Monday, November 15, 2010

Mazeltov!? What's Good? Que Paso? Do You Wear Your Culture Proudly?

Happy Monday Fine Folks!  Hope everyone had a great weekend!  If not, make next weekend better!

Speaking of weekends, mine was great.  Saturday I hit up a party at the Empire Hotel.  Nothing to write home about but it felt good getting out in the city.  It's so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of NYC and get bogged down with the routine of work and home, that days and weeks pass by and it's the same old, same old.  That's for the birds!  If you don't experience life, it'll just pass you by.

While we're on the topic of experiences, I experienced my first Orthodox Jewish wedding.  It was a blast!!!  Like seriously!  No offense to any other culture but I must say...not many people know how to party like Jews.  And by party...I mean PARTAAAAY!!  Click HERE to read more......

First off they have the cocktail hour BEFORE the wedding (I think they're onto something).  It gives everyone a chance to mingle and loosen up before the big moment.  I'm sure the groom needs it (the bride'll be fine...she's waited her whole life for this moment lol).  Anyway, after the cocktail hour, we were ushered into the room where the wedding was held.  The room was split, women on one side, men on the other.  Needless to say, being one of two Black people at a wedding of 450 my S.O. was a little uncomfortable.  Me?  I've been to Fresh Air Fund my fair share of times, so not only have I lived with a family of white people, but I have gone weeks without even seeing another Black person (the state of New Hampshire is not very "colorful" just so you know).  Anywho, we spend the ceremony apart.  Most of it was done in Hebrew so I didn't know what was being said, but the customs were very different than I was used to (no broom jumping here).  The wedding took place under a canopy that symbolized the home they would build together, and the bride circled the groom a number of times symbolizing her willingness to follow him.  All in all, I found it very enlightening and an overall great experience.

My date on the other hand felt a little out of place and sort of like the spotlight was on him.  But was it really?  I was speaking to a friend about the wedding and she said "Really?  You two were the only Black people. Wow."  Wow??  Really?  What's so surprising about that?  I'll admit, at first it seems like a normal thing to ask.  But honestly speaking, if I got married tomorrow, how many Hassidic Jews would be at my wedding?  Or yours for that matter?  Better yet, how many White people at all?  We're quick to judge others about how few blacks they know, but how much do WE really mix and mingle with other ethnicities?  Now don't get me wrong...don't start calling me Hadassah or anything.  I'm Black and I'm proud *cue James Brown*, but I just wonder sometimes, are people looking at us?  Or are we EXPECTING them to look at us?  When someone looks at me, I want them to see a fine voluptuous CHOCOLATE sister.  Anything they don't see or understand, I would be more than happy to shed some light.  I do think WE are quick to prejudge others though.  Just how we don't want to feel judged by others solely based on the color of our skin, others probably don't want us to assume they're judging us based on theirs.  Isn't the crime the same?  To judge someone's thoughts of you based on your differences? By assuming someone is judging you, aren't you judging them?  I mean I'm no Dr. King, but I would say that we definitely have more in common than not.  The judging included.

I have nothing to prove or be ashamed of.  Better yet...PUT THE SPOTLIGHT ON ME SO I CAN SHINE baby!

Bottom line : I wear my culture proudly.  Do you?

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