Teresa Nguyen and Syed Rahman

Recorded October 15, 2019 Archived November 5, 2019 39:33 minutes
0:00 / 0:00
Id: mby019375


Friends Teresa B. Nguyen (37) and Syed "Tanveer" Rahman (40) discuss their love lives and what they appreciate about one another as friends.

Subject Log / Time Code

TN remembers meeting TR.
TN remembers taking a trip to Paris.
TN describes her "Cinderella Moment," when she was set up on a blind date to attend a black tie wedding in Paris.
TR remembers wanting "true love" since childhood.
TR talks about accepting his partner's differences and interests.
TR tells TN what he appreciates about her as a friend.
TR and TN talk about their relationships with their families.
TN and TR talk about what they want for their futures.


  • Teresa Nguyen
  • Syed Rahman

Recording Location

Dallas Public Library: North Oak Cliff Branch



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00:04 Okay, my name is Teresa. When am I going to miss the name Aslan, my age is 37 it Scorpio season soon-to-be. Scorpio season today is Tuesday, October 15th, 2019 in Dallas Texas name of my interview partner is 10 beer Ramen one of my close friends. All right, so my name is 10 beer Roman as Teresa said love you by the way, but Syed Rahman is my official name. It is like the Jones Western World from where I come from tanveer was my nickname. I happen to love that name. So I actually go by that name. I just turned 40 but I don't feel it. I Feel So Young. That's just how it is. Today is Tuesday, October 15th.

01:04 1919 we're here in Dallas Texas the name of the interview Partners Teresa. Love you, and she's one of my closest friends.

01:16 Okay, so let's start with how we met each other you want to go first? Well, we met each other do the Asian film festival of Dallas and I believe you so I managed the public relations for the festival and you are you are a jury jury, like a judge you are a judge for one of the panels, but we didn't become friends from that. So I was asked to be a board member and the second year of it. I I am at you and when I first met you it was just that we're all busy. We just know met in the passing Lane be kept running into each other in different events around Dallas and then eventually we became friends. I would say fairly with this last year. We've been came very close friends.

02:16 Louis from so this past year. I was managing the public relations for the Dallas Opera social parties and then we became friends at the patron party for the Flying Dutchman know when is the opening Gala for Dallas Opera Hotel closing opening and then we're all dressed up. And now that we've gotten to know each other it was the perfect setting for us to become close friends. It happened very organically. It was just like, you know, why didn't we talk more all these years but it's just when you started talking just felt very natural and that's one of the things about you that I always think of is if it's very easy to be your friend. You're always very come you are not very high maintenance.

03:16 Comes to being your friend and I just love that. I mean to say that to all the haters with Max the other day other night because there is so there's this girl who's really nice. She is nice to everyone but she's not nice to me, but I don't know why I haven't done anything or or plan to ever do anything but I was telling him that like either either women or girls like really love me or they don't and I don't understand the don't part and I'm not going to try to figure that out. So if everybody loves you you're doing something wrong. I mean right then it's always good to have both. I think it just keeps us in a place where we we know I mean

04:16 We don't have to agree with everybody all the time you and I will always agree with everything but there's that understanding we respect each other, right? That's your opinion and advice on things when it comes to business and recently more. So with my love and personal life before you for that and end the fact that all of that happened the way you dreamt about all all your life. That's just wonderful every time I eat whenever we talk about it, that's all I think mine's like this is what she wanted and not it doesn't always happen that way and that's just how it's working. So knock on wood keep your fingers crossed what happens but whatever happens you're going to be happy. Yeah. I guess we should share that story so I know I know I know how you met Max.

05:16 This is going to be Brandi start with the star was first like how you've been involved with that like so you got me since I've been single now for will last for about a year. So July was the year so single and then you got me to sign on Unser online dating as much as I didn't want to and you like just got to do it and put yourself out there just can't fall in love are you can't meet someone unless you just put your open yourself up and put yourself out there and you're going to meet a lot of frogs. So that was like your advice for me right and then I sign on and it it's been 2 months.

