Asian Social Gatherings and Arriving Late

I have always noticed and wondered why in Asian culture arriving early for any type of social gathering never seemed to happen. Over the years I have been involved in many events and I always noticed that when I was asked to arrive at say 5:00pm for a party, I would be reminded by those around me that it meant I should arrive at 5:30 or 6:00pm.  Huh?! I never understood this. As the years have passed I thought and observed this kind of what I would call an Asian “secret code” that has been passed down for generations.  Everyone seemed to know but me that I should be arriving late. In western culture, I was taught that when I am invited to a party etiquette dictated that I arrive at the requested time, maybe even 5 minutes early in fact. So as I began to see this happen at every event with no one having a problem with it, I began to wonder why.

As I have spent so much time involved in Asian culture I have come up with a few reasons why I think that it’s appropriate to arrive late to gatherings:

Diffusion of Attention– By arriving late, they accomplish a diffusion of attention meaning that they can avoid awkward greeting or being particular noticed by others at the event. In a collectivist environment why would you want to stand out?

They May not Want to be There They are either there because their family wants them to, appeasing their girlfriend/boyfriend, or something of that nature. I would therefore make sense that they would rather come later then not at all because the social etiquette says they just should be there regardless of personal feeling or interest in the event.

 There for the Food Asian parties always have an excess of food. It’s always good and there is always plenty of it. Everyone loves free food and Asian people are no exception. At the end of a party everyone takes out the zip-lock bags and snags the left-over food for home. Why show up early when the best part of the night is what you get at the end!

So to me it seems that Asians all know that being late is customary, and no one takes offence.  In the Western style, everybody wants to make everybody else happy and show respect to the host by arriving on time.  Is one or the other better, I don’t really know for sure, but at first it seemed really strange to me.

 

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Asian Men, are they for me?

I always try and look that the good in everything, and perhaps at times that means I am overly optimistic about the AMWF relationship. I would love to think that every woman feels the same about Asian men as I do, but in truth not all of them will. I realize although that in part, personal preference is a contributor. There are women who just like white men, or back men, Asian men, or whatever. Just in the same way there are Asian men who really prefer Asian women, over white, black, or etc. That’s great right …everyone has the right to choose who they want and what they prefer. Even with this personal preference although, there are times when a women may be intentionally or unintentionally overseeing Asian men. Why? Well after much thought and asking guys what they feel might be keeping women from seeing their good intentions, I have the following reasons to present to you:

 

Physical Appearance:

 Your Height and Body Build – You maybe have wondered if that fact that you stand a mighty 5ft 6inches tall, if that’s going to be good enough for your WF. In truth many women like taller men because of the idea that a taller man is a stronger man. It’s just ingrained in our DNA to be attracted to men who are tall. Now not all women care of course, and there are many WF who are taller than many men and are fine with it. Asian men often fall under the stereotype of being short, which in fact is not always true either, but that alone might stifle her interest in Asian men. Asian men also stereotypically are viewed as skinny and not particularly strong. Some women would think that Asian men could not meet the standards of their white or black counterparts and therefore be seen as less attractive.

 Asian Eyes– those lovely deep black/brown eyes, with their unique almond shape. Ahh yes, the signature Asian eyes. To me they seem wonderful and exotic, but they also might seem a bit odd when the rest of the men she knows have eyes that are varied in color and larger. It’s not to say that women really have an eye color or shape preference, but that they might find it out of the ordinary.

 

Language:

 Your Communication with Her– let’s face it, if you can’t speak the same language , or you have a really thick accent that makes you hard to understand, then it’s not going to make it easy to get to know each other.  Having the ability to communicate well means you can express your feeling to her, and that is really important. If you are not used to, or your language does not have the words to express how you feel, she may take it as you are not interested, even if you truly are interested and have the best intent.

 Your Family/In laws– It’s also obvious, but if her future in-laws won’t be able to speak to her, then she will  be uncomfortable and perhaps she might feel that I would never work out well with this difference. Although there are many women who in fact will learn Chinese, Korean, or etc in order to better communicate and create a bond with her in-laws, not all women would want to.

 

Social Culture:

 Asian Foods– odd food and textures can often be found in Asian, comparatively to the west. For example Asia has porous meat products, jelly soups and drinks, boba in their tea, fish sauces, chicken feet, and whole bunch of crazy textures that you won’t find in the west. Although many women would love to try new foods and flavors, sometimes these can just be too outside of our comfort zone.

Family Obligations and Expectations– This might be the most difficult of all the reasons for your WF. Asian family’s often come with more obligations then the average Caucasian women’s family.  Her parents won’t expect you to visit every weekend, have extreme expectation about who she should marry, nor would the tell her what kind of wedding to have, what she should do for a career ,and etc… So when she meets an Asian mans parents, or has heard that his parents may have the almost unreasonable expectations, it would defiantly make her think twice about wanting to enter into the relationship.

