It’s been nearly a year since I jumped feet first into the shark, dolphin, and sometimes cute little baby seal-infested waters of Tinder.
“Baroness! Why is a nice girl like you resorting to an online hook-up, booty-call, cheating-on-your-spouse app?!!” I know, I know! (Hangs head.) But really . . . it’s so much more than that! Stay with me.
For the two of you in Zurich who don’t know how Tinder works, look it up. I’m too exhausted from all my dates to explain it to you. But know this. It’s easy, it’s fun and it’s addictive.
I see it as a bit of a game, which is not really how one should see an interaction or relationship with other real people, but it’s the truth. I ‘play’ it on the bus, at the cinema waiting for the film to start, in line at Migros - I’ve even done it while sitting next to my mom! Gasp!
As someone who has never tried internet dating and hasn’t even ever gone on a blind date, signing up for Tinder was not an easy decision for me. I’ve always had an aversion to online dating, and as a child of the 80s’ (now you know), I still have a dream that I can meet people the ‘old fashioned way’. But times have changed and the stigma that once accompanied personal ads and matchmaking services has been replaced by thousands of people who have met, fallen in love, and have even gotten married as a result of meeting online. Not that I’m looking for any of those things. Love and marriage. I shudder at the thought. Give me a whip-smart, wickedly-funny, non-classically handsome, confident, wise-assed afternoon-drinking buddy and I’m all set. Seriously.
And though Tinder is technically an online dating app, it’s really not. Out of a 1000 users, 96% percent said they had never used another online dating service. So I’m not alone!
I’ve had days and weeks of intelligent, intriguing and thought-provoking (and sometimes, yes, more sexy than intelligent, which is delicious fun too) conversations. Dates I would label great. Even wonderful.
I’d love to tell you all the sordid details of my experiences on Tinder, and I will. Soon. Promise. In a future installment. Date by date. Match by match. Awkward conversation by awkward conversation.
Baroness: Is English okay? I’m afraid my German is less than stellar.
Tinder hottie: (Silence. Unmatch.)
Baroness: (inner monologue) Next! Onward and upward!
You’ll just have to be patient, darlings. (Mama always said to leave ‘em wanting more)
Before you get all excited and expect to hear the stories of my one-night stands, quickies in parking garages and threesomes, let’s look at the numbers:
first dates: 8
second dates: 4
long term (over 6 weeks) dating: 1
old boyfriends discovered: 4
husbands of acquaintances discovered: 3*
married men who said so from the get go: 1
married men who ‘forgot’ share this pertinent information: 2
one night stands: none of your damn business
* (but not exposed - what kind of person do you think I am?)
I was curious about what the other women looked like on Tinder so asked an old boyfriend if he would show me. This is what I saw: Women in yoga clothes. Women in yoga clothes doing yoga poses. Lots of cats. Bikinis. Tattoos. Pouty faces. Dressed up sexy with a group of other women.
All of the women in Zurich on Tinder (other than the Baroness) have cats and do yoga, so what are the men like, you ask?
Well, I’ll tell you. Many men in Switzerland do (extreme) sports and want to show you that they do. They also pose with pets. And children. And cars. Lots of selfies in bathroom mirrors. And other women. (Perhaps this is to show they are married or were or that they are friends with the ex, but without any explanation I find it weird and always swipe left.)
There is a place for a bio or comments under your photos. Many men are excited to ‘carpe diem’. Or tell you that ‘you only live once’. Or that you can ‘sleep when you’re dead’. Those are a turn off and even if I fancy how you look, I will not swipe you right if you write stupid, pedestrian shit. So stop.
I prefer when you write nothing. Maybe your height. Apparently that’s a thing . Too many women being disappointed when a short guy shows up I guess. But that’s silly. And shallow. But expectation management is a real thing, I suppose.
Just like in real life, some conversations flow easily, some are like pulling teeth. Some people are forward or inappropriate or have no manners and some are just plain boring. And a good deal of people you match with don’t even write. It’s an ego thing. How many people can I get to like me? The human connection is secondary.
One guy’s opening line was, “Have you ever fucked an Australian?” I was horrified but admittedly, a little intrigued. Who does this? So I chatted with him. After he wrote some really raunchy things, I ignored him. He wrote a few days later apologizing and saying he’d been drunk and then proceeded to ask if he could come live with me and be my sex slave. Finally! I found someone who was interested in some sexy time! I wrote back and told him if he wore a tux while doing my laundry and vacuuming my filthy floors, he had a deal.
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