Tag Archives: media

My Asian Father

A week and a half ago, I got an email from my father that contained 17 full sentences. I counted; my father has never said that many words to me in the span of one conversation throughout my entire life. The email evoked a lot of emotions: gratitude for the care he expressed, sadness at the struggles he experienced and how they affected our relationship, and annoyance that I had to email him first for him to send me this information.

I developed a sense of my father’s personality early on in my life: hard-working, intelligent, and a free thinker. Continue reading

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Filed under Personal, Society

A Non-Self-Loathing, Very Self-Loving Gaysian

I feel at peace with myself and enjoy my life a lot nowadays, which struck me as a bit odd the other day. Part of that odd feeling I think stems from themes I have noticed crop up consistently in fiction about gay men’s lives: persistent self-loathing and engaging in unhealthy relationships. Some popular titles that include these themes include Call Me by Your Name by André Aciman, Real Life by Brandon Taylor, and Memorial by Bryan Washington. The queer protagonists of these novels possess deep insecurities, date men who mistreat them, and lack self-awareness about their intrapersonal and interpersonal patterns.

I am not suggesting that these stories are unimportant or that artists should only portray happy, healthy queer men in their work. Gay men – especially gay men with additional marginalized identities related to race, fatness, femininity, and more – go through a lot of oppression and it’s important to capture that oppression and its effects. I acknowledge the power and compassion of honoring people’s pain without trying to force them into healing or more positive emotional states right away. Especially in light of the AIDS crisis in the United States and how the government’s mishandling of that situation killed many queer artists and queer people in general, I feel grateful for the presence of queer art and how that art exists in a heteronormative world.

At the same time, I feel annoyed when these stories about queer pain receive the most publicity or popularity compared to art that promotes queer joy and healing. Continue reading

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Filed under Books, Personal

Your Snobby is Showing: Twilight, Trashy Pop Music, and Mindless TV

“I don’t want my son reading trash and wasting his time.”

My mom spewed those words at me several times in my teen years. She said that in reference to most of the YA I read, some of the nonfiction I dabbled in, and mostly anything that wasn’t strictly “literature” or science/math related. Deep beneath her blunt delivery lay good intentions: how could I be successful in school and in life if I spent my time reading about teenagers falling in love and doing drugs (or, er, each other)? As an incoming college freshman, how will I survive without a vast repertoire of literary references and knowledge about the subjects that matter? Continue reading

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Filed under Books, Movies, Personal, Pop, Society, Television

I Just Want People to Like Me (How to Get Likes on Facebook)

Hey guys! My exams finished up yesterday, hallelujah! My AP Biology exam was my most daunting obstacle – especially considering I found a twitching lizard on its back two days beforehand in my basement – but it’s over now. I haven’t been doing a great job of posting or responding to comments and messages, though that will change as I have more free time. My birthday is in ten days so maybe I’ll post about that later. For now, however, here’s an anti-process essay I wrote for my Advanced Composition course; as always I’d appreciate any comments or constructive criticism!

Proof. Trust me, it's bigger than it looks...

Proof. Trust me, it’s bigger than it looks…

      Unless you are above the age of 110 or you actually like to go outside, you probably know about the social networking website Facebook. Many people assume the purpose of this site is to share status updates, cute baby pictures, and other personal tidbits. Well, they’re wrong. Continue reading

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Filed under Personal, Society

High School Senior Jacob Rudolph Comes Out: Do I Care?

Screenshot via the video Jonathan Rudolph posted on Youtube.

Screenshot via the video Jonathan Rudolph posted on Youtube (link in post.)

If this happened in my high school, I’d probably politely clap and continue reading my novel observing the award ceremony.

No, really. The Yahoo! article about Mr. Jacob Rudolph reminds me of that article I read about the professional bowler who kissed his husband. There are more important happenings in our country and in the world – Morocco’s adjustment of its rape marriage law, North Korea’s promise to nuke the United States, and the horrible living conditions in Mali to name a few. I think that most of us can agree that there are bigger events that deserve the media’s attention, widespread occurrences that directly affect a larger amount of people.

But keep in mind that gays have gone through so much. Continue reading

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Filed under Society

The Concept of Creeping (aka, why it’s okay to look at people’s Facebook pictures)

Since I’ve started this blog, I’ve gotten quite a few messages like these ones:

“Thomas, I love your blog! Your posts remind me of cotton candy and bath towels. I hope you don’t think I’m a stalker.” – anonymous commenter.

“Your post about high school relationships really made me reevaluate my own romantic tendencies. You’re so lucky you only date fictional characters – obviously Alec Lightwood, Mr. Rochester, Sam Roth, etc. belong to you. Sorry for creeping, ha ha.” – some nice person who recognizes what/who is rightfully mine.

“Not to be a total creeper but I am astounded by your lack of a life. Go back to reading books or something, this blog is just plain bad.” – my self-esteem.

Okay, obviously none of those are true quotes besides the last one. But they all share a common theme – people apologize or feel awkward for reading my blog. Due to society’s standards, people express a sense of shame for looking at my work. Continue reading

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A Traditional Family

Sometimes I think the media makes us stupid.

Can someone give me a logical definition of the “traditional family”? Or “traditional family values”? When politicians and people in general use this phrase, are they referring to the average middle-class Caucasian family of the fifties? Are they referring to the outdated and preconceived motion that men are the head of the household? I wonder if there even is a traditional family. What cultural biases and predispositions form the mold of what should be seen as “traditional”, and should the traditional family even be considered a quality representation of America today?

Let me give you my thoughts on what a traditional family should be like. Continue reading

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