Our wish for Harry and Meghan: Disruptive Love

(This column appeared in The Concord Monitor on May 31, 2018) We did not receive any royal wedding invitations. We’ve never been to Windsor Castle or hung a royal portrait on the wall. We’ve never even tuned in to a wedding on TV (or owned a TV, for that matter). Until last Saturday. Watching the wedding…

What would MLK say?

Today is MLK Day. Tempting as it is to point an angry finger at a racist president, I want to look beyond the headlines and in the mirror instead. In his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. addressed not the Ku Klux Klanner but white people of goodwill. “I had hoped that the…

Confession: I haven’t read The Canon

Yes, I hold a BA in English but haven’t read much of “the canon”. One of the things about not coming from a very literate family, culture or class is that I wasn’t read to much growing up, and most of what was read to me was written in short form (published in the newspaper…

It Would Be So Easy To Share. So, Why Not?

When we had our babies we would often have people ask us to post (lots of) pictures of them babies’ “cute faces” on our Facebook profile pages. We have so far resisted doing so and, though (the rare barb notwithstanding) over time most people have come to tolerate, accept or embrace the fact that we…

Just Ask It!

On a walk through the woods outside Cape Town the other day, Sindiso and the kids and I happened upon a middle-aged Xhosa woman sitting outside a shed, presumably waiting to start work. I say ‘presumably’ because although I have no idea why she was in that spot at that time, I have learned from…

Yes, I’m Their Mommy, Not Their Nanny

One of the things I love most about my home country of South Africa is just how upfront people are … especially black people. On our recent trip home, several conversations about our babies duly fit this mould. For background: last year, Dan and I had twins. Since they’re still young and very portable (as well as…

A few ideas to stop systemic racism

Following the tragic events in Charlottesville, I joined the chorus of well-meaning white people in condemning white supremacist violence on American streets. I blamed the obvious villain: men with sticks and swastikas, and even semi-automatics, who marched for the belief that my biracial children are inferior and don’t belong in the land of their birth….

One year in and still standing!

We made it! We survived the first year! And my “normal” brain is maybe starting to return, at least a little… Hallelujah! So, here I am getting back to writing. I’ve missed doing it. And sooo much has happened in the last two years! Much of it, I’ve wanted to pen or capture in writing somehow…

Re-Mixed: Time to dust off our blog?

After two years of neglect of this blog we began in South Africa, we’re thinking it might just be time to dust it off again. Here’s a glimpse of how we came to that conclusion… Dan: So, Sindiso, what have you been up to anyway these past two years while not whipping up blogs for…

Wanted: Black Friends [A Dialogue]

(As two rather headstrong people with our own styles, writing together can be challenging. Here, we experiment with a dialogical approach, each writing in our own words, that reveals the process we go through in anticipation of a post on a heavy topic, or in ordinary life :). We hope you find this “behind-the-scenes” view interesting – please let us know!)…

Subtle Indignities: Why We Should Still “See” Race – Part 3

After my last post (my intermission), I wasn’t sure I wanted to proceed with my series of blog posts. Ironically, I was feeling a little fatigued of talking about the need for race consciousness (colour bravery) – especially against the backdrop of the xenophobic attacks (“black-on-black violence”) that have taken place in South Africa these last few…

Intermission: A Black African’s View on New England Winter

One day last November, I went into the gym at 4.30pm, when it was reasonably light outside, and came out at 5.30pm to find it pitch black. My thoughts: “eish, mara – what am I doing in this misery?!” I got into the car … On NPR, Melissa Block was talking to Ms. Hazard (I think that’s her…