Faire du lèche-vitrine: Internet Dating
In New York City, there are over 8 million inhabitants. Almost half of them are of the opposite sex, with slightly more women than men. On a given work day, these same people probably also come into Manhattan and, being only 13 miles long from top to tip, you can not physically be alone here — unless you lock yourself in your 450 square foot apartment, assuming that you don’t have roommates or any windows for that matter.
Taking that all into account, logic would lead you to believe that a single person in this city should have no problem meeting someone just by the very act of stepping outside. However, you would be wrong.*
Whenever I found myself single in the past four years, the frequency of how many times I’ve been advised to get on the internet dating bandwagon have increased. Without trying to make the inference that they are afraid that I’ll end up a bitter old spinster, these people tell me that its just another option in addition to the old-fashioned way of meeting someone by accident at a party or through mutual friends. To them, its a form of duty dating, as though if I don’t find someone right away after my last relationship ended, it’ll be a disservice to my family’s lineage or, as my mom has already suggested, my eggs are wrinkling as we speak.
These advice givers have been from love’s true believers (congrats E and J, engaged two years after meeting on eharmony.com!) to the optimistic (“She went on 87 dates before she met her husband. 87 dates. But it worked. In the end.”) to the Gallic shoulder shruggers (“eh, why not?). I even have a friend who told me that she was done with dating, and then also tell me that she renewed her subscription to JDate.
So, not wanting to be a bad sport to my friends when they had to listen to me lament about the death throes of my last relationship, I checked out some dating websites and have lived to tell the tale:
1. Chemistry.com: Like most dating websites, they ask you to fill out a questionnaire in the same manner as most personality quizzes that you would find on Facebook or Cosmo magazine. Based on these answers, they supposedly find potential matches for you and based on the 5 profiles they send you each day, you get to decide whether you’re interested or not. I liked it because it required me to do nothing but log on, but then again, me clicking “not interested” to most of their suggestions may not be point of all this…
2. eHarmony: I have heard from some reliable sources that you will definitely meet someone on this site if you chose to pay for their services, but I didn’t like the fact that its a Christian-based site that only allowed same-sex profiles after getting sued. Also, its profile questionnaire was so extensive, I just gave up. I think that must be the secret to their success — you must be pretty serious to spend hours answering their questions.
3. How About We: Unlike most dating websites, this site is based on the premise that you can find someone through the dates that they suggest. I like it because I didn’t have to rely on my friend writing my profile for me as to how awesome I am, but instead I can just say what I wanted to do and see if anyone else was interested. Unfortunately, no one else seems to want to sit in a dark corner and mope on a sunny Saturday afternoon…
4. Match.com: Much like its smaller service site, Match is more extensive and has the browsing function that Chemistry.com lacks so that you can actually choose who you’d like to contact. For me, its just too exhausting to do the whole search thing and I don’t like people contacting me willy-nilly; however, I can see how this is probably ideal to most people who want to try the internet dating thing.
5. Plenty of Fish: it’s a free dating website, where anyone can load a basic HTML profile and browse the personals in the same manner of finding a free couch on Craigslist. In fact, I think thats a perfect analogy for this site. My time on this site was short-lived as I didn’t check it often and, when I did, I found three emails from the same guy who went from “hey, I never do internet dating, but I thought you were cute and interesting and wanted to get to know you” to “what? do you think you’re too good to respond to me?! f— you, b—–!”
How about you? Have you tried internet dating? What site(s) did you use and what helpful things can you tell me about it?
* Yes, I know its like me standing in a closet full of clothes and saying, “I haven’t got anything to wear!” but this article will not work if I start getting introspective at this point.