How to Tinder Like a Boss

How Tinder works

For those of you living under a rock or recently released from solitary confinement, this is how the app TINDER works. A picture of a potential mate living within your established mile radius will pop up on the screen with a 500 character description.  If you find the person in picture attractive, you swipe left if you don’t then you swipe right. Basically, it gives you the power to judge like a nefarious Caligula making snap judgements about another humans worth based on looks. FUN!

The importance of proper technique

The beauty of Tinder is that if you keep going on dates that turn out to be failures, then it is not Tinder’s fault, it’s YOUR fault.  You are the filter and believe it or not the pictures and profiles can be very telling if you can spot proper clues.  Being a person of discerning in nature, I swipe about 200 NO’s for every 1 YES. Nope, I’m not a beauty queen nor a model, I’m just a reasonably intelligent woman with aspirations and a healthy dose of self-esteem.

My profile

I keep my profile low key.  I do have a couple of bikini shots because it just so happens that I like going to vacations to the Caribbean and it’s one of the few times I look genuinely happy devoid of a cynical smirk.  The other pictures show my energy and creativity.  They say “Hey! I’m doing stuff” and hopefully a guy that likes my profile says “I also like doing the same stuff!” My 500 character description is simple. I show humor, pathos, I reveal a bit of sensitivity and a smidge of attitude.  Basically, it says I’m nice, smart and low key, but don’t fuck with me.

My thought process

STEP 1 – The Snap Judgement:……NO, NO, NO, HELL NO, WHAT THE?!, NO, NO, NO, GROSS!, UGH!, I’M GONNA DIE ALONE, SIGH!, NO, NO, NO, Fuck this!, I should get back to work, NO, NO, NEVER!!, Oh! He’s cute!

STEP 2 – I Read the profile:

  • Are there many spelling mistakes?  There’s nothing wrong with being dyslexic, but considering that the profile is like a resume that guys use to get laid, one has to wonder about his intelligence if he is not at least getting a friend to proofread it.  If the guy says he’s foreign, he has a pass to make tons of spelling mistakes, but I find that they are actually better spellers than the natives.
  • Does he talk about what he does? At 32, I need a guy pursuing an advanced degree or working full time because otherwise I assume he is lazy and has self-esteem issues.  I don’t want to go out to dates to Chick-Fil-a or Denny’s.  Are they unemployed? I keep swiping.  Ambition is a big turn on for me and a very rare trait to find. An ambitious, brainy guy will Google proper foreplay technique and understand the placement of the G-spot because they hate to suck at anything they do – ain’t nothing wrong with exploiting that.
  • Does he reveal hobbies and interests? I reduce the probability of an awkward date – one full of fidgety silences where I end up praying that my best friend careens off a road and calls asking for immediate help – by making sure that the potential suitor shows that he has interests in hobbies that I am also into.

STEP 3 – I scope out the pictures:

A TINDER profile can have up to six pictures, so like a cryptologist looking for bomb coordinates, I use a discerning eye to weed out wierdos and reduce the likelihood of getting dick pick texts from random strangers.  They need to have more than one picture on their profile, otherwise, I keep swiping.  I like pictures that reveal a person sense of humor, interests, and hobbies.

I swipe NO for the following:

  • Selfie pics of them at the gym or at home with their shirt off. This guy is probably really into himself and most likely not looking for anything deeper than to be told how hot he is.  A six pack does not necessarily translate to good conversation or decent sex. NEXT!
  • Too many pictures of them with girls. This sends a confusing message.  Are you showing off what a player you are? Is that your sister, or your girlfriend? Are you in an open relationship? Did all those girls dump you? What is wrong with you?! NEXT!
  • Too many pictures of them with dudes.  This also sends a confusing message.  I don’t like the game of “spot the same guy in all the pictures” because it reminds me of an SAT question. Be realistic guys – IF you are the least attractive among your friends, don’t put pictures of yourself with your hot friends because in my giddy excitement, I might expect your hot friend to show up.  Don’t try to fool me! NEXT!
  • Pictures of children**I don’t want to complicate my life much more than it already is. I won’t swipe NO if there is a picture of a kid because it might be a niece or nephew and they are trying to show what lackadaisical fun they are.  However, I keep that picture BURNED into my memory and remember to ask! I don’t want the baby bomb shell dropped after several sexual encounters in which, one day, out of the blue, he kicks me out of the bed mid coitus because he just remembered he has custody of his 5 year old that day.  ALSO, children aren’t usually the problem, it’s potentially neurotic and insane ex-wives or girlfriends that are the problem. Children are the glue that bind those potentially hazardous women to a man…and therefore, like Velcro, to an unsuspecting woman.  I’m smart. I don’t wear Velcro.

