When the Cavalry Sucks (#181)

You know those big, dysfunctional but lovable white families you used to see in television and film? They were all about siblings being super shitty to each other. Yet when one member of the family was threatened, the family closed ranks and fended off the attacker.

I grew up in a huge, white, broken, dysfunctional family.

I thought those stories were bullshit. Continue reading When the Cavalry Sucks (#181)

House Calls (#153)

img_0053Andy’s Chinese-American father is a bored retired civil engineer. He has far too much time on his hands and his only interests are his sons and on-line video poker. He’s also got the patience of a toddler. When Jay wants something, he wants it NOW.

The man called every week after we got married, demanding a grandson. Not a grandchild, mind you. No, Jay wanted a number one son from his number one son. And he wanted it yesterday. Continue reading House Calls (#153)

Hashtags & Home Improvement (#150)

When I see hashtags, I think of home improvement. Maybe it’s because social media really took off the year that we worked on our new house. Suddenly # was no longer “the pound sign” on the landline phones of my youth (remember, I’m old). Instead, it became a marker that people used to look up conversations/ events on Twitter, or #CatsofInstagram.

Other people use hash tags to convey particular (usually snarky) emotions, or an action expressing disbelief. Like #facepalm, when reading any of Donald Trump’s tweets. About anything. Continue reading Hashtags & Home Improvement (#150)

Autumn & the Schoolkids (#149)

When we bought a new house, the kids from the middle school across the street invaded. Every day at 3 PM, skateboarders, flower-pickers, and nose-pickers hung out on our steps. They played with the sprinklers and left trash.

My husband Andy declared war. He lost. He wanted me to continue the battle.

I couldn’t think of anything I wanted to do less than yell at a bunch of recalcitrant, hormonal tweens. Continue reading Autumn & the Schoolkids (#149)

Andy Versus the Schoolkids (#148)

 

Andy thought the squirrels were bad -- until the school kids arrived.
Andy Takes Aim

When Andy and I decided to move, we fell in love with a particular area in the South Bay. It had sidewalks and sat under an undeveloped hill.

It was expensive. Out of our budget – until a tiny house across from a middle school went on the market.

Some of the brick landscaping.
Some of the brick landscaping and rose bushes.

The house had a huge backyard and gorgeous brick landscaping, but it didn’t sell immediately – unheard of in the South Bay. Apparently families that wouldn’t mind living next to a school didn’t want to fit into a house under 1200 square feet with only two bedrooms. Continue reading Andy Versus the Schoolkids (#148)

Over the Moon (#147)

My Chinese-American husband grew up in Hawaii, then moved to Los Angeles. Not only did he not care about different seasons, I’m not even sure he knew what they were until I took him to New Hampshire and Washington D.C.

His immigrant family wasn’t big on holidays, either, whether American or Chinese. The man didn’t even have a Christmas stocking until I gave him one. Continue reading Over the Moon (#147)

The Beat Down at an English Pub (#134)

Did I smell a rat at the pub?
Did I smell a rat at the British pub?

My Chinese-American husband and I have been lucky. Unlike so many other AMWF couples, Andy and I have never been harassed by racists. Maybe it’s because we live in Los Angeles, multi-racial city. Or maybe it’s because Angelenos are too self-absorbed to notice other people’s skin color.

Probably it’s because skin color doesn’t register when you’re always looking at your phone. Continue reading The Beat Down at an English Pub (#134)

Text. Subtext. (#20)

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It’s 5:45 PM on Friday when I get a message from Andy.

The text reads: Why don’t you come down to my place this weekend?

And then there’s the subtext: Please don’t make me take the 405 to the 101 to the 134 two weekends in a row. Continue reading Text. Subtext. (#20)

Commando Cat vs. Owen (#19)

This is Owen the Newfoundland. Darling of Clan Drooling.
This is Owen the Newfoundland. Darling of Clan Drooling.

When JM and Shamu moved out, little Bat Cat was lonely. I was lonely. I was definitely poorer. We found a new roommate – an actress with a dog.

Bat Cat and I decided being lonely was preferable. Continue reading Commando Cat vs. Owen (#19)

Taboo, or, Why a Chinese Math Stereotype Exists (#18)

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Cards from the game “Taboo.”

It was Game Night with Andy’s aunt, uncle, and cousins. Technically, Auntie and Uncle weren’t involved in the gaming. (Well, this sort of gaming. I learned about their love affair with Las Vegas later.) Continue reading Taboo, or, Why a Chinese Math Stereotype Exists (#18)