Amir Hay ’15 and Alex Ting ’15 have a relationship that tends to elicit a wide range of reactions from those who meet them. Some seem to think it makes a lot of sense that they’re together, while others are much more surprised to hear that they’re dating. I fall into the former camp because I was fortunate enough to watch the relationship slowly progress from the early awkward stages to comfortable togetherness and, ultimately, to cute-couple-status. Hay and Ting both lead extraordinarily hectic lives in addition to the time commitment they feel their relationship deserves, but we found enough time to sit down and chat about modern love, their first interaction and their Valentine’s Day fantasies.
You didn’t really know each other last year – I believe I was witness to your first extracurricular interaction, which we’ll get to later. What did you guys think of each other as first-years?
AH: Alex is pretty well known throughout Williams – sort of like a Williams celeb.
AT: No! It was me being a celeb for falling off the stage at First Fridays, which is the worst reason to be a celeb.
AH: I don’t know, I was kind of just doing my own thing freshman year and didn’t ever think about dating. That was the exact opposite of what I wanted to do. I guess there just wasn’t anyone who was particularly enticing.
AT: To be honest I had never even heard of this kid until we were in Econ. TA hours. I think we were both the s***heads in our respective classes, so when we got together in office hours we bonded over our confusion. But overall I thought he was a pretty crazy kid.
AH: Yeah, I didn’t really know what was going on with her either. Until I had met Alex I didn’t think there was a girl crazier than me.
So you guys really hung out for the first time the night we all got back from WOOLF this year. Did something that night spark your interest in dating again, Amir?
AH: Actually not even –
AT: It was not a dating desire, it was more of a physical desire.
Could you go into what happened that night to inspire this, uh, physical desire?
AH: So we were playing “Wah” with a group of WOOLF leaders plus transfers … Okay, it was mostly-naked “Wah.”
AT: Yeah, we were all in the sexpot together, and then we were having trouble putting our clothes back on normally for various reasons and Amir grabbed my pants by accident. This is how Amir got my number: Amir put on my jeans and wore them to Meadow and I had to get his number the next day to get my jeans back.
AH: That was definitely my strategy, actually.
AT: So, how do you feel about us having the same pants size?
So you got her number after the pants exchange, how did things develop after that?
AH: Entering sophomore year, our friend groups converged somehow –
AT: Because of WOOLF and transfer students.
AH: So we started hanging out.
AT: We just saw each other at Schow, like, every night.
AH: I would go to Schow and see her. But we never hung out purposefully, basically, for a really long time. Like, two months.
So then things developed and you got together, but you weren’t actually dating for a while. When did that change?
AT: Beginning of Winter Study, I guess. We went on an awesome, real cute date.
AH: We went to dinner in Lenox, at this cool place, and then we went to a David Wax Museum concert.
So who asked out whom?
AH: She asked me out.
AT: It was me! And then we danced.
AH: But I initiated the dancing.
AT: And then we went to a sex shop.
Speaking of sex, what’s it like dating and both of you having a roommate?
AT: I don’t know, it works out. I think we both have reasonable roommates.
AH: They’re awesome, both very accommodating. But over Winter Study they were both gone, so … [exchange of winks]
Ah, Winter Study, when relationships blossom.
AH: Yeah, we probably spent way too much time together.
I feel like kids these days don’t really date anymore. It’s a lot of hooking up and being ambiguous on the relationship status. You guys have experienced both sides of that – does it feel more comfortable to actually be dating?
AT: Well, Amir courted me for quite a while, so it was very traditional.
AH: So traditional. I brought her flowers and poems every day for a month. And sang her sweet songs of sultry love.
AT: I wanted to date when I realized I did have a weird sort of territorialism with Amir – I didn’t like the idea of an open-ended relationship after a while. So I was like, “Call me your girlfriend right now!”
AH: It’s because I’m so promiscuous.
AT: [Laughs.] Shut up!
So how do you guys balance spending time together with seeing your other friends and fulfilling all your commitments and whatnot?
AT: I think something that makes it easy is that we basically have the same friend group – hopefully we’re not too annoying with our PDA in front of them.
I’m sure it could be worse.
AH: I don’t know, we do a good job. Actually, first semester we would stay up till 4 [a.m.] every day.
AT: We didn’t sleep for like two months. When we were getting to know each other we didn’t want to hang out and mess up our normal lives, since we were still feeling out our relationship, so we’d do a bunch of work until midnight and then hang out until 4. But then we were zombie status. It got really bad.
What would be your ideal Valentine’s Day experience?
AH: I don’t know why, but my mind automatically goes to skydiving. It’s the ultimate experience. When you have a death-defying experience with someone, you want to have sex with them.
AT: [Laughs.] Oh my god, stop.
AH: It would literally be the best sex ever.
AT: Actually there’s this thing at MASS MoCA where there’s a candle-lit dinner and you can walk around the galleries and stuff.
Aw, that’s cute.
AH: I have something cute to say, actually. I was really, really into my English class last semester and Alex totally reciprocated. I would tell her stuff and then she would be like, I want to read that book. And then she did. No one has ever read a book for me. It was super nice.
Alex, what do your parents think of Amir?
AT: Um … [extended pause]
AH: Hey! Too slow of a response.
AT: [Laughs.] Sorry, they’re definitely not the parents who are strict about who I’m with. They’re happy as long as I’m happy and taken care of and with someone who helps me learn and grow.
What have you guys learned from each other?
AH: I think I’ve changed for the better, for sure. I’ve learned how to be more organized, because I want to be as efficient as you so I can hang out with you. And I’ve definitely toned down the amount of crazy s*** that I do because I know that there’s someone who doesn’t want me to do that crazy s*** so that I don’t die.
AT: Do you think I’m controlling?
AH: [Laughs.] No, not at all.
So who would you say wears the pants in the relationship?
AT: [Laughs.] Well, apparently Amir wears my pants.