The 12 Men You'll Date When You Move To Israel
"I'm your beauty, you're my beast, welcome to the Middle East!" Let these words be your introduction to the crazy beast that is dating in Israel. If you are Western – well, your love life might look radically different when you finally take the leap and make your dream move to Israel. Let's get to know the players on this new stage.
The Sexy Brute
This guy is stuck in biblical times – he mentally resides in Canaan and works the earth with a plowshare. He's romantic, he's passionate. He believes that love means pain – for WOMEN that is. As long as you can forget about a little thing called feminism, you’ll enjoy his company. He’ll take you to the beach at night, he’ll carry heavy things for you, he might carry YOU to the beach at night. He has the soul of a little boy, he breaks down and cries. You can only handle him in small doses. When he demands you cook for him or paint your nails, you’ll suddenly remember who Gloria Steinem is.
The Language Barrier Tinder Dude
You connected on Tinder, where his emojis and typos seemed charming. But when you meet in person, you realize that you ACTUALLY have to communicate through grunts and funny faces. You're shouting a lot, because the words “Where?” “What?” “Why?” etc. all sound the same to him. There's no way to assess his IQ – you can't figure it out from context, because his career is Bartender/Electrician or something. You decide to stop talking and dance to the music. You can't have a real relationship with this guy, because language is a barrier. But is he worth a kiss? Your call. (Swipe left or right.)
The Cultural Missed Connection
You and this guy are NOT on the same page. He may look good on paper, he may even look good in real life – but somehow, everything he says rubs you the wrong way. Maybe here, it’s fine to send text messages like “Why does it take you an hour to look at your phone?” But it's not cool by you. He’s pushy, he’s adversarial, he picks fights for no apparent reason – for example, you got into WW3 over whether falafel is healthy. Maybe this guy was raised by Airport Security, because he interrogates you about everything! Drop this guy so you can get on with your life. Dating is 'sync' or swim – and you two have SUNK.
The Extreme Fast-Forward Relationship Guy
This guy probably hails from Haifa or the kiryot. He wants to be in a relationship, and it had to happen yesterday. There is no such thing as “just dating” to this guy. When you held hands, you automatically became his girlfriend. On your first date, he serenaded you at a bar. The second date was his parents’ for Shabbat dinner, where you met his whole mishpacha. On the third date, he introduced you to his entire group of friends – his loyal sidekick, the weird friend who doesn't speak much, his college girlfriend, her husband and baby – and you all played Wii. On the fourth date, he demanded to know why you weren't "liking" all his FB updates. He brought up marriage. Things were progressing at a breakneck speed. On the fifth date, he broke up with you: "he wasn’t feeling it." Your head was spinning the entire time. The entire lifecycle of this relationship has been – two-and-a-half weeks.
The Prosperous High-Tech Startup Guy
This guy's a keeper! (Maybe.) Intelligent and down-to-earth, he works long hours and makes good money at his high-tech startup. He’s a developer and embraces his geeky side, but he also runs at the beach every morning, so he doesn’t look like Jabba the Hutt. He’s fluent in four human languages, his fifth is Python. This guy will treat you well, and treat you to dinner and drinks. He’s well-read, topical. The drawback? He lacks social skills. In fact, when he obliviously blurts some hurtful personal observation, you suspect him of being Aspie. Or is it just his Israeli side coming out? Or is it simply the rude brotherhood of all programmers?
The Delusional High-Tech Startup Guy
Hey, it takes a certain healthy dose of denial to found a startup. This guy's in love with his own app, which will take over the universe. He labors day and night to make that dream come true. His mission is as distant and vast as Planet Mars, and so is his ego. His optimism makes him unrealistic. Fantasy parades as reality in his mind. He might tell you something is definitely happening when there’s only a 20% chance it might happen. He might tell you he’ll call you at 2:00 tomorrow, but that only means he’ll text you, sometime. He truly means everything he says when he says it – his problem is he drank his own Kool-Aid. His whole livelihood depends on buying into his fantasy – and so must you! This guy will vanish in a puff of smoke when you realize he’s too good to be true.
