I Just Don’t Get it.

Published June 4, 2013 by mindfulofchatter

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Here’s the thing, deal, whatever you want to call it. I don’t get it. ‘It’ being this whole online dating arena.

On the plus side, it opens up meeting people. You can, and do, meet people you most likely would never bump into on the street or be seated next to at a dinner party. The variety is almost unending.

The downside is the people you meet online hide often behind their little screens. They are not honest. They post photos that are decades old as if they still look that way. They claim to be not into looks, but instantly judge you on yours. They think it’s okay to ask highly inappropriate questions. Some days, it tough to wrap my head around it.

I recently began an e-mail conversation with a man who seemed to have a similar sense of humor. Now, I am not into the endless e-mailing, but he explained he was not in the state at the moment (and why). Okay. I can go along with that. We found we had a few things in common. Another plus! I was interested in him, and he seemed interested in me. We seemed to be hitting it off. At least in writing. He answered almost all of my questions. Almost. Twice I asked about talking on the phone. Twice he ignored that particular question. Then he ended an e-mail with – So what are you wearing?

???!!???!!!! I know where that question goes. I’ve heard far too many times of late. But I gave him the benefit of the doubt and made a joke out of it. I mentioned he may want to back off that line of questioning (in a nice way), and asked (for the second time) about talking on the phone.  His next e-mail came:

What are you wearing now?

Behold me with your beauty and bring out the slutty wench costume. Do you like to dress up in the bed room? Do you like to roleplay?

Okay. This guy in on a mission. And he’s a bit dense. I know better than to drop hints, and I had told him this was not an appropriate line of questioning at this point in our non-existent relationship. Yet he continued along the path as if I had said nothing. So I sent him this:

We are not dating. We have not met in person. We barely know each other. I don’t know enough about you to share that kind of information. And you don’t know enough about me to even think about asking it. After beginning so well, I am disappointed. You see, this not the first time an e-mail or phone call has gone to inappropriate questions in such a short time. I understand men well enough at my age, but I don’t understand this ‘online’ mentality of believing that it is okay to start asking very personal questions within 10 minutes (or a handful of e-mails). It isn’t.

And it does bother me that even though I have brought it up twice, you have said nothing about a telephone call. That tells me you are avoiding it for some reason. And yes, it does read as ‘married man’ to me.

His response?

Yeah, I kinda figured we were forcing a fit.  I’m pretty sexually liberal and it sticks out sometimes (oops!).
No harm taken from your honesty 🙂

Well of course not harm taken. It’s fairly obvious he didn’t read the e-mail. Or any of the e-mails I sent him. The twit (wanker).

The next thing I don’t understand it the coffee date. Well, actually my coffee dates. Most have seemed to have gone well only to end with no further contact wanted. I can only assume it’s me, not him. I do admit to not being anyone but my crazy self. I don’t see the point in not being who I am from the beginning. I don’t dress up to impress. I wear what seems appropriate for the weather/time/place. I do go clean and well-groomed, just not dressed to the nines to sit, sip tea and talk.

My last coffee date was a nice seeming man who did not want to spend eternity e-mailing (yippee!). He did not ask my age or for a photo (yippee!). He simply asked for a place and time. Then he told me he has short brown hair, glasses and would be wearing a green and yellow tie dyed shirt. Nice. Casual. So I wore my nicer black jeans, a t-shirtish top and my purple geek sneakers (you know, the ones with the white rubber toes).

He was on time and easy to spot. We ordered our coffee/tea and found a table in the back where we could talk. And we talked. For 4 hours. The conversation flowed easily. No uncomfortable silences. Topics came and went with ease. He remarked how nice it was to talk so easily with someone. He told me a longish, but very interesting story about a bottle of wine he had been researching. The story twisted and turned and had gaps he was unable to fill. We discussed various scenarios for the gaps. It was a fun time.

Then we were done (they closed the coffee shop). It was time to go home. He said he had fun. He said it was so very nice to have met me. He hugged me good-bye. And he left. No ‘Let’s do this again’. No asking for a telephone number. Just ‘bye’ and off he went to his vehicle.

Never once did he look at his watch. Never once did his expression wander away to another time and place. He was (or seemed) engaged in our conversation the entire time. He touched my hand and arm a couple of times. He leaned in to talk to me. He made eye contact. He did all the little body language things the ‘dating coaches’ tell us to look for. And he still (apparently) was just not interested.

I don’t get it. I just don’t. I don’t wear pajama pants in public. I’m a bit chubby, but nowhere near obese (or BBW). I speak well. I am on the intelligent side. I don’t say ‘like’ or ‘um’ every other word. I take pretty good care of myself over all. I’m honest about who I am. I have a wide variety of interests. I don’t think I’m particularly pretty, but babies don’t burst into tears and mirrors don’t explode when I walk by.

So I am at a loss. And getting very tired.
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