Monday, May 30, 2011

No Free 6 Months For Me

I think my run with Match will be over soon. I'm just not really feelin' it. All I'd have to do is contact 4 more people before today... lol. I don't think I could handle six more months -- even if they are free.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Must Have Sense of Humor

Every now and then an email comes in that makes me laugh. Sincerely laugh. This one came in a while back while I was out of state for work, and I waited a while before deciding to reply or not.

I'll post a picture of it, but chances are you'll only *get* it if I... yes... you guessed it... post my profile content, too. (His whole email is practically in reference to it.)

His email (click on it to view full size):

Now, for the above to make sense, here's my profile:

1. I love listing random facts (hence, number 1). It's like the cliff notes version of getting to know someone. And we can all appreciate that, right?
2. I'm not from Houston.
3. Where from, you ask? A tiny East Texas town with 800 people, 2000 cows and one stoplight.
4. Yes, I'm guesstimating.
5. No, I'm not good at math. I much prefer English.
6. While we're on the subject, I love books. Nonfiction, preferably. Don Miller. Elizabeth Gilbert. David Sedaris.
7. I'm not fond of my middle name.
8. I hate socks in, near or around my bed. Don't try it. I'm serious. You've been warned.
9. You know the girls who wanted to be ballerinas, rockstars, teachers, nurses, or the president? I used to want to be a dolphin trainer.
10. No, I still haven't swam with one, though. Working on that.
11. Gummy bears are better frozen. Try it. You'll see.
12. I adore foreign accents. You could curse me out in your native tongue, and I'll still think it's the prettiest thing I've ever heard.
13. I don't have an odd fear of the number 13, but I find it funny when elevators skip that level.
14. I refuse to text and drive.
15. A sense of humor is a must. Must must must. The wittier, the better.
16. I'm a self-proclaimed grammar Nazi. But only because I'm a writer by profession.
17. I also have a BFA in graphic design.
18. I have two adorable dogs who, no matter how much trouble they get into, always seem to get out of it with one look.
19. I love doing laundry, but absolutely hate folding clothes.
20. I don't mind doing the dishes, though, which most people find odd.
21. I don't watch/enjoy Jersey Shore. So please, no fist pumps, orange glow, or hair gel.
22. Being from the country, I do enjoy a good two-step every now and then.
23. I think 23 is a great number to close with.

... I just thought of one more. 

23.5 I have this uncontrollable desire to be in a well-orchestrated flash mob. Then, I think life (just might) be complete. 

The end.

I actually did reply to him in a similar fashion, but I did not disclose my middle name. So we'll see if I ever hear back from him. Either way, I got a good laugh from it all.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Punctuality and Peep Toes

"You're late."

He was smiling, but this was the first time I'd seen him in person, so I did that whole is-he-kidding-or-is-he-serious internal thought process in my head. He looked like he was kidding. But somewhere, years ago, I heard that 80% of all jokes are half-truths. Or something like that. This could be one of those times.

I walked up to the bar of the restaurant to officially meet him. He got up out of his chair, like a gentleman would, and hugged me as he greeted me. Wow, I thought. He wasn't lying about his height. He really was pretty short. I was wearing heels, and I stood at least a good 2 inches (if not more) above him.

"See, I knew you'd be late. I have three sisters." He laughed.

"But I really wasn't late. Parking is terrible here! I had to walk all the way from the parking garage," I countered.

He smiled again. "But see, I planned for that."

Already this whole punctual thing was getting on my nerves. Am I always on time? No. Do I tend to take time to get ready? What girl doesn't? But seriously, harping on the fact that I was eight minutes late isn't a good introductory card to play. And I was hungry. You don't mess with me when those two are combined.

I didn't instantly sit down next to him because I expected we'd be moving to a table.

"So did you put our name on the list?" I asked.

"No, not yet. I was waiting for you."

I'm a very patient person, but when it's crowded on a Saturday night and there's a line already beginning to form out the door... wouldn't you go ahead and at least put a name down on the list? I realize some places won't seat you until your complete party is present, but you can at least have a name down. Right?

"Oh. Okay. Well, I'm here now," I replied easily. I'm not one to make a big deal out of things, and I was damned if tonight was going to crash before it even began.

We were eventually seated near the center of the room. The restaurant was really nice... dimly lit, but full of character. I had never been to a tapas restaurant before, so I was out of my element, but he was pretty familiar with most of the items on the menu.

He suggested a couple of things for me to try, so I did, and even though it wasn't my favorite genre of food, it wasn't bad.

We made the usual small talk and laughed about our long phone conversations, and that's when the waiter brought the check.

"So on to the second date, eh?" He grinned as he reached for the check before I could.

"You're already planning that?" I asked skeptically.

"No, I mean, it's gonna happen right now. Let's move this... let's take a walk."

Clever. He was trying to two-birds-with-one-stone me. See, I had told him previously on the phone that my longest first date lasted 6 hours. But to be fair -- and I had made this clear -- 2 of those 6 hours was a movie. So really, it was 4 hours tops.

We walked to a local cafe to get my parking ticket validated, and talked until closing time. The conversation was easy, not forced, but I was still evaluating everything in my head.

I decided a good test was to see what his reaction might be once I said this:

"So... I told you I had something to tell you. It's not bad, but I... well..."

"Please don't tell me you're married. Or you have a kid," he nervously laughed.

"What? No! Nothing like that. I just... well, you know I'm a writer by profession...." I continued.

"Yeah?" He looked at me but didn't see where I was going with this.

"I keep a blog."

I maintained eye contact to clearly see his reaction. It seemed like he was waiting for more, so I continued.

