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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Writer/Curator/Founder of The Autism Acceptance Project. Contributing Author to Between Interruptions: Thirty Women Tell the Truth About Motherhood, and Concepts of Normality by Wendy Lawson, and soon to be published Gravity Pulls You In. Writing my own book. Lecturer on autism and the media and parenting. Current graduate student Critical Disability Studies and most importantly, mother of Adam -- a new and emerging writer.

“There is no hope unmingled with fear, and no fear unmingled with hope.” -- Baruch Spinoza

Wednesday, August 02, 2006


Toddlers in Black

I picked up Adam at camp today when his head counselor announced, “Tomorrow is Olympic Day. The teddies [his group name] have to come wearing black.”

The mothers stood bewildered.

“Black? My child doesn’t own anything in black,” one said in disgust.

Another just rolled her eyes.

“Who makes these decisions?” asked another “Why don’t you know anything about children?” I don’t think anyone in the group owns a black anything. Not at this age.

Instead of colourful toddlers strolling about the camp tomorrow, they will be dressed in dark black under the sun. I can picture it now, a line up of toddlers marching to their event, these dark shadows, perhaps in black sunglasses -- a set of oblivious spy kids, cranky under the raging heat of the sun. It’s a rather morbid scene in my head. These red-faced and sweaty toddlers, following in a row like walking a funeral march. Not at all a sight I would expect, these bundles of joy who should be dressed in every colour of the rainbow, but not in black.

“Perhaps we can just cut out black circles and tape them to their backs,” suggested Adam’s shadow.

“Sure,” I said. “It’s better than dressing in black. Now they’ll all look like a bunch of walking targets.”


Blogger Mom to Mr. Handsome said...

I'm sorry, but I had to laugh at what you wrote. Who's idea was that? Black? In this heat, you might as well just light them on fire. What are people thinking sometimes? I like the cirlce idea :o)


1:21 PM  
Anonymous Camille said...

Put him in any color and pin a piece of cloth with the word "BLACK" written on it to his shirt.


2:40 PM  
Blogger Ruth said...

All my kids black clothes are sweat suits, which can be converted to Hallowen costumes with a little iron-on felt. Maybe when the Goths have kids-

3:10 PM  
Blogger Estee Klar-Wolfond said...


LOL!!! That's what I'm going to do! Thanks for that idea.

4:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The idea of dressing toddlers in "black" is hilarious. Your article was wonderful and I can just imagine these little people during a heat wave dressed in black. Do not forget water guns.


7:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My nieces wear black, or other dark colors all the time - one's three, the other is nine months. They look *good* in black, and it doesn't show dirt easily. It's a nice, clean, practical color.

I've never understood the American habit of dressing kids in pastels, which get dirty so fast, and don't look good on most kids.

That said, black? Outside? In a damn heat wave? Hah. Not likely.

8:13 PM  
Blogger Lisa/Jedi said...

I would never have considered putting my kid in black as a toddler if my goddaughter hadn't looked so good in it when she was little (I don't know what possessed her parents to put her in black...). B is blond like she is & so I usually have at least one black t-shirt or sweatshirt for him to wear. He has always looked great in black- go fig. I do agree that black is silly when the kids are going to be out in the sun... B does not wear black to go sailing (neither does his dad :).

12:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is simply a sign of inflexibility. Sigh.

2:49 AM  
Blogger Julia said...

The only black shirts my kids own have "I Do All My Own Stunts" on the front. If that shirt had come in some other color, we wouldn't have any black t-shirts for the kids.

Now, a good half of MY t-shirts are black, but they also say weird things like "Black Death European Tour".

(Geez, can you even BUY black t-shirts for toddlers in the store? Aside from the design I got in waaaay too many sizes, I'm not sure I've ever seen any!)

12:27 PM  
Blogger Estee Klar-Wolfond said...

I think you can get some Harley Davidson ones.

12:59 PM  
Blogger Natalia said...

I do agree w/ not wearing black outside in a heat wave but some groups (I think it's the bedouins?) manage to go around in long flowing black clothes in the desert heat. I think it's the form of the clothes, though, becos it's not close on the body like western t-shirts and so you have the heat taken into the clothes ... but not into the body. in western clothes that doesn't happen becos the shape is different.

Anyway, um ... this reminded me of a funny story: my husband knows I like the singer Juanes, who is from my husband's country. So the last time he was back in Colombia, he got me a t-shirt with the name of this one song I like, which happens to be "tengo la camisa negra" (I have on a black shirt). And of course the shirt was black. But my husband was having an absent-minded moment, although he remembered that I love bright colors, and so he asked the t-shirt guy, "do you have one just like this, but maybe in Red?" The guy looked at him like he was crazy... but it would have been funny, no? "I have a black shirt" written on a red shirt!

1:05 PM  

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