Wednesday, July 20, 2011

I've Never Told You About This....

       (charms4you)      
            {I want to start this conversation today by just telling you that the photos pictured are not associated with my story. They are things that are for sale on Etsy. You can click on the photos to go to the items themselves.}
         The movie 'Pride and Prejudice' caught my attention some years back, not because of the story itself.....which is extraordinary, by the way-"Thank you Jane Austen"!...but because of the name.
       My childhood started out in Georgia...
         (Mapity)
...a state with a lot of history here in the United States when it comes to slavery and prejudice...It also has wonderful history, in terms of friendly people, southern hospitality and good food. That's what I remember most frankly! 
      The reason I'm talking about this today is because I saw a movie trailer for 'The Help'...
        If you've followed this blog for a while you probably remember that I read this book and commented on it on this blog a while back.
      Just looking at the trailer, brought back a couple of incidents that happened to me as a kid: One being when me and my little friends were on our way to school one morning...walking. In Georgia there were houses where people sold penny candy. But we didn't have time to go to one of them. So we stopped at a little 'house-store'....a tiny '5 and dime' type store... 
       Unfortunately, the lady who ran the store was not very nice. In fact, she was very prejudice and she had a real problem with little black girls coming into her store. I especially made her angry because, being the safety conscious kid I was, I had been carrying my change in my shoe so that I wouldn't lose it.
      As soon as I took my shoe off to get my money, she 'hit the roof'!!! I could tell she wasn't happy with us by the suspicious and condescending look she had on her face prior to this, but I hadn't expected this kind of rage! O_0 She told me, in no uncertain terms...and while using the 'N' word, to go out to the well (it was in the front yard of the little store)...
              (smokeatillyjane)
        ...and wash that money off before I tried to give it to her!!...So I did. I wasn't confrontational,....and I wanted my candy!! I didn't see the bigger issue at that time.
        At another time, after Bussing was introduced in Georgia, I ended up walking across town to a school I had never been allowed to go to before. {I can't remember now why I was walking when I was suppose to be taking the bus. Knowing me it was because I was afraid of confrontations on the bus or something!}
        (CanCanCreations)
       I remember playing alone in the playground, hearing children's racist remarks, and being put in the back of the classroom. It was a very lonely time for me.
      All of that came back to mind when I saw this trailer...    


        But what also came back to mind was how strong I became by the time this period of my life was over. I learned that I was a pretty resilient little kid, and that I could get through just about anything!
      That feeling has grown with the years. I find that I take things...pretty much...in stride. Although my hubby and people who have crossed me will tell you...I do have my moments!! ^_^  
         The biggest boon to my personality,.....and I say this as a matter of fact, not because I'm trying to recruit people... was learning the Bible and becoming one of Jehovah's Witnesses. It's an organization where my color was not an issue, but my faith and my love for God was!...It's the way it should be the world over. And in this organiation...it is!
       I think history is important, and can be extremely entertaining. Some of my favorite movies include my upbringing in some form or fashion...
      (arwdesign)
       Even the mini-series of the movie 'Roots', which I watched with enthrallment back in the 70s,...
            (13thFloorVinyl)
         ...and which made a lot of people really upset!...was very eye-opening for me, and helped me to understand the issues on both sides of slavery. What I found out was that how you look at prejudice, whether a victim of it, or a perpetrator of it,  is not always just a fact of one color or the other. It has a lot to do with the heart.
        I hope I didn't get too 'deep' on you today. I'm just doing what I do when something is on my mind.... ^_^  Whether bad....or good...Yapping away!!
        (Briole)
        Thankfully, most of my Southern memories are very very good!! After all, a place that produced me can't be all bad, right?!! LOL
        In honor of 'The Help'....a little Beatles diddy! :-)



"T"-Town

I came from a small town in Georgia,
where pecan trees and sunshine line the streets;
where plums and peaches grow like nothing,
and where when music plays, you cannot keep your seat.

I love that little town in Georgia,
 and the people who can't  help but holler "Hey!"
Where back-roads just seem to last forever,
and the chickens cackle happy when they lay.

Why did I leave that little town in Georgia,
where swinging quiet on the porch could make your day;
where when it rained, the ground just seemed to flutter,
and the fields were full of horses, cows and hay.

How I miss that little town in Georgia,
where the kids are free to play outside all day,
where the people come together in a crisis,
where they love to sing, and laugh, and dance and play.

One day I'm gonna go back home to Georgia,
and live near the water -  (Oh how I wish!)
And do nothing but lay around and daydream,
go walking in the woods, and catch some fish.

