Maybe it was the first time I watched Bruce Lee in, Enter the Dragon. He was glorious. His moves were swift and lethal, and he was not bad on the eyes either. Or maybe it was when I say Lou Khan in, Mortal Kombat (The sequel sucked a**!). He journeyed to all the way to another realm all to avenge his brother’s death. How honorable, though Scorpion will always be my favorite. It could all be a combination of my fascination for all things karate, Kung Fu, and samurai (though with further research, I am not so fond of some of the samurai’s practices). But whatever it was, I have always had this keen attraction to Asian men. I guess looking back, it wasn’t all that surprising. In elementary school, my best friend was a Chinese boy named, Jerry Chen. We bonded over our love for The Simpsons. Also, one of my first major crushes was on Adam Himeno, who was half white/half Japanese. In hindsight, I guess I have always been down with the Blasian Swirl.
Don’t get me wrong, for my preference is not exclusive to a particular race. I enjoy tasting the rainbow (I like Skittles, too). But for some reason, I wanted all Asian, all the time. My father would joke that it was because I loved Ramen noodles (he’s not racist, just bad at jokes). I could not pinpoint it. Going to a diverse elementary school, interracial dating was something I saw quite often. However, throughout my teenage years, I pretty much dated black, tall, and husky guys (I liked them thick), It wasn’t that I was discriminating. It was just what I was in to at the time. I could not pinpoint it.
My persuasion to Asian was not fully ignited until much later in a dorm room in Pensacola, Florida. The movie was, The Green Hornet. Cato was played by the ever so sexy, Jay Chou (Goodness!). Where has he been all my life? Being a famous Taiwanese singer and songwriter on the other side of the world, that’s where! I thought if I could get an Asian guy like that, I would definitely get him pregnant (joking?). But did Asian men even like black women? I never really saw it portrayed on movies or television. I mean, of course you have Jet Li and the beautiful and talented, Aaliyah (R.I.P.) in, Romeo Must Die, but there wasn’t even a love scene. Not even a loving kiss exchanged between the two. Romeo must die? Romeo must get laid first. It all got me thinking. Was there really such a thing as an AMBW (Asian men/Black women) relationship? Did it even exist? Usually, when it came to black and Asian relationships, there were mainly with black men and Asian women. That was what I was used to seeing. Never the opposite. Why was that? That meant I had to put my love goals on hold.
That was until I was TAD in the galley for my first deployment (remember? I was in the Navy). It was not my ideal job for my first deployment—it was hot, I constantly smelled like food, and did I mention it sucked? However, I was also excited about being able to travel to different countries so that was pretty much the silver lining. Working at the galley and serving chow gave me the opportunity to meet new people. And with being single, I could obtain a potential “boat boo”. Well, a few weeks had passed with me meeting and making a lot of friends, but sadly no “boat boo”. What the hell, Navy? At the time, I was all about Idris Elba. I liked them handsome. I liked them tall. I like them dark chocolate. Except, none of the chocolate brothers were giving me any play. Why not? I’m freaking adorable! Well, I got my answer without even asking a question.
“You’re gay, right?”, one of my luscious chocolate crushes asked me as I mopped the galley floor, smelling of chicken parmesan and macaroni and cheese.
Come again? Not that there is anything wrong with being gay, I just wasn’t. Why would he ask such a question? He pointed to my hair. Before I left for deployment, I did my second big chop with the barber cutting my hair into a cute, yet discreet curly Mohawk. Apparently, if you are a woman with short hair, you are automatically a lesbian. Who knew? Is that why the girl in the berthing winked at me? I could have sworn it was just something in her eyes. In conclusion, it was coming down to my hair. It wasn’t as though there was some miracle growth pill that could give me a**-length hair within a day. It was going to take some time. That was it, though? I wasn’t getting any play from the luscious chocolates because they thought I was playing for the other team. I was doomed.
