While many of you have enjoyed these last few posts and have tried to get me to keep putting myself through such torturous situations to allow for more funny stories, I'm afraid our time here is done. But, in my admitedly short adventure into online dating, I was able to learn a few things.
1) People are going to lie. And they will choose to lie about really stupid stuff that can easily be witnessed when you meet them. They will lie about things that shouldn't matter, but that will make you question what else they might be lying about. So you chose to check the box that says "athletic and toned" and you're more like "a few extra pounds." Not a huge deal, right? But if you can't be honest with yourself and own what you are...that reads as insecurity. Or dishonesty. Or something. I think there are more people than we realize roaming around out there, not happy in their skin and too afraid to admit it. And that's why they check the boxes or write the paragraphs about the person they'd like to be, or hope to be instead of who they actually are.
2) You can learn a lot about someone if you are willing to show up and listen. I know both of the situations I wrote about were very different from each other, but there was a quality that came out on both dates. Both Gary and Hank completely gave themselves away in different expressions of desperation. I know about their families, where they work, who their friends are, where they hang out, etc. My total experience culminates to something less than 5 hours!
3) I am not interested in investments with low-return. My youth pastor told me in high-school, "You are built for long-term relationships." And it couldn't be more true. The majority of the people I'm close to, with a few exceptions, have been in my life for a good, long while. If I'm going to invest in someone, I want to know they're going to be around for the long haul. Otherwise, I don't want to bother. I take relating to people very seriously. That's why I hate chit-chat. I hate mingling. I hate going to a party where I only know 1 person. I'm not interested in fake conversation with someone I won't see again. That's why I don't think the online dating thing will work for me. I think the majority of people interested in online dating want to water ski. I'm not interested in playing around on the surface of the water. I want a few days on the dock to study the water and then I'm going to run off the end doing a cannonball. I'm all in.
4) If you have no expectations, you will never be disappointed. This is really hard to do, but pays off. (And is useful in, oh....all areas of life.)
Thanks for laughing with me through this experience. I'm glad I did it, I'm glad it's over, and all the best to Hank and Gary. Cheers.