Tinder Loved-How did my longest-lasting relationship was a dating app? Part-I


Tinder Loved-How did my longest-lasting relationship was a dating app? Part-I


Seven months after its debut, in the spring of 2013, I downloaded Tinder for the first time. I had heard of the idea—Grindr for straight people—but didn't feel the need for it until the conclusion of a protracted breakup with someone I had promised myself I would marry. I put the app on my phone in front of him as we were having one of the many horrible good-bye dinners that ended with this is the last time, I swear sex at a restaurant in San Francisco. He stoically chugged his negroni as I was struck by the thousands of men who were likely waiting for me on the other end should he decide to actually end the relationship. “Look!” I said, pointing at him with my iPhone 5. I neglected to explain that during this early stage of the app's development, the majority of its users were 20-year-old college students and S.F. tech bros who only wore free T-shirts from start-ups. By June, my boyfriend had finalized the breakup and moved on to a lady he had met through common friends, fast and without using an app. I desired to perish. But there's Tinder, not the sweet release of death.

After countless swipes, false starts, and discussions with friends who had also joined the app but had never gone out with a match about "logistics," I finally went on my first official Tinder date that July with Jameson. Either my introductory message or his bio contained a joke about "getting a shot of Jameson." I had chosen a light blue minidress because I was meeting him right after work and didn't want to show too much tit. He also selected a divey but not very divey Irish pub in Alphabet City for happy hour. Even though nothing he said was particularly amazing, it also wasn't boring or offensive, which I had already come to expect from most Tinder discussions. I had chosen him because he had hair that reminded me of Scott Speedman from the Felicity era.

Jameson was employed by a company that imported carpets, and he paid for everything with a large wad of cash (great!). On an empty stomach, I drank too many whiskey gingers, and 90 minutes later, I was wasted. To his credit, he didn't propose we go to his place for another drink until after 120 minutes had passed. His place was conveniently located less than a block away. I still knew what he meant even though everything about Tinder was new to me. This is ahead of schedule, I said to myself. Even though we had just been hanging out for two hours, the day was still light. I told him that I also needed to eat. While I consumed two slices of pizza at a tourist trap, he patiently waited. When he tried again, I had pepperoni on my breath and grease all over my chin. I debated asking him to find some pepperoni lodged between my molars as his tongue moved so deftly around my mouth, but I felt the potential of a wonderful romance pour through my body. I was disappointed that he wasn't my ex as I went home alone.

It wasn't a good date or a poor date, but I appreciated how simple and enjoyable it had been, and I was confident that it would be simple and enjoyable to do repeatedly with more individuals until I found someone and removed the app.

I'm still "againing and againing with other individuals" as Tinder turns ten in September. Around Tinder's fifth anniversary, essayists and academics set out to map the precise, long-lasting ways that each swipe had changed us as if we were the hands of our own sculpture. It's now obvious that Tinder has turned into the dating equivalent of smog that we all breathe. Tinder is made to appear like a real route to a happy ending by every straight couple (Tinder will never lose its original heteronormative sheen) who mentions the app in their New York Times wedding announcement. But even so, as one of the naive first users to sign up for the app, I am taken aback by how unreachable a serious long-term relationship feels. Its social impacts, the kinds that make arrogant couples sigh with satisfaction when they claim, "I'm glad I found my partner before there were apps," are felt even by folks who have never downloaded Tinder. But it's simple to overestimate how technology moulds us and undervalue how it adapts to our wants, needs, and desires. It's likely that Tinder did nothing more for us than make connection promises, and we made the choice of how to meet.

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