“Have you eaten yet?”

I love you.

“Here’s $100 for your birthday.”

We hope you don’t waste it on something decadent, like coffee. What, just because you move to Brooklyn you suddenly think you’re too good for non-dairy creamer and Folgers?

“I saw Jeffrey’s mother the other day at Costco.”

Did you know that Jeffrey’s documentary about bonobos just got nominated for an Oscar? What an Ideal Asian Son. Anyway, did you get any GoFundMe donations for your web series about early 20th-century Asian diaspora?

“I have chest pains.”

If you don’t get married soon, I’ll have a second cardiac arrest. And don’t tell me that’s not how the human heart works, unless you went to medical school.

“You look healthy.”

You’ve gained weight, mostly in your face.


Multiple definitions:

  • 1. (adjective) Your friend Greg walked in to our home with his shoes on. Does he think we live at a Dunkin’ Donuts?
  • 2. (synonym) Greg should be ashamed about only getting accepted into Cornell Medical School.
  • 3. (verb) Greg talks too much about his podcast.

“George Stephanopoulos is so handsome.”

George Stephanopoulos is so handsome.

“I don’t need a birthday gift.”

Ever since I survived communism/immigration/racism, I realized that I don’t have an attachment to objects or emotions. Have you eaten yet?

“Are you sick?”

If you’re getting sick, I will leave work right now to give you expired Tylenol and a $25 gift card to The Olive Garden. You’ll become healthier as soon as you gain more unlimited breadstick weight. Preferably in your face.

“How’s the weather?”

You sound cold. I hope you’re wearing the sweater that Grandma JuJu knit for you. You know, the one she knit while holding down three jobs and a relationship. Anyway, it’s hot where we are.

“We immigrated to America so you could live a better life.”

All of our work will have been for nothing if you don’t become a doctor, lawyer, or a doctor who side hustles as an Oscar-nominated bonobos documentary filmmaker. I’m happy if you also become the Casanova of TV, just like George Stephanopoulos.

“I heard that you want to start a band.”

You’re doing drugs, aren’t you?

“I’m proud of you.”

Sorry, Asian parents do not say this. Please try again.