Q & A — About Me

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating

How do you answer JDate’s questions without sounding repetitive, cheesy, fake or boring? Let me help you craft personal and enticing answers to both the basic and intimate questions.

  • “About Me”

I saved the best — and most important — for last. And I did so for a reason. By now you should have many, if not most of the other questions, out of the way. You have therefore eliminated the need to repeat the same answers in your “About Me” paragraph, making this section waaaaaay too long. You can always write “I love traveling… see below for The Coolest Places I’ve Visited,” but you don’t need to write “Contact me if you are interested in learning more” because you hopefully included that line under “You Should Definitely Message Me If…”

Your “About Me” should start with a basic introduction: “Hi, my name is Tamar and I’m a 33-year-old writer currently living in…” Use your first name only, don’t give too much detail regarding your exact job or specific neighborhood (for safety’s sake), and then continue:

“I’ve been told that I’m (fill in the blank)… and I agree that (fill in the blank)… I’m also a very loyal friend. I’m forgiving to a fault and I’m generous with my time and my heart.”

Include a few simple descriptions of your character and then follow with a few simple descriptions of what kind of person you’re looking for: “I’m looking for someone with strong Jewish morals and values, someone who is looking to have FUN being in love and to LAUGH a lot!”

You can give some more interesting details about yourself which aren’t addressed in other parts of the profile but don’t start a laundry list of things or go off on tangents. “About Me” should be about one paragraph (5 sentences), maybe two at most. Leave information to be shared on a first date since you’ve already revealed so much info as it is. Most first date questions have already been answered via the profile questions so if you reveal much more than you’re going into a first date feeling like you know each other more like a third date except you’ve never met! Slow your roll.

Let a trusted friend or family member read through the “About Me” answer to ensure that your personality comes through. If you’re a comedian then your shpiel should be funny just make sure it’s not coming across like you think JDate is a joke. If you’re serious then that should be the tone, just make sure your shpiel isn’t dull and boring.

This shouldn’t be your work bio, nor should it be too boastful. Have fun, but take this assignment seriously because it is.

 


Mothers, Mensches, and Manliness: The Aaron Stayman Blog

by Aaron under JBloggers,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

About twenty-four hours before being told I was going to be blogging for JDate, I was sitting with my new classmates from business school. They were sitting on their LinkedIn accounts, building networks and uploading resumes. What was I doing? I was sitting on the “currently online” section of JDate and mass viewing profiles.

My name is Aaron Stayman and I am a mass JDater in Dallas, a city without much of a young JDatabase (I wish I could promise that is the worst pun you will see in this column, but I do intend to be a Jewish dad one day). I spend a lot of time on JDate and going out on dates, and even more time thinking about dating. It’s something I enjoy so much, I’ve written and changed friends’ profiles, given Jewish males in my area makeovers, and have referenced books for friends to read to help them get better at the extremely niche game of Jewish online dating.

I’m 23 years old, but like many of you I’m looking to find someone for a serious relationship, even if marriage isn’t in my sights for a little while. One thing I’ve really enjoyed on JDate is long-distance dating. That’s been my niche, and I have plenty of fun stories on that front (especially involving my mother and the lengths she attempted to go to when I went to Arkansas to meet a girl from JDate after Skyping for months, or when she tried to follow me through Central Park on a date during our latest trip to the Big Apple), but those will have to wait until we’ve gotten to know each other a bit better.

The good news for everyone out there, male or female, is that I’m trying to make my time on JDate better every day, as well as everyone else’s time. I have helped guys become cooler versions of themselves — as well as helped them to understand how to bring out the naturally cool people they are. I’ve also made girls laugh and even given tips to female friends about things they can do to improve their dating. I’m no pro, and my advice may even be wrong from time to time (everyone is unique on this site, after all), but I look forward to sharing my random thoughts with you and hope you’ll enjoy the journey we’re about to share together as well!


Love At First JDate: Google Me

by JenG under Date Night,Online Dating

The internet gives us the best of times and it also gives us the worst of times. We can find out just about anything about the average internet user—AKA our new potential date. But how much information is too much information? How much intel is better learned through hours of in-person conversations and how much do we NEED to know beforehand?

