Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Don’t Believe the Hype on Match.Com

It’s time for another fabulous blog hop put together by the tireless Deborah Nam-Krane! If you haven’t already, please check out Morgan’s entry yesterday. Our theme this time around is….

Reality vs. the Hype!

Nowhere is this more true than in the world of online dating. Before I got divorced, I wrote about books, movies, pop culture. Then life threw me a curve and suddenly I’m back out there. Since I met my ex-husband in 1989, a lot changed in the dating world while I was busy doing other things. In college, I met my boyfriends at parties, in the dorm, in classes, through friends. Even when I was married, I had some FOMO when I looked at my single friends’ profiles and watched them evaluate the available men in town. There seemed to be so many attractive guys on those sites. Surely I’d find Mr. Right right away!

Then I found myself on several of these sites – Match, OKCupid, Plenty of Fish – and learned first hand… Don’t believe the hype!

For instance:

The hype: He’s 50 years old.
The reality: He’s 64… he “accidentally” inputted the wrong date and Match won’t let you change it. (This last part is true. But there are so many of this type of accident that it’s obviously not an accident.)

The hype: He lives for the water, always out on his boat.
The reality: A friend let him borrow his boat once. But he’s planning on buying one for himself someday! (I really don’t want a boater but a lot of women around here are)

The hype: He’s a cyclist/paddle boarder/runner
The reality: He did all those things before hip and knee injuries. Now he hangs out on the couch all day.

The hype: What great pictures!
The reality: Too bad they’re 10 years old.

The hype: He never smokes.
The reality: Because his mouth is full of chewing tobacco.

The hype: He has three great kids but his life doesn’t revolve around them.
The reality: That’s because none of his baby mama’s will let him have anything to do with them.

The hype: After a fulfilling career, he has a part-time job at a golf course to keep busy and because he loves the sport.
The reality: After he retired in lieu of getting fired, he went through all his money and this gig was all he could get. Good thing he likes it because he’ll be working there till he dies.

The hype: He’s a cultured guy who likes theatre, literary fiction, and classical music.
The reality: Hockey and NASCAR!

The hype: He’ll take care of your pet like it’s his own.
The reality: Calling the SPCA when you leave the house for longer than a half hour.

The hype: He’s Mr. Fixer Upper and wants to help you with your home repairs.
The reality: He doesn’t fix up his own place either!

The hype: Jami is going on these crazy online dates and writing blog posts so you don’t have to!
The reality: Jami met a great guy on Match.com and is no longer on any of the sites! She’ll probably need to find something else to blog about!

Don’t forget to tune in tomorrow for Caroline’s entry!

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Match Who?

It was our 5th date in less than two weeks since we’d met on Match. A whirlwind, even though I said I didn’t want to get too involved too soon. We were walking on the beach just before sunset, holding hands. A more romantic setting could not be imagined.

Suddenly he stopped, turned to me, and said in a very serious voice, “I have to ask you a question.”

My stomach plummeted to my knees. I really liked him; he was everything I was looking for, and most importantly, there were no red flags. Still, I was serious about not wanting to get too involved too soon. I’d made that mistake before. What was he going to ask? What should I say?

I nodded.

“What’s your last name?”

Ahh, the logistics of the Match meet-up. I wasn’t hiding anything. I told him. I even told him how to spell it.
But I didn’t mention that on Match, I’d deliberately spelled my first name wrong… and he’d been spelling it wrong ever since.
If things work out, he’ll learn soon enough!

Thursday, November 7, 2019

On the internet, no one knows you’re a dog

I met him on Match. He was cute, and local, and my age, and a liberal. I “liked” him. He messaged me back. We went out a few times; I was starting to like him, even though he said he didn’t like to talk because he was a “doer.” I didn’t call him on how insulting that was.

Then he emailed me an invitation. His email address contained a year that, if it was his birth year, made him nine years older than he’d claimed to be on Match. When I casually asked him about it, hoping that the year was a sports milestone or something else that would keep him my age, he brushed the comment away. “Oh, yeah. I’ve been meaning to tell you about that.”

It seems that most men dating online do not know how to correctly enter in their birth years. In their profile, they bashfully explain that they are actually 10 years older, or 15, but they had made a mistake and Match wouldn’t let them change it. Some are honest enough to admit they deliberately lie because the women they had been attracting were too old. Others wait until the first message or meeting.

I tried to pretend it didn’t bother me. After all, he didn’t seem his age, and I probably would have hit the like button anyway.

Probably.

But when he called me the next day to “let me off the hook,” he blamed me. I had made him feel uncomfortable. I suppose because I called him out for lying.

For the life of me, I can’t understand why people lie about facts on their profile that are so easily uncovered. Do they really think that once they reveal they’re ten years older, or only separated instead of divorced, or twice married instead of just once, that the object of their affection will look past the lie because they’re already so attached?

Maybe they will. Maybe I expect too much. Maybe I should pretend to be five years younger (of course that would mean lying about my son’s age, too), a marathon runner, an experienced boater.

Nah.

I’d rather be alone as myself than with another person as a lie.

Friday, October 25, 2019

Direct from Plenty of Fish!

Most messages aren't worth writing a blog about. They're either "Hi, pretty lady," or a more appropriate, "I like your profile, please check out mine." (Most of these haven't actually read my profile, otherwise they'd realize I don't want to drive 30 miles to meet someone.)

And then today I got this:



I'm going to be an old lady with 20 cats...

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

It’s a Small World…

My former brother-in-law and his wife have the kind of messy relationship one usually sees only on certain types of soap operas. As such, they are always on or off. Last week she called me – they are off again. And now she’s on Match. (We live in the same Florida county, BTW.) So she’s describing her latest date, and the details sound familiar, and I ask his name, and sure enough…

It’s this guy!

Cue the Disney soundtrack, folks!

Since she doesn’t care about politics, it could be a good match except for the aforementioned messy situation with my ex-BIL. And perhaps if he’d been more upfront with me, I’d clue him in, but he wasn’t, so my loyalty lies completely with her.

This situation was bound to happen sometime, and will probably happen again. My sister-in-law and I are in the same age range, and I have plenty of single female friends my age who are also dating online. We might not be looking for the same type of guy, but the guys don’t seem to be that picky.

Right before the High Holy Days, I heard from not one but two Jewish doctors! Alas, they were both too far from me to make meeting worthwhile. It seemed like a cosmic joke from the universe.

I went on two meet-and-greets last week – the first one was with a jerk, but the second one turned out to be a nice guy. But a really busy nice guy. I hope I’ll see him again.

Today’s my birthday. Wishing for a publishing contract and a guy!

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Cyrano, Anyone?

“I think I’m pretty easy to get along with. I think it’s because I like to listen just as much as I like to talk. People find it easy to communicate with me and I think that’s a big reason why.”

Match has a section for people to describe themselves “in their own words.” I have a hunch that they also provide templates to those who don’t know enough about themselves to do it, because I find the previous description crops up over and over again.

Match must also give people suggestions for a bucket list, because is it really possible that so many people want to ride in hot air balloons before they die?

Here’s a message I got on Plenty of Fish over the weekend: “A committed Democrat! Well now, committed is a pretty good word for it! I can overlook quite a bit for a nice smile. 😊 Especially since I really don’t like wasting my time with politics.” No, I did not respond. But I did read his profile, which earned me another message from him: “caught my favorite crazy democrat looking say hi.”

It’s scary out here in dating land. Although the snarky part of me wanted to reply with, “I don’t like wasting my time with assholes,” it’s safer just to not reply at all.

Speaking of Plenty of Fish, they appear to have added a new feature in which they message you with “It’s a match!” and a link to someone’s profile, which implies that you’ve already liked this person. I fell for it twice before I realized there was no way in hell I would have liked someone who dropped out of high school who lives on the other side of the bay. Thanks a lot, POF.

New message! Just “H” Didn’t even take the time to completely spell out “Hi.” Wow.

Why am I doing this again? The new TV season has started!

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

With Friends Like These…

A few months ago, fresh off my latest break-up, I began chatting with a guy on Match. The conversation went so well online, I asked if he wanted to meet me in a half-hour at the local wine bar. There we talked for another few hours. The chemistry was great. I told him I had jumped into my last relationship much too quickly, and was determined not to do that again. He called when I got home. Since we had a few people in common, we became Facebook friends – something I never do after just a first meeting. But it seemed like we were destined for something good, if not a romance, at least a strong friendship.

We went on two more dates that week, meeting up at First Friday and having dinner, and then brunch on Sunday. He went out of town for work, but texted me every morning. “Good morning.”

Just good morning. I’d get these texts every day, but no plans for anything else. Then slowly I realized that all our in-person meetings had been initiated by me.

When Father’s Day weekend passed without seeing him, I rationalized it as he had a visiting child in town. The texts came less frequently, but when he said he missed me, I proposed a Saturday night date. (He’d been out of town with work every week.)

On Facebook, he started complaining he was sick. So I wasn’t surprised when I checked in with him Saturday morning to hear that he was too sick to go out. He was really disappointed at not seeing me, but what he had was awful and he didn’t want to risk giving it to me.

No worries. I had an early dinner with a friend and then went home, thinking it was going to rain. It didn’t.

I checked Facebook around ten. He had also been on Facebook – to check in to a local downtown hot spot, along with the people we had in common.
It was middle school all over again. It was Marcia “something suddenly came up” Brady. My cheeks literally burned as I read this casual update, thinking about what an idiot I was. Being left out by the cool kids. Maybe they were laughing at me.

I should have unfriended him right then and there. Instead, I updated my own status: “Should have gone out tonight. Everyone’s checking in to fun places.” And waited for an apology that never came.

I never heard from him directly again. (He liked a few of my posts and asked me about a movie I’d checked into; I didn’t answer that.)

That was three months ago. I got over it, of course, but remained disappointed that what I thought was going to be a great connection turned out to be a dud; that who I thought was a great guy was just another phony.

I didn’t unfriend him. I should have.

Yesterday he started posting vacation pictures with his girlfriend.