The Sweetest Taboo

From The Jackson Free Press

This past Valentine’s Day I got two things: a single white rose—which every woman older than 18 received at church that day—and a card from my mother. That’s it. No more. It’s virtually impossible for it to have been less. That’s the way things work when you’re unattached.

I keep trying to think back to the last time I had the “couples” kind of Valentine’s Day. If I’m counting to save face, it’s been three years. Doing the real math, it’s been five. I’m not a huge Valentine’s Day fan, but it’s the principle of the matter.

I’ve decided next year should be different, but the numbers don’t seem to be on my side. Over the past couple months, I’ve seen and read numerous reports saying that because I’m black, educated and have standards for any potential partner, there’s a little less than a 50 percent chance that I will ever find myself entertaining any real male companionship. Because so many black men are incarcerated, homosexual, undereducated or think all black women are combative, they—you know, “they” — have basically told me to give up hope for a long-term relationship unless I’m willing to hook a guy who’s at least 10 years my junior, date outside my race or become a lesbian.

Read the rest at the Jackson Free Press. Or read the

My dating history has been spotty. Every time I meet a man I think is the one with whom I’ll enjoy companionship for a while, he turns out to be … an ex-con, gay, undereducated (formally or otherwise) or married. But I don’t trust “they.” They’re the same ones who have bumper stickers that read: “Rush is right.”

I have a confession to make: I have created a profile on an online dating site.

People don’t talk much about online dating unless it’s to disclose their friends’ horror stories, or until they’re engaged to their computer love and finally get tired of telling the “we ran into each other in a coffee shop” lie. But despite any stigmas that may henceforth follow me, I’m conducting my own social experiment, and I’ve decided to share some of the adventure with you.

Finding the site that fit me best was a bit confusing. Chemistry.com has quirky commercials, which I love, but I questioned whether I was cool enough for it. Match.com, where actress Essence Atkins met her husband, says I’d probably meet the love of my life in six months, but after that “I’m just a goof looking for ball” commercial, I just can’t. ChristianCafe.com seems like it’s more aptly suited for people who’d rather “marry than burn.” While I do want to eventually marry, and I definitely don’t want to burn, I don’t know that the man for me would choose a wife with his desire for legal sex outweighing compatibility. That left me with eHarmony.

If you’ve ever filled out an eHarmony profile—which I’m pretty sure none of you reading this has—it takes forever. After filing out that form, if I ever applied for a job to work with the federal government, I’d kindly point them to all the hoops I had to jump through to find a mate online, and they’ll shake their heads in the affirmative with understanding. I suppose this should give me comfort when I see dreadful online dating scenes flash in the theater of my mind. After all, I could meet a sicko in Rainbow just as I could meet someone normal (as normal as I am, at least) online, right?

Filling out an online profile will tempt even the person with the most integrity to lie. Yes, there are the basic questions: How old are you? Where do you live? Do you smoke or drink? Do you hurt babies? But then there are the questions that make you wonder if telling the truth will limit the communication requests you’ll actually get. To questions like, “How do you typically spend your leisure time?” or “What are your eating habits?” do you respond truthfully and say, “Every now and then I sit down in front of the television with a pint of Ben & Jerry’s and …” or “Veggies are my friends!”

But now the do is finally done. I’ve filled out a profile. So far, eHarmony—which urges me to “fall in love for all the right reasons”—sucks. And so do the men they’ve matched me with. Men who are (and I quote) “passionated (sic) towards people who are least thought of in the world who are in need of help because I am deep,” are looking to “not hurt wen (sic) I fall in luve (sic)” and warn in the additional-information-you’d-like-to-add section: “If you don’t like sex, don’t send me a message.”

Valentine’s Day 2011 is 11 months away. I think I’ll give eHarmony three months to find me a date for next year because, honestly, it’s expensive. I’ll keep you posted. Hmph. And they say love don’t cost a thing.

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~ by MsInklination on March 10, 2010.

One Response to “The Sweetest Taboo”

  1. […] Sweetest Taboo Revisited Last week, a column I wrote for the Jackson Free Press, “Sweetest Taboo,” got a few more comments than I expected. People’s interpretation of what you offer […]

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