Get up and make your bed; go to the bathroom and wash your face; soak your little cloths right after you take them off; wake up your brothers for school; make pancakes for breakfast; always eat your food in such a way that it won’t turn someone else’s stomach; on Sundays try to walk like a lady and not like the slut you are so bent on becoming; you mustn’t speak to wharf-rat boys, not even to give directions; don’t eat fruits on the street—flies will follow you; but I don’t talk to boys and never eat fruits on the street; this is how to clean the bathrooms accurately; this is how to vacuum the living room; this is how to hang a dress in a closet; this is how you iron your father’s khaki shirt so that it doesn’t have a crease; this is how you iron your father’s khaki pants so that they don’t have a crease; this is how you grow figs; make sure you don’t put a lot of water or otherwise they will be too soft; this is how you sweep a corner; this is how you sweep a whole house; this is how you sweep a yard; this is how you smile to someone you don’t like too much; this is how you smile to someone you don’t like at all; this is how you smile to someone you like completely; this is how you set a table for tea; this is how you set a table for dinner; this is how you set a table for dinner with an important guest; this is how you set a table for lunch; this is how you set a table for breakfast; be sure to wash every day, even if it is with your own spit; don’t pick people’s flowers—you might catch something; this is how to make a bread pudding; this is how to chicken with rice; this is how to make vegetable soup; this is how to make a good salad; this is how to make potatoes in an oven; this is how to catch a fish; this is how to serve the meat to specific people; this is how to betray a man; this is how a man betrays you; this is how to love a man, and if this doesn’t work there are other ways, and if they don’t work don’t feel too bad about giving up; this is how to make ends meet; always speak up for what’s right ; but what if I won’t be heard?; you mean to say that after all you are terrified and will never be able to speak up.
It felt really easy for me to write this because I know what I am expected to do. But knowing all the things I have to do just made me feel a little disadvantaged. That if I don’t do them, I won’t be complete. Ms. P should do this writing assignment again because it lets people think about the background they came from and what they are expected to do.
Tags: Fremont High School Jamaica Kincaid Literary Selfie
“Disadvantage” by Taleb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.