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Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Love bridges a generation gap

Jul 19 2005
Exclusive By Steve Johnson, Evening Mail
Edna Townsend with husband Simon Martin

THE father of a 31-year-old man who has married a 70-year-old widow today said "love will find a way."

Simon Martin proved age was no barrier for love when he married Edna Townsend despite the 39-year age difference.

And although his dad Eric was "shocked and surprised" at the news he said:"They are very much in love and that's all that matters,"

Sixty-nine-year-old Eric, of Sydney Road, Cradley Heath, now has to get use to the fact that he has a daughter-in-law who is actually older than himself.

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Speaking for the first time about the marriage he said :"There is a big age gap but as long as they are happy that is it as far as I am concerned. Love will always find a way.

"Our only regret is that we shall never have any grandchildren because our son Simon is our only child," added former Land Rover worker Eric.

Edna, who has two children and three grandchildren from her previous marriage, married organist Simon at Weston-super-Mare register office last week. The unlikely couple are now honeymooning in Eric's caravan in Truro, Cornwall.

Eric and his wife Gillian, 63, are currently looking after Edna's flat in Worle, near Weston, whilst their son and new daughter-in-law are house-hunting in the Weston area.

Eric, a Londoner who came to live in Sheldon, Birmingham, 55 years ago, worked at Serck Radiators in Tyseley before spending 20 years as an electrician at the Land Rover plant in Solihull. He revealed that Simon first met Edna two years ago at a concert organised by the West of England Theatre Organ Society.

"Simon was playing the organ at the concert and it appears it was love at first sight," said Eric.

"We wish them all the happiness in the world. None of us know what is around the corner and you have to make the most of whatever chances come along in life," added Mr Martin.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Death, Compassion And Love

This weekend, millions of Harry Potter fans were happily engrossed in the sixth book in the series called, "Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince."

It took 13-year-old Isabel Sen and 12-year-old Jacob Gordon 7 ½ hours to read it through. Both had finished the book by early Saturday. They tell The Early Show co-anchor Hannah Storm their emotions were caught up in the spellbinding twists and turns of J.K. Rowling's book.

One very important character suffers a terrible death. "I sort of, like, gasped because I didn't expect that person to die," Gordon said. "But I just sort of in the back of my mind saw it happening."

What was mostly surprising to Sen was the way in which the death takes place: "I was surprised as to how they died. I didn't think that the person who killed them would kill them."

In the fourth book a student is killed, but Tina Jordan, the senior editor of Entertainment Weekly magazine, said she doesn't think children were emotionally invested in him.

"This character is one who has enormous significance for them," she said. "The death scene itself will be hard for younger children to read because it's very graphic and brutal. There's also a funeral afterwards which is extremely emotional."

Sen also didn't expect to feel sorry for Lord Voldemort, as more about his past is revealed.

"We didn't know much about him before," she said. "It almost made me feel sorry for him. Then I remembered this is Voldemort we're talking about."

As for the similarities the evil character shares with Potter, Gordon said, "I wasn't surprised about that, sort of, because she sort of told the readers in the last book and maybe the fourth and third books. But you find out a lot more about Voldemort, and you see why he became evil and how."

Unlike some previous books, Jordan noted, "The Half-Blood Prince" is dark.

"It has very serious themes," she said. "There are things that will certainly scare children in it. Especially younger children."

It is clear Potter is the chosen one who can kill Voldermort so it is up to Dumbledore to teach the young wizard how to do it.

Jordan explained, "Dumbledore is showing him how Tom Riddle became Voldemort so that Harry would have a better chance to defeat him. You realize that as each chapter goes by."

But that is not the only thing in Potter's mind. At 16, he now has interest in girls, one in particular, even to the point of falling in love.

"I wasn't all that surprised," Sen said about his choice of a girlfriend, trying not to give plot details away. Gordon adds, "I couldn't really find anyone else."

But what was surprising to him was all the kissing in the book. "I did not see it coming. When they came out of Quidditch and she just put it out there."

Jordan said for her 10-year-old daughter, those romantic scenes were just "gross."

"It's disgusting," that is what Sen said her 11-year-old sister said about their first kiss.

But in essence, what makes this book such a hit, Jordan said, is its realism.

"It tapped into fantasies for children. Not only is it this perfectly imagined fantasy world, the kids are like real kids. Now, when you're reading 'The Chronicles of Narnia,' those are fabulous books, but the kids aren't like kids today."
©MMV, CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

'Romantic love is an urge'

New love can look for all the world like mental illness, a blend of mania, dementia and obsession that cuts people off from friends and family and prompts out-of-character behaviour - compulsive phone calling, serenades, yelling from rooftops - that could almost be mistaken for psychosis.

Now for the first time, neuroscientists have produced brain scan images of this fevered activity, before it settles into the wine and roses phase of romance or the joint holiday card routines of long-term commitment.

In an analysis of the images that appear on Wednesday's issue of The Journal of Neurophysiology, researchers in New York and New Jersey argue that romantic love is a biological urge distinct from sexual arousal.

It is closer in its neural profile to drives like hunger, thirst or drug craving, the researchers assert, than to emotional states like excitement or affection.

As a relationship deepens, the brain scans suggest, the neural activity associated with romantic love alters slightly, and in some cases primes areas deep in the primitive brain that are involved in long-term attachment.

The research helps explain why love produces such disparate emotions, from euphoria to anger to anxiety, and why it seems to become even more intense when it is withdrawn. In a separate, continuing experiment, the researchers are analysing brain images from people who have been rejected by their lovers. "When you're in the throes of this romantic love it's overwhelming, you're out of control, you're irrational, you're going to the gym at 6 am - why? Because she's there,"said Dr Helen Fisher, an anthropologist at Rutgers University and the co-author of the analysis.

NYT News Service

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Asian Dating - Respect and Honour

Honour and respect are two of the most important elements in Asian culture, and they shouldn't be overlooked when it comes to dating. For instance, traditionally, Asian women are taught at a young age to know their place around men, treat them with respect and accommodate them, while men are taught to protect and provide for the women. Although these traditions have become a faded practice in Western culture, respect still plays an important role in the Asian dating scene.

If you are Asian and are seeking a serious relationship with a man or woman from your ethnic culture, you will need to take into consideration that every move you make could be watched carefully by your partner's family, who may very well act as the third party to your date. With this in mind, here are a few tips you will want to think about when you begin dating:

Make an Impression -Be on your best behaviour. Listen to your date, create casual conversation, and be accommodating and thoughtful.

Treat your Date with Respect - Remember the saying "treat others as you would like to be treated", well this is when it really counts. Be considerate and patient, even if you find the topic of conversation to be of little interest to you. You should acknowledge what is important to your date and respect it.

Give them space - You don't want to come on too strong in the relationship, as this could either scare off your date, or make him or her jump to wrong conclusions. Creating a comfortable dating experience is the best way for you to discover if what you have found is an acquaintance, friend or potential lover.

