Someone is overly enamored of the sound of his own voice

Brian Moylan at Gawker just posted this godawful breakup email, though I disagree that it’s the “most annoying online dating email ever.” I’ve put up with worse than this:

Dear [MissLonelyhearts],

Thanks for an interesting 3 dates. I spent the weekend thinking about you and me and have decided that I’m not interested in pursuing “us” any longer.

I had a great time on our second date. You did a great job in planning that night. Thank you again! I really enjoyed meeting your friends on Friday night and they were great to talk to.

Personally, I’m not a big fan of when people just disappear, fall off the map or suddenly stop calling without a reason, so I figured I’d say a few things.

I don’t think we’re a good match and after looking at us on Cupid again, neither does Cupid. We’re a 35% match on ethics questions and 52% on lifestyle questions. And I think the lifestyle issue is the bigger one. I think Cupid’s matching system works best if the user answers more questions. I noticed you only answered 92 questions—so I’d recommend answering more. Cupid was founded by Harvard math majors, so I have confidence in their match algorithm.

I feel like I’m adaptable to almost any situation and get along with all kinds of people. You have told me multiple times that there are people you flat out don’t think you have anything in common with nor want to talk to—like the people at my friend’s party. I can’t date someone who doesn’t feel comfortable navigating through and thriving in the diverse social environments that I always find myself in. I feel like especially in a city like New York EVERYONE has something in common just by virtue of living in the biggest city in the US. Also most people aren’t from here, so that’s always something to talk about. My profile says it all when I talk about the various music and situations that I love. I also love crowds.

I also seem to have a lot more energy than you. I think I work longer hours, party much more, go out more, sleep less and probably exercise more than you. Plus I’m older. I love spending time relaxing on the couch, but I also love to dance every week. It would be ideal to find a partner to share these things with.

Lastly, on our first date you told me that I talk a lot but that you didn’t feel like I talked enough about the “real me.” You asked me if I ever open up to girls on dates. On our third date I told you all about my parents and I feel like instead of just listening to me and/or trying to see things from a different perspective, you basically just told me what “I should be doing” and essentially what I was doing was “wrong.” As in I should be calling my mom every day and not speaking poorly of my father. How are you going to ask someone to open up and then chastise them for doing so? I didn’t think that was very cool at all.

I highly recommend that you move to San Francisco once you are done with New York. It’s got a large tech culture which is great for design. The cafe culture in SF is much more European style than New York—thus there are more cafes and more people working from cafes. I think SF may be better suited for your pace of life.

Montauk is the place that I recommended that you take your father. I know you mentioned that he likes to take the train, but I highly recommend not taking the train there if not spending a lot of money is important to you. Montauk is pretty rural and small town (but spread out) thus there is not much public transportation. Taxis there are very expensive and not very convenient if you want to go to more than 1 beach or location. It’s not very walkable from the train station. Thus I recommend driving. The drive out there is beautiful. I took a date there last year and she loved it. I would definitely bring a change of clothes. It’s super casual during the day (surf/beach attire) and it gets fancy at night at the restaurants and bars.

I wish you the best in your dating and other pursuits and it’s a small world, so I imagine I’ll run into you again somewhere on this planet.

Ciao,

OompaLoompa

So then Moylan asks:

But where does the blame lie? Sure, OompaLoompa’s “I think I work longer hours, party much more, go out more, sleep less and probably exercise more than you. Plus I’m older,” shtick is totally obnoxious. But if what he says is true about that she criticized the way he treats his parents on date three, then maybe it makes sense why he’s dumping her.

And boy is he dumping her! But at least he’s nice and courteous enough to help her plan a visit with her father, no? So, who do you think is wrong in this situation? Is it OompaLoompa for being a type-A jackass or MissLonelyhearts for being lazy, judgmental, and mean?

I disagree. I don’t think MissLonelyhearts is lazy, judgmental or mean; she may very well all those things and worse, but that is not evident from OompaLoompa’s email. What’s is apparent from his criticisms of her is that she’s an introvert, while he’s an extrovert who doesn’t know what it means to be an introvert.

The reasons that OompaLoompa cites for breaking it off do not make him a jackass, nor do they make MissLonelyHearts a bad person. It is not her responsibility to be as sociable, gregarious or energetic as he wants, and it is not his responsibility to learn to love her more self-contained temperament.

