This is why he’s single.

I started back up on Match. Ugh. My super optimistic plan is to fail in the first six months I’ve paid for to get their free six month guarantee.

One of my NYR is to go on 12 dates. It’s not many, but it sets a standard to go out at least once a month and Match is a good way to meet at least one guy a month to go out with without feeling like I’m going overboard and dating for dinner (although, skipping ahead a bit, that’s what I felt like this week).

However, since starting back on Match and in theory telling the universe I’m ready, I’m finding other options popping up. But that’s for another time. This post is really about how if I keep up with the bullshit of online dating I’ll get fat.

Not only will there be a lot of drinking and eating on dates, I tend to promise myself I’ll stop for a sweet treat if the date’s a bust. This week my first date since being back was no exception. I feel like everything about this guy screamed, “this is why I’m single!”

He lives in Glendale. A red flag I somehow missed in the qualifying stages.

He looked good in most pictures, but there was one that made me question it. The unfitting pieces sticking out in the one picture stuck out even more when I met him.

But, the date was set – and let’s be honest, month #1 was wrapping up and I appreciate staying on track – so off I went (to the place where I got dumped, then didn’t care that I got dumped because I had Lucky, ugh). And more NOs popped up.

He had bad teeth.

And he is 33 with four roommates.

And he has a terrible laugh (one of those, like uh huh huh huuuh, does that make sense?).

And he talked about himself, bourbon and sports (the boring ones) excessively, using “like” to pepper his sentences like (a proper use) a valley girl circa 1993.

And he had no clue I was sooo checked out the entire time. He was too busy burping.

Eventually the night ended, not early enough, but still with froyo piled with chocolate.

And now it’s been a few days and I haven’t heard from him. Um, he can’t reject me, I’m rejecting him!

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But he’s SO cute.

I love HIMYM because it’s real and I can always relate it to my life. There’s an episode in which Barney describes the hot-crazy scale. A woman can be crazy, as long as she is equally hot. The first time I saw the episode, I wondered where I fell on the scale (I can admit I’m a little quirky), but now I realize it’s not just for chicks.

Last week, I signed up for Plenty of Fish (I know you see where this is going…this is obviously where all the crazies hang out). I was immediately over- and underwhelmed all at the same time, but I decided to actually give it a shot – a week – before bailing. Countless “hey” messages, too many emails from the westside and an unfortunate number of messages from younger guys filled up my inbox. Being on that site, the options are endless, so why would I waste time with a too-young guy who can’t write a decent message and lives an hour away? Delete, delete, delete.

I did manage to find a few decent guys, including one we’ll call Matt. Matt is mid-30s, a fit 6’3″ and if everyone supposedly looks like a celeb, he looks like Matt Damon (thus his super creative fake name). He works as a firefighter, but has a graduate degree and wrote a thoughtful first message. He seemed top-shelf for the site and I actually considered he was fake until he started bugging me to hang out. Not asking – bugging.

It came off as truly whiny and he was bugging me about it without actually asking me out for a specific day or time or activity – you know…like how NORMAL people make plans! I wanted to meet him, but I wasn’t going to cancel existing plans to do so and I wasn’t going to just stop by his work as he suggested because I’m not in high school. He told me I didn’t seem interested in meeting or learning about him. Womp, womp, womp.

Were we having out first fight?! Before we even met?!

So I had to have a CTJ with him about how dating works. He admittedly was a relationship guy and didn’t like dating. Ahem, because he’s BAD at it. Now, obviously I’m not the authority on the subject, but I know what works for me and generally I’ve found it vibes with most men as well. If there’s a spark, the guidelines all go out the window anyway and it just feels right and you don’t worry about it. It was not vibing with Matt.

He calmed down a bit, but still kept pushing, even on Saturday morning when we were meeting at 11. He sent me a text at 9:15 to ask if I could do earlier. Keep in mind, we had connected online I think on Wednesday and exchanged numbers on Thursday.

I told him I was starting a yoga class that got over at 10:45 and that’s when I’d be at the Starbucks across the street to meet him. So, yeah, that’s how excited I was about meeting this guy – I slid him in after a yoga class when I’d be sweaty and maybe a little stinky at the coffee shop I’d probably stop at on my way home anyway. He took note, but I don’t think he was all that offended.

