Why do Asians really get straight A's? Why do Asians really become doctors and lawyers? Why do Asians really play the piano? Many people believe that the reason has to do with the pressure to perform and the pressure to conform, however, it goes much deeper than that much, much deeper! This didactic novel reveals the truths about Asian culture, which will shock you to the marrow of your bones--and open a hidden world of long-guarded secrets.
Doctor or lawyer—my only two options. These would be your only two options if you have Asian parents. You would think that you would be able to pick your own career, since you know, it is your own damn life. But not when you have Asian parents. So my only two options: doctor or lawyer. I wonder if my parents even know why I should become a doctor or a lawyer. Is it because doctors save lives and lawyers protect the innocent? I bet they didn't know that doctors these days are only trained in surgery and prescribing medicine and pretty much nothing else; doctors don't know anything about proven alternative medicine, homeopathic remedies, chiropractic therapy, acupuncture, yet, they make all the big bucks. And they're treated like gods because they supposedly know it all, even though they haven't cured one disease since what—smallpox? As a matter of fact, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, even acne is on the rise and more prevalent than ever before! Shouldn't these reputable, knowledgeable doctors, with such advanced medical technology, know why there are so many new diseases such as acid reflux? And why is there nothing being cured today, not the common cold, not even polio? Maybe it really is all about the money since doctors make big bucks on the sick and dying but not a penny once you're cured. Because once you're cured, you're no longer a customer—I mean patient; I guess the medical profession isn't all that benevolent or caring.
Perhaps I should consider becoming a lawyer; after all, it is my only other choice. I could go to law school and graduate magna *** laude, then my parents would be really proud of their only son. Besides, attorneys work really hard to protect the innocent—or do they? I read in the paper about how a group of lawyers filed motions against DNA testing for prison inmates sentenced before 1970, because many of them would have been found innocent, if they were indeed tested. And if they were found innocent, it would obviously be catastrophic for those insidious lawyers; money over morals, I suppose. Now, I'm not exactly Mother Theresa or the Dalai Lama, but I'd like to be able to sleep at night knowing that I didn't put someone innocent in jail for the rest of his or her life. And besides, they do have lawyer jokes for a reason. My personal favorite: “What's the difference between a lawyer and a gigolo? A gigolo only screws one person at a time!” Hilarious!
So I guess my parents want me to become a doctor or a lawyer, for completely different reasons, other than what's important—like saving lives or protecting the innocent from an unjust, inequitable system; reasons being money and status, which of course, lead to power. My parents really want my little sister Jordan and me to become doctors—or lawyers if we couldn't hack it in medical school—just so we can make lots of money and then they can brag to all of their friends. I really can't think of any other reasons, since third place on the totem pole of Asian career options is engineering, and there's nothing moral or ethical about being an engineer; only the paycheck matters, so in the end, it all boils down to money.
So since it's really all about money, I guess I might as well become a prostitute, because I'll make just as much as any lawyer, and both professions are just as equally immoral. Plus, I won't have to put up with going to class anymore and I'll save my parents so much money; it's a win-win situation for everyone. Too bad Asian guys have small you-know-what, down you-know-where, so prostitution is out of the question. Of course, I'm just joking about becoming a prostitute, but I really may not be joking if I don't get into medical school.
Between you and me, what I really aspire to be—ever since I was a wee laddie born and raised in Irvine, California—is a writer. I remember telling Mommy that I wanted to become a writer, inspired by scores of the greats: Chaucer, Hemingway, Joyce, Faulkner, Ellison, Orwell, Gaiman, among many, many more. But she gave me a look, with harsh, derisive eyes, and shouted, "Write? What you write? Bulls--t? Stupid boy!"—that pretty much ended my “never got up and running” career as a writer.