Having an active, extroverted toddler in a tiny apartment means we spend very little time at home during the day. We leave by 9am, return at noon for lunch and nap, and leave again by 3pm at the latest, out all afternoon until dinner and bedtime. Olive is incredibly social, which means we get into all kinds of interesting conversations with strangers.
Last Thursday, we had had one too many adorable (Olive) and awkward (me) encounters when we had my least favorite kind, one in which someone’s curiousity about the ethnic make-up of our family makes them say completely insulting things. It was not the first time I heard this particular jem, but it somehow seems to make me angrier every damn time.
Random playground person: “Your daughter is so beautiful.”
Me: “Thank you!”
RPP: “She must look like her dad.”
Seriously. Seriously! People say this to me ALL THE TIME. I want to shake them when they look at me with that stupid smile on their face, thinking they have said something novel, hoping I will then enlighten them with why my child and I have different skin tones. Inwardly, I inform them: “You just inadvertantly called me ugly and said I don’t look anything like my kid. I NO LONGER WANT TO TALK TO YOU!!!”
Instead I just say, “Nope, you’re incorrect. We have the same features, just different coloring.”
RPP: “Yeah, I guess the hair makes a lot of difference.” I let it go from there, walking away feeling all kinds of grumbly.
We headed to Mission Community Market, where they have live music and hula hooping for the kids every week, right in the middle of the open air market. I was doing my thing with Olive, trying to dance off all the bad juju, when a woman interrupted my reverie to tell me she has a blog that features stylin’ parents once a week, and she wanted to take some photos of me and interview me for it!
I was totally caught off guard by this, especially after my previous interaction that day. Incredibly flattered, I agreed, and enjoyed her light-hearted, encouraging energy throughout. To be honest, the experience totally turned my day around. “Not all strangers are asshats!” I thought, as well as, “I really needed that today.” So, click the link to Debbies blog, and see the piece that made me not give up on humanity entirely: http://ringletleader.tumblr.com/post/24681193875/playground-chic-look-of-the-week