Matt walked in a minute or so after me and looked just like his pictures – super cute, tall, solidly built. We got coffee, we grabbed a table outside, we had a conversation. Actually for about an hour and a half.

It was a normal date, but besides his super-quiet talking, something else was just a little off. Some of his conversation topics (past relationships), his future planning (I think he may have asked me to go with him to Oregon to his mom’s for Christmas?)…they just weren’t working. He was definitely trying to qualify me for this girlfriend position he apparently has open and I think he tried to have a CTJ with me about how I need to step it up and show interest.

I think I was distracted at the time – his eyes were beautiful, he had spectacular teeth and his shirt was just the right amount of tight – but I left feeling neither good nor bad about it. He bugged me to see each other again, but again without actually attempting to make plans. I again offered two days, he picked one.

On Tuesday, I realized we had talked over the weekend, but not on Monday and about that time got a “good morning, hope you have a good day” text from Matt. I responded with a “Thanks! You too!” And got an “okay, stranger.”

That was when I had to pull the trigger. I actually thought back and forth for a while, “he’s so cute…but he’s so weird…but he’s so cute, maybe he’s just awkward at first.” Ultimately I couldn’t get past it. I texted back to let him know while I appreciate his physical beauty and that we have things in common, we should skip Thursday because it wasn’t going to work out. He texted: “Agreed.”

Done and done.

I understand where he was coming from with his whining (although I obviously did not agree with his delivery)…he wanted to gauge chemistry and meet up and have me show interest, but you can’t force any of that and I really feel like he was trying to because we have similar interests and live somewhat close together and I think he liked my work schedule. Convenience does not a relationship make. And apparently neither does a guy just being really pretty to look at. It might have developed, but he didn’t give it any room to breathe, which is pretty much a flashing red flag that it is not going to work! He apparently saw it too, so why was he pushing it?!

Under the Belt

My Match subscription is up next week and I have definitely not used it to its full potential. I thought maybe I was just underwhelmed by the men on there – not attracted to them, not excited by their profiles and they seemed to be into endless emails that I struggled to keep going – but there’s been a shift and I don’t think it’s in the men.

Since I signed up, I’ve had pity parties, I’ve had girls nights, I’ve been out on a few dates, I’ve been kissed (in both good and bad ways), and I’ve seen Lucky in a professional context without turning it into a very personal, intimate context, so I think it’s time to get going again. I’m more emotionally ready to actively date now. It had to start somewhere and I had to get that first online date (of this “round”) under my belt.

There was one guy I was interested in, but I was NOT interested in touching base every Monday to talk about how my weekend WAS and every Thursday to talk about my plans for the NEXT weekend and it had literally been a month of that. Blah. So, I told him as much and he took the hint that wasn’t really a hint and asked for my number and actually called. I’m not great on the phone and I’d much rather use it to make plans, then chat it up over dinner or drinks, but we talked for an hour one night, then a half hour the next day, so that’s a good sign!

We talked about yoga – how he thought he should try it but was intimidated, so I asked him to join me for a sesh.  What has gotten into me? I don’t ask men out (but it IS on my Dating Bingo card, check!) and I don’t need a guy watching me do yoga the first time I meet him, but I was going and wanted to meet him and it just felt natural to invite him.

Yogi gets major points.  He agreed, he showed up, he did his first yoga class ever on a first date in the middle of an outdoor mall at a fairly busy time. Oh yeah, it was a lululemon class held in the courtyard in front of their store (I’m tempted to count it as an “outdoorsy” date, but I don’t think that’s what I truly had in mind for that square, so I’ll leave it open).

Our actual class…we just didn’t make the Facebook pic.

His willingness to try something new and potentially look stupid on a date was pretty attractive. Speaking of attractive…based on his pictures, I felt like it could go either way, but when he walked up to me, I mentally heard an immediate “yes,” another good sign!

After we made it through the class – with only a few giggles from both of us and the instructor telling him she loved him, but he could learn from me – we walked through the center (score one more point for Yogi…when I ended up walking on the street side, he gently guided me to the inside – guys still do that?!) and stopped at a Mexican restaurant for a beer and to watch the end of the ASU game. Overall, a fun, easy night and I will be seeing him again…this time he asked me out!

How’s that working out for you?

I signed into an online dating site with an old email address last night.  I didn’t know just how old it was until I looked at updating my profile.

