In every national crisis, a new group of heroes emerges.
On 9/11, it was the firefighters who courageously ran into the World Trade Center minutes before they collapsed on top of them, apparently unaware that jet fuel can melt steel beams.
In the coronavirus pandemic, I don’t know that there’s been anyone quite as admirable as the people who sat around on Twitter and lied through their teeth about their plans to patronize Asian-American businesses, to counteract the devastating effect of people (including the president, natch) referring to Covid-19 as the China Flu, Wuhan Flu, or, God forbid, Wu-Tang Flu—this despite the fact that many of them live in cities that are under mandatory lockdown.
If they weren’t on lockdown, what businesses would they even frequent? Most consumer products, especially if they’re inexpensive and poorly assembled, come from China, but they’re sold by companies owned and operated by white people, like Walmart. The only Chinese businesses I can think of off the top of my head are Chinese restaurants, and you can’t seek credit for having frequented a Chinese restaurant, because that might be construed as racist.
I’ve been wanting some Chinese food since this coronavirus shit popped off, in part because any mention of China triggers a Pavlovian response in my mind (complete with phantom MSG headaches lol jk), and in part because hardly a week goes by when I don’t eat Chinese food, so I’m due. But I’m not sure if I want to take my chances.
I’m less concerned about catching Corona from the people who work in Chinese restaurants, who hardly travel outside the building, let alone to their homeland, than I am about inadvertently eating something less than appetizing. I’ve never bought into the racist rumors that Chinese restaurants serve people’s pets, even the one I used to go to that was next door to PetSmart, as discussed in The Mindset of a Champion, but I’m sure business has been down lately. People spent all their money on toilet paper and bulk quantities of 73/27 ground beef, and it might be a while until those Trump checks come out. If ever there was a time to trap stray cats in an alley and serve them as pork fried rice, it’s the present.
I probably shouldn’t admit to this in a public space, but I go to three different Chinese restaurants, for different things, including one of those dollar-a-scoop places. All three of them are more or less equally as trifling, despite the fact that they must be making out like bandits. They’re charging like $8 for a box of rice that probably cost them $0.39. I don’t have kids of my own, but I’m sure I’ve put some young guy through med school. Fortunately, the places I go to don’t serve anything weird like bat or pangolin, that I’m aware of. Supposedly, Corona (both the disease and the beverage) was started by a bat taking a shit on a pangolin in a “wet market” in Wuhan, China.
Noted influencer Dr. Eugene Gu, MD, has argued that we shouldn’t blame the Chinese for Corona, even though it really is their fault, and I’m gonna have to agree. Now is not the time for racism. Not only does referring to Corona as the Chinese Virus hurt the feelings of lithe, compliant Asian women, whom I feel compelled beyond my will to defend, but it leads some of the worst people on social media to take a bold stance against racism, to offer to send money via Cash App to people who, statistically, probably don’t actually need it and what have you, thus drowning out increasingly racier offerings from girls trying to make a living via OnlyFans. It’s fucking up my quarantine!
Take it easy on yourself,