Due to the fact that it’s 2015, I am not ashamed to publicly announce that I have dabbled in the wondrous world of online dating. At this point, if you are a single person between the ages of 18 and 28 and haven’t at least had a Tinder account for two hours as a joke, you are probably an alien doing a poor job of fitting in with human society.
There are a great number of benefits to meeting people online, such as the potential to be exposed to people you probably wouldn’t have met otherwise. For me, a huge benefit is the lack of initial face-to-face interaction. I am absolutely horrible at face-to-face interaction with new people. I get all anxious and my brain goes blank. I end up either coming off as unsociable and unfriendly, or else I start babbling word vomit and tell the hilarious but inappropriate story of the time I got really drunk and puked on one of my best friends while we were sleeping in my bed (sorry, Brittany). Through text, I am able to thoughtfully compose replies and edit as I see fit, thus enabling me to present myself as charming, articulate, and humorous, which is only sort of lying. Then, if I actually end up meeting the person in real life, they will still think I am charming and hilarious, no matter how many puke stories I tell (I have a collection, you see).
One of the downsides of online dating is that it often tests your faith in the male population, if not humanity as a whole. Don’t get me wrong; I’ve absolutely met some nice people online, and even the ones that didn’t work out were due more to a lack of conversational compatibility than anything (or they didn’t have anything more compelling to say than “hey watsup” and “lol”). But, I’ve had more than enough…um…interesting experiences to make signing into my online profiles an emotionally exhausting endeavour. What will happen today? Will I be sexually harassed? Negged? Propositioned and subsequently insulted by a man old enough to be my father? Bombarded by a myriad of white guys holding up dead fish? Every swipe, click, and/or tap is truly an adventure!
So, without further ado, I invite you to follow me into the realm of fuckboys, douches, man-babies, and custy old dudes, if you dare.
(Click to enlarge any of the photos.)
5. Copypasta Chefs
A common tactic used by dudes on sites like OKCupid is to copy/paste the same message over to multiple girls. To them, it’s a numbers game; the more messages they send out, the more chances they have of getting a response. This isn’t really a problem on Tinder; profiles are usually no more than a sentence or two, so no one is really expecting some huge clever opening. On OKCupid, though, the profiles are much more extensive, with sections for listing interests, favourite movies and books, life goals, and the like. In addition to the match quiz which has potentially hundreds of questions to answer, there are endless prompts for creative conversation starters. Being personal with a smaller number of girls will elicit a much higher response rate than sending something impersonal to a hundred of them. I’d much rather feel like you’re interested in me as a person as opposed to me as part of a sea of faceless women. Women get dozens of messages per week. Why would we respond to generic ones when there are actual interesting ones to respond to? Plus, we’re really not oblivious. We can 100% tell when we’re being served a big ol’ plate of copypasta.
If you don’t know the “How much wood could a woodchuck chuck” rhyme, thankfully, Mr. Grey-Face will be there to mansplain it to you (incorrectly). Also, apparently, due to my “origin”, my name should probably be something like Ling-Ling or Chop Suey. My Canadian-raised parents were wrong to name me such an ordinary name like Sam. I’ll be sure to change it so as not to cause further confusion.
…I know I’m pretty great, but I’m not so great that I believe this guy spent, like, ten minutes composing his autobiography to send specifically to me. And if he did, well, he’s one of the more self-absorbed people I’ve had the misfortune to interact with.
4. The Little Man-Engines That Could
I’m sure you all know the story of “The Little Engine That Could”. In case you’ve forgotten, let me refresh your memory: A little train engine tries to pull a long, heavy line of freight cars over a big hill. As it puffs along on its difficult journey, it chants, “I think I can, I think I can” to itself and is eventually successful. The message? If you persevere and believe in yourself, anything is possible.
I think we instilled this message a little too well, judging by these next fellas. They seem to have missed the memo that the little engine’s lesson is meant to be applied to things like running marathons or pursuing a tough-to-get job or finishing that last slice of cheesecake. It doesn’t really work when the thing you’re trying to attain is largely dependent on cooperation from said thing. Marathons and cheesecakes are not sentient. They cannot tell you when they do not like something. People, however, can, and dudes like this should probably learn to respect those wishes.
For context, the OKCupid match quiz (the thing that determines your match percentage) contains a question that asks if you would strongly prefer to date someone of your own race. He answered “yes”. He was brown, which I am obviously not, so I was confused. Clearly though, this conversation was doomed from the beginning, racial preferences aside.
I can only conclude that this guy has some kind of fetish for bangs, considering he mentioned the fact that I have them three times.
