As we’re nearing the end of another holiday season, I would like to thank my parents for the wonderful gift that they bestowed upon me. Ever since I was but a wee fetus, swimming around in an embryonic pool of placenta, I was blessed…
Thank you, Mom and Dad, for the gift of being Asian.
Oh, the gift of being Asian is a gift that keeps on giving. Despite our shortness and bad vision, there are several reasons why it’s great to be Asian in America. For example, one reason is that we don’t get kidnapped. Have you ever heard of an Asian toddler who has gone missing? No, because high-profile, baby kidnapping is mainly a Caucasian sport. Why would anyone kidnap an Asian when you can easily buy one online? Similarly, I don’t worry about identity theft, because unless another female Asian is jacking my credit cards, I’m guessing the cashier would find something suspicious. “But you don’t look like a Jackie Chan…” Ha, gotcha. Thus, being Asian affords me peace of mind.
Going along with stereotypes is also a plus. Overall, Asian stereotypes really aren’t that bad. So, fine, Asians can’t drive. But neither can women, so even though I’m doubly screwed, at least we have company. Stereotypical Asians are also smart, hard-working, and socially inept. The last one is actually a good thing, because our social awkwardness prevents us from being universally shamed, like Italian-Americans on Jersey Shore (yes, I Survived a Japanese Game Show was embarrassing, but I’m not Japanese… so it’s cool). Also, given that stereotypical Asians are closet ninjas and kung fu masters, I feel pretty safe walking the mean streets of New York City alone. If I ever do get mugged, I’ll simply do a few Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon backflips to escape.
Being Asian is also a gift because we can always pretend that we don’t speak English. I could go into a store, shoplift some Hello Kitty merchandise, and if I ever get caught, just blame it on my Communist heritage. “Oh, I thought we were all sharing… No speak Engrish.” Then I will bow, say “Konichiwa,” and leave.
Honestly, if we wanted to, Asians could get away with anything. We could walk out on a bill in a restaurant, and then show up the next day and get served, since no one can tell Asians apart. (Sometimes I can’t even pick my mom out of a crowd.) If you ever were accused of such dining and ditching, you could just respond back in perfect English and slap your accuser in the face. God, discrimination is such a bitch.
The one downside to being Asian is that if you’re female, you have to deal with the fetishists. And if you’re male, well, good luck trying to find anyone who will appreciate your skinny arms and engineering prowess. It also gets tiring to keep up the peace signs/bunny ears for every photograph you take. But despite these minor hiccups and the occasional embarrassing YouTube clip, the greater gift of Asian-ness must be celebrated. And with our squinty eyes, straight hair, and aversion to sunlight, we’re pretty similar to vampires — and vampires are really “in” now.
So, thank you Mom and Dad, for the gift you’ve given me. And for everyone else, Asian and non-Asian, I wish you a joyous holiday season and a very happy New Year.