Every once in a while visit the planet Earth - Be careful not to be mislead into believing that your dating relationship is something more than it is. Remember, not everyone is seeking a long term commitment (which could include you) therefore, before you let your imagination run wild from misinterpretation, make sure you take a realistic look at the relationship that is developing.

Above All have fun - Let's face it, the whole point to dating is about having a good time, and enjoying the other person's company, so don't be afraid to loosen up. Let your personality shine and take pleasure in your dating experiences.

In the end all that should matter when it comes down to dating, is that you and your date enjoy one another's company, are comfortable together, and share similar interests and values. If you find that there is no chemistry forming, it's time to say goodbye, and move on, regardless of how much your family may like him or her. After all, it is you who has to make the choice when it comes to your love life, for only you can determine who truly makes you happy. Therefore, grant yourself the respect and honour of making and standing by your dating decisions.

About the Author
Frank Duru is the author of many different articles but his
works concentrate much on dating related information, such as
“Homosexual Dating - Truth and Connection”, “Asian Dating - Respect and Honour”. The list goes on! He is the owner of An interracial Dating Site.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Only You Can Decide If Your Interracial Love Will Stand the Test of Time

Interracial dating has really evolved over the past two decades due to the fact that the younger generations have had the chance to grow up in multicultural communities, allowing them to interact and make friends with individuals from a variety of cultural backgrounds. Although this has provided them with a different perspective and fewer prejudices, in most cases their parents and grandparents disapprove of their children mingling with others, whom they consider to be “not like them”.

This ever rising diversity in culture can often leave older generations feeling defensive and fearful over the loss of their own cultural traditions and values, if their children choose to seek an intimate relationship with someone of a different ethnic background. Some people also fear that if their children begin to join with those from different races, their individual ethnic community will begin to shrink, while others are simply afraid of what they do not understand.

If you are someone who is interested in seeking interracial dating, you need to understand that there are potential challenges that await you and your date. You can be sure that there will always be those who disapprove of interracial mixing, and that being the case, you should prepare yourself for shocked or negative reactions that you may experience from certain public places, and perhaps from yours or your date’s family, relatives and maybe even your friends.

Since interracial dating differs for every individual, what may be an easy experience for someone else, could prove to be more of a challenge for you depending on your family situation; therefore, one of the best ways for you to meet someone is to join an online dating community like Love Empire, where you can safely meet and chat with a variety of individuals of different ethnicities such as black, white, eurasian, etc.

At Love Empire you need not concern yourself about criticisms or disapprovals. No one will judge you, and you will discover that the people you meet are exactly like you – interested in dating, being themselves and having fun.

You don’t need to limit yourself to your own culture when it comes to dating, and you shouldn’t let anyone but yourself decide who you should date and love. Because when it comes down to it, the only opinion that should matter to you more than your own is your date’s.

About the Author

Frank Duru is the author of many different articles but his
works concentrate much on dating related information, such as
“Homosexual Dating - Truth and Connection”, “Asian Dating - Respect and Honour”. The list goes on! He is the owner of An interracial Dating Site.

Saturday, April 30, 2005

African Dating - Pride and Ambition

It is no secret that African culture is known for its pride. Most Africans do not have a problem standing up for their beliefs and causes, and are often ambitious when it comes to obtaining specific goals. That being the case, if you are of African descent and are seeking a relationship with someone of your ethnic background, you probably already have an idea of the type of man or woman you are looking for.

When it comes to finding the African man or woman of your dreams, there are many options awaiting you if you hook up with the right community. You can find the ideal connection you are aspiring for, by getting to know others who share your same ambitions and dreams.

Of course, like seeking any relationship, there are certain character qualities you will want to avoid such as:

Money Suckers avoid a relationship with someone who is only interested in how much money you make.

Dramatics someone who takes things to the extreme could really put your patience to the test.

Desperation If your date is clingy, this is a good sign that he or she could have self-esteem issues or are desperate for reasons you may not want to know.

Shady If for any reason you suspect that your date has something to hide, or has been caught telling you a half-truth or a lie, it's time to move on. Once a liar, always a liar.

Control Freak It's true that relationships are about giving... but if you have to give up all of your free time or interests to appease your date, it's time to take back control and walk away.

Now that you have an idea of what to avoid when dating, here are some of the things to look for:

Beauty is Only Skin Deep - Of course appearance is an important part of dating, but remember that it isn't the only aspect that should attract you. Look for someone who's intelligent; someone with personality.

Common Sense This is an attribute that goes a long way, and is a good indication that your date is knowledgeable, and can think on their own two feet.

Self-Respect Any date that has self-respect, will take pride in their own ambitions, and should also respect yours.

There is no reason why you should feel pressured into perusing a relationship with someone who does not interest you, or who is looking for different goals. You need to think about what you want, and give it all you've got. And you can be sure, if it is meant to be, love will find a way to reach your heart.

About the Author
Frank Duru is the author of many different articles but his
works concentrate much on dating related information, such as
“Homosexual Dating - Truth and Connection”, “Asian Dating - Respect and Honour”. The list goes on! He is the owner of An interracial Dating Site.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Are You Insecure In Relationships?

Copyright © 2005 Carol Chanel
Certified Life Coach

Feeling insecure in a relationship is a lot like a headache: most
of us experience the pain of it at one time or another and its
curable once we know what causes it and what to do to avoid it.

This 'pain' is most acute in romantic relationships. They
can really bring out our insecurities. Insecure - lacking

Here's the interesting thing. Almost everyone is insecure about
some aspect of themselves. So if almost everyone has something
they worry about, or don't feel confident about, then how can
they make you feel better about yourself? They can't. They're
busy trying to get ahead or just get by in this world.

We're going to look at what causes you to feel insecure in
relationships? What you can do to feel more secure in a
romantic relationship? Who you can be to let confidence,
not insecurity, fill you and guide you?


The biggest cause is the need for validation - from someone
else. No one can validate you. Not really. It's not going to
happen often enough, with the right words, at the right time,
in the right way. It's not going to be enough. Only you can
validate you. The ultimate validation occurs when you acknowledge
your connection to the Divine, then you are truly validated.

On a more human level you might be choosing the wrong person
for yourself. If you are a person who likes lots of attention,
you're probably not going to do well with a man or woman who is
completely involved in their own lives with very little time and
energy to spare for you.

Or if you like to share activities you might not want to get
involved with a man who plops down in front of the TV and calls
it a night - at 6 p.m.

Be honest with yourself about what you like, what works and what
doesn't work for you. And then make choices that support your
likes, needs and wants.

Other causes - and we all suffer from these - come from our
childhood or adolescent years. Most of us didn't escape those
early teen years without feeling gawky, unattractive or some
form of embarrassment.

But now you're an adult. Take an objective look at yourself
and move on past those years. That could be an excuse to avoid
being intimate.

Insecurity comes from not valuing yourself. And then expecting
someone else to value you. When they don't - look out, you
crash. And then your self-confidence really plummets.


So in order to feel more secure you need to boost your
self-confidence. It's time to be honest here. There are four
areas - emotional, spiritual, physical and mental - that need
to be addressed.

What are some of your good qualities? The things your mother
praises about you, the things your best friend notices and
points out.

