Archive for category The Collective Wisdom of Men
While I’ve been rather chilly towards online dating in the past few months, I haven’t backed away from it completely. I have a mostly inactive Plenty of Fish account that I use to reading womens’ profiles. Out of curiosity and demographic honesty, I actually checked out a somewhat new online dating website, OurTime. I created an account, copied over some of my PoF profile text, put up some photos (not the gun photo). I actually paid for a month to get all the premium features.
I’ve been logging in every couple of days for the past two weeks to get a sense of the singles online more into my demographic. The Ourtime user interface has some minor issues but is generally easy to use. There are visual indicators of who has viewed my profile along with the usual messaging features. My profile has gotten a lot of attention. This is probably because I’m the new kid on the block and my profile is pretty good. I’ve gotten about 20 flirts and pre-populated incoming messages. Over 200 women have viewed my profile. Every woman claims to be in her 50s. As is common, I’m only attracted to about 20% of those expressing interest in my profile.
A couple of women have been rather persistent with multiple emails, flirts, liking photos, etc. If I’m not attracted, I just ignore. If I’m attracted I reply with a quick message and introduce myself just to see if their interest is honest. Sometimes, my return messages are ignored. This is one of the many negative points regarding online dating. Interest is expressed, returned interest is ignored.
One woman actually sent me a long message. She wrote that she was under the impression my profile was satire. I responded that I was being serious about my writing for post-divorce singles. We corresponded back and forth a couple of times, nothing particularly romantic, just some words about attraction and dating in general. Very recently, I noticed she was online and available for instant messaging through Ourtime. Being a writer, I likes me to do some instant messaging.
We started a instant messaging conversation. The initial topic was about the geography problem with the website. While she is local to me, I get many matches from all over the country. At this point, she subtly escalated me. I accepted that escalation. Here’s the unedited and relevant part of our online conversation:
Her: So you wouldn’t travel a long way for a date?
Me: lol… Not a chance, there are 5 million people in this part of Florida.
Her: How many of them are females lurking around the corner for you?
Me: This question I will never answer. Discretion is the better part of valor.
Her: Under cover dating agent. badboy007 love it
Me: Actually, not undercover at all. I make no secret of my writing endeavors.
Her: You mean you are an agent that does not wants to be under the covers
Me: Hehehehe… I like your style. If you want to trade verbal moves, you have met your match.
Her: You think so? Maybe I did or maybe you did
Me: Oh, you can do so much better. Turn in your college degree and get a refund.
Her: I did and they gave it to me to pledge it to the less fortunate on Ourtime
Me: That was good.
Her: You can thank me now”-)
Me: I give you two points. That’s as far as my gratitude goes. I have very high standards.
Her: 2 points -How low can you go?
Me: I said HIGH standards. Ask about points 3 and above.
Her: asking about your point system now
Me: 1 point is maintaining my interest. 2 points is engaging me with the tit a tat with words. 3 points is making me hit google for quotes. 4 points is want to meet in person because of words and stuff. 5 points is a second date.
At that point, she logged off. Then I logged off.
She did log back in later and sent this IM:
“Sorry I had to log off I was called away. I got to point 4. Does this mean you want to have words with me?”
This woman was raised overseas so I’m sure she doesn’t fully understand the English idiom “Have words with”. The ball is my court now.
This brief back and forth between us shows some key elements in attraction and communication between the sexes, even if online. One of the lessons here is that a man must maintain frame and confidence. This means he controls the ebb and flow of the conversation. This is easy online because there are no body language and voice inflection issues. Those are just words on a screen. But frame, flirtation, and escalation can certainly happen in this communications medium.
This women is somewhat older than me and yet responded like a much younger woman. The rules of attraction do not change significantly with age. This is an important lesson for my male readers. 25 or 65, men can deal successfully with women in the context of attraction and dating if men know the essential truths.
UPDATE: This woman sent me a message yesterday with a mildly entertaining joke. I responded by continuing to qualify her with that point system. I double downed. In our subsequent IM chat later in the evening she was clearly pissed off, obviously not used to a man continuing to qualify her. I might post that IM chat log. Stay tuned.
I’ve recently taken a new, full-time contract job in Miami. The contracting agency threw enough money at me to accept the very long commute. Where I work is not glamorous Miami. It’s the industrial part of Miami where warehouses and import-export businesses abound. The famous airport is less than a mile away. Topless girls on the beach are quite a few miles away. Despite it’s glamorous reputation, Miami does work pretty well, despite the fierce heat, congested streets, and the occasional alligator eating a house pet.
