The Wizardess of Oz

An American's Adventures in Australia and Beyond

Failures In Aussie Dating, Part 3 of a Many-Part Saga (Apparently)

Guess what?! I have met so many men. Move over Weather Girls, because it isn’t just raining, it is a torrential downpour of men. And they are all lovely. Intelligent, great careers, well-spoken, good-looking, love to have an adult beverage but don’t turn into raving idiots after a few, good listeners, not afraid to dance when the tunes demand it, actually good at dancing, witty, clever, cultured… Okay I think you get it. So, perfect, right? My dating dilemmas solved! No.

Three problems: 1.) Many are my coworkers, and I have a no coworker policy that I refuse to break. 2.) None of them are single, which isn’t a surprise with that description, right? 3.) Oh, and they’re all gay. Strike three, you’re out.

So while my social life has become ten times more fun and fabulous, many times those social activities are spent in gay bars, where my feminine wiles are vocally adored but never successful in hooking the ever-elusive Aussie male.

And so I’ve finally resorted to what I would consider my last resort: Online Dating. Dun dun DUUUNN!

I have to admit, I’m probably worse at online dating than I am trying to hit on a guy. Here’s how it works: A guy does this winky-thing to express his interest in you using pre-crafted pickup lines supplied by the site. If you like what you see, you wink back using a pre-crafted response. Then usually he will pay money to send you an email. At first, I was getting winky-things from all sorts of people. Some seemed normal, some seemed really weird, about 2% were actually promising. But I felt bad sending back a pre-crafted “Not Interested” response. The options I had seemed really harsh and abrupt – “Thank you for your interest, but I don’t want to take things further right now,” or “I’m very flattered, but I don’t think we have enough in common.” I mean, read between those lines and it felt like I was screaming “Thanks for the wink, but I’d rather stab out my own eyeball with a dull rusty nail than talk to you! Now I’m going to go try to recover the five minutes of my life I just lost looking at your hideous photos!”

In reality, I would have preferred something like, “Hey you seem nice enough, and I realize I can hardly know you from a paragraph and some pictures, but your grammar was atrocious and it’s just a dealbreaker for me. I’m sure you understand. Want to meet my friend Ashley? She can barely spell her first name but she looks like a goddess.” But unfortunately I’m only allowed to send the former.

After a while though, it became exhausting. Dozens of random 45 year olds who lived 100 kms away were sending winky-things, and the site has this obnoxious “response rate” percentage that is always below 100% unless you reply to every single thing, and because I panic if anything is below 90%, I started getting ruthless. Wink! “Oh hey, a 23 year-old giant ginger goon, yes let’s get to know each other. NOT!” and “Oooh a 48-year-old Indian IT analyst wants to be friends, right. And I’m really an inflatable doll with incredible life-like qualities.” “Wait, didn’t I just decline this guy? And he came back AGAIN, with the same pickup line? Facepalm.” Next thing I know, the rude “Not Interested” replies were whizzing through cyberspace at breakneck speed, and it was probably a good thing that I wasn’t allowed to editorialize.

Filtering aside, a few I let through. One emailed to the point of texting, but never tried to set up a date (though he had family visiting). He seemed nice, normal, etc., then one night starting joking (I think) about an ex girlfriend buried in his backyard. What?!? I’m all for making inappropriate jokes, and actually laughed about (joking) insinuations that his sister was a Thai hooker, but the delivery of this joke wasn’t really funny enough, plus I don’t have the context of understanding how he speaks in-person, PLUS he was someone I met from the Internet! Let’s just say texting has ceased and isn’t likely to resume. And now I’m afraid to reply to any of the other emails I’ve gotten in case there are more girlfriends buried in backyards. Or dog haters.

Net-net, I’m wondering if I shouldn’t take down the profile and just spend some time with my new fabulous gay friends.

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