I'm a girl from a little town in Georgia;
the big city couldn't take the country out of me;
"T" - Town will always be the place that I came from,
and the place that's in my heart for eternity.

22 comments:

  1. Those were certainly "dark times" in our history. I never understood it as a kid. People were people, no matter what color they were. I loved everyone! But when I became one of Jehovah's Witnesses, I felt relief from those times too. We are one big brotherhood! No racial barriers here! Thankfully!!!
    I didn't watch the trailer because I still haven't had opportunity to read the book. I want to do that first. But I do appreciate the Beatles tune! I've always loved them!
    Don't "think" too much today my friend. I don't want you to get a headache!! LOL
    Have a great day and weekend! I'll catch up with you maybe on Sunday or Monday!

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  2. Deb, a very beautiful poem this morning. I don't feel that you got to deep. I always love reading your posts no matter what the subject might be, because it gets my mind to think. Thank you for sharing. Have a wonderful day!!!!!

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  3. I'm so sorry you had those terrible experiences. There is really no excuse to speak to anyone in that manner, let alone an innocent child. You are such a strong and intelligent and warm-hearted person and the fact that you rose above all those experiences says so much about you! I am so glad you shared your story, it makes me even more happy to get to read your blog each day!

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  4. CinLynn, They were indeed dark times, weren't they! But they were also times of growth, because things have changed quite a bit. Not perfectly...yet! But quite a bit from what they were like...I can't wait until you read the book! In fact, I may read it again, now that the movie is out...Not today though! I've got to finish some hats!! I've been really dragging on my crocheting. I know why too...Been there/done that. I only get excited to crochet when it's something new. I hate re-doing something over and over. I'm having a hard time staying motivated to finish them!...But I will!!! LOL Maybe another Beatles song will...'HELP!' ^_^

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  5. SnowflakeDreams1, Awwww! Thanks Velma. I sometimes wish I could type as fast as my brain goes, but then this would be a 'Blurrrrr' and not a 'blog'!! LOL Thanks for hanging in with me! :-]

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  6. HazelandMare, Awwww! What a nice comment. You almost got me crying....`;_;` You're right too, about the things people say to children. And sometimes what they 'do' to children is even worse!! But it's also true that, with the proper help, we all can get through the bad experiences of our past. Part of what makes me who I am today is being able to look back and see where I've come from. That's probably true of a lot of us...right! :-)

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  7. I remember studying this time in US history when I was going to school in Germany and it fascinated me! Completely! And now living here in the south, I am dismayed to see how much of this prejudice still exists. Not so openly in most place, but it's there. The book "The Help" is so interesting to me! I'll have to check out your past posts on it. Reading about your experiences is just adding to all the thoughts going through my mind... You are quite amazing! Love, Silke

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  8. Silke, It's a history that those not living it would hardly believe really happened...but it did!! The movie Roots really told the story, as I remember...You know, sometimes I'm amazed that in my short life I've had some of the experiences I have. It's only in retrospect sometimes that I realize how one decision one way or the other could have totally changed my life!!...I guess that in itself is a good reason to be thankful for where I am...health issues and all!!...At the time period that "The Help" was written, there was still prejudice too, as today, but there were more options to take. Not all of them were good...on either side of the issue...Funny question, but are you finding yourself reading it with an accent, like I did?! ^_^

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  9. Thanks for sharing. I'm sorry that is one of your childhood memories, the world can really suck sometimes and can be terribly cruel to children. It makes you more resilient though doesn't it? I'm glad you didn't let it affect the wonderful person that you are.


    Lisa

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  10. Lisa, Thank you for reading. And for the sentiment too. And yes, more resilient...and determined! Some things aren't worth allowing your personality to change for though. Racism is one of those...Have a good rest of the day!

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  11. Oh, Deb, this brought a tear to my eyes. I know that's not why you were writing it, but it did. If I imagine anyone treating my Otto the way you were treated as a little girl (or treating any child that way) it just makes me horrified and sick. I used to keep my money in my socks too! And even though someone probably should have (because ICK, haha) no one ever made me feel ashamed about it or ever tried to. There's enough nastiness out there to ruin a day. I love that you pull the positive out of your experiences and focus on the fact that what didn't hurt you made you stronger and made you awesome. I really loved this post. xo!

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  12. Both our countries have a sad history with racism. I could never understand it and I still don't. It's such a shame that it still exists in some places.
    Thank you for sharing your story with us and your lovely poem.
    Loved the trailer for the movie. I hope they show it here. I would love to see it.

