I can’t imagine who came up with the concept. And even more so, thought this would be the way people would meet other people for romantic and potential life partnering going forward, but that indeed seems to be what it has become. It really is an experience enlivened with multifarious, and often hilarious, pitfalls. For those who have never summoned the courage to try it, take careful note before you do!
Setting out on this voyage requires you to follow several steps, the first of which is to put up a profile to which you assign your chosen name. Now, these alone can keep you amused for hours, with efforts like the cute Soulseeker, NaughtyRomantic (who’s probably anything but) and DreamMan, the sad and plaintive AnyoneOutThere and JustOlder, the more adventurous, he-man types like FastCarSlowWoman and Resistor… or the downright daft SlaaploosinSeattle!
Now this, along with an appealing intro, can determine your likelihood to successfully get you out the starting gate and attract profile views. And this is where things start to get a lot more interesting since you can also choose to post a recent photo of yourself.
A lot of guys, however, complain that many of the photos are anything but recent. This becomes immediately apparent when some unexpectedly crepe-skinned lady arrives, who doesn’t in the least resemble the temptress in the profile pic. Some of the guys though are not so devious, since many of the pics clearly display the years-ago-date on the photo itself. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that the six-pack on display is rather less likely than the somewhat overweight man waving to you from his seat at Mugg and Bean.
A little tip here guys: a definite no-no is posting a photo of yourself posed, drunkenly brandishing an overflowing tankard of beer, holding a fish, leering temptingly from the seat of your mobility scooter, or worse, in your underwear. Or for the ladies: enhancing your photos with Instagram or SnapChat-like ears and whiskers. It just doesn’t work!
So, having got past the profile building, it’s onto the meet-for-a-chat and see-how-it-goes moments. Clearly, for some, it’s not so good, as evidenced by the sign seen in a ladies bathroom in Henley-on-Thames. #AskForAngela is a clever initiative by the Thames Valley Police in the UK. It provides an escape route from those unwanted or plain scary dates and is a really great idea (see photo).
For those less menacing encounters, a simple, “Oh my goodness! My friend just messaged me to say she’s stuck in her bathroom. I have to go immediately to help her get out,” is enough to make a quick escape.
To be fair, most ‘dates’ (the meeting itself, as well as the prospect), are generally nice people and quite normal… although one experience not so long ago, of being stalked in the movies, was a little unorthodox, to say the least!
A recent effort to try out a UK site to illuminate this story further did, however, go rather pear-shaped when inadvertently indicating that I was a woman looking to meet other women. Now, while you can edit just about any aspect of your profile, the only way to change the gender you are seeking is to somehow delete your profile altogether. I say somehow because this seems to be easier said than done, and I have, rather frustratingly, yet to find out how to do it. Suffice to say that I now have around 15 ladies following me, fortunately, not literally, and another that just sent me a wink!
It’s just as well I fly out in under 48 hours!