JBlog®

Be There in Five…

by Caryn Alper under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

There comes a pivotal moment while waiting for a date to arrive at which point you have to make the official call: you’ve been stood up. This moment differs from person to person – some people might give up after waiting fifteen minutes, others thirty, or even an hour for some.  Or you may be in the George Costanza camp and wait about five minutes, after which you eagerly go home, change clothes, order food, and bask in the glory of eating dinner in front of the TV in your underwear. (Wasn’t it George who said something like, “I never met an obligation I was upset to get out of!”?)

No matter your personal tolerance for tardiness, being stood up is no fun. But, how do you determine if someone is just really late, or if there is a legitimate emergency, or if they just aren’t coming at all? If you’re the one running late, how far in advance do you inform your date? If one party is running really late, at what point do you decide to just cancel or reschedule? If someone has a good excuse for being late or not showing up, do you give him/her another chance? As usual, I offer more questions than answers. However, here are some general guidelines:

  • I generally give people a ten-minute leeway without question, but I tend to run on the late side myself, so your tolerance may vary.
  • If you are going to be more than a few minutes late, inform the person who is waiting for you and apologize when you arrive.
  • If you’re waiting on someone who is 5-10 minutes late, try not to make a big fuss about his/her unpunctuality on the first date. Stuff happens – be forgiving. But if it happens continuously and it bothers you, speak up!
  • If you are going to be 20 or more minutes late, you better have a decent excuse (or make one up). Call your date, explain, and offer to reschedule if he or she prefers.
  • If you’re waiting on someone who is significantly late, call and/or text to make sure you correctly communicated the same date, time, and location. It’s definitely possible that one of you showed up at a different location of the same place, for example.
  • Waiting on someone longer than 20 minutes consistently? Possible grounds for dismissal.
  • In the event that you get a better offer on the day of the date (or on the way to) and you decide to ditch your plans altogether, please inform your date. Say something came up. I suspect that this happened to me once – I was waiting for a guy to pick me up, and he never showed. After texting and giving him a ring, I got no response and never heard from him again! But don’t worry about his well-being – I could see that he was regularly logging in online and even updated his profile photos not long after that night. Harrumph.

Anyway, the point is: be considerate of people’s time. If someone isn’t considerate of yours, proceed with caution. And if you’re completely stood up? At least you can always spend the evening with an awesome, good-looking person, i.e., yourself.


Patti Stanger is Single Again

by Tamar Caspi under Entertainment,News,Relationships,Single Life

Last week Bravo! TV’s The Millionaire Matchmaker Patti Stanger announced that she and her boyfriend of three years had split up. Patti got ahead of critics who would doubt her abilities as a matchmaker when she herself can’t seem to find a forever mate. And her statement is spot on:

“I’m a human and I own my issues… But that doesn’t change the fact that I’m incredibly good at my job. I excel at setting people up and helping them fall in love. Look, how many Pro Football Hall of Fame coaches have scored touchdowns in the Super Bowl? Coaching people into winning the big game is a different skillset than winning the big game yourself. I’m really good at being a love coach. In fact, I’d say I’m one of the best. But, at playing the love game myself? I’ve got some work to do and I’m chipping away at it. I know I’ll win my game soon, but until then, I’m going to keep being the best coach I can be.”

It reminds of the phrase “those who can’t do, teach,” and that’s exactly what Patti is doing. She can see the issues other people have and helps them to work on them while finding partners who would complement them — all the while she admits that she herself is a work in progress, setting a great example that none of us should ever stop trying to better ourselves.

I myself have admitted that my divorce, as well as most of my past relationships, made me better at dispensing dating advice. Does that mean I know everything about relationships? Absolutely not. Does that mean my relationship with my fiance is perfect? No. But, admitting that is what makes me — and Patti — good at what we do.

