K.T. Ho’s Thursday Thoughts

KT Ho at the stove.
KT Ho, telling you how dinner should be made as he makes dinner.

Most of my readers know my dad pretty well by now, either because you’re family, friends, or you’ve read my blog for sometime, in which my dad often appears. He’s incapable of crying and still, despite all my explaining, doesn’t understand why anyone would be interested in the stuff I write (“Why the hell would anyone want to read about your family?”), but he’s also a huge reason I am the way I am. Uncomplicated but not simple, the strong but far from silent type. My mother, the queen of impressions, does one of my father that goes like this: “Wallah wallah wallah.”

He calls it like it is, sometimes to his detriment. At least two family members have refused to speak to them at some point in their lives because of things my father said and never felt the need to apologize for because, well, they were true. (“I was just telling it like it is,” is his reasoning, when people throw their hands up in exasperation and say, “Why must you say it out loud?”) But they learn after a while that he’s a good man and more telling than his words are his actions: he is generous, warm and wants to help, wants the best for people. A family man who, if you’re kind of related to him (his half-sister’s daughter’s husband’s nephew), will invite you over for Christmas, even if the rest of the family spends the entire holiday smiling politely at you and whispering to him, “Bah, who the hell is that.”

Anyway. As Thom is in New York and thus unavailable to share his thoughts in person, my dad, K.T. Ho, has generously shared his thoughts instead, and not once did I have to ask him.

  1. On his own cooking: “This is skill. This is master chef status. See how I cooked all five dishes in one pot? You know what that means? It means I just have to wash one pot. You know some people use five different pots to make five dishes? Idiots. Look. Look! I’m washing one pot and there are five dishes on the table. This is talent. I’m teaching you, but you might not even be able to learn. Because it’s talent.”
  2. On the way I wash the dishes: “That’s clean? That’s clean? That’s your idea of a clean dish? It’s a wonder Thom doesn’t get diarrhea everyday.”
  3. On Thom: “That chump is working? Well his girlfriend got fired. Haha! Poor guy.”
  4. On my recent weight loss: “Did you lose weight? You look like you lost weight. How much do you weigh?” I told him. “You could probably lose five more pounds.”
  5. On my Macbook Air with the 11-inch screen: “Why did you buy such a small computer? You can’t see anything. Can you see anything? I can’t see anything. You’ll go blind before you know it.”
  6. On my brother’s dog Poochy who has offended my father multiple times in the worst way: crapped on his carpets and peed on his floors: “Betty. If you take him to New York I will pay for everything. The plane ticket. The food, whatever. Just take him away.” “But Guh and Cathy don’t want me to.” “Ha. Just take him when they’re not looking.”
  7. To my sister-in-law Cathy who when he came home said to her baby, “Look! Grandpa’s home! Let’s have Grandpa hold you!”: “Don’t tell me what to do.”
  8. On my nephew, whom he loves very much and who kind of looks like him, “Looks dopey. This chump.”

Also: some more of KT Ho’s thoughts, on Instagram, including: taking my dad around New York, when he was in the army, and the first time he met Thom.

KT Ho, far right, the eldest, loudest of three.
KT Ho, far right, the eldest, loudest of three, wearing plaid since 1949.
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