Tag Archives: Guest Post Wednesday
Online dating can often feel like you’re forced to waddle through a swampy cesspool full of leaches, crocodiles, and the occasional crazy, gun-toting “Duck Dynasty” wannabe. If you’ve been doing it long enough, you know to be cautious, and you know that feeling when a few red flags turns into too many.
Yes, there are dangerous catfish lurking in these waters.
This is technically my third go-around with online dating in approximately seven years. I’ve been on plenty of awful dates, a few good ones, and mostly have simply occupied my time and given myself the best excuse whenever I was the only groomsman at the wedding without a girlfriend/wife/life partner.
My vast experience (not something I’m proud of) with online dating does mean I know when I might be getting catfished.
As readers of this blog know, Ms. Cline has quaintly outsourced her dating life to her friends. On the surface, I have to admire the brilliance of it. It is effortless dating, provided you trust your friends.
Ms. Cline detailed it last week; about a week and a half ago, she met me for a date interview.
But before Chloe Cline ever walked into that bar, I knew she wasn’t who her friends had made her out to be.
The red flags began appearing almost immediately. I messaged “Chloe” first after she “liked” me. Throughout our online conversations, her messages were abrupt and chock full of high-school texting language. Although this wasn’t, on its own, terribly off-putting, it was the first red flag. Either this 30-year-old woman has a teenage-like grasp of the English language, or she isn’t quite who she says she is.
Further, “Chloe’s” profile was sparsely filled out. It smirked of laziness, as if someone else was just filling out the questions in a way they thought would be enough to get people to write back. Red flag no. 2.
Yet, what really set off the klaxons in my head was how quickly “Chloe” propositioned me to get a drink. In less than a day and only a few messages, I was being asked out. This is strange for two reasons: First, it’s exceedingly rare for the girl to ask the guy to meet. Second, it’s nearly unforeseen that she would do so after only sending a few short messages.
Now I knew there was something suspicious here; there were many questions. I had no idea how spectacular the answers would be.
Prior to my current career, I was a newspaper reporter and a private investigator. I was often tasked with hunting down people who didn’t want to be found. Thankfully, Chloe wasn’t that challenging.
I didn’t time myself, but I’d estimate it took fewer than 5 minutes from the time I began my hunt to the time I stumbled upon this blog (and with it, her twitter feed). After a half an hour of reading this, I realized I was being catfished – sort of.
This was still on Sunday, the first day we had exchanged messages.
I read more of the blog – the Steve Harvey appearance, the failed dates, Lexi and Daisy – and I quickly realized I HAD to go on a date with this woman. There was no way I could resist.
The best trap is the one you know you’re walking into.
But now I had an important decision to make. I could approach this date one of three ways:
Option 1: Immediately upon meeting her, confront her with what I knew and see what happened.
Option 2: Assume a character and go overboard in such a way that I was assured to be terrifying/revolting but not quite over the top. This would have been challenging, but possible. Then, at the end, perhaps drop the act, confess I was faking just to make the blog, and see what happened.
Option 3: Be myself and don’t tip my hand. At a certain point during the evening, maybe drop a backhanded comment about the blog and see what chaos ensued.
I went with Option 3.
Chloe, to her benefit, came clean almost immediately (as she detailed last week).
I was crushed. She confessed within minutes of our meeting.
When I told her I knew everything and began to walk her through her own dating history (we had shaken hands only moment ago, mind you), I admit that had the biggest shit-eating grin on my face. But could you blame me? I had just turned my catfish’s face as red as her lovely nail polish. For the next little while, Ms. Cline, online dating extraordinaire, laughed, giggled, blushed and occasionally stood aghast. I had successfully turned the trap on her.
Yet after all that, Chloe and I had one of the best date interviews I’ve ever had in those years of hopeless and agonizingly awkward online dating. We had a real date last week, and I intend to take her out again, now that we can honestly get to know each other.
So all’s well that ends well, or some bullshit like that.
But seriously, folks, don’t trust your friends with your online dating profile.
 This has happened now 9 times. Always the groomsman, never the groom.
 I do not trust any of my friends to do this. I tried it once; I quickly learned my friends know next-to-nothing about me.
 I dub the “meet-and-greet” portion of online dating – you know, the part where you first meet the person and realize all their photos were taken 4 years and 50 pounds ago – as a “date interview.” You get to see if you get a real first date or not.
 I actually had figured out how to begin the conversation. It involved me showing up late, a recent morgue visit, and graphic descriptions of various bodily injuries and how much they excited me. Also, this is what all my friends wanted me to do. Chloe is lucky I did not do this.
 I chalk this up to repressed Catholic guilt.
 Which can probably best be described here as “crack whore red.”
[Editor’s Note: In regards to footnote 5, there’s nothing repressed about it. It’s very out in the open. And with footnote 6, I’m not sure another date will be happening.]
POSTED IN: catfish, chicago, chloe cline, dating, Guest Post Wednesday, okcupid, online dating
Danielle Stiles is the hysterical vlogger of Hot Mess Stiles, wearer of adorable glasses, and girl crush of many. Subscribe to her YouTube channel now. Like right now. Here ya go: Hot Mess Stiles.
[Editor’s Note: It’s just adorable how she thinks I’m an expert, huh?]
