The New M.E. Generation











I opened the email and the impression I got from the photo was that he looked way younger than his actual age.

I then viewed his profile and it showed that he was 35. His face had a boyish look, which made me feel that I was dealing instead with a 20-something.

His profession was as a paramedic and that he was currently pursuing a graduate degree in a field related to healthcare.

It was good to read that he had other ambitions in life. To me, that translates that you’re a non-conformist and willing to take a new challenge.

Working full-time and then going to school is not easy task. I did that and made me feel proud of myself that I completed a self-established goal.

The unfortunate part of having a relationship with someone who’s a paramedic (that at times are also firefighters) is their schedule. They work every other day and, depending on your seniority, usually the night shift.

Add other activities into your schedule means no time for anything else. And if you’re in a relationship and/or have children, your agenda is totally booked.

This guy has no kids, but I just knew that he wasn’t really for me. After having guys dropping off the radar pretty much right from the start, I’m going to be very cautious of how I do anything from now on.

But, like I did before, I will try to take these experiences with a humorous approach. This way it won’t affect me and the recovery is almost instant.

It may sound contradictory that I’m allowing myself to experience certain moments when they’re bound to be short-lived.

But if I change my approach into looking what I would gain (like building my character) instead of losing (like getting mad), isn’t it worth it?

Everything that one does has a risk attached to it and if you’re not willing to take them, you’ll never take off the ground to reach where you want to go.



After this incident, I continued using the dating site, but learned not to get excited about anything that might occur in it.

I continued getting messages from guys in their 20’s, 40’s and 50’s. Don’t know why those in the 30’s weren’t happening.

So, again, either they were too young, or those within my age range looked like their shelf life had happened a long time ago.

Still, it didn’t hurt to open the messages and read what was written. I figured out that, if at least I could laugh about it, it could be worth my time.

Take for instance the profile photo of a 21 year old. It was a selfie of him standing sideways without a shirt and the phone covering part of his face. He also had a tattoo on the arm he used to take the shot.

So, you are showing all of your naked torso, but not your whole face? And what do you really want me to look at, the tattoo or your fitted body? Please…

His message read, ‘Wow, hello beautiful. Would love to meet you.’ For what, so you can show me the rest of you (including other art that you may have)? Besides, he lives way out of my area. Not even worth using my gas on that either.

I know I don’t have to reply, but let’s see what happens when I try to scare him away.

‘Thank you for your message, but what is it you are looking to get out of this when I’m old enough to be your mom?’

Lucky me (or not) he was online and didn’t took long to reply. ‘C’mon it could be fun. We could meet for a movie, drinks, or something.’

Yes, fun for you, not so much for me.

I’ll leave it at that. Not going to reply with a ‘no’ when not doing so equals ‘not interested’. I’ll delete the message later.

All right, what’s next? Is there a message from a 30-something?

Let’s check it out then.



‘Hi, how are you?’ read his chat.

‘Fine; thanks. Was about to reply to your messages’, wrote I.

‘Noticed you were online, so thought it was the best way to speak with you, for now.’

This gave me an uneasy feeling. More than misinterpreting what another person might be trying to communicate, I felt I was somewhat spied upon. It’s as if he was purposely keeping an eye on me, waiting for me to appear.

And what does he mean ‘for now’? Sounds to me that he’s going to decide my fate based upon a few sentences.

‘What do you mean?’ I asked him.

‘Your profile needs work. You’re either covering things or don’t want to be so open about yourself just yet.’

I was right. He’s somewhat interested in me, but because my first impression wasn’t that extraordinary to him, he’s going to decide to either continue pursuing me or not right this moment.

Second of all, who the hell are you to judge me, even less over a dating site profile?

I got angry, but I’m not letting it show.

‘I gave this site a try recently. Putting some more time into it is not my priority these days,’ I wrote.

‘If you want to get anywhere with it, you have to.’

Is that so? Wonder if I should mention that I get messages from 20-somethings.

‘How long have you been on the dating scene?’ asked I.

‘7 years.’

Give me a freaking break!

‘7 years??’ asked I.

‘Yes, but on and off. Have had some relationships here and there.’

And they haven’t worked out because:
(a) You’re a dick.
(b) You think you’re God’s gift to the world.
(c) You’re approaching this site as if it was a bride mail-order catalog.
(d) You think women in general need re-working so they can adjust to your mold.

Answer is: All of the above; but especially the last, because I (and women who are very clear of who they are) will not follow your shopping list.

I did that my entire life, living my existence for others or doing what they expected me to do at the expense of losing my self-esteem and sense of who I was. The one who needs to make changes around here is he.

I didn’t respond to his last chat right away, so he realized I wasn’t happy.

‘I’ve used different dating sites throughout the years, but I’m not active all the time.’

Whatever, you blew it. Still no response from me.

‘When you update your profile, let me know,’ wrote he.

‘Yeah’ is all I said.

I don’t (or care to) remember who ended the chat. After that day we never communicated again.

About a month later his profile was closed. I wasn’t surprised or even wondered if he had found someone.

