AHHHHH ... where to begin with this post. I don't even know. It still blows my mind that I've been out on that many dates in less than a year, but whatevs, I'm going to own it.
So, last summer ... my buddy told me I was working too much and not socializing enough with duderinos. Fine. Fine. I get it ... I work a lot ... She suggested me getting on OKCupid as it is the nerdiest of nerdy dating sites and they use math to get you dates.
Rad ... you had me at algorithm.
ugh - I'm trying to be funny, and it's failing miserably. I am fucking pissed that I went out on ONE HUNDRED AND THREE DATES in NINE ... NINE MONTHS ... and I am still single.
Fuck me in the mother fucking goat ass.
K ... I feel better; the being honest part helps a lot. Here lemme get a song up to write this ...
Maneater? Mehhhhhh ... I'm not a maneater. Well, not intentionally. Hold on, changing.
WHOMP THERE IT IS!!
So, I created my profile in July of last year - and was IMMMEEDDIIAAAATEELLLYYY inundated with messages. Like straight up, apparently being a chick that runs a website is like uber hot to dudes because I very literally maxed my inbox out in just a couple days (that's over 500 messages, kiddies). Bat shit. I had no idea what I was looking for in dudes, so the filtering process proved to be a bit challenging. My record prior had been a bunch of GQ looking boys that were dumb as fucking rocks. The ONE thing I loved about dating the mentalist was that for the first time in my life I felt like I was dating someone as smart as me. (Well, technically speaking, I am actually smarter than him. No, like in a very literal sense - I have a guaranteed higher IQ based on the ability to execute alone. MWAHAHA!!! Suckkaaaa!)
I digress ... so now I had all of these messages sitting in my inbox, but I had no idea what I was really looking for. I've never, ever had a type. Even if you look at the boys I've dated in the past - they were all attractive in their own right, but not a ONE looked a like. Hey in math randomness is a pattern, I'm owning it.
OKC rates each users compatibility based on being a Match/ Friend/ and Enemy.
The problem with me is that I think way more like a dude than a chick. I was literally a 75% match or more with 90% of my inbox. Do the math, that's 450 messages - that is a LOT of dudes.
If 75% is my "norm" based on the boys that use this site - I guesstimated that "higher than average" would suffice and be at around 85%. I decided that to conduct this experiment I would only go out on a dates with guys that I ranked 85% with or higher in the match category. After all, I wasn't on this site to look for friends or enemies - clearly ... mama wants to get some, and get it in while she's young!!! RAWWRRRR!!
85% it was.
I started filtering through the messages, and replied back to all of the guys that were 85% and higher. Attraction to me is based on a sense of "owning it." If a dude is so comfortable in his own skin and owns every bit of everything he has, he becomes that much more attractive. No, like literally, a 5 can be a 10 if he can own it. It's about embracing what makes you unique which is unbelievably counter intuitive to the way we were raised ... in high school standing out meant people picked on you. As an adult however, and particularly in regards to dating - it's an aphrodisiac.
How can I filter through guys that "own it" on a dating website? It all starts with your pictures ...
We reveal a LOT about ourselves in social media. Like I've said in the past, even your default speaks VOLUMES about who you are as a person. Are you alone in your picture? With other people? Do you use photo filters? Are you wearing hats or glasses? How frequently do you change your default? All of these things come into play ... and I can read all of these things about people. Albeit, you have to take a lot of their profile into play as well - there is no real science to this, but it's proven more accurate than not that I can get a feel for someone and filter the messages down even more.
I was looking for pictures that told a story. TELL ME THE STORY OF YOUR LIFE IN YOUR PICTURES!!!! A series of webcam pics with various expressions totally blow. No, like straight up. Here, look at my pictures ...
My twitter avatar, but I also took this picture myself (literally, my left arm is extended and it's zoomed in) before a really great night out with my friends. I used this specifically as my default so people from twitter could identify me.
This one I just really liked. I had just started the site, and loved my old room.
This was purely for shameless self promotion. Like period. End of sentence.
Riding cross country with Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top. Hands down, top 5 favorite moment of my life.
Hands down top THREE favorite moment of my life. I was on The Price is Right in March of 2005.
The moment I got a response back from Foursquare saying they liked my site and they liked my idea that I had for them. Love me some Naveen, snapped this literally as I was reading his email (LG external monitor on top shelf).
Me facing my biggest fear. Clearly it was a scary moment ... hahaha!!!
Took this in when TNTML hit a record amount of uniques. Was so fucking rad!
So, yeah - that's my life. These are things that all mean something to me, and represent who I am at my core. You can tell a LOT about who I am based on these pictures alone. I looked for the same in guys. I don't care if you have a commercially attractive default, a guy that shows a sense of adventure and has a bit of a playful side will win HANDDDSSSS down every time!
Tangent: I personally tried to stay away from guys that had dogs (as I travel so much, and was looking for a partner in crime in that regard), but hey, I wasn't mad at dudes with 'em either. Love me some animals; I kept that limitation in mind without it being a disqualifier.
