Friday, July 30, 2010

What NOT to email someone

If you follow my friend LMG, you've seen part of this on her blog already, b/c she found it too funny to not post. This is an email I received from a guy on Frumster (who lives in LA) a few weeks back that was really more of a resume than anything else. I have edited it down for you because the entire thing was over 1000 words long (!!). In case you were wondering, there was NO salutation, and no ending other than his IM info and name. In addition, there are things in it that make it clear that he wrote it about 5 years ago and hasn't updated it since. I'm assuming this guy has no social skills and no idea what to do in terms of dating, and I kind of want to teach him something, but seriously?!?! And don't you kind of want to ask for the writing samples he mentions?

And just so you know, I did write him back, saying: "
I appreciate the message, but I've done the long distance thing in the past and have no interest in doing it again. Good luck with your search. P.S. While it's nice to receive a well- written email, yours comes across more like a resume. Perhaps you should stick to the basics when emailing someone for the first time -- more about you and your personality than your accomplishments. Just some feedback, hope you don't mind." THEN, about a week later, I actually got a dreaded ICEBREAKER from the guy!! Weird.

Anyway, happy reading, it should make your weekend. :-D

Subject: Shalom

I posses nine of what I consider the most important qualities of a good leader and counselor: initiative, high motivation, outstanding organizational skills, self-starter, integrity and good communication skills, team work, caring, and ability to conduct a program to its fullest. My easy going nature and ability to get along with people, would certainly contribute to my ability as a counselor to function both as a friend and a mentor.
I was born on May 12, 1982 in West Los Angeles. My mother (Rosenberg) was born in Czechoslovakia. A year after she was born and Israel was declared a State, she immigrated to Israel where her family settled in Hadera.
While growing up in Los Angeles where I attended public school, my family belonged to Temple Ramat Zion, a conservative synagogue. The most memorable experience I had was celebrating my Bar Mitzvah in Jerusalem at the Kotel, along with my family and Israeli relatives. This winter 2005/2006 marks a decade after my Bar Mitzvah.
At age four, I took my first flight in an airplane while traveling on a family vacation to Israel. It was a commercial flight on EL AL, from Los Angeles to New York, with a final destination of Tel Aviv. Ever since that flight I have dreamed of becoming a pilot. In fact, since that flight, I have flown on many occasions, but I believe that it was my first experience that hooked me on the “flying bug”. When in high school, I never had to figure out what I wanted for a career. My ultimate career goal was then and still remains to be an airline pilot.
From first grade through fifth grade I was in Cub Scouts, and then proceeded onto Boy Scouts, where I earned the rank of an Eagle Scout the highest rank a scout can earn. In my sophomore and junior year in college I took two classes concerning the history of the Jewish people, from ancient times to the present. (sample available upon reqest)
The following are some of the leadership positions I held in Boy Scouts of America, working with youth (ages 11-18), some were during long-term camps.
1. Troop Scribe – maintained paper and electronic database of scouts.
2. Troop Guide – counseled scouts on rank advancement
3. Camp Quartermaster - maintained summer camp gear for entire camp.
4. Asst. Patrol Leader – helped patrol leader in their duties.
5. Patrol Leader – responsible for safety of patrol (during camps, hikes, cooking meals, etc…) 12 or more scouts, and counseled on rank advancement.
6. Sr. Patrol Leader
7. Jr. Asst. Scoutmaster
8. Order of the Arrow (Honor Camping Society within scouts, and earned highest level, the Vigil Honor).
a. Chapter Chief – Running the chapter that I belonged to. (during programs and monthly meetings)
b. Vice Chief of Indian Lore
c. Member Ceremonial Dance Team
d. Active Member
9. Planed and organized trip for troop to San Diego Naval Base, and Vandenberg AFB on my own initiative. Contacted and interacted with Chief Petty Officers, Air Force Captains, Lieutenant Commanders and an Admiral.
10. Aviation Explorer Scouting (youth: 14-21) Co-Ed: Kitty Hawk Squadron III:
a. Vice President
b. President
c. Director of Maintenance
d. Flight Instructor (Volunteer / Donating Time).
Present Time

In my most recent adventure to Israel this past January, I participated in the Taglit Birthright Israel Program. This was my second visit to Masada, but it was most special because of the experience of ascending the Roman ramp on Masada just before sunrise. I was deeply moved at this site remembering the fate of the Jews who committed suicide there, rather than surrendering to the Romans. During our lesson on Masada we participated in morning services.

PS: You are the pulchritudinous one!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

A quick follow up

I got my "matches" from the party the other night. There was the guy from Frumster -- who clearly still liked me enough by the end of the party to turn my number in! And then I had decided with a friend to turn each other's number in so that we'd see how long it would take to get the "match." I'm surprised it was only a few days!

Oh well.

