In Japan if you have tattoos, you’re in the mafia. When I saw my grandmother in Japan I had to cover mine up because she’d reject me as part of the family. I also couldn’t tell my grandmother I was gay. Having tattoos and being gay and going to art school? She’d be like, “What are you doing with your life?”
I’m half-Japanese and half-white. When I’m in America I feel more Japanese, but when I go to Japan I feel really white. It’s strange because I don’t really have a home. My mom has lived in America for 30 years, but says she views her time here as an extended vacation. I asked her if she wants to move back to Japan, but she said she’s too old at this point. She’s basically cut off ties with my dad so I told her she should do what she wants.
I was born and raised in Minnesota, but I didn’t really speak English until I was five. Now English is my primary language. I think in English. I dream in English. My Japanese is slowly fading. (more…)