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  • My Love is louder than “Yours”
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Grace Chu

Stuff Lesbians Like Part 90: “Chi ku” (eating bitterness)


There is a Chinese saying, “chi ku,” which means “eat bitterness.” The concept of eating bitterness roughly translates to: “Life sucks, so shut up, and grin and bear it.” Eating bitterness is sort of like the Protestant work ethic, except that there is no underlying expectation of personal salvation at the end of all of that diligence, restraint and suffering. Eating bitterness will not get you closer to God. You’re just supposed to eat bitterness… and then you die.

Please witness gaysian internet rock star / web celebrity incorrigibly hypersocial geek Ernie of little.yellow.different and 8asians.com mangling the concept of eating bitterness.

In the clip, Ernie says, “Xian chi ku, hou chi tian,” which means, “First you eat bitterness so that you may taste sweetness later.” Ernie later admitted that his father added the part about tasting sweetness. What sort of absurd mollycoddling bullshit is this? Taste sweetness?! Asians aren’t supposed to taste sweetness! (This means that Ernie is soft and wasn’t raised a real Asian. Hey Ernie, the domain name of your website should be changed from “8asians.com” to “7Asians-and-a-poser.com.”) Remember, kids, you’re just supposed to eat bitterness. Don’t expect a cookie at the end of all that suffering.

For lesbians, eating bitterness is a skill that is as essential as eating pussy. Since lesbian social circles are inexorably incestuous as lesbians insist on collecting exes as friends and are prone to developing inappropriate feelings towards their friends, plenty of opportunities to eat bitterness naturally arise in the lesbian world. The lesbian who walks into a difficult social situation, wilts and says “I can’t take it!” is a failed lesbian. Lesbians are supposed to have hearts and stomachs of steel.


  • You are at game night at your friend’s house. Your ex walks in. CHI KU!
  • Your ex walks in with her new girlfriend. Both look great, and it’s that time of the month for you, so you’re breaking out. CHI KU!
  • Your friend that you’ve been inappropriately crushing on walks into the room. CHI KU!
  • She is with her overprotective girlfriend, who can snap your pencil neck with her pinky. CHI KU!
  • After half an hour of Scrabble, you are down to your last tiles, and you only have the letters “c,” “h,” “i,” “k,” and “u.” “Chi ku” is not a valid Scrabble word. You lose. Ha ha! CHI KU!

“But wait,” you say. “No one likes eating bitterness. Not even lesbians.” Ah, young padawan… you do not know the ways of the Sapphic sisterhood. Lesbians will puff their chests out and openly brag about how well they eat bitterness, like it is some badge of honor. Like frat boys swallowing goldfish whole after taking five Jagermeister shots, lesbians will deliberately place themselves in a situation where they have to eat bitterness to appear simultaneously martyr-like and macho. Like David Blaine’s incurable compulsion to put himself in dangerous life-or-death situations for the amusement of onlookers, lesbians cannot control their desire to prove their mettle by walking into circumstances where they have to eat bitterness.


  • “Although I felt my ACL tearing, I clutched the football like it was my firstborn child, kept my eyes on the end zone and powered through the searing pain. I ended up in the emergency room, but I did not shed a tear, not even once.”
  • “I saw my lying cheating ex at a club with her new snaggletoothed girlfriend. EVEN THOUGH HER NEW GIRLFRIEND IS AN UGLY SKANK AND I WANTED TO PISTOL WHIP BOTH OF THEM WITH MY BLACKBERRY, I went up to them and cordially said, ‘Hi.'”
  • “I am abstaining from sex, because it builds character.”

The proper response to these declarations of successful bitterness-eating is to pat your lesbian friend on the head and say, “My what a good lesbian you are. You are so skilled at eating bitterness. In fact, your abilities have the potential of reaching legendary status. Why don’t I buy you a drink to congratulate you.” She will appreciate that you validated her superhuman ability to withstand suffering and will come away with the satisfaction that she is an advanced lesbian.

15 Responses to “Stuff Lesbians Like Part 90: “Chi ku” (eating bitterness)”

  1. Efren Says:

    LOL! This was awesome–and you included Ernie!

    He’s not really a poser–but we love him (at least this fag does) 😉

    Besides 7+-asians-and-a-poser.com is too hard to type out. (We ARE more than 8, you know).

  2. Efren Says:

    Oh yeah, I’m following you on twitter…so follow me, dammit!

  3. sleeps Says:

    love it! I never thought that was carefully engrained in my psyche could actually relate to being a lesbian as well.
    i must go spread the word!

  4. darkmoon Says:

    I totally need to buy 7asians-and-a-poser.com

    Although I have to admit. What’s with Ernie doing the super-enunciation? Crazy! 😉 There actually is a chen yu that talks about eating the bitterness first, then the sweetness later actually. lol. So Ernie’s dad wasn’t really that far off. It doesn’t go quite the way of “xian chi ku, hou chi tian” though.

  5. clever Says:

    this adequately describes my lifestyle.
    thank you for making sense of my existence.

  6. Vikki Says:

    Another example…

    You are on a cross-country road trip with your ex-girlfriend and her new love and a few other friends. You have rented a van and your ex starts having sex with the new girl in the back, right behind where you are sitting. You are forced to endure this until the next rest stop. CHI KU!

  7. Grace Lightning Says:

    Excellent Excellent. Smart and funny as always.

  8. tuffdawg Says:

    “For lesbians, eating bitterness is a skill that is as essential as eating pussy.”

    all i can say is … PRICELESS

  9. meara Says:

    Oh my god. This is AWESOME.

  10. Jennifer Says:

    Oh I have another one to add (’cause ya I might as well make Chi Ku my motto at times’):
    You still love her, but now in order to be around her you must act cival [CHI KU] to the [new] significant other (whose a man >.<‘) to be around her (damn does he have to follow her everywhere or pout/bitch/sulk when she does not inform him of her every move), when you just want to beat him over the head with the nearest blunt object or yell something along the lines of ‘she is mine dammit! Get the fuck out of here.’ Guess what- CHI KU.


  11. Liger Says:

    what kind of friends… and EXES.. do YOU have?!?!!

  12. H-Diz Says:

    OUCH! Instead of CHI KU I might grab my switchblade… just in that paticular instance. haha.

  13. HEATHER D Says:

    If anyone ever asks me, “what are lesbians like?” this is the ONLY answer they shall ever need. Hahah

  14. It’s Funny Because It’s True? « The Post-Grad World According to V.T. Chin Says:

    […] Stuff Lesbians Like Part 90: “Chi ku” (eating bitterness) […]

  15. Chi Ku Part 2: It’s it 2010 Yet? Says:

    […] you haven’t read Grace Chu’s original post Chi Ku then do so now… Don’t worry, I’ll wait.  Caught up?  […]

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