Shuffle Around Life: Chapter 9 (9, K, 2): Wedding Season and Knowledge Series Part 2

What’s up TRP Shuffle Around Gang!

 

A couple of things to reference before we get started:

For those who wanted to learn the origins of this series, I highly, HIGHLY suggest you start from the beginning when it was the TRP Single Life” with Part One listed here.

As mentioned in the previous article is the beginning of the Knowledge Series, we first start with the topic of “Knowing” and what it means to research and “Know” what to do next, if you want a recap, you can start here.

Alright, let’s talk about the part that means the most to people, the doing (or execution piece) of Knowledge. This is probably the second hardest thing, out of all the four components of acquiring knowledge. Why do I say the second hardest? Well, anyone, can “do” something about anything. For instance, I didn’t know how to cook, so what did I do to make it happen? Before working in restaurant I followed some recipes to a tee. Afterwards I was taught proper knife and resource management skills in the restaurant industry, finally I understood the difference between home cooking vs. restaurant quality food. As described there’s two ways of acquiring the baseline foundation “To-Do” something.

Let’s start with imitating those who are knowledgeable:

Everyone knows, Gordon Ramsay Right? (Masterchef, Michelin Star Renowned, Hardass of the 21st century).

via GIPHY

One of the key things people say, when they look at a dish Gordon Ramsay prepares is, “I want to make that at home.” So they type on their browser, “Gordon Ramsay Recipes at home.” Review what’s available, pick what’s most appealing (and easy to prepare) and Voila, you learned your first Gordon Ramsay dish! Well the challenging piece with the imitation methodology is, cooking is a very universal skill (but approachable craft), you can make the argument to say it isn’t easy being a consistent “high-class chef” (trust me, I’ve been there personally, I understand the unhealthy and obsessive mentality of getting things right).

Whereas for something a little bit more technical like making a million dollars in a more unorthodox means (remember Flappy Bird?). You can try to imitate the people who set the tone for the type of product (or service) they provided to the world but chances are, you already missed the boat (or you’re one notch short of being another knockoff). In the world of Instagram, as a media/content creator, we often find ourselves imitating the same stuff other successful brands do:

via GIPHY

  • Add 10-20 different high volume hashtags
    • #socialmedia #thisneedsmoreviews #bloggersaresemidead #imasocialmediainfluencer #ineedmorebitcoin #needsmoresex #lotsofviolence #memes #follow4follow #arewedoneyet
  • Bold keyworded text in quotes on a semi-transparent inspiration
  • Add “Explicit Language/Commentary/Clickbait” for them views.

Yet, it doesn’t sound right and our audiences aren’t always keen in what type of content we have to provide. This is where the journey (or at least IMHO) the best way of acquiring experience learning from trial and error. 

You see many people will make the argument that it’s costly to learn from trial and error but the problem with that mindset is, if you don’t give yourself room to make mistakes how do you learn and grow from it? In Silicon Valley, people talk on and on about ‘disruption,’ ‘innovation,’ and etc. The only way those particular technologies can thrive and exist is because the architects of that technology allow machines the capability to recognize patterns and, “LEARN FROM THEM.” I know it seems obvious right, and yet we as human beings aren’t given a fraction of a capacity to learn from our mistakes. We’re criticized, vilified, and ridiculed into oblivion when our intellectual prowess doesn’t extend to our physical projection of the world because apparently we’re supposed to be flawless human beings. Now that I’m older, I do my best not to give unsolicited advice but if it’s one gem of wisdom I can share with this new generation of “millennials, meme lords, and internet misfits” is to cut yourself some slack and realize this is the only way to grow.

When you continue to fail, even if it costs you your job, career, or even reputation amongst your peers, the period of self reflection allows you to look back on it all and ask yourself, “Was it really worth it?” I try my best to not only be honest with my flaws but my lack of execution there are times, I feel it will never be enough for some people. And that’s fine because the people that are here now, are the ones that I will remember when I am  at the top of my game.

Everyone may have standards but guess what, you need to have your own. So long as you did your best and didn’t hurt anyone else in the process. If it isn’t “top notch” or “well received” fuck em, because at the end you need to also learn from the process and give yourself some self love once in a while. If you don’t learn to love yourself then how can you learn to love others. While attending numerous weddings this year it’s always important to understand that at the end of the day, only when you realize you find love and solitude in your heart, can you find passion and conviction to move forward in your life (in all aspects).

To Be Continued…

 

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Shuffle Around Life: Chapter 4 (2, Q, 4), Dating App Tips Series: Hinge and the Holiday Season

What’s up everyone and welcome to Part 2 of our DAT TRP Series. We already covered OkCupid so if you’re curious about the issue you can click here or work your way from the Beginning of the Shuffle Around Life series.

Hinge is an app that was popularized in New York, gained traction in LA and slowly crept and crawled throughout the country. One of the key differences with this app compared to OkCupid is it’s minimalist settings. Originally you had to sync your Facebook account in order to “acquire the friends of friends network aka your prospective dating pool” to see what you’re working with. As of the writing of this article, you can now sign up with just an email. You can do either way, however for me I started with Sync’ing my own FB account and went from there.

When you first start you need to set your Preferences, who are you interested in (are you interested in the same sex, opposite sex, or you like to grab from both genders). Unfortunately for certain LGBT individuals this may be off putting. Afterwards you need to turn on Location Settings because you need to “Claim your hood.” Then you have to set all the other demographic data: Age Range, Maximum Distance and more. One of the key features that stand out as a filter is the “Is this a Dealbreaker?”

