You know, a couple of things. Some events and thoughts from the world come all at the same time. Wonder Twin Boy was chatting with me, telling me he is part of of the Asian kids and the non-Asian ids. For the Asian kids, he finds it interesting because his friends are all part of Asian households, whereas ours really isn’t. I asked him he missed that, he says he doesn’t, but it’s was an interesting observation for me to chew on.

And a few days, my friend Nancy was asking if ate Korean food at home. We don’t. We don’t even eat Chinese food, which I thought was pretty ubiquitous in every hood. The fact is everyone is vegetarian at home and I only know about meat dishes, and I don’t cook Korean food. I eat it at other people’s homes and restaurants — and I love it. Last week, I went to MOMA with my emo, mom, and emo-boo and we grabbed lunch after. I had my own dish — mandoo guy, a dumpling soup with beef broth and rice cakes because I was feeling a little under the weather. My emo and mom were shoving little additional servings from their dishes – mega spicy Kim chi soon doo boo jig, which I had called “primordial broth” in one of my shows, portraying it as something grows and mysterious. But today, you know, I chow down on all of it. I thoroughly enjoyed the banchan of three kids of kimchi, the pickled root veggies, the crunchy sweet fried anchovies. We got some extras b/c my emo is a regular, and b/c we are Korean (I wouldn’t get this treatment without them, but I was with Korean-speaking Koreans, so boom). They gave us jap chae as an additional free app, and rice soup after (like the warm water you boil in the rice cooker after the rice is gone; so it’s like the rice crust floating in warm water. I totally gobbled this up as a kid, but it’s not necessarily a “nice” dish to serve in a restaurant and I laughed with my mom that Americans would be like WTH is this.) and a cinnamon pine nut cool drink. It was typical and spice and I enjoyed it so much.

So parts of me are mega- or kinda-korean! If I miss my dad, I can go get Korean food. When I have to miss my mom one day, I can also go get food. It reminds me of years of childhood. But funny enough, I have had zero thought about passing this on to my own own children. Part of its I’m content enjoying things distinctly from my nuclear family, but I don’t feel this like obligation or instinct to keep my culture alive. I was talking about the family culture with Husband, which is a great deal of theater and theater history. Ice Cream Mondays — we have ice cream every Monday, something I came up with out of desertion when the ice cream trucks came by relentlessly.

I’ve had more Asians and non-Asians wish me happy new year this year (on lunar new year) than I ever have. And Asian families do celebrate lunar new year, but not us? And when my friend asked me about food, I stopped and wondered, am I dropping the ball? like why doesn’t it even occur to me to do this stuff with the kids?

Part of it is the influence of my parents. Even though they were immigrants (and technically, so was I), they didn’t seem overly attached to Korean culture. I can say to people I’m unconventional — my personality has confused a lot of people I work with, both Asians and non-Asians. But I didn’t come out of a vacuum. On some level, my parents were both unconventional. My mom’s priority with me was academics, that’s it. As she told her neighbor, she forced me to study and made me go to Yale. (She’s nuts.) And with that much influence, she could have also easily gotten me to study Korean. We tried a few times and it just wasn’t that important to my parents on some level. We never celebrated the lunar new year or Korean Thanksgiving. It’s just, they were practical and had to make the dough to keep our household afloat. However, it’s not just life that bumped this as a priority. On some level, Korean culture and language were not a priority for how they raised me, which I find very interesting. Do you know how many years I felt guilty about not speaking Korean?

I will say though food is mega important to them and they really couldn’t live somewhere without access to Korean food (although, even that, they could ditch.)

For what it’s worth, I’m going to get the Vegan Korean cookbook from the library. Husband has agreed to help me prepare the recipes for the kids, in case the food is something that they could get into, as something they might go for to remind them of being young, of me..when ONE DAY I’M DEAD AND GONE AHA HA HA AH AHAHA

(I mean, I can already tell you the things that they will remember of me will be like how I excel at bungling a punch line, how much I love them and how much I hate their enemies, and all my jokes).


Wonder Twin Boy often says “low hanging fruit” in a joking manner, or sometimes not, and I wonder like, if you’re using this goofy consultant-speak at age 11, what happens when you’re thirty?


In the days immediately following my dad’s death, I was in such a fog. I still dropped the kids off to school and did pick up. My employer invited me to work as much or as little as I wanted but I was a freelancer, so I wanted to keep working but I chose mindless tasks I could get done without the full concentration of my brain. I still would find myself overrun with tears. Anyway, I just remembered, there was once day when I was walking back from dropping off the twins, it was raining and I passed a dad I knew but not particularly well. We don’t even always say hello but this time he stopped and said.

He said he was sorry to hear about the loss of my dad, and I said thank you. He said he lost his father a few years ago too (I think that’s what he said. Or he might have said he lost him when he was much younger.) I said, how do you get over the loss of your dad? And he choked up and said “I don’t know.” I have no idea, I think he said. It’s happened many years ago and I am still f#ed up about it.

