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Entries in eHam (6)

Saturday
Jan282017

You're dumped eHam

I finally deleted my eHam profile.  It felt weird.  Like I was letting an old friend go.  Throwing out a pair of jeans that once looked good on me. Killing off my chance to find love (pfffft, joking).  I won’t lie, as a What If Girl, it was hard. 

I’ve been on eHam for a few years – I don’t want to confess how long for fear of sounding like a loser – but it was fun.  When I first signed up I dated enthusiastically, lining up several dates every week, and chatting to a few men at once.  Then as the excitement of meeting potential partners wore off, I logged on only when I felt like it, throwing myself in and out of the dating world for as long as my self esteem would allow.

Now that journey – or should I say roller coaster - is over.  Yes, I’m still single.   But that’s okay. 

Did I meet some great men?  Absolutely.  Some of them I’m still in contact with.  Coffee Boy, one of my first dates, who texts me every year on my birthday to catch up.  Marathon Man, who I dated for a while (he’s now happily married again with another child).  Celebrity Chef, one of the hottest guys I met, swaps funny stories and emojis with me like we’re bored 15 year olds.  Oh and most recently, The Sailor, who was a brilliant dinner date and plus one.  I liked him a lot.  Never mind.  

I also talked to and met some weirdos.  IronMan, the uber strong Leo who had a voice like a jockey and talked in the third person about everyone.  Thong Man who had a fight with me because I didn’t want to meet him after ten minutes of chatting.  Smiley Face who said that women who wear glasses are librarians and that we let way too many asylum seekers into our country. Elvis the bragger and 50/50 boy the groper.  Delete.

Then there were the awesome guys I met but didn’t click with physically or emotionally.  Sometimes me, sometimes them.  The Food Scientist and I had a brilliant four hour date, then nothing.  Fireman Sam (an old school romantic), the Drummer (lots of fun) and Sauce Boy (who flew from Canberra to take me to dinner on Valentine’s Day).  All lovely guys, just not right for me. 

I also had some interesting match ups … Carlos the Spanish Horse Whisperer … Scott the Swinger who had a wife AND a girlfriend, and was looking for another playmate to join them … and the lovely Michelle, a woman transitioning and looking to explore the world of dating as she became a man.  Then there was Nick who ended up dating Twin Kat for a few months. Thank God she never brought him home.  Awkward on a new level. 

A huge shout out to The Painter, Italian Stallion and Five Perfect Dates who all have their own chapters in my upcoming book.  If I ever finish it. 

As I hit the delete button on my account I felt good.  It was time to try something new and get rid of the things in my life that weren’t working.  Done.  I closed my laptop.  A little later, however, I received more matches in my inbox.  What?  I logged on again to find I had only stopped my subscription, not deleted my account.  My profile was still there attracting men.  Nice try eHam. 

I searched the site and finally found the Close My Account section.  As I hovered over that tiny red button, I wondered if this was the right thing to do.  What If, my head taunted me.  What IF?!  No, I’m done.  We are done. 

I clicked the button and a collage of cute men scrolled across my screen with an ominous sentence … “Are you sure you want to close your account? These are some of the people you might be missing out on.”

Are you for real?!  Where the hell were all these hotties the past few years?  It’s like going to AA and someone waving a bottle of champagne in your face before you walk through the door. My self discipline may not be that strong.  I pressed the “Yes, Delete my Account” button.  Another screen popped up.   “Warning!  Are you sure you want to do this?”  

A list of reasons not to delete my profile tugged at me.  You will permanently lose all your matches.  Shame. You will lose all communication with your matches.  Fine. You will have to retake the whole relationship questionnaire (or 936 stupid questions about dumb shit as I like to call it).  Yep.  Got that.  I’m out of here.

Finally after getting through myriads of dating firewalls, my account was closed.  Dead.  Dormant.  Deleted.  Hundreds of men that didn’t quite fit me (or vice versa) disappearing into a cyber black hole.  Just like that.  My fallback database of potential love was gone … for good. 

 Surprisingly, it feels really good.  And no, I’m not signing up for Tinder.   

