Quick Thought: I Love Me

21 Feb

I was talking to my aunt about somebody who completely lied about where they’re from and what their cultural background is. That’s so strange, and I think it exhibits extreme self hate, insecurity, and low self esteem. I just have to say I love who I am… Born of 2 beautiful black people, my American mother and West Indian father, and being from the Bronx is a beautiful thing.
I like fried chicken and collard greens, as well as brown stewed chicken over rice & peas. I like baked macaroni & cheese as much as macaroni pie. Corn bread or hard dough bread? *shrugs* My favorite breakfast is salt fish & fried dumplings, but I don’t know how to cook it, nor do I know how to cook Mangu, but I love that too… I can hook up some fish & grits though (salmon cakes or fried whitings). My Lawrys & Old Bay is next to my curry, which is next to my Sazon & Adobo. I can buss a whine, dance bachata, and do the stanky leg, all quite well. I know my way around the Bronx in English, Patois, and Spanish. And both sides of my family give me a side eye glance when I ask “is there pork in this?” at the dinner table. I’m not black enough because I hate kool-aid, and I’m a Yankee because curry goat is disgusting! My daughter buys churros on the street. I think that’s gross. I love the smell of shush kebabs on the street, but I’m too paranoid about how often the kebab man washes his hands properly. A piragua is more appealing than a churro or kebab to me. My house smells like Vanilla Mistolin. Cocoa butter (Red Fox and/or Palmers) is a must, as well as Jam gel, or that black jar of black gel, AND we mustn’t forget Blue Magic and olive oil for the scalp. My maternal grandmother always has Florida water and cognac by her bed, the other seems to have all she money under she tittie. Stevie Wonder and/or Bob Marley make me feel confident before job interviews… I don’t know why. After I accomplish something I feel like a tough guy, and Notorious BIG fuels that.

These are just some of the things that make me who I am.

We all have a cultural makeup that derives from our families, households, and neighborhoods. Our cultural makeup gives us a uniqueness that we should all be proud of. I am most definitely proud of being a little black girl from that undefined section of the Bronx between Parkchester and Soundview. To know my cultural makeup, leads to understanding complex aspects of my personality. If I lied about it, no one would ever understand me, and if I were found out, no one would care to.

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