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Friday, March 31, 2006
Men Choose and Women Get Chosen

The best illustration of love happened as I sat in a Swedish cinema four years ago. I was busy reading the Swedish subtitle as Zhang Zhi Yi walked up the hill with a pail. There I was sat at the cinema watching “Vagan Hem” or “The Road Home” in English.

It was magnificent, the moment love happened. It summarised what love is and how it happens in every single life. Zhang Zhi Yi’s character, lovelorn and aching for the village teacher, a striking handsome man, walked up the hill with a pail. She could have walked another route, which was shorter and thus ends her daily task quicker, but on that chosen day, she walked the longer route; one that took her near the school, where she could hear her love interest, the village teacher, recite poems with the school children.

She walked, looking straight ahead towards the well on top of the hill. And the teacher saw her walking up and stopped reciting. He rushed in search of a pail in the school and proceeded to walk in eager footsteps after her. A kind villager offered to do the service for him but he insisted on climbing up the hill to fetch the pail of water on his own.

She looked down towards the school and saw him walking fast towards her, with a pail in hand. By then, she had collected the water she needed and her pail was full. What to do now that her pail was full? She did nothing but poured the pail of water onto the yellow earth. She dropped the pail into the well and started to fill her pail again.

He finally arrived by the wall and they exchanged smiles.

And that was the best illustration of love I have ever witness on screen. The act of love and what one would do for love – a girl creating opportunities for her love interest to be with her and a man who would go all out to be with the one he loves.

The First Conversation
Something struck me two weeks ago while in conversation with Nikki and Emma. Emma was packing her things and putting everything away. After having spent seven years in Malaysia, she is finally moving on to something much more exciting. We were chatting and everything was going along fine when Emma looked up and said, “Do you know what was the first conversation I had with Hamish?”

We were both curious. I had known Emma for quite some years but we were never really close. We would meet, go for drinks, dance, party, chat but never really shared personal details. And now Emma was packing her bags to go for a world tour with her boyfriend of five years, Hamish. They were introduced to each other during the Scottish Ball some years ago and Emma swore the first thing he said to her was, “I have a big bike. Would you want to go on a world tour with me?”

Emma smiled, “And look! We are really going on a world tour on the big bike!” Nikki and I gave Emma a warm hug. She will be away for the next year, travelling with Hamish as he had promised her the first time they met.

Love Struck
That struck me. That was the moment of love. A feeling that is so fleeting, it could had not happened, if it was not for the right time, the right place with the right people.

I remember the first time I met Alex. E screamed as the boat touched the shore. She paddled through the foot deep water, franctically shouting my name. “Do you know how deep the water was? Forty feet deep! That’s how deep!!”

I tricked my best gal pal to go for a snorkelling trip on her own, so you would understand why she was upset then. She, then with sparkling eyes whispered, “And guess what? I met this cute Scottish guy! I think he likes me!!” E then gleefully took a step to the side and I saw this god walking along the beach. He was so tall and slender with the most beautiful tan skin ever.

The group of us (Alex, two other boys, E and I) spent days and nights dancing, drinking, eating, playing scrabble and reading together. And all through that period, I felt that every guy was after her and I was just this 5 feet 3 inches tall walking and talking lamppost. The first time Alex and I were alone, we were walking at rather quick pace through the darkness, on barefoot across a small footpath from Coral Bay, which was located on the other side of where we stayed.

I remember feeling icky as my feet touched the cold muddy earth. I remember it was very dark and we were only guided by a torchlight in Alex’s hand. I remember the moon shining that night when we were first alone. In our haste to run through the cold muddy ground, E and I were separated and I was left alone with Alex.

I remember reaching Long Beach, which was where we were staying and the moon danced as the sea rolled into shore.

“Where’s E?” I asked, “do you think they are lost?”

“Don’t worry about them. Let’s sit here and wait for them,” Alex said. He then sat on the beach, where we stopped.

“Lie on me. Don’t dirty yourself, the sand’s wet.” Alex was laid out on the sand and he reached out a hand for me. I reluctantly and then clumsily laid on him.

“I promise you this, Otto,” Alex said as I laid ever so still on him, my eyes looking at the starry sky that night, “I promise you that I will follow you wherever you go. As long as I shall live and we are on earth, I will chase after you.”

Now before you folks (especially the girls) get all mushy inside, I will be honest. I am not going to lie to you. I have heard quite a number of pick up lines in my time and trust me when I say this: Men will say anything to get their fingers into your lacy red knickers.

I mean, what did you expect me to do? Trust a man whom I just met on his promise? I thought that Alex was a sleaze bag for what he said. I mean, only a sleaze bag will use “lie on me so your clothes won’t get dirty” pick up line on a sandy beach. Did I trust a word Alex said then? Nope. Not a word!

