Friday, October 17, 2008

Does Craigslist Have a Weight Limit?

I want to have sex. I don’t have a girlfriend, I don’t know any women that I could get drunk and help to have their biggest drunken mistake ever, and I am practically a shut-in. Society’s advice to me, in this instance, can be boiled down to a single word: “Craigslist”.

I started paying attention to Craigslist earlier this year. Lurking. Reading the personals, but not yet daring to respond to any of them. Primarily because a lot of them clearly stated, ‘Zeitgeist the Clown need not apply.’ Oh, they didn’t use those exact words. They instead just insisted that respondents be HWP (which took me forever to discover meant Height/Weight Proportionate). Or employed. Or well hung. Or have no emotional baggage. (Ha ha! I’ve got a whole damn luggage cart full of emotional baggage pushed around by my own private bellhop! Whee!) Usually multiple combinations of the above.

I kept an eye out for ads from people who weren’t quite so picky. There were a few, here and there. But it took me awhile before I worked up the nerve to answer one of them. The first ad I ever responded to was posted back in July by a woman who wanted to have sex with a “large white male”. Not a hung white male. Not a male with a large cock. A large white male. So, I took a deep breath, and cut and pasted the reply-to address into an email, and asked for conformation about this.

The subject line was “question about your craigslist personals post”, and the email itself (without salutation or signature) was simply: “When you say 'large white male', are you looking for someone with a huge cock (not me), or someone who weighs 440 pounds (me)? Let me know.”

It was a week before I could get back to check my email again, and when I did, there was no response. I went back to Craigslist and found her ad again. And noticed something that my brain had kind of just glossed over the first time around. She mentioned that any replies without photos would be deleted without being read. Well, yeah, I’d seen that, but I had a question. My subject line said so. Surely she’d let me ask a question, before committing to formally responding to her post, right? (It was my first encounter with Craigslist. Go easy on me. I didn’t know what I was doing.)

The more I thought about it, the more it irked me. And the more I thought that she was probably after large-dicked and not large-bodied. But just in case . . . I went ahead and sent her a picture.

A couple of years ago my siblings and a couple of friends pooled their resources and got me a digital camera for my birthday. Not long afterwards, I started playing with the 12-second timer while not wearing clothing. (I was curious about my penis, which I hadn’t actually seen since the late 80s. Oh, I had felt it every day, but I wouldn’t be able to pick it out of a line-up.) As a result of which, I happened to have a handful of nude photos of myself tucked away in a folder on my computer.

So, I sent her an email containing the exact same text as the one I had sent before, but this time with a photo attachment so that she would actually open the stupid thing and read my question. The photo was of me. From the side. From my shoulder to just above my knee. Stark naked. (I didn’t get a reply, but I’d like to think that she was drinking Pepsi or Coke while checking her email, and that viewing my picture made her spray it out her nose.)

The second post I replied to was from a woman seeking a man with a foot fetish. Now, I’d been browsing the Craigslist personals, off-and-on, for months at this point, and this was the first reference to that sort of thing that I’d seen.

Her ad wasn’t really all that specific as to what she wanted. In fact, I remember it being incredibly vague. She did ask that we describe ourselves to her, and that if she was interested she’d get back to us and initiate a picture exchange and whatnot.

So, I sent her an email telling her that I was very interested in ‘that kind of thing’, and described myself. I held my breath and left words like ‘virgin’ and ‘small penis’ out of my description, fighting my OCD urges to the contrary. I did mention the chronic illness, and gave an accurate description which included the weight number.

And guess what? No response.

After that there were several posts that I was interested in responding to over the course of a couple of weeks, but didn’t. They didn’t explicitly state ‘no fatties’ or ‘no sickies’, but I wasn’t starved for rejection or anything, so . . . why bother?

But I still read the ads. And eventually found a woman seeking a man who was ‘chubby’. So, I asked, “How chubby? I clock in at 450 on the scales. Stand about 6 foot-ish, long and balding red hair and full beard, 37 years old. If that sounds like what you're looking for, drop me a line.”

It apparently wasn’t what she was looking for, because she didn’t drop me a line.

The next thing that got my hopes up was from a couple who wanted to hear peoples’ wildest fantasies to see if they spiked any interest. Looking for either a perfect fit, or something so wild that they would dare and goad each other into contacting the respondent and doing it (whatever it happened to be) with them. They didn’t care – according to claim – about the specific physical details of the person, but instead about the true and uncensored wild side of their personality. (Although, despite not caring what a person looked like, they still asked for a picture. Huh.)

So, I sent them a nearly 2,000 word response outlining a number of fantasy scenarios covering a wide range of kinks that I’d be more than willing to engage in with a sexually adventurous couple. And I sent a picture. (Fully clothed, nothing freaky).

They sent nothing in return. Again, I sat there with no reply in my in-box.

The most recent attempt at hooking up via ‘the list’ was when I replied to a BBW who was searing for . . . I kid you not . . . ‘a big fat man’. And in what had become the standard operating procedure, I read the ad, got excited, responded to the ad, and never heard back.

