Monday, July 16, 2012

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Happy birthday to my dad

This weekend my dad turned... hmmm I'm not too sure actually. He has a real birth date and then he has a not-so-real one. Apparently his parents decided to change his birth year, making him younger, all to avoid being enlisted in the Vietnam military. (It didn't work since he ended up in the military anyways.)  I think that's the story or something like that. I'm sure something was lost in translation with my poor Vietnamese communication skills. But the bottom line is, he's old.

As previously mentioned in past posts, my parents are very reluctant to eat or try non-Vietnamese food. And even with regards to Vietnamese food, they will rarely venture out to new or different restaurants. I could count all of the places they frequent on one hand. My goal is to expose them to other foods and restaurants, to show them what they've been missing.

Waiting for our table. An unfamiliar concept in the Vietnamese restaurant world.

I started out slowly by taking them to other Vietnamese restaurants but they kept on paying for it! In our culture, it's customary for the person who does the inviting to pay for the dinner. Not in my case. It got so ridiculously out-of-control that at our last dinner (my mom's birthday), she had prepaid for the meal before we even sat down. She had arrived at the restaurant probably two minutes before we did. I had even said to the waitress, "Don't let these guys pay," pointing at my parents, at which point she just gave me a smile. I should have known.

Who wouldn't want to eat this? Oh right, my parents.

So to combat this problem, I took my family to an American restaurant for my dad's birthday. There's no way they would pull any shenanigans, they are out of their element. I had wanted to take my dad out to a steakhouse (simple, limited choices, good food) but he didn't want to drive "far". So we settled for eating locally at BJ's. This place has a wide variety of food so there's bound to be something that my parents would like to eat... or so I thought. My mom looked at menu for a good 5-10 minutes and closed it. She said she was tired of looking through it. That would have been fine but she didn't pick anything yet! After making countless suggestions, they settled on two dishes. My dad just pointed to a picture of a burger and said "get me this." I doubt he knew what kind of burger he had just ordered. It was quite frustrating. Watching my parents eat looks painful. It looks like they're forcing themselves to eat it, like a kid who's forced to eat their vegetables. I think my mom would have preferred that as she was devastated that her sandwich did not have any greens. She stole the lettuce from my dad's burger. My parents are so FOB. Not that there's anything wrong with that, it's just who they are, and I still love them the same. But this is probably the last time I take them to a non-Vietnamese restaurant.

How old is he? Doesn't look old here.

3 Reactions to this post

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  1. Click, Click, Caption This.... said... July 23, 2012 at 10:13 AM

    Jimmy...You made me jiggle by laughing @ this post! hahahha I absolutely ADORE your parents!!!
    hahahhahahha

  2. Click, Click, Caption This.... said... July 23, 2012 at 10:14 AM

    I wrote Jiggle (the tummy ) & did not mean Giggle ....since I did bust out laughing!

  3. JT said... July 23, 2012 at 9:16 PM

    That's the best compliment... to make someone laugh hard enough to jiggle. Well, besides making someone squirt water out through their nose while drinking a glass.

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