This update is going to begin with a rant, so if you don’t want to read it; skip down to the triple-asterisks I’ll insert after I’m done venting; and you can pick up the news of the day from there!
I really, seriously have a problem with racism. No, I haven’t been a victim of it, haven’t personally really had any experience with it before today, and we don’t have a problem with it in our little home town; but I do know right and wrong – and what happened to us today at our first restaurant pick for dinner had me losing my cool and making a big scene. I doubt my public rant made a difference for anyone except me and the restaurant that got our business instead; but I still think that it was the right thing to do – even if everyone in that restaurant thought I was nuts.
What happened? Nothing that doesn’t likely happen hundreds or thousands of times a day to black people in this country. We – Michael, Tim, Rowen, me, and the rest of our dinner group for the evening walked into a national chain restaurant that will not be named here or specified by me anywhere else; there were several groups waiting for tables ahead of us; and within five minutes, we were being offered tables despite the fact that there was another group of similar size to ours in line ahead of us – a group of black teens and young adults. I pointed this out to the hostess, was offered an excuse that was an obvious lie, and when she refused to give those tables to the other group; I got started on my rant. To be fair to them, my friends have never seen me lose it over anything before, but the one attempt at getting me to shut up ended with the single glare I directed at Jenny while I continued my mini tirade.
There is not going to be an apology for that anywhere in this rant because I am so not sorry – especially when I could see that the hostess, the rest of the staff, and most of the customers sitting in the ‘white’ section of the restaurant all thought I was some brain-washed, liberal nutjob. I sure hope that no Magi reading this anytime in the future believes that about me too, but my anger today went beyond the obvious discrimination. My empathy input at that restaurant kicked into overdrive; so I didn’t need to read between the lines for what was being said to me – I knew exactly what all of the people were feeling. It doesn’t matter to me in the slightest what justifications people use to accept discrimination on any level as the norm – it’s just flat-out wrong! There were some customers there that were true racists, but most just went along with the status-quo and had different reasons for doing that instead of standing up for what’s right too. I wish that wasn’t true, since this kind of behavior would end very quickly if everyone would just refuse to spend their money at places like that – which is exactly what I insisted that we do once I was finished my rant.
As far as I know, nobody else left the restaurant after us because of my tirade – including everyone still waiting for tables. I wish they would have, but I didn’t lose it in there for anyone in particular. I think that I’m right, and if I have my way; someday I’ll convince everyone that it’s past-time for us to grow up as a species and stop acting like playground toddlers fighting over who gets to go first or have all the toys.
Finally, I know that this little incident is nothing at all compared to the evil that happens all over the world to minorities. It’s not as if we saw someone get beat up or killed just for being black, but for the record; that wouldn’t happen around me anyway. I could and would stop something like that – no matter what it took. That thought does bring up a point about what did happen to us. I could’ve ‘made’ that hostess give those tables to that other group. Yes, that would have given me away to all of the Magi in our group, and I still would have done something in a life and death situation, but forcing my will on others is only something that a Dark Magi would do – or other bad, ‘normal’ people for that matter. We have free will for a reason; and Magi of the Light do not mess with that God-given gift.
I’ll also add that I’m not still angry about that incident. We’ve moved on, and the rest of our day has been amazing. This written rant is for posterity in the archives. In the grand scheme of our collective Magi history, this was an inconsequential moment – unless you remember that it is a moment that I will remember forever – and it has had an impact on my resolve to lead the next Ascension of the Light so that we can rid the world of these idiocies!
Watch out, bad guys of the world – I’m just getting started!
Cape Canaveral and the Kennedy Space Center is a standard educational stop for a lot of school trips; so it’s no surprise that it was one of the teachers’ picks for us. Michael and I managed to wake up early-enough for both a long-form Tai Chi workout and a ten-minute swim before we needed to hurry back to our rooms and get ready for the day. Rowen and Tim helped us out by picking up breakfast to go for all of us; we met them at the buses; and had that meal while we hit the road and headed east toward the Atlantic coast. We left our hotel early so that we could be at the Kennedy Space Center when it opened. Once there, Michael, Tim, Rowen, and I were on our own – and with Rowen, Lucas, Jenny, and some other teens – for the rest of the morning so that we could go on some of the more intense attractions together.
