If we could swipe left during standard social situations, the world would be a better place. “Would you like paper or plastic?” Neither. Swipe left. “How is college going?” None of your business, Tammy. Swipe left. “I haven’t seen my cat in three days, do you know where she could be?” In my belly, but you don’t have to know about that. Swipe. Left.
No matter how simple this may sound, this reality would never work, considering that this method doesn’t work for the initial program it was designed for. (Even if it did work for Tinder, we have already tested this theory. Go watch Black Mirror if you haven’t.)
No matter how hard you swipe, the aggressive directional rejection won’t eliminate them forever.
I started Tinder passively, but with dedication. No commitment, nothing crazy. Just window shopping. Hollow, mindless window shopping for hours on end. Swipe swipe swipe swipe swipe swipe swipe swipe swipe swipe. Is that the sun? Swipe.
There was a significant amount of effort put into my profile, carefully organizing my photos in a successfully deceiving manor.
I have a system: You start with a fun photo, preferably a candid shot. Then you go from 0 to 10 and show your true self with double chins and a nervous stare, followed by a photo somewhere in between the two.
The fourth shows me at work, because I have no hobbies, and the fifth features my one true love: a man in a dress. The last photo wraps up the set nicely with a simple smile, thus successfully exhausting my entire supply of normal pictures. With this balance between cute and crazy, I look passably tolerable upon first observation.
My bio was written, rewritten and revised weekly until I realized that no one actually reads them. But for the sake of the blog, and word count, I will show it to you:
While I thought this would create some lovely conversation, and hopefully bring in people with a sense of humor, this most certainly did not happen. My results went as follows:
“What’s that saying about sticking your dick in crazy?”
“I’m not a fan of the long-winded bit but I can keep your mouth busy.”
“You write? Do you like stories? I like stories.”
Once in a blue moon, I would receive an appropriate greeting and a semi-decent exchange would follow. Because I have no time for tom-foolery, I developed a habit of unmatching people I’m not interested in taking to after the initial introductions. Simple enough, right? Wrong. (Do you like these rhetorical questions? I’m having fun with them.)
The last time I unmatched someone, I first consulted my friend on the unmatching, to which he responded, “Of course you can unmatch them, why wouldn’t you?” So I did.
The moment I mentioned that the boy went to our school, my friend’s demeanor darkened and his voice went shrill. “WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT? NEVER, EVER UNMATCH SOMEONE FROM OUR SCHOOL.” I was confused, until I thought about it for a minute.
Going to a small school means several things: People know your name, your teachers notice your work, and if you want to avoid someone, you can just kiss that dream goodbye. You will never escape them. They will find you.
I panicked. I searched ways to un-unmatch people on Google, Yahoo and even Bing, BING FOR GOD’S SAKE. But, no luck. I bit my nails and waited for him to burst into my apartment, outraged and heartbroken, but what happened next somehow seemed less okay than that.
He added me on Facebook.
Sure, that may not seem weird, at first, but my last name isn’t listed on Tinder. This means he had to make an effort to find me and think it was a good idea to do so. Granted, I used photos from Facebook and there aren’t many people are named Alicia, so I’m going to guess finding me wasn’t that much of a challenge. But why in God’s green Earth would you search someone out after they have consciously removed themselves from your presence? Human behavior confuses me sometimes, but I digress.
I deleted the app in a frenzy and swore off using the mindless program from that day forward. Until I wrote this blog post.
The moment I opened the app, a message popped up in my inbox. Specifically from the only two people I hoped to hear from – two people who happened to share the same profile with hopes of sharing much more. God, give me strength.
Maybe it’s fate, or maybe it’s coincidence. We all know I’m not good at distinguishing the one from the other. Either way, I’m going to keep this app for a little while longer.
You know, for research.