By Jennifer Betts
I never envisaged that I’d get married in my twenties and proceed to have a brood like the Von Trapp family.
Okay, maybe when I was 15 and 36 sounded very, very old. Now, in my ripe ‘old’ age, I’m considered ‘past it’ by society and am subjected to the “better get a move on” scenario of conversation. To which I politely reply, “You’re so right!” Yeah, sure I do.
What I would really like to tell said smug people, is that I do get myself out there and that if they dared enter the world of the current mating rituals, they would be deeply disappointed.
I don’t mean to sound cynical, but dating in your thirties has become more like a part-time job; with no pay, terrible hours and a boss that mirrors Sigourney Weaver in Working Girl. (i.e. you do all the work and someone else gets the credit)
I still consider myself a fan of love; the holding hands, complacently opting for cosy nights in instead of hitting the tiles, endless talk of how much you both love each other. Honestly, it’s somewhat nice.
But to get to that stage? Cue a de-fuzz, detox, de-moralising few hours of preparation to compete with skinnier, younger competition in a wild safari-like place where you must keep your hands inside the vehicle at all times.
Pity the animals weren’t told the same. I’ve become less and less a fan of this type of practise and have now found myself entering the 21st century phase of finding ‘the one’.
Enter, Tinder. I would like to say that this is a social experiment, but I am ashamedly curious.
If, like me, you’re new to Tinder, let me break it down, because as far as Tinder goes, it doesn’t get more condensed.
So you can sign in with Facebook, without, thankfully, a notification appearing on your page to say, hey! I’m looking for a man! Then suddenly, men simply appear on your screen.
All you have to do, quite callously, is swipe right for ‘like’ and left for ‘nope’. The beauty part is that you only get matched with the guys who swipe right for you.
Fun, right? Depends what you’re looking for, it would seem and what my calculations of Tinder have concluded is that Tinder folk are indeed only looking for one thing and it’s not slow-motion dashes along the beach and cute, cartoon-dog spaghetti kisses.
Most of the conversations start the same, ‘Hi, thanks for the swipe, where you from?’ But you wouldn’t believe how easily that can translate to ‘I must have you now’.
Okay, if you’re looking for that sort of thing, but I thought that’s what we had Coppers for?
Another thing I’ve learned, is that there are a lot of headless men in Dublin. Out of twenty swipes, there are at least ten torso pictures.
Now call me old fashioned, but I am partial to a man that’s got the whole package, head included.
But wait, am I supposed to drool right now? Maybe how much you bench is what makes a man these days; I don’t know, I’ll be sure to ask Westlife.
I’ve had a few matches, even got so far as to have a whole four-paragraph conversation, but when it’s obvious that I have a brain and intend on using it for the foreseeable future, the conversation strangely runs cold.
To me, Tinder has become a Tinderance on my phone. I tend not to fully utilise the features of my smart phone, which includes the fact that I don’t play games. This also applies to my attitude towards dating.
One thing I’ve noticed is that in my thirties, I seem to get a lot more attention from guys in their twenties.
Maybe it’s my experience, my adaptability to any social situation, my alluring prowess towards the opposite sex, or maybe younger men don’t scare as easily.
So hold onto hope ladies, if you haven’t met the right guy yet, chances are he hasn’t been born.