After all the emails and comments I got about last week’s post, What Not to Say in Your Dating Profile, it seems I touched a nerve. So here’s an earlier piece about the art of profile construction. I believe many of your grievances are discussed. Enjoy…
There’s really only one rule to follow when you’re creating a profile for a online dating: Be Different. OK…wait, no, there’s two rules. Be Different, and Avoid Hardcore Racial Slurs. Alright three rules. Just three. Be Different, Avoid Hardcore Racial Slurs, and Try To Abstain From The Phrase “Sweet Ass Titties.” I’ve learned that one the hard way.
Seriously though, being different is the only important thing. There are so many profiles on each site, and so many of them are earth-shatteringly boring – you need to make setting yourself apart the goal. Here’s a profile the other day that caught my eye…
“Secretive conservative sensory quiet mastered the art of listening without the words.”
That’s it. That’s the whole profile. Maybe she was crazy, or really super foreign, or just operating on a different plane than you and I – but either way, I remembered her. No way in hell I’m sending her an email, but two days later she’s still occupying some space in my mind – and that’s what we’re looking for. Jump out to your reader, wake them up, make them the forget the 10 ridiculously lame profiles they just skipped past to get to yours. The best way to do this? Avoid every lame ass Internet dating cliche out there. In case you’re new to the online romance game, I’ll do my best to collect these banalities for you here, in one easy-to-read locale. So here then is a summary of Every Internet Dating Profile Ever Written.
First, the obligatory picture from too far away to actually be useful…
Gosh, what do I say in these things? [Anything really, just try to avoid cliches.] LOL! [Too late.] I totally never thought I’d be Internet dating, but I know a bunch of people who’ve had good luck on here, so I figured, why not give it a shot? [You mean, other than price, time, unlimited potential for failure, and the requirement to write an appealing and attention grabbing profile? Other than that, yeah, why not enter into things flippantly?] Hey, if we hit off, we can just tell our friends we met in a bar! [Exclamation point!]
OK, sorry, I got off track there, I’m just not great at talking about myself. [Oh, I have a hard time believing that.] But…if you asked my friends and family they’d probably say I’m loyal, hard working, but still totally laid back. [Your friends and family think you're a St. Bernard?] I love to laugh and have a good time [Everyone does. That's why it's called a good time.], and I’m just as comfortable in a cocktail dress as I am in a pair of blue jeans. [What a relief. One time I dated a girl who was uncomfortable in blue jeans. Can you say, "disaster??!!!??"]
I love to travel, either to the beach, or somewhere exotic and off the beaten path. [Again, we all do. Those are called "vacations."] But if I stay in the city, on the weekends you can usually find me either dancing the night away in a club downtown [it is wildly unlikely that I would find you in any such place], or on my couch watching a DVD. [Wearing either...a cocktail dress OR blue jeans!]
WHAT I’M LOOKING FOR
I am looking for someone who knows what he wants. [I want to click on the next profile.] Someone who likes to work hard and play hard as well. [In - God knows - how many different kinds of dresses or pants.] Sense of humor is a must for me! [I can see that.] I need someone who can make me laugh, whether it’s after a hard day of work or out people watching after brunch. LOL! [It seems to me you'll laugh at anything. You just laughed at a sentence that you yourself wrote that doesn't even have any jokes in it.]
I want someone I love spending time with, but who also understands that sometimes I just need to hang out with my girls, and he can have a night with the boys. [I believe Turtle from Entourage is available.] Oh, and I know it’s cheesy…[Never stopped you before], but he MUST love dogs. Basically I’m looking for a partner in crime [Come on. What does that even mean?] who is always honest [the last guy cheated, didn't he?], and can always cheer me up when I’m having a bad day. [LOL? No LOL? I thought that one had LOL written all over it.]
Sorry, I’m totally rambling now. [Don't be too hard on yourself. You've been rambling since the beginning.] If you’ve gotten this far, you should totally send me an email! I don’t bite, I promise! LOL! [I knew it. LOL!]
OK, admittedly, my treatment there was fairly obnoxious. But trust me, if you’re dropping any of those hackneyed profile tropes on your reader, they’re thinking the exact same thing. Be original, be creative, and try as hard as you can to really be funny. Pull even just one of those off, and I promise you’ll be remembered. With or without the hardcore racial slurs.