2.19.2007

Things I'd Just Rather Not See This Month (in addition to Norbit)

The next time you stop to think about Black History Month, pat yourself on the back. Chances are, you've already made it yourself. No, seriously, you needn't be Condoleeza Rice or Dr. Ben Carson to make black history happen.

It can be as simple as it was for me back in high school, when I quit sports to try out for cheerleading solely for the purpose of integrating the squad (I was too tired of all the athletes being black and the cheerleaders white...I was gonna learn to do a split if it was the last thing I did). Quit lacrosse, made history. Or today, becoming the first black woman in my town to have twins. Or the first one to set foot in the new supermarket on Route 9. Small victories in black history, but I'm just sayin' - so many of us make milestones everyday. Without ever knowing it.

But there's a flip side to that coin. And I hate to break it to you, but it's not all that shiny.

For every great moment in black history - of which there are many - there's a step back. I'm not talking about the homeless brother singing Biz Markie on the corner, shaking his cup. Mental illness doesn't count. I'm talking about utter and complete triflingness (I know triflingness is not a word, but you know what I mean). Case in point - Saturday, about 7:30 pm: Mr. J and I were in Target with the kids. Funny what an exciting night on the town becomes once you have kids, but I won't go there this time:

Two women - ages anywhere from late 20's to late 40's - neither morbidly obese, but both a bit overweight, walked up to those motorized red scooters for the handicapped, hooked their carts up to them and began careening through the store. Did I mention there were kids in the carts? About two kids per cart? They were following eachother all over the store and finally through the checkout line where they paused to pick out soda, candy and read gossip magazines. I didn't mention their ethnicity, I'll let you take a wild guess.

It looked like a parade for the undermotivated. It made my eyes hurt. I almost wanted to laugh, but just couldn't - mostly out of disbelief. And then, in spite of myself, I felt myself turning green because those sisters with their scooters, carts, kids and Twix bars had more nerve than I've got in my little toe. I wanted to look over from aisle 12 and yell "Hey! I got three kids, too! I'm tired, too! My feet hurt, TOO! You see me riding around Tarzhay on a complimentary scooter for the handicapped?!" But refrained, for fear of getting rolled on.

Harriet Tubman walked too far and too long for us to do this in February or any other month. Harriet deserved a deluxe spa pedicure and some reflexology. Those sisters deserved a spanking.

I know I'm wrong, just plain wrong for even thinking that.

13 comments:

Aly Cat 121 said...

well they really could have been handicapped. Not in the "Jerry's Kids" kinda way but when you're obese, it ain't easy to get around. I know you've seen those people on the Dr. Phil show and others like it. Shoot my azz weighs 200 lbs and I'm only 5'8, but since I've become a mommy and am now 60 lbs over weight, sometimes I'll get a cramp in my leg and I know it's because of my extra weight. Not saying I'd ride around in a cart, but you know what I mean.

Mrs. J said...

I guess I should have clarified, they were not morbidly obese, just overweight. You're pregnant, so you get a free pass to ride on that scooter whenever you like.

The rest of us can walk off the pounds. ;)

Christopher Chambers said...

First of all, glad to have you posting again. So "Shug," tell "Mistah" we're sending him something in the mail very soon, and sorry for the delay. Second, I didn't know there were black folks up there in Icabod Crane/Sleepy Hollow/Rip Van Winkle/The last of the Mohicans Land! (or Targets). I thought all y'all had were trading posts and general stores hahahaha. Third, every stereotype as a tiny, tiny grain of empirical truth in the center...

field negro said...

Great post Mrs. J (This is why I love your site)and thanks for the update on the brothers from TSU.

Peace.

Canadian Queen said...

I just got my Nuttin But Stringz CD in the mail today and have yet to stop listening to it! Thanks for all the great postings!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

I want to know why NORBIT made so much money. What is it about black men playing large black women that makes people think "I have to see that movie!"

Mrs. J said...

Chris - LOL! You know I wouldn't let that man move us up here without at least one retail amenity! If you must know, the Tarzhay is on the "other side of the river"...the side that folks in this college community (not I) refer to as the place "where the people have plates in their heads". At the foothills of the Catskill mountains, where there are still a few descendants of slaves (this county had the biggest population of slaves in the north) who weren't told about the emancipation proclamation yet...

FN- Thanks! Long live the HBCUs.
I'm on my way to check yours out right now.

CQ - You're very welcome - where'd you find it?

nyc - Try "The Conspiracy of Mediocrity", by - well - nobody yet, just something MJ and I talk about all the time. Norbit is just another EM misogyny fest. Although MJ actually wants to break the rules and go see it. He'll be going solo! LOL

Wow. I just realized that I sound kinda bitter. I really do love our people. You know I truly do. :)

Canadian Queen said...

I ordered it through Amazon, and also put in an order at a local music store. The Amazon one came through first, although it has been a veery long wait! I am already talking them up and playing it for everyone! I'm looking for more...do you know if they have anything else out?

lori said...

Keep telling the truth, Mrs. J. I swear if it doesn't make me want to slap some sense into folks, but seriously I'm scared i'd get slapped right back. so I'll just be happy to talk about it here in cyberspace and hope someone else is ballsy-ier than me.

But for real, are we supposed to do something or just ignore it when "our people" act a fool?

Thoughts?

Mrs. J said...

cq- Not sure if they have anything else yet...email me (so I'll have yours), and we can keep tabs on them. My address is on the right.

lori - This is a discussion that is long overdue! I don't know if saying anything to them will help, but at least we can vent to eachother about it. *sigh*

Yolanda said...

Speaking truth yet again Mrs. J! For a moment there I thought you were going to say you took a date night to go see Norbit. All I could think was wow those twins must have given her one long long LOOONG week for her to break down and do that one.

Mrs. J said...

LOL! Thankfully, it's never been that bad! ; LOL If it has, I've blocked it out...

Michelle said...

One of my many reservations about staying in the community where we are now is that people do seem to buy into their particular cultural stereotype more often than not. (And I mean every cultural group)