Archive: Happy Birthday or Whatever

The Moth: Boston June 23!


So if you managed to score tickets to the show then please come by and say hello! I will say hello back!

Here is a photo of a wombat which is not relevant to anything but your interests.


The Moth in St. Paul

Are you in Minnesota?

Are you in St. Paul or Minneapolis or the environs?

Do you like to listen to stories?

Do you like cheese curds?

Do you love cheese curds?

If you answered yes to the questions above, then here is some important news that’s tangentially related to cheese curds:

I’ll be doing The Moth on November 7 in St. Paul. It’ll be at the Fitzgerald Theater, which I’m told seats 1000, which means WHAT I am PEEING ALL OVER MYSELF RIGHT NOW. From fear. Not from, you know, just needing to pee and being too lazy to walk to the bathroom or whatever.

I will be eating cheese curds. The first time I had them I was visiting my friend Rhena in Minneapolis and I thought, dude cheese curds are awesome, how was there a cheese product that I’d NEVER had before? It was a crazy discovery-slash-revelation.

True story: Cheese curds are hard to get in NYC.
You know what’s also hard to get in NYC? Ebola. Unless you’re eating someone’s vomit, which you aren’t, because you’re too busy eating pizza, then you will be ebola free.

So to sum it up: The Moth in St. Paul on Friday, Nov. 7. No to ebola, yes to cheese curds.

See you there!

A Conversation that Just Happened between Mike and Me

Me: What do you want for your birthday?
Mike: Bitches, 40s, la chronica, and blow. What else?
Fuck it is hot as fucking balls.
Fuck this shit.
Me: But what do you really want because I can’t buy bitches on the internet.

Annnndddd scene.

(I realize one can buy bitches on the Internet but it seems like a hassle, and in addition, the bitches won’t arrive tomorrow which is his birthday.)

Fun Expert

My father gives me a set of beakers. All of different sizes, including a tiny one that is so adorable you want to explode. These are all from his lab and MAY OR MAY NOT have been used to store caustic chemicals. But I do not care because these beakers are totally BOSS. They are awesome! I also got these little test tubes with screw tops, also very adorable. I have no idea what to put in them. My brother says to store urine in them but then he stops himself and says, actually you know what? It’s too small for urine–as if this is something I’m seriously considering. Yes, Mike, let me piss in a test tube and you know with this screw top, I can easily store it for…later? So I thank my father. I will enjoy these beakers. They’re even graduated! Bad ass, right?

So then my mother says, why are you giving our daughter beakers? What is that about? My father says well it’s for decoration. She can put pencils in them, store things, she can even drink out of them! My mother says, why on EARTH would Annie want to drink out of a beaker? She has CUPS for that. She doesn’t NEED beakers. Why would she want to drink out of that? My father says, because it is FUN! FUN! But, you don’t know FUN, do you? You don’t know it!

And then we all laugh because throughout all this, my father is wearing SUSPENDERS. But not just any suspenders. They are like 2.5 inch wide straps made out of the same material you would use for, like, a duffel bag strap. AND they are holding up plaid madras bermuda shorts, which do not actually require suspenders and also do not “go” with suspenders AND in addition, these are suspenders a carpenter would wear in order to hold up a heavy toolbelt, which, if you are paying attention, my father is not wearing because we are at home eating dinner together. The man does not even wear a toolbelt at work. And apparently not a regular belt. So a man wearing carpentry suspenders is telling my mother she does not know fun.

I tell my father, hey, why don’t I get you suspenders that are not, uh, THOSE suspenders. Something classy? And he goes WHY? Those probably cost, like $25? What a waste of money. And I go, how much did THOSE cost and he says $15 and I say for an extra ten United States dollars I would totally buy you nicer suspenders that don’t look like you are wearing an actual backpack except without the pack. And my brother and I have a discussion about suspenders, in which we bring up the rainbow ones that Robin WIlliams wore in Mork & Mindy (nanu nanu, what a retarded show, seriously that show is seriously retarded). So my father says what is the point, I do not wear these in public. But he is soooo close to wearing them in public I can feel it. I mean he’s wearing them around the house, what is to stop him from being like, shit I need to run out and get some milk, and then boom suddenly he is wearing suspenders in Ralph’s. This is what I’m saying.

But even backtrack from that, why is my father even WEARING suspenders? Why wear suspenders instead of a belt? It’s not like he has no belts. My father is a man with belts. So, I ask him this. What is up with the suspenders? He says because belts make him itchy. He has been wearing belts for over 60 years at this point and NOW he decides that belts make him itchy? How can belts even itch? They’re not made of wool. It makes NO sense at all. I don’t understand, but my father is wearing suspenders a steel worker would be wearing to hold up, I don’t know, some kind of badass tool that uses fire to cut metal. But my father is there at the kitchen table eating vegan spring rolls with his hands.

