St. Valentine vs. Buddha

I used to go to this Thai buddhist temple and it wasn’t for spiritual practice reasons. Every Sundays, they served Thai food to raise money for the temple. I even joked and called it the “Thai restaurant.” One day after eating at the “Thai restaurant,” I received a message from a stranger on myspace.com. No one uses that anymore, but it was the hottest trend between Friendster and Facebook eras.

Ron sent me a message saying “it’s a long shot, but were you at the buddhist temple yesterday?” He apparently saw me there and I guess stalked me, just like any normal person would do an extensive google search when you meet a hot guy. We decided to meet in person.

Ron is same age as mine, white, about same height, slightly pudgy, and hair long enough have a man-bun. I think a guy with pony tail in a man-bun is so gross.

He had such a passion for Eastern traditions and identified himself as a buddhist. He valued living a simple life and devalued materialism, which clashed with queer culture of having the newest iPhones and designer jeans that cost as much as rent. With his enthusiastic taste of east, I suggested that we try every Asian restaurants as our date venues. We had Sushi, Chinese dim sum, Korean, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Malaysian, Indian and Thai (not at THE “Thai restaurant.”)

I usually confuse friendship interest with romantic relationship interest so I had to carefully examine my interest in Ron. I did have strong feelings for him, which immediately turns into fear of rejection paralyzing my efforts to take it further. Ron wanted to be in a relation but I was not ready.

Few months went by and I took him to a gay bar. During the time of my ambivalence, he cut his hair and lost weight. Suddenly, I was very very attracted to him and I could not hold back my feelings any longer. Whether it was booze or being around horny gay boys, I cornered Ron against a wall and started to make out with him. This elevated our relationship to sleep-overs. He lived in a tiny garage-turned-into-an-apartment by the beach. Again, very simple lifestyle, which is very different from my life of living in a luxurious downtown apartment. Although we had such a different lifestyles, I began to appreciate him more and more. Plus, it was just so nice to cuddle at night.


It was Valentine’s Day and he took me to a paint-your-own pottery glazing studio, where I always wanted to do. He then bought me an orchid plant for the pottery I painted. I thought ‘this is the best Valentine’s date ever!’ I was proud of myself to let go of my irrational fears and enjoy the possibility of not being rejected.


dont-be-a-cunt-buddha-quoteThere is a time every relationships will experience first disagreement and we were no different. Ron really wanted to go to a strawberry festival where they have rides, fried foods, and lots of screaming children. This is not an appeal for me at all, but Ron insisted that we go together. I continued to refuse and he became upset. He said the strawberry festival is very important to him. He also lectured about importance of  compromise in a relationship. He gave me an example of how he had no interest in going to the gay bar, where we first kissed, but he went anyways as a compromise. I still didn’t go to the strawberry festival.

Few weeks after that I was seeking his support from a dilemma. I had an amazing job offer but conflicted to accept because there would be a salary decrease. I expected him to be supportive, but Ron judged me. He thought I was being shallow because money was the decision making factor to take a great job opportunity.

After these two incidents, I noticed our phone calls shorter and less frequent than usual. When I confronted him about it, his response was “that’s an accurate observation” then he broke up with me.

I did end up taking a that job offer and the very first project at my new job was a program contract with Ron. Awkward!!! During the project planning, we maintained our professionalism and I tried not to bitch slap him. We maintained friendship and Ron told me about a new guy he was seeing. It turns out they were hanging out around the time of the festival.

We kept in touch for many years as friends. One day, I talked to Ron about an interesting experience when a hot guy who was in a long distance relationship flirted with me then invited me over to his place. Although we didn’t have sex or even kissed, something about cuddling with a guy who has a boyfriend made me feel weird. Ron had his strong opinions about my behavior. Ron said that that’s considered as cheating and I was “the other guy.” Then I confronted him about when we dated and how he was seeing another person at the same time. He then corrected me that we were never in a relationship.

Ron and I had very different value systems. Although it validated my irrational fears of rejection, I did enjoy the few months of bliss with Ron. I am not a buddhist, but I appreciate concepts of selfless gestures, non-materialism, and non-harm to others. I just didn’t appreciate Ron being so judgy.

Buddha-kept-it-real-300x300I told my friend about Ron’s importance of strawberry festival and my friend started labeling seriousness with strawberry-festival-important. “Stretch after running. It’s strawberry festival important!”

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Ruuuuude

This blog entry is just purely telling a story of a bad date and I will blog about other bad dates periodically.

I met Billy on match.com. He was in his late 30’s, Italian guy who is bald that makes him look sexy given his stocky built. We went to a swanky bar for drinks one night. His confidence can easily be mistaken for arrogance but oddly that attracted me even more. I agreed to go out on a second date and he took me to a fancy restaurant. We ordered a bottle of red wine and an appetizer cheese plate.

Fine dining experience includes the wine presentation by the server, which the server shows you the bottle then opening the bottle, pour, taste, approve, then pour again. I am so not into all that but I admit it does make me feel all classy.

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When the server was holding the bottle of the Cabernet we ordered and about to open, Billy abruptly says “you can open it and leave it.”  Judging by the server’s facial expression, she was shocked with his demand and I was also shocked, sharing her confusion. Billy poured the wine for me and then himself. I took several sips to suppress my discomfort after his strange behavior.

Few minutes later, the server brought the cheese plate and explained that they ran out few items so chef rearranged other available cheese for us. With sincere apology, she reassured that the cheese plate will be taken off the bill.

“So it’s free?” Billy asked.

“Yes, we will comp this from your check.”

“Then I don’t want it.”

200_sThis time, the server had a disgust on her facial expression and it made me want to hug her.

“I want it.” I told the server and began to eat them.

I told Billy that it was delicious and continued with the dinner conversation. As we went through the meal with the typical get-to-know-each-other questions about work, school, family, sports, hobbies, and etc. I began to develop more interest and found him more and more appealing despite his treatment towards the server.

Towards the end of the meal, table next to us, a straight couple who was just finished their appetizer, was greeted with their entree dishes from their server. One of them was a seafood dish.

“Well, that smells fishy.” Billy blurts out to them.

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I think I crawled under the table at that moment and it wasn’t to give him a BJ under the table.

After the dinner, he drove me home and he asked me if he talked too much during the dinner. He explained that he was nervous because it has been a long time since last time he went out a date. I wasn’t sure if he meant to ask if he was rude. I told him yes and started to make out with him in his car. Surprisingly, he was very gentle and almost held back. There were no follow up dates but I ran into him at a bar one night. He offered to buy me a drink and I asked him for a bottle of wine but only if the bartender opens it for me. He chuckled then ordered me a beer instead.