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Chasing The American Dream

August 25, 2005


I think I mentioned to you recently that I signed back up at JDate and after only one month, I decided to cancel my subscription. Reasons why? Simple, really. One, the women I seem to be interested in ignore me, and two, the women I have absolutely no interest in bombard me with emails. Overachieving. I think most of us onliners are guilty of it. We try to talk to people that are probably younger and better looking than what we can give in return. I’m guilty. I’m friggin’ 43 with a receding hair line. It’s not likely a 31 year-old woman is going to respond to me because she sees ‘43’ and it’s all over even before she opens the email. It doesn’t matter how young I am inside, a number is a number. For me, I’m not looking for ugly women in their 40s. Can I put it more plainly than that? Yes, you can sing it Carly, “You’re so vain...” Women I try to contact probably think the same thing about me. And so goes the life of us online daters, and I’ve had enough. Vacation time, I as I said in a previous post. But on my way out the door, I’ve got two very different stories for you that represent what’s wrong with online dating.

Story one. A couple of months ago, I was searching JDate to see if anyone had viewed me lately. I’d deactivated my membership so it had been a while since I last checked. There were 10 or so views. Nine were the typical 40+ers trying to overachieve, but one of them caught my eye. She was 38, divorced, had a three-year old boy and she was quite attractive. She had a very down-to-earth profile and I became intrigued. I decided to gamble the $35 monthly fee for a chance to talk to her. So I signed back up and emailed her. I didn’t honestly expect to hear back from her, but she wrote back that same day.

She seemed very sweet and we got along quite well. We emailed daily or every other day. The only downside was the fact that her listed location wasn’t accurate in the fact that she intended to move locally toward the end of the year. Still, she was only two hours away. She was to be in town on business one weekend so we agreed to meet. That weekend came and went and I never heard from her. It turned out her mother was ill so she couldn’t make it. OK, fair enough. I continued emailing her, but as usual, it was always me doing the initiating. Her replies were reduced to only once a week. And then her once-a-weekers were reduced to quickies like, “Thanks for the email. Hope you had a nice weekend.” Ouch. That last email hurt. I suck at email interpretation, but it seemed to me something or someone else had grabbed her attention. So I wrote her one last email telling her that I didn’t want my emails to be a burden, and if she didn’t feel like responding to just flat out tell me. Well, I never heard from her again. I went basically from the penthouse to the outhouse for no apparent reason. POOF, she was gone. No explanation or anything. Punk’d.

Story two. My JDate cancellation hasn’t taken effect yet. Someone emailed me, and she said she liked my profile. She was actually attractive which again is quite a change from the normal dregs I usually get. So I was writing her back Sunday when she IM'd me. We IM'd for an hour or so. During the hour some red flags went up on my end. She was misspelling a lot of words. I asked her what she did and she told me she was a hairdresser (not that there's anything wrong with that). The biggest red flag of all was that she surprised me by giving me her phone number. I think she's like the third or fourth woman to give me her number upon first communication and it has always turned into a disaster. And this was no exception. She told me to call her tomorrow (Monday) so I did on my way home.

We talked for maybe 15 minutes or so. It wasn’t going well. I usually suck anyway when it comes to the phone. I'm usually 'well established' by plenty of emails by the time the stage two phone conversation takes place. Well anyway, it took about 5 minutes for me to know that this girl wasn't it for me. She came off as being very Jappy. Being the Jewish guy that I am, you would think I could handle that, but it’s a total turn-off for me. I knew I wasn't going to ask her out. So we're talking and then out of the blue she says, "Can you hold, I have another call." It surprised me at first because you usually hear that little click when someone has call waiting, but I didn't hear anything. I said ‘yes,’ and she came right back and said she had to take the call and that she'd call me right back. I never heard from her again! I was actually laughing to myself because that's a helluva move. I hadn't ever thought of that one so I give her style points for her creativity. Punk’d. I wonder if the online dating guru has experienced this move before?


  • What about dating cute women in their 40's?


    A 41-year-old.

    By Blogger Vendelascity, at 9:51 PM, August 25, 2005  

  • Dude, your issues are SLIGHT. You should consider yourself lucky that you haven't had to deal with TRULY TRULY effed up individuals. You should also consider yourself lucky that you got off so easily...you escaped these two before the awkward date, the missed clues, the dramatic revelation that you've been lied to, etc...

    I leave you with one image: 5 years ago, me: a twenty-something online dater...he said he was 30. he ended up being 50, with a talking bird, getting lost in a neighboring town, and switching his white-gold wedding band in the middle of pizza at the mall. oh yes.. he left me in the middle of the movie to get coffee and popcorn and came back just in time for me to drive him back to his car. ass. and yes, i did the movie after the ring-finger switch. you may ask why? fuck him, that's why. i wanted to see something! lol

    By Blogger JuRiScHiCk, at 12:59 AM, August 26, 2005  

  • Who knows why things happen the way they do. Like it was said, lucky that you have gotten out of these situations before they were entirely too complicated/messy. I once told someone...

