Tag Archives: online dating

eHarmony: The Battle for Gay Rights in a Nutshell

I’ll get to the changing-your-life follow-up on the weekend. News comes first.

Back in 2005, eHarmony got slapped with a lawsuit for discrimination because gays couldn’t use the service. Now, personally, considering their overpriced, weird cult-like dating service, I kinda thought eHarmony was doing gays a favour. But I agree with the spirit of the lawsuit, because it’s bullshit.

Well, now it’s three-plus years later, and eHarmony finally has a gay service available. Yay for progress!

Oh. Wait a second. Not so much?

See, gays still can’t use eHarmony. No, they get Compatible Partners. (Which is yet to be launched. Look to March 31st, 2009, for that.)

Did they even put a marketing team on this? Do they even give a fuck? “Compatible Partners”? What, “Ass-Pirates and Their Friends” was unavailable? Holy segregated fuck, Batman! Continue reading

A Rant: An Interested Lover is a Stalker?

So, a comment was left on yesterday’s post, and it went to the effect of this:

Steff, I have to say it’s kinda’ creepy or something……with you writing about your guy and your guy adding comments to your blog.

I know it’s a free world and people can do anything they want.
But, this Blog is beginning to give me flashbacks of watching the Brady Bunch or something. It’s almost like……is he watching over your sholder all the time or stalking you? Doesn’t he have anything else to do? It’s making me sick!

The Guy makes comments on posts relating to him. Suddenly it seems stalkeresque to that reader, and perhaps others. The comment put me on the defensive, and then it made me think.

The Guy said, “Hey, she posted to my blog first. And what you see as creepy I see as caring and supportive.” I’d have to say I agree. And it’s true, I did comment on his first. (And no, I won’t post the link. You find that shit out on your own, kudos, but I like him being a rather non-distinct entity. It makes him stay more mine, in some weird way.)

The Guy’s a writer and an editor in his own right, and as a result, he’s extremely supportive and encouraging of my attempts – because he knows what you don’t: Nothing terrifies me more than writing, but there’s nothing I need to do more. He reads everything I write every day, (including on my other blog) and tends to send off a couple short emails each day, considering that he knows I simply sit at my desk most often and write. He knows I don’t like MSN/instant messaging, so he doesn’t push me to use that, since he realizes I find it interrupts my work ethic. I send him far more emails than he sends me, and it’s a wonder he’s not slapping a stalker label on my ass. But, of course, he’s definitely slapping my ass. You don’t need to hear about that.

Anyhow, that wasn’t what had me thinking.

I’m an independent chick. I don’t “need” a guy to feel whole, and my backlog proves that. But I want a guy. I want The Guy. And why not? He fits the bill of what I’ve been looking for, and vice versa.

In writing about our recent collision in matters of the heart for his own audience, he had this to say: “It’s exciting, fun, and works. We’ve jumped in with both feet: there’s lots of trust and sympatico there, which helps. It feels, in a way, like it’s been a long time in coming, and I don’t think I could explain that sense if I tried.”

And neither could I. Really, explaining this shit to the masses is like trying to explain why you like a certain food. You can try, but really, unless you’re sitting there and munching it yourself, you’ll never understand.

I’m in an unusual predicament. I’m supposed to be writing about matters of the heart and loin, and I try to push myself to create new content on a daily basis. Somehow, I mostly succeed. Yes, some days are weak and of little consequence, and others are fun and quirky, and on rare good days, I manage to even pull off the odd hint of insight.

But through it all, it’s fuelled by me – my experiences, my life, my fears, my curiosities, my takes, my opinions. Me. I leave myself out here on the clothesline to be whipped about by the elements, and hope like hell there’s no tatters when I’m through.

