Monthly archives: April, 2014

DISAGREED: Anti-Tinder Tries to Solve Online Dating’s Creepiness Problem

You may have seen this article today in the Huffington Post Tech about the new dating app, Hinge. Well, new to Chicago, and that means new to me. Hinge sends you 6 matches a day, based on your larger social media network. So you’re connected to friends of friends who have also signed up for the app.

I’ve been a Hinge user for a few months. I don’t check it all the time, I only have the app on my iPad, and last night I signed on in to look at my daily matches.

So turns out Hinge is actually the creepiest goddamned dating app I’ve ever used.

Because…

It matched me with a kid I used to babysit in 1996.

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A few notes on that point.

A) I’m not from Chicago. I grew up 3 hours south in a small town. There are maybe 30 people in the city from my hometown. This kid and I grew up a block away from each other. My mother has known his mother since like 1989 when she was pregnant with this kid.

B) My first… serious boyfriend… (first. serious. boyfriend. Get it?) is his cousin. They share the same last name.

So Hinge brings to me the people I know, attempting to be anti-creepy, but actually provides maybe the creepiest match I’ve ever gotten.

AND thus provides the story of my dating life.

[drops mic]

Melinda

The Less Than 36 Hour Relationship

This is how a get together, relationship, and breakup occurred within less than 36 hours.

Sunday, 4:09 PM

Browse through Tinder. Swipe right on a 24 year old, 7 years your junior, because against my better judgement, well, he’s cute. Tada! You match.

4:15 PM

Cute kid sends a message. I insist he’s too young, he disagrees.

4:15 – 8:30 PM

Send witty Tinder messages. Exchange numbers. Send witty text messages.

8:31 PM

“Hey it’s D—. It too late to meet up tonight?” Says he’ll be there to pick me up in 30 minutes. Arrives early, am half naked. Throw on some random outfit and run outside to his car in the rain. Head to neighborhood hotspot.

10:00 PM

2 drinks in. Cuter than ever. Discuss music, politics, school, career. Bat eyes in the booth.

12:05 AM

Drives me home. Kisses me in the car. Invites himself in.

1:21 AM

Departs back to the North side.

Monday, 9:29 AM

Receive text message referring to last night’s conversation.

9:52 AM

Add him on gchat.

10:15 AM

Gchat friend about the kid. Explain how he has his shit together more than last ex, though is only 24 years old. Friend reminds me having his shit together more than your last ex isn’t a difficult feat. Ah yes.

10:15 AM – 5:05 PM

Spend day communicating, exchanging music recommendations, sending witty gchats. Looking at his public photos on Facebook, Googling his name.

7:22 PM

Text messages:

D: I know you’re interested in me.

Me: You do huh?

8:47 – 9:41 PM

Launch texting debate/argument about empathy, social justice, and social issues. Get turned off by young Republican propaganda. Stop texting.

11:02 PM

Text message inviting me over. Consider it, but remember parking in his yuppy neighborhood is impossible.

11:07 PM

Reconsider and inquire about his stock in prophylactics.

11:07-11:31 PM

Have argument about using prophylactics. Get accused of having an STI for insisting on using prophylactics.

11:31 PM

Receive the following text message referring to opinion on safe sex:

“That’s the gayest shit I’ve ever heard in my life.”

11:32 PM

Explain that it’s actually the straightest conversation as there was discussion of heterosexual sex.

12:03 AM

Text: “That frat boy persona you got going on is not cute.” Block from Tinder and Google Voice. Go to sleep.

Note to self: Do not date 24 year olds and/or Republicans. 

-Melinda

P.S. We had the whole “where is this going” chat at about hour 20.

Dibs: Girl Code and Hook Up Culture

Most of my friends (male, female, gender neutral alike) have been physical with each other in some capacity. If I made a map of who’s kissed, touched, sucked, licked, flicked, tickled who in the last, let’s say, 8 years, it would be a cluster fuck of a web with lots of squiggles and dotted lines. That’s just the culture we live in. Throw in some theatre school nerds, guys with guitars and other artists and you have a recipe for Hook Up Disaster (read: Confusion)

The rules have changed people. But I’m not quite sure what they are.
How much time needs to past before you hook up with the same guy your friend used to hook up with?

And at what level of hook up is said hook up crossing the line?

Does someone get to call dibs on someone they were never really dating?

And who dates anymore anyway?

What constitutes a date? Dinner and a movie? Grabbing beers after a show? Hanging out at the theatre’s bar after rehearsal? Meeting for coffee on a Sunday afternoon?

I do all of these things on a regular with people I’d love to bang or have been banging and I’m not sure if it means anything. At all.

If you’re like me, you can quote the majority of Clueless, all of Mean Girls, and you still remember some of those Cosmopolitan quizzes your friends used to make you take. All of those beacons of adolescence tells us that you do not under any fucking circumstance ever in the world hook up with a friend’s ex.

“It’s like the rules of feminism”.

But nowadays, the line of who’s dating who is so blurred that it’s hard to know what factors go in to classifying someone as your ex.
Is it the amount of time you’ve known each other?
The amount of times you’ve been inside each other?
The exchanging of those dreaded three words “I love you”
Whether or not the other person cared about you? And whether or not those feelings were mutual.

These are all honest to god questions that are ping ponging in my head. So I’m going to take it upon myself as Single Girl #2 in Chicago to set the New Rules of Girl Code in 2014.
(HINT: There’s not many)

Rule #1: Dibs doesn’t really work anymore. Like a sad stroller in a parking spot in Logan Square, people are just gonna think you’re a douche if you claim it.
Rule #2: Cosmopolitan Magazine is no longer allowed to dictate our relationship choices. EVER. AGAIN.
Rule #3: But Clueless is definitely still on the table.

So that’s where I stand so far. Any insight?

-SB

I Have Enough Platonic Friends

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So this happened today.

I was set to have drinks tonight with a dude from a few years back. He’s popped up now and again. I was actually supposed to meet up with him the day I met the last dude I was dating, but he stood me up. I was pissed, starting dating the last one, and didn’t talk to him again.

But of course now I’m single. So I went for it, Bold Moves, and asked him out. He said yes, lovely, wonderful, we make plans.

Then at 5 pm he texts me this.

I am not interested in forgetting that point. The last exchange we had was relatively in depth about things he was interested in doing, and not just having a martini.

I didn’t respond to him suggesting to forget that point.

For years now, I have stayed friends, sometimes lovers, and drinking buddies with tons of dudes I’ve dated. For the most part, it’s been great. But it’s starting to grate on me.

I see Instagram photos of a dude I dated three times with his new girlfriend at fancy restaurants where he never took me, just a few weeks after he told me I’m the “best he ever had” (duh). I ran into another ex who was on a date at the bar where I work, the same one who a week earlier looked me up and down so hard it made my coworker about spit out her beer. I met up for drinks with one who broke my heart and who was moving out of town, only for him to ask me to come visit him in Michigan.

But never, ever, do these dudes ask me on a proper date.

And it’s my own fault. Because I keep them in my life, mostly for good reasons, but it doesn’t contribute to moving on and trying to find someone and something meaningful. These platonic, now-friends-ex-dudes, hit on me, call me when they’re lonely, and see me as their hot, sexy, cool, ex, but not someone they’re interested in actually dating or being in a relationship with.

And I’m not adding another one.

Instead, tonight, I’m going out with my dude friend who is not an ex boyfriend or anything of the sort. We’re gonna drink whiskey and I’m going to tell him about the aforementioned guy above and I’ll be happy I’m hanging out with a friend who is actually a friend.

-Mel