06:03 And I was I was I threw in the towel at the end. I was like I'm so tired of this. I guess like if you want to share like your side of it like when that was happening. I mean, I think you know, you're at a point of your life where you want to you're mature you understand. What do you want out of your life your independent you're doing your own thing. So you're ready to settle down so to speak but my fear was I didn't want you to just go in and settle down with someone. I want you to have fun and meet people and see all these different characters out there. Even if those are frogs, you're kissing. Those are also experiences in your life you need and I want that for it for you, but then two months is a very short. Of time, but because you put yourself out there and then you're going over to Europe and you're frustrated about it. You're not letting anybody that's working on. So I said go to Europe.

07:03 Open yourself up meet people have fun little did we know what happened in Europe. I had gone to your account to pay back in October by myself a solo trip. My first solo trip International and that was like a self-discovery. I hate that is cliche was Paris and then I kind of found myself fell back in love with myself. And then I knew I was going to get back to Paris someday somehow cuz I love Paris but I didn't realize it was going to be so soon. So then in July opportunity came up for me to go to Paris and I was like, okay, even though I had just been there in October and it was really from you from you pushing me like yeah, you should go just go eat who knows just have fun. This is the time to do it. And I said, okay. Well I'm going to go.

08:02 And this is a long story. Do we want to go into this? You have to talk about the Cinderella moment. So I went with my my close friend Bridget and we were meeting another girlfriend there Dora and it just happened that to her other friends Robert and Quan were also in Paris for a wedding. So the five of us we talked about it once wear in Paris. We're going to meet up for for lunch or try to meet up somehow but we didn't think that was going to happen. So this Saturday, we're there in Paris all five of us meet for lunch at this beautiful art-deco lunch a restaurant and Robert asked me Sir Robert Quinn are a couple and Robert asked me. What are you doing tonight? And I'm with Bridget and I came to Paris with Bridget says like oh well, you know

09:02 Wesley hang out and go out and go to a jazz club or something and in so he so then Robert says well, you know, why don't you go to this wedding with us? It's at the Shangri-La Hotel. It's a black tie event, which by the way is a very nice very fun and a very elegant space and Anna wedding. There's supposed to be really awesome. So really like a fairytale kind of a situation Palace like they've converted into a hotel so it's majorly gold gilded Gold Everywhere so they asked me this and I said, well, you know, what like why I like and what they said. Well one of our close friends his plus one didn't show up so he doesn't have a date and

10:02 Sounds like what what was wrong with her? Why wouldn't she show up there? Like we would you go in her place? And I was like well now I'm not going to go to let unless you get an extra seat for Bridget like and then I'll go and I want to leave her but she is being a good friend. She's like what were you talking about? Like, of course, I got to go see this five-star hotel in Paris gone this blind date with this guy and it's a black tie event. So you need to go and then I said the night then I said, well, you know. I don't have a gown like this. So when he asked me this was three the wedding was at 6, so it's three hours away and I was like, there's no way I'm going to find a gown. I have to go back to my hotel which is on the other side of Paris and then the weddings on the other side, so it's not going to work but you know, and looks over at me and he's like, are you kidding me you are with to spy.

11:02 So Bridget and Dora are both stylist, and that's what they do for a living.

11:09 So we went to everyone was playing up on this whole Fairy Godmother Cinderella moment. And if it truly was it actually end up being a Cinderella story and where that comes in with you and I is that I've I've always told you that I want a story like I I I don't want to meet somebody on UNO online dating or like there's just no romantic story. So so this was like a very romantic story the long story super short Bridget and Dora take me to The Gallery at Lafayette. They get me dressed. I mean, they throw gowns at me I leave with a gallon take the they cut the tags off of me. My hair was done in 10 minutes make up with Dan downstairs in the in the mall there Mall.

