Friday, June 08, 2007

Find the pink in grey

Ice-cream Truck!
Originally uploaded by florspace.

I thought I might have better things to say this week or so but one bad experience on Wednesday left me burned for quite a while...It must be told so I will relive it once more before I try to wipe it out of my system.

I was at Wynyard station in the evening with DH on our way home. When the train came, the door in front of us was damaged but I was kinda tired so DH realised it before I did so he rushed to the next entrance on the right so that he could get us a seat. I was left behind, following a lady into the same entrance when this potato-chip (Smith's, blue packaging) munching guy, clad in a grey stripe suit pushed me away, I tried to make my way ahead nonethesless, and guess what?! He ELBOWED me forcefully off the train! I was staring at him in disgust. Shocked and appalled, I didn't do anything except staring in disbelief. He muttered in disgust. I couldn't hear what he had to say amongst the noise and chip-munching. I ran up the upper deck of the train hoping to find DH. I related the incident in shock and disgust and boy was he mad. He wanted to get even but I told him not to.

In all my years in Sydney, about 5 now, the whites and the asians here had a mutual understanding that they hate each other. No offence to whoever's reading, its just how it looks to me. Its even easier for me to just say the whites hate us for invading their space. It doesn't matter how eloquent we may be in English, asians are mostly regarded as dumb country bumpkins. Its sad coz sometimes the opposite can be said of them. Yes we have to share our spaces but instead of being vehement about the asians being hardworking and thus, dare I say it, achieving more than others, shouldn't we all just strive for the good of ourselves and for the good of the earth instead? It starts to look extremely childish to me when we focus too much on the differences of class, race, gender, political leanings, whatever.

As I was pondering on such differences of "us" and "them", another incident happened yesterday that really knocked my socks off. I was at a Western Sydney suburb - Parramatta, kinda like a Western Sydney central with the slightly poorer and more Aussie-esque people. There's this fabulous museum of antiquities called Grandma Pickles to which we make our yearly pilgrimage to. It was gone this time. Disappointed but we had a Westfield Shopping Centre around so in we went. As I passed by this shop, an asian girl was trying to enter but the door alarm sounded. She tried again and it sounded again. Then I overheard a bunch of guys who walked by talking about the ASIAN girl trying to enter the store, causing the alarm, the other guy said, "yeah, maybe she stole something from the outside." The companions started laughing. Suffice to say I was amused by the whole thing and suddenly realised how marginalized the asians have become in this society.

No rights to vote, no rights to enter store, no rights to get on the train....

hell, no rights to even exist.

There's no more room for pink in the grey reality.

Disclaimer: Before you send me angry emails, I just wanna say that I personally don't give a rat's ass about differences. I'd love you even if you're black, white, yellow or pink, as long as you're nice, not naughty. That said, it just makes me sad that people care so much about skin color and to categorise and rate people that way. On the plus, I have met fabulous friends of all kinds, colors or lifestyle choices, united only by one quality - They're nice!

C'mon earth people, root for world peace!


IritC said...

Wow, I'm shocked! I would never have thought that such racism exists in Australia. I've always considered Aussies to be extremely tolerant people. I guess I was wrong. :-(
I was recently in Japan, and am glad to report that I had not encountered any racist remarks or incidents, although I'm so obviously foreign. And I must admit that I was a bit worried about that before going on the trip.
I'm really sorry that you had to go through such humiliating experiences. Although we've never met, I'm sending you a big hug. :-)

IritC said...

I forgot to add that I'm a Jewish woman living in Israel. Fortunately, I haven't had any racist or anti-semitic incidents anywhere in the world, and hope to never have one. I know I would feel just as bad as you do.

Jill said...

I can't believe how rude people can be. I'm sure that kind of thing happens in my city too, but I never really see it. I have friends of almost every race and the subject never comes up. So sorry you had to experience that, Lyn.

Kari said...

That happens in NYC too. Some people are just rude like that no matter where you go. Although it seems like Asians are making more progress in the United States, there is still widespread racism between all the races.

florspace said...

IritC, Thanks for the hug. Apparently, Australians are having their fair share of being discriminated against in other countries as well. They showed that in a TV program the other day. And, its soooo cool to know a Jewish person & in Isreal too! I always wanted to! *asks nicely* Can we be friends and do a culture swap? :+)

Jill, Yeap, I guess it does happen everywhere and everyone has a fair share of those rudeness...makes me wanna stay home and be with you nice people!

Kari, wow, its good to know that coz I'd always thought NYC would be more tolerent towards other races coz you guys have so much in the pot!

Autumn said...

Hey, I am so sorry that you had this expereince, Went to Aus almost ten years ago and did not quite receive that treatment, maybe we were tourists in Melbourne but heard from other friends that colour sentiment exists too. My hubby studied there but he says in Perth, it is ok, but I think thats because hes easygoing. However, he does not have any close Aussie frds, so that speaks huh:)

Autumn said...

Oops forgot, a big HUG HUG from me too:L)

IritC said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
IritC said...

Florspace, of course we can be friends! :-)))

I'll e-mail you about the culture swap. Sounds like great idea.

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