#SorryAsianParents

A goofy kid just trying to make sense of the world while trying to be Asian American


Leave a comment

Disappointing My Asian Parents With My English Degree and Not Doctor – #SAP EP09 (CLIP)

 

In this clip, I’m talking about how I eventually decided on choosing Creative Writing as my major at San Francisco State University. Being a first-generation Asian American in your family to go to a four-year university and deciding to become a writer is not something any immigrant parents want to hear. But to be fair, I took three and a half years to pick a major after realizing that you can’t major in Partying with a minor in Beer Pong. So there was no chance in hell I was gonna be a doctor. . .or lawyer. . .or whatever stereotypical model minority career my parents wanted.

Imagine escaping Laos and Thailand during the Vietnam War just to see their firstborn pick a prospering career as a writer. But I guess at this point; I’m more of an entertainer…or clown…whichever.

Salutationsandgoodvibrations and I also talk about some of the challenges we had growing up in Visalia. And believe me, there were many. In my case, it was how I viewed education, arts, and literature. I didn’t read too much in my own free time since my parents put more of an emphasis on subjects that would traditionally generate more money.

My parents weren’t the only ones who thought the arts were unnecessary in the Asian college plan. The friends I grew up with also weren’t too keen on the idea of being books smarts. Instead, we goons focused more on street smarts, believing that arts and education weren’t meant for kids from the block. Luckily, we grew out of this hoodrat mentality as we grew older.

Lots of stuff to unpack here. You’ll hear about how we found our passions and the obstacles we jumped **cough** getting out of Visalia right after high school **cough** to pursue our dreams. Don’t worry; these painful anecdotes of self-discovery aren’t too cringy if you sprinkle some dark humor on the trauma.

If you want to share your story about being Asian, or Asian American, or just as someone who felt they let their parents down, feel free to comment below. Let’s share and wallow because misery loves company.

*This video is a clip from #SAP EP09 “Going All The Way” by Charles Bukowski poem discussion with Cpt Ahab & Salutationsandgoodvibrations. So the audio is still distorted and Cpt Ahab picture was replaced. And yes, I know the thumbnail isn’t grammatically correct.

#sorryasianparents EP09 link in bio or here:

Weebthusiast YouTube Channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCiDfoqzX4A-Khlw7ODG_qTw

#sorryasianparents Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/sorryasianparents/

Salutationsandgoodvibrations Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/salutationsandgoodvibrations/

Weebthusiast Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/weebthusiast/

#sorryasianparents Blog:
https://www.sorryasianparents.com/


Leave a comment

#sorryasianparents EP09 – Bukowski Quotes About Going 100 w Cpt Ahab & Salutationsandgoodvibrations

Hello, hello,

Welcome back. I’m back home in Los Angeles, where I finally have time to put some finishing touches on a video to upload. In this episode, my friends Salutationsandgoodvibrations and Cpt Ahab are with me to talk about the poem “Going All The Way” by Charles Bukowski.

What does it mean to “go all the way”? How do you define success? Why do people be fronting on these social media sites and dating apps? These are the questions we will be discussing in this video. I don’t know if you will find a clear answer during your time with us, but I’m sure you’ll have a few good laughs.

Alongside these philosophical questions of pursuing your passions, I will also be discussing how I decided to major in Creative Writing at San Francisco State University. As well as briefly discussing how growing up in Visalia influenced my views on art and literature, how I disappointed my Asian parents about my career choice, and about how much I love Seann William Scott. Yes, the Stifmeister.

I apologize in advance if this video sounds like a conversation between a bunch of bored college kids. Well, I mean, what else are we gonna do during quarantine. Also, the audio’s pitch is a little high, and Ahab’s picture is covered by your friendly neighborhood Asian: me. This was intentional. So, yeah. Sorry about that, too.

But I hope you guys do enjoy the video. Feel free to comment below if you have something to say about the poem written by this German-American poet or if you just wanna share how you view success.

“Going All The Way” by Charles Bukowski

If you’re going to try, go all the way.
Otherwise, don’t even start.
If you’re going to try, go all the way.
This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives, jobs and maybe even your mind.
It could mean not eating for three or four days.
It could mean freezing on a park bench.
It could mean jail.
It could mean derision, mockery, isolation.
Isolation is the gift.
All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it.
And, you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds.
And it will be better than anything else you can imagine.
If you’re going to try, go all the way.
There is no other feeling like that.
You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire.
DO IT. DO IT. DO IT. All the way
You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It’s the only good fight there is.

Timestamps
00:00 – Intro
00:29 – Cpt Ahab Starts Us Off By Reading The Bukowski Quote
01:18 – What Does “Going All The Way Means”?
05:00 – Pursuing Your Dreams And The Value Of An Creative Writing Degree
10:10 – You Have To Put In The Work To Get What You Want In Life
17:30 – Attempt Different Things To Define Your Own Version Of Success
20:57 – Disappointing My Asian Parents By Picking An English Major In College
28:38 – Growing Up In Visalia And How We Handled Education
36:25 – How Visalias’ Environment And Immigrant Cultural Influenced My View On Art
40:00 – Me Feeling Insecure About My Lack of Literature Knowledge At SFSU
41:27 – Me Telling My Playwriting Class My Favorite Actor Is Seann William Scott
46:47 – The Authetisicty Of Your Opinions VS What Everyone Else Thought Was Cool
50:18 – What Is Even Real On Social Media And Dating Apps? Just Be Yourself
57:53 – Line Dancing At The Saddle Rack and Saying Goodbye To Cpt Ahab

Weebthusiast YouTube Channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCiDfoqzX4A-Khlw7ODG_qTw

#sorryasianparents Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/sorryasianparents/

Salutationsandgoodvibrations Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/salutationsandgoodvibrations/

Weebthusiast Instagram:
https://www.instagram.com/weebthusiast/

#sorryasianparents Blog:
https://www.sorryasianparents.com/


Leave a comment

My COVID Story and Trying to Remember High School Bio – #SAP EP01.3

 

This video is part of the original recording I did with Daniel for my #sorryasianparents YouTube Channel. In this clip, I’m telling him about my COVID experience…Then we horribly try to explain how a virus works using our English Degree from SFSU. Boy, our biology teachers would be mad. We deff fail at this Asian part of our lives. All for laughs, am I right?


