An essentially modern experience I've never had
NymphoGirl28’s ass and vagina are on full display; her back turned, feet shoulder-width apart, touching her toes. She has decided that this photo — completely faceless — will be sufficient to accomplish what she’s set out to do.
Wary that some of us judge books by their covers, NymphoGirl28 states, in the first sentence of her personal information box, that she is “a lady first and a bit of a romantic.” Without shame, she identifies herself as “an extremely horny young woman that likes showing off and group sex.” She enjoys “being tied up and giving head while being fucked,” and uses two exclamation points to emphasize how much she “loves to swallow cum.”
This might be why NymphoGirl28 is currently looking for “open-minded men that must be clean and disease-free.” She adds that she’s Hispanic, blonde, slim, and a college student in Wilmington, N.C.
While reading NymphoGirl28’s profile, I receive a message from her that reads, “so you’re not going to say hi or leave me a message, how rude!! Lol. your profile is really cute.” She leaves me her number, along with a smiley face. The last phrase, “your profile is really cute,” surprises me.
I had signed up and created an account no more than a half-hour ago. Redtube.com and other free porn sites post advertisements that say things like, “Tired of jerking off? Find a Fuckbuddy near you to take home tonight!” I don’t know what made me click this advertisement, specifically; I imagine my ex-girlfriend saying “all you think about is sex,” or a friend attributing it to the recent ending of an on-and-off again long distance relationship, or another saying I was bored, or curious. Each of them would’ve been right. To me, the advertisements seemed the same as walking past someone every day without ever having a conversation. But during the last two weeks, I found myself looking at them for longer than a glance, still maintaining that clicking on one of the links would make me a desperate, disgusting and altogether pathetic human being. But desire has its own logic, and combined with a few weeks of exceeding curiosity, I couldn’t resist.
I posted two pictures: one with my two sisters at a New Year’s Eve dinner, and another with my dog and one sister. I’d attempted to crop my sisters out of the pictures, but the website wouldn’t accept JPEGs below a certain size. Had I possessed a working laptop camera, the decision to include my dog and two sisters on an adult-dating site would’ve been different. As for the personal information section, I had become so mentally exhausted from typing and deleting and rethinking each sentence that by the time I was done, I was left with: “If you’re interested, let me know and we’ll take it from there.”
Why I had taken this website so seriously was beyond me; I wasn’t looking to get laid, but the longer I stayed on it, the more I wanted to know. This was, by the way, XMatch.com, one of fifteen hundred Internet dating sites that exist in America. A site like this doesn’t rely on computational conclusions formulated by various algorithms; it doesn’t rely on 29 dimensions of compatibility, or theories regarding brain chemistry or genetic coding, or even religious affiliation, or sense of humor, or musical or cinematic taste. Sites like XMatch.com live and die by two things: sexual disposition (“Male Seeking Female,” for example) and physical attraction. If a few sentences about “swallowing cum” and one picture are all it takes, why add more? This seemed to be NymphoGirl28’s logic, and I don’t doubt that it keeps most men interested; at least, it did for me.
When I return to NymphoGirl28’s profile page I’m aware of three things: She’s online right now; regardless of how many men she’s messaged, I’m one of them; and I’m nervous about what to say. While I double-check her profile for potential material to use in my response, I notice something I hadn’t noticed before: a small light near the bottom of the photo, just above her knees. What I’d thought was a photo taken by someone else was actually a kind of self- portrait, taken through her legs, into a mirror — a picture of a reflection of a person.
Maybe it isn’t a typical inspiration for philosophical musing, but NymphoGirl28’s image makes me think about something I read on dating and the Internet by Nick Paumgarten. He described dating profiles as stylized versions of themselves, adding that the online persona is a cheaper and more direct way of signaling one’s worth. Imagine some kind of infinite mirror stretching across a shallow sea in front of which every human being stands. Dazzled by our own reflection, and the reflections of others, most of us present either that which we think we are, or want to be, or want to appear to be. This is Paumgarten’s assertion. But to view a stylized projection of a woman pointing the camera not just at her reflection, but through it — at me— is a different thing altogether. NymphoGirl28 has rendered her mirror double-sided — partially reflective and partially transparent. She stands on both sides, and uniquely, through her photo, she’s allowed me to view her from two distinct perspectives, seemingly unaware that attracting me and exposing my own monstrosity is her greatest power.
Considering this site’s purpose, as well as NymphoGirl28’s personal information and picture, I message her the following: “That is the smartest photo on this site I’ve seen so far, and it’s beautiful.”
I wait for her response.