I can’t honestly say I give 110% in everything I do – anybody who makes this bold declaration is a liar. But I can say that with someone I’m enamored by, I give them 110%. Maybe 210%.
Nothing encapsulates this better than what happened a few weeks ago. The time leading up to November 24th to be exact. It carries on from where this post left off:
After she left for Japan in mid-October, I recalled her love for this band, Pup, and how much she wanted to see them. It came up early in our conversations, I don’t recall how or why. But they did play in Toronto earlier this year so it wasn’t likely that they’d be back for a while. I googled their next show anyway.
Guelph. November 24th.
It’s a suburb of Toronto, about an hour or so away. … Rent a car and it’s totally doable.
So I asked her if she was free on November 24th. Her work schedule wouldn’t be out til a later time, but when it was out, she’d get back to me.
It came out in early November. She was free. And so I proposed to take her officially on a surprise date. She happily agreed.
With a rush of enthusiasm, I checked the Facebook event page to link me to the tickets page. I scrolled to the discussion board… and found out that on that very same day, people had started posting “Looking for two Pup tickets!”.
My heart sank. Are you fucking kidding me.
After checking secondary sales outlets like record stores Rotate This and Soundscapes, I quickly accepted that there was nothing I could do until the day before or day of the event, since people realizing they can’t make would only sell then. I was in limbo for the next 2.5 weeks.
I let her know that there was a wrinkle in Plan A – but quickly added that I love a good challenge and I’d work to make it work. I enlisted the help of F, asking her to post asking for tickets on the Facebook event page – so that She wouldn’t see on Her newsfeed. A week later, I was stressing to FL about this, and she suggested I post on Kijiji. I scoffed through my phone – who still posts on Kijiji when the heat’s all on Facebook?? Do you see these ticket-request posts piling up??? Regardless, there was nothing to lose, so I put up a Wanted post.
November 24th was a Friday and I decided to use up a vacation day for this date. The days leading up to it were hella stressful.
Casually talking to Her on the Wednesday, we organically came up with a Plan B. We would go to the AGO to catch the Guillermo del Toro exhibit, then hit up a few galleries afterwards, including her friend’s exhibit at the Mod Club*.
* This was actually another point of stress in my plans – I didn’t want to take her away from her friends important night. But the exhibit came up way after I proposed the date. In addition to trying to get these damn tickets, I was trying my best to make both their Toronto exhibit as well as the Guelph concert. @_@
The day of November 24th, I still had no tickets, despite enlisting the help of two others to post on the Facebook event page.
Oh, and two days before our date, I fell deathly sick. Everything was fucking perfect.
I met up with her regardless, letting her know I wouldn’t be able to kiss her since I was sick. Right before we met, I got a response from Kijiji, asking me if I still wanted tickets and he had two that may become available. I immediately responded yes. No reply.
She always looks gorgeous, but she put in extra effort that day. I couldn’t believe how lucky I was to have her hand in mine.
Right off the bat, I let her know I would try to be as present as possible, but that I was also trying to make Plan A work. If I’m on my phone, it’s to make Plan A work. And by 3pm, if it wasn’t going to, I’d let her in on what it was, and we’d follow through with Plan B.
I had an amazing time with her at the AGO, but as 3:30pm rolled around, and I was making last minute ditches on Facebook to attain tickets while also trying to keep an email thread going with Kijij guy Connor, it was getting pretty stressful. I had already told her to avoid checking Facebook as I try to make this work on my own (on the event page). I pushed the reveal-time to 4pm.
Ummmm make that 5pm.
One by one these Facebook posts were falling thru. Someone who listed 2 tickets for sale ended up selling one of them and only ended up having one to offer. This happened twice.
We were getting hungry round 5pm, so we decided to go. I had gotten to the point in the conversation where Connor was telling me “don’t worry, it’s not a scam. Not that me telling you it’s not would make it not a scam”. Appealing to what humanity this maybe-scammer might have had, I told him my plan: “to surprise a date to a Pup concert in Guelph, which would require me to rent a car, drive an hour, and locate this place. So it would suck if it was a scam lol”. So if it was a scam, I’d hope that piece of personal info would persuade him to seek another victim.
