September 18th, 2011  (1)
Meeting My Dating Coach
Posted by Khiem in: Articles

I know I know… I haven’t posted any posts lately but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been out helping guys with their dating lives here and there.

Vincent actually has been pretty busy putting into application what I’ve been teaching him.  What has been most interesting to me working with him is realizing how your dating life is a direct reflection of the “heath” in other areas of your life too.  I’ll make sure to write something about that soon.

In the meantime, I was honored and humbled by reading what Vincent thought of me when he first met me.  I am reposting the post he initially wrote from his blog below.




People watching can be fun, well sort of.  I tell myself that because right now I’m people watching; watching for my dating coach to show up.  I know what he looks like, I found him on his blog at  But he doesn’t know what I look like.  This could be fun I thought, really fun.  Did I have a particular book I’m reading, Dostoyevsky perhaps, or maybe I’m sporting a tan plaid fedora, with a blue feather to the right.  Every cliché in the book right, throw in coffee shop and Beverly Hills while you’re at it.  But no, I’m not that obvious, and I’m not that cheesy.  There is nothing to give me away.

Urth Cafe Outside in Beverly Hills

It’s been thirty minutes, I get a bit anxious, if this was a date, the girl’s probably not going to show (actually he did say he was running late, but…).  Speaking of women, there’s this hot girl who spoke to me earlier, told me to cut in front of her in line, says she’s also waiting for someone.  And here she is, this petite blonde bambina, dressed in black stretch cotton tights, with a pink word prominently advertised on her behind, so ubiquitous, too ubiquitous (pink words on black pants that is).  She moves past me once or twice, adding cinnamon to her latte, looking around a bit.

Of course I didn’t say anything to her, didn’t even really look at her other than a few passing glances.  This is precisely the kind of bullshit that needs to be taken care of, my fear of talking to new people (and not just women).  That’s why I need my dating coach.  Wait… where is my dating coach Khiem.  Khiem… that girl, she must be Khiem’s friend, that’s why she was loitering around trying to find out who this mysterious client is of his is.

Dancer girl left eventually (every girl who’s cute is “dancer girl” to me).  I should’ve spoken to her. Oh well there’s another cute girl in front of me, waiting in line for her coffee or tea or whatever it is that… but someone got her attention, this tall, fit, young, confident, Asian man casually, confidently says to her “hi, how’s your day.”  They speak a bit, then he turns towards me, walks towards me and says “hi, you’re Vincent right?”

I would have loved to savor giving someone a hard time, watching the confused expression on someone’s face as I pretend to be Waldo, hidden, find me somebody.  But Khiem my dating coach found me the second he walked in.  But how did you know it was me, you don’t even know what I look like.

“I just know,” Khiem replied.

How does he just know?

But that’s the point I guess, dating coaches, they’re supposed to just know.

Knowing is everything, what to do, how to act, knowing women, understanding both men and women.  My dating coach took the time to get to know me, who I am as a person, to really understand my issues, my struggles, my dreams and passions, and whether those passions are being put into motion.

I have a good feeling about this, about Khiem, about myself, about my dating life, about my passions, about life… because they are all interconnected in a way. I feel hopeful, positive, a bit exhausted and writer’s block.  I’ll leave it at that for now.  The Wisdom of Khiem will have to come at a later post…



Coffee.  Strong, pungent aroma.  The smell of morning.  I imagine that smell to get myself to wake.  The earlier I awake, the more drowsy my mind; and the drowsier my mind, the better.  The enemy is aging, fine lines are the signs, the mirror on the bathroom wall reflects.

Mirror, mirror on the wall.  Sometimes we do need is a mirror, but a different kind of mirror, a social mirror.

Urth Coffee and Tea Latte

I met Khiem, my dating coach, at a café on Beverly Hills.  He looks confident, too confident.  The mirror in my mind is churning in the background:  is this going to work, is he going to be able to help me, is he going to like me…

And then he spoke, and the conversation felt like morning, the good parts of morning, past the mirror, past the smell of toothpaste.  It’s the slightly later parts of the morning, cream cheese melting on a warm bagel, the smell of coffee, watching the swirl of cream dissolving into darkness, changing it, lightening it, transforming it.  And then there’s the taste.  Enjoying coffee is like enjoying wine, the life of coffee, where did the beans come from, who tended the coffee bean, the way it was roasted… but I digress.

Khiem and I had a long conversation, but mostly it was about me, the life of me, where I grew up, what experiences shaped me, where I am in life.  An hour passes and it felt like minutes.  The mirror in my mind fades and the self consciousness dissolves like coffee brightening to a lighter hue.  I’m just enjoying the moment in conversation.

He then said to me, “You are bold, fun and sexy. You’re actually not shy. You need to change the labels you give yourself.”

Khiem’s right, people have told me that I’m not shy, but in my mind I’ve always thought of myself as shy.

The labels I have about myself go just beyond shyness, the mirror in my mind is distorted, self consciousness based on faulty premises. Modus Ponens, valid but not sound.

A good coach is also a good social mirror, to see you as you really are, and how you could be.
“There are many aspects to a person’s personality; the key is the focus on those aspects relevant to the situation,” Khiem said. “For dating, focus on bold, exciting and sexy.”