"I write. I keep a blog about all my dating experiences. Some people could take offense to it, so I just wanted to be upfront."

"Oh, okay, I thought you were going to tell me you had 3 kids and a maniac husband or something!" He laughed, clearly relieved.

"Ha, no nothing like that," I said, glad he seemed to handle it okay.

But then he got suddenly silent.

"Well... it is a little weird," he said as he looked at me skeptically.

"What? Having a blog?"

"Well, just writing about the dates you're going on. I mean... now that I know that, the pressure's on. It's a little weird."

"Yeah, I can understand that," I said. "But I promise, your name and identity will never be revealed. Top secret, I swear. And I do write with all honesty, but also the fact in mind that one day, someone might end up reading it."

He seemed okay with that and suggested we go for a walk.

"Okay," I said, as we both got up from the table. "But only if I can run to my car and change into flats."

Monday, May 23, 2011

Don't Filter Me! Oh, wait. Yes, please.

I feel like I keep starting these blog posts out with apologies. I'm sorry I haven't posted in a while. Long story short:

Cinco de Mayo river trip + long work weeks + traveling out of state for work + getting sick = delayed blog posts.

But I'm back and ready to enlighten you lovely readers on my wonderful world that is online dating. I'm not sure if it's so much "enlightenment" as it is pure "entertainment" or "self-deprecation," but anyhow... I'm glad you enjoy it!


So where did I leave off?

Oh, right. The cop was a no go. You can read all about that in the previous post(s).

A week or so went by before I had any quality "bites." (I just watched that Tosh.0 video about sharks eating sharks, so I guess the lingo is on the brain...)

But then, an email came in my "filtered" inbox...

Let me take a minute to explain the beauty of "filters" in the world. The email system for Match isn't the best thing in the world, but it does have its benefits. For example, this last month or so, I was receiving at least 5 emails a day. That doesn't sound like a lot, but when you don't check them very often, it can really add up. And when I would devote time to checking them, they read a lot like this:

"Hey u look gud. What up. Hit me up if u like my pics. We should hang."

As tempted as I was just to email him back and mess with him (I'd use four syllable words, of course -- it's the small things in life), I hit delete.

My email inbox would get flooded, I'd receive pointless notifications and I'd spend minutes sifting through poorly written, incoherent messages before maybe -- just maybe -- landing on something significant.

Enter the magic of "filters."

Now, as great as those filters are, they (unfortunately) don't have an automatic "delete idiot" checkbox or "delete due to poor grammar" option.

But here's what filters they do have:

I can limit my messages received to people who have my preferred education level. Bachelor's degree? Check. Graduate degree? Hellooooo there. PhD? Um... you're a perpetual student and probably a stoner. Only kidding. But seriously. Why are you 40 and still in school? Time for a big boy job.

Auditioning for world's tallest man? Need not apply. Five inches shorter than me? Well... like they say, I'm sure there's someone for everyone. I was actually pretty stingy about this one, and as you'll find out soon, I did end up going on a date with someone who was originally in my "filtered" mail because of his height. Or lack thereof. So... filters are more like pre-screening options. You don't have to stick to them, but they're good guidelines.

This one is tricky. While you have total control over how young or old to set your filters, some really great emails come in and then you feel bad for putting them in the "filtered" category (since, you know, age is just a number). However, this does take care of the 47-year-old divorcee who wants a quick fix to help raise his three rugrats and do his laundry. I was pretty generous with my age limit settings, but stingier with height. Go figure.

Okay. So back to the filtered email. I hate to admit that the email in question was automatically delivered to my filtered box because of his height. (If he ever reads this, I sincerely apologize.) But the good news is that it was witty and clever enough to work its way out of the filtered category and into my main inbox. Basically, he got my attention.

Right upfront, he mentioned where he was from (born and raised, I mean... not the town we're both currently living in.) Normally that wouldn't have garnered much of a response from me, but I was intrigued because we shared the same hometown. I don't find that very often since I come from a pretty small area, so I decided to reply.

Granted, it took me a week to do so. I'd like to say I did it on purpose to make him sweat, but honestly, I was loaded down with work and couldn't find a good time.

Once I hit "reply," we played a series of what I like to call email-interview-ping-pong. The short version went something like this:

Him: What's your favorite flower, movie and color? How do you handle stressful situations? What's your favorite book? Favorite food? (And on and on...)

Me: Answer. Answer. Answer. Answer. [pause to breathe]. Answer. Answer. (Ask the same questions...)

Replying to his emails were fun, but wow, did it take it out of me. He asked at least 10-15 questions per email, and I noticed that his style was slightly reminiscent of interview questions.

Me: These emails are turning into novels. I feel like this is an interview session!

Him: I know, but I enjoy getting to know a person really well first. And besides, if you want the job, you've got to interview for it, right? :)

I will say that kind of took me by surprise. Sure, I'd heard that before. Dating is a lot like interviewing. Or interviewing is a lot like dating. Either way, I was usually too exhausted from work to answer a 500 word email.

So it wasn't long after that we moved to the phone. (Was that his plan all along? Wear me down, long email after long email only to get my digits...?)

He was good natured and funny, but there were times where I'd say (what I thought was) a really funny joke, and he a) either wouldn't get it or b) slightly laugh, but reference the completely wrong thing, thereby negating the joke in the first place.

Now, if you know me, you know sense of humor is a must. And not just any humor. Clever, witty banter to be specific. The wittier the better. I even have it written in my online profile I'm so adamant about it. Jim from the Office comes to mind. You know, something out of the ordinary humor bin.

But the phone conversations lasted hours, so I took that to be a good sign and continued onward and upward.

