Maclean’s recently reviewed a book titled Last One Down the Aisle Wins: 10 Keys to a Fabulous Single Life Now and an Even Better Marriage Later about the pitfalls of marrying young. The message is not not marry until you’re 30 and spend the 20s developing oneself – including building friendships, values and financial independence. It’s something I totally agree as I went thru it all myself.
“If you spend your twenties learning how to be a fabulous, stable, independent, fulfilled single woman, it will naturally follow that you will choose a guy to marry who possesses these same wonderful qualities.”
The book struck a chord with me because I met G when I was 19 and didn’t know myself yet. I spent my 20s figuring who I was, much to the disappointment of G but he stuck around for me. G fell in love with the innocence and fantasies of a 20 year old but I’m certain we wouldn’t hit it off if we meet now not for my kinky sexual preference and lack of career. I’ve always maintained I’m the lucky one in the relationship for having someone so accepting for my infidelities and being so patient with a totally different person than the one he met 12 years earlier.
Change is a scary thing even for someone as myself who has moved so many times. I used to be a lot more excited about moving in my younger days, moving off to college, to Bay Area after graduation and to Toronto shortly thereafter. A new place brought new people, excitement and essentially a playground to explore but at age 32, a move denotes leaving behind a life I’ve settled into for the past 9 years. I know I need this change but my heart is just not prepared for the unknown.
Days before I flew back to Toronto, I was offered a job opportunity that gave me guidance and discipline which I sorely need. But it’s in Hongkong which means I have to uproot myself and G. I’m glad he’s supportive and willing but I can’t help but feel the pressure to supply G. some form of stability with work and money since I initiated this move even though he never once requested anything. Having been back in Toronto for a month, I’ve been busy meeting people, old and new, as opposed to the funk I have been in for the past several years where I’ve been anti-social. I know I am gonna miss my friends here when I leave as I did when I left Hongkong. It’s not easy to break out of my comfort zone now as it was in my 20s. I’m now faced with responsibility and social ties which I didn’t have a decade ago.
Change is hard but I’m somehow looking forward to it for a new career and people, I just have to get over it.
I’ve learned thru experience that it’s easy to meet somebody socially, especially in recent months when I’ve been some sort of social butterfly in Hongkong, but it takes more to be able to call that person a ‘friend.’ As opposed to my younger days when I’d be glad to meet anybody can chat about superficial shit, these days I really make an effort to know the person and see if there’s a connection. My measurement for a friend is rather simple, if I can get along with him/her one-on-one when we’re sober, then I’d call him a friend, otherwise he’s an acquaintance. I’m not sure how this need for a real connection came about – maybe age or maybe because I don’t want to be like Ron, who was never alone but really lonely as he was unwilling to share himself.
One such case in point is Stephen whom I met one night at gay bar DYMK in Hongkong shortly after I moved there. He’s short and hot but that’s not exactly the point; Stephen is a real private guy who remains very secretive about his life – a private Facebook profile, refusing to add me, and even lying to me about where he attended graduate school. With some detective work, I was able to dig a few things up on him but I didn’t bring it up because I respect his privacy he went thru great lengths to build. Except for a quiet dinner a few weeks after our initial rendezvous, all subsequent meetings I had with took place at my apartment with minimal exchange of background and feelings. But I bumped into him last Saturday night and he looked cheerless which I discovered was due to a fight with his boyfriend, it was serious enough Stephen kicked the boyfriend out. I dolled out some relationship advice from my 12 years of experience amidst my drunken stupor, genuinely wanting him to be happy. Stephen was surprised that his fuckbuddy was so willing to help with his relationship adding “I’m really surprised this is coming from you” when I suggested that he think twice before foregoing the 2 year relationship with a guy he said he was serious about and thought it’d last. Just cuz I am shagging him doesn’t mean I want his relationship to fail, I’m good at compartamentalising.
Both of us intoxicated, I insisted dropping him off even though he lives out of the way which ended with an invite to spend the night. The least I could do was offer my company for the distressed guy when I insisted on dropping him off, the invitation was unexpected. I didn’t want to take advantage of the situation and fell asleep in each others arms after some tender moments.
I think I finally got through to the guy and offered myself if he needed any company or help. To me, friends are about helping each other and the willingness to share without judgements while being able to have fun together. As I’ve aged, I am appreciating the concept that it’s better to give, as I take pleasure in making others happy.
