Archive for November, 2010

Off Market Dating

Posted in Dating on November 17, 2010 by Bright Lights

In the world of real estate, it is widely accepted that the most likely way to achieve the highest price for a piece of property is through a formal marketing process.  That marketing process must allow for a reasonable amount of time and both buyer and seller must be well informed.  The maximum price that is reached under these criteria is the fair market value.  If a property sells and these criteria are not met, then it is most likely considered an off market transaction.  An off market transaction rarely leads to the highest price, but there are usually other factors that push an owner to sell off market.  Timing is the most likely reason.  A formal marketing process can take several months whereas an owner may receive an unsolicited offer from a buyer who promises to close in short order.

I believe that some of the principles in the world of real estate hold true in the realm of dating.  Is it possible that relationships started without the benefit of dating several people at once,  are akin to an off market transaction?  Lets examine.

I have several friends who are single, and yet not proactive in the dating world.  This can lead to long droughts in intimacy as well as relationships.  Assuming that one of these folks goes on a date after a 6 month dating drought, they will be more likely to “love the one they’re with” then the guy/girl who goes on 3 dates a week thanks to internet dating sites like Match.com.  Given this dynamic, it occurred to me that long droughts of dating/intimacy may lead to some hasty decision making.  The “timing” factor plays a role because the dater may choose to lower his or her standards for the sake of establishing the boyfriend/girlfriend title with another person.  Assuming that this individual enters into a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship without the benefit of a formal marketing process for his or her self (e.g. dating others, ample time on the market), then the individual may have unknowingly sold themself off market.  Hence, they likely have not fully realized their fair market value.

Pros of Internet Dating

In my single days, internet dating was left to the lepers and the desperate.  In today’s times, its a staple of the dating world that is so widely accepted that people can hold their heads up high when they admit they use the internet to find companionship.  In some ways, internet dating is akin to going to bars with your resume printed on the front of your shirt, and your Facebook page printed on your back.  Your online dating profile will provide prospective companions with a snapshot of who you are.  Of course, the odds are better for those that look good on paper.  If you are a doctor or a lawyer, you may find yourself in a position that you are not accustomed to.  You may be an online hot commodity.  The bottom line is that online profiles are a way for someone to try and look at the whole picture of who you are.  It allows someone who is challenged in the looks department to impress others with their resume, and someone with a weak resume to impress the masses with their looks.  For those that have a little of everything to offer, there are plenty of dates to go around.

Cons of Internet Dating

In the dogma of dating, there is one formerly widely accepted concept that is no longer true.  In fact, it may never have been true.  It is this:

“People who are only looking for hookups will do so using the bar scene.  People looking for love and relationships will use internet dating.”

Not to sound like an old fogy, but men these days don’t know who good they have it.  Getting a date used to be something that was hard earned.  Afterall, you had to find a way to initiate conversation with a stranger, make a good impression, and then work up the courage to ask her out.  Now, you just need to know how to double click.  Things have gotten so good for men, that they are no longer just using  internet dating once they are ready for a relationship, they are also using the internet for hooking up.  I can’t help but wonder if these players are gonna eventually ruin the best thing for men since the founding of Playboy magazine in 1953.   Once the online scene becomes just as hedonistic as the bar scene, the women of substance will lose interest, and men everywhere will lose out on the best tool they had to meet women since the invention of alcohol.

Its possible that I am wrong and that women everywhere are just as happy to have an easy way to hookup as the men.  But like all good things, it only take a few bad seeds to ruin a party.

The Lobster Trap

One player described his match.com profile as a lobster trap.  He can go out to the bars and see what fish he can catch.  But when he comes home, he can also check to see if anything is caught in his trap.  If something is there, he’ll eat it.  Otherwise, its back to the bars the next night.

In conclusion, the dating world is not as black and white as this blog post.  People sometimes fall in love at first sight and follow their hearts rather than their heads.  Sometimes there is no need for a formal marketing process.  When you know, you know.  Players often say “don’t hate the player, hate the game.”  Well the game has changed and if you ruin online dating for your children and your children’s children, i’ll be the one saying I told you so.

Bright Lights, Big City.

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Eager to Live an Adult Life vs. Preparing to Live

Posted in Life's Ponderings on November 3, 2010 by Bright Lights

It has long been my contention that many people try to make it to the big leagues (of life, not professional sports) before they are financially stable enough to do so.  Some might just chalk up these life decisions to personal preference.  However, I believe that it if you dig deeper, there is an over-arching difference in mentality amongst these 20 somethings.  It is my believe that this professional-type demographic is divided into those that are “Eager to Live an Adult Life”  and “Preparing to Live.”  Which one are you?  Read on.

Eager to Live an Adult Life

Let me start by saying that for purposes of this discussion, the Eager group defined as spending on items that are more characteristic with someone who is more domesticated.  Those that are Eager are not necessarily living a wild life, but they are more willing to seek out comforts, rather than adventure.  Do you often say to yourself “you only live once” and allow yourself certain luxuries that your parents and friends would consider wasteful?  If so, there is a good chance you are likely part of the Eager group.  Did you buy a luxury car before you were 25 when all of your friends had junkers from college?  Did you rent a luxury apartment or insist on living alone when all of your friends had roommates?

Did you seek out the additional responsibility of having a pet at a point in your life when it could have been all about you?  Did you purchase furniture that is a little too nice and now you don’t like having friends crash on your couch?  If enough of these are true, watch out world, you have probably been part of the Eager camp for a while.

Preparing to Live

This group of individuals tends to be more conservative but also more resourceful in finding ways to have fun.  This group is more likely to have a 401k and significant savings.  The Preparing to Live group is not as interested in comfort from material possessions as the Eager.  Instead, the Preparers understand that concept that luxury items and certain comforts are not necessary or expected from the young.  As an example, it is more socially expected that a 35 year old will have nicer accomodations than a 25 year old.  As such, the 25 year old Preparers embrace that discrepancy and save their money.  Similarly, the Preparers can’t be bothered walking a dog three times a day because this is a period of their life that is best spent being selfish.  In short, the Preparers recognize that there will be a point in their life when luxury items, dogs, and high fixed costs will be appropriate or even expected.  That time is not now.  Now is the time to act young, since you are young.  And that does not mean to be irresponsible, but it does mean to do the things you can to limit responsibility.

On a personal note, I recently realized that my lifestyle aligns more closely to the Eager group and I’m not all that happy about it.  As a long time Preparer, I took alot of pride in stretching out my adolescence as well as the patience I have shown in accumulating nice possessions.  My 2002 Hyundai Accent was nothing to look at, but it got me from Point A to Point B.  I think the greatest challenging is that once you get used to a certain standard or lifestyle, there is no going back.  Watch out world.  Pappa’s got a new pair of shoes.

Bright Lights, Big City.