Stop dating yourself

As I've mentioned before in this column, there's a "farmers only" dating service called, well, FarmersOnly.com. Its tagline is, "City folks just don't get it." While that may be true, it doesn't mean that farmers do get it when it comes to romance. Being a good farmer and being a good date may not require the same skill set.

"I like taking long walks, working 16 hours a day, losing money, worrying about the weather and wondering what the vet does with all my money." What a catch! Maybe city folks get it, they just don't want it.

Face it, there are plenty of divorced farmers out there who married other farmers, and some who wish they they had married hedge fund managers. Dump custody of the kids on top of all the other daily problems, and you're not talking about a bowl full of cherries -- whether you're a farmer or a nurse.

It's not just farmers who are looking for love in the wrong online places. There's OurTime.com for people over 50, ChristianMingle.com, JDate.com for Jewish singles, BlackPeopleMeet.com and LoveBeginsAt.com, and these are all in the top 10 online dating services. Who knows what's in the Top 100: maybe AmbulanceChasingLawyers.com, MedicareFraudsters.com, ActuariesInLove.com and dozens of others.



I'm all for farmers, Christians, African-Americans, older people and even ambulance-chasing lawers finding love, but here's the question: Should ambulance-chasing lawyers only date other ambulance-chasing lawyers? Should rich doctors only look for other rich doctors? Should newspaper columnists only date other newspaper columnists? Is that the recipe for happiness or disaster?

There are plenty of good Christians out there who other good Christians wouldn't marry on a bet. She talks too much or he smokes smelly cigarettes or his ex-wife lives next door or he likes to watch "Duck Dynasty" or she likes "Iron Chef." Just because you're the same race or religion or profession doesn't mean yours will be a match made in heaven. (Note to self: Start a dating site called AMatchMadeInHeaven.com. I'll make millions, and that's always a good thing to mention when you're dating.)

It might be better if the dating sites focused on other, deeper things that farmers, professionals and older people of all races and religions can relate to. Why not GoodSenseOfHumor.com or I'mPrettyQuiet.com? Or maybe NotaMorningPerson.com, WantLotsofKids.com, LiketoTravel.com or Can'tSitStill.com?

And then you have to start asking hard questions: Why is this person still single? Did his first wife not like getting yelled at? Could her first husband not handle her chronic lateness? Maybe she didn't like the mess he left in the bathroom, and he thought she should clean the house while he's out golfing. Throw in the extended families, a few personal quirks, a drug or alcohol problem and soon you think your dating website should have been called DamagedGoods.com.

"So where do you meet people, smarty pants?" is the next logical question. Didn't you go to school? Don't you know people at work? Don't the people you know have brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers? Your next great love may be bowling with your cousin right now. She may be out looking for a new car; he may be a volunteer at the soup kitchen. He may be picking out a shirt that wouldn't look good on him at the department store; she may need help at the hardware store. Even if he or she is not The One, they may know someone who is.

If you're going to sit in front of the TV or look at the computer screen every waking minute, your chances of meeting people in the real world are incredibly low. You've got to get out of the house.

Or off the tractor.

Contact Jim Mullen at JimMullenBooks.com.

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