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Sunday, July 09, 2006

Rice Queen, Part 2

A couple days ago, I explained why I am no longer uncomfortable or irritated when somebody uses the term "Rice Queen" to describe me. Since my previous post assumed knowledge of the term, it ended up causing a bit of confusion I think, so to explain, "Rice Queen" is a term that is used for a gay white man who is attracted (exclusively or not) to Asian men. And, though not a complete definition of me, it certainly is true that I am often attracted to Asian men.

Attraction is a funny thing. Why do I look at the picture above and find the guy to be hot, while my gay brother would not be the least bit interested? Certainly there are factors of personal experience, environment, and influence that shape how we define in our minds what is attractive, and it is likely that there are genetic factors involved as well. Beyond those things that are difficult to define, though, here are a few things I have noted concerning Asian guys.

First, allow me to clear up a couple misconceptions. Asian guys are not all bottoms. If anything, I have met more Asian tops than bottoms. Certainly anecdotal, but that's my experience. Next, Asian guys do not all have small penises. It is true that the only time I fell asleep during sex was when a Vietnamese guy who thought he was a top was with me, but those are rare in my experience and most are very respectable (and a couple of them went far beyond "respectable"!).

But beyond the basic physical construction, several things I find to be very attractive about Asian guys (speaking in general terms, of course). I have found that, often because they are either immigrants themselves or their parents came over from another country, a higher percentage of Asian guys have been exposed to a variety of cultures in the world than, say, a corn-fed Midwestern American white boy. One of the great privileges of my life has been my opportunities to live 6 months in Africa and 2 years in Europe. Those travels totally transformed how I viewed the world; it expanded my understanding and appreciation of other cultures and peoples in a way I never realized possible. So, when, while I was talking to an Illinois-raised white friend of mine and suggested he try to visit Europe and he said he would only go to check out the amusement parks and ride roller coasters but had no interest in any cultural activities, I quickly began to see the differences between the worldview of those who have experienced world travel and the worldview of those who have stayed near their own homes their whole lives. Certainly this is not true of every Midwest guy at all, but my experiences here in Chicago have shown me that, at least within my circle of acquaintances, my Asian friends are more well-traveled than any others, giving them a "world awareness" that I appreciate.

Asian cultures (and this is true of African cultures and perhaps others as well) tend to be more centered and focused on family than does American culture. In my experiences, I have found that this "people-oriented" rather than "time-oriented" focus spills over into all relationships. Thus, many of my Asian friends have shown themselves to be kind, compassionate, and self-sacrificing, often above and beyond what others do. For example, when I went through the darkest valley of my life last October, many people I know called or sent cards of sympathy, all of which I sincerely appreciated. But I had three friends who went beyond the "expected" expressions and were very creative in finding ways to help me get through that time, each of their own initiative finding a way to show their love in a way that broke through the masses. And, not insignificantly, each of those 3 friends is Asian.

So, start with an attractive guy with a great smile, add in a kind spirit and an appreciation of world cultures, and you have gone a long way to get this white guy's attention. There are many other reasons, among which some were expressed in an interesting manner by the Men of Color blog post titled "On Asians", but for concerns of brevity I will limit myself to these. When I was in college and in all the years before that, my close friends were all white. However, after my time in Africa and Europe, I returned to the States and today, though it was not by any conscious effort, I have one of the most international group of friends I could imagine. And the closest of those friends are Asian. I am not hesitant nor embarrassed to say that my life has been enriched beyond anything I could deserve because of my Asian friends. So again, go ahead, call me a Rice Queen. I will accept it as a compliment.


james haenes said...

and you haven't even addressed the issue of potato queens either, something i could be accused of obversely. it's true: we all fetishize. i think that's even more so of introverted types than extroverted types (which is why i'd say you lean towards the asian persuasion and your brother is more the frat type, mike).

i'd like to think that i'm above racial considerations when it comes to sexual attraction, but the sad fact is, i do, as you do, have a certain pattern that's pretty much held for my entire sexual adult life. i often wonder why it is that other asians like me can be attracted to asians, while i myself am raraely attracted to this ethnic class, if not at all (to be fair, i've been with two asian guys, one in a threeway and the other on my own).

i am highly attracted to white guys. i won't pretend that i'm not. but funny that i'm not really attracted to the typical all-american boy next door, say, someone like your brother, mike. why is that you have to practically scrape me off the floor at the mere mention of a german or belgian or a french canadian? again, i mentioned that desire is magnificently personal but at the same time, i think you're right: it does have to do a lot with psychological / environmental factors as much as genetic why our attractions form in the first place.

Having said that, I had a field day watching the German play the Italians this weekend. Goal!

Chicago_Sexbox said...

Oh, I am just superficial and am all about muscles. Throw a nice amount of musckle on a guy and he could be purple for all I care.

Michael said...

Something I have often thought about is why we seemingly sometimes have rather arbitrary rules for what is "legitimate" criteria for attraction.

For instance, I'm not going to be accused of being narrow-minded by my friends when I say that I would never sleep with a woman. That, it seems, is a legitimate distinction.

Most people would not criticize me for saying I don't want to date a hugely-fat guy nor a skinny flesh-and-bones guy but would rather have someone in the middle.

We are seldom critical of those who express a specific sexual position role nor that they want to sleep with someone who is complementary.

It is expected that we will look for someone who fits our ideas of attraction in weight, height, eye color, hair color, and even dick size.

But when someone expresses a preference for one particular race over the others, many quickly become judgmental. Why? Personally, I think that people often incorrectly compare the thinking that leads to a sexual attraction racial preference with the thinking that leads to a racial prejudice.

In other words, though it is possible that a preference for one race over another in the sexual realm could indicate a prejudiced mind, that sexual attraction preference does not by itself prove that there is a prejudice. Hopefully that makes sense....more likely I should just go to bed.