by Pete Rognli
Cedar Rapids, Iowa:
With Microsoft walloping into MySpace-esque networking, I thought I’d dip into the world of online dating. Just the tip.
The problem is that sites like Lavalife want you to input personal information, which is way too personal. What if, five years from now, some prospective employer googles me—only to find my OkCupid.com profile? . . . or my blog? And with Facebook RSS-newsfeeing your “friends”? about every late breaking condom, I’d rather not dump my personal details on the web.
So I tried the non-committal route: Craigslist personals, which are great because you don’t have to sign up. You can just look . . . like a voyeur.
Iowa has two women seeking men. So I try the men seeking men section because, given the odds, I’m not really in a position to be picky. Before entering the M4M section you are prompted to click a button that swears you are, among other things, “not bothered by explicitly sexual content”? (this last part in red). And then come the penises.
No faces. No bodies. Every man-4-man in Iowa posts a picture of his penis, which doesn’t carry any pretensions of making it to the third date. If I were gay —and in Iowa— I probably wouldn’t post a picture of my face either. In a land where the pink tie never quite took-off, men must assume engorged genitals are a stiff substitute for chiseled cheekbones. And they’re probably right.
Curious, I check out
New York’s Craigslist. Again, penises. Thousands of face-free penises. So perhaps our gender’s obsession with genitals is not a matter of necessary discretion but merely a matter of our obsession with genitals. And it’s nice that our values transcend geography, population density, and cultural acceptance. But don’t you want to get to know a guy first?