Sunday, May 14
I love the South, part three
-Guys wearing polo shirts and Palmetto flag Croakies
-Girls wearing polo shirts and Palmetto flag Croakies
-A case of inhospitable waitstaff
Yeah--I've been bad about updating. I know. Sincerest apologies. But to my defense I've been busy and on the road pretty much constantly during the past week and a half. When you drive with your parents from Upstate South Carolina to Chicago and back, the last thing you want to do is blog about it. The Ohio post doesn't really count--that was the first day. The best way to describe it is as this: You know how there are those little things that your parents do that you really hate? Well, guess what. Even after you move away for a year and your sister gets engaged, they're still doing them.
Anyways so my sister's wedding was last weekend in Chicago, and this past week has included time at my parents' house in Anderson, post-wedding festivities in Greenville, and visits with friends in Clemson and Charleston. In addition to the gluttony of family stuff, during this time I've also remembered a) why I love the South and b) why I hate the South. It was nice to see old friends, of course, but it wasn't so nice to receive so many goddamn funny looks everywhere I went. It didn't help things that these days (in addition to still being Chinese), I've started wearing tighter pants (he's gay!) and growing my hair out (he does drugs!) Mulleted, tight-pantsed Asians are actually something of a norm around the Bay Area, but in the South, I might as well be from another planet. Hell, they'd probably welcome me even more if I was. "Take me! Take me!" they'd probably say. My first night in Charleston, I hadn't felt so out of place since the last time I was in Charleston. Still it wasn't all bad--100% the guys and 99.9% of the girls were in polo shirts and khakis and sandals, but the drinks were cheap--God, they were cheap. $13 for a round of four bourbon and gingers PLUS tip?? Insanity.
Still, I was ready to leave the next morning. But given E's promise of a free fried seafood dinner, I decided to give ole Chucktown one more chance. And it was better. At the two bars we frequented that night, we found at least eight people who dared not to dress like their parents. But it was brief respite. For lunch the next day, E, my college roommate, and I went to a soul food restaurant a couple blocks from his apartment downtown. Outside the restaurant a couple touristy-looking people in brightly colored clothing were milling about (just as they do just about everywhere in Charleston). E and I, figuring they were lost, went on inside. A big mistake, apparently, because as soon as we walked in, the hostess hurried toward us with a look of intense displeasure.
"Didn't you see the line outside?" she said. "You know there's a wait outside, don't you?"
Um, yes? As is the popular custom, miss, we walked into your fine establishment, not to cut in front of those confused old people (your target clientele, I know), but to let you know we were there and would like to put our names onto the list.
But apparently she thought differently. "Can't you homersexuals read?" she then yelled angrily, red horns sprouting from head. "Sign says 'No faggots allowed'! That means NO FAGGOTS!"
OK, OK--I embellished the last part a bit. Her horns were yellow.
Suffice it to say, E and I went elsewhere.
at 7:42 PM