Choice vs. Chance

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Relationships,Single Life

“No one falls in love by choice, it is by chance. No one stays in love by chance, it is by work. And no one falls out of love by chance, it is by choice.” -unknown

I do agree with this quote, particularly the part about love being work. But I would also add that you have to give chance the opportunity to happen to you, which means you need to make the choice to be a proactive dater. That means buying that JDate membership, downloading the JPix app, going to Jewish single shmoozers, agreeing to be setup on dates, and being the best you that you can be so that when the right person does come along you are open and willing.


Why Your Choices Matter

by Haley Plotnik under Date Night,Online Dating,Single Life

Every choice we make in life makes a ripple in our life pond. Sometimes an external force throws a stone (or a boulder) into our life pond, making unexpected waves. I am reminded often of how little control I have over my life. But that’s not exactly true either. Yes, I had to get into schools out of state to leave California. And yes, I had to do a lot of sweet-talking to get my parents on board. I didn’t just end up in the Midwest by happenstance. I chose to change the trajectory of my life. I wanted a different experience. I could have easily spent my entire life in Southern California.

You can’t effect external forces, but when you have a chance to have the say in a matter, choose to make a decision. You can’t control if someone else likes you or not, but you do have the opportunity to take a chance and put yourself out there. Not doing anything is a choice of its own, in a way. And if you don’t make a choice, someone else will act for you. Good example: a friend of mine, “Alex,” was pining away over “Mallory.” Alex couldn’t ask her out because he wasn’t sure that Mallory liked him. Well guess what? Neither was the guy who asked her out… but now he’s her boyfriend. But he went for it. While Alex waited and waited for more signs, someone else went in and swooped her up.

Next time you really like someone and are afraid to ask them out, go for it. The worst that happens is you get a no. If you never go for it, you may end up wondering what if? for the foreseeable future. I know I would be wondering what my life would be like if I didn’t go out and forge my own path in the Midwest.


The Plight of Monica Lewinsky

by Aaron under Israel,Judaism,Relationships,Single Life

Listening to the radio this last week, I was surprised to hear a name being talked about that I hadn’t heard in a long time. That name, as the title spoils, was Monica Lewinsky. Without me even writing anything else about the story, I’m sure you already know what they talked about.

And that’s the big problem: poor Monica Lewinsky can’t escape her stupid scandal no matter how hard she tries. The story talked about how she can’t get jobs, she can’t date easily, and, in general, any mention of her name (as demonstrated above) draws an instant connotation. In short, Monica Lewinsky, now age 40, seems doomed as long as she carries her name.

The easy answer, I suppose, is to change her name. It’s not like people would recognize her on the regular all these years later. Although she may illicit a familiar vibe just by seeing her. She could just become that woman who reminds people of… Monica Lewinsky.

You’re probably thinking, “this is the weirdest dating-related blog ever — who cares about Monica Lewinsky?” Well, for one, I feel bad for the poor lady. Heck, she may even be on JDate with us! But more than that, I feel like her story is a great hyperbole for how stuck we are in ourselves, and an awesome inspiration for how we can endure our reputations.

Reinvention is something a good number of us aim for regularly, especially those of us in our twenties and thirties. Reinvention is easier said than done, however. “A tiger doesn’t change it’s stripes!” people will tell you, and then we settle into our old ways. We can change our habits one by one and slowly change, but more than that, we can choose to change.

While eating hamburgers together, one of my rabbis and I talked about changing when we moved. I was expressing excitement at who I would begin life in New York as, he talked about when he first moved to Israel. What I really enjoyed about his story was his take on the month of Adar. He said before he went to Israel, he thought dancing around and being joyous during services for a month was bogus, and it drove him crazy he couldn’t get into it. When he got to Israel, he realized no one knew him as the guy who hated Adar, and he suddenly became very excited to celebrate the entire month. He set himself to be the guy who loves Adar, and it happened.

You don’t have to move to change, however. Sure, it’s definitely easier, but sometimes it can be as simple as just choosing internally to do something. My rabbi could just as easily have decided to be happy at home during Adar, and maybe people would have been surprised, but it would have quickly become normal.

So why Monica Lewinsky? More than anything, I wanted to make a point, and the rabbi story solidifies it. We get so wrapped up in who everyone thinks we are. We think everyone associates us with a certain story, a certain trait, a certain something we don’t control. Maybe Monica Lewinsky has a lot of publicity to deal with, but chances are your reputation is much less widespread than that. You can be anyone you want; all you have to do is choose that it’s what you want. Maybe it’s being the happy guy, or just the girl in the blue dress, but either way, only you get to choose.


Not My Smartest Decision

by Aaron under Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

As I sit down to quickly write this blog, I find it incredibly fitting that I just came home from a very stupid run. It was stupid in the sense of when I did it: coming off of a sickness and eating limited food this last week (for Passover), I should not have been straining myself today. And yet, an overwhelming desire to feel the wind against my back and feel the beautiful spring day (not to mention to make myself look amazing for the wonderful women of New York) overwhelmed me… and I made a stupid decision.

So here I sit coughing again and writing this entry. Yet, like many things that have happened in my life in these last three years in Dallas, this was yet another piece of training. In one sense, the run was training to get myself back into shape — I got an annoyingly long cough after Israel that I let prevent me from exercising. Yet, it was also another way I am slowly — but surely — hoping to make myself a fine specimen in a new dating scene.

My hope is that New York will lead to some great dates and adventures for myself, and through that, some great advice that I wouldn’t have been able to spread forward without the change of pace I’m headed for. Yet even in Dallas, I’ve probably held back on some of my better advice for fear of embarrassing myself. While I think one entry is too little space to spare the countless misadventures I’ve had for you to learn from, I’d simply like to remind you that every experience is a great way for you to learn… and laugh.

In a sense, I feel like I’ve messed up even in the course of blogging these last few months. I wish I had more to regularly offer you as readers — more consistently insightful moments, more secret tricks you didn’t know, something to really change your dating life. I know I used to look for that kind of advice all the time when I was serious about changing my luck. I’ve come to my own relatively simple answer, however… which is to focus on what I can control and fix it, and otherwise learn to work with the cards I’ve been dealt.

I may not always have your easy fix, and I apologize if you came here seeking a secret I couldn’t give you today. But in the next few weeks I’ll be sharing some of what I did when I realized Dallas and I weren’t as compatible as I wanted — and hopefully in the coming months I can mess up enough for all of us to learn from my not-so-smart decisions.