Destitution

"So I was down in Mount Lawley, right? Having my haircut, as I do every two months, and this girls comes up to me, right? She’s not bad looking, got a really cute voice…" The class cracks up. Mr Allanson- great stories. He’s, like, 32.
"Sir, aren’t you married?" Paul Raymondo. Ass-raper.
"Paul," said Mr Allanson, frowning at him. "Don’t ruin it for me. So anyway…"

He was warning us of the effects of a high deathrate and low birthrate. The girl in the shop was 23, and had a seven-year-old son and a two-year-old daughter. That’s a pretty precarious circumstance.

***

"It’s my city mate!"
Here we go. Another Aborigine that’s been offended. I looked around for the source of the voice, and my eyes passed over the man several times before I recognised he was the speaker. He certainly looked Aboriginal, but his voice was European. Then again, I’m dismal at recognising accents and almost as bad at realising people aren’t from the country. I just never notice. People are people, humans are humans, we’re all one species with mildly different characteristics. And yet, it is these differences that drive us so thoroughly apart. The man stood and held his arms open, to say, "Come on, bring it!"
‘Alot of them seem to be saying that,’ I noted grimly. He stood up, off the stairs on which he was sitting (and partially blocking) and began to walk after the man who had offended him. The lights turned green, and cars started moving. Nonplussed, he stepped out onto the road and slowed down his walk, glaring at the cars as he passed.
"I hope he gets hit," I heard someone say behind me.

I saw him, once everyone had crossed the road, heading for the lift and yelling. I don’t know why, but I laughed. I laughed at this injustice, and everything that had prevented that man from being treated like an Australian, even though the chances were, his heritage was far more deep rooted than the Europeans’.

Will this continue forever? Why didn’t I nod at him, sympathetically, or even say "Don’t mind him"? What stopped me from talking to him? I confess. I was scared he would reject me. Yell at me, swear at me, maybe even push me. So I let him walk across the road and hoped he wouldn’t get hit.

They’re all human to me.

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