  • Do: look up someone briefly—just to make sure they are who they say they are. Search around until you have enough information to feel safe going out to meet this new person offline. Good sites to use for your search include LinkedIn, Facebook and Google.
  • Don’t: Try to be an investigator. Don’t stalk through 5,000 of their Facebook photos, click around to find out information about their Ex, or waste too much time trying to find out every single crumb that makes them who they are. That’s what in-person conversation is for. It’s always awkward sitting across from someone, nodding your head and acting surprised when they tell you about how they were the varsity champion of their middle school soccer team—but you already know, because that’s how intensely you stalked them (guilty)!

Read more Jen Glantz here.


The Seder

by Adam under JBloggers,JDate

It’s Passover. You’re at an unfamiliar Seder with unfamiliar people. In fact, it’s probably a young professionals Seder for the people who couldn’t really go home to mother, father and a bevy of home-cooked food.

You think to yourself, “This is going to be another awkward Jewish event that I paid money for that could’ve gone to my Thursday kickball dues”. Then you realize you’ve boarded yourself in your room (other than work) after Florida Gulf Coast University ruined your bracket this weekend, and are probably in need of social interaction. Understanding this, you walk out of work, Gucci Man and Kid Cudi on repeat, and park at the synagogue/JCC/random rich dude’s house.

Upon arriving fifteen minutes late (Jewish standard time), you notice some new talent seated around the 75-100 person Seder table. This excites you, however you decide to sit next to David Goldstein, your go-to basketball-watching and gambling buddy, for familiarity reasons.

As the Seder goes on, you slyly check your phone every so often for work emails and to text your buddy across the room about this new talent.  Once the charoset and maror are passed around, you recite your Four Question checklist again:

  1. Why is this brown-haired, brown-eyed, well-dressed woman on my right different from all other women?
  2. Why does this brown-haired, brown-eyed, well-dressed woman on my right recline with such unbelievable posture? Is she a yoga teacher?
  3. Why does this brown-haired, brown-eyed, well dressed-woman on my right pop Kosher for Passover breath mints after every bite of the Hillel Sandwich  (charoset, maror, matzah)?
  4. What is the reason for this brown-haired, brown-eyed, well-dressed woman’s obsession with cats, tangerines and Duke basketball?

You then check your phone one more time to see if your buddy got any 411 on the ginger girl to your right, pick up your fork, and start eating your catered chicken.


March (Dating) Madness

by Adam under JBloggers,JFacts

March Madness is upon us, with sixty-eight teams, each fighting for the ultimate title of NCAA Men’s (and women’s) basketball championship. Starting tonight with the play-in games, then continuing Thursday and Friday with the “second” round games, hours of productivity, and thousands of dollars will be lost as a large segment of the population is glued to their television sets (or mobile phones), praying that a small school from the boonies of Louisiana can knock off Tim Tebow University.

There will be those Cinderellas- those directional state schools, and small private colleges, who win the hearts of many by knocking off schools like Duke, Kansas and Indiana, who then use their performance as a springboard for future basketball success. On the flip side, there are the busts- those teams who everyone had in their Final Four, but who flame out in the second round.

March Madness is a lot like dating. Think about it- you have those girls, or boys that in your mind are your prohibitive favorites (think Duke, Kansas, Indiana, Gonzaga) or best matches, who you think you will have the most chemistry with, or think looks good, is what Dick Vitale would call a “Prime Time Player”.

Sometimes, however, those best matches don’t exactly pan out. Maybe it goes well for a little bit, and you think it’s going to be smooth sailing to the finish (marriage), but huge bumps in the road (chemistry, change in priorities, you find out she’s a Philadelphia Eagles fan) put a halt to it.  Or maybe, a girl/boy pops up out of nowhere (think Virginia Commonwealth University during their Final Four run in 2011) and makes you heart flutter in ways you never knew existed.

March Madness and dating: it’s all about surviving and advancing. Who will end up being your “One Shining Moment”?


Love At First JDate: The Language of Online Love

by JenG under JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

There is a language for love and then there’s a language for finding love online—both, I whole-heartedly believe, take trial and error, and countless embarrassingly syntactical mistakes to master. But when learning how to present yourself and tame your feelings for a person you have just scrolled upon online, there is a certain etiquette to foster if you want to rendezvous in the real world.

