Saturday, May 23, 2009

A couple of rice queens

"All the guys that you're dating seem to be Asian," says an old friend of mine to me over dinner one night last week, "I think you're turning into a Rice Queen!"

"But I also like other Caucasians, Latinos, black guys," I protest, "it just happens that all the guys that I've been seeing recently are Asian. Anyway, you can talk, you live in Bangkok so if that term applies to anyone then it's you!"

"Oh yes, I'm definitely a Rice Queen," admits my friend with a smile on his face. "There's nothing wrong with liking Asian guys, but it's a one-way street you know! I don't know of any Caucasian guys who've ended up with non-Asian boyfriends once they realise that they like Asians."

Suddenly I notice that my friend has a white thread 'sai sin' bracelet tied round one of his wrists. I was given one too when I was in Thailand in January. Apparently the Thai belief is that they help keep one's good spirits close, as well as warding off the bad spirits. Although my 'sai sin' bracelet is a bit worn now, when he notices that I'm wearing one as well my friend smiles with an 'I told you so' look on his face.

"Interesting ...," I reply thoughtfully, realising that I'd have thrown away my 'sai sin' bracelet if I didn't feel comfortable with Asian customs. "Actually one thing that I like about Asian guys in general is that they're often very family oriented."

"Yes that's true. But Asian values also have their problems. You probably don't get them over here in London, but in Bangkok, some Thai gays with their Buddhist mind-set can be so focused on the present that it's almost impossible to plan anything for the future!"

"But why are you looking for a boyfriend?" continues my friend, "because you seem to be having a great time on your own at the moment."

"Maybe, but I do miss having a guy to share my life with me," I reply. "Also, I much prefer falling asleep and waking up with someone. Actually I sleep better when I’m with another guy. Well, not the first time because when I've got a new guy in bed to play with it's all just too exciting! But once I get used to him then I do sleep better :-). I've never worked out why that is."

"Probably the subconscious feeling of security that you get from having someone next to you!" replies my friend with another wise look on his face.

I'd never seriously thought of myself as a Rice Queen before, but I guess my friend is right because if I'm lucky enough to find myself a new boyfriend one day, then I think he is likely to be Asian.

But I also think I fall in love too easily. That was always my problem in the past, because although I loved ex-boyfriend S, I also fell in love with ex-boyfriend P at the same time. On top of that, I found myself loving more guys as well. Now, I think I've fallen for my friend T, and also for my friend who sometimes gets hayfever.

It's a problem actually, because I want them both to be happy. I also don't want to let either of them down. One good thing is that both of them seem quite relaxed about the concept of committed relationships which aren't monogamous. None the less, I don't think either of them would be happy being my boyfriend if I officially also had other boyfriends at the same time!


Anonymous said...

The use of the term rice queen should be discouraged. It will continue to carry negative connotations whether the group of men it describes willingly embrace it or not. This adds a barrier to healthy relationships because people have a tendency to want to avoid (themselves or their partners) being seen as stereotypes.

GaySocrates said...

A friend of mine-who is also a fully fledged 'rice queen' also agrees that once he'd had 'a taste of the east' there was no turning back! For him it was all about the sensuality of his sexual experiences that got him hooked!
I hadn't realized that there is also a racial stereotype of the young asian gay male who exclusively dates usually older caucasian males-you guessed it 'potato queens'
Just for the sake of completeness there is also sticky rice -asian gay guys who exclusively date within their own asian culture and feel animosity towards their potato queen brothers seeing them as undermining the gay asian male image by playing a predominantly submissive role within their relationships with caucasians!!
There's an interesting but often unexplored relationship between dominance-submission and power-intimacy within male-male relationships.
I don't know what mashed potato is- but apparently thats another one!
Stereotypes and generalizations do however sometimes cast light on issues which would otherwise go unexplored. Of course I'd warn against using these generalizations in a mean or derogatory way -anonymous

Anonymous said...

GB : Love your blog.. come to HK to vist and I will be happy to show you around but you already have a friend here C :o)

GaySocrates: mashed potato is caucasian + caucasian relationship.

You are also correct that out here a lot of asian guys like older caucasians and its really strange that the age gap can be very big. I am also a potato queen and have been with my rice queen now for 14 yrs and still very much in lurve.. ps he is only 2 yrs older than me but as I look a lot younger than my age we still get the daddy /son looks!