Besides, it was too early to knock him off the chart for humor, but I did wonder how it would play out in person since I'm a huge believer that more is said when things aren't being said...

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Pile of Red Flags

Hello dear readers, Miss Matched here. I thought I couldn't beat my own record of non-posting, but apparently, I managed to go nearly a whole month without updating you lovely folks. Shame!

So I'm sure you're all wondering...

Whatever happened to the cop?

Well, here's the cliff notes version, since I need to get you up to speed:

Certain flags started showing their true colors. As in red. Red flags.

Red Flag #1: He was overly defensive and very... shall we say "overreactive"?

Red Flag #2: He was more negative than he was positive, which isn't my cup of tea.

Red Flag #3: [Note: I never disclosed this with you before (I felt it wasn't that important), but once you get to the end of this list, it will become much more... relevant.]

When we met back up after he got back from London, he made a joke about me seeing other guys while he was gone. I shrugged my shoulders and was honest with him.

"Well, yes, I did meet someone while you were gone," I said. Something most people don't know about me: I'm completely honest. As in, I should probably work on my diplomacy and delivery. I don't have anything to hide, and I feel honesty is the best policy. Besides, we weren't exclusive by any means (it had only been three dates), so I knew there was no harm, no foul.

But apparently... he didn't feel the same way.

"What? Wait... You did what?" He was clearly upset.

"It was just one drink. We weren't (aren't) exclusive, so I figured it was okay," I said.

"But you told me you don't casually date." He got up and walked to the kitchen.

"My idea of casual dating is different from yours, I guess. I'd much rather be exclusive, but until then, you have to date to figure out what works and what doesn't. How else are you supposed to 'date' if you don't... well.... date?" I asked.

"But when I was emailing and talking to you, I was only talking to you," he said.

I laughed. How is that possible? I thought.

"Well, then it's very different for girls. That's just not possible. We get almost 20 different emails a day -- actually, more in the beginning. I woke up the morning after I had signed up for Match, and opened an inbox full of 96 emails. Overnight. It just wouldn't be feasible to email one guy and one guy only. I would get nowhere!"

"Well, we obviously have different definitions of 'casual dating,'" he said. He wasn't happy, but we agreed to disagree on that topic.

Now... continue to the next Red Flag:

Red Flag #4: His calls got less frequent, and if he did call, it was late at night.

Red Flag #5: He couldn't remember key details/facts about me. Usual, ordinary ones. You know, like... what I majored in at college and things I liked. He didn't ask me many questions about myself... which, in the beginning when you first meet someone... seems odd.

Red and FINAL Flag #5: We became friends on Facebook.

Now, I know what you're thinking. You're thinking... what? Why is that a red flag? Well, simply put, it isn't.

But you know what is? Finding out via Facebook that his stories weren't exactly matching up. As in, the day after I cooked burgers over at his place, he went out on a date with another girl.

I didn't bring it up. I didn't say anything. I played it cool because I didn't want it to be a big deal. But there it was, staring me in the face. The fact that he made me feel guilty for meeting someone for drinks, when in reality, he did the exact same thing and he knew it.

Okay, I know what you're also probably thinking. You're also (more than likely) thinking... why would I look that up on his Facebook? The answer? Because you would too. Admit it. Facebook is fair game to all. Employers use it. The government uses it. Advertisers and marketers use it. And please keep in mind we were "Facebook friends" at this point. There was no way for me to see any of this otherwise, so there was absolutely no violation of privacy.

Conclusion { a.k.a. pile of red flags}
After all was said and done, it just wasn't worth it. My time or my effort. Add the scheduling conflicts to this, and well.... as nice as it was in the beginning, he just didn't seem to be in it for the long haul or really interested in me.

So my bad boy bad boy days are long behind me, but that just means one thing...

The blog lives on!

~ Miss Matched

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Damn Hooligans.

I realize it's been a very long while since my last post. And I have a perfectly good (few hundred) reasons for that. But basically, it's because...

I'm really starting to dislike criminals. The scum of the earth, bottom of the pond, law-breaking mongrels who have absolutely no respect....

...for a decent dating schedule.

Not that I ever liked criminals. But they really should be more flexible. Damn hooligans.

To start, I haven't been able to see the cop in over a week (and even before that, there was one week dating delay due to additional scheduling conflicts). Okay, okay, it's not like I'm boo-hooing, but I have to admit, seven(+) days of not seeing someone isn't exactly what you want for a budding relationship.

So what happened? Well, for the first thwarted date, a prisoner was at the hospital and the cop had to "sit" on him -- as in safely secure, watch, keep an eye out, and make sure everything was all right while he was in the hospital's care. Long story short, he didn't get off until about 2 a.m. and then had to turn around and work his 5:30 a.m. shift. The guy slept in his car for a few hours and rolled straight into a 16-hour shift.

Then another 16-hour shift the next day, followed by a hectic workweek (he also works most of the weekend while I don't), and...

Well, you get the picture.

Justice never sleeps. Or so they say. Let's do the math, shall we?

No dates = a whole lot of nothing = makes for bad blog material.

Now, please don't think I'm going on these dates for the sole purpose of writing about them. I'm just stating that, honestly, the reason I haven't posted in a while is because there hasn't been a lot to post!

These criminals really need to get their act together. Take a page from Aretha and have some R.E.S.P.E.C.T.

