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The Beautiful Truth About Online Dating | Arum Kang & Dawoon Kang | TEDxUCDavisSF

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Arum & Dawoon Kang teach us about the truth about online dating. No longer are we looking for significant others in the traditional avenue. We need to understand the fine points about the other venues we are using, online dating. Arum loves being in the consumer space. She has experience working at Avon Products as well as Amazon, leading efforts to understand consumer needs and behavior to deliver superior product experiences. After graduating from Harvard Business School, Arum is excited to start a business that leverages technology to bring something truly valuable to consumers. After wandering around for years trying to find her passion, Dawoon is happy to be finally working on a matter close to her heart, with & for people she loves! Prior to CMB, she lived & worked in Korea, Japan, New York, India & Hong Kong, in a variety of roles that spanned from strategy & business development, marketing, research to investing/finance. She is a proud graduate of Stanford Graduate School of Business. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx
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Text Comments (490)
DRS_ au (3 days ago)
Men pay and women toss away.
Ara Cho Art (4 days ago)
There are girls who are attracted to nerdines and intelligence!!
Jacob B. (6 days ago)
If you put their names together it means beautiful in Korean... Arum Dawoon (아름다운)
Sanketh Shetty (16 days ago)
how dare you put labels on people "creep" being a neutral 3rd party service
Bruce Salem (23 days ago)
I have seen these sites that allow men to go look at profiles but ask you immediately to upgrade to premium account on a graduated scale that begins at six months of access for a lump sum of $100 dollars, on up. I refuse to pay, so I get to lurk. Do the women pay to post their profiles, photos, and send out messages? Do they have to invest upfront? I am trying to get myself dropped by these sites. A couple have let me delete my account, but I fear that I am going to have to endure spam for years now. These dating sites must be run by organized crime out of places like NYC, and it would take the FTC to put s stop to the scams.
George Tselikis (24 days ago)
So many people in this world yet so many lonely people.
Jessica Faltynski (1 month ago)
Can you help me get better at it? I just like hot and gorgeous men with good behavior skills
Wiz Enz (1 month ago)
also realized that people who go for online dating seem to get bored quite easily and would think they could do better and look for a new one immediately. When the spark is gone, when reality strikes in again, they go for a new one to go back to that honeymoon phase. Unfortunately, we're moving to this direction whether we like it or not but I also believe that there are more pleasing people somewhere who also choose to stay out of online dating so not all of the people in your app are your left options in real life.
MarcelDupond75 (1 month ago)
Personally had a lot of success in real life, but way less online. That's simply a law of supply and demand, ECO 101. In real life, and assuming a balanced location (ie not the silicon valley), the supply and demand for men and women is pretty equal. Therefore, on average, a 6 will get a 6 and a 9 will get a 9. Online, the equilibrium point is very different. The demand for guys is lower due to women's higher standards than men. The demand for girls gets higher. The supply of women drops compared to men due to the fact that there are more men than women on dating sites. (2x more on Tinder). The result is a shortage of women and a surplus of men for a shifted equilibrium point to the right, where women become more valuable. In this new market, an 8, man would get a 6, women for instance. So if you're a dude just don't waste your time on a saturated market. There are plenty of places with a reverse logic! ;)
ericn Quinn (1 month ago)
I have a crazy idea. How about "don't do online dating". Especially if you're a man.
gustavo candelaria (1 month ago)
How cool is it to see two unattractive women judging men who have no interest in them? These guys fall just for pretty young women, they are creepies. Lol
Grant Goldberg (1 month ago)
It's eggs for resources. It's that simple.
the moon (1 month ago)
heres the truth: theres nothing beautiful about online dating
Tracie Jones (1 month ago)
I never reality the bs about how beautiful I am, etc, etc... I have beautiful friends, I am 5 foot, slim, and cute is the word:))).... I met my last partner online and we were together for 7 years, too bad he is a narcissist, a lot of narcissist are online. I say hello and actually talk and all the ones saying all the right things, I don't believe. I usually don't use very many words on my profiles, and I do not have a long list of what is perfect for me, I still don't know.,.my texts get longer any longer
dantezco (1 month ago)
Is the threshold of creepiness "half plus seven"?
