Welcome to my blog!

I'm a divorced mom with a teenage daughter and two pre-teen sons. Writing is my first love. When I'm not writing or working or playing taxi to the kids, I also toy with photography and baking.

So, basically, my camera rarely sees the light of day and my mixer stands in the corner in permanent time-out.

To see some samples of my writing, you can check out my website: www.csrickard.com

Friday, June 5, 2009

On-line dating???

Yeah, I know, but let me explain first...

I always feel the need to preface my on-line dating experience with that statement. Why? Not sure. Embarrassment, maybe? Some type of justification on my part for 'stooping' to on-line dating? (shrugs)

Bottom line - I did it because I was curious.

My mother met her second husband through a dating service back in '92. He was killed 10 years later and she gave on-line dating a whirl two different times since then. I figured if my mom could do it, why not see what it has to offer. Of course, she had no luck whatsoever with it, but I still thought I'd try it out.

The minimum time-frame for trying most of the services was 3 months. So I signed up for my 3 months on two different websites and dove in to creating a profile.

Being the dominant picture taker in the family, I had no recent pictures of myself handy. Thus I found myself in my office, using the time-delay on my digital camera to attempt a full-body shot. I wasn't greedy -- I simply wanted one shot I could post in my profile.

It took about 20 minutes and over a dozen shots before I got one I could work with (it's hard trying to smile sincerely when you are only staring at a camera and know the picture will be used by total strangers as a means of gauging whether or not they are interested in getting to know you.)

I had no real hope that anything would come of it, but I was curious to see who was doing this type of thing and how many people actually used these services. If I met someone - great! If not, it would still be interesting to see what happens.

Once my profile was created, I did my first database search: men; 35-45; non-smoker; within a 100 mile radius of my home.

The search generated about 600 hits -- yes, 600 (that's not a typo). I was pleasantly surprised by the quantity and proceeded to go through the results.

To quote my daughter: "Oh my GOD!"

In this age range, I had expected to see mature, (at least semi-) confident men.

I went through all 600 results:

60% of the profiles contained at least 1 picture of the man without a shirt. Less then 15% of those were beach shots. About half of the men were doing some sort of muscle pose or a casual "check me out" pose. The majority wore only jeans or casual shorts without a shirt. A few had their jeans slightly unzipped and turned out -- EEWWW!

70% of the profiles included shots of a motorcycle (only about half of those showed the man with the motorcycle).

Those were the two dominant stats. Needless to say, those are also the two that I consider to be among my top turn-offs. I have absolutely no interest in anyone who feels they have to 'promote' their body to gain my interest. And I do NOT like motorcycles - far too risky for my tastes.

I was honestly shocked at the results. I hadn't expected either one of those stats to be noticeable, let alone dominant.

My conclusion: men aged 35-45 who participate in on-line dating are prime targets for mid-life crises.

I stopped trying searches about a month after I originally registered (just couldn't bring myself to keep 'trying' the full 3 months). My subscriptions ended in May and I have no intention of renewing them or trying it again - just not the type of people I'm interested in.

Lesson learned

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