Being a 31 year old single woman is a lot like being a platypus in a fashion salon. But Courtney, that doesn’t make sense. Yeah, exactly. Oh sure, we could talk about female empowerment and careers and adventures and blah, blah, blah; the point is, being a single woman in her early thirties (holy crap, that happened faster than I thought it would) is weird. Weird not because being single makes me a freak of nature (though to some it might), it’s that everyone my age is married off and unavailable. What results is a strange merry-go-round of solitude. Courtney does things alone because Courtney is single because everyone Courtney’s age is married and does things with their spouse, so Courtney does things alone. I’m not even on a carousel horse with a frilly mane. I’m riding the alligator. It has gum on it.

The first thing people ask upon the pronouncement of, “I’m single,” is “Have you tried online dating?” As if online dating is the cure to the single disease (spoiler alert: it’s not). As if all one must do to get hitched is erect an online profile, and voila, all the eligible singles of the world queue up, vying for your hand. Three tiered wedding cake coming right up.

The short, blunt, please-don’t-ask-me-about-this-anymore-because-I-hate-you answer is: “Yes. I’ve tried online dating.”

Sadly there’s always a follow up question, despite the finality of my verbal tone: “What sites have you tried?”

This question supposes that people who online date have a sliding scale, like there’s an or, all the way down to Having tried,, and at varying subscription prices, I’m confident that the online dating selection is the same across all platforms. The choice is how much to pay for the freak show that parades through your home.

A note before moving on: I’ve only seen the profiles of men, but I assume women are just as bizarre and have committed many an online dating sin. Duck faces? Blurry edge photos? Photos of just their boobs/butt/puckered lips? CATS? Lying about their body type? Check, check and Double-D but is really an A check. So if you have a Y chromosome, don’t get flustered with me. Woman are just as psycho, I just don’t see it. Okay? Okay.

In an attempt to shut people up when asking why I’m not married, I’ve re-upped my profile. See, I’m online dating. So I’m trying. Leave me be. I used to think dying alone was the worst thing that could happen to me. Since rejoining OKCupid, I’ve changed my mind. Here’s why:

The Mothman Cometh

Tis better to be alone than to be married to a man who posts pictures of himself as a butterfly and captions the photo “Metamorphosis.” The pose reminded me of Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs dancing around his home wearing the skin of his victims. It puts the lotion on its skin. We’ll swaddle our children in little cocoons of love.

"Metamorphosis" In general, not a good idea to post (or take) a photo in which you're pretending to be a butterfly. Unless your a five year old girl.
In general, not a good idea to post (or take) a photo in which you’re pretending to be a butterfly. Unless your a five year old girl.

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Pepperoni and Cheese Head

If music be the food of love, let’s put my face on it. Yes, I clicked through OKcupid’s “QuickMatch” and found a man who thought it was a good idea to Photoshop his head onto a slice of pepperoni pizza, the pizza floating in a purple galaxy. Doesn’t your pizza float in a galaxy? Hi, I’d like to order a star cluster and planet pizza with extra face on it. Thanks.

Why do people think it's a good idea to make faces with or put faces on pizza? And galaxies?
Why do people think it’s a good idea to make faces with or put faces on pizza? And galaxies?

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The Crazy Cat Men

Cat-centricty is not limited to women. For some reason, dozens of men think it’s a good idea to post selfies with their cat(s). Perhaps these men think the photos make them appear caring and sensitive, but to me they look like perverts, and their cats are not their pets, they’re dinner.

I googled "man selfie with cat" and got this gem. It's real. He posted this online. Intentionally.
I googled “man selfie with cat” and got this gem. It’s real. He posted this online. Intentionally.

[hr gap=”20″]

Tall, Dark and Half Naked

“I love a hairy, shirtless man who takes a selfie in the bathroom using his phone, a vacant expression in his eyes, the toilet in the background—lid up,” are words undoubtedly spoken by every girl who hoped for love. Because fifty percent of the online dating men (and, to be fair, probably women) think iPhone bathroom mirror selfies are a great idea. I don’t think that’s what Steve Jobs had in mind when his company invented the iPhone. Pretty sure Nicholas Sparks has never written about it, either.

I found this guy on Pinterest, but the site it's from is called Only Way is Gay. So guys, just an FYI, that's how you look in these photos. Even if you're ripped.
I found this guy on Pinterest, but the site it’s from is called Only Way is Gay. So guys, just an FYI, that’s how you look in these photos. Even if you’re ripped.

