In January, I shared a post including some words from my students. Today, I am sharing the next edition of their wisdom. As before, I am adding very little commentary to allow the weight of their words to be felt.
“You live in that big white house, don’t you, Miss?”
“I live in a white house, yes.”
“Your husband got a good job, don’t he? I know he does, if you live in a house like that.”
When showing a picture of my family:
“Look, her husband has a company shirt on, and it ain’t no uniform shirt. It’s one of those polo shirts. You know he got a good job.”
Groceries and Gear
“His family is rich. I go to their house, and they always have Gatorade for everybody.”
“You had to know he was rich. All of his stuff is real: his backpack, his shoes, his jeans, his belt. No knock-offs for him.”
“Mrs. C., I walked by your house last night. You was having a party, wasn’t you? There were a bunch of trucks around.”
“We hosted a meeting for some people from church last night.”
“You learn a lot about people when you walk around at night. Like, all the houses on the other side of the street -where the older run-down houses are- had TVs on, but there was only one TV on over on your side of the street.”
“Rich people don’t watch TV, they read and play games.”
These words, especially the ones about TV and Gatorade left me pondering what it means to be rich in the community where I live. Is it so little as being able to serve my guests a name-brand beverage and spending time reading and playing games instead of watching a screen? If so, do I handle the privilege of being comfortable financially with hospitality and quality time with family and friends? Sometimes, but not as often as I would like.