I’m very pleased to welcome our second male guest blogger, Ian, who really needs no formal introduction as he’ll get to that himself:
“We met in a café,” Audrey told me. “In Brooklyn.” We were in a bar on New Years Eve, and Audrey was the most recent concubine of a high-school friend named Mike. They had actually met on JDate, only arranging the Brooklyn rendezvous after several bouts of online small talk. We were all 20 at the time, and Audrey’s slight deception-by-omission was not entirely unreasonable. Online dating carried a higher social cost than meeting partners ‘the old way’.
I met Margaux at a party in the warehouse district between Memorial and the Old 4th Ward. It was the last night of 2009. She walked right up to me on the dance floor as the champagne was being poured and made quick work of securing her midnight kiss. The next day I learned that she was stopping through Atlanta before heading back to Brooklyn for a final semester of med school. The end of a five-year relationship had left her adrift in a markedly different dating pool than the one she had departed in college, and she had leapt into the online dating community several weeks earlier, head first, guns blazing. “I have a date every night next week,” Margaux told me. I was taken aback.
“My profile is really funny,” she explained, “So I get plenty of dates” (She was indeed a witty specimen, but I surmise that her avalanche of suitors were more interested in her mischievous smile and arresting figure). Margaux wouldn’t tell me what was so funny about it, instead challenging me to get online and peruse her carefully cast lures myself… which required signing up. I was uncomfortable. Surely I would befall the same fate as Mike had when he acquired Audrey- merciless ridicule. Curiosity finally got the better of me, so I picked a password, created the necessary profile, read hers, and immediately closed the browser and deleted my history. All of this took place in the middle of the night with my door locked while my roommate was out of town.
Weeks later, Blake told me he that he too was an advocate of online dating. “Bro. The women on those sites are LOOKING to date. It’s a self-selecting pool. You cannot fail.” Another friend likened online dating to the hunter-gatherer lifestyle, arguing that it’s far easier to set a proverbial trap online, baited only for the species you’re looking to attract, than to hunt females in the wild.
Do the benefits of swimming in a self-selecting pool outweigh the stigma? In college, when Mike met Audrey, they certainly did not. Yet college is over. The rules have changed. Name recognition exists only in inexorably shrinking circles. No longer do we live and operate in close contact with thousands of our peers, and no longer do Greek communities offer exposure to a lurid carnal buffet of potential relationships every weekend night. As our friends pair off one by one, the grass on the other side grows lush. But how green is green enough?
Interests: Cars, motorbikes, books, the outdoors. Two Urban Licks.
What your ideal partner should be: Spicy.
Note From Ms. Betwixter: Eloquent and Clever. Guys: to all of you who have emailed me about your fear of posting something, this should motivate you. Get off the couch, put down your beer or copy of Maxim, and send me something 🙂