Leave a comment

#SorryAsianParents – Kevin Telling Stories About His Father

 

Hi hi,

On this segment of SorryAsianParents, Kevin Chang will be joining me in my tiny apartment to catch up. He is one of my longtime friends from high school. We played football together and raised a little hell: disappointing our Asian parents one party at a time.

In our conversation, Kevin will tell me what he’s been up to, a bit of Hmong history during the Vietnam War, and about his family. We will gingerly touch on his relationship with his father….and you know how we Asian kids be with our Asian fathers. I want to thank him for sharing his family’s history with me, and now with you. Despite how many of us (first-generation Asian Americans) share the same story as Kevin and I, we are reluctant to talk about these small incidences that have shaped our lives. So let’s try and normalize it!!!

I’m honored he agreed to share his story with me and allowed me to post it on my passion project.  If y’all have any stories to tell about Laos, people from Southeast Asian, immigrant stories, or any tales of trying to live up to an Asian father (or mother), feel free to comment below and tell us. I know Kevin would love to hear other people’s experiences.

ps. I’m sorry for some of the framerate dropping here and there. I am in the process of getting new hardware soon so fingers crossed the next videos will run smoother. Bye, bye!!!


Leave a comment

The Novela Coronavirus: How COVID-19 exposed racial prejudice against Asian people

Ye Yellow Fever is coming from the East, rare.

***NOTE: This is meant as a humor piece with some facts, contains strong language.***

It’s only been a few months in the year 2020, but (!) there’s probably a strong argument that this year has sucked lots and lots of balls. So far, the world lost basketball legend Kobe Bryant, Brexit finally went down in January (after years of teasing to pull out like the British Lads they are), and, currently, America is running out of toilet paper. Coronavirus fever has finally hit the States, and it’s causing a flurry of commotion at grocery stores across the nation- resulting in robberies and physical clashing of every Chad and Karen known to man. Are these toilet paper hoarders crazy? Yeah, they probably are. But, who knows? These people might actually need the ultra-softness of Charmin’s mega roll after their assholes explode from eating a Costco worth of ramen noodles and canned beans.

So, why is this Coronavirus making people so crazy? According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, COVID-19, or its street name: Novel Coronavirus, is causing such a ruckus because there currently isn’t a cure, and it’s hard to contain. Seems more like a Novela Virus with all the drama it’s causing. Compared to its cousin Influenza, which only kills less than 1% of those infected, COVID-19 has already killed about 11%. This virus hops onto the next person faster than a contestant on The Bachelor

World leaders have taken drastic action by placing their citizens in a state of quarantine. The economy has also taken a nosedive, causing massive lay-offs. With major music festivals like Ultra and Coachella being canceled or postponed, even Instagram THOTs are feeling the burn of unemployment. And there ain’t no cream for that.

Yes, things are pretty fucking crazy right now. 

But, do you know what’s spreading faster than a Bachelorette’s legs on ABC? I mean, Coronavirus? Racism! Aside from having to worry about getting a virus that makes you cough blood and post memes all day because of having to “Shelter in Place,” people of Asian descent now have to, also, worry about xenophobia and discrimination from idiots who thinks that every John Chinaman is spewing out COVID-19 like NBA star Rudy Gobert at a press conference

Mmm, touch dem mics

Nothing says quarantine like a classic mic stroking, eh? 

France was perhaps the first country out of China to warn its citizens of COVID-19. But for one local newspaper, Le Courier Picard, the print decided to go full Fox News when they labeled the crisis “Alerte Jaune” or, in English, “Yellow Peril.” 

You might ask, “Why is this color-metaphor racist?” Well, my non-yellow friends, it’s because this phrase was used in the early 1900s as propaganda against people of the East. So, is it racist? Maybe we should ask the Chinese woman wearing a protective mask in the picture the print decided to use for their piece. She must be thrilled to be the face of French Coronavirus propaganda. Awkward.

Though the newspaper apologized for their mislabeling and bastardization of Chinese people, the damage was already done. On Twitter, the hashtag  #JeNeSuisPasUnVirus, which translates to “I’m not a virus,” started to flood social media as a means to raise awareness of the rising discrimination against French Asian citizens. I think this whole story is nuts; Asian people in France, actually existing, like in Rush Hour 3, nuts!

As Coronavirus fever made its way to Harry Potter world, stories of Asian students getting their asses beat like it’s the 1840’s were starting to make headlines. One of the first cases involved a Singapore man named Mok on the streets of Oxford. While being assaulted, Mok heard one of the four assailants say, “I don’t want your Coronavirus in my country”. A statement that probably doesn’t sound good in any context. And a month later, four Chinese students wearing medical face masks were harassed at Vincent’s Walk in Southampton. With immigration playing a key role for Brexit, Asian people getting their asses beat was inevitable. I guess having free education doesn’t stop assholes from being arsehole.