There’ve been a handful of other ads that I haven’t mentioned. Several other woman. Another couple. Once, when I was in a strange mood, I answered an ad for a man seeking a man.

And I never heard back from a single one of them. Not one.

I’ve seen furniture for sale in office supply stores with tags that read, “300 lb capacity”. There’s a limit to how much weight – how fat of a person – the chair can take. And the manufacturer is up front about it. And that’s what Craigslist needs.

Someone needs to do a study to figure out what the cut-off point is for fat people on Craigslist. I mean, I know that it’s lower than 450 lb. But I’d like to know, just out of curiosity if nothing else, what the exact weight limit for the Craigslist personals is.

“Craigslist personals have a maximum weight capacity of 320 lbs. If you weigh more than this, nobody will want to have sex with you or begin a relationship with you, so please, don’t waste either your time or ours. Thank you. The management.”

At some point in the middle of all of that replying to ads and never hearing back from the original posters, I got fed up with it. And decided to become a poster myself. I figured that since nobody was requesting a 450 pounder, then maybe offering one was the trick.

So there I am, sitting in my sister’s apartment (housesitting for the weekend – the same weekend from the previous blog post), drinking Mike’s Hard Lemonade and formulating the ‘perfect’ (?) Craigslist ad.

My ad’s grabline was “450 lb man seeking someone into that - M4W - 37 (salem-ish)”. And, if you were curious enough to click on it to read the full ad, you’d find this:

“I'm 6'2", 450 lbs, white, d&d free (well, nothing I've got is sexually transmittable, and all my meds are prescribed). I'm looking for someone to play with. One of the (seemingly mythological) straight female chubby chasers would be nice. I could also have fun with a BDSM girl who's into the obesity as an aspect of humiliation play.”

I figured that if anybody WAS looking for that, then I could go into more detail about myself in our correspondence. You know, when I responded to their response. I posted this ad on Friday night, (technically, early Saturday morning) and then started compulsively checking my email for a reply every five minutes or so. I eventually went to bed, and there was still no response to my ad when I got up (later) on Saturday morning.

O.K. I paced myself, and only checked my mail every half hour or so. (Somehow ‘every half hour’ ended up translating to every 15 – 20 minutes, but that was a lot better than the previous day.) When I’d received no response by Sunday I started telling myself, “Well, you’re a specialty item. You can’t expect an immediate reply, because how many potential females with the ‘fat guy’ fetish are going to be reading Craigslist at any given time. The responses will come.”

They just didn’t come by time my sister drove me back home Monday evening.

Two days later at the library, I found a response in my email. (Note the singular: one response, and it would turn out to be the only one I’d get.) After reading it a couple of times, I checked to see when it was sent, and . . . wouldn’t you know it? After waiting all weekend for a response, it finally came about twenty minutes after my sister and I left her apartment headed for my place.

It wasn’t the email-sent-from-computer that I’m used to seeing. Instead, it was a text message, with a celphone number for a ‘return address’. And this is what it said: “R u still looking 4 a playmate? I am interested. How old r u? I am 35 and tall an”

No, I didn’t forget to finish retyping her message. That’s it in it’s entirety. My second thought was, “Maybe she’s just got a really short character-per-message count on her phone.” Probably not very likely. My third thought was, “Transmission difficulty. Somehow, only the first part of her message got through.” That’s what I decided had happened.

[Not having had any luck with Craigslist thus far, my first thought was that she’d thumbed in that much of her message before deciding it was a bad idea . . . but accidentally hit the button that sent the message instead of the one that deleted it. (I can’t tell you how many half texts I’ve sent to my sister when trying to backspace over a typo.)]

I’ve never been overly fond of the telephone as a means of communication (preferring face-to-face conversation or written correspondence), but the whole point of this was to have sex, and I now had the phone number of a potential sex partner. And the last thing that I wanted was to try and meet somebody via a series of text messages.

I waited until 8:00, and dialed her number. When she answered the phone, I introduced myself. Told her my first name, then said on Monday night she’d responded to an ad I’d posted on Craigslist. She told me that she’d only responded to the one ad, so she knew which one I was. Then told me that at the moment there was a meeting in her house, and the place was filled with little kids and their parents. Would I mind if she called me back? Would I still be up at 10:00? I told her that was fine, and said goodbye.

At 10:05 my phone rang. I normally answer the stupid thing on the first ring (I’m one of those people that cannot tolerate a ringing phone – it must either be answered, or blasted with a shotgun), but since she didn’t know that, I let it ring a couple of times. Then I picked it up, glancing at the caller ID screen as I did so. It was my brother. “Why did it take you so long to answer the phone?” Yikes. I got rid of him as soon as I could, all the time expecting the call waiting to beep through.

At about 10:15 my phone rang again. This time it was her.

