Hannah Kingston | Disclaimer: Motley Tries Tinder will make you cringe.

Like most, when it first appeared, I downloaded Tinder “just to have a look.” My first impression was that is was, quite frankly, sleazy and a bit grim. I got rid of it almost immediately.

This summer, however, I once again became interested in the app. We spend so much of our lives staring blankly at screens. People have bought things from shoes to cars on the web. We have applied for jobs, researched for college work and have stayed in contact with friends abroad. Was it possible to find someone that you could have genuine fun with online? Once the screens are removed, can you have a spark or is it all as artificial as the light on your phone?

Let me give you some background. I am the only singleton within my wolf pack. Don’t ask me why. I’m fabulous. If you consider an irrational, emotional female with frizzy hair and a disposition for chips, even out of the bin after a night out fabulous, then I’m fabulous.

I knew it was time to take matters into my own hands. No more hiding behind phones, no more time to perfect a witty response, no filters. It was time to go old school – thanks to the new school. I uploaded my least crazy cat lady looking photos and waited in hope. I started matching with people almost immediately and was delighted with myself.
That was until the Mr. Wrongs of the world started conversations with the likes of “DTF?” “Where do you live?” and the one that will make me look at my name differently forever: “You can spell your name the same way backwards, there are other things I’d like to do to you backwards.” The filth goes on.

It’s disheartening, it’s slimy, but it’s also Tinder. A multitude of users presume that it’s specifically for hooking up. We all have our dirty little secrets but an online sex date was not something I’d like to hang up in my closet. My most notable opener from a guy consisted of a three paragraph plea to stay at my house “because he was unable to find a B&B.” As a misunderstood and lowly traveler, he thought that we could have fun and “explore” one-another. Bye Felicia.

I swiped and I swiped, I frequently blocked and I was often left feeling deflated and a bit dirty. I suppose the best and worst thing about Tinder is that you’re putting yourself out there. But we need to ask ourselves, what are we putting ourselves out there for? Sexual predators, sex hungry douche bags and people that start conversations but have the entertainment value of a cream cracker? Sigh.

Where was the nice guy? Was I forever destined to live a life of Queen Elizabeth the First? While all the other queens were spooning their man-friends, I was spooning my hot water bottle, my cat and/or my broken dreams.

Eventually a seemingly nice person did pop up. Same year in college, good-looking, funny, but going on a J1 for the summer. I mention this individual, because I want to tell you all to never judge a book by its cover. During Freshers’ Week, I came across said boy and it was bizzare. We were talking for about three seconds before he lunged at me and tried to take off my top in front of the DJ booth.

Swipe, swipe, swipe; sleaze, yuck, no. This wasn’t going to happen, I was losing hope. Even the normal people on the app didn’t get my sense of humor. I began to believe that surely you couldn’t spark off someone when you started on a screen. I pretty much gave up. That was, until a close friend made me see it as a social experiment and not an endurance test. She made me organize a date.

I spent the day terrified that they were going to be a catfish. Coffee. A simple coffee, then I could run away back to spinster city. I went into the café and was amazed by the fact that they were as hot as their picture. He was also extremely nice, despite the fact that I acted like a social reject. I then became paranoid that said male would think I was the catfish. Then I got excitable and couldn’t stop talking. By this I mean mentioning my subscription to Pony magazine when I was twelve. I’m alluding to the fact that I may have discussed my clothes drying on the line. I shook his hands twice and ran away. He seemed bewildered and amused at the same time. I wanted to bury a grave under my drying clothes and end it all. I liked him and thought I had destroyed weeks of chit-chat.

That was it, I was done, or at least that’s what I thought. But since that first psycho coffee experience, we have now gone for juices, smoothies, more coffees, gin and tonics…
Yes, I recommend what I formerly thought was a sleaze fest. Motley Tries Tinder has been a success thus far. You can find that real life spark – if you look hard enough.

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