The Way We Meet

You are really something. The things you’ve done, the places you’ve been, the people you’ve met… oh boy, the memories you’ve collected! You’ve been a nomad, a traveler, an Amazon, a rider, a storyteller. People tell you that you are ballsy, self-confident, courageous, daring…

But then you are also insecure, emotional, needy, dramatic and so on and so forth. Probably another reason you’ve been on Tinder or Inner Circle – the latest dating app I discovered while being too lazy to bike in this cold weather to any public place.

There are two types of people on dating apps: the ones who dedicate to one or two profiles at once and the ones who check other profiles while waiting for your replies having a constant fear of missing out. The first ones end up dating one of the profiles and ghosting – probably very politely – the other one. The second ones are hunters, restless, passionate, curious, nomads, people who have been living some shit, been heartbroken, rejected, ghosted and loved so many times they basically don’t give a fuck. Well not until their right buttons are triggered.

Swiping on the app your mind goes like:

Too serious.  Bad photo, dude.  Ugh.  Too pretty. And nothing else.  Weird. Too hippie.  Too short.  Too much of a close-up!!!  Too much! Too easy! Too sad.  Too old.  Ugly … those teeth!  Fat. Unconscious of himself. Arrogant. Materialistic… Too many of good old photos and just one recent where you can’t even tell what’s left of his youth. 

I know. We are judgemental. We think we have enough experience to know everything before even talking to each other. It’s a jungle.

No likes, no winks, no woofs, he just breaks the ice after a profile check:

Hey! I must say that I actually prefer your two pictures even more than pictures of pizzas from a menu – and I really love pizza 🙈

Haha, much appreciated! You should see my Snapchat bitmoji, it has my face on a pizza. Well, my head is having a pizza aura… damn, can’t show it here. But you get it.

Well, you are welcome. And that escalated quickly. I am actually not sure if I get it, but here is mine.

Only if you tell me the origin of that name

It’s an alias to my surname. My great-great-grand-dad was Polish.

…3 minutes pass and he freaks out. He says goodbye. 

You don’t want to feel like it was your fault and you engage in what it might be a better ending for a quite ok start of a conversation. You do a little bit of a small talk and hit them with a tricky question. You need their ideas. Make them think. Usually, they will think more about what you want to hear instead of what they would actually think.

Give me more. Give me a story.

Hmm… let’s see. How about a short story about the Crazy Polak from the Inner Circle? 😂 catchy. His urge and need to charm and leave an impression with this girl. 

You’re not impressed. not after having those stories too many times and yet another one wants to start. You roll your eyes. Literally with this emoji: 🙄 This will drag you down. Nobody likes that! He’s politely signing out.

Now, this is your second time pulling him back in. Because it’s weekend and this is the best shot you got to an interesting plot.

But you’re smart. You can do it. And who doesn’t love seeing you put down a bit or pretend you misunderstood his sarcastic tone. Then you are being honest and tell him what was really to blame: another guy texted you.

ok, let’s start over… tell me about that weird text.

Ohay, he obviously likes you for very little things now. He only saw two silly pics of you and forgave two stupid moves… But hey, why not push it a little bit forward and see how he reacts when you are telling him about the last guy you dated?  🙄

– If you’re gonna be weird too I am gonna call it with Polish guys 😂

– I am Danish though…

– Okaaay, fine.

Now you ask him for his phone number. Not because he passed all your texts but you are actually tired of opening this stupid app and want to make it easier for your fingers. If you are too blunt he will not give it to you and asks you why.

– Boy, I sounded bossy.

– Haha, you are bossy indeed. 😂

– I hate this app. It makes me mean. And rude. And it’s hard to text.

– You do seem a bit mean and rude actually…

Damn, you really like messing things up, don’t you? Apologise, God dammit! And be the nice guy – well girl – for once! You can even ask him to help you in that sense. He will say you can definitely find inspiration somewhere else for that. You can take a hint and let it go… you lost.

– A good girl… actually, good girls are often kinda boring 🙄 Nah…I am just trying to figure you out, that’s all. Complexity is a mouthful, but kinda interesting too…

Oh, look at that. He wants to figure you out. Well, let him have a taste. Tell him you will answer three of the most important questions for him to find that out. And you will be 100% honest. He will not ask anything complicated, but things you both know. People want confirmations though.

– Hmm… okay then, first question: You are a bit into yourself, right?

– Easy question. A yes or no one. And having a relative “bit” in it 😃 So yes, I think I am a bit into myself. And not necessarily because of my qualities, but because of 100 other reasons. Mostly my flaws made me look inside. And my failures.

– And you are a dominant creature based on fear of not fitting in?

– Hmmm… I do have the fear of missing out. I think I almost accepted the fact that I don’t always fit in and I shouldn’t struggle much about it.

– You easily get bored and then you seek a fix for an “interesting environment”?

– Yes.

