By now, most of my faithful MyBrownBaby readers know that I make a living from my writing; for almost two decades, most every article/column/essay/book I've pushed out of my MAC has helped feed, clothe, and sustain my family. But I don't just write to get paid; indeed, writing to me is an art--a creative, cathartic outlet that allows me to sketch and paint and color thoughtful prose I hope makes people really think about the human condition, and all the ways we affect it, especially when it comes to the exploration of my culture and my people. As a woman, a wife, and a mom of two girl pies, I'm also pretty passionate about issues that specifically speak to the plight of my gender.
It is this that I had in mind when I answered the call to be a contributor at The Frog's Legs, a fantastic new site founded by writer/blogger Diana Prichard, aimed at helping parents raise strong, independent, free-thinking, brilliant little girls. Of course, I bring my own "colorful" twist to the mix; my first post explores why Strawberry Shortcake's brown friend, Orange Blossom, deserves more props, and why brown girls need brown dolls. Check it:
I promise you, it wasn’t meant to be a “gotcha” kind of question. I simply wanted to know the name of Strawberry Shortcake’s new friend, a cute chocolate girl who didn’t exist back in the 70s, when I was a kid. Cyber-tap me on the shoulder if you think I was out of pocket for asking, but really, I thought it was something a PR rep pushing press packets into my hand would, well, know. Alas, she hadn’t a clue what the black character’s name was. In fact, she seemed confused and confounded by my inquiry.
And that’s what got my goat.
It just didn’t seem to occur to this woman, who presumably wanted me to purchase something from her—in this case, tickets to the new Strawberry Shortcake movie and, perhaps, a few movie tie-in toys—that there might be a rapt audience for Strawberry’s little brown friend. That, in some houses, the illustrious, rosy-cheeked, pale-skinned Strawberry might actually play second fiddle to her black sidekick.
Want to read the rest? Go to www.TheFrogsLegs.com. And if you're so moved, please show your support for fierce, independent little girls by leaving a comment, becoming a The Frog's Legs follower, and making a point of visiting often.