Regarding my profile, still the same as he saw it and with the 100 answered questions.

And the answer to what to do about all this: you have to keep on trying.



I didn’t visit the site again until about 2 days later. It was the weekend, so I thought it was the best time to engage in this with a more relaxed approach.

I login and notice I have some messages from a guy whose name was ‘greeneyes4u’.

I opened the emails and (damn!) he certainly had green eyes, is nice looking, and on my age range.

Thank you universe!!

But, wait; before I get too excited about the planets being aligned in my favor for the first time ever, let me check out his profile.

According to what he wrote, he had been married, children are grown-up, had his own business, enjoyed the beach very much, and engaged in water sports.

He looked well for his age and was physically fit, obviously as a result of the activities he engages at.

Assuming the photos were recent, they gave me a sense that he was tranquil with his life and that he does want to meet someone, but is not in a rush to do so.

Everything passed my inspection. I wasn’t seeing or reading anything that raised a red flag to me.

I was very glad that this was happening so quickly after joining the site. I felt that I was back in the game and it should finally work out this time around.

I have learned my lesson well and do intend to deal with it the right way. I will reply to his messages (about 3 of them) with no melodrama, no desperate mode, or no negative behavior.

No, no, no. I’m not getting into that any more. It’s been quite a few years since been single and the disappointments and hurt have been too much.

No, I’m not letting this happen again. I know better.

All right, let’s start. I will read all of them and then reply. No rush, no stress; just think of what to say carefully and go for it.

And just when I was about to do that, a window opens on the screen. It was the online chat. This meant he could see that I was online and had visited his profile.

Surprise to me! Darn it! So this is how this works? You pretty much know what another person is doing (if you really do your research) and the same goes for yourself.

I started getting nervous. How much does this ‘green eyed’ person has dug up about me?

I kept staring at the chat window. He wants to talk to me, now!

So, who said again is totally in control here?



I think I managed to get to the 50 questions that last day I was on the site. I sat down to work on the remaining questions a few days later.

When I logged in, I noticed I already had visitors to my profile and even a few messages.

I started with the visitors and they were pretty bad. The men were within the age range I am considering, but they physically looked much older than what they actually are.

Even more, if they were physically fit (as in a good weight and working out), their bodies looked somewhat worn out. As much as they’re making the effort to take care of themselves, it seems their lives have taken the best of them.

Then I moved to the messages. Again, some of them were from the visitors I just looked at. But, there were others from guys in their early 20’s.

The other thing that struck me was what written in the messages. The older ones would write a few lines with a polite approach: ‘Hello. I came across your profile. I was very impressed by your beauty. You probably get that comment all the time. Hope you reply.’

The younger ones, though, were short and to the point: ‘Damn girl, you’re a hottie! Want to meet for a drink?’

Shoot! This experience has not started well at all!

The guys my age are not what I’m looking for and the young ones are that, too young. The second may have the youth, maybe the goods, a career, and the best things happening for them. But it’s not what I’m interested in.

Besides, I already dealt with that before (please see ‘The Accidental Cougar’ and ‘Another Cougar Moment’ stories).

So, now what? Either way is not good options.

Why does everything that I try to do have to be so difficult?



The profile was completed and I felt exhausted, most of all on the emotional content I included than the actual task of doing it.

Regarding the photos, I decided to include only 2 that were taken at least 4 years ago. It’s not that I’m longing for my younger years, but I deliberately did it as an experiment. In both I have a different hair color and style, and barely any makeup.

What I wanted to discover was what guys would say about me physically when looking at what I considered my least glamorous shots.

The next day I logged in again to my profile and I got a message from an actual person working at the site stating that she saw that I hadn’t answered any questions yet, and that it would greatly help my search if I did.

Damn it, the questions, all 100, or more, of them. All right, let me at least do this in bulk, like 25 at a time. Shall we begin?

‘Do you believe in love at first sight?’ Maybe I did when I was a teenager. Now I’m really hard to impress. Answer: ‘It is possible for it to happen.’

‘If roses are to flowers, then dogs are to__.’ Choices: pets, animals, friends, companions. Hmm, this is one of those disguised that relates to other people. Sorry, ‘jerks’ is not an option (for men that is). Chose the last.

‘What do these 3 numbers have in common?’ What? Why do I need to calculate anything? This is what this site is supposed to do for you. Really?

I got to question 15 when I started getting annoyed by this process. Why am I feeling again that my life is so complicated to figure out, especially when it relates to men?

Hey, universe, can you enlighten me on that?



I waited about a week later to visit that dating site Ivan talked to me about.

As with any other I’ve used or considered previously, I took the time to read what they had to offer and decide if it was worth my time.

It had the basic features of any other; you had to create a profile and add pictures to it. What caught my attention was how they would find matches for you; it was all determined using math calculations.

They have these questions for you to answer that covered many subjects. The minimum to do is 100, so the more answered, the better your chances of getting compatible matches.

The other aspect that I liked about the site was that they featured all persons working on the site and explained how the software calculated the matches.

