Mothers Are the Same the World ‘Round and T-2 Days

Mother asked me if Korean mothers and American mothers were the same. This was after she told Good Man to eat his onions.

“Korean mothers,” I said in Korean, “American mothers, Chinese mothers, all mothers are the same.”

We went to Good Man’s school today. Freshman orientation was going on, so a bunch of over-excited, under-dressed almost-students were running around screaming and acting like…well, freshmen.

A girl walked past us.

Mother and I looked at each other at the same time, smiled, and started laughing.

I patted her arm and said, “우리는 똑같은 생각해요.” We are thinking the same thing.

Good Man’s mother told him to eat onions. She told him repeatedly. My mother, meanwhile, called me and asked me if Good Man’s mother prefers silver or gold. Sister was in my car with me, so I asked her.


I told Mom and she replied, “You’re sure she likes gold?”

I asked Sister again and turned back to Mom. “Yes, she likes gold.”

“Does she ever wear silver?”

I asked Sister and turned back to Mom. “No, she usually wears gold.”

“What about two-tone? What about both?”

When Mom and George came to Korea we went to a traditional village. Mom made me ask the wooden mask-maker if he really made all of those masks. She made me ask him three times. “Mom, remember when we were at the traditional village and you made me ask the guy three times if he made those masks? This is like that. I don’t even know how to ask if she likes both together. She likes gold.”

“OK. But I don’t want to make a mistake!” Mom replied.

“Mom, it’ll be fine.”

We hung up. Sister started laughing. “Mothers are the same everywhere,” she said.

Last night we had dinner at our house. Mother refused to let me in my own kitchen. She did show me how to fold large sheets of seaweed in their packet to break them up and make smaller sheets. This is one of those “duh, why didn’t I think of that?” things that is going to save us a ton of money…

She also dragged out the dried fish and some sort of paste. “Amanda! Mix this together. This is [Good Man]’s favorite food. You must make it for him.”

I adore this woman.

Yesterday Dad called and asked if cargo pants were OK to wear to the wedding. Brand new cargo pants, mind you. Never worn.

It’s occurred to me a few times over these past few days that sugar-creamer freakout aside, this wedding thing is a hell of a lot more relaxed than it could be.

No fittings for the bridesmaids. No picking up tuxes for the groom, groomsmen, and fathers. No fittings for groom, his groomsmen, the fathers. No shopping for mother-of-the-bride dresses. No trying to lose weight because…I don’t need to! I have a bit of a sunburn on my arms and a huge tan line where I wear my watch, but hey! The hanbok covers all of those lines! I’m wearing lots of sunscreen, esp on my face, but no fake tans, nothing like that. I’m using lots of hand lotion and hope we have time to get a manicure and pedicure tomorrow, but if wee don’t, well, they’re all the same length and clean and I’ll buff them. No pushups to make my shoulders look really good for the strapless dress (because almost every dress is strapless or sleeveless nowadays). No special makeup, just wearing my favorites. Hell, other than a dress shield, I didn’t even need to buy any special underwear or shapewear!

I started thinking about this when my response to Dad was a very honest, “I don’t care what you wear, as long as you show up.”

Saturday’s weather forecast: Isolated thunderstorms. 69 F low, 84 F high.