Not OK, Cupid

So, my OkCupid addiction. Let’s discuss.

My emotional stock in that site has become a problem. It’s like I’m on the hot seat, losing miserably in the game of Who Wants to Be a Happily Married Gay Man?, and OkCupid has become my final lifeline. Phone a Friend? No thanks, I’ll just browse the profiles of all the single gay men in the tri-state area between the ages of 21 and 35 who have master’s degrees and are at least five-foot-ten!

And that’s my final answer.

If you’re unfamiliar with OkCupid, then you’re probably happily coupled and I therefore hate you. But I’ll give a brief description anyways.

An online dating service for hip, young people, the design of OkCupid is quite aesthetically pleasing — hues of royal blue and hot pink provide a pleasant backdrop for the endless supply of profile bricks filled with smiles, vital statistics, and the fleeting hope for a future that doesn’t involve being a cat lady.

When you have a new message, the menu bar atop the page turns pink. If your inbox is empty, the menu bar remains in its normal state of icy cold blue… kind of like my heart.

The problem with this coding? Nothing, unless you consider the fact that the color pink has now taken on Oprah-levels of significance in my life. I associate it with validation, self-worth, and the distant notion that maybe — just maybe — I’m not obese. Pink makes me feel good.

And blue? Fuck blue. What once was my favorite color is now fraught with undertones of rejection, unworthiness, and feelings of impending doom.

Another destructive helpful feature is that OkCupid kindly informs users when you were last online. While I appreciate this tremendously in my stalking efforts, I find it disconcerting that random visitors to my profile know that I was desperately seeking a husband at approximately six o’clock this morning when I should have been getting ready for work.

More often than not, outside of working hours (without which, I’d be completely hopeless), my profile photo has a translucent and mildly condescending Online Now stamp framing its lower half. This includes right now, as the site retains such a firm grip on my balls that I can’t even blog about its firm grip on my balls without still tabbing over and clicking “refresh” every fifteen minutes.

I’m not saying that OkCupid has led me to spend enough time staring into my computer screen to develop severe eye strain and a chronic twitch… but that’s kind of exactly what I’m saying.

The eye twitch started bothering me at work, so I called my ophthalmologist and he was all, “Oh, just drink tonic water and put a tea bag on it!” and I was like, “Weird advice, but okay… Cupid.”

As it turns out, my eye doctor is a genius. The quinine in the tonic water relaxes my eye muscles just enough to make them stop throbbing, which in turn quells my fear that I’m in the throes of some kind of originating-in-the-eye death attack. It’s magical.

But now I have another problem.

Cinchonism — a pathological condition that is purely caused by ingesting too much quinine.

In short, my search for love has caused me to hate the color blue, develop an eye twitch, and now contract a disease with symptoms ranging from deafness to anaphylactic shock.

Here’s how I diagnosed myself: all the quinine I was drinking led me to curiously Google “overdose of quinine,” at which point I found a real disease and proceeded to flip the fuck out at my desk for five minutes until thinking things like, wait, I don’t have any symptoms, maybe I’m fine, until realizing that it was time to check my OkCupid inbox and that I could figure out if I was dying of a quinine overdose later, and then the menu bar was blue and I burst into tears over the fact that I HAVE CINCHONISM!!! (If it were pink I would have been fine.)

Except I don’t have cinchonism.

Wikipedia and I are pretty sure that the real trajectory of the disease is something like malaria -> high doses of straight-up quinine -> cinchonism. As opposed to my experience, which was simply desperation -> OkCupid -> eye twitch -> tonic water.

Still, I can’t help but wonder if this is all God’s way of  telling me to stop trying so damn hard.

Maybe I should just sit back, like so many other people are capable of doing, and let life do the work. Maybe I should try being a normal, content, self-fulfilled person. Maybe then — when I’m not trying to force it into existence — love will finally come along and bite me in the ass.

Or the eye.



  1. I’m dying laughing here, you’re too funny!

    I find it hard to fathom you can’t catch a decent guy, you of all people is a goddamn pretty awesome guy I’d imagine any man would love to get to know and, obviously, fall for you! Men–they don’t know what they’re missing out on. Jeeez!