There are moments when I wish The Guy didn’t have access to this blog. Moments like The Relationship Ride posting from last week. But he does have access. What’s more, it seems to matter to him what I’m saying. When I posted that writing about my early-days fear, he didn’t post some lame-ass comment for you all to read, he called me and deflated any anxieties I had through good old-fashioned conversation. We actually only talk on the phone once or twice a week. We save conversation up for being in person, but we keep communication open via email. He told me the other day I could be writing about quilting and he’d still check it daily, but the fact that it’s about sex is just “total bonus.” Then again, he knew my writing from long ago, and liked it just fine when I wasn’t giving instructions on how to perform oral.

So, it bothers me that someone who’s interested in what I say has to be labeled as a “stalker.” What the fuck is that about? As a result of him being interested and reading what I say, our communication process is probably far more sophisticated only a month (technically, but that’s not allowing for our exchanges from four years ago) into the relationship than most people probably experience after several months in. I encourage everyone to try and find their way to a communicative experience like this. Throw in a little hot action, and there you go.

It also means he understands what I want from sex, what I expect from a lover, and more importantly, what I, too, will (and do) bring to the table. Our physical exchanges are passionate, open, rewarding, and fun, and we know how to talk about it before and after the fact. Our verbal exchanges skip to the heart of the matter, because so much has already been said and understood, if even only through these pages.

I guess the long and the short of it is pretty simple. We live in a fairly cynical age where interest and affection can be perceived as indulgent and sappy. We’re so fucking bent on being “cool” and maintaining an image, and even playing fucking head games, that we tend to forget about being — or even how to be — real in between it all.

On here, I am what I need to present myself as. It’s as much a marketing ploy as anything. In print, I’m real, but I’m a stylized, heighted form of my reality. In person, I’m someone who can be hurt, who can cry at the memory of a tragic event, and who needs someone who can make that pain go away and who makes me laugh and feel safe and sexy. I’m cute, affectionate, doting, open, smart, communicative, excitable, and engaging, and I really, really need someone who mirrors that. Luckily, it would appear that’s what I’ve got.

A “stalker” is someone who shows unwanted attention to another. They’re obsessive and they pursue their subject with little regard for the subject’s desires.

The attention I’m getting is wanted. The “obsession” appears mutual. And my desires have met with nothing but his regard. And vice versa.

There will be posts in which some aspects of my relations with The Guy will find their way on here. This doesn’t look like a short-lived relationship, not to either of us, and I suspect there will indeed be things worth writing about. I think it unlikely I’ll ever share a great deal of detail with any of you in regards to that, as I do value some privacy and really do feel that keeping things to myself sometimes makes them mean more, but I’ll certainly allude to things, and I intend to continue sharing my fears, apprehensions, optimism, hope, and more. That’s what this place is about, and it indeed will change with the landscape of my life… a landscape that isn’t as empty as it was a month or two ago.

This thing I have going might seem sappy or whatever the fuck you perceive it to be, but that’s a truncated, inaccurate portrayal of what, to me, is mature, fun, communicative, supportive, and really fucking hot. So, y’know, whatever you wanna think, think. I know what I got, and I’m cool with it.

For the e-Dating Types: Six Tips

Note from Steff in 2010: It’s almost five years later, and every one of these still holds true. Please, for the love of God, people: Think about the kind of person you’ll attract through your profile, then plan accordingly. Here’s a few things not to do.

  • Look, everyone on the e-dating systems is taking a chance by putting their faces/profiles out there. Stop being a bonehead and saying, “I can’t believe I’m doing this…” or “I don’t have a lot of faith in this…” If not, then don’t!
  • We all find it a little weird, all right? In a perfect world, we’d walk into a bookstore, grin at a cutey, and have a date in five. Instead, we’re coming home after work, having a drink, and logging onto a dating service. Right. Yeah, that’s a little odd. Stop mentioning it. It’s kind of like going to a dinner party where the food’s shit: Everyone knows it, but you just nod and smile anyways.
  • If you’re a guy or gal looking for a class act to hook up with, it’s probably not the brightest idea to get a photo where you’re holding a beer bottle. Let’s think about it, all right?
  • Please, for the love of god, don’t make your profile read “If you want to know, ask.” The whole point of e-dating is the not-having-to-ask thing. Haven’t you noticed? But if you insist on staying single, have at ‘er.
  • Yes, yes, yes, we can see you’re a romantic because your profile photo is a sunset, but really, can we get a little skin? Come on.
  • And to the men out there, putting in your profile that she must be a little domesticated and know how to cook is so not gonna get you action. I just saw a guy’s profile where he demanded exactly that. And know what? He used that filthy word, too… “Laundry.”