After I looked through the users pictures, I would move to the profile. Like your pictures (it's not how attractive you may appear to be in them, it's the pictures you choose to say yes, this is how I represent myself to the world), it's not necessarily what someone says in a profile, but how they say it.
I am a deeply deeply sarcastic human being, and I very rarely take myself seriously; that bleeds from my profile.
"I enjoy talking like Robin Williams in Mrs. Doubtfire when he picks up the phone and does the horrible Indian-like voice of "I ... am ... job." If you ever call me and answer the phone like that, I might have to have your baby."
I don't say hey, I'm fun and I'm adventurous ... no, you can tell that I'm fun based on the weird shit that I write, and you can tell that I'm adventurous clearly because I went skydiving. Anyone that blatantly put, I'm fun immediately got the ax. If you're not witty or sharp enough to actually find something funny to put in your damn profile we are not at all going to get along. Like period. End of sentence.
That narrowed the results down even more.
I wasn't interested in having dinner with everyone (dinner takes too long. I'm very efficient and very ADD - if I'm not feeling it, I will leave.), so I agreed to grab a beer with willing participants. Again though, I put a disclaimer on my profile indicating that I was in fact conducting a social experiment, and if they had a problem with potentially being written about, I was not the person they wanted to date. Bottom line, the dudes knew what they were getting into, and were pretty cool about it.
All of the dates were a total blast. There were less than 5 that I can honestly say I didn't enjoy, and only 2 that I actually wanted to walk out from. The OKC algorithm is AMMAAZIINNNGGG at matching people, but chemistry is intangible. I was curious to find the organic root of attraction. What are the butterflies we say we feel when we meet that special someone? If I no longer believe in this notion of there being a "one" or a "soul mate," - what is the "it" then? And how can I solve for it?
It took me 96 dates to find out that the "it" was me. Life is reflective. What I was attracted to in dudes was something that resonated deeply in myself - I am emotionally unavailable.
Out of 96 dates, I had found that there were only 4 that I wanted to pursue something more with (there were 10 second dates ... but 6 of 'em got the ax). Of those 4, the only common denominator in each of them was that they were all emotionally unavailable. They had all recently come out of something with someone, were in a time of transition - just were not 100% able to give themselves to someone. (See this post for the breakdown)
FUUCCCKKK me in the goat ass, again.
Having that as my constant, and not fully aware of what my next doable action was - I decided to face said emotional unavailability within myself with the understanding of life's reflectiveness, that something would change. I then wrote the epic saga, This is a story about #love, but this is not a love story. It addressed how I had my heart broken, and how that was the catalyst for starting this site - etc. It's a really fucked up story to be honest, and definitely a lot to read ... but peeps dug it, and for that I am grateful. Felt great to release.
While I was writing those posts, I had a few more dates. 99, and 100 were weird. 99 was pretty rad. Really really really cool dude, but his timing was horrible. Also too, he's latin. Latin men are very protective, seductive, and like to be close to females. I do. not. like. to. be. touched. Don't touch me unless I touch you. Period end of sentence. So, his timing was horrible for taking me out on a date during that series of posts, and the fact that he can't help but organically be a very expressive lover meant we totally weren't a match. Anyway ... it wasn't until I hit 101 that I truly had an amazing date. Really really really nice boy. Is into psychology, reading body language - kinda freaked me out actually. I wondered how much he had read up about me, but then I very genuinely read on his face that he didn't know much.
Oh yeah, I have tests I give dudes throughout the night to spot the fame seekers. I can tell if a dude knows a lot about me and what I do based on a series of questions I would ask them throughout the night. It was dependent upon whatever was posted on the site at that time, but I would repeat myself often and wait for them to cut me off saying they had read it. If they didn't and pretended like it was the first time they heard it, I would be able to tell they were lying based on certain facial reactions they had. That part I got - I am DAMMNN good at spotting that shit.
Had 3 amazing nights with 101 (one night he just stopped by to say hi and dropped me off at a coffee shop), but alas after our second date - dinner, he got weird and sent me a text saying that he couldn't believe he just boned an internet celebrity. Yep, we totally got it on after dinner in an alley in Venice (dude, I'm such a classy broad) - and when he got home he texted that to me. I was like NOOOOOOOO!!!! Way to ruin it. That's a total dealbreaker for me.
I'm a lifecaster. My job is to live life and report back what I am experiencing in the form of stories told as close to being in real time as possible. If some guy is going to be a part of my equation and be conscious of me writing about it, etc - it's not honest or organic; I very genuinely want someone who isn't phased by it. I even tell dudes, don't read the site while we are going out on dates because I'm going to be able to read on your face that you are reading it, and when I say something to you and you've already read it - I'm going to know that you've read it based on your reaction and then I'm going to have to pretend that I don't know that I know that you know, and it's going to get weird. (HAHA did any of that make sense? OMG my head hurts - but I hope you catch my drift)
He hasn't stopped emailing me. Bless the dudes heart, but not gonna happen. Whether it's a joke or not, I don't care. Disqualifier. NEXT!
