This is going to be a fun and possibly controversial post.
But before we get to that, I’ve got two quick plugs to make. Remember to check out The Truth About College Game, which is a must-read for any guy still in college.
Also, check out this great blog that regularly explores and invites different perspectives on controversial topics and offers a balanced perspective of their own.
Now, let’s get to it.
Ask the Rake Mailbag time!
I’ve gotten many emails that ask me whether the rumors are really true about how easy Asian girls in Asia are. Here’s one from Max.
“…My friend went to China and said it was SOOO easy approaching there in the club. He said the girls had already chosen him and were attracted to him immediately upon seeing him. All he had to do was say hi and the girls were all over him. I also read somewhere on the internet, ‘Chinese girls are easy.’ So when I moved to China, I was really pumped.
“But I have been here for months, and I can say that they are not easy at all. Back in the UK, I dated lots of girls, and was able to have sex with them after one or two dates. Here in China, getting phone numbers is easy. But I cannot hardly get them to meet up. Or when we do go out on dates, all they want to do is sit and practice English. I haven’t even had one kiss-close after twenty dates with ten different women. Maybe I’ve been approaching the wrong women. I need your advice…”
I also just read a very similar post on the China lair.
Well, Max and all you other foreign guys in Asia wondering why it’s so much harder than you thought, here’s my take on this.
Let’s get the necessary preamble out of the way first.
For those of you aren’t up on the lingo yet, ABC (American-Born Chinese) means an American citizen of Chinese descent who grew up in America. CBC means a Canadian citizen of Chinese descent who grew up in Canada. You can guess what BBC means. I’m not a CBC, but I am a CRC (Canadian-Raised Chinese).
FOB (Fresh Off the Boat) refers to someone who just recently arrived in the host country and who has not adjusted or is still adjusting to the culture and language of the new country. Ironically, the vasty majority of Westerners in China are still FOBs, though most Westerners give me a puzzled expression when I call them FOBs, just as the old Chinese FOBs get offended when I refer to them as “waiguoren” (foreigners) while they’re in Canada. Ha! All good, geeky fun
In this post, I talk mainly about what it’s like for foreign guys in China, though I’m confident in claiming that much of what I say also applies to Taiwan and Hong Kong and to a lesser extent in Singapore. Also, while my recent experiences have been mainly with women in China, I have had extensive experience with Korean girls and some experience with Japanese women. My ex-wife was Korean-Canadian from a very conservative Korean family. Four of my long-term relationships have been with Korean girls, from international student FOBs to the most Americanized of Korean-Americans. I’ve also had a few short-term flings with other Koreans. And armed with years of (otherwise unused) formal training in Japanese studies and language, I’ve had a handful of Japanese FOBs, though I’ve never had a long-term relationship with one. This being said, while some of what I say here applies also to Korean and Japanese women, my post is meant to speak first and foremost to the situation in China, which is unique among the East Asian countries in its socio-economic-political environment.
For ease of discussion, “foreigners” here means primarily citizens from developed Western countries, including but not limited to the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, and Western Europe. I divide “foreigners” into “white” and “Asian.” “White” means, well, Caucasian, for lack of a better term. I trust everyone knows what I mean. “Asian” here stands for East Asia and most of Singapore (a clarification that is too rarely made). I use “Asian foreigner” to mean someone who is or looks East Asian and is a citizen of a Western country, including the above-mentioned Western countries. I do not claim to speak for citizens of other East Asian countries, though to a lesser extent, simply being from a developed country, such as Korea, Japan, or Singapore, brings similar advantages.
If you are a foreigner in China, you have the following advantages when trying to meet women:
1. You are exotic. You have been to places and have lived lifestyles that most Chinese only see in movies. You also bring fresh perspectives and ways of thinking and reasoning. This could also work against you, but generally speaking, it is your greatest strength. While it is relatively easy now for a Chinese citizen to obtain a tourist visa to visit most foreign countries, most Chinese have to save up a long time to be able to afford a trip to a Western country. East Asia and Southeast Asia are much easier to reach, so if you’re from one of those countries, your “exotic” factor is lower.