Just like it took me some time to understand when to use the “Poke” button on Facebook (which is never), it also took me a bit of time to understand when to use and when to respond to messages in my JDate inbox that are “Flirt Messages,” (the standard template of one-liners JDate provides users).

  • Do: Send a “Flirt Message” if you want to make someone smile, for a second, to show that you are thinking about them or interested. Follow up with a personal message that showcases a bit of your personality, and above anything else, that you took an extra couple of seconds to browse more than just their selection of glamour shot photos.
  • Don’t: Use it as a cop out and send someone a “Flirt message” over writing your own personal note to them. Remember, your first message to someone doesn’t have to be a novel of questions or a five-paragraph essay. It can be a simple remark about something that caught your eye about them on their profile. Your chances will skyrocket that someone will respond back to a personal message over a standard template message.

Read more of Jen Glantz here.


Love At First JDate: Saying Thank You

by JenG under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

The best part about being on JDate is having other friends who are on it as well and can fully understand what you’re talking about when you start to vent and run away wildly into an online dating story.

The other day my friend was telling me about how she met this guy on JDate and things were going smoothly. I nodded my head in happiness and sighed with a bit of jealousy, hoping that one day soon I could say the same. But then she told me after each date she texts guys saying, “Thank you” and that she “had a lot of fun.”

My eyebrows immediately raised and I let out a giant, “WHAT!” I had always thought it to be girl code that you wait until the guy texts you first after the date. My friend, who is a couple of years younger than me (but obviously a few years wiser), told me no way—that is how you lose them!

She couldn’t be more right.

Do:

  • Tell someone you had a good time with them — both in person and then after — via a thoughtful text or a quick phone call. There are so many anxieties that cross our minds before, during and after dates. Alleviate the tension, the guessing and the what if’s through positive affirmations — if you are indeed having positive feelings.

Don’t:

  • Hold back. You took the giant step of putting yourself out there, and then, you took an even bigger step by going on blind dates with people you’ve briefly conversed with by chomping down sentences on your keyboard. If you promise yourself not to hold back, to break some of those age old rules, you will have nothing to lose.

Read more advice from Jen Glantz here.


The Case For Valentine’s Day as a National Holiday

by Adam under JBloggers,JDate

If you check Twitter, Facebook, your email, a dating site, an adult film store, or your local big box retailer, you’ll find aisles upon aisles dedicated to Valentine’s Day goodness. It’s a big deal, and great for the service industry (as you can take our your misery or happiness on happy hour)!

Why is Valentine’s Day so important? Why is there one day focused on showing affection to your spouse, or picking up another single person at the local “Stoplight” party? Why is Target only selling pink, red and white M&Ms? Did Kobe and Shaq kiss and make up two nights ago so they wouldn’t have to go out together tonight?

Valentine’s Day is a holiday that’s grown in popularity over the past 50 years, and in terms of retail holiness for Jews, might be entering Hanukkah territory (admit it, when have you ever seen a Rosh Hashanah movie on TV?). On a national scale, it ranks up there with Christmas, New Year’s, Halloween, and July 4th as the most Instagrammed holiday of the year… per statistics that I made up.

With this increased importance, is it time for us to replace Columbus Day as a national holiday with Valentine’s Day instead? If someone recently suffered a break up, and their depression is too much to stomach at work, shouldn’t they be granted a Valentine’s Day off to watch timeless romantic classics like Love Actually, When Harry Met Sally and Space Jam? On the other hand, shouldn’t the government grant us an “Intimacy Day” due to the fact that we have a “demographic cliff” problem in the USA, as the birthrate is declining?

Think of the impacts this could have. Singles, married people, and people in all other types of relationships will be able to fully recover from their depression/euphoria/taking a hit to their bank account by having a day off from work and will come in fully rested and ready to work on February 15 — excited that their next day off is President’s Day in just a few days.


