The Points System

If you read L’s sports blogger post earlier this week you already know that LSD are huge fans of the show The League. The three of us have been binge watching the new season on Netflix simultaneously, LOLing at Ruxin’s antics, drooling over Pete, and being grossed out by Rafi.

Sorry to suddenly turn this into a 100% League themed blog (lest you all get the idea that I actually like football, because incidentally I hate it) but a plot line in one of the episodes caught my attention. Pete, the scruffy, adorable ne’er do well, tells the guys about a “points system” that he’s devised for picking up players off the waiver wire (real talk, I had no idea what that even was before I watched the show), and how it also works in the dating world. Basically Pete assigns players (or women) who are left after the draft (or who are single) points for their positive and negative attributes, and then makes a decision based on their final score. I swear I searched for half an hour for a Youtube clip of this damn scene but had no luck whatsoever. The best I could muster was an Amazon Video free preview clip of the scene that they won’t allow me to embed into this post. #bloggingfail. If you care, here it is. According to Pete:

“Those who are left, myself included, have a ton of baggage. Maybe it’s a bad hamstring. Maybe she’s got daddy issues. The system allows me to ferret it all out and make the right pick.”

Please know that Pete also claims women older than 28 qualify as the female equivalent of leftovers from the draft. Well thanks, Pete/writers for The League. I’ll be turning 29 in less than three months, so that makes me feel faaaaannntastic. 

megryan_crying

But Pete claims this is also one of the reasons the point system is so useful: the older we get, the less time we have to BS around with someone who’s not right for us. He shows the other guys how efficiently his system works by using it on a strange woman in a bar. It’s simple arithmetic: add points for the positives, subtract for the negatives, and make a call based on their final score. In the end, the joke is on Pete, because a girl who he goes out with and really likes uses the points system on him and decides he doesn’t measure up. Pete ends up with a -7 score, and no second date.

I would be lying if I said this concept didn’t intrigue me a bit. The thing is, I think it’s something that most single people are already unofficially doing in our heads. Here are some examples of things that I subconsciously keep track of. I have assigned each item a numerical value of importance using the Pete Eckhart system:

  • Taller than me: +1
  • Over 6 feet tall: +2
  • Has all his hair: +1
  • Good job and/or advanced degree: +3
  • Funny/makes me laugh: +3
  • Friendly/good conversationalist: +3
  • Good taste in music: +2
  • Lives in the city: +1
  • Poor grammar/spelling: -1
  • Bad at making plans: -2
  • Egotistical/takes himself too seriously: -3
  • Politically conservative: -2
  • Looks at his phone a lot during our date: -2
  • Texts every five seconds: -2
  • Alludes to past relationships/baggage/mommy issues/inability to commit early on: -4
  • Bad tipper: -2
  • Likes Dave Matthews Band: -1

Now, pretty much all of these categories could be used across the board on any date, but sometimes things come up that are more…individualized. Here are two examples of positives and negatives that were specific to a certain guy:

  • A the DJ owned his own successful business: +2
  • J who dumped me in a crowded bar loved…wait for it….DISNEY WORLD: -4. I’m sorry, but I am terrified of grown ass adults without kids who go to Disney World every year. I’m sure dissing the happiest place on Earth makes me sound like a crotchety bitch–don’t get me wrong, I love a good Disney movie, and the two times I went to Disney (when I was a kid and our senior trip in high school) were a blast. But I don’t get adults who voluntarily and repeatedly visit an amusement park in ORLANDO, FLORIDA when they could be traveling to…basically anywhere else.

Please know that in typical foot-in-mouth S fashion, I went on this exact rant in front of J before I knew this about him. He got really quiet for a second and then replied (in a super serious tone): “My whole family goes to Disney once a year. We’re actually going again over Christmas.”

Whooooooooopsieeeeee

Awkward-Disney-1

(I have no idea who these people are, btdubs. I googled ‘awkward family Disney World pics’ and this family came up. Clearly they’re about as pleased with my Disney trash talking as J was).

So yeah. I secretly kind of believe that whole exchange was the real reason  J dumped me but let’s be honest, it wasn’t meant to be anyway. Mama is not about to spend her Christmas in line for the “It’s a Small World” ride.

Annywayyy…. sorry for that tangent! Back to the topic at hand. Last night, in the name of Stucu research, I took the points system for a spin on someone I’ve been messaging but haven’t gone out with yet. Here’s what his breakdown looks like (remember, I haven’t met this dude):

  • lives in the city: +1
  • lawyer who seems to like his job: +3
  • Politically liberal: +2
  • Over 6 feet tall: +2
  • Excellent spelling and grammar: +1
  • Asks good questions/acts interested: +2
  • Sort of funny: +1
  • Disappeared in the middle of our messaging and then returned weeks later apologizing and claiming he had been “really busy”: -4
  • STILL taking his sweet ass time to make plans (too many messages): -2
  • MENTIONED TWICE THAT HE’S IN MENSA: ……5? Yes, -5 is fair.

