My son was at his dad’s for an entire weekend, so I took advantage of the free time by going on two dates.
I’ve recently changed my procedure for how I determine who I want to go on a date with. When I first set up my Match.com profile, I didn’t take much time filling out the sections with my information (I didn’t have nearly as much fun as when I set up that Plenty of Fish account). I was more into getting to the ‘Search’ feature and finding someone that looked like he held the possibility of compatibility. I sent out more emails than I’d like to admit (14) and didn’t get a single response. The only emails I got were from 60-something men who didn’t even live in the same state as me.
Then I read Data: A Love Story by Amy Webb. I won it in a Twitter giveaway from Dutton Books. To keep this short, Webb hacks into the analytical side of online dating. She creates spreadsheets and algorithms of her own to figure out how to create her perfect profile. She also developed a scoring system she would use before going on a date with anyone. Men had to score at least 700 points to get a first date (perfect score = 1,500).
I was inspired by her efforts, but I wasn’t into creating a complicated scoring system with three tiers of points. I did think one of her exercises was genius. She sat down and wrote out 72 characteristics of her ideal mate. SEVENTY-TWO. She became one of those women who truly knows what she was looking for. How can you look for an ideal mate, if you don’t know what one looks like?
So, I did it. I came up with 30 characteristics my perfect match would have. I divided them into tiers and developed my own points system, but then I grew tired of it and haven’t taken a second look.
I did, however, take the time to go through my Match.com profile. I wrote about who I was (without writing an autobiography), what I wanted (without sounding bitchy), and made it truly about ME.
I also made a promise to myself. No more going on dates and making excuses if he didn’t meet the qualifications.
Saturday’s date was the last vestige of men I had been talking to before I made that list. Looking back, if I had the list, I wouldn’t have gone on a first date (meeting) with him. And certainly not a second and third. He’s not a bad guy; he just doesn’t meet up to my ideals. And, after our date on Saturday, I am ready to throw in the towel. We aren’t compatible. End of story.
Sunday’s date was the first after the list. He wasn’t the first to email me after I fixed my profile. That honor goes to another guy I’ve spoken to a few times since. He’s also a single parent, so scheduling a date has become very…complicated. Sunday’s date took the initiative and just used the website’s instant messaging service to start chatting. He was the first that, looking at his profile, I kept in mind my list of 30 traits. There’s a lot on that list that I couldn’t tell from his profile and our first conversation, but he did meet some of the qualifications. So, I agreed to a first date.
We met at one of the local casinos, so we didn’t have to walk around in the cold. Three of the casinos are attached so you can walk quite a ways indoors. I originally walked right past him when I walked in, but – in my defense – I entered with a huge group of people and was concentrating on not knocking over this little girl.
So we walked. And we talked. And we ended up walking outside because it was quieter. Luckily we were both dressed warmly. He had gotten off work and was hungry, so we ended up going back to one of the casinos for a small dinner.
I had a fantastic time. I discovered he met a couple other traits on the list. He walked me to my car afterwards, we hugged, and then we parted with plans to meet up again soon.
Is he my perfect match? I don’t know. But, at least this time around, I know what ‘perfect’ in this context means for me.