STAY GOLDEN

One of my earliest memories of racism was when I was 9 years old. It's a memory that's always going to be with me, but for all the right reasons (you'll find out why soon). It was during a time when I started noticing that I wasn't like most of my friends or the people around me even. I was darker. I studied Urdu, instead of Chinese, Malay or Tamil. I didn't eat pork, but people were quick to assume that it was beef I didn't eat. But mostly it was because the colour of my skin was not as light as everyone else's. Other children were noticing it too, and a day wouldn't go by where I wouldn't hear about it.  This particular incident happened in my primary school, during those twilight moments between periods where one teacher left and we waited for the next to enter. It was a classroom of 45 third graders with 3 minutes of unsupervised freedom. Some might call it chaos. Me and Deepika, the only other Indian* girl in my class, happened to be sitting next to each other. We were minding our respective kid-businesses, when this Chinese** boy comes up to our tables... "Eeeeeeeeeeeeee. So smelly! Smelly Indians!" Being the non-confrontational person that I am, I look back down and ignore him. "So dirty, never take shower! Go home!" I shoot up a quick glance and return to ignoring him, feeling annoyed and scared at the same time. I hadn't done anything to him, why was he here bothering me? "So black! You are black shit!!! Chao da!***" I feel a surge of anger rushing up to...
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