After my latest adventure into the world of Internet dating, I have realized that for the time being, I am done with it, for now.
It’s not that I think I’m better than all that, or that I look down on anyone who still subscribes to e-match-chemistry-date-fish, because believe me, I have tried them all. I have read about their individual methodologies, and how THEY will find the one for you . . . hell, they all but promise that if you stick it out long enough, you will meet the one, on their site. They have testimonials from “real” people who met through their site, and talk about their doubts, but found the love of their lives on e-match-chemistry-date-fish. For those of us with an ounce of hope still left, we can’t help but feel drawn to the possibility.
They’re out there . . . I just know it, and maybe I’ll find them here. . .
You might, but you probably won’t. Know why?
Here are a few reasons . . .
1. Woody Allen once said, “Ninety percent of life is just showing up.”
“Showing up” shouldn’t be taken literally in this context. When I think of showing up, I’m not just talking about the act of simply showing up. I’m talking about the culmination of experiences, heart, real courage, sincere investment, and the commitment to the process of internet dating that brings you to the table genuinely open to meeting other people.
In other words,
Being on the field, doesn’t mean you’re playing the game.
Most people don’t show up. They don’t mean it. They’re not really there to really meet people; they’re there to see what else is out there, and who might come to them. Most people are on the field, but they’re not playing the game. We’re all guilty of this at one time or another. The problem is, it’s impossible to tell who is just standing on the field, and who is out there to play, and the field is littered with thousands of “standers”.
2. Internet dating is shallow, and the sun is hot.
This is an inescapable truth. I have known people who do really well on the dating sites. You know what? They’re really good looking, and they would do well regardless. For those of us who rate between a 4 and 7 on the proverbial 10 point scale (which is 95% of us, by the way. Yes, even you), it’s kind of hopeless.
YOU ARE BETTER THAN YOU APPEAR ON A COMPUTER SCREEN.
Most people are. The problem is, we never get the chance to show the online dating world who we are because it rarely gets that far, so we end up a little frustrated. We know we’re better than we appear on e-match-chemistry-date-fish, but it’s damn near impossible for anyone to put that down on paper because no matter how we try to write it down . . . there is more to each of us than we could ever express through a words pecked on a computer keyboard.
3. E-match-chemistry-date-fish is a business.
These companies have one thing on their minds, making money. How they make the money may differ, but every business has a most basic goal. . . .make money. I’m not here to argue on endlessly about the evil nature of corporations, but the fact of the matter is that these companies don’t really care about whether you meet anyone. While they almost promise you’ll meet someone on their site, they won’t guarantee it, they can’t. They only want to convince you of the possibility so that they can get your money.
I admit, all of this may be a bit cynical, but as I said before, it’s not that you CAN’T meet someone on the Internet, it’s that, in my opinion, it’s more likely that you won’t.
Now, I may be cynical, but I am also an optimist. If I have a problem with something, before I rant and rave in public, I like to come up with some solutions. An action plan, if you will.
Have you given up too, but are still unsure as to what to do next?
It’s not hopeless.
Here are some possible solutions.
1. Speed Dating.
I love speed dating. It’s not terribly different than on-line dating in many different ways, but it’s less expensive, and at least you’re getting to meet people face to face. If nothing else, you know the people you meet are, at the very least, showing up and putting themselves on the line. Worst-case scenario, you’ll have some funny stories to tell at the next cocktail party.
No joke, I once asked a woman while on a speed date which celebrity she would most like to see naked . . . she gave me a name I didn’t recognize . . . Turns out the celebrity she would most like to see naked is . . . a televangelist. The remaining 3 minutes of the speed date were a bit awkward, but I have a story to tell. I also met a foot model (yes, you read that correctly, foot model) who was pursuing her doctorate in literature.
Stories, folks, stories.
A person with a good story is always more interesting than a person without one, and you can’t get good stories without getting out there and experiencing your life.
2. Get Out There.
Go DO something that interests you. Not sure what interests you, or where to find people who like Medieval Basket Weaving . . . Go to you’re local free paper, and find out what’s happening in your town (you’d be surprised), or if all else fails, try www.meetup.com. There are thousands of meetup groups, who do all kinds of things.
If you’re getting out there and actually doing things, then you get the opportunity to meet people and show them who you really are. Plus you are actively participating in your life with other people who are actively participating in theirs.
Let me repeat, there is nothing wrong with Internet dating. I’ve done it. These days, I just feel like meeting people in a more traditional setting. If you’re still sold on the online dating world, it’s ok. You have hope . . . I admire that very much because I have hope, too, and it’s not always easy to keep it alive.
If you want to meet me, however, you’re gonna need to get out there, do something and meet me the old fashioned way . . . for now.