Anu is from a country where co-existed, fair, dark, wheatish, dusky and more multi -skinned humans. Where all lived united. But the adverse truth is, that the fair girl always got the better guy. The fair skinned always got through the ramp auditions and the one with the fairer tone got to represent any team or group. A country where even shitty skincare would sell like hot cakes, If only it read “fairness”.Where moms would try every other ancient recipes to cloak her baby from the time in her womb.
She is 21 now.
Laying on the couch in her living room, jumping channels on the television .She began, “that time, when I was in first grade ,when aunt Daisy had come home for winter vacation from Texas.do you remember Dad?”. Dad asked, “when?”, reading his newspaper .
She continued, “And I used to pester you, to buy me a Barbie. And you felt it was a stupid toy for me to play with. And you had always denied. And back then, that was all I wanted. ”
“And when Daisy aunt had visited us .She had asked me, So “tiny one, how many Barbie’s do you have ? Your cousin Christie is so obsessed with this Barbie fashion. She has a dozen”And I looked up for you to see my puppy face. And you said that you found the toy stupid , And Aunt Daisy convinced you, saying girls of my age love Barbies.And that you should buy me one.”
“The following week ,Sunday morning, I woke up to see a pink box on the table ,with a band of sunshine lighting up the plastic box from behind ,ornamented with lace beneath and inside stood some sexy legs. I held the box to see inside a dark skinned Barbie with curly black hair. It wore a purple and white floral dress. I hugged the box tight and ran to see you.. I smiled so hard ,held the Barbie up, to your face and said thanks.”
Her dad said,”Nice, that you remember so much”
“I ran to show it to everyone at home. And then I saw Christie, holding a huge glossy pink box which said Princess in bold, shiny font. It held a fair, fancy Barbie dressed in a fabulous pink dress which had glitters .It had thick blond hair upto the knee with pretty pink earrings and similar bracelet and a grand crystal tiara.Garnished with a hot pair or stilettos. I stopped, looked at the box in her hand and slowly showed her my box and said “dad got me this!”She didn’t stop to take a look, after all , none would give mine a second look if you owned that caked face fab-Barbie. She said,
“Your dad got me this too. Ain’t this pretty. I love John uncle.
” My eyes drooped , my face as well. I tried hard not to react.With a million emotions wanting to make its way out of my eyelids,I walked. I walked fast. I stepped onto each step with my barbie box held so tight on one hand,to my room and wept so hard.”
Anu said, ”You know, dad I actually thought a lot deeper ,If you got that for Christie because she was from a Continent more progressive ,or If you thought she deserved more. Or was It because, She was your sister’s daughter. But I would bog down to this one reason ,did Christie get the fair Barbie because she was fair and I got the darker one because of my skin tone.May be black barbies were actually hotter. But back then, at that moment,sorry my brain refused to think that way. All, that stayed in my mind from this incident through all these years has been:
Why did I get the black Barbie?.
Dad It’s not that I didn’t know you loved me more. But I felt so bad to be, differentiated. It really hurt.”
Anu just wanted him to know how she felt. It was not her intention to hurt him. She just wanted him to know. And since then she has never differentiated people for the way they looked.She couldn’t. she wouldn’t.
Anu grabbed the newspaper in his hand,that he had stopped reading a while ago directing him to page 8 and pointed out to an article titled, “My black Barbie”. She left the television running and walked to her room. Her dad read the article that concluded, “This is the best lesson my Dad had taught me ,lesson on what “biases” meant.”