Her name is D. (Actually, her name isn’t D. Nor does her name start with the letter D. But, ‘D’ is how I’m presenting her here in the blog.) She described herself to me. She’s 37 (not 35 as stated in her half a text message). Tall and fit. (Not just “tall an”.) Just past shoulder-length naturally brown hair with blonde highlights. Divorced with two children. And, occasionally horny. As she had been the night she saw my ad. She’s wanted some sex, and gone to Craigslist to find it. Something about my ad spoke to her, so she sent me a text, looking to hook-up. When I didn’t contact her within an hour or so, she turned to plan B, which was a toy she keeps in her nightstand drawer.

I described myself to her. Mostly. (In between calling her and her calling back, I talked to my friend Zorch (not his real name, either), and he informed me that if I told her I was a virgin or had a tiny penis during our first conversation he was going to kick my ass.) But I talked about everything else, primarily in the form of answering questions she asked me. (So glad that she didn’t ask me direct questions about whether or not I was a virgin, or about how hung I was.)

After we each knew some stuff about the other, I asked if she wanted to get together. “Absolutely!” I think that I may have actually gotten a little lightheaded when she said that. She told me that she was busy the rest of the week with some summer program that her kids were involved in, and that the next week she had out-of-state relatives visiting, but that I should call her after that and we’d set something up.

Then she asked if I could host. She didn’t mind meeting up at her place, but it was easier for her if we could just meet up at mine. I told her that my place wasn’t an option. Then I told her that I didn’t drive. “So,” she asked, “I’d need to come get you, and then take you back after?”

I told her that if I had a few days notice – if when we set something up it was for a few days from then rather than right then – I could get a ride out to her place. I could probably even get a ride back if she didn’t want to take me home afterward. She seemed okay with that.

We talked for over half an hour. I had more questions, but I figured that I’d ask them another time. Our conversation went well, and I didn’t want to do anything that would sound accusatory. (Do you always prowl around for sex on Craigslist? Why on earth did you answer the big fat guy’s sex ad?) After we hung up, I scribbled down information on a post-it note and stuck it on the calendar.

With so much of my Craigslist experience thus far having been sending an email and getting no response, it was such a nice change of pace two weeks later to be able to leave a voice mail . . . and get no response. Aaaarrgh! (Well, at least the medium was different, if not the end result, right?)

I called her again after yet another week had passed, leaving another message on her voice mail, and still got no reply.

For a brief moment there (actually more like two weeks), I had really thought I was going to have sex. And then it became the same old thing that Craigslist had been supplying me with from the beginning. Nothing.

I’ve been thinking about reposting my ad again on the Casual Encounters board. (Possibly slightly reworded.) Just to see if I do any better this time. But I’m also contemplating posting something a little different on the less fuck-and-run oriented Men Seeking Women board. Keep in mind that this is a work in progress. It needs a lot more fine-tuning than it’s gotten so far, but it will let you get the basic idea . . .

“I’m the exact opposite of what everyone else is looking for”

I’ve been reading the personals on Craigslist for awhile now, and it seems to me that these are the things that all of the women posting here seem to really want a man to be: HWP, healthy, physically fit, employed, financially stable, well-hung, and a good kisser. Oh yeah, and he also must love dogs. In addition to these qualities, the women on the Casual Encounters board require a man who is either able to host or able to drive. Preferably both.

Here’s my problem . . . I am exactly NONE of those things. I am obese (450 lbs). I am chronically ill (CFIDS and seizures). I am out of shape (a result of being obese and chronically ill). I am on SSI (social security disability). I am incredibly poor (the SSI doesn’t even cover my bills). I am not well hung. I am probably not a good kisser (never learned to kiss properly, plus I’ve got bad teeth). And in addition to being allergic to animals, dogs and I have a mutual hatred of each other. (Don’t look at me like that – they started it!)

There are three other main things that women seem to want in a man. They want him to be single. Which I am. They want him to be drug and disease free. Assuming this refers to STD and recreational drugs, then I’m d&d free. And they want him to be honest. I am, and more importantly, I just was. I know that I’m probably not anybody’s idea of the ideal catch. But as much as I want a girlfriend, I’m not going to lie about who I am to try and snag one.

Oh, there are other requirements that women have for their potential Craigslist-obtained mates. Funny. Caring. Willing to listen. Willing to share. Intelligent. (and so on). And I think that I qualify for these.

Take a chance. There are incredibly happy couples out there about whom everyone asks the question “Why on earth is she with him?” The heart wants what the heart wants. How do you know for sure that yours might not want me if you walk the other way?

Like I said, that ad is a work in progress. I’m not sure what makes me think that it has a better chance on Men for Women than my first ad did on Casual Encounters, but I’m driven to try.

And if none of those posts work, then I’ve still got one more shot to take. It will mean reining in my obsessive need for full disclosure. Maybe even fudging the truth on one or two aspects the situation. I’ve only got the subject line so far, but I think you can see where I’m going with this one:

“21 year old healthy and physically fit stud with nine-inch cock seeking blind virgin with no sense of touch.”

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