Living a love life through text messages and instagram hash-tags can often lead to confusion and miscommunication. My new pal found this out recently… Self confessed, he told me: “At 28 I was married and had bought a house in the suburbs and now I’m 32, alone, and I live in a bedsit in Turnpike Lane going out on Tinder dates. I haven’t been on a date in 10 years, what the fuck happened?” He recalled the first couple Tinder dates to me, and his tales made me feel slightly less like the awkward turtle I’ve felt on my last few dates. Dating can be tough in any normal world but in an environment resembling the Okavango (London) it’s enough to make anyone go crazy.
The space in between sending a message and those little three bubbles popping up on the screen, or the “last seen: 9.30AM today” changing to “online” is enough time to think about at least 3 different scenarios where you go on a second date, get papped with Bey and Jay in Shoreditch, fall in love at the Big Chill Bar and end the night making sweet love by candlelight… Until they reply with “I’m pretty busy this month, work’s just so crazy, but let me get back to you…” Just a note, no one is busy at work in June and July.
My new dear friend, totally new to this Okavango savannah, was regaling me with tales of his first new Tinder dates… and what a “helpful hand” technology has been playing in this love affair. From drunken texting at least 5 times consecutively without a reply to misinterpreting a text that to a normal person said, I’m not interested but to him sounded like, let’s have a second date and get married. Times really are a changin’. (sorry, Bob)
I’ve written about my thoughts about Tinder before… But when you’re coming up to the fourth year of being single you start questioning whether you should try alternative options to what you’ve been doing so far (because clearly breaking windows of strangers’ bathrooms and dating stock brokers has been going SO well for me)…
Now, I’m not about to download Tinder, but if I was, I would have to compile a rulebook before I touched any online dating and Tinder:
- Apparently this “waiting three days to text” is still a thing… Must remember not to rush to my phone to eagerly await a text message, or even worse, a whatsapp (the devil of over thinkers like myself). APPARENTLY the length of time to reply is not correlated to the eagerness of your new beau (I still hold the same views I did when I was 16 years old when we waited the same amount of time they took to text us back, wait, that was just me… great.) Playing it cool never was my forte.
- Cat emojis. I’ve said enough. (guilty) CATS CATS CATS (I just removed the photo of me and my cat from my whatsapp profile because I realised my crazy cat lady persona is TOO REAL.)
- Don’t lead with a dick pic. NO SERIOUSLY. On and off Tinder. Never send photos of your junk… Because… There doesn’t need to be a reason.
- Don’t be a twat. I know that in this day and age of multiple museums, abundance of libraries and the greatest access to information than ever before, it is difficult to find a hobby that isn’t drinking Grey Goose from the bottle and posting a picture of Tinder. But for the love of god please stop doing this. I don’t want to date, nor sleep with anyone whose mouth has anywhere near Mahiki in the last three years… (At first I wanted to say Movida, but after a quick Google search I realized it had closed and really felt my age.)
5. Don’t drink and Tinder. THERE ARE NO UNDOS ON TINDER.
- Just one thing I (and my new friend) just can’t master… Don’t come on too strong. What? This person I hooked up with at Concrete ISN’T the love of my life??? HOW DO YOU KNOW?? We slow grinded to Destiny’s Child. THAT’S LOVE!!!! Errrrr…. Let me just text him another three times because he might not have got my first five.
- Know your audience. Perhaps you are a right fucking Romeo in real life. Perhaps I want to take my clothes off right now and sleep with you because you are just so charming. But I can vouch that no matter how much you resemble Josh Hartnett or how Mr. Grey you are, you won’t translate well in texts. No one translates well in texts… I know from my own experience, my own brand of crazy just does not convert well in text speak. Keep mobile contact to a minimum, you will seem mysterious but it’s mainly to curb the crazy.
- Don’t expect love. You know they say that love happens when you least expect it? Well if you’re constantly hoping/expecting that guy who said he was “swipe right if you want to date Cleo’s Most Eligible Bachelor no. 28” will be the one, then let me just give you a spoiler, it’s really not going to happen, and definitely not on Tinder, you’ve got some odds working in your favour on Match but I mean, we’re not there yet, are we?
Fuck you, Emma Watson, have you ever been to Shoreditch on a Friday.