Posted on | October 19, 2012 | 3 Comments
Hello blog-readers, do you mind if I discuss something slightly personal? Well, you haven’t minded in the past so I’ll plough on…
For a few years I’ve been casually using a couple of free online dating sites – and by casually I mean logging on every couple of days, having a sniff round for a couple of girls that look vaguely suited for you sending them an email while expecting no reply and not getting one. This is how they seem to work and generally this seems a fun pain-free approach. I have actually met people through friends after I’d sent them a message and felt really embarrassed, but they didn’t mind, they just laughed it off and informed me that I’m still not getting a shag *sob*. Or sometimes you do get a few replies but it quickly transpires you don’t click and then you just say your goodbyes [or not] and go your separate ways in the world of all things cyber.
However, perhaps once in a blue moon (two or three times in three years for me) you get talking, I mean really talking, to someone – as I did just recently with Chloe. (Chloe isn’t her name, although I am slightly pissed off this isn’t really her fault so I thought a name’n’shame campaign would be unfairly harsh – so you’re safe there Paula*!) Over email we seemed to really click, she worked with disability which gave us a certain bond right from the start and had similar interests in music and comedy and after a few messages I thought we were disclosing more than usual. I even admitted to just what an extent I am an electric blues freak (a topic which is perhaps number one on my black-list of ‘things never to discuss with people of sexual interest’) and she told me some personal things about her previous encounter with religion (emphasis on the ‘previous’ thankfully).
So a week into our discourse I wanted to meet up and thanks to a wonderful coincidence in about ten days I had a gig in her town so I part-jokingly suggested that if we’re still talking by then (thinking it would have petered out) we should meet up. Miraculously not only did she want to do this but our discourse was still in full flow (this was despite the countless crude jokes and references to my love of guitar-laden blues I made), so we said we’d meet for a pre-gig coffee. However, as the date approached it transpired she couldn’t make it, so being as unsubtle as I am I suggested we make a separate arrangement just to meet up; which she again seemed to whole-heartedly accept and we agreed we would meet up on Friday (today) at ummm now!
Alright I know I could technically be writing this on my smartphone at a coffee shop while she gets our flat-whites, but I’m not, I’m sitting at my pc in jeans I would have definitely changed had I been meeting a girl. If you are wondering why I’m here not there it is due to a brief and blunt message I received last night saying she had met someone this week who she likes and therefore didn’t think meeting up would be appropriate.
My first reaction was one of anger, upset and annoyance, followed by a somewhat pathetic text to a few close female friends asking for some shameless sympathy. Going by all the contact we had I thought we might have had something and to see it all disappear in one little email was quite a shock.
Still, after my emotions subsided I started to wonder if this was actually her fault at all and if it was more of a reflection of how plastic building a rapport purely over textual contact is. You are probably sitting here reading this blog thinking you have a fairly good idea of who I am. However, this is a text I produced primarily to make a point I have carefully considered the tone to be appropriate for the content and it is not the tone I’d use if we were meeting for the first time. Even if you have totally pure intentions it can be easy –or inevitable- to convey a fake version of you online. Yes, I said previously that she seemed very interested in my passion for music and comedy and wanted to know how I cope with CP; but for all I know she might have asked out of boredom or selfish curiosity. I sincerely doubt she was this narrow-minded, but my point is you just don’t know what the other person is really thinking.
Perhaps online-dating works best when you don’t have a huge discourse before arranging to meet and instead ask people to meet on a whim. That way there is no expectations and you don’t go in to the date expecting to really get on because you have over email.
Or maybe it’s just not for me… oh well, I find someone soon!
*haha fooled you, this isn’t her real name either, I’m such a card!