We didn’t do any of the VIP activities like the lunch with the astronauts, but we did have fun with the shuttle launch experience; we went to the moon; and had a literal blast while playing until lunchtime. We met up with Brent, Sharon, and the rest of our group after lunch; we checked out as many of the exhibits as we could get to before needing to hop on our buses again; and then we had a short stop at a nearby beach so that we could all at least stick our toes in an ocean – a first for most of us. That wasn’t true for me, but I still had fun sharing that half-hour with my friends before we headed back to Orlando again.
I’ve already ranted on the first restaurant problem, so let’s move on to restaurant choice number two. We did a bit of walking for that, since my friends thought that I needed some time to cool down while they teased me about being such a radical maniac. I liked the supportive hugs and kisses from Michael a lot more, but the teasing was fun too; and the seafood restaurant and our server for the meal got to have the benefit of our business – and the big tip I left after we finished enjoying our meal there. For the record, the food was good and the service a bit above average, so it was really just the comparison that had me ordering a more-expensive dinner and putting up the tip for our group.
Since we hadn’t been playing until nine or ten o’clock, we had time after dinner to hang out around the hotel; go for a swim; and then hang out in our room until curfew. Michael, Tim, Rowen, and I were the ‘we’ for the last part of that, and since we have a big day at Universal Studios booked for tomorrow; the boys even went back to their room when Sharon checked in with us at eleven o’clock. This time, I went with Michael for our goodnight hugs and kisses while Tim stayed with Rowen; and then he left when I got back to our room. that was a change, since Michael had made it back to his room before Rowen returned to ours the past three nights, but we had fun with that – even if Tim thinks that he and Rowen didn’t get to have enough alone time fun before I kicked him out.
Rowen’s taking her turn in the bathroom now, so I’ve been doing my bedtime computing and getting it out of the way. I haven’t done a home update in a couple of days; so let’s do that before I wrap this up and get ready for my turn in the shower.
They’ve had pretty good weather at home, and while most of the teens and tweens are away; the remaining students in Grades Seven through Twelve have been enjoying a play week. With temperatures in the low to mid-fifties the past three days; outdoor play time has been an option. There has also been a school trip to Crystal Springs for a day at SportsFusion, and while it’s supposed to get colder for a couple of days; I’ve heard that there will be movies to watch and extra gym time instead of regular classes. Ethan and Ehlana had fun with their sleepovers on Saturday night; had a play afternoon on Sunday with Mom, Dad, and a bunch of aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends; and they’ve split their first two days of the school week between their morning classes and afternoon play time in the lab and archive. They’ve played at the park playground too, and part of the Sunday fun was Super Bowl party-related; but they played with the kids and ignored the football – just as I did while we were at Disney! ;^)
I should have mentioned that Michael’s parents had a tough day on Sunday because of their Super Bowl buffet and party at the Inn, but while they did have to work hard; only having the one buffet sitting instead of two actually made it easier for them than it would have been with two buffets while all of their teen staff was away. They’re also working on their normal days off, but have had two quiet days for that – and they haven’t needed to work all day – just the dinner-to-close shift that is normally covered by teens and the two full-timers that run the Inn when they’re off.
I can hear – and sense – that Rowen is nearly done, but there is one more bit of news that I want to mention tonight because it’ll come in handy for me tomorrow night. Co-ed sleepovers are happening with some of the seniors in our group! If you’re shocked; then you were obviously never a teen; since it happens on school trips – and likely happens a lot. Michael and I – and Rowen and Tim – have been good so far this week, but tomorrow is a rather special occasion for one of us; and I am planning on keeping Michael with me tomorrow night – or going to stay in his room. I’m sure that Rowen and Tim will survive the scandal if we get caught, though there isn’t really an ‘if’ about that; since Mom will be able to sense that I’m with Michael – even from this far away from her.
Mentioning the sleepovers that have been going on so far this week isn’t to set things up for us; but only to point out that we won’t be the only couples doing that while we’re here. I won’t include any names for that, but if you’re reading this in the future and you were one of those lucky teens – congratulations! ;^)
That bit of silliness seems like as good a place as any to end this report, and it’s time for me to hop in the shower now anyway; so, until next time...
...May the Magi Force be with you!