This morning I got an email from Tim, who has helped me tremendously as far as putting my resume together. In this short email, he said his friend advice me to take the part that says I'm a member of Berkeley Queer Alliance out of the resume.
My heart sank.
And it got me thinking the entire day.
For as long as I can remember, I've always pride myself in being unconventional. People do things this way, I do things the other way. Foreigners who reside at a foreign country usually form a clique, and stay with it. I came to the US by myself with a gigantic luggage and an open heart 3 years ago, and I told myself I would not do that. There's a Chinese saying that goes, "since you're there, you might as well get used to it." And I did. I did just that. I made friends all over the place, people from all over the world, people who speak all kinds of languages. I don't have a clique. And I take pride in that even though at times, the feeling of "I'm foreigner and I'm alone in a foreign country" could be so strong it's almost unbearable.
But I did it. And I'm goddamn proud of that.
I once had a bitch boss when I was working as a tutor. She has been there forever and nobody dares to stand up to her. One day when my student didn't show, I decided to help a friend out with her homework. She wasn't my student and I did it as a favor. 10 minutes into the tutoring, bitch boss came over, interrupted me and asked me to be quiet while I was in the middle of explaining something to this friend of mine. Later, she reprimended me for using the work place for personal usage. According to her, the tables there are only for my students and my students only. If I wanted to help a friend, go to the library. I am under no circumstances ever to use those tables to help my friend out if they are not my student, even when (1) all the tables are unoccupied and (2) it was only for a short while. She was being ridiculous and unreasonable and I wasn't going to take that sitting down. So I stood up and I told her just that and I walked away. She never bugged me after that and we got along pretty well ever since.
I don't follow the norm when the norm is stupid. I stand up for what I believe is right. I do what I believe is right and I do it with gusto.
I once worked as a sales person at a clothing store. It was a big store and there were too many employees. People were stabbing each other in the back left and right. Everywhere you turn there's politics. It was just a clothing store, for God's sake. I knew that if I stayed there, I would eventually be consumed by them, by the politics and the back-stabbing. So I left. And I found a job in another clothing store. It was much smaller and pays a lot less. But I was happy. There were only 5 of us. And all of us got along extremely well partly because we share the hatred towards our bitch boss. I loved my job. I gave up money for happiness.
I still have that innocence in me. Innocence that tells me that I can conquer the world if I believe in me.
Today, I lose a bit of that innocence.
Engineering is a conservative field. People don't want to see queers flaunting their gayness all over the place.
I am gay. I am a proud gay man. I'm here, I'm queer and you better get used to it. But for the first time, I chose the coward way out. I follow the norm. I caved under the pressure. I'll make a new resume with minimal queerness. It's already hard enough for me to get a job, what with me being a foreigner and all. I don't need to make my life harder.
I don't need to make my life any harder, right?