Archive Opinion The Orion

Love bytes on the Internet

January 1, 2007

Look at that mug. With a face like this, I’m sure you’ll be shocked to know Valentine’s Day hasn’t been the kindest holiday to me.

Even with all of my charm, grace and incredibly dashing looks, I found myself beginning February the same way I began so many months before. It’s been a long dry spell where nothing has worked. Desperate times call for desperate measures, so I tried the most desperate fix in the world.

I turned to the world of online dating.

While it may seem to be a dark day when we use something as cold and calculating as a computer to find a soul mate, the Internet has already taken over the rest of our lives. By being ahead of the curve, I’ll get rich from the book I’ll sell to the uninitiated.

Until then, I’m still a poor college student, so I put very little money into this offer. Also, I decided to rely on it for no more than two weeks. That means the “incredible savings” these Web sites throw at you when you subscribe for six months are out of the picture.

Yahoo Personals: 7-day free trial, $24.95 per month

Yahoo was first on my list for no other reason than I get at least three e-mails a week telling me to look there for love.

The detail of the search criteria was something I didn’t see much of at other sites. I could search for someone based on location, personality and even how often they go to church. Of all the sites I checked out, this one seemed to be the closest to fulfilling my vision of soulless machines controlling the human-mating process. In a related story, I’ll be using my Gmail account more from now on. 3-day free trial, $34.99 per month + $6.99 for Dr. Phil’s help

The company that’s managed to plaster Dr. Phil all over its ads offered a much better selection in terms of available women.

This was made even more promising because I got three e-mails in my inbox, but I couldn’t read them until I subscribed. Thankfully the three-day trial let me see who was looking for me.

This trial didn’t include the pre-recorded insights of Dr. Phil and his demands for me to set my love life straight. Something tells me I wasn’t missing much.

Maybe it was the menagerie of spam with offers of Amazonian women on Web cams, gay porn sites and even an invite to a Klan-approved singles site. Was my photo really that bad? On a lark though, I had to at least check out the last one. Free

This Hitler-approved mode of dating ensures no mixing of racial bloodlines for the pure bigot inside you. While there are plenty of blondes and a few brunettes, there was nobody within the Chico area. After browsing the site, I decided it wasn’t worth the effort to make a profile.

To recap: I’ve run into a site that will someday enslave humanity, another that gives prolific amounts of spam and even one that still believes in Plessy v. Ferguson.

Even more depressing was the news I got from Yahoo Personals’ personality survey.

Before embarking on this journey, I thought I was picky. It turns out it’s not me that’s the problem. Apparently I’m so unique that 69 percent of women are not interested me right off the bat. Only four out of 100 dates I go on will be mutually good.

At least that’s what the numbers say. Thankfully, I can hold out blind hope that maybe numbers aren’t everything – that maybe I can defy the odds and find someone.

Let’s just hope the machines don’t begin the forced mating rituals for another 10 years or so.