allangtegek: a pattern of dirt particles in a puddle of water (cirkels)

We return to the nameless RPF-with-OCs 'verse, which by the way has officially become an AU sometime in the last week or two, with the short version of the history between Leila al Hossam and Sarah Awaters (and, yes, Yasmin from Onbereikbaar has since become Leila). The characters and their personalities are pretty well fleshed out, it's just that I have plot whatsoever. It's just people doing stuff. And the stuff they're doing is boring! (Plus, even now, with just one of the characters' family sketched out, there's a huge cast of very diverse characters, and if I ever seriously want to write in this 'verse, that's gonna be a looot of research. /o\)

Chaos Theory )

Disclaimer: All mine; written for a [community profile] 31_days prompt. If I have written something dumb/offensive, whack me with the cluebat if you can spare the spoons. (Should I warn for an otherwise-observant Muslimah drinking?)

Also, I should upload more of my icons to DW.


Apr. 29th, 2009 11:05 am
allangtegek: a pattern of dirt particles in a puddle of water (hier gaat wat fout)

This episode could've been entirely awesome, if every scene with/about the Deaf kid hadn't been about how being Deaf is reallyreallyreally bad, OK? or how Deaf culture is totally not a Real culture, as proven by Eric Foreman, neurologist. Thanks for your opinion, Foreman. Shut up, Foreman. (And Wilson, with the "nice thing" bullshit, but I expect this crap out of Wilson, who really doesn't have as much of a clue as he thinks.)

Cut because I <3 bullet points )

So much awesome to enjoy but so much stupidity too. :(

allangtegek: a pattern of dirt particles in a puddle of water (indo)
This is weird and disjointed because it was originally loose snippets has long since ceased to be April 3rd in my time zone and I promised myself this time I would say something about this and not just never post the things I want to say but may not be ready to and hide. (Again.)

In the 1950s, Indos were inassimilable and could never get used to the Dutch climate (too cold). Also the country was full. So it would be best, really, if they didn’t come over here, and tried to make the best of life as Indonesians. However, that obviously didn’t work out, and those strange, strange people came here. (In true Dutch fashion, if at all possible on their own costs. They were still greedy colonials who were coming to get money off the backs of hardworking Dutch people, though, never mind the fact that most of the people concerned were Dutch citizens. That was sort of the point.)

When I was little, we were so much the model minority we weren’t even really considered a minority, since we’re so well-assimilated and everything. (It helps that we’re all mixed-race and some-part white, of course.) For me (third generation), the culture, and the food, and the language, and the stories my grandparents grew up with are faraway and out-of-reach, except for some bits and pieces here and there. I want to chase them, and find out more about my heritage, but it feels like I would be appropriating something that’s not ‘mine’. In my family, we Didn’t Talk About any of that.

A 1984 study (it was the first of its kind and it’s probably still pretty lonely) questions—with Science—this perfect and seamless assimilation. Its authors say it was mostly white people claiming this years after the fact, with no facts or figures to back them up, nor ever hearing the other side of the story (I can hear your gasps of surprise from over here!). Obviously the seamlessness of it was entirely due to Dutch tolerance.

I have no problem saying I’m multiracial. Indo I’m good with, too, even if I still occasionally wonder about that one because my grandfather’s family came over from Surinam to the Indies. I can just about handle ‘non-white’, even though I feel compelled to append that my mom is white and you’d have a hard time telling me apart from the whitest person in town. ‘Person of color’? I can’t do it. It’s really stupid and probably me exercising the privilege I have of passing.

On the other hand, I feel like some White Chick playing at being Other. I mean, here I am: I look pretty damn white, my mom is white, my main ethnic identity is considered to be perfectly assimilated and by definition a mix of Asian and white, and my dad’s side of the family has been mixed going back generations. Oh, sure, my grandfather was black; my grandmother was Asian, but still. It’s stupid. I know. I still can’t help feeling it.

My immediate reaction to seeing the words Indo Diaspora is still ‘I’m part of a Diaspora? Whaaa…?’.

It’s highly unlikely someone would say discriminatory shit to my face, and the first time I heard (read in a book) about discrimination against people like me, back in the sixties, I balked. Surely not? I was probably sixteen when I read that book and realize now I did everything in my power not to take that book and its perfect clarity seriously. (I reread it and it made me cry. There were tears in my eyes after the prologue.)

Of course, that was until I read an interview with a ‘hurt’ white director who got upset the Indo community didn’t like his representation of them and said things made of fail. In the nineties. (Me: GRRR.)

Or when in 2009 someone made a slur against Geert Wilders based on his ethnicity. (Me: *shocked, speechless silence* ;__;) It felt like a punch in the gut but I still feel I have no real reason to feel upset about it because comparatively? We have it pretty good here.

And then I started thinking about representation. Because, while most of the people on TV do look like me, they don’t share my heritage and background. (Or most of them don’t anyway.) I said that wasn’t a problem for me but more and more I think that was a rationalization I started making by the time it got through my thick, thick skull that my cultural default ≠ Dutch cultural default and that the people in my books and on my TV weren’t exactly me, just like me in some ways.

Because, you know, honestly? Where the hell am I? I’ll even leave out the black granddad thing! Can you point me to the third generation Indos? No? Okay, how about the second, then? Challenge: when not written by Indo writers? That leaves the first generation, where I get to see my grandmother as some white guy’s second (doting, devoted, beautiful, etc) wife who has no children of her own and not much of a personal life, either. (Possibly I get to see my grandfather on the street or on the train?) Honestly, why don’t I get to see my grandmother do anything else other than cook and take care of the family?

