Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Shidduch Meeting turned Sour

Being that it's summer and I was looking for a mini vaca, I took advantage of my friend Chani's invite to spend Shabbos with her as she was making a Kiddush for her new baby girl. Off to NY I traveled yet again, but with a crash and happy attitude. This was going to be a great breather and an even better vaca as Chani is one of my closest friends and she's super fun to be around. She's also really sweet and even though she told me to consider this a vaca, she still spent hours calling Shadchan after Shadchan trying to get me set up on a date or ATLEASt a meeting with these famed Shadchans. And then finally, the day I arrived, I had a meeting set up with not ONE Shadchan, but an entire group of them as part of a shidduch organization. 
Whilst plastering a smile on my face I thanked Chani for arranging said meeting and prayed for the best. After all, I've had meetings like these before. In fact I traveled to a few cities for these kind of meetings and rest assured-it didn't go as jolly as I thought it would. But I was in a good place and I trust Chani with my life and it happens that I already sent my profile to this organization so what really, did I have to lose?
Here's how my meeting went:
Me-standing around awkwardly uncomfortable whilst some young married 19 year old secretary gives me the elevator stare & tells me to wait. 
One woman comes into the room, introduces herself as a Shadchan from the group and walk me into a large room. 
I enter the room, all dark, seriously lacking of any air or breeze, no windows and no one inside. I tap my fingers on the table and wait. It's now 10 minutes into set meeting time and my hair is frizzing as I sit there waiting. 
Minutes (which feel like hours) pass by and then a total of 5 people all enter the room. After they all finish chatting amongst themselves they sit around and stare. 
Shadchan 1: what is your name?
Me: I say my name whilst not understanding as she had just asked my name before escorting me into the room. In any case she starts writing notes. 
Shadchan 2: wait I didn't get that, sorry, was just texting my babysitter-can U please repeat and spell your name. 
Me: smiling whilst once more repeating my name (they have my resume so I'm super confused as to why no one even bothered a quick brief review)
Shadchan 4: ok so tell us all, what do your parents do?
Me: so I'm a little caught by the question, especially as I didn't really say anything else about me, but I go on and give them all the basics, i cousin age, height, Shul, etc. 
Shadchan 5: would you go out with a guy who wears colored shirts?
Me: appalled at the ridiculousness of their questions and the way they don't even ask about the personality let alone Middos of the guy but only the shirts matter??!? 
Me: if he shows up at my door in a shirt-that's good enough for me 
Shadchan 3: so what exactly do you do?
Me: I explain my office job. 
Shadchans around the table then go into a Jewish geography conversation as well as naming other people they know amongst them who work the same job. Some ask me general questions they always wanted to know about my position whilst others check their cellphones (for all I know they could be playing solitaire). 
Shadchan 2: hope you don't mind-I'm gonna take a picture of you and then holds up her phone whilst questioning if it's ok with me. 
Me: actually you're sorta putting me on the spot here. I mean your organization did request a photo to be emailed which I did and here I am, with a group of 5 of you and-
Shadchan 2: no, it's just that I won't remember who you are and anyway shidduch pictures aren't really how you look in real life...but OK if you really don't want to...
Me: not sure if she took a photo or not but feeling really uncomfortable as a blush creeps up my neck to the top of my head. 
Shadchan 1: so can you tell us people you went out with that you feel you had a kesher with?
