This column may contain strong language, sexual content, adult humor, and other themes that may not be suitable for minors. Parental guidance is strongly advised.
Talk about the democratization of dating. Tinder is probably the most democratic dating app out there at the moment, and at times, the most entertaining.
As entertainment, it’s multi-genre. Swiping through profiles can seem like you’re in a really bad horror movie, with a parade of really frightening mugshots that would scream “psychopath” or “serial killer,” but would probably appeal to those women who fall in love with prisoners they’ve never met―prisoners on Death Row who’ve slashed and sliced bodies with surgical precision, but are oh so lonely, misunderstood, and looking for love.
Horror segues to thriller as a slew of hot men emerge―one muscled, that one bearded, this other one tousle-haired and baby-faced, that other one impossibly blue-eyed… An Ivy Leaguer here, an aristocratic-looking Brazilian close my age there, with all his hair…. Will he or won’t he swipe right on me?
For the hopeful, Tinder is the ultimate rom-com. From “Widower ready to rediscover life and love,” and “I’m not here for games but for a real relationship,” to “No hook-ups, please,” and “I’m a really nice guy,” you find a proverbial line-up of candidates with leading man potential. You look at your shared interests and your common friends. You check out his Instagram and try to dig up his Facebook and LinkedIn profiles. He seems earnest. And real. Could he be the man of your dreams? The chances are slim, but then again, you never know. Just like producing yet another superhero movie, it could be the surprise blockbuster hit of the season or an unmitigated disaster. But finding out is half the fun.
Like Giorgio, 46:
“Interesting gentleman with a very interesting sense of humor, love life and I live it diligently without so much strain or tension, I love kids, I love because it’s free and everything I do I do with passion.”
Or Anthony, 52:
“I’m serious and ready. I have been lonely. And yet I have so much passion and love that I want to pour out on one special. I want to make feel [sic] like there is no better individual on the face of the earth.”
If you’re that woman, swipe right on Anthony, please.
Then there’s the Buddy Movie, the young frat-boy types, cookie-cutter Wolf of Wall Street wannabe masters of the universe maybe, or the chill boho/hipster variety, all looking like they cast of Porky’s meets Weekend at Bernie’s meets Animal House meets Zac Efron. They’re totally DTF, looking for a hookup, maybe a fling, but definitely not the mother of their children. Forget clever or flattering but respectful openers, or even chats with substance; these guys want to get laid as quickly as possible and tend to believe the more crudely they word their proposition, the more success they’ll have.
It could be a function of youth and entitlement, though f*ckboys and assholes do come in all ages and sizes.
“Look, let’s cut the shit, you fancy me, I fancy you, we going to hook up or what?”
Or the cynical Olivier, 43:
“Bla bla bla look at me I’m amazing…bla bla bla I’ve got that many diplomas/degrees… Blab la bla I’m that type of personality, I love this that… What’s the point of a summary, this is the Internet. Any asshole can pretend to be a great person. Only think [sic] you need to know about me is that I’m trying to be on internet as I am in real life. And yes, I do love sex very much and I think I can be very good at it. Not looking for gf. Not looking for long term. Honestly, looking for NSA fun.”
Yes, definitely a f*ckboy.
Finally, there’s Erotica, courtesy of the men with enigmatic profile pictures―a hint of shoulder maybe, or a ripple of abs―obscured by shadows, sometimes with a crop, sometimes with silk ties. They ask if you like threesomes or bondage, if you have an appetite for sexual adventure.
Like Jeff, 54.
“Me: successful USA-based businessman. Sapiosexual. I seek a warm, sexy, enthusiastically submissive woman of any age who values her strong, masculine, dominant master. Are you attracted to masculine dominant men? I lead, love, direct… I can be a stern sadist & punishing lover, or tender loving gentleman lover. Big 11 inch d**k stretch all your holes. I trigger many orgasms in u.”
Oh, Jeff, those words must have made some women tremble with anticipation. You talk the talk, but unfortunately, your profile picture is more Catholic pedophile priest than Christian Grey, so it really is probable that more women swiped left than right.
This Punisher with an Asian fetish should have taken lessons from the confident and suave Manuel, whose profile picture consisted solely of his rather alluringly-shaped lips underneath a trace of mustache hairs, an affirmation of his belonging to the male species, lest one think his sensual kissing machine seemed a tad too feminine.
Manuel, 35, clearly belongs to the YOLO School of Life:
“Living la vida loca because you only live once. If we’re both here and we match, there must be some kind of connection between us, right? Let’s live and feel the magic that should never ever be lost. Let’s create new memories. Let’s allow ourselves to be seduced.”
A bit too trite, Manuel’s attempts at poetry, but they are tantalizing words, somehow. I wonder how many women allowed themselves to be seduced? I would wager quite a few.
We matched, by the way.
B.Wiser is the author of Making Love in Spanish, a novel published earlier this year by Anvil Publishing and available in National Book Store and Powerbooks, as well as online. When not assuming her Sasha Fierce alter-ego, she takes on the role of serious journalist and media consultant.
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Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in her private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Preen.ph, or any other entity of the Inquirer Group of Companies.
Art by Dorothy Guya