[lit-ideas] Ee: black Barbies and the philosopher child

  • From: "David Wright" <wright@xxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 13 Aug 2008 22:43:57 -0500

feeling overly verbose,
and extra redundant, but...

Mike Geary wrote:
"Black Barbie you know she used to talk to me"

This pair of coupled friends -- one of white, English-born parents, the
other, black, West-Indian -- have two children, one of each. 

One Christmas, their daughter was gifted a black Barbie.  It was one of
those gifts from that sort of person who implicitly intends the doll to
remain safely in the original box, placed upon a shelf for some vaguely
conceived Purpose.  Perhaps a bespectacled great-aunt or, nonetheless . .
. I digress. 

So, that evening as they're tucking her in, she insists upon sleeping
with her black Barbie.  After some humming and hawing, they open the
package.  Frustrated as only a four year old can be at her parents'
comprehension, she ignores the new doll, and hops out of bed.  Crossing
the room, she grabs her familiar, black-haired Barbie, kisses her parents
goodnight, and sends them to bed.

---

A few years later, their son, now four, and I were playing I spy.  Trying
to combine the answering of a few time-sensitive, bureacratic-type emails
along with the game, I scanned the room searching for a marked absence of
any particular colour.  Slowly, intoning the ritual words, I lit upon,
"Pink!"

As I bagan turning back to the computer confident of a few productive,
relatively distraction-free minutes, he responded immediately:  "You."

---

wondering what I've missed whilst occupied with More Important things,
d.

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