Me: well, if I did have someone or some guys, I would've had them redd again and you're really asking me to think up years of dating on the spot so not really, at the moment. (Here I am, coming to THEM for help-if I had a guy I wanted to date-why would I shlep here to meet them-I would've had him suggested already?!?!)
Shadchan 3: no-meaning, guys you went out with that you dated for a while-like name some names so we can get a feel of what type you're looking for 
Me: are they serious?!? Guys I dated and liked are married with kids already. Besides they are long forgotten as I've B"H moved on. 
Me: sorry-I can't think on the spur of the moment. Had I known you were going to ask for names, I could've spent my trip to NY going through my shidduch books to prepare them for you (yes-I literally said that!)
Shadchan 5: what's your height again?
Me: standing up to show them what I said was true. 
Shadchan 4: would you go out with someone divorced? I mean I don't know of anyone off hand now, but if it DID come up...
Me: sorry I'm not really comfortable with that (and the fact that they're spending time asking lots of theoretical questions but still haven't mentioned any names yet and I've been here for atleast 20 minutes already getting grilled by these people!)
Shadchan 5: asks same question as above but replaces divorce with 'divorced and with kids'
Me: an image goes through my mind of me getting into a car, the guy holds the door open for me, gets into the driver's seat and turns on the motor. He smiles at me and says 'hope you don't mind-I brought my kids along for a FUN date' and I slowly turn around and see 3 little kids strapped into the back seat. 
Me: umm, sorry but I'm still not comfortable with that (silently freaking out) 
A few more 'theoretical' questions are put on the table but tachlis-wise we are getting no where. I've spent Atleast 30 minutes actually 'saying' my resume to each of the 5 of them. I've spelled my name and stood up and answered their questions but now I was going to stand up for myself. 
Me: so you're a big organization-you must have lists and lists of boys and photos?
Shadchans: mumbling and embarrassed smiles....ummm no we actually have lots more girls than boys (uh-no kidding!)
Me: well, if you know of anyone I'm in town for the weekend.
Shadchan 2: sorry I have an appointment with my kid-sorry can you please email your shidduch resume to my personal email as I'm not always in the office. 
Me: after all this-they still want my resume and they HAVE it anyway?!?!(
Me: smiling sure-what's your email address?
Shadchan 5: you know what? Can you also send it to my personal email as I don't get the office emails and only come in for meetings. Thanks. 
Me: sure. 
Shadchans 1 & 2 exit the room explaining they have 'important' things to do, mumble and disappear. 
Shadchan 3,4 & 5 are all checking their smartphones and forget I'm still there. 
Me: thanks again for coming in to meet me. I really appreciate it and if there's anything that comes up-my number is.....
Shadchan 5 is already at the door, closing the lights and the other 2 have somehow disappeared during my thank you. 
Me: embarassingly walk to the door, checking I didn't leave my bag behind and mumble thanks to the last remaining Shadchan. 
I walk out-my hair is completely frizzed, I now sport an Afro as well as streaked face from my melted base and sweat droplets which have obviously dripped down. I have raccoon eyes from half smudged/half melted eyeliner and my skirt is officially glued to my legs. I spent a total of 45 minutes in the room without air conditioning. Without even a cup of water and no one, not one of them realized I was melting or looking a bit weird? 
Well my humiliation for the day was done. I was over the worst. And I made my way back to Chani's house to retell my horror story over fresh rugelach and coffee.
Only sour part of this trip was the shidduch organization. 

