Adventures in Online Dating: Chapter 16 HAZARDS OF THE JOB
Match #5 left a comment ON MY BLOG.
So much for Guided Communication, Dr. Warren, sending Second Questions, anonymity, and the like.
Here is what he said:
So, I’m sitting here printing off what seems to be a thousand pages of Old English ballads for a folklore class I have in graduate school, and I think, hmm, Katey (kinda of an unusual spelling) and she’s a freelancer in Bakersville. Well, she’s got to be easy to find via Google, and here you are. And here I am as I read the blog. Interesting (he says with a smile). I’m match #5, on the other side of the mountain. I’m actually not a member of eHarmony, just took advantage of the free weekend to see what would happen. Thought it would be fun, and it has been. But I’m not going to sign up for the site, so feel free to simply e-mail me at xxxxxx. Sounds like we could at least have fun being neighbors.
Friendly enough, and humorous, and, well, good with the internet. I had actually been hoping to get to the Open Communication stage with J so that I could say, “Please do not Google my name…I’d rather that you get to know me as a person first and not through my writing.” So much for that. Aiy, aiy, aiy!
So yes, I email him and yes and ask him not to read my blog (How’s he supposed to distinguish between the narrative voice of the nervous online dater and the real me? How am I supposed to distinguish, for that matter!). I ask him about his dogs and if the buckeye trees are changing color on his side of the mountain yet because they just started to change a bit on my side. I ask him about his PR work and I tell him to fill me in since, clearly, he knows more about me than I know about him at this point.
Meanwhile, CollegeFriend from across the country also took advantage of the free weekend on eHarmony and sent a few communications out to New Matches, free of charge. And thank goodness she told me about this, otherwise I would have had no idea what J meant by his comment. If she likes what she finds, she’s signing up. Go team go!
I’m afraid my little whim of an idea that started two weeks ago has turned into, well, exactly what it promises. Dates with interesting people. Real dates. Real people. Somehow I have this notion in my mind that this is what people do in cities…say, go out with so-and-so on one weekend and a different so-and-so on another weekend, until they eventually choose one so-and-so above all the rest and enter a monogamous relationship. Whether that’s myth or reality, I’m learning a lot about myself and it’s utterly refreshing to get to know someone outside the confines of my life up at the craft school (where hungry, horny artists abound…coming and going as they please).
So I email SH. Tell him thanks for a great date. Really, one of the best I’ve had. And I can’t get his smile out of my mind.
Then I turn the computer off, off, off. Return to my Andre Dubus book, where I find perhaps the finest quote at the conclusion of his short story “All the Time in the World,” a story about a twenty-something woman who has dated her share of men but is trying to change her habits, trying to find out what she wants and needs, and trying to take life one day at time. Here is the quote:
“She was hungry, and she talked with her friends and waited for her steak, and for all that was coming to her: from her body, from the earth, from radiant angels poised in the air she breathed.”