Hit or Miss

I’d like you to meet…

In San Francisco, there’s a new dating phenomena called “Date My Friend” — a by-invite Friendster-like happy hour party. It started out with 50 people and has since grown to a mailing list of over 5000. Just goes to show that people like to have some assurance the person they go on a date with is not a creep.

I wish there was something local like this for gay men — not because I’m afraid of dating a creep, but because I’d like my friends to vouch for me to others. I’m not a creep — I’m just painfully shy. There’s a certain self-confidence necessary for hitting the dating scene that I lack. It’s all about projecting who you are. The problem is, I don’t really know who I am anymore.

There’s something comforting in seeing an old photo of yourself with friends and knowing who you were at that point and how you stood in your relationships to others. Moving to NYC has probably been the single biggest change in my life, marking the before and after periods of my life. But now, in those unguarded moments when I catch a glimpse of myself in a window on the subway, I don’t know who that guy staring back at me is.

I honestly have no idea how the people I’ve met recently would describe me to others. Am I as much a cipher to them as I am to myself now?

While editing my online personal ad, I look at the picture and see a guy who wonders if 29 is too old to be learning how to date, who feels like he isn’t as good looking, buff, funny, or intelligent as any of the men he’s met recently, and who doesn’t even have a clue who he wants to be. And no amount of trick photography is going to fix that.

3 responses so far (Respond)

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Pshaw… you’re a great catch and someone out there will be damn lucky to snag you. Be confident and they’ll find you.

Aaron | 30 Nov 2003
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I could have invited you to a shingding some friends of mine through a few weeks ago sorta like that DMF thing. About 150 single friends of friends of friends showed up and it went well.

Where did you meet these men you refer to?

diego | 1 Dec 2003
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Matt, first of all, I think you’re great! You were beginning to sound content in New York, and I’m sure you’ll come back to that. I have found that a big city is a great place to really find yourself. There is plenty to do to discover your interests if you seek it out, but you can also achieve plenty of time with yourself by yourself whether or not you prefer that time to being with others. Maybe it’s like forced soul searching, but I’ve found it to be useful. And the confidence is paramount… an ongoing struggle for many of us.. but the independence of successful city living brings that about once you fully realize what a big feat that is! I am sure you are just as great as those other guys… even if you aren’t exactly the same as any of them… variety is the spice of life. Can’t wait to see you this weekend! : )

Shannon | 3 Dec 2003