Telling Tales – Little Havana
BY ANGEL KANE
My husband and I are amazed by the fact our children continue to persist in the theory that America is a democracy. They wake up in the morning clinging to this belief and go to bed at night dreaming of the red, white and blue. Problem is, while America is a democracy, my children do not get to partake in this free and independent state.
That’s because we like to run our home as a purely dictatorial society. In fact it brings us great joy to do so. Our favorite game is the voting game – a game very similar to what voting in Cuba is like. We let the three kids vote on where to eat dinner, what movie to see and so on. But then if the vote doesn’t go our way, we simply explain to them that parents actually have two votes each, so no matter how hard they campaign – – they can never carry the vote. This is always a fun game, as is the enjoyable game of “no you can’t, because I said so”, which I hear is a Fidel favorite.
I liken our home to other households in Havana where the three little people who live with us must follow our rules. We, their self appointed government, know what is best for them. Like Cuba, we have those who follow the rules, those who pretend to follow the rules and those who are always trying to find a way to sail to Miami!
Before our third child was born, our little Havana was a dream. The children ate what I fed them, wore what I gave them to wear and went to bed when I told them to go. Home was like a utopian society where we all shared a common goal – keep Fidel (a.k.a. Mama) happy. But then my little insurgent was born. It’s as if he came out of the womb holding the Constitution in one hand and the Bill of Rights in the other.
Since the moment he learned to speak, he has been enlightening the other citizens that the conditions they live under are unconscionable.
“Oatmeal for breakfast – why when there are things called Pop Tarts?”
“Brush your teeth with adult toothpaste – are they trying to poison us?”
“Go to bed before prime time programming – put me in solitary, why don’t you?”
We used to think the insurgent was harmless. While he can give a rousing speech, he’s only five, so naturally we assumed he was all talk. But recently, we’ve noticed that the insurgent’s spewing of democratic propaganda is beginning to cause unrest.
He’s been holding – not so – underground meetings in the playroom, touting the theory of – one man, one vote. He denounces the legitimacy of our government, as he was not allowed to add his name to the ballot. And lately he’s been claiming that my unilateral decision to deposit his birthday checks into his college accounts instead of Toys R Us is just another form of taxation without representation. His wild views are slowly catching on, just the other day all three staged a walk-out – refusing to watch Oprah insisting the vote was rigged.
Unlike Fidel, however, we are not interested in quelching this democratic movement. In fact, we are quite hopeful our little Patrick Henry’s – give me a 9 o’clock bedtime or give me death – rantings will spur all three citizens to seek more freedom one day. That’s because in our little Havana we really do want the oppressed to someday experience independence.
Our motto is – as soon as you can afford to buy your own paddleboat, you can gladly sail away!
Unbelievably, my little insurgent is now 7 years old. His insistence that he’s entitled to certain freedoms continues to this day. Recently, however, he has taken great comfort in knowing that Fidel no longer controls Cuba. He’s hopeful that his self-imposed government might also one day get a new leader.
Little does he know that Raul (a.k.a. Daddy) has long been known as Fidel’s enforcer!