Adam Nesbitt (1 month ago)
Social media and dating apps have totally devalued men! Girls have too many options and their expectations are way too high. All the Young girls follow Kim Kardashian who are brought up with an entitlement mentality, just another tool for girls too get validation but because they are so insecure they don’t have the confidence to date. And that’s the sad truth! And don’t even get me started on the animated filters they post up for their dating profiles with quotes such as ‘ I want a real man who isn’t fake’ these girls are so deluded it’s scary
Tara Bird (1 month ago)
As a woman, I get swamped with messages from men. I don't have enough time in the day to go through every message. It just gets more and more confusion.
Adam Fox (2 months ago)
So i opened up Tried my hardest Give all the love i can give Years go by.... Now what?
Corode713 (2 months ago)
Accelerated interaction = burnout
odigie johnson (2 months ago)
TAD= TED ADVERTISING (new low)
ShenkelMcDoo (2 months ago)
Weren't they on Shark Tank?
Geniely Cruz (2 months ago)
Great talk. Love that everything was backed up with data. :)
Treestump (2 months ago)
Is it just me or are most of the people in the comments really sour.
donald fewell (15 days ago)
We're a mix of sweet and sour, or just one or the other.
Minion Rocks (2 months ago)
OMG the audio is so bad. The hum, the echo, and the near feedback from that mic. I just can't listen to this, probably because I'm so annoyed with online dating.
John Mariani (2 months ago)
There's nothing beautiful about online dating. She left out some of the worst graphs that would illuminate how for 80% of men online dating is a waste of time. Online dating for men is cancer. For women who are even modestly attractive it's attention and validation. Her answer as someone making a living off it is basically spend more time and energy on this massive time sink.
Saiyan MGTOW (2 months ago)
I tried. I gave up. Now I'm mgtow and only want virgins.
Lucy Dennison (2 months ago)
I go online dating sites out of boredom...I like the questions.
Steve Thomas (2 months ago)
I have been using online and mobile dating apps for collectively over 15 years by this point. I have next to no success and have only managed to get a handful of coffee dates. I have for the most part, always tried to put a fairly in depth and interesting profile description (some sites like OKcupid for example make it easier/better to do this with their templates) and only a few times have I ever been commented on my efforts. The plain fact of the matter is (at least how I've PERSONALLY seen and experienced this), is that it all boils down to "does your face fit?". That's it. Especially when it comes to (shi)Tinder and mobile dating apps. I see female profiles with zero information and maybe even only 1 or 2 pics. Yet I know just by default that they're getting message-bombed left and right. I do agree with the part about why some people are afraid or cautious to put anything more than some very arbitrary text either on their profile descriptions or the messages that they send. But I have spent so many countless hours collectively messaging women and taking a genuine interest to highlight certain traits they might want in a potential partner, for example, to just get nothing back. Or a perfunctory "Hi" and nothing else. Seriously?! The worst part of it all is that no matter how many times I throw my hands in the air and delete all my profiles and remove all the dating apps and swear down never to do that sh** again? Guess what? Loneliness and desperation comes knocking and I realise that seeing as trying to meet someone in real life CLEARLY isn't working for me, then I have to resort to trying online dating. Cue vicious cycle. And I know I'm not alone on this one...
Artem Morozov (2 months ago)
Men want youth and looks, women want $$$. Its all 🥩 🍖 market there
Gary Huang (3 months ago)
Online dating is for cucks
Randy Fricke (3 months ago)
The fact of the matter is, online dating sites give women the attention they crave. That's all it has ever been about. Sure people get lucky and make a connection, but online dating gives woman option overload. They get to feel their hypergamous oats to the max.
Adrian P (6 days ago)
she can indulge her hypergamous oats as much as she wants, but she's gonna taste my man porridge.
donald fewell (15 days ago)
What do you find threatening about women exploring their options of choice?
Randy Fricke (3 months ago)
I can tell you why men go for younger women. It's very simple actually. It's because when men are say, 21, a 19 year old woman looks hot, and 40 year old women (older women) look like they're 80 to a 21 year old male. But, when that 21 year old man hits 60, that "older woman" is now actually 80. And the 19 year old chick still looks hot. The Dawoon's bod is smokin'!
