Translating Discrimination

I made a trip to McDonald’s to satisfy my hunger after the snickers I had earlier didn’t live up to its so-called job. I go inside. A woman is there with three small boys. Each of the boys were smiling and being well-behaved. That is a good mother. My mother claims me and my brothers and sisters were saints when we were out in public. I don’t know how much truth there is to that statement but judging by how well I behave in public now, I am sure she was telling the truth. Then again, it could have been a scheme she concocted to keep us in line and put some fear in our tiny heads about what could happen if you acted up and raised hell among onlookers and very judgmental people.

I order my food from a woman who is a bit shaken. Not sure if was her first day or what. The story isn’t about her but I just wanted to give her credit because she got my name right when I was asked what my name was. I pay and step back. I am waiting for them to prepare my order. A woman walks inside. I saw her earlier when she was leaving and I was entering. I don’t know this lady but since society has trained us to be judgmental and stereotypical. She reminded me of an overbearing soccer mom who pushes her kids to breaking points in sports they don’t want to play. She makes them train hard, study, and limits their leisure time. She was in some ugly outfit that was black and sparkly. It has something written across the chest and since I don’t recall what it said, I will pretend the word printed across the shirt in grey sparkles was, “tramp“. Not because she is a tramp but because she is being ironic and wants to fit in with the hip crowd of 20-somethingers. Sorry, mom. You’re not hip and you’re not going to hang with your 20 year-old daughter’s friends. She doesn’t like you. Your daughter finds you embarrassing. I am sure you felt the same way about your uncool parents.

So the soccer mom comes back in the store and walks to the counter. She stands there and watches as they stay busy tending to the other customers. The workers behind the counter don’t see her and don’t look to see if maybe someone could be there. They are all too busy to help her or maybe they already know what kind of lady she is. After about 20 seconds a man spots her. From how he is dressed and how the other employees are dressed, I would have to guess that he is the manager on duty. He greets her and asks,

“Can I help you?”

She explains that her daughter lost her toy and wants to know if someone turned it in. She points to the spot where her daughter set the beloved toy down. The manager looks confused. He misunderstood her and pulls a toy out from the bin below the counter. The woman is upset that he wasn’t listening to her. She exclaims,

“No. not one of your toys. It is a little squishy pumpkin. She brought it from home.”

She makes the motion of squishing the toy in her palms. The way she spoke to him after he misunderstood her was enough to irk me. He isn’t a three-year old. Baby talk isn’t an English/Spanish translation. You’re just coming across as stupid and you’re looking pretty repulsive to me. After the baby talk, she talks slower to the man. The man shrugs his shoulders and tells her that he didn’t see it. She turns away and storms off but says loudly in hopes that the man behind the counter hears her,

“He has no clue what I am saying. Those people don’t know English at all. I don’t even know why I bothered.”

The woman is clearly upset about it. Not about the toy being lost but because the man behind the counter was Hispanic. She walks away in a huff. She and her daughter take the mission upon themselves and look around the store only to come up empty-handed. The daughter cries and whines while the mother yanks her out of the Golden Arch. She yells at her and blames her daughter for losing the prized, squishy pumpkin.

“Don’t cry about it! It’s your fault for bringing the toy in. That’s why you can’t have nice things.”

I wish I had a medal on me right then and there. I would have given it the mother and named her mother of the year. Congratulations for putting blame on your daughter. Plus, great lesson to teach your daughter to degrade and figuratively spit in the faces of people who don’t speak English very well. I hope she grows up hating you and then maybe you can loan her your tramp shirt because if you keep on this path of daughter destruction, she is going to revolt. The next time you see your daughter won’t be at a family Christmas dinner but on the cover of the next Girl’s Gone Wild DVD. I hope you’re proud. Thanks for keeping discrimination alive and handing it down to the future generations. The world needs more discriminating people like you.



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I like food. I like the smell of cinnamon.

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