A Shout Out

I wanted to holla at everyone at the Asian Pacific America Coalition over at Fordham University. Thanks for inviting me today. It was good times. Stay out of jail, everyone. I mean that. Tiger children do not belong in jail. Fact: Tiger children become the “CEO of Wall Street”. Yeah, I don’t know what that means either, but I like it.

Also a quick shout out to CREAM PUFFS.

Happy Birthday to my Mother

It’s my mom’s birthday today. Part me was like, hey, what if I “forgot” her birthday and didn’t call? What would that be like? But I called her anyway and bid her birthday wishes because what if I didn’t call her? I kind of don’t want to know. I understand that knowing is half the battle, but the other half of the battle might be really fucked up. Scary even. Like, for example, I used to go to this bar a lot in my neighborhood. The same bartender has been there FOREVER. This older gentleman with a big beer gut. Totally acceptable bartender. He’s no Mr. Friendly but he’s no Colonel Asshole either. Anyway so I’ve been going to this place for years and years and then one night I’m there with friends, and JoMo goes to the bathroom and comes out with this horrified expression.

First of all, let me explain that this particular bathroom in this particular place is not what I’d call sanitary. Is it the worst bathroom ever? No. I have been in worse bathrooms, of course. One lady had said it was the grossest bathroom she had ever seen, but she was from California so I cut her some slack. In California bathrooms literally clean themselves. As for this bar’s bathroom: I’d say that it is clean enough by NY standards, but those standards are dangerously low.

So anyway JoMo explained that the bartender was in the bathroom too, had taken a whiz, and didn’t wash his hands, and then went straight back to work and fixed someone’s drink. So he rubs his pee hands all over a glass and rubs his pee hands all over the beer tap and then hands the pee beer with his pee hands to a person who then drank from the pee glass and said, thanks buddy, and left a tip. Then this guy was, you know, high-fiving people all night.

So that killed the place for me. See? In that particular case, I was better off NOT knowing half the battle. Obviously I had been going there for years and years and this man had essentially been pissing in my mouth for years and years. I mean sure he didn’t piss directly into my face hole, but there was residual pee on his hands so if you add it all up over the past 8 years I’ve been going there, this bartender has taken a really satisfying and luxurious pee in my mouth.

So now when I see this bartender, I just see two urinals for his hands. I was happier before, when I had no idea he was whizzing in my mouth. So what I mean to say is that I wished my mother a very happy birthday because I did not want her to pee in my mouth.

Whatever! Whatever! Whatever!

Thanks for the happy birthday wishes! It was a swell birthday, but it was also a birthday that was EERILY SIMILAR to another birthday I had not too long ago.

Let us flashback to…say…CHAPTER ONE of my book Happy Birthday or Whatever. The title of said book draws from the chapter in which my PARENTS FORGET MY BIRTHDAY.

Now let us flashforward to present day, August 25, 2010, also known as my birthday (and the birthdays of Regis Philbin, Elvis Costello, Ivan the Terrible, and, in addition, my friend Natalie. I should note that I’ve only had dinner with one of those four people. Hint: It’s not Ivan the Terrible). It was a good birthday. I ate a very civilized dinner with a few of my closest friends, including Chris who was carrying a murse. We made fun of him and agreed that in order to offset the mursiness he had to carry bacon, ammo, power tools, various knives, and a bottle of Old Spice. Anyway point is, it was a very pleasant evening, murse and all. I did not want a rage-a-thon this year. Figured I’d wait for the weekend like a responsible grown-up, which I now am. Not really.

But wait…something is missing…hmmm…something is misssiinnnggg.

Oh right. My parents TOTALLY FORGOT AGAIN. Again!!!

You’d think that when your kid writes a BOOK about forgetting her birthday, you’d start, you know, remembering.

So the next day August 26, is my parents’ anniversary. So I call my mom and I’m like heeeyy girl, what’s up? And I say happy anniversary! And she goes, oh is that today? Really? What’s the date? I say it’s August 26th. She goes whoaaa, where did the time go, are you sure its our anniversary? And I say yes, I am sure because I have a thing called a calendar, it is a device from the future in which you can annotate important dates. This “calendar” is also available in digital forms, such as on a computer or on a cellular telephone. And then I wait for it. You know, the REALIZATION that she has made A HORRIBLE MISTAKE. And she goes, oh well, I’ll call you daddy later, what are you doing for your birthday tomorrow?

*forehead slap*

I say DUDE my birthday was YESTERDAY, and she goes, NO, and I say YES and she says NO, and that keeps going for awhile and then she says sorry and says “Oh my gosh, I’m such a zero.” Which actually made me laugh because I have never heard her say that before, I have no idea where she picked that up. Sometimes she says “I’m going to give you knuckle sandwich” which is pretty hilarious and my father calls rolling through a stop sign a “California Stop” instead of a “California roll” even after I explained that it’s a play on words with the type of sushi, but he thinks that is nonsense. I think that cream cheese in sushi is gross. Cheese and seaweed is weird, you guys. Seriously. Who was the dude who said “Oh shit I just had a great idea. What if we take some raw fish, add some cream cheese, add some rice and wrap it with seaweed? Awesome, right?” The man was obviously from California.