Sunday
Jan312016

My dating days are done

My dating adventures have been long and well documented.  Mainly by me on blogs and at dinner parties when coupled friends ooh and ahh at my hilarious stories of singledom.  Some were jealous.  Most felt sad for me.  Hang in there, they said, you’ll meet someone when the time is right.  Blah, blah, blah.

I haven’t and I didn’t and I probably won’t so stop it.  Stop saying shit that you know nothing about.  It’s like encouraging someone to keep buying lotto tickets … just in case their numbers come up. They mean well but it's not their money they're wasting. Save your cash and spend it on something that makes you happy.  It’s time for me to do the same with my time and energy.    

Sometimes my dating was arduous, but it was mostly fun.  Heartbreaking now and again.  A great content creator to hide the way it sometimes felt.  Degrading.  Painful.  An emotional roller coaster.  If you’ve ever dated for a long period of time you know what I’m talking about.  It can lift you up … but it can also tear you down.  It’s time for me to hang up my hopes of finding a cool guy to hang out with.  I am saying goodbye to dating.

Sipping a latte in an uber cool café recently I looked around at a bunch of bored looking couples and had an epiphany. I realised that I don’t actually need a cool guy to fill my void – because I don’t have a void.  I have a life filled with more than most people have and really, do I want to spend Sunday mornings at my favourite brunch place ignoring the guy sitting in front of me?  No thanks.  I feel good about exorcising my romantic gene.  No more eHam.  No more set ups from friends. (Not that any of you tried – thanks for nothing).  No more nagging thoughts about men and being in a relationship.  I’m done with this journey.

And let’s remember, it was always a journey and never a destination.  Right?

As I pack up my dating portfolio, I wanted to highlight a few of the men I’ve encountered over the past year … and most importantly what they’ve taught me.  I often look for the lesson in things.  Right now, I’m still not sure what I should have learned along the way, but here goes. 

The Cyclist:  Thank you for reminding me that friends should always come before dumb boys with thick accents, no matter how cute they are.  Three bottles of pinot and a hot pash on the steps of the Opera House does not excuse my bad manners of being drunk at dinner with Texas Girl. Too drunk to eat that awesome seafood chowder.  Also, why did you never call me again?  I’m good at Long Distance, remember?

Insurance Man:  Thank you for confirming my belief on always being nice to people because you never know what challenges they are facing.  I understand you didn’t mean to constantly look at my online profile but not get in touch again after our first, supposedly awesome, date. Please don’t do that, it’s confusing.  Also, I’m sorry you have prostate cancer and have been busy with treatments.  I hope you feel better soon and the doctor has helped you with that medical hard on issue you described in your text message. 

Celebrity Chef:  Thank you for being cute, with gorgeous eyes and a brilliant smile. A boy that I could easily add to my “Amazing male friends in my life” collection. If you wanted me to. I like that we had fun, interactive and engaging text conversations and that you admitted I’m really funny. Funnier than you. Your lessons in emojis changed my world and I will forever love that I got to send you that little pooh smiley face emoticon and you thought it was cool.  I will miss the late night photos of your feet at the gym – and one day I might return the favour.  If I ever sign up.  Make sure you send me shots of bad eHam matches now and again so I can feel good about myself.

The Sailor:  Thank you for tricking me into believing I really could have another long distance non relationship like a FIFO miner. Let’s be honest, we’re not George Clooney and that chick acting out that movie Up in the Air.  You made me fall in love with Sydney and the harbor and fluffy bathrobes which made me really happy for a while …  but I think I saw something you didn’t.  Also, no one, not even my Nanna who doesn’t own a mobile phone, thinks it’s acceptable to text someone back three days later.  No one.  I will miss our dates, but I won’t miss the angst of not hearing from you for weeks on end.  Such a shame as I really liked you.  I don’t take just anyone to the opening night of Matilda.  Though you are an excellent plus one at an after party, coaxing waiters with arancini balls in my direction.  I really will miss you. 