{Cop it to me, cop it to me, cop it to me.}

-- Miss Matched

Friday, March 11, 2011

mixed.matched + TV Guy

{Note: The following post is from my guest blogger, Mixed.Matched. Enjoy!}

Ok, so I know I said my next post would be about writing your perfect profile (it’s still coming, in case you were looking for it), but I have to write about my latest match.
It all started when I got a wink on New Year’s Eve. I was in Arkansas visiting my grandparents for Christmas, and I’m lucky to get a single bar of signal at their little cabin in the mountains (oh, and there’s no computer, much less internet). However, I managed to get a couple of emails at one point, which is when I saw a friendly email from
Cute. In the right age range. No weird screen name, or obnoxious picture. Few pass this first test. I truly believe that your profile says a lot about you, and if you are annoying or a borderline douche-bag at this first glance, chances are you are in real life as well. But we’ll get into all of that later. The point is - I was interested. So, I clicked see profile.
Right. I forgot I have little/no chance of loading a single page, much less logging in and loading more pictures. I make a mental note of checking back later.
Fast forward almost 3 weeks, and I’ve only just remembered about this guy. I was winked at by another potential match, and I logged on to view their profile (which I almost immediately dismissed due to the excessive amount of shirtless, bathroom mirror pictures). But when I saw TV Guy’s picture in my Connections, I remembered that I wanted to know more about this guy. I found out he was divorced, no kids, worked in television, and met all my other important check points. But instead of emailing him, I just sent him a wink in return. You know… let him make the first move.
The next day, I received an email from him. Here is the first paragraph:
Hi. Ok with all this winking going on I have to send you this. A friend of mine just sent that to me and I've been laughing about it for the past hour.
Pretty adorable. Usually I get a “hey how’s it going,” for a first email (notice the lack of capitalization or punctuation). But to receive a funny and somewhat witty first email made my heart smile.
We sent several emails back and forth and decided that we were both interested enough to meet. This is when the Snowpocalypse of 2011 happened in Dallas (where he is from… I’m currently 100 miles east of Dallas). We were unfortunately unable to meet for quite some time.
Oh boy, but when we did, it was worth it. He spent a pretty penny and took me to see Cirque du Soliel. Can we just say best first date ever? Yes. Afterward, we went to Starbucks for coffee and chat. Excellent conversationalist. This almost never happens. We sat and talked for 2.5 hours. Next, he took me to the Apple store to look around. (Any Mac-nerds out there swooning yet?) And while we were walking around the mall after coming out of the Apple store, he stopped in a department store to buy pants.
Hmm… Not too sure how I feel about this. I mean, he didn’t spend a lot of time looking, or trying on. He literally walked in, found the pair he wanted, and checked out. It took less than 5 minutes. At one point, he turned to me and said, “this is probably horrible first date etiquette, huh?” I just laughed and assured him that I was easy going and that there were no rules. But in my head, I was thinking this is something I’d never do. Not on a first date.
We’ve talked a lot since then. Lots of texts and emails. And one easy-breezy phone call discussing our next date. Did I mention he’s a great conversationalist? He even made a joke about going shopping for our second date. So far, this guy is a real winner. Wish me luck. Our second date begins in 10 hours.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Is that what I think it is?

He grabbed a black gift box from the kitchen counter and handed it to me. It was square -- about the size of a paperweight.

"I wanted to see you so I could give you your gift," he said, clearly ready for me to open it.

I had barely unleashed the dogs and hugged him hello. I couldn't believe he didn't have jetlag and wasn't exhausted. His plane had landed in the states only a few hours earlier, but he seemed wide awake.

It was a weeknight, so I had just spent the last hour fighting traffic to make it to his place. He looked exactly the same (after all, it had only been a week), but I was very happy to see him. And find out what was in the black box.

The top of the box said something about "crystal" gifts, so I carefully lifted the lid.
Inside was a solid glass clock that had "London" etched in it, along with various landmarks.

Funny thing is, you can't change the time. The back of the clock is encased within the glass, so there's no way of getting to it. And the cool thing is, it's set on London time. Why would you want to change it in the first place?

Thoughtful and yet not overly thoughtful. I liked it.

It looks good on my shelf at work.

"Really, you didn't have to do that," I told him, smiling. "I was only kidding when I said you should bring something back!"

"No, I wanted to." He opened the pizza box that was sitting on the counter. He fixed me a plate and we moved to the couch to eat, trying to keep the dogs' noses out of our pepperoni.

He flipped the channel to Justified, and I begged him to show me his London photos. But his camera was still charging and he had taken more than 200. He told me about his trip and how he liked Manchester so much better than London. (Not having been to either, I just nodded because I didn't have an opinion about one over the other).

And he said he really did try to make it to Ben's Cookies -- I recommended he try it based on @WhitforBrit's blog and celebrity endorsement. (Ha, well, celebrity in my mind, anyway. I'm addicted to her blog. But that's another post for another day.)

"I asked around about them and everyone kept telling me how amazing they were," he said, referring to Ben's Cookies. "But no one could tell me where to go or how to get there! So I never did find them."

So he didn't get to experience what is apparently the best cookie on the face of this planet, but he wasn't short on the sweets.

{Note: I'm not one to kiss and tell all -- only pieces here and there -- but if you'd like, feel free to stop reading now. Consider yourself warned.}

Did I mention he's a good kisser? So yes, naturally, we started making out and moved to his bedroom. Now, now, don't go making any assumptions. I said making out.

As we were kissing, my hand hit something under the pillow. The lights were off and I couldn't see anything in the dark. But it was cold. Hard. Metal.

"Wait... wait, what is... what is that?" I stopped kissing him and formed the words slowly, not sure I wanted to know the answer.

"What?" He asked, confused.

And then, 0.25 nanoseconds later...

"Oh shit!" 

He leapt over me to grab it, blocking me from getting any closer. He sounded surprised, but not worried. There was almost a chuckle in his voice, and even though it was dark, I could have sworn he was almost laughing. He picked it up and moved it to his dresser.

