The Iron Curtain

“Neil, what you studying in school, boy? Interracial marriages? ” my mom asked.

“International relations,” I said. Suddenly I was slurping down the rest of my coffee in a rush to get out.

She turned to my father. “I send he to ‘U.F.T.’ to study international relations but I feel he studying interracial marriages. I does see we son knocking about with a little girl of the . . . Asian persuasion.” She glowered over her mug at me, and I back at her. “I getting a Chinese girl for my daughter-in-law,” she said. “Allyou think she could cook a roti? ”

She did this to stir my dad and it worked every time.

“She go feed me chow mein and pork till I dead,” Dad said. “Noodles, noodles, noodles! My backside already thin like a noodles. How I could survive on that? ” He waved his bony arms.

“Don’t forget fortune cookies.” My mother sipped the last drop of Milofrom her mug and headed to the family room.

My dad followed her. “Me ain’t want no cookie with fortune inside. I done know my fortune if my son marry a Chinese girl: I go dead from eating noodles.”

Published in TOK: Writing the New Toronto, Book 4. Purchase the book to read the full piece.