Meanwhile, I would like to tell you about one of my pet peeves with online dating. Frumster/Jwed has a feature called "send an icebreaker." It allows you to send an automatic message to another member, where the computer fills in information about you. So if I want to click "Send an icebreaker" when viewing a profile I particularly like, it would send the guy an e-mail with the subject "The Doctor would like to communicate with you" and the e-mail would say "My name is The Doctor and I am a 30 year old Modern Orthodox woman from New York City, NY where I work as a Pediatrician. My hobbies include: Theater, museums, movies and baseball. To view my full profile click the link at the bottom of this email." Such an ice-breaker would include all spelling mistakes and such from your profile b/c it just pulls the information from the top section, and in fact certain things are in bold b/c of how it pulls the info. Does that tell you anything at all about me? NO. It's stupid, and a waste of time.

Now the only one to send an ice-breaker is to be viewing someone's profile and click the link. I HATE ice breakers, I think they are stupid and lazy and if you want to talk to me, say "hello" and at least take the time to write something original. So at the bottom of my profile, it says that I won't respond to ice breakers (among other things, including to please make an effort in your email in general since I've made an effort in my profile, but we can come back to that point another time). And yet I still get them! So CLEARLY people aren't reading my profile and are just clicking the button once they see my picture or something, right? How annoying is that? So now I'm just deleting them from my inbox. Do you think that's wrong? Should I be responding to the ice breakers at all, even with a comment that says to please write a full email, or is it okay to just delete?

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

"The Kids are All Right" was more than Alright!

LOVED this movie! Go see it when you get a chance. If you haven't heard about it, it's the story of two women (Julianne Moore and Annette Benning) who are married (yes, to each other) and have 2 kids from the same sperm donor. One of the kids is now 18 so they decide to track down the bio dad, (Mark Ruffalo), and all hell breaks loose when domestic happiness becomes trouble in paradise. It's one of the best movies about marriage I've seen in a really long time. Funny and smart and real.

Now my movie-going experience, however, less than alright. First of all, it was a 9:30pm movie on a Tuesday night. It was a sold-out movie. I went with 2 friends and we got there about 9:20pm, but couldn't find 3 seats together. I politely asked if some folks would move over as there were 3 empty seats in one row, and this lady flat out refused and told us we should have come earlier if we wanted to sit together. It's not like the movie had already started or anything. And we weren't the only people walking around looking for seats. You'd THINK people in the theater would just move over once they realized it was a sold-out movie. Like nice normal people would do. But NOPE.

So the 3 of us sat separately, but tried to sit near each other. I ended up next to 2 guys who were the kind of guys you hate at movies -- they were yelling and talking back the whole time, like "Oh no she didn't" and "ew, gross" when the women kissed. Really, you didn't know it was a lesbian marriage movie?? But worse than that, they pulled out a TRAY of chicken wings to eat during the movie. A TRAY. Of Chicken Wings. With Ranch Dressing. For Dipping. And they licked and sucked their fingers after each one. And threw the bones on the floor. And it smelled to high heaven. AND he leaned into my seat. I sat so far to the corner of my seat that my back hurt. And I held my nose the entire movie.

Plus there were the people who brought their 4 year old and infant to this movie. The 4-year-old got to hear the repeated F-word and watch the gay porn and see the sex scenes and nudity. The infant eventually woke up and coughed (a croupy cough) for the last 20 minutes of the movie, and of course the parents didn't take him out of the theater.

When the movie was over, I went to find a manager to complain to. SHE was the worst of all. I told her about the guys with the wings and she wanted to know why I didn't complain DURING the movie. I explained, politely, that I had paid good money to see a movie and didn't want to miss even 10 minutes of it to have to come out and complain, that it's the theater's job to make sure people don't bring in things like chicken wings and disrupt the movie. She just kept telling me that unless I had complained DURING the movie there was nothing she could do about it. She told me it was illegal to search bags (and yet they do it at Broadway theaters and baseball stadiums, btw), and that they don't make it routine to help people find seats in sold-out shows, and that she can't do anything for me now, it's just too bad I didn't want to miss any of the movie to complain earlier, she would have made them throw away the wings. I said that wouldn't have helped b/c I would have been stuck sitting next to them the rest of the movie anyway and they would have been angry at me and she was like "Oh well." I said that I worked hard and just wanted to come enjoy a movie and it was the worst movie-going experience I'd had in a long time. She just repeated that I should have complained earlier. I told her I'd never be going back to that theater and she said "That's fine."

Okay, I'm done ranting. I'll be contacting the general manager of the theater, btw, to complain. :-)

So I Tried....

I decided to try something a little outside my usual "comfort zone" and attended a big singles' event the other night with a friend of mine. Tu B'Av is a date on the Jewish calendar, kind of like Valentine's Day, that's supposed to be a good date for meeting your soulmate (Bashert) and historically singles would wear white and meet in the open space of town.

