Friday, July 15, 2011

SOMETHING OFF ABOUT ONLINE DATING




Am I too picky or is it a case of slim pickings?

After almost two and a half years on Plenty of Fish, the well has run dry. Seems there really is a fish shortage. Maybe the site name was a bad omen for me. As a vegetarian, I can't even cope with catch-and-release.

I'd say I've gone for coffee with about thirty guys. It's a good thing I like coffee and even better that I have my own environmentally friendly mug. Otherwise, what a waste.

Any shot of dating is pretty much out for the summer. I'm back to living a ferry ride away from Vancouver and, while I have no qualms about zipping back and forth--a date is so much more (potentially) exciting than a trip to work--it seems my location is an instant turnoff. Right up there with bad breath, Crocs and an Ann Coulter Fan Club membership, a residence outside the West End or beyond walking distance to Commercial is an excuse to immediately move on. Other photos, other possibilities.

Even I have my location limits. Last week I received a new message in my inbox. Oh, hooray. The fellah didn't even have a photo. Yes, faceless man, let your words dazzle me. I clicked on the message, a quick, complimentary note about my looks and my profile. Gee, thanks, Cyrano. Still, I'd call it a woeful woo. The guy lived in Fredericton. For those of you with Canadian geography challenges, that's 5,343 kilometers away. I'm afraid the coffee would be cold by the time I got there. I did, however, follow perfect etiquette, replying with a thank you and wishing him the best of luck finding someone on his side of the Great Lakes.

Yep, the fish are that scarce these days. Plenty of Fish, your name deceives. Why not be honest with your moniker. Like Martin Short. Or Snooki. (Okay, I have no idea how to define a "snooki" but it fits, doesn't it?)

Purely for the sake of research, I just logged back in to POF and conducted my standard search: image only, within fifty miles of Vancouver, 40-49...Aside here: oh, how I hate the 46 year olds who indicate they are seeking someone from 18-35. (I'm talking to you, mister "Looking for the Guy Next Door".) My search came up with 343 guys.

Jackpot, right? 343 sure beats the zero in my community. For a newbie, that might result in a lot of clicking on profiles with safe titles like "It's in the chemistry" and "Excited for Life". (Poor "HARD-ON Friendly" seems to be on the wrong site.)

I hadn't done a search in a month so, again, purely for the sake of research, I perused the search results. Reminded me of trading hockey cards when I was a kid: seen him, seen him, seen him. It's a rapid browse. I stopped at 250 since the remaining guys hadn't been on the site in the past month. Either they had the wisdom to give up or they're too consumed with the latest iPhone app. By my count, I came across a dozen guys I'd previously messaged and either never received a response from or blew me off before any talk of coffee. Three past coffee companions popped up. I clicked on three new-to-me profiles and, as a research endeavor, went ahead an messaged two.

I'm not holding my breath. And I'm not deleting my account. Heck, no. The desperate must keep all options open! But maybe it's time to have a wandering eye on the World Wide Web. Where to next?

Next week, I'll share my first impressions in signing up again on one of the other dating sites, one that surely has a few guys like me but, from past recollection, is more populated with the likes of HARD-ON Friendly. It's difficult to keep an open mind when I'm already cringing. Gotta try. The alternative is static whining into the blogosphere. (Oh, yeah, sorry 'bout that.)

2 comments:

Rick Modien said...

Go ahead and whine, buddy. I hear you.

So a couple things come to mind in your challenges trying to find a husband (if I may put it that way):

1. (I'm going to be honest.) I'm sure you've heard about the Law of Attraction. Well, it seems to me, because you're jaded about the online dating routine (and dating in general), prospective husbands can smell it a mile away. Perhaps you're giving off that energy (I'm just saying), men feel it, and they want no part of you. Worth looking into. What we put out we get back. I realize it's hard to be positive, but what's the alternative? (Believe it or not, I'm trying to be helpful here.)

2. Most, if not all, of the men who submit profiles to these online dating sites (or that you encounter on the street) are broken in some way or other (and, believe me, there are so many ways they can be broken). This is one of the biggest reasons why I continue to write my blog. Gay men who have come to terms with their homosexuality and love themselves = better prospects for a relationship for you and anyone else who's serious about one. I'm there for you.

So, you can't change anyone else, you can only change yourself. What can you do to prepare yourself to meet men and to make your experience more rewarding?

Hey, you know what? I was where you are. I know how hard it is. But there's only so much you can do. Stay positive. Work on yourself. Don't get sucked into an attitude or experience that's not you.

Did I help even a little bit? I sincerely hope so.

Thanks for sharing pieces of yourself. You made me laugh, but I feel the pain behind the humor. I'm with you, honest I am.

Rural Gay said...

Hi Rick. I think a lot of humor comes from something darker. I laugh at myself and my predicament regularly. It's not all bad. I'm just glad that a little humor comes off in the writing. Otherwise, the whining might be insufferable!

Did you ever watch "Sex in the City"? I loved it. One of the things my gay friends and single girlfriends would do is talk about which character personified us the most. I always thought I was like Miranda--jaded, cynical, protective. Friends who knew me best, however, said I was Charlotte--hopeful, even expectant, waiting for the right guy to come along. And oh so proper!

In a blog, the Miranda elements are more likely to come out (for me, at least). On a date, I'm not that way. I think I'm positive, a good listener, supportive. If anything, I come off as too reserved because I am very shy and it's hard to fully put myself out there. (I certainly don't think any of my humor comes out.)

Who knows? Maybe I am giving off a negative vibe (although I don't think so and I can be extremely analytical). I think the problem is twofold: (1) There are indeed a lot of broken guys out there...and bad listeners to boot! and (2) There just isn't a physical attraction. Even with a photo (or a handful of pics) to start with, I know there have been times when I haven't measured up to his standards of attraction, or vice versa. It's that domino thing: He likes me, but I like him, but "him" likes someone else.

Finding the right match is filled with challenges. If nothing else, it gives me something to write about!