He told me to e-transfer him the $75, which I had no problem doing (despite this psycho using kijiji and not facebook (!!!!!!)). I was hesitant. It wasn’t just the $75 – I might have to start a personal zipcar account (~$30), find a zipcar location, rent said zipcar (~$70), drive an hour out to Guelph, find the place, PERHAPS FACE THE HUMILITY OF OUR TICKETS NOT WORKING, then drive back. After a visibly stressful decision-making period, wherein She could tell how lowkey stressed out I was, I decided taking the risk from this anonymous Kijiji man was too big. I sadly emailed him telling him the hassle was too big and I’m sorry for wasting his time. The sad part comes from the thought of not getting to see her face light up when she saw who I was planning on surprising her with.
We were in line at the sushi place and I was still sniffly. Sniffly and bummed. She held me and went in for a kiss. I backed off slightly, reminding her I was sick, and that I didn’t want to get her sick. She said “I don’t care. I want to kiss you”. And so she did. And it was the sweetest thing.
I was about to tell her what Plan A was going to be, but decided to tell her when we sat down with our food.
As we sat down, I pulled out my phone.
A Facebook Friend request from Kijiji Connor. Along with a message.
“Hey, I was hoping you seeing my Facebook profile would provide some sense of comfort to know I’m a real human being! I have 6 people in line for the tickets…. but you messaged me first, and I’ll honour that. As well, I know that if a girl surprised me with a Pup concert, I’d be over the fucking moon. So I wanna make your guy’s night. Do you still want the tickets?”
He was right – it did provide me some comfort since his profile went back to 2012 or so. I was torn. I looked up at Her. Back at my phone. Should I? I looked at Her… and the answer was so clearly, obviously, yes.
“Fuck it, you’re gonna have to wait another few hours. We’re going with Plan A.”
Almost equally ecstatic was Connor. “If he’s not over the fucking moon, ditch him! Take me to a concert instead.” I wasn’t going to correct his pronouns then and there.
So I e-Transferred him the money, booked a zipcar under my company account (I’d make up the excuse on Monday that I’d “accidentally” used the business account instead of my personal one, and pay them back). We went back to her place to change out of her shoes and jacket, which she’d bought in Japan and would not want to get dirty if there was a mosh pit.
The car ride there was also amazing – we bonded over Rob Zombie and other music from my highschool years that she unknowingly put on. She was a huge fan of Die Mannequin too. It was pretty surreal. I love that the car ride gave us time to bond, over music.
And all of this was worth it when I saw her face light up when we got to the line, and she saw people wearing Pup shirts. That was the sweetest embrace.
I asked her “is this the best surprise you’ve ever gotten?”. She excitedly nodded. But I wasn’t sure if it was because she was in the moment.
So I asked her again the morning after. And without hesitation she affirmed yes.
The last thing to wrap up this date, was to correct Connor’s pronouns. For visibility’s sake.
So that’s what I mean by 110%.
It’s not sustainable or an “always, 24/7” thing, but that’s the amount of effort I am willing to put in.
I’m willing to put in the focus, attention, and affection.
I don’t know if I can fit that in a non-monogamous relationship.
But the debate about how a non-mono rel is more sustainable/satisfactory than a mono one is a debate for another day.
That’s a term I’ve been grappling with.
It’s what she currently is, and she’s not looking for a serious monogamous relationship right now. I can’t go in looking to change that – it wouldn’t be fair for her or for me.
“Isn’t that just a fancy term for dating?” a friend of mine echoed my questions.
I guess if you’re just dating around, it’s a phase. But if you’re consensually non-monogamous, it technically implies this is not a phase – it’s permanent.
I’ve been reading up a lot about non-monogamy. It requires a lot of communication from both sides – much more honesty and checking in and self awareness than traditionally monogamous arrangements. One of the things people in or getting into monogamous relationships struggle with is jealousy, which comes hand in hand with insecurity. And the question “why am I not enough?” – which I have been struggling with.
I also learned about compersion – the ability to be happy for your partner when they sleep with or date someone else. I don’t know if it’s innate or if it can be learned, but if I’m to be with this girl, I’ll need to at least try to… “compert”.
She’s still seeing at least one other girl. And it eats me up inside. But that’s my own fault. It’ll take a while to adjust these expectations. She’s been very clear from the start.
We’ll just be cute together until then.
This time last year I would’ve been hard-pressed if asked to name more than 7 queer friends. Hell, I had to recruit a girl I’d met on Tinder to join my queer ultimate frisbee team.
So imagine my shock when, after sending out Facebook event invites for a queer park hang, the RSVP list spat out a tally of 65 queer females. And this wasn’t even counting the queers who I had either forgotten or deliberately did not invite.
After months of floating the idea of a queer park hang oriented towards ultimate frisbee, I decided to overcome the unnerving unknown of there being too few gays who would actually enjoy ultimate frisbee. I bit the bullet when I was most tired on a Thursday night, quickly drafted an event description, and sent out a swath of invitations.
I began remembering others who I’d missed and added them. Then BYOQ-style, people started inviting their own queer friends. I had amassed 90 (plus an additional 11 who cannot make it). Just under a third had committed ‘Yes’, a little less had thrown in a non-committal ‘Maybe’.
I’m excited, I really am. It’s a little tiring always having to meet gays in alcohol-themed settings. I love sports and I love park beers (beer is fine – hard liquor is a different story). Only a dollop of queerness could make these two things better.
A recurring theme in my life is meeting people when it’s too late.
In hindsight, it was sheer luck that her birthday caught my eye on Facebook – I’m usually rather oblivious and indifferent. And it was more luck that led me to privately messaging her “Hey, happy birthday!”.
“Thanks! How are things going with you?”
A deliberate opening.
We’ve been talking every day since for the past few weeks. A week into it, I learned she had recently become single.
Good. I never liked her ex.
I didn’t expect to get along so well with her though. I have such an appreciation for and attraction towards good conversationalists*.
* I’ve noticed someone who is a great conversationalist in-person is not always such over social media or online communication. The same is for the other way around. This is worth noting.
So it really sucks that she’s moving to the west coast in a few weeks.
A week into talking, she’s already opened her doors for a visit if I ever go. It doesn’t feel like a complete loss, but I am rather disappointed she’s leaving. I would’ve loved to get to know her more. Her association with a certain couple of people had me weary and dulled my interest in approaching her, but she’s a fantastic, career-driven person and we have very similar taste in books and humour. We’re both fascinated by growth and challenging ourselves. She’s very into motivational speakers and clearly a very resilient person. She’s just good vibes all around.
I’ll see her this weekend for my meetup. Beyond our dynamic, I’m excited for the event itself.
At 25, I’m only now learning about attraction and starting to navigate the emotional landscape of personal, intimate relationships. I’m definitely better at it now than last year, when I was basically a monkey in a china shop. I think I’ve made a breakthrough with figuring an important part of it out – but the problem has become this:
I thought she was cute, so I showered her with time and attention (fueled by genuine curiosity) but now that she likes me back, my feet are freezing up and I’m slowly succumbing to that persistent voice saying “RUN”. The box of reasons why I shouldn’t go any further with her has been knocked over and I’m fumbling around trying to shovel the grains back in.
That being said, not every reason strewn across the floor is irrational. She can’t eat gluten + I fucking love food. I love exploring the new restaurants in Toronto. I can’t do that with someone whose diet is so restrictive; She doesn’t have a stable job; She isn’t politically involved nor does she have an ear to the news. Everything she talks about is about being gay – it can get tiring, and reminiscent of the girl from last summer (…)
Yet I’m still not sure if these are real reasons or if it’s the “RUN” voice making excuses again. I should be head over heals about this girl if I liked her enough, but I’m not. I’m putting in a lot of effort.
There are so many blindingly obvious signs that she wants something with me. She was regretful about telling me she found one of my friends attractive. I didn’t react strongly that night, as far as I remember, but she was remorseful and abashedly told me to brush off anything stupid she had said, if I remembered.
Of course I did.
But I brushed it off, like she said.
I did fuck up though. After many nights out of nothing happening with her, I got frustrated and ended up making out with another girl in front of her. She was furious. She called me a “fuck boy” and stormed off. I walked her home, but trailed behind, sheepishly and drunkenly. But by the end of the night, I managed to diffuse the situation (for the most part) by talking about our deepest insecurities.
The day after I made out with the other girl at the club, we talked about this girl she had been sleeping with casually. She assured me there was no romantic attraction, but all I cared about was the fact that I was right – about her type. I don’t know why I’m obsessed with knowing her type. She’d mentioned this girl before and I’d brushed aside the fact that this queer girl was “her type”. We were supposed to go together, with a few film friends. But then she mentioned she would bring the other girl. Well… this was news to me. And my friends confirmed it was probably (definitely) a move to spite me for making out with that girl.
But it backfired on her because I gave her and the girl very little attention. I tend to lean away from couples – I absolutely abhor third-wheeling (This in itself warrants its own separate blogpost) – regardless of whatever attraction I had felt towards her. Luckily, I found a reason to remove myself from being near them. A friend of mine ended up bringing a queer femme friend and I gravitated towards her instead. She was cute. I like meeting new queers. Whaddya want???
She knows femme is my type and I’m sure she saw me giving this new girl all my attention. I wasn’t doing it just to spite her back – I genuinely thought she was cute and if She was going to get with the other girl, well then, great, all the best to ya, sayonara.
But I suspect it must’ve irked her. A few days later, she messaged me telling me she’d called it quits completely with the other girl.
It’s dumb, the games we’ve been playing. But it’s toned down. We’re more honest with one another… just short of admitting whatever feelings we may or may not have for one another.
It’s my fault.
She sets it up for me; She’ll lead the conversation and leave so many doors ajar for me to flirt, but I’m always too chickenshit. Instead, I remain a respectful guest in her house, mind my manners, dust off the doorknob, and close the door for her, before going back to the living room.
It’d be easier if I knew what I want.
It’d be easier if I wasn’t scared of hurting her.
It’d be easier if I didn’t care.
I don’t know. It’s Pride month. I’m meeting new queers. Let’s see where this month takes me. I’m ready to do it up.
Last week, a new video came up on my feed from Stevie Boebi, celesbian Youtuber:
This stuck out to me because I’d initially thought jealousy was a symbol of affection. I would almost wear my possessiveness with pride and freely admit to being the “jealous type”. To me, jealousy “just meant that I cared”.
A part of me guessed this would (eventually) be a problematic characteristic in a relationship, but it never clicked with me that how I felt could’ve been because of how it’s been overly romanticized. In the video, they say that while it’s a human feeling, it’s narcissistic and selfish. Jealousy isn’t an indication of affection towards another – it’s an symptom of insecurity.
The more you know know.
I don’t know of many people who identify as Asian urban planners. Throw “lesbian” in there, and I would’ve claimed that as my predominant identity, on the basis that I’d be a rarity in Toronto.
So I wasn’t surprised at all when a brief urban planning meet-up with an acquaintance from the gaysian community extended beyond the workshop and lasted a full five hours. We mutually prolonged our time together, taking turns fueling our hangout with coffee place and artisinal shop suggestions for our (unplanned) next stop.
A mutual friend had introduced us a month or so prior after talking about us separately to each other. “You’d like her!” – these really are the most promising starts to friendships.
She’s an interesting one. We had a lot to bond over – our mutual interest and knowledge in urban planning unwrapped a whole layer of conversation that I usually reserve for my… well, urban planning friends. She made it clear that her sexuality was low in her hierarchy of identity, and naturally, queerness came up not too often in our conversation – if it did, it was likely on my part. We got raw with our conversations fairly quick and she told me about her own insecurities as I reciprocated with my own. I’ve never had anybody open up so quickly and blankly before.
To my surprise, when I saw her again at a party last weekend, she was a different person from when I first met her. She was in her comfort zone and far louder, she wore a bigger personality, which I had difficulty adjusting to. I preferred her quieter, more honest. I suspected, given when we’d talked about, that she was compensating… but I’m still not quite sure which side of her is real.
Had it been the same time last year, I would’ve been completely fascinated by her. But at this point, at the speed I’m meeting (queer) people, I just don’t know if I have the energy or patience to figure her out.
But it’s wrong of me to assume I need to figure her out. Perhaps what I’d considered the greatest lesson of 2016 was wrong; perhaps closure (in this case, on what she is) is overrated and it’s just a bandaid solution for people who overthink. Closure is not the answer to overthinking, just as dropping a loonie will not cure homelessness. In fact, in seeking closure, you can often make things worse – it’s a falsehood alluding to being in power/having control, when in fact, you are so far from it. It can fix that dreaded, baneful feeling of powerlessness, but it will not take your foot off your mind’s gas pedal. Being able to shift gears, stop, and sometimes reverse, combined with knowing where to steer and in what direction – that’s a better way to not spiral out of control.
Mmm this post took a turn.
I took her to a lesbian ping pong party last Friday night.
I’d been conflicted about signals she’d been giving off… I’m fairly thrown off by people who don’t answer their phones often or quickly – it seems pretty clear: if I mattered to you as much as you did me, you’d be ecstatic when my name appears on the screen.
I really do want to invest myself emotionally. She’s cute, and I like everything that I’m learning about her – every new tidbit about her is interesting. She’s a sportsgay*, a redditor, she knows her TV shows, has good taste in music (soft, indie stuff), and…. I’m learning more as we talk more. Sure we text fairly slow, but I like the dry humour and occasional sarcasm she’ll pepper into her responses.