Anyway my mother says sorry, I go it’s fine, but really, what is wrong with you? Then she says, oh it’s really hot in Los Angeles! I’m not sure if she was trying to change the subject or if perhaps the 103 degree heat has actually made her “go full retard.”

So then I think, do I call my father, wish HIM a happy anniversary? And I think no no no, in just a few minutes, he will call me. Because my mother will call him and tell him that they forgot something important and in addition, did you know it was our anniversary today? No, me neither! OMG!

Anyway he ended up calling and apologizing.

Oh, I should also mention that my brother had REMINDED/WARNED them it was my birthday. Like, seriously people. He said he tried, but failed. Anyway the whole thing is hilarious and sad, but probably more hilarious. More sad the first time, more hilarious the second time.

I learned an important lesson today: Always order more desserts, even if people say no no no I’m full I don’t really need to eat dessert. Because they are lying. Everyone needs to eat dessert.

Skype + You + Me = Success

I read this article about how teachers are using Skype to connect their classes with authors and holding Q&A sessions. This is something I would’ve KILLED for in high school and college! Can you imagine? My brain would’ve exploded all over the place. Anyway I think this is an incredible idea, and I love talking to students. It kind of combines what I do for a paycheck (doing educational tech stuff) and what I do in life (pretending to be a writer). If you are an educator and want to organize something with me, I’d be more than happy to oblige! Email me for details.

<——— There’s a link somewhere over there.

I am older!

I celebrated a birthday last week. I hope I never stop having birthdays because THEY ARE AWESOME. We should have more birthdays, right? Would that make it less special? Maybe. But you know what? It would really spice up the economy. Just saying.

My mother called me at 9:30 in the morning, while I was at the office. She was like “What are you doing?” And I was all dude, I’m AT THE OFFICE because that is what I do on a Tuesday at 9:30 and she’s all, “Happy birthday! You so old now. You should have baby and I raise it for you.” That was all.

My cousin, who lives in Seoul, had a kid, but then went through a divorce. She’s a concert pianist and goes on tour a lot, so my aunt and my mom are more or less raising the kid. Being raised by one’s grandmothers basically means you get a shitload of attention and, like, all the ice cream you want. So they want to have another sibling for the kid so he can, you know, “keep it real.” Which, I suppose, is where I come in. PLEASE NOTE: My uterus is currently closed. Sorry for the inconvenience. At this time there are no plans to open my uterus. However, you can sign up for the newsletter to get the latest updates on my uterus. Just kidding. A uterus newsletter would be heinous. Or, awesome. You know how some people will send you email from babies or pets in the first person, like “Hi, Today I had my first piece of cake and boy, was it messy!” or “Today I went for a long walk, played fetch with Mommy and Daddy and I found a dead squirrel!” Well, my uterus newsletter would be like that. “Today I’m dry and old and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to breed! OMG, sad face. But don’t worry Mom is totes taking good care of me! LOL!” Yes, my uterus is like a 12-year-old girl. Disturbing, I know, but listen, it’s my uterus. I can’t change it. It is what it is, you understand?

Speaking of uterii, in Canada, I saw this sign and, of course, had to take a photo of it because the rest of my body is also 12 years old, just like my uterus.

So here’s the moral of the story: I am older in Earth years, but in mental years, I am still, like, 12 years old. Now, who wants to drop me off at the mall?

Late Breaking News

I’ll be reading at the Asian American Writers’ Workshop this Sunday, in honor of Lunar New Year.*

There’ll be dumplings and noodles and rice cakes and readings. It’s free-form and casual. So if you want to read something, DO VIT. DO VIT NOW!

I’ll be reading around 9:25.

AAWW is located conveniently in Midtown West.
16 West 32nd Street, Suite 10A

Right near K-town!** Holy crap! It’s your lucky day. You can eat Korean food and then listen to a Korean (American).

But, wait! How do we get there?

N, R, Q, W, F, B, D, V trains to 34th Street/Herald Square
4, 5, 6 trains to 33rd Street
1, 2, 3, 9 trains to 34th Street

*Lunar New Year is the same as Chinese New Year but, like, it’s not just New Year in China. The Sea of Japan is also bullshit. Why do they get their own sea? We don’t call it American Ocean. Though we should just to piss the Canadians off.

**People always ask me where to eat in K-town. The answer is not very clear because, for the most part, I find most of the food there kind of overpriced and not that good. But I have very high standards. Fine, I’m a total snob. You happy? I guess I like Cho Dang Gol, which is at 55 W 35th St (between 5th & 6th Ave). But I also found out recently they gave nonspicy food to white people, which is irritating. But whatever. Apparently white people are all adverse to FLAVOR. Also, please don’t go to that place with the waterfall. Everyone always goes there and it breaks my heart. It’s like why don’t I just poop on a plate and give it to you. At least it’d be free.