My wife was very upset when the nurse brought our new baby into the hospital room.
“I’m very upset,” my wife said.
“She’s incredibly beautiful, I said. I’m in love with her already.”
“Don’t you notice?” my wife said. “She’s a beautiful baby, but she’s… she’s… Asian.”
“Of course I noticed.” Did she think I was stupid?
“What difference does it make?” The baby was perfect in every way, her features were like a doll’s, her skin tinted just so, her tiny eyes beautifully abaxial. She had a full shock of straight, black hair.
“We are not Asian,” my wife said.
“I’m aware of that,” I said. “Now, how should I word this? The fact that she’s Asian is certainly no reflection on you.”
“Thank you for that,” my wife said. “But, I’m going to make inquiries.”
“I’ll do it,” I said.
I explained the situation to the head nurse on the maternity ward, then to the administrator responsible for the orderly functioning of the maternity ward.
“We live in a Global Community,” they said.
I accepted their explanation.
I work as an editor for a renowned publisher.
Which means I am a failed writer, who now tells other more successful writers how to make their work better. At the time our renowned publishing house published Stephen King. While Stephen King’s editor, also a failed author, was at lunch I perused his private files, extracting Stephen King’s phone number.
“What do you think of the idea of an Asian baby being born to a Caucasian couple.”
“Been done,” Stephen King said.
“No. I mean what do you think of the idea?”
“Been done,” he said, with considerably more emphasis, and hung up.
She won a spelling bee in second grade.
My wife, unable to get used to having an Asian baby, moved to Utah with a blackjack dealer.
I bought a rice cooker.
“I don’t want you to be lonely, Daddy,” she said, when she was sixteen.
Six years later she brought a professor home from college, a beautiful woman in her 40s who looked enough like her to be her mother.
“Have a Bovril and a game of Scrabble and get acquainted,” she said, leaving us alone. The professor used the word uterus for a triple word score. We fell into each other’s arms.