Logging On

Mon. July 26, 2004 12:00 AM
by Belia Rodriguez

The other night I was having dinner with some friends at a very nice Italian restaurant when the topic of Internet dating came up. Their take on it was along the lines of “how could that work - finding the person you were meant to be with forever on the Internet.” Not ever knowing how to just sit and look pretty, I piped in that the Internet was just as good if not better than any other avenue to meet people. Even though, I added that you will find your occasional “nut” (like that doesn’t happen in every day life) it does present opportunities in multitude and you can weed out girls very quickly based on profiles. After all, we Americans just don’t have a lot of face time to waste these days.

The couple I was with at the table was aghast at my suggesting that you can determine compatibility and long term relationship viability through a simple question and answer session on a screen. I explained that I believed that two people need to have fundamental similarities and mutual values and interests to withstand the ups and downs in relationships – isn’t that true? Sometimes we are too eager in our need to couple that we stop looking for the ideal one and settle for the one in front of us at the bar or at the gym because it works for now. Opposites may attract, but just how much opposite can you go through before you grow to resent each other and simply grow apart?

They looked at me and said “When we met we were total opposites on paper and yet today look at us, we are still together.” (I know, you are asking how long they have “coupled”- read on, read on – we’ll get there). I remind them that “she” used to love to have a good time and be out late most nights but somewhere along the line “he” quit drinking and now loves to stay in. So because it always seems like someone has to compromise when opposites attract, they are now always at home. Can you say “tick tock tick tock.” Really, isn’t it only a matter of time before their dooms day is upon them?

Then again, I'm 32 and single, maybe I don't know anything after all! The “male- stay-at-home-and-watch-TV” part of this couple told me, “maybe if you changed your attitude, you wouldn’t be single.” Hmmm, interesting comment…but not true! Internet dating has offered me willing partners but why settle when they’re not “The One.” I’m 32, I’m racing the clock, I don’t have time to kill to find out if they can become The One. What I do know is the Internet saves me time on two things - paying my bills and dating.

“Refresh my memory, how long have you two love birds been perfectly dating?” Since they’re so willing to discount an entire dating phenomenon they have never tried. “Nine months” they said together. Once again I couldn’t resist, “Oh, then by all means, you are right!”, with a proverbial roll of my eyes, off I went to log on and find the girl of my dreams.