Friday, November 20, 2009

Online Dating is for the Birds

The geek in me is drawn to online dating like its legendary loot. All I need is one good day of writing, I told myself, and I'd have a perfect profile to woo all sorts of sexy, available women. On the internet.

That right there had a few glitches. First, I'm really not all that clever. Sure, I can imagine as easily as I'm writing here that I'll put together strings of words that will both cause the viewer to laugh at my daring wit, but will also interest her to simply stop what she's doing and write me only for the pleasure of picking my brain. Reality illustrated how wrong I was. I didn't realize that short essays were the staple of these sites, and suddenly I had flashbacks to my poor SAT Writing scores. Well, those wouldn't be able to save me now. I decided to instead focus on my winning personality.

"Describe yourself," the prompt suggested, "500 chars or less." What struck me was how breezy the entire thing was. Like it was asking for a glass of water. Chilled with three ice cubes, 500 chars or less. If I was to be honest, my dating site would read much like a primer on the Unibomber. "Stays at home," it would warn, "Basement living quarters. Leaves to eat and in case of internet disconnection. Allergic to sunshine and law enforcement."

Surely, I would have to use a different tack. "Agreeable!" I wrote hoping that the exclamation would make it exciting. I looked at the screen and instantly backspaced the whole thing. "Friendly!" too, made me look boring again, as did "Fun!" I didn't even type out Nice! as that seemed to me a death kiss. I wanted something a little edgy and mysterious, so I finally settled on "Will probably not fight you!" I decided to keep the exclamation.

After my profile was completed, I browsed the entire world of eager women. Luckily, most the websites could narrow the search down to just those close to me. Of my neighbors, I picked an age range near my own. If there was an option, I would have checked "Easy" but none was available. This part of online dating leads to my second problem. I quickly learned that there's an art to reading profiles as well as writing. There are several clues to look out for. Curvy was a red flag. It meant fat. Don't get me wrong, there are fat girls I would be interesting, but I prefer if the girls I were to pick up were trim. I'm personally quite scrawny, so I always feel uncomfortable with very large women. Another red flag were pictures which showed only part of the face from a strange angle. This also probably meant fat. Then, there were the profiles with girls too pretty that screamed "I'm easy, so message me and come get some!" These were always scammers. Nothing was more disappointing than e-mailing one extremely attractive girl who seemed very nice and approachable in her profile, only to be awarded with a link to a sign-up site.

Ultimately, after editing my profiles for many days, choosing the perfect profile pictures to share, and searching through girls for a perfect match, my search has still be unrewarded. My final problem is that all the available women just ignore my comments and messages. I just think that these are all places where infinitely more attractive people are meeting other attractive people and having lots of sex. Of course, this leaves average "oh, you're kinda cute" me sitting alone on my computer. These attempts have basically been an exercise in finding more porn, I suppose, since they've all led there anyways.

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