She, being an Asian girl, said that she preferred White guys because Asian guys were too big of pussies to pursue her.
She was all class, as you might imagine.
When anyone gets lumped into sweeping generalizations or stereotypes, it doesn’t feel good. On most days, my natural instinct would have taken over which is to be defensive and openly hostile to this gasbag.
But for some reason, on this day, I froze. I sort of just nodded along, shook my head and continued on with my pork ribs.
She touched a nerve, but it wasn’t the one you might think.
I remember asking myself…Was she right?
People say that New York City is the interracial dating capital of the world and they would be right. Everyday, you see mixed-raced couples and I think that’s great. New York women especially. They like to strut around, Prada in one hand, an exotic Moroccan man in the other…It’s all part of the image carefully laid out by Carrie Bradshaw and her hungry pack of cougars.
Asian women play the game too. Dare I say that, by my observation, the majority of Asian-American women in the city are dating guys who aren’t Asian.
Asian guys on the other hand… I can remember maybe three or four times this whole year when I’ve seen them walking around with a girl who wasn’t Asian.
It begs the question…
What the fuck?
Thinking about this made me confront a couple deeply embedded biases and emotions.
First, I find that I have a generally low opinion of Asian men; I’m pretty hard on them as a group. Most of the time, I catch myself sizing them up, looking on with disdain…as if their failure was my failure.
Yo…man. You gotta be wearing those shoes? You’re really going to wear that sweater vest?
My man, can you stop nodding like a bobblehead? And why are you smiling so much? You look like you’re in desperate need of approval. STOP LOWERING YOURSELF.
I find that I have very little patience with un-cool Asian guys, especially the loud un-cool Asian guys.
It would seem that I have an implicit bias against my own people.
The second gut-shot sting I get from time to time is when I come across an Asian girl dating a White guy. I’m not sure how many guys agree with me here but see if this is at all familiar.
When I see an Asian girl with a White guy, I’m confronted with a gamut of emotions that hits me in a fleeting but poignant second only to retract into cool indifference as quickly as it appeared. (And I have to stress that this is a momentary lightning bolt of emotional charge. It’s not like I dwell on it).
Recently, I tried to document this strange wave of emotions by letting it linger for a moment longer. Simultaneously, I felt sadness, bitterness, resignation, frustration, inadequacy with a hint of jealousy.
Of these, I think the most surprising and, at the same time, most revealing emotion was the sense of inadequacy.
Inadequacy? Really? Why do I feel inadequate when I see an Asian girl, who I don’t even know, dating a White guy, who I don’t even know?
It’s interesting when you think about it because it’s a collective, not individual, sense of inadequacy. I believe—and you might disagree with me on this point—that we are naturally attracted to people similar to ourselves in race, ethnicity, background, class, or some other categorical distinction.
This isn’t to say that a person can’t be attracted to someone different from themselves…this happens all the time, of course.
What I’m arguing is that Asian guys should naturally have at least an inside track based on the fact that they share a similar ethnic identity. “If all else fails in a cocktail conversation, bring up your roots” sort of thing.
So by that premise, when I observe this unprecedented number of Asian women who choose White men (bombarded as I am in New York), I’m confronted by a collective sense of, “Shit, where did we go wrong? How did we lose that competitive advantage?”, as momentary as this reaction might be.
Silly as it sounds, this feeling of inadequacy is compounded by the fact that the majority of these White guys have eerily similar traits that are stereotypically assigned to Asian men. They tend to be on the softer, more sensitive side. Generally nice, neat guys who are leaner, smile more…
In other words, guys who look like this…
Put another way, you don’t see many White guys who look like this…
With girls who look like this…
The only Asian girls who date guys like this…
…are these kind of Asian girls…
The thing is…I like most of these White guys (barring the fratty, trucker hat types, of course). They’re funny. They’re interesting. They’re not clingy or desperate or insecure. They’re just…cool!
You know it’s hard for me to say that because I’m supposed to hate them and all, but the truth is the truth. They’re pretty damn cool.
Essentially, it’s like this: An Asian girl picks White guy who has eerily similar positive characteristics to the Asian guys she’s known all her life…over Asian guys themselves.
It’s like eating at a Taco Bell when you’re in Mexico. Except at this Taco Bell, the burritos are taller, have more natural charisma, and are generally cooler.
Asian women…to the extent that you understand what this feels like to a collective group of men, perhaps you’ll rethink the pussy label that I know so many of you harbor in some way, shape or form. Just imagine how the local mom and pop taco stand feels when they see a tourist walking into a Taco Bell across the street.
Could Asian men be more aggressive, confident, mysterious, ride a motorcycle and have burly facial hair?
Perhaps, but these are all just a culturally-reinforced—and therefore arbitrary—list of strengths. The same list of traits might be seen negatively in other contexts. Like, I’m pretty sure Asian-American men have the edge over White men in many Latin American countries. (This probably has to do more with the brutal history of colonialism and the fact that they hate gringos. But Chinos? They’re cool.)
I guess if I had a point, it would be this. We Asian men are what we are.
No, we can’t dunk.
Yes, we have spiky hair well into our 30’s.
No, we’re not dark and mysterious.
And yes, we are 5’9-5’10.
But that doesn’t make us pussies. It makes us undervalued gems that would shine in places like Bolivia or Ecuador.
So after months of pondering over this, I finally have a response to BBQ hotshit Asian girl.
Don’t come crying back to us when your insensitive, emotionally distant boyfriend dumps your pork- chomping ass…We don’t want you.
How’s THAT for defensive and hostile?