Pierre was from New Haven, Connecticut. He was in his late 40s and had never been married. Had no kids. It intrigued me that he spoke French, and I used up the majority of the French words I learned in high school and college in about four texts.
He wanted to talk on the phone. (A lot of guys wanted to talk on the phone. Sigh, why?? I’ve got things to do people. Let’s just pick a time and have an adult beverage together.)
I never did have any kind of beverage with Pierre. We made a plan or two to meet, but he canceled them. He said he was having car trouble. I think he was having trouble with the fact that I was over 50.
Meeting Pierre, and the next few Bumblers, was a good thing, though, as I began to develop a repertoire of questions to ask when I connected with someone. They were these, asked in varying order:
- Can I assume you are not married or otherwise in a relationship?
- Are you looking for a long-time partner or a hook-up?
- What do you do for a living? (In other words, do you have a job?)
- Do you have children? How old are they?
- And this key one: Do you think Trump is making America great again?
(Of note, one guy who failed the last screening question and was deleted from my Bumble account by a swipe of a different kind from my right index finger actually tracked me down on Facebook messenger to give me a tongue lashing about intolerance.)
Because this is my Year of Strength, I did not have trouble eliminating people I did not want to meet. If someone seemed awkward, narcissistic, mamby-pamby or otherwise unfitting, I simply deleted them from my account.
I had to work hard to muster said strength when others deleted me. Ouch. Not nice! But, it happened! It also happened that I would reach out to someone I had been connected with, after thinking of a clever first question, and they would not respond. How insulting.
Sharing offenses we experienced gave Craig and I a chance to bond.
“What’s their problem?” I would say.
“Seriously, if you’re not interested in talking, don’t swipe right.”
The dating world is no fancy ballroom. Enter it with a good dose of ego and have friends on hand to tell you you’re great. If you are not in a stable, confident place in life, wait a while before entering the fray. Or have someone like Craig at the ready. We were good for each other in the support category.
Aside from Pierre, I spent time on the phone with only one other person who was not interested in meeting me. He was a cop in Connecticut. He was black and would have been the first black person I’d ever dated. He seemed very nice, and I was interested in meeting him—until he called me about four times, over about as many weeks and never asked me out.
Was it because I am white? (That’s fresh, but also sincere.)
In all, I met five guys live—four of them via Bumble, one on eHarmony, where I also had a profile but where the candidates were, let’s just say, um, not people I even needed to pose my questions to to pronounce them in or out.