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Why Bother With Research?

You know the random suggestions you get every so often? The type when someone you don't know and never met, somehow calls you and has this great idea and you can't figure out how said-person actually even heard of you?
Well, just this past week this woman randomly called my house. Seems she met someone at a wedding who spoke about me and my single-status and this woman suddenly had a great idea as she knew of a guy same age and single as well!
So pants with skirt story continued with a name drop as well as the city the guy lives in. I did some research and lo and behold actually found out he did indeed exist yet he was no where near what I was looking for. Yes I have my specifics and yes I TRY and be open minded but this was quite far off. I was actually insulted with the suggestion and decided I wouldn't say anything mean as for starters the woman didn't even know me. 
In any case I was told to find out some info first and then the boy would look into me. I asked around and sure enough, after enough research found out even more that the guy was totally not for me. 
So I was PROACTIVE. Yes folks, I tracked down someone who was close with the boy himself and asked if he would even be open to dating someone like me. Sure enough the answer was an apologetic 'no'. 
And was I happy? Surely I was! I was polite, courteous, despite how insulted I was and handled things in a respectful manner.  
So why bother with all the nerves and emotions without even asking the guy first if this was at all a possibility?
Think about how much time and energy and hope could've been saved

Friday, July 3, 2015

Picky Pettiness

This week I had the privilege of participating in 3 weddings. Lucky for me, each one was a totally different crowd, so it wasn't boring and it was actually a wonderful experience. 
Unfortunately for me, I got to sit next to 'yentas and yachnes' at each chuppah, which was to say it nicely: the least pleasant part of the weddings. As the music started and the chosson walked down the aisle-the yenting began. At first, they whispered, then their voices turned from loud whisper to soft tone. It got SUPER annoying when the Rabbi was making the brachos and they were picking apart each person's outfit. From there went the flowers, the decor, the band, the singer, etc. I moved away right after the chuppah and enjoyed myself at the bar where I got myself a nice girly drink and danced my heart out all night long.
The second wedding was a more modern affair. Lucky for me, I grew up pretty open-minded, so being an out-of-towner Bais Yaakov girl, I've attended all types of classmates' weddings from chassidish to sefari to lubavitch to modern orthodox. Nothing really surprised me and each person has their own minhagim and I respect that. I guess the people sitting beside me at the chuppah of this particular wedding grew up pretty close minded. They didn't stop talking during the chuppah ceremony, commenting on every part of the chuppah from the Rabbis speech, to the singer, to the way the family was dressed, etc. I believe they went so far as to make fun of the minhagim. Needless to say I found solice in my tehillim app, walked away as soon as the chuppah was over and told them they need to get out more often.
The third wedding was full of shtick and loads of energy, but on a more simpler scale. I really enjoyed it as those are the favorite weddings-simple not fancy and full of yentas, yet full of energy! I met up with a longlost friend there and all she was commenting on the entire time was how plain the wedding was. It was truly disappointing as each time she commented on how 'pathetic' something was, or the cutlery not being super shiny, or not having wrapped chairs or a head table, it put a downer on my evening.
All in all I realized one thing: People say us girls are picky? Well, I admit, for certain things I AM, but the way these women were at a wedding, a simcha, where we are supposed to rejoice for the purpose of a couple FINALLY getting together-and instead they're busy with all the petty stupidities-that's what I call picky!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Humidity-not a Hotness Factor

Odds are that if you live on the Eastern coast of the North American continent-you've been living in super humid conditions. Personally, I don't deal well in humid conditions. It makes my hair frizz. It makes me crazy. It gives me headaches. It makes my skin swell-I can't even take my rings off. It makes me sweaty. It's just plain out gross. 
Some people like it. For me-it's the plague. 
The only thing worse than humid weather is having a date in this weather. I'm talking 80%-95% humidity. I pity the guy that has to take me out. Firstly-as much as I'll try to be in a positive mood. I'll probably be so self conscious about my hair turning into an Afro and my skirt sticking to my legs that I won't be able to concentrate. I'd probably be doublechecking my face in any reflection I could find to ensure my makeup isn't melting to make me look like one of the members of KISS. And I pray the guy would do his best to keep the date indoors with air conditioning-yes a car date would do fine, thank you. 
Honest-whatever is Bashert will be. But at the same time maybe is better to get stuck with a date in humid weather-then the guy could see my true colors from the beginning. He'd see me looking my ultimate worse (thank goodness for sheitels) to my most obsessive character to my worst mood. 
Perhaps in all this meshugas about humidity-it might end up being the best thing that ever happened? 
Who knows?

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Scroll down for Photo

I admit it. I became one of them. Those people I made fun of all those times now I actually am (gulp!) one of them. 
The them I'm referring to are the ones who 'redd' a shidduch by first asking you for your photo and then asking you about yourself and who you are and what you're looking for. 
The them are also the boys who won't even look at a resume without a photo as part of it. 
The them is all the mothers of the boys who won't allow anything to even be suggested for their precious sons, unless said mothers see a photo (or two) of the girl first. 
And lastly, the them are the ones who provide a disclaimer that only after seeing a photo of a girl, if they like the photo, then and only then will they provide the Shadchan/girl their own information. 

The good news folks, is that I ain't all that extreme as per above. However, I became so used to receiving resumes that came with a photo that automatically when I receive an emailed profile-I scroll right down to view the photo first. I must admit it sounds rude but this is the way I've been programmed since this is the format I've been receiving resume emails in. At the same time-I gotta say-most profiles sound the same. The only thing different is the guy's actual name and height. Most are 'from or living in NY.' Most are 'in real estate or taking courses for law/cpa'. Most have 'good hearts, positive energy, learn daily, looking for a Frum and fun with-it kind of girl who knows how to chill and be serious when needed, etc.'
So you can't blame me for scrolling right down to see the pic first and then after, read the guy's description...