No, I am not searching for men 23-35 within 10 miles of my old zip code in California.  I’m turning 28 next week, so that made me realize I’ve been doing the online thing for at LEAST five years.  As Dr. Phil would say, “how’s that working out for you?”

I have a few dating regrets and, as always happens with regrets, they are things I DIDN’T do rather than things I did do.

I regret staying with my high school boyfriend for most of college and not dating more there.

I regret that it took me a while to warm up to online dating and that when I started in California I didn’t do it very much or very well.

I’d say I’m pretty good at it now, but the fact that I’ve been doing it for FIVE years has me reconsidering.

Thanks, but no thanks.

Let’s take a little mid-week, mid-family-drama laugh break, shall we?

This was in my inbox this morning:

Well, the guy was, the commentary was in my head. If you know this man, please tell him THAT is not going to work out for him.

I signed up for six months on Match, so naturally Lucky was the first man I went out with.

My profile is hidden, but I still get these match blasts every day and I like to look at them to see who I know. I recently got matched with two guys I’d already gone out with during different stints on the site and shortly after meeting Lucky, I got matched with his bestie (very glad I met Lucky first)!

Poor, Poor Pitiful Me

Okay, out with it…I’ve had nine dates with six men in the past eight days.  And what has it gotten me?  Too much food, too much wine and three men who may or may not think we have plans tonight.  All I want to do is go to a yoga class, come home to put on stretchy pants, bake, do laundry and watch Hulu.  

I’ve still fit in all my workouts, seen my fam and slept a good amount, but I’m so burnt out on the whole thing.  And okay, maybe developing a little guilt.

Five of the men I met online, so they have to assume I’m dating other people, at least at this stage, but even I can admit it’s a little extreme.  It’s one thing to have coffee with a man on a Saturday afternoon and then meet up with someone at a wine bar later in the week after he returns from a business trip, but it’s another thing to pack dates in between them like sardines. 

However, I’m not doing it just to do it and tick off my numbers (last night was #10 BTW…getting scary close), these are all men who I was genuinely intrigued by and interested in after connecting on Match, which leads to another point…

I’m getting good at this.  None of the five guys was a walking red flag.  Those are not odds I’m used to.  Usually I’d end up with a least one disaster, but they were all nice, made me laugh and I had a good time with them. 

One came off as a bit of a music snob and talked over me a few times, another was a bit too “Scottsdale” for my tastes (while claiming to not be “Scottsdale”).  One had shaved legs and wore Vibrams on our date.  It was a little strange, but kind of awesome because he’s a pretty serious triathlete.  And last night I cringed a bit when my date asked to see the wine list for a second glass, but it was less about getting away from him and more about just getting in my PJs.  Not one had me considering ditching him via the bathroom.

That being said, four of them are not getting second dates.  It’s all about the intangible and the 4:1 ratio there is much more what I’m used to.

The sixth is a Rebel 2.0 (he’s nice and fun and not for me, but likes me and I was hurt by Non-Mush, so the cycle continues).  We’ve been out a handful of times, but I think it’s time to come clean.

Rebel 2.0 was one of the guys I made tentative plans with tonight, but since starting this, he got the “I’m super burnt out, let’s rain check” excuse.  So much for coming clean.  I’m bad at this.  No Name got the “you’re too busy and I’ve met someone who’s not” line because I can be honest with him like that and it’s a dance we’ve done a few times now. 

As for the “someone who’s not,” he’s the third for tonight, and the one I’d most like to see if I wanted to see anyone besides Erica and Dr. Tom.  We’re spending a good chunk of the weekend together anyway so I think he’ll understand.

A Tale of Two-Point-Five Rejections

It was the worst of times, it was the worst of times.

Six months ago I got my personal training certification. It expires after two years and I didn’t want to sit on it and suddenly realize it’s December 2012 and I hadn’t yelled at a single fat person, so I’ve been looking for part time opportunities. The local Y chapter, which has 17 branches, is doing a major overhaul of its personal training program, basically trying to keep up with the explosion of CrossFit, and had a job fair to hire a bunch of new trainers.

I submitted my resume, which impressively lays out the fact that I read a book, took a test and really like to run, and got a call with a time to come to their job fair at the ghettoist branch they have. It was like when the kids go to the city in Adventures In Babysitting, except it was light out and there were no bad guys after me, so mostly I was just being a sheltered wuss.

