The advent of social media, dating sites and photo texts generally act as gate-keepers to dissuade undesirables from encroaching upon our personal space.
Much as we would all aspire to be like Belle and accept the Beast, most of us are not locked in a castle without options.
In fact, the Internet may have given us too many options. Recall Ms. Trisha Verdner who claimed some 413 online dates before finding “The One.”
Apparently one of her dates was a woman posing as a man.
Um, excuse me?
What happened to good old-fashioned intuition?
It seems to me that a simple phone conversation and a few well placed questions could have weed-whacked half the field including the one gift-wrapped in gender confusion.
I may not have requested a photo of the Guido but at least I knew my date was a man.
I would venture to say that when it comes to casing potential dates online, Facebook offers a more honest venue than a dating site. Case in point–
DO YOUR RESEARCH
I met a handsome veterinarian flying up to Alaska in consideration of a lifestyle change from southern California. Now, anyone considering this move is either on a serious inner journey or running from the law but I was intrigued enough (and he was cute enough) to accept his friend request on Facebook.
The first post I see on his wall is entitled, “Feel the Love”–
Followed by a Bible-length rant from his father about what a serious disappointment he is. Now I might have felt sorry for him if I wasn’t mortified by such an extreme lack of social graces.
One does not, should not, air dirty laundry in a public forum filled with the minutiae of party pics and what baby had for breakfast. This letter should have found its way into the hands of a capable shrink instead of the masses.
Were I to become involved with him, this is exactly where I could expect our private matters to end up.
Given his next post, dear old Dad may have had reason to be disappointed.
“I don’t usually ask for help but I really need money to move on to the next phase of my journey and I’m not getting anywhere paying credit card interest. If any of you can help me I can pay you back $300 a month, interest free…”
Not only would I be future Facebook fodder but I’d be paying his Internet bill so he could post it?
READ BETWEEN THE LINES
Most women — and men — who have at least tried online dating discover how to maneuver the dating minefield (except perhaps, Ms. Trisha Verdner).
The hot guy or gal pressing up against jagged white space once occupied by your predecessor? It doesn’t take a master’s thesis in psychology to realize this is not a promising omen for you.
Social drinker? This pronouncement coupled with booze-infested photos foreshadows a romantic vacation for two to Cabos Wabo where your date will surely pass out on the beach and wake up a rocked lobster needing medical attention.
Yea, the life of the party alright. Just not yours.
Okay men, I admit this part is primarily for women but I’m sure there are equal opportunity complaints. I’d love to hear your stories so “comment” me. I digress…
Men think women are so bad with measurements.
We may not know what 50 meters or 100 yards is but when it comes to inches?
Oh honey, this is our territory.
When a few inches in the right place can make all the difference between staring at the ceiling or falling asleep with a smile, trust me, we’re going to make it our business to know inches.
But right now I’m talking about height given that particular *ahem* feature is not on the checklist and even if it were? Right.
Men would lie. And who could blame them?
Because you know it was a man who came up with “it’s not about size it’s about the motion in the ocean” and I bet the very same man came up with “I wish I was an Oscar Mayer Weiner.”
survival of the fittest
Perhaps this has less to do with moral code and more to do with primal behavior.
The theory survival of the fittest refers to a natural selection process which comes about through both natural and evolving physical features through the ongoing competition within and between species for food, space and a mate. Charles Darwin’s theory was primarily concerned with biological evolution which was later expanded to include economic evolution by British philosopher, Herbert Spencer.
This explains a few things. Namely, why men are sensitive about a few inches whether it involves the afore-mentioned unmentionable or HEIGHT.
Because men lie about height.
Why? Perhaps the taller caveman could attain the most desired fruit on the branches. He could also reach bigger, stronger branches to sharpen into better weapons and thus, had both the energy and cache to fight predators.
I’m betting it was a 6′ tall caveman.
Whatever the reason for this benchmark height, shorter men seem to forget that somewhere in the lineage, they survived, too.
6′ tall and above, we know what we’re getting.
Below? Anything listed under 6’0 is likely going to be a few inches less. If it reads 5’11” we’re staring into the eyes of 5’9.”
For the record, one of the biggest movie stars in the world is 5’9.” You think Tom Cruise cares what you think?
He has also evolved economically to a very desirable way of living.
Which feeds into Spencer’s overall take on survival of the fittest and economic evolution quite nicely. This also explains why a man lacking a few inches may post pictures of himself posing in a BMW 7-series or a backyard pool the size of Lake Tahoe.
Oh, we also know inches in a sneaky form called “pounds.”
C’mon, women live and die by pounds every single day in the United States. So don’t try to put one over on us by saying “a few extra pounds” or “stocky” when we’re sipping on wheat grass and walking down grocery store aisles of junk food with longing or indulging with our favorite guys, Ben & Jerry, after an epic date FAIL.
For the record, a few extra pounds is three– Not 20.
There’s nothing wrong with extra pounds so long as we know what’s waddling is the size of a guinea pig, not a small dog.
This goes for both men and women.
Be honest. It’s so refreshing!
NEVER VIOLATE the CARDINAL RULE(S)
Even should one manage to become an expert at reading through the lines, there’s always the likelihood of violating THE cardinal sin of Internet dating. Hold that thought.
Online he looks good. On the phone she sounds good. No she sounds GREAT.
How can someone be so fucking attractive and intelligent and witty and…
You enjoy talking so much that you’ve been chatting for months now.
Remember that thought? The #1 Cardinal Rule:
The rule of chemistry.
This can only be determined in person. You don’t even know if you have an accurate photo of this person! Maybe you’ve been talking with her sister or his roommate this whole time. But you do it anyway…
You commit to dinner.
This is the RULE #2 of Online Dating: Never commit to dinner on a first date.
This is way too much time to spend with someone you’ve never met. Waaaay.
You may find he elicits as much of a response in you as a cardboard cut-out and you haven’t even ordered yet.
Better that she be a seat warmer in a cafe. A space filler between picking up dry-cleaning and a Seinfield rerun.
When he becomes a serious obstacle positioned between you and the door, crazy things happen.
Imaginary phone conversations occur.
A parent dies unexpectedly.
A friend has escaped to the woman’s shelter and she needs you.
The waiter is an ex-boyfriend and he wants you back. Yes, he’s gay NOW because you drove him to the other side.
See? He’s looking over here.
And you will make your escape however you can else you will end up in the situation I did, sitting across from the Guido as he pulled his black silk shirt open to reveal that my name was tattooed across a red heart on his chest.
That was the night my Grandpa died. Again.