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Online dating over 30

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Luckily, OKCupid's data is much more optimistic than my friend Chelsea.

Data scientist Dale Markowitz wrote via email, "When it comes to receiving quality messages on Ok Cupid (that is, first messages that turn into conversations), there is no penalty to being 40 or over.

My clock didn't begin ticking louder when I turned 40, but the echo of her boots on the floor did.

Before now, the single men I wanted to date weren't interested in nubile twenty-somethings — at least not exclusively — and even in my mid-thirties competition from younger women didn't concern me.

In fact, the proportion of men to women on Ok Cupid grows with age; women over 40 get on average more messages than women under 40, and have the pick of the litter, so to speak."If Markowitz is right, then perhaps being 40 could be to my advantage.

Michael, a gorgeous musician who used to bartend at my local watering hole, is one such sensitive younger dude; he's an old hand at online dating whose sexploits have singed the eyebrows right off my face, but he's also articulate, smart and funny.

"I'd call it a slow attrition of diminishing returns," Chelsea said about dating in NYC.

"I feel as if I make out with a guy and tell a guy I'd like to enjoy sexual congress, he should be stoked.

I had time, and if someone wanted to get up in my grill about having kids eventually, well, my mom had me when she was 38 and I turned out mostly okay. Summers, who is 54, is firmly in favor of skimming a few years off one's age, though always coming correct with current photos.

But now I'm encountering divorcees and mid-life crises and men who themselves lie about their ages and cheekily confess, "Haha, just hoping you'd be so charmed by the time you clicked that it wouldn't matter! Like me, she straddles the digital divide; we remember a time before DOS, but not a lot of dating without the accompanying click and beep of a modem.

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