One of the great, unheralded aspects of Internet dating was that the word was in the title, thus eliminating any ambiguity. Occasionally I would e-mail one of them, and they never wrote back, and I got it.
After I got sober, I worried I'd never have sex again.
This may sound dramatic, the kind of grandiose proclamation a teenager makes before slamming the door to her room.
I'd had quiet sex, and giggling sex, and sex so delicate it was like a soap bubble perched on the tip of my finger. I didn't want to watch some guy's face fall when I ordered a Diet Coke and then endure the pecks of his curiosity.
I knew such joy could exist between two people, but I had no clue how to get to it anymore. So my "About Me" statement began "I used to drink, but I don't anymore." I've had stronger openings, but this one was good for now.
This wasn't the first time I had tried online dating.
About six months after I moved to New York, I signed on to One was from a successful businessman with silver hair. Having portrayed myself as the overthinking hedonist's Marilyn Monroe, I could not bear to disappoint them.The other was from an indie-rock type who frequented a burger shop less than two blocks from my front door. There was not a pair of Spanx in the world big enough to bridge the distance between the woman on that site and the woman who stood in my kitchen, pacing in jogging pants. This story was one of a thousand reminders that dating was never easier when I was drinking.I did it for my friend Anna, who'd logged countless hours listening to me complain about my ex. I bought a bottle of sauvignon blanc that night and sipped my way onto a plateau of cleverness.I didn't want a profile that was drab and ordinary.My only directions involved taking a glass of wine to my lips and letting the sweet release show me the way. It was the fate of all single women in their late thirties to stare down a personal profile, and as far as punishments go, this was fairly benign. It allowed me to inch toward intimacy with built-in distance. I understood that not drinking—and not drinking to such an extent that it was the first detail I shared about myself—would turn off certain guys. Those bearded eccentrics with their fluency in HBO shows and single-malt Scotch.