It has begun. In a vast desert of romantic interest, already, two couples have sprung up. Oases that I never saw coming, but a welcome sight at that. I do believe Spring Fever is upon us.
Which brings me to dating.
Fast forward through the "once upon a time" and zip right on through the "land far, far away" - I was always more interested in the happy endings. Maybe I lacked the patience. Maybe, I just wanted my knight to canter right on up to my castle and sweep me away from my ivory tower. My only lament was that my hair wouldn't grow fast enough. I associated happy endings with a perfect man (and chocolates galore), as any Korean drama or Disney movie of the 50's variety or 90's renaissance would have me believe, and I knew, I just knew that my day would come.
Fast forward a little bit more: past the tomboy stage and right on through adolescent angst, and somewhere in that time warp, I went from a little girl lost in a fairytale reverie to a twentysomething embracing independence and life as a singleton, masterfully zoning out during lectures from the parentals.
My parents, like any other Asian parents, are very much invested in my future. They always have been. As I am now out of college and can no longer be subject to discussions on grades and standardized test scores, they have set their sights upon more ambitious matters: marriage. SAT’s? Child’s play. They’ve since entered the major leagues. Ever since I graduated, the sparked interest in who I’m dating, how I’m spending my free time has grown exponentially. My mom likes to provide constructive criticism, noting that it is okay to date, so long as he is (a) Christian, (b) not a lawyer, and (c) comes from a solid family.
My relatives have even joined in on the fun. While my meddlesome aunt lacks the subtlety necessary for adequately addressing such topics, my uncle has taken to referencing his unborn grandchildren in his car-buying decisions. I find it amazing that the yet-to-be-conceived demographic has such purchasing power. It's just unfortunate that at this point, the most eligible bachelorette in the Choung/Kim family is eighteen years old.
But back to my parents. They’re sharp, those two, and they adapt quickly. Upon realization that their tag team efforts of inquiries into my romantic life were leading nowhere, they switched to subtler, more subversive tactics.
“You know, I was married at twenty-three.”
That’s nice umma, I say sweetly with a mischievous smile.
“You know I expect you to be married by twenty-six, right?”
You do realize I’ll be twenty-five in a month..