Sunday, September 23, 2007

Food for the Soul, Sept. 23, 2007

In the wake of this week's news out of Jena, Louisiana, I thought I'd share the following short, but relevant tale.

I'm currently reading David Maraniss' excellent biography of Roberto Clemente. In it, Maraniss tells the story of Clemente's fellow countryman, Vic Power, who was the first black Puerto Rican to play in the Major Leagues.

Here is a passage about Power's clever and graceful approach to dealing with racism:

What he did, often, was use humor as a shield to protect himself from deadly serious discrimination. His stories about how he confronted racism in the South have become a part of baseball lore, accurately reflecting social conditions in 1950s America even if some might shade into apocrypha. When a waitress told him that her restaurant did not serve Negroes, Power replied, "That's okay, I don't eat Negroes. I just want some rice and beans."

1 comment:

Chef JP said...

A nice tie-in with the Jenna, LA stuff via the Clemente bio which is an excellent book. Clemente, as a man, transcended baseball and it's nice to see that he's remembered for many things besides his great play on the field. chefjp