Thursday, August 27, 2009

An open letter to boys I chat with online.

Dear boys on online dating sites,

I have been using online dating sites because I don't have many avenues to meet more people. I actually enjoy the experience because the online scene is one in which I feel comfortable interacting anyway. I also appreciate the fact that it allows me to get to know a lot of people. Here are a few things that hopefully will help our online experience go more smoothly:

1. I appreciate your compliments. Thanks for letting me know that you think I'm good-looking. I haven't gotten a lot of that in my life.

2. I don't need more pen pals. Of course we are going to exchange messages to see if we think that we might be interested in each other. But I have plenty of friends to chat with on the Internet. If our conversations are not progressing toward us getting together, I'm probably not going to engage in a lot of flirty banter with you just for the heck of it. So if you want to go out, ask me out.

3. If you're interested in me, be interested. Don't just message me every other week when things aren't working out with whatever girl you've been working on lately. Corollary: I'd rather not hear about what the last girl was complaining about. I try to keep a positive attitude and I like having positive conversations.

4. There is no need for a "No thanks" message. Just don't write me back. The fact that you took the effort to send out a "no thanks" makes it feel like a rejection, whereas a non-reply is simply part of Internet life.

5. If you want to impress me, don't try to ask me "spicy" questions or refer a lot to making out and so forth when we get together. If you're interested in having a girl just to make out or talk dirty with, I don't think I'm what you're looking for. Don't get me wrong: I enjoy expressing myself physically, and I believe that the man I end up with will be very satisfied. But I'm not here to be used and I deserve better than that.

6. If your age has a 4 or 5 in the tens place, I'm not the girl you're looking for. I'm only 32, after all. In fact, I feel more comfortable with people who are younger than I am most of the time.

I am looking to enrich my life through making more social connections that ultimately lead to personal meetings (i.e. dates). If that's not what you're into right now we'd probably both be a lot happier talking with other people. On the other hand, if you think we might click, give it a chance! It's only one date, after all, not the end of the world.

Sincerely yours,

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Tornado anniversary

I just saw a news story in remembrance of the 10th anniversary of the big tornado in Salt Lake City. Yes, it was August 10, 1999 when the F-2 tornado went through downtown Salt Lake City, killing one, injuring others, uprooting trees, etc. The news anchor said something like, "I think if you were living here at that time you remember exactly where you were and what you were doing when the tornado happened."

Watch one of the news stories here

I definitely remember where I was and what I was doing when I heard about the tornado. I was going door-to-door on the streets of Winnipeg as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As we walked the other direction on a street we had been visiting, a woman I had talked with before came out of her house. "You're from Salt Lake City!" she said. "There was a tornado! You better call your family and make sure they're okay!"

Of course being from Salt Lake City, my first instinct was to say something like, "Excuse me, I thought you said tornado." Because, of course, tornadoes are not high on the Utah natural disaster list. Scientists have been predicting The Big Earthquake ever since I was a child, but we don't usually worry about tornadoes doing much damage in our mountain valley home.

But sure enough, the next day someone showed me a map in the newspaper that diagrammed the path of the tornado through downtown Salt Lake City. After that I didn't give it much more thought; I knew that my family was far from the path.

And so today, they remember the tornado in a news story. Must be a slow news day.