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…

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…

Subtle Indignities: Why We Should Still “See” Race – Part 2

Last post I gave the example of having suffered a subtle indignity linked to my social identity as a black woman at a professional dinner. Now I turn to a different situation. Teaching a new class, I always find that I have to work extra hard with my students – more so than my white (especially male)…

When ‘reasonable belief’ is unreasonable and unjust

(This article appeared in The Concord Monitor on Sunday, November 30, 2014) The grand jury has spoken. Officer Darren Wilson has had his day in court. The focus of the press and public is moving on from Ferguson, Mo. Although the outcome of the case is clear – Wilson will not be tried in court for the killing…

Race and politics: A race to the bottom in NH

Race and politics: A race to the bottom in NH Some of my good friends call me “Wholesome” and I don’t complain. There’s no secret that I idealize my small-town New Hampshire upbringing, where the farm, the woods, and the baseball field were my primary occupations after school. Eating porridge around the breakfast table as…

Things for ((sub)urban) black persons to consider before marrying a white person

Pardon the graphic opening – it’s just a little bit of an overshare. Also pardon the gross generalisations inherent in my personal observations/reflections below: I know not all white people who go camping are wealthy for it is sometimes possible to acquire some of the expensive kit from yard sales and thrift stores (Dan, for instance, didn’t grow…

Lovin’ “Loving Day”

It’s corny, I know: interracial couples the world over, and their friends, getting together en masse to publicly celebrate interracial relating. Yeah, it’s kind of a gimmick too. Yet, I can’t help but get excited about it every time the annual reminder shows up on my calendar. I even confess that I looked on the…

The Story Behind “You’re Beautiful”

I was walking through an airport the other day when I spotted the glossy cover. An unabashedly black Lupita Nyong’o, sporting her very own nappy black hair, cropped short, beamed on the cover of People magazine’s “50 Most Beautiful” issue. Another first for dark black women in American popular culture, courtesy the luminous Lupita. But for…