Online dating… what even to say. How even to characterize this odd experience. I have been on a few online sites sporadically in the last few years, and it can be fun, but can we all agree that the experience can be a little weird? While I have met a few decent people online, I have also been inundated by far too many cliches (putting it nicely) but more frankly, bullshit.
Most guys look amazing in writing. I will introduce you to Stereotypical Online Dating Guy #1, Marcus (this person = totally made up, I’m not that mean). The online dating gods matched us together, and I am super pumped. He looks great in pictures (ahem, that were taken 10 years ago, ahem), and he seems like the sweetest. He likes sports and traveling. He is a laid back stud looking for a partner in crime, someone to whom he is attracted. But of course, the most important part of a girl is her character (Christian equivalent: “looking for a Proverbs 31 girl”).
What a cutie.
I finally meet up with Marcus. THE ANTICIPATED FIREWORKS.
Marcus ends up being… eh. Typical. Then I find out he likes John Piper. Dammit. An hour goes by and I keep checking my watch. Oh. my. goodness. could. time. go. slower. No sparks.
No offense to Marcus, he is very nice. Nothing against him. But online dating is a crap shoot. Most of the time it is fluffy meaninglessness and completely random.
I mean, does it even matter what I put on my profile? All I need to do is incorporate enough cliche mannerisms to get the Marcuses of online dating to contact me.
Is it just me, or is there something odd about how superficial the whole system is?
These guys all look the same. They talk of college football, travel, and their faith. And the weather. Oh God, the weather. “Wow, you lived in California, how do you like being in Michigan?” If I could have a dime for the number of times that statement has been uttered…. HOW ARE YOU SUPPOSED TO GET TO KNOW ANYONE BY TALKING ABOUT THE WEATHER?
I don’t know how any of these sites match people together. Personality characteristics, location, attributes desired in a partner– they all use imperfect heuristics that work marginally at best. (Caveat: It is oh so hard to measure compatibility. It’s not like I have a better idea on how to solve the online dating woes of a single 20-something girl. Just let me vent, okay???).
Online dating can work, I have seen it work. BUT it doesn’t work when everyone is so fake. But then to get dates you have to play the fake game. And so the crap shoot cycle of being paired with “travel… football… beer” Marcuses at random continues. How am I supposed to filter out if any of these people are worth my time?
Honestly, I am sick of being fake and censoring myself knowing that others are scrutinizing my words. For once, I want to be REAL on one of these sites. Or at least, if I’m going to make a profile composed of bullshit, it might as well be ridiculous (with a dash of truth).
SO, I have decided to make a (satirical) dating profile that I will never, ever post because to online date, you have to play the games and go through the hoops. Playing games –> not doing what I’m about to do. But I’m just saying, if it was socially acceptable to do this, I would.
“Hi, thanks for reading this. I’m sorry if at any point this starts to be stereotypical or cliche, because my goal in life is to be anything but. Let me start with a few exclusionary factors right now. If you are cliche, enjoy puns, bubbly/ positive quotes, you can along to the next profile. Also, I am looking for a guy who likes or can come to like Rachel Held Evans. Similarly, you have to like Rob Bell in some capacity. I have broken up with someone over Rob Bell, I am totally not joking about this. If you’re not on board with Love Wins, that’s fine. Enjoying his early work will suffice. But you and Rob Bell must have some familiarity because I might want him to officiate any hypothetical wedding.
If you’re still reading, welcome. As you might guess, I am a theology nerd and Jesus feminist. If you whisper sweet nothings to me about Rob Bell or Time Keller, you will automatically be granted a second date. If Henri Nouwen is your favorite author, we might be soul mates.
I am like an angsty teenager who loves angsty teenage TV shows such as Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars. (If you are angsty, that is a plus. If you like to yell into the abyss during existential crises, that’s also a plus).
If I could eat only one food for the rest of my life, it would be Sour Patch Kids. Every few months, I get an intense spell of wanderlust. I have deep, intense feelings, and sometimes I cannot name them right away. However, my therapist can, so it’s all good. I am subtly hinting that I may have struggled with some mental health stuff in the past, but I’m going to be coy about it until date 6, at which time we shall lay our cards on the table.
I am an anxious perfectionist, which is exacerbated by excessive caffeine consumption. If I could be granted a magic wish, I would wish for unlimited Starbucks holiday drinks for the duration of my days. Or I might wish for the ability to teleport. Dammit why can’t people teleport yet?
If it ever comes to this, know that I want to be proposed two in one of two ways: at a Rob Bell event or at a NEDA walk. So, file that information away.”