Then again, he didn’t really need to tell her why he feels they aren’t compatible, or at least not in that much detail. We’re talking about three dates here; it’s not like they own property together. A simple “I don’t think we have much in common, so I’m not interested in another date” would be fine. But, you know, if he really felt the need to explain to her why they weren’t compatible, then the differences in their dispositions and interests are good reasons. He wants his girlfriend to go dancing with him, he should find a woman who likes to dance.

This incident here is interesting:

Lastly, on our first date you told me that I talk a lot but that you didn’t feel like I talked enough about the “real me.” You asked me if I ever open up to girls on dates. On our third date I told you all about my parents and I feel like instead of just listening to me and/or trying to see things from a different perspective, you basically just told me what “I should be doing” and essentially what I was doing was “wrong.” As in I should be calling my mom every day and not speaking poorly of my father. How are you going to ask someone to open up and then chastise them for doing so? I didn’t think that was very cool at all.

Problem is, we weren’t there to see how the conversation went down. If the way he communicates in email is any indication, he probably ran his mouth for a long time without saying anything that was useful in getting to know him. By “tell her about his parents,” he may have genuinely tried sharing sensitive information with her, or he may have used a bunch of superficial parent-blaming as a substitute for meaningful disclosure about himself. He’s already shown himself to be someone who likes to go on and on about how someone else should handle herself when his advice is neither solicited nor needed. It’s also possible that when MissLonelyHearts asked him to “open up,” she meant only on her terms, which is not helpful. The issue is probably, at its core, that they simply have different ideas of what kind of emotional disclosure is appropriate in early dates.

Where he really goes wrong is that it wasn’t enough for him to tell her why he wasn’t interested in seeing her anymore. Oh, no, he doesn’t want to go out with her again, but he’s not finished telling her what to do with herself:

I don’t think we’re a good match and after looking at us on Cupid again, neither does Cupid. We’re a 35% match on ethics questions and 52% on lifestyle questions. And I think the lifestyle issue is the bigger one. I think Cupid’s matching system works best if the user answers more questions. I noticed you only answered 92 questions—so I’d recommend answering more. Cupid was founded by Harvard math majors, so I have confidence in their match algorithm.

No, dude. Just, no. It is not your place to tell her that she should answer more matching questions now that you’ve already dumped her. Now that she’s no longer your problem, whatever she does is none of your business.

Besides, 92 questions is enough to get a useful reading

It gets worse:

I highly recommend that you move to San Francisco once you are done with New York. It’s got a large tech culture which is great for design. The cafe culture in SF is much more European style than New York—thus there are more cafes and more people working from cafes. I think SF may be better suited for your pace of life.

Montauk is the place that I recommended that you take your father. I know you mentioned that he likes to take the train, but I highly recommend not taking the train there if not spending a lot of money is important to you. Montauk is pretty rural and small town (but spread out) thus there is not much public transportation. Taxis there are very expensive and not very convenient if you want to go to more than 1 beach or location. It’s not very walkable from the train station. Thus I recommend driving. The drive out there is beautiful. I took a date there last year and she loved it. I would definitely bring a change of clothes. It’s super casual during the day (surf/beach attire) and it gets fancy at night at the restaurants and bars.

What the Hell kind of presumptuous ass tells a woman he’s just dumped that she should move across the country? I’m sure it would be very convenient for her to move 3000 miles away if you’re afraid you might run into her in New York. If you’re afraid she might stalk you, then she’s not going to take your advice to move to another time zone. If you’re afraid that YOU might stalk HER if she doesn’t get the hell out of Dodge, then you need help.

No, it is not “nice” or “courteous” of him to advise her on planning a trip with her father. It’s just one more place where he can’t stop himself from bossing her around even now that he won’t be dating her again. I’m sensing some control freak tendencies here. He doesn’t want to go to the trouble of spending time with her, but he still wants to be that helpful, wise fellow in her life. If this is how he talks to her when they’re on a date, then it’s probably a relief to her to see that he’s breaking it off. If he had simply said, “I don’t think we’re a good match,” and proceeded straight to “I wish you the best,” that would have been ideal. Seeing how much this dude loves to hear himself talk, MissLonelyHearts probably wouldn’t have needed any further explanation of how they’re not compatible. She’s a creative, artsy type who likes to work in cafes, keeps to herself and doesn’t think everyone is her friend. She needs to be with someone who doesn’t talk nearly as much compared to what he has to say.

But all that said? I’ve taken worse, and in the grand scheme, my breakups were not that bad. I think OompaLoompa’s main problem is a paucity of self-awareness.