I think the sign and hat isn't bad. But that girl in the back, too far, bro.

I think the sign and hat aren’t bad. But that girl in the back, too far, bro.

Even in the land where weed and hookers are legal, the Netherlands, there are cases of racial discrimination. A Korean woman was almost assaulted by two men while riding her bike, Meghan Rajagopalan reports on BuzzFeed News. The victim, Jiye Seong-Yu, said she heard one of the men yell out “Chinese” as he swung. Rajagopalan’s piece also mentions a Korean American woman living in Amsterdam who was harassed online. The woman was called a “Chinese bitch” on Facebook and received other hateful comments. 

And the COVID-19 World Tour doesn’t stop there. America may be late to the party, but we are currently putting all the other country’s racist games to shame. 

Starting from the East Coast in NYC, a woman named Min, who goes by @princessmin_c on Twitter, said that a woman sitting across from her moved when she coughed. Min said the woman also covered her face before she decided to play a game of Runawayfromtheasian. 

In San Fernando Valley, a 16-year-old Asian kid was beaten and sent to the hospital because his schoolmates thought he had the Coronavirus. A couple of miles away, a man was yelling at an Asian woman about how all the “Chinese” are dirty on the Los Angeles Metro. The kicker is that the woman isn’t even Chinese. I don’t know what’s more ridiculous: a man of color assuming the woman is Chinese or that he believes this woman just flew in from Cronavirusville, China, only to ride in the elegant carriage of the LA Metro?

Mind you, these are just a few accounts from an overabundance of many. Every time I’m on NextShark, I can’t help but feel a little overwhelmed with all the new stories flooding in, gangbanging my faith in humanity. 

Even esteemed news sources like CNN and NPR are chiming in, telling people to not do something that I didn’t think needed to be said. It’s gotten to the point where California’s Governor, Gavin Newsom, had to address the recent rise in racial prejudice against Asian people in a press conference.

When talking about big media covering the Coronavirus, we, of course, have to talk about the elephant in the room: Fox News.

On an episode of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, the comedian jests about how one Fox News correspondent really felt about China. (It’s at the 16-minute mark of the episode/link). Spoiler Alert: Donald Luskin doesn’t think they are civilized people. Though, it’s not surprising with similar past segments on FOX taking the piss out of Asian people who (literally) can’t defend themselves. Just between you and me, everyone at Fox kinda looks like your average neighborhood racist that hates the “Chine-knees” but still jerks-off to oriental porn when the wife’s at spin class.

Haters gonna hate. During these trying times, people would usually look to their leaders for pluralism and guidance. But, this is “Trump’s America” we’re talking about. 

Between the tariffs and political ass-kissing, President Trump has a complicated relationship with China. Unlike with Russia, where the leader is literally Putin it in his mouth, Trump’s relationship with Jinping is more of a

Yeah, he said it.

will-they-or-won’t-they kind of situation.

However, the president of the United States made his feelings pretty clear when referring to COVID-19 as the “Chinese Virus” in a tweet. An unfortunate choice of words would probably be a gross understatement. Of course, Trump being Trump didn’t stop his White House staff from using the term “Kung-Flu” at a press dinner. CBS News correspondent Weijia Jiang had the honor of being the “Asian person in the room” for the staff to throw down their new slang. The amount of professionalism here is equivalent to, “If I say it to my Asian friend, then it must be ok.” 

Just like the time your white friend asked your black friend if it’s ok to use the “N-word” if he uses a soft “a” and not the “er,” it’s a hard fuckin’ no! Especially at an official White House event filled with reporters, you fucking idiots.  

You might be thinking, “The president and these officials aren’t being PC, who cares?”

I guess it would be ok . . . if we were in our 20’s and at a fucking frathouse. But these are public officials who are held to a higher standard! 

Just because Trump can’t use big words, we can’t have the president of the US demonizing an entire race by personifying a virus as Chinese. There are already stupid people who can’t tell the difference between Chinese people from China and Asian people from other countries . . . in Asia . . . that isn’t China. I know this isn’t exactly rocket science, but sometimes I feel like it is. 

Honestly, I can keep going on about shit people doing shit things, but let’s start wrapping this up. I know I’ve given a lot of examples, but, like a child asking for a toy a hundred times, I feel like I have to annoy you till you feel pissed off to do something about it. 

I actually got a taste of this Coronaracism last month when I was called a DIRTY CHINESE, CORONAVIRUS, and a ZIPPERHEAD. This happened in the locker room at the 24 Hour Fitness in Koreatown by a Latino guy. In fucking Koreatown! Full of Asians, I know, the balls on this guy. 

Truth be told, I was taken by surprise. This was one of those “I hear about it online, but it never happens to me” kinda deal. So, I did what any millennial would do: write about it on Facebook. 

I was actually surprised by how many people responded to my post with support. I was even more surprised how some of my non-Asian friends were unaware of the current Yellow State of Affairs. Though I shouldn’t have been surprised since racism isn’t new. 

But why now? Why is it currently “ok” for stupid people to Trojan Horse their chauvinistic feelings against Asian people during Coronapocalypes? 

Anna Russell tries to answer this question in her piece for The New Yorker, “The Rise of Coronavirus Hate Crimes.” Her article points out that dumbasses feel it’s ok to attack Asian people because “lots of people agree” with the attacker’s emotions. In millennials words, because it’s fucking trending. I’m just paraphrasing here. 

