Friday 24 September 2010

My indigidar must be stuffed

It's been a long time since I have watched the 7.30 Report, but I tuned in last night for a few minutes for no good reason. I watched one story and that was it - I must have entered half way through.

The story was about a bunch of medical students at Sydney Uni. We saw them living in their colleges, eating with friends, meeting some big wigs, examining pelvic bones and so on. I listened in, thinking, "Yeah, this is nice - but so what?"

Then we found that they are all on scholarships, which is good - I like scholarships. They were being paid for a private philanthropist - I like that too. They were doing well - can't complain about that.

A few then went on to talk about how they were going to work in indigenous communities once they graduate. Yep, that's nice - health in some places in pretty rooted, and the more doctors, the better.

It then followed one of them home to a country town - Taree maybe? - and showed the student eating with their family. Looked like a normal, middle class family to me.

Then it struck home - all these medical students were Aboriginal. I had to be told that, because nothing up until that point had suggested to me that they were anything but white, middle class kids.

To cap it off, I bumped into Stan Grant in town today. Well, not really bumped. He stood beside me as we waited for a light to turn green. I am the albino of our family - everyone else tans like mahogany, whilst I burn after half an hour in the sun. If you put Dad in the sun for two days, then stood him next to Stan and told a complete stranger that one of them was part Aboriginal, I reckon most people would point at Dad. I'm not saying Stan is pale - but I doubt a tourist would pick him as a blackfella.

Where am I going with this? Dunno. All I can say is that my indigidar (like gaydar) is stuffed. Down here in the city, it's bloody hard to pick out who is a blackfella and who is a whitefella - not that I ever really gave a shit. You're either good at what you do, or useless, and that's about all that counts.

I guess this is why people have to "feel" like they are Aboriginal these days - because not many look classically Aboriginal anymore. The melting pot has seen to that.

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