"It's my gun," he said casually. "Don't worry, it was locked down."

I assumed by "locked down" he meant the safety was on. After I had a moment to process what had just happened, I nervously laughed. (You know how you laugh when you're not sure what else to do?) I mentally reminded myself that no, my hand/arm/face hadn't been blown off and yes, everything was all right and under control. And after replaying the event in my head and laughing at the absurdity of it all, I did have to admit... was kinda hot.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

1 in 5 relationships...

We were lying on his couch flipping through the channels.

"Do you like Pawn Stars?" the cop asked me.

"Who doesn't?" I shot a grin back his way.

I loved that show. It was the History Channel meets Antique Roadshow meets Family Guy (I see a little Peter (or even his son... I forget his name...) in Chumlee). My family and I would always watch it when I was home to visit. They were actually the ones who got me hooked on it.

He let the remote stop on that channel and turned my cheek toward his. It was our third date, and he leaned in for another kiss.

I wasn't so much worried about his kissing ability as I was my own, though. It had been a while since I'd really gotten out there and dated -- and by "been a while," I mean it had been about 5 years. My last relationship was 4 years (too) long. So I did the math... and I realized I hadn't had a real "first" date in over 5 years. (To be fair, I did have a sort of "rebound" guy right after the horrible, no good, really bad breakup, but we never officially dated, and long story short... I broke his heart. I knew it wasn't right, but I hung on for the security of it all.)

So to say I was a little nervous about kissing the cop was an understatement. But my nervousness melted as soon as he tipped my chin toward his. It felt so... natural. Unforced. Right.

And that's when everything stopped.

"One in five relationships now begin on an online dating site," a female voice rang out over his television speakers.

"You have GOT to be kidding me!" The kissing ended, and I rolled over to hide my head in his shoulder.

"Wow. That's just... wow." I could not believe his TV was mocking me. Mocking us! I was too embarrassed. The moment was gone.

The cop laughed.

"Oh... c'mon, it's okay. I mean, I met you, didn't I?" He kissed my forehead. Was this really only the third date?

-- Miss Matched

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Third dates, dogs and raising the Bounty bar

"So you're giving away your dad's recipe already, huh?" The cop asked as he saw me pull my "secret" ingredients out of the Randall's grocery sack and line them up on his kitchen counter.

It was our third date, and I had agreed to drive to his place for dinner and a movie, but only on one condition. My two dogs had to make the trek with me. They stared up at me from my feet, tails wagging, hoping I'd drop a piece of food in their direction. I smiled. They looked happy here, in this stranger's kitchen.

"I told you I make an amazing burger. And these are the only ingredients he uses," I said as I opened a bottle of worcestershire sauce and a seasoning packet.

"So you're saying that if I don't like your burgers, I'm insulting your dad already? Man. The pressure's on," he teased.

"That's exactly right," I said. "So you better like 'em. And if you don't, you better lie."

He grinned and gave me a peck on the cheek as I tried to gracefully unwrap a pound of ground hamburger meat. There was nothing graceful about it though, and I accepted my fate. My hands were covered in raw meat as I mixed the ingredients together and flattened out patties between my palms, but he didn't seem to notice. He was still smiling at me.

When he finally did quit looking in my direction, it was to open the fridge and pull out a package of fresh turkey deli meat.

Before I had time to question his choice (did he not like my burgers already? I hadn't even put them on the grill yet!), he held a piece of turkey close to the ground.

"How about a treat? You want a treat?"

Oh. My. God. He was a natural. My dogs scampered over to him as quickly as possible and wolfed down the two slices of turkey. He pet them both on the head and then started smiling at me again.

I didn't want to let him know how much I had enjoyed seeing him do that. You win over my dogs, you win me over, too. I had to be smart about this. I had to play coy. But inside, my heart was grinning.

I finished crafting the hamburger patties and put them on a plate to transfer them to the grill. I made my way over to the sink to wash my filthy hands. I applied loads of soap and rinsed them clean. Before I knew it, he was behind me.

With a paper towel. Already torn. For me. He was always one step ahead of me. But in a good way.

I'm not sure why that made such a heavy impact on me. As I was recalling that scene to my (happily married) sister a day later, she picked up on its sensitivity and considerateness, but was quick to bring me back down to reality.

"Hun, I'm so glad he did that for you. I'm just so saddened that's the kind of thing that blows you away. A paper towel! You should have someone do that kind of thing for you and more -- every day."

She had a point. I had to raise the bar if I was going to find someone and take this seriously --  to take me seriously.

I had to raise my Bounty (Quicker Picker Upper) bar.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Cops and Tattoos

Imagine my surprise when he told me, "No, I'm allergic to the ink."

Perhaps I was getting ahead of myself when I assumed that surely, just surely, he would have a tattoo. At least one. Or perhaps I'd been watching too much TV which led me to believe that all cops have some sort of permanent ink, no matter how small.

I rolled over on my side on the couch we were both sharing and peeled my eyes from Pawn Stars just long enough to give him an inquisitive look.

"Really?" I asked.

"Really. My mom is allergic to whatever they put in the ink. So I figured I would be too."

I rolled back over with my back toward him and secretly smiled. Little did he know that I actually joke to my friends about being allergic to the ink as well. My fair skin never took well to things like wool... I wasn't going to chance a limb with permanent ink.

Besides, I've never really been that girl who's attracted to the guy covered from head to foot in tribal patterns, latin phrases and initials of his ex-girlfriend that have been replaced with a nice little collage of skulls, X's and daggers.

Nope, can't do it. It just doesn't get my blood boiling.