A lot of people’s lives have been affected by this virus, and some of those people feel the need to blame someone. And it’s not gratifying blaming a virus because a clump of RNA can’t react to someone’s grievance (unless it’s the anime Cells at Work). 

So what’s the next best thing? It’s good ole fashion racism. The situation has gotten so bad in America that some Chinese Americans now fear for their lives. Just look at these testimonials in The New York Times from people who have been attacked

You’re probably wondering, how can we stop this intolerance against Asian people? Well, it’s easy, really. But the fact that I even have to say it is absurd; DON’T BE A FUCKING RACIST! 

What if you’re in a situation where an Asian person is being bullied, and you’re not the one being racist? Well, Josephine Harvey tells us precisely what to do in her piece for the HuffPost. If you see something, say something. 

It could be as simple as saying, “Hey! Not cool, bro.” If you’re more of an action person, then you can just stand next to the victim. Just a sense of solidarity goes a long way. If bystanders show support for the victim, then the perpetrator might realize it’s not normal to be a racist dick. Be like this guy standing up for his fellow American citizen on an NYC train. 

And now reporting Coronavirus-related attacks is even easier with this new website by Asian American and Pacific Islander groups. According to NBC News, the information collected will be used by nonprofit groups for education and media campaigns telling people to, you know, not be a racist.

For all you racist out there, all I’m asking for is just some basic things: read a map and figure out the difference between a Chinese person and another Asian person; stop assuming every Asian person has the Coronavirus because we probably all have it by now; maybe educate yourself about the virus and how it isn’t in every Asian-looking person’s DNA (you uneducated swine); and, most importantly, you should stop punching Asian people in angry mobs then running away (you fucking coward). If you think an Asian person has the Cough of Death and you run towards ‘em, then you definitely deserved to be coughed on. Unless you’re Stretch Armstrong, punching someone isn’t exactly social distancing.  

Right now, the Coronavirus isn’t just a Chinese problem; it’s a global epidemic. Even if you think this corona thing is a hoax, this problem will affect your life, whether you like it or not. The circumstances have changed, and we need to band together if we’re going to survive. I know being in quarantine is driving you mad, and you’re probably playing around with the idea of starting an Only Fans/Patreon, but we gotta stop stabbing Asian people at grocery stores. If we can’t do that, then at the very least, stop buying more than one mega roll of toilet paper. Because if people run out of to-go napkins to wipe their butts with, then we’re going to have a pinkeye epidemic next. 

I guess it’s time for those Micky Dz napkins.

 

Yeah, I screenshot this. I stand by what I did.


Leave a comment

No Fadah, Moe Problams

This past Christmas, my father spent the festive night getting his gallbladder removed at Kawiia Delta Hospital. Despite being about ten or so years older than Baby Yoda, his health is not the ass-beating Asian father of nine he once was. I remember seeing my father stumble towards the front door the night before Krampus came for his inside cookies. I was sleeping in the living room when I woke up at 4 am to a thumping sound. Thinking it was my brother who was still drunk from a holiday party he and I attended a few hours before, I got up and yelled, “What the fuck you still doing up?” To my surprise, I saw it was my father, pressed against the wall. Between heavy breaths, he told me he was in pain and was making his way outside to meet my sister, who was taking him to the hospital.

I rushed to my father’s aid, escorting him outside by the arm. The early morning was cold as balls. I could feel my father shivering as we carefully made our way down the rain-drenched driveway. When I opened the car door, my father immediately sunk his body into the passenger seat. His eyes were closed, one arm clutching his stomach as the other found its place on the “Oh Shit” handle above the door. Seeing the man, who I thought was the toughest SOB growing up, in pain woke me up to a possible future where my father would die thinking I am a failure.

Growing up, my father was hard on me. Not to sound like the stereotype, but my father is the “typical Asian dad.” Like most Tiger Dads, he yelled at me when my grades fell below A’s (because B is for bitch); instead of getting grounded, I would get my ass beat; and, of course, he wanted me to become *enter my bad impersonation* doctor. He had a plan . . . until I (his firstborn son who had the opportunity to be the first of the family to attend a 4-year university) told him, “fuck all that.”

My parents and I at my SFSU graduation

Of course, I gradually disappointed my father with a soft lie of wanting to become a teacher. If I dropped the news like napalm, he would have had a heart attack from all the shame.

Even if my father wanted to voice his concerns for my questionable career choice, it would have been difficult because of our cultural differences. Typically, an Asian American son would know how his Asian father was feeling from the strength of his backhand. (JK…Kinda) Our relationship was(is) no different. So you can see why I avoided those father-son chats; my ugly face can’t take high-fives anymore. But when we did have our chats, the conversation would usually end with “You could do better,” or “Stop fucking up, dumbass.”

Looking back at it now, it’s probably not what my father intended for me to feel. He was trying to raise me how he knew best, learning from his father before him. But, needless to say, the constant fear of disappointing him put a lot of pressure on me.

Eventually, I stood up to my father and told him how I really felt (like them white kids on ABC Family). Haha PSYCH, no fucking way. I listened to my Asian side and ran away from my feelings, limiting my communication with him and avoided any conversations about my future.

Once my father got the hint, he started backing off. Then my twenties took OFF! Without having to worry about being the perfect Asian son, I was free from the guilt as I frolicked aboutsss in college. All it cost me was a healthy relationship with the man whose sack I swam from.