12:02 And is like they are spraying like spraying perfume on me and make it with everything was getting thrown at me. We we go to the hotel. There's a grand staircase because the course is the grand staircase we go up to the grand staircase. And that's where I meet him for the first time on top of the staircase where the ceremony was held and we're still dating. So it's been three a little over three months now and everything's going well and I get to end up hearing this you have a shared with you that you know, we haven't had any serious talk like we've seen each other pretty much.

12:46 Yeah, we see each other every weekend we we we see each other a lot and we're in communication everyday.

12:52 And I do care for him a lot and but there hasn't been any kind of talk. So far your friends mainly me, you know, we all love him. It's wonderful. And by the way to make the story The Cinderella Story we talked about galerie Lafayette. It is anything but Amal. It's an extravaganza if you'll call it. So as you can see coming down the staircase are all dressed up. I just visualize it and just make me so happy for you. That's just so wonderful. I know that's what you wanted and it's really happening like this is happening right now as I'm getting my makeup done. My friend is like, what about this perfume, what about this perfume and I don't I don't have the right bra on and

13:42 AT&T Mi but yeah, I was clearly putting on my bra while my make it was getting done while they were covering me up so I can get this get to this to this ball quote on quote Bob. I think we foresee a future Paris get together a lot of us fingers crossed. You guys want it more than I do something fun. So so since then since we met each other so all of our of our mutual friends, especially Robert incline and then of the year and Bridget have been rooting reading for us and input we are very chill. We are just like we're enjoying each other I of course want to have that serious talk like where we where we going. Where do you want to go? Yeah, and I haven't because of you mainly but also I'm trying to take a different approach. If not, I've just enjoying and B.

14:42 And being present instead of what I want for you is to enjoy this times to get to know each other very well and just in due time everything is in due time for now. Everything is going wonderfully and that you will know in the X O D. I feel that I mean for me that's how I felt all though my story's totally different but that's that's how I felt. So yeah, let's talk about you. Let's talk about Darren so

15:12 Oh, wow, speaking of Darren who's my other half? My mother's favorite, son. All my brother is all my family member loves them more than they love me for sure. No, one of the things I always wanted growing up. I think it went when your kid are you thinking of what you want to be a we all have our stories and dreams somehow someway, I always wanted true love always always wanted to love but I think I wanted it so much because I thought that that it didn't exist. It doesn't happen. Nobody has it and I'm sure people fall in love but really true love somebody that loves you so selflessly and long story short. That's what I have. I just truly happy truly lucky, especially being Muslim being gay being dark skinned growing up in different parts of the world. You always know that that

16:12 Defending others and not only your different in a visually inside of you before I came out. I knew I was different than others. But here's the difference about me. I see a lot of my controversy in the west or in other parts of the world at Asia or other places that I lived.

16:33 People who

16:36 The terms of gay straight. I don't really like so much with no sexually their preferences at to be with a man or or gay there's a certain social Norm. They follow I never felt or connected to that. I just always felt very normal for me. I was a man has a son I was a friend and I had my study let my business plan. It just so happens that I liked men sexually that was just it was never my just my identity is just a gay man. And even today that's what you've done is very important. I don't want to downplay it. It's extremely important especially in the society that we live in but for me personally, I'm just all these things and then they daren't happens to be the same way. You know, he's just a very hard worker very family man in a very down-to-earth extreme.

17:36 I don't twerk. I don't know how that happened with me. And that is just so giving so selfless and sometimes I sit and and and I think you can I wonder what have I done in life to deserve this and he truly wants to make me be a better person in a week. We hear this thing's all the time, but it's really in its truest sense the random nights. I'll be sitting there watching TV and all of a sudden he would do something very simple and like wow, I probably wouldn't do that. But then then I think well I should do that when he does that for me. I should be like that too. And so yeah, it's just and how did and I met know we were when we met

18:22 We were friends and I was actually seeing someone else but I knew that there in like to me but at that time Darren was too just to down to earth into simple of a person and I I don't want to downplay. This is a great person. In terms of what I liked at the timer as at that age. I wanted the whole shebang so to speak so I was seeing someone else and I was moving away to California and when the movers came and moved everything and I packed up my dog with my partner at the time. It was also an amazing human being were so very good friends. We talk everyday, but as I was driving away out of Texas the whole way. I cried I cried and I cried.

