Before & After someone mistakes me for the “Wrong Asian”. 👯♀️
Hi, it’s me, Jen. Not Becky (literal not @becksyams), Grace or some other Asian chick who’s also named Jen. I got this pin from @linhyen.co for #asianpacificamericanheritagemonth bc this shit still happens All. The. Time. Sometimes it’s hilarious, mostly it’s annoying and sometimes - well, one time I was mistaken for my friend who had passed away a year earlier (things gets surreal when a white woman you spent an entire day working with tries to argue that you are, in fact, your dead friend and not you).
I also think about the idea that one can be the “wrong” type of Asian. My Cantonese is crap, I curse like a plumber from New Jersey, & if it wasn’t bad enough being a comedian, I’m also an actor & musician. I even use my chopsticks “wrong” (and listen, I may have horrible technique, but I can pick up an individual grain of uncooked rice and walk it across the room any day of the week, no problem).
Being Asian in America means being extra vigilant about your identity at all times. It means having to define & redefine yourself every single day. And even if you are the “wrong” Asian in someone else’s eyes, you still get be the “right” one in your own. Be you. Own it. Every single day of the year.