Single Mom: Adventures in Online Dating
When I decided to dip my foot back into dating circuit, I had absolutely no good reason for picking Match.com over any other service other than my fall-back decision making technique I learned back in the 3rd grade.
Everybody’s doing it so I should too.
A few single people in my life kept talking about Match-this and Match-that like it was some sort of exclusive club where they got to enjoy adult drinks with adult humans in clothes that were not made specifically for sweating in and the more they talked about it the more I wanted in.
Give me the key, the password, the secret knock, dammit.
But like most things that sound good in theory, in the reality of my life as a single mom with four kids running a business and attempting to dodge the verbal bullets of my disgruntled ex, it was like a full-time job.
These services suck you in by allowing you to peruse the guys in your area for free, all of whom they must somehow save to bait new, prospective members like me and inject us with a huge spark of hope that forces us to blindly hand over our credit card so we can actually talk to these people, not realizing that in doing that you open up a veritable pandora’s box of men who are, not surprisingly, single.
“But, but that pretty one, where did he go?” I thought to myself as I flipped through profile page after profile page with weird screen names like EZGOIN56 and LASTNICEGUY4REALZ and photos of themselves that were basically a mugshot without the number across their chest.
But worse, if that’s possible, is the grammar. I mean, I’m not sure what these people typed last: a text to their teenager or an English 101 paper on a word processor?
Seriously, when did everyone become so illiterate? Why can people not write a single sentence without ending it with an emoticon?
Now sure, I get an errant comma, a hanging quotation mark, even a smiley face after a sarcastic line (way better than JK in my book) but when it’s amidst a jumble of words that reads like a bad newspaper wanted ad, you have to wonder how these people survive on Earth. And procreate, even.
I long for the days where you just met someone in a bar or a club or your Psychology class and you didn’t know that he couldn’t spell or hell, make complete sentences until after you went out a few times or at least got a good screw out of it.
And you certainly had no knowledge of his emoticon prowess. I mean, if you send me this — :* — which, by the way, what is that? A butthole face? How can I take you seriously whatsoever?
You might even have gotten married to bad-grammar-emoticon guy and had a couple of kids not even knowing that he didn’t understand the difference between it’s and its and a regular face and winky face you and you would have been perfectly fine, happy ever after even.
And even if you did finally discover that he couldn’t correctly use an apostrophe it was too late; you were two cars, two and a half kids in and while you might imagine life with that sexy good-grammar guy, it would require way too many pairs of Spanx and actual clothing (vs. those yoga pants) and yeah, carry on with your wrong use of possessive, husband.
These days, you can’t even get to his photos because you just can’t get past the fact that at 44 he’s an emoticon abuser who doesn’t have a mastery of the English language.
Is there a scientific correlation between bedroom prowess and punctuation use because I would like to know what the survey says, please. Do men who use emoticons get laid more or less than men who don’t?
I did try to swallow my pride and graduate education to give a few cute guys who had similar interests to me, like “eating out” and “breathing air,” a fair shake, but in the back of my mind, I just couldn’t put aside the knowledge that they thought it was okay to publicly end sentences with a smiley face.
Of course, all the grammarians I went out with turned out to be complete duds who probably spent all their time and energy crafting the funniest, most well-written bio and not so much on an actual personality, so maybe I need to go back to the drawing board. Or at least, get my priorities straight.
“So, how big is your…?”