If you've forgotten what those qualities are - ask a friend,
family member, or an ex-boyfriend or girlfriend. Choose
someone you trust.

Then work on the physical part. What is it you really need to
change? You know the one or two things you don't like about
yourself that you can easily change.

Do you want to lose 10 pounds? Then start an exercise program
and learn to eat properly. Do you want to tone your muscles?
Get an exercise video or hire a trainer. Do you want to dress
differently? Hire an image consultant or get a hip friend to
take you shopping.

Maybe you want to stop smoking or start meditating to feel
calmer and peaceful.

Start with one thing that will allow you to feel better about
yourself. Something easy. Something achievable. You will
build momentum.

Then take a look at the spiritual part - what is your spiritual
life like? Do you believe in a higher power? If so, are you in
gratitude for the things you do have? Like two arms, legs, a
healthy heart. Or do you complain about what you don't have?

Gratitude lifts your self-confidence by strengthening your core.

Are you giving and loving to others? If you want to feel better
about yourself - give love to others. A generous heart works
every time.

To lift up the mental part look at what information you are
soaking up. Are you watching violent movies or soap operas
or reading melodramatic novels? Are you glued to CNN?

The problem with those things is they connect you to low energy
emotions of blame, regret, anxiety, humiliation, shame and even

Read uplifting stories, watch The Biography Channel or other
interesting programming. Involve your mind in topics and with
people who aren't living in melodrama or negativity, but instead
prefer to think positively and lovingly.

The emotional part will follow when you get the other three in
order. Diet, exercise, spiritual growth and what your mind is
exposed to, naturally affect your emotions because then you are
in a loving energy field.

And if you are still suffering, then please get some professional
help. There's no shame in that. Don't suffer on your own.


You can BE a beacon of light. You can choose to be loving. You
can choose to think light filled thoughts. You can be a source
of hope, inspiration and joy.

When you reconnect to the light you will feel wonderful about
yourself. Yes we all have our mountains to climb. That's life.
We don't need to choose to feel insecure because of our

I like this quote from Khan that Wayne Dyer used in his book
"There's A Spiritual Solution to Every Problem":

"The solution to the problem of the day is the awakening of the
consciousness of humanity to the divinity within." Hazrat
Inayat Khan

Think about it - you are connected to the Divine Source. You
are part of that Source, just like a wave is part of the ocean.
It looks like it's separate but it ultimately flows back into
the ocean. So by acknowledging that you are part of the Divine
Source then you can't be inferior. Say a pray, call to the
angels, go to church, take a hike or a long walk by the ocean.
Do something that puts you in touch with nature and your

Take the steps to improve how you feel about yourself, to
reconnect to the Divine Source. You're not inferior. You
don't need to feel insecure. You are loved and you are able
to love.

Start today and set up a plan to begin to increase your
self-confidence. Don't let anything be an excuse.

Love others and yourself, be in gratitude, read uplifting
stories or great spiritual books, exercise and eat healthy
foods, don't make wrong choices.

© Carol C. Chanel, 2004-2005

Monday, April 18, 2005

Why Women Give Bad Dating Advice

By Alex White Specials

Have you ever noticed that the worst advice you get about winning women over usually comes from women themselves? Women are famous for not knowing what they want.

They say they want a nice guy, but follow jerk-offs like lemmings. They say they want flowers, poems and gifts, but get turned off if the wrong guy sends them a birthday card.

Clearly they don't understand their needs, and their triggers.

Follow these hints and you'll soon learn to wade through the deluge of useless feminine advice to find the real nuggets of wisdom.

advice to make more friends

The female friends in your life will often tell you to lay all your feelings out on the table. "Tell her how you feel," "Be a nice guy" and "Don't sleep with her right away."

Their advice will get you more girl-friends, but sadly, no bedmates.

They mean well, yeah, but truth be told, they're setting you up to look like a chump. Because when you play Mr. Nice Guy and open all her doors and sleep on the couch, you're not making a lover -- you're making a friend. And a boring one at that! Your female buddies might think they're helping you out, but they're really just sending another hapless calf off to slaughter.

even mom doesn't get it

"Just be yourself!" sounds nice when mom says it, doesn't it? And we know she wants the best for us, but we need to a draw a distinction in this piece of advice. Don't just be yourself, please yourself. That means going after the woman you want and being open about your motives, with no apologies!

Simply "being" is not enough; you need to be a man of action! Mom can't give good advice until she lets go of her image of you as a "nice little boy."

ex-girlfriends suck

We have to be wary of the ex's "tips," as these characters will either tell you what you want to hear to get you to move on, or they'll wreck your chances of replacing them. Ex-girlfriends will tell you things like, "The harder you look, the less you find," and "Maybe you shouldn't date anyone for a while."

This is hardly any consolation to a depressed, horny guy. And I defy you to find me an ex-girlfriend who wants you to start dating a girl much hotter than she is. Your exes can't give good advice because their ego is involved

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

The Hassle-free Dating Plan

by: Becky Mentyra

The trials and tribulations of dating make for good humor and interesting dinner time stories! Doubling your dating pleasure starts with prioritizing the objectives of the date.

More single men and women could get more out of their dating if they applied a failsafe approach to the process.

While there aren't any rules to dating, here are a few pointers to enhance the dating excitement and thwart the perils of dating the wrong prospects.

Devise a simple dating plan. Meeting singles through personal ads, online dating sites and in the bar scene can expose you to a small percentage of undesirables. To avoid wasting your time, conduct thorough phone interviews with your prospective dates. Invest five to 10 hours of phone dating time first.

Ask your prospective date the following questions: where they work, reside, substance abuse habits and marital status. These are important questions to inquire if you are planning a date. Great time and energy can be saved by conducting a brief "interview". This helps both of you to know and understand each other.

Make your first date simple. Prior to your date, set a dating schedule... a minimum of an hour to three hours is ideal. A failsafe dating plan will assure the both of you are not obligated or disappointed to prolong a date that may not be going well for either party. Moreover, it avoids the awkwardness of ending the date soon.

Choose a cool dating location. Select a geographically convenient location for the both of you. Try to find an intimate and quiet public place but avoid the crowded bar scene because it will not do much for the first dating encounter if you can't hear each other talking!

Enforce dating security and safety. Whether you are a male or female, notify a close friend about where you plan to go on your date. Remember, to leave your date's contact information.

Make a dating pledge. Plan to go Dutch to alleviate any hard feelings so that no one bears the sole financial obligation of the date.

Finally, remember that dating is a numbers game. Every date will bring you that much closer to finding that special person who you will spend the rest of your life with!
What are you waiting for? Get cracking!

About The Author

Becky Mentyra is the dating specialist & webmaster of UM Dating Guide which is a resource for singles looking for their life partner. Visit her site for more dating tips, articles and advice:

If You Really Need A Dating Quiz, Maybe You Shouldn't Be Dating

Q. My boyfriend failed a dating quiz. Should I dump him?

A. If you're the type that hates to be dumped, then you should dump him before he finds out that you even asked this question. If you put so much value on a dating quiz that you're willing to break off a relationship because someone "failed" it, then maybe you're not ready for dating yet.

