Back to Black…

Photographed by the ever talented Alexandra Rose…
Test Shot for a client’s lighting. This is what came out… 
“…You went back to what you knew
So far removed from all that we went through
And I tread a troubled track
My odds are stacked
I’ll go back to black

We only said goodbye with words
I died a hundred times
You go back to her
And I go back to…..

I go back to us

I love you much
It’s not enough…”

Amy Winehouse’s Back to Black. 

 

Before the first date… the RUSH

the first date.
You put on your favorite CD, specifically the song that makes you feel sexy. You plan your outfit down to your socks. You groom in all the appropriate places, and then it happens... the first date. The anticipation of the first date makes you get butterflies, and then next thing you know your hormones and aadrenaline are pumping…
But…
How does one get to the first date? It seems like technology has ruined the idea of flirting, and summer romances. Between Grindr, Jack’d and what is left of facebook have we become desensitized to romance? A good date is hard to come by, but finding the date seems even harder these days. We try to go on dates from these apps, but they rarely amount to anything but a first date and a f*ck.
the water hole…
True fact. Gay men drink and we drink well. It seems that what was once the social setting to meet guys, has now turned into the SEX and the CITY equivalent of breakfast.  We have become these cliquey little gays that go out with our friends in our Fendi, Prada and Dolce. We sit around smoking and looking, but very few will actually make the move and attempt to flirt. Why the hesitation? It is the ideal social situation right? A room of gays that are intoxicated so their gaurd is down and liquid courage kicks in?? 
There is a difference between flirting and cruising/picking up on a guy… Cruising/picking up… usually opens up with a line like… “How do you like your eggs in the morning…” or “You are hot, you. me. my place.” or even “Gimme five minutes behind the bar.Hah. These are the lines guys wish they could use.… Hahah. Or they are lines that we talk about with our friends. Then there is the ideal flirt… Charming, usually a lot of smiling goes on with this, there are butterflies and a spark
 The flirting lasts all night, and usually ends with an unusually long hug goodbye… an exchange of numbers and making plans to get together for dinner or coffee. Last night, I got to experience flirting in the ideal situation again… At first I didn’t even know it was happening, and then BAM! It hit me in the face like someone should hit Paula Abdul for releasing that new awful single. I mean the guy was cute to begin with, but he was semi-off limits because he was a friend of a friend. It was one of those situations…. BACKTRACK! I went to the W Hollywood to meet up with friends from the past, then headed off to West Hollywood where I would run into a close colleague and friend with his friends, my cousin and his friends, former Social Culture models, Louis Van Amstel, and friends from San Fran. The plan was to just go and be social and catch up with good people, and drink… I needed it after my evening.
So… as I am meeting up with my friend and his friends, I was introduced to him… lets call him… J. Everything seemed normal, the exchange of names, how we know our mutual friend, and then progressively through the night it turned into flirting... a mini date? A spiral of crazy goodness?
 Not exactly sure...    I do know this, when he touched me I got butterflies, and I even stopped smoking for the evening since he is not a smoker.  *BIG DEAL* right?
  the morning after.
work. Always work… but the thoughts rush through my head…
The polite good morning texts…
PLUS SIDE… talking to my friend to see what his version of last night was… there is always two sides of the story… and well to be frank… my flirtatious evening might just be him being genuine and a good guy... let us hope otherwise.

in bed with… yellow like asian… MACHISMO


In be with… well me.
I have decided to photograph boys in bed with me and talk about sex, sexuality and relationships…

machismo.
butch.
masc 4 masc.

all terms gay men use to help define their sex lives… their preferences… (please go read my post on micro aggressions here)

Well recently, I encountered a strange situation… I was basically told I wasn’t someone that their parents could respect. 
It boiled down to the fact I wasn’t latino, and I wasn’t “masculine” by latino definition…
0_0   (asian shocked face)

So, we talked about… and well it boiled down to one thing: MACHISMO.
It’s kind of a big deal in a lot of cultures. In Latino culture (which I am surrounded by) masculinity is stressed in three major areas: job, sexuality and family. So, after examining these three areas, and factoring in all of the other research I have done around gay relationships and gay men… I have come to this blog post…

If masculinity is defined by superficial appearance, by mannerisms and by sexual orientation…
Than why be gay at all? When did it become acceptable that being a good person isn’t good enough?
Well… here is what I have come to learn when dating latinos…

 being “butch” is the first deciding factor if they are into you. What is butch?
ABS, facial hair, lack of fashion, pretty boi swagg…
Ironically, no one should wear pretty boi swagg, and it is even worse when you see men in their 30’s with the hat, the plaid, the chain, the jeans, the sneakers… Unless you are Ricardo Tisci’s muse aka billionaire Kanye West… Grow up please…

Being butch also passes the question if you can pass as straight… note to self: everyone straight or gay gets their eyebrows done… no one should have a unibrow. period. But it seems, that if you have a slight arch.. you are femme. Which means we need to call the boys from Jersey Shore and inform them that they are femme gay.

