1.12.2010

"I Love Asian Guys"

Is it just me or is saying "I love Asian guys" a terrible way to hit on an Asian guy? For me, it's an immediate turn-off. I understand that everyone has his own tastes and preferences, but announcing it as an opening line strikes me as distasteful and tactless. I don't want to know you're attracted to me because of certain physical features I share with an entire population, or because of some socially-constructed preconception of who I am and where I come from.

It's like you're telling me I'm your fetish. Am I a Model Minority today, or your Exotic Erotic?

At the very least, the line "I love Asian guys" makes me wonder: so, if I weren't Asian, you wouldn't like me? Do you want me or my race?

In fact, I'm pretty suspicious of guys who are only interested in a particular race. It makes me feel like a collector's item.

Granted, I don't encounter this often - at least, not in person. It's a lot more common online. I have an account on adam4adam (Lord knows why) and once a week a keyboard-savvy penis declares his love of Asian men to me. I guess the majority of people on A4A aren't all that...erm, astute...but if you wouldn't say something in person, saying it online doesn't make it okay.

Other gay Asian males out there, cash in on this. Do you find the line "I like Asian guys" demeaning? Offensive? No problem at all?

13 comments:

Alex C. said...

Oh rice queens, you can't live with them and you can't live without them. There are tons of guys like that in SF, but there are also tons of guys who exclusively won't date Asians so I guess it's the way the universe balances things out.

Sometimes I dig it and sometimes I get offended. As you can tell on my blog, I definitely make fun of them a lot!

~A

thwany said...

i find that line so fucking annoying. i've had people say that to me and it just makes me want to say "get the hell out of my face." it also annoys me when people ask "are you sticky rice?" labels like that are useless and just make the person who chooses to use that term look ignorant.

people are people and that's how we should perceive one another.

Anonymous said...

Don't kid yourself. You know exactly why you joined adam4adam.

And it sounds odd that you complain about being fetishized for being Asian when so much of your identity is bound up in the fact that you are Asian. Sure, the "I love Asian guys" line is ridiculous, but what exactly do you expect when you have a half-naked photo of yourself on a highly sexualized gay chat site? You can't have your cake and eat it too.

Best Fiction said...

@ Anonymous: Who's kidding himself? "Lord knows why" is tongue-in-cheek: of course I know why - everyone does.

Adam4Adam is only a small part of my experience, but you're right: it's a highly sexualized page with a very anything-goes attitude. I shouldn't harp on what these guys say - I know beforehand what I'm getting myself into.

I would argue though that being attracted to a shirtless guy and being attracted to a shirtless guy because he's Asian (and then having the poor taste to announce it, which is really the point of my rant) are two different things.

Along those same lines, I may identify as an Asian American...but do I want someone to like me solely for that? I presume that anyone who does only knows me on a superficial level; it shouldn't be the only determining factor, in other words.

Finally, you apparently know me personally. Why don't you leave your name next time so we can actually discuss this?

Best Fiction said...

@ Alex: I can only imagine what the dating scene in California is like. With such a substantial Asian American presence, would you say that dating is a lot more "integrated," for lack of a better word? That is, do you find guys more open-minded towards dating Asian men, or is it pretty either/or?

@thwany: There's something crude about the label "sticky rice"! I don't like it either, but I was just thinking about it last night. There's a common stereotype that gay Asian men are all bottoms (look for that post soon), and therefore need to date men of other ethnicities - and therefore "sticky rice" couples are odd. I've had people say that to my face before!

Mark said...

I'm the anonymous poster from above. Actually, I don't know you personally. But I have read enough of your blog to know that you're obsessed with being Thai, and your adam4adam profile is easy enough to find. So people on that site are going to be drawn to you because you're Asian, whether you like it or not. Outside that site, anyone who dates you is going to have to deal with your own Asian fixation, so it's probably going to be rice queens who stay the most interested. (And I say all this as a gay Asian man.)

Best Fiction said...

@ Mark: I guess what I should have said more clearly is that I don't want a person to be attracted to me /solely/ because I'm Asian. A good starting point, I suppose, and he should appreciate my cultural background because, yes, it is a large part of me, but that shouldn't be the only reason he wants to date me.

You say that, because I have an "Asian fixation" of my own, only "rice queens" (men with a singular attraction towards Asian men?) will stay interested in me. Now my question is: if you are attracted to an Asian man, must his ethnicity be a factor in that attraction? Is it possible to like someone based not on race but, rather, on character? On how well your personalities sync? Or is it inescapable, and that any thought otherwise is naive?

I'm more concerned about readers' responses to questions like these based on their personal experiences...rather than comments directed at me, personally.

Thanks for reading and commenting!

Rob said...

If a guy came on to you and was focused on a more generic attribute say "I love guys with hairy chests", you probably would not view this "intro" in the same light (or if he had said "you have a beautiful smile").
But one should pretty much think twice when saying pretty much anything that has to do with ethnicity, especially to a stranger, as one is likely to offend or at least annoy someone.

Best Fiction said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Best Fiction said...

@Rob: You're right, and that was the point of my rant: tread carefully before making that ethnic come-on.

Your comment reminds me I have my own prejudices, though - I am quick to jump on the "race" horse (lol). It's something I have to watch out for.

Rob said...

one of my "favorite" compliments is "but you don't look Mexican!" which can be taken in any number of ways (most of those negatively haha).

letopho said...

I love this.

readmylist said...

First and foremost, I am attracted to personality. Physical attractiveness is still important, and possibly even an ultimate roadblock in my affections. I'm racially unbiased when it comes to attraction though, which is not the same for a lot of people.

When I dated a half-black half-native american it was because I was into his mind/soul, not his looks. I will say that his ethnicity was an added bonus, however. Being (briefly) a mixed race couple was pretty exciting.

This is Miles, btw.

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