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My friend Brooke, who is a similarly fresh-faced 40-year-old, divulged over Gchat, "I joined OKCupid [when I was 39] and actually had to quit because I was INUNDATED by men in their 20s — though I put an age range and that is well below it. And can teach their useless baby bodies what to do?They were like 'Would you consider a guy below your age range? " While I have encountered a few boychiks who are curious about bedding older ladies and nothing more, my inbox hasn't been a total waste of space.Those exceptions take effort, and online dating is like Amazon Prime for sex.(And love, ideally.) If it weren't for the algorithms, I could meet all of these people IRL and they wouldn't know I was 40 unless I showed them my birth certificate — ah, the very idea made me irate.I'd taken a break from dating after a quick but hot liaison with a punk I'd met at a Damned concert petered out, but I wanted to, you know, put the vibes out there into the universe.As I waded through Ok Cupid's endless questions and block of text, I imagined the countless men of New York City setting their age filters to 35 or, gasp, 39, and I wondered if it was true that anyone who didn't accept me as I am isn't worth knowing.It never occurred to me in a serious way before this to lie about my age, even when I hit 30 or 35.In the context of dating, those ages felt a lot less damning than 40; they felt a lot more viable. As ambivalent as I am about having my own children, there's something haunting about that scene from where Marisa Tomei stomps her foot about her biological clock ticking.

Michael also prefers older women though I assume he wouldn't kick a younger woman out of his bed for eating crackers."Since I was about 17, I've always found something alluring about 'older' women," he wrote me.

In fact, the proportion of men to women on Ok Cupid grows with age; women over 40 get on average more messages than women under 40, and have the pick of the litter, so to speak."If Markowitz is right, then perhaps being 40 could be to my advantage.

Michael, a gorgeous musician who used to bartend at my local watering hole, is one such sensitive younger dude; he's an old hand at online dating whose sexploits have singed the eyebrows right off my face, but he's also articulate, smart and funny.

Luckily, OKCupid's data is much more optimistic than my friend Chelsea.

Data scientist Dale Markowitz wrote via email, "When it comes to receiving quality messages on Ok Cupid (that is, first messages that turn into conversations), there is no penalty to being 40 or over.

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