Thursday, October 16, 2008

New York - so far so close

Big Apple Fashions was a huge success. Its fitting irony that my
father sold dresses to black women. That they adored him and he
secretly them. Like all Indians, my father was a bit of a racist. In
that Archie Bunker, loving way. New York egged on his prejudices.
The city is surprisingly tolerant to expressing verbal bigotry,
probably explaining why we all get along so well. Because we express
just how we feel about jews, the chinese, gays, blacks. If you over
hear any real new york crowd of kids on a school yard, faggot and
don't jew me out are a accepted part of endearing yourself to someone.
Political correctness was invented by upper west side liberals who
went to columbia and NYU. The rest of us used language to express our
endless frustrations.

My father was also an anti-semite. Jew this and jew that. He got a
c+ in graduate school in a course taught by a jew. It was his only
non A grade, and he became convinced it was because of the jew. In
the the class there were also my father's other indian friends.
According to him they got c+'s as well. I heard that story millions
of times. I got strange chills reading Mein Kahph years later with
Hitler expressing similar dismay over a C he recieved by a jew that
turned him off painting. Jews should be careful with grades they
give. man.

But my father loved Israeli jews, and the orthodox. He called them
real jews. Most of his interaction was at the falafel place on Jewel
aveneue, a hassidic enclave. Back then, there were not many options
for vegetarians when they wanted to eat out. My parents would eat
pizza or go for falafel. overtime these falafel joints became hindu
haunts. It was filled with yamacas, those hairy curls, turbans,
salwar kammezes, it was astounding how well we got along. I still
remember the warmth and friendliness of many of those people. They
would come sit next to my father and talk of india. Many had gone
there after their military service. India held a special place in
their heart for them.

No comments: