Crushes History, or, Crushtory (If You Will) Part 1

Before actually entering (a more accurate description here would be pushed into the deep, dark pool of) the dating scene, I only had a few crushes. But the few that I had basically took over my life. It was like being in reciprocated love—the highs when we were together—with a sucker punch of Just-Kidding-you’re-a-crazy-bitch.

Let’s jump back through the time portal.

A few crushes here and there in Junior High and High School which were mostly me slapping a face onto my “ideal man.” Actually, it was me vomiting idyllic projections onto the guy without him knowing. Stalking Admiring from afar.

Give me this instead. I know exactly what to do…

But in college, boy did I wise up. Actual dating seemed weird to me my first two years of college. You didn’t even know them, how would that interaction even happen? “Hi, uh, I think you’re gorgeous so on the off chance that you have an awesome personality, let’s subject ourselves to an hour and a half of maybe-good conversation”? What if you don’t click at all? Then it’s going to be awkward the next time you see each other around campus. “That’s the girl I almost had a thing for. Thank god I found out she’s crazy…”

So, I friendzoned myself. All the time, with a side of Creepy.

That’s a step up, right? Going from admiring from a distance to actually talking to them? I think I deserve a gold medal. It’s not like I have to tell them I liked them. They’re going to fall for me first! … publicly… !

Mario and I met where any other couple meets: the badminton courts. If you’ve ever wanted to climb up the social ladder, I suggest you not look towards badminton. If you wanted a good recommendation for grad school, however…

He caught my attention because he was the first normal-looking white guy I’ve ever seen on the courts.  Usually it’s nerds of all colors in the yellow-brown family. But I dismissed him immediately because he was attractive. In my experience, attractive guys provide the least stimulating conversation.

During this time, it was my Lost Years at the university so I was jonesing for some close friends. Around the time I met Mario, I met Jonie, who was petite and fiery. We clicked on and off the court and were soon inseparable.The three of us traveled to tournaments together, stayed in hotel rooms together, and went out at night together. I wasn’t 21 at the time, so I was the Super Baby of the group.

My love for him grew. But I refused to hang out alone with him. Guys had to make the first move and at least I was getting SOME airtime with him, right? The fact that they hung out without me meant nothing.

A comic strip has never described my love life so well...

The one time we hung out it was at a dive bar indie concert. And it was clearly not a date, although I did treat it like one. I got a little too tipsy on pre-mixed margarita, stood awkwardly while I waited for him to pay cover (not part of the plan, but I made it so), and then bought him donuts afterward. I felt bad, so I paid him back during the ride home.

I was getting desperate because I knew Jonie, my only connection to Mario, was moving away at the end of that year. And Mario? He was graduating soon. But that didn’t matter as much because without Jonie, there was nothing.

So it continued. Nothing. Nothing. Something? Nothing.

Soon, it was summer and whatever small momentum we had was lost.

Anytime anyone asks me about what happened, I get snappy. And they’re confused because everything happened in my head. 

Mom: So, what happened to that Mario guy? Is he still on campus?
Me: I think he left. (Actually he didn’t, but explaining why we haven’t hung out is worse)
Mom: He left without saying goodbye?! I thought you guys were friends.
Me: HE’S JUST LIKE THAT, MA. Pull into McDonalds right now.

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The Fine Line Between Friendly and Creepy

We (hopefully) are all aware that there is a fine line between friendly and creepy when you’re first getting to know someone, be it as friends or as something more.

what we see when you're doing something wrong

A lot of it has to do with whether you dig the person or not. Has anyone seen the recent episodes of How I Met Your Mother? Well, in one of them, Ted hooks up with this chick who actually did stalkerish things to get him. The group decided that if you’re into whoever’s doing these stalker deeds (stalkereeds?), it doesn’t seem creepy at all, but sweet. However, if you’re not into them, then it comes off REALLY creepy.

Dr. Nerdlove agrees:

If a woman (or a man, for that matter) is attracted to someone, she is more likely to feel comfortable with them and more willing to accept certain behaviors… that is, her boundaries may be different for this person. This doesn’t mean that attraction is an all-encompasing passport to do whatever you want; just because somebody’s boundaries may be relaxed in certain areas doesn’t mean that they no longer exist. It’s very easy to shut down another person’s attraction to you in an instant, whether it’s by being an asshole, saying something rude or inconsiderate, or pushing at her boundaries.

Hear that, boys? This explains why we suddenly pull back someone even when we were feeling the vibe just a few moments ago. Don’t keep pushing at those boundaries. And don’t think that just because we agreed to hang out with you more than once that we’re committed for a real try. Especially when we’ve just met.

Now, I’m usually pretty open to people. I’m a friendly person. But if you’re pushing for more than friendship, my standards will go up for you. I have standards for friends, yes, but they’re even higher for people I would date. Most people, if they’re not douchebags, have an either/or clause.