 

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Response to EPM: “Alex”

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

A response to the Extreme Profile Makeover for “Alex:”

“Thank you for the feedback. I’ll adjust some of what you said and try to get new photos. However, I don’t agree with condensing the profile; I want to stand out from the crowd and not be repetitive. I want to be myself and tell my story instead of having a generic profile. That’s why I went into detail.”

______________________________________________________________________________

Hi Alex,

I understand where you’re coming from; people often feel attached to their profiles, but I do stand by my recommendations. You use LOTS of adjectives, making your profile read as generic, which is exactly what you said you don’t want. Alas, I think we can come to a compromise.

  • First, condense your current answers and eliminate repetition as I suggested.
  • Second, add to a few sections with what YOU bring to the table and how YOU will be a great boyfriend/husband.

Writing a laundry list of keywords you want in someone doesn’t resonate. In order to stand out, go deeper and be more specific. Rather than saying you want someone with a sense of humor, describe what kind of humor would complement yours: is it more Seinfeld/Larry David style, or Friends/Chandler Bing style, or Will Ferrell/Owen Wilson/Vince Vaughn, or Jim Carrey/Sacha Baron Cohen, or ___________???

Finally, I strongly recommend you take my original advice about changing your age range. A 28-year-old man should not have an age range of 18-35. You’re too old for college girls and perhaps slightly too young for a woman in her mid-30’s. My general rule of thumb is a ten year age range for JDaters in their 20’s, 30’s, and 40’s, so at most I would suggest 21-31 for you.

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Encountering Past Dates in the Wild: A Field Guide

by Caryn Alper under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

The world is split between two kinds of people: those who run toward an acquaintance at the grocery store, eager to say hello, and those who dart away and hide in the next aisle in an effort to avoid forced small talk.  Which kind of person are you?

Do you fall into the same camp if the acquaintance is someone you previously dated? What if you recognize someone with whom you’ve previously changed messages, but you never met in person? What if the other person doesn’t recognize you? What’s the protocol here?

Relax, dear readers, I’ve got the rules below.

First, as a natural hider, let me say that avoidance is always an acceptable option.  On days where I just don’t feel like talking to someone, or I’m in work-out clothes with post-gym hair, or whatever, I’ve been known to feign interest in the nutrition facts of Worchester sauce until the perceived social threat has passed.  However, once you commit to the avoidance tactic, what would have been a 10-minute run to the store can easily turn into a tactical strategy of hard-core hide and seek.  Be forewarned.

But once eye contact has been established with the acquaintance, things get a little trickier.  Proceed as indicated below:

If you recognize someone who…

  • Is on JDate and you might be interested: Smile and make eye contact
  • Is on JDate and you are probably not interested: Avoid or smile weakly
  • You recently exchanged messages with: Smile and make eye contact
  • You exchanged messages over 6 months ago but never met: Avoid or smile, depending on whether you are still interested
  • You went out with once or twice: Smile
  • You went out with on the worst date of your life: Avoid — or, if you’re in a movie, make a loud scene resulting in the destruction of a pyramid of produce, causing innocent bystanders to start tripping over oranges
  • You dated for a few months: Smile and wave politely, depending on how things ended
  • You dated for a substantial amount of time: This really depends on the nature of your relationships, but given its length, you will know what feels most comfortable
  • Is a random, cute stranger: Smile! And ask for a food recommendation  – why not?

If you’re ever unsure whether to approach someone whose relationship isn’t listed above, come find me for consultation – I’ll be the one hiding behind giant sunglasses pretending to inspect the melons really closely.


Extreme Profile Makeover: “Alex”

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

Today’s Extreme Profile Makeover was requested by “Alex” — if you want your profile reviewed just send Tamar your JDate profile name by clicking here.

