Thursday, May 11, 2006

Why I gave up on internet dating

A few weeks ago I said that I had given up totally on the whole internet dating thing and here's a major reason Why. I was flip-flopping on posting these because of a moral dilemma. If I posted them I might be somehow violating some privacy issues, but the more I thought about it I realized that wasn't the case. The person who posted them on the internet gave them freely, and I feel that the person who posted them was guilty of fraud. Maybe not criminal fraud, but fraud on a different level. I'm not sure what you would call it, but it was a deception. After I thought about this deception for a while I began to feel better about posting them here. For the most part I'd never post anyone's picture without consent, and even the small grainy picture of Baby Bear taking the dump in the woods I got permission. All other pictures I post here of people, like what's found in my Funny Foto Fridays are found readily by doing a Google search for "Funny Pictures". So I began to feel better about exposing the deception.
About a year ago, when I still had a personals ad up on Yahoo Personals, I received a reply to my ad from a woman who was allegedly portrayed in the photo above. I'll admit it. I'm attracted to blondes, and being a child of the 80's really liked the hair. She seemed sincere in her first note and we began chatting on Yahoo IM. I had been burned by bullshitters in the past so I kept it like that for several weeks. I wasn't about to give out my phone number or jump into anything really fast. I wasn't going to get suckered by another pretty face.
We chatted like that for a few weeks, and seemed to get along ok. We had a lot of things in common, went to school at the same time, same age, like the same music, blah, blah, blah... But something still bothered me about her original photo. She admitted it was a few years old, and and I had to concede that mine was too. She said she still looked the same but had put on a few pounds. No biggie. That was never a really big deal in my books anyway. The most recent picture of me at the time was three years old and I basically look the same so I took her words as they were.
This went on for a few weeks and we had finally set up a afternoon date to have coffee. Before that could happen though she told me she had her daughter take a new picture of her and would I like to see it? Sure I said, send it...
Below is what she sent.

Ok. Imagine if you will my reaction... I'm really not that shallow, but come on! I know I'm no Ben Affleck or Brad Pitt by a very long shot... But what the fuck!

The first reaction was "She's had a rough paper route"... And all the tats. BIG, major turn-off. She never told me she had tats. One or two tastefully done tattoos are one thing, but the illustrated Lady? No way. And another thing. I was a cop for too long and I spotted it right away.

I contacted a deputy in the Sheriff's Office who I had become friends with and gave him her name and he immediately knew who she was. A rap sheet longer than my arm, mostly prescription fraud and bad checks, but also a few for prostitution thrown in for good measure. Didn't even have to go to NCIC or County or State data bases. He knew her by name. That's pretty bad when a cop knows someone like that. It tells of an ongoing pattern of contact with law enforcement... And not the good kind.

Just what I need.

Ok. I know that people can turn their lives around with drugs, alcohol or anything. Hell, even the issues I had in my own personal life I've charged and got control of and I'm nowhere near the person I was two years ago. I have very good friends who have a past of severe and chronic substance abuse. But they've taken control of their lives and are no longer that way, totally in control and better people. Anyone can turn their life around. But this was too much.

Adios Muchachas!

Does this make me shallow? Perhaps.

But what this shows is a pattern of lies and falsehoods. Trying to convince me she was a completely different person that who she really was. And it insulted me too on an intellectual level also... That I would be so stupid as to continue to believe the bullshit. Even before she sent the picture I was getting vibes that she wasn't being completely honest with me...

Maybe there's still a part of me that's the jaded, burnt out cop who doesn't believe a thing anyone says. I'll tell you, if I heard one more time "You're my hero" or "I'll never leave you" I'd scream. But don't try to bullshit me on something as basic as this. It'll only piss me off and insult my intelligence, definitely not win any points.

