Your Best Bet for Love? Timing

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If someone had told me five years ago that I'd be spending another Valentine's Day at home with my dogs, I would have said that person was nuts.

Understanding that the man of my dreams isn't going to knock on my door and beg to buy me a 5-carat diamond, I have been trying to scrounge up a boyfriend in a very 21st century kind of way: I shop around on the Internet.

My latest attempt was with New York-based CrazyBlindDate.com. Rather than go through the exhaustive process of creating a profile and then nitpicking through the profiles of others, Crazy Blind Date matches clients, based on their schedules and some basic criteria, such as education and height.

It's free, and it's supposed to be quick. The idea is that clients can request a Saturday night date on Friday, or even that morning, and be sipping mojitos in four major U.S. cities by nightfall.

So far, Crazy Blind Date matches singles in Austin, San Francisco, Boston and New York. This week, its co-founder announced launches in Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles.

I signed up for the first time on a Friday morning, looking for a date the next night. I picked a solo date — double dates are a possibility — and created a user name and a password. Then I got to pick my date's preferred height (above 5'7'' please), his education (high school diploma was the least educated choice), his age (my age plus six years older), and smoking preference (no, thanks!). There were a couple of other options, including race and ethnicity, which I left blank.

Then I picked the neighborhoods I was willing to travel to, and times I was available. The site requests you stick close to your e-mail or your phone, as the Crazy Blind Date cupids will send you a notification when they match you, and it could be as soon as 15 minutes before they want you to be there.

I also was asked to create a spunky tag line to go with my profile — "There's got to be more to Saturday nights than Netflix" was my best shot — and upload a picture of myself that they scrambled for my match, to give him at least some idea of what I look like, though all you could tell from mine was that I had one head and was wearing orange.

Then I waited. Friday night came and went. No date. Nothing in my inbox on Saturday morning, except some credit card offers and a forward from my grandparents.

I should also mention that, while I was asked to confirm both my e-mail and my cell phone number with a code that CrazyBlindDate.com sent to me, I was never given a code for my cell phone, even after I requested it be resent several times.

So, at 6 p.m. — the start of the time frame I had requested — I made myself dinner. At 7 p.m., I threw around some toys for the dogs. At 8 p.m., I was in my jammies, figuring I could just get dressed again, if need be. By 9 p.m. — now, one hour away from the end of my time frame — I was on the couch with a Kevin Bacon movie in the DVD player.

Two weeks later, I tried again.

I updated my profile to expand the age limits, and took away the height requirement, though I kept my no smoking preference — a girl's got to have standards.

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