I’m going to dedicate this blog to SiamJai, he asked me two question which actually gave me pause and inspired this blog or rant depending on well, your perspective I suppose. Before I begin I want to thank everyone who’s commented on my blogs and I must I enjoy this site very much, I gice major kudos to the originators of this for having a superb site.
The two questions SiamJai asked me was : ” Do you feel that your place in American society became different now that you discovered your roots? Or do you view the US from a different perspective?”
My answer is that yes I have discovered a new place in American society and yes my views are very different now due to not only living in Thailand but for having the opportunity to travel throughout Asia and the Middle East the last 5 years. Here’s what’s change:
As an Asian Male living in the US I realized that I’m by and larger ignored, I’m not sure if that is so good. While I did enjoy the fact that while in BKK I looked like everyone else, I cannot help but feel like an outcast in the US. I hate to be superficial but the reality is, is that it is hard being an Asian man here. Dating is that much more difficult, the height thing is a pain and I cannot but feel that while I love the US it is still plagued with bad prejudices and sometimes subliminal racism. A few months ago I read a book called the “The Asian Mystique” it was written by a woman I know who is currently who for a time was Asia Editor for BusinessWeek. She’s white by the way and her book is amazing so if anyone has the chance pick it up. In a nutshell, the book explores Asian stereotypes regarding how the world views Asian women and to a smaller degree Asian men. On purely pop culture way Asian men are getting shafted, you rarely see or even hear of sian men being sexy or seen as sex symbols. Yes I will concede that Asian women are, but for what reason? Before I left New York, I never put much thought in this, I never had a problem getting a date, to be honest I always prided myself to the fact that I’ve dated the UN, but I digress. The realities I’ve faced is that no matter how much I try, I’m never gonna fit in and that saddens me. (For those who reading and think I’m crazy, I’m not there are some staggering stats, that are so large it would dominate the blog, but if you want stats let me kow)
I’ve noticed more and more since my return how Asian men are seen as asexual, feminine and basically not attractive. This is being validated by the fact that there is an absece of Asian men and Asians in general in the media. With some exceptions, the percentage of Asians being represented is appaling and when they are, they are usually stereotypes into roles that only re-enforces those stereotypes. Sadly the more I stay in NY the more I realize I do not belong in the US, NY and LA and SF aside or any other areas with a high Asian population, the blatant racism and the subtle prejudices have begun to irk me. Don’t take my word for it, watch a movie, watch tv. Here’s a prime example of what I find, I was on a blind date, and the girl stated, “No offence to you but I only date white guys.” This was even before we ordered the drinks. I said to her ok no problem but why? she said, “Well, I guess it comes down to what people think, what my kids may look like.” To which I replied, “This is a date in a restaurant, not a Vegas wedding chapel.”
Ok, so thats a small piece of what has changed. On a political front, I was shocked how many people I’ve come into contact who have said and I quote, “Wow, 9/11 was a tragedy…but you do know that you deserved it, right?” I realized, “Man, people hate us.” Not like normal hatred like Man U fans and Liverpool fans or Yankee fans (go Yanks) and Red Sox fans, but a geniune, “you got what you deserved” mentality.
Since I’ve been back I’ve withdrawn into this little world where all the flaws, all the “stereotypes” have consumed me. Like it or not I’ve realized its gonna happen and I can’t stop it. I’ve been resigned to the fact that Asian men will never be in vogue or trendy. I did, SiamJai, discover my roots, it made me more conscience of who I am, it gave me a chance to see myself from two different perspectives, on the one hand even while Thailand I was treated a bit differently because I am Americanized and once back I’ve realized that I don’t count.
So how does this lttle rant do with Thailand, while I was there I went many girls, not just bargirls, but college students from Chula, Kasert and Thammasat who want to date Westerners, not just for money or the chance to get away, but because, wait for it……so they can have babaies. This is almost as sad as middle to upper class college girls who turn tricks for extra shopping money.
The phenomenom of Asian women and non Asians boyfriends and husbands is the fast growing martital trend acording the Census Bureau. It’s the whole, mystique, that idea of a geisha or a Suzy Wong. A friend of mine, who met his current girlfriend online showed me the personal ads put up by Asian women, in their preferences for a mate, espically in the race category, most checked off on almost all of the races except Asian, and Native Americans(but seriously we screwed them over so bad we should throw them a bone).
There’s more to say and I’l probably save it for another time, but I always wonder, “If America annot accet me and Thailand views me as a stranger , where do I belong? Australia maybe?