A Letter to Maclean's From a Concerned Asian Parent
Thank you so much for publishing "'Too Asian'?" I was shocked—no, appalled—to read that Canadian universities are being overrun by overachieving, nose-to-the-grindstone Asians. Because frankly, this is not what I expected when we left Taiwan!
Like most traditional Asian parents, I've always valued hard work, MSG and the power of an engineering degree. One day a few years ago, as I was preparing my daughter's bento box, I watched her struggle with her math homework in the last moments before she had to go to school. She looked up at me, frowned, and said, "Mama, I don't wanna do this. I hate math."
I was dumbfounded. How could my lazy, unmotivated child compete against her math-loving colleagues? At this rate, she'd be a geisha before she finished high school! That's when I knew: it was time to leave South Korea behind and move to Canada for a better life.
I'd long heard rumours about the laziness of white people. In school we were often told of their slothlike reluctance to study, their fitful love of alcohol. I went to see Animal House three times when it finally came to Hanoi! I knew what these college whites were about! I was sure that even a daughter as fat and useless as mine—with whom Buddha cursed me, even after I begged him for a boy—could succeed in a Canadian university. "Compared to these Canadian students," I told myself, "even the laziest of Orientals still works like a dog."
But now I know I was wrong! Turns out everyone else had the same idea. Far from being the only Asian candidate, my melonhead daughter is now one of a million. No wonder the supermarket was sold out of rice! For "'Too Asian'?" Stephanie Findlay and Nicholas Köhler even interviewed the pighead son of my dishonourable brother, Ping Mao. Even that good-for-nothing works harder than my daughter. And Findlay and Köhler say that even Asians masquerading as third-generation Canadian citizens are ambitious! How ever will she get into a good school with all this Asian competition?! Ai ya!
I'm relieved I found out about this before we shamed ourselves by applying to U of T, as we had intended. As my daughter enters grade twelve, with seemingly no academic possibilities in sight, I can see only one future for her. Maclean's, maybe you can help me: you know those exotic massage parlours they have in Toronto? How would one apply to one of those?
A Concerned Asian Parent
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