If I had a dime for every friend of mine who has a JDate profile, I’d be rich. Well, maybe not filthy rich. But financially secure enough not to have to troll JDate looking for a doctor/lawyer husband.

But I’m on there, albeit with a free account, which means I can’t access my JDate messages (of which I have several). And that’s probably a good thing. God only knows what trouble I’d get into if I had unlimited access to young, single Jewish men. Really, God knows what trouble I’ve already gotten into.

The concept is simple-pay for a monthly subscription (it should be humorously noted that JDate’s membership fee is slightly greater than other online dating websites), and connect with Jewish singles. According to the Web site’s most recent statistics, only 18 percent of its members fall into the 18-25 age range bracket. Considering the fact that most of my not-yet-graduated and recently graduated Jewish friends are on JDate, and several have even met their husbands/wives/fiancees on the site, one would think I would show no hesitations and dive in head-first at the chance to sign up. In fact, when I first told friends, both Jewish and not, that I had registered for the free membership, none were surprised. NONE. I’m not sure what that says about me. Perhaps that I have an open mind? That I take a modern view on dating and courtship? Or that I am quick to jump on the bandwagon? Whatever the case, I surprised the world by rejecting this unconventional path to betrothal. In truth, I’m a little creeped out by JDate. There is nothing fun or exciting about being IMed at 1 a.m. by a balding 29-year-old ESL teacher (note: not a doctor or lawyer) in Queens who first asks me if I want “naughty or nice conversation,” then asks me my feelings about beer and the New York Yankees. As if that isn’t enough of a reason to shy away from virtual J-love, here are my additional reservations:

1. I will be in South Korea by the end of summer, and JDate doesn’t operate in Asia (I already checked).

2. Maybe this would be more fun if I lived in a major metropolitan area, where more than a handful of young Jewish singles live. But here I am, in upstate New York, and I think its safe to say I know nearly every Jewish guy between the ages of 19 and 23 who lives in this town.

3. On that same note, I live in a pretty small town. During my freshman year of college, I learned about JDate for the first time and did some digging. Just wanted to see who was on there, you know? Well, in the first five minutes, I found my high school boyfriend’s recently widowed father, an old Hebrew School teacher and various others I’d surely bump into when I came home for the next year’s High Holiday services. And if I can see them, they can surely see me. Not to sound like the bird watching hospital patient from Grey’s Anatomy, but I like to watch people, not have them watch me.

4. My screenname is pretty lame and makes a poor first impression. I’d change it, but going through the process of notifying everyone on a buddy list is time-consuming. Then again, so is blogging…

I know I buy into stereotypes all the time, but this one takes the cake. New York City consultant Darren Sherman went out to dinner with a woman he met on JDate. Apparently she didn’t feel the same sparks he did, because she didn’t return his calls or e-mails in the weeks following the dinner date. He then badgered her for weeks, trying to get her to pay for her share of the meal, which apparently amounted to around $50.

As if I didn’t have enough reasons to stay away? According to the JDate News Center, “22% of JDaters say their mom has paid for their JDate subscription.” If that’s the case, then thanks but no thanks, JDate. I think I’ll stick to the real world. And if the only nice Jewish fish are in the JDate sea, maybe its time to find a different body of water. I’m thinking the Pacific Ocean.

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