Saturday, February 13, 2010
Shania: means not really an Indian in Ojibway
I asked my wife if Shania ever wanted to hook up with me, if that would be okay. My wife said "if Shania ever ever wants to hook up with you, then it will okay with me." My wife is the greatest.
By the way Shania is Ojibway by adoption and raised. So the title is an attempt at being facetious. Shania is more Indian than many of the Indians we see in the news: Ward Churchill, Joseph Boyden for example.
Everyone likes the Indian. They like to be more than the average everyday individual. We want to belong to something bigger than ourselves. That is why we join groups, make affiliations. We are lucky by birth as to who we belong to. I belong to the Ojibway of Sagkeeng. That is so cool.
Some people can only pretend or wish they belong to a certain group. In Germany Karl May made the Indian image famous. So famous that people dreamed of being the Noble Savage. That is okay.
I like Indian art. I used to get the artwork framed at a local frame shop called Fleet Gallery. The owner was Klaus from Germany. He loved Karl May and the image of Indians. He was a bit disappointed at what he found in Canada. He still wanted to hang on to the Karl May image.
There is a television show in Canada called Mix Blessings. It is about a Canadian who marries a Cree Woman. It is a funny show. It airs on the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network APTN. I like this show. The guy doesn't try to be Indian but it shows the differences that he and his wife encounter. One of the episodes explored the German Indian. It was really funny. The German fellow ended up being disgusted with the Indians. He said "I am more Indian than the rest of you." He knew how to build canoes, pitch up a teepee and ate wild meat. He was in love with the Noble Savage.
I am not a noble savage or a stoic Indian. Hell, I don't even look Indian. I still belong to the Ojibway and I am an Indian (although the label Indian is not one most Indigenous people like). No one, no one can take that away. :-)
Everyone likes the Indian. That is they like the Vanishing Indian, the Stoic Indian, the fantasy book Indian, the Hollywood Indian. They just don't like the real life Indian.