The Food Scientist:  Thank you for being the one that finally let me see dating for what it is.  A handful of unicorn fairy dust where you think all your dreams will come true … and for three hours you really believe that … until it’s time to say goodbye and it becomes blatantly obvious that you’re never going to see each other again.  Our date was fun and I loved asking you 397 questions while you asked me nothing about my life.  (It’s okay, this is what 97% of men do on dates). I learnt a lot about free range chickens so not all is lost.  It’s just going to be hard to hang out in the egg section of Coles ever again.  And you had such gorgeous blue eyes and loved espresso martinis.  Damn it!

It’s been fun.  Sort of.   I’m just done.   I need to focus on the amazing things I have in my life, not the tiny little thing I don’t.

Please ignore the sweet bitterness in my tone.  I’m just adding a little bit of drama like the closing scenes of a bad soap opera.  I’m grateful that I’ve had so many adventures.  I’m not sure what I’m going to write / talk / whinge about now … but I’ll find something. A new hobby.  Sailing for one, perhaps?

Sunday
Jun222014

Rejected

 

My self esteem just plummeted because two men I’ve never met rejected me.

This event only took two minutes. It’s called online dating and if you want to feel bad about yourself, you should try it too.

I’ve not been on eHam for a while.  I haven’t been in the headspace to be dating and didn’t have the energy to ‘look for love’ or ‘find my soulmate’ or whatever other marketing message they use to make you feel bad for being single.  After a few months of way too many dates with my cat and GFM (not that I don’t love them both), I decided I was ready to head back into the world of online dating.

I was wrong.

You have to be brave and full of confidence to do online dating.  I’ve had lots of people tell me ‘they couldn’t do it’.  Sure, I get that, but unless you want me to date the lovely boy from my local Indian restaurant, there really aren’t any men knocking on my door asking me out to dinner.  (Just the lovely Indian boy bringing it to my house.  Then leaving.)

Twin Kat is newly single and she decided to give eHam a whirl.  She set up her profile.  It was great.  A mix of fun photos showing the different facets of her personality  - on holidays – with pets – smiling in the sun – she covered all the basics.  She also put up a photo of herself eating a donut.  There’s sugar all over her face.  Oh, and she’s wearing a bikini.  She’ll get a stack of winks and smiles with that one. Especially once they see her perfect breasts.

As she went on her first date I saw remnants of Dating Tan from four years ago.  Nervous. Excited. Unsure. Hopeful. Freaking out. Confident. In control but not really. The first date is the most exciting – but also the hardest. 

She said her date with the Cop went well.  He was cute, smart and engaging.  They talked for three hours and had a few drinks.  The afternoon ended with him suggesting they catch up again. A polite kiss on the cheek. Kat was rapt.  It was a win win date.  Good on you eHam.  Dating is fun.

Two days went past. She didn’t hear from him so rang me to ask what the ‘rules’ were.  I hate that question.  What are these rules people talk about and which idiot wrote them?  Apparently you’re meant to wait three days to contact someone so you don’t seem ‘too keen’.  What a load of crap.  If you like someone you text them whenever you want.  No games please. Surely we’re all grown ups.

Kat decided not to text him.  He sent her a random non descript message after three days. Looks like the Cop has read that illusive rule book.  She replied to his text a few hours later.  He waited a whole day to reply.  She texted back straight away.  He didn’t get back to her until 24 hours later.  Then he asked her out on a date for the following weekend.  The day prior he cancelled.  She hasn’t heard from him since. Idiot.

Her dating self esteem hit rock bottom.  She now calls it eHarm – because when you get rejected you want to e-Harm yourself.  Funny.  Kinda true.

Online dating is hard because at the start, you’re never really sure if the people you’re talking to are who they say they are.  When you meet them it alleviates some of the fear, but there’s still a nervousness. Are they telling the truth? Are they seeing other people? Are they married with a secret life? Not that meeting a random stranger in a bar means you get what you see, but it’s so easy to create a fake life and persona online.   It takes a lot of trust and confidence – in yourself as well as others.