But you know what? We have travelled through many countries together. We have gone through a lot, thick and thin and we have stuck together through those times. It took me more than four years to realise that Alex meant what he said when he first met me. It took him four years to tame my heart and for me to see with my eyes that he was here to stay. And now in my more quiet moments, I ask myself why had I not realised then, as I laid on top of him that he would protect, love and cherish me.

Now I realise that he has always loved me, even from the first moment he met me.

Men Choose And Women Get Chosen
“I love you so much and yet you went out with another guy,” he would grumble each time. That signalled the start of our inevitable topic, between my high school sweetheart and I.

“Well he loved me!” I would reply.

“That’s the thing about girls, I am telling you. You never choose who you love. The men choose you.”

That was the most revealing thing he has ever told me. That, followed by the long lecture on the flow of logic and our on-going argument on evolution.

According to high school boyfriend, girls never get to choose who they love. It is always the boy that chooses.

“What utter rubbish!” I said, my feminist self emerging.

But he was right and he is still right today. I hate it when he is right and I hate it when he grins, knowing that he is right and I have to admit that I am wrong.

You see, boys and girls - it was always the man who chose which girl he was interested in. And most girls would love someone who chose them as the object of affection.

Think about it. It is always more often than not, that a man pursues his love interest. He makes his intentions known to his love interest. A woman on the other hand, waits for men to show their affections and then choose one from the group of them.

Obviously there are also women who make their intentions known. However again more often than not, these declarations of love are the tales of the worst romance ever. Especially if the man concerned does not reciprocate her affections.

In my opinion, a woman can never influence or induce a man into loving her. But a man can influence a woman into loving him. All a man needs to do is be a true friend and a secure refuge for the given girl and the girl will slowly but surely learn to love him. Women are born to recognize love and affection and respond positively to people who nurture and care for them.

Men, men on the other hand, are not creatures that are easily tamed. It is difficult for a woman to capture a man’s heart. You cannot do good, no matter how good and expect the man to recognize you. Where men and love are concerned, it is a matter of whether he loves you. Or not.

And for whatever reason if he does not love you, you can die for him and he will not mourn the lost of you. As a matter of fact, you can cook and clean better than his mother and still, the man will not be touched by your generosity or actions that bespeaks of your love for him.

Such is man.

I Hate It When He Is Right
I would end this rather long post with the stories of my love for my high school sweetheart and subsequent love, Alan.

I loved my high school sweetheart very much. I would have done everything to be with him and I did that. We were happy together for the period of one year, when he was studying for his final year. We made good conversations and had the best of times. He left for the UK to study and for two years, he did not contact me. I waited and waited and waited for him and I cried almost every night praying to God, asking Him to bring this sweetheart of mine back into my arms.

And when he did come back into my life, this time with a bachelor's degree, again we had the best times. By then, I was studying for my Masters and we drank in the evenings and danced the nights away. When his sister was in trouble, he left me for her and went back to Sabah. So I was left alone again and I waited and waited and waited for him to come back to me.

He called me one day and said that we should break up. He wanted to remain in Sabah to help his people and his family. I went out with a bunch of friends during this period of time - a group of perhaps 8 boys and 5 girls, all of us single. I think we were out almost every evening for a period of nearly a year, having dinners, parties, swimming and naughty saunas together.

To simplify this story, I would relate only to two boys named Alan and Sun and how they both related to a girl named SC and I. SC had a huge crush on Alan while I was quite smittened by Sun's slitty eyes. SC did everything in her power to impress Alan, to show what a great girlfriend she would be and what a good catch she was. She cooked for him when he was sick. She tried to impress who she considered her future in laws, she did all the good things for him. As for I, I was all out chasing after Mr. Sun, to no avail.

At the same time, Alan would offer to fetch me everywhere I wanted. By Christmas time, we had switched cars, he would drive my measly Proton and I had his better car. He would accompany me to the library on Sundays just because I loved reading. He did all this while we were friends and not a moment had I ever thought about him because I was quite stuck on Mr. Sun. So while SC was pursuing Alan and Alan refusing to acknowledge her, I was busy trying to get Mr. Sun's attention, which was given to another girl named Cheng Cheng.

Now Mr. Sun was not impressed by my exercises of devotion and Alan was not smittened by SC's declaration of undying love. This funny spectacle went on for more than a year, though SC eventually moved on to another boy in the group and Mr. Sun paired up and married Cheng Cheng two years ago. That would only leave Alan, high school sweetheart that was missing in Sabah and I...

Alan never said he loved me but looking back, he showed it more than he said it. Sometimes women expect their men to say "I love you" but I have come to realise that many times men do not say. Men do. "You crazy? We are friends!" I would say whenever anyone asked me whether Alan was my boyfriend. Truth was, I was having such a good time being a single, I refused to acknowledge Alan as anything more than my friend.

And one evening I sprained my ankle while out shopping. I was in tears when Alan called me that evening, complaining about my sore ankle and voicing my worry that I would experience the nightmare of all dancers - that I could not dance anymore.

