I first joined OKCupid in 2006. While I had met girls in the past from local chat rooms on AOL, this felt archaic and pre-Socratic; OKCupid was the true monolith. After creating my profile, I browsed the site carefully, thoroughly reading profiles and perusing responses to the site’s very important questions about flag burning and eugenics. That’s when I came across Nikki and decided, what the heck, why not cobble together a message? She was pretty, she lived in my town, we had mutual interests, and we both seemed to think that “kissing in a tent in the woods” was idyllic.
It was a beautiful and peaceful time in the single’s market where you didn’t need a whole lot of Game to get a girl talking to you and retain her interest. I didn’t have a whole lot of Game at the time, so it all balanced out. Nikki and I messaged back and forth a bit, chatting a bit on AIM, and then decided to talk on the phone… for weeks and weeks.
You can’t just meet someone from the internet! They could be crazy!
You can only truly appreciate innocence in retrospect. You don’t know you’re in the good old days until they’re heartbreakingly inaccessible. Life can be a perpetual kick in the balls. If I only had a bit of Game I would have been the Blow Job King. Now I have tight Game and I’m fighting other mongoloids for scraps. This is the kind of thing that keeps you up at night.
Nikki didn’t have any pictures of her body, and I didn’t think much of it. It didn’t occur to me to ask her about it. If she had something to tell me, she would have surely told me before we met and she risked potential embarrassment.
I still remember her adorable little lisp. It was subtle and endearing. We spent a lot of time on the phone.
We finally met and my jaw hit the floor hard when she turned out to be a big fat fuck. She didn’t tell me she was fat. Her angled pictures certainly didn’t indicate it. While she tried to come across as sexy and inviting, I sat in silent terror. My mind raced… I was sitting next to a crazy person! She must be crazy! How else could you explain completely misrepresenting yourself and showing up like the other person isn’t going to notice?! Only a crazy person would do that! And even though she was practically begging me to fuck her, I spent the duration of our date making polite chit-chat and then sent her packing.
To put this in a modern perspective, in today’s world this would have been the classic “pump and dump.” She wasn’t fat enough to inspire revulsion, but she was too fat to follow up on. Her misrepresentation would have taken guilt out of the equation; in this regard, it’s almost welcome.
There are attractive women on OKCupid, but they’re probably not talking to you. They get one hundred messages per day. They’re on OKCupid for a cheap laugh and an ego boost, and if they do get pumped and dumped, it’s by cooler guys than you.
For the rest of us, there are two types of woman on OKCupid. You can tell a tremendous about them by
their profiles the questions they answer the pictures they choose.
She’ll have charming and adorable shots of her face perfectly angled and zoomed in tight. She understands the beauty pedestal, and she wants to swing for the fences and knock it out of the park. She wants you to fall in love… and you do a little bit. Just a little bit; a fraction of a fraction.
You think, this girl with this very pretty face, making adorable and charming expressions… this girl could be my girlfriend. We could domesticate. I could come home from a long day at the office, to her pretty face and adorable expressions, and we could discuss how we both enjoy the same movies and food, how we both think animal abuse is horrifying, and how we would like to implement a plan to engineer a master race by sterilizing those who test under a yet-to-be-determined IQ threshold.
We could have this life together because she has a pretty face and we like the same movies.
Then you get to her last picture and she’s a big fat fuck, and you can reverse engineer what happened from here. This is what I call the “reality shot.” She didn’t start out posting this type of picture… it’s at the end of her line of photos for a reason. It certainly would never be her profile photo. What happened here is that she is too fat for the type of man that her pictures are attracting. She is too fat to pump and dump. She is too fat for this man to even bother being polite. The gap between her pictures and her reality was too wide, and she has experienced serious and humiliating blow-back too many times to attempt this ruse.
Her punishment is the last picture in her line-up of adorable, endearing, carefully framed and angled pictures. The reality shot. Her punishment is that reality has become inescapable.
It’s not that other girls match their pictures, it’s that they match their pictures to a slightly more reasonable degree in order to garner a pump and dump. They show up on the date, and the man secretly registers disappointment. He then assesses the damage and thinks, “since I’m here anyway, I may as well get sex out of it.” While the gap between her pictures and her reality is immediately evident, it isn’t wide enough to dismiss sex. He fucks her, she’s happy, he doesn’t text her again, he’s a jerk… now her job is to find an equally attractive non-jerk.
Only that last part never happens, and this is why you see a lot of the same girls on OKCupid year-after-year; very likely for eternity. That attractive non-jerk doesn’t exist, and she isn’t getting enough negative feedback to readjust her expectations.
American culture is built on this kind of symbolic incoherence. We don’t need substance or meaning; our symbols take precedence over what they’re intended to symbolize. The dating site picture is meant to be representative of reality, but it has become ultimately indicative of nothing. The selfie has replaced reality for the modern woman. Reality has become secondary.
It’s ten years since I met Nikki and now nothing surprises me. I met a girl a few weeks ago who had such an incredible gap between her stunning selfies and her in-person reality that I had her take a selfie in front of me to show me how it’s done. Fucking esoteric black magic. I watched her do it and I still don’t understand.
The selfie makes every girl a celebrity. Her dating profile is her magazine cover. She’ll still get fucked, she’ll still get messaged, and she’ll get to revel in that. She’ll believe the lie that she’s trying to sell and no one will tell her differently.
At what point does the lie become a more significant reality?
Strange question to ask during a strange time to be alive.
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