So everyone wore white and we got numbers and were set to mingle. Armed with a drink, or course. There were WAY too many people there and it was kind of hard to meet people, but my friend and I tried to introduce ourselves and walked around and put ourselves out there and all (she was way better at it than I am, btw). The strangest part was when this buy comes over to me and says "Hi, are you E? Aren't you a Doctor? But you aren't from here, right?" It was kinda spooky. Turns out I had been emailing with him on Frumster/JWed just last week and had been about to give him my # and then he went out of town for the weekend.

We chatted for a bit, he was nice and cute (his pic on the site is blurry, actually, so I never would have recognized him). Spoke to him a few times during the night and I promised to give him my number so we could actually talk and go out.

Didn't have much luck with anyone else, though. You should take a look at my friend's blog ("Little Match Girl," link to it on the right side) for one obnoxious guy she met. Did get to hang out with some new friends I've made over the past few months, though, and generally had a good time and stayed out later than I thought I would.

And meanwhile, I email the guy with a "It was so nice meeting you, here's my number, maybe we can meet for coffee in the next week" kind of thing. He writes me back today (36 hrs after the event started, okay?) saying this:
"Great meeting you and your friend. I actually met someone that night and we just started dating. I am not one that dates a couple of girls at the same time. I hope you understand and I wish you all the best of luck." Really?! In less than 36 hours you've become completely exclusive with someone? That's AMAZING! I'm shocked and in awe and kind of impressed. And also don't believe him. Do you??

Monday, July 26, 2010

I will follow you.....

You'll now see a short list of blogs that I follow to the right hand side.
In actuality, I follow about 30 blogs via my RSS reader with my gmail account, but I didn't create this blog with that gmail account b/c I didn't want everyone to have access to my full name, just in case people happened across this blog by accident.
But I DID want my friends (real or cyber-friends) to find this blog, and to know that I followed them, and to follow me back. So now some of my friends and favorite blogs have me following them twice, lucky you!
I'll add more of my favorite blogs to this list as time goes on, it's just tedious, and at some point I have to get work done at work. Or at least study for my upcoming Pediatric boards.
Check out some of the other blogs when you get a chance, they are fun. :-)

Having standards vs being picky

I had a conversation with a friend over the weekend about the difference between having standards and being picky. It's a fine line. I think it's okay to say that I'll only date Jewish guys -- no one would say that's being too picky, right? And I only want to date guys who are as Observant as I am (keep Shabbos and Kosher the same way that I do). Plus I would only date someone who's college educated, and I don't want to date anyone who has kids.

So then this guy e-mails me last week on Frumster/JWed and he doesn't have a college degree, and I send him a nice note back saying that I don't think we'd be a good match. He writes me back and says that while he respects my decision, he doesn't have a problem dating someone with a medical degree, that he didn't go to college but instead opened his own business and does very well for himself. (Now this entire e-mail was full of spelling and grammatical errors, just so you know.) Do you think it's unfair of me to say straight out that I won't date someone who doesn't have a college degree??

What about other standards? Like not wanting to date someone who's divorced or has kids? Or is Ashkenazic vs Sephardic, or lives nearby vs long-distance? What about age standards? When does it become being "too picky" and one needs to allow oneself to be more flexible and just meet more people?

I will tell you that I once dated a guy who was about 6 years older than me. On our 3rd date, he told me his rule was he wouldn't date anyone born in 1980 or late. I had to then tell him that I had already broken his rule, but only by 2 hours, since I was born at 1:52am on January 1, 1980. He decided that since it was still 1979 in California when I was born, he would allow it. But really, when you have such strict rules, you are BOUND to meet the ONE person who breaks them, right??

Friday, July 23, 2010

JDate vs JWed

Last post today, I promise, b/c I have to get some actual work done at some point.....

So I've been using one online dating site for some time. Actually, my profile dates back to 2002 (when I was in college), so clearly it's worked for me. Ha. Anyway, the site used to be called "Frumster." I always hated the name, but it clearly implied its purpose -- it was designed for the more observant single Jewish person ("frum" is a Yiddish term for observant). As opposed to other sites, like JDate, which is more commonly known but doesn't always serve the observant world.

Well they've now changed their name to JWed. Which is clearly stating that they are DIFFERENT in more ways than one from JDate. So it's not just that "we are here for the observant Jewish single person," but they are now saying "we are here for the Jewish single person who actually wants to get married" -- in other words, are they trying to say that JDate is designed for people who ONLY want to date and NOT get married??

What do y'all think? I know several people who've gotten married after meeting people on JDate. I also know lots of people who haven't had any success on JDate at all. And clearly, I've been hugely successful on Frumster, on and off, for the past 8 years, despite wanting to get married that entire time.

