March 30th, 2011


Two grade-eight girls on the bus, talking about what high schools they want to go to. Dressed in eighties reflux: side ponytails, jelly bracelets, identical pink plaid shirts hiked up and tied to reveal their bellies. Both with very loud voices, very severe speech impediments (of the sort probably caused by extreme orthodontia, but I couldn’t see for sure). Crowded bus, but very quiet. School names redacted because I have already forgotten them.

Girl #1: And if I don’t get into School A, I’m totally going to School B.
Girl #2: Yeah?
Girl #1: That’s an art school too.
Girl #2: Yeah?
Girl #1: Because with an art school, you get aaalllll white.
Girl #2: Yeah?
Girl #1: Yeah. I mean, I don’t mean to be racist, but like, black people? What can they do.
Girl #2: (pause, then very firmly) Sing. And dance and rap and stuff.

I doubt the conversation meant much; the girls had already classified most of their classmates as skanks, hos, bitches and sluts, all of whom are ugly. I can’t even imagine where in Toronto their current school might be, that they only know white people so far.

I also feel really bad for *really really* disliking those two girls. They’re just kids, right? I feel like I should have gone and sat with them and explained diversity or something. They probably would’ve stolen my purse if I’d even made eye-contact.

When I was getting off the bus, I walked down the aisle and realized everyone was listening, and that these two guys in their early 20s were adding little comments to the dialogue, making fun of them. I felt better that those dudes agreed with me, and then terrible that the girls were being mocked by exactly the demographic they most wanted to impress.

Life in the city is weird.

One Response to “Yikes!”

  • AMT says:

    about these girls: … um.

    about you: SUCCESS??? HAVE YOU SURVIVED AND MOVED?? inquiring minds!

  • Leave a Reply

So Much Love by Rebecca Rosenblum

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