Thursday, March 25, 2010

Census. Cultural Background. Panic.

I love filling out forms. I don't know why, but any time I have the opportunity to fill one out, I jump at the chance (4 patient information forms, front and back, in a doctor's office? OK!). So imagine my glee when we received our 2010 census form.

I was disappointed when I looked over the form. I thought there would be more to fill out than name, address, age and race of each person in my household...but that was it.

That wasn't going to kill my buzz though. I still had a form to fill out!

As I happily filled in information and made neat little X's in the appropriate boxes, I screeched to a halt when I reached the "race" portion in my section.

Such a simple question, not so simple an least for me.

I have a very mixed background, but the main ones are Sicilian (at least 25%, if not more), African American (25%) and Native American (not sure exactly how much - I'm pretty sure it's not 25%, but could be close).

Now I know when they say "Caucasian," this could describe I was covered there. But do I make an X in the box next to African-American? And if I fill in the box next to American Indian (is that even a PC term?) they ask you to name your "enrolled or principal tribe." Uh...I'm not official with a card or anything, I just know it's in my background. Do I put an X next to "other" and make up some craaaazy new name for my mixed heritage, like Cablinasian (except, you know, with my it'd be like Cablinducilian...or something)?


So, after much deliberation, I put an X next to Caucasian and an X next to African American.

Alright...moving on. Next up: Peanut.


Geez oh Pete! What do I put for HER?!

(Another tense deliberation)

I left her portion with just an X next to Caucasian.

* * * * *

I'm sure I will leave some census person confused when they read:

Head of household: Caucasian
Spouse: Caucasian and African American
Biological child: Caucasian

Yep. That's us.