I received a stats message from match.com today. I’ve been a member there for the past 12 years, and in that time, my profile has been viewed 6,825 times. Wow. That number surprised me. But though this count of views might seem high, the number of women I actually met through Match is less than 20, and the number that I got a relationship going with, stands at just 2. I’ve sent out well over 15,000 winks and emails, and have spent hours into the thousands logged in there. I’ve revised my profile and posted pictures nearly a hundred times. Yet I’m still without my soul mate. In fact, I must conclude that online dating just does not work for me. So, it’s time for some drastic changes in order to get off this rock I’ve been stuck on for the past five months, and re energize my love quest.
I feel that it’s time now, to abolish this whole online dating practice. What’s that old saying? When something you’re doing repeatedly does not work, you change what you’re doing. Indeed, while I concede that for many, Internet introductions work very well, I can’t say the same for myself. When I started, the possibilities implied by access to a bigger pool of potential dates, quite intrigued me. It mattered not, that most of them lived thousands of miles away, because in 1998, the year I first appeared in the web dating arena, few roots held me to where I lived. So I would have relocated to just about any metropolitan area in the US, to be with my dream girl, had I found her.
But over the years, I’ve developed strong ties here in my first, real hometown, which I moved back to in December of 2001, after over twenty years of residing hundreds of miles distant. I’ve lived here now for over eight years, and have grown quite fond of this house, the land, the culture, and my family; so fond in fact that last year, I realized that I wish to live out my remaining days right here, in this place. I do not want to move anywhere again, for this is one of only two places where I’ve not seriously longed to be somewhere else. This is my truest home, and I know all too well the pains of leaving it, even if taking up residence elsewhere means that I could finally be near my lady princess. For perhaps the first time in my life, it’s more important to stay here on Pleasant Valley Blvd., than to be anywhere else, though my dream girl might in fact, be waiting for me there. I’d rather be here, alone, than anywhere else, with a goddess.
Besides, long-distance relationships are pesky, troublesome little beasts I’ve come to know, because the distance obscures the details that should be crystal clear in order to intelligently decide to be with a particular other for the long term. I might think I love her while multiple states separate us. But even when she’s temporarily close, as in when we visit one another, important details surrounding our true compatibility remain shrouded, and in this circumstance, it’s very easy to confuse true love with lofty fantasy. It’s only when we begin moving toward a day-in and day-out closeness that I can really tell how I feel about her, and usually, I ended up feeling nothing. It’s hard to know someone well, who lives not in your town.
Indeed, a stranger really is a stranger when they live far away, because there’s usually no one to ask about them in my city that knows enough about them them to provide a meaningful voucher. I can’t easily learn how they treat others, “through the grapevine”. Nor, do I typically hear others tell stories about them when they were little. So, there’s no one close by to warn me of potential problems, or dangers in fact. The world of long-distance relationships is fraught with risks and potential gotchas, and in this, my 50th year, I’m notably skiddish about fully trusting someone, without others to confirm what they’re telling me through the sharing of local folklore, traditions, and stories. I like knowing others, who know my lovers too.
Yet in my experience, online dating was all about long distance romances, as very few local, eligible women posted profiles. If I was going to online date therefore, I had to be willing to do long-distance; and I was, for a lot of years. But my life has changed such that I can do that no longer, as I have less money these days for plane tickets, hotels, restaurants, and the other big costs of traveling to far-away places. Plus, I like being at home or nearby, and so, am less eager to travel today than I’ve ever been. This is my home. I take care of it, and so, worry over it when I’m gone. I have my junk and tools in the basement, that I miss when I’m three states away. In fact. where once I’d boast of the number of hours I rode on Greyhound buses to get from Dayton to Altoona, I now enjoy telling others how many months it’s been since I last left home for more than a day or two. I just don’t like traveling much these days. Thus, online dating therefore, with its implied extensive traveling, must go, as I’m just not up for it today.
So, how will I meet desirable women, if not through online dating? Well, stay tuned, and I’ll let you know, as soon as I have some answers. Comments are welcome.