If it was not already obvious, I’m Asian…well, Japanese American to be exact. I am not FOB (Fresh Off the Boat) by any means considering my family’s roots are in Hawaii for many generations. Oh, and Hawaii is a part
of the U.S. (you would be surprised how many people think I am from a “foreign” country/island).
I did not come to terms with the fact that I was different until the third grade when we started learning about Asian cultures. I remember my friends and I making fun of Asians because they have slanted/squinty eyes and smell funny from the weird foods they eat. It was a good laugh at the time, and no one thought anything of it. Then I went home and asked my mom what an Asian was. I was utterly horrified when she replied, “You are, dear.” I remember crying…a lot. So the next day in school when my friends started with the Asian bashing, I pointed out to them that I am Asian
. I will never forget that moment of realization when they all stopped and took a good, long look at me. They had forgotten I was Asian too. I do that sometimes, even today. It is hard to remember that I am different all the time.
To complicate my cultural identity further, I have an Asian block in which I do not find Asians attractive and therefore do not seek them out. I know this is horrible and self-loathing, but it is something I have had to deal with my whole life. I don’t know if it has to do with the subtle messages that we receive of American beauty being a Barbie/Ken doll image, or the fact that my parents have pushed my sisters and I to find “a nice Japanese boy” our whole lives and we rebelled. But interestingly enough, I find people who are half Asian to be some of the most beautiful people in the world (e.g., Brandon Lee
…need I say more?).
Proudly, the block subsided when MKD, Center, and I went to see, Saving Face
recently. I found myself strangely attracted to the leading women and my block did not rear its ugly head. This is a gigantic step for me and I am quite pleased with myself.
On a side note, I did not ogle the screen as much as MKD and Center (they have a bad case of yellow fever and were deliriously happy during the sex scenes). I wasn’t embarrassed until they started wishing and chanting at the screen, “Sex, sex, sex…come on…sex!”