I met with two friendly ladies, one old man who thought he was Jack LaLanne and one younger man who was the head honcho and looked like freaking Josh Duhamel, so you know…HOT. Since Joshy has played both bad guy and bad boy, I couldn’t help but wonder what kind of bad this man had in him (bad guy = bad, bad boy = good). Josh Duhamel 2.0 had had a quite unfortunate name. Like Drew Barrymore’s teasing nickname in Never Been Kissed, except it was his real last name.

Considering I don’t have any experience, I thought I did well in the interview, but it was one of those interviews that when you leave, you’re not sure if you’d be happier if they offered it to you or kind of relieved if they didn’t. I mean, if they did, I’d get to work with Mr. Not Grossy, but he’d be my boss.

If they didn’t, I’d keep up with the status quo. I had gone in thinking it was potentially a part time gig, but it was full time and had a “competitive salary,” and although we didn’t talk numbers, I’m pretty sure “competitive” in the PT world is not really anything compared to what I’m used to – and still struggling with – currently.

I hit the hiring fest at the end and the group was making decisions the next day, so I went home to wait it out with my men of Match.com to keep me company. And WHO do I see?! Mr. Not Grossy! Not only is he not married – did I mention I had noticed his lack of wedding ring in .8 seconds? – he’s single and looking, and oh yeah, still HOT. He had viewed my profile, which might explain why he was looking at me like he was trying to place me during the interview. But, alas, he had not emailed or even winked at runningmj. How rude (and completely silly).

Rejection count: .5

Now, I’m a great online dater and have no problem winking or emailing, but I decided if I was potentially going to be working with Mr. Not Grossy, I’d do best to leave the winking out of it.

On decision day, I got pushed off to a different branch, went for round two there and again had mixed feelings about it, so when that D-day came and I heard nothing, I was bummed and relieved at the same time. I didn’t have my heart on it, so that was fine, but still!

Rejection count: 1.5

I figured there wasn’t anything else to lose, so I logged on to match, found Mr. Not Grossy again and sent a quick “since I didn’t get the job, do I at least get a date?”

Not as cute typed out as it was in my head, but I was hoping that even though he didn’t like my profile enough on its own to email me, pair that with me in real life and it’s a no-brainer.

It’s been a few days and I have not yet heard back from Mr. Not Grossy. Maybe he’s not a member? Or maybe he is and…

Rejection count: 2.5

And I Dated Him WHY?!

No Name is back (ish).  He reappears every now and then and tries to make plans and sometimes I blow him off and sometimes I meet up with him.  Last week I met up with him, and here’s why – and by here’s why, I mean, he asked why I hang out with him and I told him:
 
  1. Because I want to find out why he keeps coming back randomly and wanting to hang out with me.
  2. Because it gets me out of the house.
  3. Because it will give me a good story for my blog.
  4. Because maybe when he goes to the bathroom, a cute guy will come hit on me.
  5. Because now I have something to tell my dad when he asks me who I dated this week.
  6. Because when I have an answer to that question, my parents get a glimmer of hope that their younger daughter isn’t going to die alone, and by alone, I mean surrounded by cats.
  7. Because I like sushi.
  8. Because it gives me legit plans so I don’t feel bad turning other men I don’t want to hang out with down.
 And the unspoken:
 
  1. Because he pays for the sushi.
  2. Because I can be abrasive and say what I think (mostly) and talk about my love life, but still flirt with him and he sticks around for all of that.
  3. Because I wanted to see if he’s grown a pair and/or if he’s learned how to kiss in a way other than that which can only be described as “my aunt smells like mothballs but I have to kiss her anyway.”

He never told me why he randomly wants to hang out.  The obvious answer would be because he gets a little something-something, but as per unspoken #3, he doesn’t.  It got me out of the house, but didn’t keep me away too long.  I’m obviously currently writing about it.  I didn’t get hit on while he wasn’t at the table.  No name was in real estate as was my dad, so it’s love already.  My parents did glimmer a bit.  The sushi was delish.  And I probably would have preferred the other guy who asked, but you never know which rando is going to ask you out for which day.

No Name did pay for the sushi, he did stick around during the MJ show and no he didn’t grow a pair and I’m assuming he hasn’t improved his technique.
 
