M.E.S.S.—Sticks and stones may break my bones, but wor—HEY! Watch your language!! (part 2)

My first day of kindergarten sticks out in my mind like it was only 25 years ago…

I’d never seen so many people in one room before. Wait, I misspoke: I’d never seen so many people—who weren’t Tamil—in one room before. Before then, I’d only meaningfully interacted with relatives: we’re all Sri Lankan Tamil Canadians (though at that point we hadn’t yet received Canadian citizenship, so we were technically Sri Lankan Tamil refugees then…). Well, there was also my godfather (whom I called Uncle presumably because he was mein patenonkel—German for my godfather)—so I also knew one white dude. Until I met my kindergarten teacher, he was the only white person I remembered interacting with, so seeing my kindergarten teacher immediately piqued my curiosity. Moving forward, I’ll call her Angel Cloutmuther—Ms. Cloutmuther for my kindergarten tenure, respect given where respect’s due…

That’s obviously not my kindergarten teacher’s real name. I’m altering names to protect identities and renaming important people to fit archetypes I’ll discuss in future articles… She was one of the highest impact women in my life, so she’ll come up often enough that I need to nail this down now… Ironically, her real name suits her so well and sounds so surreal that I regret having to change it…

The new faces in the room fascinated me. I didn’t realize so many different types of people existed. As everyone crowded in around Ms. Cloutmuther, I noticed various ethnicities crop up among the families. There were a few other Tamil kids, but more interesting were the other ethnicities I’d never seen before. There were a few Chinese kids, a few Ethiopian kids, a few Somali kids, a few Filipino kids, one lady with an olive complexion welcoming us into the classroom (I’d later learn that she was our assistant teacher), a few Eastern European kids, etc. Turns out the entire world wasn’t brown and white… The racial/ethnic/cultural demographics at my school would remain relatively constant (and diverse) until I switched schools six to seven years from then, when I switched out of our immigrant-centric neighbourhood to one that was more… normal.

For those who don’t know me, my barometer for “normal” sucks, but at that point in time I didn’t know that—few people knew that about me. Stranger yet, I was pretty much the polar opposite of what I’m like now, so I actually found people incredibly interesting. I actively poked my nose into conversations, indiscriminately started chatting with people, and I was even hug-friendly… That combined with my shitty eyesight and persistent curiosity resulted in a kid who excelled at violating personal space boundaries…

Please join me tomorrow for part 3 of this series where I receive my first time-out (of too many to count), and the aftermath that’ll help launch a parallel article series: Roysplainin’.

Thank you for your time,
Roybert S. Henanigans


Note 1: I’m reasonably convinced this happened on the first day of school, though it might’ve deviated by a day or two. This definitely happened within the first school week.

Note 2: You can find part 1 here. <https://wordpress.com/post/justcallmeroybert.wordpress.com/72 >
 
Note 3: Was this article too thicccc, not thic enough, or just thicc enough?

Note 4: 12/08/21-Upon receiving feedback, I deleted all emoticons used in this article.

3 thoughts on “M.E.S.S.—Sticks and stones may break my bones, but wor—HEY! Watch your language!! (part 2)

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