CHINESE PEOPLE EAT THEIR HEADS
I ask my Chinese friend why we’ve been ushered to the center of the empty restaurant. She tells me to read menu. Don’t ask so many question. I reply I have posited one question and I might have many more and she should get used to it. I remind her I’m paying. She replies, never order egg roll.
I try to ask in a way that isn’t a question. I say, interesting music, eh? She smoothes the tablecloth and replies in Chinese. I don’t speak Chinese. Our conversation falls flat.
The tea arrives and I attempt to pour, but she stops me, saying it needs to steep three minute.
My prawns arrive in sauce. Her prawns sit up, red, crispy, with black eyes at the end of pink tentacles. The eyes look from me to her. She bites one off and eats at an astounding speed. She calls the waiter over. They speak their choppy language. Plate after plate arrives. I maneuver her prawn-head dish so all the eyes face her.
She nods. Scoops more onto my plate, even though I protest I’m full. She points to my stomach. They take off head, she says, you not Chinese.
A Peculiar Feeling of Restlessness
Kathy Fish, Amy Clark, Elizabeth Ellen, Claudia Smith