2. You are of above-average economic means, implying that you can introduce them to a lifestyle that is outside their means. The GDP of developed countries is much higher than that of China. The Chinese know this. Automatically, they assume you’re used to a higher standard of living. It also costs a lot to travel here. You could undercut their positive presumption by using the word “student” (even if you preface “student” with Ph.D., it still takes extra effort to explain that not all students are poor) to describe yourself, as in “international student,” “exchange student,” “student studying Chinese.” If you’re a student, or an English teacher (to a lesser extent, the stigma applies to “teachers” too), I suggest you find another way to answer the “What are you doing in China?” question. Don’t lie. Just tell them some other facet of your personality or interests, e.g., “I’m a snowboarder from Canada and am checking out the snowboarding scene in Beijing… Oh yeah, I live near Beijing University and take some courses during the day.”
3. You are traveled. Simply by virtue of the fact that you’ve traveled a long way from home to come to China implies that you travel. Moreover, the presumption will be that you travel often. Even if this is your first-ever trip out of your home country, people will assume that you travel often.
4. You are adventurous. Most Chinese consider a trip to a Western country halfway across the world (Australia, though closer, is often put in this category) as a big adventure. The fact that you’ve come to a country on the other side of the planet whose culture is about as different from your own as it can get implies that you are adventurous. Again, this is a positive presumption.
5. You are open-minded and socially liberal. This can also work against you, as I will explain later. But in general, this helps with getting women fast for guilt-free hook ups. Since most Chinese form their first, and sometimes only, opinions about Western culture from Hollywood and MTV, they assume that all Westerners, including Western women, have lots of casual sex with anyone they feel like. For better or worse, they assume you and your friends regularly have one-night stands and even fuck-buddies.
This results in the extremes of social behavior you see in China. At the extreme are the girls who worship all things Western and want to become what they perceive as Western, including adopting a liberal “Hollywood and MTV” attitude to sex, and they pretty much fuck a new guy every week, partly just because they think that’s what Westerners do. My advice: Stay away from these chicks! They’re psycho! Think “MTV’s The Real World,” which strangely enough, they get on TV here in China. Imagine a girl who thinks “The Real World” depicts the normal life of a 20-something Westerner! This can really work against you when a girl is looking for an LTR or a husband, but it’s a positive presumption when you’re gaming for quick lays. As everyone in the community knows, it’s much easier to go from lover to provider than the other way around, so I consider this a definite advantage.
Beyond these five, there are two prominent and pernicious assumptions of value that I’ve heard floating about and that are both false:
i. Westerners have desirable passports. This sentence in itself is true, just as the following is true: Canadians have a superior passport, travel-wise, than Americans Had to get that in there, haha. But gone are the days when you could get a really beautiful Chinese woman in a major city by tempting her with marriage and a green card. The passport-tempting trick can work in the smaller cities and towns, but not with the most beautiful women in Beijing, Shanghai, or Guangzhou. Many of the Chinese women I’ve had in Beijing make more than US$50,000 a year. A few of them were US$ millionaires or married to one.
Considering the lifestyle US$50K could get you in Beijing versus in LA or NYC, why on earth would a Chinese person want to move to a foreign country where the cost of living is far more expensive, the food tastes awful (most Chinese think Westerners eat pizza, KFC, burgers, or steak every day), the crime rates are astronomically higher (okay, this only applies to the US, haha), the culture is completely different, the language is foreign, and you are as far away from family and friends as you can get? Yes, times are different now. China changes fast.