If you’re one of those people that likes to sample the entire world’s buffet, then never turn on that option. However if Religion, Maximum Distance (which only covers 100 miles, talk about limited parameters) and more are truly important for you, then by all means switch on and indicate “It is a Dealbreaker?” It will be marked with ‘Dealbreaker’ in the preference setting, so you can set it and forget it. Now me personally, unlike OkCupid you cannot filter by fitness preferences (seems superficial and probably better for overall user experience) but for those of us who want someone a bit more active, than average (and that’s not asking much) this is one of my few qualms about it. One other thing to note is, while OkCupid still has a slant (no pun intended) to favor Caucasian Males and Asian Females. This app caters to a similar audience (it’s not to throw shade it’s the facts), so if you love Basic Becky/Techies (70%) then you’re probably in Nirvana. There are a portion of Minority Females but the breakdown before I placed my filters were (20% Asian and 5-10% Latino/Hispanic or African American given your geographic location). You don’t have to fill out everything but you should definitely address everything, if you want to take this thing seriously. Your mileage may vary and as an Asian-American male my experience is much more unique than let’s say someone who is Caucasian or African-American. When thinking about how you want to convey yourself to your dating prospects be mindful to:

It’s very important to setup your profile sections, you need to optimize: six pictures, three answer prompts, seven virtues, eight vitals, four vices, and the option of syncing your Instagram (sounds like the 12 days of Christmas song, doesn’t it?). I’ll break it down by each section mentioned:

Six Pictures

You have six pictures to make an ideal impression on your would-be prospect. I’ve seen both my friend’s profiles and some acquaintances. If you don’t like taking pictures either befriend (or pay) for professional photography headshots. If you’re crafty (or gutsy like I was), you can have someone take them for you and take a chance. For my recommendations you should have a split, three photos of you: One clear headshot, one full body shot, and one action shot (pick your ideal activity: climbing, racing, dancing, etc.) The other three, should showcase your personality/interests: Do you like dogs, have a specific passion, have an “urge” to travel (which is very common in dating apps)?

Once you pick those photos you can put it in order, now there’s another three ways you can break this out:

  1. Treat your dating profile like a page from your life story, infographic style and easy to follow, top to bottom
  2. While creating PR highlights about yourself in between the snippet

Three Answer Prompts

English majors, Hinge will make you shine so hard, it’s not even funny (maybe even OkCupid), very few know how to entertain those with a tap of the keyboard. In any event, if you’re a man of few words, use your concise language effectively. My recommendations are: Two Truths/One Lie (if you live an interesting life, are a good liar, entertaining storyteller, or all of the above), I’m looking for (you can be as blunt or witty, e.g. I like tongue and cheeks…. tongue twisters and baby cheeks to pinch, you pervert), & Ideal first date (to set the tone of the first encounter).

Seven Virtues

This is your personal/impersonal background. You don’t have to give out your life story like a business card, of the seven, I would say: Work, Job Title, and Education Level are the most important. A tie for forth is Religious Beliefs/Politics, if that truly matters to you.

Eight Vitals

These are your sports stats, get ready to flex (or not flex) your biological prowess. As for the important ones in this list: Gender, Age, Height, Ethnicity, Family Plans and Location. If you’re concerned about stalking safety (yes ladies, it happens to guys as well), then change your Location setting to what’s reasonable and within the area you’d like to be. Just note, if you place yourself into some “perceived rich metropolitan area” you could be cat fishing those along, who might be looking for a lifestyle that doesn’t equate to your standards. 

My Four Vice

This particular section is all about which vices resonate or deal break the entire experience. Do you sip, get lit, hit the bong, or go off the grid?

Instagram feed Syncing is optional. If you decide to sync it, think of it like your first pictures but people will be able to “Hinge comment or  heart like” (I’ll explain this in a bit). your photos via IG (up to the most recent 27 entries). Again, think of these recent entries as part of “What’s going on in my Social Media life recently?”

***

Now that your profile is set you’re ready to engage. When you encounter a profile, you’ll see their name in the top left corner. And you’ll begin to notice the choices people make on their photos, prompts, and etc. The heart icons enable you to “like” a specific part of that profile (why I encouraged optimizing your profile from the beginning). While scrolling top-bottom you’ll see a pink-red ‘X’ notating you can outright reject the current profile (a swipe left in Tinder/OkCupid land) and movie onto the next. If you did your due diligence, once you like this person and they review your awesome profile, they’ll like you back and “maybe comment'” about whatever picture or content you wrote about.

Like most dating websites, there are stereotypes both regionally/nationally/globally about genders. For instance,  women on dating apps “love to travel” (I get it, you have not only disposable income but you’d also like to explore a buffet of men and destinations before settling down, men feel the same way). Whereas guys love to “Rock Climb, go Camping, Racing, or “Raving.” etc. Pick your poison and if you want to make it a drinking game, play dating app bingo and see how many stereotypes you come across. Also note, didn’t realize women we’re already ahead of the curve, case in point (however the insecurities of putting dating effort into the app, definitely hit her hard) as well as a few others who came into this realization.

Overall, you get what you put into any experience and dating apps are no exception to this rule. Sure, there are some things you might want to hold back on your first few dates. However over time people will eventually see if you’re worthwhile or not, which I stumbled upon content creator George Bruno and his timely video here, said this in his script “Women marry a lifestyle, a man marries a body.” 