Either you’re extremely attractive or your personality is the bomb. 

Now, these are the bare minimums for me. Like, friends-with-benefits bare minimums. Usually, I’d rather you less attractive but with an awesome personality. I’ve found that really attractive people usually haven’t needed an amazing personality because of their looks, so they haven’t been able to cultivate it yet.

I’m sorry for throwing all those generalizations out there. But in my experience, it’s true. I’m not saying it’s an end-all.

For me, I label someone as creepy and/or undateable if:

  • they don’t know how to converse
  • they seem really desperate
  • they don’t have a sense of humor

Conversation is a big one. Unless I just met you randomly at a party and we’re ready to get it on, people usually like other people they can talk with. For an extensive amount of time. In conversation, be interested but not so interested that everything you say is a GODDAMN QUESTION. That’s just strange. I want to hear your opinions too. I know dating conversation is different than normal conversation because it’s more about getting to know the other person rather than commenting on something together (the majority of the type of conversations I have with friends), so just try your best to have a balanced two-way information share session.

Don’t talk about yourself too much, because that just shows me you’re not that interested in me, you’re just interested in stroking your ego. Look into the person’s eyes.

Catch conversational nuances, like tone… 

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Update on My Life!

I know many of you don’t care, but to make myself feel better, I’ll pretend you care. Or I’ll pretend I’m talking to my mom or something because she out of anyone… should… care…. right?

Baby Animal Baby Mountain Lion

I am happy to report that as of last Thursday, I have lost 4.5 pounds! Let’s not all get too carried away in our celebration, though, because I have a nagging suspicion that this is water weight. I swear I spend 95% of my life bloated.

Running-wise, I’ve been able to run 2 miles consistently now—excluding the first time I ran after deciding I would now work out in the mornings. The night before, I overindulged in the collegiate way of drinking and felt like I was a contestant on The Biggest Loser. My mind, however, is not so good as Jillian. I’m trying to build up to 2.5 this week. Let’s all cross our knees. A phrase that I coined in honor of my injured knee in attempts of humor, but as all my jokes go, I ended up sounding like a member of the clergy.

I’ve been proud of my attempts in the kitchen lately. My roommates are about to punch me in the face because I can’t resist showing them my delectable dishes and never offering to share any with them. I successfully made fried rice for the first time! Even though I’m Asian, I’m so bad at connecting with my culture that I had to google how to open the bottle of Kikkoman Soy Sauce. Don’t mock. You ever try that before, bro? There’s a secret to it.

Unfortunately, the rice got a little too excited, much like me, so my roommates and I walked around with sticky feet/socks for the rest of the week.

I also made Buffalo Chicken Tacos! Which are delicious and made me briefly consider opening my own restaurant. My dreams were dashed by reality when I realized that no one would ever frequent a restaurant that only had one item on the menu. I guess I could always call it a specialty. I made these from the leftovers of my whole rotisserie chicken and the brown remains of my guacamole. I told myself that this semester, I’ll spend more time cooking. And so far, it’s been working. I actually enjoy it so much more than I thought I would.

Academically, I spent MLK weekend catching up, but by this time in the week, I’m probably behind again. I can see the looming deadlines of three closely-spaced essays and I’m not happy. I’m conquering my debilitating fear of participating in class with my Prison Creative Arts program here. Did I tell you about that?

The Prison Creative Arts Portfolio that I’m participating in this semester is where 14 students pair off and go to different penitentiaries to facilitate a creative portfolio with an incarcerated youth. This is another thing I’ll probably be writing about later on throughout the semester. So far, I’ve heard phenomenal reviews of the course, but I dislike viewing it as just a course; just a one-sided beneficial relationship. The people of our class are supposed to be the altruistic, self-reflective, progressive types that congregate on this campus, but it’s hard to distance yourself from your selfishness sometimes. Are we doing it to put on a resumé? If you’ve done it, why not put it on a resume; but does that mean you’re using it?

See, I’m already wrestling with these concepts and I haven’t even been placed yet.

So, if there’s anything that interests you and you’d like to hear more about, I’d love to appease :)

And now… time for Monday Madness! I’ve been all over with these lately, since I’m trying to expand the kinds of blogs that I read!

And that’s about it. I’m not gonna be too ambitious for now! Have a great day!

REMEMBER, I HAVE MOVED! MY NEW PLACE OF RESIDENCE IS [HERE]

The Day I Took Drugs From a Stranger

I don’t advocate taking drugs from a stranger, but I don’t really regret it. It made for a good story although I really wish I could illustrate with my body how this story goes, but I’ll settle with painting a word picture… 

To say that it was just “crowded” or “hot” would surely be a gross understatement and whoever uttered it deserved to be sentenced to jail for outright lying. I stood there, under direct noon sunlight, in front of the Google Play stage waiting for The Givers to come onstage.

