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57 year-old on-line dating novice learns the ropes

First time readers, kindly read the first entry for October 27, 2012, when this story began . . .

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“What are you looking for in a relationship?”

It’s a legitimate question.  Most of the time, though, I’m tempted to reply:

“I'm not looking for a relationship, I'm just looking for someone to pick me up after my colonoscopy.  A subscription to this site is cheaper than cab fare."

But the "little voice" is still there, whispering in my head.  “He could be sincere . . . he could be nice . . . let down your defenses and agree to meet him for coffee.”

More often, though, I not only hear voices, but have visions . . .  of frowning elementary-school teachers, wearing harlequin glasses, bright lipstick and pincurls, reminding the young ladies in class we’ll catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.  I now know why Miss Spinster wound up teaching school rather than marrying.

Another version of the question I struggle to answer is: "What type of relationship are you looking for?"

I can come up with an array of witty responses to that one, but I’ve learned that men who make the effort to contact you divide relationships into two categories – casual or serious.  As someone raised in an era where casual relationships between men and women did not exist, fielding this question from a guy of the same age usually signals the conversation will end within two or three sentences.

Awhile ago, I received a request to be “interviewed by phone.”  It was Sunday night.   It had been a long weekend.  I was bored.   I pretty much knew what I was in for and I was pretty much right.  Are you good in bed?

He claims to have an “ivy league education,” so his approach was a little more polished.  “I travel a lot and when I’m in town, it’s usually for a short period of time.”

I’m sure there are a number of women who would find this guy their “dream-come-true.”  He makes a lot of money and is seldom home.  They can spend their days at the country club and their evenings with the pool guy. 

I took the cowardly way out.  I said – "Hang on for 15 minutes – I need to run to the convenience store for a carton of cigarettes and a bottle of Thunderbird."    (Okay, so I didn’t.  I was polite and said I had to be at work early and it was nice of him to call).

Younger men typically don’t ask for interviews.  Instead, they tell you what they’ll provide in a brief email.  I’m tempted to correct the grammar, red-line the changes and return it, but I simply don’t reply.

The guy who openly pronounced it’s easier for him to describe the things he likes, than those he didn't, sounded appealing, until he began to recite a portion of the things he disliked.  I declined his offer to “share lists.”

I’ve promised to share some of the more “salty stories” in future issues of this blog.  When my friends learned of its existence, they invariably asked the rhetorical question, “do you make any money doing this?”