So, I’m a girl that believes in giving new things a chance. That internet dating is crazy? Yah? Didn’t you you know was nuts anyway? There you have it. I’m crazy and doing crazy sort of things. For a few years (ok, about 3 or 4, I was born in 1976, but am 25 don’t ask me why…but I am), I looked around this great big world and thought to myself…how the heck am I supposed to meet someone…in a world of strangers?
We’re all so driven today that we don’t have the time to pause and be polite to a random person in the street. Walking down a doggie path, it’s more likely that the dogs will have a loud (barking) conversation without our reacting and talking ourselves. We’ll mutter our “excuse me’s” and keep going, rather than take a chance and find a wonderful new friend at the very least. It’s harder and harder (it seems) to meet people in the eye. Sharing a “good morning” is easier if it’s in IM and in that farcical, dumb, less than satisfying short hand speak that everyone else but me seems to know nowadays (can you tell I dislike all those gismos, gadgets and instruments of non-face-to-face communication humanity has developed?)
Still, since relationships in this day and age are with our computers, our mp3 players, and yes even the radio…while we commute to and from work, is it any wonder that people are being easily led (in droves btw) to online dating? We’re already online, we’re surfing for everything from the meaning of a word…(what happened to a good ‘ole book called the dictionary? It went digital.) to finding the holy grail it seems. The internet is the new frontier, and our kids (sigh, yes, I’m old enough to have kids that can be…old enough to experience that kind of revolution. Sigh. Anyway moving on.), they are leading the way.
I’ve got kids telling me about rock bands with weird loopy names I’ve never heard about…and making me feel like I made my mom feel so many years ago…out of touch. So, standing back, passing judgment on something so standard as the use of the internet for dating is as backwards…as thinking the personal ads were scandalous…when they first began in the 1800’s. Have you ever heard of mail order brides? Wait…I think they still exist, it’s just that they’re now featured…online…in a catalog of pictures.
The internet, is simply a new means of carrying out the same social functions as before. The best part is that you get to date people you would otherwise not have met at your usual dive (ok, only hangout because you haven’t felt adventurous since you got rejected at your jr. high dance by the boy/girl of your pimply dreams.) Daring to talk to a stranger, when you don’t have to see them face to face and possibly take a chance of not “liking” them is easier…when you’re online. Why? Because you can ignore them afterward. Block them. Delete them. Move on without having to be polite…as our Mom taught us to be when speaking to other people…in person. Ok, socially speaking that’s a big, a huge, a sad, drawback, but one that happens even outside the internet realms. Or are you forgetting all those times when you didn’t call back that guy/gal that you went out with…and who didn’t rock your boat? See? The attitudes are the same, they’re just transferring to other media being used.
We also have other advantages, and one of them is keeping in touch with our friends, and family. I live a few hundred miles from my family and staying in touch would be impossible if I didn’t do the internet rounds, and make calls. See? Technology is harmful, crazy, not too great…only when you don’t apply it in the spirit it was meant to be used for. I’ve met several new friends that way, and dated (2 o 3) from among them. Some have been busts, tanked, no good, drinking buddy material rather than romantic, and others have been great, but no chemistry. There’s always a chance though that the right person, at the right time, might come out of those places we dread admitting we go to…like the matchmaker sites.
I’ve done it, I’ve paid for it and truthfully they’re not all that great (they’re businesses after all and are trying to part you from your hard earned money) but you do find and have some interesting moments. I wish there were more of those times, in real time, real life, up front, and in person. That’s all. Go on, log in, and see who’s your newest match. I know I used to do that for a time, and enjoyed it, but I’m working on meeting people face to face. Don’t want to lose touch with reality, and immerse myself in the virtual worlds that so many (and specially kids) are addicted to.