Before we begin, a momentary aside to you Quickmatchers: I'm hotmelomel, and I much prefer direct contact over the anonymous thumbs-up."
[She then goes on to compare it to "the unsolicited finger in the anus"; I encourage you to go read her profile, it's a ton of fun! (If you like reading and want to read a profile even longer than mine)]
"The beet is the most passionate of vegetables... A [profile] that begins with a beet will end with the devil."
I'm going to try to save a bunch of y'all some time - it's only fair, this is a long profile. I intend this to be direct rather than hostile, but you probably won't find me to be what you're looking for here if you are:
♦ not tolerant of the honest mistakes that I might make, due to my brain injury ( like forgetting not to mention you on Facebook, or needing me to remember certain ways that you need to not be touched (e.g., due to PTSD), or so on! ). Seriously, I have had a couple of recent really rewarding relationships totally crash and burn, due to my current inability to reliably remember these sorts of things!
♦ not interested in poly or open relationships. Seriously, I am committed to my partners; ethical non-monogamy is what it's all about. And no, it's not just dating. I'm happy to talk about the topic, though - hell, poly people date by talking about relationship styles. The book "Opening Up" might be required reading if I really really like you (seriously, it is an awesome resource for long-term romantic relationships of every type).
♦ a tobacco smoker. I'm not judging, I'm just pretty allergic to that stuff. eCigs are not a problem, it's actual cigarettes and cigars that make my organs turn inside out. If you're good with eCigs, we'll do fine, I have some myself ( they are -awesome- for the treatment of migraines! ). But if you're likely to smoke tobacco around me, neither of us will probably enjoy meeting. Unless "vomit" is a color that you really need in your pallette.
♦ serious about your religious dogma. It's one thing if it's a sense of underlying order for you, but if you believe in a sky god who cares about what you do with your naughty bits, we're not going to get along. And if you think evolution should be taught on an equal ground with creationism (unless it's to show why evolution is a scientific theory and "intelligent design" isn't), we'll fight. Here, I am judging.
♦ thinking, "TL;DR." I strongly prefer readers. I won't start writing less once I meet you.
♦ not fond of dogs. I have a wonderful german shepherd-mix, Stormageddon Dark Lord of All, and had a larger shepherd-lab mix, Buckminster Fuller. Those names alone should tell you a lot about me.
I have many, varied interests - I like stimulation of many kinds, and am usually happiest learning new ones. I'll typically get really into one, focus on it for a while, and then put it aside for some period of time before I come back to it.
I have been asked about that diving photo on my profile - it's there because I used to really love to dive - open water, spring, cave, deep mixed gas rebreather, whatever - if I'm getting in the water, I'm happy. That photo's from a rebreather training course I was taking in Belize a while back. Oddly enough, the instructor later left the dive operation and opened a coffee house near Austin, in Lakeway - Java Dive.
If you try to talk to me in Latin all I'll be able to say is, "te audire non possum est. Musa fixa in aure sapientum est."
Sometimes I'm Kermit, sometimes I'm Gonzo, sometimes I'm Animal, sometimes I'm Sam the (American) Eagle. Not so much on the Miss Piggy. Catch me at the right (or wrong) time and I'm Fozzy. Only occasionally am I the Swedish Chef. "Ain't this boogie a mess?"
I'm a strong, smart, educated, well-read confident guy and I'm capable of doing anything I put my mind to. I'm also compassionate and considerate, but I'm more guarded about who gets to see those sides of me. I'm funny and goofy and serious and flippant, and I'm a pretty damned good judge of character. I like people who think, no matter what they think about, and it's important for lovers to be in charge of their own lives.
In friends, I like people with similar tastes. In lovers, I like people with more varied tastes - I think luring one another to new experiences is hot, learning is awesome and fun.
I can be darkly ironic and allusive, but I'm steering away from that here since it's so difficult to do so effectively without more context.
While I'm strongly intellectual and have an technical entrepreneurial background, I value music and the arts more than I value technical prowess. When thinking about potential mates, I find physical beauty common as well as a malleable metric - an active, curious mind is one of the biggest turn-ons one can exhibit, and I prefer people who are confident and forthright. And you know? If I fall in love with someone, I see their beauty.
