Food for Thought: Growing up Southern

We sit in the car at the barbecue stand,
waiting for Daddy to return with
our supper.
As usual, I’ve ordered a hotdog and a NuGrape.

Then I see something I’ve
never noticed before.
A man approaches a side door,
knocks, speaks through a small
window. The window closes.
He waits.

“Mother, why did that man go to that door?
Why didn’t he go in like Daddy or
blow his horn for curb service?”

Before she can answer, a white
paper bag is shoved out the window
by an impatient hand. The man
pays and leaves quietly.

Something is wrong. Why do I feel
embarrassed, ashamed?

“Because, honey,” comes the reply,
“the man is black.
He’s not allowed inside.”

Eunice Doman Myers

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