Annals of Internet Dating, Part II 

For those of you just tuning in, this is part two in a series about how to date on the World Wide Web. Last week I discussed choosing appropriate sites and the all-important profile pictures. If you are playing along at home, you have already researched and picked out a site or two and gathered up several charming pictures of yourself. Good job!

The next step is filling out the profile information. I’ve read hundreds of profiles and clearly this is not an easy task. You are not in high school and, yes, everybody is judging you. That is why you fill out this information: to be judged and picked or passed over — the same thing you will do to others.

Use the auto-fill forms to meet the site’s parameters as accurately as possible; they are designed to take care of the little details the site feels its members are most superficially concerned with. These forms also tip you off to the site’s theme. If you can pick a profession and indicate whether you have a pet, the site is at least designed with relationships in mind. If you can indicate your cock size and favorite position with drop-down menus, it’s a hook-up haven. Though the available options leave room for error, be as honest as possible. Just because you can swim doesn’t mean you have a swimmer’s physique. I work out and am very fit, but I am slim, not athletic. An athlete can kick my ass. If you go to a bar five nights a week or only drink on holidays, you are not a “social drinker,” and if you don’t believe in Jesus you are probably not a Christian.

Now you have to write a little something. Yes, you hate this part — most people do — but you do not need to write that in your profile. Also, do not rhyme! Do not quote Shakespeare, Maya Angelou, Dolly Parton, or Journey. This is where you should try to sound like yourself. Charming, funny, nerdy, bawdy, brilliant you! Be sincere, but do not take yourself too seriously. Divulging intimate secrets and life dreams in detail is overexposure. It usually reads less exciting than you think and can make strangers uncomfortable.

Be positive and confident about who you are and what you want, but don’t be arrogant or snobbish. Avoid calling yourself VGL (very good looking) or stating that you are looking for VGL people to date. It is silly and sounds like an STD. I have found that most overconfident profiles are posted by guys who were way over-validated as children and require a lot of upkeep.

Emphasize what is important to you, whether it be social activities, hobbies, sex, or work. Remember that your interests and your reality might be two different things. I like hiking and reading, for instance. I go to the library every two weeks, but I don’t go hiking unless someone takes me.

Describe who you are looking for clearly. Focus on what you want, not what you don’t want. If you have definite dislikes, it is OK to state them, but use tact. I cringe when I read “no fats or fems.” These are the words of assholes. If you must, try saying, “I like masculine and fit men.” Do not invite people with a desired trait to “move to the front of the line.” Are you giving blowjobs at the Whataburger drive-thru? Even if you are, have some pride.

Profiles are littered with warning lights and misused modifiers. Anyone who is looking for or offering a “discreet” relationship has a boyfriend, girlfriend, wife, or husband. Or is a gay Republican. The “casual” modifier indicates that person is seeking one-night stands or noncommittal relationships — pretty straightforward, but be aware that your friend might have more than one casual relationship. “PNP” and “party” mean drug use and often unsafe sex. Be careful! And honest: You are not DDF (disease and drug free) or “clean” if you use drugs, are not tested regularly, or don’t practice safe sex.

Next week we will discuss making first contact, email etiquette, and meeting in person. For now, register with your chosen site(s) and begin working on your profiles. Please note that there is no spell check on these forms. Seriously.

Much luck and love,

Your Uncle Mat

Uncle Mat answers questions about relationships, sex, pets, and art. Email him at
dearunclemat@sacurrent.com or Myspace.com/yourunclemat. Your true identity is safe with him.


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