When you are young, you’re stupid. For real, think about being in your early 20’s and in college. I didn’t give a fuck about another person’s opinion, nor did I care about being some “model minority.” I was living the American Dream, baby. My ego had a BBC, and it was just swingin’ it in the air.

But all of that big dick energy went away on Christmas as I reverted back to a prepubescent teen who was afraid of disappointing his dad.

It’s a shame that it took an exploding gallbladder to make me realize how much of a child I’ve been, a thirty-year-old man-child who thought he could put a pause on time until he was ready to become an adult. But time doesn’t wait for anyone (unless you’re hella rich, then you can do whatever you want). Growing up isn’t a choice for me anymore; it’s a sobering reality.

Facing my father’s morality made me reflect on what I want for my future. I can’t change who I am and all the choices I’ve made in my life. And though I don’t want to be a bad Asian boy anymore, I cannot deny my hopes and dreams as an individual. I suppose, now, all I can hope for is to use the remaining time to make my dad proud by my standards. Or at least pay off my student loans. Come on, Liberal Arts Degree! Digivolve into a money-making machine!

#SorryAsianParents

PS, I know I’m not alone when it comes to immigrant children and daddy/mommy issues. Good luck to those out there who are going through the same struggles of finding your own identity.


Leave a comment

There’s Something About (Sad) Millennials

Sometimes we need a little help to keep from falling

Oh man, it has been a long time since I wrote something. Hi Hi, I want everyone to know that I am not dead; I just took some time off from doing anything creative to focus on my alcohol abuse. Wait, what I meant to say is that I took some time off to focus on myself. Honestly, it’s all just some grade-A millennial buulllllsheit.

I’m not going to lie, I have spent the past few months lollygagging around; there was a point in my life where I did not know where I was going or what I wanted to actually do. So like many people who are in the post-college-oh-shit-I’m-almost-30 slump, I got a job making tips so I can participate in what some may call “Life Experience.” AKA: drinking myself into oblivion and avoiding all adult responsibilities.

Despite how much damage I put on my brain and liver, I still have a mind that will always (sometimes) want to make the “right” decisions. However, ingesting a bunch of booze can force your brain on a time-out, interfering with your conscious decision-making as you board the blackout train. For a random example (don’t look too much into it), making the choice of raging on a giant hill in Berkeley to drink alcohol and chase just-made-it-to-18-year-old-Irish girls a viable one for a soon-to-be-30-year-old-but-looks-23-cuz-he’s-Asian an easy one.

Ahh, I can’t lie. That was me, sorry for fooling you. Stupid? Yes. But at that point in my life, I found it easier to deal with the I’m-too-old-for-this-shit hangover than to confront my future with a sober mind. Trust me, getting rejected from a girl whom you may never see again is better than getting rejected by life.

The big thing I’ve noticed is that I am not alone. There are plenty of people like me who feel unmotivated, taking one step forward while taking two vodka shots back. If you don’t want to admit your similar circumstances, then we can just say it’s “your friend” (ehh, wink wink).

People in my age group are down and feel as if they have lost their path in life. Being lost can mean a lot of different things. You don’t have to be broke and living with your parents to feel like you don’t know what the fuck you’re doing. Look at me, I have a decent paying job that pays for self-destructive things that I do, I’m still alive, to say the least. Despite all of the positive factors in my (and probably yours) life, there’s still a lingering feeling of emptiness, a void in adulthood left unfulfilled.

Why are my peers and I so messed up? Growing up, we were told that we could be anything and do anything, but yet some of us do nothing or, worst, can’t. Are the destructive lives and uncertain future of millennials a result of poor planning, were our pipe dreams too big? Did you really need to take a bong rip and blow off work for the new season of Stranger Things. Well, I don’t know the answer. But I do know one thing: It’s probably because we broke ass shit and our education is nothing more than a glorified party degree.

Don’t just take my word for it. In Stephen Harrison piece “Start-Ups Aren’t Cool Anymore”, he explains how we millennials are fucked. “Underemployed Millennials simply could not build as they entered the workforce,” Harrison wrote. “Student debt worsened the underlying economic problems.” Our education was not providing the cash flow that we need to build a more Instagram perfect life. No money, mo problems. 

If the words of a Dallas writer doesn’t convince you how us born in the late ’80s got the short end of the stick, then let the American government tell you. In “Are Millennials Different?”, a study by Christopher Kurz, Geng Li and Daniel J Vine for the Federal Reserve, we basically are told that we are smarter, have different ideas in life because we’re racially diverse and are poor because the past generation handed us a shitty economy.

They didn’t exactly say that (it was me who paraphrased it, shhh).

“Millennials are more racially diverse, more educated, and . . . are less well off than members of earlier generations when they were young, with lower earnings, fewer assets, and less wealth. For debt, millennials hold levels similar to those of Generation X and more than those of the baby boomers. Conditional on their age and other factors, millennials do not appear to have preferences for consumption that differ significantly from those of earlier generations.”

So, the people who are blaming us for the downfall of the economy are actually the ones who fucked it all up. Shame, shame, blame game. 

Now, what are we going to do about it? Honestly, we just have to play with the hand we’re dealt and not give up! 

Personally, I take one day at a time while planning for my future. Sure, the planning part might not be consistent, or it may be put on pause for a music festival, but you have to just live life. But, you gotta make sure that you’re still making small steps forward, even if it’s with one hangover at a time.

Listen to some music, save money and take a vacation or watch a relatable TV show for a false sense of comfort. Take a drink and have fun on this adventure and try not to let the little stuff bring you down.

