“Oh, he’s great. As far as I can tell, he’s everything he’s touted to be, just what I ‘want’, and everything else that’s good and desirable—“
“Everything but a good conversationalist. Communication between us was just short of nonexistent.”
“If he wants to go out again, I’ll give it a shot, but I doubt he will.”
I’d be curious to know what percentage of matches make it past the first (and second) date.
Just being sensible for a moment, there’s no point in (a girl) doing the FBI-caliber background check until after that first date.
Just from my experience, the extensive research rarely disqualifies a suggested match. Usually you can tell from their shidduch resume if they’re in the ballpark, and if they are, you’re not likely to hear much that doesn’t support that from the handpicked references, or even the references’ references. No – the big disqualifier is the First Date.
The first date is when you find out that the guy who seemed to be a perfect match in every point you asked about is an irreconcilable non-match in the one area you didn’t think necessary to ask about. Like the guy who had the same general goals and even some of the same hobbies as me. We forgot to ask how he handles education in women (and could anyone have answered that anyway?) and yeah, I don’t think he enjoyed the date much, for which I’m still a bit sorry.
The first date is also when you find out that all the flattering details you heard about him from his friends and neighbors were either misrepresented or misunderstood. The most egregious department of misinformation, in my experience, is a guy’s college experience. If they say he got into an Ivy League, you reserve judgment until you know it wasn’t something like NYU’s for-profit division, where anyone can enroll providing they’re eligible for financial aid, or Columbia’s engineering school, where anyone can enroll, providing they’re rich and not a complete idiot. And if they say he’s got a degree at all, well 10-to-1 it’s something his parents forced him to get, is in a field he hates, and is something he never intends to use, ever, even if he goes to work. Or else it’s something like “sociology” because he never intends to use the degree, so why not enjoy the experience? But I’m digressing a lot. Pardon me.
My point is, since the date itself is more likely to disqualify a fellow than the research, why not spare yourself the anguish and skip the research until after the first date? Chances are good you’ll never have to do it! The point of research (I think) is to see if the guy is what he appears to be, which should be close to what you want him to be and also what you perceive him to be. So wouldn’t it make sense to do it after you’ve seen what he is?
Disclaimer: I guess this doesn’t apply as much to guys, who get many more unlikely suggestions, and who also have to dish out the cash for dates. I imagine they’ll want to do just enough research to be able to emphatically cross off anyone utterly wrong.