"I'm leaving this town, I'm moving all my bags today, I'm leaving this town, no matter what they tell me" - Raphael Saadiq, Uptown (Instant Vintage)
I finally found some joy in these holidays. A weekend with the lovely Miss Mahoney, The Trues, The Lovely Miss Anna Baby and Chewy the Molester and a Christmas party at my parents not-so-humble abode was the perfect thing. My cousins got drunk on moet, my dad sat at the piano and played carols while Nikki Harris, Ray Parker Jr., Obba Babatund, and Evelyn King sang along with the cast of Tens we had in attendance, my sister's friends had a dance-off, I made 7 dollars in tips at the bar...and Christmas came to the ghetto. If only we lived in the ghetto.
You know Santa, right? The big white guy who only works one day a year and yet no one calls him lazy; the big white guy who exploits elfin labor in a sweatshop for no pay while his wife does all the housework, and yet no one calls him a slave master; the big white guy who invades millions of homes on Christmas Eve and yet, no one arrests him for breaking and entering. Yeah, that one.
Though there has been an attempt to make use of Santas of color in malls around the country lately, I think we can all agree this is pretty absurd: if Santa were black, there is little question he'd have been shot dead years ago in the vestibule of some New York City apartment by the NYPD's Street Crimes Unit. After all, how could the cop be sure that toy gun he was bringing to the child inside wasn't real? Better safe than sorry -- and anyway, that bright red suit would make him a logical target, seeing as how red is the color favored by members of the Bloods street gang.
But it wasn't this kind of irony about a black Santa that animated the comment I heard while strolling through the mall that day. No, it was pure racial resentment and nothing else leading the white woman, child in tow, to say to her friend, "don't you think it's silly to have these Black Santas? Everybody's trying to be so P.C. I mean, come on, a Black Santa? Everyone knows Santa is white."
Her friend of course agreed. Everyone knows Santa -- a make believe entity for those who haven't figured it out yet -- is white. The insistence on the racial purity of this entirely fictional being, as if this was a real person, struck me as hilarious, and right up there with the folks who send get well cards to their favorite soap opera characters when they fall ill on the shows. Ronald and Nancy Reagan are reported to have done this once. Fantasy, reality, ah screw it, who cares? I'm starting to realize the awful truth: white people are certifiably insane.
Accept these Happy Holiday wishes from this Negro, Please. See you in the New Year. 2003's gonna be dope, yo.