1. On Being Asian, Gay, and Very Naïve…

It is 10:00pm. I am in my bed; lying alone as per usual. I check my phone, although it did not make any notification noises or anything I check it habitually, almost religiously as all millennials now do. I then scroll through my social media outlets. One by one I check the feeds. Instagram… check. Twitter… check. Facebook… check. After making one round through my social media outlets I check again, and again. Almost to the point of insanity, nothing new has appeared. The state of my loneliness I am in, gets worse and worse every time I pull down to refresh my screen.. I want more. Something more than an inspiring quote over a sunset. I want something more personal. So I then go onto the other facet of social media and venture down the dark rabbit hole of gay dating applications.

Oh Grindr. An app built to fit dozens of profiles of men within a certain radius of you. It seems simple enough. Maybe someone as naïve as I can find someone special on here. I shall keep my hopes up. I load the application. The yellow background and black skull type logo are first to appear. Interesting design. I start filling in my profile. It seems simple enough. The faces start filling my screen…well some faces, many headless torsos, and blank profiles. I message a few users. My initial message has something witty, cute, or a compliment based on their profile and what I can work with. No response.

“That’s fine. I will try again another time.”

I download more applications. Hornet, Tinder, Jack’D…The list continues.

I continue the process with all the applications as I did with the first one. Nothing. Or it feels like nothing. As I soon realize the person that is 1452 kilometres away from me is actually a term that is a “bot”. A little background about me.

I am a gay Canadian-Vietnamese young adult. I am a college graduate. I live on my own. I can manage myself. I can care for others. I am 165 centimetres tall. I exercise regularly and have my own hobbies. I have many interests and pride myself in my open mindedness.

I do not know what initially wrong with me. I think I stand a fair chance among other bachelors. I don’t know. So I decided to wait it out. Days turn into weeks. Weeks turn into months. Months turn into years.

My messaging changes, my habits as well. Instead of something witty and cute, I start with “Are you into Asians?” It may seem so strong to start with but knowing myself and learning from the cruel lessons of the world have forced me to save time and angst. And if they are awesome proceed to phase 2. If not one of many, or make it millions. Anyway, they are into Asians. Awesome. Moving to the next phase. Finding out if their preference for Asians is actually a preference or a thing called “yellow fever.” If it’s just a preference. Awesome. Proceed to phase 3. If not, I personally don’t want my partner to be more Asian than I am. (Unless they are Asian too haha.) Anyway. I am not a novelty to be added to their collection. I have too much self respect to be another thing to own or another person to be a conquest.

Hello there. Welcome to phase 3. Well; actually lets get one fact first. I want to be in love. I want to care for someone so much it hurts. I want that person to be so in love with me. I want it to be a 50/50 effort. It is equal on both sides and both sides are content. I also am in love with being in love. I want to feel all these emotions. They are meant to be felt. And sometimes I just take a chance with them and I ruin everything. I say something that’s too much, I see someone too much, everything I do its in excess because my little heart that acts like a nuclear reactor for love and affection continues to pump more and more. It is an uncontrollable current, when repressed it feels more unbearable. The feelings and longing for mutual affection. Complete unconditional intimacy.

Whether it be stereotypes to my ethnicity that repulses other people or I may want something serious “too fast” I am sorry my desires are “too fast” for your “right now” demands. Actually to be frank. I am not sorry. I am not sorry for my turmeric skin and my jet black hair. That what you perceive as submissive when all I am doing is showing respect and cultural manners. When I am a more tactile person when showing affection it stems from my cultural upbringings. Does it make you uncomfortable that I am a more aggressive Asian. War stains my bloodlines and I was raised to be a fighter.

Forgive me for my frankness for I do not mean to offend. But when one writes me off as too feminine bottom. You my friend; know nothing. I have the drive of my tiger mom. I don’t have anything to say of what you perceive to be too masc or too femme. You are stuck in the quicksand of your own twisted reality. Too enclosed in the narrow opening of your mind.

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