3. Guys with Sweet Pickup Lines That Totally Make Sense
I don’t really have much to say about these next guys, so I’ll let national treasure JBiebs say it for me**
PSA: If you are white, please refrain from using the phrase “mmm ma”, or else risk sounding like an idiot. Also, milkshakes (especially thick ones) are not good thirst quenchers. Try water, or perhaps a refreshing sports drink.
**Disclaimer: This is a sarcastic comment. This blog does not support Justin Bieber as a concept or as a person.
2. Online Catcallers
Catcalling is bad. Right? Right. No girl walking down the street wants to hear about how nice her tits are from some creep lurking behind a dumpster. And most people will agree that shouting “I want to fuck your ass!” at innocent passers-by is really shitty and not complementary in the slightest.
However, this rule apparently does not extend to online interaction. For some reason, a surprisingly (well, not that surprising, honestly) large percentage of the male population think it appropriate to greet potential dates by making lewd sexual comments. I completely fail to see how this could ever be successful, and it confuses me how anyone wouldn’t understand why it isn’t positively received.
My “You should message me if…” section said something along the lines of “If you’re not going to proposition sex in the first three messages”, so this guy decided to be cute about it. Shoutout to my sister Emily for the invention of this rejection tactic. Also note his use of the n-word (he wasn’t black, I asked).
The best part about this guy is the 70’s disco-inspired shirt and cheesy facial hair. Well, maybe not the best part, but certainly an important part.
André making me immediately regret my decision to break my rule about never swiping right to guys with shirtless mirror selfies as their main image.
Clearly, this tactic was ultimately unsuccessful.
1. Salty Old Guys Who I Am Absolutely Shocked Are Still Single
I should preface this final category by explaining one of the key differences between Tinder and OKCupid. On Tinder, both parties have to swipe right in order to be able to interact. On OKCupid, anyone can send you a message, regardless of match potential. There is a feature that allows LGBTQ+ individuals to block straight people from being able to see them, but otherwise, it’s open season. OKCupid does allow you to list preferences, including an age range, but they’re just that: preferences. Those outside your preferences can still see your profile and talk to you.
Now, I am not at all romantically or sexually interested in older men. I am against the idea that age equals maturity. I am also very wary of men who seek out women 10+ years their junior (and anyone over the age of 19 who seeks out high school girls…seriously, what the fuck are you doing?). Age is not just a number to me. In light of this, I had my age range listed as 21-27 years old, ie. one year younger to five years older than me. In my “You should message me if…” section, I once again asserted that I am only interested in people within my age range, and even warned that anyone who ignores that range would be greeted with hostility. So, I had my age preferences listed TWICE on my profile. You’d think the old dudes would’ve gotten the picture, considering how “wise” and “mature” they are, but you would be wrong…
This grey-faced gentleman expects me to believe that he wanted me to travel 750km to give him a cupcake and nothing else.
I’m really sad because it seems I stopped taking screenshots and didn’t get the whole conversation, but this escalated into him telling me I was an abusive bitch, to which I responded with a link to an article about gaslighting (ie. an abuse tactic). This is absolutely what he was trying to do, as he then turned around and acted “nice” again, trying to spin it so I was the one at fault, saying I should be grateful he was so nice, etc. The scary thing is, his profile listed that he had a kid…I sincerely hope that it isn’t a daughter and/or that he/she never brings any female friends over. Creep and a half.
This guy is the absolute worst person I’ve ever spoken to on any dating site and is truly the pièce de résistance of this whole post. I know it’s a doozy, so TL;DR: He wrote me four essays about how I am a fat loser, called me a “biatch”, and apparently, he only messaged me because he felt bad for me, as I am not beautiful, pretty, or sexy, but merely cute like a puppy. Also, he doesn’t like Asian girls. Definitely a winner.
As you can see, it’s impossible to win. It doesn’t matter if you’re friendly, polite, blunt, rude, or just ignore them altogether. Thirsty dudes gonna thirst. Douchebags gonna douche. It might seem like I was picking fights with some of them, but frankly, I was tired of taking all this crap lying down. Otherwise, these asshats would have gone on thinking that their behaviour was okay. Not that I really convinced any of them, but maybe if enough of us stand up for ourselves, we can implement a full-scale asshat shut-down. Hey, a girl can dream.
In the end, I’ve mostly signed off of the dating apps for now. It’s just emotionally exhausting to deal with men like this on a daily basis. The sad thing is, the dickheads truly have ruined it for the good guys I know are out there. I’ve lost the will to endure endless shitty and insulting and dehumanizing messages to find the ones who will treat me like a person. And I know I’m not alone in feeling this way.
But, to all the Tinderellas and Tinderfellas that are still swiping and clicking away, I wish you all the luck. And, ladies, always remember to keep it a…