You see, a dating quiz is written for entertainment purposes only. I'm not trying to be sexist here, but they are usually written for girls and young woman, and they are designed to prey upon your natural insecurities. They are biased towards some unrealistic viewpoint of what the perfect partner is and the perfect partner doesn't exist.

I remember a dating quiz that asked if my girlfriend reached over to unlock the driver's door after I let her into the passenger door. If I answered "Yes" then she would make a perfect wife. If I answered "No" then I should run away!

Come on, get real. If that's all it took to be a perfect wife there would never be any divorces.

My point, at the risk of repeating myself, is that a dating quiz shouldn't be taken seriously. In fact, there is a good chance that they shouldn't be taken at all. Your common sense knows whether or not you are dating someone who is good or bad for you. You don't need some overworked writer, working against a deadline to fill up some white space in a magazine, or on a web site, to tell you whether or not you should dump someone on the basis of your answers to a dating quiz. Not if you're anyone who is worth dating, that is.

About The Author

Brian Fong
Quiz Faq - Your solutions for the quiz.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Dating Tool: Confidence 101

by: Kerr Seth Lordygan

I’m over it. “There’s plenty of fish in the sea,” they say. Well, apparently I have been using the wrong bait. Nobody said dating would be easy, but Hollywood sure likes to paint it that way, doesn’t it? “There’s someone for everyone,” they say. Maybe that ought to translate to, “There’s someone for everyone….as long as you’re a muscled pretty boy with washboard abs, and at least 6 feet tall.”

So how does one get by this unsettling dating stipulation? Are we actually to believe that love will find us when we’re not looking? I think people who say that are normally in happy relationships when they say it. Can we “buy” outer beauty from an online store to match our own inner beauty? Somebody is buying pheromones and weight-loss pills and liposuction and facial restructuring. Hell, now people even get plastic surgery to make them look like a celebrity. Huh??? And you know what? I bet these things work for people. As long as it can build the confidence up in someone, it also strengthens the attraction. So how can we build up that confidence without spending tons of money to people who know how the game works? Sounds like a question for the shrink.

I suppose its all part of why I started up a matchmaking service with a friend of mine in Los Angeles. It can be so frustrating out there. And being “alone” can only make your work day more stressful, it seems. So if I had someone to do the dirty work for me….get me the dating connections, counsel me on why I might not be getting that second date, maybe my frustration level would decrease. So I went into the business….pretty much as a means to find out what can be done to find the perfect one. OK, so nobody’s perfect, but at least maybe I can find a decent one who happens to have similar ethics as myself. Oh, and a killer sense of humour is mandatory. But looking around, nobody was going to help me, a fact that made me feel even more alone! So I had to do it myself. Such is life, right? Part of it might be that I feel a need to always be in control of my own destiny. As long as I am actively pursuing something, I am a success. Yea, that sounds right! So I joined forced with my cohort and we started Let’s Meet Here. Now I’m gonna’ find the one, right?


As it seems unethical to date my own clients (damn, I knew I’d run into some roadblock!), I figured….at least pass on any information I can gather to those who need it (and baby, we all need it!). Granted, I am learning about all this stuff now. It seems every date and every relationship is completely unique. There is no list of do’s and don’ts that applies. But I do know that going into the business has allowed me an increase in confidence that is apparent in me without my even having to think about it. I am starting to really believe that success comes from the active pursuit of a goal, whether or not the goal is achieved. The process in itself builds character…and character is attractive.

So while I learn as I go, I will show as I go too. It is absolutely within my own power to be a success. And the pursuit of achievements is an achievement of its own. However, I have also learned that a little is never enough. And to settle after one’s success is no success at all. Maybe now I’m fishing with the right bait!

By Kerr Seth Lordygan
Director, Lets Meet Here, LLC

Get More Clients From Networking - Follow The Rules Of Dating!

by: Alan Matthews

If you’re a business owner, you probably spend quite a lot of your time at networking events. In fact, it may be the main way you try to get new clients. But do you ever feel that you could get more from these meetings? Do you actually get the results from your networking to justify the amount of time you put into it?

If you don’t find you get a lot of interest from the people you meet, it may be that you’re going about things the wrong way. You may need a new approach.

My own view is that you can’t go far wrong if you think of networking more like dating. The two activities have a lot in common ( although, I must admit, I’m relying on distant memory here ). Here are some things you need to think about.

1. What sort of person do you want to meet?

If your answer is “ anyone “ you risk wasting time talking to a lot of people who just aren’t going to be “ the one “. You also sound a bit desperate, to be honest. Not everyone is going to be your ideal client. Once you know who that is, you can be more choosy about who you talk to.

2. Where are you likely to meet them?

There are lots of places to meet people, but where will you find your ideal person – in a club, at evening classes, at the Bingo? Don’t just go to the first place you find, pick the event where you know the person you’re looking for is most likely to be.

3. Think about joining a dating agency so you can look through details of the other members.

Look at the members list of any group before joining if you can get hold of it ( ask for photographs if possible ). Also, look at the list of attendees before a meeting so you can make a beeline for the people you want to talk to.

4. Accept that it takes time to build a relationship.

Don’t expect too much too soon. People will need time to get to know and trust you and, in this case, you’re looking for a long term relationship, not a one – night stand.

5. Think of something interesting to say about yourself.

If someone asks you “ What do you do? “ don’t just say “ I’m a Financial Adviser “ or “ I’m a Consultant “ and expect them to swoon. Tell them what you do for people, how you help, the problems you solve. But don’t make things up to impress them, you’ll be found out sooner or later.

6. Don’t spend the whole time talking about yourself.

One secret for getting people to like you is to ask them about themselves. Be a great listener, not a great talker. People love talking about themselves, they don’t want to listen to you telling them how wonderful you are. Stop talking before they lose the will to live and ask a question. Prepare some good ones in advance so your mind doesn’t go blank. Avoid “ Do you come here often? “ or “ So what line of business are you in? “ Try to find something you both have in common.

7. Don’t be too pushy on your first date.

Just because someone shows an interest doesn’t mean you can bombard them with information about all your products or services. You’ll look too needy and that puts people off.

8. People always say they’ll ring, they never do.

Sad but true. Don’t rely on other people ringing you, make sure you get their number so you can call them. It’s much more important to get someone else’s business card than to give them your own. It gives you the initiative.

9. Keep your numbers in a little black book.

Set up a contact management system so you don’t lose the details of the people you meet. This might just be a card index or it might be sophisticated software. Whatever it is, have a system which you know how to use.

10. Keep in touch.

Do contact them again if you got on well, they want you to really. Call or write, refer back to your conversation and mention something they said. Send them an article about an interest they mentioned, it will show you were listening and you care about them. It’s amazing how many people go to networking events, then never follow up with the people they meet. Don’t expect “ love at first sight “, it takes several contacts before someone is likely to do business with you.

I hope that’s given you some ideas. Of course, you still have to remember the basics, such as dressing up a bit and cleaning your teeth, but that’s down to you.

