I met Mike’s two sisters and brother and their families in St. Louis this week and my sister-in-law said something so profoundly stupid I thought I had been hit by a bus, a short yellow bus. Her son told me he had been to Asia and so I asked which Asian country he’d been to and he told me to ask his mom. I turned to my sister-in-law and she said, “Well, we went to Hawaii. I know it’s part of the United States, but it’s Asian…”
Hawaii is not Asia. Just because there are a lot of Japanese tourists and a large Filipino population, it is not Asia. Even if Hawaii were filled with only Asians, there is no way in hell anyone Asian would mistake it for their native country or people living there would turn to each other and say, “Gee, why go to Asia when we can just stay here in Hawaii? It’s the same thing!” I am writing this here because I cannot tell this to my sister-in-law and even if I did, it would not make a dent in a geosocial perspective she picked up ten years ago as a tourist shopping at ALA MOANA.
I’m going to make this into a shirt: Hawaii is not Asia.