By Paula Conhain
When thinking about my own stance on online dating, I wondered about who else was doing it and why. Now that I was online myself, it was time to learn a little about them.
I have a particular type of guy that I like, physically. When shopping online, you don’t click on a pair of shoes that are not your style. It’s the same with perusing the men on OK Cupid. I must have checked out every guy within five miles, my age or older, with dark hair, taller than 5’ 10” who hadn’t shaved in 3-5 days. The more profiles I read, the more a theme started to emerge.
It was clear why the men of OK Cupid were single. They were too busy hiking Machu Picchu, going to every sporting event, working on their MBA, camping, wine tasting, hosting dinner parties, and saving orphans in Haiti to take the time to meet anyone in real life.
Seriously, were these guys for real? Every single one of them was an avid traveler, outdoorsman, super genius and perfect human being. The more I read of these profiles, the more desensitized I became. I wouldn’t have recognized someone truly awesome if they had jumped out of my computer screen, grabbed me and professed their undying love.
This also had a great effect on how I positioned myself when writing my own profile. I truly do like to travel – I have been to a majority of these United States (including territories few have heard of), over a dozen countries, and am always planning a trip somewhere. I really do like food – cooking it, eating it, reading about it. I’m educated, have a good job, and love live music. You may be thinking, “Good for you! You have all of these things in common with so many great guys. There are so many matches out there!”
But no. All of these qualities seemed so cliché after reading about them on everyone else’s profile. I felt like if I mentioned those things, someone would think I was just checking the travel/foodie/music/cool person boxes. I even took down the photo of me on top of a mountain in Guam petting a water buffalo: it looked too much like the 500 photos I saw of guys in the Himalayas hiking with a llama.
That said, I am a sucker for a well-traveled man who is ready to pick up and go on a fabulous vacation at a moment’s notice. So, yes, the very good looking guy who emailed me from his European sabbatical and I planned to meet up upon his return. Would he keep his commitment after months away?