STEP 4 – First Contact:

Once I’ve been matched, I make it a point to contact that individual.  You Tarzan, me Jane.  Let me now place you under a microscope via irreverent witty text banter.  This part is the prelude to an actual date and is very important.  I ask questions about one of their interests, figure out if they have a job, and try to gauge their sense of humor.  The point is to establish enough rapport to avoid a disastrous first date.  I’m a curious person and get very talkative on dates, so once I have enough fodder, I proceed to set a date.

STEP 5 – First Date:

The Swagger – I show up dressed a little nicer than I do at work.  Since I want to meet someone special who will understand me on intellectual and physical levels, I want my date to respect me, want to get to know me, and not just get inside of me.  My focus is on looking put-together, color coordinated, and NOT slutty.  Basically, I dress as if I was meeting his Grandma.  I avoid make-up and let my freckles and wrinkles shine through because it’s only downhill from there baby!  The problem with make-up is that should one engage in fun drunken sex, layers of the stuff will invariably migrate across your face like Pangea and leave one looking like a homicidal child eating clown from a Stephen King thriller.  Remember Murphy’s Law: Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong…or something like that.

The Location – I like meeting at low key places that are inexpensive and boisterous enough to facilitate fun conversation and people watching opportunities.  Personally, I would never eat a salad on a date just to seem dainty. I eat with gusto, mostly because I’m usually starving, but also because they love seeing a girl show enthusiasm when she eats.

Payment – PIPE DOWN! I’m talking about payment for FOOD and not for sex, but I don’t judge.  I’ve been stupidly giving sex away for free all these years and totally understand why a woman would want to charge for it.  ANYWAY, I’m a proud person and don’t feel comfortable with anyone paying for my food, especially if I just met that person.  I throw my card down as soon as I can to prevent a skirmish over a check.  Ladies, here’s why I do this: By the end of the night I get to hear some horror stories about how shitty women are to them and I am compelled by guilt to prove to them otherwise.

My final advice for women

I would encourage women to be themselves.  Dress natural, act natural, and don’t be afraid to make a joke at their expense.  If you are looking for a potentially serious relationship, don’t start off by masquerading as someone you are not.  If you’re smart flaunt it! Don’t dumb yourself down because you should be with someone who will respect you as an equal partner.  Most of all, have fun and remember that if your experiences keep ending in a disaster, it’s totally within your realm to change the outcome by changing your approach.  Don’t be afraid to set high standards for yourself if you are looking for something more serious.

LADIES and GENTLEMEN! BE A GUEST BLOGGER AND SHARE YOUR BAD TINDER EXPERIENCE WITH THE WORLD. FEEL FREE TO E-MAIL ME AT lessonsinreality@gmail.com. TURN YOUR NEGATIVE EXPERIENCE INTO SOMETHING WE CAN ALL LAUGH AT.

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I Loved an Alcoholic

So, I figured I would give you guys the rundown on what prompted this blog.  This posting won’t be funny, like you probably expected; then again, breaking up with your boyfriend because he’s an alcoholic who took you for granted for 3 ½ years, is no fun. Despite the timing, the break-up itself isn’t the reason for this blog, it’s the fact that now I find myself with free time because I only have to take care of myself and nobody else.  For those of you in similar situations, I hope this particular posting makes you feel understood.