I thought I'd like the two guys that rejected me.  Actually I really just liked their photos and profiles and thought we had things in common. Especially the guy who co-ordinates charity bike rides.  Fitness and making a difference.  This man is the one for me I thought sending him a smile.  He obviously didn’t think the same as not only did he not reply but closed my profile. Blocked. Deleted. Gone. Just like that.  Without finding out anything about me.  Like how I run marathons for charity.  I was rejected by a total stranger with the click of a mouse.   Just like that, any hope of finding a compatible partner to spend time with went out the door.  Bang. Ouch.  

Online dating is hard but you have to let the rejections wash off and hope there’s a better guy out there in the cyberworld.  An amazing guy who gets you. Who wants to hang out with you.  Who clicks “yes, let’s chat” and answers your five questions.  Someone who makes you smile and feel great because he lets you know he’s thinking about you.  A guy so much better than Mr Charity Cyclist.  I have to believe that or what’s the point of torturing myself with 43 requests from bearded bogans and old men who like caravaning and cups of tea.  It's all those rejections that get you closer to the one - and really, it's only one that you need. The right one.    

The Cop just rang Twin Kat and asked her out on a date.  Good on you eHam, always full of surprises.  Let's see if that rule book makes any sense after all.   

Sunday
Feb032013

Is it over before it started?

 The Asian Playboy just broke up with me.  

Actually we were never together so he didn’t exactly break up with me.   But it’s over.  Before it even began.

I’ve never even met the Asian Playboy.   We’ve not seen more than a few photos of each other.  We’ve never even spoken on the phone.   But it’s over.

You may remember that Asian Playboy – so named due to his adventure photos on eHam – was meant to call me on the weekend to arrange a date.  He was sick of online and texting because ‘it suxs’.   Fair enough.

No text, phone call or offer to catch up came.   The weekend disappeared.  I wasn’t disappointed, more wondering what was going on in his mind and would we ever arrange a catch up.  Maybe.   Maybe Not.   The joys of online dating.

On Wednesday night I received this text:   Tan, I’m co-hosting a Meetup tomorrow.  Did you want to come and hang.  What do u think … we’re both always busy.  Lets just meet up once.

Sorry, but what the fuck is a Meetup?  Is this where he gets all of the girls he’s talking to on eHam and meets them at the same time in one venue?  Like AA but for desperate singles?   No thanks Asian Man.  Not big on group therapy and activities (including orgies if you were wondering).

I sent him back the following message:

Hey there.  A Meetup?  Not sure I have done one of those before.  This week is crazy – stuff on every night + every weekend.  Sorry.  Yes we're both super busy.

I have to admit, I wasn’t feeling great on Wednesday.  I’d not had much sleep, was fighting a cold and not feeling great about other human beings.  Ones in my real world as much as cyber ones.  I may have been channeling a bit of Cranky Tan.  So yes, I wasn’t that into Asian Playboy at that point in time.  Cut your losses I thought to myself.   You have 42 other weirdos on eHam you can talk to.  Whatever he replies with, I will be fine either way.

In the middle of a brainstorm meeting about a very sexy car dealer, I got the following message:  All good.  We will work something out.  I just want a glass of wine.  Just to see if there is magic.

Smart Ass Tan replied with: You want magical wine?  Weird.

That’s generally my first tool during difficult situations.  Hit up people with a bit of comedy.  They will either laugh and think you are hilarious, softening a little.  Or they will think you are an insensitive douchebag and the fight will escalate.  I don’t know much about Asian Playboy.  This could go either way.

Thankfully, just a short time later I got a bit of LOL action:   LOL.  Would be awesome to see you.

Phew, angry online dater pacified.  Good job Tan.  

My phone beeped again with that joyful sound that says someone wants to talk to me, but not really, as they’d call if they really cared:   Next week, I have my kids so it’s impossible.  Maybe it’s just too hard for us.  I hope u find what u r looking for.  You seem like a nice person.  Cheers, Playboy.

Wow, is it over before it started? 

I know this sounds really dumb, as I’ve never even met this guy, but part of me was disappointed.   I felt a bit rejected.  I’ve not even spoken to him and already he’s trying to fob me off.  Dating sucks ass.

