My friend Julie in Baltimore decided to dip her toes in the OKC waters, which inspired the two of us to go at this together. Much like workout buddies, we are there to remind each other to hold our heads high and not to give up — and to share some of the insanity that runs rampant on the Internet. We also thought it would be interesting to compare and contrast the Los Angeles and Baltimore dating scenes.
Because some of this material is too good not to share, we’ve decided to share it with you in the form of weekly highlights. You’ll get them until either one of us finds love (don’t hold your breath) or gives up (more likely).
Here we are, Julie and I, in week three of our little social experiment. But are we experimenting on ourselves? And how much longer can we keep this up? Having her to digest and deconstruct these profiles and the messages really is like having a workout buddy except, you know, it’s not our bodies that are bruised and sore but our souls. I don’t know that I could handle all this on my own.
Phone Calls: 0 (although one guy was supposed to call but didn’t)
Messages: Too many — most of which were fewer than five words. Aka “hi” and “how are you?”
BEST AND WORST OPENING MESSAGE (AT THE SAME TIME!):
si belle qu’elle ma fait souffrir
[so beautiful she makes me suffer!]
(Yes, he provided the translation. His profile also features him in white jeans and in black leather pants and sprawled on a motorcycle. I think he’s French.)
PROGRESS (OR LACK THEREOF):
As most people who find their way into the world of online dating will tell you, it is clearly an undiscovered ring of hell. Or an expansion on No Exit. Aka, hell is other people.
But what kind of hell, exactly?
Well, there’s the guy who told me he hates Israelis: “Because of the stupid attitude, like they’re superior or something.” [PS. My family is Israeli.]
I think he’s making a statement about bathroom mirror selfies, which I would appreciate, on an intellectual level, if I could get past that blinding flash.
On the other side of the spectrum, there’s this:
Then there was this piece of body “art”:
I know that many women find tattoos sexy. I, in fact, am usually one of those women. But this would bring a very unique double entendre to the twenty-first century condition of being fucked by the government.
Then there was the guy who wrote me this:
“Intriguing, relevant, stimulating = visually and mentally.
Real, raw, imaginative and invigorating. A Reese Wither spoon +++
Multi layered … Well I am just a man admiring from afar..
Sharing thoughts with a fellow former New Yorker…”
Which reads almost like an e.e. cummings poem (minus the capital letters). I was intrigued enough to check out his profile, in which he clearly states that he is in a relationship and only seeking people who can help further his entertainment career. I guess bonus points for bluntness? Maybe he thought I could do a Reese Witherspoon impersonation to get him into a club or The Ivy or something? Sadly, his profile has since been closed, so my opportunity to further his career is lost. Forever. Or, as e.e. himself might say: “Humanity I love you because when you’re hard up you pawn your intelligence to buy a drink.”
Except I’m not loving my fellow man these days. Especially when this guy messaged me “hi” a few minutes ago.
But out of all these charmers, I’d like to reserve a special circle of hell for the ageists out there. Because, you see, I’m 37. In a couple years (you can do the math), I’ll be 40. And 40 is, apparently, when I should be put out to pasture, if not before.
For those of you lucky enough not to know how OKCupid works, you can select your desired age range. This is the age range within which you will agree to date. Consistently — and I really do mean over and over — the men whose profiles I look at specify 22-35 or 22-38…even if they, themselves are 40 and above. Now, not all of them, to be fair, but an uncomfortable percentage.
So, if you’re a 40 year old man, you really want to date a 22-year-old? And you wouldn’t date someone your own age? I know age is relative, but that’s why I have a nice meaty bracket on my profile. I can always decide if I want to write someone back, but I don’t want to eliminate someone purely based on a category. I say 30-50 because I feel like that’s a healthy buffer around my own age. But the fact that some of the men who write to me wouldn’t write to me if I’m still single in a year or two — and yet, the implication is, would actually go out with someone almost twenty years younger than them, makes me profoundly uncomfortable and just a little bit sad. Yes, I know, I live in LA, but still. The women here are very well-maintained. Some of them with medical assistance. So maybe loosen up those restrictions just a little bit?
For these guys, it’s not absence that makes the heart grow fonder. It’s absinthe. Can you pass me a glass?
A Cranky Dahlia