This really hit close to home because as I get older, I do fear in some respects that could be a possibility. And with the advent of Social Media, more and more people are “conforming/settling” for a specific lifestyle, I wonder why that may be the case? Side note aside, Hinge as a dating app (like everything else in the market) gives you an opportunity to meet new people. Some of you are expecting 100% effectiveness with these tips, unfortunately it may not work for some of you at all. I’m merely sharing my experience because I had to learn the hard way, there were no resources for Asian-American males and the things that were taught to me, didn’t apply (or I didn’t have the “model look” to pull it off like some of my peers LOL).  

All I do hope is whether it’s this holiday season, you’re trying to get an extra ‘snack’ to stay warm with or are truly looking for something meaningful. I hope these few tidbits can help you one step closer in your journey to happiness. Merry Christmahanukwanzaa to all and The Relationship Podcast will be ready to ring in 2019 with a brand new season! Thank you for the support as always and take care, the only single guy on the panel signing off!

-R.M. 2018 DAT TRP

 

Shuffle Around Life: Chapter 3 (7, 6, 5), Dating App Tips Series: OkCupid and More

Here’s my explanation for this long-overdue Chapter, I wanted to create a bit more coherence between posts (beyond Cartomancy and the general theme of top, middle, and bottom) and introduce a small mini series called Dating App Tips The RelationshiPodcast Series (or DAT TRP)

This series is a build up to the Dating Project I mentioned a few episodes back and I’ll start with a semi-popular and somewhat relevant app of today, OkCupid. There are many reviews of this app, you can read Mashable’s, Ask Men’s, or Dating Scout’s version. However my review is different because I will share with you the few tips you need to have the most optimal experience. One other thing to keep in mind, this is coming from a heterosexual minority (Asian-American) male so your experience and mileage may vary.

Let’s get started!

Unlike Tinder and Bumble what sets this specific app apart is the long form survey questionnaires. People get real lazy and from my experience if a woman really appreciates your “aesthetic” chances are she didn’t read your profile for jack shit. So you’re probably gonna ask, “How can I get my own bae?” Welp, here are some best practices and specific questions to look out for:

  1. Be yourself (write your profile as if you had a girlfriend/wife).
    1. I know this shit sounds weird but when I first created my profile a long time ago, I thought about it like a “Marketer/Youtube Clickbait writer.” Trust me it works, the more genuine your tone and candor you provide. Your personality shines bright like a diamond and the chances you’ll be matched with someone will increase (even if you feel like your ugly as sin itself).
  2. Watch out for specific questions that could indicate incompatibility based on your lifestyle and core values
    1. Ethnic/Race preference Question: Probably the biggest indicator (if your ideal mate) likes to stick with their own kind. Even OkCupid Christian Rudder reference’s in his book Cataclysm, that this question is supposed to indicate some sliding scale of Racial preferences. A 95% of the woman I swiped on thankfully answered in this manner:
      1. Would you Strongly prefer to date someone of your own skin color/racial background?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. There are a few profiles I encountered that say “Yes” and majority of those were Caucasian and Asian women (no big surprises there given our previous podcast episodes and historical data).
      2. Would you ever consider ending a relationship because a parent, family, member or close friend didn’t approve of your partner in terms of attractiveness, race, nationality, gender, age, or other factors beyond their control?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
      3. If you were going to have a child would you want the other parent to be of the same ethnicity as you?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. Fun fact, if she says “Yes” and you’re not her ethnicity, well I feel bad for you son because…. 99 problems but a kid ain’t one. *Jay-Z voice*
    2. Money Question(s): Again, another dead giveaway. People usually don’t put in the work to answer these for yourself but you should (and for good reason). If you don’t want a “Gold Digger” than anything that shows she values money potential you might, have a large incompatibility issue in the long run. Furthermore, I would stress that a whopping 98% of the profiles I’ve encountered answered these questions in the same way regardless of ethnicity, that I swiped on (shocking I know) and here are the two questions and their affiliated responses:
      1. Is your ideal match well-off financially or at the very least someone who has high income potential?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: Yes it’s somewhat important
          1. If she answers “Yes it’s very important,” now I ain’t saying she a gold digger but..
      2. How important is money/wealth for you in a match?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: Yes, it’s somewhat important.
          1. …she ain’t a messing…
      3. Would you date someone who was in considerable debt?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: No
          1. …With a (Broke/Student Loan heavy/no new BMW type) ninja. However if she ever says, “Yes, its not a problem for me.” that’s wifey material right there (hard to come by).
      4. How would you feel if your significant other made more money than you?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: Very Comfortable
          1. Fun fact on this one, I NEVER see any ladies say “Very Uncomfortable.” Given the whole movement in 2018 for dating equality, there are some things that will stay the same till the end of time.
      5. Do you believe money can buy happiness?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: Yes
          1. If she answers yes (in addition to the above questions), then I hope your pockets are deeper than the Mariana trenches, cause that child/lifestyle support money is serious in 2018
    3. Hygiene (Biological/Lifestyle) Question(s): You’re probably thinking, damn Ryan I can’t pick up a woman if I don’t wash my balls religiously or brush my teeth twice a day. You can thank your stars Jimmy, this isn’t that much of a deal breaker. Granted I can make the case, that most people have some standard of basic hygiene and the arguments for lack of hygiene is purely for lifestyle optimization (not washing their hair everyday, is a ‘dirtbag’ (rock climber), or HLA (Human Leikocyte Antigens) incompatibility). In my sample size, 60% of the women I swiped on answered the question and provided these responses:
      1. How important is it to you that your partner smell good?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: Important-ish or Less important than you think
          1. If she says “I just don’t care at all” may your crusty balls be forever cherished.
    4. Lifestyle: This isn’t lumped with hygiene because you can avoid the restroom for a few weeks and still be a rational (and somewhat ethnical) human being. However do note, depending on what you’re personally gunning for you may want to focus on certain questions and de-prioritize the rest. Here are the questions and their respective responses, keep in mind 70% of the women, I swiped on answered in this manner:
      1. Would you date someone who still lives with their parents?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. Another fun tidbit, if she says “Yes” and you’re living in a very expensive part of the country *COUGH* San Francisco Bay Area/Manhattan/Hollywood*. Good luck, trying to convince her otherwise.
      2. Would you consider having an open relationship (i.e., one where you can see other people)?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. One of the things I learned from past dates is if she says “Yes,” then you shouldn’t hold your breathe on commitment quality, just saying (and this is beyond the “Dating Phase.”) as well.
      3. It’s your first date. Do you split the bill, pay the whole bill, have them pay the whole bill?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: Split the bill or It doesn’t matter to me.
          1. If she answers “Have them pay the whole bill.” then you know what to do chief.
      4. Would you consider sleeping on a first date?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. If she says yes and she’s also down to hook-up, then make sure to stay equipped.
      5. About how long do you want your next relationship to last?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: Several years or The rest of my life
          1. I never seen the answer “One night” usually few months to a year is common.
      6. Has anyone ever accused you of being “high maintenance”?
        1. You answer: Whatver
        2. She answers: No
          1. If she answers “Yes” in addition to the financial questions again don’t be surprised…
  3. Read their profile and find common ground between you two
    1. No surprises there but there’s some amount of work you need to put in.

