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The Sticky Film of Seekingness August 19, 2012

Posted by Onely in Dating, Food for Thought.
Tags: , , ,

Rotating Profiles Dinner: If you are interested in people and people’s stories, this is the best event ever! If you want to make more friends, this is the best event ever! If you want to stretch your paradigms and get ideas for the characters in your next novel, this is the best event ever! I read about it in an email from one of my DC events list serves, and I got very excited.

By now you’ve guessed that there’s a “But. . .” coming.

First, here’s what happens at the Rotating Profiles Dinner:

You fill out a questionnaire about your life ahead of time. Then the night of the event, the organizers you sit you at a table with a bunch of people whose interests match yours, and you all eat Mongolian Barbeque for dinner. (That alone puts the gathering in the running for Best Event Ever.)

THEN for dessert you sit at another table, with people whose questionnaires indicated they would be completely different from you.  Such as, I imagine, because I like tabby kittens I would be seated at a table with a few Rottweiler owners. How fascinating! I have never met a Rottweiler owner. I need to meet a Rottweiler owner to dismantle my prejudiced view of them (which involves, for complicated reasons, bug-eyes and empty pizza boxes).  I would love to talk to a Rottweiler owner.

BUT I am not particularly interested in dating a Rottweiler owner. Or the owner of anything (except maybe a beach house in Hawaii). Yet the expectation is that in order to attend the Rotating Profiles event I have to be single “and seeking”. I have to want to find a date, or a boyfriend. And that stinks.

It’s no fun–or at least a lot less fun–for me to talk with interesting people when all across the gathering there’s a sticky film of datable/not-datable? coating everyone’s eyes and bodies and voices, like spiderwebs. If you want the film, fine. If you tolerate the film because you want to break through it and grab a significant other, fine. But I don’t want the film at all, at least not now. I do, however, want to talk with a Rottweiler owner.

So where are the Rotating Profiles dinners for just ordinary people regardless of dating status?

I stared at the email for a while. I wondered who would be at my dessert table. Was this my chance to meet my Exact Opposite? Who would he be? I pictured the Rottweiler Owner in my head: a muscled triathlete who loves cooking, B.A.S.E. jumping, and baby corn. I wanted to attend the event just to see him, this Exact Opposite of mine, in the same way people want to go to the Muetter Museum to see the giant colon.

Copious Readers, would you have attended this event? (We’re imaging for the moment that you, like me, are single and non-seeking, or single and not-particularly-seeking.) Or would you find the film of “seeking” too annoying or distracting?

Another question: Is it even fair for me to attend the event, if I have no direct intention of using it as a dating mechanism?


P.S. All these lofty questions became moot when I remembered that I had a haircut scheduled the evening of the event. My hairdresser is brilliant and backed up until the Apocalypse, so you don’t cancel appointments.
Photo credit: Bruce Briscoe


1. silvergirl3 - August 20, 2012

I detest the sticky film of which you speak, Christina! I have found that I feel so much more relaxed and confident around men since I’ve shed that sticky film. I’m not worrying about sizing them up for mate potential anymore or worrying about them doing the same to me. It’s incredibly liberating. And I think if I ever do become paired up, it will be in part to this new liberated confidence I now exude. (Ok, that makes me sound cool as a cucumber which is untrue–I can be a neurotic mess with the best of them! But I guess it’s all relative. 🙂

2. Beth - August 21, 2012

1. Go! Just because you’re not actively seeking doesn’t mean you’re opposed to find someone to sexytimes with. And besides, what if other people just want to go to meet new friends as well? You can’t be the only one.
2. Moot means unanswerable, not irrelevant (sorry to be a grammar nazi but as a writer you might be interested in knowing)

Scott - August 24, 2012

According to Merriam Webster, moot means “deprived of practical significance.” Score: Christina 1, Grammar Nazi 0.

Beth - August 26, 2012

“Deprived of practical significance, typically because the subject is too uncertain to allow a decision”

3. clofa - August 26, 2012

At first, I thought this is too cool to miss, so what if the ultimate goal is coupledom, maybe you can ignore that and still be able to have fun with some like-minded people. But then, when I tried to imagine how the scenario would be with that “sticky film,” I found it impossible to be able to relax and enjoy it for what it really, worrying instead about people’s ulterior motives.
This reminds of when people consider me “childish” or “immature” for going to a restaurant to enjoy the food! It’s like there should always be some motive to attract people an seek a relationship. I’ve been so bummed out by outings, picnics, gatherings… which purpose end up to be dating that now I only go out with one or 2 friends, who are either married or seeking elsewhere (not when they’re with me).

4. SWC - October 28, 2012

It’s as if people can’t conceive of the idea that single people might be perfectly satisfied living as a single adult! It’s always fun to meet new people, whether I am looking for someone to date, someone to exercise with, someone who shares my taste in museums, or whatever. Why does it have to be clouded with romantic tension?

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