Dela Flowers (2 months ago)
Before computers and the internet, people were much more social.  Cities were smaller and you knew most of the people in your neighborhood.  You met your life partner through family connections, friends, neighbors, school/college, social clubs, work, social networking, and so forth.  By meeting face to face, you instantly knew if there was an emotional connection or not.  Unfortunately, it is more difficult via online dating even though you have more choices, but they are very superficial because people are not always honest about themselves.  It is useful however for older adults who may lead more isolated lives.
Dela Flowers (1 month ago)
Sunshine, that is still true in many Asian/African countries and was true in the West two hundred or more years ago. It was less liberal in Spain and Latin American countries than in Nordic European countries, the U.S., Canada and Australia.  Although in the West, women had a little more leeway, to choose or reject a potential suitor or mate.  You think women have it that easy, especially in this day and age?   Some women are darn right lucky or  plain shrewd and know how to bag a guy; others are not.  It depends on many factors, but it is getting harder now to find a suitable marriage partner for both genders.
Sunshine Starcraft (2 months ago)
Hahahaha, you made me laugh. Back in the days, the family chose your partner. This is why women asked for more freedom. But now, they compete for the same 3 guys and they still complain.
Arsaces of Parthia (3 months ago)
Online dating is for geeks and nerds and freaks, you can't find alphas on any sites only posers wanna be.... uhh most asians are uber nerds...
simon scowled (3 months ago)
Out of all the apps and sites I have used CMB has been the best one. you should a thoughtfully written out profile and the more pictures the better. Don't make me guess which person the profile belongs to. Also Have at least one full body picture, attraction is important The main problem is that people become too picky too choosy and end up with no one. Research suggests throwing out the list of what you want and instead choosing what you need. Meeting people offline is good because you can communicate better and easier and establish trust faster. The difficulty is actually meeting new people who happen to be single
Trautur Vandrar (3 months ago)
Never take dating advice from women. First rule of life.
Average men 5'10 LMAO
SuperQdaddy (3 months ago)
Allow..?..sorry but my experience with women in last 5 years..is poor communication..don't return calls or text...or have anything positive to say...
Moo Young Moon (3 months ago)
A lot of nut cases out there. Why would one "open" itself to random chaotic universe. The problems is western civilization left behind family, tradition and communities witch left them with kids without a strong stable foundation. Online dating is for confused lab rats.
Mark Campbell (3 months ago)
As someone who spent time on all major sites let me say BS. I wrote and re wrote my profile, and hardly even got responses. The few you do get you feel terrible bc you aren't into them but then go into a mental rant about how can you complain when you finally get one response, but why should you settle and realize that there probably isn't hope for you at all. With a response rate of maybe 2% MAYBE, I'd say unless you are Ryan Gossling or Scarlett Johanson like she says in the video, I'd stay far away from this stuff. It's nothing but a depressant
Davey Thacher (3 months ago)
Look its simple. Women want the unrealistic fantasy, an example would be height. (They want it as a form of validation of themselves.) There are two flavors: the fun guy and the hot guy. The rich guy is actually a flavor of the fun guy, should he be willing to use it. Women think they are hotter than they are. This is why the engineer is not interesting. While he has money and a future he is not hot or fun, so case closed. Look this is coming from a generation that believes in casual everything. Then when they start getting older or time to settle down they will go find one of those engineers they think they have trained/in reserve. (Aka friend zone) Only problem is men go after younger women, and men gain status with age, while old women lose it. (Look women are just as guilty of this as men are! The double standards are on both sides.) See the graph there is a wall at 30, 35, and 40. So if you think I was laughing when she started talking about profile content, you would be right. Online dating was a nice idea, but it forgot about people. People screw up everything eventually. Game theory also predicts most of this, it is not that hard.
classiccarz (3 months ago)
These two women are terrible presenters
Angry Buddhist (3 months ago)
I like women that can actually speak & pronunciate! Is this even a real TED Talk, or a biter woman feuding...?!
donald fewell (15 days ago)
pronounce bitter Proofreading matters.
Treestump (2 months ago)
It's an accent.
Nickel Mgtow (3 months ago)
Angry Buddhist Why not both?
Riri Airi (3 months ago)
She seems to have problems with singular/plural.
Korina ki (3 months ago)
Jesus... All that just to say that we have to write more words in their dating sites????