That last one….I just can’t. Am I the only one who finds that to be incredibly lame and gross? It’s like adults who still talk about their SAT score: CALM DOWN. You’re really smart. I get it. I actually originally thought this was grounds for dismissal because ew, eyeroll…

30-Rock-111

but when I did the math, this guy (also a J) squeaked by with a +1. If he doesn’t fall off the face of the Earth (again), I may still give him a shot because 1. he has a positive point value and I want to test this theory and 2. there’s a fairly good chance that he’d show up to our date wearing this:

score big mensa

and legitimately attempt to test my IQ. Which let’s face it, would make for some fanfuckingtastic blog fodder.

One final note on the points system: while I think it’s fun, efficient, and maybe useful to a point, it’s also super arbitrary: how much is something like sense of humor really “worth” to me in relation to say, height? I’m not sure quantifying it is that helpful an exercise. Especially because I also think it discounts a huge part of what’s important in finding a match, and that’s chemistry. Sure, I can assign points to ‘makes me laugh’ and ‘good conversationalist’, but that doesn’t entirely cover it. L and I were recently discussing this: there is that intangible connection/compatibility/attraction that you just have with some people and you don’t with others, period. And having done the online dating thing for a while now, I honestly believe in chemistry more than ever. Maybe it’s the format of getting to know someone before actually meeting them… I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been out with a guy who was nice and cool enough over email and who I was excited to meet, and then it just fell totally flat in person.

Also, I think it’s much harder to find that intangible connection than it is to come across many of the things on my “list” (with the exception of ‘good at making plans’ and ‘over 6 feet tall’. Tall dudes who can plan an outing, holler at me!). For instance, K would have done well on the points system, but I just wasn’t feeling it with him. No chemistry. Meanwhile, with other dudes that would get a mediocre score at best, my chemistry has been off the charts. I think the key (and what makes it so hard to meet someone awesome) is to find a combination of both.

So, dear readers, what do you think of Pete Eckhart’s points system? Is it unromantic BS, or do you think there’s actually something to it? If you’re single, have you ever weighed the pluses and minuses of a date or do you just go with your gut?

Also, while we’re at it, should I give Mensa dude a chance or get rid of him? (rest assured I’ll still make my own decision, but I’m curious to hear what you guys think):

My date with sports blogger the great

You know how everybody has a celebrity “list?” The list of celebs that, if they EVER propositioned you, EVEN if you were happily married to your spouse of 25 years and had 6 kids, and were in the middle of open heart surgery (performing it or having it)  you would IMMEDIATELY drop EVERYTHING to  have sex with them? (If you don’t have a “list,” stop judging me and make one right now. It should have between 2-4 people on it to encourage maximum thought and specificity, and those people should be living so the fantasy can be somewhat real).

So, at the top of my list is this guy:

mark-duplass is so hot 1

If you know who that is, I salute you. This is why we’re friends. If you don’t, allow me to explain. That is Mark Duplass, who is best known for being Mindy Kaling’s (our spirit animal, you remember?) f%^k buddy/rival on “The Mindy Project.”  I first developed my very serious crush on him though, while watching the little known FX classic, “The League.”

Mark (we’re on a first name basis, obviously) plays Pete on “The League,” who, much to my therapist’s chagrin, epitomizes everything I am drawn to in a man:

1. He’s a scoundrel. Oh, how I adore a ne’er do well. Pete is always up to no good. He loves to trick Taco into making ridiculous trades, get Kevin in trouble with Jenny, and sleep with Baby Geoffrey’s nanny. I am total mush for his on-screen antics, and love to fantasize about what kind of off-screen trouble we’d get into.

2. He has untapped potential (aka he is lazy): We know Pete works in a cubicle, and basically spends all day wasting time, pretending to work, and actually doing nothing but fantasy football. But we also know Pete is very smart. He was the original architect of the Sacko Bowl, for gods sakes! Clearly, he needs the right woman to help him discover his passion and use his intelligence for good! I am that girl Pete!

3. His outfits. What can I say? I am a mess for a man in a hoodie and a loose, plain T-shirt. I call it “slacker chic.” My friend C calls it a “mediocrity fetish.”

4. His love of sports: Let’s explore this a bit. Because I am no Jenny MacArthur. The only sport I can claim to be a legit fan of is college basketball, and that doesn’t even have a real fantasy draft. But for some reason, men watching sports, talking about sports, etc. has always turned me on. I have done a lot of soul searching oh this topic, and I think I’ve come up with the reasons for this:

a. Genetic need: I am terrible at sports, despite over 10 combined years on field hockey and softball teams as a youth. Unfortunately, I was one of the rare cases where practice actually yielded no tangible results. It probably didn’t help that I donned protective eyewear for my entire athletic “career.”

rec specs

(Please know I most closely resembled the child on the left, but with bigger glasses, and a lot more hair.)

