He’s eyeing the exits and doing calf stretches…

A while back during a happy hour, Michael, Fredo and I were discussing the “emergency call” that you set up with a friend in advance of a first/blind date. Since Fredo and I both have iPhones, I called him and he took a screen capture of the incoming call, saying that if necessary, he could make it his wallpaper to look like he was getting a call. Naturally, someone has developed an iPhone application to take it one step further. Of course, there’s always the direct approach:

Ok maybe that can only happen on tv, but I’ve heard many a tale of ways to give yourself an escape clause for that coffee date. Rather than wisely limit it to a specific time beforehand, I’ve seen people tell of wearing caps or sweaters, only taking them off once they’ve spotted and approved of their date so that they can be found. There was a time when you could easily observe this behavior taking place at the Dupont Circle Starbucks.

Since my blind dates have generally gone pretty poorly, I actually started a little guidebook to help friends set up their friends, maybe I’ll post a bit from that this weekend. But I figured that since this election was lining up to be a sign that anything is possible in America, that I’d put the same optimism into finding a date. In so doing, I decided to go the old-fashioned route–pay.

I’m sure everyone gets sick of those commercials for eHarmony and chemistry.com of the impossibly happy, impossibly perfectly matched couples who make it seem so easy to find that special someone when you’re not doing any of the actual work to find someone. Well it sounded so easy, I gave it a try–no, not with eHarmony. I signed up with a service during my week off “stay-cation” and it’s been about two and a half months… with no results.

I’d hoped that I might at least have some fun or interesting or even dreadful experiences to write about, but it seems that most of the reviews of dating services are true. Lots of promises, a few success stories and little results, mostly due to the face that anyone can get a free profile, but to interact with anyone they have to pay. Interesting that most will go through a lengthy and detailed set up to create a profile, but once they’ve gone that far, it just doesn’t seem worth it to pony up to actually talk with other singles.

I know people that have had some success with the sites. I’ve met guys from them before, but mostly when I look at the profiles I see guys that I’ve already dated. I’m not sure if that makes me feel good or more like a loser. I try to swear off the sites for a while, but like a drug dealer they keep pulling me back in. Ads like “he’s waiting for you” and “don’t be alone this holiday season” – and those are just on Facebook! I have to admit, it would feel a bit nicer if my arguments in favor of gay marriage were also being made because I have someone I’d like to get married to. I still don’t care for weddings tho. That much hasn’t changed. 😈

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5 Responses

  1. shindo says:

    I’ve always been apprehensive about pouring money into a dating website, even it’s $12 per month typically. Why do that when I can host my own website for less (not that I’m using it for that purpose). Maybe I’m just too stingy, but I’d rather spend that $12 on something else.

    Being fairly new to the iPhone route compared to you or Fredo, I’ll download the app to use if I’m ever in a blind date I want out of.

    latest entry: Resplendence: Feuille 17

  2. William Mize says:

    I’d love to try eHarmony, even if just for the horror stories or perhaps the honor of being rejected as a heathen, but I’m too cheap. I hear it’s like $60 a month or some such craziness.

    latest entry: Stalk Your Favorite Authors

  3. brian says:

    @shindo: I think after all my failed dates, I’m quite ready to restrict the meeting to a limited amount of time and be as honest as the bounds of good taste allow when it’s all over. It seems more harsh than the non-callback, but ultimately I’d rather someone say it up front than weasel out the back door by disappearing.

    …and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

    @Bill: If eHarmony told people the reasons they couldn’t match them up, then it might be fun. I went through the whole test and crap and they still never told me that they were unable to find me a match because I’m queer.

  4. William Mize says:

    @brian: My golden rule is 30 minutes. While arranging the FTF, I say something to the tune of “I have an appointment/shindig/thing/orgy later that day, but how about we meet for coffee for about a half hour?”
    This means if we hate each other, we only have to tolerate each other for 30 minutes.
    This also means that if the groove is on, I can make a ‘call’ and cancel/reschedule the above pressing engagement and spend more time with her.
    Yes, it’s quite the skulduggery, but works.

    latest entry: Stalk Your Favorite Authors

  5. shindo says:

    @brian Thanks for the birthday wish. I’ll have a drink at Top of the Park for you. πŸ™‚

    latest entry: Resplendence: Feuille 17

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