I can honestly say there were less than 10 that I knew of that were fame seekers. I filtered them out pretty quickly. There were only a handful that straight up petitioned to go out on a date with me, and one of them I wound up living with for 2 months in a completely platonic way. He's literally family to me now, and we were off the charts on Match and Friend. OKC really really really knows their shit.
I was a bit taken a back by how many people were genuinely intrigued by what I was doing. No, like literally - it was not my intention to get buzz from this thing, just post honest reactions - and occasionally have a post or two chiming in from our dating coach, The Art of Charm's Jordan Harbinger, on what guys can do about these problems that I am addressing.
Like for example, one dude I dated totally friended one of my best friends on Facebook without ever meeting him. COMPLETELY creeped me out ... and is a HUGE faux pas. Here's what Jordan had to say about it:
It was my intention to date, be brutally honest, but at least not leave guys hating me - but having next doable actions on what they can do in the future to not be labeled a "creeper" or be put in the "friend zone."
Here are some frequently asked questions:
Answer: None were completely different than their profile. You can't lie in social media. Even if you think that you are, I guarantee you, you are not. I scoped out Facebook profiles, twitter feeds (when applicable). I knew all of the guys I went out on a date with before I even met them. Gone are the days of anonymity online and being able to put up a "front." I knew what I was getting into with each one.
Answer: Guys that owned it. Period end of sentence ... but see above for more of the breakdown.
Answer: OMG almost all of them!!! I very literally found some amazing friends through OKC, and a LOOOTTTT of business peeps. Literally, so many dudes just wanted to pick my brain and still call me for various things. Absolutely incredible. I don't regret a minute of it, and I never got sick of it.
Answer: First nighter? I think you mean people that I slept with on the first night? Only one! That was the dude I went out on a date with in Culver City and woke up in Santa Barbara. I didn't sleep with that many guys to be honest. Out of the 11 second dates, I'd say I slept with less than 6 for sure. I know I slept with all 4 of the ones I wanted the relationship with, hence why I wanted the relationship ... the sex was good. I'm sure I just threw a few a bone because I was horny.
Answer: Almost immediately, but I would for scientific purposes definitely measure it within the first hour. I'm also a very cut and dry kinda person - I have no problem making up my mind, and my gut has never proven me wrong (although I look forward to the day).
Answer: UMMM tough one! My favorite date was one at Griffith Park Observatory. I had never been, and that place was SOOOOO coooolllll!!!! Jones on Santa Monica is also awesome. I took most of my dates to Dillons in Hollywood, because they have shock top on tap haha. I'm a dive bar kinda chick - I don't dig the loud music, just give me good beer and a quiet nook and I'm a happy camper.
Answer: That I have a lot of healing to do from my broken heart, but I am super super super proud of myself for at least trying. You can't fail if you just try, at least you'll get experience. I can now say, I am a VERY experienced dater. HA!
Another question I get asked all the time is how I could sit through all of those questions of ... "so, tell me about yourself ..."
That's the thing about OKC though, you can find all of that out already. I also just adore people and hearing their stories - so I was absolutely never ever bored on a date, and was only asked a handful of times for me to tell them about myself ... these guys knew what they were getting themselves into, and were intrigued.
So, bottom line - out of all of these dates, I learned the truth of life's reflective nature; people just are and we are all just being. It is how you interpret those experiences and tell the story to yourself that dictates your state of consciousness and your state of being.
I assure you, I am not taking any pride in this, but this is just part of my story. Of course I am angry that the 4 dudes that I liked didn't feel it back - but again I am taking responsibility and ownership of that in saying what in me was attracted to them?
I have recently addressed that I do not like to be touched, and clearly online dating is not going to get me over that - so for my next leg of the experiment I will be going offline (albeit documenting online), and putting myself in situations at bars where I can be touched in the hopes of conducting aversion therapy to get through my issues.
I'm stoked man! The next social experiment is sponsored by Effing Gear - and at least by wearing their shirts out at bars, I KNOOOOOWWWW guys are going to talk to me. They're super soft!! BAH! Can't stand it - love 'em! Tune in next week for more of my findings. Really really really curious what is going to attract me to random dudes at a bar - I've never. ever. been a bar chick, but hey, it's something new to try, and will hopefully help me get over my aversion to being touched!!! Maybe all my experiment proved is that the "it" I was trying to solve for really is a mystery, and cannot be solved. You can have all the compatibility and all the matches in the world - but what makes you have chemistry with someone?? At least by isolating as many of the variables as possible I can say with more of a definitive answer ... BAHH!!! So exciting!!!
I'm just going to stop focusing on looking for a relationship in one capacity or another and just enjoy every night of the experiment. Just let it be, and let it organically unfold.
I'm not going to post in Hollywood what bars I will be hitting up and when, but feel free to follow me on FourSquare, and you can at least stop by one of my checkins.
Thanks for the interest, and thanks for reading!