Growing Up Asian

Being an Asian kid in the 70’s South was a bit of a bewildering experience. I don’t really remember seeing other Asians in Greensboro when we lived there. Although I later learned that Ken Jeong was lurking around some other part of town at that point.

We move to Raleigh when I was 7. It was a little better there, but still… it was North Carolina in the 70’s.

Fast forward to today and the grocery store has an Asian Bar and sushi.

It’s a brave new world.

Holy Week: Palm Sunday

The most memorable Palm Sunday sermon I ever witnessed pointed out that there were two things located in the area as Jesus approached from the east to enter Jerusalem; the temple and the fortress.

Slightly to the south was the temple, the physical center and religious symbol of their identity as a people. This temple was not the one Solomon built, but a new structure built by Herod the Great. Still, it was the cultural center of their life.

To the north, was the Antonia Fortress which was also built by Herod the Great and housed part of the Roman garrison occupying the city. The garrison was there to both protect the temple and maintain order lest anyone get any bright ideas. Foreign occupation meant that the selection of the High Priest was subject to the approval of Roman officials. The clothing required to conduct ceremonies on important religious holidays was stored in the fortress. Rome occupied not only their land, but their religion as well.

As they approached the city, the crowd grew and the noise must have as well. Many there might have understandably assumed Jesus was leading them to the fortress to confront the Romans. In their minds, this was the day. The Messiah had arrived. Freedom was just around the corner.

Instead, he heads to the temple.

Imagine the confusion, the bewilderment, the disappointment.

He knew where he needed to start, tho, and it wasn’t with the obvious power grab.

Happy Sunday

Years ago, before the Internet was available on computers, much less the palm of our hands, a friend showed me a VHS tape of Robert Tilton cut together with fart sounds that was supposedly made by someone on his production crew.

This is a thousand times better than that.

Okra or Weed?

I am become the keeper of the Perry family photos and I have discovered… things.

What is it that my father was growing in my grandmother’s back yard? Photos circa late 90’s/early 00’s.

Ward Cleaver he was not.

The New Year Begins with Turkey

The turkey was purchased at Aldi with the intention of taking it to the in-laws for Christmas, but we could not get it thawed in time so here it is making an appearance in the New Year. Lisa did an amazing job on the turkey and we will be surely eating turkey sandwiches and soup and tacos for at least a week if not longer.

I suppose we should be eating black eyed peas, ham, collards, and cornbread like good Southerners, but I never put a lot of stock in old wives tales or even tradition just for tradition’s sake. I will update you on the success or failure of that approach as we go through the year.

2023 was a mixture of amazing and borderline unbearable. Highs and lows are both, I believe, unescapable components of the human experience. We are all mostly still here so I count 2023 slightly weighted in the positive direction.

I’m also not really one much to do resolutions or words or what have you. Not that I think they’re bad things necessarily, but I’ve not had a lot of success in keeping up something past a week and then I feel like a loser. In order to avoid that, I just take things as they come.

Again, I will update you on the success or failure of my approach as we go.