This wasn't an isolated incident either. The rest weren't this blatant or obvious, but it just seems that no one on these personals sites are who they portray themselves to be. I only met one person who was what they said they were and we're still very close and good friends now... And I'd like to think that the reason we're still not together as a couple is we're too much alike. She's like a carbon copy of me with ovaries.

But that's an anomaly from my standpoint.

I'm pretty sure there's tons of men out there doing the same thing so I'm not saying that only women do this. But from my experience it women like this one, or women who look like my grandmother looking for Russell Crowe...

For now I'll just work on the railroad and give up on the internet dating thing entirely.

Copyright 2006 Thomas J Wolfenden


25 comments:

Jay said...

I can't blame you. I mean, if people aren't up for meeting others face to face, you have to consider the possibility they're hiding something.

Or a lot of somethings.

But a 20 year old picture should have been a red flag. A big red flag.

Kat_womanx2 said...

After seeing pic #2...I can see why she posted pic #1. Thats probably the only way she can get any response at all. Being familiar with the internet dating thing, I realized that some people will do things like that in order to get their "foot in the door", so to speak (for lack of a better phrase at the moment) in the hopes of meeting someone that might possibly see something more in them beyond the first impression. However, I do have to agree with you here...she, herself, should have known that the difference in these two pics was more than any one man could handle..and the tatoos should have been mentioned wayyyyyy beforehand....

I believe you life is changing now for the better....new things are happening, and I think something very special is in store for you...I feel it coming, so put on some clean socks and underwear!!!

Courtney said...

OMG - I would have had the same reaction. Why would she feel that it's ok to post the first picture. It's like trying to sell a 12 year old dog by putting its 8 week old puppy pictures up. Not right. Not representative of the product. Not at all.

Carolyn said...

You're probably smart to stop the I-net dating. Since I'm married, of course I don't use it, but I've heard stories...

My ex boss from 3 years ago (who was a real jerk) used to make fun of people that used the net dating services. He called them "losers." Last Fall, I ran into a mutual friend of mine and his that told me to go home and look on Yahoo Personal's for a surprise. I did and my ex boss was on it, and lying about himself! LOL!

berly02 said...

Oh Holy Shit!
That first picture is a down right lie!!!
Yahoo should make her take it off.

Ranger Tom said...

Miss Jay: Yep, should have been a major red flag.. But hey, I'm not perfect.

Kat: Couldn't agree with you more... And the tats are way too much! And clean socks and underwear? You make it sound like i'm going to be hit by a truck, not starting on a new career!

Courtney: The "12 year old dog" analogy is pefect!

Carolyn: I gave up on it a while ago. But I do know where you're comming from. The most outragous one beleive it or not wasn't this one... It was a woman I met though it when I was still in Arizona right after my separation. Turned out it was the wife of a very prominant local politicial who had some serious issues I won't go into right now... LOL

Berly: It was a year ago, and I'm not even sure she's still got thee profile up. But yes, it was a lie.

Sherri said...

Hmmmm.... guys always seem to prefer blondes, even if it is vividly apparent bottle blonde. I'll never get that.

Red said...

I swear Tom, you and my dad have sooo much in common.. He's also an ex-cop, who after years of marriage had to enter the dating scene again.. He tried the net dating thing. Every time I'd tell him it wasn't a good idea. Like Miss Jay said, I figured for sure they had something to hide.. If all these women were as gorgeous as they portray themselves, why in the hell are they using the internet?

The good news is, he's really actually done. While he wasn't really looking, he met this really cool lady that he's proposing to this weekend at a cookout for the whole family...

So, I also agree with Kat.. Better have on your clean underclothes!!

honkeie2 said...

OH MY GOD! That is too much dude.....I thought that first picture was of some long lost 80's chick. And that last one would have had me running for the hillls.

Dirk said...

She's like a carbon copy of me with ovaries.
Eww.
Just eww.
I think you've maligned this woman, even if I've never seen her.

tsduff said...

