When everything is great, except that one thing.

Art reached out to me on OK Cupid. We were a 97% match – and as I’ve written before, that means something. It is not the fake “matches” you get on Plenty of Fish which are the people who messaged you and who you viewed. These are based on questions you answer (in my case, over 1,400).

He seemed cute in a nerdy way. His profile – not surprisingly, given our match percentage – appealed to me. He was open about the stage he was at and refreshingly honest. His messages were lucid, funny, and flirty.

We moved to text and it continued to be good. There was friendly and witty banter. He asked me whether he’d been nicknamed yet (how does he know women do that?!) and where he lined up in my set of suitors. He told me my honesty was refreshing, but his was as well. He liked my answers to the sex questions on OKC. He was intellectual.

He was keen and interested. Sweetly so. But I wasn’t quite sure when I could meet him. I was honest that I had plans that Saturday night but they could fall through. I didn’t say it was a date but I didn’t have to.

Well, as you already know from my Tony post, my plans fell through. I texted Art to let him know, and within minutes he had rearranged his plans so we could meet for dinner.

The fun messages continued. Here’s an example:

I have yet to write about my Saturday mid-day plans with someone new to this blog…but I will just say I was well fucked by the time I met Art at a restaurant in my neighbourhood.


There’s something about the first moment you meet someone – our brains register and process so much information in a matter of seconds. We aren’t aware of everything we are taking in, but we make snap judgements and form opinions.

My first thought was – oh, damn, I don’t think he’s attractive at all.

Why does it work that way with the super-high matches?

I should make sure I’m crystal clear – I can find attractiveness in most people. I really wanted to find Art attractive and I just couldn’t. There was nothing there. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Even the Accountant, with a relatively boring conversation, had things I found physically appealing.

We had an amazing conversation for a few hours. The high match percentage played itself out in our beliefs, interests, attitudes, and behaviours. Parenting, emotions, intellect, sex.

We had a hilarious conversation with the waitress when we were leaving. As she was running through our credit cards (I offered to split the bill and he accepted), she said “so, what are you guys doing next?” We looked awkwardly at each other and I muttered something about it being our first date. She commented she wouldn’t have known it was our first date and we had “really great chemistry”.

Then she repeated her question about what we were doing next.

I was dying a little inside, thinking about the truly great chemistry I had with Tony on our first date. But I recovered: we paid and left.

He offered to walk me home but instead we stopped in front of where he was picking up his transportation home. We chatted awkwardly for a while and then he asked if he could kiss me. I said yes, naturally. I was hoping I could get over the lack of appeal with great physical chemistry.

The kiss was tentative but wonderful. He was good. Not good enough to make me forget everything. Which yes, has happened.

And all I could think about was that despite all of my attempts to be attracted physically to this man, I simply wasn’t.

Even still, given everything, I was willing to go on a second date with him. I am trying very hard to give men a chance – quality men who I get along with are not common. I wondered whether having a positive physical response to him might help me find attractiveness.

He was very keen, but it didn’t happen – and it was my decision.

I will tell you why very soon, I promise.

27 thoughts on “When everything is great, except that one thing.

    • Yeah, I guess it is. I’m open to dating men I may not have before, as long as they meet my criteria. But sometimes it’s just not right.

      The frustrating thing is a strong intellectual connection is relatively rare for me. So when I find it, I really hope it comes in a package I can find appealing.

  1. Laws of attraction seem impossible to predict and to characterize. I’m sorry this one did not work out. Any possibility you could just be friends without benefits?

  2. I’m curious, how do you avoid getting burned out or jaded with going on so many dates with different people, particularly when they don’t work out? I’ve found it very hard to do without starting to see people as disposable or get dismissive a lot more quickly than I otherwise used to. Any tips?

    • It’s a good question Josh and I’m not really sure. I suppose there are a few things… I am generally very interested in people and human nature so I can get something out of most anyone I meet.

      I try to learn from every experience I have. So even though it sucks to experience bad behavior, for example, I reflect and try to see what I could have done differently or if the signs were there. Very few dates are really wasted experiences.

      Also, I still think I’m still new in the process. Although I’ve been single for two years, it was only last Fall that I started looking for men who wanted a relationship. But I also kept up some sexual exploration as well. Then I was with Tony for 6 months.

      I’m not sure how I would feel 2 years from now if I’d never met anyone I could date for a period of time. That would be difficult for sure.

  3. Are you finding that the guys you’re meeting aren’t up to Tony’s way of making you feel? To me, it seems like any new guy you’re meeting is fighting the ghost of Tony… and that’s not fair to a new guy because changes are good he’s gonna get nowhere with you because he’s not Tony (or “better) than his is.

    Whatcha think?

    • It’s a fair comment but the bottom line is while these guys so far have had the electric chemistry, what they DO have is emotional readiness, good communication, less baggage, an ability to make me feel comfortable with how they feel, etcetera… And that is wonderful, and reinforces how bad that stuff was with Tony.

      • I’m sure that makes you feel some kind of way but I’ve noticed that in your last few writings about situations without Tony – you weren’t talking to or seeing him – his name still comes up as you graciously share your experiences with us – and thank you for that.

        So, yeah, I wonder if (a) you’re comparing new guys with Tony and (b) if these comparisons play a part in how you’re reacting to other men and (c) if you think it’s fair for you to bring the ghost of Tony on dates with you.

  4. I can’t get past that physical attraction part no matter how hard I try…but I do agree with you it is certainly worth trying.

      • Not really. I am just teasing you. You can’t force yourself to feel physically attracted to someone. For me, my most successful relationships have always been around an 80% match, plus a physical spark.

  5. It actually happens both ways… some of us may unintentionally feel / act a little shallow when it comes to certain people, especially if they over do it. When they try harder to either like you or get their way, it’s an instant turn off. I’ve had quite the experiences with pushy women as well. Then again, i consider guys are more prone to do stupid shit in order to feel liked.

    • Art wasn’t particularly pushy nor did he come across as needy. The latter is bad, but genuine interest and acknowledging someone likes me is cool with me. But you are right when we are turned off by someone we don’t tend to act with as much honor, for lack of a better term.

      I think women do TONS of stupid shit to be liked by men. We put up with all kinds of shitty behavior.

What do you think?