From the beginning, my relationship with Nash was about trying to position a round peg into a square hole (no sexual pun intended).  We were polar opposites.  I was 27 and he was 23.  He struggled to finish high school; I was college educated.  He had a small and uncomplicated list of interests composed of surfing, skateboarding and watching TV.  Period.  My interests were in politics, art, history, medicine, music and languages.  We only had surfing in common and that was it.  Still, in my post-divorce frame of mind, I figured that simple was good because, at my age, smart guys were going places and I wasn’t much of a follower.  I had my own trail to bushwhack and I didn’t want to risk falling for someone who could muddle or confuse me with his own demanding, and ambitious, goals, which is what had happened in my marriage.  Nash and I didn’t talk much.  We cuddled a lot and had sex and that was good enough.  In the meantime I got my intellectual stimulation from books and friends.  In retrospect, I probably was gullible, but I truly believed his ostensibly uncomplicated demeanor would make having a relationship easier.  But it turns out I’m the type of person who can love a house plant if I give it a proper name and personify it.  I am that naïve.

What made me fall for Nash was that he was emotionally transparent and affectionate.  After he finally seduced me (took him a whole month) he told me plainly:  “I want you to be my woman.”  You see, I have relationship Asperger’s, a very accurate, albeit fictitious disorder, where I am blunt and unafraid to express my true feelings – be they platonic or otherwise.  I expect reciprocation of my penchant for direct communication because I am impatient and I don’t like assuming or guessing what the other person is thinking, which I find to be a general waste of time.  As long as we both lay our cards on the table in a reasonably civil manner, I feel, in my naiveté, that I can safely proceed according to the established rules we have both agreed upon.  Now, some men are understandably terrified of this intensity of honesty, which is ironic considering they all resoundingly agree — at some secret man convention, or wherever they commune and bang on drums — that women have trouble communicating their feelings.  But I find that when presented with honestly-expressed emotions, some men leave me watching a trail of dust and others are bewitched, as if struck dumb by a curare-tipped dart.  I don’t care for the wimps.  My motto is:  Take me as I am or fuck you.  Nash came across as someone who knew what he wanted and it seemed like a relationship founded on open communication might not be a problem for his philistine aesthetic.

Three months after we met, we moved together from Los Angeles to San Diego to surf better waves and to wrest our souls from the gridlocked traffic and barbarous commutes to our respective jobs.  I didn’t say I was a genius.  I am a right-brained gut-thinker.  My gut was satisfied with tacos that day and that was the day we decided to move, all right?!

Once I found a new job in San Diego, I retreated into my all-work, no-play bubble, but the red flags soon started popping up like prairie dogs in a drought.  It started out small.  I would wake up at 3 a.m. to the muffled hiss of a beer can being opened in the kitchen, or I would find beer cans in the bathtub.  Any time of day, there was always a cold beer in his hand.  Having taken a leisurely approach to finding work, Nash, being unemployed, had more time to watch TV and guzzle beer.  He paced himself for a while, but then he started binging, disappearing for entire nights and not answering my phone calls, only to materialize in the mornings drunk on his ass as I was heading off to work.  Soon, the physical toll of his drinking started manifesting itself.  Drinking to excess, he would black out and couldn’t recall conversations or events.  He was sickly all the time with bowel irritations and vomiting.  Then, he started asking for rent money, at which point I became so annoyed I started tracking his consumption.  He was averaging 15 beers a day; and, with the increased drinking, he became more irritable and moody.  On a nightly basis I came home to a pig-sty of a house, a refrigerator empty of food, and, eventually, inevitably, to an affectionless boyfriend because he had already passed out by 8:00 pm.

One of my biggest regrets was the complete loss of my sexual drive.  It’s hard to feel sexy and want to get naked with your live-in boyfriend when, 10 minutes prior to demanding sex, he calls me a cunt and describes my vagina as “nasty.”  Of course, I suppose to some men a vagina can look like a gaping sore if he’s in the throes of the blue Johnnies from over-imbibition.  I’ve also met men who covet vaginas, attending to them, and worshipping them, as if they were rare orchids.  Furthermore, as someone who considers men as potential progenitors of a new generation that I would mother, the idea of being impregnated with a sickly baby that might turn out to have macrocephaly or retardation was also doing a number on my already freighted psyche.  Ultimately, my biological need to be with a healthy mate suitable for reproductive purposes made Nash a poor genetic selection.  Not that I wanted a baby, but I’m programmed to look for a healthy mate who could keep up with my active lifestyle.

