Sunday, August 17, 2008

In my time as an Internet Dating Consultant I have come across many curious cases. I have decided to recount some of the more interesting ones here on my blog.

Notes from my casebook:
The Vexing Problem of "Barry" the Beardy Albino

My friend Rose in Vancouver is open to dating men of all cultures from all walks of life, and doesn't exhort that they conform to any particular norm of physical beauty. In Rose's professional life as a doctor she's pretty much seen at all, and I would describe her as a very tolerant and forgiving person. The internet dating site she is subscribed to allows one to enforce one's prejudices by filtering out the short or tall, black or white, skinny or fat, young or old, etc. But the only thing Rose filters out is the religious, for she is a fervent atheist.

So when Rose was sent a message by a man on her internet dating site - let us call him "Barry" - , a man who's photo depicted a severely myopic, slightly chubby albino man sporting a long beard, she saw no reason not to reply and they struck up an online conversation. Barry bore a striking resemblance to the image below:

Best approximation of Barry's internet dating photo

I think my friend's remarkable tolerance in the face of... well... Father Christmas, amply proves her open-mindedness and generosity of spirit. While nobody could be blamed for being born with a congenital melanin deficiency that results in snowy white hair, rosy pink cheeks and vision impairment, the cultivation of a long bushy beard is however a matter of personal choice - a choice that indicates a remarkable lack of aesthetic judgment, given the resulting festive-themed appearance. And where appearances are concerned, a long white beard is an unfortunate thing indeed.*

But when it comes to the dating decisions of others I am not one to impose my anti-festive prejudices, so when Rose asked me for my approval on the matter of going on a date with Barry I was glad to give it. "Yes," I texted her, "provided that he doesn't make you sit on his knee and ask you if you've been a good girl."(Or something to that effect.)

Then another matter came up. During online discussions Barry confessed to being a virgin. It seems he was determined to be up front about every one of his personal defects that might put Rose off. For a man of many (strange) faults, it was hard to fault the man on honesty.

But was it still OK to date this man - a self-confessed mature-aged virgin? I was dubious. Rose's other Internet Dating Consultant, however, is a great believer in the human spirit and her feeling was that men, like dogs and performing seals, can always be trained. I deferred to my rival's superior knowledge of dogs and seals, and Rose arranged to spend a weekend with Barry.

I think that if Rose had been a Girl Guide she would have surely received a Guide badge for agreeing to this weekend, which in some ways could be described as an act of charity, if not bravery. She was embarking on the task of deflowering a mature-aged half-blind albino virgin who looked like Santa Claus, a challenge that presumably no female before her had ever dared attempt.

Hypothetical picture of Rose, had she been a Girl Guide

It is unnecessary to recount the exact series of events that during the first half of this séjour but I am informed that it consisted of some not unpleasant meals and light conversation. Let us fast forward to the critical moment of the weekend. The moment when Rose and Barry found each other in a room together and began the process of disrobing.


* unless you are a LARPer

** As this is already a long post I shall defer the conclusion until tomorrow in the interests of pandering to the short attention spans of typical blog readers


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