I finally watched Crash last night - definitely a recommended rental. This film deals with racial stereotypes and race relations, and it is not afraid to be uncomfortably real. It will make you cringe. It will also make you laugh, even when you feel like you shouldn't as a politically correct, open-minded individual. There were so many unexpected moments; I won't ruin anything for anyone who hasn't seen this yet, but I'll just say that I found myself with my hand over my gasping mouth many times.
When Oprah was turned away from the Hermes store in Paris, she called it her "Crash moment."
I have had my fair share of experiences as an Asian woman. I was crossing paths with a Caucasian woman near Union Square when we tried to get out of each other's way. We ended up doing that dance where we moved to the side in the same direction, and then we both move together again in the other direction. When we finally got around each other, she had the nerve to say, "Go back to where you came from." (Uh, I'm from here.) When I was in Texas, I was called "a little China doll." (I do realize that I was in Texas.) A friend was recently in Vegas when she was called "chink" and got pelted with an egg. The list goes on.
When I was walking down the street yesterday, a guy called out to me from his car, "Hey, Lucy Liu! Are you Lucy Liu? Can I have your autograph? Ooh, man, it's Lucy Liu." Not quite a Crash moment, I realize. It was actually kind of funny in a lame way. I wanted to end this post on a less serious note. But go rent Crash. It'll make you think.