Many people ask me "Hey WokTiny, what does 'WokTiny' mean?" So many, in fact, that I decided it is time to tell my story.
As an infant, I was left for dead in the back alleys of New York City. For too long I laid there cold and hungry, unaware of a better life, or even why I was cold and what hunger meant. Just another back alley preemie, with nothing but time to exercise his barely developed lungs. By a stroke of fate, luck, or Providence, I was found in that dank alley by the humble husband and wife owners of a small Chinese fast food restaurant: Mr. and Mrs. Xiao.
Malnourished, sick, and weak though I was, compassion overwhelmed my would-be guardians. They spared me the alley and introduced me to warmth, milk, and green tea. I'm not sure about the details: if they ever legally adopted me, if the government even knew I existed; all I know is they took care of me the best way they knew how.
The Xiaos were not prepared for an infant. As would be expected, their restaurant was not equipped with baby furnishings, least of all a cradle. Taking from what was available then and there, I was wrapped in a table cloth and laid in a wok. I was so small, tiny, in fact, that they had to use their smallest wok. This became my namesake, and I was named 'Guo', which is Chinese for 'wok'. 'Guo Xiao', or as the Chinese say 'Xiao Guo'.
As it turns out, brown rice and green tea is not everything a malnourished back alley preemie needs to grow strong. I'm not sure whether it was the time I spent hungry in the alley, or the MSG in my brown rice and green tea; It may even have been that tiny wok, but I never grew quite right. I never grew long legs.
I have disproportionately small legs. I waddle. Just a little bit, I walk like a penguin. Middle School was Hell. It's one thing to be short, but to be short with a surname that means 'tiny' opens up the door to a cruelty known only in heartless dregs of Middle School. It didn't take long for people to see that I walk with short steps. It didn't take long for people to realize the coincidence with my name. It didn't take long for some kid to say "He walks Tiny!" It hurt. My only solace was getting to laugh silently at the kid who's accent prevented him from saying "walks." I even started to enjoy when he clumsily tried to fit in by putting me down saying "He wok tiny!"
Yes, I am WokTiny.