I’m a born matchmaker and a bit of a busybody. So the new interactive ‘The Singles Project’ is perfect for me. Not only do I watch Lee (37, dentist), Kerry (27, art consultant), Joey (27, eyebrow stylist), Ericka (38, VP brand strategist), Tabasum (34, dermatologist) and Brian (29, retail storeowner) try to find love in NYC, I get to stick my two-cents in via live Q&A polls. At the end I can actually offer advice/observations.
Viewers can also submit themselves as potential partners, however I’ve been married for 26 years and my husband frowns upon my dating, so I’ll just stick to giving pointers.
It didn’t take long to see why these people are still single. They make typical mistakes – some make the same ones over and over, which keeps them stuck. Infractions from last night’s episode were things like getting more than one number at a party without being very discreet about it; being almost 30, yet acting like a 20-year-old sorority girl; characterizing all men as bad thanks to the misgivings of one; and dating someone who is just wrong for you.
After we met the first three cast mates: Ericka, Joey and Kerry, the audience poll agreed almost unanimously that Ericka was most likely to have a successful date. Oh how wrong we were.
Ericka is a cliché: beautiful and successful (she works for Puff Daddy aka P. Diddy aka Sean Combs) and is so dedicated to her professional life that her personal one suffers. Her wingwoman and BFF Onika takes her out and demands they not leave the place until she gets some numbers. Ericka does not go after men, they come to her is her claim. (Clearly if that strategy was working out for her she would not be on this show.) Onika tells her to approach dating as though it were a job. (I recall an episode of 'Sex And The City' exactly like this, where Charlotte turns her social life into a business.) “You wouldn’t sit back and wait for the job to come to you. You’d go get it.” With that Ericka is off to get some digits: from Cornell and Jerome.
Cornell is standoffish and they have little to say to one another. Jerome is quite outgoing and interested. The next day, when it was time to call them, the audience – again unanimously -- agreed she should call Jerome, but did she listen?
Ericka calls Cornell and he is as uninterested in speaking to her on the phone, as he was the night before in the restaurant. After he turns down her invite for a coffee date, she slams shut her cell, proclaims the “pussification” of men, then announces that Jerome can call her. It was painful to watch.
She gave up what was probably a sure thing with Jerome to call the guy she had no chemistry with and whose number she should have thrown out ten minutes after she got it. I think there was more here than bad judgment about whom to call first. She knew Jerome would accept her invitation and she was afraid to go through with it, so she called the lackluster one first and used his rejection as an excuse not to have to go on an actual date with the one who was interested.
Kerry was voted least likely to have a successful date and for good reason. I couldn’t stand watching her for her few minutes of screen time and can’t imagine the poor guy who’d have to spend the evening with her. Kudos though to her high self-esteem: “I don’t understand why people aren’t knocking themselves over to go out with me,” she says as she shakes her long blonde hair. Well, perhaps because instead of acting like a poised, sophisticated art consultant, she acts like a squealing co-ed.
Kerry chose a guy she liked in college from Facebook and another from Tinder and asked America to vote. I chose the Tinder guy, since he was a bit older and would be new to her. However, most everyone else went with FB guy who was clearly her favorite. She had a crush on him in college (it went nowhere) and apparently still does. She’s moving backwards, not forwards. They will have their date next week. I predict disappointed, if not disaster.
Joey was the successful date winner of the three (and the evening, actually) even though I voted “no” to his companion Anthony. I just didn’t see them together. Even though they got along and seemed to have a lovely dinner and walk afterwards, I saw no spark; just two men who could probably be really good friends – perhaps with benefits.