There was an article how Asian-Americans, previously the intermarriage masters, are realizing the benefits of shared backgrounds when selecting a spouse.
This passage jumped out at me:
Ms. Le is a gregarious, ambitious corporate lawyer, but in her parents’ home, she said, “There’s a switch that you flip.” In their presence, she is demure. She looks down when she speaks, to demonstrate her respect for her mother and father. She pours their tea, slices their fruit and serves their meals, handing them dishes with both hands.
The point of this anecdote in the article was how white boyfriends were freaked by this display of filial respect; Le eventually wed an Indian-American who implicitly understood respectful submission to parents.
But for me, I was jolted, comprehending my suckiness in my own kibud av v'eim. Seriously, read what she does; everything I don't and should.
And talk about respecting elders!
Ed Lin . . . said that his wife, Lily Lin, had given him a deeper understanding of many Chinese traditions.“She brings to the table a lot of small nuances that are embedded culturally,” Mr. Lin said of his wife, who has also encouraged him to serve tea to his elders and refer to older people as aunty and uncle.
I like to flatter myself that I know how to treat those older than me, but every time I want to refer to my aunt and uncle as "Aunt" and "Uncle," the labels stick in my throat. I even attempted using the Hungarian terms, Néni and Bácsi, which I always called my great-aunt and -uncles so easily, but for more immediate family I lamely wimp out.
One thing's for sure, I'm not letting no article think that Asians have a monopoly on respect. Sure, their cultures have been around as long as ours, but two can play that game.
So I challenge my fellow frummies: Let us remind the world who can do the real respecting.