Conclusion:
Anytime we hyper-sexualize, or hyper-masculinize someone we are feeding into the original conflict that homosexuals and heterosexuals faced during the 70’s. Whether it is heterosexual or homosexual, anytime we overcompensate by hyper-sexualizing someone we are feeding the social concept that race determines sexuality… which would be wrong. Placing a stress on masculinity is just another form of sexism, just this time it is homosexual sexism? If gender roles are given based on someone’s masculinity, then we are still stuck pre women’s rights… and makes me wonder have we even made any progress as a human race?

I’m a respectable person. period.
It doesn’t matter my race, my gender role, my mannerisms, my self expression…
I don’t judge other men based on the above, I am the last one to claim masculinity- but for those of you who constantly enforce that you are masculine… what are you overcompensating for?

Thank You to the guy who posed for me… 


If you want to hop in bed with me… 
shoot me an e-mail!!

the YELLOW factor…


the YELLOW factor …
This is kind of a very touchy subject but I needed to address it, as it has been on my mind.

Like most single gays I spend time on websites, apps for iPhone and other forms of social media looking to meet other gay men. It has come to my attention that in the area that I live in race as is the most important thing, so much so that it even determines friendships.

I understand the whole difference of masculine and feminine in friendships… But race? This I don’t understand.


part deux … 

My best friend recently said that the only reason why I stay out here, or the only reason why I go out to local bars is that I am the only Asian- he then followed by saying this is why I get all these guys… Only because they like asians. That was kind of offensive, but none the less… Is it true?

This was then followed by him saying that only attractive men hit on me, and that I only am seen with attractive men.
So, in my mind I feel like I am being racially profiled, while my best friend sees it as me landing every hot guy I want because I am Asian…

This was then followed by examining past relationships, hook ups and men I talked to…

Here is what I have found in common:
 Most of the men I have been in relationships are always attractive and have facial hair. They are always masculine, successful, and charming. They always are in some ways in the arts or admire/support the arts. 

Now most of the men I hook up with : 4/5 are latino. 3/5 have a six pack. 1/2 i end up going on a date with.

The men I pursue…

1. attractive. Being attractive to me is someone who is charming and respectable. It necessarily isn’t about looks, or body type. It is something about who they are as an individual.
2. smart. Being smart doesn’t mean having a Phd or masters degree. It just means I can hold conversation with someone on almost any subject, and they will have a retort of some sorts. This is one of the biggest turn ons.
3. successful. Success is in the eye of the beholder. It’s not about money, it isn’t about their position in life. It is about being passionate about life, being passionate about a career, and most of all having goals for themselves. 
4. personality. Someone who intrigues me. Someone who makes me laugh. Someone who I can trust. Someone who isn’t afraid of commitment. Someone who is just willing to exist with you.

now 9/10 i’m rejected.
1/4 times we go on a first date that accumulates to nothing…


Finally part tres…
Gaysian in the City


My work. At my job being Asian benefits me, a lot. I don’t think because I am Asian I have it easier. In fact, I probably have it a lot harder since the influx of gaysians into the world of fashion. (I blame Alexander Wang, even though I am dying over his Fall 2012 Menswear.) There are plenty of gaysians in the world of fashion now… From designers to bloggers, to new fashion editors making it big… But, I sit here and I ask myself when will I get my break? I work hard, I am passionate about my work, and most of all I am dying to make a difference in the world. So. how does being Asian factor into this? I don’t know, but because of my mood it seems to be that way.

In the Sheets…


This may not be appropriate for people 18 and under.

