My son’s best friend at daycare is a boy named Joshua whose family is from Mexico. “Joshie” as he is better known, is two months younger than Jackson and has been in his class since they were infants. We were invited to Joshie’s 3rd birthday party this past weekend and Jackson literally could not wait for the party to start.
I myself was also a little excited about the party. Truth be told I had never been to a Mexican fiesta before and was interested to see what was in store. I can’t even begin to tell you my disappointment when we arrived and I saw a grill with burgers and hot dogs on it. I thought for sure we’d be feasting on homemade tamales and tacos.
My disappointment was quickly cured though when I looked in the corner and saw the biggest piñata I have ever seen in my life! A life size clown sat smiling at me and I knew a good time was about to be had. As I listened to Selena singing in the background I said to Joshie’s grandmother that I had never seen such a large piñata. To which she replied, “oh that’s nothing, you should see the ones we have in Mexico.” When is that party and how do we get an invite??
When piñata time finally arrived the kids all lined up for their turn to take a whack, birthday boy first of course, and Jackson was right behind him. I watched on with pride as Jackson grabbed the stick and went for his first hit. That pride was quickly replaced with utter embarrassment as my baby gently tapped the clown over and over with the force of a feather landing to the Earth. Thank God his father was not there to witness this!
After Jackson’s turn the Latino kids went on one after another, hitting this poor clown like he had just robbed their mother. I could not have been more impressed with the intensity they put into every swing. I silently thought to myself, “no wonder Latino’s are so much better at baseball, look at the practice they are getting at such a young age.”
By the time the stick was put back in Jackson's hands that poor clown was about to collapse. But I can promise you, that collapse wasn’t happening on Jackson’s turn. Again, he gently tapped his new friend with no effort whatsoever. I decided then and there that I would be starting a piñata whacking class immediately. I couldn’t possibly take him to another party and risk this embarrassment happening again. From the looks of the other white boy taking swings, I have a feeling I’d have quite a few students enrolled.
Three more kids after Jackson and the clown was history. Candy fell out of the sky like it was Christmas and all the kids scattered. And can I just tell you which kid scored the most? That’s right, my boy! Pride returned as I stuffed his lollipops, Reese’s and Snickers into my pockets. Then suddenly, that pride turned into guilt, as in my mind the thought occurred, “isn’t it just like a white man to let the minorities do all the work while he reaps all the benefits?” Damn stereotypes!