Who has two thumbs and is mere weeks away from turning the big 3-0?
And who is also feeling less and less technologically savvy the older she gets?
I am really feeling my age lately, especially in the world of online dating. New sites and apps pop up all the time and it seems like every five minutes there’s a new fad: taking it offline, group dating, matching based solely on (possibly lewd) pics, and now connecting through people you actually already know. Through all these trends I have continued to just kick it old school with my tried and true Okcupid, but then suddenly I looked around and all my single friends were on Tinder, Hinge, Coffee Meets Bagel and God knows what other hip new services that I don’t even know about. I can’t keep up! I’ve just been sitting in a lonely corner of the internet, sadly connecting to AOL via dial up and thinking about popping in a Blockbuster VHS tape later.
That may be a slight exaggeration, but I do feel totally late to the party on a lot of these sites, particularly the social media based dating apps like Coffee Meets Bagel and Hinge. They’ve always made me suspicious, and in case you haven’t already gleaned this from our paranoid blog musings, we’re a naturally suspicious group here at StuCu. I just don’t like the possibility of my dating life being broadcast on Facebook (clearly I prefer to voluntarily broadcast it to the entire internet) or some app mining all of my pictures, post history and personal info. And I know I know, that’s “not how it works”, but I don’t trust that douche Zuckerberg. Never have; never will.
However, after co-blogger D experienced mild success on Coffee Meets Bagel, I decided I had nothing to lose (besides my privacy. And my dignity. No wait, those are both long gone). And I liked the concept of the site:
Great! Amazing! I signed my single self up. And then… promptly rejected pretty much every single ‘bagel’ they sent me. Seriously, the pickins were slim. First of all, most of my bagels (naturally) lived in NYC. Second, most of them weren’t even friends of my Facebook friends, so basically it was REGULAR ONLINE DATING except with a much tinier pool of guys. Eventually I got tired of looking at a lame match from Brooklyn every day at noon, so I started to just ignore my daily bagels. This went on for weeks, until:
Bahahaha. You guys, I was kicked off of Coffee Meets Bagel. And honestly, I respect that. I was on their site but totally inactive, just annoyingly taking up space. Good for them for escorting me off the premises, because mama deserved it. Now, if Coffee Meets Bagel worked as aggressively on recruiting some actual eligible single dudes for their site as they did on getting rid of the dead weight like me, maybe people would be getting dates. Just a thought, CMB. I’m full of ‘em.
The other sosh meeds connected site I joined was Hinge, which at first appeared to be slightly less useless than CMB. There were actual matches within 20 miles of me! Also, having a way to confirm that my matches weren’t going to allow me to use their girlfriend’s beauty products or you know, murder me, was a delightful bonus. I signed up, but immediately noticed that the typical demographic looked something like this:
Please note that I’m connected to the last guy through L. Um, here’s hoping he’s a friend of her younger sister’s.
Seriously though, I’m already feeling old as dirt with a milestone birthday around the corner, and now the average age of guys on this site is making me feel straight up like….
I don’t even like to date guys who are my age, because I personally feel that they need to have at least a few years on me to help combat the wild immaturity, funemployment, and lack of desire for an actual relationship that I’ve encountered time and again with the male species. Even significantly older guys I have no problem whatsoever with (remember the 40 year old who I comically went to see ‘This is 40′ with two years ago?) But when that age difference is in the other direction; yeah, no.
(RIP Mike Nichols.)
Back to my maiden Hinge voyage. I browsed through my alleged matches, swiped no on a handful of awful-looking/sounding youths before closing the app and ignoring it completely, for weeks, just like Coffee Meets Bagel. Then one day I was opening my Dunkin Donuts app to score free coffee after an Eagles win (the only thing football has ever done for me), and I thought huh, I guess I should get back in the ol’ Hinge saddle see what’s what. Lo and behold, I came across someone I was actually interested in. Which then made me realize that I had no idea how the app actually worked. So I Gchatted D for help.
