Saturday, May 1, 2010


One advantage of being military is seeing the world at government expense.

Some people view this as a deterrent - living where people don't (gasp) speak English, where the value of your money changes daily, and customs/ holidays/foods are NOT North American.

I'd rather jump in and accept "their" ways; after all, aren't we the guests here? If you are invited to an Italian dinner, and demand baked beans, you're being more than a little bit rude. If you refuse to accept or even LEARN the rules of etiquette, you obviously need them more than anyone. And if the public concept of art/modestly/laws/personal hygiene are not what you grew up with, throwing dirty looks at everyone is not gonna make any kind of change, and just reinforces that Americans are arrogant.

And a lot of us ARE.

My kids were born in Manhattan (Kansas, not New York), Dusseldorf and Frankfort A.M., West Germany (back when there were two Germany's). All three began school in Honolulu (a melting pot of Asians) and graduated in Maryland (black majority). So much of their life they were the haole (literally 'foriegner' in Hawaii, although its come to mean 'white'), the kids with the odd shaped eyes and hair color, the white kids.

I had the opportunity of not finding a job easily because I was Caucasian - I'd be called in for an interview, look around the office, realize mine was the only white one skin in sight, and knew I wouldn't be hired.

So I get a little miffed when someone puts on their ethnicity. On the airplane, I sat next to a lovely couple - but they managed to communicate within the first minutes that I was the enemy.

And just because the color of my skin.

Children, can't we all live together as one?