On January 14, I turned 43. This was officially my “New Year’s.” It was time to put 2014 behind me, and make a new life in Charlotte. I thought moving back to NC would be easy, but I quickly discovered that I needed my own connections, more friends than just my mom, step-dad and 12 year old nephew. I needed my life, I needed to find my tribe.
I’ve never been a fan of online dating sites. You have to weed through a lot of crap. It’s like shopping at TJ Maxx-you have to sort through the generic crap to find last season’s designer stuff. I’ll do this when I’m in the mood and have the time, but many times I don’t want to be bothered. I’d rather just go to Macy’s and pay full price and be done. However, I was faced with the dilemma of do I just sit at home, drink bottle after bottle of wine and then whine about how I have no life, no local friends or do I do something about it? I did something about it. On the night of my 43rd birthday, I loaded up on my favorite things: wine, Chick-fila and chocolate cake, then took the leap and logged on to OK Cupid.
My intentions were simple: get out of the house, meet people and maybe develop some friendships. I didn’t consider it dating. My criteria was fairly simple: a white man, 41-50 years old, Catholic, college-educated, and employed. This search yielded no more than 2o men. “Quality over quantity,” I reminded myself. I browsed through the profiles and quickly assessed that quality, not just quantity may be an issue. But it didn’t matter, I thought, I wasn’t looking for the perfect guy, I was looking for my tribe, for people who wanted to hang out with me and give me a reason to get out of my pajamas each day (I work from home, so this one is hard sometimes).
Men are visual creatures, so I uploaded just a photo. No profile description, just my age. I read profile after profile, and after a while they all start to sound the same and you just go to the photo. When you visit a profile on OKC, the other person gets a notification you visited their profile. “So what?”I mumbled with cake in my mouth (yes, I talk to myself), “I don’t have anything about myself up there, I’m just looking right now, when I’m ready to go hard at it, I’ll draft something witty and smart.” I decided I wasn’t investing too much.
So as I was sitting there watching old episodes of Friends, sipping Chardonnay and eating birthday cake directly out of the box, I got a message from Qua*&#uy37. I froze–this one was interesting–I had been triggered.
Stay tuned for more on how this simple message sparked My Project 43.