POSTED IN: chicago, chloe cline, dating, Guest Post Wednesday, hot mess, Hot Mess Stiles, Terrible First Date Ideas
I love Tinder. I love shopping for boys–the constant ability to have instant attention at the ease of a swipe and the excitement when you sign in to see a little red dot in your message section. It was perfect for me as a true sufferer of commitment phobia. I convinced myself and my friends that I was interested in casual dating for fun but open to something more serious if it was the right person. I hadn’t been in a relationship in years and honestly out of the dating scene for quite some time. I was a Tinder sceptic, but after a few good experiences I had faith in the system.
I realized quickly that there is a method to how guys Tinder…
*Step 1: Ask a girl to drinks on a week night to see if she passes the crazy test and if she is as hot in person as her 3 individual/1 group pictures reveal.
*Step 2: Ask her to drinks part 2 on a week night and determine if this girl is a good hookup by inviting her back to your place which is conveniently close to where drinks are.
*Step 3: Maybe meet up for 2-4 additional hookups/hangouts then decide that it was “getting too serious too quickly” and find a new girl to repeat the cycle with.
As a true Type A person, I wanted to make sure that I was going to be beat guys at their own game and always be one step ahead of them in the process. I did my homework and made sure that the gents I selected to meet in person were truly worth my time. I dated hard in the spring/summer and ended up having positive Tinder experiences. I broke my own rules and ended up falling for one of the bastards in late July. I even deleted the app. Sadly, as summer ended and the Calvin Harris song was officially driving everyone nuts, my Tinder love also faded. Now I sat at the start of fall with a bruised ego and no guys on the horizon.
After a lonely and boring hungover Sunday, I decided to download Tinder for the SECOND time. I gave my profile a facelift and added new, much more attractive pictures from that month showing that I actually stuck to my summer diet. I felt so invigorated to be getting all these matches and starting the process from scratch. It was on hour 2 of Tindering that I matched with what seemed to be the adorable Kevin. Kevin seemed to be a great catch and with my stellar eye for classy men on that vulnerable Sunday, I realized it was his pictures that had me at “hey, what’s up?”
Let’s review the classic photos that every desperate Tinder girl gives into….
- Photo holding a baby (check)
- Photo where he looks extremely attractive compared to his friends/other people in the picture (check)
- Photo in Europe looking very classy and cultured (check)
- Individual photo in a suit probably from standing up in a wedding, showing that he cleans up well (check)
Sooo Kevin initiated conversation early and stated that he was in the business field and studying to get his MBA. We talked aimlessly about other insignificant details and after only 4-5 lines of conversation, Kevin asked me out. Normally I would attempt to learn more before meeting up with him to ensure that the date would be a success…however I was desperate and feeling super sorry for myself on that Sunday. So I exchanged numbers and agreed to meet up with him later in the week. I remember thinking, “Take that Summer Tinder Love, I have hot Kevin now and it only took me 2 hours to find him.”
Until this point I thought I was a genius and maybe even the Tinder whisperer…and then the Tinder gods struck me down from that pedestal quickly by giving me truly a horrific date with Kevin. The first warning sign was that Kevin asked me out to ice cream on a Tuesday at 7:30. I thought, “Awww how original. I have never been on an ice cream date in Chicago and maybe this will be special.” WRONG–the reason I have never been on an ice cream date in Chicago is because I am over the age of 12 and any dates after 5 P.M. should include alcohol NOT ice cream.
Anywho, I arrived for my ice cream date with Kevin and, to put it kindly, he was NOT cute. (Strike) He must have picked the best 4 pictures of his life, but I decided to let it go and see if he had a redeeming personality. He DID NOT. (Strike). So rather than replay every word of that 45-minute ice cream date, I will give you the highlights of why you should never swipe right to Kevin.
- Upon arrival he mentioned that he was going to the gym immediately after ice cream because he knew this date wouldn’t last long.
- He hates his job and is annoyed that I don’t hate mine.
- He told me that I was too positive.
- He explained that he used to have a girlfriend who he lived with last spring but she dumped him and now he is just lonely.
- He hated Europe when he visited. (Who the fuck hates when they went to Europe?!?)
- He has a predisposed genetic muscular disease that may put him in a wheelchair eventually, but don’t worry, it shouldn’t be for a while.
- And Kevin informed me that the fact that I drink Diet Coke will kill me.
Much to your surprise I’m sure, Kevin and I did NOT work out. At the end of the date, we hugged it out with looks of mutual disgust on both of our faces.
So my word of advice…Keep Calm and Tinder ON because it only takes one swipe to find Mr. Right Now.
And never agree to go on an ice cream date. Unless you’re 12. Then it’s adorable.
[Editor’s Note: My favorite part of this is when Olivia feels justice has been served to her former Tinder flame by finding Tinder Kevin in record time. It’s just like a Jane Austen novel.]
POSTED IN: chloe cline, does tinder work, Guest Post Wednesday, ice cream dates, swipe right, tinder, Tinder disaster
Guest Post Wednesday: What Happens Out of Town, Stays Out of Town. Unless Your Friends Are Assholes. by Dating Olivia
POSTED IN: Canada, chicago, dating, dating olivia, Guest Post Wednesday, moving to warmer climates