Joan's Jottings


Online Dating-Week 25
June 26, 2011, 2:47 pm
Filed under: Online dating

I did not read a lot of profiles this week, but the (chosen) few that I did, provided a fair amount of material.  Those bios, coupled with a flirtatious gesture and one email, confirm that there is a lot of nonsense and game-playing that goes on within these sites. Here are this week’s winners:

Under the heading, “Who has been the most influential person in your life?,” one gent wrote, “I don’t really have a most influential person. I pretty much figured out life by myself.” Really? You must be some kind of genius! You landed on a planet, inhabited by billions of people, of which you have probably crossed paths with at least a few thousand, and not ONE person had some kind of memorable impact on you? I, too, landed on this same planet, have crossed paths with a few thousand people to-date, have been influenced in ways large and small by many and I STILL HAVE NOT FIGURED OUT LIFE!

One “Dudeman” (the actual name he goes by on the dating site) acknowledges that he is short (5’7″). He apologizes for his lack of stature, and then says, “I am still hoping for my growth spurt. Maybe some day….” First of all, 5’7″ is not all that short, so I personally would not even mention it. We single women can actually read, and your height and body type are posted right on your profile. Secondly, never apologize for that which you cannot change. Self confidence is a turn-on for women. And remember, good things often do come in small packages!

One avid beach bum mentioned that he likes putting his toes in the sand with a special person. He wants you to write back if his profile sparked an interest, and then “Let’s see if we can put 20 toes in the sand. Wow! I really dig a guy who can count, especially to 20!

One 54 year-old fella had two things that caught my attention in his profile. The first was the age range of his matches. (This is often a telling portion of a profile.) He is looking for women ages 36-59. Now, let’s do some math here.  Mr. Old Fart will date a woman who is as young as 18 years his junior or merely four years his senior. I do give him credit for even considering women  older than him, (most men do not), but 18 years younger? Kind a creepy, Grandpa! He also mentions that IKEA is a good place to get to know someone. How is that? When I enter an IKEA, I am generally concerned that I will ever find my way out of the maze. I would find it difficult to “get to know someone” while I frantically wander in circles, searching for an exit as I hyperventilate into a brown paper bag!

A 53-year old mail carrier, who posted no less than 25 photos, wrote the majority of his profile with references to fairy tales. He covered Prince Charming, Cinderella, The Seven Dwarfs, Sleeping Beauty, Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretl, and The Beauty and the Beast, to name more than a few! While I desperately want to give him an “A” for effort and creativity, I can’t get past the fact that an aging, presumably heterosexual male wrote a fairy tale-based profile in an effort to attract grown women. I think his “grade” is just a great big question mark with a “Huh?” written beside it!

One Rambo wannabee (he actually posted a photo of himself dressed in camouflage with matching face paint) wrote in great length about hunting with his bow and arrow. He wants his readers to know that “I have hunted all around this great country, and the bounty is amazing.” I want him to know that for nearly six long and painful months, I have hunted all around this great country via online dating sites and the bounty is far less than amazing. In fact, it is down right ridiculous most of the time.

My flirtatious gesture was sent by a 32-year old local guy. His profile mentioned that he was looking for women ages 24-49, he has never been married but does have two children, he is into fitness and works at a local bank. He also wants his potential matches to know that “I enjoy shopping. The woman I am seeking has to love shopping. I can’t have a girl that will be annoyed with having to wait for me outside the stores.” Huh? I did NOT respond to him for a MULTITUDE of reasons. While he was quite attractive and physically fit, I can’t figure out if he is heterosexual, bisexual, metrosexual or just plain confused? Also, as mentioned earlier in this post, an 18-year age difference is just plain creepy when it comes to male-female relationships. It may appear as if someone is looking for a parent rather than a partner. (Just another letter “r” differentiates the two.) But mostly, I took a pass because I have learned after 25 weeks, that there is a fair amount of game-playing and scamming that goes on within these sites. Remember the very scientific stats that were mentioned in an earlier post? Merely 20% of singles (or supposed singles) on these sites are legit! The rest are frauds looking to take advantage of folks just lookin for love!

This brings me to an email sent by a supposed 50 year-old Brazilian native, currently residing in California. Despite the fact that his profile says that he is looking for women ages 37-45, he wrote to my 50-year old self. He said, “I am getting lots of messages from some freaks here. I am planning to cancel my subscription. Wanna chat by email (insert his personal email address)? Can you reply with some private pics if you’re up for it?”  The answer is NO! First of all, you obviously can’t read. I am five years older that your age range. Secondly, you are getting a lot of messages from “freaks” because you live in a state that is notorious for housing “freaks.” Perhaps, you are unaware of that well-known fact because you are not from here? (Brazil? That is a new one. Most scammers are from Russia or Africa. South America is a new one. It does have a certain sexy, daring, Latin flair to it. You get the “A” for creativity this week.) Thirdly, why so quick to begin chatting with me off the dating site? And why the request for “private pics?” Don’t you like any of  the four photos I have already posted? I did not fall for your scam, Mr. Brazil, but I am considering reporting you as a “concern” to the dating site. You folks really are kind of despicable and pathetic.

