Saturday, June 7, 2008


I am about to give up. This is just stupid.... how difficult it is to meet someone. I have been on several of the online dating websites now, and have become just as discouraged with them as with meeting a decent man anywhere else.

You register, think up what you hope is a good profile to attract some interest, post a few recent photos of yourself, and then start fishing. You read through zillions of horribly written profiles, full of terrible spelling (ever hear of Spellcheck, buddy?) and worse grammar, trying to weed out what seem like losers.

Then, you come across a few hopefuls, profiles where the man can obviously string a few words together to make an intelligent sentence, where he has pictures posted and doesn't look too heavy or neanderthal. Face it - women are just as attracted to a pleasant face as guys are - especially in this medium, where that and those few words are all you have to start with. Physical attraction has to be one of the starting points - at least for me. You can be as witty as you want with words, but if you are 450 lbs with a huge nose and a unibrow, I am afraid there won't be a first meeting with this girl.

Now, I am not at all shy, and will definitely be one to make the first move if I see a profile that looks interesting. So I have sent emails to quite a few men, and most often hear nothing back. I have hit the instant message button when they are online, and most of the time, nothing happens. They are either away from their computers and didn't log out, or more than likely chatting away with someone else and ignore my request to chat. Or they just decide they don't like my face (cuz your pic shows up in that little IM box) and close it down.

The thing that bothers me is this: when someone emails me, saying hi and wanting to chat or meet, I think it is common courtesy to reply. Even if just to say 'I'm sorry' and that they aren't my type for whatever reason. I believe in being polite. I believe in wishing them luck in their search. Because we are all in this for the same reason - to try and find someone we can relate to, get to know and fall in love with, hopefully for the rest of our lives.

Now, I have a fairly attractive face. I am a nice person. I am intelligent, have a decent sense of humour and like a variety of activities. When I read profiles, I try to make sure that the men I contact have a few of the same things on their interests list as I have on mine. Because there has to be something in common to get you started.

So why is it so hard to locate a man who will actually contact me back? Why do so many chose to ignore an email and not bother responding? And why are some of these guys (and I am sure there are women who fit in this category as well, although I don't go looking at THEM) on these sites for years, on 112 favorites lists and yet still seem to be looking?

Here's a run-down of what has happened with me since I started this venture into cyber-datedom:

The first guy I connected with online last summer turned out to be working in a different province for most of the year and only made it home every few weekends, with the occasional week or two at home in between being sent on the road again. We met for coffee occasionally, and still do, and have actually got along quite well in person as well as online but mostly just chat once in a while online. He won't commit to even a real date, because, in his own words, he is all f**ked up in the head. He doesn't seem to be when I talk to him and I like him. So that has gone nowhere, although we have become friends and just yak at times.

Another man, only 5 years older than myself, which to me didn't seem to be much, turned out to be from another generation (like... my parents'). We started seeing each other early last winter and it became clear to me in a few short weeks that this simply would not work out. Nice guy and everything, bright and articulate, but it felt really weird to me to be cuddly with a guy who acted like my dad. This guy, it turned out, was the youngest of six and his oldest brother was 18 years his senior. And there were 8 years between him and the next sibling. So he grew up old. Not his fault, really, and he came from a small town down East, which added to the oldness, but it was just too disquieting to me.

I spent some time offline, deleting my profiles from the sites I was on, but in January, I decided to try again. So I found another site, recommended by a guy I work with (he met his girlfriend on this particular site), and went through the rigmarole of writing another profile, taking more pictures and posting them.

And then the fishing begins anew. I cast my line in a pond with a few nice fish and huge schools of sharks. I started getting emails and IMs from all kinds of guys - but not the kind I wanted. The young guys - in their early to mid 20's - looking for a 'cougar' for sex. For some reason, really short men seem attracted to me (I am 5'9") and there were emails from men not even 5'6". I can go my own height but I have to be able to look the man in the eye. It is just a personal preference for me.

Then there was the guy who was married and looking for someone discreet to have an affair with. No thanks, bud. I don't do married. And I also won't keep emailing or IMing if I don't know what he looks like. I need to see a picture. Some of the guys who don't have a picture on their profile, do that for good reason - they are scary looking!!!

Then there are the guys who can't spell, can't type, can't string together a sentence if their life depended on it. That, to me, is an indicator of intelligence. And I need the man I interact with to have a good brain in his head. Cuz no matter how good looking you are, if you're as bright as a sack of hammers, it just won't work.

I cruised through profiles, cruised through who was online at the moment, read their profiles and emailed them if they read/looked promising. That was how I met one hell of a great guy - he was witty, funny, had a great command of the English language, wrote a wonderful profile and had some great pictures up on his profile too. I only found him because I went cruising, because he was a smoker and I had my list of requirements for contacting me to be set as non-smokers only. So I contacted him.

We hit it off pretty quickly - the sparks few and things got intense very fast. Too fast, actually, and in the long run (well, two months' time), once we got to know each other better, it turned out that he felt I was not the right kind of woman for him. In all honesty, he was very sensitive and fair about the break-up, but it was still difficult. Better sooner rather than later, though, so we both moved on.

So online I went yet again.... emailed and chatted with a guy who one day seemed to freak out on me when we were chatting - all of a sudden was just sending me silly little icons and then 'I have to go, I can't do this anymore' appeared on the screen. Never heard from him again. I don't think I would have continued anyway after that fiasco. Don't really know what went on in his mind, but best leave it where it is.

The next contact turned out to be extremely anal and so uptight about things that I knew, after just two outings (one was a bike ride at Birds Hill Park) that there was just no chemistry at all for me. Nice looking man, seemed bright, but just way too hung up on some things.

Last week, I contacted someone who seemed promising. A fair number of things in common on our profiles, close in age, decent pics. We chatted and then talked on the phone and made arrangements to meet the next evening for a drink and to see if a first date would happen. Sounded cool. Well, I got home from work the next afternoon and logged on to my computer. Shortly thereafter, I get an email from him stating this: a woman he had met online last week, who hadn't seemed too interested then, had emailed him that day and wanted to get together that night. When we had made plans. So he was going to meet with her instead of with me. But did I want him to contact me after if things didn't work out with her? (This happened about 2 1/2 hours before we were supposed to get together.)

Not bloody likely, a$$hole! I may be naive here, but I was right pissed off at him. I felt he was rude and inconsiderate. Now, I can understand wanting to meet with her and see what happens there. This is dating and that is how it works. But when you already have made plans to meet with someone else, would it not be common courtesy to say you are busy that evening and make arrangements for another time????

I was pretty angry about that but, being the nice person that I am, I took the dog for a nice, long walk while I contemplated the situation. Then I emailed him back and told him that I thought he was rude and inconsiderate (politely) and that no, he couldn't contact me if that fell through. And then deleted him from my favorites list, which is where I put men I have contacted and that have potential.

So back to square one. Which is where I am at today. It is frustrating and daunting to be back in the dating game at the age of 50. I won't go to bars... and who wants to meet some drunk guy anyway? Most of the guys I work with would not be the type I would date either - besides which they are all spoken for. The horse activities I participate in attract mostly women and the few (single) men I have met I wouldn't date if my life depended on it. So I think I am going to just call it quits on this cyber-dating crap. If there is someone out there for me, he is just going to have to find me on his own.

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