I moved to New York when I was 13. I left a suburban town in Los Angeles that was almost entirely Chinese for a very similar suburban town in New York — with the exception that it was almost entirely all Jewish.
I won’t lie, approved being a new kid in 7th grade was a trying time, and at times it really sucked a lot. It took a while for me to adjust, but looking back at my childhood, I don’t regret it at all. If anything, I’m grateful that I’ve had a chance to have grown up in a Jewish community and be immersed in Jewish culture, which I’ve found to have many similarities and connections to my Chinese upbringing.
Even in Los Angeles, we never had a Christmas tree at my house, and I probably never will. This Christmas Eve, I won’t be crying about my treeless apartment- the only tears I’ll be shedding will be tears of joy. I’ll be celebrating the bond between Jews and Asians by co-hosting Woks and Lox at the Queens Kickshaw with my Jewish co-producer, Jeff Orlick, and we’d love for you to come too.
Of course any celebration, Jewish or Asian, can’t be without food and drink. So, our good friend and talented chef Chichi Wang will be preparing a sit-down dinner for 20 followed by a party of 40 more, complete with Sino-semitic noshes.
The fun doesn’t end there. Aside from dinner and noshes, we’ll have entertainment ranging from adaptations of Chinese wedding games to barmitzvah festivities and mah jong, as well as a Chinese auction with prizes donated by some of our favorite small businesses and companies.
Some of our prizes and giveaways include He’Brew, The Chosen Beer, Queens Historian Jack Eichenbaum‘s Tour along the 7 train, Fresh Ginger Ale by Bruce Cost, special Woks & Lox wallets from Hail the Right Brain made by yours truly, and Jeff will be giving away tickets to his infamous Midnight Street Food tour too.
That’s just the beginning – we’ll also have JoJu’s Modern Vietnamese, and many pizza giveaways from Louie’s Pizzeria in Elmhurst to Roebling Pizza in Williamsburg, in addition to tickets to Scott’s Pizza tour, and of course Jeff’s Real Pizza of New York iPhone app. More to come in a following post!
Last but not least, we’re doing it at one of our favorite places in our home borough of Queens, The Queens Kickshaw. We couldn’t do this without Kickshaw owners Ben Sandler and Jen Lim, two of our very first supporters of Woks & Lox and not-so-coincidentally also a Jewish and Asian duo, who have generously offered to host us and even be there personally to mix special drinks just for this special Christmas evening.
Christmas Eve is a tough date to make, but even if you can’t come, we don’t want you to feel left out – so we’re making holiday cards, money holders, and party t0-go packs from me and Jeff at Woks & Lox HQ (aka my apartment) – all for sale on IndieGoGo alongside the tickets to the event. It’s going to be fun, and I hope you can be a part of it. If you can’t, please help us to spread the word and make our Christmas wish come true.