Adventures in Online Dating

So, starting where we left off from my last blog, now that Mr. West Coast abruptly became Mr. East Coast, I reluctantly decided to activate my profile on a well known internet dating site.  Why?  Because I had nothing better to do and was looking for some “new” insightful personal development since I had learned so much from my last encounter. 🙂  Unfortunately, my feelings of adventure and spontaneity have lasted all about a week and I’ll be cancelling my membership tomorrow.  I’m over it.

Let me state for the record, I totally support internet dating.  For everyone else, except myself that is.  For the rest of the single world, I think it’s a great way to meet people and I have 2 girlfriends that both married men they met online so based on the small sample size of evidence, it clearly works.  But for me, it just doesn’t resonate for a variety of reasons.

First, I feel like I have to “sell” myself.  Not that this is a bad thing per se and if I ever run out of money, I’ll definitely consider going that route but my problem is that my professional career for the last 22 years is actually in Sales. I have sold everything in technology from consumer hardware to enterprise software to manufacturing services and remember, LAST thing I want to now sell is “myself”. Also see reference to the blog titled “The Writing Workshop.”

Do you know want to know what the first line of my profile says?  “Act now and you’ll get a free set of steak knives”.  It honestly does because an online dating profile to me feels like some kind some twisted personal infomercial. And I might as well be entertaining because everyone loves humor, right?

Secondly, I prefer to get a feel for people energetically in 3D, not 2D.  You know, sense their vibe and see their smile in real life to get a feel for who they are and what they are about.  I think you can tell pretty quickly when there is a connection or not. Sometimes I see men in person that I think are very physically attractive and then after a short conversation, I realize they are not as attractive as I initially thought and other times, I have met men that I didn’t feel attracted to at first but once I got to know them a bit, I found them very attractive.  It’s all about the details for me and emotional as well as intellectual intelligence go a long way in my book.  So basically, I can start to question myself and second guess my choices and it all can become a big mess, fast.

And for me, reading personal essays and looking at carefully placed photos from who knows when just doesn’t cut it because it brings out another hoodlum that I’d rather keep locked up, The Judge. And with Mr. P’s departure, J-Man thinks this is his territory now.

I guess before I go any further, I should talk about one of Mr. E’s proteges. He mentored with Mr. P so he knows the ropes in general.  Meet The Judge. I don’t want to welcome him too much because he’s not very nice. And not just to me (which is a given), but to others as well.  See, when I’m searching through online dating profiles, do you know who is driving the bus? The Judge and I can’t even stand myself when he’s around because it’s such a yucky feeling when he sneaks in.  Just another reason, why I don’t like the online dating process.  He thinks he runs the show. He wants to “critique” every photo, word, interest, status, height, age, whatever he can get his hands on to figure out if this is good, bad, right, wrong, and point out every little detail in the process.  When he is on a roll, it’s like picky on steroids. He can’t wait to bring down the hammer.

Love…Love…Love…Love…Love

Sorry, just trying to clear some space for a little positive energy here.  I don’t want to use my blog to talk negatively about people.  Who am I to judge? Is that a rhetorical question?  I know there is someone out there for everyone and regardless of my “criteria”, that are a ton of really nice people in the world that I could get to know.

And finally, it is my belief that net-net; I don’t translate well on paper.  Because my persona is different when I write than how I actually express myself in real life (this writing stuff is all just a pretend world, right?) Plus, you can’t see my sparkly eyes and sunshine-y smile either which I think makes all of the difference in the world! 🙂

Yes, I am best to be viewed in living color as well.  If you can remember back to the “Life of an Introvert” post, I really don’t like to talk about myself either (unless it’s my blog of course which is the whole purpose of the journey, isn’t it?) I also feel really vulnerable putting myself out there to a bunch of total strangers too. I’m a private person and this all just feels super public to me.  It’s an extrovert’s dream and an introvert’s worst nightmare. Yes, I thought I would only resort to internet dating when hell freezes over.  Hmm, Is it getting cold in here or is it just me?

