// Own the Bowl Haircut – Why should childhood trauma still haunt you? Bring a bowl to the salon and tell them to do it. Bonus points if you are a woman or you do it at home. Post on social media. #iamthebowl
// Eat raw ramen out of the package at a public space like the bus or the park, and stare down anyone who makes eye contact. In fact, just stare down anyone while you break off pieces of ramen to feed your inner hungry ghost. And yes, yes, put the seasoning on it. You’re not an animal.
// Wear radical t-shirts! For example, Fermented fish is my jam; Made in America; #iamthebowl; Keep away, I have the Chinese disease – dragonass!
// Launch into a soliloquy about Chinese genocide, the Year Zero, or the honorable disembowelment of samurai warriors in dental waiting rooms or elevators.
// Go around telling people what their Asian tattoo means. It’s good to start gently, with a “That’s a shame” said under your breath or a “Tsk, tsk” accompanied by a head shake. (Do not point and laugh. We ran for ten blocks to avoid an ass-kicking.)
// Casually interject into conversations a quiet, rational, but fervent downplay of the amount of sugar in bubble tea drinks.
// Demand the repatriation of the U.S Railway system to the Chinese (and Irish, I suppose) who built the damn things. Bonus points for singing John Denver’s “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad” as a protest chant.
// Support local Asian American business by standing in front coaxing customers to come in and have a look. Bonus points for handing out fliers with the owners’ origin stories. “They’re slashing prices on all upright mahogany tables and bookcases by 50%…outrageous, right?”
// Learn to say select phrases in your family’s native tongue and shout them during sporting events, graduations, weddings, and crowded coffee shops. “Don’t cut the line!” “Can’t touch this,” “Light my cigarette”…
// At car washes and in front of window cleaners, mime “wax on, wax off” from The Karate Kid.
// Handout your Asian American friends’ resumes at the mall or Trader Joes.
// Enjoy a little wordplay when ordering at Asian restaurants. “Yes, I’ll have the chopstick suey,” or “Can I have the roll in the California style, err, no, like a caterpillar,” or try the direct translation of pad Thai, fried Thai. Pad Thai? No, FRIED Thai, F-R-I-E-D Thai, Fry Thai, Fry the Thai! Shout if misunderstood; works for mom.
// Call everyone “little sister” or “uncle”.
// Put a sign on your car that says, “Asian driver”, kick back, relax, and enjoy the wide berth on the highway.