And here's my reason why:

I dread having that inevitable conversation with my mom. You know.
This one:

Mom: "He has tattoos."

Me: "Yes, Mom, I know."

Mom: "Those are permanent."

Me: "Yes, Mom, I know."

Mom: "Well, that laser technology gets better and better everyday, but I still don't understand how someone can do that to themselves."

Me: "Yes, Mom. I know."

Add this to the fact that my last boyfriend swore up and down the first tattoo he'd ever get would be in honor of his friend who died in a motorcycle crash, but as soon as we broke up, he got a skull and cross bones of a redheaded girl with "poison" written in the middle. Nice touch. Definitely not subtle, but nice way to memorialize me forever on his right calf.

So to say I was relieved that the cop didn't have any tattoos was putting it lightly. Something that permanent should have much thought go into it, I felt. Not that I'm against all tattoos -- I'm just against the ones that aren't well thought out.

A good friend of mine once told me that if you wanted a tattoo, wait a year. If you still want the same thing that same time next year, then go ahead. But if you changed your mind in the last year, you'll thank yourself you never went through with it.

"What about you?" he asked, as he flipped the channel back to How I Met Your Mother.

"Tattoos? Oh, no. No, none for me." I smiled, but he couldn't see it since my back was toward him.

He was earning points very quickly with me, and he didn't even know it.

-- Miss Matched

Mixed Matched

Hello there. I’ll be a guest blogger here for Miss.Matched. You can call me Mixed.Matched; I’ll be mixing things up around here from time to time.

Where to start?

Well. I was an early adopter of the online dating movement. The first fella I met online was 19-year-old Jeff. We met innocently in a chat room back in 1999. But when he started talking about moving and marriage, my little 15-year-old heart cut all ties. I was far too young to be agreeing to such drastic commitments.

Jeff was my first and only online dating experience until I joined in 2004. Older and wiser (heart beaten and bruised from past relationships), I felt I was prepared to dive back into the online dating world.

I can imagine what you’re thinking. 7 years on Match and no real success? Sounds pretty lame. I have to agree. But I can’t completely blame Match. I’m ridiculously hard to please and easily annoyed by suitors. Typically after a month of talking/dating, something minor happens that turns me off and I stop answering phone calls. This is true of dating in general, and not isolated to my online dates. Plus, I’ve been inactive on Match for a good portion of the last 7 years.

I say all of this because being an on-again-off-again member of Match makes me a bit of an online dating expert. I can give helpful advice, as well as tell all my horror stories and near successes.

So check back often. Soon I’ll be posting a blog on writing your perfect online profile. Until then…

Saturday, February 26, 2011

It's a Match First!

Note: I tried to publish this last night from my phone, but it wouldn't upload. So here it is, today:

It's a Match first for me tonight, my lovely readers. I've never committed to a third date before.

I'm totally willing to admit that I'm nervous. I'm not sure why I'm just now getting the jitterbugs.

You would think that the first date would be much more nerve-wrecking, but for me, it's the third.

The first date is kinda easy. You're both strangers, and you haven't quite shared enough to make you feel vulnerable...yet.

But by the third date, you know he's somewhat of a neatfreak, has booked a one week trip to London, and has a pet peeve about texting and driving (which makes you admire him even more.)

And on the flip side, he knows that you consider your dogs as your children, love frozen gummy bears, and still haven't completely unpacked your boxes from moving in.

Vulnerable. That's what you are.

With every time you hang out, you become increasingly vulnerable. Which is understandable. If you weren't, it wouldn't make for a very honest or good relationship. But it's still scary.

I probably sound like I have commitment issues. No, I wouldn't say that.

But I will say that every girl who has been burned in the past knows what I'm talking about. And guys, too. To become vulnerable is to put yourself out there -- put your heart on the line.

Now, I wouldn't say I'm there yet. No, no. Don't get me wrong. It's only the third date. I mean, I like the guy. But I'm smart enough to not jump to conclusions or make broad generalizations.

I'm only stating that I'm nervous. Because it's the third date. And because I never planned this far ahead, dear readers...

The most important question is...

What do I wear?!

- Posted by Miss Matched using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Smart Phones Are Date Dumb

NOTE: Yes, I'm aware of the irony, since I posted this with my iPhone.

Don't get me wrong. I love my smartphone. I wouldn't trade it in for anything. But it just doesn't understand my dating life.

Like, for example, when I go to search the web. It takes me to the last page I had visited (last three pages, rather), and it's a reminder of who didn't work and how I awkwardly shot them down or let the "relationship" fizzle into virtual thin air.

To illustrate:

My browser opens up to the IMDB page of Kevin Connolly.

Why was I Googling Kevin Connolly? Because as my second date and I were walking in the park, we got into a (non-serious) argument about who "the little dude" was in He's Just Not That Into You. Lawyer guy was correct, I was proven wrong.

So when my browser pops open to that IMDB page, I'm instantly reminded how I tried to let him down easy with the pathetic line of, "But I'm afraid I might wrinkle you!"

(Yes, that lawyer. The one who I deemed to be too "fancy.")

And then there's the other webpage that opens up to reveal "hello" defined in many different languages ("jambo" is hello in Swahili, just for your daily dose of FYI trivia) because the divorced single dad and I had a text message volley going with international flair. We stopped when we got to Japanese. I got tired of having to copy and paste what I was going to text, translate it, and then re-copy and paste it... All for the sake of an "lol."

So, smartphone.... If you're so stinkin' smart, why don't you NOT remind me of the dates I "dumped" and ease my conscience the next time I feel like Googling something?

Just sayin'.

- Posted by Miss Matched using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Bad boys, bad boys. The Longest {Good} Date.

