Anonymous “grew up seeing the pick-up line, ‘What did your mom and dad feed you to get you so pretty?’ in Hmong movies… usually the girl always responds with rice.” It was interesting for them to see this in movies because they never heard of or experienced that pick-up line in real life. Furthermore, it seemed very carefully chosen for her culture because she shat “love was often shown through food by family members and to hear that comment on food asked by a date was really goofy.” Anonymous is still bewildered by the use of this pick-up line and how it is incorporated into Hmong media regularly.
It is uncommon to hear of or see this pick-up line used in American folk groups, but the utilization of a cultural pick-up line in which the answer is a staple food in Hmong culture is an interesting tidbit of folklore to be shared, orally or digitally. It encompasses an ironic connection between the love languages utilized in Hmong/Asian families and those found within romantic relationships. It is common for Asian cultures to be incapable of orally expressing their love and affection to their family (mostly from parents to children), but sometimes food is the easiest way to do so. When Asian parents apologize, it is most likely your favorite dish waiting for you downstairs as an offer of reconciliation. To ask a romantic interest, “What did your mom and dad feed you to get you so pretty?” may allude to what kind of love one was raised on and even a way to delve more into one’s personality traits. It is also interesting that food is valued and not seen as an enemy to beauty. Sometimes in American standards, it is not seen as feminine or beautiful for a woman to express her love for food because they must uphold a taut figure. It is evident that values differ purely by analyzing American and Hmong folklore.