This brings me to a comical display of my confusion/general cluelessness.
Jesus, now I know what my mom must feel like when she calls me to help her format an Excel spreadsheet (love you mom, but Microsoft Office is not your strong suit).
Then it hit me: I never even filled out a profile on Hinge, nor did I choose profile pics. What had this guy been going off of when he ‘liked’ me?
I clicked on my profile. The main pic was my Facebook profile pic, which was to be expected. Then I realized there were more pics of me, like at least 15 more, which again I did NOT pick. To my horror, I began scrolling through a gallery of vintage ph0tos (I’m talking almost a decade old) featuring yours truly at various stages of college pregaming, day drunk and red in the face.
Why, Hinge? Whyyyyy. I flagged poor D down again.
Never mind that ‘love your pictures’ is the tried and true pick up line of killers the world over, but why had this stupid app chosen such old pics anyway?? Even if some were my profile pics wayyyy back in the day, like any narcissistic millennial I have dozens of newer ones. And it’s my personal opinion that it should be a FEDERAL OFFENSE to post dating profile pics that are a decade old, let alone more than two years old. In fact, I should speak to L about hiring her vigilante task force to police this law.
Okay, I thought. Some dude messaged me, and he possibly thinks I look 10 years younger than I actually do, so even though I personally believe I look 900 times better than I did in college (seriously, it’s all about the eyebrow shaping, people), I should probably still address that. So I sent my Hinge match a message to the tune of ‘haha thanks, I’m new to this app and it totally chose weird outdated pics of me drinking in college/switching them up now/isn’t the internet a WHACKY place?’
Minutes later, he responded:
Thaaaanks…? Damn it, was this another tea totaler? Grouchketeer, is that you?
And while I’m on the subject of things I don’t understand, feast your eyes on Hinge’s collection of inexplicable pre-written profile tags:
So, they provide users with this list of jokey categories to use on our profiles and I guess help us appear cool…?. Is this something the kids are doing now?
Really though, goody two-shoes? Sailor? After partier? Midnight toker (cool it, Steve Miller Band)? LEISURE DIVER? Who would self report as any of these things with a straight face? Then I realized that everyone, literally everyone, was doing just that and putting these things on their profiles. So I figured, WHEN IN ROME, do as the youths do, and picked a few of the less douchey ones, figuring no one would care about which ones I chose, anyway. And then…
- Witty little opening line, Hinge. Well played. Except it took me approximately 4 messages to realize that Hinge was writing these and not my matches. (In my defense, every opening line is different, so it wasn’t clear at first! I know. God, I’m old.)
- Oh my God, these stupid tags. Here’s the problem, though: are we actually supposed to talk about being “r0ad trippers”? With a straight face? Because what does that even mean? Obviously I enjoy a good road trip every now and then, but who doesn’t? It’s like making a ‘pizza lover’ tag: unless you have some weird dietary restriction, it’s just assumed that you enjoy pizza, because only a serial killer wouldn’t. So thanks, Hinge, for creating the most useless faux-conversation starters ever.
- That last comment. I….’ve got nothing.
So I know what you’re thinking: “it’s Friday, S, and I’m ready for happy hour. Get to the damn point. Have you actually gone out with anyone from Hinge?”
Fair question! The answer is a big fat resounding:
Literally what I’ve shared in this post is the furthest I’ve gotten with any dude since I joined. No dates, and almost no actual real conversations. I’ve gotta say, at this point I’m just going to take that as a sign that I should stick with what works. True, I haven’t actually gone on more than two Okcupid dates with the same person since…April (yikes), so whether that’s actually “working” is debatable. But here’s hoping that changes in my 30th year, and here’s hoping you all stick around to find out.
PS do any of you single readers out there use CMB or Hinge? If yes, leave a comment and tell us about your experience. Am I missing something? Am I doing it wrong? #old
Have a great weekend, readers!