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Crunching the Costs of New Year's Resolutions

Meet someone/get married
This is a resolution fraught with all sorts of peril, as relationships are seldom as simple as plucking someone off of a shopping list, but that doesn't mean people who make it won't try.

The online dating industry was built seemingly with this resolution in mind, as dating sites such as Match, eHarmony and Lavalife charge between $35 and $60 a month -- less for long-term memberships -- to pair singles up with their supposedly perfect someone. Laugh if you must, Mr. or Ms. organic dater, but at least the folks on these dating sites are trying to shave the odds in their favor somewhat.

According to Ian Stanczyk of the Book of Odds site, the average single is paying $250 or more per date when playing the aggressor in his or her courting process. By his calculations, this yields a 1-in-6 chance of sex -- never mind marriage -- that could result in $1,500 in dinners and movies before the cash-wielding courter is even invited upstairs for drinks.

This would normally be the part where we'd enumerate wedding costs but, if this is really what the dating public is considering when seeking a mate, that would be getting a few continents ahead of ourselves.

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