Hello singles, takens and friends-with-benefits-something-or-others,

Tonight I had the longest date I've ever had. It lasted from 1:30 p.m. until about 6:30 p.m. You're all dying to know if it was good or bad, though, aren't you? Because that would make or break the connotation of "the longest date ever," am I right?

Simply put, it was good. It really was. First a quick trip to the dog park, then lunch at a local hole-in-the-wall joint, and then afterward, a movie. All in all, not bad for a first date. I haven't mentioned this guy yet, and I'm not sure why. A couple days before the date, I spent over four hours on the phone with him, so that was definitely a good sign.

He was a complete gentleman, but not overly formal as to make things awkward. He had a great sense of humor and shared some family/friends stories (he told me he's already dished about me to his buddies, so I took that as a good sign).

We've already planned to get sushi tomorrow night, as a matter of fact. Such a quick turn around has never happened like that before.

Oh... and he's a cop.

Men in uniform, anyone? Ha. (Yes, I made him show me his ID to prove it). So I might have a few trust issues... What of it? I'm just cautious. Ha.

As I'm sure you've already put this together... yes, my dating schedule line up changed a little bit.

Here's a quick re-cap:

Last night, second date with the lawyer wasn't bad, but it wasn't great. It just reiterated the fact that he was a little too concerned with money and the "finer" things in life --- whereas my pajama-loving, Netflix-watching, playing-with-my-dogs self probably just wouldn't be able to handle his high-rise condo constant nightscene lifestyle.

So... moving right along...

I actually had to postpone NASA. I know, bummer right? I was actually really looking forward to that one. It's set up for next weekend, though, so stay tuned.

But I did have brunch with divorced single dad. He was funny and it went okay (aside from the whole part where he answered the phone in the middle of the date without a kind "Excuse me, but I've got to take this"), but I felt like there was more of a connection on his end than mine. And if I'm going to date someone with kids, I've got to be sure there's a connection. 100%.

So that's when cop guy came in to the picture. We had been talking over the phone, exchanging text messages and the like, but had already set up sushi for Monday night.

A five hour first date is good in my book.... wouldn't you agree?

-- Miss Matched

Friday, February 18, 2011

Double the fun? Don't. Ever. Do. It.

to my double-booked Sunday

Online dating tip:

NEVER, EVER -- under any circumstances -- tell a date that you double-booked them with another guy on the same day. Ever.

They'll laugh. They'll tease. And thank heavens in my case, they'll still agree to meet. But regardless, it's not a good rule of thumb, and it makes for what I can only assume will be an extra awkward goodbye.

[The following imagined scenario playing out in my head]

              Me: "So... I better get going."

              Him: "Yeah... for your second date."

              Me: "Yeah... um... that."

Just play coy, make an excuse when he asks you why you had to rearrange your schedule, and let that be the end of it.

It's not like I meant to tell him. He prodded me about why I had to shuffle things around and teased about my having "many" dates (he doesn't know about any others, he was absolutely just joking in good fun). It all just came out... like verbal vomit, spewing from my mouth. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

But... On the other hand, it does let them know they're in for a little healthy competition.... hmm. 

No. Don't do it. Just don't do it. Or, at the very least, hope to the high heavens that you have an understanding person on the other end of that phone that says, "Sweetie, here's a piece of advice. In the future, never tell another guy that you have to bump them because of a later date."

I'm mortified. I'm honest and blunt, but I'm absolutely mortified.

-- Miss Matched

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Dating Overkill?

I know this isn't the post you were waiting for. This one will have to be quick and dirty because I'm on a time crunch.

I want to devote a good amount of time to tell you about my Valentine's Day blind date, but before I do, I have to give you an update on this weekend.

Are four dates in one weekend too much?

Now c'mon. Before you judge, wouldn't you want to knock 'em out as quickly as possible in order to move on to the rest (in the case they didn't work out)?

Anyway, here's my weekend lineup so far:

Fri: Possibly a late coffee (first date) after work. He's a lawyer, so work hours are loosely defined, as it could be as early as 6 or as late as 9 pm.

Sat: Second date. Different lawyer. Dinner at an Italian place. Now I must find an SDO, pronto. (Second date outfit)

Sun: Here's where it gets tricky.

A.M. - early afternoon: First date. Behind-the-scenes tour of NASA. Pretty cool, right? No, he's not an astronaut.

P.M. - First date. Divorced single dad. Not my first preference, but he was extremely funny over the phone and the kid looks very, very cute.

So.... am I committing overkill?

Sunday, February 13, 2011

First Date Outfit (the LBD)

I have another "first" date tomorrow.

{Freeze frame: I'm not sure why this thought is just now occurring to me, but tomorrow was not smart on my part. Tomorrow is Valentine's Day. That could be extremely awkward. This date might have to be postponed. I'll keep you posted, dear readers. Now back to the story...}

It's supposed to be coffee and conversation at a nice little local place. Having had three "first" dates already (meaning three separate dates with three separate men), I've decided I need a "first date outfit."

Here's my logic:

I usually stress over what to wear, how to fix my hair, what accessories to use, etc. etc. However, I've decided that having a designated "first date outfit" cuts down on all that. Just wash... and re-wear.

It's a cute LBD (for all my male readers out there, that's short for little black dress), and I can dress it up or down depending on jewelry and shoes.

Granted, if I run into any former first dates or visit the same venue too many times, the waiters might start questioning me...

But for now it works. As long as I don't get too date-happy and keep them spaced out with days in between to do the laundry, I'm set.

Resourceful and efficient... don't you think?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Yes, I judge you when you use poor grammar has brought out my inner grammar nazi. I've always been frustrated by bad grammar, but getting 15-20 poorly written emails per day is too much for my patient little brain to handle.