How about she tells the stepkids stories about how she joined the Red Cross after the war to find her lost fiancé? Maybe in that book, she simply couldn’t find him and met this awesome white dude years later and happily married him. Can that be arranged at least?

(I mean, I can always still pretend any white kid in your stories is just really light like and takes after the white side of the family, after all! Just give me some of my family too?)

And the lovely thing is, I’m still wondering if I have any business saying/posting this. Isn’t that awesome?

(Written for the
Asian Women Carnival, organized by [personal profile] ciderpress.)

PS — No, Random Stranger, seeing a mother with two very different looking children does not give you the right to ask the mom if they have the same father. (Yes and fuck you.)
allangtegek: a pattern of dirt particles in a puddle of water (hier gaat wat fout)
Dear Mayor Cohen,

Even though you're not (technically) my mayor, and even though I wasn't all that impressed with you in the first place (remember that Rita is een Moordwijf thing? I think you handled that sort of badly), and even though I'm late in saying this, I just have to wonder what. the. fuck. you're on about here. We've just had the gazillionth case of a frantic overreaction to a 'trustworthy' tip that someone was going to blow something up. You know, the usual? Round up a couple of Muslims, look good on TV; release them the next day because it turns out that, hey, they haven't done anything (but somehow still manage to avoid looking less good on TV, because the police are Looking Out For Us So Long As 'We' Are Not Muslim Of Course).

Yeah. Your solution to making sure that doesn't happen again (and again. and again. etc...) seems to be along the lines of 'I'm afraid we're just going to have to get used to it'. Oookay then. I will assume that you are in fact aware that this is not, as such, a solution. I'm also quite certain that you know very well that by 'innocent people' we mean 'innocent Muslims' or 'innocent people who look like Muslims to someone' (hint: as our far right friends are so fond of pointing out, since 'Islam is not a race'--you know, to deny that the racist things they say about Muslims of various Middle-Eastern and North-African ethnicities are racist?--anyone could look 'like a Muslim [up to no good]').

So let's get to the point here. You, mister mayor, will not have to worry about being mistaken for a potential terrorist. Neither will I. We're not in any danger of being the innocent people arrested for False Scare #252146423. Or even the innocent people arrested for Not False Scare #1. That'd be the around one million (one in sixteen Dutch people, that is) Muslims here, y'see.

And I'm really not okay with 'just getting used to [that]'. I can't currently (and couldn't last week) put into words how not okay I am with that and how disappointed, angry and bewildered I am that you are not only okay with that but think the rest of us should be, too. Even and especially those of 'us' (as in: Dutch people) who will not only have to 'get used to' innocent people being arrested but who would have to 'get used to' the possibility of getting arrested for Being Muslim While There's A Terror Scare Going On. (By the way: all terrorists are Muslim, amirite?!)

PS -- I take the risk of being caught in a terrorist attack. Prevention is good but I'm pretty sure there are better ways to it than rampant islamophobia. And since you cannot possibly prevent all attacks, I'd rather no one's freedom gets sacrificed to make us feel 'safe'.

PPS -- I mean it, I can't believe this. You're not even interested in attempting to prevent the potential arrest of innocent people (AGAIN)? Seriously?

PPPS -- I hope I have not myself said anything too stupid in here. If I have, please apply cluebat directly to my head.
No, not you, Job.
allangtegek: a pattern of dirt particles in a puddle of water (indo)
Colorblindness, huh? Nifty little concept: "I don't see race/color/ethnicity; I just see people!". Yup, and I just saw people, too. The fact that those people on my dad's side of the family were various shades of brown (or not)? Feh! We are, after all, the most succesfully assimilated integrated minority group* in the country, so what the hell?

Dad's side of the family and Dad's side of the family's friends and acquaintances were all Just People! (Please keep these signicificant capitals in mind.) And, of course, other non-white Dutch people were all Just People too.

The moral of this story that Just People = relevant cultural default (autochthonous white) and that my own personal cultural default is actually much more Euro/Asian (plus some Surinamese) than that. Assimilation or not (and as my handy little strikethroughs show, I have Thoughts about that as well), I was actually just whitewashing my environment. That is just not cool. It took my grandmother dying for me to realize that. Also uncool.

Interestingly enough, even in my much more clueless days, as a (half**) member of that perfectly assimilated well-integrated group, I know there were times I was subconciously seeking out things/thinking things/I don't know about difference, maybe? I can't put this thought into words. Actually asking my grandparents, of course, was something I never did. I repeat: not until my grandmother died did I realize there was a huge gaping hole where some other half of my cultural background could've been. Until then, I was telling myself thought that just didn't happen to second and later generation migrants (or, say, people of mixed heritage being "repatriated").

* Hello oversimplification of my ethnic background! I gave you a call somewhere around the time I figured out the Amerindian part wasn't just me being a fucking idiot and I think that was where I lost the script. I'm just going to be using the one ethnicity that has the mixedness built right in from now on.
** How the hell do you define yourself as half some-mixed-group?

(I'm sorry, I'm still impossibly tired. I hope this made any kind of sense at all (if not, cluebat's in the corner!). And I think I'm mostly ranting at 19-year-old me, even though it was brought on by some of the things said during Racefail...)


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