I don’t understand Hinge, and other almost 30 confessions

Who has two thumbs and is mere weeks away from turning the big 3-0?

manny

Source: buzzfeed.com

This girl.

And who is also feeling less and less technologically savvy the older she gets?

no idea

Source: jezebel.com

Me again!

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:

cmb

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:

bagel1

bagel2

slow clap

Source: giphy.com

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:

hinge 24

hinge 24

youths

Source: giphy.com

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.

mrs-robinson-gif

Source: mattsko.wordpress.com

(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.

hinge

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.

hinge pics

hinge sarasota

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:

hinge liver

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:

 

hinge tagshinge tags 2

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?

out of touch

Source: knowyourmeme.com

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…

hinge road tripper

  1. 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.)
  2. 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.
  3. 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:

nope

Source: www.reactiongifs.com

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!

Message Monday – the Flintstones

I’ve been appearing lately more as a guest-poster than as a co-blogger. Namely because I spend most of my waking hours being swallowed whole by one case, trapped in the corner of my office by an ever rising stack of boxes upon boxes upon boxes of discovery. Dating has, sadly, taken a bit of a backseat to the glamorous lifestyle of civil litigation. So it’s likely that stories of hilarious hi-jinks in person will be pretty sparse for awhile. But fear not, I still receive messages from the fine gentlemen of greater Boston, and the kind of man I apparently attract is still comically soul-crushing. 

flintstones

You guys. I didn’t even have to put our cupid logo over his face because his face does not appear on his profile. AT ALL. That Flintstones cartoon is his sole profile picture.

You can’t expect me to seriously consider engaging in conversation with you if you substitute a cartoon image for a picture of yourself, and can’t form complete sentences at the age of 40. Also, while I’m generally cool with being called cute, is it just me or is it kind of creepy coming from a 40 year old?

So that’s what’s happening in this neck of the woods.

At the movies with S

A few weeks ago I was home on a Friday night doing some hardcore crafting (who has two thumbs and is doing her part to fulfill every stereotype about single women out there? This gal! Just give it another month or so before I splurge on a subscription to Cat Fancy.) I was watching Comcast On Demand (The Newsroom is back, bitches. McKenzie McHale 4 life) when I realized all three of the movies they were promo-ing the hell out of were movies I had seen on dates. And uh, hello, I have a dating blog, so I think it’s high time I dished to you guys about them. Shall we?

Movie Date #1: Moonrise Kingdom

https://i1.wp.com/content9.flixster.com/movie/11/16/67/11166787_800.jpg

This date was over a year ago, last June to be exact. It was a third date with J, who I’ve mentioned on the blog before (more on him later). We had dinner beforehand and had a really nice time… good conversation, playful banter, flirting etc. It bore more of a resemblance to those dreaded Match.com commercials than any date I’d had before. It was so fun that we totally lost track of time and basically had to run down the street to the theater to make the movie. The tiny theater was full so I grabbed us two seats in the back while J ran to the bathroom.

The previews had started and I was just catching my breath and getting settled when J appeared and asked me to switch sweats. Judging him immediately for being a seating prima donna, I thought, ‘Uggghhhh can this dude just sit down, Jesus’ and audibly sighed, gathering my popcorn, diet coke and purse dramatically. J looked really sheepish as he explained, in the quiet theater, ‘Yeahhh, sorry to be a pain, but I’m actually deaf in my left ear so… I won’t be able to hear you if we sit this way. That’s why I wanted to switch. ‘

Face palm. FACE. PALM.

https://i0.wp.com/www.theblessedbarrenness.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/facepalm.jpg

So let’s review. I threw my date some serious shade for making a simple request, and it turns out he was making that request to accommodate an actual disability. Liz, if I may call upon your wisdom once again:

liz lemon man

After that special little exchange, the date was (mercifully) uneventful. Fun, but uneventful. We switched seats, got settled, and enjoyed the movie. BONUS, J was able to hear me. It was actually a good date flick… fun, ridiculous, and sweetly romantic. J drove my home afterwards and we kissed in his car.

