Friday, April 4, 2008

82 yr old Native American ladies

Sometimes I get a strange look from people when I answer their question, "What do you do?" I usually point to my son and daughter and say, "This is what I do. I raise my kids." Usually, from younger parents, I get a very positive response. One of them (the wife normally) may be an at-home-parent as well and won't blink twice. The husband may make a comment like, "I don't know how you do it." I could say the same thing to the guy that funnels money from here to there all day, or helps mass produce something that's so important that I DO live without it.
There is a class of people that almost always respond the same. The Greatest Generation. "Ahw, that's sweet. It's Daddy's day out. Your wife is very lucky today. And what do you do?"
2 days ago, I was asked by an 82 year old Native American (Cherokee) lady, "So, what do you do?" We were in a hair salon (that's right) and I was wearing my son. I pointed at him and said, "This is what I do. I raise my kids." Her face flashed confusion, denial, maybe she heard me wrong, these kids today are so out of touch. The look lasted all of a millisecond. I understand there is a generation difference. I even think I may understand there may be a cultural difference that has something to do with this one. So I just looked at her. Then....
we had the most pleasant conversation. It turns out that she knew the parents of the guy that built my new house. My new house was built in 1901. Did I mention this is a small town?
Right now, I'm thinking of a certain other Native American lady (not 82) that will set me straight. Check the comments to see if she reads her friends blogs.

6 comments:

theHBlady said...

what.ever. matthew - you *know* i read your blog! hmm - every tribe is different in terms of how matriarchal/patriarchal they are etc. but i'd guess lots of elders would think that mighty "hmmmm". just cause it wasn't so long ago for us that men were out for long stretches hunting. and breastpumps are a mighty new invention. ;)

Matt said...

I knew you'd come through for me. I think you are the ONLY person reading this.

Backpacking Dad said...

Nope.

30 year-old Mohawk dude also reading it.

I get lots of praise from my family for staying home. I haven't encountered anyone on the rez who thinks I need to be out working.

"Working" is an import.

Vamp D said...

I read it when the satellite goes out, or if the Family Guy episode is one I've seen...

Vamp D said...

What's with the MySpace autoplay music??

greg said...

okay let move on.

how about an update?