It’s no big secret I love the show New Girl. To quickly sum up the show, it’s about a group of friends who are nearing the age of 30 trying to find their path in life.

His love for me is unbearable at times.

Sounds familiar? The show reminds us how surrounding yourself with positive friends and family can make this butterflying a more fun experience. You may be awkward and poor now but with help from the village, you can transform into a less poor and an even more awkward adult.

It’s ok to be unhappy and it’s ok to be happy with your current self in “adulthood.” Don’t feel guilty for having fun now, but know that you can’t Peter Pan it forever.

So, that’s what I’ve been up to, taking a turn onto Dazed and Confused road with everyone else. I’m not saying that I’m a changed man, I’m still that Asian boy who’s trying to find the right banana milkshake blend of Asian and American who continuously disappoints his hard-working Oriental parents. I am working on it and so are my fellow post-grad slummers.

If all else fails, you and I can always become sugar babies (;P)


 

 


Leave a comment

Bad Asian Mom Chooses Car Over Son

By Airec Sype.

Long story short, a mother in Yiwu, China, refused to let firefighters save her trapped child by breaking the window of her BMW and wished to wait for a locksmith. She basically decided that her material object was more important than her son. And I doubt that it was because she didn’t have car insurance.

Damn, stuff like this really pisses me off. Of all the moments where I wished a negative story wasn’t about an Asian person, this is probably in the top 5. This kind of reassures that stereotype that Asians, particularly women, are materialistic. I’m not saying all Asians are like that, but this c*nt really is.

My parents used physically discipline on me when I was growing up. However it was only used when I was doing something stupid, never was there an incident where my father or mother came home after a night of drinking and beat me. I understand that their form of discipline was one borrowed from their old country; they didn’t know of any other structure of discipline. However there is no exception in this case, this lady wanted to make sure her posh BMW stayed unharmed while her child was dying in a car that was being baked by scorching heat; now that is some sh*t that is unforgivable.

I first found this story on Uproxx and did a little more research on a Yahoo! news page. So needless to say, many Internet outlets have picked up on this story. Not to mention the public shaming by random people through social media, like Twitter and other blogs.

Moral of the story is don’t leave your kid in a car during high temperatures. And if your child is locked in a car during a heat wave then smash that window to save YOUR OFFSPRING! Don’t be a bad Asian; you’re suppose to be smarter than that. SMH!

I know this site is called #SorryAsianParents, but this lady needs one for #BadAsianParents. I feel sorry for this kid who has to grow up knowing that his life isn’t worth a window on a BMW. If only China had affordable car insurance like GEICO.


1 Comment

Let Us Celebrate 61 Years of Jackie Chan: My first Asian Hero

(Jaaaackkiieee gots jokes as he post a hipsterized pic of himself on Facebook)

By Airec Sype.

Action comedian actor director singer Jack-of-all-trades Jackie Chan celebrated his 61st birthday earlier this month. So I have to mention it; how can I have a blog that celebrates my Asian American weirdness without talking about one of my heroes JACKIE CHAN!!!

Growing up in America, there were not a lot of Asian heroes for this cute little Asian baby, who was lucky enough to be born in this great nation (MURRICA!), to look up to. Most of the heroes I (or we) had were from the relic VHS tapes that translated kung-fu movies onto giant heavy television boxes.

When I talk to some Asians and Asian-Americans about Jackie Chan, I get the conciseness that you either like him or hate him. Some Asians dislike Jackie Chan (I know this is going to get annoying but it doesn’t feel right just using his last name; there is more power and status if I just keep saying Jackie Chan) because they don’t see him as a martial artist despite him having training in multiple of different styles. But then they’re Asians, like I, who loves this man.

The legacy of Jackie Chan is his ability to combine comedy and action. There is a sense of authenticity to his work because he does almost all of his stunts himself. Uproxx has compiled a list of his notable injuries. This is because he was originally a stunt man in old martial arts films. In fact, he got hit in the face by Bruce Lee himself in a failed attempt of a sneak attack.

However, behind all the action and laughter, Jackie Chan also has a sensitive side. During a press-conference, Jackie Chan reveals how he wants to do a movie about love. Knowing that this might not be the Jackie Chan we all know, he said, “I love to produce movie which I love where I can speak what I want to speak and do what I want to do. It is not all about making money.”

Getting hit in the face by Lee and breaking almost every bone in his body all in the effort of entertaining us, that is the man behind the legend. My favorite movie will probably be Legend of the Drunken Master. That movie has the perfect combination of comedy, action and Asian boys with daddy problems . . . Oh did I forget to mention that this man can SING!!!

Oh yeah, this man got it all.

Let’s go back to this idea of Asian or Asian American heroes. Growing up there really wasn’t much for us to look up to besides these kung-fu flying, fist punching, ass-kicking action heroes. Growing up in the 90’s, the idea of an Asian American in the mainstream media was not feasible.

I’m not saying that there wasn’t any Asian heroes when I was growing up, I just didn’t know about them nor did I have the mature mental capacity to appreciate them (not saying I’m mature, I still act like a frat-boy at times). I was introduced to Yo-Yo Ma while watching an episode of PBS Arthur, but I didn’t really know who that was. There was obviously Michelle Kwan who can literally fly on ice, but I didn’t like ice skating as a kid.

Growing up, I wanted an Asian Arnold, or an Asian James Bond. These were men that I could look up to! I didn’t want the Asian henchmen in the Rambo films who gets gunned down by starving POW to be my heroes. Fu*K those guys, they were WEAK! Or I wanted a swavey Asian guy who can come into a room and swoop the girl, not the creepy four eyed Japanese pervert that the white hero was saving her from.