Korina ki (3 months ago)
I'm just lazy..
Radkon Psygami (3 months ago)
Please tell us more about yourself so that we can send your psychological profile to NSA and make some real money. Talking too much is not good. . .kills the mystery. . .an then there is the issue of it is ALWAYS better to meet women face to face and not online.
InChrist (3 months ago)
Threshold of creepiness? Everybody laughs ... Why are men always being attacked? There's a reason why men go for younger women. Older women tend to latch on to feminism, they've hit the wall, they're stuck in their ways and have ceased growing in there mindfulness, the list goes on! The fact that you said that girl was cute, the one with the fake profile, you just created vanity. All women are beautiful!
Life tobelived (2 months ago)
I think the threshold of creepiness can go both ways. To be honest I don't see any problem with a man or a woman being attracted to someone younger who is legal because we can find people younger and older than us attractive either physically or mentally. . On the other hand it doesn't necessarily mean a huge age gap is a great idea and it takes two people to be in agreement that they don't mind the age gap.
F Roy (3 months ago)
This is VERY good. Thank You.
aoflex (3 months ago)
Duh! I want children, so of course I prefer dating women below 30! Children of women older than ~27 have much higher rates of birth defects such as autism and fertility decreases rapidly. It's biology you idiots!
Treestump (2 months ago)
Autism is not a birth defect, it is a natural neurological difference. If you want children, older women can also give birth. Or adoption of course.
Tom Rich (3 months ago)
So obvious stuff like, "Don't eat the yellow snow" truth... yes, it is what you thought it was. "Don't step on the steamy mud"... yes, it is what you think it is. REALLY???
R R3 (3 months ago)
Why date?
Jim Hightower (3 months ago)
No "Threshold of Gold-Digger-ry" in the graph regarding women seeking men and income? Weird.
donald fewell (15 days ago)
avarice (gold diggery)
Twin Turbo (4 months ago)
Men like younger women because generally speaking after 30 women tend to hit the wall, what that means is that their looks start to decline.. especially Caucasian women.. that is a no brainier.
marie Krekora (4 months ago)
Online dating is only getting a glimpse of the person behind the photo, it's so very empty cyberspace.
Rutger (4 months ago)
Hmmm...where are the error bars in those graphs?
Aedan Alvena (4 months ago)
i have great, detailed profile, yet still my dating life is non-existent xD
Jocelyn Waters (4 months ago)
I thought was excellent!
Joshua Collins (4 months ago)
I meet my girlfriend on Filipino cupid. We are honest with each other and we lift each other up socially and mentality. I am not perfect but I believe in us.
jessabella77 (4 months ago)
I was about to reply at the beginning of this before they got into breaking down the data and say the people that are single are single because they aren’t truly open to the experience. I was really into someone for about a week and heavily exchanging messages back and forth. We set a date and I got all dressed up and then spent 2 hours waiting at the restaurant for them to show up. They then blocked me on everything. And of course I was hurt and I though I did something wrong even though just the night before we were laughing for hours on the phone. But they just weren’t ready. And two weeks later I met my now girlfriend and we’re now moving in together. Will it work out, I sure hope so but the important part is that we’re truly open with each other and to the relationship. Like things people usually hide for a while or permanently from a partner. And it’s been the best relationship I’ve had. And I’m not gonna lie, I’ve been dating off and on through online dating for 7 years. This is my third relationship started through it. And some might see that as a failure but I had a relationship for almost 4 years with someone that I met online. At a certain people things don’t work out because of the people not because of the way they met. It works if you want it to and you’re open and your standards are true to who you want to find. Just some food for thought if you’re struggling with finding someone. It may be awhile but don’t be afraid to be open.
James Adams (4 months ago)
My profiles use 1,400 characters, five times the mean they found for successful users. I haven't sparked attraction in anyone in ten years of using all of the big name online dating platforms. Something's missing from their data.
Washington Consultants (2 months ago)
Is there a pill I can take to grow 3" taller? No seriously, is there?
