Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Something New?

I came home early from work today to see Oprah's interview with the cast of "Something New," touted as the first interracial romance movie.

(she's also gonna interview James Blunt, the creepy British guy that sings "You're Beautiful" while staring at the camera out of the corner of his eye. Must be a rerun.)

So anyway, interracial relationships.

One time, I was in Spain for a conference, I went to hang out with the UM Spanish Department program in Barcelona. I ended up having lunch with a group of grad students and undergrads; for some reason I remember it as a Chinese restaurant, but I know that can't be right, can it?

So one of the undergrads asked me where I was from, and I said "Seattle."

She scoffed and said "Seattle. Interracial Dating Captial of the World."

It took me a second. A good second to realize that that was supposed to be a negative thing.

"Yah, I never thought about it," I answered, "but I don't know anyone who doesn't date 'outside of their race.' Even the racists." She laughed.

That story has come up a number of times since I moved back to Seattle ten years ago. Twice, after telling this story, the women I was telling it to reached for her wallet and showed me pictures of their mixed babies. One time, a white woman who didn't grow up here agreed in amazement, and told me about the time she had a date with a white guy and everyone assumed that they were brother and sister. "It's abnormal here to date someone the same color as you!"

"Well," I said, "you're probably overstating it."

Anyway, I think we should all take away from Oprah the lesson that people from different cultures have different hair needs. Not everyone has straight black asian hair, coarse enough and strong enough to use as dental floss.


So it was really stormy (rainy/windy) here an hour ago, stuff blowing across the street, pounding rain, etc. And now there's direct sunshine, blue skys and low clouds. There's word that it will snow tomorrow morning.

Time for a bowl of rice, and then grading.

1 comment:

ding said...

i saw this one! (and i saw the movie.) i wouldn't say 'something new' was the first interracial romance movie - there was 'restaurant' with adrien brody, 'zebrahead' with that guy and, uh...

anyway, hurray for interracial dating and interracial marriage. there's no better remedy for racism in this country than loving someone outside of your ethnic group - it's good for you, it's good for the people outside of the relationship to confront their own issues and assumptions and it will eventually turn the whole world a nice caramel color with a nice curly 'fro.

i'm all for that.