Wednesday, October 01, 2008

"I never know what to say for these things..." ;)

So a couple months ago I finally laid my pride on the altar of desperation and signed up for an internet dating site. I thought I was too good for such things. (Yes, I, with a monumentally pathetic dating life. Don't ask me to explain that vanity.)

There is something fishy going on there, though: 95% of the men in Internet Dating Land, no matter their age or girth, want me to believe that they are "very active." They want me to know that they run, they hop, they skip, they jump, they leap over tall buildings in a single bound and they grin as they do so. There need not be a damsel in distress -- it's just, you know, what they do at all times, because they are Active Guys. I know what this is -- it is an attempt to reassure me that while they may be older, they are still virile, cobweb-free. I understand, and I feel for them. (By the same token, none of my posted photos show me sans lipstick or from a bad angle.)

But does it never occur to these men that there are a lot of women out there who don't want to spend their entire dating/wedded lives cartwheeling up mountain trails? Women who are more intent on finding a man who can speak in complete sentences about things besides basketball? If he's a farmer or a rodeo cowboy, I definitely want to know how "active" he is. If he's not, I'd like to know he's intelligent enough to navigate the urban jungle reasonably well. And I'd happily trade that abundant nervous energy they all advertise for a couple sweet spoonfuls of I'm-willing-to-approach-you-and-ask-you-on-an-actual-date-

Oh with initiative. Is it hot in here, or is it just me?

* Of course, this all assumes that there are men (man?) currently roaming the earth who have any interest an ol' snarkstress like myself. Again, where does my vanity come from, and can I have it surgically removed? Maybe the indignities of internet dating will burn it out of me -- if so, that's $15 well spent, whether or not it gets me a man.


Amy said...

Haha. All I can say is...good luck!

April said...

They're probably hoping you'll be so impressed with their athleticism that you won't notice the last book they read was for high school English. Good luck finding a library card-carrying guy!!

D'Arcy said...

When I realized that this English teacher had fallen so low as to be ok with them if they just spelled correctly, then I knew it was time to sign off!

I also found it disturbing how many 60 year old men felt just find approaching a 29 year old girl. If you're not Picasso, don't go there.

Hey, It's Ansley said...

I'm not sure I have anything to add that hasn't already been said. I feel like I should date online but I also get tired of only 50-60 men writing me. And I get discouraged by how few men read anything. I once heard a comedian say that in NYC on the dating sites the top interests were things like rock climbing and hiking! In NYC! At least you are in UT where it's possible. Good luck finding one great guy! And if you find 2 great guys let me know

lenalou said...

Ooh, good for you! Keep me posted. I keep meaning to try it, but keep making up escape clauses ("I will next month if so and so") and so far "if" hasn't happened.

And it's not vanity, it's healthy self esteem, and we have to have it if we don't want to turn into sad spinsters. And I'd date you if I was a guy.

t.j. said...

I KNOW!!! I gifted myself a three-month subscription a couple of years ago and I was also amazed at the amount of men who are on there who are "active." I thought it was just me imagining I am glad you found the same thing!

i i eee said...

Because I don't know about you, but if he doesn't participate daily in hiking, soccer, football, water skiing, snowboarding, la crosse, and rugby, I'm just not that interested.

And what, doesn't the Da Vinci Code count as good lit? I swear every guy on dating sites lists it as his favorite.

Be careful to stay away from my ex-boyfriend. Also, in my experience, many that also claimed themselves "active" in the Church were big fat liars.

i i eee said...

Even so, good luck!

t.j. said...

Oh yeah.. the old men who think it's okay to prey on women 20 years younger! Now I remember: this 50 year-old guy kept emailing me and I eventually told him I was in no way interested in dating a guy who was old enough to be my father. He said: "you don't know what you're missing." Hmmmm... I think I do. I have a father.

Anonymous said...

I have found the exact same thing and decided that some mysterious online virus had changed everyone's interests to outdoor, sports-y activities because really, someone has to be buying all the nintendo chairs, renting all the video games, and filling up all the theaters when Batman comes out.
I have been and am a big fan of your blog, so I finally decided to comment.

Annette G said...

At my cousin's wedding last week, my 62 year old, recently divorced uncle (not her father) flirted with her 30 year old bride's maid. It is as painful to recall as it was to watch. At least, you don't have to see these "old online" guys in action - or be related to them. UGH!!

sharonsfriendjen said...

Welcome to the cruel world I call my life. I have searched out the less "active" more intelligent and witty men, but only found nimwits and momma's boys. Still I keep searching.

Marie said...

Amy – Thanks!

April – Well, you've got the database – maybe you could risk your job and send me some phone numbers on the sly? ;)

D'Arcy – It *is* icky. But I now have a great comeback when approached by such men: “Are you Picasso?” “” “Then don't go there.” Thank you, D'Arcy. The next time might almost be fun!

Ansley – Really? I would've though NYC men would calculate their profiles to sound like they work in lucrative fields that enable them to purchase penthouses in upper Manhattan. Do NYC women even express an interest in men who rock climb, or is this a simple matter of one half knowing not what the other wants? Wouldn't it be more believable and to the point to say, “I'm a nice, employed, non-felon who likes to walk in the Park and promises to not turn into a couch potato”?

Lena – That is so sweet. And mildly disturbing. But mostly sweet. Right back atcha.

T.J. -- I'm also glad to know I'm not just imagining it. And thank you for a second great too-old-guy comeback! Ha!

iieee – Waaaaaaah! It's hopeless, isn't it???? I'm wasting my money, aren't I???? Waaaaaah!!

Anonymous – Oh, wait -- I have a secret blog admirer? Really? I care not, Anonymous, whether you are "involved" or geriatric or even female: suddenly things are less hopeless here in Cyberland. Thanks for lurking!

Annette -- I guess they're all someone's child/brother/uncle, aren't they? Every family's got their black sheep, and apparently their dark sheepy instincts drive them enmasse to their True Herd: Internet dating sites. And to prowl at wedding receptions. I'm sorry you had to watch that.

Jen -- I joke not when I say that I admire your dogged persistence. The universe has a reward for those who endure with hope and determination (and humor!), and you will get it. I know you will. But until then, thanks for your good example.

wynne said...

Oh, nononono! Your approach is all wrong! See, you get a corner downtown by the library, and you hide in the bushes. You watch the people coming in and out. When you finally see a fella coming out with a stack of books that are a 50% mix of classics and Terry Pratchett novels, you leap up and club him from behind. At this point you can just drag him home and feed him. Once you feed him, he will not leave. He can't. It's a guy thing. Provide them with food and they belong to you.

Of course, this approach does take a certain amount of persistence and an ability to dodge police.