The Truth is Stranger Than Fiction - An Introduction

Truth is Stranger Than Fiction - An Introduction

My first foray into the Social Networking world was some years ago, in 2005 I believe, with Yahoo. They had a site called Yahoo 360° that was their own attempt at MySpace, which, at the time, was all the rage. I hadn't been bitten by the MySpace bug yet, but I was already an active member of Yahoo, so to get my feet wet, I set up a Yahoo 360° profile.

Blogging was an extremely attractive prospect to me. I love to write, I love to give myself that type of "outlet" to my problems, fears, joys, and experiences. I've kept diaries and journals off and on over the years and they've always been therapeutic when I took the time to keep them up. But this... a public diary? How do I approach such a thing? How much do I divulge? And what, praytel, do I write about that would actually entice people to read it?

Browsing thru existing blogs, one thing was an absolute MUST: I could not, would not, write about mundane things that no one but myself would care about. I needed an angle-- Something that I could write passionately about. Something that people, in general, have an interest in. Something that would grab the attention of the public. And something that had a "theme." I found that, to me personally, a blog that jumped around all over the place was difficult to read. A theme would keep me in check, and allow me to focus, rather than a stream of conscious that I was sure would bore to death anyone who came across my page.

The idea came to me fairly quickly. I was newly divorced and discovering the delights and annoyances of being single and dating in my 30's. It was perfect!
Love, sex, relationships, dating... The overall general interaction between men and women has always been a fascination and a sure-fire hit to our society, if not our entire species! I had my topic, I was ready to roll...

Yahoo has since shut down their 360° forum, and the experience I had there was both rewarding and therapeutic. So I am going to retell my adventures in a retro-active tale here, and see if I can gather the same, if not bigger, audience I did there. Maybe I can even get inspired enough to bring the whole thing up to date and wrap it all up into a happy ending? We shall see...

So, here we go! Hello, my name is Jennifer. I am 37 years old and I've been divorced just over 6 years now. Fasten your seat belts, boys and girls, it's gonna be one hell of a ride!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Chapter 4: Moving On...

So my first Internet date was a bust. Well, that’s okay. Try, try again, right? I could see that I wasn’t going to get much action on No new matches had been found for me since I signed up. It occurred to me that Internet dating was so popular because you had such exposure to so many people across any given area. When I went out with my friends to the local places that we enjoyed to frequent, I realized very quickly that you end up seeing the same faces over and over again. There was no way that I was going to meet anyone new or exciting by remaining in the same network of people.

I was sitting at home one night, surfing around on Comcast’s On-Demand features, looking for a movie to watch, and I saw an option that said “Dating on Demand.” Huh? Dating on Demand? Oh, I had to check this out. And that’s exactly what it was! It was a collection of videos to a dating service. You didn’t get a whole lot of information about where each individual lived, but it kept directing me to the same website:

So I got online to check it out. sponsors those Speed Dating events you hear about, where you get like 5 minutes with a person and then move to the next table. But you didn’t have to attend one of these events to sign up with them. You could create a profile and upload some pictures to meet people strictly from the site. Why not? I signed up. I listed all my “statistics” and then listed all the “stats” I’d prefer in a date. Let’s see what comes back. Considering the claim they had of their clientele, I didn’t receive back nearly as many matches as I thought I would… There were only about twelve. I looked over all of them, and there were two that struck my fancy. They had two ways to initiate contact. You could send an email to someone, or you could send a “virtual drink.” This was, of course, the quick way to point out to someone that you noticed him without the pressure of coming up with something witty and charming to say in an email. I sent a “drink” to the two men that struck my fancy. Neither one responded.

Then, I was contacted by “Horace.” He was blonde, pretty cute, and I was intrigued. We exchanged a few emails, and then graduated to the phone. It was a nice conversation. Not great, but not bad. He seemed a little dry, but we agreed to go out to dinner the following night. We met at Brio in Buckhead, Atlanta’s premier uptown area, so I was impressed with his choice. Dinner was a little awkward and there were lulls in the conversation, but overall it was nice. I hadn’t been mistaken, he definitely had a dry personality, but it wasn’t unbearable. After dinner, we did the after-date shuffle of, “What do we do next?” He wanted to come back to my house with me. I’m no fool. I knew what he wanted.

So now I was faced with a choice. I was over 30, not in high school anymore, and officially divorced. I didn’t have to say, “No, No, No,” anymore for fear of the bad-girl reputation I had in high school, right? This is 2005, and casual sex is quite common, if not accepted these days. The question was: did I want to have sex with THIS guy? I didn’t really feel any strong mental attraction to him, but I thought he was attractive. I knew that I would not have some great relationship with this man, regardless of what happened the rest of this evening. After being with no one but my ex-husband for the last seven years, part of me thought that I just needed to do it: Get that first one out of the way. It was against my better judgment, but I agreed, and he followed me home.

“Horace’s” finesse was less than stellar, to say the least. He made comments like, “This is a nice house, why don’t you show me the upstairs?” How classy. And I was still hesitating. It was all so contrived. Was this really how things went? Had I really been out of the loop this long? Did men really think it was okay to act like this? I even pointed out how cheesy it was that he kept making comments like, “Show me the bedroom,” but it didn’t make him stop doing it.

Alright, let’s skip to the punchline: We ended up in bed. And it was just AWFUL! I mean, it was really AWFUL! This man had no technique, no style, no stamina, and I swear that his idea of foreplay was, “Are you ready yet?” It lasted less than five minutes, but, I am an understanding woman, and these things happen. I was perfectly willing to allow him a Second Round to make a first impression. The second round was worst than the first. I couldn't get him out the door fast enough. When I finally DID get him out the door, he said, "I'll call you," and I said, "Sure," praying that I would never hear from him again. Thankfully, I did not.

I remember coming back inside and not sure how to define what I was feeling. Sort of a combination of embarrassed, humiliated, and ashamed. What a wasted notch on my belt! Was it just a "first time out" experience, and it didn't matter who it was, it would have been awful? Or was this guy truly just the most pathetic lover in Atlanta? Or, an even more chilling thought: Was this indicative of the standard of lovers there were out there? It scared me to think that I might actually regret getting a divorce.

Lesson Number Three: Be WAY more picky before you invite someone new into your bed, regardless of how cute he is.

Status: Learned. Learned WELL.

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