Treestump (2 months ago)
Sort of. You could have been taller if you took growth hormones as a child, but by the time you reach a certain age it would have no effect. You could also get one of those old head hanging machine things, that help with something else but did make people taller to
Washington Consultants (4 months ago)
Bull. Women who are older standards are too high. They never answer My messages
Rita Bates (4 months ago)
I feel I am attractive enough and have opened up on my profiles without getting overly lengthy, yet I never received the responses most women get. I stopped using online dating because I got tired of meeting duds, or worse. Every once in a while I will get an urge to try but only for a few days so never get to the point of actually meeting someone. It is just not for me and wasted too much time when I could be doing something fun or productive.
David Pierce (4 months ago)
Wtf is this info? I'm lost. A couples group?
Front Kick (4 months ago)
Online dating is symbolic of everything wrong with our culture. A real man does not need validation from a female. If you do it will cost you. Most women are parasites.
Riccardo Moretti (4 months ago)
Online dating for men is a waste of time and damages their ego
donald fewell (15 days ago)
I just tell myself that it's their choice and their loss. My self-esteem is ok except about my appearence.
Bruce Salem (23 days ago)
+Dela Flowers I don't know. I have seen older women my own age, 71, not only on those sites, but baring all, to get attention, and they are no bathing beauties. I am not disgusted by that. I am disgusted by having to pay much money to be able to chat with any of them. Google Hangouts is full of African scammers. Google could do us all a favor and just cut central Africa out of Hangouts, but they won't.
nightmareTomek (1 month ago)
LC Owen Not as much as for men. Only women play the victim all the time, lie and blame men. And women are the ones with the scrambled perception.
LC Owen (1 month ago)
Riccardo Moretti it’s hard for women too.
Nevets556 (4 months ago)
Online dating sites are made for women, the men have to jump through hoops and meet all the standards the women want. Seriously have a woman and a man both sign up for eharmony or something, the women get to say all they want then the men have to match everything she wants!
ノックスパー (4 months ago)
Her lisp is cute
Timothy N (5 months ago)
Seriously? No love for engineers? Sad times :,(
jasonasdecker (5 months ago)
On your age table also fertility rates of men and women by age and you will see the real reason.
jasonasdecker (5 months ago)
I use to have a long profile and wrote long letters BUT after years of that I stopped because I never heard back.
LaborHours (5 months ago)
They call it online dating, but there are no dates - only profiles. A dating website is probably the worst possible place to find a date.
A New Love Official (5 months ago)
There are pros and cons in an online dating but I'm very thankful for it because I've met someone who's really been a good match to me. At first I was so hesitant to the idea of meeting someone from the online world but I'm so glad it turns out well and didn't experience the negative side of it.
Claire D. (5 months ago)
time to optimize CMB profile ☺️
LA Turley (5 months ago)
I can open my mind to all people, but most do not return the same favor. I will never go back to online dating because too many people lie. No relationship of trust can start with lies.
Jeffrey Paasch (5 months ago)
I've tried "online dating" twice, and both times a had to have my bank CLOSE my card account at My expense to get Rid of the service from billing me because the damn things Wouldn't Shut Off after i was done with them. And i met several nice looking PICTURES speaking words to Play with my heart for (scam) money.
Nickel Mgtow (3 months ago)
Jeffrey Paasch Use a prepaid card ;)
Smells like teen Hitler (5 months ago)
Online dating is a loose term. Online attention seeking is more apt.
m mit (5 months ago)
sweet facts, the one thing that is great about online dating, is that you can date way more often and find that special person, I don't mind dating tons of women to find the right now
nico3641 (5 months ago)
The 2nd graph shows that even gold diggers have standards.
BlueAmethyst (5 months ago)
People who are a catch don't need online dating.
donald fewell (15 days ago)
Usually but not necessarily.
Goldboy Jr (2 months ago)
so def not you
Sarah Larson (5 months ago)
Brilliant! I love this
Patrick Pepin (5 months ago)
online dating is great for women but not for men
tomchoi74 (5 months ago)
Women complain that men likes women just for looks but at the same time, if we say we don't think they are that pretty but like them for their personality, then you wouldn't like it! Same is not true for how women who like men for money. If a women says to a man that she likes him for his personality and don't care about his money, he would love it! A lot of women don't understand how much they get away with because men are attracted to them physically/visually. If we don't like you for your looks, then you'd have to actually be nice to us and work a lot harder for us to like you. The truth is you want us to like you for your looks! so stop complaining about it! Also, different men have different tastes. There is a man out there who thinks you are physically attractive. It's just a matter of if you are willing to date them.
