It’s only Wednesday but the grocery stores are filled with busy shoppers. Tomorrow and the day after tomorrow would be rainy and then freezing, which makes today the best day for weekend shopping.
Usually in HMart, we only see Asians. I rarely see non-Asians there. Wait, I can’t say that since every weekend, groups of Rutgers students of diverse racial composition would come in, looking around in their jolly ways, and enjoying talking to each other more than the shopping itself. Other than that, once I saw an Italian man–I guessed he was Italian but my friend guessed he was Jewish–who was standing in the rice aisle puzzled. He asked us about certain kind of rice, but we didn’t understand the word he used. I would know risotto if he said it, but he didn’t say risotto. Obviously he was looking for a special kind of rice, which he couldn’t find. He threw up his arms in despair, “so many rice, but none is the blahblah that I am looking for.”
At the check out today, a lady behind me suddenly asked me, “how do you cook this?” She was pointing to the Taiwanese cauliflower I was purchasing. It tastes like the cauliflowers from American stores, but it is a little tougher. Also it has an unruly look since its head is not a shapely round ball like a cheese curd. Rather the head spreads out into wild unshapely form, like those vegetation that grows too vigorously, especially in tropical areas.
I turned and saw that she’s a well coiffed white lady, who just dropped in to buy one bottle of Korean bean sauce, probably for her special Christmas dish. Immediately I thought about the stereotypical image of an Asian woman working as a cooking slave in the kitchen. I think people always have such a stereotypical image whenever they see an Asian woman, and it is my duty to fight against stereotypes. So I said,
“I just microwave it. You know I am lazy…”
She started to laugh very heartily. I was a little surprised to see she laughed so happily.
“That’s the best way. I am sure.” She said as if we shared some secret feminine comradeship.