Why did I wait so long before leaving him?  Simple!  I thought I could change him, heal him, nurse him back to health, and one day he would appear, reborn, the young man I had fallen in love with.  Ah, the delusions of a woman!  Truth be told, his lifestyle wasn’t sustainable and I couldn’t fathom how he could rationally continue to live like a pustule.  It also irked me that I had invested so much in the relationship and had lowered my bar pitifully low for how I expected to be treated, that I felt that surely he would see the writing on the beer-stained walls and stop bumping his head on it!  I’m educated, I cook, and I take care of the people who matter to me, and yet I was in a constant state of incomprehension how callously I was being treated.  Surely he knew how special I was?  He eventually did … after I left.

Leaving wasn’t the hard part.  I came home after a particularly exhausting day to the usual — a house of slacked-jawed surfer dudes in a tribal-like semi-circle around a totemistic pyramid of beer cans.  I became “Argentinean bat shit angry,” as my friend characterizes it.  Picture me muttering obscenities under my breath while cleaning up beer cans.  It’s actually very dishearteningly un-Argentinean.  The contradictory voices that had kept me too confused to make a move sooner finally violently collided in agreement that it was time to move on.  I had a new job, new goals, and no time for drama.  A good friend offered me refuge, in exchange for taking care of her insane cat while she gallivanted around the country.  I left Nash and was out of the house within a week of the kind offer.

Our break up did both of us good.  Gone were the daily shouting matches — and that alone was a blessing!  The stressed induced psoriasis break-out that I developed on my tongue disappeared.  Without me to pay his rent and provide him with false encouragement, Nash drank more, smoked more, and consumed more cocaine than ever before, which was exactly what I feared he would do.  I tried to prepare myself for his imminent suicide, but, thankfully, two weeks later he checked himself into rehab.  He admitted to me afterward:  “Whenever you were upset, I would think if what I could say to get you to calm down knowing that I had no intention of following through on my promise.”  The entire time I thought I was helping him be more responsible by providing emotional support to help him treat his addiction, but the reality was I was preventing him from hitting rock-bottom and getting treatment sooner.  That is what an enabler unwittingly does.

I moved to my own place and enjoyed the opportunity for solitude and reflection.  My goal was to try to spend a year alone discovering myself … whatever that means.  Anyway, being alone became quickly boring.  I’m an introvert and I like my space, but I enjoy the open exchange of ideas with people.  I wanted to meet new people, explore new hobbies, and see if I could remove the cobwebs from my vagina and remind her that it’s not just there for peeing or bleeding. I promised myself to compromise no longer; my next relationship has to be intellectually stimulating, physically engaging, and imbued in honesty.

So, I joined Tinder.

Nice to Meet You!

My name is Sandra and I’m a 32 year old introverted female with textbook case ADD, a penchant for binge eating, and an appreciation of fine chocolates. I have an Urban Planning degree from UCLA and currently work as a Compliance Coordinator at a renewable energy company in San Diego. This blog is an attempt to track my personal growth as I grapple with adult ADD, depression, and a need to find meaningful direction in my life. Being responsible hasn’t gotten me very far; so, let’s see how far I get when I throw caution to the wind and do whatever the fuck I want to, like the 90 year old curmudgeonly lady that I am one day destined to be.

Warning: Your religious and prudish grandmother would not approve of this blog. There will be swearing, subject matter of a prurient nature, and plenty of griping about the elderly.  I don’t care for censorship, although I will change names to protect the pathetic.  In essence you will get a peek at a disturbed, opinionated, and slightly emotionally unhinged woman who attempts to employ humor and off-the wall commentary to deal with her Lessons in Reality. You can’t call 911 and sic the men in the white coats and tranquilizer guns on me because I will deny everything in this blog, change my picture to your picture, DOX you, and inform the authorities that YOU are catfishing ME.

About you

  • You’re the type of person who likes to look under bandages and pop infected boils. (You’re a little twisted.  I like that!)
  • You’re probably bored at your mind-numbing job and feel the need to connect with someone as equally, or more, fucked up than you are. (Let’s be best friends.)
  • You want to feel good about yourself, so you try to read about someone who has it worse than you. (Congratulations, bask in your schadenfreude!  Your life is awesome as far as you know.)