Sunday, May 5, 2013

Why the clearance aisle?

 I am a recently-turned-40-year-old single woman of the never-been-married variety. And yes, I do own a cat. Everyone I know is married, soon-to-be married, divorced and remarried, or happily ensconced in a relationship where they don't feel the need to be married. I have gotten a lot of dating advice over the years, some of which I paid a crap-ton of money for. The latest flavor has been that I should try online dating. Everyone knows someone who knows someone who met their soulmate online. I have tried it in the past with extremely limited success, but I thought I'd give it another go. "What have you got to lose?"suggested a friend. Indeed.

I first tried one of the more popular free sites. I sweated over the profile essays. Will they think I'm funny, or cynical? Do I sound too desperate? Does this sentence say "send me a message" or "I'm a psycho hose beast?" The website also has the user answer questions and rate which answers they would prefer from a potential match. Your profile is compared against other people and you can see the answers to their questions as well. I answered over 100 questions, uploaded a few pictures, and waited for the messages to pour in. I'm a catch after all, right? Not so much. I have also returned to one of the sites that uses fancy algorithms to determine who your perfect match would be. In my opinion, all I am doing is paying to be rejected. It's a daily dose of soul-crushing reality delivered to your inbox.

What I have concluded after using these dating sites on-and-off for several years is that at my age, I am dating in the clearance aisle. You know, the aisle in every discount store that has the red-tag items that they can't seem to ditch. That's right. The people who were messaging me were just like the teddy bear with one eyeball, or the bag of mittens that are all left-handed. I was getting hit on by the cologne that smelled like feet, or the radio that only receives AM stations. Now, I'm not saying it's all bad. You can find some great stuff in the clearance aisle. Every once in a while you'll find a set of sheets that perfectly match your comforter. But, you have to do a lot of digging to find it.

The purpose of this blog is to share some of my experiences in the clearance aisle. Some stories are funny, some sad, some ridiculous, and some are disturbing. Several fit more than one of those categories. I just can't shake the feeling that I'm not the only clearance-aisle dater out there. And if others have stories like mine, it can be helpful to know that it's not us. Although lately I have been getting the distinct feeling that I'm one of those one-eyed teddy bears up on the shelf.

Someone in my family once told me that I'll never find someone decent if I use a picture of my cat on my social network page. So I'm including it here. He's a better cuddler than my last boyfriend. Just saying.


  1. Love the Stories! Proud of you Sis!

  2. .......Carrie ....these stories are so real have a great gift to be able to write in this style...humorous stories ..spiced with tragedy....... that do bring a a smile!!! ...Too.....wanted to day that you are one very special lady that touches the heart of anyone she may me...Jude'