due to my subconscious mind’s continuous attempt to process my non-Black-multi-racial heritage and had nothing to do with my lack of skill with chalk pastels.

Even though I’m not Black, I don’t want anybody to pity me. I’ve still managed to have an okay life. I’ve never been able to do any of the cool things that Black people can do, but I can’t do any of the cool things that any people can do. So I’m non-discriminatorily untalented, which I think is PC of me. By “PC”, I do mean “pretty cool”. Even though I look Hispanic, talk White, am Asian, and wish I were Black, I’m not enough of any of those things to be readily accepted by any group of people on a purely superficial basis. However, it gives me the opportunity to say things that often cause race riots. You know how when most people say something, it’s just wrong, but when other people say it, it’s alright? Well, I’m Other People. I am mostly alright with that, honeychil’.

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2 thoughts on “Random Saturdays — A Coming of Race Story (pt 2)

    • Thanks, Cathy! I don’t even remember what the assignment was or why I picked that photo to draw, but I remember being frustrated by not being able to fix the facial features. So, I figured that I should at least put some purple in the picture. If only my purple aura would detract from my jacked up face in real life 😛

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