In an attempt to leave on a “lighter note,” one gent wrote, “I have been told that I am very funny. I know I crack myself up!” I don’t know if I am “very funny,” but I hope that this post at least made the corners of your mouth turn upward. See you next week! The official six-month mark.  UGH!



Father’s Day
June 19, 2011, 12:07 pm
Filed under: family

Today marks the Sunday that we honor dads. The greeting card aisles have been stocked for weeks, and radio and TV ads are full of great gift ideas, which always seem to include power tools and grills. It dawned on me recently that for the first time in my entire life, I have no one (living) to recognize this year. My own dad will be gone 15 years on July 1st, and my husband and son’s father passed nearly 10 years ago. The only remaining patriarch of recent history, my father-in-law and son’s grandfather, died on August 20th of last year.

There are no cards to buy, and no gifts to wrap. Today will be just another Sunday at our house. We miss the men in our lives, but I am personally grateful that my son does have positive male role models around him. M. is blessed to have a tennis coach who is patient and kind, and truly wants to see him improve his game to the best of his ability. M.’s private lesson teacher (for saxophone) is also a great influence, who once a week shares his gift of music. There have also been several male teachers who have had a lasting impact on M. as he makes his way through school. To these men and others everywhere, we wish you a great Father’s Day. Be sure to cherish the precious time you have with your children today and always.



Online Dating-Week 24
June 18, 2011, 2:33 am
Filed under: Online dating

I stuck to my vow of limited viewing this week. I checked my newest site only twice, mostly so I would have SOMETHING to write about. (There really was no “match” that seemed ultra interesting to me anyway.) My original site is really pulling out the big guns as my renewal date approaches.  As I have mentioned before, for the better part of three months, they have sent me many photoless guys from quite far away. All of a sudden, there is a bumper crop of local bachelors, all a perfect match for me! I think they are trying to convince me that they have more available hometown men, so that I will give them more of my money and another three months. No way! I am done. I suppose with one less site, there will be less material for this blog and potential book, but I am okay with that. I can still get plenty of silly tidbits from site number two, with the lengthy bios that guys write. Here are some snippets from this week:

One guy wrote, “I love dogs, especially Rottweilers.” Me too! I have had six dogs in my lifetime, and our Rottweiler was my favorite. (Shhh. Don’t tell my current Labrador Retriever that I just wrote that! She is already quite shy and lacking in self-esteem. Plus, she is currently wearing the “cone of shame” thanks to recent foot surgery, which is making her even more self-conscious.)

Another local gent mentioned his “best match story to-date.” Apparently, he met up with a woman who has “seen dead people.” Obviously, this was a deal breaker for him.  I wonder what he would think about me and my conversations with my late friend, Debbie? I don’t actually see her, but I do talk to her and believe that she can hear me. I am probably not a match for him either! This same guy also mentioned that he is a “pretty good dancer for a white guy.” I found this comment cute and kind of funny!

One fella found it necessary to inform his readers that “God has been very good to me.” Now, considering the life-altering events that occurred within my family in the past decade (cancer hit the family twice with one fatality, and a diagnosis of Type 1 Diabetes for my then seven-year old son), one might presume that “God has been very bad to me. ” Not so. I think that God is very good to EVERYONE. Our human, ego-driven selves often misinterpret life challenges as punishment by a vengeful God, when they really are just opportunities for personal growth granted to us by a God that knows only love.

At least three men have mentioned that they like to shop. One guy specifically stated that he likes rifling through the racks at TJ Maxx. (This is one of my favorite stores, where I, too, can be found sifting through the aisles of clothes, shoes and kitschy home goodies.) Another guy mentioned that he especially likes shopping WITH women for clothes. I had to read that line twice to make sure that he did not say, “I like shopping FOR women’s clothes.” There is a HUGE difference!

Under favorite things, one guy wrote, “I got a Harley.” The latent grammar coach in me just had to correct this with, “I have a Harley, and I am pretty sure that Joan will NOT be going for a ride!”

My all time favorite quote this week came from a Bill Gates look-alike who spends most of his free time in Boy Scout related activities. Under “Most important thing I am looking for, ” he wrote, ” In general terms, a lady in public and passionate in the bedroom.” I recognize slightly altered plagiarism when I see it. I think the correct phrasing of this famous line is, ” I am looking for a lady in public and a whore in the bedroom, ” or something along those lines. Wow, boy scouts have really changed over the years! Perhaps, they finally figured out that all of that knot tying they learn comes in handy with the ladies hookers.

Thanks for reading along this week. Remember, I don’t write em, I just repeat em. I could NOT make this s_ _ _  up! (I have taken a no cussing vow again.)  Have a good weekend and an even better week. Summer officially begins on Tuesday. Funny thing, we never really had a spring in our neck of the woods!