Despite the childhood obstacles I faced to becoming the next Serena Williams, I really want my children to be good at sports. I think sports build great character in children and adults (how to be a graceful loser and gracious winner, working hard, exercises regularly collaboration, etc). So I am biologically drawn to men who will bare and nuture this quality in my children.

b. I like it when a man knows stuff I don’t know. I don’t give myself credit for many things, but I’ll take credit for this: I know a lot about a lot. I’ve always been an information sponge, spelling bee champ, history nerd, grammar policewoman, expert on 18th and 19th century lit. (I know, I’m too sexy for this blog, too sexy for this blog…) But I don’t know a ton about sports. I like it when a guy can tell me some new and interesting facts, or get me psyched about something that I previously did not know enough to be psyched about.

c. I really love sports food. My cellphone background is a picture of a hot dog with cheese whiz that I got at a baseball game. With some nachos on the side. Give me buffalo or chili covered anything, and I am a super happy lady. I figure I have a very good chance of encountering this food at Superbowl parties or at live sporting events. Which I will be attending, of course, with Pete.

(Oh dear. I just read this list and I have a very clear understanding of why I am still technically single. If any NON-SCOUNDREL, HARD WORKING, WELL-DRESSED, SPORTS FAN is reading this and thinking, “Oh, L sounds amazing! I love know-it-alls with a healthy appetite and terrible hand eye coordination! Too bad I am not her type,” please contact me anyway. I promise to abandon my bad judgement and give you a shot. My mom will be very happy! And I promise not to steal your cheese fries until Date # 2.).

So, the point of this very long and obscure digression is to set the stage for the fact that when D contacted me on OKC, I was psyched. He was a lawyer turned fantasy sports blogger who, in his initial message, claimed to have met Busta Rhymes (not on my list, but one of my heros!). Being the competitive chum that sports bloggers will be, I suppose, he challenged me to Scrabble match at one of my favorite bars.

I spent the days leading up to the date doing minimal research on football (his favorite), but then gave up because 1) I know enough to carry on a conversation and 2) I don’t want our future marriage to be built on a foundation of lies. So I wasn’t a sports expert! There can only be one in the family!

(I assure you, this is a healthy level of what we single ladies like to call “getting ahead of one’s self.”)

D looked better than his pic when I got to the bar, and he also offered me some free pizza samples, so needless to say the date was off to an excellent start. 

Unfortunately, I proceeded to annihilate him in Scrabble. Like, it was 300 to 80 or something. By the end I was literally feeding this guy words. I mean, I will say that I do know my way around a Scrabble board (…TOO SEXY!), but this was an exceptionally poor showing for a high school graduate. Plus, this guy didn’t seem appropriately ashamed of himself, and I felt like he wasn’t trash talking me nearly enough. Pete would have been throwing verbal punches by Round 2. But D was still very cute. And very nice. And pretty interesting, and cheerful (something you rarely find in men and women in DC).

So we decided to switch to another game. He picked “Life”–and I am a little ashamed to say I kinda let him beat me / I lost because I was getting really drunk and focusing most of my energy on sticking the little pink and blue people into cars. Four hours into the date, I realized I was going to be late to meet my friends for dinner, so I bid D a hasty goodbye. In the cab to dinner, I called S and babbled about what a great time I had and of course offered her Super Bowl tickets, which I assumed I would definitely get if I ended up dating Mr. Sports blog.

D called me the next day and asked me out again. I really wanted to see him, but the summer had been hella busy between work and summer beach trips, friend’s parties, etc, and I truly only had 2 open weekdays in the next month (I have had the benefit of learning from S’s experience, and I don’t do weekends until we’ve passed the 3rd date mark). So, we made plans to hang out again, in two weeks.

D spent the majority of the two weeks regularly texting me pleasantries, most of which I found annoying. However, I’d be a liar if I didn’t admit that I was flattered by his consistent attention. I’d also be a liar if I didn’t admit that I was enjoying starting sentences with, “This sports blogger I am sort of dating says…” or, “Oh? Fantasy football? I am going out with a guy who like invented that!” 

A day before our date, I hadn’t heard from him, which was unusual, because he had been texting me inane things almost daily. So, I texted him to check if we were still on:

david rejection text

Wait? What? Oh hello, rejection! We are meeting more and more frequently these days!

Welp, obviously, that was the end of D. I am sorry readers, cause I really wanted to give away a few Super Bowl tickets to you. At the end of the day, I can’t fault D. He did the right thing by being honest and direct. There are no laws against him meeting someone else. We’d been on one date, after all. And, there must have been some truth to what he was saying, because the next day, he deleted his OKC profile. 

I spent about two days mourning the end of D. When I reflected on the experience, I realized I wasn’t that into him after all. I could never respect a man who I could cream so overwhelmingly in Scrabble. 

Date rating: (7/10) While the ending of this story is disappointing, D was a decent date. I would have definitely gone out with him again, had he not met someone cooler than me at a bar. 

Lesson learned: The big lesson I learned here is about timing and momentum. If you let a couple weeks pass between first and second dates, it’s quite possible a desirable person will find someone else. I do think that if the timing had been a bit different, D, DeSean Jackson, and I could be out for beers right now.