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Friday, July 9, 2010

Online Dating Services - Buyer Beware

During light dinner conversation last night, Mike reminded me of these stories he’d shared previously. Don’t know why I didn’t write about them back then because they’re absolutely true and truly delicious. Here ya go.

Online dating services are commonplace these days as super-busy singles see their real-life options shrink for meeting people. With caution as a high priority, the routine generally takes folks from identifying likely dates, exchanging emails, progressing to telephone calls, and finally to meeting in-person, in daylight, in a public place.

These are the steps that are supposed to assist in weeding out the crazies. They didn’t work for a couple of Mike’s friends.

A lady we’ll call Patty had been investigating online dating and thought she’d found an interesting fellow. He said he was an entertainer; he had a good sense of humor; and they seemed to have enough in common for a coffee date. Patty said she would wear red. He said he’d be able to spot her.

Patty arrived at the designated place at the designated time and scanned the room hoping to see an attractive man headed in her direction. She quickly observed someone walking toward her with a big smile of recognition. Patty blinked, gulped and considered making a dash for the door.

The online Romeo had neglected to inform her that his “entertainment” gig was as a female impersonater. And there he was, fully decked out as Reba McEntire. Not that there’s anything wrong with being a female impersonater. But don’t you think you might mention that before a first date? Or don’t you think you might tell a person about that instead of showing up in full regalia? I’m just sayin’.

Patty is a polite lady, so she sat down with Reba for the coffee date, then went home and deleted him from her prospect list.

Then there was Mary’s coffee date. She was in her mid-40s, and the witty gentleman online was supposed to be 51, charming and available. As she drove into the parking lot of the meeting place, Mary saw a “mature” gentleman leaning on his cane at the front door and felt a sinking sensation.

She was right. The senior citizen was her date and he had seriously fudged about his age, but she would have coffee with him so as not to be rude.

Don’t know why she let him in her car to pick up coffee at the drive-through. Not a good plan. Both coffee and conversation were adequate, but there was not going to be a second date. Mary was looking for someone closer to her age. And something just felt odd.

They exchanged polite good-byes. The man exited her car, and Mary started driving away. Only moments later, she spotted his wallet that must have slipped out of his pocket onto the passenger seat. (Mary later surmised that he must have left it deliberately.) She circled back to the parking lot and, when she failed to see him, looked through the wallet for an address. While looking for that, Mary found his Medicare card indicating that he was at least 65. She located the necessary information and made the short drive to his house to return the wallet.

As Mary walked up the sidewalk to the front door, she could see that, although a storm door was closed, the front door stood open revealing a view of the house’s interior. Stepping onto the front porch, Mary saw no one in the living room so she rang the door bell. And then – Mary saw the dating service Lothario approaching the front door . . . completely naked. She threw down the wallet and ran like hell to her car.

I don’t know, but maybe these guys need some coaching on how NOT to send a lady screaming to the nearest exit.

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