Happy Father’s Day!

Big happy family (sis-in-law, bro, me, mom, dad).
Big happy family (sis-in-law, bro, me, mom, dad).

Here’s the obligatory highly original and heartfelt Father’s day online post in which I’ll talk about why my (Asian) dad is so awesome.

Like most other Asian dads, he:

    • Studied engineering.
    • Wears long, white socks up to his knees.
    • Had high expectations for the maths and sciences until recently. I’ll elaborate on this later.
    • Forced me into classes I hated as a kid (Chinese school and swimming) but for which I’m grateful now. I mean, I don’t need to fear boating and things like that anymore.
    • Looks forward to grandkids.
    • Is extremely hardworking and will sacrifice everything for his family (which is why he’s great, also more on this later).

I kid you not, these stereotypes are REAL AND LEGIT – see #31 and 79.

Here are some ways he differs from other Asian dads:

  • Encouraged me to study in the Humanities (and by encouragement, I mean he takes real and genuine pride in what I do, as opposed to mere tolerance and head-shaking).  I know very little other Asian dads who not only tolerated a B.A. in English and other random Humanities subjects but also said, “Go get it!”
  • Almost enrolled me in martial arts as a kid. (Okay, contrary to stereotypes, Asians don’t *actually* all know kung fu and karate… in fact, girls aren’t particularly encouraged to join in such dangerous activities! Parents would much rather their daughters study piano/violin/poetic recitations of Tang dynasty poetry.)
  • Enrolled me in art class and I’ve been drawing and painting ever since!
  • Gives me much more trust than I deserve, at times. My Dad was the coolest person when I did the stupidest things, like hitting a bus and going over the phone bill by the hundreds and other things you can’t write on the internet. I have an implied curfew, not a real one, but to make up for this trust I am inspired to think for myself and consider consequences more carefully.
  • Encouraged my brother to do what he loves, too, and now he’s using his interpersonal, quick-thinking, and communicative skills very successfully.

And some things that are just cool about him in general:

  • Is a great photographer (with permission, I might post some of his works here sometime).
  • Plays/coaches soccer. With guys in their 20s half his age. I’m pretty sure he can still outrun me…
  • Does what he loves for a living: designing high quality audio things, like loudspeakers and (analog?) amplifiers. It’s just cool that he gets to pour his creativity and engineering skills into luxury works of art that have, recently, garnered critical praise.

And last but not least, some awesome life lessons Dad has given me:

  • Keep an open mind. This is something he’s dropped into conversation recently, that there’s always a different way of looking at one thing, that people will always think differently. At the same time, my Dad always encourages me to stick to key principles
  • Do something you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.
  • Don’t rush your youth (though make time for kids). Not sure how I feel about this one…

Happy Father’s Day – you’re great, Dad! You’re a great example for your children.


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