Years ago, the way Josh and I met might have been considered unusual, but now it is becoming more common. In my office alone at least four colleagues have met their husbands the same way.
It started when a close friend met her boyfriend on Match.com and became a huge advocate for the benefits of online dating. It’s a little like online shopping; you enter criteria for your perfect match and their algorithms give you several options. Aziz Ansari tries to explain how it works in one of his stand-up routines. He asks a friend, “What is the magical formula you put into the system in order to find your soul mate?!” His friend replies, “Jewish and my zip code.” I think my search to find Josh went a little like that, except “Catholic and my zip code” and maybe a few other parameters.
After trying to write a summary that best described me, I had a friend review it from a “guy’s perspective.” He told me my profile should reflect who I am and what is important to me. So, on a flight home from Seattle, I certainly had time to think about it. What I determined was that my alma mater, Providence College, is very important to me and someone who enjoys attending basketball games, hockey games and other alumni events would be an ideal match.
Three days after posting my Friar-themed profile, I connected with Josh. He was also a PC graduate, Friar fan, and, of course, was a Catholic in my zip code. After a few emails back and forth, Josh asked if I would meet him at the next basketball game, PC vs. Navy.
That evening I parked at the mall and raced through the shops, down the escalators (running late as usual!) to meet Josh. As I came up to the sky bridge I saw a tall, attractive man scanning faces in the crowd trying to match me to my picture. Our eyes met and he smiled as he walked over to me. I instantly started talking, as though in the middle of a conversation, nervous to start the date. We had a wonderful time at the game laughing and sharing our backgrounds. We even engaged in some lighthearted ribbing as I learned Josh’s superstitious game day behaviors.
After going out on a few other dates we realized that we had very likely crossed paths several times before. Our first meeting wasn’t the basketball game and it wasn’t even our virtual meeting. In fact, we had likely first met five years earlier (Fall of 2009), in college, at a retreat. We even have a picture of us standing about two feet from each other! We also likely crossed paths again three years later (Spring of 2013) at a PC legacy dinner for Josh’s, and my brother’s, graduation. I’m sure there are other times we passed each other on campus or at an event, but it just wasn’t the right time for us to really meet.
Six months after our first date, Josh proposed in front of St. Dominic’s Chapel on the PC campus, where we will be wed in August. (But more on the proposal later!) Needless to say, my 6-month Match.com subscription went to waste, but it was the best $100 I ever spent!