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April 8th, 2008

Just Posted to My "Other" Journal

I don't know how much it's going to actually help me, but I decided to post to the journal on my OkCupid profile. For the most part, I'll most likely just cross-post entries I've written for LJ, but I do see myself occasionally writing specifically for OkCupid. In fact, I wrote just such a post. Most of the information in it should be familiar if you've been reading my posts for some time, but at least it's been remixed and presented in a new fashion. Anyway, here's the post for those of you are are interested.




I feel like a quote out of context
Withholding the rest
So I can be for you what you want to see
I got the gestures and sounds
Got the timing down
Its uncanny, yeah
You'd think it was me
Do you think I should take a class
To lose my southern accent?
Did I make me up
Or make a face 'til it stuck?
I do the best imitation of myself.

-- "Best Imitation of Myself," Ben Folds Five

I think the thing that's hardest about being forced back onto the dating scene (I'll save the "forced" explanation for another time, but trust me -- I'm most certainly not separated, getting ready for a divorce and back on the dating scene by choice), is the whole repackaging, marketing and selling of myself. Of course, it's just impossible to present a real idea of the complete package in an online personal, so you take your best bits, arrange them in what you hope is an interesting fashion, put them out there for the world to see, and hope that it catches the eye of someone you might find attractive. At least, this is what I'm doing as I have no interest in one-night stands or casual relationships.

The hard part is when doing so you also inevitably put out bibs and bobs that will make you unattractive. I noticed this most frequently when I set up a Match.com account. Now it could just be my limited experience from what profiles I read of women who supposedly rated high on Match.com's mystical match % scale, but I frequently saw women who were looking for what I'm not: athletic/skinny, without kids, never married, 6' or taller, income of $100,000+ -- and this is coming from women who are in my age group. As an acquaintance of mine once said, when discussing this phenomenon on my LiveJournal page a few weeks back, "You have to wonder who women like that are expecting to find. A guy who's athletic, employed, polite, kind, handsome, and honest, and wants a commitment? But somehow he got to his mid-thirties without getting married or having kids? Maybe he was an international spy."

So, let's say I somehow get myself noticed and finally land a date. Then the imitation of myself continues as I put my best foot forward. You try to look your best, which is something -- if we're honest with our ourselves -- we don't typically do on a regular basis and try to leave all the disconcerting "quirks" at home -- at least, you do it for a long enough time so that when you do finally "show the crazy" (to quote a character from a favorite television show) it's least counter-balanced by all the positives about yourself that you've managed to convey.

Don't get me wrong, I'm trying as hard as possible to somehow do all this while being honest with everyone, especially myself. The fact is that I don't have the patience for games from anybody -- including myself. As I said before, I didn't get back on this ride willingly, and I certainly don't want to be on it any longer than I have to be. At the same time, I want to do this with as much honesty and integrity as I can muster. In other words, be myself and withhold as little as possible when doing so.

With the exception of a brief four-month period at the beginning of 1996, I've been out of the dating pool since October, 1993, and I had forgotten how hard all this was. I know a lot of this is hardly news to most people reading this, but I had forgotten just how disconcerting all this was. A friend of mine told me not too long ago that I needed to keep a positive attitude and just enjoy myself as much as possible while meeting new people and going out to dinner, movies and new places with them. The only problem is that thanks to the demands of parenthood (which I don't regret for a single second) my time and money are much more limited than they were 15 years ago, and every time any sort of connection ends -- whether it's after the first and only date or after the eighth -- I feel like I want that time and money back.

Oops, I've revealed something potentially less than attractive on a journal at a dating site.

Fuck it... at least I'm being honest.

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