Thursday, December 30, 2010
All Look Same! All Look Same!
I used to get called 'Ken' by my coworkers at California Pizza Kitchen. Ken was the other Japanese American server at the time I worked there. I usually don't mind being mistaken for other Asian American guys, especially when they're as good-looking as Ken.
Plus, I'm used to it.
When people attempt to apologize for calling me by someone else's name I try to minimize their obvious embarrassment, because I am that Japanese, with the explanation that I am used to being called by my brothers' names (which isn't exactly true, probably because I'm the oldest).
At work, it's a compliment to be mistaken for our Assistant Director of Admissions, a handsome Filipino guy with a wholesome preppy wardrobe. Sometimes I'll even dress like him on purpose, with a button-down collar and a sweater vest. It makes a few of my coworkers nervous when I walk by their desks, as if I had caught them during a not-working-as-hard-as-they-could've-been moment.
I love being mistaken for the Director of the Computer Animation program which, unfortunately, doesn't happen very often. He is also Filipino, with well-toned biceps, and he is thinner than I am (he smokes, that cheater). His natty dress shirts, ties, and waistcoats influence my work-wear as well, as does his hair which is always freshly cut and gelled to contemporary perfection.
The biggest benefit of looking like my coworkers is that I can ignore other staff members when I feel like it. People that I see on a daily basis don't always say hi to me when I'm walking through the hallways. I think it's because they're not quite sure whether it's actually me or "the other Asian guy."
(The title of the post is stolen directly from Prince, which was his reaction to the photo above)