cablinasian or something like it

If you spend enough time in Tennessee, you will meet many, many people who claim to be “part-Cherokee”. Yet, when asked to clarify, the explanation proves to be so distant and watered down that there is really nothing to it. Other cultures are equally popular and people like to claim them as their own with fervor. On St.Patrick’s Day, everybody claims to be “part-Irish”. Anyone who has known Doug for more than 5 minutes knows that he doesn’t claim part anything, but instead states “I am Irish”. In fact, he uses it to justify two aspects of his personality. Upon learning of the soon-to-be-born Amy’s name, the first words out of one relative’s mouth were, “that’s not an Irish name.” Let’s test the waters a bit. Doug was not born in Ireland. Neither were his parents, his grandparents or his great-grandparents. Doug can’t name a single ancestor who wasn’t born in America. So, is he Irish or is he American? His parents and sister travelled to Ireland a few years ago to search for ancestors. While there, they were told by more than one person that they are Scottish and not Irish. This didn’t sit well with the family. I guess Scottish isn’t as cool as Irish. I don’t know Jack about my father’s heritage, but I know that my mother’s family has been in America for only a few generations. Yet, even the children of the immigrants called themselves Americans. Where is the line drawn? What about the babies born today to mothers without official American paperwork?

5 thoughts on “cablinasian or something like it

  1. That’s embarassingly out of context. I don’t think I have uttered those words in years. When I have uttered them it was in the guise of a justification for some absurdly heavy drinking or hot temper.

    Where the conversation has been had in recent times is in regard to a conversation I had with my grandfather in which he explained that our ancestors came from Ireland with the name Ocean.

    I have always thought it silly for an American to claim to be “Irish” or “German” or whatever. Blood lines have long been mixed. Born in America…American.

  2. You’re related to Billy Ocean!?! Car-i-bune queeeeen… sharing thu same dreeeeeam… beat as onnnne… no more looooove on the ruuu-uuun

  3. There’s an agrument to be made that the family name was origianlly spelled O’Con. When I talked geneology with my grandmother on my mother’s side (Higgins) she replied “our ancestors were all idiots” then went on to explain that we were related to some famous person (I don’t know that I believe it) who gave his fortune to England.

  4. I married an Irish lass. Her mom moved here from Ireland as a little girl, I don’t remember her dad’s side (but I don’t think they’ve been here much longer).

    absurdly heavy drinking or hot temper

    Yup. I get them both. Also stubborn as hell.

  5. I’m part cherokee on both sides (someone had to say that, didn’t they, ha) And I’m scotch- irish on one side. šŸ™‚
    I do have some papers to prove it ::)

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