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Jewish Journal

My Cynical & Jaded Online Dating Butt Just Got Kicked by a Kid

by Ilana Angel

August 31, 2011 | 12:06 pm

I wrote a while back about a man named Dave who wrote me 4 times on an online dating site with the same message.  It was so sad that it became funny, and after I wrote back to a couple of his emails telling him I appreciated the interest but did not feel we were a match, I gave up and just stopped replying.

I just got another email from Dave, but get this, it was from another dating site.  The best part is that he sent me the exact same email.  Not one single word was different.  Not one!  I have the same pictures and profile on both sites so there is no way he could not know he was writing to the same person.  Dear Lord.

I have now blocked Dave from contacting me on both of these sites.  Thank God I am able to laugh at the ridiculousness of it all, but come on.  How much of this can one girl take?  How much can anyone who dates online take?  How many losers do you come in contact with before you get a good one?  I’m due for some luck.

A man on JDate wrote me this week and he looks normal in his profile, which means he’s probably a freak.  That’s how I role.  I get written to by the normal looking ones who end up being odd, married, drunks, who need to schedule dates with the help of a parole officer.  So when he wrote, and appeared to be “normal”, I blew him off.

His profile said he wanted to have kids one day, and since I’m done birthing babies, I wrote him back and let him know that while he seemed lovely and I liked his note, we were not compatible.  I figured that was that, but he wrote back.  He said that at 45, he was open to having a kid, or not, and really just wanted to be happy.

He was both sincere and sarcastic, which we all know I’m a sucker for.  I was not going to write him back because my experience has been that if a man says he is unsure about having a baby, he really wants one, and that’s not happening for me, so why bother?  I had figured it all out in my head when my son came into the room.

He looked at the man’s profile and commented that he was probably a nice guy because he had a nice looking dog.  I told my son that I was not interested and started to ramble off why, when he told me I was full of crap.  He said that my dismissing this guy based on what I thought he was saying was not nice and he expected more of me.

My 15 year old child scolded me on my dating, and said that if I really wanted to find love, I needed to stop thinking, and start listening.  We ended up having a very interesting conversation about love, what it means, and why it’s important to have it.  He is a very wise child and I learn something from him each and every day.

Let me share a story. When my dad Robert, of blessed memory, got cancer, my son and I went up to see him as often as we could.  On one visit, we were sitting on my sister’s porch and my dad was talking to my son about planes. He gave him a helicopter game and my son said to my dad that he would need to come teach him at our house.

My father started to cry.  He was suffering from the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, cancer was ravaging his body, and he knew he would never make another trip to our home in Los Angeles.  He looked at my son and told him he looked forward to it.  My son, who was 5, stood up, hugged my dad, and told him he loved him.

My father was hugging my child and this delicious little boy, who was so young, and so desperately in love with his Grandpa Bob, told him that he would keep the game forever and when he came to heaven, he would bring it and they could play it together then.  He kissed my dad, kissed me, and ran off to play with his cousins.

I sat quietly with my dad on the porch and we both marveled at what my son had said.  My dad told me my son had the wisdom of Solomon and that I must never throw away the game, even if it was broken, so they could play it together one day.  That visit was the last time I saw my dad.  He passed away before I was able to get home again.

What is the connection between the story of my dad, and this man I was blowing off because I thought I knew what he was thinking based on a few words on a lame dating site?  There is a connection between this man and my last visit with my dad that only this man will understand. It’s really quite lovely and my son forced me see it.

I won’t spell out the connection now because it would give away who he was to people who know him and I figure since he is going to be my friend, I will hold off on outing him so early in The Jewish Journal.  Plus, as much as I am going to take my kid’s advice and think positive, he could still be one of the weird ones and it might piss him off.

I am going to meet this man for a drink tomorrow night and I’m looking forward to it.  Love connection or not does not matter, because there is a connection between him, his dog, my son, and my dad that is comforting.  I would never have spoken to this man had it not been for my kid kicking me in my closed off and cynical ass.

I’ve had horrible dates with men that based on their online dating profiles, I thought I would totally dig.  Could it be that I will have a great date with someone whose profile I did not think was compatible with mine?  Did it take a 15 year old to teach me the rules of online dating?  It’s all a crapshoot so why assume anything about anyone?

My son gave me the best dating advice ever when he said, “Stop thinking Mom.  Instead of worrying about opening your heart, open your mind.”  He has the wisdom of Solomon, which I’ve always known and find myself thankful today that my dad knew too.  I miss my dad, adore my son, and have loved a broken helicopter for 10 years.

I like to think that after my date I will have a new friend.  My son will say that’s cynical, but it’s not.  Great love can happen between friends and so rather than look for love, looking for a friend might be the better way to go.  Of course he could read my blog and it may be over before it even begins.  All I can do is not think too much, and keep the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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