 

For many more reasons then I guess I would care to come up with, there will be women who are just not into Asian men, just as much as some women are. But the point is that these things should not be seen as an obstacle for your choice in mates.  Whatever your preferences we should not let others opinions influence are choice and it should not stop you from going after what you want. Things like physical looks, food preferences, and family obligation are only a few things that “could” be an issue… yes “could be” but you never will really know unless you give things a try. Every relationship will be filled with successes and struggles, but it’s the important things like your values, working together, common interests, lifestyles, and who you are as a person that will keep the love and happiness between the two of you alive and strong. So I encourage women to try something new, give those cute Asian guys a chance, because you might be surprised that the things that you worry most about, are only small things that can actually make your relationship more unique and that much stronger.

The Mysterious Asian Male & Passion…Where Did It Go?

I was most fortunate enough to have exposure to an Asian and a Canadian lifestyle growing up. Not only did I learn particular mannerisms and behavior from popular culture, I had my Asian friends and family to relate to as well. These days I have come to wonder if there is actually a distinct difference between Western and Asian perceptions of passion and emotions.

The prototypical Asian tends to have some form of subdued behavior. He is courteous, yet has a quiet and gentle presence. I wouldn’t go as far to say he would be shy, just a slightly more reserved. It’s almost as if he’s ensuring that everything is comfortable and safe before placing himself in harm’s way. I can even relate myself. Growing up, I was the regular Asian kid, hanging out in my big Asian group of friends. We hung around each other because it was easy. All of us had some form of strict parents. We went through the piano or violin lessons as a child, had some form of liking to Sanrio (I had Badtz-Maru and Keroppi), and most of all multiple video game consoles (no surprise there). When I was in my comfortable group, I could open up with ease. Hence why large Asian groups are loud (aside from the fact that it is very loud in urban Asian cities) it’s easy to share jokes and relate in their native tongue.

This is a significant contrast in comparison to Western popular culture where there’s a considerable amount of body and facial language in conveying passion. Their eyes will light up in excitement and their face will give a beaming smile. Amazing charisma is infectious. Somehow I don’t quite get that same captivation when I relate to my Asian side.  I would remember when my parents would have their eyes glued to the television watching the latest Chinese prime time drama. For those unfamiliar with the format, it is usually some 25-40 episode series that runs nightly.  It usually centers on a love triangle filled with jealousy, and family dialogue often at the dinner table or living room sofa.  By the end of the series, the virtuous male ends up with the love of his life. How typical.

Many years later, what struck me was that there were very subtle differences between how Asians and Western cultures perceive passion.  As we have mentioned in earlier posts, Asian Males tend to express their feelings for a significant other through actions and gifts. This is also true when it comes to other forms of expression, such as passion. When I talk about passion, I talk about having interest in something, whether it is sailing, music production, cooking, or anything that involves you as a person; it is usually fueled by passion. So, by following this pattern, what will happen is usually the Asian male works harder, and makes sure things are done right – almost to the point of perfection. What is implied is that expression through facial, body, or tone is severely underutilized.  In no written Confucian conversation do I ever recall Confucius telling his pupil to “smile” or have “charisma”.

A Westerner would scratch their head in confusion. They can tell when someone clearly is involved passionately. It’s undeniable. They emit this kind of aura around them. Unfortunately there is one problem with popular culture and consumerism, is that passion borders sexual. The problem is that both can be very intense and often gets used interchangeably. Passion for art, sport, or whatever comes from a combination of challenge and skill. Sometimes we lose track of time and become completely involved. While this is true in a sexual nature, I would classify this as a subgroup of passion with an emphasis on desire than challenge and skill.

So do I believe if Asians can be passionate as well? Yes I believe they can. Unfortunately most of our expression is limited to our actions and not how we project ourselves to others. Instead of sexual attraction that is prevalent in Western popular culture, Asians tend to use jealousy and rage as intense emotions.

Now this becomes a serious issue when it comes to AMWF Relationships. The Asian Male needs to express himself beyond actions such as working hard or listening, while the Western Female has to be receptive to his good intentions despite the lack of expression. Initially I would say the Asian Male will have to learn to express in a way the woman will be receptive, but in a long-term perspective both parties will have to learn from each other. The passion was always there to begin with, but the approaches are different.

To my Asian Males: step out of your comfort zone, and take a chance.

To my Western Females:  understand his cultural upbringing, and don’t ever stop smiling – a soft gentle aura will warm (or melt) any Asian Male’s heart.

Men from Asia: Pioneers in the Western Dating Market

Regardless of most external factors, the mentality of the Asian male is largely based on his family’s influence. We all know that mom traditionally is the one in charge of raising the children, domestic duties, enforcing morals/values, and achievements in education. Perhaps when you were in school as a child your life was regimented and overseen by her. She made sure you spent more time studying then socializing with other children, kept you on schedule for piano lessons or other activities. She made sure all your needs were met, and that you spent enough time meeting your obligations to family and close family friends (So much in fact that you maybe never needed other friends around). She was the center of your world!

Asian fathers do have a say in most matters, but in the end the decisions still seems to fall on mom when it comes to her son’s happiness and well being. She already has thought about your career, marriage, kids, and grand kids, before you even knew how you felt about it yourself.  Now don’t get me wrong, I give Asian moms credit because they just want your life to be a good one. Free from poverty, problems, and anything that would ruin your chances of happiness is life. In theory this is all fine and good, but when it comes to wanting something different then what mom thinks is best for you, now you’re playing a different  game.