And, of course, there is one big difference between networking and dating – with networking, you’re allowed to see lots of people at the same time!

Good luck.

About The Author
Alan Matthews is an experienced trained, coach and speaker specialising in communication skills for business owners. He is author of " Do You Come Here Often? How To Get More Clients By Successful Networking " and " Secrets Of A Professional Speaker " as well as numerous articles and reports, all available from


by Rachel Davis

Want to pick up women? Get a friend to help you out! First, stand or sit a few feet away from a woman or group of women and seem to be having a light-hearted, joking disagreement with your pal. “You’re wrong!” “No, you are!” “I’m telling you, you don’t know what you’re talking about!” Then keep talking, but a little quieter so that the girl probably won’t hear, then say, “Fine by me!” Remember, don’t act really angry, act like a couple of friends jokingly disputing a small thing.

Now, go up to the woman you like (if she’s with a friend, either your buddy can try to pick up her friend or he can play wing man and keep the friend occupied while you hit on your babe) and say, “Excuse me, but we’re trying to settle a bet and we really need your help. We have agreed to let you settle the argument, and we’ll abide by whatever you say.” Now you’ve really got her attention, because she’s dying of curiosity to know what the bet is, and she’s flattered that you’re putting her in charge of casting the deciding vote for the argument. Then ask something like, “Ok, my buddy here says Marsha was the oldest daughter on The Brady Bunch, but I know she was the middle one.” Your pal can jump in here and say, “No way!” You don’t have to use The Brady Bunch, just pick some show that was a huge hit within the last 20 or 30 years that people still talk about and joke about, and that’s still played in reruns on TV. Don’t pick anything obscure – go for something that everybody knows the answer to. Other choices might be shows like “Cheers,” and you can bet that Norm was the name of the postman, while your friend thinks it was Cliff. Just pick something that for your age group and where you live, everybody is going to know the answer. If you pick a current show it won’t work as well, because it will seem like a set up if you don’t know the name of the biggest star on the biggest hit show on air now. But people do jokingly argue about things in older shows, and the nostalgia value of a show you loved growing up can get you – and the girl you want – laughing at the memory.

So now she’ll say something like, “I hate to break this to you, but your friend is right. Marsha was the oldest daughter.” Act a little shocked or let down, like, “Ah man! Are you sure? Well, all right, a bet’s a bet. It looks like I’m the one buying the next round,” you say this last part to your friend, making sure to smile and shake your head, maybe patting him on the shoulder – real friendly and casual. The woman’s probably laughing about the whole bet over a cheesy TV show – but that means she’s also entertained and enjoying herself. Now turn back to the woman and say, “Thanks for helping us out, we could’ve argued that all night. Seriously, we are that crazy! Let me pay you back, what are you drinking?” When she tells you and you order the drink, say, “Do you mind if we join you?” Since you’ve already made her laugh with your funny bet and you’ve bought her a drink, she won’t refuse a seat at her table. Make very sure that while you’re “arguing” the point with your friend before you talk to the woman in the first place that you don’t mention specifically what the bet is about – someone else may overhear and jump in to offer the answer, blowing your plan.

The great thing about this conversation starter, though, is it can work lots of places – it doesn’t have to be a bar. You can do this in a coffee shop and offer to buy a cup of coffee, you can do this in a fast food restaurant and say you owe the pal a beer or a coffee, then ask the ladies to join you (this may mean moving on to a coffee shop or bar, which is just fine!), and you can even do it in a park. There you’d say the bet was for a drink or snack of some sort from a street vender (if there is one in the park), or that you were heading to the coffee shop around the corner, and get her to come, too.

The next question is, now that you’ve got a hottie sitting down with you for a drink, what do you say now? Easy – check out "Conversation King" for step-by-step guidelines on how to keep the conversation flowing and bag your babe!

Flirting by Touch

by Sebastian Steele

Another person's touch is the most soothing form of contact that your body will even encounter... even when it makes you nervous or uncomfortable, you love the feel of a woman's touch. This is commonly referred to as "kino".

This works both ways... a woman loves a man's touch (if done properly), and YOU can learn how to use touching to your advantage to get the women that you want into bed!

Want to learn how? Keep reading...

Nothing sends across the message "I'm attracted to you" stronger than when a woman touches you repeatedly during conversation, it is the oldest and most powerful flirting technique that the world has ever seen. It makes you immediately warm up to her, get a very good feeling about her, and raises your interest in her significantly, doesn't it?

But why does it have this effect on you? How can you go from being slightly interested in a woman to being just shy of infatuated with her after a series of light touches and rubs?

You see, our minds are naturally programmed to respond to human touch in a positive way, which makes it a huge influence on who we are attracted to... even more so than what we see, hear, or smell. That means that by simply touching a woman correctly you can makes her more attracted to you than you could ever do with your looks, your words, and your cologne... combined!

Because of the structure of todays society, many of us are not as accustomed to touching as we should be, so much so that when someone we do not know very well DOES touch us, it comes as a surprise... a surprise that we won't soon forget.

Can you remember when a woman you had recently met was flirting with you by touch?

I'm sure you can.

She made a lasting impression on you, did she not? Just the fact that you still remember this woman demonstrates just how powerful touching can really be!

Now wouldn't you like to be able to have that same effect on the woman that you desire? The ability to make a first impression on her that is so strong that she will never forget about you? Damn right you would!

That is exactly what you'll learn to do with my Simple Seducer System. It is the most complete guide to picking up women EVER written, and I'm so confident that it will work for you that I'll give you the entire package completely FREE if you do not meet 10 hot women within 90 days!

Go to and see what I'm talking about, you have nothing to lose and a world of women to gain!

By Sebastian Steele
Author : Simple Seducer

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Why are American Singles jumping onboard?

Bachelors and other unattached guys and girls from around the USA are finding more and more fun dating online.

American singles have no better way to meet new and interesting people than in an online dating environment.

Dating on the web offers American singles the chance to control exactly who they meet, who they strike up a conversation with and how they can find someone unattached they are going to have some fun with!

The only problem is that there are so many different online dating services that cater to American singles. This website, the Dating Sites Advisor, helps you cut through that mix with specific advice for American singles to save you time, money and a whole lot of frustration so you can find the unattached singles here in the USA.

You can find:

In-depth reviews and critiques for dating sites catering to American singles. These have the good AND the bad for each one.
Customizable feature comparison charts for multiple dating sites so that you will be able to see where most of the American singles online reside and specifically be able to find those that have the same interests as you.
Dating tips and advice so you have a safe, enjoyable and most of all, fun experience while dating online. Help finding all of those unattached guys and girls from the USA that want to date online.

Loads of information about the best online services that are exclusively for American singles. Many dating sites include members from different countries but we give you the information on the best sites that are only for American singles. Take a look at this Yahoo Personals detailed review as an example.
There are millions of unattached internet users from right around the USA. Some of the best dating services even offer the majority of their features free of charge. Have a look at the reviews here, pick the dating site that feels the best to you and have a great time meeting other American singles like yourself!