It’s incredible the amount of oblivious folks out in the world. Sure keeps it entertaining for the rest of us, though, doesn’t it?

Stupid is as stupid does

I’m doing the online dating thing. Let me say ONE THING: Your opening line is EVERYTHING, boys.

So, the guy who just opened with: “May I have your panties?” Uh… Where to even begin on the lameness scale for that one?

Remember, “block this person” is the most valuable tool you have when doing the online thing.

Block, block, block. Fucking twit.

______________

So, Dear Readers, I’d like to ask you to stay tuned. Starting next week, I’ll have more time on my hands and a more diligent writing schedule, and I have a few ambitious ideas to tackle. Hopefully this place’ll be hopping again. In the meantime, I’d like to leave you with this lovely image.

Why this image? Because I’ve been pursuing the online thing more of late, and my GOD am I getting frustrated.

Okay, here’s a mini-rant.

Men are willing to go off to war. They’re willing to scale mountains. They’re willing to do all manner of stupid, life-endangering things, like running with bulls, but god-fucking-forbid they have the balls to cancel on a chick or see through some plans. (Obviously, there are awesome men out there who are not these guys… WHERE ARE YOU? Come HITHER. Now.)

As far as I can tell, these guys all want me. They’ve said so in countless ways, but as soon as our plans roll around, the guys are typically forgetful men and they often FORGET the dates. Instead of having the balls to say, “Shit, I forgot,” they pussy up and never contact me again. And the amusing thing? I’m usually pretty cool about that sort of thing. I’m a busy chick, and I like my time alone, so getting a night to myself is often a bonus, not a horrible event.

I’ve always thought I was pretty decent at decoding men, but these days, I’m getting just a little flustered. I tell you, I’m five minutes away from walking into a bar and laying it on a guy. Trust me, I could easily walk in, and walk out with a dude on my arm — I just hate the got’em-at-the-bar kind of deal.

On the flipside, meeting a nice CHICK someplace seems like a fuck of a lot LESS (ed. note: seems I forgot the most important word in this sentence earlier… AHEM.) hassle. I tell you, I’m so close to being driven to dyke by the dicks. So very close.

e-Dating: a Rant

I have recently gotten back into the world of e-dating. This is my third attempt. I’m not a clubber. I’m kind of a shy chick until I have an “in,” and despite getting increasingly flirtatious in real life, it seems that every fucking man I meet is attached, married, or gay. So I’m going where the odds are better.

e-dating began for me in the spring of 2004, and I thought it was a great new tool. No, actually, it’s mostly where you find the tools. Still, there are a few diamonds in the dark, dark mine.

The first date I had was with Paul, who had an inability to relax. Over the course of a 90-minute meal, Paul drank five beers and had the worst body language you could imagine: He sat there with his leg shaking violently under the table for the entire meal.

“It’s just him,” I thought. “Things will improve.”

The next date was with this cute Asian guy, and we decided to go watch a hockey game in a pub and have a couple drinks. Well, the pub I recommended wound up taking some 45 minutes to deliver a plate of nachos to us, and dude literally held me personally responsible and couldn’t shake the annoyance regarding bad service. His mood was the shits, so I naturally let him pay, and I fucked off.

Since then, I’ve probably had about three dozen dates. Maybe three have really went well, but the connection ultimately wasn’t mutual. The rest have flat-out tanked.

