From "The Question: Multiracial Asians and the Issue of Identity" (an excerpt)
by Scott Watanabe
A typical conversation involving a mixed race Asian goes like this:
"What are you?"
"God, this is so embarrassing."
"I don't know how to ask this."
The key to the issue is in the question: not "Who" or "What." Essentially, the person is asking, "How can I fit you into my limited world view so that I may feel secure?" The answer, obviously, is that they can't. And if the mixed race person decides to answer the question it usually doesn't help much anyway. The impetus for the question is the corollary to a universally recognized truth: Familiarity may breed contempt, but unfamiliarity breeds suspicion. That's precisely the reaction mixed race Asians provoke.
[. . .] There is no set scenario that defines the experience of mixed race Asians. They have no census box (though we're working on it). There is no sweeping generalization to make about them, no nutshell in which to place them. The only thing other people know for sure about them, white, black, Asian, etc., is that they are "other". And from that observation they make assumptions.
In reality, the only term that applies to all mixed race Asians without exception is this: "individual". Some were born here and others overseas. Some grew up in big cities, others in small towns. A good deal have parents who are divorced, and still more have parents who are together. Many have come to terms with their ethnic heritage. Others have not.
That's the truth of it. Unfortunately, in spite of the truth, there is also a big fucking truckload of myths, suppositions and bald-faced lies.
Found at riksha magazine.
Since 1993, riksha has been dedicated to promoting artistic and literary works by and about Asian Americans. riksha is a Chicago-based organization, however we are interested in work from around the U.S. and overseas. In conjunction with our artistic/literary bent, riksha spreads the word about relevant social issues that impact our communities. We also stage performances and lend a hand in a wide range of community organizations.
Um, I found their site while looking for an address for Earwax Café. Really, it only looks like I have an odd obsession with the Asian community in Chicago.