Other questions to look out for and determine good compatibility not just for dates but long-term relationship potential are:

  • How many children would you ideally like to have?
  • Is it ok for a woman to ask a man out on a date?
  • Would you consider being in a relationship with someone who has had homosexual sex?
  • Does hanging out in an empty field, in the middle of no where, at 2am to watch a meteor shower sound like fun to you
  • Are you still in love with one or more of your former partners?
  • Which of the following do you find to be the most liberating?
  • How many countries have you visited?
  • Have you stayed friends with most of your ex-boyfriends/ex-girlfriends?
  • Do you have an ex that you would really like to date again?
  • Are you flaky (i.e. cancel plans at the last minute)?
  • Can you cook?
  • Do you believe regular sex is necessary in maintaining a healthy relationship?
  • Do you ever ghost someone (cut off contact without warning) after meeting in person?

These questions are a supplemental litmus to determine how adventurous, reliable, and/or “not ready for a relationship material these prospects” are. You can observe on the one’s I highlighted here to determine, the ideal people I’d like to build a relationship. However if you really want to take the bare bones optimal approach use the questions I bolded as strong indicators of overall compatibility, that might help you in your search. Hope this helps and look out for an upcoming Podcast Episode on Double Standards and the next app I’ll review in the DAT TRP series.

Shuffle Around Life: Chapter 1, begin to re-shuffle priorities, 7-7-8

This series was meant to replace The Single Life column for two reasons:

  1. I’m not single anymore, so there’s no point in continuing forward.
  2. Neither John nor Andrey is single either and would have any relevance with maintaining such a column.

**

With this in mind the new setup and approach with this column is like a deck of cards sans Joker Card(s). I’ll shuffle around the deck and point out the highs, lows, and everything in between with regards to what’s going on in my life.. I’m toying with the idea if I should actually shuffle a deck of cards and see what is the top, bottom and middle card drawn from the deck. There’s 52 cards and 52 weeks, so maybe this can reflect every three weeks?

The cards in display are as follows:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Highs, 7 of Spades; Spades historically have been the suit to beat. The seven isn’t too high but it isn’t too low either. Ever since starting this podcast and having this escalated amount of responsibility it feels as though time has accelerated tremendously. Unlike many of my peers, within our age cohort most of us are (or at least presumably) ready to settle down and really get your shit together.

Lows, 8 of Clubs; The suit of clubs is an interesting bunch. This isn’t the king or a bottom card like the 2, however in my life at the moment, my energy feels very depleted. In reflection, as noted by many of my co-workers, it follows in a three of a kind. Someone’s getting engaged, married, or pregnant. In my life, someone has gotten engaged, invited me to my first baby shower, and has gotten married. Furthermore, it makes me wonder when the time comes to have a family of my own, will I ever be ready to step up and become a father?

In Between, 7 of Diamonds; If you played “Big two aka Pusoy Dos aka an Asian Gambling game,” my middle school self would be ecstatic when the suits are ordered (clubs, spades, hearts, diamonds). Perhaps I had it all wrong in that the correct suit priority was (Diamonds, Clubs, Hearts, Spades)? One of the biggest skillsets to have in adulthood is shifting priorities, certain people, projects, and hours in the day will be allotted to take precedence over everything else. A year ago today, my life was extremely different. I had a more robust social life… A mid-size social circle, plenty of activities I participated in, and dating was like a box of chocolates because you never know what you’re going to get.

Thanks for reading this very rough, first post but I’m still creatively figuring out how to present everything.

