The dating geniuses at Huffington Post are at it again, this time with a single 40-something “dating and relationship expert” bemoaning the state of modern dating while extracting the usual cash and prizes from men who make the mistake of courting her traditionally. Look upon time’s ravages, ye mighty, and despair:

Dating is the required presentational stage for a possible future interlude. For this very reason, I chafe at having to be “on point.” I rail at the notion of being appealing, engaging and alluring.

It’s an indictment of our society that even a modicum of desirability is difficult to muster up for a woman who calls herself a “relationship expert.” Clearly it is a tremendous chore to feign being presentable to a fellow human being for an hour while availing oneself of free food and drink.

There’s a great myth that’s been hoisted upon all women that “dating” is fun, and as women we should like it. I’m convinced it’s a conspiracy crafted to guarantee an ongoing form of economic revenue, women are forced to buy new clothes and makeup while men are lured into exorbitant restaurants to prove their merit.

Dating does promote senseless deficit spending, but the burden falls almost entirely on men. The author even admits it later in the piece.

I’d long been criticized for never having “officially dated.” In an attempt to put this argument to rest, I decided to say “yes” to any agreeable man who asked me out. I had 98 dates in nine months.

Sounds like the author made full use of her round-the-world carousel ticket, against the advice of her friends and family. The death throes of any woman’s sexual marketplace value are often a dumpster fire to behold, with the last coughs often resulting in absurd experiments of “self-empowerment,” such as saying yes to every man who asks to date you despite having no sexual interest in them.

“I ate my way through every restaurant in Manhattan and spent far more time in Starbucks than any human who has their own WiFi. No less than three times a week I’d put on the same outfit (perhaps a little half-hearted on my part) and meet a new man for dinner or coffee. I sat. I listened. I ate. I drank.”

Though she complains about the necessity of buying new dresses for dates (because we all know women hate shopping for new clothing), our fearless attraction scientist couldn’t even be bothered to change the potato sack she was donning for men who were spending their time and money on her. The reader is supposed to feel pity that she was forced to bask in the attention (and financial support) of nearly a hundred simps she herself agreed to date.

At the end of my social experiment, here’s what I learned. Men parade their toys while women serve as the cows, pigs and horses parading for our Blue Ribbon of acceptance. Men name-drop their friendships with celebrities and clarify their numerous positions of power and influence. They rattle off their trips in foreign cities, identify their cars by the manufacturer’s name and list their homes by prestigious locations. They dangle their toys in front our eyes in the hopes that we’ll bite the bait. Oddly, they’re not the bait.

She makes a good point — too many men think that their possessions, and not themselves, are the road to attracting women. That said, the author brought it upon herself by dating men who agreed to take her to exorbitant restaurants on first dates, virtually guaranteeing a selection bias for men who 1) Have no idea how to attract a woman and 2) Are apt to use their buying power as a pathetic attempt to impress a first date, the very phenomenon that she later bemoans. By dipping into the turgid pool of “Gameless 30-something schlubs with tons of money in New York City,” she virtually assured her conclusion before undertaking the experiment.

Is it possible to create a meaningful connection without the dog and pony show? Do we really need to sell ourselves on the auction block in order to gain affection? Can’t one leapfrog past all this nonsense and move straight into partnership?

The clichéd irony of these pieces is that their authors conveniently omit the years that they spent eschewing a meaningful connection and chasing the dog and pony show of male attractiveness, power, fame, etc. Only when they begin to sense their value has cratered do they bemoan the meritocracy of the sexual marketplace and yearn to slide “straight into partnership.”

So, while I’ve satisfied my friends and family with giving dating a fair shot, I still prefer the old-school method of connection where I’m just doing my thing and happen to meet someone special. Whether walking my dog or at the gym, I’m where I want to be while living the life I love. And we meet. Naturally. Organically. The spark we find serves as our connection. We merge.

Ah yes, the “old school” method of connection where people go on dates—the one that the author expressed her disgust for in the preceding 300 words. Even with her vast experience at an advanced age, the author does not understand this immutable truth of humanity: Nothing happens organically. Every action takes place because one person (usually a man) wills himself to put himself out there because it serves a selfish need.

In the arena of romance, the vast majority of dating interactions occur between people who were forced to spend a great deal of time together, most often in a work setting, school situation, or with mutual friends. In the vanishing minority of relationships, marriages, hookup situations etc. that do not fit this formula, they occur because a man made it happen.

For the author, “organic” means “Without any agency on my part, and only with a man that I find desirable.” Unfortunately, the time for her to meet men at this level of “organicness” has passed. The men who she will be attracted to are talking to the 25 year old in the produce aisle, or interrupting a 22-year old’s Instagram whoring at Starbucks to ask if she likes the computer she’s using. They certainly won’t be knocking on the door of a 40-something unmarried “relationship expert” who has never dated traditionally and mocks men who try (however clumsily) to establish a connection with her.

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