Online dating can teach you a lot about yourself

Published by adviser, Author: Jonathan Janasik - Commentary, Date: March 7, 2013

After my girlfriend broke up with me, a friend tried to comfort me by saying that there are plenty of fish in the sea. I honestly have no idea what the hell he was trying to tell me. I’ve got blue balls and a broken heart, how the funk is a healthy population of fish supposed to compensate for that?

One thing that never ceases to cheer me up is to do some investigative reporting for the Rocket. Using this breakup as a new lease on life, I decided to partake in a personal study of how internet dating works. To be more specific, I decided to look at some popular websites like eHarmony, the Craigslist personals, and, of course, in order to see what women are looking for in men.

The first surprising trend that I noticed was the abundant amount of girls asking for a “Redneck Romeo”.  Truck nuts. Plastic ballsacks dangling from the back of a pick-up truck is first thing that comes to mind when anybody says the word ‘redneck’, so associating  one of literature’s most famous characters with that stereotype creates a ridiculous image in my head. I imagine Romeo throwing empty cans of Budweiser at Juliet’s window, and asking her if she wants to come over to watch NASCAR.

Also, spoilers for anybody who hasn’t finished reading Romeo and Juliet yet: Romeo is super clingy and he kills himself. So unless that’s what you’re looking for in a relationship, I don’t think that a “Redneck Romeo” is actually what you’re looking for.

Another phrase that is commonly used on these sites is “tired of boys, looking for men”.  This one also struck me as odd, because all three of these websites require you to be 18 or older to sign up. Is there really a rampant problem with kids 16 and under signing up for these websites? If that is the case, I would recommend that they should stick with these boys, because they seem like real go-getters. These are the types of boys who aren’t afraid to get shit done.

Maybe these women aren’t talking about boys as an age range, but rather as a sort of negative mentality within grown men. If that is the case, what is it that separates the boys from the men? The amount of money in his wallet? Amount of hair on his chest? The size of his truck nuts?

This led me to another important question: Am I a man? I was the pinnacle of masculinity in the fifth grade. I was the best at playing Super Nintendo games, I owned an impressive collection of stuffed animals (girls love sensitivity), and I was the first boy to grow a mustache, and I’ve always considered that to be the day that I officially became a man. But now that I’m going through this existential crisis, I’m starting to second guess myself.

When I think of the quintessential men, I think of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone. Both of these men are so manly that they can’t even speak like normal people. You can hear the excess testosterone travel through their voices. Simply put, they’re dream boats. If I’m going to impress any of the classy ladies on, I’m going to need to be more like them.

So what makes these guys so manly? After extensive research, I’ve narrowed it down to three aspects. They have big muscles, nice cars, and loud guns. This is a bit of a problem because I am a bit shrimpy, I don’t have enough money for a good car, and I’m afraid of loud noises. Looking at these attributes, it seems as if I’m utterly screwed when it comes to proving myself as a man.

That’s when it hit me. John Lennon, singer and guitarist of the Beatles was also quite shrimpy and I’m pretty sure he was afraid of loud noises! Recently I heard a story about him that put all of my fears back into perspective. His wife, Yoko Ono, recently released a clothing line in honor of her late husband. According to Yoko, the clothes would pay tribute to her favorite aspects of Lennon. The clothes feature large handprints on the crotch of the trousers and even more handprints on the man-boob area of the shirt. Simply put, it’s beautiful.

This story really spoke to me. Maybe I shouldn’t be asking myself what women want from me. I’m not going to find happiness pretending to be a “Redneck Romeo” or by unraveling the mysteries of what it means to be a man. In order to be happy, I think that that I need to be like Lennon and find somebody who cares about me for me. What’s really important in life is to find somebody that will carry on your legacy long after you’re gone.

So to my ex-girlfriend if you’re reading this, I hope you remember all of the good times we had. I hope you never look back with regret on those nights we wasted playing Super Mario World together.  Most importantly, I hope a small part of me lives on in your art. Who knows, maybe the sentimental memories of me will inspire you to create something truly magnificent, perhaps something that could be even greater than Yoko Ono’s hand-on-crotch trousers.


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