Okay, I was about to start laughing... this COULDNT be for real - but oh my goodness, it is? As the title of your blog suggests... you've got to be kidding, right? This is too bizarre! When you find the weird ones, you really hit the jackpot :-D
I'm sorry Tom, because that is the most horrible internet dating story I've heard (or seen - yuck)yet. I've never been involved in internet dating (been married longer than not... until just recently) but I can only run screaming in horror at the thought.

Lisa said...

That first pic looks like a senior HIGH SCHOOL photo... Wow. Time has NOT been kind to her. Yikes.

Ranger Tom said...

Sherri: Can't explain it to you. It's one of those cosmic mysteries.

Red: Just like your dad? Uhuh. And I have stopped looking. The really strange ones have a way of finding me, internet or no internet.

Honkeie: I almost turned to a pillar of salt when I saw the pic...

Dirk: I was talking personalities... Sheesh. It isn't funny if I've got to explain it.

Tsduff: I'm definately NOT shitting you. And I swear I have this magnet...

Lisa: And I thought I had a rough paper route!

cantellya said...

I would definitely vote NOT SHALLOW. If any person wishes for "THE" relationship, she should know enough not to bullshit. My goodness! I was taken aback by the new pic. A FEW years old? A FEW pounds? Why lie? Did she think you wouldn't notice? Don't understand why she wasn't honest from the get-go.

Miss Fire said...

Oh. Oh, dear God. She's not only a liar but a nutcase. Oh. I need a shower now.

And you are not shallow - she is fugly.

Leazwell said...

Whew! That was close. Thank goodness for a strong grasp of the obvious... ;)

Babe Bennett said...

Interesting.......
I was hitting next blog and happened upon this. Poor you!
Good luck with the romance thing, but I'm with you; internet romance is not the answer.
Now, internet flirting, that's a whole different kettle o' fish!
-Babe

Cheryl said...

Damn...don' blame you a bit. yikes.

Outdoorsy Girl said...

Yikes. That's about all I can say.

And it is SUCH an understatement! I've not been into internet dating, but I've given up nonetheless. They say that's always when you find someone anyway...when you're not looking!

cmk said...

Words fail...sooooooo glad I'm an old, married woman and don't have to think about dating of any kind! (shudder)

Kev said...

You're our hero, Tom. We'll never leave you.

MadeInDade said...

Woah. Can we say "false advertisement"?? Atleast she gave you the courtesy of seeing the *real* her in photo before you actually went out and met her in person, that would've really sent you running. If your still trying the online dating thing I'd really like to recommend webdate.com, trust and believe that this would never happen to you there because they have video chatrooms, you can actually see on cam who you are chatting with, so there's really not much room for dissapointment. Good luck with your experiences !

phlegmfatale said...

She'd make a freight train take a gravel road, as my dear pa would say. Sheesh. I don't blame you for feeling deceived - the tattoos alone were a pretty big deal to have kept from you. Yuck. I feel sad for her.

JULIO said...

DAMN MAN, Im sorry to hear that. I have seen this happen to people that I know so I did a little research, looking for a site that uses webcams, so I found one, Webdate.com When I looked up the site, all I did was fill in one page of 6 questions and BAM! im chating in a video chat room. In this room I can see everyone and when I am chating with someone, I can see them when we are chating. I think thats awsome and suggest highly to check it out. Webdate.com.

Juliou

Mark Brooks said...

This is exactly why the founders of Webdate started the company.

Alas, people do tell white lies in profiles. Blatant misrepresentation should only be rewarded with a polite decline of a date. That's the eqtiquette I would recommend. If you show up on a date and you're massively surprised by the person in front of you, politely decline and leave immediately. Lies are no way to start a relationship of any kind.

Webdate is a great alternative because they offer webcam based dating. The camera doesn't lie. They're also strong on mobile phone based dating which is less expensive at ~$4 a month.

Mark Brooks
editor, onlinepersonalswatch.com