Thursday, January 26, 2017

The Unwanted Matchmaker

With the annual Spring Festival inching its way around the corner, more than a few of my singleton friends would undoubtedly be arming themselves for the relentless pellets of presumption heading their way from meddling relatives, near and far. Me, I've learned to accept it with grace as part and parcel of the entirely Chinese celebration along with the oranges and the firecrackers - but in these days of easily bruised strawberries, such intrusive interrogations seem to have become entirely taboo.

Even a simple query on the status of their marital relations or lack thereof would earn a whiny blubber. So could this be the end of the ever kaypoh matchmaker?

Which would be quite sad actually. Amongst my friends here, I've understandably earned an unfavourable reputation for being the dreaded matchmaker. In almost every social situation with someone new, the first question I would ask is the dreaded one most Asian kids would already know.

Are you married?

And if they are happily single, then the generic follow-up questions on the reasons thereafter and the ever-ready list of eligible bachelors or bachelorettes available in a ten mile radius with their contactable numbers. How the original Tindr worked before cellphones if you're wondering. Before any singletons start proclaiming their love for a single life, let me say this - there is no need to have an eternal flame in your life but that doesn't mean you have to stop searching for that weird and wonderful spark either.


Pretty sure I've stepped on more than a few toes - and horrified some of the more hypersensitive strawberries around but to that, all I gotta say is toughen up. Seriously. If such teensy inconsequential questions already leave you flailing about in agonizing suspense, you're going to have a lot more troubles in the future. The previous generation - yes those kaypoh aunts and uncles - managed to deal with such unwanted intrusion so why are you so weepy indignant over so little?

Yes, I have little patience with wimps.

But why my peculiar obsession with dating? Simple actually, because we couldn't do it for a really, really long time. All throughout high school, we sat twiddling our thumbs on the sidelines just watching while everyone else - sometimes including the boy we liked - paired off into couples on their first dates. Obviously we all have a tendency to cherish that which we never actually had.

For my single heterosexual friends out there, you really don't know how very lucky you are. No matter how many doubts and worries you might have about the frightful perils of dating, that wouldn't even come close to the mountains we have had to climb as a gay man. Not only do we have to manage all the dating demons that you have, we also have our own peculiarly gay problems to contend with.

Lovey dovey gay couples still aren't all that visible here. 

Such as the fact that despite the strides that have been made in may other places, over here we're still pretty much an ostracized community.

Yes, it's difficult to make that first move. But perhaps you have taken for granted just how easy it is to go over to a bar and slide a drink over to their latest amour. At the very worst, you get a polite rejection. There's no worry that the targeted fellow would send his balled fist across the table instead. There's no worry that the homophobic waitress would dump the tray on the both of you during a date. There's even less worry that all hell will break loose and you'd be attacked by a mob of pitch-fork wielding haters.

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