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Over the following months, I would play with this slightly: I variously described myself as a dreamer, book lover, learner, educator, and writer, someone who views the world with a glass half-full of optimism and a dash of sarcasm.I noted that my friends describe me as “sincere and hilarious,” “fun to do things with,” and “a great trivia partner.” I peppered my profile with jokes and references to climbing, yoga, learning, eating all of the things, and drinking all of the drinks.It made me feel that I was more likely to find someone with whom I actually connected—not just another pretty face.I uploaded pictures and filled out my profile with basic demographic information—height, body type, religion, and education.Meanwhile, online, I could decide between sites with free memberships, such as Plenty of Fish; paid sites with an older, more earnest clientele, such as e Harmony; niche sites such as and Gluten-Free Singles; and many others, all slightly differentiated by price, demographics, and objectives.I signed up for Tinder and Bumble—two apps with simple interfaces that invite users to swipe on pictures of people they find attractive—as well as Ok Cupid.
I didn’t just wait to be noticed: I also actively messaged others.
I mentioned my penchant for ’60s soul, ’90s hip hop, indie rock, and the writing of Kurt Vonnegut—and alluded to my fondness for the board game Settlers of Catan to attract hot nerds.
That first night, after crafting what I thought was a suitably witty, cool, and interesting profile, I let the site’s algorithms work their magic.
Some of my friends pegged my situation to an intimidation factor.
I’m a lawyer working toward a Ph D in management, and I am a serious athlete, competing internationally for Canada in Ultimate Frisbee.