Those who know me, know that my favourite animal has always been the elephant (and not for the long trunk, as some of those who know me might immediately think ;-). Elephants are big and look strong, and yet they are so sensitive, playful, caring, one of the few animals that can cry and recognise himself in a mirror. All traits that I see in myself, especially the recognising myself in a mirror bit.
Two more traits that I have in common with elephants are a long memory and, thank God for this, a thick skin, and these two traits are at the centre of the latest blow I’ve received from my online dating experience.
When I started my online (mis)adventure three years ago (a minute of silence, pls…), the friend who convinced me to take this step told me to make sure to wait a bit after my break-up, as not to be too vulnerable, because online I would have met all sorts of people (read: jerks), who wouldn’t have cared less about my fabulous inner world and who would have ended up hurting me easily, if I was not a bit thick skinned.
Never were words truer….
I’ve had all sorts of disappointments with the online dating, that I classify in BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER.
Before: guys who would be very vulgar online, or who would insult me when I would point out kindly that I didn’t think we would be a match, so good luck with you search but let’s not waste each other’s time. Or to whom I am opening up with anecdotes of all sorts, and who in response just ask me for photos of my ass.
During: guys who would turn up being much different from what they looked in the photo, or who would confess me (not necessarily on the first date) that they lied big time in their profile, that they were not actually single. Not to mention those who would not turn up at the date at all.
After: Guys who would vanish in the air, once they reached their target, never answering my texts or phone calls (there is a chance they died young, or got kidnapped, which might mean I bring bad luck…). Or, on the opposite spectrum, guys with whom things were going really well and who would then destroy everything with the catastrophic: “I don’t want any commitment”.
But if life is tough, and online dating is tougher, I thought by now I had developed quite a few inches of thick skin. And yet, just when you think you’ve seen and heard it all, life surprises you (which is great, though, Life, could you choose your surprises a bit better?). This week I have discovered that online dating can strike you a blow even MUCH LATER. Two years later.
I saw this profile on Tinder of a guy I had a date with two years ago. The photos were the same, so I swiped right just in case to say hello and see how he had been in these two years. We are decent human beings, we shared a connection, though minimal. It comes out we have a match, so I wrote him using his old nickname he had on POF, that I still remembered. I told him it was kind of soul-mending to see I was not the only one who was taking ages to find her The Bloody One. We started talking, had some banter, and he asked me what I remembered of our date.
Roby, the elephant with the long memory, starts telling him all sorts of details: “Oh, you are a fireman, I came to see you near your firemen station in Highbury and islington, you are a part-time model, you were adopted, you went to Italy and find it racist, you don’t drink and that’s why we met for a coffee, I was wearing my brown dress with cowboy boots, bla bla”, even explaining him why we didn’t have a second date (despite the fact that 85% of women might agree that a muscled fireman and part-time model sounds like a dream come true).
He says he was honestly impressed by my memory.
Then it’s my turn to know what he remembered about me. I was even ready to hear that he didn’t remember much of our conversation, but at least he remembered my legs 😉
……..But no, lower your expectations even more, Roby.
“I honestly have no recollection that we ever met”.
Wow. Or… Ah, ecco.
Trust me: hearing that you leave no impressions at all, that you go unremembered and unnoticed, is a bad blow for your personality. Unless you are the killer in the book “The Perfume” by Suskin and that’s exactly what you are aiming at.
The only way I can avoid cutting my veins or drinking some bleach now is by thinking that I do indeed bring bad luck to the guys I meet, and this one had a serious head injury with a consequent amnesia.
At my next date I’ll make sure to do something really weird, so that they will remember me for sure. Any suggestions?