I went on a couple of dates this week - using the word loosely, that is. One of them was horrible; the other was decent but didn't quite live up to expectations. I shall explain each one in turn.
Tuesday - Polish Singapore permanent resident
The exact moment I wanted to leave the bloody date was when we were talking about LGBT rights in Singapore, or the lack thereof, and he said the following: 'I don't have anything against LGBTs. I mean, some of the people that work in my company are gay. But I find them so aggressive in asserting their rights, like they would publicly display affection. I might not want my kids to see that!'
I'm sorry, but Premise 2 - that 'LGBTs' are aggressive in asserting their rights by their displays of public affection - does not follow from Premise 1 - that he had nothing againt 'LGBTs'. If one truly had nothing against gay people, then one would not be bothered when a gay couple publicly displays affection. That one would have a problem with it clearly suggests some latent discomfort at best, prejudice at worst, against gay people. After I said that I've been told many times that my communitarian theory sounds suspiciously liberal, he said some shit about how he's not a liberal and there's nothing liberal about minority rights. He was clearly not a liberal, but I was astounded as to how blind he was to his latent conservatism. Don't pretend to be okay with gay people if you're actually not; or stop lying to yourself about being okay with them and just own your backward thinking. Of course, a conservative would object and say that they can't be open about disliking gay people because they would draw the ire of liberals like me (or rather, right-thinking people like myself). And to that I have two things to say - first, if you're going to hold rubbish views about others, then fuck yeah you deserve to be shamed for it; and second, I would take a self-aware bigot who owns his bigotry over a wolf in sheep's clothing conservative type who either deludes himself into thinking he's open-minded, or pretends to be so, anytime, anyday. Don't be politically correct for the sake of it. If you're not confident of defending your views against attacks, then maybe you shouldn't hold such shitty views in the first place.
So that was the first thing that pissed me off - and it wasn't even the most annoying. It all just went downhill from there. I literally cannot remember ever wanting to leave in the middle of a date, even when I was talking to someone really boring with whom I had no connection whatsoever (e.g. random English guy I met at Hot Numbers in Cambridge last year - good on paper because Oxford, but fuck, the conversation was dull and he kept talking about himself). But this Polish dude was seriously a champion in that regard. After this gay people comment, he started going off about how some feminists are aggressive too, like his mother or whatever. And you know it's bad when someone prefaces such a criticism with something along the lines of 'I don't have anything against the feminist cause, but...' But what, shithead? But you're not a fucking woman living in a man's world, so shut the fuck up about aggressive feminists, whose existence is caused by men like you. And how do I know that he was closet chauvinist? I was telling him about John attending a wedding in Poland with Kasia (John's girlfriend) and John telling me about how much vodka they drank. What did Dipshit say? 'Yeah even the women drink a lot.' EVEN THE WOMEN DRINK A LOT. Are you bloody shitting me? Is there something in our DNA that forbids us from drinking as much as a man? Is there something wrong with a woman drinking a lot? Or is it more the case that it's bad to drink a lot, PERIOD, regardless of gender?
It says a lot about how bloody polite and non-confrontational I am that I didn't tell him off at all. But I haven't even got to the worst bit yet. The worst part - absolutely worst part - was when he started bitching about how we Singaporeans complain about our government without knowing how good we have it. His reasons for thinking Singapore is paradise? Low taxes and safe streets. THAT WAS IT. Sure, safe streets are great, but does he know the cost that we pay for the safety of our streets? Does he know anything about the individuals that we have sacrificed to put in place a climate of tough law enforcement? If you don't know jack shit, shut the fuck up. And when I disputed his claim that you couldn't feel as safe in other places, especially Europe, he tried to mansplain to me that there are dangerous parts of London. Oh, no fucking shit, there are? Like the places that I very smartly avoided while living there because they were dangerous? Why even challenge my own experience - that I felt absolutely safe when I was living in central London and pretty much had never felt threatened abroad safe for when I went to Rome for holiday?
But even better: low taxes. In fact, that seemed to be his main reason for loving Singapore. He kept going off about how little taxes he pays as compared to the 40% he paid in Europe, which got him 'nothing' because he was too high brow to use public health care (like, is it entirely the fault of the system that you don't want to use the services that you pay for?). Does he know the downsides to these low taxes? Does he know how little benefits the government gives out to the poor?
I'm definitely not a blind government hater, and I realise and acknowledge, fully, that the government has done a lot of good for this country. But I really fucking hate it when some newcomer to the country, who has only been here a measly five years, who reaps all the benefits of our wealth and sees none of the downsides, sings the praises of a government that is far from perfect - AND has the gall to imply that Singaporeans don't know what we're complaining about when we complain about the government. Yeah, sure, a lot of people are idiots and complain for the sake of it; but not everyone is like that. Not everyone is content with how things are, not everyone is complacent, some of us actually want to see our country progress and become a better place for everyone, not just the ones in the majority. When I mentioned the lack of free speech, he said that it was fine as long as you didn't get thrown into jail for having opinions and are allowed to hold them privately and not speak out. What the flying fuck?! Does he know nothing of democratic participation, the ten million theories about democracy that stress the importance of speech? And this guy wants to acquire citizenship. PLEASE FUCKING DON'T. Singapore doesn't need another self-interested prick who votes for the incumbent every election out of concern for their bank account. We have enough of those types of Singaporeans already.
When I was trying to explain in very measured tones how, yes, I knew that the government is competent and blah, but it still has its imperfections, he actually said, 'I'll challenge you - name me a government that does a better job than Singapore's.' (I think he even said that Singapore's government is the best or some sycophantic shit.) But what would be the point of that? There is no perfect government in the world that gets everything right. Every government would be better at one aspect of governance than some other aspect. What does it even mean to say that Singapore's government is the 'best'? This is just such an empty accolade that it is utter nonsense.
To round it all off, he looked better in photos, he was shorter than me (granted, I was in heels, but still), AND he kept talking over me. Oh my god. I can't believe I talked to this clown for two hours. Why the hell am I so nice? I maintained a pleasant facade throughout but left feeling like I'd just lost two hours of my life that I could never get back. I'm also immediately put off when a guy says 'fuck' within five minutes of meeting. Come on, could we at least save that for when we know each other better? Ugh, so gross.
Needless to say, there was no contact after that. Thank god.
Friday - Singaporean dude
I'd been texting this dude for about 3 weeks or something.
Meeting him didn't really live up to expectations. He was nice enough and more or less interesting, but he kept talking about himself and I got a bit bored at one point. But I was actually quite offended when I said that I ran a 10K and he said, 'Why did you even bother?' This was after he'd told me that he ran a few marathons, and I said that I wanted to run a half.
I mean, I totally understand setting proper goals and doing things that matter, but I didn't think a 10K qualified as something that didn't matter, considering I'm not even a runner. I would've understood the reaction if I'd ran a 5K (THAT would really be a 'why bother' since I run that distance on my casual, shit-ate-too-much-must-lose-weight runs)...but that wasn't the case.
As usual, though, my hatred for confrontation and unfailing politeness ruled me and I just brushed it aside.
Meh. Sam has been the most interesting and fun so far, but he's resolutely not my type (too Matt-esque in many ways) and I'm not really in touch with him anymore. And then there's the guy in Cardiff who's definitely coming to Cambridge to meet me. He told me last night that he's actually 40 and not 35 or whatever it was on his profile and...I don't know. I'm a bit tired now so my mind isn't working too well, but yeah, I'm afraid that he's a bit too keen. But he has the most in common with me out of the men that I've talked to, so I'm willing to see how it goes.