Never Been Kissed

The 20s are all about questioning what you've learned. Knowledge is power but knowledge is also dangerous when it goes without examination. The best schools don't just teach you what you need to know, they teach you how to think. Information comes at all from so many different places and we have to know how to decipher it all. Some things you have to read into as opposed to accepting them as facts at face value. Edification is the only way to grow, but sometimes that means challenging the social systems and practices we've been indoctrinated into. Don't knock it until you try it. You may just like it especially if you've never been kissed.

"It isn't a matter of black is beautiful as much as it is white is not ALL that's beautiful” Bill Cosby

Walking around my campus one of the first things you'll notice is that that there  are very few people of color present (cause noticing that most people are white would be unveiling the social system we've been taught to ignore) but even more so the amount of interracial couples is about as rare as a warm day during a classic Vermont winter. The other day I started thinking about it and then thought of my own, nonexistent, love life. It's been so frustrating because I hear constantly from all my guy friends, and a litany of girls that I'm one of the most eligible bachelors on my campus. I'm supposed to be this "top catch" (but nobody's catching me), the perfect guy, husband material even. Why then has my apparently handsome self never been kissed, never been on a date, and never been in a relationship? Yeah, me not-so actively playing the field has to do with it, but if all you get is rejections before you even hit the field, then what's the point (sports metaphor - Tim Tebow take notice). I'm allegedly practically perfect in that I'm thoughtful, listen intently, in touch with my emotions, have a great sense of humor, am going places, dress well, and even am a pop-culture zealot among other things. I'm domesticated (cooking, cleaning, organizing - you name it, I'm your man), love kids, and am cute as hell. Why then has no one ever expressed interest in me or made any moves for all of this (*points to self)? I realized there was nothing more I could do to be the "ideal" guy (as if there's a singular standard for a person to strive for) and I realized that I missing something basic ... I'm not white. Yup, the color of my skin (as always) effects people's perception of me (as with nearly everything else). I'll break it down soon enough, but before then I will take some time to point out what might make me less attractive. I'm quite possibly the busiest person who ever lived (hyperbole or not, the world may never know). I'm a perfectionist and can be obsessive in making sure things go a certain way (yeah, our dates would be flawlessly planned out and extravagantly intimate however I may forgot to be in the moment and focus on the details). I carry my "strength" (cause that's what guys are supposed to be) differently than most guys. I'm an intellectual so all the physical stuff (sports, outdoor activities, handymanship etc. are not my forte but I'll do them as I can) let's just say is not my go to. In traditional terms, I'd probably be labeled as more effeminate (which is problematic in and of itself) than other guys but it's not my job to protect my partner, it's a shared responsibility. Put it all together and you get me, the most popular kid you know who's never been kissed.

If you're thinking, "he's pulling the race card ... again" check yourself. Firstly, there's no such thing because if we actually were aware of how the stereotypes and stigmas against people of color affects nearly every aspect of our lives (whether we're conscious of it or not #whiteprivilege), we'd be actively combatting them. Every time I turn on the TV, sit in a movie theater, read a book, flip through a magazine, scroll through my twitter feed and pretty much everywhere else, I see white people. I see white people depicted in a multitude of diverse ways. Individuals, each and every one of them. White people glorified and not so subtly made to be the standard by which we judge people. If the only people we see shown or hear talked about as being attractive are white people, Scarlett Johansson, Ryan Gosling, Channing Tatum, Zac Efron, Jennifer Lawrence, Emma Watson and all the other ivory-skinned celebrities who we're taught to salivate over, then it's no wonder people of color are not even considered as potential mates. Not only are we looking for that white skin but those who are fit among other arbitrary things (these attributes are only significant because we make them so). Do a google image search for the words "beauty; hot; attractive" and notice that for several pages of scrolling it's only white people. That should tell us something right there. Not only do we disregard people of color but on this basic level, we don't even see them as them desirable. People think it's acceptable to say things like, "I would never date an Asian chick. Arab guys are scary. You're cute for a black guy. Latina girls are crazy in bed." Holy freaking crap those racist microaggressions are heavy as hell. The thing is that white people are rarely grouped and almost never written off as collective because it wouldn't make sense. It wouldn't be fair. It wouldn't be right. Then why then do people think it's okay to do the same thing to entire minority populations? Even if you've been with one person, you haven't been with any of the others, and we deserve - no demand - to be valued and treated with dignity. We are hot as hell. We're good looking. We're smoldering. We're worth holding hands with, kissing, and doing whatever else people do with each other. We can be lovers and we're worth loving. I mean maybe the love-making backtrack might be a little different, but we all do the dirty (exclude my abstinent self from that) the same (to a certain extent #strokegame proper). Never been kissed or maybe just never kissed anyone.

Interracial relationships in particular come with their own set of difficulties (as all relationships do) but if issues of accepting/celebrating identity are not acknowledged, they can end real fast (not that I would know). I'm not saying that people aren't entitled to their personal preference because we all have them, but it's definitely worth examining how our preferences have been shaped by society. People of color even neglecting people within their own and pining exclusively after white people, that can be attributed to our submergence in white culture and iconography. Yes, people are most often attracted to be whole look like them and race is a factor in that, but that means missing out on a massive population of potential. There's nothing wrong with it per say but excluding any group is super problematic. On the flipside of that is only dating minorities for the thrill or to experiment with stereotype fulfillment. We, like all people, are NOT objects or toys to be played with. Do not exoticize or eroticize us. The initiation process to talk, hookup or do whatever with us is the same. Treat us with respect and show you're interest in flirtation and we'll do the same. Not looking at us, avoiding us at parties, and cringing when you see is unacceptable and uncalled for. Check your learned biases because they definitely have an effect on us like they would you if you were blatantly disregarded. Like me for me and come after me. I'm just like every other guy only a little different. I'm open and want to date, if you are apt to as well. Let's get this guy kissed.

My blog post question for the day is ... what makes a person attractive to you? I look for girls with little quirks and endearing small habits. Also, scratchy voices on girls always gets me right in the fees.


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