It was the second day of Lollapalooza 2012, which meant that my dehydration and exhaustion was compounded that day from the day before. For those of you who have never been, the first day feels like you’re a five-year-old thrown into bootcamp, forced to survive among hundreds of thousands of other people. But it’s worse, because you signed up for it. And, by God, you’re going to enjoy the fuck out of it! You didn’t pay upwards of $200 to have painful, exhausted memories. No, you came here to make a legacy.

Pressed up against the protruding backpack of the behemoth of a man in front of me (there is always that one really huge man in every concert, and he always happens to be standing in front of you), occasionally running my face into it because there are dickwads everywhere trying to push their way to the front even though they didn’t earn the right like I did, standing under the punishing sun.

To my left, another behemoth, smoking what seems to be a pipe-sized joint. To my right, the one friend out of my entire group that I would not have raged with, the one that thought anyone who enjoyed themselves committing sins were bound not to be good people.

It was only noon. There were 30 minutes left until The Givers would make their way onstage. 40, if you count the fact that all performers are divas and that they move for no one.

My friend, who had been complaining about the heat and exhaustion even before entering Lollapalooza on the first day and told me that morning that she had to take Advil for the muscle aches, stood there stoically. She preferred to suffer in silence.

I felt a nudge to my left and glanced down. The smoking behemoth was offering me a hit of his joint. My eyes slid over to my oblivious friend and I shrugged. If you don’t smoke at Lolla, you’re not alive. I took a hit, and it was like riding a—I died coughing. The joint came around one other time, and I sighed regretfully, knowing that two hits were definitely not enough to get me anywhere. Except cottonmouth.

How many more minutes until they came on? Was I supposed to make polite conversation in an attempt to bond with the offerer of ganja? Who else were we supposed to see today? Fun.? God, I can’t wait until tonight, when I see Of Monsters and Men at the House of Blues. 

Then it hit me. My eyes suddenly seemed to slow to capture images around me. I smiled, relaxing, knowing that music sounds like Angels’ farts when in this state of mind; happy that I could still feel it. I needed The Givers to come onstage now. And that want abruptly turned into a consuming need.

I don’t know when I realized that I was feeling it much more than I should have, that when the effects should’ve stopped, it just kept plowing on. Tamping down my concern, I held on to sanity, knowing that once worried while high, it would become paranoia.

Looking down at my watch, I saw the time but didn’t comprehend and looked again. Ten more minutes. Oh god, I don’t know if I could hold on that long. As a precaution, I leaned down to whisper in my friend’s ear, “Hey… I don’t really feel that good.”

Bright lights everywhere. Was I thrust onto a movie set? Why was everything suddenly in sepia?

It seemed like an additional hour when I decided I couldn’t take it anymore. The effects continued marching and I was having semi out-of-body sensations that I knew, from last year, could result in fainting. One of the first thoughts that popped into my head was that my friend, who had never attended a college party, wouldn’t know how to deal.

“Let’s leave,” I told her, and caught a small line weaving out of the crowd.

I concentrated on walking, but by now, the effects were so strong that I had to think about how to walk. It was like one of those movie scenes with the protagonist tripping balls mixed with Moses walking through the desert in ‘Prince of Egypt’. Images whirled across my eyes. Really bright.

I’m doing such a good job, I thought to myself proudly, as I weaved. Sure, people were staring blatantly for no reason, but I was doing it. Holy shit, how far in were we? Where did this sea of people come from? How long have I been walking?! I blacked in and out, and abruptly decided that I couldn’t walk anymore. I spotted an empty piece of land and collapsed, gasping like I was an asthmatic having a panic attack, which wouldn’t be too far off the truth.

Unfortunately, my perspective was completely off from reality. According to my friend, I had been doing well at first, and then my concentration steadily deteriorated from shouldering straight into people without apology (she followed up with a stream of apologies for me), and then finally just shoving people aside, like I was freakin’ Mr. Incredible meets Hulk trying out for linebacker.

And me finding a patch of land to rest on? Nope. A girl put me there after I completely collapsed on her.

My poor friend didn’t know the effects of weed, so she was highly confused and probably thought that I was suddenly schizophrenic bipolar. She chose that time to remember an article she read the other day about someone who smoked synthetic weed and suddenly had an urge to nom people’s faces off and was afraid that that was to be my fate as well. 

I spent the rest of the concert lying in the grass and looking through the picket fence of legs. My friend then escorted me to Chipotle for lunch. On the way, she told me that I when I saw any fast food restaurant, I would exclaim loudly an item that I really wanted to chomp on from there.

And, after ordering enough food for 20 men at Chipotle, I fell asleep in the booth with a bursting stomach and cottonmouth.