Off Match Dot Com


Caption: Just a lemur eating a watermelon.

First of all, they are shorter than you expect on MDC.  That was the problem with a series of my dates.  Shorter than expected, which means shorter than me.

One date crashed within the first five minutes.  I was explaining my research, my job, my passion, my perspective (“anthropological archaeology and human evolutionary biology”) and he posed a casual question, in the indifferent tone that one would ask, “do you take cream with your coffee?” or “do you like crossword puzzles?”  In this tone he asked me, “oh so, do you believe in evolution?”  Choked on my beer.  That’s how much I believe in evolution, that I choked on my beer.

There was a lawyer who I liked enough to see twice, but I think he had Asperger’s.

Then there was the Rachel affair.

I received the following message:


I am writing to you on behalf of Samuel, in the capacity of his assistant and close personal friend.  As a woman myself, at first I was shocked when I was given this assignment, but having thought it over I am glad to do it.  Samuel is the kind of guy who really lives life deeply and brings joy and insight to everyone he meets.  Girls are constantly flirting with him and trying to get him out on date, but he has yet to find someone who really stands out for him.  Hopefully I can help him to find the right one, and to keep him away from the wrong ones as well!  I am very protective of him!

Samuel has personally selected you as someone intriguing who he would be interested in meeting.  I’ve been authorized to communicate with you in order to set a brief date so that the two of you may get to know one another.  If you’d prefer I can also pass your phone number along to Samuel and have him contact you personally, but he generally prefers to just meet for a quick coffee or drink rather than dealing with endless emails and phone calls.  I look forward to getting to know you, as does Samuel.



Well, his profile portrayed him as a 24-year-old entrepreneur, the most ambiguous occupation and more often, non-occupation.  His pictures were also ambiguous.  Dressed up, in profile, he looked like the good kind of young entrepreneur.  Dressed down, face first, he looked pediatric.

Well, I liked Rachel.  She looked forward to getting to know me!  She seemed like a great assistant.  At least I knew Samuel has good taste in assistants.

Well, this sounded terrible.

But my friends oh-so-wanted me to go.

Well, fine.  Another attempt at love or a good story—which incidentally is becoming the theme of my life.

Rachel arranged for us to meet on Monday at 8 pm at the Starbucks in Davis Square “for ease/convenience,” but pointed out that there were many restaurants/bars for us to explore in the area.  Thanks Rachel.  I know that Starbucks.

I have a pre-date ritual.  Get ready while drinking a beer snob-approved beer and listening to Pandora-Katy Perry (and getting annoyed because it doesn’t play enough Katy Perry).  The process eases my nerves, vanquishes my pragmatic pessimism, and is a damn good time!  Usually a much better time than the date, but so it goes.

I arrived at Starbucks ~20 minutes early.  I absolutely arrive first because I abhor finding strangers or friends or my own mother in a crowd.  I hate scanning the scene with a look of bewilderment.  Plus I need a new eye prescription so my powers of discrimination are currently long hair/short hair and black skin/white skin (by the way, do they have Groupons for optometrists?).  To eschew this unpleasantry, I arrive early, contently read some pretentious magazine (or peer reviewed journal!), and make the dates identify me.

It’s a big mistake if they greet me with a hug.  It’s not their fault.  There’s no way they could know that according to some (many), I am the worst hugger.  I didn’t put it in my 500-words and it was not a fill in biostat (hugs? yes/no/the worst).  I don’t know how or why I’m such an awkward hugger.  I promise my parents hugged me as a child!  So if they greet me with a hug, we start off behind.

Fortunately, Samuel did not greet me with a hug.  That was the only fortunate thing about the date.

A pint-sized Indian guy showed up in wire-framed glasses and a woolen sweater vest.  It looked really itchy and he looked really meek, with low immunity.


“Yes,” I said with resignation and slammed Archaeometry (the journal) closed.

We crossed the street to a beer-snob approved bar and sat at window stools.

I immediately asked THE question.  “So what kind of person has his assistant handle his online dating?”

“Well Rachel is not really my assistant.  I was not having good fortune with the online dating and I hired this Rachel woman to do it for me.  She arranges many good dates.”

When the waitress came I ordered one beer and handed her the menu because I knew I would only be staying for one drink.  I had to leave after one drink because it was my roommate’s last night in town before she left for two months in Singapore and I promised her we’d get dinner (It was more or less true.  Just substitute Singapore for Downtown Boston and two months for 9-5 working hours tomorrow.  And substitute dinner plans for brushing our teeth around the same time).

When I ordered just one beer, Samuel was crestfallen: “don’t you want shots?”

He ordered a double whiskey, a beer, and calamari.

He lives with his parents and is an entrepreneur/waiter in their Indian restaurant.

He wants to move out soon and asked me, “So how does one find roommates?  And how does one know they will pay?”

At one point I asked, “So what do you do for fun?”

You know a date has sunk when you ask, “so what do you do for fun?”

And you know me, I believe in Evolution for fun.  Lemurs!  The End.

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