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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A date with a World Champion

Over at Gizmodo, intern Alyssa Bereznak wrote about a date arranged online over OKCupid. It turns out this date was with Jon Finkel, one time world champion player of Magic: the Gathering, Hall of Famer, immortalized on a Magic card, and widely acknowledged as one of the best players of the game, ever. She apparently didn't like that this history wasn't a major part of his profile, even though *GASP* he still plays the game, and is still friends with fellow players.

I won't link to her post, as there's suspicion that she gets paid per link or hit, so I've linked instead to a Reddit thread where Jon Finkel answers questions on the issue (an Ask Me Anything thread).

Now, I'm not sure what would inspire a person to discuss a person, by name, in an article like this. It seems petty and vindictive. She would have known his history by just Googling him. Ironically, it is Alyssa who will forever be marked as damaged goods through the power of Google.

I haven't done online dating, but I doubt I'd put "player of D&D and M:tG" in any profile. Maybe "enjoys games," which suggests a wider variety of interests I may share with a woman. As I mentioned before, I cover.

It looks like my comment on the original article wasn't posted, so I'll put it here.

So your objection is he participates in a harmless intellectual hobby that you don't, and he has friends that aren't yours? You sound like a real catch for an independent man.

Were I in a long term relationship with a woman who didn't share my own geek interests and my old friends, I would expect to spend less time on them, and even less time were I to have children. However, I would not expect to spend no time on them. Nor would I expect her to spend no time on her old hobbies and old friends. Let's be honest, were the setup a man telling his wife or girlfriend that she can't see her old friends now that they're together, the Dear Abby advice would be "That sounds like an abusive relationship. Get out."


Update: Over Labor Day weekend, Jon Finkel won $4000 in that Magic tournament he was preparing for. What did Alyssa do?

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