It seems that what drives traffic to my blog is if I write about the Argentine men or tango. No one seems to be all that interested in my posts on how to make yogurt. Let's talk more about men. Everyone's favorite topic..or so it seems. Women love to talk about men, good or bad. Men want to know what women say about them.
Where is the best place to meet men in Argentina? I can tell you with first hand experience, not in the milonga, not on the street, or in the grocery store. In the olden days you were "presented" to a friend of the family. Now a days things are a little different. People still prefer to meet someone near or involved in their social group or family. For the more modern, there is now the Internet. I started Internet dating in the US in the 90s. The chats on computer BBS, later Compuserve and the Source, and then America Online, and now with the various sites available. The online dating here in Argentina really didn't catch on until maybe 5 years ago.
Five years ago there were relatively free sites like Badoo and Tagged. Now both sites are disasters. Badoo is full of married men who think they are so smart about their cheating ways, men who live in desperate situations looking for a way out. Tagged has tons of false profiles. The majority of my mails come from men using Google Translate that live in Tunisia, Morocco, Greece, or somewhere else I have no interest in. (Hola Querida..querida is what old ladies like your abuela call you.)
I am pretty strict about a couple of things, 1. no smokers, 2. no one in a relationship, 3. financially independent, 4. reasonably attractive, 5. intelligent. (Not in any particular order) Some of my Argentine women friends think that I am too demanding. Sometimes when I read the profiles of some of the men, it is amazing. One man wrote the woman he was looking for had to wear red nail polish and lipstick. She needed to have an athletic body. She needed to wear heels. She should be blond with either green or blue eyes. Oh and the best, she had to be affectionate. He also wanted her to be involved with his family. She needed to like to buy gifts for them. I am demanding??? Jeesh!
In the USA the dating sites offer advice. Some say you should not respond for 24 hours when playing the online dating game. Here in Argentina if you don't respond right away, the insults start. I am amazed. I have had men say some of the most awful things. Some people stay connected 24 hours a day with the smartphone apps to the same sites. Me no. I have to work. There are others when they find out I am from the US think it is OK to hide behind their computer screens with a barrage of insults. People who hate foreigners live all over the world. It is no secret among South Americans that Argentines consider themselves superior. I hear it all the time during chats and sometimes on my dates. Like the one I talk about below.
A couple of months ago I agreed to meet "Jose" (not his real name) for coffee. He wanted to take me to dinner. I learned that lesson long ago. Coffee is much safer. If you hit it off then maybe dinner, otherwise you are stuck the whole night with some guy buying you dinner you cannot stand. A little uncomfortable to say the least.
We agree to meet outside Alto Palermo, a large shopping center in Palermo. I see him. He is my age. He looks good. He is a pendex like me. (In Argentine slang..pendejo/a is an adolescent. A pendex is someone old who acts young.) I go to greet him and then he asks if he can show me something inside the mall. He told he went shopping before he was to meet me. We go to the Swatch shop and he shows me a watch for $1500 pesos. (Then it was about $155 USD) "What do you think?" he asks. Now what am I suppose to say? It is a little weird and sort of awkward after knowing someone only 5 minutes. I told him I thought it was nice, and he bought it. Uff. Then we went for coffee.
In my old life, I was a business analyst. I would ask my clients lots of questions. The talent I had is that they never noticed. I now apply this same talent to my dating life. Argentine men are chaymuyeros or worse verseros. In other words big talkers or full of hot air. The question I get asked most is why I live in Argentina. Concentrating on me is a good way for them not to talk about themselves. Being a foreigner gives them an opportunity they might not have with a local woman. During this conversation I find out that this guy lives on his small boat because the wife got the house. He works as a lower level employee in a company. None of this really matters but he told me online about his boat which he made me believe was a large yacht. He bragged about being in charge at a large marketing company. He lied. What was he thinking? That I would never find out? Now I know the big reason to make a show about the watch.
I try to find out what we have in common. My passion is traveling. I am not vetting properly online. I realize this. Online he told me he loved to travel. In person his travels included 1 trip to Brasil and wherever he could go in his boat inside Argentina. I asked if he had ever been to Chile or Uruguay. He began to bash both countries. I decided whatever, I am no longer going to behave. (Which is probably one of the reasons I am still single.)
"How can you say things about a country you have never been to?" I ask. "Chile is nice." He then tells me the Chilenos are jealous of Argentines. Ahh right. "Of what I ask him?" "That Argentina has higher inflation? No investment?" "What exactly are they jealous of?" "We are better looking." he tells me. "How do you know if you haven't been to Chile?" I ask him. He tells me they are all ugly and short. I tell him that I had a very handsome Chilean boyfriend who about the same size as him. "We are better lovers." He tells me. "Argentine men are the best lovers." You know I hate when men say this about whatever country they are from, because it is the individual male, not the country. To be honest I can never remember any men saying this to me since I moved to Argentina. Most be old age.
"Really?" I say to him? "How many Chilean men have you slept with? Or Colombians Or Mexicans? Or even Argentines?" He looks at me incredulous. "You are asking me how many men I have slept with?" "Yes, because for you to say that Argentine men are the best lovers, you must have first hand experience." Now, I have him backed into a corner. I am not nice. He says "Well none. I have never had sex with a man." "Then how can you say that the Argentine men are the best lovers with no experience? I on the other hand have much experience having sex with men." He looks at me. He doesn't know what to say. Most likely he is afraid to. Game over.