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Who’s the Fairest of Them All?

Selfies, selfies everywhere and not a friend to be had to take your photo. Disclosure: I have a personal animus against the proliferation of selfies. One or two selfies, no biggie, but all the time everywhere? Especially the ones that are supposed to look candid, while you’re driving in your truck? A random face photo of you on a mountain top? That’s supposed to fool me? And my favorite: goofy face selfie. Sexy.

Another random Google finalist. This is pretty typical of the selfies of online and online dating.
Another random Google finalist. This is pretty typical of the selfies of online and online dating.

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Let me take a photo from my computer and not even look into the camera, or smile. That won’t make me look like a child molester. Chicks love men who stare with dead eyes into their computer cameras. That’s how Brad and Angelina met, I know it.

[I thought about putting a photo here…but they’re just so bad. Use the one above as a reference.]

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Despite all of the above, the profiles all promise that these guys are “easy-going,” and “laid-back.” Raised by apes, but at least they’re casual about it.

Thoughts I have when clicking through

  1. I wonder how much I could sell my eggs for…
  2. I really must spend more time with my niece and nephew, they’re the only children I’ll have in my life.
  3. Living alone is nice. Peaceful.
  4. Hmmm, he has his shirt on in all of his photos, and only two are selfies and…read, read, read…he has a job and doesn’t live with his mom. I’ll “like” his profile, but he’ll never make a move.
  5. Why does this guy have photos of paddles and whips in his profile? Oh, he likes to be spanked.* He must be the one.
  6. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to live in a convent. I wonder if I can have dogs…

Verdict? Online dating sucks, and it’s what I imagine purgatory to look like: suffering with the hope that maybe it’ll end in a few thousand years when God decides I cannot take any more of it.

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*Not making that up. He even had photos of him being spanked. This is reality, Greg.

Though I didn’t post photos of the real men of which I described, the men I wrote about are all real. It’s a scary world out there. Hold your spouse close and never let them go, because dear Lord in Heaven.


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  3. Gary Wolfe December 26, 2016 at 12:39 pm


    My wife and I met through It was her last attempt to find someone. Before me she kept getting matched with, in real life, “Pot-bellied truck drivers w/missing teeth.” — my wife. It boggles my mind that, of all the things/places to lie/embellish anything, how people can’t see that doing so in an online dating profile is _not_ counter to your cause. It’s like ordering a steak at Daniel’s Broiler and getting served brussel sprouts and a side of durian. No one is suddenly going, “I was completely wrong! This is what I really wanted all along.” Bringing it back to my wife’s encounters, she wasn’t about to utter anything like “…take me home you toothless Buddha!”

    I failed e-harmony’s personality test. I didn’t even know that was a thing. Coming off of a divorce from a woman that didn’t know the meaning of fidelity, it’s not the most swell result for which one could hope. If you haven’t seen it, it’s a message something to the extent of them being unable to place you into a particular profile, I think I straddled a few, that they would rather deny their services rather than risk a bad match. “I’m broken and will be alone forever.” I remember thinking.

    I tried The issue w/this one, in my opinion, is that it’s an open meat market where everyone can browse/stalk everyone. _That_ site, in my estimation, is full of cheaters. With the exception of one person, out of 13 dates, this was my experience. Around this time, started an e-harmony-like offshoot called I recall seeing ads specifically targeting the e-harmony rejects. They have a similar personality test and a restricted who can be seen and progression once the initial dual opt-in of interest has occurred.

    I had slightly less dates through Chemistry than match. But all were a) more professional (careers/educated) and no cheaters. At least none that things went far enough along for such an admission would be required. Full disclosure wrt the ‘professional’ assertion. This is more a function of my choice in the opt-in aspect of the site. It is not meant as a blanket guarantee that that’s all one will find therein. I just knew what I was looking for and didn’t wish to waste time with lesser ‘matches’.

    We were married about a year after our first date; just over 6 years ago.

    Do whatever floats your bubble as it were, but I would encourage you to try the site w/the same eye towards ‘choosiness’ as I, and my wife. It’s not _all_ bad.

    Given your wit, mirth-generating abilities, and aesthetics, I can’t imagine you’re destined for a life of solitude. You seem like you’d be a blast to be around.

    Good luck.