The Common Multiples Theory

26 06 2010

In math, fractions can be divided by other numbers called multiples; some numbers have more common multiples than others (this is about the extent of math skills as evidenced by my near-failing grade in Math 11). This can also be applied to people, I’ve found.

He’s young, outgoing, and really good-looking. As much as people in general frown upon (okay, more like hate) racism, it still goes on quietly, with little or no backlash. It seems that if you’re white, it’s almost the “standard”, or the most common denominator, at least among gay men (I don’t know about the heteros, but I”m sure it’s at least similar). Being a denominator with many common multiples means you’re divisible by more people — more people are into you, essentially.

Take my friend Dan. He’s intelligent, outgoing, and good-looking and the kind of guy that a lot of people would be into — Asians like him because he’s, well, white and attractive (another topic altogether of how/why Asians are into white men); the other caucasians like him since he’s probably holds the same ideals, has had a similar upbringing, and can speak English (though of course, that’s an assumption nonetheless); and everyone else… well, North American society is so saturated with white folks — think of all the movies, music, tv shows that feature prominent white characters or have an all-white cast — that it’s become the standard of beauty. Dan is a common multiple amongst many, many people but it works both ways too. He sees past the color of your skin, and he doesn’t hold any sort of sexual racism. As easily as people are into him, he’s into them the same; the greater amount of multiples (in this case, people), theoretically, the greater the chance of liking.

With that principle in mind, the laws of sexual racism come into play. Browse the men for men personal ads on craigslist and you’ll find the most unabashedly open racists there. Nothing suggesting death or a one-race by any means, but something different. I particularly like how, in an attempt to cover up their racism, some guys write “Sorry, it’s just a preference” after stating something like, “Not into Asians”. The term “Asians”, in this case, encompasses those of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean backgrounds and it appears that most of the people who say such things are caucasians or other races. Rarely do you find ads saying, “Not into caucasians” (I won’t delve too much into sexual racism because I could go on and on and since this is about The Common Multiples Theory, I had to mention it briefly).

Does this mean that being Asian automatically puts you at a disadvantage to having multiples? Not necessarily. Take my friend Matt. He’s quirky, humorous, and fun to be around. He’s also half-filipino and half-vietnamese and although not “Asian”, he is clearly is. But he’s had relationships before (how many, I don’t know but they all seem fairly significant); and having been born and raised in Vancouver, he has an air of Western culture to him that make him seem more “white” than traditionally Asian. I believe Matt and others similar to him are the exception — not because they are white-washed but because they are outgoing and charming enough to allow others to see past their skin and into their personality. It also probably doesn’t hurt that he dresses not flamboyantly, but attractively, in the sense that people would notice him on the street. Matt strikes me as the kind of person who doesn’t have to look very hard to find someone who would like and want to date him, and despite the fact that he is Asian, he also has many common multiples.

So where do I fit into this theory? Shortly put, I feel like a prime number, only divisible by 1 and itself (one being my left hand and itself being me).

I’m not as outgoing as Dan nor Matt (or at least not upon first meeting), and I don’t feel like I particularly stand out against a crowd like Matt. I’m not super Asian, having grown up here in Vancouver, so I don’t hold those traditional beliefs nor am I taking any ESL coursese. Though Asians are attracted to other Asians, I’ve found that a lot of them are closeted or looking for someone more like them/a white boyfriend, and I’m not that. Caucasian guys probably rule me out because of how I look (unless someone tells me otherwise, that’s what I’m going with because honestly, very few have actually even replied to my messages or whatnot). At the same time, I’m not super white-washed — I’m sort of this in between hybrid of the two. At times I feel like an anomaly while everyone around me and their multiples are out getting it on.

Perhaps I’ve failed to taken into account another common factor between Dan and Matt — that both go out clubbing. Though this may seem trivial, clubbing is equivalent in the gay world as Comic Con to the geeks. It’s the meeting place (among other things) for the queers to go and meet others like them, and where I don’t particularly have fun.

Whatever the case, I remain a prime number, at least for the time being.