But because I’m not working I won’t meet people professionally, I live in a 99% “family” oriented area and the majority of my close girlfriends either live far away or are married, so I don’t have a lot of options, well from my couch that is. 🙂  Remember, yesterday’s post?  I’m clearly only half ass interested in making any dating effort anyway (which the Executive is definitely disappointed in) so decided to pay for one month of hell, I mean membership and dive in.  I wonder if I should hold my breath? Not advised.  This is going to take awhile and a little water up the nose should be the least of any concerns at this point. And the last thing I would want to do is be found dead while searching dating sites although I find that kinda ironic in a strange way.

Now, if you haven’t noticed yet, I’m a detail oriented person (S on the Myers Briggs type, which I will talk more about later this week) so this compels me to look at lots and lots of profiles.  Over 2000+ to be exact and that was just my first search.  And because this is Sales, I know very well….it’s a numbers game.  If I wink at 12 men, maybe 4 will respond and out of the 4 maybe I’ll meet with 2 and score with 1.  For those of you unfamiliar with Sales as a profession, this is technically called a “pipeline”.  And if we were consulting together, I would figure out your sales funnel based on your sales process/metrics and we would come up with a “contact to close ratio” that would enable you to predictable forecast your revenue and ideally hit your desired quota.  Make sense?  Sorry, that was the Executive talking, he’s going stir crazy around here.

Back to the search, so I carefully and painfully comb through thousands of profiles on the look out for “potential future husbands” and throw out a couple of emails, a few winks, etc to about 12 men that feel like a good match thus already breaking my rule from yesterday about not initiating first. Great! And do you know how many of those preferred hand selected Mr. Leandra’s respond to me? Zero. I love internet dating.

Huh?  Well, that’s strange.  I don’t think it’s my profile or photos, because I have had my guy friend check it out and he says it looks fine.  Now, we agree too, that he also already knows me in person, so his opinion doesn’t really count.  And of course, when your product isn’t selling, you have to go back and really review your sales pitch, marketing material, value propositions, competitive landscape, product features and benefits, etc.  Sorry, you know who is back.  He can’t help himself. And sure, I can change it all but isn’t that like changing me? Hmm. I’m still not sure who I am but let’s not get started with that again.

But, don’t worry. I’m getting emails alright, but from the 10-12 men that would be very, very unlikely to ever dare to approach me in a thousand years in “real life”.  And the only “match” I want at this point in a “real one” to light myself on fire.

And do you know what is hard top of it all?  My girlfriends have all told me, DO NOT RESPOND TO SOMEONE YOU ARE NOT INTERESTED IN.  Seems like a simple rule to follow but you know what, this makes me feel bad.  Like I am ignoring them and being rude because I’m a really nice person. And maybe they had to muster up a bunch of (liquid) courage to say hello?  So I would rather politely thank them and decline then just not respond at all.  Well, I learned my lesson on this one quickly and they were right.  Now I don’t respond and try not to feel too bad about it.

Ok, so one of the first decent responses I get to my thoughtful yet humorous profile was from a gentlemen that I thought “probably” wasn’t a match but we seemed to have a lot in common and I thought I would give it a try.  His return email was funny too and I thought what the heck.  Live and let die, right? Or Live and let Live?  Or live and let LEARN! Oh, don’t worry, as always, we’ll get to the learning part at the end.

Stay tuned because it’s just about to get good…

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3 Responses to Adventures in Online Dating

  1. So, you wrote: “Love…Love…Love…Love…Love” and I went directly to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4p8qxGbpOk. I just couldn’t help myself. Great post. Can’t wait for the update. ;>

  2. amen to the misjudging. what’s the deal with that? i so understand! in the book “too good to leave, too bad to stay” the author asks if you are the type who can find yourself physically attracted to almost any man. for some of us the answer is “yes.” it just is! maybe not at first, but eventually, or we can find some aspect of the guy that is attractive. and i know this isn’t the point of your whose post, just part, but it set me thinking……!

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