Are You There Krishna? It’s Me, Reshma. Or Rachel. Or Whatever.
Essays on Talking to Ghosts, Accosting Celebrities, Getting High, Sexism, Race, and First-Generation Woes
By Rachel Khona
Rachel knew even as a young child that she wasn’t like the rest of her Indian family. While her parents were plotting how she could make it into med school with her mediocre grades in chemistry and biology, she had other things on her mind, including such gems as:
- Why can’t she go to the temple on her period?
- Why don’t her Indian cousins like her?
- Why was it OK to be sexualized at a beauty pageant but not for herself?
- How can she straddle two cultures while retaining her sense of self?
- Why are women considered sluts and men considered studs?
- Why do people keep asking her if she was born in India?
- Should she wax down there?
- Why does she have crazy eyes?
After leaving home, Rachel got high in Amsterdam, met her pop singer idol in a bathroom, argued with a ghost, and got lost in the Pyrenees. But that didn’t stop her from questioning while men still tell her to smile. Are You There Krishna? It’s Me, Reshma. Or Rachel. Or Whatever. weaves stories of Rachel’s life with observations on race, class, sex, feminism, and culture with humor and candor.
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