Can't believe I became one of those people :(

Monday, June 8, 2015

Dating Vaca

So, it's been a while, but y'know-as all singles eventually do=I needed a vaca. The whole shidduch system was really getting to me; the shadchans, the resumes, the dates, the miscommunications and the non-verbal communication, which now is email only or whatsapp messages. So folks, I did what anyone else in my situation would do, to avoid a nervous breakdown: I went to Priceline and found a last minute flight. I called my close friends, crashed with them and you know what? it was AWESOME!
I was away from the tri-state area, away from the dating scene, turned off my phone, stayed away from WiFi and I survived :)
I guess I now know what it means when I'm told the guy is burnt out and needs a vacation from dating. I used to be upset and annoyed when they used that excuse on me. Like-what the guy needs a break from dating?? He is the one who has the mitzvah to move on in life, get married and have kids. I, the single gal who had to take off work, travel and find myself places to stay, needed a break.
It's safe to say that now I see the other side. We all need refreshing from time to time. We need to stop, recharge our batteries, breathe the fresh air and just stop and enjoy life. All these minute little nuisances are part of Shidduchim and aren't likely to change. We, ourselves need to change-or atleast change our outlook in life.
Hoping I can find someone with that outlook.
Oh-and of course, I can't end this post without the clincher: So we were stranded at this random shul/resort/lobby Shabbos afternoon and didn't know a soul. My friends and I were chatting and joking and suddenly 3 frum guys show up. Good looking young guys. Here was the answer to my prayers-without anyone else in site to ask, we each shyly dared each other to go up to them and ask if they were single or not, but as girls tend to....we were all too shy and ashamed if the answer would be that they were married and at a conference, or engaged and this was the bachelor party or somethin...

Monday, May 11, 2015

Give me a Chance to make a First Impression!

In my search to find a suitable young bachelor, I'm constantly sent names/numbers/emails of people/shadchans/organizations to be in touch with, who 'know people' for me. Calls are usually made without anyone answering on the other end. Messages are left, which go unanswered. Emails are sent without receiving a reply back, even a 'thank you' to let me know they were actually received and read.
In my correspondence, I've tried to remain polite and positive, yet cannot help feeling dismayed at the lack of courtesy. Whilst I understand people are busy and are doing me the favor, a call back, a text message, an email with 2 words, or just to be told on the phone that it's not a good time to call, is better than being ignored.
Last week, I experienced a brand new "response". I was given the name of a shadchan by an old family friend of mine. Apparently this Shadchan is the new one in town and she's made umpteen Shidduchim and knows TONS of guys. I called up and she answered my call. I gave the whole intro, of who I was, what I was looking for, etc. and waited for a response on the other end.
"Ya", she said, "I've heard of you and your name came up, but you guys don't support yeshivos and are anti-yeshivish so..."
I don't have to tell  you how upset I was at her stupid assumptions and remarks. Just because I am NOT Yeshivish, doesn't mean I'm ANTI Yeshivish. My family actually supports many Yeshivas as well as Kollelim. The worst part is I don't know this woman, nor have I ever actually even met her. Yet, here she is on the other line, telling me who she believes & thinks I am. (and I was the one worried about making a first impression!) Nevertheless, I ended the call with a brief, thanks but no thanks and called my friend back. She too was shocked. She never mentioned my name to this woman and didn't understand where she got this information from, but as she said, even if this woman overheard something-to make such assumptions and then, in her position, pass on that false information is very bad PR for someone like me, who needs a Shadchan who can say good things.
Needless to say, I will not travel to meet this woman, nor call her again. I hope no one calls her about me and I hope she reads this so she will understand how someone in her position can ruin someone else with just one baseless assumption.
Woman-if you are reading this, just thing of the word assumption. People who ASSume things, well, y'know what they say about them...