Today marks Day #27 of my online dating experiment. Ethically speaking, I’m doing the best I can; I’m posting every detail of my love life on the internet, for crying out loud! And while I’ve withheld a few juicy tidbits for the sake of propriety, I think I’ve gone above and beyond the rules of disclosure.
Although, to be perfectly honest, I’m not really sure what sort of “rules” apply in the world of online dating. Match.com is like a parallel universe, in which you have drop down menus for rejections and the ability to wink at the click of a button (and given my abject inability to wink in real life, I’m a huge fain of virtual winking). As far as I can tell, it’s entirely acceptable, if not entirely normal, to cast a wide net on Match.com, at least in the beginning.
But what do you do when your net pulls in… well, more than one good catch? How do you narrow it down? The first few weeks of my “experiment” saw me entirely preoccupied with this question (a second date with #3? With #4? Or should I move onto #6?). It was as though I had somehow positioned myself as the star of my own reality show (and I hate reality TV, so I’m not really sure how that happened) without taking the time to figure out the rules!
I’ve since realized that’s it not really up to me (it does take two to tango, after all) but I figured I would post the following suggestions for your ammusement. (Especially because I have an interview over at a community college this morning and I’m in too much of a hurry to think of anything more creative, or tasteful, for today.)
The first came courtesy of my college roommate: “Just make out with all the guys you’ve dated and then pick the best kisser!” Tempting though this idea may be (I do love a good snog), I remain a bit concerned about numbers. Dating four guys in four days is bad enough, but making out with four guys in four days? Well, that’s a bad reputation—and a killer case of mono—waiting to happen. And while I like to think I’m one of these Sex and the City types who can separate emotional from physical attachment, I can’t (and I’ve reached a point in my life where I’m starting to think that maybe this isn’t such a bad thing).
The second suggestion came from an anonymous reader: “Post a poll on your blog and let people vote! Click here for Date #2, here for Date #3 and so on.” Given that said anonymous reader has a rather vested interest in He-with-whom-I’ll-Eventually-Decide-to-Spend-the-Rest-of-my-Life, I didn’t think this was a terribly good idea. There’s a fine line between “engaging” with your readership and completely relinquishing all control of your love life— not to mention embarrassing (and objectifying) the men who have been decent enough to indulge my kiss-and-sort-of-tell tendencies.
So, I’m sorry folks but there will not be a poll.
The third and by far most bizarre suggestion was a joke (or so I hope): “Invite them all for a drink and then have them fight to the death!” Hmmm. Much as I love Renaissance fairs, antiquated codes of chivalry and Heath Ledger dressed in armor (or anything— or nothing come to think of it), this seems a bit medieval—primeval, actually— not to mention inhumane. And probably illegal.
But it’s not up to me. It’s up to fate, or the cosmos, or whatever we’re calling destiny these days. It’s up to Mystic Sherry, who writes the horoscope page over at the South Philly Review. And—oh yeah, I should have mentioned this earlier—it’s up to the men who have been kind enough to put up with me and my online shenanigans thus far. Merci beaucoup.