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  13. OttosMom, Awww! I'm sorry if it made you sad. As you say, that wasn't my intention. But also, as you said, no child should be treated that way! In fact, I'm very conscious, even today, when I'm in the presence of a 'little mind' (child) that I know will be easily molded, not to say or do anything that will make them feel 'less than'. I remember what that felt like myself...Maya Angelou said: 'Your eyes should light up when a child walks into the room.' That's what I try to let my eyes do whenever I'm around children. :-) ...She also said: "Children's talent to endure stems from their ignorance of alternatives." :-] She is a very wise woman. :-)

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  14. Jo-anne, I'm afraid 'The World' has a sad history with racism!! It's one of the saddest things about us humans...that we have to make someone else feel 'less than' in order to feel good about ourselves. :-( It is changeable though, and I know that one day soon it will be! In the meantime, the only person any of us can change is 'ourselves'!...Thank you for the nice words about my self-indulgent poem. LOL And I KNOW the book is good!! We'll have to wait and see about the movie I guess. :-]

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  15. Yes, I am reading The Help with the accents in my mind! Isn't that funny? Hadn't thought about that... You know, I read To Kill a Mockingbird, Gone with the Wind and Uncle Tom's Cabin in German when I was a teenager. All of them several times. And then, when I moved to the US and my English had become much better, I reread them all in their original language, which somehow made such a huge difference. I'm still not done with The Help - my drawing class is getting in the way a little bit, but I'm hoping for some good reading time this weekend! Much love, Silke

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  16. I am a child of the south too. I grew up in the 80's and 90's and so my experience was a bit different. We had to read Jane Austen books in school. Coincidentally, Pride and Prejudice came on last night. I hope that you enjoy the books as much as you enjoyed the movies.

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  17. Of course you know I'm an Austin fan! I also read the Help, I liked the book. The movie will be out Aug 10th. I'm sorry to hearabout your experiences growing up!! Such a crime. I remember traveling down south as a child and seeing signs No Colored Allowed. I was so shocked and upset. That was in 1973!!

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  18. Silke, I knew I wasn't the only one doing that!! Ha! Ha! Especially a 'southerner'. I think the mental accent is part of the required reading! ^_^ I've never read gone with the wind or Uncle Tom's Cabin either!! But I've seen the movie version of Gone with the wind numerous times, and The King and I too! LOL (There's a rendition of Uncle Tom's Cabin in that movie...*Teehee*) How did I ever become a poet and have such a love for words, but never read these classics?!...On the good side though, I've read the Bible completely through more times than I can count!! ^_^ Oh well, maybe I'll get around to some of these. You never know with me! ^_^

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  19. Shelley, WOW! You had to read Jane Austen in school?!...I loved English in school, but I don't remember required books! O_0 I do remember the class breaking down Beatles' songs, line by line, and translating them into the way we speak in the U.S.! And I remember having to write stories...I must have had to read some books, right?! ^_^ Maybe it'll come back to me eventually...At any rate, I hope I do enjoy the Jane Austen books. :-)

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  20. Susan, Yes, I know 'you're' an Austen fan!! :-] And thanks for the date for the movie release...As to the signs, yes. I'm very familiar with no colored allowed...and WORSE!! I also have vague memories of being told not to look a white person directly in the face, or to go into their front door!...By the time I left Georgia, around the same time you mentioned, I had noticed that things were getting less tense. But of course, racism is not about a place. It's about a people. And unfortunately I found that the North had racism as well. Sometimes harder to deal with racism, because people would smile in your face while they twisted a knife in your back...so to speak. At least in the south they didn't try to hide it in those days...A good thing I learned from my mother was not to treat people according to their color, but according to their behavior. None of us had anything to do with what color we came out of the womb as!! LOL

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  21. I unfortunately led a very sheltered childhood, so I wasn't aware of racism until the 70's. What you are saying about the North is true! People up here do not say it to your face, even now. I wish we could talk more about your experiences, if you wanted to, I am very drawn to word of mouth history. And I care deeply.

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  22. Susan, Well, I think it's great that you were able to be sheltered from it. That should be the experience of every child!! But unfortunately, there always comes a time when the reality of it has to be dealt with...thus LEARNING and GROWTH can take place!...I would love to discuss it with you any time. In fact, one of these days maybe I'll have a question and answer day about it all. In the meantime...you ask. And I'll do my best to answer! :-)

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