Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Chinese Women Talk a lot of Trash, Episode 3

On our way from Union Square to SoHo this weekend, my sister conned me into stopping at some tented jewelry kiosk to look at some rings. As you might expect, the guy working there surrounded us like a fly on shit, making sure he could assist us and maybe even seal the deal on some of his goods.

Calm down, already.

I saw him walk away and pass off his babysitting responsibilies to a woman colleague. She—a heavyset, flannel shirt-wearin', Chinese bull dyke—stood almost on top of me with her hands behind her back, adding non-requested commentary to our conversations (Does this method really work for you? I tend to doubt it).

It was annoying threefold:
1) No one invited her to our party
2) My sister and I don't exactly come off as criminals
3) The bull dyke could have stood another 3 feet back as to not smother me, and still manage to catch us in our stealing act, had stealing even been our intention.

It wasn't. We weren't planning to run off with a plastic rings treasure chest.

My sister and I didn't refrain from our terse commentary (that which narrates all of our adventures) due to present company. I asked Rachel if she liked a necklace I picked up or if she thought it looked cheap?

"Yeah, it looks like you got it here," she replied.

Nuff said. We were in a tent, after all.

I then pulled a ring out of its little velvet cubby, only to realize that it was huge.

I commented that, "This is for a guy's big toe."

That's when the Chinese bull dyke stepped in. She had obviously heard enough.

"Not all people are as fortunate as you. People come in all shapes and sizes. We have to make jewelery for everyone."

What I thought: Geez, you really told me, lady. I feel so bad for making such a heartless comment. You are so benevolent and I -- I am just a stuck up, self-centered American whose knowledge is limited only to my tight knit, group of petite cronies. The rest of my day will be spent in guilt, while your day will no doubt be spent basking in the glory that results from having enlightened such a simpleton being, such am I.

What I said: "Yes," I replied. "And you've made sure to make a ring for a guy's big toe. So, what's the problem?"

What I should have said: Refer to "What I thought."

At that point, I stopped looking at her jewelry. There was no reason for me to buy anything from her. Hell, we were surrounded by about 20 other tents having exactly the same sweat factory-produced goods. That simple economic detail in mind, she should have backed off and agreed with me that, yes, the ring could fit on a big man's toe... because it could. Instead of sharing hatred, we could have shared a cup of tea; perhaps a little chuckle. This seems the more appropriate response seeing as how the comment was for the sake of jest and our own entertainment, not for her offense nor listening pleasure. Furthermore,
if she wouldn't have been right on top of me—employing a stance that assumed guilt despite the existance of a crime—our dear bull dyke here wouldn't have even been privy to a comment that was never intended for her listening pleasure.

Despite the content though, I do have to give her credit for talkin' her trash in English. The previous offenders did all their trash-talkin' in Cantonese and Mandarin. Vietnamese? Maybe that too.

After giving it some thought, however, I don't think this woman knew a lick of Cantonese, Mandarin or Vietnamese. Unfortunately, her inclination to talk trash in English was simply by default.

'Chinese Women Talk a lot of Trash' is a continuous series. To catch up on your reading, venture