Sunday, September 11, 2005

One more thing to throw into the well...

Earlier this evening I went to the store to find the perfect top (I had it pictured in my head but hadn't seen it in the "real world" yet) for a photo shoot this upcoming Monday. I FOUND IT just as the mall was closing. I got in line and there was a couple in front of me with a child. He was about 6 years old and busy putting a bunch of metal bracelets on his arms to turn himself into some sort of invincible creature. I chuckled at him when I realized what he was doing and all three looked at me. The couple smiled, then the mother busied herself with picking through the jewelry (since it was taking so long for us to get to the register). She kept picking up items and asking (of no one in particular) "isn't this the cutest little thing?" Nobody ever answered her. Finally she tapped her little boy on the head and said "Isn't this the cutest little thing? I wonder how much he costs." The boy promptly answered "free". I smiled. The scene was adorable. Like a modern-day Norman Rockwell painting. She said "Great, I should ask the people in the store who would like a cute little boy for free." He answered "Okay." Then looked at me quickly and added "but not black people." I gasped. That was the last thing I was expecting to come out of his mouth. I felt like I had been punched in the stomach. His mother looked at me and I'm sure the look on my face made ithave been apparent that I heard him. She leaned down and asked him what he said and he repeated it. She then made a big production of making him sit on the floor across the room, and asking the guy "where did he learn that?!" At first dude denied hearing him, then when pressed he said "I don't know." She was clearly embarrassed, and the guy was trying to just brush it off. I thought about speaking to the little boy--nothing nasty, he was just a child acting out sentiments he had heard somewhere. But I've had a rough few days with the family drama and all, and I didn't much feel like teaching lessons at that particular moment. So I stayed in line, paid for my item, and threw that experience into the "well". If I am cast in a role that requires me to draw upon it, I know it's there.

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