Apr 292012


Once upon a time, in the bygone days of yore, when neanderthals roamed the earth, technology was sparse; primitive communication devices were used and it could take days or weeks to reach someone. Mail was not a reliable method, it was sent using small, square objects known as “stamps” and was distributed via a primeval system known as the “US Postal Service.” A slightly better (though still quite antiquated) system was a phone call to something known as a “landline”- most of the time, no one even answered!

If you were lucky, you were connected to a terribly unsophisticated device known as the “answering machine”- it would play a generic recording, telling you to leave a message after the beep. So you would leave a message after the beep, hoping the person whom you were trying to reach would choose to call you back. The almighty answering machine was the only way to screen your calls then. The only way known to man.

Yes, sir! I’m talking about the *early nineties!*

It was such a backwards time, I struggle to imagine how life was even possible! How did we survive? How did we find people when we got separated at events? At noisy concerts! In crowded malls! We must have made concrete plans, carried “date books”! Went to libraries! Wrote things down and looked them up later!

Most importantly, how did people *date?* I shudder. There were no *dating sites* that you could log into and instantly be led to a veritable watering hole of vastly *inappropriate* single people! I have found surviving evidence of SINGLES’ groups, SINGLES’ chat lines! SINGLES’ nights and SINGLES’ church functions! People appear to have been separated like cattle. CATTLE! You were single, you had *single* friends- you went places in SINGLES’ groups. There were SINGLES’ dances, SINGLES’ wine mixers and SINGLES’ volleyball tournaments! All for the purpose of what?

Meeting the love of your life?

When it came down to it, after meeting a woman, you had to *call* her. No question, that’s what you *had* to do. You couldn’t just send a casual and risk free text that read, “Hey, it’s [so and so], we met [whenever], hit me up if you ever wanna get together.”

The awkward first phone call was inevitable. You *had* to do it, there was no way around it- “Hello, Mary. This is Ed, we met last night. I was wondering if you’d like to go Roller Blading with me sometime? Or we could go see the new Pauly Shore flick? Maybe Putt Putt?”

You would *never* have used the phrase “hit me up”. Never.

If ever I have gotten a phone call like this, it was from someone no less than eight years my senior. Someone who learned how to date in the nineties, of course. The over 35 crowd will literally keep you on the phone for *hours*, interviewing you, trying to *get to know you*, when face it- it ain’t gonna work out anyway, let’s just meet and get it the hell over with! Then I won’t have to regret the *hours* I put into *getting to know* that dude who turned out to be a midget and spent the whole night sneezing on my belt buckle.

In the nineties, the phone call reached a new level of importance in the dating world! But in the 21st Century? Now there are *thousands* of dating sites! It’s commonplace to see someone type out their vital statistics and place them online underneath a picture of their face . . . IN FRONT OF GOD AND EVERYBODY! How messed up is all this?

Personality tests, compatibility tests, people have checklists! CHECKLISTS! It’s all so sick! I’m a *person*, not a science project! Men ask for my phone number before they ask my *name*!

Now that’s partially why I’ve stopped dating, I refuse to take part in these silly antics any longer! None of these things has improved dating for me and in the *nineties*, I’d have been just as dissatisfied! All that *SINGLES* crap?!? I DON’T WANT TO FOLLOW THE HERD!!!

I honestly don’t think I’d be happy dating in any decade. Whatever happened to *romance*?

I’m going to go wait for Cary Grant on top of the Empire State Building. In the rain.

Like a normal person.

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