My hobbies can be really diverse and usually involve something that's both exciting and involves some degree of learning. I love to fly (I'm a private pilot), as mentioned I love diving (and can really geek out on technical diving, esp. cave and deep mixed gas), and like to brew beer, wine and mead. I have many time-consuming interests, so they tend to rotate in and out on a several year cycle.
"Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before." I'm with Mae. Speaking of picking multiple evils, I am polyamorous...!
I'm not thrilled by most religions - while basically an atheist (or more accurately a Spinozan Pantheist, like Einstein was - we can quibble about that if you are interested in poetic metaphors for emergent behavior from mathematically complex systems), I think spirituality is important as a matter of human psychology and how we make sense of our place in the world and doesn't require believing patently absurd things. I'm something of an ontological scavenger.
My politics are all over the map - I'm a gun owner who wants strict licensing requiring training, I believe that personal freedom is vitally important, but while I think that most government solutions are naive about the law of unintended consequences - that doesn't mean that we shouldn't try, just that our politics should be flexible in the face of facts. I've been frustrated that the organized right has basically intentionally gone insane and stupid, but am not horribly comfortable with a lot of the orthodoxy from the left.
I am entrepreneurial, muppetational, and extropian.
After a lot of soul-searching (and travel and adventure and picking up a pilot's license), I decided that Austin is really where I want to live, where I can be "the best me I can," as the cliche goes. I bought a house here and have been getting used to my intentional life.
After (oh my god, has it been?) twelve or thirteen years here, I'm a much happier person. I am part of several rewarding social crowds.
I am also newly-single-ish, as of about two years ago, when I underwent some heart surgery that was botched, leaving me with some brain damage... I *just* completed rehab in my home from an outfit named Rehab Without Walls, and am finally able to think about dating again!
Professionally, I *was*, pre-incident, forehead deep in an iOS (iPhone/iPad) startup with xBeccane and our (just-) friend nachosquidpants. This was my fourth career, I often wonder what my fifth will be!
Even though my degree is in Physics, where I completely rock is at things where I can combine expertise and intuition. This has served me very well professionally - I can mix technical knowledge with the more intuitive demands of business to be an excellent entrepreneur. Making money comes easily to me, if I'm working on something that I'm interested in or otherwise am well-motivated - the business I turned around was an assisted living facility (I was motivated by it being something that my family owned and needed to have go away).
Business is easy - comedy is hard.
I'm also a really good conversationalist, on an intimate (as distinct from sexual, though that too) level. I'm fairly empathic, but I'm strong, too - I know who I am and won't let somebody else move me farther along any path than I choose to be moved.
Similarly, I'm a very good friend for those whom I choose to make part of my circle, there's little that I wouldn't do for them. Most of my good friends are people who I'll be close to for the rest of my life - even if we don't talk for six months (or six years), we'll be able to pick up again right away the next time we meet. I'm choosey because a lot of people don't know how to maintain appropriate boundaries - but my friends are very important to me.
Not coincidentally - by all reports the same skills often seem to reflect well in my love life. Just sayin'.
I'm told I look younger in person than my photo. I'm probably more animated, too.
Chemistry is funny. If we meet and you're expecting fireworks, you'll probably be disappointed unless you're really giving off a strong fun vibe - I really don't believe that relying on "chemistry" in a first meeting is very wise (it's pretty much an invitation to players, who specialize in simulating chemistry).
I tend to like people (not only those people, but many) who are shyer and reserved at first, which means that I pay a lot of attention to boundaries - at a first meeting, I'm likely to be getting a feel for who you are instead of going in fires a-blazing. If you show me some humor, sparks will start - but nervousness often keeps us both guarded. And that's cool with me, I'll generally go for a second meeting as long as I like what I see with just hints of the possibility of chemistry, or just somebody I think could be a good friend - as much as I like and crave sexual relationships, I like friends too. Every relationship is different.
So to sum it up, if you just can relax and enjoy the moment more than looking to be swept off your feet, we'll do fine. Sometimes the chemistry does instantly explode and that's very cool and I believe in following it, but that's no indicator of a good longer term relationship.
Currently reading: Ending Aging: The Rejuvenation Breakthroughs That Could Reverse Human Aging in Our Lifetime. YaRLY.
Movies: I love both quirky dystopian and psychomimetic movies and big science fiction films. My favorite films include Brazil, Toys, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, and The Abyss. I love the older masters, too, from Arsenic and Old Lace to Rear Window to Duck Soup. Coen brothers films are also a great favorite, from the flawed Blood Simple to the Masterpiece Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?. Charlie Kauffman (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Being John Malkovitch) screenplays are always fantastic. Donnie Darko rocked, but the released version was better than the director's cut... some stuff is better left ambiguous.
