It’s time for the weekly Monday Match-Up Report: the posting where I lay it all out… the Christian connections, the Church chums, the PSO’s (or lack thereof).

Here’s the lowdown on the last five weeks:

I started a new job. I quit match.com. I joined ChristianMingle.com. I’ve met some people, and left others in the dust. Ready for the story? Read on…

My job involves meeting more people in a week than I usually see in a handful of months. It’s been adventurous, intimidating, exciting, and exhausting. I’m redeveloping my clear communication skills. I’m great at writing memos and telemarketing, but speaking directly to people gets me tongue-tied. So this new job is going to be a great rehearsal for the rest of my life. It helps that my boss and coworker both have a great sense of humor… and patience.

The match.com men were… not matchable. There’s only so many times I can say “no” to a tattooed gang-banger before I realize, match.com really isn’t paying attention to me and my selection criteria.

ChristianMingle.com is getting there. After I received three emails and twelve smiles, I decided it was time to subscribe. So I did. The first email was just a “hey”. Most of the guys are not someone I would pick, but that’s okay. I only need one, right? I started getting some actual interest about two weeks ago. I realized it’s totally okay for me to send the first smile. So when I see a profile I like, I don’t just click “yes”, I send a smile. If it’s someone I really think has potential, I send a card or a spark; you know, something that if he responds to it, I know he’s a paying subscriber like I am, and that means he’s also 90% serious about making friends and not playing games.

Guy #1 was interesting. He’d sent me two emails before I subscribed. So I subscribed and responded. The emails before I subscribed were basic. “Hi, how are you?” stuff. I wrote back, “Hey! I finally subscribed.” To which he responded, “send me a pic please”. Seriously?! I reminded him I have about seven photos on my profile. That was the last I heard from him. Go figure.

Guy #2 seemed sweet. Too sweet. The first email from him was full of terms of endearment. After one “smile” and a computerized “hello”, I’ve become his sweetie, honey, and dear. Yeah. I don’t think so. Terms of endearment should be reserved for, well, your dear one. Not some computer connection you know nothing about. I can imagine all the women he already calls honey and dear. No thanks. I’m not into sharing.

Guy #3 was very cute. Until the third email in which he disclosed a complete lack of self-confidence by telling me he hates how he looks and hopes he can compare with other guys I know. Nope. I’m not into counseling, missionary dating, or building up something that is so broken you have to announce it immediately. We all have down days and feel ugly now and then, but this guy doesn’t even know me. And here he is spewing negative already. I’m pretty sure I will never be able to make him happy.

Guy #4 sent me this email [edited]: “I like your profile, all i can say is that “The greatest gift to my eyesight is having my eyes set on your profile, i will like to know all about you. I’m [name] and you are? you can as well write me via email, [personal email address] will be waiting to read from you soon.” My radar is flashing, “Danger! Danger, Will Robinson!” and not just ‘cos I’m new to the whole trusting-guys-online thing. Let’s just say this one did not get a reply from me.

Finally, Guy #5 actually sent a nice email that asked me to respond via ChristianMingle.com, and was not pushy. So I responded. We’ll see if he responds back.

I did make some nice e-friends on the chat [Guy #6, who lives too far away to be a PSO, but still might turn into a good friend], and I also received some sound advice for “meeting” people on the internet. What to pay attention to, what to stay away from. And I find that there’s a world of people out there just like me. People who don’t go out into social circles for a variety of reasons. Time. Money. Location. Fear. Family. And being online offers a sense of community, even if we’re separated by 2,000 miles and cable wires.

I find myself being more social, online and in person. I’m able to express myself more openly to those I already know, and I’m looking for more opportunities to meet people. Shopping at the grocery store is no longer a chore, but a chance to smile. Going to work fills me with excitement to practice my verbal skills.

All in all, the last month has been a great outreach for me, a great growth spurt. And it’s only just the beginning.

At the end of this week, I’m heading off to Vegas to visit some family. That will be the biggest adventure yet. The chance to really get out and socialize. Family, crowds, adults, kids, all rolled into one weekend.

Betcha can’t wait for next Monday’s Report now, can ya? Didn’t think so. :)

What Happens in Vegas (and surrounding areas)... [Part One]
Comment Commentary: June 6, 2011
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