Laylee’s been talking smack. She’s learned how to hold a chopstick recently. Now, I’m not saying she’s learned how to hold chopsticks or even A chopstick correctly. No. Not so much. She has opposable thumbs and she can use them along with her other phalanges to keep a chopstick from falling out of her hand.
She thinks this is really something. Every once in a while, she successfully stabs something with a chopstick and manages to zip it into her mouth before it falls off. She’s even been known to use both sticks together to awkwardly pick up a lump of rice and shovel it in.
Now normally, I’d say, “Cute. She’s learning,” and I’d encourage her and try to teach her better technique ala Mr. Miyagi. But when I offered to help her, she told me she’s already too good. Yep. She informed me that she’s better than me, she’s better than Dan, she’s better than that one Chinese guy who works at your local Chinese restaurant and patiently teaches lame white people how to maneuver a pair, while laughing at them on the inside. She slaughters that guy at chopsticks.
Finally, sick of Laylee getting all up in his grill, Dan challenged her to a chopstick-off. The challenge involved Â¼ cup of peas for each of them, meticulously measured by an impartial judge named Me. We set a timer. They were off.
Did she remember that Dan served a mission in China Town in New York City? Did she remember that he can speak both Cantonese and Mandarin while using those chopsticks? Did she remember that he has a will of steel and refuses to lose to anyone, a trait which I find simultaneously sexy and frustrating?
He mopped the floor with her six-year-old butt, consuming peas at a rate of 4:1. She didn’t stand a chance. It’s not that she wasn’t focused. Because she was. She didn’t look to the left or to the right. She stared at the peas and even in her pathetic loss, I felt that she was a contender. And she held her head high.
“I will win one day. When he’s old, like as old as great great great grandpa who’s dead was, like right before he died? That’s when I’ll win.”
Okay. So she’s already planning to beat down the helpless 98-year-old vegetable with a pair of chopsticks? Nice.