Posted by: danielharan | July 21, 2007

Why online dating sucks: “A man! You’re the first one I’ve had tonight!”

Friday nights at Cat’s Corner start with a 1 hour lesson. Dancers rotate, so you get to meet plenty of people. A half hour into this lesson I get paired with a woman that screams with delight: “A man! You’re the first one I’ve had tonight!”.

That very instant, online dating sites start to feel absurd, even quaint. I’ve met half a dozen women in 20 minutes, some of them cool, others flirtatious. 10 guys were missing to even out the gender balance. On dating sites, the balance is horrible, with guys competing for attention and women overwhelmed. Why are guys paying for dating sites, and not going to dance classes?

Alain, one of the instructors, encourages me to take both the swing and Lindy hop classes starting Monday because they are missing leads. I take a few minutes to go to the bank machine to get money for the classes.

On my way back, I see 5 drunk chumps hollering at the sales guy in front of a nude dance bar on St-Catherine. “What’s the cover?” He crosses the street to convince them, gets their attention. He’ll surely rope them in. They’ll exit more intoxicated, more frustrated, but having bonded.

I walk another block, up 3 flights of stairs into a crowded room of dancers having fun. It’s a safe and fun place to meet people, like the social dances I remember going to in France: all ages, everyone dancing with everyone. My parents met over tango and waltzes. Countless aunts and uncles did the same. Maybe rock and roll really did screw things up for everyone?

The very geeky idea of starting an online dating site keeps bubbling up. I know it can make a lot of money. Unfortunately, I keep seeing better ways for people to meet than through computer-mediated communications.




  1. there are also meetups that cross my mind, such as book clubs, volunteer organizations, yoga classes, theater, where you will always find 3 times more women than men.

    love the blog’s design by the way.

  2. Hey Heri!

    I’ve never had trouble meeting lots of women. Unlike many fellow geeks, I didn’t take computer science. Next to Women’s Studies, the major I was in – International Development Studies – was the most heavily gender skewed towards women. I also founded a peace group (80% women on average), and got to be an honourary member of Voice of Women.

    Still, dancing is unique. Touch and flirtation are natural parts of it. I only recommend it for guys that actually enjoy music and dancing – otherwise it’s pretty clear a guy is only looking to get laid. If a guy enjoys both of those however, there’s no excuse not to dance.

  3. Great blog . I really liked it. I have also created a lens in same niche. This is my first time , hope u guys like it.Here’s a brief intro: Free online dating personals are fast becoming a popular way to meet other people from all parts of the world. Until recently, the majority of people met their boyfriends and girlfriends through traditional means. The most popular ways to meet someone included blind dates, setups, meeting through friends and colleagues, and of course bar and club hopping

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