19:13 And I realized that I really loved Darren.

19:18 So is a different story and I think we've been within the year. I was back. I was back here and best decision ever that is one story and I and I share this with you before I say that every time you talk about Darren it gives me so much. Hope because I feel it like when you talk about your love for him and in in about him because you know anyone listening it's like they are complete opposite like you to a complete opposite right? Like he's from Kentucky Caucasian, you know, you would you wouldn't think that you two would like if you were to like spot you two in the crowd you think like a visa to end up together, but actually you guys are like so perfect and I'm that's the I mean that's when it's things like that before recently like I would say to you like

20:18 It just gives me so much hope that there is that kind of deep love for each other. You know, what I've learned is a different word different in many ways. We we think totally differently our way off and on my business plans and his he's a workaholic and his work plans in our travel plans are our family The Corrs, we believe in the court that we love each other. We have to support each other. We always have to be there for her family and friends and we have to be good people that those are record everything else. I know you and I would like to adopt probably like to dress up and then I'll let you go to a fancy restaurant Darren's total opposite. He doesn't want to ever dress up and I have to force a minion t-shirt and shorts but towards the beginning beginning think you're also like that to you. I'm texting you like her wear t-shirts and shorts, but he also have I can go from this to that in the

21:18 The moment but we daren't and so it was difficult for me, but then I've learned to accept it. So and because I've learned to accept it because Darren gives me hundred percent complete Freedom. You want to go to operate to restore your friend go ahead and I'll be waiting for you at home or I'll go do my business for record this and that and I started to do the same, you know you he loves Disney? He loves all the stuff. I can't stand it. But I've been to Disney World still need helping love learned that when you love someone you have to give them the freedom and even if you don't like it leave. Donald Duck's t-shirts in the Mickey Mouse t-shirt, and that's the thing every time I take him I end up having such a good time. It's only because I enjoy him Darren having a good time and he becomes a kid and he's just so happy and he doesn't he require so little like

22:18 I want to give him everything I possibly can. He doesn't want anything from me. He just wants me to love him and just be there for him. That's all so give taking him to those kitschy things in the Disney world hardest cartoon things in Harry Potter Harry Potter London. I told you the story this at our his love for superheroes in a fight indulging that makes him so happy. So although I don't miss what he want to do that and then I'm burnt out with all that but then it makes me so happy to see him happy. So I guess as I get older, I guess maybe that's a little bit of definition of love is to see your other half happy makes you happy but you know before me didn't happen, like life wasn't always like that. Although life was in many senses great compared to many others, but

23:12 You I've never told you this so I'll tell you today growing up being the oldest son and always knowing that I was different and my father was extremely alpha male.

23:27 Successful always being on top of everything. So in an Asian culture, you can relate to that being the oldest son. I was expected to follow his lead. I never wanted to do that. I never wanted to do what he was doing because I saw how busy he was he was always gone and I'm selling some of those things caused issues.

23:52 And he hated the fact that I didn't want to do it so bad. I've had a horrible relationship with them. All I wanted to do is just get out of there at the first chance I get because I wanted my freedom I wanted to do things might wait. So as a young teenager as a young man, I used to think don't form yourself yet. I would literally tell myself and I know your father is forcing you your family is forcing you suicide is forcing. You don't form just get through what you have to do to your studies do this until he can get out in the world by yourself then see the world then become who you want to be.

24:31 And that serve me well, but that also caused so much heartache and because my family would see when I left and it started to become my own person. I have to literally start like start the way I want to thing. I didn't want to think what they told me to think. I wanted to form my own opinion. I wanted to do my own things and I would go do wild things and fun things but also try to stay focus and of course, we all make mistakes night. I make plenty of them and they would see that and they'll have a hard time with me. So why are you doing this? I know you shouldn't be doing this and they didn't like it. So I have this this conflict in my mind. I know I'm doing this. I know this is right, but I'm not making them happy.

