Nearly every single person I know has taken the step into Tinder-land. If you’re not familiar with Tinder, there’s a wee article on it here, but basically it’s online speed dating based on pics found on your Facebook profile.
I refused to buy into this free app, purely because I didn’t want to be the girl who was judging guys on their looks. I can’t wah on about how all I really want is a nice guy, who gets my jokes, and doesn’t think my sister is hotter than me, and then go and “nope” a guy based on a picture or a series of them.
There comes a time though, when exceptions are made. It was a Wednesday. I came home and my mum was waving the local paper from her seat at the dining table.
“See this? See? Look here, look at this, Kelly Johnson (not her real name) got married in Malta.”
“Yes mum, I did see that, weeks ago, on Facebook. That’s what it’s for. Reminding you that the people you hated in high school are getting married, having babies and re-tiling their bathrooms, and not necessarily in that order.”
“Well, your father and I thought that we might put an unmarried notice in the paper for you. One that says that our oldest daughter, is still unwed, and could potential suitors please step forward.”
I went to my room and installed the app right away…
The first dilemma was deciding which pics to post. My Facebook profile isn’t exactly overflowing with becoming pictures. The majority of the pics are taken from a weekend off the wagon (hashtag:onemojitotoomany), or outdoors with sunnies on (hashtag:fitspo). It’s a fine line between flattery and misrepresentation. I didn’t want to go straight in with the trolleyed pushing a trolley pic, but at the same time, I didn’t want to lead with a long distance shot with six filters (hashtag:firstworldproblems).
So pics were chosen. I included the one of me riding a fibreglass cow – just to show my fun side, but omitted the one of me on the couch with my dad in our silly stuffed animal hats – mine a chicken, his a mouse. The close up of me with the miniature horse made the grade – must love animals, and a shot of me and the sis in the Hunter Valley – sans vino.
It takes a while for Tinder to register your chosen age limits, so for the first 48 hours I was bombarded with an assortment of 18 year olds. Call me crazy, but I don’t remember 18 year olds being that hot. Oooh-wee, talk about muff tease!
While in this every man’s land of 18 to 68 year olds, I would go on wild “nope” sessions, swiping from right to left, so you’re in the rhythm, “nope”-ing the 19 year old eye candy, and you’re so caught up in the moment, that you “nope” someone who could potentially be your future husband. So then you’re furiously swiping left to right, trying to get him back, and in the process, you’re “yes”-ing an ever increasing number of teenage dirt bags. Oh the agony of it all.
The worst thing about Tinder, for me, has been the realisation that I am shallow. So shallow. Too shallow. And not just shallow end of the pool shallow, I’m shallow edge of the puddle shallow.
I’ve been lovingly raised in a household where racism, sexism and any other ism were banned. I was born believing that it’s what’s on the inside that counts (possibly because I was the ugliest baby ever known by mankind), and yet here I am, “nope”, “nope”, “nope”-ing, like I’m spoiled for choice!!
There’s any multitude of “sins” that automatically earn a potential Tinder match a “nope”;
– Pictures of carcasses, including fish corpses. I’ve already jumped ahead to our seventh date, he’s asked me to go hunting, and I’m keen to prove that there’s more to me than eye lash extensions and gel nail polish (with ombre glitter). There we are, three hours into the back of beyond, and he takes a shot at Bambi/Porky/Daffy and I’m in tears for days.
– Candidates with group pics. Especially if five of the six guys in the pic are babin’ and then I get to picture #4 only to find that this candidate is the 6th guy…
– Pictures of cars, motorbikes or trucks. It’s hard to believe, but I’ve seen a pic of all three. He’s never going to be able to afford to buy me diamonds or surprise me with overseas trips if he’s spending all his money on carbon fibre bonnets, LED light bars or moto-x boots.
– Candidates with a terrible tattoo. Or several terrible tattoos. Or white sunglasses. Or white sunglasses and terrible tattoos. And an eyebrow ring. Holding a headless deer.
– Pictures participating in any form of marathon running. It’s only a matter of time before he expects me to spend four hours waiting for him to cross the finish line. Ain’t nobody got time fo’ dat!
– Candidates who are shirtless. Especially candidates who look good shirtless. I’m more inclined to “yes” if they’re shirtless and they look fair to average. Unless they have a terrible tattoo. Or they’re shirtless, looking average, holding a murdered fish
– Pictures with a cig hanging out the mouth. He’ll regret that when they remove his tongue in 30 years. If he thinks that I’m interested in sticking around to mash his pumpkin, he can think again. Sometimes they have a cig hanging out their mouth, they’re “cheers”-ing the camera person with a can of pre-mix bourbon, and there’s an Evo III in the background. NOPE!
– Candidates with names I can’t pronounce. Or the same name as an ex. Or both.
– Candidates with a picture of them at the snow. I get cold just looking at the snow. The first question is bound to be: “do you board?”. First answer will be: “I can’t think of anything worse. Except hunting, hunting would be worse. Hunting in the snow is my idea of hell on Earth.”
– Candidates that mention what they own in their bio. Good for you sunshine. I own an online clothing store. And by own, I mean the bank owns it, and it’s not online. Minor details.
So despite the rigorous screening process, I still managed to get some matches on Tinder, and needless to say, none of them got my humour. Maybe it’s just not gettable.
One guy led with, “why do yu live 100 miles away thats to far how did we match” I chose to ignore the lack of punctuation and the grammatical massacre and responded with “Perhaps if you were looking for someone whose location was within a convenient commute, you should have adjusted your settings.”
He launched back with “its nt just about the distance if yor a girl that likes chicken nibbles and your into boreding and long walks on the beech if yur smart and youre name is hot then that hlps”. Aaaaaand block.
The straws that broke the camels back, and meant the un-installation of the Tinder app on the Samsung S4, were many, and in a short space of time. I ran into a guy on Tinder who I’d been hanging out with a few weeks before (no mum, we weren’t having sex – I know you’re reading this), whose friend had announced to me (just quietly) that said guy was moving back in with his wife and kids. Perhaps he was just browsing Tinder while the ink dried on his new tenancy agreement?
My memory, that is only good for the storage of useless information (read about my useful memory full of useless stuff here), started to recollect the guys that I had “yes”d, who hadn’t “yes”d me back. The rejection was ruining my already sketchy mental health.
There was far too much innuendo and cliche for my liking. The final weekend I received an initial greeting of “get to Pauanui now”, sent at 2am, on a Friday. I’m on my way, Romeo.
The same fateful weekend I was asked if I was a plus-sized model, who the girl in the pic with me was, and whether I would deliver BK. I was also confronted, via a private Facebook message, by a friend of a friend, about the reason that I hadn’t “yes”d him on Tinder aaand, I saw not one, not two, but three husbands of acquaintances on there.
So that’s it, no more Tinder, no more “yes”-ing or “nope”-ing, no more pulling out my phone every 10km to trawl the Tinderverse. Luckily I know the manager of the Cambridge Edition, and she’s said that she’ll give mum a discount on that classified ad.