03/30/2015 07:07 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

The Truth About Online Dating

Excerpted from the show Failing Forward, The Bluesical by Ken Kirsh

After my wife and I untied the knot, I had to put myself back on the market. If you thought adolescence was awkward, try posting pictures of yourself online so people can instantly judge and dismiss you. I'd rather go back to high school and up to a girl sweating through my Lynryd Skynrd T-shirt with a face full of acne and take my chances.

Women say guys rarely look like their picture, but I can assure you it goes both ways. Whoever said the camera doesn't lie never went on a date.

But if you think about it, online dating profiles are like online resumes. What guy is gonna say anything bad about himself on LinkedIn: "I'm always late, and I do NOT like working with other people." And what girl on eharmony is going admit "I haven't flossed in three weeks, and I have chlamydia...again."

Most of these dating sites have you fill out way too many questions. I think you can actually become a US citizen in less time.

That's why Tinder is so great. It isn't a dating site so much as an addictive app like Words With Friends. You don't have to write anything, just post a few pictures. Then people can swipe right for 'yes,' left for 'no.' It's like being in a bar that encourages eye contact and instantly fixes you up if there is. Maybe Words with Friends should develop their own dating app...Words With Friends With Benefits!


But for most dating sites, you have to wade through these long descriptions. I kind of know what goes through a woman's mind when she's reading a man's profile. But I can tell you exactly what a guy is thinking when he reads a woman's profile:

Girl. I like to go out in my little black dress and get crazy but also stay at home in blue jeans and do nothing.

Guy. She sounds conflicted.

Girl. Here's a picture of my best friend and me at the beach.

Guy. Please don't be THAT one!

Girl. No hookups please.

Guy. Yeah, if he's hot and you get a little drunk, you'll be fine with it.

Girl. Please don't lie about your height.

Guy. Damnit!

Girl. I love to travel and discover new restaurants.

Guy. Ok, this could still work.

Girl. Please don't contact me if you're just looking for a physical relationship or if you're emotionally unavailable.

Guy. Well, I don't know what emotionally unavailable means. I do know what physically unavailable means, and that makes me emotionally sad.

Girl. You should have a sense of humor, be confident, intelligent, athletic and toned, and earn over six figures.

Guy. Is this an actual person she's talking about?

When you're younger, dating is fun and there's lots of time to be wrong. When you're older, it's a pain in the ass and there's no time for mistakes.

Plus, it's complicated:

You live near each other...but there's no chemistry.

There's chemistry...but your schedules don't line up.

One of you is finished raising a family...the other wants to start one.

Thankfully, every once in a while, you do connect. Everything lines up and all that effort becomes worth it!

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