3/10/13

Caucasian Cancer . . .

No. This is not a shot from a dating site but is, instead,
the funniest result I got when I Googled "Funny mug shot."
Not long after I moved out of the house and accepted that my marriage was over, my absolutely absurd and I-am-dubious-she-even-has-any-certifications shrink suggested that I try online dating.

NOT "dating" or "going to a bar to meet someone" or "asking friends to set me up with someone" but online dating. Very specific, yes? And why would she suggest this? Simple, she explained. My brain is overly analytic and yet I am gut-driven. I (and the women of the world) would never survive the process if I were to actually try to just date in the real world. Besides, she continued . . . the point is NOT to find someone and fall deeply in love - the point is to see if my brain can spark an interest in another woman or if I can find any one out there that stimulates me (the essence of me - I have Google for finding things that entice my simpler parts). Did it work? Yes. Candidly, it did.

But it was not easy . . . I found myself poring over 100s of women. NONE of whom had expressed any interest in me. 99.9% of which would not have any interest in me anyway. They were, instead, looking for something totally different than what I was looking for. They wanted love. Or a quick date. Or a hook up. Or a hybrid of the above. They did NOT want to simply be evaluated as part of some homework assignment for an emotionally crippled man. They certainly did not want to be judged. But judge I did, sadly (tis' my way according to a good friend of mine).

NAMES:

  • I loved the names women gave themselves (Ready2Luv46? Could be her age or maybe 45 people before her also HAD to have that name.) Also odd how many corresponded to Twitter handles.
  • No, no. No. You cannot do something flirty like "CurvesToHoldTight" and then talk about how much you love G-d and how you can't stand game playing or men just looking for sex. No. You can't.

DESCRIPTORS: 

  • Weird incorporation of their astrology in to their names and profiles (One headline read "Caucasian Cancer Seeks Frequent Smoker" (I can't make this up!)).
  • If you are 72 years old . . . you should not be trying online dating. Period. Shhh-shh. No explanation needed. Shut down the profile. And take down the selfies of you with your peers. Too much temptation.
  • If you say "no" to "Wants kids" in the bullets, you can't then elaborate down below about your dream to have five children . . . of the two legged variety. (This woman had seven cats. Seven cats. Seven. Cats.)
  • Yeah . . . the "ideal first date" that includes dinner, drinks, dancing, and maybe a concert or the rodeo" - how about coffee? Or lunch? Or any ONE of the above five things?" Want to look complicated and needy? Propose six or seven hours as a first meeting. 

PHOTOS:

  • One woman actually had 31 "selfies" (19 of which were just subtle angle shifts of each other in her own bathroom, with poor lighting, and with the toilet seat up in the background). The other 12 were clearly set up to emphasize her cleavage (which I am FINE with). 
  • Another woman had 10 pictures of various people (Kids? Friends? Family? Ex-lovers? Strangers?) that were not captioned or identified in any way. Also - bad Glamour Shots are alive and well, friends.
  • Captioning a photo of yourself in thigh highs, high heels, a school girl skirt and a cardigan sweater with "Revenge is sweet, bastard." does not really tie in to how you're "Mature and civilized with your exes."
  • Also, ladies, let's try to not have our name tags and the name of the medical clinic where we work in the shots. That's not really good for privacy/safety. 
  • Do I need to see a picture of your three adult children? I don't know that knowing what your offspring grew in to helps me decide if I want to go to dinner, drinks, dancing, a concert, and a rodeo. But I'd look at that picture DURING drinks, as appropriate.

QUALIFIERS: 


  • Don't tell me you're tired of "stupid men" who can't communicate if your profile is full of typos, fragments, run-ons, and slang, shortcuts, abbreviated, and words that only teenagers with texting disorders can understand.
  • Save a little bit of mystery. If you give me your entire life's story including what hospital you were born at, there is no reason to ever meet you. How would that go . . . "No need to tell me anything about yourself. I know it ALL. What are you doing tomorrow?" Also, feel free to take liberties with the body description category. I think it actually speaks to confidence if you're overweight and you say "A few extra pounds." but don't say you "need" a man in to fitness to help motivate you to lose weight. That's a very different personal ad . . . for a personal trainer. 
  • Presented without context or cynical criticism: "I'm dun plyaing around. If your just looking for some durte sex, click elswehre, a**hold. Im a real women and I want the real dele - wite horse; doors opent; Xs & Os: big hard c*ck but onyl fur me." 

I looked at every, single photo. And the backgrounds of them. And I recognized a few of the women. If I'm being honest, there were a handful of women that DID catch my attention in a positive way. There would be something curious or comical in their profile, a photo of them looking genuinely happy that I admired, or excellent sentence structure and flirty subtext that made me giddy. It didn't matter. I was not who/what they wanted and I was not looking for what they were so . . . it ended there.

Don't hate me, Carrie, for "judging." Yes. I dismissed. I criticized. I judged. BUT the lasting "judgement" on each woman was positive. Each of them had the courage to summarize their life in to a preset framework, to outline who and what they needed (like any of us ever know) and to upload pictures of themselves in whatever context/position/framing/lighting they thought would best reflect who they were and what they were looking for. They are all far more courageous than me (I have nearly a decade of time with a woman I could never figure out or be figured out by) and I hope they find whatever happiness they seek. And/or learn how to "brand" and "market" themselves more effectively. Hopefully both. And in whatever order is best for everyone involved.

Oh, and to clarify how the experiment "worked" . . . just enough to tell me that I'm not ready to date. I'm not in a place where sharing time and space is healthy. I came to realize I may actually be a Caucasian cancer myself. Temporarily, I hope.