I have never been the type of person that shares lots of details about my dating life. My Mother asks me weekly, and I usually avoid the conversation. If I reveal any details, the grand inquisition begins. If I say nothing, there is immediate disappointment. I usually opt for the disappointment.
Last June, my Mother and I had the following dialogue about my love life.
Mom: So…do you have a special friend?
Me: Not right now.
Mom: What about that nice Jewish girl, my friend’s niece…did you ever call her?
Me: Not yet. I’m working on it.
Mom: What about that other girl from the Israel trip? She sounded nice…did you email her?
Me: I’m gonna do it later.
Mom: PAUL…do you like girls?
And the answer is YES. Of course I do (not that there’s anything wrong if you don’t.) But I was tired of being set up. I was tired of J-Date (Read here to understand why: http://thecorner33.blogspot.com/2008/08/j-date-202.html) And I was tired of dating girls simply because they were Jewish. As a Jewish man, it is definitely preferred by family that you settle down with a Jewish girl. There are definitely some amazing Jewish girls out there, but why should I limit myself? Why can’t I meet girls from different backgrounds?
I am not a Girlist! I will date any type of girl. I will not discriminate based on ethnicity or religion. The only girls I won’t date are Republicans, Yankees fans, and girls that don’t like the Wonder Years (see my dealbreaker link for more: http://thecorner33.blogspot.com/2008/06/deal-breakers.html)
There are two kinds of Jewish men: The ones that date only Jewish girls. And the ones that rebel and do the complete opposite. I am the latter. I will date Asian girls, Latina girls, African-American girls; I even made out with a deaf girl once.
This led me to the inevitable. I scrapped J-Date and moved on to something else. A place with variety. A place where people haven’t heard of the Matzoh Ball Dance. A place where religion didn’t matter. A place where some girls were just looking to have fun.
A little place called Match.com.
The Summer of 2008 was one of the best of my life thanks to Match.com. It was the first time I felt like a player. I am normally the typical nice guy; a hopeless romantic; the protagonist you might see in an 80’s movie. But Match.com allowed me to blossom. It allowed me to meet girls who weren’t looking for anything serious. Girls that just wanted to have fun. And girls that just wanted to have fun with me. I felt like I had super powers; like I was the captain of the football team or a famous musician. I felt really cool!
Since I analyzed J-Date in my other posts, I thought it was only fair to break down the ins and outs of Match.com. The following methods helped me meet lots of cool, attractive, and down-to-Earth women.
And before women roll their eyes, I want to say this in my defense. I am generally a nice guy. I am honest with women and treat them respectfully. I have never cheated on a girlfriend (although I have not had that many to cheat on.) And my ultimate goal is to meet the right girl. But to quote AC Slater: “Why not have fun with the wrong ones until I find the right one?”
Match has a pretty similar system as J-Date. You enter your age, location, ethnicity, religion, body type, height, and if you’re a smoker/drinker.
My family thinks I’m 6’ and my friends think I’m 5’ 8”. I usually compromise and list myself as 5” 10.” I could be exaggerating by an inch, but it makes me feel better.
The first thing that I learned is not to list my religion. The first week, when I mentioned I was a Jew, only Jewish girls contacted me. So I changed my Religion response to “No Answer” and everything opened up for me.
This is where you list your hair color, eye color, interests, education, job, favorite sexual position (just kidding, but that would be cool) income, astrological sign, etc.
But my favorite categories are: Best Feature and Body Art.
I love scrolling through girl’s profiles and seeing them brag about their bodies. Best features include: butt, breasts, legs, and ankles. What’s sexier then a girl with firm ankles?
This section gives a girl a chance to talk about her tattoos and piercings. Some guys aren’t into it, but I’m a sucker as long as their bodies are mostly intact. For me, if a girl gets a tattoo, it means she is spontaneous, adventurous, and can make decisions. It also means she’ll probably hook up a lot faster. To quote Vince Vaughn in Wedding Crashers: “Tattoo on the lower back? Mine as well be a bulls-eye.” And if she’s got a tongue ring—come on, now. That’s a no brainer.
On the flip side, I leave my body art answer empty which makes me more mysterious. On one date, a girl was obsessed to find out if I had a tattoo. Since I didn’t list anything, she was intrigued to discover the truth. This lead to lots of flirting, exploration, and a very fun night.
Turn-Ons and Turn-Offs
This is by far my favorite section to look at. Turn-ons/turn-offs include: Boldness/Assertiveness, dancing, flirting, sarcasm, thrills, candlelight, long hair, money, power, thunderstorms, etc.
(I never understood being turned on or off by thunderstorms. What the hell does the weather have to do with dating? Is there a problem with the Earth’s gravitational pull?)
The two turn-ons I immediately look for are: skinny dipping and erotica. If girls are turned-on by skinny dipping, it means they like to be naked (yes!), enjoy swimming (always nice), and like to be naked (yes again!)