The Kosher Chili Cook-Off

by Adam under Date Night,JBloggers,JDate

For those reading this who do not live in Texas (or Memphis where they have a Kosher BBQ cook-off) the Kosher Chili Cook-Off is a big deal in Dallas, Austin and Houston. Around 50 teams in Dallas and 20 in Austin prepare diligently, starting at 8am. They cook for hours, and won’t stop till the final vote is cast at 3pm to make sure they make the best chili and procure the most amount of votes. One kosher ingredient can make all the difference.

Every team starts with the same amount of meat, around 18-22 pounds of it, unless, of course, you happen to be on a vegetarian team. What ingredients you use next is up to you, just as long as it stays kosher. Many people spend days searching for the perfect recipe and then working out the math to make sure the amount of other ingredients correlates to the amount of meat provided. There are certain rules of chili cook-offs to abide by, like don’t cook all the meat at once, and don’t put all the jalapenos in at once, so children and the elderly don’t burn their mouths eating it. You win with a combination of great chili and a personality that endears you to the general public.

Dating is the same way. Regardless of what you think, everyone starts on the same plane, with the same amount of meat (relatively). It’s the ingredients, and your presentation, that make all the difference. Everyone buys vegetables, and chili powder, and some cumin, but what else? What sets you apart? For the chili example, our team used Dr. Brown’s Cream Soda and pineapple, giving it a tangy taste, combined with the loads of spice we put on there. Additionally, we managed to be a highly personable team, conversing with literally everyone that came by our tent and screaming wildly after someone put their vote in our bowl.

What makes you different when it comes to the dating scene? Sure you may workout five times a week, graduated magna cum laude from some school that starts with H and ends with “arvard,” and spent your childhood playing polo on the weekends with Bill Clinton, but what else? You certainly have some solid ingredients, but which one stands out when you play the dating game? When people think of you, is the aftertaste in their mouth, “Oh, he’s just a polo player from Harvard” or “He’s an engaging guy with an interesting background that not only includes that weird game called polo, but he also has tried every item on the McDonald’s dollar menu.”

Dating and the chili cook-off. You have the ingredients, so how do you combine them to achieve the best possible result?


Love at First JDate: Jen Glantz

by JenG under JDate,Relationships,Single Life

It’s been almost one year since I stuffed my entire life into two 50-pound suitcases, smooched goodbye a life underneath the Florida heat waves and moved to New York City. And throughout my adventure here, having to navigate my way around cohorts of tourists and consciously avoiding getting swiped by speeding yellow taxi cabs, the two most popular and regular questions my loved ones back home dare to ask me are: “Are you surviving the weather?” and “Did you get married yet?”

My constant response to both always comes decorated with a deep-pitted sigh and a fumbled laugh: “NO!”

Let me rewind for a second. I moved to New York for the same reason most 20-somethings drain their savings accounts: to live inside a shoe box, eat the crust of days old bread here, and to flirt with adventure. I came here to jump start my career and be spoon feed a constant reminder that every moment I spend swallowed between my couch cushions would set me back an indefinite amount toward reaching my wildest dreams. However, with quite a large number of people cha-cha sliding around such a small city, if I did, by chance, meet a guy who would look at me with the same kind of goo-goo eyes that I only save for a delicious slice of street pizza, well then that would be a great added bonus, and a exhale of relief for my mother.

I always thought I’d meet someone naturally. Perhaps while reading through 100 pages of a Norah Ephron novel in a bookstore, or while tapping my toes in line to get a fresh, hot bagel with some strawberry shmear. I’ve spent my Friday nights in a cesspool-like environment, covered up as a West Village bar, making small talk with guys that reek of Whiskey and then lost track of my Subway stop because I was gazing into the eyes of a cute straphanger. But nothing. There’s been no connection worth writing home about — and most of my first dates end with me wallowing on a warm bench alone, declaring my love to a pint of Chunky Monkey.

It’s been almost a year. Now that I’m finally settled into working at my 9-whenever-the-day-ends-job, and can finally traverse the city (or at least the parts of the cities with numbered streets), without whipping out Google maps, it’s time to focus on navigating my heart.

And in the process, I fancy to share all the gory and beautiful details with you, my new JDate friends, about the dos and don’ts of first dates (the awkward hellos and the even more awkward goodbyes).

All to finally be able to bring a mensch home to my darling parents, all in the name of hoping to find “Love at First JDate”.