Well done. You are a human to him now. He will like knowing you are a bit insecure, protective and careful. Now, it’s your turn. Show him you want to figure him out. He will say he is honest, sensitive and simple, but he likes complexity. And when he realizes that’s quite a short presentation, he will ask you to ask three questions about himself. You will ask him the following:

1. Who would you save from the end of the world?

2. What age would you prefer to die?

3. How many dates you think we’ll have?

He will be sweet and honest. And then you can open up to him for the last time (or maybe not):

I am actually saddened by the dating these days… How we behave, how we forgot the romance and how we are just being fake polite. We scroll. We check out. We judge. We imagine. We barely dare to talk. We talk random or too personal with all kinds of strangers. We meet. Once a month. Once a week maybe when we get bored and don’t feel like doing the same things. We don’t connect. We don’t even expect to. Because it’s been too long since the last time we did it. And maybe that last one wasn’t even real. Was mostly in our dreamy heads. Then we become so… wild we don’t even know how to behave. So we might pass on real people really easy…We wouldn’t even know.

He gives you his phone number now. You can continue there.

– What do you want? I asked him.

– What do I want? Now that is a huge question… I guess I want to find my future-fantastic-baby-mama…

– I kinda want pizza now… but then is it really worth it? (I feel like most of the people on these dating apps think like this haha).

– Buy a pizza then, easy!

– I am having cake now.

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With someone else…

Coffee Meets Bagel

It’s a cold night in Denmark. You’re single, tired of watching Netflix alone and wish you could have someone who you could just cuddle with. So where are you going? Shopping. To the app store. Entertainment category. Tinder comes up first. But you don’t want a one night stand. Happn is too creepy, OkCupid takes too much time, Bumble is full of cute, smart but insecure guys and the rest of them…well, you don’t wanna be that desperate. But hey what about Coffee Meets Bagel (CMB)?
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CMB was founded by 3 sisters, 30+yo on Valentine’s Day in 2012 (though Wikipedia says it was on my birthday). These 3 females/feminists are confident that their app is the best dating app for women. So called “Anti-Tinder”, CMB names its users ‘bagels’ (I’m not sure if only the guys are bagels or girls too?) and here is how it works: you log in with Facebook, answer to a few questions about yourself including what you expect from your date, then you get daily (at noon) 21 ‘bagels’ who are supposed to be suitable for you. Also you get coffee beans for liking people, playing games and other quizzes, which you can use as the currency for buying extra bagels or to send them to your friends. Convinced yet? Okay… But heads up: single, smart, busy men are not hot, not on this app. Or at least not in the first ‘order’ day and not for sophisticated, high-maintenance women. 🙈

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After 10 minutes you realise you basically cannot even swipe right once. You get 21 ‘bagels’ (gosh, how can one be attracted to someone who’s so highly objectified?! 😛 ) for 24 hours and keep thinking who to chose. But eventually you pick the 35yo engineer guy who looks a bit too serious and old for your taste, but hey, you’re curious about his PhD in solar energy and he looked nice in one picture – which was probably taken 3 years ago on some happy holiday. Oh what a surprise, you match! CMB sends you notifications on what to ask him. You only know the bagel’s name after you match. Everyone is just a bagel until they…eat each other?

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The app’s algorithm tells you to ask the Bagel about the last book he bought. You do it. The bagel makes you wait. Overthinking mood on: “double check my photos, am I probably too superficial to him? I am way hotter so he must’ve think that there is no point of this anyway. Or maybe he’s at some dinner. Or he’s already sleeping. He seems the kind of guy who goes to bed early.”

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So what do you do? you poor yourself a glass of wine, install Bumble, swipe a few times right, get some matches, text 3 of them and even start a conversation with one. Bagel keeps you waiting, but who has time for that at the end of autumn 2016?! You text Bagel that you’re not here for random chatting, small talk and meeting tons of people. You have been here for 20 hours and it was enough to tell it’s a waste of time for you, but if he wants to text sometime and see if is there any connection, you can give him your phone number. If not, best of luck amigo! Bagel answers you after you already got two dates on Bumble and he sounds like writing an email:

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“I like the honesty. I am not a fan of chatting too much here neither. I prefer to meet and see how it goes face to face. We can meet one day, have a coffee without making a big deal out of it and see. This Sunday morning would work for me. Please let me know what suits you.”

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This Bagel obviously hasn’t been on the dating apps too much. But at this point you are super happy about this Bumble guy who cannot shut up and makes you smile so you don’t wanna be too mean to Bagel (even though he deserves more of your honesty). Tell him that ignoring your offering of your phone number was a turn off and Sunday morning is definitely reserved for a special guy who can make you fall in love on a perfect Sunday morning. Anyway, it’s late, winter is coming and nobody asked you for dating counselling. Though they should, cause that’s something dating apps made you good at.

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Apparently Coffee Meets Bagel made more than 2.5 billion introductions and created more than 50,000 happy couples. Called LadiesChoice because it’s the app with more women users than men (60/40 ratio). Also, one of the co-founders found her boyfriend on CMB when her sister sent the right bagel to her. Are you a coffee who needs bagels?
“Coffee Meets Bagel wants to be the place to find love, not hook-ups.” (TechCrunch, 2016)