I don’t know what erotica is, but I’m pretty sure it’s a nice way of saying porn. So if a girl writes that she is turned-on by erotica, it means that she likes porn. If she likes porn, it means she likes sex. So by the associative property, if a girl likes erotica, it means that she might have sex with you.
If she leaves the response empty, she could still like porn, so don’t hang your head. If she writes erotica as a turn-off, immediately move on to someone else.
Pictures are incredibly important. You could be the best writer ever, but if your pictures aren’t up to par, you’re in trouble. Let’s be realistic. Whether it’s online or in person, you’re going to approach people that you find attractive.
My advice is to use the following types of photos:
A picture with you and an animal. Girls loves animals, especially cute and cuddly dogs. It shows that you are sensitive, and it gives them an ice breaker when they write you: “Your dog is so cute…what’s his name?”
A picture with you and kids. It could be a nephew/niece, the basketball team you coach, or the time you volunteered at that school. This will melt their hearts and make you seem like a great guy.
On the flip side, women should be very careful of putting kids in their photos—first off, it may scare the guy off because he’ll think you have a kid. Second, it implies that you are already thinking about family and the future which is also scary.
The funny picture. This could be as simple as a funny pose, your goofy Halloween costume, or the time you were in a dunking tank. It is important to keep it lighthearted and silly; make them laugh; don’t scare them (i.e. if you dressed up as a bloody, beaten up, grizzled Vampire, do not put this in…this applies for both guys and girls.)
The stylish photo. This is a picture of you at your friend’s wedding. You look regale and sophisticated in your suit or tux. You are an accomplished and responsible man. This could be way off, but in that photo, it appears to be true.
Photo #5 and More...
Match allows at least 20 photos. I would choose quality over quantity. Four pictures are perfect, but if you want to add a few more, go with “These are the places I visited” photos. But make sure you’re in it. A nice picture of the Eiffel tower, the Grand Canyon, or In-N-Out Burger doesn’t matter to anyone. But if you’re standing next to it and look good, then you got yourself a photo.
Photo to Avoid
Many girls have told me: “There is nothing worse then pictures of shirtless men on dating sites.” It’s curious because if I see a shirtless woman, it’s awesome, but apparently women don’t feel the same way about us.
Match is a little behind the times on this one. While IM is offered, it is hard to use, and most users are not accessible. People rarely respond; well at least every time I tried to contact them. This is one of the few categories where J-Date is better.
I have no idea what to write in this message to get a response, so I’ll just be honest. That was my opening line because it was the absolute truth. I really have no idea what to write. If there’s a secret virtual pick up line, I’d love to hear it.
My only advice is get to the point. At first I exchanged 5 or 6 emails. But then the girl would stop responding; this is most likely because somebody else asked her out. I learned my lesson and started asking girls out within the second email. They usually sent back their number. If I passed the phone call test, I actually had a date set up.
The Phone Call Test
This is a preventative tool used by women to make sure that you’re not crazy. I used to be a horrible phone talker until my long distance girlfriend taught me how to speak on the phone. I learned to avoid mumbling and speak clearly. I learned about timing and transition. And I learned how to listen and watch ESPN at the same time (harder then you might think.) But I still never mastered the phone message...
The Phone Message
Leaving a message for a girl is one of the most painful and grueling experiences (remember Mikey from Swingers.) You don’t what to say, how to say it, or when to stop. When you hang up, you always feel stupid and think: “Why did I just say that?” And if they don’t get back to you, you keep thinking: “If I hadn’t left that idiotic message, she would’ve called me back.” But the good thing about Match is that they’ve already agreed to go out with you. They’ll call you back because it’s different then the real world.
In the real world, the girl may give out her number because:
1) She’s too nice.
2) So you’ll leave her alone.
3) She is mildly interested.
4) She is drunk.
5) She feels bad for you.
6) She is interested.
7) She wants a free dinner.
But if it’s 1-5, she’s not calling you back. If it’s 6 or 7, you may stand a chance. But with online dating, these rules don’t apply which is a breath of fresh air.
Once you’re on the date, it’s up to you. If you really need advice, you can watch Hitch or just read my blog next month.
All Good Things Must Come to an End
As the summer ended so did my subscription to Match.com. The leaves changed color, the air became crisp, and my dating life cooled off. The summer was over.
I actually rejoined Match.com one more time. The day after I forked over the 40 dollar (43 with tax) subscription fee, I met a girl without the aid of the internet. I got her number, and two days later, I left the dreaded phone message.
I waited for her to call me back. One day. Nothing. Two days. Nothing.
On the third day, I thought to myself: “Why did I leave that terrible message? I’m an idiot!”
On the fourth day, she called me back, and I haven’t been on Match since.
Tradecraft: xXx Rides Again
2 days ago