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(You might recognize him from being quoted at length in s "Tinder and the Dawn of the 'Dating Apocalypse'" story, which makes him an expert of sorts).

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.

Then there are the men I've met online who are actually my age, chronologically and emotionally, who seem to click with my weirdness in all the right ways.

Some are people whose social circles overlapped with mine but whom I'd never have otherwise met; whose emails wake me up at 5 a.m.

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.

Dating in my twenties and thirties made me feel like Odysseus, trying to choose between dashing myself on the ego-bruising rocks of casual romps or a slow death from unrequited lust for garbage humans.

There was the ex who brutally dumped me but wouldn't stop emailing me for months, whose presence at dorky work gatherings made me dizzy; the sociopathic film critic whose shoulder I virtually cried on; the go-nowhere first dates; and the great, wide swaths of time spent single, usually pining after some unavailable director or writer who'd relish my attention and nothing else. There were a few things that sent me into a panic about turning 40, but the biggest — looming larger than the golden ring of a book deal or a staff job or, like, finally going back to yoga — was what it meant for me to still be single and actively looking for a partner at that age. If you're not familiar with the exciting world of online dating, sites and apps let you set search parameters that range from location to body type to education and, yes, age range.

It has generally been rote and fruitless, with occasional flurries of excitement, but for someone who makes their living with words, I've had a weirdly difficult time wooing dudes with them.

Still, the day after I turned 40, I decided to fire up an old profile and see what happened.

Not so much even that I was single, but that I and what that implied. There are plenty of things I simply do not give a single solitary fuck about when it comes to what women my age are supposed to be doing. Just as there are movies on Netflix you might never stumble across in your bleary-eyed scrolling, there are plenty of people you might never see through some whim of programming code.

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