Back in high school when we were still called boys and girls, no one in class was married. Which meant everyone was available. Mostly. Another plus? All the boys had hair and all the girls had perfect pouts.

Things are different now that we're grownups. Say youíre at Home Depot on the hunt for a panhead screw and youíre confused. Since the guy rifling through the bolt collection has a nice butt, you ask for help. Great start but you can't always tell who's attached. In fact, attached has so many meanings these days, itís more confusing than choosing a really good screw.

Two Feet Under
First meet? Keep it light.
Two Feet Under
Relax. Smile. Talk. Listen. Repeat.

And so we land at Internet dating. Where everyone is available. Sort of. Why sort of? Because. There are men and women on dating sites to pass the time. To get an ego boost. Or they’re scaredy-cats. Afraid to follow through and meet the stranger they’ve been emailing.

And that’s the huge difference between dating in high school where you’re dissecting that frog (nicknamed Mr. McDougal after your science teacher) with your lab partner, the very boy you’re crushing on.

Whereas Internet dating is the almost-equivalent of the dreaded blind date.

Because. Because no matter how hilarious he is in email, and no matter how cute her smile in her profile photo, nothing counts until you meet.

In a way, the emailing part is easy. You can edit and rewrite for hours in your baggy-paint-pants and spaghetti-stained T-shirt.

When it comes to the meet, not so much. People run scared. Anxiety eats away at the ego.

Should she wear jeans so she won’t look as if she’s trying too hard? Can he hide his bald spot if he never turns his head to the side?

How to combat this icky stomach-turning? Keep one little thing in mind: It's just a freakin' meet. 

It's just a freakin' meet means have no expectations. A lack of expectations means you’re more likely to relax. That attitude and a nice zinfandel and you might make it through.

Remember, you're not on a date. The date comes next if you hit it off. Besides, you don't need a date. 

You've got a life. Share it with your meet.