Hate to admit, I’ve never been good at math, but if others have taken the time to explain how the science behind this madness works, then they do know what they’re doing.

All right, let’s begin. Started completing the general part of the profile and decided to leave the questions for another day.

Then comes the real deal; what you like and dislike, what you want from the other person, etc.

This is the tricky part. I know what I want from a guy, but, how much am I really willing to disclose publicly to get that?

And regarding the photos, will I post current or past ones? When men see them, what image or perception am I hoping to project?

In other words, how far will I really go with this?

I stared at the screen and became worried. It has been quite many years since I’ve given another dating site a try.

When I started on this, I just wanted to find someone, fast. Now I’m questioning what my current needs are and how much another person will add on to my total life equation?

Would it be a ‘+’, ‘-‘, or ‘+/-‘?



I waited about 2 days and called him before going to sleep. To my surprise, he answered the phone.

Once again, he sounded he wasn’t exactly on this world; it was more like being away on dreamland, but not upset that I called.

“Oops, did I wake you up?” asked I.

“No, I’m in bed relaxing.”

Hmm, it felt very inviting for a moment. Yet, he has always shared his space with all those problematic women, but never with me. I wondered why and couldn’t find an answer.

“All those women you date got you all worn out?” continued I.

“I only date one woman at a time, you know that.”

“Sounds to me like one far too many.”

Ivan didn’t answer. He knows I’m right and I’m sure he wasn’t interested in me giving him a speech yet again about how badly he manages his love life.

“I wanted to call you to thank you for listening to me the other day. I know I got all emotional, but it was all bottled up and just couldn’t control myself.”

“I understand. No worries. Listen, there’s a free dating site you should try.”

“What?? Didn’t you say to me you wanted to take a break? How many women have you met or dated?”

“Just a few, but that was not a recent thing. I really intend to be on my own for a while.”

“At the rate you’re going, next time I speak with you, I bet you’re in a relationship, maybe living with that person, you eloped or moved to the other side of the world. With you, anything is possible.”

“It’s also possible that for once in my life I will finally follow through on what I say.”

“You know what will happen next? I will get into this site you’re talking about and come across your photo.”

“No, it’s not active right now.”

“It’s a surprise to hear that, but a good start indeed. I will give it a try and let you know.”

“You will find someone. Remember, be patient. Everything will be good in the long run. Trust me.”

Trust you when you can’t even do that with yourself? Please, don’t make me laugh! Actually, it’s not a bad idea.

And regarding the site, hey, it’s free. What have I got to lose?

For starters, my dignity and sanity. That can be followed by my lack of patience and sense of lost hope that I will ever meet someone worth anything.

I know Ivan means well, but he’s the last person whom I would take romantic advice.

On that aspect, trust me, I know, plenty.



I turned my chair to face the wall, so no one could see my tears flowing down my eyes. It was one of those moments when not even waterproof make-up could conceal the emotions that were pouring out.

It started getting so bad, I grabbed my shawl and wrapped it all the way to my nose. More than for warmth, the item became my mask and handkerchief.

“This year has been so difficult,” said I. “I’m still with no guy. Every one that I meet isn’t worth anything. This month would have been my 20-year anniversary.

I know the grass is never greener on the other side. But there are times when I just feel that my life sucks and won’t change for the better.

I’m grateful that I have many blessings. But I’m not asking for much. I’m a good person and don’t understand why I’m still single.

All I want is to settle down, have a family, and live a tranquil existence. Why can’t I just get that?”

“You will find someone,” said he. “You have to be patient.”

“How many times you’ve told me that and still nothing? At least you’re always with someone, for better or for worse.”

“That doesn’t mean I’m happy. And, no, right now I’m not with someone. I want to take a break.”

“You always say that too. When I turn around you’re back in being in a relationship.”

“I know; I’m a disaster. But I really want to be alone for a while. When Thanksgiving comes, I’m getting a bottle of champagne and drink it all alone at my place. Not interested in going to any parties or anything.”

“You don’t have to be so extreme. You can celebrate the holiday very low key with people that really care about you.”

“I’m not in the mood to be with anyone. How about you?”

“I’ll be with family. I mean, it’s good, but won’t help much that I’m so sad, angry, frustrated at so many things. I need an extraordinary experience to happen to me that will give me a new perspective and change everything that I am.”

“Things will get better for you.”

“When? I’m tired of waiting. I want it to happen already.”

Ivan and I talked for a few more minutes. It was a brief conversation as usual, but it was the first one that after talking to him I felt some relief.

After hanging up, I turned to face the computer again and luckily nobody saw or heard me while talking.

I quickly ran out into the bathroom to hide and chill out for a few minutes.

I could barely look at myself on the mirror. But turns out using the shawl as handkerchief saved some of my make-up, so I was able to fix it good enough that people wouldn’t notice my tears.

Once back at my desk, I realized I didn’t thank Ivan for listening, or that to remember he had (sort of) promised to meet me one day for drinks.

So, call him again? I’ll drink to that.



et cetera
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