25:18 Sick, but today when I talk to my mom about those times and those things I'm so happy I chose to be who I am and it cost me a lot and there's a lot of issues because of that and I still suffer from some of those things because I felt I didn't have the guidance. I felt I have to create that guidance from my mistakes. So you've done really well for yourself. I'm happy you're successful and I'm sure your mom is extremely proud. You're responsible sun-loving responsible son. And as a friend like I left you like you're always that you're the first person I call about anyting like lately your friend and I mean that because you like I said individual conversations that you are very calm and you are

26:15 You don't whatever we talk. You're very patient. You let you let me speak and you know and you just listen and listen and listen and sometimes have to catch myself so I can have I'm just talk too much. I am back but you left me. Let me talk and you listen and you pay attention and I noticed that and I appreciate that and that's what it takes to another thing. I always believed in, you know, a lot of people we know everybody in Dallas. But the thing is I don't have a whole lot of friends. I have very few people that I call friends. I mean today's time Facebook age. We know everybody if not know them directly are socially by association. We know them about this very very few people that are friends. You're definitely one of them and that's how I want my friends to be. I don't want to tell my friends. I want just a few friends. So it's my privilege to be your friend. I mean that

27:15 But you know, you're also very responsible child, but that's one of the things that you and I have in common that you're the oldest and you can kind of the responsibilities kind of fall on you somehow and I'm not the oldest. I'm the 3rd at 4, but I think the way the order is my is my sister lives up. She lives in Kentucky to her family's out there. So she can't really be here for my parents who live in Fort Worth and my older brother, you know, he's the guy I mean, obviously you're irresponsible, but you know, they just he just loves differently and he's not now he has his own family too. And so they comes the falls on me and then my younger brother.

28:15 And he's sky but you know, he loves loves my parents but he loves in a different way does not like take them to the doctor away, but it's more like show up and see how they're doing. But yeah that that is something that you and I share taking care of her parents.

28:40 I think you know when there are several seven siblings and I have two other brothers my second brother whom I just love so dearly but he's developmentally challenged. So he is someone for the rest of his life. He will need someone to always keep an eye on them in the guide him. He's very functional but no developmentally challenged my youngest brother grew up to be my father's in child that sort of like my father that alpha male that wanted to just everywhere on top of everything. He's done very well for himself very proud of him, but him and I we do not get along at all. Although we have business ties together and all that stuff, but we just leave it at that. I've decided that's how it works best. The hardest thing is history kids.

29:29 Those are not that the children they're just everything to me. So sometimes this straining our relationship effects that but sometimes we have to make decisions where we have to decide what works for me and them as well. So during IVF decided someday when the kids are older and hopefully we'll have an opportunity to be closer. So I'm looking forward to that and I hopefully that day will come tonight. I do miss that but he's like that it's all about him. He's there for my mom but he knows and in our culture we called the older brother by omitting the big brother. So he knows that I will take care of Mom and that's just my natural responsibility. But I also feel that in my heart. So it's all good with you is like I'm very grateful.

30:29 And thankful and that I can take care of my parents and that I'm there for them. But yet there that there are times that any we've sure this is that it can be very emotionally draining but that's where you find that balance and if it's hard but I always remind myself and then my mom will only be here for so long and then I'll have the rest of my life but I'll always have the satisfaction of taking care of of the heart to the best of my ability. But I also know what helps having a partner who agrees with you we do the same for each other for his dad who is 87 years old and I love him so much. Is that as I see where Darren became who he is. So we do that for each other. So I think families important than I think of for both of us. The reason we get along cuz we both have this in common love for our family and we both wanted love and we have to share that.

