Pretty much every day Match will send me an e-mail saying something like, “She’s interested in you, and you have so much in common. You’re both the eldest sibling, you like to eat food, and you both have blue eyes!” Thank you, Match. You really get me.
Match also tells me every time a woman e-mails me through Match. I don’t get to read the e-mail–no, I have to pay for that privilege. But I know there are e-mails sitting out there, all of them presumably written by supermodels who love to play board games, can quote Arrested Development, and wear yoga pants as regular pants.
So it’s to my delight that once a month, Match tells me that it’s about to delete all of my received e-mails from that month unless I subscribe right away. In that notification e-mail it includes a little gem, a short e-mail received over the last month.
So, to get to the point of this blog entry, here’s the e-mail I received the other day as part of that notification (no photo was included, but based on her name and the winks I’ve received this past month, I’m pretty sure this is her):
So, for someone who finds women that judge unattractive, you sure have a lot of opinions. Never any mindless tv? I do agree with no Jersey Shores or Hills, but Bethenny and some of the Real Housewives??? One of my favorite ways to try to get my mind to stop for just an hour. –Tracy
She’s referring to a paragraph in my Match profile:
What do I find unattractive? Women who… Assume. Judge. Pout. Wear much makeup. Don’t have their own friends. Give ultimatums. Enter serious discussions about relationships when it’s really late at night. Watch trashy reality TV (we all have ways to turn off our brains and relax, but really, Jersey Shore and The Hills? There’s a difference between relaxing and wasting time).
So I got Tracy’s e-mail, and at first I was all like, “I’m going to resubscribe to Match to respond to Tracy and convince her that I’m not judgmental and tell her how cute she is.”
Then I stopped to think about it. She might be right. But I’m not sure.
The first question is: Am I being judgmental (and thus hypocritical) by looking down on people who watch trashy reality TV (yes, I’d lump Bethenny and Real Housewives into that category, Tracy)? I would say yes. It seems that’s the textbook definition of judging.
The second question is: Is judging allowed in dating? Especially online dating? Isn’t this what dating is–you figure out what you want and don’t want, and you only date people who have the characteristics you want. Of course, that means that I should remove “judge” from the list of things I find unattractive in a woman. I’m okay with that.
The last question is: Is reality TV a waste of time? I thought about this quite a bit after getting Tracy’s e-mail. Essentially, the reason I look down on reality TV is that it requires you to sit on your couch and watch another real human being get followed around by a camera. Instead of living your life, you’re watching other people live theirs. To me, that’s a waste.
But then I started wondering if it’s all that different from any other TV show. All TV shows, scripted or unscripted, involve us sitting on the couch watching other people live their lives. It doesn’t matter if those lives are real or not. It’s all just entertainment to us.
Now, I think that I get a lot more value out of watching a scripted show–or even an unscripted competition show like Survivor or Top Chef–than watching rich, tan, fake-boobed ladies parade themselves around New York as if they’re important. But who am I to judge? If Tracy likes to come home and relax by watching the Real Housewives, as long as she can turn her brain back on when she talks to me, that’s all that matters.
So Tracy, thank you for pointing out my hypocracy. I appreciate when people challenge me in constructive ways.