So when it comes to dating western women, or someone from a different culture all together, I bet you realize this might be tricky. Let’s be honest, if your mom is traditional it’s not going to be easy. If your mom is open to minded, it will be much better. But any way you look at it, there may be obstacles standing in your way. Anything from distance and location, time zone differences, language and etc… Even with all that, you know you can make it work. But when you need to sit down and tell mom that you are interested, want to date seriously, or in love with that oh so special foreign lady, now that’s the hardest part.  Now when you tell her how you feel about this western woman, mom will probably be thinking one thing. Will my son, and my grandchildren, have a better life with this women, than he could have in his own country, with his own race?

It’s not a bad question, but I feel it is one that plants the seed of doubt in your mind. One that makes you question your own personal feeling, needs, and wants. I just keep finding that men from Asian countries are hesitant to date and marry white women. I think they feel things wont, or might not work out. That they feel they may disappoint or let down there mom, family, and social obligations. I think that it often puts them in a position to go against perhaps their family or community, and that can be difficult. So when I think about the men from Asia, who do learn English, study western cultures, who stay up all night to talk online, I give them a lot of credit.

So why are you a pioneer? Because as a man living in Asia, you may find yourself in a position that requires you to do something none of your friends of family have done before. You will need to be the guy that says, I want what I want, I do what I feel is right for me, regardless of the social pressures that surround me. Yes that’s you. You can be that guy who goes after what he wants. No you don’t have to disown your family, friends, or leave your culture behind, you just need to the have confidence to do what’s right for you. So if it’s what you want, the only thing that could ever really stop you is you. Go discover, explore, and make your dreams a reality. You are a pioneer!

Interpersonal Relationships – Using TCAI

 

Our favourite model is back again. When dealing with describing Asian Men, I find it most useful to make four distinct Archetypes of Asian Men. Like I have always said before, every Asian male has qualities from all four types, but there is usually one predominant over the other three. This time I will discuss the interpersonal relationships using the TCAI Model. This can be used when talking to Asian Men, as a White Female, or even any other person – regardless of relation.

This idea came apparent to me when I was imagining different types of people at the podium giving a public speech. I contemplated on what they would say, but what struck me was the underlying purpose of their speech.

The Technophile: To be greatly appreciated

When talking to a Technophile type, it is important to recognize his contributions and show your appreciation. Since the Technophile is usually a more introverted type, the ways of showing your gratitude can be a simple thanks.  These people are technically savvy, with great knowledge and skill. However when it comes to the communication department, it is very difficult for them to fully express what or how they feel. Fortunately they can recognize the emotions of gratitude and appreciation. Their actions speak louder than their words.

Conversational elements will include: the latest news on electronics and technology, current events, new and upcoming cars, or exciting video games.

The Comedian: To be loved & adored

There is no better feeling to them than to be loved and adored by everyone around them.  Comedians are the ones who can harness the power of humour to bring smiles to everyone’s faces. It comes almost natural to them.  When observing a Comedian in conversation with others, they will be the one taking centre stage, feeding off the beaming smiles of their audience.  Being around people is not a problem for the innately extroverted Comedian. Throughout and by the end of the interaction, the audience remembers how the Comedian made them laugh and brought out joyful memories.

Comedians prefer conversing about popular culture, fashion, sports, social events, card games, and board games. Honestly anything that creates an audience and is funny.

The Ambitious: To be respected & revered

Ambitious types love being respected and revered because they believe that it has been earned. Usually in high social or career positions, they sacrificed much of their youthful leisure to attain such high status. This is different from the Technophile and Comedian in a very slight subtle way. Technophiles places others on a higher position than them, while Comedians prefer the same level. For the Ambitious, they may see that everyone is subordinate to them. At worst it can be felt as bossy, but they really want to do their best. Given that they have a high position, they believe that they have an even greater responsibility to contribute.

For the Ambitious, they have a multitude of topics to talk about. Actually they can be fairly well versed in any topic, but they have a natural gravitation to elements that give elite social status. The purpose of the conversation is to be admired. You will stop and say, “Wow”. They draw similar elements of the Technophiles with the latest gadgets, but they are only focused on the best.  They too enjoy the topics of the Comedians as well, but the underlying intention is not to make you smile, it’s for you to drop your jaw in awe of their presence.

The Individual: To be deeply moved

There’s quite a diverse variety of Individuals. They can range from the quirky types to ones who create the trend before it even begins. To them, it’s not about being appreciated, loved, or revered. Actually, it really is about understanding what they do and the great deal of work they put into it. If Individuals were to give a speech, it would be something so convincing and touching that you would be deeply moved by it. You would feel pathos, to respond so powerfully emotionally that you may reach an epiphany.

Individuals can also talk about anything for the most part, however what they truly enjoy are elements which pertain to our own humanity as a whole. They love design, form, or any ideas that express freedom.  They really do not care if they are loved or hated; they just want to be understood. These are the types that believe they leave a piece of themselves in everything that they do. That’s what makes it real.