I ask you: why did no one explain to me the virtues of this online dating thing sooner?

I will admit that the idea of online dating filled me with the same type of dread I have for a trip to the DMV. But at least you know what to expect at the DMV … and I will say that the DMV and online dating do have a few things in common, such as widespread use of poor grammar, long response times and outrageous fees.

But, after a few days, I have to say I’m pretty excited about the whole thing, and it’s for one reason. Here’s what makes online dating the most awesomest invention since the advent of the Internet if you’re a word nerd like me: your prospects have to write mini-essays about themselves, and you get to read said essays before you ever decide if you want to make eye contact.

Holy. Buckets.

Not only are there essays, you can also categorize your potential suitors into YES, NO, and MAYBE, and you can make a list of FAVORITES. Seriously, my inner OCD list-making self is ecstatic. It’s like a video game for dorks.

It’s not lost on me that meeting someone online is a much less interesting and romantic story than is meeting on a train, in an airport lounge, at a friend’s holiday party, etc. I also understand that it’s possible that the “chemistry” that might seem to be buzzing in the background of every email or text may not fully charge when you actually come face-to-face with the other person. That could be a bit of a let-down.

But here’s the thing: with my life the way that it is these days, I only have the opportunity to meet new people face-to-face about once a month or so. That’s not so exciting. Whereas online it’s possible to meet, or at least entertain the idea of meeting, someone new every day. I like those odds much better, and while childbearing is not something I’m overly concerned about, it’s true what they say. I’m not getting any younger.

It’s been a week since I signed up for one of the commonly known dating sites, and here’s what I’ve found so far.

1) Dudes who post more than 7 pictures of themselves may like themselves a little too much. I don’t need three different photos of yourself shirtless, but thank you. Also random landscape and concert shots without captions are COMPLETELY USELESS. They don’t tell me anything about you.

2) And, apparently there’s a whole contingency of guys in LA who think white v-necks are fashionable. I know I’m automatically less cool than these guys because I don’t live in LA, but I also know that v-neck Ts on dudes aren’t cool. They’re just weird.

Wish me luck.


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