Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Uh... No.

My office rents out part of our office space to a solo practitioner and his assistant (who's also his wife). They're this older Chinese couple, and the woman has basically taken to treating me like a surrogate son because she feels bad that I'm so far removed from my own Chinese family. From time to time she brings me some leftover food, either stuff she's made or stuff they had at some restaurant. She's very traditional Chinese.

One afternoon, my office was having lunch in the conference room when she wandered by. I had made a rather large recipe of pasta and vegetables the night before, so we were all eating my food which I had shared with the others.

"So what are you eating?" Chinese Lady asked.

"It's pasta with vegetables. Dennis! made it," one of my colleagues told her. We have a makeshift kitchen in the office (consisting of a rather large toaster oven and a microwave) so oftentimes there are rather impressive cooking projects going on for lunch. Even salads are a big production sometimes. I usually buy my food, but sometimes I bring leftovers.

"You should cook more often!" Chinese Lady tells me. "See, that looks good!"

"I know, but it's hard when you're single," I tell her.

Chinese Lady stopped for a while... then piped up again: "You know what you need? You need a girlfriend to cook for you." Have I mentioned that she makes her husband his lunch every day?

My colleagues and I each looked up and kinda chortled. Really, how does one respond to something like that tactfully?

Have I mentioned how traditional this woman is? On top of that, she's very religious; her church creates a large part of her social life. Once I remember a number of us sitting around at lunch chatting and the subject veered to same-sex marriage. "What's your opinion?" my boss asked her. I think she was caught off guard, because the first things out of her mouth were words to the effect of how "those people" are "sick." (She then slightly changed her wording but it was clear what her position was on the subject.)

The conversation just got more bizarre after that: You could almost see the light bulb go "ding!" over her head as she suddenly said, "Oh! I know! You should meet my niece! She's in New York now, but I think she's coming down to visit!"

I couldn't hold it back. Almost immediately after she finished, I responded: "Uh, NO."

She persisted though. I'll give her her perseverance. "No pressure, really. Just a relaxed evening. We'll all go to dinner. Really it's just you guys meeting each other."

My boss tried valiantly to extricate me. "I think Dennis! is really quite the happy free-wheeling bachelor...."

And yet she insisted that it would just be dinner, no big deal, no pressure, just a fun night out. She insisted that I give her my cell phone number so that she could set it up.

That was about two weeks ago. I thought it had all blown over, but apparently he niece is coming into town this weekend and she wants me to join them for dinner.

Short of telling her that I'd rather stick an iodine-dipped dinner fork in my eye, I can't imagine politely declining for no reason.

So I'm going to tell her I already have weekend plans. Maybe I'll be going out of town.

To New York.

1 comment:

Jon said...

It would almost have been worth it to say 'I like cock', but you do have to see this lady every day. And she's on your floor.

Hopefully she'll provide more amusing blog anecdotes, though her heart is in the right placem despite her feeling for our 'team'. Extra points if she gives you dim sum!