"iDate premium T140 v7 Bta" Concentrate on What is Most Important
You know what I'm talking about - the dating website with those groovy commercials that always showed happily married couples where they "pre-screen your matches based on 29 dimensions of deep meaningful capability".
That and the fact that "Love begins here" was too good to refuse.
So after filling in the 75 page love compatibility questionnaire that took me a good 10 or so hours to complete, I come across SeductiveSirenSally69; 5 foot 9, black hair, athletic build, non-smoker, PHD qualified, atheist, right-wing extremist, ½ Spanish - ½ Chinese, earns > $900,000, loves Chinese food and with a headline that caused me to pitch a tent.
After exchanging a couple of "kisses" we decided to meet up for a coffee.
Now to make sure that I was on my A-Game, I decided to bring my MacBook Pro so I could check for places to go after coffee, my iPod in case she wanted to sing along to some tunes, my iPhone 4 to check the latest movie times and my iPad to showcase to her my latest logo designs.
Come to think of it I was pretty prepared for date night until...
5 minutes after we greeted each other, I decided to take out my new Blackberry smart-phone to check my Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon and Delicious accounts because I ran out of things to say.
She then proceeded to make some excuse that she had to go home because she was "feeling tired"! What an ass! KingRichard *** You don't need some professor to tell you in a 25,000 word research paper that the dating scene, in addition to dating etiquette, has completed changed with the plethora of technology that has consumed the lives of everyone on this planet.
Even an ancient tribe living in the remote depths of the Amazon jungle has probably seen a wannabe Indiana Jones doing barrel rolls and back flips trying to take pictures of them on a Nikon D5000 Kit - AF-S G 18-55 VR and then see him transfer the photos on a Toshiba Satellite L505D-S5992 with a AMD Turion? II Dual-Core Mobile Processor M500.
I'm not against technology because we are creatures of convenience and technology definitely satisfies this primal need in more ways than one.
In other words, our lives are dictated by the route that offers the least form of resistance and when it comes to the dating scene, why put yourself in a situation when 10 "Hellos" to 10 burning-hot women equates to 10 "Nays" when you screen, pick, dissect and choose in the comfort of your own home where you are "The" Game Master.
With technology you can be the Game Master in everything you can possibly dream of.
Grocery shopping online? Check.
Paying the bills online? Check.
Informing the world via Twitter about your autobiography which is exactly 140 characters in length? Check.
Breaking up with your imaginary girlfriend via Facebook? Check.
Finding an imaginary one in 5 minutes flat? Check.
Last but not least, a personalised butt-scratching service all-year round? Check.
In this day and age, you can literally sit on your comfy behind whilst staring at your computer screen all day long without the need to talk to anyone because everything can be done with a click of button.
Now don't get me wrong, this is an astonishing world that we are living in but we seem to be forgetting something.
Getting back to Richard's diary entry, Richard has forgotten the one invaluable skill that plays an integral part in how we integrate and ultimately, how we co-exist with one another and that is, he doesn't even know how to even communicate with his date! So I pose you this question, have our social skills taken a back seat with the advent of technology? Definitely! But at the same time, the fundamental problem here is that a lot of people don't even know how to communicate properly when they are on a date let alone the intervention of technology.
What is ironic is that when we meet people for dating/relationships/sex/love, we seem to revert back to a Neanderthal form of communication and simple language skills are thrown out the window.
Combine this with technology that creates an impenetrable bubble around the user and we create a situation where our communication skills become near obsolete.
Now it is this inability to communicate that effectively makes the date absolutely pointless - this is a fact.
At the end of the day, nothing in this technologically driven world will ever replace that one-on-one interaction.
EVER! You may or may not agree with me but it's also arguable that this technologically driven world has complicated dating and at the same time made us too lethargic.
Let me be clear, I'm not against dating websites because I genuinely believe they do a great job is matching people up with similar qualities but what ever happened to the traditional way of meeting someone without the 75 page questionnaire? I want you think about this.
You could spend countless hours and even days browsing profiles on sites such as RSVP, Match or eHarmony.
You could spend another hour paying money to send "kisses", "winks" and "hugs".
If you're lucky, she'll respond within the day but there's no guarantee when or if she will respond because your profile wasn't "attractive" enough.
When she finally does respond, you now have to open your wallet again and pay the dating site to be able to talk to her via an online messaging system or via a controlled video feed.
After a week or so of back and forth chats, you now finally get to see her face-to-face for a date.
What's interesting is that when you finally sit down together for this date, she's look completely different to the photo she sent you.
Add to that, she's only 155cm tall as opposed to the 170cm she put on her profile.
To put the icing on the cake, she's actually a divorcee with 2 kids as opposed to a university student with 2 cats.
But putting that all aside, you now don't even know what to say - you can't even mumble your way through let alone carry on a conversation! Don't fuss - it's not entirely your fault because she too doesn't even know what to say.
You should be fussing because the whole process of going online, signing up to a dating website, filling-out a massive personality questionnaire, viewing multiple profiles after paying a fee, filtering potential partners, paying another fee to chat and then finally seeing her in-person but then realising that the both of you are totally clueless as what to say, probably took a couple of weeks.
Fair enough - a dating website is a very effective way to meet new people but weren't you supposed to meet up with SeductiveSirenSally69 NOT BoringBeastlyBetty13? Yes I understand, we're running "busier lives" but as you can see from the above example, you're just back at square one! Now let's compare the above with meeting people offline - how about that girl you see every day on the train platform when you go to work? What about that girl who gives a wink from across the room? Here are some questions that I now want you to think about.
Instead of relying on technology to find your Princess (or Knight in Shining Armour), wouldn't it be more advantageous to concentrate on improving your communication skills so that you can talk to that girl on the train platform? Now wouldn't that $35 on your monthly dating website subscription be better spent on something else? Just remember, if you make an investment on improving your communication skills, it is something that will last you a lifetime.
Now go concentrate on what is most important!