Friday, November 7, 2008

The kids are Mommy are upstairs doing an duck ghost exorcism. Seriously.

Being 33 and seeing the Duck Ghost

Alex either doesn't know how old he is or is always just wanting to be slightly older then he is. I sometimes suspect the latter as he really really wants to attend kindergarten. So this week when I took him to yet another doctor appointment I told him the lady there was going to have him practice homework to see if he could go to kindergarten yet. He was quite excited to show the lady that he was ready for kindergarten. As the doctor came into the meeting room and asked Alex if he was ready to go in, Alex was quick to jump up. The doctor had stopped to talk to me for a brief moment as Alex stood paused in the doorway, leaning against the wall, hands in his pockets with the most serious look on his face waiting patiently. The doctor then kneeled down to his level and asked Alex how old he was. In a serious James Dean sort of expression came Alex's reply "ahh... thirty ..three" Usually he is only 6 or once in a while maybe twenty one. But this week he has spent three entire days being in his thirties because as he explains to me. "I growed up more."

So as the week continues and I am doing housework I get called into my bedroom by Ms. Zoe. She is telling me that "It is really the truth I saw it. It's not made up, it's real Mommy." Just as serious as she can be. The she pauses as I say "ohh" and she continues hand behind her back standing on my bed "It's true I saw it. It's the Duck Ghost." "Ok," I say and continue on with my Mommy life and walk downstairs to do some computer stuff.

A moment later, Zoe comes downstairs in tears with Alex lagging behind her. She is scared because why? Alex told her the Duck Ghost is invisible and right behind her about to eat her. I guess it's no fun being a thirty three year old brother if you can't sometimes scare your little sister with stories of the Great Duck Ghost. And he IS REAL too according to Zoe who believes and even when she needs more information now she ask Alex what color he is. And if you ask Alex what the Duck Ghost eats of course the answer is "People's ears."

Posted by Mommy.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Living in an Obama World, Day 1

Last night as my wife and I watched the election coverage, I felt waves of emotion sweep over me. My eyes welled because it felt as if finally, enough Americans like me had banded together to change the system. Enough of us had placed our trust in the electoral voting process to elect one of us, a politician who was from modest means, had not been treading in the tainted waters of the system, and who seemed humble and burdened when he stepped up on stage to make his speech. I felt as if we had finally taken a look at where we were, and decided that after all, we needed to do something drastic to survive. We couldn't drown in the moat that we had dug.

Watching the newscasts, I wasn't sure if it was intentional or just the fact of the matter, that McCain supporters were primarily white, whereas Obama supporters were decidedly mixed. Everytime they cut to an African American supporter, I wondered if the press was making a concious judgment call. I had been listening to a lot of NPR election coverage, and this election has really brought racial relations and prejudice front and center. People started to wear their prejudices on their sleeves. Some were honest about it, others hid it under the labels of inexperience, religion, and even loose associations with terrorism. I didn't really want to look at it that way, figured it was just those middle states, whereby they were mostly Republican and not progressive thinking.

But this morning when I went to work, I witnessed the kind of bitterness in McCain supporters that I honestly didn't expect. They were almost spiteful in their attitudes. I didn't flare up when Gore lost, but I was upset when Bush got his second term because it seemed evident that America was heading in a terrible direction. But Obama really doesn't have the history to signify that he was going to lead the country in a bad direction. He didn't seem to have any radical ideas or overt promises that would lead us astray.

So to be upfront, most of the people I work with are Asian immigrants, mostly Southeast Asians, and some from the African nations. They are also mostly at most high school educated also. So in the morning, one of the more vocal assemblers, a 20 some year veteran, was sarcastically cheering for Obama. Then as work progressed, my immediate co-workers, some of which didn't even vote, starting talking about Obama.

"4 years of hell."
"He's going to give tax breaks to hip-hop artists."
"What does Michelle Obama do? Freebase."

It's one of the moments when I get absolutely disappointed with humankind, our potential to hate without reason, to judge with extreme prejudice. It's a crushing feeling because it's human nature at it's ugliest. It's like someone scraped the bottoms of our dark souls and stuck it on the tip of our tongues. I may not be able to state Obama's stance on healthcare, education, or his policies, but I simply refuse to talk to anyone who cannot look past the color of his skin. I'm not saying that I'm impervious to casual prejudices and generalizations, but outright bile like the shit I hear at work makes me angry. Not because they are mocking my candidate and our future president, but because they are expelling hate toward an individual who has not warranted any of that aggression past the color of his skin.

Obama has a tremendous burden to bear, to live up to the expectations of Democrats, Republicans, African-Americans, and world leaders. It is a bittersweet victory to see Obama get elected, and at the same time see all the racism that's been simmering in so many souls.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Today is a great day to be an American, when one of our own is elected to be the next President. We were peeking at the news when Obama had 207 to McCain's 147 and I was getting nervous, then we switched to the Backyardigans for the kids. Halfway through my mother in law called, we checked the telly, and sure enough, he had gained 90 more votes to secure the election. A lot of welling up of tears, but I go to bed feeling hope and pride.