As a child of the Internet and confirmed weirdo, imagine my relief when they finally took that last bastion of in-person awkwardness — dating — to my laptop instead. I’ve been using one of the major dating sites, OkCupid, on and off for about five years now. While it has its perks, being a woman on a dating site means immersing yourself in a disgusting cesspool of exposed nerves, unfiltered testosterone, and daily propositions to engage in sex acts so horrifying, I hadn’t even heard of them before, and I’m from the Internet.
I got the feeling that a lot of men on that site would message literally any woman who had a profile, but the optimist in me wanted to believe that there was a limit. Maybe there was a woman so awful, so toxic, so irredeemably unlikeable that no one would message her, or if they did, at least they would realize they never, ever wanted to meet her. So I made the OkCupid profile of the Worst Woman on Earth, hoping to prove that there exists an online dating profile so loathsome that no man would message it.
I did not accomplish my goal.
In making this profile, I made sure my creation touched on every major facet of being truly horrible: mean, spoiled, lazy, racist, manipulative, and willfully ignorant, and I threw in a little gold digging just for funzies. I maintain that there is not a human on this planet who would read this profile and think, “Yes, I’d like to spend any amount of the fleeting time I’m given on my journey around the sun getting to know this person.” This profile is my magnum opus; it will be engraved on my tombstone. Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair:
(My wonderful friend Rae agreed to let me use some of her Facebook photos for this profile. In addition to being a journalist, mother, and all-around A+ person, she’s also a model. Only that last bit is relevant here, I guess.)
I figured any profile with photos of a beautiful woman would get a few messages from men whose boners were willing to overlook her personality. The captions on her photos were just as draped in red flags as her profile was, so there’s no way they were totally clueless as to how awful she is, but sure, I figured, maybe she’d get a couple of messages a day from people with especially low reading comprehension.
She got 150 messages in 24 hours.
OK, I thought, pouring myself a stiff drink as I prepared to sift through these messages from actual, living men with functioning central nervous systems. Maybe none of them read her profile, or maybe they thought that she was fun-crazy instead of actually-ruin-your-life crazy. I just had to convince them that she was the latter. My new goal was to get these men to stop messaging her back. I was going to make AaronCarterFan come across as so abhorrent that not even the kinds of dudes who comment on YouPorn videos would respond to her.
Want to guess how well that worked? I’ll give you a hint: I’m confiscating everyone’s penis until further notice.
Response Tactic #1: Be Unforgivably Awful
In trying to convince these men that they’re better than this, my first strategy was to just say horrible shit. These messages are natural extensions of her profile, confirmation that you do not, I repeat, do not want to know this woman.
It was not as successful as I hoped it would be.
Response Tactic #2: She Will Ruin Your Life
OK, I get it. These men don’t care about her personality; there is no lower limit to how deeply repulsive she can be on the inside, as long as she’s hot. It’s a bitter pill to swallow, sure, but I guess that’s how it is.
But what if meeting her would have clear, lasting consequences? What if there was no such thing as a one-night stand with her? What if the effects of coming into contact with this woman were devastating and permanent?
Response Tactic #3: Utter Nonsense
I’ll level with you, readers: This wasn’t so much a tactic as it was a result of the mental and emotional toll this social experiment was taking on me. After reading 500 messages from men who apparently had just slapped their semi-erect penis on their keyboard a few times and pressed “send,” my already flimsy grasp on reality was loosening. Preparing response strategies and putting words into a coherent order wasn’t an option for me anymore, so I decided to turn that into its own strategy. I’d tried mean-crazy, I’d tried life-destroying-crazy; I might as well try crazy-crazy.
God fucking damn it.
There are any number of cynical conclusions I could draw from the results of this experiment. For example, I could extrapolate from my data that men have been so deeply socialized to value women solely on their appearance that many of them seem unable to take any other aspect of who she is, such as intelligence or capacity for self-reflection or suffocating douchiness, into account. Or I could follow my first instinct as these messages began to roll in, which was to invest in a high-quality chastity belt and start collecting cats.
But rather than follow these results into the darkness, I’ll stay optimistic and instead offer an impassioned plea. Men of the world: You are better than this. I know many of you would never message AaronCarterFan, but many of you would, and a whole bunch of you did. You’re better than that. There are women and men out there who are smart, and kind, and challenging, and honest, and a lot of other really positive adjectives. You don’t want someone who will pull out your teeth and then sue you for child support; you deserve someone who will make you want to be better than you are, and will want to be better because of you. You deserve happiness, and love, and adventure. Be brave. Don’t settle. Figure out how to be happy with who you are and then look for someone who makes your great life even better. And most importantly (as became my mantra every time I checked her inbox):
STOP FUCKING MESSAGING AARONCARTERFAN, YOU ASSHOLES.