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Sex and the Capital City: Putting down the looking glass and going with the flow

Stop me (oh, oh, oh, stop me) if you’ve heard this before. “I don’t get it. I go on dates all the time. Where are the normal men?”

Morrissey certainly knew what he was talking about with that line — we’re like broken records, especially when it comes to our interactions with the opposite sex. And as someone who spends a fair amount of time talking about dating, I hear these words more than most.

My friends and I often get together to talk about our experiences in the dating world: the good, the terrifyingly awkward, and most often, the bad. But one thing that seems to ring true is that as women, many of us feel like we’re going to overwhelmingly great lengths to find that certain someone. And we might be missing what’s right under our noses.

 Are we trying too hard? We get anxious, thinking all the good men have gone, but have they? No. 

We pore over our online matches, looking for a similar favorite book, hoping someone in the Internet ether will appreciate our profiles’ sly Back to the Future references and affinity for Jonathan Franzen novels and John Prine songs. We poll our male friends for a halfway normal friend who will at least split the check and can carry on a conversation. We work so hard to cover all our bases looking for someone that it’s exhausting.

It got me thinking. Are we trying too hard? We get anxious, thinking all the good men have gone, but have they? No. We’ve just got our noses so firmly to the ground looking for them that it’s a miracle we don’t trip with every step. An 85 percent compatibility match on OK Cupid is a good start, but nothing compared to a good conversation.

So I’m posing that maybe we just try a little harder to go with the flow. Let’s stop considering how people look on paper and get to know them in the flesh. At least until getting to know them in the flesh sends us back online, alright?

I’m not saying it’s time to give up the good fight, but perhaps it’s time to sit back and breathe a minute and let things go where they may. And while Morrissey may have hit the nail on the head with our repetition, don’t listen if you’re feeling vulnerable. That’ll bum anyone out. 

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