I moved to South Florida after finishing college in New Orleans. In New Orleans, you couldn’t walk a couple of feet and not bump into another Asian. Not the case down here. Every once in awhile I would spy another Asian and then a slightly awkward exchange occurs. First there’s that moment of disbelief. Did I just see another Asian? Or was it a mirage, like when you’re driving and you swear the road looks wet.
Millions of Asians worldwide and I just happen to look like every one of them. People see my eyes, my hair, my skin color and instantly I’m the Asian they’ve seen on TV, the Asian they work with or the Asian they went to school with. I never knew I had the universal Asian face. This must be the reason why I’m the subject of so many cases of mistaken eye-dentity.
I have an admission.
It’s not something I am proud of but, as the old adage goes, the first step in solving a problem is to admit you have one.
So here it is. I laugh when people fall.
Asian mothers have the ability to change kernels of guilt into full-blown stalks of blame and penitence. When Asian mothers are in this mode, it’s best to lay supine on the floor and act dead. Hold your breath for as long as you can and stay still because if she detects you survived the initial blow of guilt, she will go after the jugular.