One obsession of our North American culture I haven’t succumbed to is the pursuit of youth. As many people would pray to be younger, I’m very happy to be 32. Yes, my mid-section is less than defined compared to when I was 20 but I don’t have the saggy skin and wrinkled forehead plaguing a 50 year old so the physical effects haven’t dawned on me yet, giving me the courage to say this. Ask me in 20 years, it may be different.
What I’m talking about is that as I’ve matured since college, I’ve become wiser and understand that things are never black and white. It’s true that wisdom comes with age and I’ve learned a lot in the past 12 years, the lesson has been so valuable that I am really appreciating it and hopefully make me a stronger person for the years to come.
One big lesson I learned is that there are no shortcuts in life. We all have to pay for it someway or another, just a matter of now or later. I cheated routinely thru high school and college thinking that I could get away with it but my laziness came back to haunt me, teaching me that I can’t cheat thru life. I was lucky to have successfully cheated but luck is not reliable like hard work.
There’s so much I wanna say but yet at the same time not sure where I’m going with this. Anyways, I just wanted to point out that it isn’t that bad being older and I wouldn’t trade what experiences for youth (not that it’s possible).
I’m starting to miss home, mainly my life with G., now that it’s been six months in Hongkong. I realise that no matter where I am, it’s the people that make the place. Spending time with G., cuddling, cooking and sharing tidbits in life is what a boyfriend is all about and I miss that terribly.
There’s the snow along with the messy weather, provincial people and over-regulation that bug me in Toronto yet there’s social conversatism and materialistic obsession in Hongkong that are just as annoying.
One thing I learned in then past 6 months is that we can’t have it all and need to make do with what we have in order to be satisfied.
People are so sensitive and obsessed with political correctness in the North American culture these days that one can’t talk about black and fat without any backlash and inevitably censorsing any comments about these two topics.
Whenever someone says anything black, it’s immediately taken as pejorative and racist. It’s okay to identify the store salesman as “that thin blond guy” but people assume you’re a racist and irrespectful if you say “that chubby black guy.” Hence you find every way to convey the same message without ever saying ‘fat’ and ‘black,’ so you’d hear censored descriptions such as “that guy in the white t-shirt in the far corner.” Good gracious, it’s a description. Quit being so sensitive.
What really brought me to this rant is the controversy over musician John Mayer’s preference for white woman in a recent interview with Playboy magazine causing a ruckus that he’s a racist.
PLAYBOY: Do black women throw themselves at you?
MAYER: I don’t think I open myself to it. My dick is sort of like a white supremacist. I’ve got a Benetton heart and a fuckin’ David Duke cock. I’m going to start dating separately from my dick.
One’s sexual preference does not mean they’re racist! If it was, then we should start considering Whites who prefer Asians reverse racists, those who only pull a raging boner for long hair girls hairist, or those who love hot slender bodies body facists.
Sexual preferences are a personal taste just like some prefer those who are tall, fat or have big eyes. Racism is hatred of another race and belief that those of another race have inherent differences making them inferior. The two are DIFFERENT. My belief is that as long as you don’t think people of another race are any less of a person or inferior because of some physical attribute, it’s not discrimination.
So quit being so sensitive!
Read the John Mayer interview with Playboy here.
It’s weird how lust masks your taste. I’ve been looking at Steven and Patrick’s facebook photos recently and thinking to myself ‘what was I thinking?’ They don’t look good and are totally not my type. Recent encounters with Stephen tell me he’s just WEIRD.
Ever since I decided that nothing was gonna ever happen with Steven, the chemistry between us has obviously changed but he’s just plain weird and rude now. He and a few other friends attended my Mr. Gay night, he was cold and shrugged me of the entire night. I tried my best to overlook that but I gave up and didn’t even bother talking to him, leaving early that night. Over lunch on Friday, he kept talking with Elly as if I wasn’t at the table. Steven always analyses me, the analysis which are not untrue but oftentimes debasing, as if to prove he’s better than me. I don’t need friends to prove they’re better than me. I thought I could maintain a friendship with him based on mutual respect but the guy is just weird.
I recounted this and Shirley, who asked Steven point blank after I left that night why he was so rude to me (it was that obvious! everybody saw it) Steven just said “he has a family.” This plus several comments from others seem to justify that he still has feelings for me thus explaining why he’s acting out. I mean he admitted he wasn’t ready for me when I visited after I cut things off. I wanna talk with him about it but he’s obvious too proud to acknowledge I am anybody worthy of his attention, so I’ll just cut ties with him because I’m not that desperate for friends to hang out with someone who enjoys mocking me.
Posted in relationship