    "I give you my hand! I give you my love more precious than money, I give you myself before preaching or law; Will you give me yourself? will you come travel with me? Shall we stick by each other as long as we live?"

    Whitman said it best and I had to share that with him. Mabye I was expecting too much or wanting a big revelation from him? Who knows. I do know I love him and he means the world to me.

    By Blogger Ash, at 2:24 AM, August 26, 2005  

  • Believe me, I've had my share. Not as bad as that JC, but I've definitely had my share as have we all. I guess my point was that I'd been away from online dating for 9 months and when I came back, nothing much changed. Vendela, of course cute women in their 40s are an option. I once invited one to come to Florida and she turned me down. Ash, wow, that's deep. It reads like a marriage proposal. Was it?

    By Blogger Plantation, at 5:07 AM, August 26, 2005  

  • Ah, no it wasn't a marriage proposal but rather more of a "I have let all my walls down, set everything aside because you have made me feel so comfortable/safe, and I thank you as well as love you for all that you have taught me about you/myself/and people, and want nothing more than to just be with you completely/totally."

    Yes I know, deep as well as the mushy/romantic, possibly a lot to lay on him, but it was what I wanted to say to him so that he knows that I have thought about the good/bad things that will/could happen but it's in being with him that I'm willing to roll with the punches as long as we roll w/the punches together.

    He's worth it.

    By Blogger Ash, at 6:05 AM, August 26, 2005  

  • When I saw the title, I kept waiting for you to say, "And it turns out she was a HE" or something similar. Because THEN you'd have been Punk'd!

    Again, you know that one of my dreams is to be standing on a beach somewhere (sans hurricanes) at your wedding. I even had the perfect sundress picked out!

    I'm with Vendela, though, about the cute adult women thing: no daddy complexes there. With a grown-up, you get maturity, style and grace. Not drama, games and tantrums.

    I'm not sure where you'll find her, but I hope you do! And as I said before: I hope she's not your "type" but you get knocked off your feet.

    By Anonymous ~Kabe, at 8:43 PM, August 26, 2005  

  • Despite the fact that you willingly acknowledge it, your double standard about the people you'll contact does not engender much sympathy for your situation. Callously refering to people as "the dregs I normally get" or "ugly women in their 40s" thoroughly contradicts the image you otherwise project (genuine, kind-hearted, easy-going, etc.). Of course, it's only human to feel that way, but I don't think that I would be as forthright as to come out and say it....

    By Anonymous JRM, at 10:13 PM, August 27, 2005  

  • Tks for the comment JRM. I'm not looking for sympathy; I'm just reporting the honest facts such as they are. I even admitted up there about me being vain here. Yes, I suppose I could have sugar-coated my description of these women, but I'd rather be honest than 'project' an image of someone who I'm not.

    By Blogger Plantation, at 11:35 PM, August 27, 2005  

  • Fair enough man. Thanks why I don't have a blog :)

    Just curious: have you noticed a steady rise in readership lately? I imagine that I'm like many in that I found you via Stephanie Klein; I only heard about her through the NY Times, and it took about a month to work through her archives and follow the link to you, and then read a bunch of your stuff. (Okay, now that I write it, it's a somewhat convoluted process. Maybe there aren't many others who followed the same path...)

    By Anonymous JRM, at 1:20 AM, August 28, 2005  

  • I don't normally dish out 'harsh' comments, but here is my first to you..... and I think I'm allowed 'cause you know I'm not a meanie ;)

    You say a number is just a number, right? Then stop thinking, or even considering the younger women, and just date. I'm not saying only date your age, I'm just saying to give those your age a chance. Give all ages a chance. I, too, did my share of online dating and could share some horrid stories as well.

    Take a break PLT, just don't give up!

    By Blogger catsteevens, at 7:04 PM, August 28, 2005  

  • See, this is why all of my female friends are totally turned off by online dating - they never even get a chance because it's all about the beautiful picture and being young. LOL, I suppose it's the same way with the old bar scene, too, it just seems a whole lot more harsh when it happens online, you know?

    By Blogger Denise, at 3:49 PM, August 29, 2005  

  • I'm not a bad speller, but cna be a bad typist.

    I agree with your thoughts about vanity. I'm not going to bullshit about it, I want to date someone who is attractive. Most people do.

    I also venture onto jdate once in a while to check out who has been checking me out.

    By Blogger Lyss, at 10:55 AM, September 02, 2005  

  • All I can say is, stop trying so hard! Miss Right MAY be out there, but then again, she may NOT be. Be happy with who you are and let her find you!!

    By Anonymous Ilene (Honeybuns2@aol.com), at 10:26 PM, September 05, 2005  

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