Moreover, the most beautiful women in the big cities have a myriad of options for advancing up the socio-economic ladder, including getting a rich Chinese boyfriend or orbiter, so that they do not need to marry a Westerner just to improve their standard of living. There are plenty of young, rich Chinese guys who are more than willing to finance their lifestyles. The biggest clubs in Beijing and Shanghai are full of them. They book 99% of the tables in the big clubs like Babyface. These guys (and the rare Europeans who have game) are my stiffest competition here. This is another topic entirely.
ii. White guys have bigger penises. I’ve read studies that say there is a 0.1-0.2 inch variation in the average erect penis sizes of white, black, Latino, and Asian men. The variation is much higher between individuals regardless of race than between whole races. Its hardly worth bragging about. Among the small minority of Western-worshiping girls, this myth is certainly an advantage. Just as with any niche value, like girls who go absolutely crazy over goth guys who wear spiked boots and have lip-piercings, there will be some small subset of girls who will do anything for a white dick. But the curiosity of most Chinese girls is more than satiated by simply seeing a white penis on a porno website. In fact, this misconception can really work against you as many Chinese girls, especially the ones in the adult industry here, don’t want a guy who is too long because they think it will hurt (in a bad way). In any case, this myth is mainly perpetrated by white men and is almost entirely absent from Chinese popular culture. Obviously, this only applies to white foreigners.
Despite i. and ii., foreigners still have 1.-5. working for them. They are assumed to be exotic, above-average earners, well traveled, adventurous, and open-minded.
On this alone, foreigners can attract with relative ease the average Chinese girl in a big city. The average girl is, by definition, an HB5. I mean by “relative” in comparison to their ease in attracting an HB5 in their home country. For examples of what I mean by an HB5 or less, I use my second favorite medium on the blog, photos, which I’ve taken from Stylites, a cool fashion blog by a Westerner in Beijing. Here are examples of fashionably dressed HB5s or less (keeping in mind that their fashionable dress may bump them up a rating or two for some guys and keeping in mind that the rating is based purely on first impressions formed on the basis of their physical appearances):
However, the five advantages will generally not be enough to get high-status girls in China, such as rich girls and models. Why?
1. The high-status girls will generally have plenty of Chinese-speaking Western friends and acquaintances. As one girl put it to me, “Foreigners are everywhere now. Being foreign is not so special in Beijing.” You are not all that exotic to them.
2. The high-status girls usually make as much or more than you do, or they have orbiters or boyfriends who do. That’s part of being high-status. Almost half of the past 20 girls I’ve had in China have made over US$30K and some of them were millionaires. Some of them owned Benzes. Many of them had guy friends or orbiters who made six to seven figure US$ salaries. Since you probably cannot introduce them to a lifestyle outside their own means or reach, your simply being an above-average earner will not attract them.
3. Many of these girls have traveled extensively for work and even for leisure. I dated a 24 year old executive of a French company who spoke passable English and French and who flew to Europe once a month for work. She also spent a month each year backpacking through Europe. Her social circle was full of French people. I met her in a jazz club while she was with four French guys. She had also vacationed in Thailand and Australia. She was certainly as well-traveled as I, or even more so.
4. Some of these girls have sky-dived, scuba-dived, bungee-jumped, backpacked through some of the highest mountain ranges in the world, and have the photos to prove it. Or, more commonly, they have Chinese or Western guy friends who have done so and who are constantly inviting them along (and offering to foot the bill) to join in these adventurous activities. So it’s going to be a lot harder to stand out as Mr. Adventurous Guy in their social circles.
5. The high-status social circles in China are often more liberal (“kaifang”) than the average Western party people. Think the wildest frat and sorority scenes. It is common for guys in this scene to be sleeping around, partying four nights a week, and doing blow. The girls in these circles are inured to this whole thing. So being a guy who is open-minded, while still a good trait overall, will not help you stand out very much in these circles.
So the five advantages of the foreign male in China are neutralized when it comes to the most desirable women. I have in mind girls that look like the girls in my sidebar. Or, you can look at the following. These girls are at least 8s to me, based solely on looks. These are all Chinese girls who are either living or have lived in China:
If neither the girls in my sidebar nor these three girls do it for you, I’m happy to say we have a distinct difference in taste, and what I say in the rest of this post probably doesn’t apply to you.
To get a high-status girl (note: high-status is not necessarily the same thing as high-value or high-quality) in China, you’ve got to bring more to the table. This is where being a high-quality guy and having “game” makes a big difference.
The problem is, when playing at the higher levels, foreign guys also have to overcome the following negative biases.