The Flashy Player
This guy is a close cousin of the Sexy Brute, but with more education and better career. He’s a 21st-century chauvinist: he may be modern, but hey, it’s still the Middle East. Money can buy a lot of things, and he takes full advantage of all of them. This guy pulls up in a luxury car – or, since it’s Israel, just a car. He blasts his sound system and brags about his stellar parking skills. He wears a black Armani shirt and tie – or at least the fake Armani he got in Bangkok. He’s fun while it lasts, but ultimately there’s no room for three in this relationship: you, him, and his EGO. You might catch him swiping at an Israeli dating app at the bar – he thinks you don't understand it, because it’s in Hebrew. PUA Fail! One thing you can count on from this guy – he’ll buy you premium cocktails. And if other women want to join the party? Why, he’ll buy them cocktails too.
The 40-Year-Old Desperado
This guy is active on every dating site and hits the bars every night. In fact he makes every situation into a dating situation, whether it is or is not – for example, he'll walk up to women at the beach and ask them if they want to take a cruise in his private yacht. He'll make eyes at you during a professional situation, such as your interview. He’s always giving women “the look of love.” (Come on ladies, we all know what that is!) He’ll tell a girl anything she wants to hear, as long as it translates into getting a date. This guy may be divorced with kids, he may be never-married – but his only goal is to find someone FAST. Maybe he comes from a traditional background and Ema is pressuring him to get under the chuppah. He doesn’t fully accept that his age makes him undesirable to 20-year-olds, thus he is constantly making himself look foolish. He will never give up, though, because the boy can’t help it.
The Russian Mafioso
There are so many Russians in Israel that it’s practically a former Soviet bloc annex. You can hear a “horosho” while walking down any Hertzl Street in any eeriya, anytime. Slavic men can be cute, and we may assume they have more in common. Wrong! Russians can be crazy, too. First, they love to drink. Heavily. (Proving some stereotypes are true.) Second, they hang in large, close-knit packs with other Russians. Third, they love to party – which simply merges points 1 and 2. If you're not Russian-born, it’s hard to crack in. It’s the ultimate in-crowd, and if you’re not Russian, you just don’t get it. Everything your Russian guy needs, he’s probably getting from the Russian community – yes, everything! And it’s hard to figure out what’s going on with him. Unlike Israelis, Russian men aren't open – they're secretive. You can bet your blini your Russian has something you don’t wanna know about, whether it’s his side mistress or his electronics scam. Whether his plot is for money or romantic intrigue... it probably involves alcohol. AND his friends.
The Perfect Arse
When you move to Israel, you soon learn that “Arse” isn’t just the British pronunciation of ass. Nope, it’s so much more than that. An Arse is pretty much the Israeli answer to a Guido. "Arsim" wear muscle shirts, lots of bling, and listen to loud Mizrahi music – a wailing music that is definitely an acquired taste. They generally act rowdy and obnoxious. And stoned. Very stoned. You will, of course, meet your own irresistible Arse on the beach. He will leer and call you “juicy white meat.” You will secretly be into it. He will offer you a beer and a joint, so you will join him and his scantily-clad friends, and you will all throw rocks at things together. Life is good!
The Hippie Ex-World Traveller
This guy is a bit of a special case. He has already seen the world, backpacking after his army service through every region you can or can't place on the map. He reminisces about Nepal fondly, like it’s a typical tourist spot, and Galapagos is close to his heart. He is wiser than you, for sure, because he’s seen everything and done everything. Customs and conventions mean nothing to him – he’s seen it done differently. He shrugs off social expectations. Having to play by the rules NOW is annoying to him. He’s run out of money and come home, so he does what he can to make it work at his office job. But you can always see his eyes light up, briefly, when he sees someone lighting up. And he always smells slightly redolent of… something. Eventually he will break it off with you because you’re too conventional, and leave for Malta with a girl who is truly free-spirited to go cliff-diving. You will look back on your time together fondly and without regrets – since he was never really your type anyway.
This guy isn’t Israeli, but he’s in Israel for a short period of time and wants to make his stay here memorable. Nothing that happens here counts toward his real life anyway, right? So he tries to find a hot local and have her show him around. (If he can’t find a local, you will do.) This guy may be discovering Israel on Birthright or some similar trip, he may be on a Christian tour, he may be in Israel for work, or on behalf of the American army. He intends to have fun while he’s here, partying his way across the holy land and drinking in the footsteps of Jesus. For your part, you enjoy listening to his cute accent from whatever region of the world he calls home. So it’s a win. Maybe you’ll stay facebook friends, maybe you’ll discuss vague plans to meet up again sometime, and you'll definitely see his posts when he enters into a REAL relationship 6 months later.
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