Thursday, March 26, 2009

Class 1- 1-8-09

My Brain and me
Welcome, welcome come right in, I've been expecting you. Today is the first time I have seen the sun, isn't it glorious. It has been so stuffy in here, I was glad to be able to open the window today and get some cobwebs out. So how are things in the world today? There's been a lot of grey around here lately and I can't figure out why. I've been visiting the books on the

Sillyness10-25-08

Sillyness. I don't know why but I feel silly right now that and silly is just a funny word that adults shouldn't say lest they want to seem like a fuddy duddy. OMG I am full of strange words today. It is Saturday, yet it feels like it should be a weekday! But I guess that's what it's like when you don't have a real job. I don't feel like I am a contributing memeber of my family since I don't draw a paycheck. I'm sure my partner resents my being home all the time while he wakes at the buttass crack of dawn to drive 45 minutes to his job.

Class exercise 2-5-09

My body was just relieved to stop and not think anymore, as soon as I closed my eyes calm set over me. I could hear the noises outside but they were like a distant echo. I take a breath and settle in, nerves pinching in my leg, gotta move, gotta stop. My head is cloudy trying to go back to that time, an age of innocence, when was that where was that? When do you lose that innoncence? I thought perhaps it would be when I was a teenager, but really, there is no innocence there, you're always up to something scheming and plotting away. Innoncence is 5th grade, the school yard on a May day. The air is warm, the wind blows and kicks up dirt. We're playing some silly jump rope game. You know the one where you name your boyfriend? How truly innocent is that? You spell his name and all the girls around you wonder who he is. "He doesn't go to this school" she says puffing her chest with pride. "He's older, our dad's work together". All of a sudden you are mysterious, a world traveller. Innocence is lost when this same boy, years after "your relationship" has ended, dies. He was so young, not troublesome, how do you end up shooting yourself?

Random Notes

2/5/09
The rain drops on the tin roof, the water as it flows down the gutter, splashing through puddles, walking somewhere, splashing each other with puddles, trying not to get wet. It's the gang, we're together walking by the high school to ChicChar. It starts raining harder now, we order more fries so we can wait out the storm. Tammy peeks out the steam covered window to Chucker's across the street. Silly boys smoking in the rain. Nancy brings out fries as we get ready to chow down.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Rant

That's it. I have lost faith in all of humanity. Well, if you consider casting human. WTF is going on in the world. American indians have endured and lived on this land for hundreds of years, yet know one really know what an indian is, that or everyone is one. Indians are portrayed in mainstream movies only in period pieces, where the majority of characters are shirtless peck bulging men and few women who consist of the chiefs daughter and the old woman whom she seeks advice from. Believe it or not, there are movies out there with indian themes, but they don't get mainstream play, because the lingo and colloquialisms are very distinct. Of course, if the movie contains a role that can be filled by some popular non-indian actor that can sell the movie, well that one will be picked up by a studio.
My latest rant is due to the fact that I'm checking out recent casting in the movies. This latest one is due to the fact that on this woman's IMDB page, she is listed as Japanese, no mention of indian, which is fine, she's brown, she has high cheek bones, her name asian sounding, her website lists nothing about her ethinicty. I am fine with this anonymity, I understand that. But on my quest I find out WHY GOD WHY, there it is in some article, listing out her heritage. Japanese/Irish/Cherokee.

So here is my quandry. I want to yell and scream at her for not telling everyone that she is native, should we just assume (which when it comes to someone brown is the wrong assumption to make that she is indian) that she is? and on the other side, I want to yell and scream at her that she is NOT indian, please everyone is cherokee. Everyone is indian when it is convenient for them.

Monday, March 9, 2009

I am now 8

Why I focus on being an 8 year old, I'm not sure. But while reading a foundation update today, I think I've figured it out. Young children see the whole world in front of them, no judgement, no prejudice, just opportunity. As we age, the world around us encroaches upon these things. Some can keep the dream alive, but at some point, usually mid-life they realize that they are not happy with where they are at, or that they have lost their way completely.

