How much do you have in common with your significant other?
Here’s yesterday’s column, in which I investigate.
A MILLION MILES FROM NORMAL – By Paige Nick
WHAT MAKES A PERFECT MATCH?
Of course dating is a numbers game – the more people you date, the greater your chances of meeting your perfect match. It’s even more of a numbers game when you date online, but that’s because they use a percentage rating system to match people up. As a member, each week you receive a list of people the dating site believes are a good match for you.
But over the last few months I’ve begun to worry about the matches I’ve been receiving. Who’s figuring these things out, a blind person with a sick sense of humour?
Indumiso was one recent match. He’s a 37 year old man from Soweto, looking for a Jewish woman. Preferably a submissive virgin. I was a 41% match for him.
I’m not sure which part of me was the 41% match for him. I am Jewish, but I’m certainly not a virgin. Hell, I’m not even 41% of a virgin. Maybe it’s the submissive part. I’m very submissive. When I’m sleeping, or in a coma.
Dating websites use an algorithm to figure out these matches, but after Indumiso, and then my introduction to Hannes, I began to wonder if there isn’t perhaps a glitch in the system?
Hannes appeared in my inbox as a 76% match for me, which seemed rather a good match. Unfortunately I was only a 47.3% match for him, but that’s probably because he’s looking for someone ‘interested in bondage and discipline, power play, leather, chains and other related BDSM activities.’ Realistically speaking, I should probably be more like a 0.003% match for him. Nowhere in my profile have I ever even hinted at the fact that I’m interested in this kind of thing. (As an aside, what on earth is he going to do with the chains? Does he need them to lock his up bicycle outside, before he pops inside to reveal a full-body leather one-piece gimp suit underneath his two-tone khaki shirt?)
Like I said, dating really is a numbers game. 87.9999% of the time, it’s just a bunch of horny lunatics who’ve thrown themselves at the internet with high hopes and low standards.
But if you are just a human being, not a computer with an algorithm, how do you figure out what makes your perfect match? I’ve spent the last two decades trying to figure it out, ticking each new combination of human being off my to-try list as I go:
Tall recently divorced fathers of two, who drive cars fueled by used chip oil, tick. Short, hairy millionaire financier bachelors who dabble in art, tick. Broke con-artist handymen, tick. Handsome misogynist chefs, tick. Guys with a sense of humour, tick. Guys without a sense of humour, tick. Sporty guys, tick. Couch potato guys, tick. At this stage I’m still no closer to figuring out what makes a perfect match.
They say the secret is to date someone you have lots in common with. That would explain men and women who wear his and hers clothing, and the sudden explosion of oddly specific dating websites. There are dating websites specifically for Goths, cat lovers, truckers, adult diaper wearers and Trekkies. The latest I stumbled across is Gluten-free Singles. If you’re gluten-intolerant, have Celiac disease, or just choose to be gluten free for health reasons, you can now find someone to date who’s in the same boat as you. Then you can both not find a single thing on the menu to order together. It’s a first date made in heaven.
Flying directly in the face of what ‘they’ say, I have almost nothing in common with the guy I’m currently dating. We don’t share any hobbies or like too much of the same stuff. I’m pretty sure our dating website match percentages would be in the lower forties. That being said, he’s a really nice guy, he makes me laugh, he seems to ‘get’ me, and he’s great in the sack. Is that enough to make a perfect match? Only time will tell.
I’m thinking this could even become a new dating fad. Because surely the more similar you are to the person you’re dating, the closer you come to dating yourself. And if past relationships are anything to go by, dating me never ended well for anyone.