I’m going to preface this by saying: I do not know if all Asian moms do the things on this list. And I’m sure most, if not all, moms do at least some of these things on this list. But, I do know my mom does it all. And I absolutely love her for it and wouldn’t want it any other way.
1. “Did you eat yet?”
It’s her polite way, at the end of a phone call, of saying, “I love you, but this phone call must come to an end.” Also, she is legitimately concerned if you ate or not.
2. She knows everything before you do
She knows the weather before you step out the door. She knows when there’s a major citywide power outage where you live before you even turn on the news. She knows there’s a gunman on the loose! How is she doing this?!
3. You want to join an extracurricular activity? But why?
It’s not just something you see Asian moms doing on TV shows (like Fresh Off the Boat). Try and join some sort of fun extracurricular activity like softball or band, and she will say: “But why? Just focus on your studies. You really think you’ll be playing that sax in five years? Didn’t think so.”
4. “Love you mom”
You probably saw this one on the oh-so-adorable Buzzfeed video, and it’s true. Asian mothers really do start and end their emails and texts with “hi, it’s mom” and “love mom,” respectively. As if I didn’t know that’s who I was texting this entire time. But it’s so great.
5. Cursing is great
You didn’t know what was happening or what she was saying when you were a kid, but when you realized she was cursing under her breath, you were both taken aback and so pumped you had another curse word under your belt — this time in a different language.
6. She’s very superstitious
Me whenever I see a purse on the floor. Image: Giphy
Yeah, that’s right. If there’s one thing my mother taught me it’s don’t put your purse on the floor! I mean, unless you want bad luck and to lose money, then go for it. What else is there… Oh, if you drop a spoon, expect a male visitor soon. And have itchy palms? Expect money coming your way.
7. “Do you need money?”
“Are you OK with money? Do you want me to fill up your tank? Want me to get you groceries?” Anything she can buy, she will try! Also, pretty sure all moms do this, so…
8. Your version of “clean” is never clean enough
My mom can always find a spot I missed. And by spot, I mean the entire bathtub, the floor under the refrigerator you didn’t think to sweep, the weeds in your backyard, the cleaning supplies haphazardly thrown underneath the kitchen sink and every other spot you never think needs to be clean.
9. Marshalls all the time
Every time you see her, you go shopping at Marshalls. You always shop the clearance sections. Visiting a new city? Skip the museum. You’ll somehow find yourself in a Marshalls. And I love it.
10. Let’s get some shoes…
… and leave them in the box and never ever wear them. Seriously, my mother has a closet full of shoes, still in their boxes. Same goes for purses.
11. Giving someone else’s Asian food a shot
You’ll try pretty much all Asian food restaurants in the area, and she’ll always end the meal with: “Mine is better.”
12. Lumpia is the greatest gift of them all
Every Christmas, everyone gets rolls upon rolls of lumpia. Whenever we visit home, we leave with a huge Tupperware of frozen lumpia. Someone’s birthday? They get lumpia. See where I’m going with this?
13. Getting compared to other Asian families
She’ll ask, “What are the so-and-so’s doing? What are the kids doing? Oh, but your job is better, right?”
14. “Have you talked to your sister?”
Instead of asking your sibling what she’s up to, she’ll ask you about it. She’ll ask you what she did yesterday, how she spent her weekend, how she and her boyfriend are doing. It never makes sense, but I expect it every time I talk to her on the phone.
15. Ruffles? More like pork rinds and vinegar
Image: Evan Amos/Wikimedia Commons
Instead of seeing Lay’s or Ruffles and French onion dip in your pantry, you’ll find pork rinds and a bottle of vinegar.
I can only hope I do all of this to my children. Everything she does is perfection.