That was it. It was very generous of him to share that with me. We still run into each other on occasion and we still don’t always say hi. It was just like this random other part of life that doesn’t interact with regular life, but it was also wild to witness what someone else might be going through beneath the surface.


Oh my god, can we discuss the physical manifestations of aging? It is wild. When I went to my 20th high school reunion, I saw men whose ears and nose doubled in size and their heads didn’t keep up. There was one man, who looked like the a Lord of the Ring dwarves. I had to look at his name tag to figure out who he was and it blew me away. This man used to be a petite, wiry soccer player and now he had ZZ Top hair and beard, a body that was shaped like a bowling pin, and the requisite enlarged ears and nose.
My 30th college reunion is coming up (!) Of course, I feel like the majority of attendees will be people who have aged relatively “well” and who are pleased/don’t care about their appearance. I recently saw my photo in a work event and I was like my god, my face looks like someone kicked a football into the middle of my face and the features just kind of crowded around the middle. Do you know what I mean? Some people age with the peripheral parts of their face gaining more ground so it’s like your young face surrounded by an enormous doughtbut of face flesh. Can you picture it? Can you imagine what I a describing? My face is still there, but it’s all in the tiny center. C’est la vie. It used to make me sad, but now I think, the whole thing, the whole process, is very interesting.

screen zombies

You know what’s depressing? Three bright, delightful kids addicted to screens. The sounds of Minecraft and Mario Kart and cat videos clashing in the air and their complete stillness — it is just absolutely discouraging.

Mystery of Cookie Monster

I have watched “Sesame Street” since I was a kid. I guess I stopped watching at some point, so that’s a lie, but what is true is that I noticed that whenever Cookie Monster ate cookies, he never truly got to eat them. He smashed them and never actually like chewed and swallowed cookies. For some reason, I’ve been haunted by this. It plays in my mind from time to time, even now when I’m eligible to run for the president of the AARP. But today, the NY Times published this piece of hard-hitting journalism/a> on the person who makes Cookie Monster cookies and the mechanics of how his whole act happens. It was so satisfying and the best thing I read on the Internet today, hands down.


Told the kids, “you can be an actor. Just make sure you marry rich. Like Dad.”
“You’re rich?”
“Not really, but we’re all still alive, right?”
It’s not like the best advice, but I think back on the panic my mom felt when I told her i was going to act, and acting is hard. It is detrimental to your spiritual and financial health, and yet, if you feel that pull, you ignore it at your own peril. It was extremely confusing for me to follow my intuition, since I was raised under a “Tiger Mom Light” household. When you’re a high-achieving kid under the strict direction of a demanding parent, it takes a long time to find your own voice. In my case, it took years. Like maybe I have my voice now — at age 51. Yeeeesh.

A colleague told me and my videographer that his son wanted to become an actor. My videographer and I had opposite reactions. He immediately related feeling discouraged whereas I felt elated and overjoyed at the news. It’s not that I think things will work out. They will not for most actors, but you have to learn to listen to that instinct. If you don’t, you will make so many mistakes and so many wrong decisions. After all, I have to say, that same voice that led me to acting told me it was time to leave when my father was ill — so it’s precious to me, this compass.

I have no idea if my kids will do theater. I would guess 1-2 of them will dabble in it given that’s how me and their father met and he still feels pretty passionately about it, but there are so many options in life and pursuits that don’t even exist yet, who can really say?


Today I realized my Thanksgiving tradition is to not really understand how quickly Thanksgiving comes and food shop the day of. Happy Thanksgiving!

Lily Gladstone

You know, I may or may not get to “Killers of a Flower Moon” because it seems overwhelmingly dark and it also runs more than three hours long. There’s no reason for anything to be longer than an hour and half, you know? Regardless, I appreciate the tremendous beauty of Lily Gladstone, one of the stars. She has a luminous face and she’s not a cookie-cutter, skinny-minny Hollywood starlet. It is a relief to see her body among other famous people. I don’t have to despise my belly fat as much when I see someone who looks more normal (though I presume she must be tiny in real life, like all film stars). You think you’re immune to the images presented to you every day, but you’re not. (And by “you,” I mean “me,” the best kind of “you.”)

kidney list

It happened organically, but I started a “Kidney List” — a list of people I’d be willing to give a kidney too. No family are on that list, but I suppose that’s because they are automatically assumed to be on that list. This list is more for friends who showed up for me in my darkest hour and supported me. I guess when I think what is the deepest, most profound way I can give back, my brain automatically goes to that extra kidney (and i have to get reminded which organ it is that we have two kidneys for?) Like what can be bigger than an actual part of my body?

In any case, there is one Brooklyn family this week who came to our rescue twice this week — omg in a big way — but I suppose they’re not QUITE at kidney list level but close enough that I mentioned that such a list exists. The father has mocked me in the past that no one would want my liver (because, yes, admittedly, I had confused the kidney and liver, and I do enjoy the booze), but tonight, I decided to start an appendix list. I still have one! No one needs an extra! But it’s a good stop-gap/stop-over while you work your way up to “Kidney List-worthy.”