Cigarette in hand, Tanqueray on the coffee table, and lap top in lap… I found myself contemplating all of these things in the following order…
Sex . Relationships . Fashion . Life

SEX is important one’s life. It actually is extremely important. We find ourselves obsessed with it, talking about it, watching porn, in the movies, all of it… It’s a part of life. I mean right? That’s how we got here in the first place… So, it’s time to start talking about sex… Before, I would consider myself to be sexually conservative, if this was Sex and the City I would definitely be a Charlotte (both in bed and out of the bed). Conservative, classic, and most of all a hopeless romantic wandering the city… 
I was having a conversations with friends about the amount of sex we have, and actually I have come this conclusion… 
RELATIONSHIPS  give us security, while sex liberates who we are. So, it isn’t the monogamy thing that we all want, it is the security of having someone, depending on someone and having someone talk to at any given moment.  So, right now in my life what do I want more? Neither. It’s the fabulous life of FASHION that I want the most. I want the life of glamour, but I want the life that will let me find new talent, and find new faces. I want to work with new and upcoming stars so I can watch their careers grow and change. I have come the understanding that it is fashion who I am married to, and that is where my heart is, and unfortunately it seems like you can’t have both…

YET…

Here is the crazy part… I find myself lately becoming obsessed with sex and relationships.

There have been the whimsical romances like the one I had in New York that never came into existence. There have been the romantic holiday relationships that resulted in breaking up at a starbucks. There have been the long term relationships that result in heartbreak and there have been the friends who turn into hook ups. 

But recently, very recently I encountered a new type of relationship… and a sexual experience I hadn’t had before. 
PASSION.
As cliche as that may sound… I recently met a guy who is probably the most passionate man I have ever been with… I recently consulted with a girlfriend, I needed a second opinion on the entire situation. 

What happens when you meet someone at a bar, who instantly finds a connection with you. His eye contact is extremely intense and well… at this bar I ended up kissing him… and then, something out of character, I took him home. The sex you ask? Is amazing… Maybe it’s too good, because I cant get enough. The downside you may ask? He is leaving. But I have this connection to him, it’s addicting. 
He’s smart, he’s funny, he’s attractive… He’s about to leave as he’s a foreigner… I am not sure.

Do I pursue something with him as he is into me?
And I am into him….

It’s quite possible that I will get hurt…
That nothing good can come of this but great sex, good conversation and a few good laughs.

Well that solves that… Pursue it.

Flowers and Bullshit…

It’s a normal Sunday night for me… working: going over notes for Social Culture, and prepping for the week. 
As stressful as it may be, I love it. But I was sitting, working in my living room when I noticed how nice my living room actually is. 
So I took some pictures with the iPhone and compiled it. It’s quite nice. Don’t you think?

Now… Bullshit.
Relationships.

I am not a relationship expert, in fact I am probably the farthest thing from being a relationship expert. But I do know the following about relationships, well gay ones that is…

Four things to look out for when getting to know someone, to see if they are even ready to date (ask them to yourself as well):
1. Are they independent? Both emotionally and financially. If they still live at home it is probably not the best of signs, especially if they are over 22. Independence shows that they are mature, and understand how to take care of themselves as well as someone else. If they still go to their friends for every detail of their lives, relationships or sex life… they probably aren’t the best candidate… 

2. Do they set long term short term goals? If they don’t know what they want in the long term, run for the hills. If they can’t even make short term goals like when they will see you next… Run – they are probably flaky. Goals are really important, most people don’t take the time to plan anything anymore. Yes, spontaneity is great in a relationship, but it can’t be the foundation…

3. The popular game? Are their lives posted on facebook, instagram, twitter … is it important that they have a bazillion followers? 
It is one thing if it is for work, but if they tell you that they are bench pressing, or at carl’s jr, if they post about walking to the bus, then at the bus, then at the train station, then on the train … they probably care more about their appearance and popularity than anything else?

4. Finally, stick to 3 – 3 – 3 -3 
in the first 3 seconds are you sexually attracted to them? If you aren’t attracted to them… you might get bored and cheat lol.
in the first 3 dates you know whether or not you want to date them or not.
after 3 weeks you know if it is serious or not…
and after 3 months you should have an idea if you want to spend the rest of your life with them, or could even see the possibility of that happening…

—-

And that is my advice to all you gay men out there, running around as if you are on sex in the city… haha

A Second Chance…


What if life gave you a second chance at love, a love that never got to come into existence, that never really had a chance, and the timing was all wrong…  Would you take it? I hope so. I am.

Everything I have learned over the past 8 years has gone out the door, and it has been the best thing ever. It is like everything that I knew about love, relationships and men was erased from my memory and here I am- completely engulfed in the present.

If there was something that connected two people, whatever that may be- whatever it could be… it is happening.