If you're a lady, dating online is nothing like an eharmony commercial, where a polite queue of nice men in navy sweaters and bouquets of daisies send you well-punctuated messages asking about your favorite place to go hiking. The reality of online dating, for women at least, is more like sauntering down the sidewalk in a construction zone in the summer while wearing ass cheek revealing cutoffs and a sopping wet white tank top. And any sparse thoughtful messages sent by Nice Guys are drowned out by the loud, constant virtual wolf whistles of the Online Dating Guy Who Doesn't Seem To Care About Anything But Having Sex. They're completely undaunted by rejection, completely unfazed by glaring incompatibility. They just want someone to touch their penis. So just how repulsive can a woman make herself seem online before men call off their dogs? One intrepid blogger made a fake, totally gross online persona to find out. What she found will delight you, but it probably won't surprise you.
Meet "Marla." "Marla" is the OKCupid alterego of Alyssa Kramer, a Philadelphia-area blogger (and very funny lady) who dared venture to answer the question "Just how fucking batty does a gal have to get before guys on the internet stop trying to fuck her?"
Kramer says she set some ground rules— first, no starting conversations. Any and all interactions must occur at the behest of the male trying to get in on the Marla action. Second, Marla wasn't to ask any questions to further the conversation; she wanted to be an unpleasant, totally bonkers-acting conversational dud. And third, if a person who seemed genuinely interested in getting to know her messaged her, she didn't string him along. Her picture didn't show her face or any of the parts of her that Fergie might call Lovely Lady Lumps — it was just her shoulder. Nothing provocative.
Marla didn't make any illusions about being a dazzling lady of urbanity and taste. Under her "self summary," she wrote,
hi im marla searching for someone special someone cute age 26-72. i dont smoke cig. Dont drink. Socialy i will. Or in basement. like to no more lets get 2gether 2 watch a movie n see how it goes im a nice gurl so if your serious im f'in serious. Plz dont smoke. I smoke to keep my stress down n I have a big dog named Booty so if u dont like dogs move on hes the king lol peace marla
Marla's typical Friday night activities include only "drinkin," her favorite food is "4 sure hot pockets" and she refers to her body type as "used up." Not the stuff of the Maxim Hot 100.
But— surprise — that doesn't matter to guys on the internet who want to get laid! At all! Men still found Marla irresistible. One conversation went thusly,
Bachelor #1: Hi, What kind of dog is booty? Are you from the NYC area originally?
Marla: hes a mix mutt, part fox part coyote. yea im nyc born n bred just like booty lol
B1: Hi Marla, that sounds like a pretty cool dog. I imagine there aren't too many country music fans who are from nyc. Would you like to get together for a movie sometime?
Marla: hes beautiful im thinkin about enterin him in a beauty contest w/humans thats how sure i am he will win
B1: I beat he would take the beauty contest. Some of those beauty pageant girls look kind of freaky.
B1: would you like to meet up sometime?
They were undaunted by feigned constipation...
Bachelor #2: Hi, how are you?
Marla: not 2 good been constipated 4 like days and days lol
B2: Anal is supposed to help with that!
And oddly turned on by Marla's claim that she was 257 lbs of muscle and fat.
Bachelor #3: hey you...
Marla: hey me...
B3: cute.. very cute. ;P makes me want to just throw you around a little bit...
Marla: but i weight 257 lbs
B3: damn... picture's deceiving... fair enough then. not like i have red claws either. well, 257 is a lot for me to handle... i guess no throwing around it seems.
Marla: I know it seems like a lot but im mostly muscle & fat
B3: lol... well i guess that's better than a 257lb bony mass
B3: what are you doing over there alone with your big self...
Men were equally undaunted by odd personality switches.
Bachelor #4: You look beautiful and you sound interesting, let's go on one date.
Marla: how about 27 dates
B4: Excellent idea. Let's go on the first of 27 dates!
Marla: who whoa u are gettin too serious too fast
B4: Ok. Ok. So tell me about yourself.
Marla: im just a gurl standin in front of a microwave waitin for my hot pocket to be done
B4: Excellent, you seem quite interesting and intriguing, what's the story, you must have like 8 boyfriends.
And one seemed encouraged by a nutty story about a monkey in an office.
Bachelor #5: Hey, you down to watch a movie sometime? I can do some night this week? Holla at me.
Marla: whats holla mean lol im not jenny from the block
B5: I don't even know. I guess something I use when I'm feeling thugish? I need to get out of Bronx. Anyway, how'd your day go?
Marla: eh nothin 2 exciting unless u count the monkey that was runnin around the office lol my coworker bill is nutso n brought his chimp to work. i tried to teach him how 2 do my job but the thing (his name is oscar) just kept pluckin shit out of his hair n tryin to eat my pencils lol i was like hey oscar stop but it was almost 2 cute to get angry over anyway i love monkeys especially chimps. did you ever see that movie 'Monkey Trouble' rofl that monkey sure got himself into sum sticky situations n i could sit n watch that movie all day and all night
B5: You're fucking ridiculous. Let's get drinks.
In fact, Marla's favorite movies — Free Willy and Monkey Trouble — made frequent appearances in her interactions with men who still wanted to bang her even after she called them "wanksta" or that she'd accidentally killed her boyfriend because he forgot the safe word. They didn't care that she reported her day to be terrible because she found out that she just ran into a friend who had syphilis. They didn't care that she was bummed out about having to pay to taxidermy the hamster that her cat had killed, or that she was upset that her cat had died after eating her pet poisonous Amazon frogs.
In the end, and in spite of Kramer's best efforts to be revolting, Marla attracted several dozen suitors, several of which you can read about here and here. And the answer to the How Far Can You Take It Before All Men are Summarily Unable to Achieve Erections? Basically, you have to be an actual bath salted out cannibal eating some guy's face under a bridge in Florida. Boners are hard to kill.
An interesting coda to this story: after her first piece about Marla went live, OKCupid suspended the account. Apparently acting bananas is only okay if it comes from a genuine place.
When you think about it, the results of Kramer's experiment are sort of encouraging. No matter how weird, bizarre acting, offbeat, or off your rocker you act, if you're a lady just trying to use the internet to find someone to touch you in the pants, you will succeed — as long as you're willing to settle for a guy who might be into some equally weird shit.
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