I have another one scheduled for Saturday, and I’m really looking forwards to it. Something sounds different about this guy, but I’m having a hard time sending my skepticism away.

Let me say this as plainly as I can: There are a LOT of losers out there. I’m pretty sure that’s not exclusive to the men’s side of this deal. From what I’ve heard, there are a lot of pathetic women in the picture, too.

Where did common sense go? Does anyone have a brain anymore? Is etiquette really as elusive as it seems to be? Does anyone understand how to attract the opposite sex in print? And finally, can people please learn to fucking spell and punctuate their dating profiles?

I had tried the “dating” and “relationships” sections on Lavalife, one of the prime dating systems in cyberland, and finally decided to say “fuck that,” and have moved on to the very pointed “intimates” section.

Intimates is where folks go when sex is an important factor in relationships. If you’re into “alternative” lifestyles, it’s also a great place to find those interested in the same things.

That said, there’s some scary shit out there, and I’ve slowly learned how to tell the freaks from the pack. Sadly, the freaks dominate the pack.

When I first posted my profile in the “intimates” section, I had more than a hundred local men respond in the first two days. Why? Well, for starters, I know how to write something sexy. I was honest and blunt. I said I was overweight, though I’d lost quite a bit of what I’d used to weigh already, but I was very, very confident in my abilities.

I touched on my interests, explained things I thought were romantic, and alluded to the music and movies I enjoy, plus the other activities I liked. Most specifically, though, I said what qualities I wanted in a man, and what I didn’t want.

To this day, I’m continually baffled by the stupidity of other people’s profiles, and their approaches towards the dating field.

A few cases in point:

“Peachmuncher” said, “I love to munch peaches.” Let me clue you guys in. Sure, there are men who don’t like oral. (I have yet to encounter one in my sex life, though.) But the fact is, the majority of men seem to love giving oral. You think it’s a selling point? No, it’s a cliche. Have some creativity and use anything else for a line than that. For god’s sake, have some DEPTH. Oral ain’t going to last all night, every night, and you better be bringing something else to the arena.

The Illiterate. I cannot tell you how many men seem to hit on me who have none of the qualities I list as being ones I’m seeking in my profile. Read the fucking profile. Consider it a checklist. If you don’t meet the criteria, then move the hell on. When I say “No older men” and I’m 31, if you’re more than 40, move the hell on. This goes for the morons who are my FATHER’S age and hitting on me — in their 50s and beyond.

One brainiac retorted to my “Not interested in older men” response to his advances with “But a hard cock is ageless.” I simply responded, “Yeah, with a little fucking blue pill, right?” and then I blocked him.

If she’s not interested in age (or vice versa) then take your reality check and walk, bub.

The Stupid. The line of the night of late was a guy who didn’t even say hello, just messaged me with “I’m looking to get fucked tonight.” His name was “22inches14internal”. I lost all my tact and responded with, “you’re a piece of WORK, pal. One word for ya: Hoover.”

Which brings us to names. Choosing really stupid names like “HungLikeHorsie” and “SheCumsFirst” and “Thick1forU” are probably not going to net you any significant catches. But if skanky hoes do it for ya, then have at it.

The Sad and Disenchanted. Sure, some people might be interested in distance, but when someone says “Not interested in distance” and that they like “to have sex often,” the odds are pretty good that your being located more than 50 miles away is going to take you out of the running, let alone the twits who are 2400 miles away yet still think they have a chance.

The Grammatically Challenged. When a chick says she’s intelligent, and you claim you’re looking for a “smart, sexy” woman, but you fail to use any grammar or spelling or punctuation in your ad or in your communications with her, then you’ve got to expect little or no response from the calibre of chick (or guy) you’re seeking.

After all, how hard is it to understand that the profile you put in the e-dating world is your handshake, your business card, your first impression? It is. It’s EVERYTHING, people. Spend a little time on it! Write something that evokes you. Then spell-check it. Check the grammar. And when it’s nice and good, then you can post it.