Alan came over that evening. He took my right foot and placed it on his lap. He massaged my ankle while I winced and made a big fuss. "You are such a baby," he said, then kissing my ankle. He smiled.

And that was the moment I knew I had to acknowledge Alan as someone more than my friend. Because he was more than my friend. I realised that he loved me and it was useless for me to deny that fact. From that moment on, I nodded my head and smiled whenever anyone asked me whether Alan and I had a relationship.

It was one weekend, when high school sweetheart returned to KL and met up with me, that he said, "I love you so much and yet you went out with another guy". Alan left me alone with high school sweetheart, to talk things over and it was then that I told high school sweetheart that it was over. I was quite tired of waiting for someone that left me for years without words and came back when he felt like it.

And I loved Alan because he loved me. Love was light and easy because he loved me first.

And So You See
Women can be won over with lots of love and affection. My most satisfying relationships (Alan, Swedish Love and Alex) were with men who loved me FIRST. Relationships where we loved equally (high school sweetheart) and a one way love affair (where I did all the loving, like with Mr. Sun) failed miserably or ended up as my most embarrassing moments in life.

With all this banter, what is it that I am trying to say? I am 30 this year (yes, that is what I am - the big three zero) and I have come to realise that it is better for me (as a girl) to choose someone who loves me deeply. It was he would loved me and I responded in love.

And that is why men choose and women get chosen. This is the one time that the battle of the sexes is never fair.

Very chuffed to be mentioned on Kenny Sia

Thank you, Kenny.

Small Talk
Damn TMnet is not working, so writing will be sporadic and spelling rotten. Bear with me till then.


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Its better to let men love first. Its more difficult to plant the seeds of love in men and expect it to grow. So yeah, in some ways, you're right. Men choose and women get chosen. However, I think 'Men choose first, and women choose later' is more apt. Afterall, its up to the ladies whether or not to accept the suitor's approach.

7:40 am  

Yes, indeed women get to choose but they choice is limited to those who showed interest in them. Women can hardly choose someone who doesn't love her in the beginning.

8:47 am  

i've been trying to pushed myself to watch The Road Home! its one of the many first movie debut for Zhang Zi Yi. i like this entry.

i think that its up to both sides to choose to loved or be loved. love works in mysterious ways.

9:47 am  

At any time, the battle of the sexes will never be fair to the women until they have equal rights as the men.
Therefore, fight for your rights first before going for a battle.

9:56 am  

wow... this entry set me straight... what you said is most entirely true... sigh~~...

as a female... our love life is unfair... :(

3:28 pm  

I chose to love Boo rather than he chose me. Maybe that's why I'm still holding the grudge till now.

4:03 pm  

Jezzo & YC
Hey - we girls can do something! We can make ourselves better and we can choose to set a high standard for the men around us.

Sometimes we girls forget to set the standard high and get only the best boys after our tails.. muahahahha... cheerz for the weekend, babes!

4:30 pm  

Cheng Sim
Love does work in mysterious ways... but for the rest of us mere mortals, there is an average pattern to the road towards LOVE. Perhaps we just get lucky, perhaps it is love coming, perhaps it is time...

Perhaps... perhaps... perhaps...

You bring up a very good point actually. Love is never fair towards women because traditionally women are a step behind men.... and until the day, we women achieve equal status with men (that means earn as much as the man) then we are able to do the chasing...

Madonna is a good example. She pursued Guy Ritchie as her husband and she got the man.

For the rest of us, the best we can do is to be our best... and let the best man win!

4:40 pm  

I learnt something very important here. Action speaks louder than words. Hope I can be like Alan. thks for the enlightenment

5:53 pm  

Good post. I have met a number of much older women who said, "marry a man who loves you more than you love him." Practical advice, eh?

And thanks for sharing your stories. :)


5:53 pm  

very nice. first time I chanced upon this blog. i might not be back, but don't stop writing :D

6:06 pm  

wow. i've never really thought of it that way. i get what you mean about 'picking a man who loves you more' thing. i am unfortunate enough to experience unrequited love. so yes, let them love you first.

6:01 am  

I think it is important that girls learn to appreciate their men for their actions and perhaps see further than the mere words.

Anon 5:53 a.m.
Are you trying to imply that I am old? o_O

Erm... thanks....

Anon 6:01 a.m.
Many asked where I get my inspiration from and my reply often is, "you can't write from nothing..."

By this I mean, you have to experience the whole range of emotions in order to write...

But above that, you will feel alive when you have experienced both good and bad, happy and sad. Do read "Of Joy And Sorrow" by Khalil Gibran Khan. That's my favourite poem and epitome of what I believe life to be.

8:21 am  

Thought-provoking article ! I was fascinated by the information , Does anyone know if I might be able to get a fillable 2009 SC SCCA 430 version to fill out ?

7:37 am  

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