Ottawa, May 2014

I think I am a pretty honest person. I don’t cheat and I don’t play tricks. Why would I? I find life is generally easier when you tell the truth and speak your mind—without being brutally blunt, of course. Being caught in a web of lies must be a nightmare. I don’t have the energy for that kind of crap.

But what about these little white lies? Okay, I am guilty of these.

“Yum yum… look what I have here, a peanut butter sandwich!”

I hate peanut butter. I am convinced it’s an acquired taste, much like strong blue cheese (yummy!). The funny thing is, I don’t mind nuts and I don’t mind peanuts in Asian food. But I can’t take peanut butter. The first time I tasted it was at Tim Hortons: I was addicted to their cookies back then, and one day I was given a peanut butter treat by mistake. I spat it out. It tasted… like sand.

I introduced Mark to peanut butter because it’s a relatively healthy spread (well, healthier than Nutella) and he isn’t fond of cheese or butter. But I can’t eat it myself. Just the smell… yuck.

“No, that’s fine, I’ll give Mark his bath.”

That’s not fine. I am not exactly looking forward to getting soaked and wrestling to rinse him properly. I am tired too. But I’ll do the job faster. It’s 9 p.m. I just want the day to end, already.

“Mark, be nice with your grandparents.”

But if you feel like throwing tantrums, acting up and whining, please use up your daily quota with them and be an angel when you come back. You are their only grandson. They can’t get sick of you. Enjoy.

“Come on Mark, we are going right there. Yes, the store is here, very close.”

More like three blocks away but hey, whatever it takes to convince him to follow me and walk in the right direction and stop jumping in puddles of water already.

“Well, if you’re thirsty, you can drink water.”

Meanwhile, I am having a Coke Zero or a tall coffee, thank you very much. Well, when you’ll be 31 years old you’ll get to pick your drink too. Put yourself in my shoes: I need caffeine to keep up with you. You have energy, apparently. I don’t.

“I don’t know where your ball is, Mark.”

I do. It’s hidden behind the bed. And you ain’t getting it. Look, I get it: guys like to throw stuff. You can play throw and catch with Feng. With me, you get to (pretend to) read books, stack Duplos and push your toy trucks and cars. Why don’t I want to play with a ball? Well, first of all, I am trying to catch up with some work and my laptop screen isn’t supposed to be hit by a ball. Second, I am one of these people who close their eyes or turn their heads when the ball is thrown at them. I have zero hand-eye coordination and yes, life wasn’t fun at recess in middle school—I don’t need to live through that again with you. Mark.

The “No please, go first” hand gesture at the four-way stop sign

I am on my bike getting soaked by the rain. You are in your car, dry and comfortable. I resent you. But cyclists are actually to be treated as vehicles and the back-and-forth waving of each other is annoying and dangerous. Come on, drive away, already!

The forced smile every time I meet the “toddler police”

I don’t feel like smiling. I want to call you names and use “fuck” as punctuation. But I won’t because one of my rules is not to engage the crazies.

How about you? Told any white lies lately?

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  1. Holly Nelson June 15, 2014 at 10:29 am

    Hmmm…I am sure I have told many white lies lately! I can’t think of them right now. I suppose the biggest I tell in general though is ‘Sure, come on over!’ to our neighbour who likes to hang out at our house, when all I want to do is watch Beverly Hills on the TV and drink tea!

    1. Zhu June 15, 2014 at 8:36 pm

      Ugh. I’m big on boundaries, I would hate a too friendly neighbour!

  2. Shannon June 15, 2014 at 11:04 am

    I eat peanut butter a lot at the moment (it’s a healthy spread for my morning English muffin), but when I was younger, I was pretty much “Take it or leave it” bordering on “Ehh… no, I don’t want that”. I guess that’s just proof that tastes do change!

    1. Zhu June 15, 2014 at 8:37 pm

      This is very true, tastes do change! I used to hate coffee and now I need my daily fix for instance. It’s kind of cool, it means we change and adapt through the years.

  3. Canedolia June 15, 2014 at 12:27 pm

    If I ever have kids, I’ll be exactly like you with that ball. Understanding Frenchman’s family are very into football and I’m sure it won’t take our hypothetical two-year-old children long to figure out that they have better coordination and spatial awareness than I do!

    1. Zhu June 15, 2014 at 8:38 pm

      Any toddler is better with a ball than I am. It’s embarrassing!

  4. Christiane June 20, 2014 at 4:59 pm

    Ugh i hate peanut butter too ! I prefer almond butter.

    Hmmm i told a few white lies to G lately. Sometimes G do something which makes me want to go full on “angry black woman” on me and he always look at me and ask “Are you ok?” and i say “I am good”. Got to pick my battles, right?

    1. Zhu June 20, 2014 at 8:11 pm

      I can imagine the “angry black woman” look 😆 Plus, being pregnant… hormones drive you crazy. Seriously, I wasn’t myself either. White lies are fine… in my book!


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