The Non-Photogenic. Taking a photo where you’re in your stained t-shirt with holes in it, sitting in front of your computer with bad hair and a tired expression on your face will do nothing towards getting you laid! Taking a photo of yourself in the mirror where the flash pops and the viewer gets to see nothing of you will also do nothing towards getting you laid. A big panoramic shot of you standing in front of Matterhorn Mountain? Also not gonna do it. You’re talking about a 2” wide or smaller photo on the net, in a panoramic, you’re a flickin’ blip on the screen.

Make it a frickin’ head shot, people, or at the very least, your upper body and head. Is that so hard? Put on a nice shirt. Do your makeup or shave or whatever the hell it is that gets you looking your best, and then take a photo. It doesn’t have to be the level of Vogue’s photography, but you could put some effort into it. You can ad an awesome full-body shot in your additional photos.

If you’re in an intimates section like I am, use your brains. A photo of JUST you cock or tits or ass is not going to do the trick. Having a nice cock is easy enough, and so too is having the face of a horse. I won’t be choosing my mate because he has a nice rigid cock and nothing else. Think about it. Jesus Christ. You have no idea how often I’ve seen shots of just a guy’s ass.

The Computer-Phobic. You’re using electronic dating for your social life but you get pissed off at having to chat in MSN or something? Get past it! That’s the new culture. Sure, you can talk on the phone, too, but don’t insult someone because they favour MSN or something. I tend to stick to online chatting for a bit so I can gauge intelligence in print.

And finally, a word about etiquette. So far, I’ve experienced a lot of guys who make plans and blow them the fuck off. For every date I make, half are kept. Fortunately, they’re often guys I’m only half-interested in, so it ultimately doesn’t matter. It worked out great the night I accidentally set my hair on fire and smelled like burnt dog, though. Having him blow me off was just perfect that night, especially since admitting that I set my hair on fire would’ve been a major crushing blow to my ego. I guess I need to tell you about that now. Hmm. Later.

But normally, guys seem to think it doesn’t warrant a simple courtesy email or call. “Sorry, I lost my interest. Things have changed. Can’t make it.”

It’s respect, people, and EVERYONE deserves it. The e-dating world is full of enough bullshit, but you deliberately adding to it is completely uncool. You can block the person after you’ve shown them basic respect, if you don’t want to deal with their bullshit after the fact. But at least give them that much.

Now, the pluses of e-dating? For a chick like me, I really get to test the waters intellectually. The funny thing has been that most guys say they’re looking for a smart chick. I’m a disarming chick — I’m funny, I’m easy-going, but when I turn on the smarts, you best look out.

So the fine print tends to have been thus far, “As long as she’s not smarter than me.”

E-dating has allowed me to cut through that crap and establish my intellect. I scare off more men than I attract, and that’s just fine with me. I’ve had a couple decent dates, and they’ve been fun.

Unfortunately, most haven’t been. One guy was guilty of false advertising when he stuck a sock down his pants to make himself seem larger, and when we finally got to fooling around, his cock was miniscule. My hand was wider than his “hard” cock was long.

Why the games? The chick’s gonna find out, guys. Ditto for girls with padded bras. What in the HELL are you thinking? Be yourself. Someone’s gonna dig it. There are “teeny queens” out there, and guys who don’t like big boobs. Putting on an act is just moronic.

Fact is, most of dating is rife with failure. Most dates turn out ludicrous. Most marriages fail, for God’s sake.

But the fun is in the hunt. Get over the bad happenings and move the hell on, but don’t add to the negativity by being a cunt in the hunt. Have a little decency.

POST-SCRIPT: A commenter is freaking out about their first upcoming e-date. I say go! Do it! E-dating’s great positive is that it’s like a conveyor belt of dating. Everyone knows it’s supposed to be a short hookup. Meet for coffee and a walk. If they blow, so do you — right on outta there. :) I won’t stop e-dating, I just won’t hesitate to tell a guy to take a hike, either.