Tinder is great for people who can’t make up their minds about what the fuck it is they actually want, like me and everyone else I know who recreationally swipes.
I don’t have to tell you how relationship-oriented other apps, such as OkCupid, can be. Take a quiz, answer a personal question, write about the six things you could never do without! The love of your life needs to know these things ahead of time.
On the other end of the spectrum, of course, there are the full-blown hookup apps in which expressing so much as a modicum of human emotion is NEVER OKAY, such as Grindr. (If you’re a gay man, at least. If you’re straight and/or a lesbian, there is no Grindr. But there are grinders. Which, frankly, are more delicious and less riddled with STDs, so actually you win.)
Which brings us back to Tinder, a.k.a. the 2014 version of Snake, that green-and-black time vacuum that dominated your Nokia cell phone circa 1997-2002.
This is to say that – as has already been acknowledged by many a Tinder think piece thanks to the inspirational “Keep playing!” button – Tinder is a game. A game in which Facebook profile pictures are pieces of luggage on a conveyor belt at the airport and you get to arbitrarily pick up all the bags you want (if the bags are nice and clean, that is) while allowing the other bags (you know, the raggedy ones that are missing zippers and shit) to drift on by untouched.
It’s a low-or-high-or-maybe-both-self-esteem-fueled sport of gathering all the luggage you can until eventually you turn around and see that there’s a fucking mountain of suitcases behind you.
“Wait. Do I actually have to open these and go through them?” you’ll ask yourself.
And then you’ll shrug and be like, “Ugh, that would take time and energy,” so instead you’ll just hit the little flame icon and go back to mindlessly building your collection, even if the pile gets to be so big that you need a ladder (and/or Cirque du Soliel-esque ceiling harness, if you fancy) to reach the top. You’ll never want to reach the top, though, because you will eventually realize that this whole game is pointless.
But random bags will fall to the ground on their own and crack themselves open for you anyways, and many of them will be inappropriate and most of them will be boring but a few will be different. Maybe one in particular will be different.
He’ll start a conversation that sneakily grabs your attention and manages to keep you entertained for the duration of a drunken 45-minute train ride home at night, when the idea of being entertained by a total stranger always wins. And you won’t have to do any work to keep it going, which is the ultimate in convenience for someone who’s on this median of dating apps (and also: is lazy).
And you still won’t be able to make up your mind about what the fuck it is you actually want, but you’ll find yourself going on a date next week anyways in hopes that maybe he’ll be the One to decide for you.
When it turns out that he’s not, though, you’ll feel oddly relieved.
And this is why Tinder is perfect for us.