Come on Tan.  It’s a text from a man you’ve never met.  Suck it up.  Maybe he’s just feeling a little unloved because you’ve not told him you really want to meet him.  Men have egos.  They need to be stroked.  

Wow, did you just break up with me before we even met?  Ha!  Not in a hurry … we can try in a few weeks if you like?

Ping!  Asian Playboy comes back with a return serve to match that hottie who won the Australian Open this year.  Except he wasn’t Asian.  

LOL.  I figured we have been chatting online since October.  And if u / we really genuinely wanted to meet and want the same thing in the long term, then we would have made a bigger effort.   So I figured u can’t be that into it.  I do want to see u, but I actually am looking to meet someone for a long term relationship, and I want someone who has time for it …

Ohmygod. There it is.  The clanger.  The one thing that kills me every time.  You never have time for me.  Why do you work so much?  How can you be so busy?  Why are you never around?  When can I see you so we can sit on the couch, ignore each other and do nothing but watch bad television?

I have an amazing life.  It’s busy because I do lots of great stuff and don’t sit by the phone or front door waiting for a man to rock up on a white horse and save me.  I'm living my life and having a great time until the right man comes along (again).   Please don’t assume because I’m super busy now, I won’t be able to fit you in.  If you are right, you will slide in perfectly.  If you’re not, there’s always espresso martinis to keep me warm at night. 

Hey, October?  Wow, didn’t realise it had been that long.  All fine.  I was expecting a catch up last weekend but yes, obviously not that into it if we haven’t tried harder.  All good.  No hard feelings.  I hope you find just the right girl for you!  Good luck!

See ya Asian Playboy.  Am sorry we never got to meet, but it seems like I’m not right for you.  Go find a woman who likes to be connected at the hip. 

I put my heart back in the freezer and carry on with my life.

Today, three days later, I get the following messages – one after the other:

LOL. I’m at my kids sport right now.  Lets at least have a glass of wine next week.

And we should meet.  Because I’m kind of spectacular.

And it’s not only my Mum who says that.

Oh, funny boy.  Trying to win me back with a bit of comedy.  He’s like Katy Perry’s Hot & Cold.   Sure.  We can do this.  I’m bored and I really do want to see what this guy is like.  In fact, my friends have already said they’ll be disappointed if we don’t meet.  They are expecting a story.  My life has become a sitcom

Only kind of spectacular?  Wow.  Bit of a let down.  I am mega awesome.

Your shot Asian Boy:  Yes but I can provide references.

Oh, we can all provide references Mr Playboy.   You can call my ex husband, my high school teacher or that young boy I picked up after the work Christmas party if you want a report card.   Up to you.  Depends on what sort of info and references you’re looking for.

Perhaps I should meet your Mum first?  I need to shuffle a few things around, but what about Tuesday.  Does that work for you?

I should point out that I’ve got a massive work function on Tuesday night with live bands and some really super big wigs from the music industry.  But really, would they want to stand in my way of love?  I think not.

So.  Tuesday it is.  My chance to finally meet the Asian Playboy.  

What does one wear on a date with a man who is Hot and Cold, loves adventure and may or may not be a Playboy.   

Taffeta.  Too much?

Monday
Jan282013

Do I Call? Do I Wait? Do I Give Up?

I’ve been talking to the Asian Playboy on eHam for a few months now.  (No, I’m not racist, it’s the best way to describe him and separates him from the other Playboy who was online – and a tool - last year.)  He’s quite attractive and all his photos are of him at glamorous events or doing adventure sports.   There’s a shot of him scuba diving, then on a yacht, at the races, salsa dancing with friends, on a motor bike and a really nice one of him and his kids.  Ah, they’re so cute.

Our online chats have been casual and nice – giving out little bits of information each time.  He seems to have a good sense of humour, likes to try new things and has a similar philosophy on life to me – have fun, don’t take it too seriously, do what you love and enjoy it while you can.

Two weeks ago he texted to suggest we catch up for a drink.  He made a joke about “not wanting to admire me from afar anymore”, and said to let him know if I wanted to meet him.  Sure, that would be great.  We can’t email chat forever. 

