Gwnewch y pethau bychain

Ok, cupid….

So, maedbh7 said “hey, you should go over to OKCupid and answer a lot of questions because it would be nifty and stuff to see how it came out” and, lacking any compelling reason to tell her no, went and did so.

I should preface this by saying that I don’t take matchmaking sites at all seriously. I understand what they’re for, but I don’t at any level understand just how that’s supposed to actually work. I form attachments to people by getting to know them, and only after having gotten to know them to I really start to form serious attractions to them. While I admit to random lust from time to time, its confined to the realm of general fantasy and I don’t actually consider “going there” as a result of it.

Having said that, a lot of the questions being asked are amusing to me. Some of them are obvious personality or IQ questions, some of them are obviously “where do you fit on this political or moral spectrum”, and some are badly formed to the point of being completely unanswerable.

And then, every now and then, I find one unanswerable because it simply doesn’t consider factors that I need to know to make a desision. To wit:

Would you enjoy being tied up and having your lover write poetry on your naked back with a feather quill?
o Yes
o No

My immediate reaction to this was: “Well, that depends. How good is the poetry….?”


Here’s your sign…




  1. I’m writing it.

  2. words from Sappho are a common choice…

  3. My answer would be “No -- I want to be able to *read* the poetry!”

  4. (snork!!!)
    ahem. My immediate response, after guffawing, was “I love you!” hee.
    How good is the poetry indeed!!
    I’m reminded of that great bit in Bull Durham where Susan Sarandon is tied up and looking ecstatic and the camera pans down to Kevin Costner painting her toenails. I’d much rather have poetry. And come to that, I’d much rather have Susan Sarandon.

    I think the answer would be yes -- IF -- if I liked the person, if I liked the poetry, and if and only if they read it to me as well. And no permanent ink.

    Adrienne Rich has some lovely erotic poetry.

  5. What’s the line from Pride and Prejudice? Something like this, I think: “In my opinion, there is nothing more efficatious in killing off love than a sonnet.” “I rather thought poetry was supposed to induce love, not drive it away.” “Certainly, when the love is strong, anything may feed it. But if the preference is of a wispy sort, one good poem will drive it away utterly.”

  6. FWIW, I’m an online matchmaking success story. But not necessarily an online matchmaking recommendation.

    I won a free year on So, I got 54 weeks to play on it (two week free trial + free year). I was checking it out at least once or twice a week the whole time, and sending out 1-4 ‘hi there!’ e-mails per week. I got less than ten replies back over the course of my year, and only met two women face-to-face. At ten months or so, I had decided that I was not going to spend money to extend my membership.

    My wife had signed on for the two week free trial. I sent her a ‘hi there!’ -- she got it sometime in her second week. We meet within a couple of weeks, and were married on the six month anniversary of our first date. We’re coming up on our fourth anniversary in about three weeks, and it’s still honeymoon.

    For, they had multiple choice and essay questions. One of the things I realized early on was that you used the multiple choice questions to do a high-level filter (For instance, I’m a dog person, and allergic to cats -- so I filtered out ‘has cat(s)’), and then read the essay questions on everyone who gets through the high-level filter to decide who to try to contact.

    They’re a way to meet (hopefully interesting) people that you otherwise might not meet. Instead of thinking of it as a matchmaking service, maybe you could think of it as a friend-recommendation service? Meet some guys to see if they’d make good / interesting friends, and maybe one of them will turn out to be the guy you fall in love with and marry?

    • I don’t think I could marry a guy, even if I fell in love with him, unless we were willing to move to Massachussetts. And even then, my wife would probably object. 🙂

      I see your point. Like I’ve said, my not understanding of them has a lot to do with how I know I meet people and form friendships. I suppose it’s *possible* I could do that via a site like this, its just outside of my normal mode of social interaction that I don’t know how I’d cope with it. They’re obviously a useful resource for a lot of other people, and I’m not disparaging those who use it.

      Congratulations to you and your wife on your anniversary!!

      • Even if I didn’t object, I don’t think MA has gotten quite so far as to legally recognize poly marriages. 🙂 (And I’m emphatically not so obliging as to divorce you, dear!)

    • Interesting that out of perhaps 100-150 emails you sent back, you got back fewer than 10 replies. That about gibes with what I’ve seen — I’ve sent out very few messages (because I don’t pay for membership on most sites) and have gotten a minimal number of responses.

      On sites where you have to pay to reply to a message, that makes sense, but I really don’t understand why women on these sites often lack the common decency to reply (even just to say “sorry, not interested) on those sites where it’s free to respond, as it is on Matchmaker! That’s just poor manners, and it disgusts me.

      Overall, I haven’t been too impressed with personals sites (or with the people on them who are in my area — there are rarely any people I’m interested in contacting).

  7. FWIW, my mom met her 2nd husband through the old-fashioned kind of personals--you know, where you had to type up your ad and send it into the paper, and there was a character limit. This was 12 years ago.

    I also met one of my best friends on Yahoo Personals. We dated for about six months, were good friends thereafter, and he was part of my wedding party. 🙂 So it can work out.

    As for the poetry…hm, are we talking original here, or say, Shakespeare? That might affect my answer…

  8. And you know, I had to answer no. Quills are scratchy. Now on the other hand, if they were to write the poetry on my back with chocolate flavored ink and a paint brush, that would be differnt. -H…

  9. Forget about the quality of the poetry — they need to specify the ink!

  10. I’ve played around there, too, under a slightly different handle. I don’t take matchmaking sites seriously for matchmaking. I think of it as a possible way to meet other people to chat with that I might have things in common with, not for matchmaking. Sure, it might turn out that I’d get to know one of those people well and get interested, but that’s true of however I meet people, really.

    I skip a lot of the questions that I think aren’t well written.

    Your example made me think of an amusing couple of scenes from Dangerous Liaisons!

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