Museum of the Plains White Person: Rayna Green
Let me tell you something of the plans for our museum. First, we will be building the museum over an abandoned ceremonial ballcourt, called a “football field,” somewhere in what the Omaha nation called “Nebraska.” Our Indian archaeologists made, as you know, the great discovery of an ancient white ceremonial cult called the Cornhuskers1, right there, and this ballcourt was the site of their annual rites for that once-great religion. Its major gallery, of course, will be a hall of ancestral remains, and that is the major emphasis of our first collecting effort. We have organized collecting expeditions throughout the country, and, as we speak, Indian backhoes are excavating the sadly abandoned white cemeteries of the United States. We have, through our powers of eminent domain, acquired at least eighty percent of the white cemeteries in this country.
We have begun our national campaign to acquire the bones of famous white people, since they themselves insisted for centuries that we can all learn so much from studying and displaying such remains. And, accepting their notions of reverence for the exhibition of the dead and goods from graves, White People will be honored to have the remains of their grandmothers and grandfathers on display. We have just acquired what I think is quite an important and moving find, the bones of John Wayne2, the White Cutlure Hero, and we plan to acquire the remains of many other famous white persons. You might guess who we have our sights on. What a great significance this can have for our scholars, as they attempt to interpret the important aspects of white culture from this most American of mythological characters …
Let me tell you about some of the other collections and exhibition plans that I think are quite exciting. There will be a White Foodways Gallery where we examine the great and holy foods of the quintessential white culture – mayonnaise, white bread, iceberg lettuce, peanut butter, lime Jell-O and little marshmallows. We will reconstruct one of their temples to food, a so-called “McDonald’s,” in its entirety. We are currently doing a study of some of the ceremonial foodways of the Cornhuskers, and we are particularly interested in the great Weenie-Burning rites that occurred in the summer, a religious behavior perhaps related to their reverence for the Little Marshmallows. And, of course, we are doing research on white hunting and foraging techniques, which appeared to be called “making reservations.”
We will have several exhibits about their strange but wonderful customs. We have found a few remaining White People who know fragments of their quaint dances and songs, and we will offer living history programs of their dances, the waltz, the fox-trot, the Texas Two-Step, the disco, frug, bop and polka. Additionally, we have discovered people who actually remember and can interpret the meaningless vocables – bop-shu-bop, do-wop, and oooh, oooh, oooh baby – of many of their courting songs. We are creating an entire photographic exhibition on a form of ritual performance revered by white people, a kind of symbolic warfare they called “talk shows.”
We are busily acquiring examples of their most important elaborate ceremonial and shamanistic costumes and instruments of power – a typical chieftain’s three-piece suit and briefcase, a medicine man’s stethoscope and a Barbie shaman’s spike heels and bikini underpants … And finally, we will be assembling a stellar and major collection of items of costume associated with their centuries-old significant, though puzzling, form of ritual behavior called “playing Indian” …
1 nickname for the University of Nebraska football team
2 iconic film star whose roles included several in which he fought against Native American tribes