31:29 Destin for too long because your birthday is on Valentine's Day is my ID. And I think another thing is like we we have we have different Faith but we have faith and I think that's I mean you are destined to find true love. I mean, no one gets no one's born on Valentine's Day and not fight. I didn't know nothing forgotten. So in love with each other's fate, whatever it is, that's very important. I've always known that that's how I grew up in my family. I have a mixed family members if the religion so that was never an issue, but it's race or

32:29 Culture or religion? Everybody was welcomed and everything but yes, I think having that respect helps for me. But in terms of true love I wish that was the truth may be that is but I'm just going to take it and I'll just going to take it and live with it. So we'll see what happens. But how wonderful is this experience? Yes. I got this forever over at like 5 days from now. We don't have that much more time of it. I guess we should talk about our future.

33:11 What is one thing that you dream of having you need immediate future?

33:21 Material things now I guess I shouldn't eat anything whatever you feel.

33:26 Oh, okay guys, that's what I've always been one to like, I I love what I do. I work in public relations, but more than that I get to work with people's dreams. Like these are there businesses. This is their Vision. So I live my days like loving my life. So I I actually don't want anything more than what I have mean. If I do that's great. Of course, I want I want an apartment in Paris one day I want for my 40th birthday. I imagine myself when I yacht but if I'm not it's okay. I want to give myself a Porsche 911 S convertible white for ich for my 40th birthday, which isn't can I drive it can drive it?

34:16 So, I mean those things are in my email near future and plans, but but I'm all I still have the attitude that if it doesn't happen doesn't happen, but with with Max with Max like I adore him and I'm getting to know him and I would love to see something happened a long time with him crossed fingers crossed and prayers whatever happens happens. You're always going to be happy and whatever happens you'll make the best of it and sometimes some things happens to us that we can't change and that's okay. There's nothing you can do about it. So don't worry about it. Just see what do you need to do at the moment and move on.

35:02 I'm not I'm not worried because I know I mean I love our story So Eun if that's all I got from it was his amazing story amazing time with him then then I'm I'm forever grateful for every experience is as a stone in your life. So there you go. You material things. Should I love who doesn't I love material things but at the end of the day if I didn't have any material a be fine, I probably cry a little on your shoulder so buddy, but I want to be a better husband to Darren. I really going to continue to see through my mom's health and be there and I travel travel I want to travel for the rest of the time that I have in this world as much as I can and I we need to take a trip together soon. I know New York coming.

36:02 And I decided not to go but that's the reason you know that by the way, we must mention in your PR field. You just you one of your clients just was named number to restaurant in the entire country. Yeah, that's so proud of you. So deep. I'm like, I want a board apartment in Paris and I want you to have their apartment Paris. I just want to go visit if you talk on the trail, I think that's what's going to be my next car. We talked about it at LeMay go get it together, but I have some planning to do after plan it and see if I can manage that so we'll figure it out. We will we will you may want what I want midnight blue.

36:54 Oh, I'm a picture of mine white like a like a really light pearlescent like pink but not white but like a little little pink not like Pepto pink but like yeah, mine has to be where I said I have to be I would like it to be midnight blue either 911 Porsche 911 or that came in. So what are you doing here? That's enough on people giving me to scan it for myself, but I'm giving you my friendship. Yes, absolutely very happy for it and it's getting cold outside so we can get to wear coats.

37:54 Spotlight love for like 30 minutes, but faux fur all all this surface things and then all the Deep things in life. And that's where I connect with you. We have that and we can have fun on the surface. But we also have this deep in a room full of people when we talk to each other. We have that connection. So at the end of the day like all this doesn't matter it's fun butts and if they it's the friendship and it's it's the true love it's the end of the walks on to this scene River in Paris in like hey friend. I just met this guy at a wedding and it's those moments that are just completely free and worth everything and all three of you you Max and Bridget brought me back my coat from Paris.

38:54 All the time, but it's just off and see what all intertwined so but

39:02 Thank you for being my friend and thank you for asking me to do this with you. Glad you're able to do this with me outside of mad, cuz I wanted just to kind of find out more about him, and this was like my way, but then my second person was like for Sheraton Vera I have to see if he's available, and I'm so glad you are absolutely I told Mom and I got to go for just a little bit. I'll be right back. Love you. Love you, too.