Growing up in the South, I was often the only Asian in the classroom and one of few in the school. This fact, along with the sad truth that I am just so awkwark, dorky and UNcool, contributes to my lifelong struggle to fit in with other Asians. To be clear, I have accrued a lot of Asian friends over the years. There is a Law of Nature that states if there are 2 isolated Asians amongst a crowd of people within a 5 mile radius, a gravitational pull will occur between the two bodies and they will always manage to find each other. However, when I find myself in a CROWD of Asians, the word "LOSER" will magically appear on my forehead.
Why is it that when a bunch of Asians get together, no matter what kind (Korean, Chinese, Indian), a select majority become SO COOL?! As a teenager, every year my parents would drag me to a Chinese retreat and I would suddenly be immerse in a gigantic pool of teen-aged Asians and be completely ostracized. And it's not just because they were teenagers. I seemed to do just fine if the crowd was mixed (see above paragraph). I mean these Asian teens had the gum smack, hair toss, eye squint (in built, of course) perfected and I would be sooooo intimidated. I would just try to act like I didn't care, I had equally cool things to do ... with my little sister, and DIDN'T NEED THEM.
College was the beginning of my association with the Cool Asians. One day freshmen year I met and befriended a girl at a mixer of some sorts. As I was walking back to the dorm, I realized that she and her sister were one of the ULTRA cool Asians at the blasted retreat and I actually got nervous. Walking home. Her presence, no where near me. I totally grossed myself out.
(Oh, and I forgot. One of the cutest Cool Asians who lived in my home town actually had a weird and way-too-serious crush on me in high school. But that was a fluke of nature.)
Now that I am much older and wiser, I see that these so-called Cool Asians are not neccessarily that cool. They are just ELITIST. Against their own kind. I mean, they will associate with all kinds of people outside of their race, but if they deem you unworthy of the Asian race, then it's all nose-up-in-the-air to you. I suppose it's a kind of insecurity and low self-esteem on their part. Of course, there are some people who happen to be Asian who are just super cool (ie Metrodad), those are the peeps these wannabees flock to.
I am reminded of a certain someone, a Chinese girl of my age, whom I used to hang out with whenever our parents got together (we lived in different towns). When I was an undergrad in summer school, we happened to be in the same science lab. She was of the ultra-chic, red-headed, super-skinny variety. I, unfortunately, was of the sweaty-just-biked-2-miles, glasses wearing (contact prohibited in this particular lab), short variety. Silly me started to strike up a conversation the first day and boy, I think she spent time with the Amish, I was SHUNNED. It was so after-school-TV-special-ish that I wasn't even offended, I just wanted to laugh and find the cameras.
Fast forward 3 years. Medical school. Me, starting my 4th and last year of medical school. Her, a lowly first-year medical student (suppose she had a difficult time getting in). All of the sudden, she REMEMBERS me from our childhood. Feigning amnesia, she denied seeing me in the forementioned lab, and totally HITS ON MY BOYFRIEND (who apparently was a Cool Asian, unbeknownst to me or him, else he probably wouldn't have asked me out). Darling Boyfriend (now Husband) shoots her down on her super-skinny ass and proposes to me the following month. Hellllll-yaaaa, Bitch! Me: one. Cool Asian Bitch: zero.