Profile Name:
I like your profile name — it includes your actual name without revealing too much personal information and has a catch phrase attached. No issues here. =)

Photos:
You need to add a headshot for your main profile picture, not a professional or business photo, but a close-up of your smiling face with your eyes showing. Next, I would advise some rearranging of photos:

  • Move the pic of you in flip flops from third to second place (the full-body shot typically goes second)
  • Your current second photo can be moved to the third slot
  • Delete what is now your current profile photo

The reason I don’t like your current main photo is because it’s too posed with a fake backdrop; plus it’s oddly cropped. Since you talk about family a lot, try and find a casual photo with a family member (or two or three) and add that as your last photo. Make sure you add a caption to identify who is who — and try not to have any female family members around your age in the picture as that can be confusing!

In My Own Words:
I like a lot of what you have to say in your bio, but I do think it can be condensed and edited. You say a lot of the same things in different ways as different answers, and it can get redundant. I understand that you want to make sure a woman knows you’re being authentic, but at a certain point the overkill has the reverse effect. Right now your profile is coming across a bit strong with the “keywords” — something you will understand since you’re in online marketing.

Here are a few quick tips to help you pare down your profile:

  • Cut any sentences that include the following words: honest/honesty, trust, respect, and any variation of the terms desire/adore/cherish/etc.
  • Sometimes less is more and you will prove that you believe all of the above by your actions
  • In fact, you can delete the middle two paragraphs of your “About Me” section
  • And in the “My Perfect First Date” answer, you use the word simple three times: delete the third one and simply say (no pun intended): I want to do something easy

Another way to condense is to not answer all of the questions since many force you to repeat the same answer in other ways. I think you can eliminate “The Things I Could Never Live Without” and “For Fun I Like To” and “I’m Looking For” (or “My Ideal Relationship”).

His Details:
Select “a couple extra pounds” for body type and delete your income.

My Ideal Match:
Delete “A Date” and “An Activity Partner” since you are looking for your wife. Adjust your age range. You are a 28-year-old man, so your ideal general age range should be 22-30.

Finally, when you’re searching, play with the preferences for location since New York City is so populated. You are in the perfect location to find someone, and I think the profile makeover will help you do just that!


Dear Tamar: How Can I Politely Reject Someone?

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

Dear Tamar,

I had a JDater send me an email (he was not my type, and not someone I would want to go out with), but I want to respond to the email as I think it rude not to. He asked me specific questions from my profile. Please help on how I can respond nicely, but let him know that I am not interested without hurting his feeling.

Thanks!

-Polite Rejection

_________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Dear Polite Rejection,

It sounds like your prospect has read my tips on how to write an awesome first email! The flip side is what you’re experiencing — getting that really great email and still not being interested, but wanting to show appreciation for the effort. And that’s exactly what you should write:

“Thank you so much for your email… I can see that you put a lot of thought into it and I really appreciate it. Unfortunately I just don’t think we are a match. I wanted to make sure you knew that the effort you put into the email didn’t go unnoticed, but I also didn’t want to leave you hanging. Best of luck to you in this crazy dating world!”

Play around with those sentences so that it is authentic to your voice. Recognizing the effort and adding a bit of humor at the end will help soften the rejection.

 

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Dear Tamar: Burned After Moving Too Fast

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Relationships,Single Life

Dear Tamar,

I am a 65-year-old widower and recently had instant chemistry with a woman. Within days we felt like our relationship was a comfortable old shoe.  The relationship grew quickly — she told me to slow down — I didn’t.  After a few weeks and a few warnings, she terminated the relationship by email.  She refuses to talk or give it another try.  How can I woo her back?

________________________________________________________________________________________

Dear Burned,

I suggest contacting her the same way she broke off the relationship — via email. But first, make sure you truly comprehend what happened to bring an end to the relationship and take ownership of it. It seems from your letter like you understand that she asked you to slow down a number of times and that you didn’t listen, but don’t make excuses to her as to why you didn’t listen.

