One of the things I like about OkCupid (and ‘like’ is strong language given how much I moan about it) is the match percentage system. I briefly looked into Match.com, and found the experience alarming in its randomness. The people on Match.com are the sort of folk you’d find trapped in a lift. A broken-down lift in a multi-storey carpark next a hellish shopping centre two desperate shopping days before Christmas. And all the men inside are winking at you.
Anyway, it didn’t seem much like real-life dating. Ordinarily, the people you date will already have been filtered in some way. They’ll be a friend of a friend, or a work colleague, or you’ll have met them via a shared passion for scuba-diving or astrophysics or Morris dancing. Rarely will you find a match inside a lift, despite Match.com’s business model.
NB – If you and your partner are Morris dancers, please don’t procreate.
OkCupid’s matching system is by no means perfect, but it does cut out some of the crap. If I match 95% with person A, and 22% with person B, chances are I’m going to have more in common with person A. I may, of course, find person A deeply irritating. It may be that our common ground gives way to a vast snaky pit of mutual loathing, and that by the end of the date we’re considering ramming our chopsticks up the other’s nostrils and scooping out the brains to make sashimi. But between person A and person B, the former is much less likely to believe in fairies.
The questions, as well, are fun to fill in and an endless source of debate. I went through mine with one of my matches, and came to blows over quite a few:
Question: The person you’ve been seeing for a while climbs in your window, crawls in bed with you and cuddles up. You find this:
Him: Why is this scary if you’re seeing them?
Me: It depends on what floor of the house you’re on, and for another thing whether you’re expecting them to turn up. If you live on the top floor of an apartment block and are asleep at the time, it could be scary. Especially if they’re wielding a knife.
Him: So is it normal for ‘the person you’ve been seeing a while’ to be a knife wielding maniac?
This sort of thing is important to know. If I were looking for men on Match.com I’d probably never get chance to learn their opinion re breaking-and-entering of property, which could turn out to be a dealbreaker further down the line. With OkCupid and its match questions, you’ve got chance to cover your back.