Yesterday the guy I order breakfast from asked me in English, “Where are you from?”
And I know exactly what he wants to know, but instead of that I answer the question he asked me. “I’m from Seattle.”
“So how come you speak perfect Spanish.”
“Well, I doubt it’s perfect.” If I had a habit of deflecting compliments before, it’s tripled since my time in China. I find myself even deflecting compliments in Spanish among latinos, when I should be accepting them. “Lo hablo por mis amigos latinos.” It’s because of my latino friends.
“But my brother in law is from Seattle, a white guy. He says there are no latinos in Seattle.”
“Yah,” I say, “there are latinos in Seattle, but the white folks don’t know where they are. You know you can get corn tortillas at the regular grocery store in Seattle, but in Manhattan, not so much.”
“Yah,” he said, and then I moved down the line to pay.
Now the dude is nice, I’m sure he’s prolly boricua. But I’m filipino american, and I’m outraged at the lack of corn tortillas in Manhattan. We’re talking about a basic staple of subsistence that’s native to this continent, in the oft-proclaimed “Bess city on Oit’! “You kid foynd AVRYTHING right heah!”
Anyway, today I went to a different breakfast place, just to change things up. I ended up at Greek Corner on 28th St and 7th Ave.
As an aside, it’s really hard to get two eggs over medium, bacon, and a toast without somebody loading up your plate with “home fries.” I never order the home fries, but some how, I get them every time. It’s either that or I get iced coffee when I ordered ice tea.
Oh and today, I sent back the toast, because I found a spider crawling on it.