-R

Final Chapter of TRP Single Life: Execution, Timing, and Luck; Same Woman, Three Dates (Dates #11-13):

“You have everything I want in a person but… I’m just not feeling it and I don’t know what’s wrong with me…”

Final Chapter Author’s Note: These series of dates happened a while back (before I got into a relationship) so this is sort of a recap of what happened prior and what’s to come with this column. Anyway hope you enjoy it!

Execution, Timing, and Luck are necessary to lead you into the next door of opportunity.

**

Everything in life is a combination of three things: Timing, Execution, and Luck

The execution piece is obvious, it’s probably the only thing you have complete control over. Whereas Timing and Luck are the two other elements you will never be able to control. You’re also probably wondering why I’m not lumping timing with luck because although they’re obviously intertwined, it’s quite different when it comes to being variables within the success of any relationship.

***

Date #11: Timing

***

Like all things in life, you have to be at the right place at the right time. However in terms of dating apps, sometimes a glass of scotch and perusing dating app profiles is a better way to get the weekend festivities started after a long work week. I was at profile number 50 and I was ready to call it quits. Finally she appeared, her name read Mizunara, “Worked in the City, active, and had a nice smile to boot.” *Clicks Accept*

Sipping on scotch while watching Netflix, ten minutes have elapsed and then the pop up notification came “Mizunara has accepted the match, please begin to chat.” As usual, one message became two, four, and you already know the drill….So we meet at this bar on a hill (the rhyme wasn’t intentional). Simple digs and there was a party there before us, she then explicitly stated, “If this doesn’t work out at least we have good drinks.” Our conversations weaved in out, between the yesteryears of college midterms to  future aspirations. As we paid the check, I asked her did she wanted to proceed. She nodded, waited for the check, took my arm and off we went for dinner.

On the way we stopped at a cross walk and made out. It was clear, the night wasn’t over yet. We had food, enjoyed conversation and I’ll leave the rest of the imagination to you all… After our fun, we made plans to see each other in a week and a half.

***

Date #12: Execution

***

We rendezvous’d at a mid-point within the city. Gave each other an embrace and a single kiss as anyone dating would, especially when they rekindle their passion for one another for that fleeting moment. Having been a very simple date, we decided to keep going with the theme and went to a beer and wine specialty bar. As usual, time elapsed and we continued enjoying each other’s time and conversation. However as my previous experience (and slight jadedness has taught me), sometimes if things are too good to be true…Then it is. I’m already 2/2 and as we kept talking, I was looking for the x variable, the thing that’ll throw a wrench in this whole experience. I know I shouldn’t be thinking like that but I knew at some point it will come up. She then mentioned, the x variable, “I hadn’t been in a relationship in a long while and I don’t know if I’ll ever settle…”

You see, she had everything else covered. Stable career, active, reasonably attractive, and etc. However when people start sharing they don’t know if they will ever settle. There’s this restlessness that settles in (at least it did for me), it’s very intuitive and a huge red flag for me. Psychic abilities aside, I don’t know if I’m willing to risk that, however there results were laid out to bare our final date…

***

Date #13: Luck

***

A week has gone by since the last date, and the dreaded text finally came on a busy Thursday morning at work

***

Her: Hey

Me: What’s up?

Her: Can we meet up and talk later tonight?

Me: Sure…

***

When we met up with one another, the hug (was half assed, butt sticking out using one arm) and the body language became distant. I knew right at that moment, regardless of what plans we “initially discussed” via text wasn’t going to come to fruition. She told me up front,  she wasn’t feeling “the chemistry.” My luck had ran out and this person wasn’t the one for me. At the time I felt completely rejected like any other human being, but if it wasn’t already noticeable I had learn to adapt (and dispose) whatever connection I had with this person like a useless folder of pictures of your exes. Dragging them into the Recycle Bin on a PC, with intent of permanent deletion and memory lapse.

You see, in the human language of the words “Dating chemistry,” its a culmination of emotional, physical, sexual, and spiritual attraction all wrapped up into one. If your partner (man or woman) cannot see themselves, at some point doing anything of those things (for a long period of time) it’s a wrap for that possibility. At times it feels like a “cop out response” easy to serve without remorse. More often than not, it’s the woman who will determine the chemistry barometer. As a guy (or the pursuer if you’re LGBT), your sole task is to uncover the catalyst of that chemistry and decide for yourself if it’s worth maintaining in the long-run.

Throughout this series, after reflection I realized there was a lot of confirmation on my end both in long-term core values and daily relationship nuances. For the first time in a long-term, before getting into my current relationship. I have some lessons, I would like to share from this experience. Hopefully you can learn from example (instead of experiencing them like I did), in order to find more fulfilling relationships.

  1. Appreciate Someone’s Identity: Don’t think of them as another “name” in your cell phone.
  2. Good on paper, doesn’t mean good for compatibility: We all have “ideal mates” but realize they’re not perfect but always a work in progress.
  3. Shoot for the moon but have a parachute in handy: You can climb the highest mountains but if they’re not willing to summit with you, re-evaluate.
  4. Everyone is searching for love: It can get complicated but the more honest you are with your search the easier it is to find someone more compatible.
  5. A kiss isn’t always meaningful: Some people hand them out like business cards but your individual actions beyond the kiss mean much more in the long-run.
  6. Substance Influence Dating isn’t recommended: You can argue for it’s shortcomings (or miraculous opportunities) but in the long-term it doesn’t really pan out for most.
  7. Never double-book yourself: It’s not sustainable and you won’t value the people you spend your time with (personal and platonic).
  8. Don’t over communicate before your first date: Whether it’s sending 200 messages on a dating app or talking 2 hours a day for two weeks. It’s setting the wrong expectations.
  9. Always work towards the middle ground: People will take advantage (or remain oblivious) of how unfair it feels at any moment when things are imbalanced. You and your potential partner need to always vocalize, reflect, and respect each other’s differences. The sum of your experiences are entirely different from their own. Learn how to leverage and intertwine this knowledge for a better foundation.
  10. Realize all the wrong relationships were meant for “The Right One”: We can debate till the end of time people’s definitions of soulmates: Astrological, Atheistic, Christian, and etc. At the end of the day, when you (and hopefully your partner) realize how much the other brings to the table. You’ll soon see that is the reason why they remain (and continue to flourish) in your life.

