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So you finally got a Tinder account.
Maybe you're curious, maybe you're looking for a hookup, maybe you are tentatively trying to get back into the dating game. Maybe you have no freaking idea why you've allowed your best friend to set you up with a Tinder account but you're going with it.
Even if you don't know exactly what you're looking for you, you do know precisely what you're NOT looking for: no assholes, no unsolicited dick pics, no disgusting sexists, no psychos, no "your" instead of "you're", etc. You choose a few nice pictures where you look pretty and friendly and intriguing and you write a funny variation of "I like dogs" in your bio.
The time has come to swipe.
You probably start by checking every profile meticulously: playing detective when all he has are group pictures, trying to read between the lines of his poorly written bio, trying to understand what the heck a "2nd connection" is, judging his confusing music choices, etc. You want to give them a fair chance and you're probably more generous with your "Likes" than your friends would want you to be. If he has kind eyes, if his bio isn't completely uninteresting, if he works in your field and you sort of want to network (maybe?), if he has a genuine smile, if he has a dog, if he has a sweet picture with his family... The first match takes you completely by surprise, you blush, you giggle, you tell your friend who looks at his pictures with a scrunched up nose and says, "He's not really my type but whatever floats your boat" and you keep swiping, now feeling a bit emboldened. The following few matches still feel electric and promising, but the giggly wonder will eventually wear off.
You're waiting for them to text, you know it's an unfair social construct and you feel a bit guilty that the weight is on their shoulders but you reason that you're not really invested enough to break social conventions, you'll just go with the flow. (Alternatively, you cling to the excuse that if they expected you to text first they could've been on Bumble instead of Tinder). You keep your expectations low, if they open with a cheesy (yet endearing) pickup line followed by a friendly conversation it will be a success. You're still hoping for some witty banter, after all, the point of this is to flirt, right?
After a while, you realize the only variation from "Hi, I don't have a dog lol" you might have any chance of getting is, "Hi, how was your weekend?" But they're nice, they sound like nice guys, maybe not the sarcastic comedians they pretended to be on their bio (some are completely incompatible with the idea of sarcasm altogether) but they're okay. Three out of five of these Nice Guys will abandon the conversation four messages in, potentially because:
A) They died of boredom after their incredibly boring contributions attacked them.
B) They freaked out and fled in fear when you actually tried to engage in some humorous flirting.
C) They gave up on the sexual potential of the conversation after their dry small talk didn't result in a confession of all-consuming desire for them.
The other two out of five will prolong this conversation into the most boring of alleys in Small Talk Town. And that's literally it, you've matched with all the Nice Guys on Tinder which means no flirting, no teasing, maybe like 15% actual interest in your life at best, no chemistry and no tension. None of the conversations lead anywhere because they wilt under the weight of their own boredom. The most you will gain is a great opportunity to test your small talk skills (to the death) in a barren wasteland of humour, where your clever quips make the same noise as a tree falling in an empty forest.
Welcome to Tinder. You thought you were safe from disappointment because you expected no more than cheesy lines and cheeky banter but you were wrong. Your wide-eyed wonder and propensity for kind-eyed guys will lead to the bumpy road of bitterness that ends with this sentence.