In Chinese I am sometimes called 白鬼 , bai gui, or in English White Ghost. It is a derogatory term for Caucasians. In China when I speak Chinese I pretend to be foolish. I do this so it’s easier for me to break cultural barriers, to create laughs, to learn from new people, but most importantly, so I can make mistakes in communication to avoid embarrassment.
In China I am a White Ghost.
In America I was born in a region deprived of economic advantages or larger populations generating broader opportunities for social mobility. I was not born with physical attractiveness or a body glorified in the media. I am not considered outgoing or having a personality that meets society’s standards of success. I must constantly validate the sincerity of my interests to avoid the appearance that I am perverting them. I have remained with relatively little agency because of my marginalization in locations and cultures. I’m invisible because I’m just another average white guy.
In America I am a White Ghost.