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Tips for Creating a Successful Personal Online Dating Profile

Your profile is the key to meeting your perfect match at online dating and personals services so it’s surprising that many profiles are mediocre at best. With a little extra time, thought and effort, and the help of these tips, you can make yours a winner and attract a large pool of admirers to take your pick from.

Invent a distinctive username:

Your username (nickname) is the first hint at what kind of person you are. It needs to be original and memorable, while somehow summing you up - not easy in a dozen letters or so!

For ideas, think about your interests, background, location and personality. For instance, an outgoing person from Phoenix might choose PhoenixSparkler, an avid skier with a wild streak might be SnowTiger. Humor’s great (I recently spotted MissBehaving) but overly sentimental (LetMeBeTheOne), meaningless (Vyc2DX) or desperate sounding (SoLonelyInOhio) names are a turn off.

Give yourself time: think of a name before sitting down to complete your profile, as well as a couple of backup options. It’s amazing how many “original” names are in use already. Most services spit out alternatives but they’re usually unimaginative and full of numbers.

Write a compelling headline:

Your opening line, or headline, is like the first thing you see on an ad: it should compel people to read on and find out more about you. Don’t be apologetic about being there - “I don’t normally do this sort of thing” - and don’t begin (as thousands do) with “My name’s Bob, I’m 25 and live in Boise.” This isn’t compelling. It’s not even interesting. “Born in Boise, Heading for Barbados” is more the thing. It’s intriguing without being confusing, and raises questions: is Bob a traveler, a dreamer or working for an international company? Only one way to find out – read on!

Again, it’s not easy. If you get stuck, a favorite line from a song, book or movie can say lot about you – who you like and/or what you believe in - and stands out to other people who love it too.

Post at least one photo:

For 75% of online daters, the photo is the first thing they look for when browsing through profiles. Not surprisingly, profiles with photos get ten to fifteen times the response of those without. Including a photo is a must! But beware, some photos do more harm than good. Big offenders are photos that show you with someone else, or even worse, part of someone else. (It might not be your ex, or your ex’s body part, but people have no way of knowing.)

If you don’t have a suitable photo, get one taken, and keep it real - glamour shots could come back to haunt you. Think about asking a friend to pick out a photo that they think looks most like you. Make sure people don’t have to squint at the screen to see what you look like, and be sure to smile!

Check the right boxes:

Most profiles have a hefty component of check boxes – age group, sex, and so on. It’s a basic thing but when researching sites I do it a lot myself: check the wrong boxes or forget to change them from a default setting that isn’t right for me. And I’m not alone. Believe it or not, a common mistake among online daters is choosing the wrong sex of their ideal partner. So, take care over these basic but important details.

Check your grammar and spelling:

You might be the most intelligent person on the planet but if you rush your profile and don’t check your spelling and grammar you’re not going to come across well to anyone who values intelligence. You might like to prepare your freestyle entries using a program with spelling and grammar checkers, then paste them into your profile.

Avoid clichés:

Unfortunately, a lot of people say the same thing in the same way as everyone else. It’s boring at best and unbelievable at worst. Can we really believe that so many people “exercise regularly and keep in good shape”? Also, use a thesaurus to replace well-worn words like “good” and “nice” with more interesting, meaningful alternatives that add spice and sparkle to your profile.

Make your meaning clear:

Your spelling and grammar might be perfect but sometimes your words can convey a completely different meaning from what you intended. Give your profile a thorough reading to avoid potentially embarrassing or damaging misinterpretations!

Stick to your own style:

Many online dating profiles include sections where you can express yourself in your own words. It’s a chance to make yourself more human and “real,” and other members can pick up lots of interesting information about you – clues they might find appealing - from the way you express yourself. Don’t block the process by suddenly adopting a style and tone that isn’t really you.

Focus on your unique qualities:

It’s our unique qualities that make us attractive - and to some, very attractive! When you have a chance to describe yourself, let these qualities shine. Skip the things that people take for granted (and have in common) and focus on the things that make you, “you.”

Perhaps you speak another language, have an unusual skill or interest, or something you feel passionately about. Small things count too. If you change your hair color every other day or have an addiction to triple hot chili sauce, say so. People who share or appreciate your unique qualities will tune right in and they make great conversation starters if they decide to make a move!

Flatter yourself – it’s allowed!:

If you’re good at something or proud of yourself for something, go ahead and blow your own trumpet. Confidence (not to be confused with a raging ego!) is an attractive quality and there are plenty of ways to flatter yourself while sounding modest: “My friends say I’m…” or, “If I had to describe one thing about myself that I like…”

Be honest:

Many people can’t resist the urge to be less than completely honest when writing their online personals profile. Women tend to lie about their appearance and men about their status and physical prowess. There’s really no need. Online dating and personals services have thousands if not millions of members. You’ve got a great chance of meeting someone who’s attracted to the real you, warts and all. Of course, there’s no need to tell your darkest secrets – just keep it real. You’ll be able to pursue relationships without having to worry about all the lies you’ve spun. Honesty is an attractive trait.

Be passionate about your passions:

If you have a hobby or interest that you’re absolutely passionate about, that takes up a lot of your time and energy, go ahead and rave about it. It’s better that people know up front how important it is to you, and fellow fanatics will tune right in!

Be careful with humor:

Humor’s great but a super-dry or tongue-in-cheek sense of humor may not work well in writing. People don’t know you and can’t see the twinkle in your eye. You’ll have ample opportunity to display your brand of wit when you’re communicating one-on-one with other members.

Say it with feeling:

Too many profiles read like a job application with flat phrases like, “I enjoy skiing, cooking and photography” which don’t really tell us much. Add emotions, thoughts and feelings into the mix. The idea is to showcase your personality and make a connection on an emotional level.

Be positive:

Our bugbears say something about the type of person we are but keep them to a minimum in your profile or they’ll say something bad! Focus on the things that make you feel good and you'll come across as a fun date.

Don’t dwell on past relationships:

Too much talk of past relationships is a sure way to scare off potential dates. It doesn’t show much commitment to moving along in life with someone new. However, some services touch on the subject in their profiles in which case you can give it a more interesting, positive twist by talking in general terms about lessons learned, where you are today and what your hopes are for future relationships.

Describe your ideal match in your own words:

If you have an opportunity to describe the type of person you’re looking to meet in your own words, use it. If someone reads your profile and likes you, they’ll know right away whether or not they’re a likely candidate for your affections. On the other hand, don’t be too picky or demanding! One idea is to limit yourself to the three or four attributes that you value most in a partner and perhaps one big turn off (you want to keep it positive overall).

Describe the kind of dates you enjoy:

Make it easy for people to ask you on a date by giving them an idea of the kind of dates you enjoy. For instance, “I like a relaxing atmosphere where you can chat and get to know someone,” or, “Doing something new and exciting together is a great way to get to know someone.”

Promote yourself as a great date:

When someone likes what they read in your profile, they’ll probably wonder what kind of date you’d make. In other words, you seem interesting and attractive but would you be the date from hell? Put this question to rest with upfront information that paints a great picture of what it would be like to date you. For instance, perhaps you’re a good listener who likes a quiet, relaxing atmosphere where you can talk and get to know someone, or a sociable energetic type who thinks that doing something new and exciting together is the best way to get to know someone.

