Sunday, May 05, 2019

LUCAS

i: We have been texting for about a week. I'm a little nervous to meet him. He's not like the type of guy I tend to date, which is maybe a good thing, considering how that hasn't worked out yet. I dress differently from how I would usually dress, it's a little edgier. I wear my sister's black Vans instead of any of my standard pink shoes. I wonder if I'm trying to curate myself the way I see him being presented on his Instagram feed. We meet at Golden Mile Complex, and have cheap Thai food. The food is not the best, I know much better cheap Thai food elsewhere, and perhaps we will have that someday. (Orchard Towers has amazing fluffy omelette. It's a seedy place, but the seediest places have the best food.) We talk about family and work. He's also gone through religious trauma with his family, and he jokes as a white person, he always wishes he had a regular chill white-person family, but I think I much prefer this Lucas than I would alternate-universe-chill-family Lucas. He works at Singapore Airlines, where my best friend is an engineer on the aircraft, but he does IT. I show him a few memes and Tweets and comic strips that relate to whatever comes up in our conversation, I tell him I have a millennial brain that thinks in terms of Tweets and comic strip panels. He says he likes the way my brain works. I like the way my brain works too, so that makes both of us. He has a Singlish accent, or at least he uses a lot of Singlish phrases but he doesn't understand and can't pronounce some things, like teh in teh o peng (iced tea with no milk). I tell him to say Taylor Swift and take the first syllable. I also explain what kena means. He has the cutest accent. It is a shortish lunch date because I have to go to work. He texts me that we were wearing matching colors, which is the first time a man has taken note of such a thing or at least mentioned it to me. We arrange to go to Art Science Museum for an interactive climate change exhibition for our next date, but we also mention that we should go to the Botanic Gardens 'cos he hasn't been. He wants to see Haw Par Villa, a sort of religious derelict place that tells stories of how Buddhist (or is it Taoist? Or something else?) people will experience Hell. There are all sorts of weird torture contraptions and it has become a trippy destination for tourists and locals alike. It's like a Ripley's Believe It Or Not: Religious Edition. He says his favorite place is Mustafa Centre, which I'm sure I have mentioned as being one of my favorite places in Singapore. It's different from the glitzy glam malls, it's cheap and you can find anything and everything, from TVs to spices. It has character and I would enjoy going there with him. I have to let him try chilli crab with mantou buns, he hasn't tried it but we both love lobster rolls (also he used to work as a cook!!! Dream!!! Man!!!). This feels like how a healthy relationship could and would start. He pays attention to me and is soft and kind and sweet. I like him a lot. Inb4 anyone asks, yes he knows I applied for school and do not yet know what my future holds.

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