If you ask me, Tinder is the dating app that best simulates real life: On a Saturday night at a bar you see millions of faces, each connected to a person whos age and interests you can roughly estimate based off appearance. You pass on person after person, only picking out a few that appeal to you. You think they’re cute and you make eyes at them and if they notice and smile back at you, a conversation might start up (but it’s just as likely that it might not, too.) Tinder does the same thing, just swipe those suckers to the left (pass, pass, pass, pass) until someone catches your eye. Interested? If they are, you match up and the possibility of conversation opens up.
The thing is, just like in a bar, aside from knowing you like this person’s face, you don’t know a dang thing about that stranger you’re looking at. So when I snagged myself my first Tinder date earlier this week, I quickly realized that I was going into this date pretty much blind. Unlike other dating sites, I didn’t have a somewhat carefully crafted profile with key facts about the guy. I didn’t even know how tall he was. We’d exchanged a few text messages and I’d done a bit of interweb snooping, but a LinkedIn page doesn’t exactly give personality insights.
A thing that has always been curious to me about first dates is the whole grandeur of it all. Especially if you’ve got a good vibe off of someone, you’re doing your best impersonation of a charming, smooth, sexy, put-together person, and they’re doing the same. It’s this wonderful/horrible masquerade of trying to be yourself (because you want them to like you) but also trying to be the kind of person that they’ll like (because who can be sure if that’s actually you, right?) Toss in a few drinks and who knows. That’s how my first Tinder date went. Right off the bat, good vibes and the overwhelming need to impress (without looking like you’re trying to hard.)
All in all, I’d say we were both successful in our endeavors to charm and woo with wit and banter. I’m feeling quite a bit intrigued and certainly looking forward to date #2. At some point the guises will be dropped and then the real fun begins!