A. “Your Western culture is too liberal, too foreign.” The Chinese are fiercely proud of their three thousand year-old culture, as many an old Chinese man will remind you. This is where advantages #1 and #5 can work against you. You want to seem exotic, but not too exotic. You want to seem open-minded, but not too open-minded. To do this, you should show some knowledge and a keen interest in Chinese culture. This is related to the next point.
B. “You Westerners are unadjusted to Chinese culture.” This can be a major problem. Basically, you are still stuck in culture shock. You should want to try new Chinese foods, experience new aspects of Chinese culture, visit new places in China. This will go a long way to alleviating any suspicions about your excessive foreignness. A highly desirable Chinese woman would rather get the socio-economic benefits from a rich, young, hot Chinese guy rather than have to deal with “the foreigner.”
C. “You Westerners have a superiority complex.” This is a major sticking point because on the one hand, you do have distinct advantages. You’re traveled, above-average economically, and probably more educated. On the other hand, you can’t let them think that you think of yourself as superior because of these points.
Moreover, I’ve seen too many Westerners openly complain about China all the time to the Chinese people, including to their Chinese dates. Granted, there are plenty of things to complain about—the pollution, the traffic, the spitting, poor service in the average restaurant, the high degree of graft and bureaucratic red tape. But don’t you think the hot Chinese girl you’re talking to hates the same things about her own country? You don’t need to vent in front of her.
You also don’t need to rub it in her face that you find things here so cheap. “OMG, this is only five US dollars! Quit bargaining with the vendor!” This is actually a major Verbalization of Lower Value (VLV). She is well aware of the higher cost of living in the West; you don’t need to remind her. Besides, if you frequent the higher social echelons where the hottest girls are, you’ll quickly realize why Beijing and Shanghai are rated among the twenty most expensive places to live in the world and are close to New York City in cost of living for expats.
D. “White men are excessively hairy.” Little to moderate body hair is good. It’s better than no body hair at all, as is the case with a small minority of Chinese men. I have moderate body hair for a Westerner but maybe excessive for an Asian guy. In any case, thick mounds of hair on the back tend to freak out most Chinese women. Wax that shit off.
E. “White men have noxious body odor and sweat profusely.” This is probably related to D. I get asked all the time how I can possibly breathe in the locker rooms back in America. I find this one pretty funny, especially since it’s usually the locals whose garlic-infused body odors make me almost faint on the buses and subways.
Oddly, I’ve gotten lots of emails from white dudes about this article, and they only seem to remember D and E and take issue with those. Hey white man, this is a long article, and the only thing you remember is that I said (Chinese people think) you are hairy and smelly? LOL. That says a lot more about your own insecurities.
I’m not reporting what I, David Tian, think about white men. These stereotypes come directly from hot Chinese women. I’m just passing them along, so you know what they’re complaining about. LOL.
F. And obviously, the biggest impediment of all: If you cannot speak Chinese or any language that she speaks, then you will have an extremely difficult time getting anywhere with her, especially if she is high-status. Many of the hottest Chinese girls speak little or no English. This is because they don’t have to. They have everything handed to them on a silver platter. On the rare occasion, you may get lucky with just that kind of girl who is in just the right mood and at just that time in her life when she is looking to have anonymous sex with someone she knows nothing about, and you are very good at pumping buying temperature through sexy dancing and the like. I have seen this work effectively on the average Chinese cutie, especially the type who has had few foreign friends. But with the hottest Chinese girls, this is a little like playing the lottery. Someone’s going to win, but it’s probably not you
Foreigners of Chinese (and East Asian) descent, especially ABCs and CBCs, obviously do not have to deal with D or E and depending on how acculturated they are to Chinese culture, A-C and F may also not be an issue. This is mainly why ABCs and CBCs can have the best of both worlds in China.
Overall, I think that advantages #1-5 outweigh disadvantages A-E, though not F, so that in the final balance, foreigners who have their shit together and know some Chinese have a little edge over their local counterparts, especially in getting the average Chinese girl. Still, getting the most desirable women in China is just as tough as back home. So get your life together and hone those social skills. Oh yeah, and learn Chinese ☺
Now onto a rockin’ weekend!
Happy playin’, The Asian Rake.