Slava Loutchine (5 months ago)
Extremely boring talk, nothing new ..peaceout bye
Lion Of Judah (5 months ago)
This is how you overthink something.
Oscar Magnum (5 months ago)
Why do all men go for younger women... hmmm I wonder. How naive is the presenter?
JulesNZ79 (25 days ago)
They don't all, many prefer their own age give or take. The ones who do go for younger tend to be insecure sleazes who get off on controlling and dominating, and they perceive that'll be easier with women who are younger.
Life tobelived (2 months ago)
But the reality is that a small percentage go for older women. Not a large percentage but I'd be curious on those statistics. It rarely works out but in a few cases it does.
ACEL713 (5 months ago)
My first-hand experience with online dating is in complete sync with the worst attributes and completely contradicts the "hopeful analysis." On every single app or website I've ever tried for the past 4 years, including this woman's CMB app, I have been completely and utterly ignored by the female half of the community, with one exception. In said exception, the moment she found out I wasn't rich, the girl ghosted. Online dating sucks, and I'm done with it. I'm just going to die alone by shooting my brains out with a shotgun when I'm 50 and still single.
Alexander (26 days ago)
Don't blow your brains out! Just find your own happiness within yourself. :) Just because we feel all these compulsions of biology to breed doesn't mean that's life's real end. There's more to it than that.
Bennett Lewis (5 months ago)
Monetizing relationships is what I call the threshold of creepy
chloe phill (5 months ago)
Decided to have a LTR based on trust and honesty. Been cheated on and I just want a guy to love and be loved. Kindly text if you are serious minded. 8147967636. Thanks
Citizens Arrest (5 months ago)
Coffee Meets Bagel is just as bad as any other "swipe" site...its the same "bad product" that all of the other site have...the one thing online dating sites and apps cant do is perform quality control on their users. It's the same crowd of bad mannered, selfish people you find on all of the other sites.
Me Too (6 months ago)
"PERFECT SOMEONE" is someone delusional here
Roy D (6 months ago)
men like young women are more fertile. It's biology speaking !
None Ya (6 months ago)
Gee, guys like physically attractive women, and women like guys with money and prestige. What a surprise! Note, that what guys want, costs a woman nothing. Women are after kids and money, which have real liabilities and value. This, is why women are very risky for men. They're generally selfish and can't be trusted. It's got nothing to do with chivalry, or surviving. It's about being selfish parasites.
Dela Flowers (1 month ago)
Why?
Trisha Yamada (1 month ago)
Dela Flowers um are you new?
KW (1 month ago)
A sad sad comment. Really wow there are no words to describe. You sound like the biggest liability ever! I feel sorry for the poor women that ends up in your presence.
Dela Flowers (2 months ago)
[email protected] no different when you men are shaming women.
Dela Flowers (2 months ago)
Nothing wrong with wanting kids or a family. The problem is that many of these young women now are very greedy and don't take their marriage vows seriously.
Jason Grady (6 months ago)
Women cake on the make up and convince themselves how pretty they are and how good of a man they deserve. Men just come as they are. At least the men are honest. The women false advertise.
Dumfries Spearhead (4 months ago)
Jason Grady So you'd be okay if she didn't wear make up, wore flatties and left her hair as it was? Be careful what you wish for.
Jason Grady (6 months ago)
Fook mi and fook you
nedar giordano (6 months ago)
Before its too late ladies and gents.
Freedom Lovin' (6 months ago)
You can't generalize men's and women's experiences in online dating. A cute female will get massive attention, a decent looking man can get none. Women get tons of emails, men get very few. It's night and day.
Erik S (6 months ago)
Pfft. I've done everything they recommended, been open, vulnerable, and reveal who i really am. and in 7 years, have had no success whatsoever. Some people are just unlovable
Lisa in PA (6 months ago)
I'm content with pizza, booze and Netflix.. Those things never reject me and like me for me 😁
MissHannah2036 (6 months ago)
Isn’t it human nature for a man to seek a woman 5 to 10 years younger than them. Even if I’m chatting to a guy the same age as me online, I’m inverably thinking they will end up choosing someone that much younger than them. It’s a problem I like younger men ;)

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