Tinder. The birth place of our modern hook-up culture.
I'd be lying if I said I hadn't indulged in the Tinder fantasy before. There's been a number of times where my fingers have typed those fiery five letters and hit download on the App Store. All of my attempts had only ever lasted a short and somewhat laughable amount of time. "What was my problem?", I often questioned myself. Was I not 'hip' enough? Was I too morally conscious and unwilling to let loose? It wasn't until my latest Tinder escapade however that I realised why my previous Tinder attempts had been unsuccessful.
I didn't want to hookup with a stranger, I just wanted to chat to them.
It makes sense right? We've been bought up our whole lives to value friendship and to be ware of strangers. I didn't want to travel into a bar in Newtown on Saturday night and make small talk over bread baskets and chardonnay. I wanted someone to speak to me when all my friends were too busy and I couldn't be bothered to get out of my pyjamas.
Perhaps the only match I was willing to make.
So armed with the perfect excuse of "I'm leaving the country in twelve days and I probably won't be back until February next year," I hit the dating app once again.
So many ripe swipes waiting to happen. Tinder had updated itself a few times since the last time it had featured on my phone. A particularly interesting new aspect was the 'Group Chat'. Was this Facebook Messenger or Tinder and why did I have the option of speaking to women? Thanks Tinder but if I wanted to speak to women I would have downloaded Pinterest.
I wasn't going to be too picky with my swipe rights but I did find myself developing some standards. If you featured selfies, it was a no from me. If you mentioned 'gym' in your profile, it was a no from me. If your photo's showed more of your topless torso instead of your face, you needed to buy a shirt.
If love is first impressions, I definitely had some good ones. Medical Students, Entrepreneurs, Actors and Athletes, what Tinder lacked in authenticity it certainly made up for in variety. To my delight, a lot of my high-raters had similarly given me the illustrious green heart. I went to bed that evening with sore thumbs from swiping overuse and an excited heart at the prospect of waking up with notifications from people other then the young Indian men who keep sending me Facebook message requests.
To my delight, the hours I had spent sorting my yes' from my no's had not gone unnoticed and I woke up to a string of potential conversations from unassuming Tinder folk. A lot of people wanted to know about my long weekend which resulted in conversations that sounded a lot like this:
TB (Tinder Bae): Hey! How was your long weekend?
M: Oh hey there! It was good, spent the last few days in bed recovering. How was yours?
TB: Ahhhhh so f*#king good. Got so wrecked. My mates and I didn't get home till 6AM both nights. Don't remember a thing. Ivy went offffffffffff!!!!
What TB didn't realise was that I was in bed recovering from 28 hours of work and that you couldn't keep a conversation going on an event you couldn't even remember. Sigh. At least the TB's put some attempt in at conversation.
I actually got into two decent conversations on day two. The first was with Luke who had just returned from two years abroad in Bristol. I was actually enjoying this conversation, so when Luke invited me on a date and I politely declined on the basis that I was leaving in less than two weeks to myself embark on a similar self-discovery adventure, I expected the conversation to continue as normal. Luke didn't reply and three days later I do not think this reply will come. K bye.
My second enjoyable conversation came from Sam the Cameraman. Smart, well-travelled, tall and attractive - if Sam bought you a drink at a lonely bar you'd get the man a chair. Things were going seemingly well until we started talking about my trip and looming departure. Like all good Harry Potter characters, the conversation died, and so did my second day of Tinder usage.
After two days, the buzz of strangers liking your severely unrealistic profile really wears off. By day three I was ready to throw in the towel and uninstall the app.
No one actually wanted to chat. No one really cared if I was studying, what my interests were, if I ordered lattes or flat whites.
Never underestimate a man and Tigerlily swim.
Maybe I looked more interesting on paper or maybe it was the fact that I wasn't interested in doing things on TB's terms. Maybe it was just Tinder and to be a part of the Tinder club you really just need to put all chivalry aside. Did I enjoy being courted as "hot ass", of course not, but what was really to be expected on an app where conversations begin after your ass has been screened and approved. If Tinder was a game, there were far more equipped players then I.
With that I bid farewell to Tinder knowing that likely I'll see thee again the next time I have exams to procrastinate for.
SOME FINAL STATISTICS:
0 NEW FRIENDS