Cupid and the Golden Apple

The more mythologically minded of you may already be familiar with the ancient Greek fable about the Judgement of Paris, or the myth of the Golden Apple that set the events of the Trojan War into effect.

Eris, goddess of discord was not invited, for it was believed she would have made the party unpleasant for everyone. Angered by this snub, Eris arrived at the celebration with a golden apple from the Garden of the Hesperides, which she threw into the proceedings as a prize of beauty, the apple inscribed with the words “For the Fairest.”

Three goddesses claimed the apple: Hera, Athena and Aphrodite. They asked Zeus to judge which of them was fairest, and eventually he, reluctant to favor any claim himself, declared that Paris, a Trojan mortal, would judge their cases, for he had recently shown his exemplary fairness.

Not many are as familiar with Eris, goddess of discord, as with other Greek gods or the story itself. She unfairly gets lost in the tale, as she is the catalyst to all of its events.

Paris eventually chooses Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love and Beauty. He asks for the love of the most beautiful woman in the world, who just so happens to be the already betrothed Helen of Troy.  Chaos, crossed lovers, war and spite reigns. This brings me to the heart of a new story, one that involves the influence of the roll of Eris and of Cupid.

OKCupid is a popular, mostly free dating site that has several series of questions and algorithms designed so you are supposed to see how your real values match up with with others.  I love this concept- I am all about personality quizzes and seeing how people present themselves. I have stayed loyal to this site despite not really getting any promising results. I personally have crafted a rather boring page because I felt the need to get directly to the point (I am looking to meet someone to love forever, not just for a night) because I felt my profile was not being read- only my pictures looked at.

To get out of this rather boring, mission objective mindset, some friends and I decided to channel Eris and throw some real discordian chaos towards a dating profile in my likeness. Little did we know the hell we would wrought…

First, some background. This idea was originally a social experiment presented in a Cracked.com article by Alli Reed. The article highlights how difficult is it for women on dating sites to be taken seriously or even for them to deter unwanted suitors. While still a wonderfully produced piece, I had some issues with it.

  1. The pictures she uses are conventionally pretty. I figure many men don’t even bother to read the profile if the picture is attractive enough. They aren’t in it for your brain. So I decided to use my own pictures in full zombie makeup, a mermaid halloween costume that was pretty conservative (not a lot of skin showing), me drinking out of a paper-bag covered bottle at the grand canyon (with large sunglasses covering most of my face), and an older picture with a teddy bear making a heinously demonic smile. I would never use these pictures on a normal dating site because I don’t think they are anywhere near my most flattering photos and don’t really represent my interest well.
  2.  The original author attempts to be the worst person she can think of- which is mostly gold-digging, baby daddy seeking, and racist. My thoughts are that, unfortunately, there are probably men for whom these characteristics are not only non-deterrent, but bonuses. That’s why my friends and I came up with basic nonsense. A lot of it was taken straight from the Nihilist Arby’s twitter feed and notes my friends and I had taken while we were inebriated, to give you an example.  Nothing (I thought) was sexy or a particular value judgement. Just nonsense sentences.

So, a bit into a bottle of wine, we let the profile go live. We didn’t have much in the way of profile info so we figured we would get a few laughs over the course of a week or so.

HOLY SHIT YOU GUYS WE WERE SO WRONG.

It has  been less than 24 hours and the profile already has 200+ saves, and we have received at least 100 INDIVIDUALS messaging us. Last night there were FOUR of us responding to these messages as nutterbutter as we could and still couldn’t keep up with the messages. There were so many we simply could not deter, or seemed more interested in us the more Buffalo Bill, stapler-exploitation, anal sacrifices we inflicted on them.

I ALMOST FEEL SORRY FOR HOW THIRSTY SOME OF THESE MEN ARE.  Almost. At least half still wanted to “meet up” with us after we told them they would be used for ritual sacrifice, that we needed their toenails to complete, or that we required (specifically) a stapler. I told another that he would have to go on a date with a teddy bear and the teddy bear would have to judge if he was a proper suitor before we meet in person. Not a deterrent. SOME OF THEM ESCALATED IT TO THE POINT WE WERE LEGITIMATELY SQUICKED OUT.

As I stated, this is a brand new project but the results are already shocking. I plan to continue seeing how this plays out and adding to my documentation. Wish us luck.

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