When your admirers know you’re on the same page in terms of dating style, they’re more likely to take the next step and ask you out, or at least to get to know you better, confident you’ll be a great date. And if your dating styles are completely out of tune, at least you’ve avoided finding it out the hard way - on that date from hell.

Create a Master Profile:

Save all your profile information and entries in a master file so you don’t have to start from scratch if you’re planning on using more than one service. Profiles vary considerably from service to service but many parts will be similar.

Make Changes:

Last but not least, don’t forget that your profile isn’t written in stone! It’s fast and easy to make any changes you like, so don’t fret too much about perfection!

About The Author

Copyright 2004 Caroline Mackenzie
Caroline Mackenzie is Co-Owner/Webmaster of The Dating Muse, the complete guide to online dating services and personals featuring in-depth reviews of the top online dating sites plus tips and ideas for finding friends, dates, soulmates and sexual adventure online. Visit her site at and for lighthearted, sometimes serious insights into the dating game, online and off, subscribe to her newsletter, at

Friday, April 08, 2005

Looking For Love In All The Wrong Places

Quote of the day: 'All that you seek you already have within you.'

Practically every year finding love is at the top of Americans’ list of resolutions for the New Year. That’s the good news. The bad news is that most Americans are looking for love in all the wrong places.

The way I see it, the definition of love should not be limited to romantic love alone. Love is more than a sentiment. Love is a way of being. The broader definition of love should also be a longing for experiencing a life of fulfillment, purpose, meaning, inner peace, fulfillment, real joy and self-worth. After all, everything we do is to either experience more love and fulfillment or to compensate for the lack of it.

Some people have been willing to go under the knife, and endure excruciating pain, to change their looks (hoping the mirror will still be kind just a little longer and gravity will not take its toll anytime soon). Some people have deprived themselves of food while on the quest for attaining the perfect body. They have been willing to go into huge debt and endure the worst kind of pain and humiliation that comes from compromising one’s integrity and selling their soul just to support a life-style and status they couldn’t afford. Some even ignored and deprived the biggest part of their Self, their spirit, which allows them to experience all the very things they set out to attain in the first place. In short, you name it and they endured just about anything in their quest for love.

Even for those who were able to achieve material success, it was only a hollow victory since no amount of money, good looks, status and/or trophies could fill up the void inside which was created by a malnourished spirit. They too discovered that “when you get there, there is no “there” there,” and that external riches don’t necessarily have the power to give us internal riches (“real love” defined as fulfillment, purpose, meaning, inner peace, real joy and self-worth) that we are desperately seeking. At best they were flirting with the illusion of love rather than experiencing the real deal.

In a “more is better” culture where vanity, and not virtue, is worshipped (consider the growing trend of reality TV shows such as “For Love or Money”) it’s easy to understand why we have been looking for love in all the wrong places. Yet surprisingly, we have ignored the fact that the natural state of our spirit is love, which is the driving force behind all creation. Hollywood stars, the media and multi-billion dollar industries have all brainwashed us to believe that we are simply not adequate, worthy or good enough to be loved just the way we are and that it is only “He with the most toys, and not joy, lives.” The reality is that finding true love should not be either painful and/or costly. You can find true love (in the broader definition) no matter what you have been brainwashed to believe. First you must recognize that you are a spiritual being first, having a human experience (and not the other way around) and therefore, your natural state of being is love. As such you were meant to live a life of meaning, purpose, fulfillment, real joy, inner peace, and abundance by reconnecting with your spiritual roots (living in harmony with universal laws characterized by integrity, giving and the honoring of all living things). We can’t truly be happy and fulfilled without the element of giving. Real joy comes from making a meaningful difference in people’s lives, when money and power are used as useful tools to help make a difference.

Next time you are tempted to look for “love” in all the wrong places, consider the definition of real love. Most importantly remember that all that you seek is not “somewhere out there,” but rather it is already within you. All you have to do is recognize it and enjoy it while you can.

About The Author

Copyright © 2004-2005, Geela
Author of “The American Dream”

Geela is an award winning singer/songwriter/composer, columnist, and author of the best-selling book “THE AMERICAN DREAM,” her true- life story of how she came to America as a young immigrant with nothing and overcame incredible obstacles to achieve mega-success. She founded ONE SPIRIT, ONE WORLD to help children and promote a culture of peace and harmony. Get a free sample of her music and her book at

Guys Love What Women Don't

by: Ed Williams

Remember last week’s column when I talked about that annoying little habit women have of wanting to eat food off a man’s plate when they’re out with one of us at a restaurant? Well, I had a certain lady write me an email in response, and she told me that she somewhat agreed with me re what I was saying, but, added that it really didn’t matter too much as, “...getting upset about us eating food off a man’s plate is strictly a guy’s thing. It‘s no big deal to us.”

A guy’s thing. I’ve heard that terminology since back in high school when I first started dating. What it refers to is the fact that there are just some things that men like that women don’t. Those little things that separate the sexes, and make them what they are. And, after thinking for a good twenty seconds, I’m gonna be kind enough to list what some of the major “guy’s things” are:

1. The Three Stooges - For some unknown reason, guys love the Stooges and women don’t. What’s not to love? They exhibited some of the greatest physical comedy ever, and some of their sayings were priceless. Remember some of these routines:

Curly: “Whatja say?”

Moe: *gives Curly a two-finger eye poke*

Curly: “That’s what I thought ya said.”


Shemp: (Looking into a mirror) “There I yam - and as pretty as a picture.”

Moe: “Yeah. Of an ape.” (Then slaps Shemp hard).

Isn’t that great? I’ll bet lots of you guys out there are laughing out loud. On the other hand, I’ll bet that most of you ladies are saying, “I just don’t get it, I never thought the Stooges were all that funny.” This is a great first example of a “guy’s thing.” But there’s plenty more.

2. Mountain Dew - Diet Mountain Dew is my favorite soft drink in the world. I love its mellow, citrus based taste, and it has more caffeine in it than any other soft drink. But, what I’ve discovered is, try offering one to a woman. For some unknown reason, experience has taught me that eight out of ten women will turn a Mountain Dew down, saying, “I just don’t like it.” What’s not to like? It tastes good, keeps you awake, and it looks the same leaving your body as when it went in. A totally useful product.

3. Burping loudly - I’m not going to say anything else here or I’ll get in trouble, but just suffice it to say that most men get a big kick out of this, and all women despise it. No one ever said that Mother Nature is always pretty, you know.

4. Hating ties - Any man that has a testosterone count higher than Liberace hates neck ties. Absolutely despises them. They had to be invented by a fervent man-hater - the problem is, women love for you to wear one just as badly as you hate doing so. I’d rather spend a Saturday poisoning wasp nests than to wear a neck tie to a formal social function. Unfortunately, the women in our lives can give you pretty convincing reasons to wear one, so, we have to do it. But it still stinks like a dead frog in the hot sun, though.

