A few weeks ago, I was talking to my friend Viv about my pathetic dating life, and my attempts at finding a man online. “Why don’t you try Tinder?” she asked me. I told her that I wasn’t good at the whole phone App thing and that I thought it would be too confusing for me. “No, it’s really simple,” she told me and then proceeded to show me how it works.
“See? You just look through pictures of people, and see if you’d be interested in them or not.” She showed me photos of some of the girls that were on her Tinder, swiping them to the side as she decided she wasn’t interested in them.
“What, is it like Grinder for straight or gay people?”
“Nah, it’s more like “Hot or Not”, she replied.
I knew that my friend Barry was also on Tinder, so I thought I might give it a try. The infomerical on Tinder’s website made the whole experience appear fairly benign and very sweet. The narrative they give you: “Remember that hot guy that you saw in the park? Well Tinder can do the e-introduction for you!” That’s what it seems like, at least. Phone app introductions for those with no game.
The scariest part is that you have to let the app gain access to your Facebook account. The good thing, however, is that Tinder says it won’t post on your Facebook wall. It’s only linked so that you can find out if you and other matches know the same people (through your friends lists) or have interests in common.
I was only on Tinder for about two days. That’s how great my experience was.
So after I set up my profile with five photos and a short description of myself, I set my preferences to “within 25 miles” like I did on OK Cupid, and said that I was interested in men between the ages of 29 and 45 (I discovered very quickly that men fitting those qualifications are not very attractive. Maybe I should move to another area…).
The other problem with me is that I’m not very technologically savvy. I was constantly sweeping left on my screen to reject potential candidates, but after a while I swept both left AND right, not knowing that sweeping right means that you LIKE a person. After a few too many times sweeping right, I was told that I had “matched up” with someone that I wasn’t interested in. GREAT.
That actually happened to me a few times since sweeping right to “like” a person AND tapping a photo to view their photos are somewhat similar swiping motions. I accidentally matched up with a few guys before I started matching up with two guys that I was actually somewhat interested in.
Guy #1 had about five model-esque photos on his profile. After Tinder matched us, he chatted me up. He asked me if I ever visit a certain part of town.
“Not really, unless it’s a special occasion,” I replied.
“lol I’ll give yo ass a reason to come out here!” he wrote back to me. Then he proceeded to message me a drawing of a guy dancing to music notes (very clever use of dashes, lower case “d”s, and parentheses, I must say).
I’m not too used to this type of game, so it took my slow ass a while to realize that when a guy talks about YO ASS, it’s probably not a DATE in the more traditional sense.
Guy #2 was good looking and said that he was attracted to “intelligent women”. He had a fairly long descriptive profile (for a Tinder account), and I found out that he knew two acquaintances of mine on FB that were good peoples. After getting matched up, he hit me up about two hours later and began chatting me. It all seemed fairly benign. Then he asked me for my number.
“To talk, or to meet up?” I asked him.
“To meet up,” he replied.
Later that night he called me, and then texted me (I missed both messages). I called him back. The conversation went something like this:
“Well well, if it isn’t the woman of my dreams…”
“Hey, how are you doing tonight?”
“I’m good, just coming home right now. What are you up to?”
“I’m just at home, about to go to bed. Would you be interested in hanging out tomorrow night or this weekend?”
“Wait, you can’t meet up tonight?” **CLICK**
OH HELL NAW. He hung up on me without saying goodbye?! #RUDE
Later that night, he texted me: When someone says they want to meet, why would you give them your number and then say that you’re busy?
I texted back: Sorry, I thought this was a dating site too.
He replied: No problem. It just threw me off because I thought you wanted to meet up.
(Apparently I didn’t know what “meeting up” entailed. Oh well sucks for him.)
Over the next few nights however, he proceeded to text me around 12 or 1 AM. I had to install another app on my phone – this time to block calls and texts from douche-bags.
His late night texts were, of course, pretty dirty. Until the last one that I received from him, which simply said:
I told my friend Barry about my experience. He sympathized, but told me to get off Tinder because if I wasn’t there to get laid, I was “ruining it for the rest of the people on Tinder who just want to make a hook up happen!!!!!” (like him) Apparently, a lot of people match up on Tinder but many are too shy to actually let things manifest. So, a lot of people (mostly men) are pretty frustrated with the experience.
So there you have it. That was my Tinder experience, in a nutshell.
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PS. The best part about being on Tinder? I saw a guy who I KNOW (at least used to be) MARRIED on Tinder!! I wonder if he got a divorce, or if he’s just an undercover lover like that…
PPS: Do check out this awesome “article” about Tinder’s Unwritten Rules! (I should have looked this up before I joined. But then I wouldn’t have such entertaining and pathetic stories to share, would I??)
*** EDIT ***
FAST FORWARD to September of 2014. I went on a personal dating campaign for the past few months, and guess what – I got back on Tinder. My profile now says, “No booty calls please, dating only”. That disclaimer seems to work just fine for me. And I’ve actually met some really cool guys! No winners yet, but hey – it’s allowed me to talk to that one cute guy I used to see around town, and link up with a friend of a friend that I’ve always heard about but never met. I’ve also had guys un-match me once they figure out that I’m not down to hook up, which is just fine by me.
I guess one can make dating work on Tinder!