People who know me well know that I can be weird and silly sometimes. Like I can randomly ask them “hey, when you’re on a date, and you have that urge to fart, and you can’t leave the table, which one would you prefer: a stink one or a loud one”. Or when I pretended to be deaf and mute because I got stuck in an angkot when a stranger asked me my number. Or when I ate glue because I was curious.
There are silly challenges I would commit to do for the sake of YOLO, but not asking a guy out. For years, one of my closest friends often tells me to ask guys out if I find them interesting, but I used to think that it’s not..okay. Funny, huh? Neng Tia likes to tell people that she’s a feminist and believes that women should do what they can do because we need to break gender stereotype, but still, when it comes to asking a guy out, she thought that it should come from men.
Maybe because I grew up with older women in my life who kept telling me that “aggressive” women were bad. Even my mom, although she’s independent, smart, and pretty decisive, she played that passive-aggressive strategy to my dad before he asked her out (FYI, my dad was a big nerd who paid attention too much on music and alien, he didn’t even realize that my mom, his own best friend had a crush on him back then).
Yeah, us, woman know that, talk about that once in a while, that asking a guy out is kinda taboo. That you can’t show interest first, that you have to attract them, and wait, like some animal in a pet store. Well, tinder and other dating apps sort of help us to make the first move, but let's admit it, if we could avoid using that card, we would. Because somehow it “defines” our “values”, that we are good enough to be wanted. To be chased.
And I get that. No matter how awesome you think you are, or your friends often tell you that you’re amazing or cool, once in a while you still need some external factor to justify that. And that factor, ladies, are men (or women, depends on your preferences).
It’s nice to be wanted, especially when a guy whom you think is cool, or smart, or hot, or has it all asks your number and asks you out on a date. I get that. Once this hot-successful (I’m talking about a Doctor giving lecturers at Harvard, Berkeley, did amazing projects on urban planning, has his own organization and curated numerous art exhibitions kind of successful) guy told me that I’m attractive and smart and asked me out. In my head I was like “YES, YES, FUCKING YES, OH GAWD DEFINITELY A HUNDRED YESS, SIR YOU HAD ME WHEN YOU MENTIONED YOU HAD A COPY OF CODEX SERAPHINIANUS YES SIR I’M FUCKING YOURS SIR YESS!!!” but of course I simply replied “sure. Yes. Somewhere in SCBD maybe?”. Although it didn’t work out the way I imagined it would be, and it was my friend who finally tapped him, I still think that it’s an accomplishment. Haha.
I digress. Where was I? Oh, yes, asking a man out is kinda taboo. Because we don’t want to be seen that desperate. We don’t want that man to think “are you really that lonely?”. Not until two weeks ago I decided to try asking a man out. I mean..I’m an INTP who’s really bad at flirting, so of course Mr.Spock in my head was telling me to ask a guy that I find interesting out. It’s harmless, it’s just an invitation, and it’s sort of empowering.
|image courtesy: here|
So last week I asked this guy out. I sent him a simple line, “hey, are you free tomorrow night?” He said yes. An hour before he came I texted my friend and told her that I’m gonna laugh really hard if he shows up with a friend because he thought I was asking for a hanging out session. Laugh or would be like Jane of IT Crowd who suddenly asked people to dance together just to get away from awkward situation. But he came alone, and I had a good time, good conversation, and free food.
So you know, ladies, it’s okay to ask a guy out. It doesn’t mean that you’re aggressive, even if it makes you look like an aggressive woman, it doesn’t make you a bad person. And trust me, it feels good to finally be able to conquer your own fear of being judged as not wanted or pathetic. If a guy whom you asked thinks that you are, it’s still going to be just fine, it’s not the end of the world. Remember, you’re not some animal in a pet store.