… I am grateful to be developing a wonderful relationship with a very sweet (and independent) lady. However this is just the beginning and now I begin to shuffle things around in preparation for things to come.

Thanks for reading this series and hope you continue to in the next chapter of my relationship life!

 

 

The Engaged Life #7: Why I’m Not Having a Bachelor Party

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As per usual, let’s get all the caveats out of the way first. I’m not knocking anyone for having a bachelor/ette party. It’s incredibly commonplace in America, so insinuating that I’m against almost everyone is laughably inaccurate. I believe that celebrations such as these are the choices of the celebrant, and no one else’s. If you accept that premise, then I feel like I’m well within my jurisdiction to abstain.

To understand my stance on this, I suppose I need to give a bit of background on myself. I’m the type of person that doesn’t like unneeded attention. If I’m promoting a gig or a project that I worked on (i.e. the TRP podcast), then of course I’d like the attention to help either myself or my team succeed. Outside of that, I don’t really need or want a lot of attention. This has been my philosophy for a while which is part of the reason why I don’t even celebrate my own birthday. Sure, some friends have pointed out that my life experiences have also contributed to this “tradition,” but I distinctly remember making a conscious decision in my adult life not to celebrate my birthday anymore. I can make a whole post on my reasoning for that, as well as the social experiment I conducted after I made that decision, but that isn’t the point of this post. I just wanted to lay the groundwork for the topic at hand.

So here are a few reasons why I am choosing to not have a bachelor party:

1. I don’t want the attention

Following through with what I just said, I simply don’t want the attention. I don’t like being the celebrant, especially in America. There’s this odd stigmatization in America specifically. Whenever there’s a celebration, it’s usually the case that you want to support the celebrant and do whatever he/she wants to do. However, the instant the celebrant refuses to want to celebrate, they get admonished.

“C’mon, why don’t you want to do anything? You’re weird. It’s your last hurrah. Don’t be such a lame ass.”

I get that there’s a benevolent agenda behind these words. Trust me, I do. But, there are a few things I find wrong with it, and the main one is that it’s almost like people forget who they’re supposed to be supporting. It’s one thing when someone isn’t sure and needs a bit of encouragement. It’s a totally different situation when they’re sure and that’s their position. If I want encouragement, then I’m not one to turn it away. However, if I’ve made a decision, I prefer support rather than having to fight tooth and nail to defend it, especially when it doesn’t really affect anyone else (see the next point).

2. I know the party isn’t completely for the bachelor, but I don’t really care

Okay, so let’s get real here. Nowadays, I know the bachelor party is less for the bachelor and more for the guests coming along with him. It’s an excuse to get the guys together and spend time. It’s an excuse for married men to relive some of the bliss from before they were married. It’s supposed to be male bonding at its finest. I get that. I’m just not sure if I care. It’s not that I don’t care about my groomsmen or my friends and don’t want to spend time with them, I just don’t buy into this as the reasoning for a bachelor party. I don’t like being guilt tripped into doing something I’m not comfortable with if it doesn’t serve a noble purpose.

I consider my groomsmen my brothers. They were here for me long before, and they’ll be here long after. We’ve been through hell and back together. I’d much rather take them out after the wedding and treat them to a guy’s trip. I’d rather show them my appreciation than have them take me on a trip which I find no personal meaning. Or maybe we can just go out and celebrate what we’ve been through together. It accomplishes the same goals as the bachelor party without any of the subtext which I don’t agree with. This is where I would prefer to take responsibility for being the outlier. Just because I don’t like being the celebrant, it doesn’t mean that there shouldn’t be a celebration or any appreciation shown at all.

If your response is “well it’s harder to do that after you’re married,” then that perplexes me. Here’s what I can’t wrap my head around. Why would it be more acceptable for married men to go to a bachelor party than to go on a trip like the ones I’m proposing? Is it just because a pending marriage is involved? Even though the term “bachelor party” itself connotes and sometimes almost guarantees debauchery, it’s somehow more acceptable?

On a side note, I’m not one that believes that flings on the bachelor/ette party don’t count. Your actions are your responsibility, it shouldn’t matter the context. If you feel like you need to have a fling before you get married or even during it, then maybe you aren’t/weren’t ready. There, I said it.

3. It may be tradition for some people, but it isn’t one of mine

Although I’m proud to be an American, I’m still a child of immigrants. Even though Indonesia is starting to adopt bachelor parties, they’re well aware that it was adopted from American culture specifically. My dad didn’t have a bachelor party. Neither of my grandfathers had bachelor parties. I don’t have any historic or cultural reason to have one. It’s such a foreign concept to anyone who wasn’t raised with it. I personally didn’t even come across the concept of a bachelor party until I was in college. When your family doesn’t believe in them and no one around you is talking about marriage yet, then it never comes up.