This letter needs to be about all the amazing things you like about her and how she makes you feel and how you hope to make her feel. Don’t make it all about you; if you want her back then it has to be about her — you already made it about you when you ignored her warnings and kept moving quickly when she wanted to slow down. You need to show her that you now understand where she’s coming from and offer to date her rather than jump back into a serious relationship. She may not want to though and you will have to accept that, but it’s worth a try!


Quick! Reply to That Message

by Caryn Alper under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating

Nowadays, no one has the patience to wait for much at all: Everything is fast paced. Long gone are the days of flipping through a little black book to find a date for next weekend.  Welcome to the days of swiping right and securing a date for that same night within two minutes. We eat fast food (or fast casual), we  go to Quik Trip, we speed date, we make 30-minute meals, and we work out at 20 Minutes to Fitness. But… we are also told that you can’t hurry love.

So how does this all affect your dating life? More specifically, should the world’s fast pace inform your response time to JDate messages?

I’ve definitely asked myself this question before — when you feel the excitement from seeing a new message in your inbox — do you open it, read it, and respond right away? Do you play it cool and wait to open it so the sender can’t tell that you read it immediately? (Because, you know, you are way too busy doing important things and can’t be bothered to check your messages regularly.) Do you read it right away, but wait a while to respond? Do you Google the person’s username, try to figure out their actual name, and head straight to your online county court’s records to investigate? Does anyone else even think about these things?

After considering the pros and cons of each scenario, I realized that so many people walk around with their phones glued to their hand that it’s safe to assume most people are receiving messages instantaneously. So there’s no shame in reading right away! And while you’re on the message page, you may as well respond, too — the speed of your reply builds momentum and sets the pace for subsequent replies. After all, the sooner you read and reply, the sooner you can hopefully meet in person, which is usually the point of online dating. My conclusion: no sense in waiting to reply. Speed skating, anyone?


First Date Tips: Post Date Follow-up

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

After a first date what is the appropriate follow-up?

  • If the date went well and the man paid, then the woman should call the next day to thank him for a nice evening. Don’t linger on the phone though, steer the conversation towards when you will speak again or when you will see each other again. A text can sometimes be okay here if you know he has a busy morning; just make sure that it has a flirty tone so he knows that you aren’t blowing him off.
  • If the date did not go well and the man paid then the woman should text the man a thank you. Keep it simple and short. Make sure it’s not flirty so that you don’t lead him on.
  • If the date did not go well and you split the check, then you don’t necessarily owe your date a thank you… but it’s good karma to say thank you and wish the other luck.
  • If your date did go well and you split the check, then you should absolutely follow-up the next day with a call to let your date know you want another date
  • If the date went well and you are the man who paid, but you didn’t hear from the woman, then don’t write her off just yet. Don’t assume it means she wasn’t grateful or doesn’t want to see you again. Call her and see where that leads.

All in all, if you want another date with this person, then how can it hurt to call — or even text — the next day? Do it. Pick up the phone and call.

 

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First Date Tips: Saying Good-Bye

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Online Dating,Single Life

As your date comes to an end and you’re saying goodbye you may start getting nervous about what to do… handshake, hug, kiss, full-on make-out session? What should you do (or not do) to make sure you’re sending the right message?

Let’s operate on the assumption that the date went well — you’ve enjoyed each other’s company, so before bidding adieu: discuss plans to see each other again, thank each other for a nice time, and express how nice the date was. Then… go in for a hug while being open for a kiss without seeming to eager. That means having open body language and leaning towards your date with a smile and making eye contact. If your date returns those same signals then a short, closed-mouth kiss held for a few seconds is likely welcomed and will be reciprocated.

And if your date didn’t go so hot, well, there are even a few different scenarios within that area. If there wasn’t chemistry, but you still had fun, then give the hips-out hug. If it was just not-so-great, then a handshake will do. And, if it was awful, then a wave while saying thank you will suffice.

(And of course, I must address the dates where there’s lots of chemistry, but you don’t see a future… in that case, go in for the full-on make-out session and have fun!)

 

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