That was until I met a petty officer while serving chow. He was cute, smart, and Filipino. Even better, he loved my hair! He reminded me of a guy in my shop but better. We started speaking from time to time, him even asking me what I was going to do for our port call to the Philippines. Hopefully hanging out with him, I thought to myself. Did it happen? Nope. Life, you b****. There was a hurricane or a tsunami (something with water) happening, so we had to delay our port call. Unfortunately, the petty officer was leaving for a new command right after the port call, so he left before we could hang. Damn you, weather! Why did thou forsaken me?
Luckily, my Asian persuasion did not end there. I talked to a few other handsome guys: every nationality from Filipino to Korean. And they just loved my curly hair (but just don’t touch)! I even got in good with the Filipino Mafia on the boat (Yes, people! That is a real thing!). It wasn’t long before the guys in my shop found out about my certain preference. There were a few jokes, of course. Some were funny. Some were very inappropriate. Although, nothing stuck out to me more than what my squadron’s HM said to me when he found out.
“Really? I didn’t think black girls like Asian men and vice versa.”
Was an AMBW relationship really that rare? Was it the unicorn of interracial relationships? Surely, I couldn’t possibly be the only black girl who was attracted to Asian men……
Could I be?
Once deployment was done and I had better internet, I decided to do a little bit of research to see if this unicorn was real. It was time to bring back my handy dandy Google. After checking the preference of Asian men on many interracial dating sites, I could see that most preferred everything but black women. Damn, Gina! I felt like a dating oddity. That was until I stumbled upon a website specifically for black women and Asian men uniting; dating. I wasn’t alone! I wasn’t a unicorn! The website was great, even meeting some cool friends, but I grew bored after a while. I did not find what I was looking for; a relationship. The best course of action was putting myself out there. I was in California, for goodness sake! It was the interracial capital of the United States (I’m not very sure if that statement is true, but just roll with it).
It was strange how Asian men were surprised that I was in to them. Really? Why was that? The bizarre thing is that statistically, black women and Asian men are the least to get married. My question is, why not just marry each other? Problem solved, right? WRONG (surprise, surprise). When I asked that question to a few people, I received a lot of superficial and stereotypical answers. One of the reasons I got from some black women was because of the “Thunder down Under”. There is this ongoing stereotype that all Asian men are “lacking” where they should be “packing” (you get where I going with this, right?). I’m going to go out on a limb and flat out say (forgive me, mama) that that is indeed not sure. Where did this stereotype even originate from? I just imagine some elves in a sweatshop coming up with numerous stereotypes to offend people. Go make me some shoes or some damn cookies, you freaking elves!
When asked why they don’t date black women, many Asian men said that it is because we are believed to be ghetto with bad attitudes, with the loud mouths and rolling of the necks. Uh, someone has watched too much, Love and Hip Hop. All black women are not like that. I know I’m not. I have a stiff neck, for one. But in all honestly, that is a bit disheartening, but I get it. Asian men are seen as the geeky nerds who never get the girls. Black women are the Shenenehs, the Laquieshas; Craig’s ghetto girlfriend from Friday. It is actually hindering people from actually seeking beyond their preconceived notions.
It is all very sad really; however, there are successful AMBW relationships out there that s*** on the stereotypes. On Instagram, I follow a woman, Vmarie401. She and her Korean husband have two beautiful children, and are madly in love. There are many others that say “F*** you”, to the labels and love unconditionally. A love that sees no color; that is what I wanted.
But I had to be real with myself. Was I seeking out Asian men to fulfill some fantasy and disguising it as a “preference”? I wanted to marry Bruce Lee, f*** Lou Khan, and kill Jackie Chan (sorry, Jackie) at one point. I was no better than men wanting to date black women because it was deemed exotic; something to say that you did like a freaking bucket list. Was I no better than a douchebag? HELL YES I WAS! It was imperative to separate the fantasy from reality. After a while, I learned that having certain preferences were only hurting me and keeping me of actually finding the person for me. I unchecked all the boxes for “Asian/Pacific Islander” on my dating profiles, and stopped comparing all the men I date to the Lee Byung-hun from Red 2. I had to stop seeing a guy for his race and start seeing for being just one sexy motherf***er (with a good personality). In return, I hope to find the “one”. For now my preference is more open.
Unless you’re crazy. Keep the hell away from me.