As I mentioned in passing in this post, in the midst of the UNBRIDLED JOY of having a private pond right here in the house for my convenience, geeFlarmony got off its collective ass and sent me a match.
A match with a man who didn’t know if he was black or white, in fact. And so he was dubbed Whitey McBrother, based upon his picture (white) and his statistics (black).
And I knew, pretty much right from that fateful start with his conflicted self, that this wasn’t going to go anywhere. I probably should’ve just closed the match and moved on. But I was in need of some distraction. And some blog fodder. So… I proceeded with the match.
Buckle up, my darlings.
If you’re unfamiliar with how geeFlarmony works, you have to understand that it’s not like your typical dating site where Person1 sees Person2 and says, “Hey baby!” and you see where it goes from there. Oh no. They take you through “guided communication” so as to keep the number of people who end up out on dates with utter loons (and who subsequently decide to sue the service) to a minimum. Guided Communication is the grown-up version of Mother May I, only even less fun than when we were kids. (Seriously, wasn’t that like the least enjoyable game ever? Why play that instead of Red Light, Green Light? Or Red Rover, Red Rover? Apparently all the best children’s playground games involve some repetition.)
So. We both got the email saying we’d been matched, and we both got some cursory information on the other person. In his case, a photo was also displayed. My settings are such that people can’t see my picture until we’ve been through the guided process (tuck that tidbit away for later). After this initial stage, you move on to multiple-choice questions.
Yes. That’s right. Multiple-choice questions. There’s a list of questions from which you can choose five, I think, to send to the other person. And then they can choose from the offered answers. It’s an innocuous enough little exercise; you can’t really expect to know a person until you know whether they’d spend their evening at home 1) watching TV, 2) reading, 3) cleaning, or 4) talking on the phone. I base all of my important relationship assessments upon this sort of information.
Anyway, we got through the first step just fine. Whitey sent me some questions, I answered them. I sent him some questions, he answered them. Nothing to write home about. Ding! First Questions round completed!
Next is a sharing of “must have” and “can’t stand” items. These are things the user has chosen as part of the gazillion page profiling process. Again, geeFlarmony offers lists of items from which to choose. You get to have 10 must-have and 10 can’t-stand items, with the master list offering just about anything you might imagine a person would find important when approaching a relationship. This is a better chance, I think, to learn about what really makes the other person tick.
Me, I’ve got things like “spiritual acceptance” and “sense of humor” on my list of must-haves. Amongst the can’t-stands I have things like “poor hygiene” and “racist attitude.” (The irony of my prior selection of the “racist” choice was not lost on me as I forwarded my preferences to Whitey.) I sent my lists along, and his arrived in return.
Aaaaaaand that was when the fun began.
On his list of must-haves, he included this gem:
I must have a partner who is considered “very attractive” by most current standards.
Whitey, Whitey, Whitey.
I’ve mentioned here before that I am immediately put off by someone who makes physical appearance a priority. I just… don’t get it. Attraction happens in the brain. If you HAVE a brain, I think there’s no greater turn-on than ANOTHER FUNCTIONING BRAIN, regardless of the skull it resides in. Not that I don’t appreciate Johnny Depp as much as the next red-blooded female, you understand. But in general I care a lot more about what comes out of your mouth than what your mouth looks like.
So that was a problem.
Furthermore, at this point? I’ve seen his picture. And I guess that shallow is shallow is shallow, but if Whitey was a Johnny Depp lookalike I could maybe let it slide, just a little, that he wants someone who is smoking hot in kind. It’s not an excuse, but I guess I could tolerate it just a bit better.
Let’s just say that Whitey should not be asking for hot. Whitey should be grateful for what he gets. Ahem.
I keep reading, and I come across another gem:
I must have someone who is willing to explore our sexual desires with passion and understanding.
For the record, I don’t necessarily think this is a bad goal in a relationship (although I do think geeFlarmony’s wording is… awkward and weird). But to list it as a must-have right off the bat, particularly when there are a plethora of choices on the list which mean nearly the same thing but are less… well… hoochie-sounding… I wasn’t impressed.
But suddenly it was all clear. Whitey is looking for a bombshell fuckbuddy. And geeFlarmony sent him ME.
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAA! Poor Whitey.
Oh, and there was one more great little bit. His career is listed as being in mental health. And on his list of can’t stands? People who are depressed.
At this point, I’m thinking that our pal Whitey is an enigma, wrapped up in AN ASSHOLE.
But Whitey was moving onward. Ding! End of the list-sharing round. On to Second Questions round, where you still select questions from a list, but the respondent gets to type in an answer rather than choose from predetermined choices. He immediately sent me three questions.
It was here that I made my critical error. I already knew it was game over, and the only thing keeping me from closing the match was my morbid curiosity about the picture/ethnicity discrepancy. I HAD TO ASK. And I figured I wouldn’t get a straight answer unless I appeared to be answering his questions in good faith. So when I sat down to “Describe an interest you have that you would truly hope your partner could share with you,” I answered honestly, though very briefly (so as to allow me space within the word limit to ask about his picture and give him a piece of my mind).
After my response to the question, I had enough room left over to add:
(This is unrelated but I have two things I must say: One, are you aware that you have a photo in which you certainly appear to be white, but your ethnicity is listed as African-American? Much cognitive dissonance happening over here. Two, I very nearly closed this match due to your “highly attractive” must-have. Not because I’m not (I mean, I seem to do okay), but I find that incredibly shallow. I’m trying to give you the benefit of the doubt, but that’s where I’m at.)
I then proceeded to answer the other two questions and send off my answers. Though I fully expected him to close the match upon reading my needling.
Had I played this correctly, in response to “Describe an interest you have that you would truly hope your partner could share with you,” I would’ve spun a fine tale. “I find embalming very relaxing, and wish more people understood why it’s really a forgotten art.” Or “I believe in expressing my affection for my partner through ritual animal sacrifice.” Something like that.
Whitey didn’t respond quite as quickly, this time. But he did write back. He copied my tactic of using extra space in the question fields to go off-topic and address my concerns:
Thank you for pointing of the Africian American error I have corrected it and not sure how that happened. As far as handsome I put that down because thats what I hear and what people tell me. I am modest however and usually do not make things into a big deal.
Holy sloppy writing, Batman! From what I was able to decipher, here’s what I gathered:
1) He’s a moron.
2) Who said anything about handsome?
3) See 1.
Okay! But there was more, of course, because I’d sent him 3 questions, you see. One of the available questions is “What do you find physically attractive?” Normally I wouldn’t give a rat’s ass about what a potential mate finds physically attractive, and I certainly don’t care what Whitey finds attractive, but given his preference for A HOT MAMA I figured I’d ask.
I’ll let him speak for himself. It’s too good to paraphrase:
What I find physicallt attractive is a womans personality, its like you can’t judge a book by its cover. You have to look inside to see the real story. From there you know whether this person could be right for you. Physical attraction for me is, whether or person has a good sense of humor, is confident about themselves, is independent and can do things on their own, a person who is caring and warm and knows how to express those feelings and is not afraid to do so no matter who is around. The physical looks are just the icing on the cake. By the way do you have a picture of yourself you could share with me, I have not seen one, thank you
I think I peed myself. Allow me to paraphrase: Oh, really, what matters is what’s on the inside, like how on the inside I never made it past 3rd grade English. Looks are unimportant. Pinky swear. Um, can I see a picture of you?
Godspeed, Whitey. I’m sure there’s someone out there for you. As for me, I’d rather have a dozen cats. And I say that as someone who is allergic to cats. So. Um. Good luck!