Lakey Gets Into The Nitty Gritty of Making a Good Profileby Lakey Lumin on August 29, 2012
This is the latest post from our Chicago-based Date Reporter Lakey Lumin. She’ll be giving you a first-hand peek into her dating life. Catch up on her story here. In this post she covers filling out her profile.
So why did I choose HowAboutWe? Well, to be honest, there are two reasons:
1. They asked me to write for them.
2. I’m bored of Plenty of Fish and OkCupid.
To be totally honest, when I first started online dating (read about why I did in my first post), HowAboutWe sounded a bit intimidating at first. Like, “oh, shit, I actually have to GO OUT with people?” But yes, you do. Because that’s what it’s all about. And trust me, there are plenty of people (especially girls, I’ve heard) that online date for the sole purpose of padding their egos and never actually go out with anyone. HowAboutWe naturally cuts down on people like that because those types go somewhere else. It also cuts down on the sometimes ENDLESS messaging back and forth that I’ve experience. I really just don’t see the point of this. I don’t want to tell you so much about myself before we even meet that I’ll have nothing to say to you when we do! So if you are actually looking to venture into the world with real humans, HAW is perhaps the place for you. And perhaps its the place for me too. I just started, so I’m still exploring, but I like what I’m seeing so far. Hello, cute boys! Why do you all live in Lincoln Park? And why am I moving to Wicker Park instead?
I always like this part. I really love exploring new dating sites. And because I’m a total narcissist, I love answering questions about myself. I AM 24. I AM a graduate student. I AM agnostic. It feels powerful to state yourself so strongly. Is this silly? Absolutely, but I don’t care.
I know a lot of people lie online and I try my very hardest to be completely honest, but there are places where I may be stretching the truth a tiny bit. And these are not the places you may think (height, weight, income). Instead, they are in my political beliefs (I might lean a little further left than “liberal,” but hey, I’m a sociologist, leave me alone!) and about whether I want children. I put liberal so people won’t think I’m a commie bastard, but I AM honest about my lack of desire for children. I’m hesitant about this because I like the idea of being able to change my mind about my hatred for sticky, loud little people and don’t want to be boxed in as the kid hater that I am.
SELECTING A PHOTO
Anywho, after I answer a few demographic questions, they ask me to post a photo. I post one I took relatively recently, maybe six weeks ago. I know people hate when people’s photos are out-dated online and a guy I recently talked to said he’d been tricked by multiple “secret fatties” – AKA people who posted photos from before they gained 45 pounds. Partly for this reason, I post a shot that shows at least half of my body. This way, no one can be confused when I show up how I am. I am as skinny/fat/fit as I am and I’m not going to try to trick anyone. I’m also all made up, ready to go out, wearing a dress I just bought that day. It was a self-taken photo, which I usually am against, but I look good in it, so that’s the most important thing. (FYI, it’s the pic at the top of this blog, if you are interested in evaluating it for yourself. Thought in the comments, please.)
POSTING A DATE
Next, HAW wants me to post a date. This makes me nervous. I haven’t gotten to see what other types of posts people write so I don’t know what’s cool. But I know what type of thing I would think is clever, so I suggest getting together and eating a buncha caramels. I set the location as somewhere. It’s a quote from one of my favorite movies – Good Will Hunting – so I figure only people that “get it” will reply. I think I’m clever, so I like the idea of doing things like this. [Editor's Note: This is genius.]
ANSWERING PROFILE QUESTONS
After my first date is set, HAW asks what I’m like in the real world by asking me a series of questions. The first question is “an awesome place I’ve been:” I answer “The island of Mykonos, Greece after watching Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.” The thing I’ve learned thus far in online dating is that it’s best to be specific and give a little personality. Since my personality is kinda weird, I let it flow. I only want to hang out with people that will like my weird personality, so what’s the point of trying to be normal?
Next they ask “the movie I’ve watched the most times.” I give the honest, but potentially embarrassing answer: “’Overboard.’ God, I love that movie. That or ‘Love Actually.’ ‘Fools Rush In’ and ‘Empire Records’ are close 3rd and 4th.” Is this more than one movie? Yes, but who cares. I don’t think HAW is going to kick me off for not being to the point.
The third question asks me to give a five sentence summary of my life so far: “After growing up in the Twin Cities, I moved to Milwaukee for college. I graduated and worked at an ad agency for a year. Then moved to Chicago to start my next scholastic adventure as a grad student. Now I’m here, I love to read, play trivia, write creatively, watch TV series, play with my doggy and play roller derby. My dream is to teach in a foreign country someday.” I think this covers me pretty accurately and also gives people stuff to ask me if/when we go out. Again, it’s specific and shows I have pretty varied interests.
The final question I answer concerns my first/dream concert: “My first concert, I think, was Dave Matthew’s Band at Alpine Valley. I wasn’t a huge fan, but my friends were going, so I thought it would be fun. My dream concert would be if The Black Keys played with Jack White and then Freddie Mercury was reborn (as a nonzombie) and reunited with Queen.” People tend to think that musical taste is REALLY important in dating. I don’t really understand this, it’s not like you are going to a concert every day or anything and I’ve never broken up with someone because they hated The White Stripes, but I go with it anyways.
Once I’m done with the questions, HAW lets me explore. Yes, favorite part. I’m surprised by how quickly they let me get to this part. There are usually a lot more hoops to jump through. I think the whole process only took about 10 minutes, at most. And that’s partly because I got distracted by my love for Zach Woodlee on The Glee Project, which I was watching while signing up.
MY POTENTIAL DATES
First impressions of the guys: surprisingly cute. I’ve been bemoaning OkCupid and POF for not having attractive enough people lately. That doesn’t seem to be the case here. The dates sound remarkably fun too. Some more than others. Initially I saw about three dates that included eating meat, which I don’t do, so that made me slightly nervous. Like, “is this place strictly for carnivores? Will I not fit in with my herbivorianism??” I also was concerned that the dates would seem like too much of an initial commitment. I’m not big on commitment and I’m very interested in having built-in escape routes to avoid awkward situations. A lot of the dates sound like they would last no more than an hour unless you really hit it off with the guy. I can deal with an hour.
By now it’s 1 a.m. and I’ve spent too much time perusing, as I always do. Plus, Colbert is now over, so it’s off to bed. First impression of HAW: awesome and I’m excited to see who expresses interest in my silly date posting. Can’t wait to explore more tomorrow. Hope my detailed explanation of how I developed my profile was interesting/helpful/bemusing. Let me know what you think!
Lakey Lumin is a gender sociologist who is determined to live up her 20’s in Chicago. She is inordinately impressed by good trivia skills and witty banter. Follow her on Twitter @LoveLustLakey and check out her other blog at www.chicagonow.com/love-lust-