That is one of the things I was envious of as a kid, these white little boys had someone they could look up to; they were able to picture themselves as the hero and mainstream media reenforced that dream. So if I followed what the 90’s told me, I was bound to be a fu*king four-eyed henchmen who is perving on white woman while getting my ass-kicked by some white guy or just some nerdy sidekick who does all the math homework and robot stuff.

Blacks and Latinos were also lucky. Of course black kids had . . . well they had the whole NBA and hip-hop industry in the 90s to look up to . . . and Malcolm X and MLK. I’m not a complete racist here. And Latinos had Oscar Dela Hoya and Ricky Martin (before he came out). But there I was, thinking that my future can do no better than Mr. Miyagi. And he wasn’t even the main hero of the Karate Kid! THE KARATE KID WASN’T EVEN ASIAN! Thankfully Community fixed that.

I guess that’s why when Al from City Guys first appeared, I hung onto that character. He was one of the first Asian looking males on TV that I saw swooping girls off their feet. The same feeling of inspiration arose when I first saw John Cho in American Pie. Despite their small roles in the show or movies, their presence on the show gave me a light of hope that an Asian American male like me could one day exist in a mainstream American world where my role isn’t the nerdy foreign exchange student . . . and that I too can get cute white girls (but that’s not the point of this conversation.)

Of course now when I look at the Asian American, or just Asian in general, heroes of today, I can think of Jerry Yang, the creator of Yahoo!, or Margret Cho, or the Chinese who left their homeland and built the railroads/gold mines. I can think of people like that who risked their lives or did amazing feats instead of solely relying on action stars like Donnie Yen and Tony Jaa or any other yellow-skinned karate master. But lets not forget those two, they’re pretty badass. Oh, and that Asian kid from 21 and over, his chill-to-pull ratio was 5:5.

That is probably why when shows like Selfie, which has an Asian American male as a lead actor, gets cancelled I feel a little hurt inside. Or actions like replacing the Asian characters in movies like 21 and Dragonball: Evolution hurts the young Asian American community. I feel for the lost of an easy hero for young Asian boys to look up to, to picture themselves as a possible version of their future. Some say that the media is evil, but it was the quickest way for young minority boys like I to picture themselves in the American world. School and books and Asian doctors, pff. That didn’t matter growing up in the rough side of Visalia. Movies was our salvation for a potential better life. In a way, that sense of living vicariously through a fictional character allowed us to be hopeful of becoming a real American. It’s what the media told us.

Despite the lack of Asian males in the media, we still have mix-martial art fighters. But sometimes it’s hard to tell who’s fighting when two Asians are going at it.

Now looking at it in hindsight, we kinda all had a hero with us growing up. I didn’t realize it until I reached college and was able to think like an “adult.” My father kinda is a hero. Any minority kid can call their father a hero, a man who risk his life leaving his old country for a better life for his family, a man who slaves away at work so his children can have an American life/education. Well unless your father was a bastard, then this doesn’t apply to you.

Sure my dad was an SOB at times, but he was there for me and had my back. He didn’t know kung-fu or built robots, but he got his yellow ass over here and fertilized me on the great soil of America so that I didn’t have to make shoes for Nike.

I guess heroes are everywhere, it just took me a little while to realize it. If you’re Asian American, try to be a hero for the kids of tomorrow. Oh and I love you Jackie Chan.

 


Leave a comment

Exploring Microaggression: Is everyone a racist? Can Comedy Justify a Little Racism?

showing my asian booty by the bay bridge

showing my asian booty by the bay bridge

By Airec Sype.

Edited by Broscobar

 

“You’re pretty cute, for an Asian guy.”

One of the many phrases that I’ve heard in my life that opposes my ethnicity as an Asian-American. That disclaimer lingers in my mind; are they trying to flatter me and what attractive features I actually possess, or are they trying to sneak an insult about the lack of attractive features my ethnicity at large possesses?

If I’m cute, then why need to add a qualifying clause. Why the need for a justification!? I’m flattered, but what about all the other Asian boys? Dose she (and others who utter this phrase) think that the majority of Asian males are ugly, or weird-looking, or perhaps strange anime characters who belongs in J-pop bands?

Other statements like, “You’re not that smart for an Asian,” or, “You probably know some form of martial arts,” also resonates with me. Despite the last statement being pretty badass (cuz we AZN kick ass), it seems clear that there are plenty of stereotypes (positive and negative) thrown at my face constantly.

In fact, recently I’ve learned that these kinds of statements that includes an Asian qualifying clause, is a form of microaggression. Hell, I wrote a whole blog post about it a month ago.

It’s sometimes difficult determining which form of microaggression to praise and which to reject in an angry-minority-blogger-kind-way. Sure I’ll gladly accept the fact that you think I’m cute, but I will revile this common unholy standard of attractiveness for Asians and this belief  of a small penis!!! (>.<) !!!

So how do we determine what is OK to say and if the person who spoke the offense, if any, is at fault?

My buddy, Daniel, 25, of San Francisco, says, “Sometimes the person who committed the microaggression may not be aware of it, and yet it happens all the time when people use generalization based on race, gender, or use stereotypes.”

What does that mean? If I say that all Asians are good at math, then does that mean I’m a little bit racist? Or if I say that all Jewish people are good at saving money, does that mean I secretly think Jews are cheap? Or if I open a door for a random girl, then does that mean I’m secretly a misogynist? (Actually true story, some woman on my first week of college got upset at me for opening the door for her, pff. She should have walked faster if she didn’t want me to give her a taste of my gentlemanly qualities!)