Date rating: 8/10. Good date, good conversation beforehand, good movie, good makeout session. Only one wildly awkward faux pas by yours truly. 

What happened with J? In case you don’t recall, J happens to be the dude I mentioned a few months ago who after casually dating for most of the summer broke it off with me in a crowded bar. He literally drove into the city during rush hour, found parking, and met me in a popular place for happy hour, just to tell me he didn’t want to see me anymore. Yeesh, that was rough. So actually I don’t know why I was still feeling bad about my theater behavior because it turns out, J deserved to feel a little embarrassment. 

Movie Date #2: This is 40

Extra Large Movie Poster Image for This Is 40

This was a second date back in January. The most comical thing about this outing was the fact that my date, A, was 39, by far the oldest guy I’ve ever gone out with. Naturally, our asses had barely hit our seats before I started a relentless barrage of jokes at A’s expense, featuring me pointing over at him repeating, ‘THIS is forty. This right here, people!” and LOLing obnoxiously to myself. That shtick carried us through the previews and well past the credits rolling at the end. Luckily A was a pretty good sport, all things considered. Incidentally the movie wasn’t great… mama loves me some Rudd and those Apatow nuggets couldn’t have been cuter, but it was essentially a movie about two people struggling with their long term relationship and the misery of middle age. Depressing date fodder, needless to say.

The movie ended, I continued to ham it up with the old age jokes as we walked out, and then we (drumroll please) made out in A’s car in the empty parking lot. Yup, I went out with a 40 year old and then made out with him in his parked vehicle like we were both 17. Or should I say, barely 17…

I’m sorry (I’m not sorry), but Meatloaf just makes everything better. You’re welcome. 

Date rating: 8/10. Despite the meh movie, the date was fun, non-awkward and basically stress free. And a little making out in an empty Loews parking lot on a weeknight never hurt anyone, AMIRITE?

What happened with A? We casually dated on and off for months, but homeboy claimed he didn’t want a serious relationship despite legitimately being over the hill. I honestly didn’t want to seriously date him either; he was a little wild for my taste and seemed to have a serious Peter Pan thing going on. After losing touch with him for a while I did discover (thank you, Internet. Judgers of my stalking can move right along, please) that he is now (another drumroll, por favor) seriously dating someone. And although his real life Mr. Big impression turned out to be bullshit, I honestly do wish him the best. It was fun, A, and I hope you do find true love before you’re old enough to score an AARP card. Because that’s seriously right around the corner.

Movie Date # 3: Admission

https://i2.wp.com/cdn.mos.totalfilm.com/images/p/paul-rudd-and-tina-fey-star-in-first-trailer-for-admission-watch-now-121217-00-470-75.jpg

This was also a second date with a guy named D who was fun but who I didn’t think I wanted to date seriously. Our shared obsession with Tina Fey prompted him to suggest this movie. It was one of the first things we discussed, probably because my Okcupid profile opens with an over the top anecdote about how my life’s dream is to become the third sidekick to Amy Poehler and Tina Fey’s dynamic duo. My girl crush on Tina knows no bounds, and the fact that she’s from Philly is just icing on the big lesbian cake I’ve baked in her honor.

https://stupidcupidblog.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/21bda-tinafey5.jpg

To quote Elizabeth Banks in Pitch Perfect: this girl could turn me.

Now, speaking of Philly, there’s something I need to explain about my city. And I say this with all the love in my heart of a parent talking about their least successful (but secret favorite) kid: Philly is lacking some…seemingly basic amenities that any outsider would ASSUME a major city would have. Such as a normal, large movie theater centrally located anywhere downtown. There are tiny Ritz theaters showing a bevy of independent flicks, and then there’s the dreaded UA Riverview. Please, if you have a moment, enjoy these stellar yelp reviews of the Riverview (or as I’ve heard it referred to, the Riverspew).*

*Disclaimer: Any insane, bigoted rants possibly seen on that yelp page are not the opinion of this blog.

