I came to this country more than a decade ago. It’s become my second home and I hold it in very high regard. With this comes lots of constructive critique….just because I love the U.S. doesn’t mean I don’t look at it with honest eyes. It’s the home of our son. He will be a descendant of Trinidad but firstly, he will be American. I hope to make America better and better not by some nationalist ideology but by unpacking the shit that makes me the most uncomfortable and striving to be more open, more loving, kinder and more forgiving with everyone around me. So today, I say Happy Birthday to the country that has given me so much and taught me an immense amount about being a real, proper grown-up human.
Today, we got in a little beach before breakfast then walked to Coney Island.
It was utter madness in preparation for the hot dog eating contest. There is something so utterly awful but fascinating about people stuffing their faces as a competitive sport. As we were discussing this, Adam admitted that he really wanted to stick around to see it so we joined a couple hundred people sticky with sunscreen and tipsy with beer to watch Joey Chestnut defend his title. It was the most American thing I have ever done. While we waited, Adam took the baby to the arcade for the first time. It was every bit as overly stimulating and exciting as you would imagine.
Here is Adam trying to stop him from sucking on one of the machines. Do you see the look of impending addiction in his eyes?
We then cleaned up, put on real clothes like civilized humans and went to Prospect Park to meet up with some friends and family.
Adam and I spend lots of time critiquing the racial tensions in the U.S. and we worry a little bit about raising a mixed-race child in a country that seems so heavily divided by color. It was nice to show our son the simple pleasures of being an American in the form of grilled hot dogs, parks, fireworks and good friends.
Happy July 4th.