dispelling the model minority myth
i have a mental bank of favorite stories that i like to tell, encompassing a variety of topics including, but not limited to, true things that people have said to me, crazy situations that i have been in, stupid things i have done, etc.
one of my all-time faves involves a certain pair of hair-and-nails ladies from my friend summer's wedding. i was a bridesmaid in the wedding (along with some of the sexiest ladies i have ever met - bow chicka wow wow), and we were all getting dressed/ready for the big day. now, some context here -- summer married a fantastic guy named ben, who we all love and adore. ben is from a wee little town called wiiiiiiise, va (okay, so it's spelled "wise," but that doesn't quite do justice to how the actual inhabitants pronounce it). ben's mother had brought up her two favorite hair-and-nails ladies from wiiiiise to be on-hand as we ladies got ready, whose names were... damn. i can't remember their names. di, summer, EO, jo, if any of you read this blog and remember their names, leave them in the comments b/c it's funnier with the actual names.
anyway, moving on... despite appearances to the contrary (think tanned skin with the consistency of old leather, super-teased beauty pageant hair, thick make-up with day-glo colors and small-town southern accents so thick you could cut them with a knife), overall the hair-and-nails ladies ended up doing a wonderful job with everyone's hair and nails. they had also brought along a bunch of cosmetics in case anyone needed help applying their makeup. most of us had adhered to the BYOB policy when it came to makeup, and didn't really end up using their stash.
as i was getting ready, though, i kept looking in the mirror, feeling that for some reason my makeup didn't look quite right - not enough, or not the right shades, or something. i didn't want to look like a schmoe on summer's big day (also - see bow-chicka-wow-wow-ladies reference above), so i wondered aloud what else i should do.
cue hair and nails lady #1 (in thick southern accent and teased hair, remember): "why huuun why don't you let me help you with your makeup... i used to watch connie chung on TV, so i know exactly how to do your makeup!"
(quickly snap dropped jaw shut and stifle giggling)
they were total sweethearts, but i think that still tops my list as one of the best illustrations of the "that's a bit of a stretch" phrase tha i've ever heard. note the clear logic trail inherent in her "if A then B" thinking (where A = i've seen an asian news anchor on TV and B = i am now an expert on applying makeup for all asian women).
what makes it even worse is her choice of model. ahem. (seriously, you must follow that link.) it is almost as delicious as the britney spears / matt lauer interview from last week, although since i have much less interest in connie chung (most likely to the chagrin of hair-and-nails lady, who probably thinks we share a strong bond as members of the asian sisterhood) it's not quite as captivating.
connie chung, doing her best to be a crazy-ass on-crack lady so as to shatter the hard-working good-little-asian stereotype being perpetrated by asians across the world...