Communication and having to white it up
Him: (proudly) That’s my son.
Me: Hey, little fella.
Got a random call this weekend from an old college buddy. He was in town for just a bit and wanted to stop by with his new son.
Because I married so late in life, I’m one of the few people in that group of friends that have no kids.
It’s weird, even now, realizing that so many of my friends are parents and on that next stage of their lives. If I ever do become a father, wonder what type of one I’ll be?
Speaking of fathers, it’s Father’s Day. For a number of reasons, I wasn’t able to see him, as much as I would want to.
Sadly, something else that’s different with my friends is that many of the them don’t have the luxury of simply picking up the phone and calling them any more.
I do, though, and try to whenever I can.
Me: Hey dad, just checking to see how you’re doing.
Him: I’m good. Getting fatter.
Me: That makes two of us.
For many reasons, wish my Chinese were better. One, so I could talk to him more; another so that, if I ever did have a kid, would be able to talk to him or her in it.
Him: I feel bad, sometimes. English isn’t my native language. Chinese isn’t yours. It’s like me and my dad. We couldn’t communicate.
Me: Yes, but communication isn’t what you say, it’s what the other person hears. So, I think it’s fine.
The wife speaks another language fluently, so I don’t expect her to pick up a third. Although I do try to teach her some important phrases.
Me: Can you order me a 榨菜肉絲麵?
Her: I’ll never be able to say that, I’ll have to white it up.
Location: yesterday, 11AM, the West Side Highway
Music: say honestly you won’t give up on me And I shall believe
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5 Replies to “Father’s day 2014”
I feel the same way about my Chinese. Now that I have a little one, I wish more and more that I took the time to learn it. Guess it’s never too late.
Yup, I have several series, including Rosetta Stone, that I keep saying I’m going to start – but there are so many things that I want to do and brushing up on my Chinese seems to take a backseat all the time, even though I know it shouldn’t. As I start thinking about kids more and more, I keep thinking that I need to figure out what my priorities are going to be.
Congrats on being a new(ish?) mom!
Why couldn’t your dad speak with his dad fluently?
It’s actually pretty interesting; Taiwan was occupied by the Japanese from 1895 to 1945 so that was the official language but most people spoke a mix of Taiwanese, Mandarin, Hakka, and the local dialect (it’s why my dad speaks a ridiculous 6+ languages fluently).
So my grandfather’s main language was one language while my father’s was a different one.