    I’ll advice you to just stop searching so hard for the man of your dreams and let the Universe guide you to him. He’ll come to you, they usually do when we least expect it. Clichè, but true.

    And, be careful with that/those addiction(s)! 😉

    Love you!

  2. Well, if you have a disease, at least you’ll probably get a pity date, right?

    Not that you need one, but good to know you’ve got that ace up your sleeve.

    So here goes the supportive side. I’m sure you’re not fat. I’m sure you’ll meet a good guy who, hopefully, isn’t 5 ft. 9 because, well, that would be tragic. Then, you two will get married and have two lovely babies that look nothing like either of you (the hazards of adoption) and live happily ever after.

    Best of luck. I already bought a dog, so I’m pretty sure I’m destined to be the lonely, animal type but hell, there’s still hope for you at least!

    • Haha omg, I’m MOMENTS away from a terrier!!! Seriously, this is the best comment ever. Thank you so much!

  3. I love LOVE LOVE LOVE this!!! I have near-crippling hypochondriacism (self-diagnosed, obvs) and have spent today terrified I’m going to die from a horse-fly bite I received two days ago on my stomach that hurts more every day and now has my whole right side twitching in pain. :/

    Cinchonism sounds entirely plausible.

    As far as love… I hear you – looking for it seems desperate, and just assuming it’ll randomly one day knock you off your feet seems retardedly optimistic. So, I go to work, and then come home, and hold my cat (that’s right), assuming that one day the Fed Ex man or pizza delivery guy might actually be the dude of my pathetic disease-obsessed dreams.


    • This comment was epic and perfect. Ha!!! Omg, I’m so glad you could relate on both levels of this post – I was worried the hypochondria elements would alienate some readers.

      Was gone due to grad school, but totally back!!! I hope I haven’t missed too much!

  4. This post is probably the story of my life, and I will now pursue drinking tonic water.

  5. Funny stuff. Wikitrajectory: brilliant.

  6. I have to comment on one little thing. That ‘last logged in’ feature? I have a new found fondness for such things. Against all odds, my best friend was online one day on a site (I forget which one). She ended up seeing that my ex (who at the time I was speaking to and considering getting back with) had been online recently and pointed it out to me.

    That led to the wonderful ‘if you like me why are you checking your site’ fight. In which, I -did not- take him back…. And in re-reading this comment, I acknowledge that I sound like a preppy little gossip thing…. It’s making my eye twitch. But the story is much too long for a comment box. As is, probably, this particular comment… More eye twitching.

    Pass the tonic water?

    • Ha!! Best. comment. ever. Your getting mad about him being online was actually totally justified. I’ve often considered doing the same thing to guys I’ve had like, one date with whose last names I didn’t even know.

  7. Hah, this is great! Thanks for the follow. I can tell we’re going to get along very well as blog friends 🙂

    • SO very agreed on the blog friendship; I’ve been looking for a blogger with your kind of style, glad I found it!

  8. Thank you for stopping by 🙂

  9. I couldn’t stop & read & not drop a note. Thanks for sharing. It has cemented my avoidance of online dating services. Maine is slim pickings for everyone. 😦 (I kind of feel your pain)


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  2. […] had a point, so I took a sip of tonic water (explanation) from my work-goblet and just fucking went for […]

  3. […] The best/most surreal part: it came from one of my all-time favorite authors, Joel Derfner (read my review of his book Swish here) after he read “Not OK, Cupid.” […]

  4. […] shorter than advertised on OkCupid, […]

  5. […] than reflect on the milestones, revelations, and addictions to dating websites that I experienced this year, I think I’d prefer to share a few totally insignificant things that […]

  6. […] (because this), getting-called-fat-related (because this), or OkCupid-related (because this, this, and this, probably). But aside from all of those, here are five of the most bizarre searches to […]

  7. […] presence, I decided that maybe I should go for it. I submitted an old blog post of mine called “Not OK, Cupid.” Within a couple hours, I got an e-mail from an editor at the time, Stephanie Georgopulos, who […]

  8. […] about my book and started writing it in earnest (while also continuing to document my absurd dating journey on this blog, of […]

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