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On Life, Love and the Pursuit of Happiness

Technology and Dating: Boom or Bust?

Robert Manni - Friday, April 25, 2014


It’s the best of times and the worst of times.

The preponderance of technology into modern life has pulled the world closer together while at the same time creating more separation. Dating is a prime example of this technological fall out with both men and women paying a price. So let’s take a quick look at how technology and social media have enabled dating and also made it more challenging to find mate.

The good stuff.

Hooray for online dating. Everyone is busy and people don’t have the time to troll the bars and clubs to find their mate. Women can hang with their BFF’s while occasionally checking their phones for the next group of guys who reach out and tell them they’re hot.  And dudes can score dates with hot women while sitting at home in their tighty whiteys. Dating online is fast, empowering and fun. If you’re a guy, all you need is spell check, a photo with your shirt on and the patience to mindfully read woman’s person’s profile. After a short message or email you exchange digits and you’re off and running.

When you get together everything can change quickly. But so what if there aren’t any sparks? When you meet online, you can end it with one keystroke— delete. It’s generally considered that people we meet online are disposal and replaceable. That’s not necessarily fair, but it’s how the game is played. So if you can check your feelings at the door, you have a shot at finding a match. And millions do every day. My wife likes to say that she found me online and there are so many others who have found their soul mate online.

Things to keep in mind.

Not everyone has a thick skin and can deal with the cut and dry aspects of online dating. So we need to remind ourselves that there is a human being with real feelings and emotions person behind their online persona. Just because you met online doesn’t make he or she less deserving of your respect. Keep your standards high and don’t forget the words— please, excuse me, and thank you. And if she’s interested and it’s not a match at least let her know that there were no sparkles if she asks.

Another consideration is that, an itchy trigger finger on that delete button could prevent you from getting to know someone who is worth a little extra effort. Not everyone is consistently at the top of his or her game when flirting online or during that first meet up. That’s not to suggest that you waste your time on an obviously bad fit. But if you think about some of your best friends or lovers, did those relationships always begin under the best circumstances?

Oops.

Between Facebook, Twitter and Tinder we live in an age of maximum exposure. And once something finds its way online, it’s there forever. Keep that in mind next time you think it’s acceptable to sext pics of your junk to a lady or before you take that selfie while drinking from that bottle of chocolate whipped cream vodka. These might not be images you want to share with a prospective mate or potential employer.

Technology and social media can be a dater’s best friend or worst enemy.  Always remember that dating is a face-to-face activity. Keep it real, amigo.

This week’s Guy’s Guy of the Week is any dude who picks up the phone and asks a woman out instead of hitting her up by text to see if she wants to hang out. 

Social Media and Dating: The Good, The Bad, and The "Oops"!

Robert Manni - Thursday, July 18, 2013


It is the best of times. It is the worst of times…for dating.

The deepening integration of technology into our lives has, in many ways, pulled the world closer together. However, when it comes to developing basic social skills and maintaining a sense of privacy and decorum it has also pushed us further apart.  Dating is a prime example of the fallout, with both men and women paying a price.  Let's take a quick look at how technology and social media makes dating easier, while also presenting a few challenges along the way.

The Good.

Hooray for online dating.  I scored tons of dates with hot women while sitting at home in my tightie whiteys.  My wife likes to say that she found me online.  And it saved me years of hanging in clubs, bars and gyms in search of Ms. Right.  Dating online is fast, empowering and fun.  All you need is spell check, a handful of flattering photos, and the mindfulness to read between the lines of another person’s profile before investing your valuable time.  Once you meet, it’s business as usual.  And when you meet online, you can end things swiftly.  There’s an unspoken rule that makes anyone we meet online more disposable.  Sure; it’s not necessarily fair, but I think you’d agree.

The Bad.

Just because you meet someone online doesn’t make him or her less deserving of respect.  That’s the flip side of eliminating someone via one keystroke.  What is intended as expediency can come across as cold.  And although there's an endless pool of prospective partners available online, an itchy trigger finger on the delete button could prevent you from getting to know someone you may have liked had you met them in person, instead of your iPhone.  And when it comes to that first "date" at the coffee shop, not everyone is at the top of his or her game.  That’s not to suggest that you waste time on a bad fit. Just keep in mind that everyone has feelings. After an awkward first date a woman I met online wrote to me and stated that she did not “feel the sparkles”. How could I be upset?

The Oops.

Between Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. we live in an age of maximum exposure.  Once it’s online, it’s there forever.  You need to be mindful when being photographed at the party wearing just your tats and drinking straight out of a bottle of Whipped Cream vodka.  That may not be something you'd want to share with future paramours or potential employers.  My policy when dealing in the online space is if you can’t keep it positive; don’t put it out there. That goes for this post, too. Technology and social media can be a dater’s best friend or worst enemy—it’s up to you to decide.

Our Guy's Guy of the Week is Matti Makkonen, the inventor of the text message.

Be kind, be mindful, be loving and technology will serve you well.

The 'No-Problem' Problem

Robert Manni - Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Image courtesy of Nic McPhee

In today’s hyper-fast, modern world of anagrams, walking up the stairs while texting, and speed-dating, the human spirit always seems to find even more short cuts. Here in NYC, the pace is even more frantic. Just take a look at the streets of Midtown in the summer and you’ll see the impatient faces of New Yorkers shifting gears while attempting to pass random hoards of disorganized map-wielding tourists all looking up in different directions while they shuffle along in the general direction of Times Square.

And with our all-consuming need for speed, young Americans have resourcefully found one, singular mega-multitasking response to situations that call for: an affirmative or negative answer, “Thank you” or “You’re welcome”.  It’s the now ubiquitous, “No Problem”, the cure-all for modern communication, or lack of it. You hear it used repeatedly by the staff in quick service restaurants, retail stores, and anywhere young peeps are employed or hang out. I used to think this phrase was only heard during that weeklong Caribbean vacation and scuttled after returning to the grind. Now, it’s omnipresent.

“Waiter, can we have more water?” “No problem.” “I ordered the squid, not the octopus.” “No problem.” “Thank you for moving over.” “No problem.” “Sorry, I stepped on your toe. “No problem”.  I can keep going, but we all hear this neutral, yet annoying mantra deployed on a daily basis to address a cadre of situations. First, it usurped, “You’re welcome”, and that seemed oddly acceptable. I say, “Thank you,” and someone responds, “No problem”. Why would there be a problem?  Maybe this began when we started thanking employees at retail stores for doing their job at the cash register, with our, ”Thank you” implying, “Thanks for ringing up these shoes for me.” Could situations like this be when, “No problem,” popped into our culture and took root?  Maybe, but however it emerged, its uses have rapidly expanded and the trend doesn’t seem to be going away.

I wonder how far this will go. Will we reach a point where “no problem” becomes the go-to response to “Hello”, “Goodbye”, “I’m sorry, but you’re very ill and don’t have much time”, and “Will you marry me?” Let’s hope not, but if it does, what else can we say, but, “No problem.”

Do you have a problem with that?


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