The life of a Repo Man is always intense.
Music: just about everything, really. Especially like prog rock, jazz (but don't ask me to name names), and rock/jazz fusion. I can be really passionate about well constructed lyrics and concept albums. But if it's not overly simple prefab pop (by which I mean Brittany Spears and boy bands, not Monkees) I'll probably like it. Favorites include Frank Zappa, King Crimson, Yes, Weather Report, Todd Rundgren, Sisters of Mercy, Concrete Blonde, and Sun Ra.
I also love old recorded comedy, especially stuff out of the 1960s. Smothers Brothers, Bill Cosby, Stan Freberg, Bob Newhart... I also love the modern audio drama / radio shows, like Ruby and Jack Flanders. One of the things I love best about all of the above is that they're touched by that cheerfully insane tradition descended from the Vaudevillains. And yes, the Muppets too.
("You see this ukulele? It came with no strings attached.")
Books: fiction: mostly sf, particularly the recent breed of literate hard space opera sf, like Iain M Banks. Non fiction: stuff that talks about why we are the way we are, from Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs, and Steel to Dannet's Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon. But those are just foci, I'm fairly omnivorous and voracious when it comes to reading (hmm, I must be hungry). Oh, and let's not forget Jitterbug Perfume and the collected poetry of Rumi. And I can't believe I forgot Ann Tyler's The Accidental Tourist.
And, brace yourself for it, The Ethical Slut. But I'm a very picky slut, if that makes sense.
Food: I loves the spicy food. Both hot and flavorful. I'm not a big fan of most fish (shrimp == cockroach of the sea, and cephalopods are people (they play practical jokes!)), but otherwise love Thai, Chinese, Indian, Mexican, Ethiopian, and so on (whatever that means here). I'm not eating so much of it these days, as Nutrisystem is helping me lose mass. I do like some tuna and salmon-based sushi. Especially if cream cheese is involved. While I eat meat, I also really enjoy vegetarian and vegan food.
TV: Battlestar Galactica, Heroes, Amazing Race, Biggest Loser, Real Time with Bill Maher, The Daily Show with John Stewart. Anything Whedon. Or Minear. House. Dexter. B5. Terminator: Sarah Conner Chronicles. Project Runway (Ha! Surprised you!).
I also enjoy comic books from time to time, usually in spurts where I devour many months (sometimes more than than a year) of issues of many titles at a time and then go dry again for a while. I love the work of Alan Moore, Warren Ellis, and Joss Whedon. Neil Gaiman doesn't suck either. I haven't been big on Marvel's main universe for decades (except for maybe JMS Spider-Man), but enjoy the Ultimate versions. I like big parts of the DC Universe, especially anything Green Lantern.
I also game from time to time, though not recently. It's one of those things that you need a bunch of like minded people to do, so it's an opportunistic affliction.
Music. Books. Friends. Sex. Intelligent conversation. Ambition.
Um. Can we just count "sex" and "intelligent conversation" as types of "friends"? In which case, I'll add "optimism." That's six.
My thoughts about religion tend to be along the lines of, "what do people get out of this stuff, and how can they get it without having to believe blatantly silly things?" Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon, by Daniel Dennet, is a really good exploration of the anthropological data we have.
I'm actually fairly spiritual, despite my tag - I love a lot about universal Sufism, and the poetry of Rumi, which mixes imagery of love, intoxication, and religious ecstasy is among my favorite. I'm not a Believer, but nor am I a strident atheist of the Dawkins/Harris/Hitchens brand (though I love Christopher Hitchens' diatribes), but I really would like to see humanity come up with a way to stop believing stuff about the world that's pretty arbitrary and random.
Except for the Flying Spaghetti Monster, of course.
Sex, well, I love sex. I'm not going to be shy or bashful about it, it's definitely the most consistent ranker in my favorite things to do. It can be quick, hot, and spontaneous or hours of slow, luxurious basking in each other's pleasure. There's nothing that serves so well to connect me with my body and my bliss as having someone focus on making my body sing while I delight in bringing them pleasure. It's the best way I know to make me feel that all is right in the world and be connected to another human being and their pleasure. Chains, silk ties, toys, all of that kinky stuff can be and often is great fun but ultimately they're just tools for two (or more!) human beings to make each other feel warm, excited, ecstatic, and accepted and to explore their pleasure centers together.
