For the past few months I’ve been playing around on Tinder. My activities are limited to responding to perverted messages with even more perverted things until I get a “…Best of luck to you” from the instigator and chatting with guys that are either on a layover at Logan or send me messages in the style of Prince (“Hey Grl. Wat r u up 2?”). The one Tinder date I had left me in a parking lot late at night after I had locked my keys in my car. It was going really, really well.
Imagine my surprise when Jacob (not his name) messaged me one Friday night and asked me to meet up for a drink. I declined at first, because it was late (9:30pm) and I was already in my donut pajamas and watching Wrestlemania II, but after some seemingly normal conversation void of red flags, I threw out a few suggestions of bars in our neighborhood we could meet up at. He refused all options due them being his usual hangouts and I suggested a place I knew no one ever frequented.
“This place is so dumb,” he said as he walked in.
“Hi, I’m Dana.”
When he asked me why I ever set foot in that place I explained I had come in with a friend after having dinner across the street at one of my favorite restaraunts.
“I hate when people do that. I hate when people say ‘That place is so great’ all the time.”
“When did I say anything else was ‘great?’ You should go there and form your own opinion. It’s a really nice place.”
Then it just became a spiral of negativity.
“I think pub trivia is annoying and I don’t know why people do it.”
“Well, everyone has their own thing. What do you do?”
He rolled his eyes. “I’m unemployed. Thanks for bringing it up.”
I resisted the urge to slam my fist on the counter. I should’ve been watching Hulk Hogan slam Andre the Giant. “Well, I meant, like, what do you do with your life? Your time?”
“I told you. I’m unemployed. I’m not into sports. I hate basketball.”
“I love basketball. I lived in San Antonio….”
To show his disinterest he made some face like he was trying to hold in a sneeze and a fart at the same time while waving his hands in the air.
“I got so upset about your question about what I do that I didn’t ask what you do.”
I wanted to say “FOR REAL? HOW COULD YOU NOT EXPECT SOMEONE TO ASK YOU THE MOST BASIC, GENERAL QUESTION ABOUT YOUR LIFE AND THEN STILL BE REALLY COOL ABOUT IT WHEN YOU ACT LIKE A GIANT DICKMUNCH?” Instead, I played nice.
“I’m a social worker, but I do a ton of other things with my free time.” As I began to answer his question I am almost positive that I saw his spirit physically leave his body in search of discussing his hatred of people that use the term upcycle instead of refurbish – a topic I actually would’ve agreed with him on. “Anyway, I just moved into the neighborhood. How long have you lived here?”
“What’s your living situation like? Roommates?”
“I have a roommate, yes. A woman.”
“Like an old woman?”
“…You could say that….”
“Like an old woman that you care for and is going to die soon?”
“I live with my girlfriend.”
I smiled. “That’s cool. How long have you guys been together?”
He leaned away in his chair. “Three years. I’m a terrible person. I’m an awful person…”
I watched him squirm in his seat for a little while. Even though I had decided about two minutes into meeting this guy that I wanted nothing to do with him, I was pissed. “Why are you here?”
“I wanted to get out of the house. I’m sorry for wasting your time.” He looked guilty. Finally, a different emotion!
“Okay. I’m going to finish my drink and go.”
“Yeah, me too.”
I laughed one of those high society type laughs I didn’t realize I was capable of doing. “No. I’m going to finish my drink. You’re going to leave.”
And with that he chugged his beer and ran out.
The soundtrack to my walk home was notifications of new messages on Tinder from Jacob. “I’m deleting this app!” “You don’t understand!” And my personal favorite: “I FEEL BAD!” Realizing I had given him my phone number at some point, I blocked him so the information would evaporate into space.
Another notification. Cool! Someone new!
“Hi Dana! How do you feel about circumcision?”
And then I deleted Tinder. And I deleted okcupid. And I just deleted a bunch of other unrelated apps out of rage to make a statement.
It’s important to see people for who they really are. Technology hinders this by making it easier to hide behind a chat box. It also gives people a chance to be completely disrespectful and inappropriate with no repercussions. Try asking me about my thoughts on circumcision as a pick up line and see what happens (Hint: Mase).
Share the things that you love with people, because that is what is the most interesting. Don’t waste my time with your negative garbage. If all you have to share is negativity and you love absolutely nothing (including your girlfriend of three years), then I don’t want to spend one second in your company. It’s not the things that you like or what you do with your time, but you’re approach to them. I make zero excuses for the things that I enjoy and I shouldn’t have to make any. Your compatibility with someone doesn’t stem on your hobbies or interests. Don’t compromise who you are because someone doesn’t like that you like basketball. (Go Spurs!)
People have asked me what I would do if I ran into Jacob at a bar along with his friends or his girlfriend. The answer is nothing. I will stand my ground with my vodka soda and refuse to let it bother me. He knows what he did and it’s up to him to figure out his next step as far as his relationship is concerned. Let’s hope that meeting a beautiful, fun, and fancy lady for a drink might have been some type of wake up call for him and, if it wasn’t, there will be one eventually. It’s not my problem.