This is the start of a new series on Sugar & Spice, called the Online Dating Diaries. I’ll profile a person or couple who have waded through the battlefields (because, duh, love is a battlefield) of online dating.
In today’s crazy world, apps and websites like Tinder and match.com make finding a hookup or a relationship seem as easy as a swipe or a click. But in reality, it’s not that simple. With that swipe or click, we make an instant decision and then… what happens next? The near misses and rejections; the bad dates that make you glad to be single and the good dates that led you to where you are now… those are the stories I want to tell. Below, to start the series, is my dear friend Mitch.
“The first requirement of dating is being utterly confident being single (but not forever, then no one will message you). You’re less desperate. And you have a clear mind as far as getting what you want. You don’t compromise.”
What he does: Creative at an Apple store, photographer and artist
Lives in: Crown Heights, Brooklyn
Go-to app: OkCupid. “I feel like it’s the most well-known, in New York City at least.”
His ideal guy: “I always look for someone who is in a similar field, who has a good job. It doesn’t have to be glamorous or anything, but a career. Someone who’s motivated and who’s active. Someone who’s a mix of introverted and extroverted, because I can be both. I have my moments when I want to go out and party, and then also stay in with a movie.”
His m.o.: “Dating is exhausting,” he says. Mitch tends to deactivate his account after about three different dates to take a breather. “It’s good practice not being a familiar face,” he says. “It’s like, ‘That guy again? He’s still here? He must be really bad.’” Mitch says he also changes his picture often, otherwise “you’re just stale bread.”
Deal-breakers: “Often times it’s cigarettes, although sometimes you can look the other way. But I try to avoid people who smoke, it really bothers me.” Other times he swipes left (i.e. no thanks!): When people don’t fill out their profile, don’t have a profile picture or if they just have a picture of their body. “People like to show off their bodies, so they’ll have no face picture at all because they’re trying to hide from people they know, since they’re not out yet. A huge deal-breaker is people that are not out to their friends and family.”
Online dating is… “one of those weird things in the world. You almost feel guilty doing it. You’re advertising yourself for dating and serious relationships, and you’re also shopping at the same time [laughs]. You’re window shopping… looking for that perfect, you know, accessory. Ever since computers and mobile devices, we’ve opened up this online marketplace [where] we’re literally selling ourselves, trying to advertise our best features."
The worst date he’s had: ”My first online date ever was the worst by far. I didn’t have a car at the time, and was living on [Long Island, New York,] and this guy picked me up in a car. A minivan. He wasn’t as tall as he said; a lot of people who are shorter tend to lie about their height. He said that we were going to go pick up his friends, which I thought was really weird for a first date. We went to a bar, and even though he asked me on the date, he didn’t pay for my beer. After being kind of miserable the entire time, and him not really picking up on it, we headed home, and then him and his friends starting smoking weed in the car. He still thought I was going to give him a kiss at the end of the night… Yeah, it was fuckin’ bizarre. [laughs].“
Album on rotation: Fleetwood Mac, Seven Wonders. "I just saw them in concert. I never thought I would see them, but they’re even better live. Tickets were pricey, but it was worth every penny. All the members of the band are musical geniuses, not just Stevie Nicks.”
His style, in three words: “Basic, basic, basic.”
Favorite restaurant in his neighborhood: Barboncino. “I love the pizza, the atmosphere, and the interesting cocktails.”
Thanks to Mitch for taking part in the interview and sharing his thoughts and experiences. He’s the coolest. Look for the next part of the Online Dating Diaries in April. Follow along on Twitter (@HeatherFurlow) and Instagram (@summerheather) so you don’t miss a post! Xoxo, H
Photographs, courtesy of Mitch, both taken by his brother, Nick.