Most Eligible 2015

Mathew Delaire

Manager of Membership and Development, Newport Historical Society


Age: 26
From: Providence, RI
Currently lives: Providence, RI

Ok, so tell us about what makes you eligible. What are your interests/hobbies/quirks? What would people be surprised to know about you?

I have a strong passion for art, history, and nature and tend to pick up hobbies that revolve around one, or a combination of the three. A lover of the "great outdoors," so to speak, I am often finding excuses to be out in all weather - hiking, bird watching, camping, whatever gets me outside. I am an avid amateur genealogist and have had great success unraveling my family's past. I also have a strong interest in "forgotten" or declining skills, so for the past two years I have been pursuing things like open hearth cooking and hand sewing - (although I do not dress up and pretend to get shot on battlefields!) All in all I have found that my interests and hobbies are the LEAST sexiest things to talk about on dates or while flirting! As soon as I get going on my love of historic house museums, I tend to see my date's eyes glaze over. I think people would be surprised to know that my secret dream is to run away and farm sheep somewhere in Scotland.

What are you looking for in an ideal mate? What about an ideal first date?
I would say that my "ideal mate" is someone who is in touch and comfortable with who they are. I am holding out for an unconditional love and a partnership based on mutual respect and admiration that will allow my partner and I to grow and change over time together. My ideal first date would be something simple and straight forward that allowed for conversation and getting to know one another better. I am happy with the traditional drinks or dinner - I have never been one for wild or overly romantic dates that are meant to impress someone more than give you a feel for one another's personalities. And while attraction and chemistry are important, I know that these things fade and change overtime so I try not to base a relationship entirely on attraction. I am much more quickly seduced by wit and humor than muscles and a tan.

What's your perfect weekend? Where can we find you in your downtime?
As I commute out of Providence for work, I am happy spending my weekends exploring the city. An ideal Saturday would start with a coffee and a bagel, involve a trip to a museum or some shopping, and end with drinks out with friends. If you need to find me on my day off, start with the stacks at the Providence Public Library and end with the bar stools at The Stable on Washington Street. If I am not at either of those places, I am out walking and filling up my Instagram with Providence's unique architecture.

Let's talk about dating in Providence. What's your take on the singles scene here?
I have found the dating scene in Providence to be disappointing so far. My first impression is that the scene in Providence is very youth based, which leads to a lot of importance being placed on image. Being concerned with image is fine, and I actually am attracted to people who put stock in what they look like and how they are perceived. The issue I have found is that it is often the only thing people are concerned about. And then there is of course the size of the dating pool. You eventually either go on a date with everyone you see, or have a friend that has gone on a date with everyone you see. I find it keeps social circles in the city small and cliquey and that a lot of people in Providence get bitter about it. I try to stay positive though and make an effort to keep myself "out there." The city may be small, but I think there is another weirdo out there for me somewhere!

Every single one of your married friends has probably recommended online dating. Have you tried it? How do you feel about matchmaking sites? Tinder?
I have the opposite problem - my friends tend to look down on online dating and see it as promiscuous and only for "hook ups." I have tried matchmaking sites before, and was even in a relationship with someone that I met via one. I eventually moved away from them as I found people were not being their true selves, including me! I think that having a screen between you and another person throws off the whole process and keeps things from developing organically. So much of how we communicate cannot be expressed without body language, tone, or facial expressions. I am also WAY too sarcastic to be understood on matchmaking sites. I would like to add that while they were not a good fit for me, I do not judge people who use them and I definitely see them becoming a larger and larger part of the dating scene.

Do you have any really funny dating stories?
That depends on your definition of funny! My last relationship ended with a text message break-up...on Halloween...while I was dressed like a pirate. Nothing like having the fake beard you drew on yourself run down your neck as you get dumped via text in the middle of a house party to make you rethink all of your life decisions.

Anything else you'd like people to know?
Like Rhode Island, my motto is: Hope. Hope that if I stay true to myself and stay positive, love and I will find each other. If that fails, I look forward to letting myself go!


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