Updated: Feb 14, 2021
The name of this post comes from a quote in the film Flirting (1991), starring Thandie Newton and Nicole Kidman. In the film, a teenage Thandie Newton is the only black girl in a 1960s Australian boarding school where many of the girls make jokes about her being a monkey. But make no mistake, Thandie's character is not a girl that will be victimized. Very early on in the film, she responds to her racist classmates by bumping into their record player causing the music to skip and then saying, "Sorry, I slipped on a Banana." In a single moment, she has asserted herself and her place at the school―even if it caused a temporary inconvenience and/or skip of their spinning record.
I recently rewatched this film with the sound of helicopters hovering above my apartment and the smoke from tear gas billowing through my bedroom windows. As I am being inundated with images of people that look like me being victimized like George Floyd, I remember Thandie's character "Thandiwe Adjewa" and what that small act of disruption says to all those who would try to oppress her. She is not an animal.
George Floyd was not an animal and deserved better!
This is a playlist for Floyd and Thandiwe Adjewa's spirit, as well as those who have taken to the streets to disrupt a broken record. Click here for the playlist.