online dating cliches

So after awhile taking a break from the whole dating scene I have decided to put myself “back on the market.” Which has meant, among other things, reactivating my online dating profile and in fact signing up for a new dating service. (Yes, I’m not Jewish. But hey, as I’ve said before, I seem to like Jewish girls … and I figured I’d just mix things up, after trying other other sites).

Anyway, let me preface this by saying that I’m sure by saying that I’m sure my online dating profile (here’s mine on okcupid) has its flaws too. And I’m sure that there are stupid things guys say on their profiles that turn women off. (In fact, please post examples to comments). However, I don’t browse guys’ profiles so I can’t really talk about that. Here, though, are some of the things I’ve noticed as cliches while browsing women’s profiles:

  • “I try to live life to the fullest…” Okay, I appreciate the sentiment. But this is such a cliche now. If you’re really trying to live a full life, doesn’t that include originality? As they say in journalism, “show, don’t tell.” Explain to me how you’re living such a full life! Give examples! And stay away from tired terminology.
  • “I’m as comfortable in X as I am in Y.” As in, I’m as comfortable in an evening gown as I am in jeans … I’m just as comfortable at a dive bar as a fancy restaurant. (Other examples of this) Artist Jonathan Harris, noting the popularity of this construction, told the NYT City Room blog: ““People think contradictions are sexy, so they try to describe themselves as having contradictions.” However, this formula is again, a total cliche by now. And really: do most women find evening gowns (or dive bars) uncomfortable? I don’t know of any that do.
  • “I try to take advantage of all NYC has to offer…” Well … New York City is actually a pretty big frickin’ place, with lots to see and do. Even if someone was unemployed, I really don’t think he or she could take advantage of everything it has to offer, from learning to tango to catching Rangers games to playing chess in the East Village to taking classes at NYU to going clubbing until 4 a.m. … Even starting to take advantage of it all would take like five or six lifetimes. And really, most of us I think stay in our little routines and just do a couple different things we’re passionate about. Tell me what they are.
  • “No players!” Or no guys who “play games.” This is odd, because you’re basically saying that the last few guys in your life weren’t interested in a serious relationship with you. But really, the image you should trying to project is that you’re so hot, you have to beat guys off you with sticks. Or at least that you have no problem meeting people in “real life.” Also: does any guy think of himself as a “player” or someone who plays games or toys with women’s hearts? I doubt it. I think most of us, male or female, would like to meet someone we’re so ga-ga over we’d marry him or her in an instant. Unfortunately life is rarely that simple. If you’re looking exclusively for a serious relationship, just say so. (maybe preferably in a light-hearted way?)

Anyway. Tell me your pet online dating peeves!

9 comments to online dating cliches

  • how about those who want “honesty and respect” in a relationship-and most likely, those are the ones lying about their age/whatever else…

  • There are actually guys who say they want a woman who’s as comfortable in a ___ as she is in a ___, so that cliche appears on both sides.

    And to be honest, I am NOT as comfortable in a dress as I am in sweatpants. Do you ever sleep in a dress?

    The worst, however, is guys who don’t say anything when they write, that actually makes you think they really read your profile. Don’t be generic in your response.

    Also, saying mean things about fat or overweight women in your profile or emails is a real turnoff, even for those of us who are skinny. Meanness is just not attractive. And yes, there ARE physical reasons why some people may find it harder to lose weight (besides that they eat a lot). If you are only attracted to physically fit people, fine, say that – no need to be mean about it! You’re not always so perfect yourself, guys.

  • by the way, that’s totally cool that you joined jdate – there are lots of nice people on there. just make it clear somewhere in your profile that you’re not jewish but you’ve dated many jewish girls and got along well with them.

  • sally

    I can’t tell if it is the picture, but one of the pictures on okcupid looks like you spilt something on your shirt…your beer?

  • Yup, I am clumsy. That is me and Flygirl, btw, at the Flyers post-marathon party last year.

  • Becca

    hi derek, my parents are bulgarian and dutch jews and i guess i have that exotic jewish look… im single at moment, 25. hobbies; fashion, aerobics (am instructor), i like ur look… how come a hot guy like u is still single?

  • Ooooo, that’s a deep question. I’m actually reading a (library) book at the moment, “Unhooked Generation: The Truth About Why We’re Still Single” which purports to answer that very query. The author is an Oprah producer who conducted in-depth interviews with 100 singles to try to figure things out … She argues that people today oh-so-scared of “settling” and missing out on someone better, end up with unrealistic expectations and a list full of checklists that can never be met.

    I’m still reading and thinking her argument over.

    BUT moving on from that deep question … Bulgarian and Dutch, huh?? I definitely like fit girls ;) … so what do you think about older men? Got a picture online?

  • I dated a guy I met on match.com who kept a record of all the goofy things he read inpofiles (alas- they were almost all women’s) and he gave them to me to post over time on my blog about internet dating in Pittsburgh (the worst city in the country to be over 40 and single.)

    Here are some (on a theme) – but please don’t think we’re all this provincial:

    What language(s) do you speak, read or write?
    English, why learn any other crap when I live in my own country.

    What language(s) do you speak, read or write?
    I speak English, some sign language in bad traffic, Body language,
    I speak it and read it.

    What language(s) do you speak, read or write?
    What do you think???? DUH!!!

    Where were you born? List some of the places you have lived or traveled.
    I’m a local, borned and raised near Pittsburgh.

    Where were you born? List some of the places you have lived or traveled.
    Pa. traveling…well, I’ve been to sea world

    What are some of your life-long goals? Where would you like to be in 2 years? In 5 years?
    in a house

    favorite hot spots:
    BARS ARE OK. I DO NOT DRINK BUT LIKE TO GO HAVE FUN.
    IT DOES NOT BOTHER ME IF YOU DRINK BUT I DO NOT LIKE FIGHTS WHEN YOU DRINK.

  • Becca

    Ah sorry i just noticed that ur not Jewish. Am looking for a Jewish guy (and actually met this great one recently at a Hanukkah party) so thanks and good luck. Oh and Merry Christmas!! xx

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