That’s what I used to do when I first started online dating.   I would spend hours every night writing back to guys who wanted to know more about me and my super glamorous life. Sometimes I’d write to them for months online – with a few texts in between – and one of two things would happen:  I’d get bored and stop ‘talking’ to them – or we’d finally meet up and well, I’m still single, so you work it out.

Now I’m a seasoned professional and a woman with not much time on her hands so I’d rather have a bit of e chit chat then arrange a face to face catch up.  Let’s just cut to the chase and find out if we’re attracted to each other, is my new philosophy.  Then we can either go on a few more dates, or you can head back to your laptop and Archive me.   We’re grown ups, I’m busy, let’s do this. 

Adventure Man and I did it quick and fast.  I liked his profile as he did lots of exciting stuff, had traveled and wasn’t ‘let’s build a house together and make babies’ serious, like a lot of men on eHam.  So many men want the white picket fence and perfect wife.  Wanna see me run the other way?  Mention you’re looking to “meet a special lady for long walks on the beach and intimate cuddles”.  Adios Amigos.  Good luck with that. 

I chatted for just two weeks to Adventure Man via email and we arranged to meet at a pub for a few drinks.  We hadn’t even talked on the phone and I didn’t know much about him, but then you don’t know anything about someone you meet in a bar or at a party, so I figured I was a few steps ahead.  He seemed nice, was polite and had all his own teeth.  His blue eyes did in fact sparkle in real life like his profile pic.  So far so good.

Two hours of him talking about his sailing adventures in the Caribbean on his yacht was interesting but making me feel a bit seasick.  We switched to talking about his year in Japan after I mentioned I had visited and loved it.  He has had some great adventures in his life.  He neglected to ask me anything about mine.  A classic sign of He’s just not that into Me.  Adventure Man is a nice guy, but really, there’s nothing going on here.  He hasn’t texted or called since.  I’m not upset or taking it personally; I’m relieved and he’s crossed off the Potential man I can hang out With list.  

Which brings me back to the Asian Playboy.  It’s now been more than a week since he said he’d call to arrange a date, as “email suxs” and I’m stuck between two worlds.  There’s I’m a woman who knows what she wants and not afraid to ask a man out.  The other part of me is wondering why women have to do so much asking out these days. Is it too much to want him to make the first move?   

It's happening to my friends and they all take different sides – Wait and Hope or Go for it and Hope.  I’m not sure what the best strategy is and for me it comes down to how I am feeling about life – and myself.  If I’m in my zone, I’ll flirt with my dry cleaning man and check to see if he’s married.  If I don’t have my game face on, Bradley Cooper could ask me out and I’m going to say no.  (Oh, yes, that totally happens to me all the time).

How long do I wait before it’s obvious he’s not going to ask me out?  A weekend – or a whole week?  Do I make the suggestion of a catch up and see what he says?   Or just let it go and assume that it wasn’t meant to be for me and the Asian Playboy?  (Pity really, I could use some help with my salsa moves).

I’m starting to think guys don’t ask girls out because we do all the work.  They don’t have to pick up the phone as we make it easy for them with our texting and impatience.  Or maybe they're afraid of rejection - or perhaps they really don"t care?  Hey, I’m not looking forward to the next guy that turns me down or breaks my heart, but that’s what happens when you’re single.  You put yourself out there and sometimes you meet awesome people you click with – and other times you get bitch slapped.  It’s the same for guys and girls. 

So here’s my plan.  I’m going to leave Asian Playboy alone for the weekend then text to see if he still wants to catch up later in the week.  If I don’t hear back or he has to go visit his sick Granny interstate, that’s totally cool and I’ve lost nothing.  If he says Yes, I’ll feel good about being proactive in my dating life and hopefully we’ll click. 

If Asian Playboy isn’t for me (or vice versa) it’s back to my laptop to see who else is out there.  No hard feelings.  I’m not so battered that I’m ready to give up on dating yet.  I’m a bit bruised, but at the end of the day, if I don’t put myself out there, single life isn’t going to change.  Unless Bradley Cooper finds my number and asks me out.  Let’s hope I’m in my zone when he calls.