Long story short: I hate the Riverview. It’s dirty, noisy, and someone makes a scene pretty much every time I go. Naturally, it was the site of my date with D. Luckily, the movie wasn’t exactly popular, and we went pretty early on a weeknight, so when we walked into the theater there were only two other people there. Phew, I thought. At least we can watch the movie without any wild disruptions. Or maybe make out if it’s bad? In the back of an empty theater that could be fun.

My date, however, had other ideas. There’s no delicate, PC way to share this fact, so I’m just going to throw it out there as it pertains to my story. For those of you who don’t know me personally (all three of you): I’m white. Painfully white. I mean, I did open this blog post with the phrase ‘hardcore crafting’ and then proceed to embed a Meatloaf music video, so this should not come as a shock to anyone at this juncture. My date, D, is black. So anyway, about a minute into the previews, D turned to me, chuckling sheepishly, and said:

D: I have to warn you about something before the movie starts.

S: Okay?

D: You know how a stereotype can be racist, but also true?

S: …I guess?

D: Well… I kind of talk at the movies. A lot. 

S: You do?

D: I know it’s the biggest cliche in the world, but when this gets going I guarantee I will end up commenting out loud and not even realize I’m doing it. Just let me know if I’m bugging the shit out of you, okay?

S: O…kay.

He said this entire thing in a jokey way, so I honestly had NO clue if he was pulling my leg. Any minute I thought he was going to turn to me and be like HAH! I got you good. Of course I don’t shout at the movies.

What actually happened was the movie started, and not 10 minutes in, D started shouting. Okay, maybe not shouting. But commenting VERY loudly, sometimes to me but sometimes just to the air/universe, about things that were happening in the movie. I was paralyzed, again not sure if I was being Punk’d, trying to figure out if I should laugh, roll my eyes, or tell him to shut the f*ck up. The theater was mostly empty, but this honestly made it even more awkward when the couple five rows in front of us turned around at the noise. Because who is it causing the disturbance? Oh hey just the ONLY OTHER PEOPLE IN THE THEATER. The other thing that made this behavior particularly ridiculous was the genre of movie… we weren’t watching like, an action or a horror movie where surprising or crazy things even happened. We were watching a dull, semi serious romantic comedy about APPLYING TO COLLEGE.

The thing is, D was actually really sweet. Case in point: he told me when we started messaging that he was trying his hand at baking for the first time, and I joked that he owed me cookies after revealing that fact. Well sure enough, he showed up to our first date with homemade cookies. And then at the movies, he smuggled a new, delicious, still warm batch into the theater for us to snack on. I mean, thoughtful, right? So I decided to laugh off this ridiculous turn of events. Actually by the end I was laughing harder at the spectacle my date was making than at the actual movie. I even made some loud commentary of my own towards the end, because ‘When in the Riverview’, right?

Date rating: 7/10. As always, Tina was a vision, but the movie itself was bad (what I could hear of it at least). And my date caused a bit of a scene. However, he also made me LOL more than once and fed me fresh homemade cookies. It was an unexpectedly fun night.

What happened with D?

Funny you should ask (I know, no one asked) but I actually saw D yesterday. We’re not exclusively dating–not even close. I hadn’t seen him in over a month before we met for happy hour last night. And I still don’t think I’ll ever seriously date him; I just don’t feel a crazy connection with him. But he’s a nice, fun, funny dude who lives in my ‘hood and we get along well. I’m dating other people, and I have no doubt that he is, too. But as a painfully single 28 year old, it’s always nice to have that one ace in the hole (that’s what she said) who you can keep around to have fun with without any complications or drama. Unless, of course, disrupting a mediocre romcom counts as drama.