Saturday, February 19, 2011

Valentine's Day

My favorite sugar cookie recipe
While in college, I worked a variety of jobs. Area manager at a theater, customer service rep for a call center, rental clerk for Hollywood video, prostitute...(Just kidding! I would never work for Hollywood video!) During my sophomore year, I worked as a hostess at a local Asian restaurant. It was crap job, but they were willing to let me work as much or as little as I wanted, because I spoke english.

I am Vietnamese, and they're all Chinese. So, the staff would often play practical jokes on me. When I first started working there, the waiter told me his name was "Da Ji," and that the sushi chef was "Mu Ji." It wasn't until weeks later that they finally admitted that I'd been calling them Rooster and Chicken. Hilarious. I loved working with them.

On slow days during the summer, we would take naps together at the sushi bar, or they would practice their english on me. Rooster would make me mixed cds with Michael Bolton and Kenny G songs. Chicken would make origami for me using bills from his tips jar. We all loved the movie Kung Fu Hustle. I would ask them about their lives in China or about their families, and they would pause and finally say that it was too difficult to talk about. They were amazing guys, and we kept in touch for almost two years, even after we all left the restaurant. I miss them a lot.
Red Velvet Whoopie Pies with Cream Cheese frosting
Three years ago, I stopped hearing from them. Their cell phone numbers stopped working. My phone hasn't changed, but I haven't heard from either of them. Rooster and Chicken were Chinese illegal immigrants who came to America to live better lives. I worry about them. I wonder if they were deported, or if they weren't able to pay off the debt they owed the smugglers who sneaked them into the country. I once asked Chicken about his journey to America. He would only shake his head, and say "No...bad. Bad."

It kills me that I don't have a phone number to reach them, or that I can't search Facebook to get back in touch with them. I know that their attachment to me was just as strong, that's why it's so frightening that they haven't called me in such a long time. I always think of Rooster and Chicken during a holiday, because that's when we would always make sure to get in touch...So each time a holiday rolls around, I hope that one of them will call.

Valentine's Day is a day about love, and we all have loved ones that we wish we were closer to, or people that we could love more. So, I guess this is my cheesy/depressing way to ask you to love each other. Do it more than you have in the past, and more often.  Everyone deserves friends like Rooster and Chicken.

I show love by baking for people. Notice the cookie that says "HATE."


shelly said...

who are you giving the "hate" cookie to and what is it laced with?

Chau said...

It was for a friend. All the ladies joke that they all hate him, when he's really like the gay friend that he never wanted to be. Ha! I hope that made sense. I laced it with love. And gayness.