A reader sends me this article, assuming (correctly) that it’s right up my alley:
Let me explain. Matchsmith works like this.
You meet up with Holly and the two of you go through a long list of likes and don’t likes in a potential partner, any particular physical characteristics you might be after, and deal breakers. (Also, any exes who might be lurking out there.)
Then it’s onto you: How do you normally interact with potential paramours? How much information would you normally give out? How long before you normally take things offline?
Basically, Holly learns everything there is to know about YOU and your dating style. Then you give her your Tinder, Bumble, Hinge (or whatever app you fancy) login details and she gets to work.
Yes, women are now outsourcing the initial stages of dating. Remember what I said just a few weeks ago:
One of the most peculiar aspects of modern dating is middle aged, professional women citing as a priority their desire to find a lifetime partner, but refusing to make the slightest effort to find and accommodate one.
The founders of this Matchsmith app have worked out there is an abundance of wealthy women who can’t be bothered putting in time and effort on dating apps and have generously offered to do it for them, in exchange for a fee.
I can’t tell you how much of a relief I found this. My dating forays usually go like this: Swipe with glee abandon for several nights; get nice messages from nice boys; chat to nice boys; then either go on a terrible date with one of these ‘nice’ boys or they stop responding to my messages. Feel overcome with depression, decide I will obviously die alone surrounded by my towering collection of Tatler back issues and cats. Drink wine to commiserate with self.
She seems to think the reason she’s single is because she’s picking the wrong people on dating apps. It doesn’t seem to occur to her that she might be partly responsible for dates being terrible or men suddenly quitting a text conversation. This mentality rests on the delusion women buy into whereby “they just need to meet the right person” instead of sorting out the issues which are keeping them single. If women can’t find a half-decent man in New York, London, or Sydney it’s likely the problem is on their side.
(It would seem I am far from alone in this weary state of affairs. “Swipe-focused apps especially can leave you feeling disheartened if you’re coming across hundreds of profiles of people that don’t seem at all right for you,” Holly says.)
Basically, a lot of women rate themselves a lot higher than they ought to. Look at these graphs:
I’d go so far as to say the single greatest impediment to women finding a partner is they consider the men in their dating pool to be beneath them. Men, when push comes to shove, are prepared to compromise.
Which is why I love that Matchsmith – it takes that particular demoralising aspect out of modern dating.
You’ve outsourced rejection. This is not adult behaviour. Here’s how the article began:
Josh* and I couldn’t stop laughing. It was our first date and we were sitting in an inner-city Sydney pub on our second round of drinks. Tattooed and with a beard, he was definitely not the sort of bloke I would normally go for but that evening was turning out to be a delight.
So Holly’s basically matching you with hipsters.
And, truth be told, I didn’t pick Josh. My ‘dating EA’ or ‘Bumble concierge’ did. For nearly three months, Holly Barter, the genius founder of Sydney’s Matchsmith, who has been swiping, chatting and arranging my dates – all as me.
As far as Josh knew, he and I have been swapping pithy jokes and witty asides for a couple of weeks. In reality, I read ‘our’ conversation history in the Uber on the way there.
I’m just throwing this out there, but I suspect relationships which only get started thanks to contrived, professional deception don’t last very long.
After a couple of weeks, Holly messages me with pics and some details about three guys ‘Daniela’ has been chatting to and asks me if I am happy for her to give them my number.
While they weren’t necessarily blokes I would have picked, they all met my criteria (must like puns, wine and more puns) and I was open to meeting anyone who seemed funny and smart and willing to come to my postcode.
A common feature of these stories is women revealing trivial aspects of their character – wine and puns, really? – as if it makes them look fun and carefree. What it actually makes them look is unserious, shallow, and immature. You never hear they’re into something genuinely interesting, like playing the violin or sailing, things which require some degree of effort to participate in.
The first guy ended up having to go overseas for work…
The date went so well he immediately volunteered for a ten-year assignment in the jungles of Papau New Guinea.
…the second stopped returning my texts (ah, the joy of modern dating)…
Like you’ve never done that. Rather a lot of women boast about the men they’ve ghosted or blocked, as if it’s something to be proud of.
…and the third was the delightful Josh.
Who at some point will find out he’s been lied to.
(One thing I gave a lot of thought to was when and if I would tell him that during ‘our’ chats he had actually been conversing with another woman. On one hand, I did feel a wee bit duplicitous however Holly did an amazing job of being me – her puns and quips were ON FIRE. I decided that if any of these dates progressed to a second or third outing, I would explain the situation.)
How is this different from putting up a picture which isn’t you? Any man worth his salt is going to quickly realise the deluded fool sat in front of him isn’t the one who’s been sending him all the puns.
After my date with Josh, over the course of the next two months, Holly matched me with a number of great guys.
So you never saw Josh again?
I went on dates with an American businessman who has just relocated to Australia and enjoyed a lengthy WhatsApp flirtation with another that didn’t quite make it as a real-world match.
I know a chap who works in an American bank, and he told me in his younger days he used to pull a trick. He’d be sent on business trips to some town or other and would go on Craigslist and find himself a date. He’d say he was in town for a job interview and he was hoping to move there permanently in a month or so, which would make his date a lot more likely to sleep with him. When he got back to his office he’d drop them a note saying “Too bad, I didn’t get the job.” I must ask him if he’s been to Australia recently.
While I didn’t find The One (maybe starting a wedding Pinterest board was a little bit premature now I think about it), the whole experience completely renewed my enthusiasm for dating. From jaded and misanthropic, I had become more encouraged and much more open-minded about meeting boys. Each new encounter was a wonderful reminder that there are smart, kind and funny guys out there. Seriously. I have met at least three of them.
If you need professional help to meet smart, funny guys (who then don’t seem interested in anything long term with you), I’m not sure you’re addressing the root of the problem. My advice is to make yourself more interesting.