Online Dating-Week 23
June 12, 2011, 2:02 pm
Filed under: Online dating

I was back this week, but in my new, limited way. I have only checked my second dating site once, but have been on the original site a few times. (They must have gotten wind that I am about to cancel my subscription, so they are inundating me with matches nearly everyday, with some even from my home state and town!) It has been freeing to only read certain profiles, which also resulted in fewer notes in my handy, dandy notebook. This left me more time to deal with yet another breakdown of a young, major home appliance (my four-year old washer), and my duties as chauffeur to Miss Daisy, formerly known as my son, M. I am currently trying to figure out the intentions of a certain male at my gym, who as Mick Jagger sings, “Is just dying to meet me.” (I think!) I can’t determine if he is just shy, uncertain of my own “hooked up” status, married, or ALL of the above. The “married thing” would NOT be cool, and would add an ugly chapter to this book-in-the-making.

Here are a few nice, funny and silly items plucked from profiles this week:

One kind gentleman wrote this under the heading, The Most Influential Person in my Life: ” My son because of the way he behaved during his fight with cancer (he won!)” To this I say,”AWESOME!” I love to hear about yet another cancer survivor. Also, kudos to dad for recognizing and acknowledging this in his profile.

One funny guy wrote the following under “Occupation:” CPA (Car parking attendant). Cute! I think that I might begin using CPA as my own acronym for occupation: Certified Profile Analyzer. I think I have earned this title after reading approximately 300-400 profiles over a five-month period!

One Harley riding dude wrote this under Favorite Things: “Cooking, remodel rooms and sewing (yes, I can sew pretty well.)” I kind of like this guy. He is definitely in touch with his masculine AND feminine sides, sort of like the music artist, Prince.

And, last but not least, my favorite from a 46-year old with a “supposed PhD.,” who was quite chatty with his profile. First, he posted 25 photos (a bit over done, don’t you think?) that included two close-up shots of his tattoos. Nice! He wants the reader to know that, “The partner in crime and life thang sounds good to me.” (I, too, am looking for a life partner, but was going to try to steer clear of committing any crimes at this stage in my life.) He has been told that he is an attractive man who is 6 feet, 210 lbs. He plays high stakes Blackjack, and has played in casinos just about everywhere. He has also studied (extensively) and fought full contact Bushido. (I had to look that up. It is a Japanese samurai warrior martial arts “thang.”) Under favorite things, he listed music, TV shows, college football and foods, and wrote “sugar sucks.” This modern-day Clyde (looking for his Bonnie) is WAY TOO much man for me, and while I know that “sugar sucks” from a nutritional perspective, I can’t live without it!

That’s all for this week. I kind of like the brevity of this post with its sugar sweet ending. See you next time.



Online Dating-Week 22
June 5, 2011, 7:01 pm
Filed under: Online dating

I took last week off. The beginning of June marked the fifth month of this blogging journal. After 20 weeks of reading profiles and then documenting the good, the bad and the ugly, coupled with a second negative experience with an individual I met online, I just needed to take a break. I will not write with any detail about specific negative experiences I have encountered for two reasons. The first is that some things should remain private and confidential and not be broadcast to the world via the ever-permanent internet. (This is not to say that I have not verbally shared these stories with family, friends and/or co-workers.) Secondly, I will not give “life” to negativity. If you are familiar with the laws of the universe, you already know that positive attracts positive and negative attracts negative. I do not wish to invite anymore “negative” into my life. It finds me just fine on its own, often in the form of adult bullies and individuals with lots of baggage. I do consider myself a positive person who sees the glass as half full. I believe that if you lined up ALL of the people in the world, you would find that MOST people are good. (Watching the evening news might portray a different view with its incessant focus on war and terrorism.) With that said, I also believe that when you are dealing with people on the internet, whether it be online dating, chat rooms, blogs, etc,. you must proceed with caution. The adage, “most people in the world are good” changes to “most people are bad until they prove otherwise.” A male friend recently quoted this statistic-75% to 80% of people on online dating sites are bad. (My super-duper math brain tells me that if you believe P. and his stats, only 20% to 25% of possible “matches” are good.) While at first this seemed like a doomsday sort of revelation, I would probably have to agree that he is right.

In early July, one of my dating sites comes up for its three-month renewal, at which time I will cancel my subscription. This will come at no great loss other than the money and time I have already invested. For the past ten weeks or so, they rarely send me any matches, and when they do, the vast majority have no photo and live HUNDREDS of miles away! I have also decided to be more selective in the profiles that I read. (I used to read all of the ones I was sent if for nothing else than possible “material” for this blog.) Now, I read only the profiles whose photos match my “type” (see Week 20 for details), and I am also limiting myself to checking the site only twice per week. Quite frankly, so many of the profiles are beginning to sound like one giant, run-on sentence. I become extremely bored reading through them, much like I did with an American history assignment in high school.

I continually remind myself that online dating is merely ONE avenue for meeting a potential mate. It is still much more important to remain engaged in my everyday life where I have opportunities to meet people through friends and co-workers, the gym, my writing group, and yes, even the supermarket! The biggest step I have made to-date was just deciding that after ten years of widowhood (and a “little” other drama mixed in), I was finally ready to meet someone. The rest is up to God and his co-pilot-my guardian angel, Debbie.