Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Online Dating Etiquette and Persistence

If I start talking to a man online and there is chemistry, I have a rule about never meeting him until we talk on the phone. It lets me hear his voice, and get a feel for his personality. I've found you can tell a lot about a man by his ability to do a "cold call."

I know it's not easy to call someone you've never talked to so I do my best to keep the conversation going. Most of the time the men who have the guts to call can keep a good conversation. Admittedly, my system is not foolproof but I can sense if a man is confident and if there would be chemistry on the date.

I started chatting with a guy online and things were going well. He immediately gave his email and I semi-joked that I don't initiate conversation with men. He laughed and we kept talking. After about a half hour he said he was going to Starbucks to study and that we should meet up. So I told him I'd be more comfortable if we talked on the phone first and we exchanged numbers.

He told me to call him right then so we could meet up later that night. I told him to slow down that I had things to do and if he wanted to call me after he was done studying that was fine, I could talk after 9pm. At that point I had to take my dog outside so I told him I'd be back.

While walking my dog he started texting me trying to convince me to meet him. I told him I couldn't study at starbucks and there would not be a point because we'd want to talk. I thought it was cute that he was being so persistent. When I got back inside he was still online and continued to press me. I told him that I really needed to go and study but that we could talk later that night.

He started telling me to call him now. That we should meet now. That we could study together. All the sudden he went from chat buddy to pressurer extraordinare. I again told him I had to go but to call me after 9pm. HE KEPT PERSISTING. He then made a joke that was semi-inappropriate and followed it up by saying it must've crossed a boundary. I joked back that his persistence was crossing the annoying boundary. At which point he said bye and signed off. I figured that was the end of it.

8:35 I get a text message telling me he wasn't sure how he felt about being called annoying. I texted him back that I had set my limits and that he kept pushing them, and that he couldn't even respect my request to call after 9pm.

There is a fine line between playful persistence and all out pressure. If a woman has boundaries and states them, she should be respected for it or at least respect those boundaries. By pushing them you are saying you don't respect her enough to care and take her wishes into consideration. Unless you're just trying to get laid; even then I don't see pressure as a successful tactic and feigning respect would still get you a lot further.

I'm not sure if anyone is out there reading this, but I'd love some thoughts. Please leave a comment -- even if it's just to call me a bitch. I could use a dose of reality!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Name dropping, annoyances, and questions

I'd like to think I am optimistic and hopeful. In an effort to get out of my dating slump I rejoined match.com. Yes, apparently I am a glutton for punishment! I met some interesting men, but the problem is by the time emails and phone numbers are exchanged, so much time passes that I can't remember why we started talking in the first place.

I was talking to this one guy for a month, let's call him Sam. We emailed a bunch, and sent some instant messages; finally talking on the phone and arranging a date. He was very excited when he realized I would be getting off work in downtown and suggested we meet at this very trendy downtown hotel/condo complex - where he lived. I was amused at the presumption but didn't care enough to change the venue; there was no way in hell I would go up to see his condo.

Long story short, Sam spent the entire date telling me about the building. Who he knew, who he had seen, how many parties he had booked - everything except how much he had paid for his condo. I nursed my drink and watched our waitress who was so attractive I preferred watching her work the room, to listening to my date.

Why do men think its necessary or impressive to list people they know? It's one of my biggest pet peeves. When a man drops a name, he's not telling me how important he is. He is telling me that he thinks he is important because he knows someone. OR that I'm ______ enough to be impressed with his contacts.


I went out with another guy, let's call him Adam - one I met in the real world. Cute, really good on paper, everything seemed great; a real gentleman I thought. He and I got drinks a couple of times when he suggested he come over to pick me up so we could go out. Now I'm pretty weary of men wanting to pick me up. I've learned that it leads to: "the leave behind," or the "let's not go out," or the let me come in after I walk you to the door..." But this guy was cute, and he had never tried to kiss me so I figured maybe he really is trying to be polite.

I got all dressed up since I figured we were going out. To my surprise he shows up with vodka, club soda, and limes. He said he'd been dying to try this brand and figured we could try it before we left. I was somewhat on guard, but still wanted to believe the best in him. (Feel free to comment on my issues of naivete)

He made the drinks and we talked while we worked on them. Trying to figure out where to go and what to do. Neither of us could come up with a place we wanted to go, it was too late to eat and none of our friends were out for once. So the inevitable happened, "we" decided to rent a movie. Yes, yes, I know I was part of the process. But I didn't have any better suggestions, and you must remember this guy had made no move on me yet.

So we picked out a movie that he said I would love, and he bought it. We went back to watch it and things were great. We were drinking and he wasn't trying anything. At one point I got up and he put his arm around me and we cuddled. The movie ended and we started watching a different one, when all of the sudden he says he wants to take a nap. At about two am. I was taken aback, because who takes a nap that late? And did he really expect to nap at my house? I had no clue what to say!

He got off my couch and wandered into my bedroom, pointing out that we could watch tv in bed!!! I stood in the doorway telling him my tv didn't work (which it doesn't but I don't have the physical strength to throw it away.) I'm not sure if he was really drunk or really tired or really thought I would go straight from JUST CUDDLING to sharing my bed with him, but I told him no way.

He went back to my couch and sprawled out while I kinda stood over him with a WTF look. Finally I decided to just watch the movie because it looked like he was dozing off. After a few minutes he apologized "if he was being presumptuous"! I told him I appreciated the apology (what else should I have said?)

He finally got up to go and told me to keep the DVD so I could watch it again. Now I liked this guy. Beside his faux pas he was still very cute, and had a lot of potential. But there was no way I was letting him do a leave behind and then hear from him in two months that I still had his DVD. So I joked that we should watch ti at his apartment next time and made him take it home.

I'm still conflicted on this guy. He still didn't try to kiss me. He has texted me a couple of times but has been weird. I can't tell if he's embarrassed about that night or what. And to be honest I'm not sure if I'm into him anymore. I just wish I knew what he was thinking! Were his intentions pure? Any thoughts?


Yet another date I went on demonstrated my least favorite trait of clinginess. The date wasn't special, and the chemistry wasn't great. The guy was new to town and didn't want it to end, but I was tired and wanted to go home. I was barely back on the road when i got an immediate text that he had wanted to spend more time with me and wished to see me again real soon.

Now I know this is hypocritical but if I was really into the guy that text would make me ecstatic. But I wasn't even really on the fence with him, and that cinched it.

So if any guys are reading this, here is a tip. You lose nothing by waiting to text/call the next day. If a girl isn't that into you and you don't text right away she will wonder why not, so when you do text her the stress you put her through may make her think twice about blowing you off. And if the girl really likes you, again you lose nothing by waiting to contact her. It builds the anticipation and makes your attention more valuable!