Online dating.

Eeshk.

I realize in our current society, online dating does not carry the same stigma it used to. No longer are you a geeky loser if you hope to meet the love of your life through a dating site! No longer are you lame if you believe your soul mate is lurking somewhere in the deep, dark recesses of the Cyber Cafe. Take heart, online daters! Society has made room for you and you no longer should feel like an outcast.

Except maybe I do a *little bit*. I’m actually supremely uncomfortable with the whole thing. See, I don’t believe in “the love of my life” or “soul mates.” Seriously. I think the whole idea of one person for everyone is too limiting; in fact, I’m sure of it. How can I be certain? If there is truly just one person for everyone, this means one day I’d have to choose between Kevin Bacon and Keanu Reeves. And I’m not comfortable with that choice. I mean, really. Would you be able to decide between those two?

Indeed.

Another problem with Online Dating for me is this: the moment I submitted my online profile, I unleashed my inner Judgy McJudgerson. Every time a guy sends me a message, I immediately study his profile to figure out what character flaw/personality glitch has forced this poor soul into the Online Dating Arena (which is really a lot like the ancient Roman arenas, what with the men who think they are gladiators and those who are just lions, ready to rip you apart like the piece of tasty meat you are). Can I use my nearly 3 years of psychology study to analyze his profile and diagnose the personality disorders that have led to the poor guy’s single status and subsequent foray into the Online Arena? And beyond that, is it a personality disorder? Or is it just POOR GRAMMAR?? (Like the one guy who told me he wasn’t looking for a gold digger, or someone who wants to “meet me a the bank.” Ooookay. I try not to meet any first dates “a” the bank. But maybe he had a bad experience with a girl who wanted to meet “a” the bank. Or maybe it was because he signed his emails with “Peace and Grace, aight???” Seriously.)

I realize this Judgy stance makes me a HUGE hypocrite. I’m in the Online Dating Arena as well. But I’m *different*. I don’t *need* to be Online Dating, I just happen to be exploring it as a possibility.

Lame.

But seriously, it’s a little bit scary out there. Don’t believe me? Allow me to offer a small, bulleted list of some of best moments of my Online experience:

-The guy who insisted on signing all emails, “I am a Golden God.” I get the reference, sir, and appreciate it even. But believe me, a Golden God would *never* use LOL as much as you do. In fact, he wouldn’t even use it a little bit. A Golden God would recognize LOL for what it is: Pure Evil.

-The guy who emailed me at 11:00 on a Saturday night, asking if I wanted to get together in 30 minutes. He had never emailed me before. Ever. Thank you for that, Mr. This is Totally NOT a Booty Call (email). A true gentleman would have given me 45 minutes.

-The man who (aside from being 30 years older than I am) forgot he had already emailed me and sent me his *form* email again. And again. And again one more time. But you know how the elderly can be forgetful…

-The guy who told me he “understood my soul” and explained (a LOT) how he likes to “find beauty in all things.” No, his name was not Justin Bobby. This fool also accused me of taking advantage of him for free food when I told him I didn’t want to go on a third date with him. AFTER I had offered (seriously, and three times) to pay my half of the meal. Assclown.

-The guy who talked about how he saw polygamy as a viable life option on our first (and last) date. He also went on to tell me what he was looking for in a wife and how he believed I had all those qualities. Sadly, as it was our last date, I never got to find out which wife I’d be.

See? It’s frightening out there. I can’t get past the whole idea of meeting someone and *automatically* being on a date with them. One guy (who was actually quite lovely) agreed with me and said he just preferred to think of the first date as “random coffee with a new acquaintance.” Or something like that.

But you know, this whole Online Dating Extravaganza has been good for me. It’s gotten me out and about in a new city. Because we all know if it were up to me, I’d be sitting on the couch, pantsless, watching reruns of Gilmore Girls and eating Halloween candy, one piece after another, and throwing the wrappers on the floor.

At least this way I get a free meal now and again.

As Phoebe says, “A girl’s gotta eat.”

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