* Up to this point, I’d never even considered being with a girl who was into sports. It was usually a dealbreaker for me – though, a subconscious one. I’d always assumed I’d be with (and taking care of) a femme girl, but I suppose that’s just my mind
So you can imagine how off-putting it was when I got her tickets to the Hayley Kiyoko concert and she responded with “hahaha thanks bud :)”.
Is any combination of letters more platonic and friend-zoney than calling someone “bud”?
I almost threw up in my mouth.
Learning from 2016, I’ve talked to several people about this and the (logical and obvious) conclusion they all individually give me is: “play it out”; “take it easy”.
Yeah…. let’s not think about it.
I really like the way her eyes fold when she laughs. But I wouldn’t be devastated if we don’t work out.
I’m cautious with my heart.
I had a massive crush on a girl in third year. It was the hardest (and purest) crush to get over because I didn’t fall for her immediately – I slowly (and deeply) fell for her personality. (I’d written about her before)
She’s a good person with great intentions, and she’s highly empathetic, perceptive, and conscious of other people’s emotions. Most strikingly, she’s the best conversationalist – she’s so engaging and outspoken. And although this package would seem to be one wrapped in self-confidence, she’s so humble, modest, and self-conscious. As strange as this may sound, she opened my eyes to self-deprecating jokes.
I tried (we all did) keeping in touch with her but she drifted after graduation, spending life with her boyfriend (whom she’d introduced to us once). But we met up again for drinks tonight, her, a friend, and I, after over a year of no communication (nothing deliberate – we just drifted). At one point, she congratulated me on coming out. She also took the initiative to ask me questions about my life, deliberately switching gears from the conversation – which I found so interesting (and nice).
She hasn’t changed much. Only me – I’m just looking at her with new eyes. And she’s as beautiful (if not more) a person as before.
You know how sometimes you meet a person and you’re just so happy they exist? And that they make the world a better place by just existing?
I’m glad I fell for her. Bisexual or not, she was a crush that, in hindsight, I’m proud of.
p.s. she still does that thing with her hair – she twirls it round and round her fingers as you’re talking. The only thing that’s changed is her curls aren’t as prominent and her hair’s straighter. Must be the boyfriend.
It’s like sometimes the universe knows.
I’ve been feeling jaded and overwhelmed because of everything unfolding recently and these feelings are so strong they’ve seeped even into my dreams (as I’d mentioned previously). I need a
n out break from the gaysian group.
Then out of the blue, I noticed it was twitter girl’s birthday on Facebook and without thinking, I decided to wish her a happy birthday. We got to talking and she asked me how things were on my end. Giving the timing and prevalence of what’s been happening, I let her in on the gay drama that was unraveling. We hadn’t spoken in months, but she hadn’t changed – listening with patience and empathy. Next thing you know, she’d invited me to a birthday gathering. I had made prior plans so I messaged her to give her a heads up.
Next thing you know, we’re making tentative plans for a monthly queer dance party. I’m assuming this is with her gay friends.
I have no residual feelings for her (I stress they were invalid in the first place and for the idea of her rather than her, herself), but I certainly respect her for her social activism and strong moral compass – just because we had no chemistry doesn’t change that fact. It’d be nice to reconnect and catch up.
It’d be nice to get out of this circle for a while.
I’m still always shocked by how oblivious I’ve been my entire life, taking my family for granted. Upon listening to my other (Asian) friends lament the tension between them and their parents resulting from news of their queerness, I’ve begun to realize how unbelievably fortunate I am.
A friend – J – and I went for coffee today to air out some thoughts and completely unplanned, she ended up meeting my mom, who’d dropped by to drop off some food. Despite us just being friends and it not being a “meet the parents” kinda deal, she was nervous – I suspect it stems back to her bad experience with (Asian) parents and queerness.
My mom was also slightly awkward (but I was unsure if it was her being normal — now that I’m thinking back to how she meets my other friends, I suspect it was her normal. I guess she’s just a little socially awkward). I checked in with her shortly after, letting her know, “that was Jenny. She’s gay. We’re just friends.” Her response:
I almost doubled over from the mix of guilt and emotions. On the one hand, I’m asking “what did I do to deserve this.” On the other, I feel like this is how parents should be.
It’s just that the latter is obviously not always the case.