Monday, April 20, 2015

End of an Era (1950s, that is)

Well, after nearly five months with the Greek, he became way too comfortable in revealing his whole self. All I can say is yeesh. At first I thought- what a nice guy, he seems so into getting to know me, so interesting himself, down-to-earth, and I saw a possibility of a future. Everything is true except the last point.

I have said it before and I will say it again: people tell you exactly who they are in the first 20 minutes. There are signs. I knew well the signs from his, shall I say, conservative politics, and his statements in absolutes (read immaturity) that this may not, indeed have a future. However I feel you just continue until you REALLY know if a) you want to make that person family and marry him; b) part as friends; or c) just part altogether.

After a particularly revealing conversation driving home the realness of the above-mentioned flags, I decided upon option "b".

I can summarize this into a Cliff Notes version:
Him: I’m more like a Tea Party guy, I believe in traditional marriage roles, Women’s lib is a bad thing, I should live in the 1950s I’d be a lead Prof at MIT. WTF??!!

My responses, consecutively: 
Tea Party- NOOOO, No No No No! Thank goodness you’re Greek and therefore will never vote here otherwise I’d have to vote in EVERY election just to cancel you out.

Traditional Marriage Roles- If you want to live by 1950s values then you can’t have double standards. For example no intelligent wage-earning woman wants to work full time, clean after herself and double her workload by adding YOU to the mix. You should only date someone that makes less than half your wage so her standard of living doesn’t go down by being with you. I make too much money, i.e. more than you. Therefore I'm out of your league.

Women’s Lib- What do you actually BRING to the table, because waving a penis around means nothing. Sperm? Yes, I can get that at a bank or a bar. I certainly don't need to take care of you to get that. And seeing that I'm the principle breadwinner (when shouldn't that be YOUR 'traditional' role?), you're not even living up to your basic, and only, responsibility.

1950s god- In the 1950s you would still be in Greece or here earning a low wage. The American world was not a friendly place to non-WASPs in 1950.

Even though it was hot topics the tone wasn't contentious. He saw this as a debate, one that he lost every point on. The only thing that seemed to hurt him was killing the dream of his being a 1950s MIT god. Being Greek he thinks the world sees Greeks as they see themselves- the epitome of humans on earth. The reality is that no one cares: people never say to themselves, “gee if only I were Greek, Life would be so much better.”

I'm not even upset or disappointed at this point. Just sort of mellow and cool about the whole thing. It wasn't wasted time it was just another great lesson learned and understanding more the kind of person who would (and wouldn't) make a great partner for me... and vice versa. I mean at least we can speak openly and honestly and there's value in that. And who knew I would ever call a Tea Party supporter a friend? Its just that I would never want a life with him so I'm happy to part on friendly terms.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Fake Profiles on

I can't tell you enough how I dislike online dating. However it seems the new "organic" way of meeting people. But when you move to a city and everyone is tired from the commuting and getting used to a new schedule you come around to find the idea of online dating appealing after all. Well, sort of.

I guess in my head I never wanted to have the story, "Oh we met online," yet I have met a lot of men online and a handful I've kept as friends. Still I occasionally sign up as I feel like I'm supposed to really put myself out there. I weed through the sea of insecure and often odd men and find a few gems where we connect and meet up. Then a month goes by, I forget the membership until the alarm comes up on my calendar for me to cancel the account.

And that's when it happens... I get a lovely email from an exceptionally interesting and handsome man and I sign up for one more month.

At first I though I was Murphy's Law when this happened as soon as I cancelled. But after a couple more times, I began to get suspicious and surfed the web. Was my profile highlighted? Maybe, but the forums that came up showed that there are a great deal of people out there thinking creates fake profiles.

I thought this all sounded a little too conspiracy-theory until I read their accounts: good-looking person that's perfect on paper and very good-looking sends them an email either right as their subscription ends or is about to end. They send their phone number and ask you to text if you're interested. Several text messages occur until one day they disappear.

This very thing happened to me and with one of particular note, Darren. Darren was a very handsome man, seemed down-to-earth, family-oriented, a couple of years older, and very into getting to know me. All things I love, of course. He sent me such a nice email and followed with his phone number. We texted and were making plans to meet up then Pow! He disappeared. His account on Match was nowhere to be found; it was like he never existed. I followed up. No reply.

I wrote this off as he met someone else, etc. etc. and then I saw these forums. I got curious and still had his email with profile pic. So I saved the pic and decided to do a reverse image search. Sure enough, a fake profile was created- this guy is not Darren from DC but rather a Lebanese guy named Ali. The care that had been put into creating that fake profile was astounding: no less than 15 pictures with friends, family, etc.

I was stunned at first but honestly, it made me feel slightly better. After all, I wasn't really rejected, I just fell for a scam. And I don't have to feel pressured into renewing my match subscription. One should note, will often block you permanently if you decide to cancel your subscription. However for the online daters I would recommend the following steps to prevent encountering a fake profile:

1) Really look at the photos: is there just one? I mean I'm lazy about putting up a lot of photos but I always have at least a few.

2) Now look at the quality of the photos. Are they candid or do they look like they were taken at a studio? So often we just look at the person that we overlook that the lighting is perfect and this might be a model shot.

3) If you really want to know, do a reverse image search. Engines such as Image Raider and TinEye search thousands of social media sites. It's a good way to see if the person is who they say they are.

This may sound like drastic measures but it's becoming very common to see fake profiles- people wanting to live vicariously through someone else, someone who may be married and living out a fantasy, or dating sites that want to look like they have more enticing members. Whatever the reason, it saves a lot of time and investment to take a few precautions to realize if these people are legit.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Green Broke

I grew up around horses and horse people. In fact I was helping to break horses from the age of four. My Grandpa would start the wild horse on a lead, then put a saddle on him/her, and when they got used to the saddle, well the next logical step was to put on an uncombed 4-year-old tomboy. Immediately I would be thrown and just as quick I was expected to get back on, ride for a few minutes, then my Grandpa (the real expert) would take over.

So growing up around horses and breaking horses we always left them a bit on the wild side, or "green broke." I often define this as the horse knows the rules but he may just buck you off for the hell of it... or rub you off on barbed wire... or run like lightening toward a low-hanging branch.

Anyhoo, I have often (and still do) use this term to describe myself. It's a bit more appropriate than you'd like to think. I also used this analogy before my sister's wedding: we were always considered Grandpa's wild ponies and those ponies choose who rides them; no one breaks their spirit.

As I was straightening my hair this morning I looked at those crazy little new growths and thought, "Damn. Green broke." They're no longer wild little forest children, they've been beaten into submission enough to know the rules. That doesn't mean they don't just stand at a 3 inch attention straight out of my scalp. Little bastards.

A while back I showed how to train the cowlick (which Auto-correct turned to 'Catholic' and henceforth I received the first hits from some Middle Eastern countries I had not before seen on here). I used a blow dryer to tame them. But to tell you the truth, I hate blow dryers. It takes FOREVER to dry my hair and since I want to curl or straighten it, I only want to do styling damage once. Now I have learned the art of using barrettes to tack down these crazy cowlicks to each side so they won't rear up on me.

It works and as you can see from this photo, shot at 5.20am nonetheless, that those wild little spurts of new growth you get when you stop dying your hair DO eventually grow up. That's a great benefit to not coloring your hair- you gain a lot of new growth. My hairline came down a full inch. They come in standing at full attention but eventually do behave. My wispies are only teenagers right now but I do hope that, unlike me, they grow out of their green broke stage and become well-behaved adults.