As a result, I also spend a lot of time thinking about different dating strategies people use to attract mates - while I'm interested for my own benefit, it's also interesting in the abstract. There's so much that's fascinating about how people "mate and relate."
As my favorite Bitchin' Byker Babe friend once said, "we need to spend less time arguing and more time figuring out how to get more great sex."
A friend wrote in her journal that guys don't need to write in their profiles that sex is super important to them, that it's assumed and that it's important to women too. Well, it would be nice to be able to assume that but long term relationships with mismatched libidos suck. And not in the good way. Just sayin'.
Technology is how we do what we do, better (how's that for a jarring transition?). That includes figuring out how to get more great sex, but also is how we live longer happier lives, how we have all this great leisure time, and will ultimately be how the highest portion of humanity can live happiest and most full lives. I'm not a pollyanna; technology has all sorts of unintended consequences, and we must not be blind to those - but that's a matter of priorities in how technology is applied, not in the general approach of new technology. A middle management problem, if you will.
Intellectually I'm very much a child of the Enlightenment, and love the notion of the renaissance man; humans should be able to function artistically, philosophically, scientifically, and humanely.
I put two spaces after every period. Sorry, that's just the way I roll.
I believe that there's a good chance that people of about my age will never have to die of old age, and I'm pretty sure that there are people alive today who will be able to live for essentially forever. Yeah, extropian.
I am strangely fascinated by women stalking me who have a lower match percentage than enemy. Even more so when it's 0% - really? We couldn't find *any* common ground? Best not to pursue that thought too far, I think, I'd end up trying to talk to a white separatist, submitting "quiverful" anti-abortion Christian anti-gay activist woman. I'd say "not that there's anything wrong with that," but there kinda is.
Long gloves on women are a huge turn-on. So are thigh-high boots. I don't know what that means about my psyche.
Oh! I know! The biggest compliment anybody ever gave me in my entire life was, "you taught me to love myself."
I see a lot of people saying something like, "no games." Here's the game I am really tired of: blowing off dates to see how your date responds. I am bored by the whole "test the power dynamic" thing.
If we have a greater than an (-approximately-!) 90% friend or match, and 10% or lower enemy, I definitely would like to know you. I've made a ton of just-friends through OKCupid thanks to the quality of their matching algorithm, and 90/10 is a really good threshold - but it's approximate, so don't sweat a couple of percentage points. That threshold usually means that we won't see eye to eye about polyamory, religion, or smoking - all of which are deal killers.
I used to have a monthly casual party in north Austin where I swear half the attendees came via matches on OKCupid, even if they didn't turn into romantic relationships. They're a good bunch o' folks.
IMing me here will not work - I often leave an OKCupid window open or minimized on a desktop that I am not in front of and occasionally OKC turns IMing back on without my permission.
If you send me a trivial message (like, just "hello"), all I promise is that I'll look at your profile - that's similar to the old "wink" command, and I figure that my pushing a button in response is about the right level of commitment. If I really like what I see, maybe I'll write - but if you write anything substantive (i.e., more than just "hello") to me, I promise I'll write back. Fair's fair. Mind you, I react negatively (just a little bit) to people who don't put up photos - come on, suck it up. We all have our own hesitance.
On the other hand, I *do* carefully read profiles and if it looks like I don't match your stated requirements (often stating only interest in single guys) I'll probably not initiate contact, but indicate interest through giving a 4-star or 5-star rating.
When I do write back to you, I expect a reply too - if I don't seem like somebody you want to spend more time on, say so. Ignoring a reply is just rude. If you don't agree, don't message me - we're just going to annoy each other.
Don't write to me if you're going to flake out, my time's extremely valuable to me. Similarly, please be somebody who isn't afraid to just say, "sorry, I'm just not that into you." S'cool, we're all adults here, right?
Write me if you're interested in meeting me and are okay with the possibility of dating casually or meeting as friends. It's better to learn whether you can have fun with each other before worrying about the future, and then figure out how your needs match up. Monogamy is like marriage - in the words of Mae West, "a great institution, but I'm not ready for an institution yet."
Also write me if you're interested in arguing about what kind of God we don't believe in. The devil is in the details.