It’s kind of like the whole gender reveal party thing that’s been gaining popularity recently. I personally don’t understand gender reveals as a new tradition that people are starting. I completely get baby showers. Your child’s actual birth is still a private family matter so you can celebrate with friends beforehand (read: cash in on some helpful presents). I’m still not sure how gender reveals fit into the whole scheme of things. In my opinion, bachelor parties are to marriage as gender reveals are to baby showers.

4. I don’t need a last hurrah

This is usually the tertiary reason that people give for a bachelor party which is why I put it last too. I’ve lived my live exactly the way I wanted. I’ve prepped myself for being married this whole time. There isn’t any angst in my life anymore. That was the whole point of my early adult life. If you spent your time wisely and gained as much experience (good and bad) as you possibly could, then you don’t feel like you’re missing out on anything when you’re 30+. Are there more things that I would like to experience in this life? Absolutely, but it doesn’t mean that I need to be single or unmarried to do them. Will childrearing later on severely limit my mobility when it comes to pursuing some adventures, travel aspirations, or career changes? Of course, but that comes with it’s own set of rewards that I feel will balance out at the end. It’s all about perspective and making sure that yours conforms to the reality that you have to deal with.

Conclusion

To be honest, I wrote this in response to a lot of people that have been asking me about it. This way I can just link them to this, without having to explain myself over and over. Nonetheless, this is how I honestly feel about the matter. I don’t foresee anything drastically changing my mind, and I feel like that bachelor parties are such a vestigial part of wedding tradition that people aren’t going to really take the time to draw up a full counterpoint to what I’ve said. The underlying point is: if it’s something I can’t logically defend, then it’s something that I shouldn’t logically do.

Change my mind. If you have any thoughts on why I’m wrong or any other comments on this topic, be sure to leave a comment below. As always, you can reach me at therelationshipodcast@gmail.com.

-Drey

The Single Life: Dates 5 & 6: Same Woman: Cheesy Flower Bowl Antics

1st Date Leftovers…

Cheesy and wine glasses, almost a month back in to the dating game and I’m getting sick of the stuffiness. At this point, nothing should surprise me and my expectations were slowly dwindling. This lovely lady is a software engineer but we didn’t have an exciting conversation the first time we chatted via dating app. However somehow we managed to meet up for a drinks and by some weird coincidence she was fine with the same place, I’ve met someone else at before (not intentional but it worked out that way). I was running a bit late because I had to work Overtime and I was nearly exhausted by the time I got to the date spot.

So I can’t believe, I got a flower bowl just to drink soup and everything spills over.

The place was blasting with music and all I saw was a woman with long hair, a peach dress and a quiet demeanor. I thought to myself, “This date is probably gonna get awkward, real quick.” I introduced myself and we gave each other an awkward handshake/hug (I didn’t know what she was trying to go for). As we sat down we ordered a few orders, one of them being a couple of toasted burrata pieces and our drinks. Within 30 minutes it went down with the cliche order of operations…

***

Me: So, how was your day?
Her: Good, not too much work and you? *eats quietly*
Me: It was exhausting but I’m glad it was over, how do you like burrata?
Her: Good, not bad at all. *sips quietly*
Me: …Ok, do you like your wine?
Her: It’s ok, I just ordered it because I couldn’t decide… *continues to sip quietly*

***

I was ready to throw in the towel. She then exclaimed, “I would talk more but it’s so loud so I’m afraid you can’t hear me.” I told her, “Wanna leave early and try for round two, given the circumstances?” During this time she explained about friends visiting, her work, and her limited time. I was for certain this was it but then she replied, “Yes, that would be great. I’ll let you know when I’m free next week.”

I covered the tab and then escorted her to her Uber. Gave her a proper hug and she went on her way, Date 1 was over.

**

Next week arrived and we were planning for Date 2, a quieter and more intimate venue. They didn’t have reservations but it ended up being a walk-in spot. She got there earlier than I did because it was the weekend and she just finished shopping with her friends. We ordered a few flights of wine and over the course of the evening the alcohol caught up to us, we became a bit more flirty with a bit more exchanges across the table.  Afterwards a bit more banter came out and she mentioned her bad choices of kitchenware. A flower, that forces extra liquids to spillover, that’s quite the highlight of the night. The corny conversation was lighthearted and fun, something I don’t really experience too often with these dates. During the last flight of wine, we looked at each other and I told her, “I would be right back as I whispered in her ear, she turned towards me and made out with me for a bit.”

I thought to myself, “Is this really happening right now? Is the alcohol, the only reason why she is really into me at the moment?” I couldn’t tell but after some back and forth, she was ready to go home. This self proclaimed ‘high tolerance lady’ was ready to hit the hay. We strolled through downtown and made out a bit more one another, she randomly blurted in a slurred speech, “You know I should hire you for a party sometime, you know quite a bit about food and drink.” I gave her this weird glance given the random response out of the blue. It was odd of her to say such a thing during our second date, as if I was some rogue bartender/chef for hire.