These young girls, participating in an afterschool drop-in program come together to share their plight of growing up, by exploring the world of art and conversation. One girl didn't not want to take her doll project home, due to the fact it would unveil parts of herself she is not ready for the rest of the world to see. This is how I feel while attempting to write my epic tale. Right now, all my story and vision is safely tucked away in my head. If you could climb in there and check it out, that would be cool, as long as I didn't have to say it out loud. Once you say things out loud, there out there for the world to scruntinize and critic. If you check it out while it is still in the warm confines of my head, no one gets hurt.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

There is no I in Indian

Time is slipping away. I don't know what to do or feel anymore?! I am done. While trying to write my epic tale and searching through the annals of my memories I have found nothing. I have found how little I know about my heritage that I am so proud of.
I am indian. American indian if you prefer to be politically correct, which I don't really care either way about. I don't get caught up in the technicalities of it, dude, I'm indian, no big.

I came to acting to show the world what an indian looks like, but no one really wants to know. Hollywood is still black and white. People just assume that we still wear buckskin, have long dark braided hair and have a direct line to the creator. When casting sends out their casting calls they put ethnic tags onto their character description, but it doesn't matter, every actor out there will submit to it because after all everyone is "indian". Maybe it's because I'm especially sensitive to it, but the conversation does happens a lot, maybe it's just because I'm an ass and enjoy the hypocracy of it all. While in class when someone poses the awkward question ..."so what are you?" as they try to ask in the most p.c. way, my ears perk up! It's always an interesting answer. Why can't you just say American? But now the long list of what some long lost relatives were begins. "Well, I'm French, German, Swedish, Italian, Irish, Scottish, oh yeah, and Choctaw". Then of course I have to look, because I think, oooh a new friend. I think this because obviously since we're both indians we are long lost friends and will realize this the minute we start to talk as our connection to the creator will bring us together. But then I turn around and see my new friend. She has dirty blond hair, is fair complected and her eyes sparkle like sapphires. Really, really I think? Of all the heritages you just mentioned, you talk more about being indian, as if trying to relate to me. I haven't said I was indian yet? You just made the assumption that we are some kindered spirit, because of the color of my skin. Granted I formed some opinion of you by simply looking at you. But my assumptions never jumped to indian.

I feel like such a hypocrite. Here I am passing judgement on this blond bimbo who may know all about her heritage as I sit way up here on my soapbox. Fine you wanna know the truth, I know stuff. I know how to say hello and thank you, and to call someone a pig, I know what my grandmother used to call me when I was small instead of Wanda. I know when I think of my high school boyfriend, Toby and his brothers how much sadness I feel. Toby lived on the rez, he went to the english school, he was in grade 12. I went to the french school and was only in grade 11. Like any tragic teen love story, my father didn't want me to date him, just for the simple fact that he was from the rez and wasn't the stellar student I was, I was going to go to law school after all, while he could barely pass basic math and english. On the weekends, I would meet-up with a friend from work, whose boyfriend was indian too, and we would take a taxi to the rez, since I was still too young to drive and she didn't have her permit either. I'd have to either make sure that the cabby came back for me at a specific time, or make sure I made it to the corner store before it closed so I could use their phone since there was no phone at Toby's. It was only him and his 2 other brothers that lived there. His parents worked in other towns and they were left there alone most of the time. Barely any heat in the winter, somedays they had no power because the bill hadn't been paid. Their uncle, who was maybe 25, was supposed to be the responsible adult in their life. That was a joke. He would come over and sell his drugs out of the house. I know this because I was there one night, and was relegated to reading and listening to music in the bedroom, while they "talked" in the livingroom, Toby coming in periodically to make sure I was ok. At least he cared for me enough to not want to expose me to that world, so I guess I'm thankful for that. But what I can't stop thinking of now when I think of him, was the squalor that they lived in. I feel guilty because I didn't live this empoverished life, I had all the opportunity in the world. So did they though. They got paid to go to school. Every kid that lived on the rez would get a stipend from Indian Affairs. Sure it wasn't much, but I remember being pissed because here they were, always skipping class, having barely passing grades and they got money every month. Fine they needed the money, but they didn't use it for anything useful, it was usually used for beer and drugs.

I want to return to being the eight-year old. Whose whole world was ahead of her, and there was nothing in her way.