Put Some Match in Your Dot-com

Looking for love online? From "cyberstalking" to email etiquette—check out these tips for success from men's lifestyle expert, Oliver "Ali" Nejad.

With today’s high pressure, high demand jobs, many of us are working longer and longer workweeks, leaving less and less time for socializing—the key conduit to meeting new people and dating. Enter the brilliantly efficient platform of online dating, where we can do most of our screening and searching from the false privacy of a cubicle on company time, or the relative comfort of our pajamas shortly before passing out in bed. It can be a great way to avoid the draining cycle of disappointing first dates. But with all the convenience that online dating affords us comes all the hazards of non-human interface. The following tips will help you successfully online date, and truly put some match in your dot-com.

1. Avoid mystery and misrepresentation. Part of the appeal of online dating is the way in which we can learn so very much about someone without potentially wasting time doing so. There’s comfort associated with reading people’s various responses to questionnaires, and gathering a sense of compatibility based upon them. But we rely heavily upon people presenting themselves genuinely, and not as they wish to see themselves.

While I am a staunch advocate of not laying it all on the line early in the practice of conventional dating, I am opposed to this philosophy in cyberspace. Be as open and honest about your circumstances (both good and bad) as you can stomach when assembling your online profile – it’s in your own best interests! Attracting someone via a fabricated persona is disastrous. When was the last time you got the ol’ bait and switch and said “sweet!”?

2. Don’t cyberstalk. Eau de desperado is a fragrance so powerful, it actually transcends the internet medium, and is easily detected by the well evolved female olfactory apparatus. Remember that scene in Swingers where Jon Favreau (Mikey) calls the girl he meets at the bar over and over again leaving message after message on her machine within hours of having met her? Don’t be that guy. We all get excited when we stumble across that seemingly perfect profile, but try to keep your wits about you. Blowing a girl’s inbox up with winks and messages is not the winning formula. Send a thoughtful, personalized note (meaning no cutting and pasting) along, and be patient. If you don’t hear back within a couple of days and notice she has been online since your last message was sent, send a single follow up and hope for the best. Remember, not every girl that messages you is one you’re into, and vice versa.

3. Take it easy. Unless you’re on adult friend finder, chances are you aren’t online trolling for tail. You’re searching for some potential companionship, and that’s pretty serious business. But it doesn’t have to feel like it. Keep your profile—and the interaction from those it garners interest in—light. Dating, online or otherwise, should be fun. And one of the easiest ways to forge rapport with a woman in an online dating community is to laugh about the unconventional nature of the beast. Everyone has felt awkward about it at some point so get it out there! It’s an easy way to have something to talk about.

4. Keep an open mind. You can keep waiting for Giselle Bundchen to put her profile up and go dateless in the interim, or you can take advantage of having access to all different types of women to explore individuals you might not otherwise have met or spoken to. You might even make some cool friends that will help you stay sane down the line once you do end up with Mrs. Right. Practice makes perfect in the online dating world, so don’t let yourself get frustrated by having abnormally high expectations. Sometimes, taking a date with someone who doesn’t seem to perfectly fit the bill can be refreshingly devoid of the pressure you put on yourself with the Mrs. Right candidates. Give a girl a chance the same way you’d want to be given one. It’s good kharma!

Think of a version of the real life “Van Wilder” and you have found Oliver “Ali” Nejad. With a broad and rich knowledge of everything from cars, computers, and hi-tech gadgetry; to dating, collegiate culture, and sports; to music, movies, and poker, Nejad is the ultimate envelope pushing “man’s man.”

Recognized for his success in the poker world, Nejad has made a career out of more than just the gamble of a good hand. The multi-talented Nejad has been coined “The King of Poker Commentary,” having hosted or served as the play by play man and color commentator on a variety of shows including: FSN’s Poker Superstars II, NBC’s National Heads-up Poker Championship, the internationally seen Ultimate Poker Challenge, NBC’s Poker After Dark (on in 13 countries), and ESPN’s Pro-Am Poker Equalizer. Nejad also contributes as a Men’s Lifestyle expert to a slew of shows and sites including TheUltimateTailgater.com and FOX’s Red Eye. For more info: www.olivernejad.com

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