This is all confusing, I’m sure. I, too, am also at fault for spewing negative racial, sexual, cultural and many other -als out there. Especially during a heated game of HALO! But I don’t think I’m a racist; I think I’m just a jackass in the nicest way possible. This does not stop me from using microaggressive Asian stereotypes as jokes or joke about other racial (or any other class of people) stereotypes.

Can an Asian make racial jokes about Asians? I’m sure I can; I’m Asian.

. . . don’t lie you P.C. America; we all do it . . . it could be in a subtle-behind-closed-doors form or in a vulgar matter . . . we’re (well a large sum of us) idiots, which is why half of the world hates us . . .

 

The Mexican is strong in my friends cooking

The Mexican is strong in my friends cooking

Here is an example of me exercising my microaggressive urges. A friend of mine, Martin, 28, a college educated man of San Francisco, made carne asada fries and I comment: “The Mexican is strong in you.” Did my comment imply that my friend is now a better Mexican because he can make these south of the boarder fries . . . hell yea. I won’t shy away from calling my statement a little racist. Like how I would post on my black friends Facebook wall, “Happy Martin Luther Kings Day.”

Martin returned the joke by saying, “My parents would be proud, Airec Syprasert.” Our banter is one that implies that he is a better “Mexican” because of his skill to cook a dish with a Latin flavor, instead of his career. This is the kind of relationships that me and many other people in the world have with their friends. We share a racially open alliance where one could use racial stereotypes to aid or hurt one another, all for a good laugh . . . or a stinging burn!

Comedians like Dave Chappelle and Kevin Shea also uses racial stereotypes in their jokes, but the general public views them as comics rather than racists.

Was it racist when Shea says, in the video, that black people have white people to “worry” about, or that the last Asian man on Earth would be chasing his dog for dinner? Yeah. But it’s funny! The comedy of truth. Even today the internet is popping up with numerous of blogs and vblogs ranting about how white people are oppressing blacks in America.

Here is Jimmy O. Yang with some more Asian stand-up. It’s funny but borderline racist.

In the name of microaggression, the blanket word that shines an ugly racial light onto everything American, it does seem like everything is a tad-bit-sometimes-always-a-baby-racist. But if everything is racist, then that’s bad right? If everything racist is bad, then why do comedians make racially profound jokes/commentary, or why do best friends throw offensive hay-makers and maybe an occasional n/c-word or two?

My Jewish friend, lets call him J-Friend, 24, graduate student at USF, believes that the people who uses the term microaggression are hyper politically correct people, claiming that everything is racist.

“Microaggression is one of those terms I can’t help but roll my eyes when I hear it,” he says. “I’m more callous than others but I think racist jokes, and even antisemitic jokes, are hilarious.”

So now with this new generation of “minorities,” we are faced with this racial line that divides actual racism and comedy.

Also, if someone refuses to see comedy in microaggression, then does that mean that person is a little bit racist? Can a person be so politically correct that subconsciously their mind is being microaggressive?

“In some ways though you are right; some people who proclaim to be the most non-racist are basically gentle racists,” J-Friend said. “Like the white Social Justice Warrior(s) f*cks who runs around being every ethnic minorities white knight calling racism everywhere. Like if you’re more pissed off than the supposed victims then it seems like you’re doing it more for mental masturbation than actual justice.”

I will admit that I dislike some of the white SJW at SFSU. I understand that some Caucasians have “white guilt,” but you don’t have to be the forerunner for every minorities battle. This eagerness to jump to a minority defense is what caused some whites to be accused of “march-jacking” the police brutality protest in the Bay Area.

I also cannot stand the minorities that claims that everything is racist. Even some people think Chappelle is a racist. This feeling was ever so true in my Asian American studies classes. Not everything is racist . . . Well let me rephrase that, not everything that can seem racist is meant with malice or harmful intent.

I guess this is why we have terms like microaggression . . . oooppp . . .

“I think racism just is the negative stuff that no one actually inherits or passes down or is proud about, while the positive stuff being cultural tradition type stuff that people are proud about and want to pass on,” Broscobar says, 25, graduate of UC Berkeley. “Jokes are a different matter though. Sincerity goes out the window and it’s all entertainment. Laughing at a racist joke is the goal because it exists in a vacuum; it’s not supposed to be passed on and no one is supposed to want to pass on or inherit the negative stuff.”

Intent seems to be the key factor when it comes to microaggression, everyday human interactions and comedy. When it comes down to it, it’s really hard to say what is right and wrong when friends are throwing blows at each other or when race, and other nouns of oppression, is used as a comedic trope. Race is a touchy subject and will continue to be one as long as there are ignorant people in the world.

However, this and the blanket term “microaggression” shouldn’t hold you back from making a joke, as long if it’s without malice intent (that word again). Comedy is just tragedy plus time right? So is it ok to laugh now? I also don’t think that my friends who says that Asians have small penises are all racist (I’m average when I’m not drunk, fyi), nor do I think they harbor secret racist feelings. They are idiots, but I guess they’re my idoits? Unless you’re like this Asian girls ex-boyfriend, then you’re just a f*cking racist and gets NO pass! So lighten up, throw some microaggression around . . . an intelligent person should be able to determine what is harmful or not: respect each other out there. Don’t be a jackass.

-Till next time, Sype.

-ps, I do think there is still racism out there, I’m just talking about a little bit of diet racism.