Whenever I watch TV it seems, I come across your commercial where you tell me that “the world has changed” and that more and more relationships are beginning online. You seem to say this with this positive, uplifting voice and in all honesty, I have to say I don’t think this statistic, whether it’s true or not, is warming, comforting or positive at all. In fact, it’s sad; it’s scary; and also, I’m not buying into it at all.
I’ve done online dating. I have. And let me tell you what’s like: You meet people looking for booty calls, you meet people so awkward they can hardly carry a conversation, you meet legitimately nice people you don’t really have anything in common with, you wake up the morning of the date dreading the feeling of meeting a complete stranger in public for the first time. But… you never, ever meet your soul mate.
I know how you’ll respond; you’ll tell me I wasn’t on the right site, I wasn’t looking hard enough, I wasn’t putting myself out there, I gave up too quickly, and ‘he’s out there.’
Yeah – he is out there. I can be 100% sure of that. But he’s not going to be found on a computer screen. He just isn’t. I’m sure there are a lot of wonderful people out there on the world wide web; I even know some of them, and I commend them for putting up with so much bullshit in their online dating lives. But… in love, I am looking for something more extraordinary than that.
Online dating is lazy. Sorry – it is. It’s basically saying to the ‘fates’, should they exist, “I’ve given up trying to communicate and reach someone in real-time, so I’m going to search for them online instead.” It’s a catalogue of people – they could be anyone, and you’re first of all, judging them based on a photo and a few paragraphs about themselves, their salary and educational background, etc. and making a decision as to whether or not you’d date them before even knowing how it is they communicate at all in person. And secondly, you’re meeting up with them when you both know that you’re actively seeking someone to “date” and this creates all kinds of stigmas thereafter; desperation? An easy lay? Lonely? And so on.
And who can blame people for wanting to online date? The world is lazy; why phone when you can text? Why write a letter when you could go on Facebook? Why send a card when you could send an e-card? It’s faster, it’s better, it’s ‘the norm’. But you know what? That doesn’t make it better! And it doesn’t make it acceptable! I don’t want to succumb to a change that doesn’t need to exist and in fact, defines my generation as a bunch of lazy people who can no longer communicate in real-time because they spend all their time in front of a computer when they could be out meeting and connecting with people in their real lives without that crutch. There’s no Goddamn way I’m going to stand by and let people like you tell me this is just “how things are” and we should roll with the changes.
Because unlike those you’re marketing to you, I DO believe in magic; REAL magic; I believe in something extraordinary and real that can happen in real-time; when you meet someone and look into their eyes for the first time simultaneously; when you sit down and have a pint and pick someone’s brain in a pub or walk downtown in the afternoon. When you talk with someone and let your walls fall down organically, and feel them falling down when you’re sitting right beside someone – someone you like inside, outside and close beside you. Trust me. There’s nothing more amazing than that. There’s nothing more real than that.
So to any of your members or prospective members… good luck in their quest for love; I wish them the best and I believe if they find something real it’s no less ‘authentic’ than what someone else can find in a bar or a book store. But… courtship is something that must be felt and seen and not something that can be read on my laptop at home.