I Still Want Fireworks
Even though it has swiftly become ubiquitous, online dating is still a relatively new phenomenon, especially to those who grew up before the internet. What, some might ask, is wrong with meeting people the old-fashioned way? Is it really possible to find true love online? These are the questions Judith Hill’s new memoir seeks to answer.
All right, so maybe she isn’t exactly looking for true love – she’s pretty open about looking mostly for sex – but Judith’s certainly looking for something, and at her son’s advice, she turns to the internet to find it. At sixty years old, she’s understandably a little hesitant to hop onto a brand-new dating scene, but she eventually gives in and signs up for a six-month subscription for a popular dating site. What follows is a week-by-week account of her adventures and misadventures in the world of online dating with occasional interludes to share facts from experts and little tips she’s picked up. We get to follow her through all six months, and whether you find yourself laughing with her at her misfortune or sighing in commiseration (I did a little of both), this is a quick, delightful read meant for anyone who’s noticed the prevalence of dating sites and contemplated joining one.
I’ve never read a memoir written as the events happen, and at times it felt a little bit like reading a diary. Considering Judith put this out into the world to be published, though, it’s pretty easy to not feel guilty about that. Besides, it’s a funny and interesting diary, providing a fresh look at an industry many of us are already taking for granted as part of the social scene. (And yes, it is very much an industry. One of the chapters goes into detail about the profits of dating sites, and I can honestly say I never thought I would be so interested in reading profit reports.) The best part about Judith writing the entries as they happen is that neither the reader nor she knows what will happen at the end. She grows through the book, and watching that growth, even over just six months, turns the book from being just a humorous piece poking fun at online dating to a work that perfectly straddles the line between being funny and tender.
I should add one caveat: this book will probably be most enjoyed by women close to Judith’s own age. Younger readers, like myself, can still find it a good read, but they should expect to affectionately roll their eyes now and then.
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