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Wednesday, September 7, 2005

Tense Moment on KUOW This Morning

Posted by on September 7 at 10:40 AM

There was a hilarious moment on KUOW this morning. The host, Marcie Sillman, was doing a typically cloying KUOW show about “Your Memories of the First Day of School”asking listeners to call in with memories of autumn leaves and new teachers and scary bus rides. Well, after about three calls of exactly that, she stumbled into a call from a white woman who remembered her first day of third grade when her school in Maryland had just been desegregated. You could feel Marcieand every uptight, P.C. cell in her bodytighten, as the woman proceededbreezily and unselfconsciously to tell a story (“and then there were all these black children in the school”) about getting ambushed in the bathroom by three black girls and getting punched in the nose. “I just stood there and cried and and the girls just laughed and laughed at me. And that was my first day at school.”

Marcie squirmed as the story came with no sweet tale of reconciliation. “I never made friends with her,” the woman said, and then explained that her parents were raised as racistsand told her that you just have to hide your racism.

Sillman stumbled out of the call saying all your first day of school memories don’t have to be tied to complex social issues and people could just call in with stuff like: “maybe you just remember what your new sweater was like…”