Thursday, August 09, 2012

Hey Universe, my dance card is closed.

During the recent layover date I received a perplexing email from a stranger. It was doubly perplexing as he emailed my pretty much defunct hotmail address:
From: Dave L*****
Date: Fri, 27 Jul 2012 20:49:48
To: Jessica V***** 
Subject: RE: cheap couch
Yes lets do dinner tomorrow here at my place and then we will see about spending the night on the roof :) You can't see the table till its done. I think I'm going to sell some stuff. I have a guitar and amp I never use and maybe my fancy camera but maybe i'll wait till after the canoe trip so I can get some nice photos.
After racking my brains for all of 2 minutes, I determined that I did not know this person. But hey, I almost emailed a movie ticket confirmation to the City Manager of Milton (Same first name as H) recently so I understand the perils of email address autofill all too well.

Not wanting poor Dave to miss out on a night of hot potential action on his roof, I replied in order to make him aware of his error. Obviously, I bcc'd D as she was sitting right next to me trapped in hellish 401 cottage-commuter traffic:
From: Jessica V****
To: Dave L*****
Date: Fri, 27 Jul 2012 21:55:38
Subject: Re: cheap couch 

Oh hey Dave! I would love to spend the night on your roof, but sadly no longer live in Vancouver.
The next day I received this:
From: Dave L*****
Date: Sat, 28 Jul 2012 06:20:15
To: Jessica V**** 
Subject: RE: cheap couch

Oh man oh man sorry about the miss-sent email Jessica-that-I-used-to-know.
Hope your well wherever you live now. If you ever come back to Van you always have a place to stay on my roof haha :) 
Wait...I know/knew this guy? I Garcia'd the Google. Yep. I knew him.

Confession Time: I was a Closet Serial Online Dater. (You were expecting me to say Alcoholic, weren't you?) In my younger days I was stealthy and secretive and ashamed, but since its become more than commonplace and no longer has a stigma attached to it I outed myself. In my most recent go-round I was downright outspoken about it and had a blast. And hey, I won! I'd say I've dabbled probably 8 or so times. Gerrit? Yep.

So. Turns out Dave was an online date from my very early Vancouver days, real early, Coquitlam early. 2008. WEIRD! Which begs the question: Was it an intentional email to try and re-establish contact? Its not like after 4 years my email address would still autofill. Was it to put a feeler out and see if I was back 'on the scene' ...maybe pick up where we left off?

Because  I totally get that. Dating lulls and recent breakups can lead a chronic online dater to scroll through old contacts for comfort. Like if you have a particularly awful date, you send a text to that person that was pretty normal and fun even if your connection wasn't amazing, just to get the bad taste out of your mouth (hopefully not literally). Dave and I had similar interests, held down good conversations, and as a bonus: neither of us were creepy old men pretending to be what we're not. Because Online Dating - while there are a ton of fun, normal, interesting people - is also rife with let downs and weirdos. One apparently normal, relatively attractive guy gave me a book about Gnomes on our first (and only) date at the Elephant & Castle. He told me it was 'Written by a Gnome'. 'You mean by a personabout a Gnome.'. 'No. Written by a Gnome.' (No really. I kept the book for proof.)

Now, 8 months ago I would have emailed Dave back and flirted and kept him on a back burner just in case I ended up back in Vancouver and needed a cute masculine sure thing to buy me a bourbon and tell me I'm pretty. But that Jess is dead, so I simply didn't email him back.

Then I noticed something peculiar happening in my inbox(es) over the past two weeks:

From: Andrew L***
Sent: Monday, July 23, 2012 7:07 PM To: Jessica V****
Subject: Black Keys

Hey Jesse, Good seeing you yesterday. I still have an extra tix for the Black Keys' August 4th show at the Molson Amphitheatre. They're in section 201. If you or B****n would like to go please let me know.
I met Andrew when I bought his 2011 Black Keys tour tickets from his Craigslist ad at an extremely inflated rate. We met up to exchange money for tickets, and then he emailed me for a few weeks asking me for dinner to make up for the price he made me pay but I never went. Until the events of today I had previously dismissed this email as an accidental address autofill to his alleged friend 'Jesse' and thought it was a weird coincidence that it was regarding the only thing about me that he actually knows. I didn't respond.

From: danny o******
Date: 9 August 2012 10:39am
To: Jessica V*****
Subject: fall coat

Should I send it to you with yr paintings?
lemme know .....
how was the Vanesa visit?
I met Danny online in January. He's a hottttt professor at a local University and I was excited to go on a date with him but then I met H 2 days before so obviously I cancelled. We have had zero contact since then aside from an email in late January wishing me well and telling me to give him a ring if it didn't work out with whomever I must have met to have fallen off the face of the earth like I did because I didn't seem flaky. (I can be) It also said that he hoped 'the guy could cook' and he had impeccable grammar. I didn't respond.
Today, 1:04pm Jeff via sms: ''Late nights because more can happen in an evening when you stay up late. Beatles or Led Zep?"
Right after I met Jeff here online in late November he went travelling in South America, but we would email and/or text on the regular for a bit. We used to just send options to each other then answer with our preference and why. Example: Q - "high heels or flats?" A - "high heels with flats in my bag in case we have an adventure...late nights or early mornings?" His text today is the direct answer to the last text I sent December. Also, dude, answer is obviously ROLLING STONES as if my online dating name - RubyTuesdae - didn't immediately give away my love for blues rock and frozen dairy. Clearly, I didn't respond.

Uh, REALLY? Is accidental emailing/texting on purpose a thing now? I've only been off dating for like 8 months, have things changed this much?? Or are these really all just coincidental? And if not coincidental, why now? A 10 second FB search turns up a pic of me beaming at the love of my life and/or a dog, ceasing to wear makeup and sporting an alarming amount of plaid, so why bother?

I have fond memories of dating, but f-ck am I glad I'm out of that game.

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