Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Random Access Memory

I have a love-hate relationship with my family. Mostly I love them, but some of them annoy me immensely. However it is possible to love anoyances, or so I have realised. I was reading 'the opposite of fate' by 'Amy Tan' and I came to this passage in which Tan described an exchange with her parents. It sounded familiar. I could swap the names with mine and my parents and it was the conversation I have had with my parents while I was a kid. It went this way:
Father: "Plumpie"
Me: "What?"
Father: "Why are you so disrespectful? Do you have to question whatever I have to say?"

The correct response to my parents calling me by name was to say, "Coming Daddy or Mommy dearest!"

When I spoke with my mother later in the evening, I told her that all Asian parents were alike. She had no clue what I was talking about and I didnt want to educate her. While I was a kid, I thought my parents were very strict. Now I know for a fact that both of them were drama queens really.

For example, my mother (Like Tan's) is a fatalist. When I was a kid, and she had to educate me about washing my hands before a meal, she would not say that, "Its to kill all germs," or whatever regular mommies say. She would instead show me the most disgusting picture of earthworms or snakes and tell me, "If you don't wash your hands, you will have worms of this sort in your tummy and they will eat you up from inside." I often remained wide awake at night picturing worms crawling all around my tummy the days I forgot to wash properly. For years afterwards I washed my hands like a person possessed before and after eating. I still harbour a dread of worms and maggots thanks to Mommy dearest. I reminded Mom about this few days back and Mom laughed gleefully and said, "That was a brainwave of mine, wasn't it?"


Post a Comment

<< Home