This is only the second time in my career where I’m working at a corporate headquarters of a huge multi-national company with billions in revenue and the highest profile in its industry, . Normally, I work on nerd farms surrounded by information technology (IT) people. I have no problem with IT people but they represent a stereotype that I found to be accurate. Being at a corporate headquarters means all departments needed to run a huge corporation are in the corporate campus. There are also at least 2,000 people working in the buildings
There are all sorts of people here. It’s a mix of ages, nationalities, languages, personality types, etc. Most everyone is friendly, relaxed, professional, and seem generally happy to work here. When I leave my cube to go to the cafeteria or have a smoke, I see far more social interaction than in the usual IT shop. It’s refreshing and improves my mood, as well. Human beings are social animals.
I make a point to casually observe how the women appear and act in this corporate environment. There are a lot of women here. All ages are represented and it’s a good snapshot of how age impacts a woman’s appearance. Time can be merciless. But I have seen The middle-aged guys working here all kind of look alike. I am convinced that a man’s physical looks plateaus at a certain age, perhaps around 40, and can stay that way for a decade or more.
There is also a very good cross section of how women dress themselves. This company is a bit unusual in that all the summer months are casual dress. The men take advantage of this by generally dressing very casually, including board shorts and sandals. The only exceptions are the many Italian guys who bring a certain European masculine fashion sense, even while casually dressed. But some of their sartorial expressions get dangerously close to hipsterism.
The women dress quite well despite it being casual dress summer. The reason for this is the Latin influence here. The stereotype that Latinas dress better than their American peers is basically true. So the situation is that in the fashion arms race here, the Latinas are usually better armed and the American women are playing catch up. I’ve notice that no matter the age if the figure supports it, the Latinas are far more likely to wear much tighter clothes and much higher heels or sandals.
When I’m observing all this, I have to ensure I don’t stare too much. This is actually really tough challenge given the current state of my eyesight. It takes my eyes quite a while to focus on a particular thing so I’m concerned my gaze is just a hair too long when I’m looking around. Maybe my gaze shows confidence, maybe I’ve crossed the Rubicon into the creepzone.
I know I harp on this subject. I do this because it’s a huge problem for men. I’ve covered well how technology seriously disrupts in-person social interactions. Streaming video, satellite TV, entertainment servers, all of it acts as barriers to genuine human contact. Congratulations, nerds, you won. But girls still won’t date you. Yes, that was an abrasive remark aimed at the socially dysfunctional men who created such technology.
There is another way we isolate each other. During our collective commutes to work, our vehicles typically holds only the driver. Commute times are long, averaging 35 minutes. That’s 35 minutes in social isolation as we drive to and from work, mentally focusing on work, those idiot drivers surrounding us, and the sundry minutae of life.
I was reminded of this commute-based isolation when I started to use public transportation earlier this year. While I was taking the bus, I got to know some of the regulars and enjoyed the social interaction. Here in South Florida, bus riders are not rich folk. It didn’t matter to me. In the mornings I chatted with the young, overnight security guard of Cuban origins who got on the bus stop as I did. Returning from work, I talked about motorcycles and life with the middle-age Puerto Rican bus driver. I also chatted with tourists who took the same bus up the beach to get back to their hotels. Of course, there were drunks and mentally ill homeless to deal with. Such is the life of a regular bus rider.
With a new and far more lucrative contract just having started, I’m now taking the commuter train (Tri-Rail). These are hard-core commuters and mostly like me, the white-collar crowd. Most are glued to smart devices so I don’t interrupt. But these past few days, there has been cordial chit chat with other passengers and a few occasions. Such times are excellent opportunities to be social in a socially frictionless environment. Just this morning, while waiting to exit the train, I was standing next to a middle-age flight attendant, a stewardess to use the older vernacular. She was in uniform. That train stop has a shuttle to the Miami airport.
I opened the brief conversation. “So we’re both going to work.”
She smiled at me pleasantly. “Yes, we are.”
“But you’ve got a helluva an office.”
With that she laughed and a light exchange ensued as the train slowed to a stop. We wished each other well and walked to our separate shuttle busses. There are a couple of take-aways from all this:
1. Take advantage of social opportunities. I’m advocating making radicall changes to your commute, but perhaps a carpool might be something to explore if your job, job schedule, and geography permits it. Bonus, save money on gas and wear and tear on your vehicle.
2. When opening up a conversation, it’s easiest to bring up something that you both have in common. Even something as innocuous as going to work is a conversational opener. What I did with the flight attendant was a variation of the environmental opener (HT Roosh)
Social isolation can too easily wipe away social skills. All men, regardless of age, must be reminded of this often. Just now, as I’m writing this post, I’m on the train. The gentleman across from me has his eyes firmly attached to his smart device. I tried to engage him in conversation but he was a bit terse and put in his ear buds. Hint, taken. Maybe tomorrow I’ll sit across from someone more social.
Here’s a photo of an interesting business I see from my train-based commute: