Just a Jew. Named Mitch. Writing about his feelings.

Fun with JDate

Posted by JewMitch on June 22, 2009


People are constantly telling me to go on JDate. “Go on JDate,” they say, “It’s great for meeting people. Or just to hook up.” I try to explain that I really only like to date blonde non-Jewish girls, but to no avail. “Sign up anyway,” they say. “There are all types on there.”

To settle this matter for once and for all, I’d like to tell the story of my one and only JDate-date. I put up a ridiculous profile hoping to attract a fun girl with a good sense of humor. My photo was cropped in a heart shape. When asked who I was trying to meet, I wrote: “I’m looking for a girl who is extra pretty, extra smart, extra funny. Kind of like an extra value meal.” For my ideal first date, I wrote: “I’d have to go with mild to heavy drinking during happy hour. That way, if we like each other, we can make out without that awkward sober feeling. And if we don’t, I can just drink and watch your mouth move without listening to what you are saying.” When asked what you want your date to know about you, I wrote: “Sometimes, when cuddling, my arm falls asleep. And just because I ask you to roll over, that doesn’t mean that I don’t love you.”

So this one fairly cute girl starts e-mailing me. She seems to have a good sense of humor and not be overweight, so we chat online for a bit before deciding to meet in DC at this great bar called Brickskeller. I immediately know that something is off when she shows up with wet hair.

“Why is your hair wet?” I asked, wondering why it wasn’t blow-dried like in her photo. With internet dating, you expect that people don’t look exactly like their photo, but blow-drying one’s hair seemed simple enough.

“Oh,” she said. “It’s still shabbas.”

“You’re shomer shabbas?” I asked. She nodded. “Shomer shabbas” means that you’re one of those Jews who observe the Sabbath by not using any electricity or driving a car on Saturday (like John Goodman’s character in The Big Lebowski). Such a practice is ancient and beautiful in one sense, and extremely annoying in another.

“Hmm,” I say. “Does this mean we can still order drinks?”

“Drinks are okay,” she said. “But I shouldn’t order any food.”

“Can I order food and just leave it in the middle of the table?”

“Uhm, I guess that’s okay.”

So we order a warmed loaf of bread and two beers. Only she orders a Pabst Blue Ribbon in a can. Normally, this would be perfectly acceptable behavior, except we were in the Brickskeller, which is literally in the Guinness Book of World Records for having a selection of over 1,000 beers in bottles. It’s just not really the place to order a can of PBR. On top of this, she asks for a glass too. “Do you know how dirty cans are?” she asked. “They have like, rat feces on them. I saw a documentary once.”

At this point, I could already tell that this girl may not be my soul mate. What type of a person sits and watches a documentary on aluminum cans? So I decided to pry into this religion thing a little more. “So are you Shomer Negiah?” I asked. Shomer Negiah is when a Jewish person is so observant that they don’t touch members of the opposite sex until they get married, not even hand holding. Obviously, this would have been an instant deal breaker.

“No,” she said. Then she paused for a second before adding, “but I don’t have sex.”

Awesome, I thought. Keeping the ball rolling, I said, “So you must be all about oral?”

She frowned. “Not really. I mean, that’s sort of like having sex for me. Also, I had a bad experience a while back with a boyfriend where I thought I had caught something and it kind of weirded me out towards doing that.”

Finally, the date was going somewhere. “Like herpes?”

“No,” she said. “I don’t want to talk about it.”

“Like gonorrhea?”

“Like HIV,” she said.

“Really?! You know that HIV is really hard to catch if from oral sex. Were you eating a lot of Captain Crunch right before or something.”

“It’s possible to catch HIV from oral sex!” she said.

“There’s been like one documented case in history.”

“It’s still possible.” Then she proceeded to tell me a long story about how right after she had broken up with a boyfriend, she had gotten a call from a charity that was raising money for AIDS research. And instead of politely declining, or maybe making a small donation, she had decided that the reason they were calling her at this time was because … are you ready for this … her boyfriend had AIDS. So she freaked out and went and got an HIV test, but is still a little nervous from the experience.

Knowing that this date can only get better, I decide to switch the topic from sex back to religion and ask her about one of my favorite philosophical topics: the afterlife.

“So, you believe in the afterlife?”


“Don’t you think it’s a little convenient? Like everyone was sitting around thinking about how scary death is, and one person says – what if after we die we all go to a happy place? And everyone was like, that’s a great idea, let’s believe that.”

“No,” she said. “I think of it more like the chicken and the egg. Like we don’t know which came first. This life or the afterlife.”

“That’s sort of a good analogy,” I said. “But it would work a lot better if the chickens were this real thing that we saw every day, and eggs were this thing that a lot of people talked about, but no one had ever seen or touched.”

She frowned again. It was at this point in the date where she said, “Well, maybe we can just be friends.”

To which I replied, “That’s okay. But it was nice meeting you.” And that was my last experience with JDate.


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