5. Not wanting to use strange toilets - For some reason, women can go into a restroom in a restaurant, gas station, or other public facility and use it without hesitation. Conversely, most men hate using a strange toilet. For us, images of mutant bacteria that could eat whole cows alive live on those toilet seats. I’ve even resisted going to the bathroom instead of being forced to use a strange one. Honestly, I think most of you ladies out there need to rethink this one.

And there you have it. Some of the most well known “guy’s things” there are. Probably, if I’m guessing right, I’d say that some of you ladies out there might want equal time, maybe a future column about “gal’s things.” The only thing is, I’m not biologically qualified to write it. My suggestion would be to contact my good friend, columnist Amy Eason ( Tell her I wrote a column about guy’s things, and that you think a response is in order. That’ll get her back up enough that I’ll guarantee you she’ll produce a wonderful, women friendly masterpiece for all you ladies...

About The Author

Ed’s latest book, “Rough As A Cob,“ can be ordered by calling River City Publishing toll-free at: 877-408-7078. He’s also a popular after dinner speaker, and his column runs in a number of Southeastern publications. You can contact him via email at:, or through his web site address at:

Lonely Expats Looking For Love

AMSTERDAM —Being an expat in a foreign country where you don't speak the language is hard at the best of times. And if you're single with the most romantic day of the year looming, what do you do?

You could sit at home and feel sorry for yourself, but the modern expat in Europe is turning to exciting new ways of finding Mr or Mrs Right before February 14.

One way is through SpeedDating, where you get 25 different three-minute dates in one evening.

SpeedDating was nothing more than a fad in cities such as London and New York, but for expats in Europe, it's proving to be a lifesaver come February 14.

Many single expats find SpeedDating an attractive, safe and efficient alternative to the superficial bar scene and torturous three-hour blind dates.

A Valentine's edition of Expatica SpeedDate, in central Amsterdam, has proved so popular that people are queuing up just to be on the reserve list.

Although the concept was intended for English-speaking expatriates, more and more locals are looking to meet interesting international people.

But, is three minutes enough? Can you really meet Mr or Mrs Right? And if so, will it develop into a long-term relationship?

The answer to all three questions was " yes " for Canadian expat Jay Parker* who met Australian Monique Frey* at an Expatica SpeedDate evening in Amsterdam in 2002 -- and is about to get married. The happy couple now lives in Canada and last told Expatica they are busy in “wedding planning mode”.

For those not quite bold enough to launch themselves into a room with complete strangers, an ever-increasing way of finding love is online. is the largest of the online dating sites, but it's not a great deal of use if, for example, you’re an American living in Paris.

Enter - which runs Europe's largest online dating service for expats. With over 6,000 profiles online, Expatica Date provides a platform for lonely expats to meet up in a foreign land.

And the site appears to be doing the trick - Expatica often receives emails from happy couples boasting how they met on the site.

So, for those seeking romance for Valentines, there is help out there—if you’re willing to post a profile online or blind date 25 people in one evening.

*Names have been changed to protect privacy

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

For more information on this article, please contact:

Colleen Geske
Marketing Manager
1098 SM Amsterdam

e-Matchmaking: Can a Computer Program Find Love For You?

by: Devlyn Steele

I logged on to a dating site the other day and was greeted by a large, flashing message. It promised that if I took the time to answer a series of questions that they would find a "perfect match" for me. Imagine that? All the work and worry of being single - gone! We truly have evolved! Not only can computer programs manage the entire traffic system of a city and make chess grandmasters cry, but now they can lead my perfect match right to my doorstep. I always wanted a Stepford wife, I hope it comes assembled.

The recent trend in Internet Dating has been the use of a "computer personality test" of some sort. Websites claim that these tests, usually developed by a "top psychologist", have the ability to understand you and your needs through a series of questions. Confused? Lost in love? Problems communicating? Don't worry, the Online Dating Hal 5000 can figure you out! In fact, when you're done, this computer program will know your needs and desires better than you do.

Remember the Broadway play “Fiddler on The Roof”? You might not, it was the first Broadway play I went to when I was seven. A song that always stuck in my head for some reason was “matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match…” The song starts as a plea to the matchmaker to bring true love straight to the altar; someone beautiful, rich, intelligent, and perfect.

But by the end of the song, the singer realizes that the Matchmaker might not be up to the task. She decides that “playing with matches, a girl can get burned”.

So, do these tests really work?

Personality tests have a long history. Really, really smart guys with names like Freud, Maslov, Fromm, and Jung developed respected psychological theories, and these theories are used as the basis for all types of tests. “The Big Five” theory suggests that there are five dimensions of personality: openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. Some popular personality tests use this as a foundation. Others go the “Big Three” route, which does away with the “openness” and “agreeableness” dimensions - mostly because it’s easier to remember.

I joke a little about these theories, but the truth is that they’ve survived the test of time and there is a ton of scientific research behind them. The real question is if these tests can be effective in applying a theory to the complexity of a human being. Add to this the additional layer of meshing your answers with another, equally complex person. That’s a tall order.

People have impulsive behavior that simply can’t be measured when they’re sitting, relaxed and introspective, taking one of these tests. Often our answers reflect our perfect (or hopeful) idea of ourselves. Even if we are trying our best to be honest, our impulsive behavior in real-life situations can be far different than we’d expect.

Another wildcard is attraction. We can meet someone who’s empirically good-looking, has a similar background, is kind and successful – and yet we’re not attracted. Often we can’t explain why we like another person. It may be how they make us laugh, a crooked smile – even how they smell! Sometimes little things that are immeasurable on their own can collectively make us attracted.

Human beings and our emotions and desires are far too complex, and a computer program can’t solve the riddles of our romantic lives. As Jung put it, “the meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances; if there is a reaction both are transformed”. It sounds good, but even Jung was hedging his bet when it comes to love. What will cause two individuals to react to each other? Even the developers of the study of personality would not presume that a series of questions could predict romance.

If you rely solely on matchmaking services, you are missing the entire beauty of online dating. The beauty is opportunity. Online dating offers you an almost limitless opportunity to meet and date new people. It gives you the time and space to find what best suits you. Going to a quality dating site that isn’t trying to sell you fantasy of finding your match for you will mean you will have a pool of millions of singles to meet.

Treat matchmaking options as just another fun way to explore. It can serve as an ice breaker to start a conversation, but don’t expect them to be the answer to finding your perfect match. Keep all options open and explore possibilities. As a unique individual, only can you know what works for you. You need to develop skills to communicate and meet people. Developing both online and offline dating skills is the best way to find the right relationship.

Next time you’re brushing your teeth, take a look in the mirror. See that amazing person? That’s your matchmaker with a mouthful of toothpaste. Take charge of your life and get into action! Enjoy dating and enjoy the process of discovery. Your experiences, both good and not-so-good, are essential to finding the right person for you.

About The Author

Devlyn Steele ("America's Leading Life-Coach") is a Relationship Coach, Life-Coach, radio host, columnist, and the developer of His new program teaches Internet daters the skills they need to find their perfect matches on their own.