Sunday, 9 January 2011

The Next Stage

So, the results of my night of speed dating are in. Although in a way they're not, because (and to be honest I feel a little cheated by this) we don't get to do the Yes/Friends/No tick thing. Apparently the fact that there were over 250 people at the party means that the organisers think we won't want to play the tick-box game. I was really looking forward to that bit! So now I can say that I went speed dating and got zero ticks - but then so did everybody else that night.

Instead of indicating that we'd like to see somebody again by ticking a box next to their name, the website is enabling us to send an email to anyone who was at the event. Upon finding this out my first thought was "Oh no - I don't want to have to write to them - can't I just tick Yes somehow?" Then I realised that this probably said something about my lack of successful connections on that evening - if I'd really liked someone then I guess maybe I wouldn't be intimidated by the thought of trying to think of something good to write to them! Hmm.

After a bit of procrastination I managed to talk myself into a more positive mindset and I wrote emails to nine of the women from the evening. Some of the messages sounded more like a "Yes" tick, others more like a "Friends" tick, and one woman I hadn't even met during the evening but just saw something amusing on her profile and wanted to comment.

Well, it's now been four days since I sent those messages and I've only received one reply - and that reply was a polite but unambiguous No. I haven't received any opening messages either. In fact, I can see that a sizable proportion of the women who were at the event don't even seem to have logged onto the website since the event! I guess the fact that there was plenty of time to mingle after the speed dating meant that people who really hit it off probably chatted more and just exchanged numbers at the event. Alternatively some people may just have gone home very disappointed and sworn off the whole thing!

So it wasn't a resounding success for me, but that's OK - onwards and upwards. In fact, this is a good time to mention my next venture. I've talked the talk for a while and now it's nearly time to walk the walk and return to the weird and wonderful world of Online Dating! I'm currently contemplating which site to sign up to - the leading contenders in my mind at the moment are: Plenty Of Fish; Match; Guardian Soulmates; eHarmony; OKCupid. Of course, if I find that one site isn't giving me enough prospects to sift through then I might sign up for more.

Of course, this won't be my first experience of online dating - most of my blog posts from July/August 2010 were about my online dating experiences of many years ago. Those dates weren't all wildly successful but they were beneficial learning experiences, and I've continued to learn about myself and the world in the intervening years, so I'm optimistic that good things will come from my return.

I've got another thing going for me this time as well: I've been lucky enough to have recently read a lot of awesome blogs, many of which are dating blogs (and I'm even more lucky to have some of you as readers too) - it's almost like online dating has been a hobby of mine in recent months even though I haven't actually been signed up! Again I feel like I've learned a lot, but at the same time I'm always happy to hear more advice. If you could give me one thing to remember as I upload my toe back into the water, what would it be?

13 comments:

  1. I'd be really annoyed with those organizers! Sounds like they were just being lazy. MUCH harder to write an email than tick a box!

    I'd also consider mysinglefriend as well. That's my favorite site for quality of people. And that you seem to get a better idea of someone through what their friend writes than if they did.

    Just remember to have fun!

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  2. It did seem odd - they could at least have left the tick boxes in as an option as well as letting us email!

    Thanks for the recommendation - I'll add that to my list to have a look at. And you're right that I need to remember to make it fun too!

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  3. Okay wait...so the speed dating venue also came with a "in case you missed it, here are the contestants again" email option? I can see how you'd be a little uh..hesitant. I certainly would prefer the tick box over that as well.

    I've just left the world of online dating (wonder if I'm going to miss it??) and you're getting ready to head in. I can't wait to hear about your experiences and for pete's sake, I hope nothing but the breast.. I mean best! =)

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  4. I don't think they'd planned it all that well - there was no explanation of this on the actual night when we were filling out our comment cards.

    I'm not sure whether you're just wishing me well or wishing for me not to unknowingly meet any transvestites, but either way I appreciate the sentiment!

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  5. Women like a man with a plan. Have a proper date in mind when you ask a girl out. She has so much to think about - all for your viewing pleasure - waxing, hair, outfit, make-up - she will really appreciate it! But only ask her out if you really like her... please.

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  6. Interesting note: apparently Eharmony was ranked highest for men looking to find women "out of their league."

    PoF is a douchecanoe haven where it's hard to stand out and prove you're not actually a douche.

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  7. Rebecca: Two good pieces of advice - thank you. I'll try to have a plan, and I certainly don't intend to mess anyone around.

    Caleb: I'm not sure whether that's a recommendation for eHarmony or not! I hope to find someone who I think is great and who thinks I'm great too. I am still tempted at least to try Plenty Of Fish - maybe if I can somehow show that I'm not a douche I'll be in high demand!

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  8. Ugh, that speed dating website sounds like bullshit! how silly of them! oh well, moving on, like you said!

    best of luck with online dating- i met my current boyfriend on okcupid and my ex on match, so i recommend them both!

    looking forward to reading about the adventures!

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  9. I haven't been online dating for long.... I've had some fun and interesting dates though:) The only advice I can give you is from a subjective perspective: take the time to write interesting things about yourself on your profile and when you email someone you're hoping to get to know more about, do the same thing in reverse: ask a lot of interesting questions and take the time to write something interesting. I get so many 3 or four word emails...and to me, it implies laziness or that the person is probably sending "stock" emails to tons of ppl he's maybe only vaguely interested in. Those are two instant turn offs for me. I no longer bother to respond and I typically just automatic delete the email. Wish I had more advice to offer! Good luck! Sorry about your speed dating disappointment!

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  10. Boo - I'm not happy with the way this event was run. And I wasn't even there! oh well.

    My advice for online dating --- be honest, but don't expect that everyone will be honest with you. It's just a risk you take with online dating. I think if you expect everyone to be 100 percent what they say they are (which is the way it would be in an ideal world), you are setting yourself up for disappointment.
    Good luck!

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  11. Larissa: Thanks for the recommendations - it always reinforces my faith in the potential of online dating to hear about its having worked for another person, and twice for you even!

    KayDee: Good point - I assume that I'll be doing the majority of the initial contacting and I don't want to look like another cut-and-paste spammer, and I want to make sure that there's enough on my profile for somebody to comment on if anyone writes to me first!

    simplysolo: Good points too - I'm very much into honesty but I know that not everyone else is and that I may be in for some bumps and surprises along the way. It's all part of the experience - that's what I'll try to tell myself anyway!

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  12. Try not to judge me for the lateness of this comment ;) But I'm on super catch up mode...even though I should be studying...but a girl needs a break eh! :)

    Also...this post reminded me of something I think about a fair bit...my hatred of flirting...well...flirting when I don't know if it's reciprocated intent or just flirting for the sake of it (bleh!)...and that's kind of like the [tick yes] boxes...my first thought is fuck I wouldn't go unless they had that...however...there's something to be said to living a life that's not so cut and dried that includes rejection and the excitement of finding out someone wanted to hear from you...but then...as a girl...it's different...but I digress lol...

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  13. No judging at all - all comments gratefully received!

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