Picture perfect...

Is it Weds already?  A rather routine non-eventful day for me and WiMi....   We found ourselves on the other side of town around lunchtime and ended up a less than spectacular McDonald's...   Let me tell you ....I think I'm going to push for legislation that mandates that any establishment that is open to the general public including children must have clean working changing stations in both the men's AND women's bathroom.  I mean what's up with that?  Men don't change diapers?   I wasn't happy about it and I definitely let the manager know... all I got was an extra Happy Meal toy...   Thanks.

But that's not even what really got me riled up today...   After I got lunch I took the boys over to Eden Park to eat....   as we're eating I noticed a table of middle-aged woman continually staring at us.... I've got somewhat used to this albeit annoying at times.  As we continue to eat a woman starts walking our way.  What's the first thing she does to annoy me?  Ask if the boys are twins.... AYFKM?!  I didn't even make eye-contact with her and said yeah.  I'm at the point now when people ask that I give a shrug or a sarcastic no.  So to continue....she says.... "I don't think there is a finer picture than a black man spending time with his sons" (I think I should mention this was a black female.... the question came up before)  I had sun-glasses on so it was hard for her to read my reaction but I was like "Really.... seriously?    I really found myself insulted by this...    First I knew she was only trying to warm me up before she went into her spiel right before she lay down her Watchtower...  Secondly....   and I hate to borrow from that famous Chris Rock bit...because I think it's one of the most abused ...taken out of context comedy bits ever.  But... I'm SUPPOSED to spend time with my sons lady!!  In 2010...the 21st century...  really?   I guess the statistical data I shared with "Anonymous" in a previous post has comeback to haunt me.  I long for the day when black men spending time with their children isn't a novelty.  I suppose I took it for granted all those years that my dad who was actually my "stepdad"  spent time with me.  I never realized I was living a life of luxury.

Picture Perfect.... Where's my Pulitzer?
Look ... I don't spend time with my son's because I'm looking for some type of medal or award or am trying to complete some perfect picture.  A lot of people day after day leave comments on my blog about how "awesome or great" a dad I am.... and I usually don't publish them because I find it a little embarrassing.   I'm spending time with my son's because I enjoy it first of all..... Nothing... I repeat nothing on this Earth gives me greater joy than the time I have with my boys.... Second to raise these boys and prepare them for manhood, that's going to take me being involved, hand-on and spending time with them.... and it's not all going to be a walk in the park (no pun intended)  I know this.  So that's why I spend time with my son's 

Some will say I should have just taken the compliment and left it at that... but no.  I think that accepting it as a compliment perpetuates the idea that it's a rarity or un-heard of that a black man spends time with his children. It shouldn't.  Parents in general shouldn't be complimented for spending time with their children... it's their responsibility.

You want to know what I think IS a finer picture....  a mother and father... black or white... spending time with their children together...   a family being a family.   Frame that!




Melissa said...

Hi Ed! I'm a friend of Mina's and found your blog through her Facebook account. I've been reading your entries, and felt I needed to chime in agreement with you on this subject.

People will say the same thing about me in regards to my daughter Audrey who is 10 years old. We do a lot of things together, including spending time with one another. For some reason people seem to find it amazing that I want to spend time with my own child. It's unfortunate but her Dad isn't involved in her life much any more. When she asks me why he doesn't call or email (he lives in Texas) I tell her that someday he will regret missing out on her childhood and being there to help raise her.

I agree though, spending time with your child(ren) is a parent's responsibility.

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