However, my biggest pet peeve is actually turning into a handy little way of weeding out potential dates. I can understand an occasional autocorrect or typo, but if you don't take the time to type two more keystrokes and turn "u" into "you" --- then it's just not happening between us.

"Your" vs. "you're" is, and will probably always be, a top contender. "Their" and "there" comes in second with "lose" and "loose" at a close third.

Boys, if you don't take any other piece of {online dating} advice, take this one:

Proper grammar will get you out of the trash bin and, if you're really lucky, a reply.

See? All that schooling wasn't a waste. Now if you'd just put it to use...

-- Miss *Match*ed

The Cardinal Sin (of

I just committed the cardinal sin of I'm way in over my head at this point. I need a assistant, and I'm not even joking. I'm preparing to start an Excel spreadsheet tonight.

No, it's not that I have a lot of suitors. I just have a lot of potential suitors. And I'm not complaining. I mean, I know it's a good problem to have. Believe me, it's not like I'd rather be in Sheldon's shoes (any Big Bang Theory fans out there?). The more matches available, the better chances I have, right? However, I was just not prepared for the sheer volume. 

So back to the cardinal sin...

I was busy enjoying the day with my parents (they came in town to visit), and while hanging out in town, I used the mobile app (which could use so many upgrades and tweaks, but that's another story for another time) to shoot off a quick email to a guy who told me his account was expiring. Not sure if guys use that as a line to get your phone number faster, but anyway... it worked. I sent him my phone number via email (instructing him to use it carefully, since it's my only one...ha).

Hours later, and I had forgotten all about that little email until a text message pops up on my phone from a number I don't recognize...

(XXX) XXX-XXX: Lol, your number is in good hands :-)

Me: Lol, let me guess... Dan?

Five minutes of racking my brain. Then 2.3 split seconds to realize I never sent a "Dan" my number. Frantically, 1.4 nanoseconds to try to figure out what to do next. SHIT.

Me: Wait! No... Kevin? C'mon help a girl out!

That's it, play the "do me a favor, help me out" game. Somehow, I still don't think this is working. I'm digging my own grave. Shit, shit, shit. What if he's not even a Kevin? Then I've gone and screwed up TWICE!

Me: Ah crap, I just ruined this conversation, didn't I?

Yeah. Keep it light-hearted. This will be a good test of his sense of humor at the very least, right? Oh God... Stupid! Stupid! Stupid! 

{Five minutes of stressful silence, and no "bing!" from a text message in response}

I just dug my own grave. I committed the cardinal sin of all sins on I forgot his name! Or rather, I got him mixed up with ANOTHER GUY. What am I doing? I am way in over my...


Him: Lol Dan, huh?

Well, at least he has a good sense of humor. However, he *still* didn't leave his name.... SHIT.

-- Miss *Match*ed

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Oh my god, I'm in love with an email

I realize this is my very first blog post. I'm a little behind. To be specific, I'm about two weeks behind. But everyone loved Star Wars, and that started four episodes in. I'm hoping my critics are lenient. Or at the very least, willing to travel down a couple week's worth of memory lane with me later.

My goal for this blog is to document the good, the bad and the... well. We'll just have to find out when we get there, won't we?

I want to document my online dating adventure, well, because I'm convinced that's what it could be. A grand mix of butterflies, awkward half side-hugs, and two people reaching for the check. It could also very well be an adventurous disaster, but that's just better fodder for future blog posts, am I right?

With that said, and with no further ado, I'm going to jump right into what happened tonight...

Day 15: Otherwise known as "I'm in love with an email"

He emailed me back. He emailed me back. He finally! emailed me back. That's all I could think. I was giggling like a silly little schoolgirl. I'm 27-years-old.

Flashback: A full 8 days had passed and no communication. (No, I wasn't counting.... All right, fine. Maybe just a little.) But it wasn't the longest 8 days of my life. I'm not overly melodramatic, mind you. The back of my hand has never hit my forehand, and I've never fainted a day in my life. But the absence of communication was present -- it was on the back of my mind. I hadn't heard from him, and this is when my overly-analyzing self comes out in full force, with its twin cousins, fear and worry.

Stupid, stupid, stupid. You were too forward. You shouldn't have given him your cell phone number. Stupid! What were you thinking?

Let's rewind a bit, shall we? It's January 31. The weather is a little chillier than normal. I sit down at my computer and log on to Before I know it, these gorgeous brown eyes are staring back at me from my screen.  In all my five days of being on the site, I hadn't seen a profile picture so gorgeous. Too gorgeous. Wait...

Does install dating "spys" to scour their site? He's too perfect. This can't be real. And he emailed ME first.

All conspiracy aside, his email was far from generic. He was warm, sincere, and oh... did I really just read that? He said he has a slight British accent.

Note: From here on out, we'll refer to him as British guy. I'm keeping all usernames/real names/nicknames and the like private for my sake and everyone I correspond with.

So... back to present day. After not hearing from British guy in 8 long and grueling days, I see it. Another email. From him. God, it's beautiful. It's just like his picture, but with nouns and verbs and beautifully placed adjectives. I love everything about it... his warm introduction "Very nice to hear from you!" to his funny use of English phrases: "I've got an early get up tomorrow" and "shall I" and "arse." (Yes, he used the word "arse." That story to come later.)

But his sense of humor is just as charming. Funny, self-deprecating... it was all there. As was my cell phone number. He now had it. There was no turning back. The ball was now in his court.

Only, that was the problem. This wasn't a game to me. This was real. I was officially in love with an email. A gorgeous British email.

More to come...