Anonymous said...

Rice queens originally referred to relatively wealthy Western men who visited poor third world Asian nations and had their way with the boys there for cheap.

It is inappropriate for this term to be applied to men who date Asian men in Western countries. It conjures ideas of exploitation and makes others assume the Asian men in such pairings to be poor, undernourished bottoms who could do with more years of schooling and the Western men to be old, ugly, overweight men.

Certainly if one visits certain Asian countries straight and gay pairings that fit this stereotype are still ubiquitous, but this is certainly not the case in the UK where there is less power imbalace in White-Asian relationships. So please, GB, do not describe yourself as a rice queen if you find yourself liking Asian men.

Anonymous said...

Reading a few blogs and came across this google ad and just had to post it. Would you like to be the stereotype?

MadeInScotland said...

But GB, I always knew you liked to have your rice cake and eat it! ;)

Though it seems Rice Queen referencing has got some of your readers in a noodle.

Beware gay tags-Hey FagAhoj!!

Jay said...

GB maybe you could do a posting on the unexplored relationship between dominance-submission and power within male-male relationships. I think this would be a interesting topic. Just because your a bottom, does that mean you have less power in a relationship?

I have found that some people are reluctant to reveal whether they are a bottom or top - maybe for this reason. What do you think GB?


Jason said...

I thought I was reading about myself in your last 2 paragraphs. I have the same issues I fall for guys easily and doin't wann let them down. But I eventually do.

GB said...

Interesting comment about the history of the term 'Rice queen', first and third anomymous commentators, whoever you are. Although the urban dictionary definition of 'Rice queen' suggests that the terminology has moved on, perhaps in much the same way that the word gay itself has changed it's meaning over the last 100 years.

I was aware of 'Pototo queens' and 'Sticky Rice', Gay Socrates, although I confess that I hadn't heard of the term 'Mashed potato'. So thanks for explaining that term, second anonymous commentator, whoever you are.

Intersting advert, fourth anonymous commentator, whoever you are. However it's a bit heterosexual, don't you think?

As you say MadeInScotland, these gay tags are fraught with pitfalls, as your own post on this subject points out!

Yes, Jay, that's an interesting subject so I've made a note to do a post about it at some point. Although I've got a long list of ideas for posts, so I'm not sure when I'll get round to it!

Perhaps we should form our own little support group, Jason? Although if I were to fall in love with you too, then it just makes my problems worse LOL!

GB xxx

Shawn L said...

My bf's first relationship was with a caucasian guy. But after he dated his second boyfriend, who is an Asian. There is no turning back for him =)
Agree that Asians tend to be more family oriented and emphasizes more on companionship. This is the same even for Asians who are brought up in Europe or America.
Terms like RQ (Rice Queen), PQ (Potato Queen) have been used over the years, and there are more terms "invented" based on these terms, such as Bean Queen (attracted to latino)

close encounters said...

GB, sounds like you've been busy with all your new BFs !

have you seen Shortbus ? there's a scene in it where one of the main characters tells his therapist that he needs to love everybody ! he gets a slap from his therapist !!

Anonymous said...

Most asians I know after old men are in it for the money, or student visas.

I actually feel sorry for older men when I see them with a young asiam, you just know its never going to last and the sad old fart is going to be too old to find anyone realisic by the time he is done messing around.

Enjoy it now, but when you're 65 and too old to pull anyone serious for a LTR it won't be sofun living out your last years on your own.

That would scare me more than anything. Think long term.

Anonymous said...

Jay, regarding ur issue. Quite the contrary, I think a bottom has alot more power than a top.

Hedonist said...

Interesting, I've been reading this blog on and off for a while and never noticed we shared that. I'm also a rice queen, have been for a couple of years, and sometimes I wonder if I'll turn back or it really is a one way street. After I dated the first Asian guy all the others that followed have also been Asian, but I'm not entirely sure why...

Not sure the term is derogatory at all though. My Asian friends in London use it quite generally without any negative connotation. As suggested it may well be one of those terms that were once derogatory but have now moved on.

And I disagree there needs to be a dominant/submissive slant to such relationship... at least on my experience.