As we got into the car, we were trying to iron out plans for a second date. She mentioned, about all the things we could do and she’ll “get back to me” once her schedule was clear. At that point, I was too skeptical, to believe something would come out of it. I think a sober thought entered my mind, given my current run of experience that this was all a temporary fantasy. After dropping her home and going about the week, I didn’t hear from her until the day before our potential third date. She rescinded her original “3rd date proposal,” felt it was better to “stay friends and didn’t feel the chemistry.” I was confused and somewhat shocked but I politely declined and wandered into a bar later that night. As I sat there with a scotch in hand, I realized, all you gotta do is move on. So with one shot and more messages flowing, it was onto the next one…

According to my peers one would argue that I suck at life. Some would maybe say it’s “bad timing” or someone called ‘dibs’ before I even had a chance. Either way, this is all a journey for me, so let’s keep it moving.

The Bar of Standards – S1E12

The bar of standards, how far will you go to achieve your level of success?

In the previous discussion on Improve Yourself Before Dating (episode 11), Ryan mentioned The Bar of Standards; not the bar at The Standard Hotel.  Ryan thought this would be a great episode because everyone has this “bar” in reference to our partners and potential partners.  Meaning that everyone has their own criteria when choosing a partner.  Lets find out and get to the top (or bottom) of this.

The bar of standardS Outline

  • How do you define “The Bar of Standards?”
    • Are there differences of this Bar between Men and Women?
  • Are there levels to your Bar of Standards or just one baseline?
    • If so, when do you feel the need to adjust?
  • With all the topics we’ve covered so far this season, which ones create the biggest impact to setting this bar? Is it any of the following:
    • Communication Differences (Episode 7)
    • Cultural Barriers (Episode 3)
    • Deal Breakers (Episode 5)

Intro and Outro music from The PassionHiFi.
Scratching done by DJ Indoe (Drey).

If you want your music to be featured on our podcast (or contact us) please send us an e-mail

Episode 11 (Recap) – Improve Yourself Before Dating.  Check it out here.

This is the NON-SALTY Disclaimer: ‘We at The Relationship Podcast do not discriminate based on race, sex, sexual orientation, income level, political affiliate, religion, or creed. These opinions are solely based on our own unique experiences; our opinions are not the rule. We are always open to EVERYONE’S personal life experiences and opinions. At the end of the day, we can always agree to disagree. Please enjoy the podcast.”

Do You Booboo – Improving Yourself Before Dating – S1E11

Improve yourself before dating, do people follow said advice?

Improving Yourself Before Dating, a cliche’ idea one of audience members suggested mentioned we should do an episode based around this central idea.  This is a great topic choice because a majority of us learn something about ourselves in every relationship; whether successful or not.  Special thanks to BooBoo for filling out our survey and making this awesome topic choice for today.  We hope to answer all of your questions!!

Improving Yourself Before Dating Outline

  • First of all, do you guys actively try to improve yourselves?
  • What are some of the things that you guys do to improve yourselves?
    • Hobbies, skills, discipline?
  • Have you ever directly observed the benefits of doing this?
    • Examples
  • What suggestions would you give to someone who doesn’t actively do this, but wants to?
    • Tips, tricks, advice
  • Why do you think it’s important for someone to actively improve themselves?

The song that Andrey refers to towards the end of the podcast is Brother Ali – Picket Fence (lyrics):

Intro and Outro music from The PassionHiFi.
Scratching done by DJ Indoe (Drey).

If you want your music to be featured on our podcast (or contact us) please send us an e-mail

Episode 10 (Recap) – Dating Alpha Women.  Check it out here.

This is the NON-SALTY Disclaimer: ‘We at The Relationship Podcast do not discriminate based on race, sex, sexual orientation, income level, political affiliate, religion, or creed. These opinions are solely based on our own unique experiences; our opinions are not the rule. We are always open to EVERYONE’S personal life experiences and opinions. At the end of the day, we can always agree to disagree. Please enjoy the podcast.”

Dating Alpha Women – S1E10

Dating Alpha Women

Stitcher   GooglePlay Anchor.FMSponsored by MoseApp

We dive into dating alpha women.  Ryan and I had a brief conversation about potential collaborations.  He mentioned a trio of woman that had a podcast–ABG Podcast, which is a trio of women.  At first I thought ABG was short for Asian Baby Girls (which made me less interested), but it was Asian Boss Girls instead (which drew me back in).  I thought about it and contrasted how much different women TODAY are compared to women 40 years ago.  Today there are a lot more opportunities for women than before.  Women today are much more highly educated, hold more powerful positions in business, they are in all industries that were previously dominated by men, have a lot of expendable income, and they just have the power of freedom to do whatever they want.  Lets go!!

Dating Alpha Women Outline

  • What is your definition of an Alpha Woman?
  • Have you ever dated an Alpha Woman?
  • Generally speaking, do you think it is difficult for men (or women) to date a strong, independent woman?
  • Do you think it is harder for Alpha Woman to find partners?
  • What qualities does a man (or woman) need to date an Alpha Woman?
  • What kind of men (or women) have a tendency to prefer a Alpha Woman?
  • Discussion Reference: How To Date An Alpha Female by Madeline Haller. Read here.

Intro and Outro music from The PassionHiFi.
Scratching done by DJ Indoe (Drey).

If you want your music to be featured on our podcast (or contact us) please send us an e-mail

Episode 9 (Recap) – Five Stages of a Relationship by George Levinger.  Check it out here.

Facebook      TRP Patreon

This the NON-SALTY Disclaimer: ‘We at The Relationship Podcast do not discriminate based on race, sex, sexual orientation, income level, political affiliate, religion, or creed. These opinions are solely based on our own unique experiences; our opinions are not the rule. We are always open to EVERYONE’S personal life experiences and opinions. At the end of the day, we can always agree to disagree. Please enjoy the podcast.”