Uh, no, you may not chance on my handkerchief.

February 16, 2010

I’m not that kind of girl. Well, not to strangers, anyway. Probably.

So, there I was, searching back through emails I had archived from about a year ago, and I came across something I had received and entirely forgotten about, which really should be shared with the world.

“And the answer is—it is often one of the only redeeming qualities of online dating.”

“Uh, what is ‘foreign guys who know just enough English to make it creepy,’ Alex?”

For sure, because it certainly isn’t worthwhile dates, in my experience. Not by a long shot. The hidden, seldom-shared actual benefit of dating online is the amusement and oddity upon which you’re likely to stumble, not entirely unlike attending the circus. For instance, you don’t want to stay at the circus forever—dear god, the headache. The grotesque freakishness, the garish makeup, the haunting music. But going once in a great while to marvel at the strange, colorful, and unusual can be quite fun.

Likewise, I can’t hang out on the online dating sites too often, because oh my god, does the anonymity of the Internet make otherwise normal people nuttier than squirrel crap. Or complete douche bags. You know, or possibly it’s just that anonymity and a lack of face-to-face social responsibility is just a magnifying glass to qualities that already existed in a person, like flat-out psychosis, a troglodytical disregard for manners, blatant megalomania, abject cowardice, glaring narcissism, (also related) total self-esteem failure, unchecked irascibility, general mean-spiritedness, sexual repression, sexual aggression, hate-mongering xenophobia, and remarkably hyperactive one-upmanship. They all tend to come out and line themselves up on these dating sites like a little psychologically damaged parade, often whacking you in the head with sexual harassment candies.

That being said, one of the only perks I’ve found of having an online dating account with PlentyofFish or OkCupid (with the exception of a precious few genuinely interesting and enjoyable people I’ve met as a result) is the occasional hilarious reply I receive that makes all the other boring, ridiculous, offensive, spambot, attention-starved, obnoxious, downright geriatric, or mass-produced replies seem worth wading through. Unlike my long-winded sentences. Which brings us to the foreign guys I mentioned, who clearly just enter what they want to say into a free direct translation Web site and paste it exactly into their message to you.

I shall lay this here—a response I had gotten a year ago to my PlentyofFish profile (and saved, thankfully). It is unaltered, except that I changed the email and phone number, in case any of you feel compelled to stalk poor Daniel here:

“I am Daniel. I WENT INTO YOUR PROFILE AND I AM VERY TOUCHED. I LIKE YOU AND WILL LIKE TO BE YOUR DATE LEADING TO MARRIAGE VERY SOON.I AM SINGLE AND NEED A COMFORTER.CANT SAY MUCH HERE .PLEASE SEN ME YOUR YAHOO ID WHEN REPLYING BECAUSE I WANT TO CHANCE ON YOUR HANDKERCHIEF. WANT TO TELL YOU MUCH ON YAHOO. MY YAHOO ID IS XXX123@YAHOO.COM.CELLPHONE NUMBER IS +5557770000 YOU CAN CALL ME TOO.KNOW THAT LOVE SHARES NO BOUNDARIES. GOOD MOMENTS.
BYE DANIEL “

Oh, Daniel. Daniel, Daniel, Daniel, Daniel. Thank you for making this all so worthwhile, because that was pure poetry. I adored it. The inexplicable all-caps with the exception of the first sentence, the hasty marriage proposal, the free love advice, the desire for new bedding (he’s in need of a comforter, folks), the enigmatic signoff: “GOOD MOMENTS.” All of it, gorgeous.

I mean, I didn’t actually reply to this. Yeah, if I wanted my handkerchief chanced on, I would march it on down to a fetish club. But his reply did, nonetheless, remind me why I keep my profile on these sites amidst an incessant forum for negativity and degradation.

Complete hilarity.

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