Archive for May 18, 2006

Bed-Stuy Bi-Harmony*

Since I’ve been hanging around more locally and working on a very popular consumer strip of Bed-Stuy, I’ve been taking note of the culture and community. The local coffee shop next door to my job is a nice local spot where nearly everyone comes through at least once a day. It’s very family-friendly so a lot of hip parents bringing in their equally hip toddlers.

And in that vein, I noticed something even more “impressive.” Of course, this is Bed-Stuy so whenever I see white people, I definitely notice. In fact, for full disclosure and because I’m sure she’ll bring it up, the same day ms. jackass joined the area I noticed (I kid you not!) FOUR HIPSTERS getting off the subway at UTICA at ELEVEN O’CLOCK AT NIGHT. Even the neighborhood panhandler widened his eyes and stayed silent as they jollied past him. Now I know Ms. Jackass would grow a third boob before associating with Williamsburg vermin, but still, quite the coincidence.

Anyways, what I notice about most of the white people around here is that nearly all are young 20- or 30-something women and ALL of them (the ones I’ve seen) have biracial babies. And not no half-white, half-Asian or half-Czechoslovakian baby. No, each and every baby is COLORED.

Each time I see this, two things come to mind: one, there’s clearly a higher concentration of biracial couples here than in some other parts of the city; but, two, I can’t help but think that Bed-Stuy has become some sort of drop-off/haven for black men to bring their white baby mommas. And I don’t mean that in some “ghetto”-fied way. Most of these women are very hip, wearing well-over hundred dollar jeans, etc. But I have yet to see the fathers with these babies, it’s nearly always the mothers. Thus, the haven/drop-off image.

So it looks like Bed-Stuy has also earned yet another fab aspect – white women, colored babies, and the black men who love ’em (“but uhh, stay your white ass within a 5-block radius, bitch.”). On a more serious note, I wonder how many of ’em were coupled up in other parts of the city and felt less comfortable there. Not even the Upper East or West Sides – I mean, that’s just obvious what reception they’d get – but places more like the West Village or Park Slope where folks like to pat themselves on the back. Then when they’re tolerance is truly called upon, turns out they’re not as open as they thought. I can picture the looks or the overly-gushing over a white woman’s cute lil multicultural baby (touching their hair and all that). I can also easily picture a white mother of a black baby feeling a helluva lot more comfortable in a black neigborhood than a white one.

It’s like that old saying: “A white woman can have a black child, but a black woman can’t have a white child.”…think about it.

*I realize that said title above might evoke bisexuality rather than what I’m about to discuss but I couldn’t think of anything better. But please, feel free to suggest better terms for this racial rainbow town.


May 18, 2006 at 4:08 pm 5 comments

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