Now, three has always been my favorite number, so let’s focus on that one – the first #3 that is.  He didn’t question it, so I’m not sure if he thinks I was joking, but I’ve noticed a trend in single lady bloggers lately – we are awesome and are not afraid to embrace a bad date for the sake of sharing it all over the internet. 
 
It wasn’t bad, wasn’t good, probably won’t do it again anytime soon.  And while nothing really blog worthy happened on that sushi date, stay tuned for other blog worthy tales.   
 
As a mini-update, this weekend, I went out with Bachelors #6, 7 and 8.  So, yeah, thanks to Match I’m back at it.
 

Matchmaker, Matchmaker

So….I signed up for Match over the weekend.  Just created a profile, really. 

But, the functionality of the site as well as the seeming quality of men on there – seriously, and we all KNOW my standards are actually getting higher, which makes no sense – got to me.  That plus the 29 emails I had received, but was unable to read or even see who they were from, had me reaching for my credit card. 

Yes, after bitching about money all weekend, I gave in and signed up.  For SIX months, which assuming failure, gives me another six for free.  Match Guarantee, they call it.  Match is actually guaranteeing me love.  And I’m sitting back like a surly teenager, arms crossed, showing them what a challenge they have on their hands.  I should probably read the fine print because I’m not sure what exactly counts.

The 29 emails quickly pared down to 15, but that’s still not terrible. 

I came up with these new rules for this new adventure:

This is about keeping my options open and I’m going to make it fit my life however I want. 

No younger men.

No out of area men, which may even include no west-siders.  Although I may or may not have already emailed a sexy lumberjack from Boise because that’s where I’m currently dreaming of living.

No lame jobs.

Be nice about height.  (Something new I’m trying after realizing how silly these people look.)

Deleting emails without responding is perfectly acceptable.  It’s a freaking smorgasboard, after all.

The emails are pinged to my email address attached to this blog, which is – gasp – a fake email address (well, real, but fake, but, well whatever) that I don’t check too often and that is not sent directly to my phone so I won’t be dealing with constant overload.

Skipping days between logging on is completely acceptable.  If I’m going to be at this for a year and spend an hour or two every time I log in, I could do it once a week and still kill 100+ hours of my life.  Ugh.

There are no dates per week or even month minimum.  And I’m not changing any plans for first or second dates.

Per Patti Stanger, online dating is just 1/3 of my dating search.  I’m still trying to be approachable IRL and asking to be set up – although I never actually have been.  The guys who it didn’t work out with don’t seem too keen on introducing me to their friends.  And the normal people who tell me they have someone for me never close the deal.  I’m not kidding here, folks, I’ll try anything!

No responding to men who lack originality.

No Cowboys fans.  This is not a new rule.  This is a non-negotiable.

See ya, eHarmony!

Thanks, eHarmony, for reminding me how much fun it is to be in love EVERY TIME I log into your stupid site that has given me NOTHING.

I love the older couples featured on the site too, but I still think Kate and Justin are my favorite.

Perhaps the key to success on eHarmony is having a name that is some derivative of Katherine.

When I started on this wonderful journey, I thought one month was too short.  I thought three months was a sure thing.  Three months later, I realize I was wrong. 

I spent the last few weeks really trying too, even talking to men not in my area, which originally I was quite opposed to.  Blame it on the lovely tales of long-distance love that are floating around the blogsphere.  No such luck for MJ.  Long-distance or otherwise.

I went on sixish dates with fourish guys.  Three were nice, but there was no connection.  One was not nice, but I did find him probably the most attractive.  Oops. 

Even since him, which is when I gave up on the dating thing, I was still trucking away with my matches, but despite what appearances may suggest, I have NOT been declining dates left and right. It’s just not happening.

So, eH, it’s been real, but I’m totally over you. 

Overall, I didn’t like the structure of the site and the matching.  You don’t get to pick for yourself, which just denies the fact that attraction is actually important because apparently you’re not supposed to say that.  Then you have to exchange canned messages for a week.

What works for some, completely bombs for others, which really just reinforces my belief in destiny and fate and what not.  I believe my sister was destined to meet her guy and they were on the site at the same time and it was a good time in their lives and they fell in love. 

My fate awaits me elsewhere.