Why I shouldn't date anyone with a J name

I've never had any luck with guys who have names that start with J.

(Women, on the other hand, are fine. There's my sister, of course, who after she stopped beating me up became my best friend. And my other best friend, who's a J. And several others. So don't get mad yet, I acknowledge that female J's are fine.)

Here are all the examples I can come up with sitting here right now, I'm sure there are more, but I think it's enough to win the argument:

J#1: My Dad. So okay, I didn't DATE my dad. But my parents got divorced when I was three. He moved out of state when I was 8. While we have a good relationship now, it took a long time to get there. Many would argue (and I would likely agree) that he's the reason I have a fear of abandonment. When my dad moved out of state, I was mad at him for a long time, and so far I haven't met that good guy who hasn't also left me. And yes, I do think that my dad IS a good guy. But I'm still going to keep him on this list, okay?

J#2: I knew him through a summer program in high school. He should have been my first kiss but was too chicken, so that honor went to a guy named Eugene (I know). The following summer I was actually J#2's first kiss (he finally got up the courage). Then we got set-up when I lived in Houston post-Katrina and dated for a month, it was fun. After that month he said we didn't want the "same thing" so broke up with me. Well I didn't want to marry him and I was leaving Houston soon after, so unless HE wanted a long-term thing my guess is we did want the same thing, but whatever.

J#3: Was in high school, he lived in Memphis, I lived in Birmingham. He wanted to date, I didn't. He wrote me a long letter one summer about how the long-distance thing could work. I said fine. We talked on the phone. I went to Memphis. Then it was his turn to come to B'ham. He didn't want to, so we broke up. I told him I was right about the long-distance thing not working. Should have ended there, but instead he started spreading rumors about me within our region of the youth group. Not true rumors. Not sure why he did that, but luckily most people knew better than to believe him.

J#4: College. He was super religious when we started dating. It was a super intense relationship. Then we broke up. Then he became not religious. It's weird.

J#2, part 2: Med School - Dated him again, see above.

J#5: Med school. This guy totally broke my heart. Still hurts to talk about it. He swept me off my feet and I thought we were getting married. He ultimately chose his job over me, to make a long story short.

J#6: Residency - I dated this guy for over 2 years. Turns out my family and friends hated him and he didn't treat me well. I defended him the whole time. His mom hated me, too. Real winner. I could write a lot more but it's not worth it.

J#7: I had coffee with a guy recently whom I was set up with through a website that uses Matchmakers. (You don't get to peruse the profiles, only the matchmakers do, and then they suggest matches. I have it set-up so the guy has to approve me first, then I can approve him, then he gets my contact info.) So I met this guy for coffee and we talked for 90 minutes. I wasn't so attracted to him (big, lanky red-head) but it was a nice chat, I would have seen him again. He told me he was leaving town the next day for business so I figured I wouldn't hear from him for a few days anyway. About 4 days later I go onto the website and he's closed our match. Really, you couldn't have the decency to at least e-mail me to say it was nice meeting me but you don't want to see me again?? After a 90 minute coffee date?? Maybe if we'd had nothing to chat about or something.

J#8: From the same site, I was set up with this other guy who sounded promising. Good job, did a lot of volunteer work too. We e-mailed, texted. He was hard to pin down but kept saying he was really interested in seeing me. So finally we met for drinks and it was a really fun date, he was extremely flirty the entire time. Texted me all that night until I finally said I had to go to sleep. Texted all the next day. Invited me for Shabbos dinner with some friends, which was fun. I basically didn't hear from him for several days after that so I emailed him and he writes back to say sorry he didn't get back to me, he had "a great time" with me both times, but didn't think we were "soul-mates." Really, dude? After two short experiences, where you had a "great time," you are ready to write someone off as not your soul-mate and you don't want to see them again?

And in general, what's with guys just not knowing how to communicate??!!

I'm sure I've dated other J's in the past, but these 7 stand out. So I think I'm done. No more J's. Anyone object?


Hi -- Welcome to my blog!

This isn't my first attempt at blogging. Way back in medical school, I kept a blog for a couple months. I used it to complain about some random things, and then people commented about why was I complaining all the time. Wasn't that the point of the blog? Then I got busy, and Katrina happened, and I closed up the blog. So here I am again, 5 years later, and I've decided that I have a lot to say and not a lot of good places to say it. And yes, this may sometimes be a place where I do a lot of complaining. If you don't like it, you don't have to stay. But I hope you find me, at times, entertaining. I hope you comment. And that you come back for me. And bring your friends! I like new friends. :-) Let me know what you like hearing about, and what you don't like hearing about, and maybe I'll try to give you more of what you like and less of what you don't like. Maybe.

I apologize in advance for multiple posts today -- I have a lot to say. Enjoy.