The Latest Flame Starter: Tinder

Screenshot 2014-04-29 19.29.10

My friend Jessica told me that she’d started online dating on the app Tinder. I’d never heard of it. I promptly forgot about it because it sounded a bit like a hook-up app or something. So, when I got ready to start perusing the available specimens of the opposite sex, I went back to Match.com. I don’t know why I keep going back there except that it’s like the mainstream grocery store. There’s nothing decent there, but there’s a lot of it, and it’s cheap. Two weeks into it, I’m ready to stop again. I met one guy who was infatuated with me the moment he saw my profile and didn’t even take the chance to get to know me. In less than a week’s time, his flame seemed to have burned out. I imagine when you don’t have any knowledge of the person you are enamored with, there’s not much staying power. The rest have been incompatible to say the least.

Ugh …. I get so sick of it. I have a friend in Michigan who is trying online dating again, and we email each other about the sheer boredom of it all. I read the profiles, and you’d think from the way they talk about themselves they all have their lives together. Some even say they have no baggage. Really? At 50 something? How about denial, pal … that’s baggage. Or, there’s some that are so angry and bitter that their profile is a laundry list of things they don’t want. “If you have an ex that you can’t seem to quit sleeping with, please pass me by….. I’m not interested in raising your kids …. If you have a lot of drama in your life, I’m not interested.”  I get so tired of reading them. Then there are the ones that write a novel about what they are looking for … sort of an epic love story that is lacking one essential piece – the woman. But, they are ready! They know how it’s all going to unfold. I scroll and scroll….. good heavens... give me some substance, dude.

Tinder’s Intro Video

So, I’m at the point again that I’m sick of Match. Today I thought I’d just check out this Tinder thing. Except I couldn’t remember the name of it. I searched for Timber. I don’t know why “dead wood” would be a good name for a dating app, but that’s what stuck in my mind. I couldn’t find Timber. I finally searched for ‘dating apps’, and Tinder came right up. I downloaded it, and, in minutes, I was scrolling through pictures of men my age. It’s simpler than Match. You can do a little short profile if you want, but you only have a couple of sentences. It’s tied to Facebook, so you have to have a Facebook account to play. It’s really very shallow. A picture comes up, and you swipe left if you don’t like them and right if you do. It’s like shopping for melons …. except it’s men. It’s all based on looks. And if you swipe right on him, and he swipes right on you, you get to chat. If you …. or he … swipes left, you’ll never see each other again. You can tell if you have any mutual Facebook friends and if you “like” some of the same pages, but that’s it. The rest is whether you like their looks or not.

This is what I like about it. It’s actually more like real life. When you go out somewhere, you don’t just walk over to anybody and start finding out what they want in life. You figure out if you like their looks, and then you go over to meet them. You actually have no idea who they are or what they are looking for or even if they are really single. Of course, I could argue that the other dating sites are the same way because almost everybody lies whether they intend to or not. But, with Tinder, you know it’s a crap shoot. It’s like being in a bar without having to get dressed.

Right now, I’m texting with a restaurant manager from New Orleans about the music scene in Memphis. I met another guy who is a landscaper today. We’re just texting. I suppose if we get to know each other a little and want to meet up, we can. But, it’s kind of fun. And, for some reason, with this I don’t have this expectation that they are looking for something nor do I have any expectations. For all I know, he’s looking for something totally different than I am, and I don’t care right now. I like the lack of information. With Match, there always seems to be this expectation that we’re going to start dating. With the last guy, it was like he wanted to jump right from hello into a relationship. I can’t do that. I have a life, and I want to get to know somebody slowly over time. I’ve figured out that the 3 month mark is a big marker for when people show who they really are. After about 3 months, the facade starts to fall away. This time around, I’m going to hold my heart back until I’ve known somebody for a period of time. Then, if they are somebody worth being with, I’ll quit guarding my heart. Until then, they are FRIENDS. I know … the best laid plans… but that’s my intention.

So, I’m going to finish my conversation with Mr. Metairie, and I’m heading to bed to read. I texted Jessica and told her I like Tinder so far. She said she’s had good experiences with it, and it’s kind of addicting to “shop” on an app. She’s met a few guys on there. She asked about my guy who was in love with me last week, and I told her I got a Dear John letter on Monday. “A what?” she asked. The generation gap may not impact the way we date, but it does impact communication at times. I told her I was so sick of people who won’t even take the time to get to know who I am that I’m going to start hooking up with complete strangers on Tinder.  “Yep,” she texted. “There’s an app for everything.”

 

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