Coming to Grips with Online Dating Part III

. . . continued from Coming to Grips with Dating Part II.

About three emails after I first contacted my husband-to-be, he texted, he called.  And then he emailed and called, and called, and texted, and emailed.  We couldn’t meet because 1) he lived far, far away, and 2) he was in the throws of his last semester of law school.

We played the “do you know” game, and when I’d hear about people I knew through Kevin Bacon, I’d call Kevin to double check.

Meeting someone online isn’t that different from meeting someone in person: whatever you do, don’t believe a word they say until you verify the information with an outside source.  And don’t just check them out on Facebook and Google.  Get your brother to call his work.  Note: If he is a photographer, he is unemployed; if he is a consultant, he is unemployed. 

If you’re interested in the guy, insist that you meet him, in person, pronto at California Pizza Kitchen at 6:00PM on a Friday.  "Getting to know him” online is colossal waste of time.  You don’t know who you are getting to know.  He might be married, a 14 year old, or . . . believe me, it can get worse.  So, if he doesn’t want to meet you in person within two weeks, stop writing him.  Stop.  Now.  Do I need to say that again? 

I lived by that quick sort, quick email, meet in person ASAP method.  Until my husband. 

Because I couldn’t meet him in person ASAP, I pretended to be Nancy Drew.  Remember Mark Hacking? If you’re ever worried about being paranoid, just remember Mark Hacking.  That’s when you’ll remember it’s okay to be paranoid.  I checked his school directory.  Yep, a man named Jake Scott really went to school there – but was that Jake Scott the same “Jake Scott” I “knew”? Was that his real name?  These are the questions that plagued me.

This was not like me.  Only stupid girls fell in love with people they hadn’t met.  Right?  That’s when Jake asked if I was his phone-girlfriend.

I said, “Yes, we are exclusively phoning.” 

I put him on the phone with my friends; they interviewed him.  I made him send countless pictures of himself.  He sent me one of his unwashed shirts in the mail, so I would know what he smelled like.  He sent flowers to my work.  He wrote terrible poetry; I actually thought it was cute – terrible, but cute.   I told him to call every night at 9:00PM my time or he was toast.  And guess what, he called every night at 9:00PM for seven weeks.  Seven weeks.  That, my friends, is true love.

We stopped flirting with other people.  We would stare at the moon, and say cheesy stuff like, “We’re staring at the same moon!” I photoshopped a picture of us together.  Yes, it was a bit like How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.  I think we even had a love fern.  The therapy? That came later.

But as the time to meet him in person approached, I became increasingly worried.  What if my version of You’ve Got Mail ended with Clint Howard instead of Tom Hanks?  . . . Read Coming to Grips with Online Dating Part IV