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What a Privilege at the SFMoma

I love a good trip to a museum. Especially on a rainy day. So, you can imagine my delight taking Kalegaroo and NPRdvark to the SFMoma. But I’ll let Vark and K tell you all about it….


N: The SFMoma is one of the greatest attractions in San Francisco. Modern in its architecture as well as its contents, it’s the perfect thing to do on a day where the weather is less than pleasant. And that’s exactly what we did.

It was pouring rain, big fat cold drops. It was raining cats and dogs (even if I have always felt that phrase was a little bit racist) but we had planned a nice day and we were determined to have it. So, in our squishy target boots and all we walked the somewhat labyrinth-like halls of the SFMoma.

We started at the very top, which is how I think it’s best to experience the Moma. On the top floor is usually a special exhibition. This time was “Art and China after 1989” which was truly incredible. I love to immerse myself in another culture, hear its voice, know its people, see its struggle, and I find one way of doing this is through modern art. Of course, I would much rather travel to those countries and really live with the locals and experience their world first hand, but if I can’t, I rely on modern art to be my window to a land too far away to touch. So, I was entranced by every piece, struck by the pain and humor, the history and future, the traditionalism and innovation in every piece around the room. You know, it reminded me of when I was in Istanbul, I was at the Blue Mosque, oh if you haven’t been, you really must, its truly incredible. It makes you feel so small, I mean, I already feel so small in those places but----

K: ---Vark?

N: --- uuuh, yes, K?

K: whatcha doin?

N: well, I’m writing about our museum trip.

K: I see, and you’re doing a wonderful job, but I just thought we might want to stay on topic about the museum.

N: I am talking about the museum

K: you’re talking about the Blue Mosque.

N: I was just going to relate the exhibition to something I saw---

K: ---yes, I understand that, and I would love to hear all about it but sometimes when you think you’re just telling a quick anecdote, it ends up being a lot longer and a little hard to relate to

N: how is it hard to relate to?

K: since you’ve been all these places and not all of us can say the same. You’re in a very unique position to travel all over the world, you can’t write that like everyone has the ability to go to the blue mosque any old time.

N: I didn’t think that’s what I was saying

K: I know you didn’t, I am just pointing it out so that you know

N: but what’s the harm in writing about it?

K: there’s no harm in it at all! It’s just that’s not what we’re here to write about. It’s like stopping a relatable story and telling a privileged aside with yourself and then can’t remember what the point was.

N: privileged?!

K: sweetie, everyone has SOME kind of privilege. But you really do wax on poetical when you get going and if you are going to do that for seven floors, we’re going to be here forever.

N: wax…on…poetical...?!

K: hunny, I mean that in the nicest way possible

N: you know, you have a lot of nerve calling me privileged. Considering I’m an African American mammal

K: we both have privilege, Vark, pretending we don’t is part of the problem…. and I’m a marsupial sooooo

N: a marsupial that is the dominant species on her continent, even outnumbering humans. Also, still a mammal

K: and female

N: and I’m gay regardless of how I may present. We’re splitting hairs at this point.

K: I’m just saying not everyone has the advantages to go to Istanbul and saying things like “oh if you haven’t been, you really must go, it’s so transformative” sounds like you’re assuming that everyone around you has as much money as you do and just hasn’t gotten around to it. And that feels weird because of the privilege it shows.

N: but isn’t telling people about our trip to the SFMoma that same type of privilege?

K: probably. I just don’t think its as obvious since it’s a local trip.

N: but there are still people who can’t afford it

K: that’s true

N: so, are we supposed to not tell the story of our day at the museum because it’s rude to people who can’t go?

K: well… I don’t think so…. I’m not sure….


N: you know there is such a thing as being “too woke” K…

K: … yeah…. I’m starting to see that…..

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