So I guess the next time I see a woman I find intriguing, I’d have to ask myself, what would a bold, exciting and sexy man do and say.

Perhaps that’s the only way to change the mirror in our minds.

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    March 28th, 2011  (0)
Get Out Of Your Head, Reality Isn’t Always As It Seems
Posted by Khiem in: Articles, First Impressions

People must be liking the new direction I’m taking with the blog.

Today, inspired by my “First Impressions” series of blogs (first couple stories are here and here), Donnie wants to share a personal story.  He is going to talk about how to not let the monkey chatter cloud your mind and make the best out of your first few interactions with someone.

If you have a an insightful and entertaining story you want to share that truly speaks of how people really think while dating or socializing, email me.  I don’t think you need “gurus” to show you how to date better.  When it comes to improving your chances at meeting and attracting the people you want in your life, I believe we can all learn from each other if we shared more of our experiences with one another.

And Kiss N’ Tale is the place for you to do that!

Right now, the series is about “first impressions” or “first love/lust.”  I also would love people to write about bad sex, interracial dating or being too much of a nice guy.


Have I been wrong all along?  Back track to a few months ago, to when I was just starting to open myself up and really put myself out there to meet people, everything I saw was what I believed to be real.

I’d work myself up the courage to go and talk to the cute girl behind the counter at the coffee shop and rather than just placing my order, I would talk to her and see what she is all about.  We’d have a good fun conversation that would last for a good few minutes depending on how many people were in line (usually I went up when there was no line) or until I had exhausted the conversation and felt like I had left a good impression.

So what happened the next time I saw her?

I’d walk into the coffee shop and I’d instantly look to see if she was working that day.  When I saw her and she’d look up at me and then look back at what she was doing, all I could think about was:  “Did I creep her out?” “Does she not remember me?” “Should I just leave?”.  Explosions of monkey chatter would go off in my head when in reality, she was just working and being focused on her job, nothing personal.

Monkey Chatter

Do you find yourself “expecting” things from women?  When you think about it, how many times have you not talked to a girl because she didn’t show immediate bubbly enthusiasm that you were in her presence?

What you see is not what you always get. (more…)

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    March 7th, 2011  (3)
Love at First Sight… or Lust at First Sight?
Posted by Khiem in: Articles, First Impressions

I was introduced to her.  Ironically, I was introduced to her by the girl who invited me out and with whom I was flirting with the week before.

At first, I didn’t know she was part of the group.  She was cute.  She was walking with a shorter lightly pudgy Asian guy I didn’t know either.  Her smile was the first thing that caught my attention.

Her smile was the kind of smile that whispered to me:  “Well hello there!…”

It was the kind of smile that made me want to make a mental double take, but I couldn’t… at least not yet.  I needed to focus on the girl who actually invited me out and who just walked up to me with a hug.

I acted cool, I acted “normal.”  Throughout the evening, I mostly entertained “Alya,” the girl I flirted with last week.  The evening kind of felt like a double date.  “Alya” was walking with me… and the other girl was walking with the pudgy Asian guy.  I still didn’t know if she was with him or not.

However, I would find my eyes furtively look for her.  From the corner of my eyes, I’d catch her looking back at me or maybe it was her catching me look at her.  There was that unspoken smile again.

Maybe it wasn’t even her smile, maybe it was her eyes.  There was a glimmer in her eyes that seemed to want to blurt out more than just hi.

We talked a few times to one another, never alone, always in group, occasionally joking around, teasing…

She had an allure to her…. a certain sweet, genuine, innocent vibe mixed with something utterly contradictory, a darker, sexier and much more confident energy.

I would be lying if I didn’t say I noticed the contour of her soft round chest filling her deep V-neck shirt with smooth curves that would make my mind wander in territories not so holy and leading my eyes down towards her short jeans skirt.

I like the way she walked.  I liked the way she looked at me, talked to me, smiled at me…

At one point, she and I found each other by ourselves.  “Her” guy and “my” girl walked away together to get drinks.  It turned out “her” guy was just a friend from college and “my” girl was someone she just met a few days prior.  Ironically, I just met “Alya” the week before too.

She admitted to being adventurous… or maybe spontaneous, I’m not quite sure anymore… so I called her out on it:

I dare you to stand right there, under the screen projection, and dance in front of everyone!

We were at the Museum of Natural History for First Friday, near USC.  There was a screen projection on the wall of the live band playing.  A lot of people were gathered in semi-circle there in front of that screen, watching and singing along but not dancing.  I didn’t think she’d do it.  I was just teasing her.

Do you notice the projection screens?Do you guys notice the projection screens?

Fainting hesitation yet without skipping a beat, she fired back at me:

OK, but what do I get if I do it?

Do you know what it feels like when you are in the moment with someone, the tension is high and everything you’ve felt so far seems to culminate and all crash into one single “turning-point” moment?  That’s e-x-a-c-t-l-y how I felt.  My mind was running 200 miles an hour.  I haven’t thought that far ahead when I dared her to dance in front of everybody. (more…)

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